Saturday, June 22, 2019

Around the Tubes: June 22, 2019

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 On Becoming a God in Central Forida, Prince, The Affair, America’s Hidden Stories, Amazing Dogs, Bipolar Rock ’N’ Roller, Paul Simon, Shania Twain, Taylor Swift, Maggie Lindemann, Back to Life, Heavenly Bodies, and The Banana Splits Adventure Hour.

- Showtime has picked up On Becoming a God in Central Forida, a one-hour series set to debut Sunday, August 25 at 10 p.m. ET/PT. Starring Emmy and Golden Globe nominee Kirsten Dunst (Fargo), the nine-episode series is a darkly comedic story about the cult of free enterprise and one woman’s relentless pursuit of the American Dream. In addition to Dunst, the series stars Théodore Pellerin (Genesis), Beth Ditto (Nocturnal Animals), Mel Rodriguez (The Last Man on Earth) and Ted Levine (The Silence of the Lambs). Created and executive produced by Robert Funke and Matt Lutsky and produced by Sony’s TriStar Television, the series is also executive produced by Smokehouse Pictures’ George Clooney (Catch-22) and Grant Heslov (Catch-22), along with Dunst, Charlie McDowell (The One I Love), who also directed the pilot and Esta Spalding (MASTERS OF SEX), who also serves as showrunner.

- The Prince Estate, in partnership with Warner Records, released a brand new music video for Prince's original demo recording of the classic "Manic Monday" featuring never before seen, archival footage from his storied vault that provides a rare window into Prince's creative process during a wildly productive era of his career. Watch the brand new "Manic Monday" music video in full and catch up on all things Prince on Apple Music here.

- Showtime has released the first-look teaser for the highly anticipated fifth and final season of the critically acclaimed, Golden Globe-winning Showtime drama series The Affair. Premiering on Sunday, August 25 at 9 p.m. ET/PT, the series was created by WGA Award-winning playwright, writer, executive producer and showrunner Sarah Treem (House of Cards, In Treatment). The Affair is also executive produced by Jessica Rhoades (Sharp Objects), Hagai Levi (In Treatment) and Michele Giordono (Nurse Jackie). Starring Golden Globe nominee Dominic West, Golden Globe winner Maura Tierney and Sanaa Lathan, the series explores the emotional and psychological effects of an affair that destroyed two marriages, and the crime that brings these individuals back together. Oscar® and Golden Globe Award winner Anna Paquin (True Blood) joined the final season as a series regular.

- Jamestown, the first successful English settlement in the Americas, is best known for the legend of John Smith and Pocahontas, but now archaeologists are on the hunt for a pioneering and controversial forgotten founding father. On July 30, 1619, Sir George Yeardley presided over the first democratic assembly in English-speaking America. Just a few weeks later, he purchased the first captive Africans for an English colony – opening America to the horrors of slavery. Smithsonian Channel’s probing series America’s Hidden Stories has pulled back the curtain on history we thought we knew, such as the groundbreaking revelation that Revolutionary War hero General Casimir Pulaski was intersex. Now, a special episode of the series reveals how Sir George Yeardley and a single year, 1619, set the course for the nation’s future. America’s Hidden Stories: Mystery at Jamestown premieres 400 years after the assembly’s anniversary on Monday, July 29 at 8 PM ET/PT.

- Take a journey along the twists and turns of the canine family tree to meet the most dangerous and wondrous wild dogs in the natural world and learn how they eventually went on to become much-loved pets like Labradors, bulldogs, mutts and more. Hosted by biologist Patrick Aryee, Amazing Dogs travels the world to study all 34 extraordinary canine species – from the Arctic fox to South America’s maned wolves and everything in between. Aryee examines these wonderfully varied creatures and discovers how, by harnessing their wild instincts, dogs helped change the course of human history. Taking viewers from the jungles of Brazil to the deserts of Africa and onto North America’s prairies to meet the most incredible canines known to man – Amazing Dogs premieres Sunday, July 28 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Smithsonian Channel. The premiere episode, MAN’S BEST FRIEND, sees Aryee meet the fastest, strongest and most unusual looking domestic dogs on the planet – all descended from the wild gray wolf. In the Mongolian wilderness, we find the Bankhar, a native dog that protects livestock from predators; then, it’s to the deserts of the Middle East to meet the Saluki – speed-demon canines that can reach up to 40 mph. Later, Aryee heads north on a dog-sledding adventure with the sturdy and strong Inuit Sled Dog, and while heading back south, he finds the loyal Newfoundland working among fishermen and the Cattle Dog riding alongside cowboys.

