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.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Around the Tubes: 6/10/16

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 House of Lies, Barely Famous, Winsanitty, Power, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Keith Urban, and Masters of Sex.

- This Sunday, June 12th at 9:00, our favorite corporate sharks are boarding their last flight, in grand, historic style, to Havana, Cuba for the conclusion of the Showtime comedy series House of Lies. Shot entirely on location and directed by series creator and executive producer Matthew Carnahan, this final episode, “No Es Fácil,” marks the first time an American scripted series was shot in Cuba since the restoration of diplomatic relations. Don Cheadle (Miles Ahead) headlines the stellar cast, which includes Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars), Emmy® winner Ben Schwartz (Parks & Recreation), Josh Lawson (Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues), Donis Leonard Jr. (Criminal Minds), and Emmy winner Glynn Turman (In Treatment). As we conclude the series, the Pod is assessing their personal portfolios: in their constant quest for the almighty dollar, how much is enough? How much money buys happiness and at what cost?

- Season two continues to satirize the reality TV genre by exploring the endless hypocrisy of Hollywood wealth and fame. Each episode of Barely Famous, featuring multi-hyphenate producers, actresses and writers Erin and Sara Foster, dives into the world of celebrity in a docu-style format through the eyes of the delusional, hilarious and beautiful Foster sisters. Celebrity cameos this season include Chris Martin, Chelsea Handler, Kate Hudson, Jessica Alba, Zach Braff, Kate Upton, Cindy Crawford, Brooke Burke, Dr. Phil, Ali Larter, Lauren London, Joey Fatone and more. Check out the Supertrailer here.

- GSN has partnered with participation TV technology company iPowow on the new game show series, Winsanity, to allow viewers – for the first time ever in cable TV – to play along at home in real-time on their mobile devices against other viewers, see their results on-screen and also get a chance to win prizes throughout the season. The play along at home feature will be part of the show, beginning with the series debut on Thursday, June 9 at 9:00 on GSN. The new iPowow play-at-home game at, allows viewers watching the show in real-time to play along for free and stack the facts in the correct order, using their smartphone, tablet or laptop.

- Anchoe Bay Entertainment gears up for the much-anticipated release of the Starz Original series Power: The Complete Second Seasonon Blu-ray™ and DVD on Tuesday, June 14th. Executive Produced by Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson and created by Courtney A. Kemp (“The Good Wife”), POWER is a drama that straddles the opulent Manhattan lifestyle of the rich and infamous and the underbelly of the international drug trade. The second season picks up where it left off: James "Ghost" St. Patrick (Omari Hardwick) doubling down on his drug business to save his nightclub and dream of a legitimate future. His work troubles pale in comparison to juggling his relationship with his wife, Tasha (Naturi Naughton), and his first love Angela (Lela Loren), who's also an Assistant United States Attorney investigating his drug organization. Ghost is set further back from his dream by his business partner Tommy (Joseph Sikora) who loves the drug game, and his former mentor, Kanan (Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson), fresh out of jail, and looking for revenge. Season two has Ghost in a race against himself: can he get out of the drug game alive before Angela discovers who he is? The third season of POWER premieres on a new night Sunday, July 17 at 9:00 on Starz.

- Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’ Greatest Hits collection will be available on vinyl for the first time in North America on July 29 as a double LP on 180-Gram Black Vinyl. The album is the biggest selling in the band’s illustrious catalog, with sales surpassing twelve million copies since its 1993 release.

Tune in to watch Keith Urban on AT&T Live at the iHeartRadio Theater NY airing exclusively via nationwide broadcast this Friday (tonight), June 10 at 9:00 on the AUDIENCE Network DIRECTV Ch 239/U-verse Ch 1114.

- Niecy Nash and Betty Gilpin will be guest stars on the fourth season of Showtime Networks’ critically acclaimed drama series Masters of Sex Nash, who will appear in a multi-episode arc, plays Louise Bell, a local AA - chairperson running Masters’ (Michael Sheen) court-ordered daily meetings. She fervently believes in AA’s message, and uses it to push Masters to reevaluate his life. Gilpin, who will also appear in a multi-episode arc, will play Nancy, a former medical student of Barton’s (Beau Bridges), who partners with Masters adding a second MD to the practice. Production on season four recently began in Los Angeles.

Thursday, June 09, 2016

Previewing Wrecked

The cast of Wrecked

Longtime readers know I have an irrational hatred of Lost. For six years I thought I was watching a sci-fi show with some relationship aspects but when the how ended I realized all those sci-fi elements did not matter and Lost was no different than all the other nighttime soaps on ABC at that time that just happened to take place in different places. Desperate Housewives took place in the suburbs, Grey’s Anatomy took place in a hospital; Lost just happened to take place on a deserted island with mystical power. But ignored the random four toed statue just offshore, the show was more about Jack and the relationship with his imaginary son. If I could turn a frozen donkey wheel to go back in time to tell my younger self to not watch that show I would.

The first time I saw the trailer for Wrecked, it was completely cold. I had never heard of the show, did not know what to expect. So when the promo started with a group of strangers stranded on a deserted island, I thought, oh goodness no. Then the previous serious tone of the ad ended with a joke and the comedy station TBS logo splashed on the screen, I realized it was not a cheap Lost rip-off, it was actually a cheap Lost parody.

