Sunday, January 22, 2017

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 1/22/17


The Affair: Allison’s acts have been kind of a bore this season and it looked like that was going to be more of the same… and then Helen plopped down next to her at a bar. That was kind of interesting especially when Helen said, “I think people see what they want to see in people” when you put that in context of how this story is told. Unfortunately no such surprise meeting during Cole’s act (unless you count Allison visiting him in jail which did not happen in her act). I was really hoping he was going to run into Gunter in jail, even though Gunter works at an upstate prison. Hopefully they actually reveal Cole stabbed Noah because something interesting has to happen in his storyline. Him confessing his love to Allison does not cut it.

Lucifer: Wait, only two episodes until the winter finale? I thought it just returned from its winter finale. If you are going away for three month, why even come back for three episodes?
You can download Lucifer on iTunes.

Timeless: So Lucy gets kidnapped foe one whole episode? Meh, they could have stretched that out a little longer.
You can download Timeless on iTunes.

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: So the Inhuman boss turned out to be a regular human with some Captain America Super Soldier rip off that only works for a limited time. Alrighty. And they did that to make American trust Inhymans but could not find any actual Inhumans they actually trusted to do the actual job. Sounds like our government.
Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on iTunes.

The Good Place: Is it possible to hate and love a finale at the same time? But before that, the Medium Place was great. Although after what we learned in the finale, is the Medium Place a real place or was she just another actor in Michael’s plan? Is there a real Good Place at all? I am going to assume the answer is yes until we learn definitely either way. As for the final episode, I kind of hated the reveal. When the show started it was hard not to think that this may have been The Bad Place or some sort of Purgatory (which I guess is The Medium Place) but I thought the concept of a horrible person accidentally making it into The Good Place was a strong enough concept it did not need a twist. But on the other hand I did like how the concept set up a potential second season (there has to be a secnd season right, what else does NBC actually have in the comedy department; I do not see Powerless setting the ratings on fire).
You can download The Good Place on iTunes.

The Blacklist: I was really hoping the creepy kid actually had some special ability, that would have made the episode much more interesting.
You can download The Blacklist on iTunes.

Emerald City: So we now know who the Tin Man is. But does that make the boy turned girl the cowardly lion? They are spending so much time on him/her you would think (s)he would be part of the original story. But wouldn’t it be a little sexist to say a girl who spent her whole life as a boy needs courage.
You can download Emerald City on iTunes.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Around the Tubes: 1/20/2017



I have gotten a plethora of cool press releases have been flooding my inbox recently that you may find interesting. This post will include blurbs on Atlantis Eising, Uncensored with Michael Ware, The Weapon Hunter, TNT and TBS news, The Great British Baking Show, All Eyez On Me, and The Mindy Project.

- The legend of Atlantis has sparked controversy and debate for thousands of years — is the story fact or fiction? And if Atlantis was a real place, can its ruins be found today?
Atlantis Eising, which premieres on National Geographic on Sunday, Jan. 29, at 9:00, follows executive producer and Oscar-winning legend James Cameron; three-time Emmy-winning filmmaker Simcha] Jacobovici; and a group of archeologists, scientists and historians as they set out to search for the true “Atlantean” civilization and for a possible location for the mother city, the lost city itself. The team draws clues from “Timaeus” and “Critias,” the source of the story of Atlantis, penned by fourth century B.C. Greek philosopher Plato.

- Audacious journalist Michael Ware is best known for his coverage as a war correspondent, spending nearly a decade of his life in some of the most brutal and hostile combat zones on the planet. Famous for his coverage of the Iraq War, Ware was given access that he deemed to be frightening, witnessing the horrors of war and the birth of ISIS. Now, in National Geographic’s new eight-episode series Uncensored with Michael Ware, Ware is leaving the trenches to embark on a new adventure as he investigates some of the most fascinating people, places and cultures on the planet. Ware brings his style of gritty, unapologetic journalism to some of the world’s buzziest areas, ranging from the rough and savage highlands of Papua New Guinea — where women who are thought to be witches are hunted and killed — to the glamorous streets of Los Angeles where celebrities are sought out and snapped by paparazzi. Uncensored with Michael Ware WARE premieres on Tuesday, Jan. 24, at 10:00 on National Geographic and globally in 171 countries and in 45 languages on Sunday, March 19.

