Saturday, May 29, 2010

57 Channels and Only This Is On vol. CXXXII

Quote of the Week: You strike at the shepherd, and the sheep may scatter. (Boyd Crowder’s congregation, Justified)

Song of the Week: Blaze of Glory – Jon Bon Jovi (as performed by Jeffster, Chuck)

Big News of the Week: A Melancholy Happy Trails to Gary Colman: As a child of the eighties of course I watched Diff’rent Strokes, a show that could have only been made that decade (rich white dudes adopts two kids from the ghettos, if they did it now, it would probably be foreigners a la Angelina Jolie). I was really young at the time so I really do not recall much else about the series except of course for, “Whacha talkin’ ‘bout Willis.”

Gratuitous Token Hot Chick Picture of the Week:

Chuck: So Papa Bartowski gets shot near a laboratory where they were able to bring Shaw back to life (after being brought all the way back from Paris) and no one thought to give it a try for daddy. Keep in mind selectively using Claire’s blood on Heroes is one of very many things that made that show unwatchable. And how is a guy as paranoid as him not wear a bullet proof vest? But still it is hard to complain about am episode that included a Jeffster music video (except that they haven’t yet released a full version to the internets). Although the duo better not be on the run for very much next season in order to shed some budget. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Chuck on iTunes.

How I Met Your Mother: See my Parenthood review. You can stream recent episodes over at You can also download How I Met Your Mother on iTunes.

The Big Bang Theory: A female Sheldon is cool for a one off thing but I fear that Blossom may return again next season might be too much of a good thing. And I would have liked to see some failed matches before they got to the female Sheldon. Sheldon on a blind date with a normal person has to be the highest of high comedy. You can download The Big Bang Theory on iTunes.

Parenthood: Not so fun fact: I once dyed my hair black. I couldn’t wait long enough to get rid of that hair soon enough that I got a premature buzz cut so I had brown roots up the sides and the black still up top. Needless to say I got ridiculed as much as Ted dying his blond. Too bad the season ended before we could see Haddie’s dyer’s remorse. But my favorite part of the episode was when Zeke laid into Timm for having an extra latter in his name. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Parenthood on iTunes.

Justified: Good old Dewey, getting deputized. If he gets banished from the church again I wouldn’t mind seeing that as a spin-off. Though I was hoping that was going to Be Stephan Root coming to the VFW with a court order to come inside. But everything seems to be coming together (I wish the previously on portion was actually longer) and we may be looking at some big blowup between Raylan, Boyd, and Bo, and I would be surprised if all three are still alive by the end of the season. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Justified on iTunes.

Free Download of the Week: Matador Records - Intended Play 2010 (Amazon MP3): Artist included on the sampler include Cat Power, Pavement and Ted Leo.

Deal of the Week: Blu Ray Spotlight for Dad (Iron Man, Sin City, Planet Earth)

Video of the Week: It was pretty clear for a long time that Lost wasn’t going to answer all the questions it posed throughout it series run, and below is a rundown of a few of them. Keep in mind the video is produced by a site called College Humor, so some are asked for humorous effect, and some were actually answered if you were paying attention and of course they missed quite of few questions (but if you made that video with every unanswered question it would be a couple hours). But still a good watch. And of course you acn also check out my series review of Lost: Whatever Happened Happened.

Next Week Pick of the Week: It’s Memorial Day, turn off your television and enjoy the great outdoors.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Around the Tubes vol. LII

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 Drop Dead Diva, Life, True Blood, Stadium Slugfest, Team Coco presents Writers Live, and the Worls Cup.

