Showing posts with label Penny Dreadful. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Penny Dreadful. Show all posts

Saturday, June 25, 2016

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 6/25/16



Penny Dreadful: What is going on over at Showtime. About a month ago they announced House of Lies was ending with just episodes to go in the season. Then they announce the end of Penny Dreadful by added a “The End” title card to the end of the season finale, adding a press release saying yes this is the end the next day. Add that to the recent announcement of its flagship show Homeland will not be airing in its normal fall slot, instead being delayed to winter. I actually do like the surprise “The End” title card because sometime the anticipation of the final couple episodes of a series can really drag on the enjoyment of the show as you spend too much time worrying if the show will stick the landing.

Of course when the show ends, you still are left to decide if the show did stick the landing. The death of Vanessa did bring things full circle and it was probably for the best to put her out of her suffering. Same with Frankenstein’s monster who realized that it is for the best for everyone to let someone stay dead, no matter how much you loved them. Other storylines just kind of fell flat. Dorian was always the weakest link on the show and never really fit. Then I spent most of the season waiting for Mr. Hyde to show up, instead all we got was Lord Hyde who does not seem all that different from Dr. Jekyll. I guess you can say metaphorically that Lily was the split personally, or even Vanessa. But in the end it is probably the right call to just end the show here, it was enjoyable while it lasted but it was never going to be great. I will just be slightly disappointed the show did not last long enough to introduce the Invisible Man.

BrainDead: What a bizarre way to do a “previously On” package. I would expect it from a show like Galavant, but I wonder what possessed the writers on this show to do a musical recap about alien brain bugs and exploding heads. And I am not sure if it really exists, but sadly I can totally believe that there actually is a “Tax Prom” every year. But my big complaint with this show is I really do not understand what is going on with the aliens. Are half conservative and half liberal and just happen to inhabit different brains to continue their partisan war? Do they take on the traits of the brains they inhabit and just amplify those ideas? And why do some brains explode?
You can download BrainDead on Amazon Instant Video, free with a Prime membership.

Pretty Little Liars: There are few things I hate more than the “x amount of time earlier” title card at the end of the first scene of an episode. The only thing that is worse is when they do even resolve that scene until later in that season. So we start off the season with the Liars sans Hannah burying someone (or something, I am not entirely sold on them burying a dead body). The title card only said four days ago so hopefully we do not have to wait the whole season to get there.
You can download Pretty Little Liars on iTunes.

Casual: It only took four episodes, but I finally see what they are doing. The first season was all about casual romantic relationships and this season is all about casual friendships. Valerie has her work neighbor, Laura has her study group buddy, and Ale, well, he still has the British dude. But now that I realized that, I have to start wondering at which point do any of the friends try to make a romantic move?
A lot was made at all the women Don Draper bedded, but if we are talking quality over quantity, Pete Campbell had Don beat hands down: Alison Brie, Sarah Wright, Alexis Bledel, Jessy Schram. So I was expecting bit more with his finance on this show. Granted if she ended up stealing all of Alex’s lightbulbs later in this season, her stock will rise greatly. And if I were the Asian chick, I would be a bit offended by being called Bill Wennington. C’mon, at least give her Horace Grant.
You can watch Casual on Hulu.

The Challenge: Rivals III: Wow, that was cheap. Vince actually throws punches and gets off with a warning, Tony hovers over his parter and gets tossed. That is like in baseball where a pitcher throws at a dudes head as hard as he can, both teams gets a warning, then a couple innings later some middling reliever drills someone between the shoulder blades with a sixty mile per hour retaliation pitch and gets the boot. To add insult to injury, it was even Vince who basically instigated the whole thing by knocking Camilla to the ground making her go full drunken Brazilian mode leading to Vince and Johnny to wake up the blacked out Tony. Karma should dictate Vince should automatically go to the Junglee. And with a memory challenge, he may very well depending how attentive Jenna is.
You can download The Challenge: Rivals III on iTunes.

Aquarius: Not a good sign for the second week in a row I fell asleep while watching. I did wake up in time to see the chick with the bad accent turn on the creepy biker dude. Worse sign, I did not even bother to look up a recap to see what I missed.
You can download Aquarius on iTunes.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

57 Channels and Only This Is On:




House of Lies: I hate when episode start in the third act before a “x amount of time earlier” title card, this was weird because we did not get just one scene in the future before flashing back to the beginning, we got five (and really the whole episode just jumped back and forth in time), but at least that was worth it for adding Doug making out with the old lady at the end. I guess it was good the show ended because I am not sure a season with Marty and Jeannie blissfully married. But still a weird way to end it. Before the season Kristen Bell was cast in an NBC sitcom but they said it would not interfere with House of Lies. Which makes sense, ten episode of one show, thirteen of another; some sitcoms air twenty-four episodes a year. Except when the Veronica Mars movie was being made there was talk of a television reboot but they said that could not be done because Kristen Bell could not be the face of two shows at the same time. But then David Duchovny did it with X-Files and Aquarius so maybe in that time people were lax on that. But then two weeks before the finale, Showtime announced it would be a series finale, not season. Has Showtime just decided to get out of the half-hour business? Happyish was a rare one and done on a premium network. House of Lies is now done; Episode only has one season left. So that leaves Dice as only half hour on the air that has not been canceled. Except that has not been renewed either, and not getting a renewal a month after the season ended is not a good sign. And I am not aware of any new comedies in the pipeline. Not that I am complaining, Showtime’s drama are much better. House of Lie is the best I have seen on the network and it is not in the top five all all shows.

Preacher: Being able to get people to do whatever you say in the most literal way has to be one of the lames superpowers to have. That may take a while for Preacher to master in his advantage. Okay, the scene with the Irish Vampire was fun.
You can download Preacher on iTunes.

Penny Dreadful: When shows like Lost were on I obsessed on every little detail, noticed every callback, every Easter egg, just straight off the dome. Fast forward a decade and I do not even notice that museum guy and Dracula was the same guy. Getting old really sucks. At the start of the episode when museum guy lifted up the vampire I thought, oh, I wonder what Victorian monster this guy could be. It was not until it donned on Vanessa that she was hooking up with Dracula the whole time that the lightbulb slowly flickered over my head too. But what exactly does that ending mean? Dracula want to serve Vanessa but it was still him that drank her blood. Does that mean she is a vampire now too? The hot Mr. Lyle replacement said not to believe the mythology behind Dracula, so maybe not. She definitely turned evil. But we did learn from her phycologist that she has at least three distinct personalities so there is probably still a good version or two in there.

Speaking of split personalities, Lily may be getting one soon after Dorian turned on her to team up with Dr. Frankenstein and will soon get injected with Dr. Jekyll’s formula. I have been waiting all season for Dr. Jekyll to turn into Mr. Hyde, maybe it will be Lily who turns into Mr. Hyde. Well that theory does really work because Mr. Hyde is a hideous, evil creature without compassion or remorse and, well, Lily is already there.

BrainDead: Man, this show got killed by critics (and in the ratings) but I really enjoyed the whole sixties B-movie with modern day production feel to it. It is more enjoyable than the other Ramona Flowers show that aired earlier this year.
You can download BrainDead on Amazon Instant Video, free with a Prime membership.

Casual: Nice to see Pete Campbell is still an intolerable douchebag. Here is hoping someone on this show punches him too. And here we are in the third episode and Laura is on her third learning environment. During the meet and greet, right around the “good job” discussion (speaking of intolerable people) I thought she might be on a fourth one next episode but looks like she may actually be sticking around for a while. And apparently Alex’s phase three phase is officially over after bedding one of the annoying mother. Is he back to phase one or is there a phase four?
You can watch Casual on Hulu.

The Challenge: Rivals III: For years I have been advocating that Survivor poach The Challenge challenge makers. But maybe The Challenge challenge makers have finally run out of ideas because almost all of them this season have been horrible and this week’s grab a flag going off the cliff challenge may have been the worst yet. Then they stole that build something until it reaches a certain height Jungle challenge from Survivor, albeit adding a silly ice cooler bath component to it.
You can download The Challenge: Rivals III on iTunes.