- Season two of the Smithsonian Channel original series The Weapon Hunter shines a light on true American heroes as series host, history buff and restoration expert Paul Shull partners with veterans to spotlight iconic moments and artefacts in military history. This is history that leaves a mark. From a Vietnam era gun truck and a World War II B-25 bomber, to a giant 20mm Oerlikon anti-aircraft cannon and more, The Weapon Hunter is history up-close and personal. Season two of the six-episode series premieres Sunday, February 12 at 9:00.

- Turner's TNT has picked up a sixth season of the hugely popular crime-drama Major Crimes, from Warner Bros. Television, which has consistently ranked as one of cable's most-watched drama series since its chart-topping debut in 2012. The show's stellar ensemble cast – including two-time Oscar® nominee Mary McDonnell, G.W. Bailey, Tony Denison, Michael Paul Chan, Raymond Cruz, Phillip P. Keene, Kearran Giovanni, Jonathan Del Arco and Graham Patrick Martin – will return for the 13-episode sixth season. Major Crimes will close out its fifth season with an eight-episode run that begins on Wednesday, Feb. 22, at 9:00.

- TBS's The Guest Book is filling up quickly with notable entries. The new comedy series from Emmy® winner Greg Garcia (My Name Is Earl) has locked its first-season cast and guest cast. The Guest Book is slated to premiere on TBS in August. Among the regular and recurring cast members joining The Guest Book are Kellie Martin (Army Wives) as Officer Kimberly Leahy, who serves on the police force in the small mountain town of Mount Trace. Charlie Robinson (Hart of Dixie) is Wilfrid, an easygoing, friendly gentleman who manages a group of mountain rental cottages with his wife, Emma, played by recurring guest star Aloma Wright (Suits), Carly Jibson (Broadway's Hairspray) is Vivian, a tough, strong-willed woman who runs a bikini bar called Chubbys with her stepson Frank, played by Lou Wilson (Tween Fest). Rounding out the first season cast in recurring roles will be Garret Dillahunt (The Mindy Project), Laura Bell Bundy (Scream Queens) and Eddie Steeples (My Name Is Earl). The Guest Book has also lined up an impressive list of guest stars, reserving the talents of Danny Pudi (Community), Jenna Fischer (The Office), Tommy Dewey (The Mindy Project), Lauren Lapkus (Orange Is the new Black), Michaela Watkins (Casual), Mary Lynn Rajskub (24), Michael Rapaport (Sully), Kate Micucci (Raising Hope), Jaime Pressly (My Name Is Earl), Stockard Channing (The Good Wife), Andrew J. West (The Walking Dead) John Ortiz (Togetherness), David Zayas (Gotham), Shannon Woodward (Westworld), Margo Martindale (The Good Wife) and Stephnie Weir ( The Comedians) for the anthology-style series.

- Dakota Fanning (American Pastoral) is set to star in TNT's The Alienist, the eagerly anticipated series based on the Anthony Award-winning New York Times bestseller by Caleb Carr. Playing Sara Howard, a headstrong secretary at Police Headquarters, Fanning joins recently cast Daniel Brühl (Rush, Inglorious Bastards, Captain America: Civil War), who stars as forensic psychologist Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, and Luke Evans (The Girl on The Train, The Hobbit trilogy), who will play reporter John Moore. The series will follow the three of them as they investigate a series of brutal murders in New York during the Gilded Age.

- Turner's TBS has greenlit ten episodes of the animated series The Cops (working title), starring and co-created by Louis C.K. and Albert Brooks. The two also serve as executive producers on the series with Greg Daniels, Dino Stamatopoulos, Dave Becky and Howard Klein. The Cops is produced by FX Productions, Louis C.K.'s Pig Newton and Turner's Studio T, and is slated to premiere in 2018. The Cops follows Al (Brooks) and Lou (C.K.), two Los Angeles patrolmen trying their best to protect and serve, sometimes failing at both. Ride with them as they patrol one of the biggest cities in the world, then go home with them and be glad you're not married to either.

- Turner's TNT has ordered a second season of its hit drama series Good Behavior, starring award-winning actress Michelle Dockery. Juan Diego Botto, Terry Kinney and Lusia Strus also star in the seductive thriller, which is executive-produced by Chad Hodge and Blake Crouch and based on a series of books by Crouch. The entire first season of Good Behavior is currently available on TNT On Demand and TNT's digital and mobile platforms. The second season is slated to launch in the fall.

