Sunday, December 09, 2018

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 12/9/2018

Supergirl: Wow, that has to be the lamest superpower ever. But hopefully this is the last we see of Agent Liberty now that he is in jail because that storyline sucked. But I have a sinking suspicion the mysterious figure he was talking to on the phone this week was the new president so he may get out sooner than later.
Supergirl on iTunes.

Ray Donovan: Wow Teresa sure was able to get to New York pretty quick. I know Terry said he would need Bridget to look after the kid for a couple days, but it did not seem that long.

Survivor: David vs. Goliath: Every season, as it starts to wind down, someone I barely remember pops up with a plan that makes me go, really, you have been hiding in the shadows this whole time and that is your big plan to win over the jury. Davie is that person this season. The rest of the tribe wisely realizes that Christian would win in a route and blindside him because he has an Idol. But Davie in all his infinite wisdom tells Christian this… and then still votes for him. What? I kind of hope he makes the final just so I can hear his explanation as to why he thinks he played the best game.
You can download Survivor: David vs. Goliath on iTunes.

Vikings: Ooo, Ivar’s new bride is a spicy minx. He may not be able to produce an heir, but that is not going to stop her from giving him one. But what will the baby daddy say about the heir to the throne? Speaking of heirs, interesting Alfred is trying to convert the pagans to Christianity much like Ragnar once practiced (though I do not remember him renouncing his God, just doing a hybrid). And so much for the bishop going back to his vow of celibacy. That did not last long. Speaking of forbidden love, it looks like Bjorn has the same penchant for banging princesses as his father.
You can download Vikings on iTunes.

The Good Place: I never thought we would get to the actual Good Place this season, maybe the season finale at the earliest. And how disappointing that I have spent the last three years trying to maximizing my Good Place points only to learn no one has gotten in there in centuries. No more snail funerals for me.
The Good Place on iTunes.

Blindspot: So Zapata is caught and Jane as gone full loony. I thin last week may have made for a better mid-season finale.
You can download Blindspot on iTunes.

Titans: I recently signed up for DC Universe and finally caught up on the show and, well, you would think of how much the DC movies have gotten panned for being too dark and gritty, they would not make a show that was too dark and gritty. But alas, here we are. Though the most recent was the best so far. Having Lyla Garrity helps, she has been in a coma way too long. But really, it is not a good sign when the two best episodes spent not much time on the Titans because the Doom Patrol episode was the second best.

Nightflyers: Well, this George R.R. Martin adaptation is certainly no Game of Thrones. And really it run into the same problem every spaceship television show run into: the ship is too small making the show too claustrophobic for ten hours o so. You really need to spend some time outside.
You can download Nightflyers on iTunes.

Friday, December 07, 2018

Around the Tubes: 12/7/2018

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 Hootie & the Blowfish, American Dream/American Knightmare, En Vogue, Eight Days that Made Rome, and Disasters at Sea.

- Hootie & the Blowfish: Only Wanna Be with You

- Showtime will debut the world premiere of the new documentary film American Dream/American Knightmare, on Friday, December 21 at 8:30 on-air, streaming and on demand. The documentary, which offers an uncensored look into the life of notorious rap mogul Marion “Suge” Knight, is directed by Antoine Fuqua (Training Day, Southpaw).

- On Saturday, Vevo confirmed that thank u, next had broken the 24-hour Vevo record. Today, Vevo can confirm that Ariana Grande's video is now the fastest video to reach 100 million views, a feat managed in under four days following the release of the video on Friday, November 30 at 3pm ET.

- Tune in Friday, December 7 at 9:00 to watch the broadcast premiere of the concert special “En Vogue” on AT&T* AUDIENCE Network via DIRECTV Ch 239. The show will also be available streaming on-demand through DIRECTV NOW and WatchTV.

- Presented by award-winning historian, author and broadcaster Bettany Hughes – Oxford University scholar and one of the BBC’s 100 Global Women – Eight Days that Made Rome explores the eight key days that defined the great Roman Empire. To tell the story of Rome, Hughes travels across the region once held by the empire, delving into its rich history and uncovering brand new archeological evidence to bring ancient Rome back to life. The eight-part landmark series offers a fresh perspective on the building of arguably the most powerful empire of all time – examining how it came to dominate the ancient world and helping us to understand its astonishing success. Eight Days that Made Rome premieres on Monday, January 7 at 8:00 with a special premiere episode sneak peek the night before on Sunday, January 6 at 9:00 on Smithsonian Channel.