Aquarius: I spent most of last season talking about what was happening behind the scenes than what was actually happening on screen. And that is continuing for the surprise second season. No binge watch option like season one where NBC released every episode On Demand after the premiere, but instead this year we get a two hour commercial free premiere. When they announced this I thought we would get two extended episodes. But when the credits ran I noticed writers and directors for “part 3.” So instead of two extended episodes, the two hour premiere was three shortened episodes (though not by much, most hour longs run forty-two minutes so we basically got two minutes less than usual). Did this stunt work? I cannot see how it possibly could. When Angie Tribeca ran its commercial free marathon, it still had a “presenting sponsor,” Aquarius did not even have that. On a personal level it was pretty much a failure because I found myself nodding off about halfway through. But I vaguely remember Denis Wilson showing up. And guess the people that are killed in the future are the Sharon Tate murders. Meh.
You can download Aquarius on iTunes.

Orphan Black: So before season finale we learned next season will be the last raising the bar for the episode. The big reveal is that Rachel will soon meet the person behind everything that apparently is too good for dying and has been around for over a hundred years. So have we met this person yet or is going to be someone new. My first thought was Leekie, or more specifically someone who looks like him, we really cannot rule out the big bad being a clone themselves. Or will it look like Sarah and the rest of the clones that we already know and this person is the real original clone?
You can download Orphan Black on iTunes.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 6/11/16




House of Lies: This show was the first US production to film in Cuba since they lifted the embargo and, well, it kind of looks like every Central / South American setting.

Preacher: So the Irish dude is a vampire, the way he devoured the cow I though he was going to be something more demonic. Though there is still some question of what is up with the Preacher, something inhabited him last week and clearly he thinks he now has some power of persuasion telling the girl to wake up at the end, except we have to wait a week to find out if she does.
You can download Preacher on iTunes.

Penny Dreadful: Oh man, why are they getting rid of Mr. Lyle? He was the most entertaining part of the show. But of course since this is television they replaced him with a younger hotter model. But I guess they also needed to replace the hot demon chick even though you would think a witch could survive a simple gunshot wound. I guess this helps put Ethan back on the good side (he did walk away from his father instead of killing him). And now the gang can get back together just in to help Vanessa battle Dracula. But what a weird scene with Vanessa telling the museum guy there is some ancient evil trying to take her soul and not only does not run, goes on a monologue about the vampire bat before having sex with her. How long until he dies or at least getting under Dracula’s spell? I give I two episodes.

The Americans: So this is the closest Spy Philip has been to FBI Agent Stan since that time Elizabeth got caught back in I think season two being at the same park at the same time. But now that they have officially announce an end date after two more season I am just going to assume the Jennings are never going to be caught. Now my big question is when in the eighties will the show end? The season finale took place in January 1984. I was kind of surprised when I looked up the date of the Oakland-Washington Super Bowl because it seemed like it should be later. I thought the premiere took place during the Reagan inauguration which means only three years have elapsed in four seasons. If the Jennings did not get caught, I was hoping the series would at least last until at least the fall of communism but the fall of the Berlin Wall is five years and a half away and eight year until the end of The Soviet Union. So unless there is a sizable time jump we will not get there.
You can download The Americans on iTunes.

The Challenge: Rivals III: Really, another episode where no one was sent home. So what are we up to, the sixth episode and only one team has sent home via the Jungle and actually stayed away. Except since another team went home voluntarily, will Jessica and Johnny replace them next week? And I kind of have to side with Camilla on the whole token scandal. It is Christina’s responsibility to keep track of her token and should not just be throwing it around willy nilly. How hard is it to tuck it in your sports bra so it does not get lost like I saw many people do? Now I was too lazy to go back and re-watch it, but if it was a situation where the tokens were color coded to the teams, then I can see disqualifying Camellia if she picked up, say, Christina’s blue token when her teams were red. But of course all that drama did not matter because another dude when home because of his girlfriend (at least this time was noble as she was entering the emergency room) and of course Nany and Wes did not draw a black skull.
You can download The Challenge: Rivals III on iTunes.

Orphan Black: Welcome back Helena. Way to spray your clone with copious amount of blood. Speaking of welcome back, holy Delphine sighting. That was so unexpected, during that final scene I originally thought it was Felix; sister until they kept talking about Delphine during the “next time on” package.
You can download Orphan Black on iTunes.

Sunday, June 05, 2016

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 6/5/16




House of Lies: Oh Jennie, why re you making out with the fourth member out of four of a boy band? At least hold out for the second banana. I was going to laugh at the mayoral candidate getting in a fight with that boy bander, but it reminds me too much of what Donald Trump is capable of. You know Trump would punch the fourth banana from One Direction. And his poll numbers would go up.

Preacher: With the proliferation of comic book adaptations and the limited amount of competent actors, it is only a matter time because everyone starts being in two or more properties; heck, despite being a much maligned franchise Fantastic Four’s Johnny Storm has found his way into the Marvel Cinematic Universe twice (Chris Evans as Captain America and Michael B. Jordan in an undisclosed role in the upcoming Black Panther standalone). I wish there were some nineties east-coast / west coast rap level of loyalty when it comes to the two big comic book companies, but alas here we have Howard Stark in the DC property (granted a DC imprint Vertigo which I do not believe is tied into the DC Universe; not that the television shows and movies are connected unless you want to believe they are all art of the multi-verse). The lady who plays Tulip was even on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

I really did not know much about the comic the show was based on but the premiere was mostly enjoyable but suffered a little from overhype (seriously writers of the world, can we please stop with the “best pilot ever” tag, I think most people are smart enough to realize you say that just in the hopes of getting your name in the promo). The star of the episode had to be the Irish dude (though honorable mention to the homemade bazooka); what is up with that dude? I am tempted to go to the comic wiki page. Dude jumps out of a plane with nothing but an umbrella (an a bottle of wine) but The Penguin he is not as he splats on the ground with his intestines all out then gets back together by depowering a cow. Yep this should be a fun summer show.
You can download Preacher on iTunes.

Penny Dreadful Last week we spent the entire episode with Vanessa in the loony bin learning how she met Dracula and this week we (pretty much) spent the whole episode with Ethan (okay we got a couple scenes with Dr. Jekyll but really until Mr. Hyde shows up, those scene are inconsequential). And the two episodes were very glaring, I kind of got bored last week, but the Ethan backstory was fascinating and well put together. My one complaint was I just knew right when his father drew his gun, that the episode was going to end on that cliffhanger. Crap. Now we have to wait a week to see if Ethan embraces the dark side or the light. Okay, daddy’s gotta die. Right?

The Americans: So the FBI are inkling closer to the Russian scientist (thanks to the promo monkeys for letting us know how that turns out) so we have one week to see if this is the time when the Jennings actually get caught by the FBI or maybe the scientist dies before he can talk. But what I found interesting was Oleg taking about the Challenger. Are the writers going to suggest the Russians had something to do with that?
You can download The Americans on iTunes.

The Challenge: Rivals III: So here we are in the fourth week and only two teams were sent home from the jungle. Well actually only one went home because the first team came back for no apparently reason. If you were going to do that, how about have the loser of this Jungle battle the returning team to see who gets back in the game? I would have much rather have Jessica and Johnny back than the other team whose only memory I have of is remember writing I have no idea these people were in this game when they were eliminated the first time.
You can download The Challenge: Rivals III on iTunes.

Orphan Black: Can the next NBC live musical please be Jesus Christ Superstar starring Tatiana Maslany? Or even better Maslany as Alison Hendrix playing Judas?
You can download Orphan Black on iTunes.


We have reached that time of the year where most of the spring shows have ended (there are one more Americans, two more House of Lies ever after tonight, two more of Orphan Black, and four more of Penny Dreadful) and summer shows are slowly trickle out. Actually looking like it will be a very slow summer, it seems like everything is airing at 10:00 on either Wednesday or Sunday, but not much else. Maybe some of the new shows that really have not grabbed my attention with lackluster trailers (Animal Kingdom, Good Behavior, Queen of the South) will end up being this year’s Mr. Robot which had a meh trailer but ended up being great (TNT which airs those first two is in definitely need of a hit as it has launched a critical or commercial hit since maybe Falling Skies; and that show is not on the air anymore). Here is what I will be watching while trying to avoid allergens outside over the next couple months.

