Saturday, June 15, 2013

Best of the Week: 6/15/13

Quote of the Week: You don’t make a lot of friends Don so I’m going to assume this is important. (Ted Kough, Mad Men)

Song of the Week: Kill of the Night – Gin Wigmore (Pretty Little Liars)

Scene of the Week:

Big News of the Week: The Triumphant Return of Madison Sinclair: Until recently, the only ones officially signed on to the Veronica Mars Movie were Kristen Bell, Enrico Colantoni, and Jason Dohring. With filming starting Monday, they have been releasing more cast members every day this week including some obvious Neptune alums like Percy Daggs III (Wallace), Tina Majorino (Mac), Francis Capra (Weevil), Ryan Hansen (Dick) some fan favorites like Amanda Noret (Madison Sinclair!), Darrin Norris (Cliff McCormack), Brandon Hillock (Deputy Sacks), Krysten Ritter (Gia Goodman), Jonathan Chesner (Corney), and a few surprises. Rob said that Piz and Parker had parts in the outline despite not being tied to Neptune High and Chris Lowell is official signed on (Julie Gonzalo, who may be busy with Dallas, has not yet signed up to reprise her role as Parker).

There were a couple of Neptune residents who appeared in three or less episode who will also be resurrected on the big screen. Kevin Sheridan appeared in three episodes as an 09er whose family ended up working for them. Sam Huntington, who would go on to play Jimmy Olsen in the ill fated Superman Returns and currently stars on Being Human, was a buddy of Logan who was not seen since the first season.

The most surprising cast addition was Christine Lakin (who will always be Al from Step by Step to me) who had a blink and you would miss it cameo during the first season. Her character actually had ties to two actors who would go on to becoming household names. Her best friend was played by Leighton Meester and was knocked up by her teacher played by Adam Scott. Me thinks Lakin returning may just be an excuse by Rob Thomas to bring in Scott who also starred in his Party Down series as the baby daddy in a surprise cameo. I would also not be surprised if Jane Lynch, who was also on Party Down and played the student council adviser in one episode of Veronica Mars, also makes an appearance if it does not conflict with that horrible game show she is doing on NBC.

That leaves some only three former cast members names yet to be officially announced aside, from Gonzalo there is Tessa Thompson (Jackie) and Teddy Dunn (Duncan) who I doubt will be announced because the statute of limitations for kidnapping probably have not expired yet making it hard for him to show up (though I would not be surprised if he makes an unannounced cameo in the movie with a ten year old Lily). Hopefully before Monday we will get conformation on some recurring actors like Ken Marino (Vinnie Van Lowe), Max Greenfield (Deputy Leo), and / or Duane Daniels (Principal Clemmons), And though they did not graduate with the rest of them, I would not mind seeing Aaron Ashmore (Troy), Jessy Schram (Hanna), and Adam Hendershott (Butters) again. Also no word on the show's future award winners Jessica Chastain (who played Ronnie’s neighbor), Melisa Leo (who played someone’s dad; no seriously), or Aaron Paul (who played someone who videotaped college girls flashing him). I am also hoping they pull in a name to be the fourth actress to portray Shelly Pomroy. I would suggest Lizzy Caplan.

Preview Picture of the Week:

Franklin and Bash, "Coffee and Cream" Wednesday at 9:00 on TNT

Free Download of the Week: Beekeeper - Aoife O'Donovan (iTunes)

Deal of the Week: 100 Albumd for $5 Each: Get discounted greatest hits albums from Elton John, Crosby Stills and Nash, The Cars, and Donny Hathaway.

New Album Release of the Week: Anthem - Hanson

New DVD Release of the Week: Inside Combat Rescue

Video of the Week: 300 was pure awesomeness, a historical drama with stylize drama. And now there is a sequel. Sure the protagonist from the original is dead and the original director who gave it the distinctive look was off filming the Superman reboot and is only a producer this time around so hopes were cautiously optimist. At the very least the trailer for 300: Rise of an Empire looks epic. Although Eva Green as a Persian seems like a bit of a stretch.

Next Week Pick of the Week: Hannibal, Thursday at 10:00 on NBC: We finally learned why Hannibal alerted Jacob Hobbs and it was because he wanted to see what he would do. Since then he has been taunting Will, slowly driving him crazy to the point where everyone would think Will was the copycat killer. So all is left in the season finale is to see who really takes the fall for the murders. I am guessing Will will finally realize that his shrink is the one who did it, but will anyone believe him? Or maybe season two will be Will trying to prove that Dr. Lecter is a serial killer.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Around the Tubes: 6/14/13

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 Killing Kennedy, Vice, AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute to Mel Brooks, Spell-Mageddon, Kristin Errett, Sublime, BET Awards '13, Crowning New York, and Guinness World Records® Unleashed.

