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.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Around the Tubes: 5/22/15

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 B.B. King, The Island, The Strain, Seinfeld, T. rex Autopsy, Turner Classic Movies, EPIX, and the Stars For Second Harvest.

- B.B. King personified blues music for the whole world,” says Austin City Limits (ACL) executive producer Terry Lickona, "but when he first appeared on Austin City Limits in 1983 it was rare for a blues artist to command a full hour on national television.” In honor of the late, undisputed King of the Blues, ACL is proud to bring that iconic hour out from the vault and back to television for the first time in 22 years. This special encore episode airs Saturday, May 23rd at 8:00 on PBS stations (check local listings for times).

- In the hour-long The Island, internationally acclaimed adventurer and survivalist Bear Grylls gives the modern American man the ultimate challenge: Can a man of today's world survive on a deserted island without the luxuries - or even the basics - of contemporary everyday life? Check out a preview below of the showw that premieres Monday at 10:00 on NBC.

- The Strain returns to FX this summer for its highly-anticipated second season on Sundays at 10:00, beginning July 12th. The award-winning thriller from Guillermo del Toro and Carlton Cuse, based off of the best-selling The Strain Trilogy by del Toro and Chuck Hogan, was the most-watched new cable drama of 2014.

- One of the most popular, most award-winning and longest-running comedy series of all time Seinfeld will be available to stream – in its entirety – for the first time ever on Hulu beginning June 24th. Jerry Seinfeld stars as a stand-up comedian whose life in New York City is made even more chaotic by his quirky group of friends who join him in wrestling with life's most perplexing, yet often trivial questions. Often described as "a show about nothing," Seinfeld mines the humor in life's mundane situations like waiting in line, searching for a lost item, or the trials and tribulations of dating.

- This summer, dinosaurs will again capture the world’s imagination with a trip to “Jurassic World.” And though National Geographic Channel cannot bring any dinosaurs back to life (at least not yet!), we will make our own attempt to crack the paleontological code with the new two-hour world premiere special T. rex Autopsy, premiering Sunday, June 7, at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

- Time Out New York reveals a killer feature where the Pixies’ Black Francis and TV on the Radio’s Tunde Adebimpe interview each other! As we set the stage for bringing together the two indie-rock heroes, the outcome makes for a once-in-a-lifetime, awesome conversation all on its own.

- Turner Classic Movies (TCM) today announced a collaboration with Ball State University and Canvas Network, an open online educational platform from Instructure, to present Into the Darkness: Investigating Film Noir, a free online multimedia course open to the general public. The open online course is one of several interactive initiatives TCM is launching in connection to its Summer of Darkness programming event for fans that want to dive deeper into the world of film noir. Enrollment begins today and noir fans can sign up for the course at

- Ross William Ulbricht, the convicted 31-year-old entrepreneur accused of being Dread Pirate Roberts, and founder of the Silk Road drug marketplace, will be sentenced on May 29 in New York. Lyn Ulbricht, mother of Ross Ulbricht and Alex Winter (Downloaded), director, writer and producer of the EPIX Original Documentary Deep Web that chronicles Ulbricht's trial, will participate in a Periscope live video session immediately following the sentencing from the steps of the courthouse. In February 2015 Ulbricht was convicted of seven felony charges including drug trafficking, conspiracy to commit money laundering, conspiracy to commit computer hacking and a kingpin charge. He faces a minimum sentence of thirty years, with a maximum sentence of life in prison. Deep Web makes its World Television Premiere on EPIX Sunday, May 31, 2015 at 8:00.

- Premium TV network EPIX announced today that it is adding original, scripted series to its programming slate, beginning with series from its joint-venture studio partners Paramount, Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF) and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Two of the series will begin production this fall for premiere autumn 2016. The series, "Graves" from Lionsgate Television and "Berlin Station" from Paramount Television, mark the first original series that will appear on EPIX across its channels, EPIX On Demand, and TV Everywhere platforms with its distribution partners. A third original series from MGM will be announced in the near future.