Mondays
9:00 - Angie Tribeca (TBS, June 6)
10:00 – BrainDead (CBS, June 13)

Tuesdays
Casual (Hulu, June 7)
8:00 – Pretty Little Liars (Freeform, June 21)
10:00 – Wrecked (TBS, June 14)

Wednesdays
10:00 – The Challenge Rivals III (MTV, already started)
10:00 – Royal Pains (USA, already started)
10:00 – Tyrant (FX, July 6)
10:00 – Mr. Robot (USA, July 13)
10:00 – You’re the Worst (FXX, August 31)

Thursdays
10:00 - Aquarius (NBC, June 16)
10:00 - Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll (FX, June 30)

Sundays

9:00 – The Last Ship (TNT, June 12)
9:00 – Ray Donovan (Showtime, June 25)
10:00 - Preacher (AMC, already started)
10:00 - Murder in the First (TNT, June 19)
10:00 – Roadies (Showtime, June 25)
10:00 - The Strain (FX, August 28)


Sunday, May 29, 2016

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 5/29/16



House of Lies: This was the second time this season the group got high to close a deal. Nice work if you can get it.

Penny Dreadful: So we do get a full flashback episode with Vanessa in the mental hospital and it was Frankenstein’s monster as the orderly. Kind of horror movies set up, girl in mental hospital and orderly learn to accept each other, a quick scare in the middle, and then at the end we finally see the Lucifer.. and then his brother… Dracula? And Lucifer is scared of Dracula? Mmm, alright. I kind of wish this was mixed in with other character’s segments because there was not much going on to fill an entire hour.

Gotham: I think I actually liked Clayface as Gordon more than I liked Gordon himself. Of course none of the guys figured out it was an imposter and it took Barbra only thirty seconds spot that it was not him. Speaking of doppelgangers, that last person out of the bus certainly looked a lot like Bruce with Edward Scissorhand hair.
You can download Gotham on iTunes.

Blindspot: So just who is Jane Doe? Taylor Shaw was a very compelling story arc that apparently is not who she is (though this is television, they can always have a twist next season and be like, nope, she really was Taylor, the bones were planted and Kurt’s dad was brainwashed; and of course my clone theory could still be in play). So Kurt arrests Jane, who surprisingly goes willingly. Sure he does not even give a reason, what exactly is she under arrest for? He does not know she killed a dude. She did not still someone else’s identity, it was assigned to her by the FBI themselves. I do have a sinking suspicion that the start of the next season, one of her tattoos will be integral to a case Kurt is working on and he will begrudgingly let her out of custody.

The Path: So the season ends where the first episode did, but instead of Eddie hallucination the leader dying with a snake slithering on him, he actually sees the cancer stricken leader up and walking around… or did he? A pretty vague ending. Still some other plot points things left unresolved. I spent most of the season wondering if certain characters were going to leave the cult while other would join. It seemed like the husband died under iffy circumstances yet that was not brought up this week and it seemed that the FBI guy may actually be back in, especially if he starts to believe Eddie’s prayer helped. And I am not entirely sure what I saw at the end. Cal spoke of a miracle a couple episodes ago, is the leader now cured and that is the miracle? Is Eddie hallucinating the leader, who is already dead, and the leader came to him in a passing of the torch situation?
You can stream The Path on Hulu.

The Americans: If one would flip, I always thought Philip would be the one as he actually seem to have empathy for his victims while Elizabeth is more single minded at her tasks. Last week was the first time I remember seeing empathy from her asking out of her con on the Asian people and then again when she got a call from the wife. Of course all that went out the window when she stabbed a dude in the neck in front of her daughter. Hard to claim to be a non-violent spy when you can kill a man that easily and not blink.
You can download The Americans on iTunes.

Nashville: The show was a late cancel and it did seem like there was a good chance it was coming back (they just hired a new showrunner for a potential next season) but it did seem like they rushed to put a nice bow on every storyline (well, except Juliet’s plane going missing and of course Layla can never end up happy). Especially the Maddie, she gets mad when Deacon tries to save her from a skeevy dude at a concert caressing her leg, but is glad when he is there when a skeevy producer does the same thing. But it was definitely time for this show to go, probably could have ended last season.

The Challenge: Rivals III: So this is the fourth episode and we still have had only one elimination. As much as I enjoy see Camillinator just going H.A.M. on everyone, let’s cut some of that down and get back to one elimination per episode. Or cut down on time spent on challenges by getting rid of heat based challenges. Sure I enjoy seeing people dropping from heights into water, but we only saw three heats this week and we still have three or four left to get through. (also ending on a is Camilla hurt cliffhanger loses its suspense when we see her at the elimination on the promo for next week, stupid promo monkeys.) Figure out how to have everyone go at once because these heat based challenges are getting too repetitive. Or do a spelling bee, c’mon, who’s against a spelling be challenge (except the actual contestants)?
You can download The Challenge: Rivals III on iTunes.

Orphan Black: The Donny getting arrested scene was great, probably the most entertaining this season, but why did Allison not go down for the drug business too? As great as Donny in jail will likely be, Allison in prison would be so much better.
You can download Orphan Black on iTunes.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 5/22/16



Once Upon a Time: The best part (and really, increasingly the only good part) of the show is the pre-tease break. Except this season they defeated Hades in the anti-penultimate episode and we got a two hour tease of what is to come next. Color me uninterested already. So we meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde who split themselves into two different entities which was just introduced to have the Evil Queen and Regina at the same time. I am guess they are going to explain the Evil Queen did not die from her heart being crushed because she is so evil she does not even have a heart. And how good is purely good Regina if she is willing crush someone’s heart? I was more in in the quick page flip in the books in the library where we saw Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox. I would rather take a trip through American folklore than a severely watered down version of Penny Dreadful.
You can download Once Upon a Time on iTunes.

House of Lies: It was pretty clear that movie producers in the eighties were doing copious amounts of cocaine by the types of movies they greenlit: a mannequin romantic comedy, one with a dead guy as the main character, both inexplicably got sequels. But the most shocking movie that got made with 20/20 hindsight was the feel good racist comedy Soul Man where noted white dude C. Thomas Howell takes tanning pills to get a scholarship for African-Americans. With all the outrage of blackface and cultural appropriation these days I thought we would never see that storyline ever again. It probably also lessens the outrage by having black guy (with a white mother) play the faker as white people do not care much about whiteface. Though I still do not know how there was not more outrage surrounding White Chicks.

Penny Dreadful: So Vanessa has met Dracula before. I thought we would get a lengthy flashback in a future episode; instead we get a one minute scene tacked on the end of the episode. Maybe it is just a tease for a lot more flashbacks next week. And was that even Dracula? It looked more like Frankenstein’s monster in his previous life without hair. And about Frank, was that remembering his younger self? Bu it looked like that kid was near death. Unless Dr. Frankenstein implanted a child’s brain into the monster’s body. Or maybe he has residual memories of all his body parts. As for his creator, we did learn his buddy’s experiment is only temporary. The question now is has Dr. Jekle already taken his cure or does that come later?

Quantico: No wonder Asher could not make it at Quantico, dude was not even smart enough to jump out of the car before it went over the bridge. But then again, how smart am I for making it all the way through the season?
You can download Quantico on iTunes.

Gotham: How disappointing that Hugo Strange is implanting new personas in the people he resurrects but Fish Mooney remembers who she was. I thought we were finally going to learn what Batman villain she turns in to. But we did get Clayface… I think.
You can download Gotham on iTunes.

Blindspot: Wow that was the worst death scene in recent memory. But I guess when you are killed off a show, why bother trying anymore (well except if you hope to get more work somewhere else). But maybe the bigger bombshell was that Kurt’s father confessed to killing Taylor Shaw like everyone thought prior to Jane Doe showing up with markers saying she was and was not Taylor. We do have to wait until the finale to see if this was the ratings of a delusional man or a real bedside confession, but you have to assume it is the latter. Unless, could this be an Orphan Black situation and Jane Doe is a clone of Taylor? That could be really interesting and explain the DNA inconsistencies.
You can download Blindspot on iTunes.

Castle: It was probably for the best that ABC canned this show, most shows have a shelf life of five seasons if they are lucky so eight is enough (bad old person’s pun intended). But oh, was that final scene crammed in. I guess we can assume had the show been renewed and Kate was not returning, she does not survive the gunshot. Actually that scene seemed crammed in to as if they tacked that on after learning Stana Katic was not coming back.
You can download Castle on iTunes.