- Need something to watch this long weekend, Lifetime is running a Drop Dead Diva marathon of its first season Sunday starting at 10:00 AM. For those with an adverson to commercial, Drop Dead Diva season one comes out on DVD next Tuesday. Look out for season two the following Sunday. Here is a preview:

Also coming out on DVD, as well as Blu-Ray, June 1 is the BBC miniseries Life which you may have caught earlier this year on Discovery hosted by Oprah Winfrey. I should have a full rundown by then, until I do, check out this preview clip:

- Also next Tuesday at midnight (9:00 for you west coasters) HBO will host the True Blood Ultimate Fan Experience, featuring a live Q&A via satellite with creator Alan Ball and select main cast members, a screening of the True Blood: Season 2 finale episode and a sneak peek of what's to come with an extended Season 3 trailer. The event will take place simultaneously at movie theaters in 50 markets across the country. There are two ways to get passes to the screening event:

Win a VIP pass through the True Blood Ultimate Fan Facebook Sweepstakes at

Register for general admission passes at Passes are available on a first come first serve basis.

Can’t make it; check out a two minute preview of the new season below:

- In other HBO news, the channel will be hosting the very first ever pro boxing match in Yankees Stadium next Saturday (6/6) at 10:15 between super welterweight champion Yuri Foreman and three-time world champion Miguel Cotto.

- Conan O’Brien fans in Chicago, tickets go on sale today at 10:00 AM for his one hour special tentatively titled Team Coco presents Writers Live and will also feature longtime sidekick Andy Richter. The special will be taped on Thursday, June 17, at 7 p.m. (CT), and premiere on TBS Sunday, June 27, at 10 p.m. (ET/PT).

- Are you ready for some football? No spring practices for the NFL, but the world’s football with next month’s World Cup. If so, you will want to check out a bilingual digital media company catering to U.S. Hispanic soccer fans. There is even a fantasy game you can sign up for.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Feed Your iPod vol. XLV: Delicate

My head still hurts from the Lost finale and my lengthy write up of the show (see Whatever Happened Happened). While I have Lost on my mind, I thought I’d go back to one of my favorite song placements from the show, Delicate by Damien Rice that closed out a season one episode where Hurley humorously ran out of battery life. Below is the clip from the show and under that is the song as a whole.

Delicate – Damien Rice Damien Rice - O (Deluxe Version) - Delicate

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Whatever Happened Happened

Lost the Complete Series

If Blogger allowed subtitles, it would be, “Unless of course it was all a dream then that didn’t really happen.”

Please, if you will, jump into the Hot Tube Time Machine all the way back to February 10, 2005, a mere week into the inception of the 9th Green and my very first mention of Lost here, Déjà Vu All Over Again. In the post I mention my first apprehension to the show going in the long run because it had just already in the first season utilized the second of the biggest clichés in television history when we learned that Claire had come down with a bout of amnesia. But I bring this up because of the first overused cliché they used, the “it was all a dream” sequence when Boone saw Smoke kill his sister until Locke said, “Psyche! It was all a dream Boone, she is still alive.”

There is always a lot of talk about if a series finale could tarnish a show and the answer is no. The Seinfeld was considered bad but is still regarded as one of the funniest shows in the history of television. The Sopranos ending created such visceral hatred but I still saw it on plenty of Greatest of the 00’s lists and even topped a few. These were like seeing Joe Montana in a Chief’s uniform, sure you do not want to see it, but it doesn’t disqualify him from the Hall of Fame.

While the series finale may not tarnish the show as a whole, it completely ruined the last season. As one of the few people that actually like the flash-sideways, to go back and realize that forty percent of the season happened in the dead minds of the castaways so they could have the lamest high school reunion ever really ruined that part of the season I had previously liked so much. And what was with everyone with a drinking the kool-aid look to everyone sported after they flashed. They were all way too happy to realize they were dead.

And who was and wasn’t invited was befuddling. Sure they could explain away Michael as being stuck Jacob Marley style with whispering chains (along, plausibly, with Eko, Nikki, Paulo and a few others) but what about Walt? Could have had some flashes at some time with Vincent? And who invited Ben? Did he really redeem himself that much as Hurley’s number two? And what happens to him outside the church? Couldn’t he have gone with Alex and or Rousseau? Speaking of children, where were Aaron, baby Charlie, Ji Yeon, and the spawn of Sawyer? Shouldn’t have Richard warranted an invite? Sure if the island was underwater, he never gets eternal life from Jacob, but if sideways was just make believe anyway, he could have made an appearance.