- PBS announced this week at the Television Critics Association Winter Press Tour that The Great British Baking Show will return for a fourth season on June 16, 2017, airing Friday nights at 9:00 p.m. ET (check local listings). This upcoming season is the BBC’s most recent season, which received the highest-ever viewership for the series. PBS also announced it has committed to a fifth season of the series that has previously aired on the BBC.

- Lionsgate (NYSE:LGF.A, LGF.B) and Morgan Creek Entertainment announced today that Lionsgate’s Summit Entertainment label will distribute All Eyez On Me, the biopic on Tupac Shakur, in the U.S. The film is scheduled to be released in theatres nationwide on June 16, 2017, on what would have been Tupac’s 46th birthday.

- Get a behind-the-scenes look at the amazing costumes and design on The Mindy Project. Season five of The Mindy Project returns Tuesday, Feb. 14.


- This week the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released a report finding that if the key provisions in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) are repealed 32 million Americans will become uninsured over the course of 10 years, and more than half of those people—18 million Americans—will lose their insurance within the first year. A report by Policy Matters Ohio found that 964,000 Ohioans would lose health coverage in 2019 if the ACA were repealed.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Previewing Six



The Seals of Six on History

As it has been written many times before, we are truly in the era of peak television. There are hundreds of new scripted shows (352 in 2014 and probably rising) coming every year now so it is easy to miss them. Seriously, I have never even heard of The Crown until it won the Golden Globe for Best Drama (so good promotions dollars to whoever bribed the Hollywood Foreign Press for that award). So I have never even heard of Six until History made it available for me to watch the first couple episode. And to be honest, the only reason I watched was because Boyd Crowder was in it.

If you are like me and only hearing about the show now, Six is for Seal Team Six, led by Crowder back in 2014. For fans of action, there are two firefights in the first ten minutes, three in the first twenty-five. Not surprising, Crowder is kind of a psychopath who makes a question kill on the last mission we see with him as the team leader.

Fast forward two years, Crowder is now employed by a private contractor who is building a new school in Africa, right in the middle of Boca Haram country. Naturally Crowder gets captured setting up the season where his old team has to rescue him and the schoolgirls who were also taken. The team is still in tack sans Crowder and a newbie replacing him while the team is now being led by Barry Sloane (who I best know as the guy who ruined Revenge). The only other cast member I recognized is My Name Is Earl’s Nadine Velazquez as one of the team member’s wife who is a little irritated at her husband’s insistence that it is “one last mission.”

And that is kind of the downfall of Six, I really do not care when they go home as all the (ex)wives are kind of wet blankets. Sloane’s wants to have children while he is more reluctant. The only home storyline that is remotely interesting is that of the playboy who grown teenage daughter starts popping up all of the sudden much to his dismay. But aside from those home diversions, added to the race against the clock to save Crowder is unknown to the team, they are racing against someone else looking for Crowder, remember the question kill I mentioned earlier, that guy’s brother also learns of Crowder’s capture. Six should appeal to those who have enjoyed History’s first foray into scripted fair Vikings (even though Six is not actually based on real events and is not even that historic taking place three to one years ago). But I guess it makes more sense than the unscripted shows that History currently airs.

Six airs Wednesdays at 10:00 on History.


Monday, January 16, 2017

Previewing The Story of God with Morgan Freeman:Season Two



When Morgan Freeman talks, people listen (okay, we will forget the ads he lent his voice to last fall). And now it is time to listen to his golden voice as his show The Story of God with Morgan Freeman. Tonight’s premiere sees Freeman travel the globe to find “chose ones” of various religion. He starts off with probably the most famous living “chosen one,” the latest Dali Lama a nine year old who Morgan goes his first ever public speaking event since being declared the next Dali Lama at age two. From there Freeman talked to someone who was convicted in North Korea for “attempting to overthrow the government,” or just praying to God in North Korea.

For those who always wondered is the difference between Sunni and Shiite Muslims, Freeman goes back in time to look at the split where the Shiites believe in a chosen one that the Sunni do not. Also in the episode are Thailand religious people mutilate themselves in the name of god with multiple piercing including swords and pipes.