- John Kennedy, Jackie, and even Harvey Lee Oswald’s wife have already been cast in National Geographic’s upcoming Killing Kennedy and now the man who (supposably) pulled the trigger has been cast and will be played by Will Rothhaar last seen on Last Resort. Robert Kennedy has also been announced: Jack Noseworthy who I will always know as the dude from Dead at 21, as Robert F. Kennedy. And if that is not enough, we now have our first look as Rob Lowe as JFK and Ginnifer Goodwin as his wife:

First look of Rob Lowe as President John F. Kennedy on the set of National Geographic Channel’s KILLING KENNEDY, which started production this week in Richmond, Va. The television event will air on Nat Geo this November. Photo by Kent Eanes/National Geographic Channel

First look of Ginnifer Goodwin as First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy on the set of National Geographic Channel’s KILLING KENNEDY, which started production this week in Richmond, Va. Nat Geo will air the television event this November. Photo by Kent Eanes/National Geographic Channel

- Vice heads to North Korea for its season finale tonight at 10:00 on HBO. But do not worry, the show will be back for a second season. Until then, here is a preview of what you will see tonight.

- TNT and Turner Classic Movies (TCM) will present the AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute to Mel Brooks, a star-studded special celebrating the comedy legend. The highest honor for a career in the movies, the American Film Institute bestowed the honor on Brooks during a black-tie gala held in Hollywood on June 6. Many of Hollywood’s most revered luminaries turned out for the tribute, which will premiere on Saturday at 9:00.

- In a story I broke last week, ABC Family is going through with Spell-Mageddon (the show based on The Challenge spelling challenge) and now they have a host: Alfonso Ribeiro who may be better known as Carlton Banks. The show is set to premiere Wednesday July 24 at 9:00.

- If you are in the mood for some new music in the pop area like Sara Bareilles, check out Kristin Errett who just released her debut album Confessions of a Songbird which you can grab on iTunes.

- On Monday, June 17, a global online viewing party will occur to celebrate the eagerly anticipated DVD and CD release of Sublime’s 3-Ring Circus: Live at the Palace – October 21, 1995. This concert catches the trio of late frontman / guitarist / songwriter Bradley Nowell, bassist Eric Wilson and drummer Bud Gaugh in top form before a packed house at the legendary Hollywood, CA venue. The classic concert will be broadcast live on Facebook to over 1 billion Facebook users and on For $1.99 viewers can watch, listen and interact together on and starting at 9:00. The show will be out on DVD and CD the next day.

- The BET Awards ‘13 is shaping up to be the most explosive yet, with rapper Kendrick Lamar recently announced as a performer live from the Nokia Theatre L.A. Live in Los Angeles on Sunday, June 30th at 8:00.

- Smithsonian Channel is in production on a one-hour special that reveals one of modern day’s most daring engineering feats: the installation of a 408-foot spire atop One World Trade Center. Crowning New York will air later this year to coincide with the official ceremony that will mark the lighting of the beacon atop the historic skyscraper.

- truTV will go into production on brand new episodes of its hit series Guinness World Records Unleashed on Wednesday, June 19, at the historic Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, Calif. Hosted by Dan Cortese (MTV Sports), the series features daring and fearless record hopefuls as they attempt to secure their place in history by breaking some truly outrageous world records. All new episodes of Guinness World Records Unleashed are set to launch on truTV later this year.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Previewing Sullivan and Son 2.x

Sullivan and Son is back for a second round

TBS has hit its stride with its old school sitcom that put the situations in comedy. Sure they are not going to win any awards or critical acclaim, but you will laugh a couple times each episode. Men At Work just wrapped its second season and now TBS’s other traditional sitcom Sullivan and Son is back for a second round. And little has changed from the first season.

For those that like looking at episode titles, do not let the title of the second season premiere fool you, The Pilot, One More Time is an all new episode, it is not even a reboot of the show, in fact all the characters are the same and in the same state of arrested development where we left them. We finally do get to meet Susan’s husband who shows up in the form of Community’s Ken Jeong who get inspired by Steve job change from high stress.

Later in the season, Steve, Melanie, and Owen make a pact to be more accepting of potential significant others after spending one too many nights alone in the bad, and needless to say the guy and girls they end up with have some pretty huge character flaws. But that does not stop Owen from fighting with Ahmed for the affections of a hippie chick in a later episode. And since the show airs int between episodes of The Big Bang Theory, it is only apropos that one of the nerds from the show pops up and Kunal Nayyar will do just that. Nayyar will play a character that considers himself the ultimate ladies man later this season. While attending the bar's first-ever "Ladies Night," he tries to hit on multiple women using different personalities.