- From pleasure cruises to cargo carriers, even the calmest boat trips can end in tragedy. In the aftermath of the world’s most destructive naval catastrophes, loved ones and investigators are often left with unsatisfying answers. Following its acclaimed series AIR DISASTERS, which has uncovered shocking revelations behind aviation calamities for 11 seasons, Smithsonian Channel expands its search for the truth into the world of maritime incidents. New series Disasters at Sea premieres Sunday, January 13 at 9:00 on Smithsonian Channel.

Thursday, December 06, 2018

Previewing: Into the Dark: Pooka!

The first “episode” of Into the Dark was a farcical slasher flick, the second was a very insularity psychological thriller, and for December, we get a third very different type of horror. Pooka! is a very disturbing mind trip where the further we get in the episode the harder it is to trust what exactly what we are seeing.

Directed by Nacho Vigalondo, the writer and director of Colossal, Pooka! stars Nyasha Hatendi (Casual) stars as a struggling actor who gets cast as the body of the hot new toy for this Christmas season. Pooka has headlight eyes, a weird oval mouth with lines on both sides (being right under the eyes makes me wonder if they may be tears), a big “O” on the belly, and repeats everything you say in its weird voice. Oh and Pooka, who is only available at pop-up stores, chooses to be naughty or nice, not the owner or anyone else. Of course throughout the episode, Pooka is more naughty than nice.

After putting on the suit for the gig, Hatendi starts to wonder if he is wearing the suit or is the suit wearing him. There are gaps in his memory and visions of the suit moving without him. Making things even more troublesome, a budding romance with a single mother. And just when you think there is no why this episode can end in a coherent way, it actually ends in a way that (kind of) makes sense. Here is my up to date Into the Dark Power Rankings:

1. The Body (October)
2. Pooka! (December)
3. Flesh and Bone (November)

Into the Dark: Pooka! premieres tomorrow only on Hulu. And look out later this month for “January’s” episode, because the New Year’s Eve episode premieres December 28.

Sunday, December 02, 2018

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 12/2/2018

Supergirl: I knew Manchester Black was a bad guy from the comics, but pretty cold to sell out Supergirl like that. And it did not even work, Captain Liberty was somewhere else. Although I kind of hope Manchester does exact some revenge because am ready for the Make Earth Great Again storyline to be over. Whatever happened to Soviet Supergirl?
Supergirl on iTunes.

Ray Donovan: You would think after getting blackmailed with a sex tape the mayoral candidate would not be so quick to fork another dude she just met even if he helped her out. And just what exactly is Bunchy up to? But is this the end of Conner? He finally gets out to New York with the rest of the family only to ship out by the end of the episode. Granted he is the least interesting Donovan so itt would be fine if he stays in Afghanistan or wherever he is going.

The Walking Dead: Way to spoil who survives that graveyard Promo Monkey. Geez. But is it really that hard to scale five foot wall? With Eugene pulling and two dudes pushing him over should not have been as hard as they made it out to be. And did Maggie really die in the time jump? She has only been vaguely mentioned and her kid has been whole absent. Maybe they just sent her away assuming her ABC show gets quickly canceled and she will be back next season.
You can download The Walking Dead on iTunes.

Manifest: Wait, they killed off the Homeland Security guy? Or at least hot lady cop was told he did not make it. Of course my number one rule of television is, if you do not see someone die, they probably are not dead. Me thinks he was taken by the shady government agency.
You can download Manifest on iTunes.

Survivor: David vs. Goliath: Wait, Probst offered up extra rice for exchange of someone sitting out an immunity challenge? Lame. Dude’s taken everything before. Should have at least made multiple people sit out. But Angelina is just that keeps on giving this season. She could have been booted that week after the jacket incident and still would have been an all-timer, but lack of self-awareness is just pure entertainment. She finally thinks she is in with the David’s and the look on her face when she realized that Carl was getting more votes than expected was just priceless. She is almost the second coming of Eliza.
You can download Survivor: David vs. Goliath on iTunes.

Blindspot: So Kurt finally realized Jane was not who she was pretending to be and… they ended up having to still work together because they got caught up in a home invasion. But now that she has escaped, it should make things a little more interesting as the FBI will now be chasing two rouge agents. So how long until Jane hooks up with Zapata? Although doesn’t Jane need the FBI and their information? Patterson did find another file this week.
You can download Blindspot on iTunes.

Friday, November 30, 2018

Around the Tubes: 11/30/2018

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 I Am the Night, Marvel's Runaways, Fail State, Desus and Mero, Sommore: A Queen with No Spades, Taylor Janzen, Showtime music documentaries, Ask Dr. Ruth, Life Sucks, and Laws of the Lizzard.