- Showtime and Mauro Ranallo announced at the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) National Convention in Seattle that Bipolar Rock ’N’ Roller, a raw and revealing documentary chronicling the prolific combat-sports broadcaster Ranallo and his lifelong battle with mental illness, is now available for free to non-subscribers. The full documentary, which originally premiered on Showtime during Mental Health Awareness Month in May 2018, is available via YouTube, and across select TV and streaming providers' websites, apps and free On Demand channels through Saturday, August 31.

- Paul Simon will perform a special pair of concerts August 13 and 14 at Maui Arts & Cultural Center’s A&B Amphitheater and Yokouchi Pavilion with all of the artist’s net proceeds to be donated to environmental organizations working in Hawai‘i. Tickets for both shows go on sale to the general public Saturday, June 22 at 10:00 am HST at the MACC Box office, by phone at 808-242-SHOW or online at

- One of music's most renowned trailblazers and the top-selling female country artist of all-time, Shania Twain, is returning to the Las Vegas Strip with Shania Twain "Let's Go!" The Vegas Residency, opening at Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino on Friday, Dec. 6, 2019.

- Taylor Swift's 7th studio album Lover has already set a new Apple Music record...and it's not even out yet! Lover is officially the most pre-added album by a female artist ever on Apple Music in the first day with 178.6K Pre-Adds worldwide, breaking the previous record set by thank u, next by Ariana Grande.

- On Maggie Lindemann's latest single, ‘Friends Go,’ the 20-year-old treads the line between modernist and throwback. The starlet embraces this duality with the help of Blink 182's Travis Barker by putting a punk twist on the recent single which explores feelings of disconnect at a time in which technology has made people closer than ever before.

- Showtime has ordered the critically acclaimed six episode comedy series Back to Life, from Fleabag producers Harry and Jack Williams and Daisy Haggard (EPISODES). Haggard plays Miri Matteson, who, after 18 years behind bars, returns home and stumbles back into adult life in the coastal town she once knew, while the mystery of her past looms large. Created by Haggard and written by Haggard and Laura Solon, the series will premiere on Showtime on Sunday October 6 at 8:30 p.m. ET/PT.

- What do you want to happen when you die? The ancient Greeks hung their heroes in the stars. On Monday, June 24, Smithsonian Channel cameras will capture an emotional, 21st-century version of this timeless human story, when 152 people mark the end of their life on Earth – by having their ashes shot into space. Celestis Memorial Spaceflights is lifting the cremains of 152 space enthusiasts off to their greatest and final adventure. Now, cameras are on the ground to capture the stories of Celestis participants and their loved ones as they witness this emotional launch to be shown in an upcoming Smithsonian Channel program, Heavenly Bodies (w.t.).

- One banana, two banana, three banana, GORE! The cult-favorite animal rock-band from Hanna-Barbera’s 1968 The Banana Splits Adventure Hour variety program is back with a blood-spattered vengeance! Warner Bros. Home Entertainment brings you The Banana Splits Movie, an original feature-length film on Digital on August 13, and on Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD on August 27, 2019. The movie is priced to own at $19.99 SRP for Digital, $24.98 SRP for Blu-ray Combo Pack ($34.97 in Canada), $19.98 SRP for the DVD ($24.99 in Canada).

Thursday, June 20, 2019

The Five Most Anticipated Albums of Summer 2019

Last week I saw a Billboard headline that asked are labels signing too many artist? After the music industry almost died during the height of downloading, it seemed like most Top 40 radio stations only played 25 songs, streaming has been a huge boon and they are making almost as much money as the CD era. So to answer Billboard's question, no. With more signees means more diversity, after a long period where record companies were just throwing around crash to Soundcloud rappers, hopefully with the boon it will spawn the weirdness in the nineties where you had alt rock, gangsta rap, Boyz II Men, Hootie and The Blowfish, and Celine Dion all selling boatloads of CD's. Even Fleetwood Mac, The Eagles, and johnny Cash had huge comeback albums. With the overabundance of music come are way, I am actually able to come up with a Most Anticipated list for the first time in a while.