Sullivan and Son airs Thursdays at 100 on TBS. You can also download Sullivan & Son on iTunes.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Musings from the Back 9: Music Edition XVI

To put into perspective just how long it has been since Black Sabbath put out an album with Ozzy Osbourne, I had not even been born yet and I am old enough to remember when Dr. Dre started working on Detox. Really, when I think of Ozzy, I think of his cheesy power ballads from the lat eighties / early nineties. Which I guess is better than the generation or two that came after me who think Ozzy only as a reality star. But their reunion album 13 got me intrigued if only because it was being produced by Rick Rubin who may have the greatest batting average among producers since the band last released an album together. Unfortunately unlucky 13 is a rare swing and a miss as it turns out sounding exactly what a bunch of sixty year olds playing heavy metal would sound like. A Johnny Cash redefining album that Rubin produced, this is not. And it is mostly Ozzy’s fault who sounds phoned in (anyone who saw his reality show probably knows why) even though Tony Iommi’s riff are for the most part still haunting as ever. I just wished Rubin pushed them more. The most intriguing song on the album is Damaged Soul where the harmonica sends the song into a bluesy direction before getting drowned out by Iommi’s guitar. I just wished 13 had more moments like that.

13 gets a Terror Alert Level: Guarded [BLUE] on my Terror Alert Scale.

Back in the late nineties, electronic music became such a big fad even Eric Clapton and R.E.M. were making albums that relied heavily on drum machines. At the same time, Barenaked Ladies were enjoying their biggest success creating music more organically. Fifteen years later we are in the second electronic boon and the Ladies finally jumped on board with the trend on their tenth studio album Grinning Streak (depending how you count them). They never drop the base or any of those other annoying trends in EDM these days, but the album is easily their more electronic embracing to date. Well that is primarily the opening song Limits, after that all the hints of electrics are tempered down. The rest of the album may have been more interesting if it were more like the opening track. And despite the title Grinning Streak, the trademark wit the band usually has is once again downplayed. I always thought the token rapper Ed Robertson was the fun guy in the group, but ever since Steven Paige has left the group, their album as much less fun.

Grinning Streak gets a Terror Alert Level: Guarded [BLUE] on my Terror Alert Scale.

Tom Petty once sang about the ups and downs of being a rock and roll star during Into the Great Wide Open and one line that always stick out to me is when he sings, “their A&R guy said ‘I don’t hear a single.’” That line comes up occasionally when I listen to albums like the last Jimmy Eat World album. Invented was good, but nothing on the album really stood out as being particularly great. Same goes for their latest Damage. You are still getting a solid ten song, which really does not add anything new to their catalogue. But alas I do not hear a single worth downloading and if you already own Bleed American and Furtures, you really do not need to add Damage to your library.

Damage gets a Terror Alert Level: Elevated [YELLOW] on my Terror Alert Scale.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

I Want My Music Television: 6/11/13

There have been a couple of videos that have caught my eye lately so I thought I’d give them some love since the death of Musical Television left a void for a forum on the art form. If you are interested in buying the video through iTunes, click the title link (where available). If you are interested in buying the song, look for a link in the analysis.

Everything Has Changed - Taylor Swift featuring Ed Sheeran

They psyched me out, I thought the kids were going to be the younger versions of Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran but it turned out to be their kids, or more likely little siblings. I pretty much ignored Red because it was way too poppy for my taste, but this song reminds me there were a couple good songs on it. It is a shame that there not more songs like this on the album, it would have been much better.

Diane Young – Vampire Weekend

Pot use getsa bad rap for killing brain cells but we all knew that guy who could build a bong out of anything. Though I am not sure how practical the saxophone bong in the Vampire Weekend video is, seems like a lot of smoke would escape the keys holes.

Boomarng – Barenaked Ladies

I know the Barenaked Ladies has not had a big hit here in a decade, but I have to believe that made enough money from the Big Bang Theory Theme that they could afford to make a music video that look better than something that could have been made for the Super Nintendo.

The War Within - Churchill

Churchill were already in the running for the 2013 Peter Bjorn and John Award for Catchiest Indie Pop Song of the Summer with their song Change and they may have some competition with their new single whose outro gives me a very Where the Streets Have No Name vibe. I keep re-watching the video just trying to figure out which famous person the female in the group looks like. A grown up Millie Kentner maybe? But I am beginning to think she is just an amalgamation of every super cute chick I went to college with. If you like this song, you can download it for the low, low price of free on Noisetrade along with four remixes of Change.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Previewing King and Maxwell and Major Crimes

Rebecca Romijn and Jon Tenney of King an Maxwell

You doubtfully have ever seen a show that starts with a gopher driving a mass transit bus and I doubt you will ever see it again. But that is how King and Maxwell opens. Based on the David Baldacci best sellers, the new series stars Rebecca Romijn (Rollerball) as Michelle Maxwell and Jon Tenney (The Closer) as Sean King as two former secret service agents turned private investigators which leads to a humorous reading of the Miranda Rights on a count that they do not actually read them because they are no longer officers of the law.