And the absence of Faraday and Charlotte could be explained away by Desmond respecting the request of Eloise Hawking, but as the “time cop” shouldn’t she know if a world created by a group that leaves, would that world cease to exist and she then was denying her son a chance to pass on? And why care enough to include Miles, Artz and Anna Lucia in you sideways world but not even invite them to your reunion? Sure they did not have some epic love story, but neither did Locke or Boone (did I miss a scene when Boone had his flash backs?). Neither did Sayid and Shannon for that matter. Seriously, Sayid pines over Nadia, cris-crossing continents trying to find her, watches her die, but his true love is a chick he dated for a week.

The big irony for me when it comes to Lost is when ABC shipped Monday Night Football I said there was nothing left on the All Broads Channel for guys to watch except for Lost. It wasn’t until the finale did I realize that Lost in fact fit right in with all the other televised chick flicks on the network. Lost was never a genre show, the sci-fi aspect of the show was no less a gimmick than a hospital or the suburbs. This is why we would never get some important answers to questions like: "Why was Sun the only living member of Oceanic 6 that didn’t flash back to 1977?" because it never matter. If you need and answer, it was just a way for the writers to keep Jin and Sun away from each other for another two seasons because it would make for a more emotional reunion and subsequent farewell.

The finale was for all the people who would annoyingly mash up character names and fights to the death arguing over if Kate should pick Jack or Sawyer and cried when Penny called Desmond on the freighter for the first time. Sure I enjoys the first couple flashes in the finale (to a point, they really went overboard with all of them) but that just isn’t me, I could have cared less who Kate picked as long as the writers found new ways to get her out of her clothes and didn’t well up during the phone call because I was still trying to figure out how present day Desmond was able to get nineties Penny to call him. It is probably not a coincidence that some of my favorite characters on the show, Ben, Locke, Hugo, Faraday, Miles, rarely got any sweet lovin’ if any.

A secondary irony is for the whole series all I ever heard about the show was, “I have no clue what is going on but I love it.” Well I almost always new was going on (I could never wrap my head around the idea of the Constant) I never thought the show was all that great since the second season. But in the end it may not have been a good idea to trust someone behind Crossing Jordan and Nash Bridges.

Lost: The Series gets a Terror Alert Level: Elevated [YELLOW] on my Terror Alert Scale.

Lost on iTunes

Monday, May 24, 2010

Times Change, We Need to Change as Well


I tend to avoid bio-flicks. Why would I want to watch the Fresh Prince pretend to be Muhammad Ali when I can watch Ali as himself in When We Were Kings? The problem with most bio-flicks is they try to cram a whole life’s work into under two hours. When bio-flicks usually work is when they take a small segment of a person’s life, especially a little know, but important, aspect that an audience can learn about. That is such the case with the latest Clint Eastwood (Gran Torino) directed film, Invictus.

The film takes a look at the life of Nelson Mandela shortly after taking the office of president of South Africa and trying to unite the country after years of apartheid. His unlikely solution was to get the country behind its rugby team for the upcoming World Cup being held in the country after realizing all the white people in the stands were cheering for their Springboks while all the blacks were cheering against them as they came to represent apartheid. A story most of us Americans have never knew of because the sport is not big here and we were too busy following the O.J. Simpson murder case in 1995. Had this been a normal Mandela bio-flick, we would have gotten a large chunk of him during his nearly three decades spent in jail, and the rugby portion would most likely been boiled down to one scene if it even got mentioned at all.

In Invictus, Morgan Freeman (Million Dollar Baby) plays the newly elected president who reaches out the captain of the national rugby team played by Matt Damon (Good Will Hunting). I’m am sure some people could give grief to Damon’s accent in the film, but it really didn’t bother me as there are plenty of actors in the film that have natural South African accents that were hard to understand what they are saying at times.