- Director Patty Jenkins (Wonder Woman, Monster) has released a new trailer on Twitter for TNT's highly anticipated limited suspense drama, I Am the Night, starring Chris Pine (Wonder Woman, Star Trek). I Am the Night premieres Monday, January 28, at 9 p.m. (ET/PT).

- Check out the official trailer for the second season of Marvel's Runaways, premiering all episodes Friday, December 21, only on Hulu.

- Executive produced by news legend Dan Rather, Fail State (Monday December 17, on Starz) investigates the dark side of American higher education, chronicling the decades of policy decisions in Washington, D.C. that have given rise to a powerful and highly-predatory for-profit college industry. With echoes of the subprime mortgage crisis, the film lays bare how for-profit colleges exploit millions of low-income and minority students, leaving them with worthless degrees and drowning in student loan debt. Combining five years of research and interviews from over 60 experts, policymakers, whistleblowers, and students defrauded by their colleges, director Alexander Shebanow presents a searing indictment on the for-profit college industry and the lawmakers enabling widespread fraud and abuse in American higher education.

- Showtime will debut Desus and Mero, the weekly half-hour late-night series starring Desus Nice and The Kid Mero on Thursday, February 21 at 11:00, which will air on Thursday nights from New York City. The first ever weekly late-night talk show on Showtime will feature popular TV and podcast personalities Desus and Mero speaking off the cuff and chatting with guests at the intersection of pop culture, sports, music, politics and more.

- Stand-up comedian Sommore brings a full house of class and sass for the debut of her new one-hour comedy special, Sommore: A Queen with No Spades, on Friday, December 21 at 10:00 on Showtime. In the special, directed by Kevin Layne and Scott Woolley and filmed at the Faena Theater in Miami Beach, Sommore commands the stage with her frank and fearless take on today’s issues and her unique perspective on life, politics and individual choice. T

- With her stunningly sparse melodies and minimalistic guitar riffs, 19 year old Taylor Janzen may seem softly spoken, but her staggering lyrical narrative and deeply personal writing sends a resounding message. The Winnipeg artist garnered praise from the New York Times with her debut EP, Interpersonal. which was mastered by Greg Calbi (Julien Baker, Arcade Fire, Big Thief), and co-produced by Taylor. Today, she returns with "New Mercies" - a song that sees Taylor embrace a bigger, fuller sound and was produced/mixed by Mike Mogis (Cursive, Phoebe Bridgers, Bright Eyes). With folk-twinged riffs and an unabashedly post-punk backbone, New Mercies has an underlying sense of frustration that sees the Canadian artist grapple with her disconnection with spirituality.

- SHOWTIME has announced plans for a special week of music documentary premieres in December, profiling rock legends Jeff Beck, Agnostic Front, GG Allin and Korn’s Brian “Head” Welch. JEFF BECK: STILL ON THE RUN will premiere Tuesday, December 11 at 7:30 p.m. ET/PT, AGNOSTIC FRONT: GODFATHERS OF HARDCORE on Wednesday, December 12 at 7:00 p.m. ET/PT, GG ALLIN: ALL IN THE FAMILY on Thursday, December 13 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT, and KORN’S BRIAN “HEAD” WELCH: LOUD KRAZY LOVE on Friday, December 14 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.

- Hulu announced that it has acquired 2019 Official Sundance Selection Ask Dr. Ruth to join its growing slate of award-winning documentary films, which includes 2018 Sundance Film Festival selections and critically acclaimed titles Minding the Gap and Crime + Punishment. The film will premiere at Sundance Film Festival, on Hulu and in theaters in 2019, and will receive the widest theatrical release for a Hulu Documentary to date. Directed by Ryan White (The Keepers, The Case Against 8), Ask Dr. Ruth chronicles the incredible life of Dr. Ruth Westheimer, a Holocaust survivor who became America's most famous sex therapist. With her diminutive frame, thick German accent, and uninhibited approach to sex therapy and education, Dr. Ruth transformed the conversation around sexuality. As she approaches her 90th birthday and shows no signs of slowing down, Ask Dr. Ruth follows Dr. Ruth as she revisits her painful past and unlikely path to a career at the forefront of the sexual revolution.

- Laughspin has exclusively premiered the first two episodes of the new '00s nostalgia comedy series LIFE SUCKS, a perfectly awkward blend of Freaks & Geeks and Wet Hot American Summer, with a production history worthy of true underdog status. Episodes 3-6 will be released weekly beginning in the first week of December.