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Gee, and I just got done talking about the worst death scene, this one came pretty close with Hive and low rent Electro bro-ing down before their inevitable deaths. And this is exactly why I hate it when shows open up X amount of time in the future before flashing back, we knew someone die and Yoyo’s cross had something to do with it and then in the last episode five different characters played hot potatoes with it. But of course Electro ended up with it because there can be no happy couples on a Weadon show (Really the only fake out they had was when Fitz had the cross for a scene). But hey at least we finally got rid of Ward… unless he turns out to be what the Irish doctor was working on. Please no. That body did look feminine. A mate for Vision? Also six months in the future Daisy has gone rouge and Coulson is reporting to a director (is that Talbert or is there a new head of SHIELD). And why six months? The show seems to move in real time and six months puts us in November when presumably the season will start in late September. Doctor Strange comes out in November but I doubt there will be much cross over with that movie. I wonder if we will have to wait a month or two until we see that scene and prior to that is Coulson searching for Daisy or in that basically where the season will start?
You can download Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on iTunes.

The Path: All season I have ping-ponged back and forth predicting this character is going to join the cult while that one would be joining. Here we are with one episode left and it looks like I was wrong every time. There was a time I thought FBI guy would join, but after his diatribe with Eddie, that is never going to happen, especially after learning Allison’s husband did die under suspicious circumstances. And Allison looks to be coming back into the fold (although that may not last long after she sees the autopsy. I thought the teens would run away together, and Hawk actually did leave, but sneaky Cal nipped that in the bud. But the biggest transition is Eddie. They teased his moments of doubt early in the season, but mostly re-found his way after time in the program in the room. Was that punch his way of exiting the cult?
You can stream The Path on Hulu.

Survivor: Brains vs. Brawn vs. Beauty II: Usually I have a good sense of how the winds are blowing going into the finals but I was a bit shocked at how Aubrey did not win and it was not even because of that silly evict a jury member (worst twist since Redemption Island). Sure her Final Tribal was less than stellar (how do you not play up how well you adapted after your two biggest allies were pulled from the game?). But congratulations to Michele who did a much better job playing up her underdog role than Aubrey. Poor Tai, does not even get a pity vote. I originally thought it was a bad decision to split the votes and not take Cydney to the final three but in retrospect, I am not sure it matter with Michele winning either way. Maybe Cydney wins the Jury Veto (which is a stretch because for a Brawn, she was not that great in challenges) and bans Julia, then maybe Tai could have gotten Aubrey, Joe, Neil, and Debbie, but I think instead, Michele wins by a larger margin.

But Michele winning was not the biggest shock of the night, seriously, what was Sia doing there? And was that even really her? In real time it sounded to me her accent was coming and going. If it was, Sia just continues to get weirder. Wow. Then we got a tease for next season: Millennials vs. Gen X. Meh. Didn’t the last time they separated end up being an epic fail (that would be the Jimmy Johnson season that was won by Fabio). Probably one of the bottom five seasons of all time. And just by the trailer the Millennials were getting on my nerve already. If they are going to divide by age, I wish they would have done three of four tribes: people in the their twenties, thirties, and forties plus, and maybe fifties plus.
You can download Survivor: Brains vs. Brawn vs. Beauty II on iTunes.

The Americans: Kind of a throwaway episode because I never thought Reverend Tim was ever in much danger. Really having an emotionally pregnant woman now knowing their secret was the bigger danger. The more ingesting part of the episode was Stan’s old boss getting approached by the KGB. I kind of wanted him to take the offer. Instead he runs through a glass door. Not the best escape plan. It will be interesting how this effects the main storyline.
You can download The Americans on iTunes.

The Challenge: Rivals III: The first challenge really suck, now this, this is the challenge I have come to know and love, grinding on a bar of soap. Awesome. Not so awesome is replacing LeRoy with some nobodies. Actually worse than nobody, somebody who thinks acting crazy will get them more screen time. More annoying was T.J. canceling the Jungle for no good reason. So that is two of three episodes where no one when home.
You can download The Challenge: Rivals III on iTunes.

The Blacklist: There was never a point where I thought Lizzie was dead, the only question I had was who helped her. I had thought it was whoever was trying to kidnap Lizzie but it ended up being Tom and Red’s henchwoman. And I long assumed the person that was trying to kidnap was her not so dead mother. Nope, wrong again, it was her dad, or someone claiming to be her dad. That puts a crinkle in my long theory that Red was Lizzy’s dad. After the chunkiness of this season (somewhat reasonable due to a real life pregnancy) this sets up a very interesting season four.
You can download The Blacklist on iTunes.

Orphan Black: Crystal is quickly moving up my Clone Power Ranking. She almost made me forget there was no Allison this week. Almost. Seriously, do not make me go a week without an Allison fix.
You can download Orphan Black on iTunes.


Saturday, May 14, 2016

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 5/15/16



Once Upon a Time: So as predicted Robin Hood died and Captain Hook made his way back to Storybrooke. The only question now is what are they going to do in the final two episodes now that Hades was defeated? The only unresolved issue is that Belle remains under her sleeping spell. Maybe we will get more than the usual tease of the next Disney property they exploit. When do they go to Tron?
You can download Once Upon a Time on iTunes.

House of Lies: Oh, no, not the Douchebag Twins. And yet, even with an episode that saw the not so triumphant return of the Douchebag Twins, they did not even give us the most disturbing scene, that was instead Clyde and Doug chugging Jennie’s pump and dump.

Penny Dreadful: Dorian and Lily were wholly absent from the premiere and that was a quite unexpected way for them to return to the show. I fully assumed that that was the type of show they would enjoy but I guess it makes more sense that they would rather participate than just watch. I fear (and would be kind of disappointed) that she will end up like the transvestite from last season. Then you have Dr. Jekyll who has a formula that can turn a criminally insane person into fully functioning human being. Of course there are going to be side effects, the question is has he tried it on himself yet or not. Dracula again is resigned to the final scene again. Last week I feared when we did not get to see him it was going to be a Master on The Strain situation who ended turning out to be a not very scary looking Muppet, but we did get to see Dracula who ended up looking like a low rent Matt Dillon which I guess is better than a low rent Muppet.

Quantico: So it turns out the football player was yet another pawn though the whole using his voice on the phone with Alex was a bit of a stretch. Instead the traitor was the Quantico teacher because… oh who know. Even when he eventually gives his Bond villain type speech I doubt it will make any sense.
You can download Quantico on iTunes.

Gotham: I guess I was wrong with Galavan killing the Captain. It turns out Galavan is really bad at killing people. Tabatha also landed in the hospital and not the morgue. Alfred gets thrown out of a window and was still able to walk away to fight some more. I was going to say Galavan was as good at killing as everyone was at trying to kill him; just how many bullets can that guy take? Then Penguin and Butch show up with a bazooka. Awesome.
You can download Gotham on iTunes.

Blindspot: Can we get more drugged up chick in the elevator? She was by far the best part of the episode.
You can download Blindspot on iTunes.

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: I have an irrational hatred of movie theaters so naturally I did not see Captain America: Civil War prior to this episode so I guess I now know who wins. Yeah, D.C.’s movies may have sucked but their separating television from the movies is looking better every time SHIELD spoils a movie. Granted really they have only spoiled the last two Captain America movies. Oh yeah, and they killed off Peggy Carter. Booooo. I was really hoping she would get some anti-aging serum like the Nazi got last season. What a shame that they may possibly kill off her character and cancel her show in the same month. Hopefully ABC finds a way to keep that show going. Oh well. Sending Lash after Hive seemed like a great idea but they kind of overlooked two huge plot point. Okay, Lash, the Inhuman killer can ward off Hive’s parasites, fine, whatever. But why did he not kill Daisy, and not only did he not kill her, he actually helped her and saved her from Hive’s trance? Andrew’s last sliver of humanity was kind of a big stretch.
You can download Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on iTunes.

The Path: Last episode, Cal mentioned before killing a dude that the next leader would perform a miracle, could Sarah saving the baby be that miracle? Certainly Cal would no be too happy he is not the chosen one. Maybe that is why he tried to hook up with her.
You can stream The Path on Hulu.