Later this season, Freeman tackles how different faith look at Heaven and Hell and looks for proof of God. The series also visits some of the world’s most sacred places, including Angkor Wat in Cambodia, constructed in the 12th century as a model of Hindu heaven; Devil’s Tower in Wyoming, which the Lakota tribe believe to be one of the power points of their worship; the underwater caves, or “cenotes,” of the Maya in Mexico, which they believed were the entryways to heaven and hell; rare access inside the Golden Temple in Amritsar, India, the holiest shrine of the Sikh faith; and the Meskel celebration in Ethiopia that commemorates the discovery of the true cross by Helena, mother of Roman Emperor Constantine.

The Story of God with Morgan Freeman airs Mondays at 9:00 on the National Geographic Channel.


Sunday, January 15, 2017

Previewing Homeland: Season Six



At the end of last season of Homeland, it looked like this season would revert back to familiar time when Saul offered her a job back at the CIA with full autonomy of her team. But shockingly, she turned it down to continue working with her philanthropist fiancée. The other big new from the end of last season was Quinn pretty much dying after being the giunie pig for a chemical bomb Except the show left his death ambiguous as the season went to black, but basically he needed a miracle to survive,

I thought the show was going to tease out Quinn’s fate after the lack of a title sequence to see if the actor’s name was still in the credits, but it is easy to deduce his fate in the first scene of the season and confirmed in the second. At the start, Carrie has moved back to the United States (which means a return of computer guy Max), taking up roots in New York City still working for the foundation But instead of working for the poor like in the past, she has steered the new New York chapter towards unjust Muslim arrests.

Saul and Dar are still at the CIA and start the season meeting with the new Madam President Elect. Before you decry the presumptuous liberal Hollywood for already electing Hilary Clinton before the votes were cast, this female president is vert dovish whose one of the first questions she has is why do we just pull out of the Middle East completely? But what exactly does this have to do with Carrie who last we saw had no interest with the CIA. Well the first time Saul and Carrie meet this season, he points out the President Elect is friends with Carrie’s boss and point blank accuses her of being the president-elect’s secret council.

Okay, enough beating around the bush, I am going to talk about the fate of Quinn since the premiere has been on the internet for a while. So SPOILER ALERT if you have not watched it.

Brody should have died at the end of season one. Clearly in hindsight because of the horrible and eventual Carrie/Brody romance that completely ruined the show for a season and a half, but I think most people in the moment knew he should have exploded his vest at the end of the first season. I fear things will be repeating itself. Quinn should have died last season. It is completely inexplicable that he survive the chemical booth. And goodness is he annoying this year as a half dead person who still pining over Carrie. If they actually hookup it may be worse than Brody because that means the writers have not learned their lesson. But other than that, a female president elect… how novel.

Homeland airs Sundays at 9:00 on Showtime.


Saturday, January 14, 2017

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 1/14/17




The Affair: Finally another duel perspective episode. And of course Noah’s sex scene was creepy and kind of violent (also interesting that Helen kept her top on during her act and Noah had it off). I am kind of hoping for a Gunter act coming up just to see if what Noah sees is real or not, I am questioning his point of view. Would seem like a long haul to drive from upstate New York into the city just to taunt Noah and not retaliate when he cuts you (I have to imagine that cut will come into play at some point.

:Good Behavior: My big takeaway from the season finale: Just how did Javier get both cars to the house? But anyway. It was a satisfying finale. I am not sure how exactly the show is doing in the ratings or even critically, but if this is also the series finale, I would be fine with how the season played out.
You can download Good Behavior on iTunes.

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Oh man, good one Dr. Ratcliff, program your robot to make it seem like she has overwrote their own programming. Really brilliant. But when does Ada actually go Ex-Machina?
Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on iTunes.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Around the Tubes: 1/13/17



I have gotten a plethora of cool press releases have been flooding my inbox recently that you may find interesting. This post will include blurbs on The New Edition Story, Seven Songs for a Long Life, From Dusk till Dawn: The Series, The Obama Years: The Power of Words, and news from Showtime.

- BET Network’s upcoming biopic The New Edition Story is a 6 hour, 3 night star studded mini-series that will air on January 24, 25, and 26, 2017. Check out the trailer below.