- Biologists and wildlife filmmakers Nate Dappen and Neil Losin launch a year-long adventure in search of the secrets of an unassuming reptile in Smithsonian Channel’s Laws of the Lizzard. Dappen and Losin travel to remote forests and tiny islands across the Caribbean and Latin America to uncover how a tiny reptile can reveal the fundamental rules of nature – what they call the “laws of the lizard.” Winner of the 2018 Jackson Hole Science Media Awards’ top prize, the Grand Helix, Laws of the Lizard will premiere on Wednesday, December 26 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Smithsonian Channel.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Previewing the Second Half of Vikings Season Five

Last season on Vikings, it was brother vs. brother as half of the sons of Ragnar L:othbrok fought each other for control of Katagaurd. But it was Ragnar’s long lost brother who returned to tip the scales, but not the way I would have guessed. Instead of siding with nephew Bjorn whom he had actually known and his mother, he fought with Ivar whom I do not believe he even met.

The other major storyline from last season saw Floki sail to Greenland looking for the lands of the Gods only to find a frozen wasteland and his traveling companions only became more frustrated. Then over in England Alfred has ascended to the throne even though I believe he was not actually the king’s son. And one of his first decrees being that the English shall now only speak English. So the English and Vikings both speak primarily English. Alrighty.

So the big question going into the new block of episodes is what becomes of the loser Bjorn, Ubba, and Laggatha who is now sporting white hair even though the show picks right up and she really did not have the time to go that grey that fast. Granted with all the decade time jumps in the past she has got to be up there in age by now. The other big question for me is how long can Ivar hang on to power. I have been a bit surprised that a cripple could hold on to power that long. But he has vanquished a couple brothers though there is a new lady in his life that could be his downfall. And I am not the only one to think that because Ivar even has some disturbing visions of her.

Vikings airs Wednesdays at 9:00 on History.

Sunday, November 25, 2018

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 11/25/2018

- Supergirl: I spend the summer catching up on Game of Thrones and after all that time looking at Drogan and his brothers, I audibly laughed at how cheesy the dragon looked on this show.
Supergirl on iTunes.

Ray Donovan: Yeah, Bridget’s fiancé is adding nothing to this show. Those I did get a laugh out of Bridget talking about how her last relationships went. Too bad beau number three may actually not be much better. But when will Micky realize that Ray is smarter than him? So where do Micky and Bunchy go from here? They still have their ID’s so they can still get to Canada but they do not have the money to get to Vietnam or any other country without an extradition treaty. Shouldn’t Daryll still be worried about retaliation though if Micky does not have the money to go anywhere? I cannot imagine Ray turning Micky in if Bunchy is still with him. Although even if his baby mama has not called the cops, Bunchy still killed a guard?

Manifest: Wait, why is the brother at the same school as his sister? Shouldn’t she be in high school and him still in elementary school? Did he get socially promoted because he should be in high school?
You can download Manifest on iTunes.

The Challenge: Final Reckoning: Last week I predicted that Joss and Sylvia would win and I should have gotten that right except those morons stupidly stepped down for some deal that the other team had no obligation to keep. Just lost five minute there. Had they just lasted to second place in that challenge, they likely win. Well, unless Cara Maria and Maria would have agreed that Joss and Sylvia gotten their grenade too. Speaking of stupid moves, how does Hunter let Smashley win? Clearly he could have out run her but chose to stay with her. And even I was against taking the money, Smashley’s excuse of Hunter threatening her family was a worthy reason to screw her over. You just do not treat people that way. It will be interesting how Hunter reacts to the tape of him saying what he swears he did not say. The tape does not lie.
You can download The Challenge: Final Reckoning on iTunes.

Survivor: David vs. Goliath: I had a pretty big eye roll when Carl found the Idol Nulifier. I thought there was no way that thing would be used correctly and really, I doubted it would be used at all. But oh I was wrong and in a big way. When the Davids were talking about all their advantages, I thought it was too good to be true that they would actually play all their advantages and actually do it correctly. The stealing of Alison’s vote did kind of raise my eyebrow but maybe that was the decoy to get the Idol out and through the scent off of who they were actually targeting. But the David’s pulled it off without a hitch. Kudos to Christian who managed to get a Goliath out and hold on to his Idol even though before the vote I thought he should had played it just in case. You found that one, go out tomorrow and find another.

So what now? We are actually back even, five each. Do the three Goliaths who were keen on flipping last episode still try working with the David even though they pulled two over on them two Tribals in a row? Does Angelina go rouge after getting voted for by Goliaths? Would it be wise for any Goliath to flip because it would be pretty obvious now they would be on the bottom? Can the Goliaths pull together and get the upper hand back with all the Advantages sans Christian’s Idol out of the game? It should make for an interesting final stretch since Dan was the least likable of the bunch this season. Hopefully it keeps ping ponging back and forth because one tribe dominating post-merge is always boring.
You can download Survivor: David vs. Goliath on iTunes.