Survivor: Brains vs. Brawn vs. Beauty II: I have long thought that winning Individual Reward was advantageous to your game, especially in a case where you pick two people and then there are four people made at you back at camp. But I never thought winning a Reward would turn out as badly as this. To have to be pulled from the game because you ate too much meat, ouch. And we have known this for a while that this was bad. How many times in the early seasons did we see people get Rewards only to spend a lot of time in the woods with a pile of leaves? Seriously people, Reward Challenges are not worth it. At least we did not get the stupid Survivor Action where morons bid on food instead of waiting for an advantage. And that was the second pull out this season which negated what could have been a fascinating Tribal Council. On one side you had a strong Joe/Aubrey alliance. On the other was Michelle. Then there is Cydney in the middle but seemed to be leaning Michelle. Then you had Tai and his Idol so he was not going anywhere. When he and Michelle were alone I was waiting for someone to come up with a plan where he give her his Idol because no one would vote for him because of it. But then he seemed to make up with Aubrey. Really what it may have come down to it is who talked to Tai last. Instead we had our third unplayed Idol, one that went home with someone being pulled, one that went home with someone because he did not play it expecting a SuperIdol, and one that did not get to played because the last Tribal that it could have been played at never happened. Kind of sums up this lackluster season.
You can download Survivor: Brains vs. Brawn vs. Beauty II on iTunes.

Black-ish: Isn’t it too early for the show to bring in a baby? Usually sitcoms do that when they run out of ideas, it should be too early for that, it I only season two. At least wait until season five.
You can download Black-ish on iTunes.

The Americans: There are few thing lis scary than watching The Day After thirty plus years later. I kind of had to laugh at everyone's reaction. Interesting Philip's reaction was maybe we should not give that destructive virus to their government after watching. It is about time for a shajke up in the show. Maybe instead of the FBI finding them out as tradors, maybe the twist could be Philip becoming sympathetic to Americans.
You can download The Americans on iTunes.

The Challenge: Rivals III: Poor Leroy, that is two straight seasons he goes home early for medical reasons. But we essentially had a two and a half premiere episode. I guess that is needed to get to know the new cast and introduce the season, except the two people who went into The Jungle I had no clue they were even on this season until they got picked to go in. Hopefully we go back to one elimination per episode because there was just too much filler in these first two episodes.
You can download The Challenge: Rivals III on iTunes.

The Blacklist: There was a point when I thought Scottie was going to turn out to be Lizzy’s mother, but no, she is Tom’s… or least that is what Red told him. The episode was alright but as a backdoor Pilot, I am not ready to watch another show which is just The Blacklist with the gender of the two leads being swapped. Maybe I will watch if the show is filler between a break of the ordinal.
You can download The Blacklist on iTunes.


Thursday, April 28, 2016

Previewing Penny Dreadful: Season Three



At the end of the last season of Penny Dreadful, everyone seemed to be leaving Vanessa, Ethan turned himself in to the American lawmen who hunted him for the past two seasons, Sir Malcolm went back to Africa, even the Creature even boarded a ship to an undisclosed location. The only people left in London with here were Ferdinand and Dr. Frankenstein who experienced his own abandonment when Lily chose the company of Dorian Gray over his.

So it is Ferdinand who visits Vanessa at the start of the season while she is living in squalor who shakes off her cobwebs and sends her to a doctor specializing in alienism (the study of mental illness) played by Patti Lupone, just not as the same character she played last season on account that she got tarred and feathered. Across the globe we meet up with Ethan on a train in the New Mexico territory along with his captor and other familiar face. The Creature finds himself at the start of the season on the same boat but is now frozen still in the arctic.

Sir Malcolm meanwhile is in Zanzibar runs into an Indian who has a connection with Ethan. Dr. Frankenstein is also visited by an Indian but this one is from the Asian subcontinent not North American and has a name that everyone will know. Victor’s visitor is not the only new familiar Victorian literary name we hear except the second one we hear is the last word we hear in the season premiere and do not actually get to see the person who introduces himself to a new acquaintance of Vanessa.

The start of the new season is a bit of a slow burn with the main characters spread across three continents and one undisclosed arctic climate, and only two actually interacting with each other (Dorian and Lily are completely absent aside from a couple glimpses in the “previous on” package). But with the introduction of the two new Victorian characters and Lupone’s new creation, the new season looks to shake things up as Penny Dreadful looks to claim the title as best horror show on television.

Penny Dreadful airs Sundays at 10:00 on Showtime. If you can not wait for the premiere you can watch it below (albeit the TV14 version):


Saturday, July 11, 2015

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 7/11/15



Penny Dreadful: So the creepy Vanessa doll was the Earthly vessel for the Fallen Angel... Awesome. But did destroying the doll end the Fallen Angel or will he just be stewing in hell until he find another witch to do his bidding (and could the witch's daughter be that person; though I have a feeling if she shows up again it will be to help Ethan escape)? I did not quite understand the absorbing the scorpion, was she absorbing the Fallen Angel and is now an angel herself? Is that why she burned the cross. Maybe that was the Fallen Angel processing her, maybe? Though it does seem that they are setting up Lilly and Dorian as the big bad of season three.
You can download Penny Dreadful on iTunes.

Tyrant: Offering his services as baby sitter for the woman who is leaving the village for six months really makes it looks like Barry will be spending the whole season there and not trying to get home to his family which would be a bummer. At least the promo monkeys make it seem he will be going to Syria next week.
You can download Tyrant on iTunes.

Mr. Robot: That bar scene basically just confirmed to me that Christian Slater is just a figment of Elliot's imagination. Then you had Tyrell going as close as you can get to going American Psycho without having Huey Lewis and the News playing in the background (which begs the question who is this decade's Huey Lewis... Maroon 5?) But still, I need more than one or two scene of Dalia Royce per episode. This is the worst tease in television history.
You can download Mr. Robot on iTunes.

Hannibal: Leave it to this show to make even hot lesbian sex seem creepy. And I finally figured out who Mason looks like with his new face: he looks like a resident of Whoville. Now I will probably start laughing whenever he comes on screen.
You can download Hannibal on iTunes.

Sunday, July 05, 2015

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 7/5/15



Penny Dreadful: Last week I was beginning to think that Sembene was special after he was able to shake Sir Malcolm from his enchantment. Well it turns out the marks on his face was because he was a slave trader and he is, as he claims, just a man. Of course if he is still around next week after surviving a wolf attack he is more than just a man. But the show did set up what looks to be a tense finale. Malcolm and Dr. Frankenstein are locked up in a room of illusion. Vanessa was introduced to a creepy doll version of herself (or I assume even though it looks less like her than the bust of Lionel Richie made by a blind woman looked like him). Then you have to wonder if Lyle is still playing both sides because he is safest of them all right now.
You can download Penny Dreadful on iTunes.

The Last Ship: The two hour premiere was pretty intense, defeating the evil dictator o Utopia. But is that going to get the whole show now that they have the cure: go into a new area, overthrow a dictator, pass out the cure? Hopefully they find something more interesting to do this season because that could get old soon. This week's searching for surviving family members was kind of boring.
You can download The Last Ship on iTunes.

American Odyssey: Oh, how did the writers think they were actually going to get a second season? There really was no need for a cliffhanger here. It really put a damper on a stupid fun season which is becoming a NBC post football Sundays tradition. But at least the show went out stupid with Aslam just running the streets of Spain looking for Odell, the weird thing in the cemetery, plus there should have been no reason for a cliffhanger because shouldn't Peter's flashdrive backed up everything Odell said? Oh well. It will not put a damper on whatever cheap Homeland ripoff NBC puts in this slot next spring.
You can download American Odyssey on iTunes.

Pretty Little Liars: Can we just please get to the point where Allison starts coaching the church's soccer team please. Forget the summer of answers, all I want this season is her coaching. For some reason we will have to wait at least two weeks or that because the show is randomly off next week. In non soccer news, let me go ahead and predict the little dancing girl is actually the younger version of Spencer.

Tyrant: So is Barry just going to spend the whole season in a desert town? Even in the middle of nowhere and with a beard, it is kind of hard to believe no one noticed the brother of the president.
You can download Tyrant on iTunes.