1. Originals - Prince (Tomorrow) - We are all familiar with songs like Manic Monday, Jungle Love, and the Glamorous Life but what some people may not know is that Prince wrote all three of those songs and many more that he handed off to artists as diverse as Martika and Kenny Rogers. Much like last years Piano and a Microphone 1983 these are all demos and not completely finished songs but like that album, this will at the very least be an interesting album to listen to.

2. "Let's Rock" - The Black Keys (June 28) - The duo released six albums in their first eight years as a band but just two in the next eight years. And the last one, Turn Blue was a weird psychedelic turn. Thier firt in five years sounds like a reeturn to the garage rock that got them the rare guitar based radio this decade. And I am all ready to have some rock back in my life.

3. Jimmy Lee - Raphael Saadiq (August 23) - Speaking of a long hiattus, it has been eight years since the last album by the RnB legend but listening to the first single Something Keeps Calling, it will be worth the wait. Really, old school RnB is another thing I really need back in my life.

4. No.6 Collaborations Project - Ed Sheeran (July 12) - Before he got signed and released mathematical themed album titles, Ed Sheeran numbered his EP's, the last of which was No.5 Collaborations Project. No word on who he is collaborating with other than Justin Beiber (meh) and Chance the Rapper (much better) which have already been released as single.

5. Lover - Taylor Swift (August 23) - Alright, Reputation was pure trash. And Me! was not much better, but Taylor does tend to release her cheesiest songs first. You Need to Calm Down is a little better. Here is hoping she is holding off her best for the album release like she has done for hr best albums.

Here are some other albums coming out this summer that will at least be worth a spin on Spotify. Click on the album name to pre-order on Amazon. Click on the artist's name to be taken to their iTunes page.

Help Us Stranger - The Raconteurs
Late Night Feelings - Mark Ronson
Ride Me Back Home - Willie Nelson
Blood - Collective Soul

June 28
From Muscle Shoals - Foy Vance
Stranger Songs - Ingrid Michaelson

July 5
Brand New Day - Eddie Money

July 12
III - Banks
Solutions - K.Flay
Voyager - 311
Full Circle - Angie Stone
∑(No,12k,Lg,17Mif) New Order + Liam Gillick: So It Goes.. (Live at MIF) - New Order

July 19
Singular Act II - Sabrina Carpenter
Throwing Copper (25 Anniversary) - Live

July 26
Fever Dream - Of Monsters and Men
Little Yachty - Sugar Ray
Hotel Last Resort - Violent Femmes
Live From The Artists Den - Soundgarden
Everything Hits At Once: The Best Of Spoon - Spoon

August 2
Finch - Penny & Sparrow
Interpreting the Masters, Volume 2: (A Tribute to Van Halen) - The Bird and the Bee
Live at Woodstock - Creedence Clearwater Revival

August 9
How Do You Love? - The Regrettes

August 16
Thrashing Thru the Passion - The Hold Steady

August 23
Threads - Sheryl Crow
Hello From Las Vegas - Lionel Richie

September 6
Lost Girls - Bat for Lashes
404 - Barns Courtney
Valve Bone Woe - Chrissy Hynde

September 13
III - The Lumineers
Charli - Charli XCX

September 20
Why Me? Why Not. - Liam Gallagher

October 4
Closer Than Together - The Avett Brothers


Masochism - Sky Ferreira
Run the Jewels 4 - Run The Jewels
Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band
Chance the Rapper
Guns N' Roses
Hootie & The Blowfish
Mandy Moore
Neil Young & Crazy Horse

And of course this could be the quarter we here Dr. Dre's Detox. Recently Flying Lotus says he has heard Detox and claims it is better than Compton, so maybe there is a chance us common people will hear it soon too.

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Previewing The Detour: Season Four

The Detour started out as a travel show as a family of four had a bunch of humorous mishaps while trying to make it to Florida for a family vacation. The show took a detour form that concept staying fairly stationary in seasons two and three. Now in season four, the Parkers are hitting the road again and traveling a lot further than from New York to Florida.