- ACM’s New Artist of the Year winner Cole Swindell , CMA nominee Sarah Buxton and BMI Songwriter of the Year Rodney Clawson join the All-Star lineup of singers and songwriters for the 11 th annual Stars For Second Harvest event on Tuesday, June 9 at Nashville’s historic Ryman Auditorium. Presented by O’Charley’s, hosted by acclaimed hit songwriter Craig Wiseman , and benefitting Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee, the show will feature unplugged acoustic style performances by some of country music’s most acclaimed songwriters and performers. Concert tickets are on-sale now for both general admission $35 plus applicable service charges and preferred seating $55 tickets and are available at Ticketmaster outlets,, Ryman box office,, or by calling 800-745-3000.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

I Want My Music Television: 5/20/15

Bad Blood - Taylor Swift featuring Kendrick Lamar

The build up to the new Taylor Swift music video ended up being more entertaining than the video itself. It ended up looking like a movie trailer with an endless cast who only gets three seconds of screen time each. And I feel bad for Selena Gomez, Taylor gets backed by all her friends while Selena just gets faceless drones. Of all the cameos, couldn't Taylor throw Selena one or two friends?

Feel Right - Mark Ronson featuring Mystikal

I have said this before, but casting children for your stand in for a music video always works. Thank you Mark Ronson, and an extra thank you to mini-Mystikal.

Crystals - Of Monsters and Men

In this week's installment of Adventures in One Hit Wonderdom, Of Monsters and Men had a surprised hit three years ago with the ultra-catchy Little Talks. Everything else off the album failed to stick tin public consciousness and now is back with its sophomore album soon. The first single is kind of sleepy (I can see it in a bunch of winter trailers) but I do like the freaky music video.

Sparks - Hilary Duff

I am not sure I just watched a Hilary Duff music video or a Tinder commercial nor am I sure which would be worse. I do kind of want to like the song because it has been too long since there has been a great whistle breakdown in a song, but unfortunately this just is not a good song either

Sunday, May 17, 2015

57 Channels and Only This Is On: 5/17/15

Once Upon a Time: I came to the realization this week that having an author in the story he was writing was extremely stupid. Thankfully Henry broke the pen which hopefully that is the end of that. And apparently next season they are going to Camelot. Um, yeah?
You can download Once Upon a Time on iTunes.

Mad Men: It was about time one of the characters got lung cancer. Sorry Betty. Now, will any of these drunken fools have liver failure by the end of the show? Despite Betty's death sentence that was a pretty subdued penultimate episode. We did learn that Pete will be joining Joan and Don in the no longer employed by McCaan list. Will Peggy and Roger (who is basically already checked out) join them next week? Whatever happens, it is pretty clear by the last couple episodes, the show probably will not be going out with a bang.
You can download Mad Men on iTunes.

Revenge: Well after all the twists and turns, that was a pretty straight forward finale. Okay, Amanda getting Victoria heart (maybe, it also maybe have been a dream sequence) was a little weird. Even weirder was the revelation that Victoria hooked up with her father. What is with all the incest on television this decade: Game of Thrones, Bates Motel and now Revenge. This trend really needs to stop.
You can download Revenge on iTunes.

American Odyssey: I was really hoping the douchebag boyfriend would end up being just a douchebag boyfriend and the father was just losing it, but that is never the case in shows like this. Oh well.
You can download American Odyssey on iTunes.

Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Oh no, what just happened to Simmons? Of course in a Joss Wheadon show right when Fitz Simmons start discussing the "I love you" incident, something bad really happens. But what exactly happen? Was that The Blob and swallowed her whole? Did it take over her body like Fred on Angel? Is it a Vemon situation where she is really there but is just overtaken temporary but can be saved. A two hour season finale and the last minute is all I can think about.
You can download Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on iTunes.

Survivor: Blue Collar vs. White Collar vs. No Collar: Wow, Mike was able to Jedi mind trick both Dan and Carolyn to use their Extra Vote and Hidden Immunity Idol at the same Tribal Council. I do wonder if Carolyn uses her Idol if Dan does not use his Extra Vote. Still, going into the Season Finale, I do not really care about any of them. I even kind of hope Carolyn wins just so she will not be allowed to show up next season.
You can download Survivor: White Collar vs. Blue Collar vs. No Collar on iTunes.

Nashville: What a silly cliffhanger, of course Deacon is not the bad new the doctor is taking about, the complications have to do with the sister. But I do wonder if she is dead or if she will need assistance that Deacon and Rayna will have to provide for the rest of her life. Almost as silly is Juliet jumping to Luke's label as if her contract with Rayna is that flimsy. At least Will finally came out even if it was two seasons too late.
You can download Nashville on iTunes.

The Blacklist: Oh wow, Lizzie actually killed the Attorney General, that is hard to come back from even if those investigative journalists uncover The Cabal. Of course if Red can join the task force, why not Lizzie? But will she be cleared by episode two of next season or will that be a season long arc?
You can download The Blacklist on iTunes.