Politics aside, Invictus makes for a pretty decent sports movie. Being about a sport that is so unfamiliar with American movie goers, it isn’t bogged down with sports clichés that you see over and over with to the point you expect them in overdone sports over here like baseball movies (though it still has some of the universal sports clichés that populate most sports movies). There are some amazing camera shots like a ground view shot of a scrum and a game that was played in monsoon type rain. And of course when the Springboks plays the All-Blacks of New Zealand we get treated to the Haka which makes you wonder why this hasn’t been imported into other team sports. Maybe if LeBron had done the Haka before games instead of clowning around with silly bowling skits or his cheesy WWE-style chalk throw, maybe he would still be playing.

For the special features on the blu-ray (in stores now as a combo pack and also separately available in DVD, On Demand and digital download forms) you get an in-depth picture-in-picture commentary with insight from the cast, crew and Clint himself. Two behind the scenes featurettes, a standard making of which includes Freeman and Damon meeting their real life counterparts and a separate one about turning the Hollywood star into a rugby play, along with the Invictus music trailer as well as access to BD Live. There is also a twenty minute excerpt from The Eastwood Factor which will be available June 1 individually or part of the blu-ray box set Clint Eastwood Collection which features 10 of his classics.

Invictus gets a Terror Alert Level: High [ORANGE] on my Terror Alert Scale.

Full Disclosure Notice: This Blu-Ray was given to me on behalf of Warner Brothers Entertainment for the purpose of reviewing the movie.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

57 Channels and Only This Is On vol. CXXXI

Chuck: Of course Superman isn’t dead, simply pumping him with bullets will just annoy him. And annoy everyone who was happy to see Superman gone from the show. The only thing worse than having Superman around again: Jesffster breaking up. Hopefully a reunion tour is already in the works. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Chuck on iTunes.

How I Met Your Mother: How did nobody point out the most in sulting part of the movie based on Ted’s life: being portrayed by Chris Kattan. You can stream recent episodes over at You can also download How I Met Your Mother on iTunes.

The Big Bang Theory: I loved how everyone looked so different a couple years ago, yet Sheldon looks exactly the same. And we finally find out how the elevator got broken. See Lot, it is possible to give satisfying answers. You can download The Big Bang Theory on iTunes.

Castle: I really hope that next season doesn’t turn into a season of will they or won’t they with near misses every couple episodes. But it looks pretty clear they are going into that direction. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Castle on iTunes. Also be sure to check out my chat with Stana Katic.

Lost: Only two and a half more hours and I don’t have to watch the show again. Can’t wait. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu.

Lost on iTunes

Justified: With the condition that he will keep his robe on, can we make Stephan Root a recurring character? With Winona as a court reporter, it cannot be that hard to write him into the show. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Justified on iTunes.

Parenthood: When did Patty Prior turn into such a good actress? My heart was breaking right along with hers during the episode. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Parenthood on iTunes.

Modern Family: I guess it is a good thing Hailey didn’t go to the Lakers game because of the run in with Kobe because he has been known to being attracted to girls of that age and skin color and doesn’t like the word no. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu.

Modern Family on iTunes

Community: When I saw they going towards the obvious who will he pick cliffhanger I first wondered how are they going to turn the overused plot point on its head. My second thought was, they better not end it with Jeff picking Annie as the big twist. Naturally I was a bit disappointed with the ending. You can stream current episodes on Hulu. You can also download Community on iTunes.

Friday Night Lights: I literally stood up and clapped at the end of Buddy’s speech at the boosters party. Hopefully more people follow Buddy and put some support behind the Lions. And I also have a solution to the anemic Lions bleacher situation, bring in Mama Smash, she is better than a whole team of cheerleaders. And I hope this week we saw the conclusion of the art internship, because I am ready to move on from the storyline as a viewer. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu.

Friday Night Lights on iTunes