Wrecked is more in vein of a Mel Brookes broad parody than the horible Wayans brother cram in as many references in a minute as they can. Sure the show opens up with the close up of a dude’s face and there is a character in the premiere that I am pretty sure the casting agent said, “get someone who looks exactly like Matthew Fox.” And unlike the creators of Lost who famously wanted to kill off Jack in the first episode of Lost, the writers gleefully do it in the promo for the show. Um, spoiler alert for anyone who did not see that promo.

Really aside from the setting and the brief stint from a Jack-like character, there is not else tying the show to Lost. No flashback, no smoke monster (yet) for better or worse. When the cop admits to another character he was not actually a cop prior to crashing I was fully expecting a flashback with a sight gag of him being the furthest thing from a respectable cop.

Also where the characters on Lost all had roles and their uses, Wrecked is populated by some useless and incompetent people. There is the grown up douchebag frat boy and his long suffering sorority girlfriend, an incompetent male flight attendant, a vapid sports agent, the pretentious liberal, and maybe the most reliable castaway is a podiatrist. Sure there is someone who can kill a boar (possibly with her bare hand), but she is not all there. The cast is rounded out with a loveable lunk who is upbeat despite having his legs crushed by debris and is played by the only recognizable member of the cast played by the lizard man from the best episode of the recent The X-Files reboot. Happy Endings’s Eliza Coupe does show up in the premiere as the higher strung flight attendant but is not seen after the plane crash. We do not see her die so possible she is on the other end of the island with The Others.

After years of putting on traditional sitcoms in vein of eighties multi-cams, TBS is ramping up more adventurous programming starting earlier this year with Angie Tribeca which is currently the funniest show on television and followed that up with the everything goes hilariously wrong The Detour. Wrecked may not be as funny, but in a summer which is lacking anything else in the funny department there are plenty of laughs to be found. My favorite bit being when one castaway finds a DVD player with two hours left of charge and then has to decide whether to watch the important and powerful Selma as possibly their last movie they ever watch, or watch Dumb or Dumber To.

Wrecked airs Tuesdays at 10:00 on TBS.

Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Previewing Casual: Season Two


The first season of Casual ended in maybe the most casual way, with someone walking in on the girl who he is seeing (who has another serious boyfriend in their open relationship) in bed with his sister. The same sister whose one night stand the guy participated in a foursome with and the girl in the open relationship. Well that was the start of the finale, the season ended just like it began, with the guy, the sister, her daughter in the back of a church. But instead of an imaginary funeral of their father, it is his real wedding to their mother.

The first season of Casual was about dating at different stages of life. Valerie was a recent divorcée dealing with the grief of that ending and trying to find something new, usually disastrously (like ending up in your brother’s bed with his girlfriend). Alex has never had a serious relationship but your aimless twenties start to get old when you are well into your thirties. Then there is Valerie’s daughter Laura who is navigation high school while possibly making the worse decision of the all by making a sex tape in hopes of making her photography teacher jealous.

As the second season start, the family is still together in the same house but there are plenty of changes. Alex has moved into Phase 3 of his life which apparently involves running at dawn, fresh fruit drinks, and yoga. And he is not even picking up chick at yoga either. Laura cannot go back to her old school after a sex scandal and her mother sleeping with photographer teacher. While Vanessa, well, he is dealing with birds and construction in a neighboring office.

There are big changes in the personal lives as well as professional. After what happened last season, Alex’s dating app need help to stay afloat. In walked the very person you do not want see walk into your office: Pete Campbell. Even worse, no one punches him in the first couple episode, granted we had to wait four or five seasons before Lane did something every viewer wanted to see. Disappointment of not seeing Pete Campbell getting decked by a British dude aside (c’mon Leon, you can do it), if you enjoyed the first season, there is plenty in the second to renew your Hulu subscription.

New episodes of Casual premiere Tuesdays on Hulu where the first two episodes of season two (and the entire first season) are available now.

Monday, June 06, 2016

Previewing Rizzoli and Isles: The Final Season

Rizzzoli and Isles back for a final season

Nothing like some gunfire to liven up a wedding reception. Just that happened to Korsak after tying the knot which ended the sixth season of Rizzoli and Isles. The seventh, and final, season begins tonight with Rizzoli running down the assailant and Isles mending to wounded, which she herself includes. No signs point to Alice Sands but that is exactly who the Boston Police Department focuses on.

Sands is the former drug kingpin who dropped out of the academy after coming in second too many times to Rizzoli and now has decided to harass Rizzoli by burning down her house and kidnapping Maura. And now she is believed to shoot up a wedding leaving at least one in critical condition.

There are back to back episodes tonight and the second involves a fatal car crash which may not be as simple as it looks that the team investigates while still on the hunt for Sands. The second ends with not one but two shocking conclusions. There also may be new love in the air this season. Oh and zombies. There are zombies next week.

Rizzoli and Isles airs Mondays at 9:00 on TNT.

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.

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

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

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)

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


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)