Mr. Robot: The show does paranoia better than I can remember being depicted on screen before. It crossed my mind last week but I am becoming more convinced that Christian Slater is just a figment of Elliot's paranoia, basically the person he want, or thinks he should be. And maybe all the hackers are parts of him. But as good the first two episodes have been, I am going to need more Dalia Royce than just one scene going forward.
You can download Mr. Robot on iTunes.

Hannibal: If Danny DeVito's momma cannot survive being thrown from a train it is hard to believe Will Graham can. And I thought European countries had bullet trains now. Oh well. At least Jack got some form of revenge on Hannibal as we know he will not be able to capture him (not that Jack looked like he had any intention of capturing). I am just hoping Hannibal's capture happens soon so they can move on to the next capture because I am not sure if I want to sit through a whole season of near captures.
You can download Hannibal on iTunes.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 6/27/15


Orphan Black: Season three got off to a rough start with muddling mythology and a new clone that was not very interesting. Things did start picking up around the time the killed off most of the dude clones and the female ones started interacting more again. We did get a mostly satisfying season finale even if they reintroduced the nevolutionist (those are the guys with the tails from the first season right) who I did not really care for. I am surprised that Cosima's new girlfriend did not turn out to be someone involved, those she is still on the top of my list of who killed Delphine.
You can download Orphan Black on iTunes.

Penny Dreadful: Last week's episode was kind of meh, but things certainly picked up this week with the best of the season, maybe series. We learned Lily is playing dumb and apparently Dr. Frankenstein implanted the brain of some evil megalomaniac. We finally got to see what Dorian Grey was hiding (even if everyone already knew what he was looking at). We also got the full text and that Lucifer needs Vanessa to get back into heaven and the vampire monster that was the big bad of last season was his brother that was cast out of heaven at the same time. We also may have learned what is up with Sembene who was able to break the witch's curse (unless I am reading that scene wrong but dude has to have some power right?). Should make for an interesting final two episodes.
You can download Penny Dreadful on iTunes.

American Odyssey: Oh yeah, #OdellLives was a thing before everyone except for her daughter forgot about her. And we learned by Luc is so irrational around her, he actually loves her. And could anyone have blamed her had she just stayed dead with the hot French dude instead of going home to her slubby husband?
You can download American Odyssey on iTunes.

Pretty Little Liars: I really hope this season does not devolve into Charles being alive and dead every other week. Make up you mind. Hanna should have continued digging up the grave (not that a body would have confirmed it was him; everyone thought Allison was in her grave). But I was mostly disappointed we did not see Allison coach youth soccer this week.
You can download Pretty Little Liars on iTunes.

Mr. Robot: I had absolutely no interest in watching this show from the promos, seriously television and movie writers, hackers are not lead characters, the are background ones at best. Especially one who is trying to bring down some Illuminati one percent cabal which has been done to death recently. It did not help knowing Christian Slater was in the cast considering all the crappy one and done series over the past decade. Then I saw a behind the scenes package featuring Dalia Royce as one of the hacker. Awesome. That got me to watch. I was really shocked with how good the whole thing was despite the tired plot and the even more tired Christian Slater. And that was even with Dalia Royce only appearing in two scene. If they up her involvement in future episodes we may have out first contender for best new show of the television season.
You can download Mr. Robot on iTunes.

Aquarius: Again the most interesting part of the show this week happen off screen when NBC actually renew the show for a second season. Apparently releasing the whole season online was a resounding success. NBC even said it broke streaming records. I just wished NBC would have tried that once with Hannibal before canceling that show this week. Oh well, now there is the waiting game to see if anyone will bother to pick Hannibal up. As for onscreen, as much grief I gave her when the show started, the hot cop with the bad accent is the most entertaining part of the show and it was a much better episode with her back this week stupidly trying to seduce a football player who beats women before Mulder stepped in.
You can download the full season (just the televised version as of now) of Aquarius on iTunes.

Hannibal: After a month, we finally learn what became of Alana Bloom, apparently just a lot of broken bones. And we learned that Will is after Hannibal, Jack is after Will, and Mason is now also after Hannibal with a reward. Alrighty. I really do not like this non-linear storytelling this season. But it looks like we are all now caught up with everyone now so hopefully it is linear from here on out.
You can download Hannibal on iTunes.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 6/20/15



Penny Dreadful: I guess we should not be surprised that Lily did not come back right, but a what is up with her killing a dude during sex?
You can download Penny Dreadful on iTunes.

American Odyssey: I am not sure what my favorite part of the episode was: Luc again flipping allegiances by saving Odell by pretending to have her kidnapped and killed and not bothering to tell her the plan. Or Ruby who loves Harrison so much that she would commit suicide by cop that either kill him or get arrested (even though if her boss wants him dead can he not just hire another assassin after she dies). Nope, now that I think about it, my favorite part was Ruby having a pager. Who knew those were still around?
You can download American Odyssey on iTunes.

Pretty Little Liars: In the supposed "Summer of Answers" we still did not really get any. We did get a confirmation that Charles is a long lost brother of Allison but we essentially already knew that. But I do not really need answers this summer, really all I need from the the show this summer is multiple scenes of Ali mentoring a youth soccer team.
You can download Pretty Little Liars on iTunes.

Tyrant: I was kind of hoping that this show would not be back for a second season because it was one of those post golden age shows that had a good concept, good acting, but was just missing something (usually any entertainment value). I was hoping for a hard reboot with Jamel actually going through with the execution of Barry, and was almost fooled that he did until I remembered my cardinal rule of television: no one is really dead until you see the body (and even in some cases that still does not stick), so I figured that was someone else under the hood. But if you are not going to hang Barry, why leave him out in the middle of the desert to die? Meh.
You can download Tyrant on iTunes.

Aquarius: Another week without the howling hot chick with the bad American accent? Meh. But again the most fascinating part of the show this week was something that did not happen on screen as the show did not get a "Next Time" segment instead airing a promo for I Can Do That making me wonder if they are going to pull the show. Though Hannibal did get a Next Time package which ended with the announcer saying, "after an all new episode of Aquarius." Plus my TV Guide listing does still list an all new episode next week. It would be interesting if they actually pull the show the week the streaming and On Demand full season episode were supposed to expire. Of course that would not have been the weirdest thing NBC has ever done.
You can download the full season (just the televised version as of now) of Aquarius on iTunes.

Hannibal: It is official, the show is much better as a procedural with weird cases every week instead of a stow hunt for Hannibal. At least it looks like the whole gang will be back together next week.
You can download Hannibal on iTunes.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 6/13/15



Orphan Black: Oh Donnie, how long until he tries to have sex with one of the clones, I thought it may actually happen this week with Helena. Then I thought he might accidentally kill another dude this week but instead just gets into a slap fight instead (where I thought he might have been dead until the promo monkeys went and spoiled that).
You can download Orphan Black on iTunes.

Penny Dreadful: Fun fact: I was once an award winning actor who once was tasked with throwing confetti on stage during every performance. After the first time I actually did it and the play was over, I went to sweep up the mess I created until the director came by and told said the star does not have to clean anything, leave that to the minions. I felt bad as someone else had to clean up after me every night. It was that thought that ran through my mind when it started raining blood this week, somebody is going to have to clean that up, wash the clothes and everything. And just for a dream sequence. Poor chaps. But I have a feeling we may never see Dorian Grey's ball room again after that.
You can download Penny Dreadful on iTunes.

American Odyssey: Of course Odell gets captured by a pre-teen army. Why would she not? Luc not selling her out would have may actual sense, he has to flip on her for no reason at all every other episode. I also liked Yucef's plan to assassinate a sitting Senator so he could go on trial and tell his story as if that really would have happened his security team would have totally shot first and asked questions later, instead of wrestling the gun toting terrorist to the ground without a shot fired by them.
You can download American Odyssey on iTunes.

Pretty Little Liars: Well that was boring. After a tense season premiere, that was really boring with the girls moping around for the whole episode. So much for the Summer of Answers.
You can download Pretty Little Liars on iTunes.

Aquarius: I had spent the first two week making fun of the hot cop with the embarrassingly bad American accent but I have to admit I kind of his her and her howling this week. Oh well. But hey, Mulder rescued the runaway about eight episodes before I expected him too. And the acid trip scene was almost as entertaining as the howling.
You can download the full season (just the televised version as of now) of Aquarius on iTunes.