After Delilah stole a car and ran away last season, leaving a note imploring her family not to come find her, the remaining Parkers have been traveling the globe, going from Paraguay to Tibet to Russia (there is a Soviet version of Kickstart My Heart) trying to find the missing teenager. These travels also introduce us to some long lost relatives of the Parker clan, some never mention to others before and others thought to be long dead. While other family members who had been on the show previously like Robin’s sister and Nate’s other baby momma show up for about five seconds each via a phone message.

The problem with Delilah on the lamb, she was the best part of the show in the early season so she does not get much screen time for the first couple episodes. But when we finally get an episode devoted to what she had been up to in the past year, it not surprisingly turns out to be the best episode of the season. And much like last season, this season ends with a pretty big cliffhanger tease for a potential season five which may include a new cast member who shows up late in the season and is pretty entertaining in their own right.

The Detour airs Tuesdays at 10:30 on TBS.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

57 Channels and Only This Is On: June 16, 2019

Billions: So everything Chuck did this season with his father was just a very long con against Connorty? That just comes across as a little too cute. Really, Chuck knew that choir boy Connerty was going to eventually turn into Chuck? But where does this leave Connerty next season? Is he really going to prison to only be seen again as Taylor plots her revenge against both Chuck and Axe who thankfully will be antagonists again next season because them working never seemed right? I just hope Taylor actually brings one if not both down next season. Although it will probably be another Connerty situation where just as we think Taylor has Axe dead to rights, in the season finale we will learn Taylor played into Axe’s hand the whole time. Meh.

Big Little Lies: I worried about the second season of the show because when Game of Thrones went past the books, creatively the show fell off, same for the Handmaid’s Tale, and there may not be much of a plot now that the murder has been resolved, but oh my goodness, everyone was just firing heaters all episode. I cannot remember any show that has ever been this snide and snarky before. Although the one exception was Adam Scott who seems to be obvious as ever. And I was just as puzzled as him at that supermarket scene. Should I know who the boob job chick was? Was that the teacher from last season?

The Chi: After all the blustery from Cruz, Ronnie still gets out of prison by the end of the episode. With not much time until the season finale, I wonder if he will catch Ronnie by then. It is also about time for the cops to crack down on all the gang activity this season. They finally connected everything, now they just need the smoking gun. Speaking of wrapping things up, it will be interesting to see how they end Brandon’s arc considering the actor got dismissed from the show. Hopefully they did not intend his wedding to be a big part of next season, because we know it is not happening now if it is not done by the end of this season.

The Bold Type: So Scarlett is folding? Is that was what was happening at the end? Is the main trio just going to start a blog next season? Or is the magazine just going full digital and just downsizing? Did they really renew this show and not Cloak and Dagger yet?
You can download The Bold Type on iTunes.

The Handmaid’s Tale: Wow, those Rory Gilmore scenes were just super boring. If you are going to do a sappy reunion, just leave it to one scene. If you are going to drag that out, at least give the wife a new wife (or more shockingly, a husband). Really the whole episode was a drag until the end (this episode sorely missed Commander Lawrence who is the only interesting this so far). Is Fred really going to go to Canada to steal “his” baby back?.
You can watch The The Handmaid’s Tale on Hulu.

Krypton: So I watched about a ten minute recap before the premiere and still ended up a little confused. Like the blond chick was a clone? Completely forgot that. But I finally got the answer of what happened to Adam Strange, he went back to his time only for his town being bottled by Brainiac and apparently the planet was also taken over by Zod. Except Zeg-El killed Brainiac so all’s well on Earth now I guess? Okay, I doubt Brainiac is really dead. It would be pretty cheesy to defeat a supervillain off screen like that.
You can download Krypton on iTunes.

Swamp Thing: They are really racking up the questions without actually answering the past ones. Like who, or what, were controlling the bugs and why did they disperse when Swamp Thing told them to? What was the secret group the banker mentioned when threatening to expose Avery? And why exactly can the actor not leave, why did his cards change, what exactly do the cards mean, and what exactly does Abby have to do with it?

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: So Not-Coulsen is not evil and is actually trying to save the Earth? Alrighty. Even more confusing is how Daisy was able to get back to Earth so quickly. Didn’t Simmons waste the last warp speed jump to get to Fitz? So how did Daisy get back to Earth so easily?
You can download Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on iTunes.