- Hospice care is rarely associated with song and dance, unless the songs happen to be dirges or solemn hymns. But a new hospice-centered documentary, Seven Songs for a Long Life, sings a very different tune. Filmmaker Amy Hardie goes inside Strathcarron Hospice in Scotland, where six patients, some stricken with terminal illness, face pain and uncertainty with song and bravery. Three years in the making, Seven Songs for a Long Life captures the often quirky patients’ reflections on life and their own mortality, as well as their heart-tugging renditions of pop music classics by everyone from Sinatra to R.E.M. The film debuts on the PBS POV series on Monday, Jan. 30, 2017.

- This February, home audiences will be whisked deep into the vortex of a culebra underworld on the verge exploding in From Dusk till Dawn: The Series - Season Three. Across 10 new horror-packed episodes, MIRAMAX and El Rey's fan-favorite, supernatural crime saga returns on loaded blu-ray and DVD, available only from Entertainment One. Both sets include hours of specially-produced extras including audio commentary with the cast & crew, featurettes including "Season 3 Catch Up," "Inside the Episodes," "Season 3 Best Kills," "Evolution of a Fight Scenes" and much more!

- From global independent studio Entertainment One (eOne), Sienna Films, Wildcats Productions and Executive Producer Frank Spotnitz's Big Light Productions comes the suspense drama series Ransom, which follows crisis and hostage negotiator Eric Beaumont whose team is brought in to save lives when no one else can. Ransom airs Saturdays at 8:00 on CBS. eOne will release new episodes for purchase on iTunes, Amazon and all other leading digital platforms weekly.

- Over eight years, President Obama delivered more than 3,500 speeches and statements – officially ending his era with a farewell address on Tuesday in Chicago. His speeches ranged from redefining patriotism, candidly addressing race relations, inspiring hope and healing, and turning divisive moments into an opportunity for national unification. But which are the moments that history will remember? A new hour-long Smithsonian Channel special tells the story of Barack Obama, “writer in chief,” and takes viewers inside the defining moments of his political career through the prism of his most memorable speeches. The Obama Years: The Power of Words, narrated by actor and producer Jesse Williams, premieres on Monday, February 27, 2017 at 8:00.

Showtime Sports® announced a powerful new documentary, Prison Fighters: 5 Rounds To Freedom, which examines a controversial practice in Thailand’s criminal justice system whereby inmates can earn their freedom by winning a series of Muay Thai fights. A Showtime Sports original production, the 90-minute film will premiere on Friday, Feb. 24 at 8:30 on Showtime.

- Showtime has announced the airdates for its two highly-anticipated new series GUERRILLA and I’M DYING UP HERE. The new six-part limited event series GUERRILLA will premiere on Sunday, April 16 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Showtime. The drama will premiere in the U.S. on Showtime and in the U.K. on Sky in the same week. The new one-hour drama series I’M DYING UP HERE will premiere on SHOWTIME on Sunday, June 4 at 10 p.m. ET/PT, kicking off the network’s summer line-up which will include new seasons of RAY DONOVAN, DICE and EPISODES. The announcement was made today by David Nevins, President and CEO, Showtime Networks Inc. at the 2017 Television Critics Association Winter Press Tour.

- Showtime has announced the premiere date for the highly anticipated, new TWIN PEAKS. The 18-hour limited event series will debut with a two-hour premiere on Sunday, May 21 at 9 p.m. ET/PT. Immediately following the premiere, Showtime subscribers will have access to the third and fourth hours, exclusively across the Showtime streaming service, Showtime Showtime® and Showtime ON DEMAND®. In its second week, TWIN PEAKS will air the third and fourth hours back-to-back on the linear network, starting at 9 p.m. ET/PT, followed by one-hour episodes in subsequent weeks. The announcement was made today by David Nevins, President and CEO, Showtime Networks Inc. at the 2017 Television Critics Association Winter Press Tour.

- Days after the inauguration of Donald J. Trump, Showtime Documentary Films presents TRUMPED: INSIDE THE GREATEST POLITICAL UPSET OF ALL TIME at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival. This world premiere screening at the prestigious festival will be followed by the Showtime premiere of the film on Friday, February 3 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on-air, On Demand and the Showtime streaming service. The film was produced by the team behind The Circus on Showtime. The announcement was made today by David Nevins, President and CEO, Showtime Networks Inc., at the 2017 Television Critics Association Winter Press Tour.