Hannibal: When Abigail Hobbs walked into Will's room as he was coming to I thought, she has to be a hallucination. They actually got me to believe she was real when she was still around "8 months later." Well they got me, of course no one is going to survive getting their throat slit twice. Noe she can go to that big fly fishing river in the sky. But this reintroducing only one character per episode like it is Lost is getting kind of annoying.
You can download Hannibal on iTunes.

Saturday, June 06, 2015

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 6/6/15



Orphan Black: Finally, after weeks of boring and confusing mythology, we actually got back to what made the first season so good: clones interacting with and pretending to be each other. I still think there needs to be a Donnie and Allison crappy CBS spinoff sitcom. I may bring this up every weekend until I will it into existence
You can download Orphan Black on iTunes.

Penny Dreadful: Well that was a dark montage at the end. And just when you thought it could not get any creepier, Dr. Frankenstein has sex with his creation? Ew. As for the previously mentioned montage, what is Sir Malcolm thinking? Ethan just told you to be on high alert. I would think a woman coming on to him at this very moment would be suspicious, but, c'mon Malcolm, she "accidentally" drew your blood with her ring. That might as well have been a tattoo on her forehead that reads, "I'm a witch!"
You can download Penny Dreadful on iTunes.

American Odyssey: When Bob told Harrison that he deeply cared for him I was taken about thinking that is a little strong thing to say, you might as well try to kiss him at this point. And then Bob leaned in. Oh my. I know this show is not very good, but what it lack in quality it certainly makes up for in entertainment value. And apparently Harrison was so shocked by the move and having someone's brain matter splattered on him he was stupid enough hook up with the person who was responsible for that brain matter. But hey, at least she is not a witch.
You can download American Odyssey on iTunes

Pretty Little Liars: I was kind of hoping we would get an entire season in the dollhouse. Probably not the smartest idea to set a fire when you are locked underground but again, these are not the smartest girls to ever be on television. At this point it would be out of character to do the smart thing.
You can download Pretty Little Liars on iTunes.

Stitchers: Just last week I declared the chick from Aquarius to have the worst American accent put to film, but the lead on this show is pretty bad too. And what may be more annoying is the accent fluctuates constantly. Seriously casting agents either 1) let these actors use their normal accent; there is not reason the lead charterer here cannot be from Australian (okay, it would be a bit more of a stretch to have a rookie Australian cop back in the sixties; which begs the question, just how many hot Australian are there in Hollywood these days? Even Harley Quinn in the upcoming Suicide Squad is played by an Australian) or 2) just be xenophobic and cast an American.
You can download Stitchers on iTunes.

Aquarius: So having your kid run away is an aphrodisiac... who knew? As previously mention, the hot lady cop has the worst American accent put to film, but you know how to make her accent less distraction: make her howl. Wow. That was weird and random. But much like last week, the most interesting aspect of the show this week did not happen on screen but behind the scenes when the creator said there is an NC-17 version of the show floating around. He originally said it was the version on iTunes but that turned to be incorrect and revised to say it is coming soon. I did notice some kind of bad overdubs this week where they obviously replaced naughty words and once where they just completely cut out one of Mulder's words. I wonder if the edits are just auditory or if there are any missing scenes. Though I do not really need to see Charlie Manson bed Emma's dad.
You can download the full season (just the televised version as of now) of Aquarius on iTunes.

Hannibal: The show left us with three of the leads bleeding on the floor along with Abigail Hobbs. We will have to wait to find out their fates (though it is a bit of a spoiler that all three actors remain in the title sequence so Hobbs is the only one with a question mark). The show has always been a slow cooker, but with the hole episode devoted to Hannibal, it got kind of boring. Hopefully things get back on track when the people at the FBI (presumably) show back up next week.
You can download Hannibal on iTunes.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 5/30/15



Orphan Black: The show should never put Allison on the shelf for an entire episode but they almost made up for it this week with her and Donnie's dance party which rivals the nineties dance party back in season one as the best scene in the show's history.
You can download Orphan Black on iTunes.

Penny Dreadful: Whoa, for I believe is the first time in the show's history, it was having a bit of fun with the dress shopping sequence (is Dr. Frankenstein really going to fall in love with his creation). Of course that did not last long as it had to go back to creepy which the wall people definitely were.
You can download Penny Dreadful on iTunes.

American Odyssy: Oh no, they killed the arab transvestite television host who trades sexual favors with the Malian general, (s)he was the best part of the show. But hey, Chloe Sullivan showed up this week (though her name has been in the credits for the last couple weeks, have they brought her in just to show the back of her head all those eavesdropping scenes). I wonder what she has been up to since the end of Smallville.
You can download American Odyssey on iTunes

Aquarius: I have weirdly enjoyed NBC's midseason attempts the last couple years, the shows have been ambitious even if they tend to fall short of the cable quality they clearly are trying for. Plus they are almost guaranteed to be low commitment because I believe Hannibal is the only one of these shows to get a second season (although based solely on ratings, even that probably should have been canned but luckily returns for its third season this week. I am not sure I really needed to see a highly fictitious show built around Charlie Manson (though I would have said that about Hannibal Lecter three years ago too) but there is almost nothing else on this week. Plus it is nice to have Fox Mulder back on free television plus it also has my favorite Bunhead. Unfortunately is also stars the worst actor Friday Night Lights. Seriously, why is Smash Williams relegated to recurring when the dude whose name I never bothered to learn in the main cast? Then there is a hot blond cop (cue Sir Psycho Sexy) who may have the worst American accent in the history of television.

 Still Aquarius did have its moments be it funny (though I am not entirely sure all were meant to be intentionally funny) or weird (Charlie Manson tries to rape a dude... twice). But I fear the most interesting part of the show will be NBC's decision to release every episode for purchase, streaming and On Demand the day after the premiere. As a creature of habit, I will probably will still end up watching the show live since I will be watching Hannibal afterwards anyway, but I do like it when networks try something new. I am not sure what will qualify as a success but I do hope this leads the networks to new innovation.
You can download the full season of Aquarius on iTunes.

As I just mentioned, there was not much to watch on television this week. So I had to make a little hart to let myself know when summer shows start premiering. Apparently Wednesday will be movie or video game night for me. Even Monday looks pretty barren until late August.

Sundays
9:00 - Ray Donavan (July 12, Showtime)
9:00 - The Last Ship (June 22, TNT)
10:00 - Masters of Sex (July 12, Showtime)
10:00 - Falling Skies (June 28, TNT)
10:00 - The Strain (July 12, FX)

Mondays
Switched at Birth (August 24, ABC Family)

Tuesdays
8:00 - Pretty Little Liars (June 2, ABC Family)
10:00 - Royal Pains (June 2, USA)
10:00 - Tyrant (June 16, FX)
10:00 - Public Morals (August 25, TNT)

Wednesdays

Thursdays
9:00 - Aquarius (already airing, NBC)
9:00 - Under the Dome (June 25)
10:00 - Hannibal (June 4, NBC)
10:00 - Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll (July 16, FX)
10:30 - Married (July 16, FX)

Fridays
8:00 - Defiance (June 12, Syfy)

Saturday, May 23, 2015

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 5/23/15



Orphan Black: Meh, an episode without Allison is not an episode worth watching.
You can download Orphan Black on iTunes.

Mad Men: I know the show was about advertising, but ended the series with a Coke ad was silly, not autistic boy imagined the whole thing a snowglobe silly, but silly nonetheless. Matthew Weiner had stated that last season's ending of Don showing his kids was how he originally was going to end the series (not to be confused of last year's half season finale of Bert Cooper dancing his way off this mortal coil). That worked as a much better ending to the show than the one we got. Mad Men was depressing and everyone getting a happy ending (well, except Betty) just did not fit with the ending of the show, everybody finds love and / or gets a better or more full filling job then after "retiring" Don comes up with what some call the best commercial of advertising (at least that is what I am assuming that final scene was about).
You can download Mad Men on iTunes.