Unfortunately after the gopher incident, the rest of the premiere fall into your formulaic crime procedural and feels more like Tenney’s former show on TNT than Veronica Mars even had the show focused on Keith rather than his daughter. And the setting of Washing D.C. (these are former secret servicemen so they still have a few connections) just means there are going to be a lot more political intrigue than bail jumpers on the show and a lot of run ins with the FBI considering two agents, Michael O’Keefe (Caddyshack) and his partner Chris Butler (The Good Wife), are also part of the cast.

The first non-gopher case involves a serial killer (Sons of Anarchy’s Ryan Hurst who looks a lot different with a clean shave and a Tim Riggins haircut) whose lawyer, and friend of King, is murdered and King is out to find out why his friend was gunned down and why if it tied to his latest case (spoiler alert: of course it is). The client is not much help as a high-functioning autistic savant. But the case is so run of the mill, I was able to spot the killer the moment they walk on screen. If the rest of the episodes were more gopher chasing and less political intrigue, I would watch every episode but sadly I have a feeling we have seen our last gopher bus chase.

King and Maxwell airs Mondays at 10:00 on TNT.

Nadine Velazquez joins the cast of Major Crimes

The series premiere of King and Maxwell will be preceded by the spin-off of Tenney’s old show Major Crimes, now in its second season. Though the show is still dominated by the Philip Stroh case that started way back in the days of The Closer. Nadine Velazquez (My Name is Earl) joins the cast this season as the Deputy District Attorney prosecuting Stroh and quickly butts head with Captain Raydor over the key witness Rusty and her guardianship. The case of the week tonight involves a movie director comes home to find his wife murdered and Provenza is ready to prosecuted him on the spot, which of course probably means he did not do it (again, I was able to spot the actual killer the moment they walked on screen which probably means I watch too many of these types of shows). And look out later this season when Raynor’s estranged husband shows up in the form of Tom Berenger.

Major Crimes airs Mondays at 9:00 on TNT. You can also download Major Crimes on iTunes.

Sunday, June 09, 2013

Previewing Falling Skies 3.x

The Mason family of Falling Skies

The first two seasons of Falling Skies were a bit rocky, the characters were not worth rooting for and they seemed aimless going from town to town. Things started to pick up near the end of last season when the 2nd Mass arrived in Charleston, an outpost for human refuges that had started to cobble together a sense of a society. They even had running water and an actual medical facility. By the time the season ended Weaver reunited with his daughter… again, Tom knocked up Anne, Karen gave Hal some eye bug thingy, oh yeah, and we were introduced to another alien race in the final scene of the season.

So we had to spend the next year wonder if these new aliens are friends or foes, or something in between. Well you are going to have to wait a couple minutes into the third season premiere to find out as were start out with a rescue mission of a character I forgot even needed rescuing from the old aliens where we get to meet the new “mega-mechs” before we learn what the new aliens are up to (TNT’s lawyer will rain fire down on me if I spoil any of the surprises, but I can say that the new aliens are called the Volm, their leader is named Chochise and we even get a name for the alien race the Overlords are part of: the Espheri. Granted Pope wisely just refers them as Bubbleheads and Fishheads respectively) but information starts to trickle out about them over the two hour premiere.

The premiere actually picks up seven month after the Volm first arrive which means Anne is very pregnant by the time we see them again. Tom is now the president of The New United States, Ben got himself a lady friend, Matt got himself a new perm, and Hal still has that bug thingy that no one has detected yet. Weaver has spend the time getting to know his daughter, Pope now has a whole town named after him, Lourdes has been upgraded to a white coat, and it looks like Anthony (you may only know him as the token black dude from the first two seasons) may actually be getting a storyline this season.

There are also some major changes that happened in the past seven months and the day we return to Charleston, again, I cannot not go into details due to the previously mentioned fiery rain but I can say one character had a major life change, someone gets a surprise promotion (and I am not talking about Tom being elected president), and someone you will know will not make it out the first hour alive, and the death does not come on the battle field, setting up a murder mystery for a couple episodes.

The Volm are not the only new faces this season. Noah Wiley’s ER cohort Gloria Reuben shows up as one of his top advisers. Doug Jones, who played Abe Sapien in Hellboy and the thing with eyes on his hands in Pan's Labyrinth, dons another mask as Cochise. In the second half of tonight’s premiere we meet the eccentric guy who powers the city of Charleston who refuses to come topside and may instantly be the most interesting character on the show. In the second half of the episode we also get a look of some of the earliest harnessed humans and they just keep on getting creepier and creepier.

Falling Skies premieres tonight at 9:00 with two hours. Starting next Sunday, the rest of the season will air in its regular time slot at 10:00. You can also download Falling Skies on iTunes.