Penny Dreadful: I always find it interesting when shows go full flashback for an entire episode. Basically it is a flashing "This Is Important!" for the viewers, or least the writers want you to think that. Sometimes it seems like the writers came up short breaking a story so they add a flashback episode to fill the season. Timing is also interesting, this show was smart to have it at the beginning of the season because when it falls near the end, it just breaks the momentum of a show going to a conclusion (Lost comes to mind who would always try to cute with stunts like that). Overall, I am not sure if this episode added much to the overall arch of the season, we already knew the witches were evil, we may not needed that reinforced by having her manipulate someone to burn the witch in between her Vanessa. And I am not sure we really learned enough of Vanessa's past to really warrant an entire episode. All I was left with was wondering once Vanessa left the premises, how did it take the witch a couple more years to track Vanessa down again?

Survivor: Blue Collar vs. White Collar vs. No Collar: Watching the reunion just reminded me just how horrible this season was considering the spent almost the entire show talking about just how horrible Dan and Will were. And they did not even have enough time to get to the Masshole who said some pretty offensive things too. Thankfully they had the Second Chance vote which meant five less minutes spent on this cast.

As for the actual finale, I was shocked that Mike won. Not that he did not deserve it, I thought for sure the Second Chance voting was a spoiler and his inclusion meant he would not win. But win he did, taking home the last two Immunity Necklaces and even somehow convinced Dan to vote for him in the end even though Dan refused to forgive him during the game which could have meant he had been in the finale. I was a bit surprised Carolyn did not get more votes, tying Will for second. Tyler ended up being more bitter than I expected and I originally though the Blue Collar would end up voting for her. But in retrospect that was stupid thinking Dan and the Masshole would actually vote for a woman.

Even more shocking than Carolyn's lack of votes at the Final Tribal was her lack of votes in the Second Chance voting. I figured everyone from the last two seasons would be a lock (with maybe the exception of Max who was booted early this season and lacked a defining moment). I was also shocked Not-Dante Culpepper was also passed on considering Probst man crush on him that may only be rivaled by his man crush on Boston Rob. I am glad more people were with me than Probst. And Not-Dante should have had an easier route than Carolyn since Mike became ineligible. I wonder who took Mike's spot. My guess would be one of the elder men from the early season be it Terry or Andrew.

As for the shocking inclusions, I am a bit befuddled with who voted for Kass and to a lesser extent Kimmi. I was also surprised Kelley Wentworth got one of the two token hot chick nods considering I did not even remember her despite her being on last season (I did vote for her solely for physical reasons). Hopefully she gets on an opposite tribe from Kelly Wiglesworth because that could be annoying. I thought Mikayla may get the other out of pity for absurdly of being voted out solely so Brandon Hantz would not do something immoral to her.

Overall I am surpised that of the twenty people I voted for fifteen made it. Sure I wouild swapped Kass and Kimmi for Mikayla and Sabrina. I did not vote for Shirin but I am fine with her addition and will probably will be better than Natalie whom I voted for instead (mostly because no one on thirty seasons looked better in a bikini than her). I am also fine with the two guys I did not vote for, Terry and Joe (I went with Max and Troyzan but did not felt strong about either). But after one historically bad season and one meh season I m really looking forward to Second Chances. Which could only mean Kass and Kimmi will be making the finals.

I did not have a place to put it in earlier, but I have to say the way Probst revealed the cast was extremely awkward. It felt like a Maury Pauvich type reveal. As a stats guy it is also interesting that of the six runner ups on their seasons, half gote voted onto Second Chance while half went home (Carolyn, Natalie, and Sabrina). Weirdly, there were five tenth placed finisher and all of them are heading to Cambodia. Then Kimmi and Kelley (not to be confused with Kelly) were the only two that finished worse than tenth to board the bus. The other five double digit finishers are going home. Five was an unlucky number, because besides the three runner ups and the five double digit finishers, two of the other three not boarding the plane (T-Bird and Shane) finished fifth. Granted Ciera and Peih-Gee also finished fifth.
You can download Survivor: White Collar vs. Blue Collar vs. No Collar on iTunes.

Sunday, May 03, 2015

Previewing Penny Dreadful: Season Two


The cast of Penny Dreadful

For years Showtime played second banana to HBO until Homeland came along and won all the awards and praise in its first season. Sure it was basically a one season wonder that burned out quicker than maybe any series in the history of television (even if it was almost able to regain its footing last season). Homeland did get an identity with Homeland, but in the years since has been chasing that critical and commercial buzz ever since with what I call post-Golden Age Television: shows with good acting, good premise, but something is just keeping it from being great. Showtime's post Homeland shows Ray Donovan, The Affair and Penny Dreadful all fit in this category (The only other new drama since then, Masters of Sex is legitimately great, but is in the same category as The Americans where it seems like only critics watch because no one else actually seems to talks about them). And the less we say about the Twin Peaks reboot right now may be the best because we may never actually get to see it.

One of my biggest problem with the first season of Penny Dreadful was it seemed very paint by numbers. All season long they teased Ethan was the Wolfman, and as the season closed out, he went all Beast Mode. From the moment Brona started coughing up blood, it was safe to assume she would end up being the Bride of Frankenstein which also came to fruition by season's end. Then there was Dorian Grey who seem utterly useless in the first season, only there to have sex with everyone else. That was not to say the whole season was completely predictable, Frankenstein's monster getting ripped opened by the original prototype early on was extremely shocking and I certainly did not see Sir Malcolm spending the entire season looking for his daughter to find her and kill her after telling her, "I already have a daughter."

But what may Penny Dreadful's biggest flaw is that it pales in comparison to Hannibal in the horror department even though the latter is hamstrung by the standards and practices of a network series. Sure Eva Green put on a very haunting performance, but I would be more frightened to see Mads Mikkelsen at the end of a darkened hallway than Green.

As season two starts off, it seems like Penny Dreadful and done better to quash my biggest complaints on the show. Now that we all know the real and new identities of Ethan and Brona, we can finally move on to new less predictable territories. It also looks like they are giving Dorian Grey something to do this season, tied in the season's big bad, and coven of witches than can transform themselves into something that looks like Marilyn Manson circa The Dope Show but sans any hair at all. And they are actually look more scary than Hannibal Lector himself and at the end of the second episode one of the witches does something as creepy as anything Hannibal has done on his show. Many shows have a sophomore slump in their second season, but Penny Dreadful may just be finding its footing in its second and may quickly become the scariest show on television.

Penny Dreadful airs Sundays at 10:00 on Showtime.

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

The Ten Best Television Shows of 2013-14



For my list of best shows of the year, I only consider shows that air a majority of their episodes during the past year so I did not consider the most recent season of Mad Men which stupidly was split into half season with the remaining episodes not airing until spring of 2015. Here are the ten best shows that aired their episodes in the same twelve month periods.

1. Hannibal, Season 2 (NBC)

2. Justified, Season 5 (FX)

3. Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey (FOX)

4. Masters of Sex, Season 1 (Showtime)

5. The Blacklist, Season 1 (NBC)

6. Orphan Black, Season 2 (BBC America)

7. The Americans, Season 2 (FX)

8. Penny Dreadful, Season 1 (Showtime)

9. Parenthood, Season 5 (NBC)

10. Sons of Anarchy, Season 6 (FX)


And for fun, here are the shows that had the most Quotes and Songs of the Week from the past year.

Quotes of the Week:
Justified – 8
The Bridge – 6
Mad Men – 5
Homeland – 4
Shameless – 3
The Big Bang Theory – 2
Masters of Sex – 2
Once Upon a Time – 2
Orphan Black – 2
Penny Dreadful – 2
Pretty Little Liars – 2
Survivor – 2
The Challenge – 1
Community - 1
How I Met Your Mother – 1
King of the Nerds – 1
Nashville – 1
NFL Draft – 1
The Neighbors – 1
Ray Donovan – 1
The Sing-Off – 1
Tyrant – 1
Under the Dome – 1

Songs of the Week:
How I Met Your Mother – 6
Pretty Little Liars – 5
The Goldbergs – 4
The Americans – 3
Nashville – 3
Ray Donovan – 3
The Blacklist – 2
Growing Up Fisher – 2
Orphan Black - 2
Revenge – 2
Suburgatory – 3
The Big Bang Theory – 1
The Bridge – 1
Californication – 1
The Colbert Report – 1
Community - 1
Crisis – 1
Dominion – 1
House of Lies – 1
Mad Men – 1
Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – 1
The Millers – 1
Perception – 1
Sons of Anarchy – 1
Tyrant – 1