Saturday, December 14, 2019

Around the Tubes: December 14, 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 New Order: Decades, Duran Duran: There's Something You Should Know, Little Fires Everywhere, The Weeknd, The Circus, Chelsea Cutler, The Boomtown Rats, Inayah, TIDAL, and Battle of the Little Big Horn.Pavarotti,

- Showtime has announced two new documentaries profiling iconic rock bands New Order and Duran Duran. New Order: Decades will premiere on Friday, December 27 at 7:30 p.m. ET/PT. Part concert, part documentary, New Order: Decades follows the band's preparations in the re-staging of their acclaimed collaboration, So It Goes, with the artist Liam Gillick and the 12-piece synthesizer orchestra that captured the headlines during Manchester International Festival 2017. Duran Duran: There's Something You Should Know offers a candid look back through the extraordinary career of one of the world’s most beloved groups, with previously unseen footage and intimate conversations with the original line-up: singer Simon Le Bon, bassist John Taylor, drummer Roger Taylor and keyboardist Nick Rhodes. The doc highlights the defining moments of their four decades-long journey and provides a glimpse into what’s next for Duran Duran. Duran Duran: There's Something You Should Know will premiere on Friday, December 27 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

- We are thrilled to announce that Little Fires Everywhere, staring Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington, will premiere Wednesday, March 18th only on Hulu!

- Logging a pair of entries on the Billboard Hot 100 this week, GRAMMY® Award-winning diamond-certified Toronto RnB / Pop icon The Weeknd captures #1 on the chart with his latest single "Heartless" as "Blinding Lights" takes the #11 spot, also making him the only R&B artist to hit #1 in his first full week on the charts in 2019. "Heartless" immediately shot up to #1 making it his 4th #1 to date, and both tracks have earned over 550,000 consumption domestically, and over 1 million globally.

- The Circus returns for its fifth season on Sunday, January 26 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Showtime, a week before the crucial Iowa Democratic caucuses. After covering the burgeoning field of Democratic presidential candidates and their campaigns around the country, along with the Ukraine scandal that led to the historic impeachment inquiry into President Trump’s conduct, season four had its finale on November 10. Hosted by John Heilemann, Mark McKinnon and Alex Wagner, The Circus is the network’s most-watched docuseries, averaging more than one million weekly viewers.

- Singer, songwriter and producer Chelsea Cutler unveils the video for her latest single, “I Was In Heaven,” today—watch it HERE! Her debut album, How To Be Human, is set for release on January 17th, 2020 and now available for pre-order HERE.

- The Boomtown Rats will mark 2020 (The Year Of The Rat) with the release of ‘Citizens Of Boomtown’, their first new studio album since 1984, plus a UK tour, and a book of lyrics and reminiscence by Rats singer Bob Geldof entitled ‘Tales Of Boomtown Glory’. The Boomtown Rats’ first new studio album for 36 years, ‘Citizens Of Boomtown’ features 10 glorious new Boomtown Rats songs and will be released on March 13, 2020 on the BMG label. Produced by Rats bassist Pete Briquette, it will be available on digital platforms, CD and vinyl. The first single ‘Trash Glam Baby’, a beautifully sleazy rocker, will be released on January 10, 2020.

- Houston’s viral R&B sensation Inayah closes out 2019 with her debut album S.O.L.A.R. [Inayahlator Enterprises/EMPIRE], an acronym for Storytelling Over Lyrics and Rhymes. For the Houston native, who got her start creating jingles and viral cover videos, the narrative always comes first, and the beat follows. The 12-track album is a window into Inayah’s life, as she consistently weaves personal experiences into her music. Her 1.6 million Instagram followers (aka “Inayahlators”) connect to her no holds barred perspective on love lost and love found. Stream S.O.L.A.R. HERE.

- With the release of The Hot Rats Sessions – the 50th anniversary boxed set of Frank Zappa’s landmark first solo album, Hot Rats – just around the corner next Friday, December 20, the Zappa Trust is pleased to share the previously unreleased outtake, “Dame Margret’s Son To Be A Bride (1969 Quick Mix).” Recorded at T.T.G. Studios in Hollywood during the sessions for Hot Rats, the instrumental composition written by Zappa features the basic rhythm tracks, performed by Max Bennett on bass and Paul Humphrey on drums, that were eventually used for the song, “Lemme Take You To The Beach,” on 1978’s Studio Tan. Unheard until now, the song from disc 6 of the six-disc collection, also features multi-instrumentalist Ian Underwood’s tack piano performance that has since been lost, allowing the only opportunity to hear the original version. The quick mix was run off by Zappa following the basic track sessions so he could hear back what the musicians created. “Dame Margret’s Son To Be A Bride (1969 Quick Mix)” is available now to stream and as an instant grat download with preorder. Stream/purchase here:

- TIDAL, a global music and entertainment streaming platform dedicated to bringing its members unique and high-quality listening experiences, and Dolby Laboratories (NYSE: DLB), a leader in immersive entertainment technology, are introducing a more emotional and authentic way to enjoy the songs you love with Dolby Atmos Music now available on TIDAL HiFi. Members subscribing to the TIDAL HiFi tier with compatible Android smartphones or tablets will have access to a growing library of music available in Dolby Atmos from Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group. The current library includes songs from some of the world’s biggest artists such as The Weeknd, Blondie, Ariana Grande and more. TIDAL is working closely with its artist-owners, including JAY-Z, to mix their catalogs in Dolby Atmos – which are expected to become available in 2020.

- Showtime announced that it will air the television premiere of Pavarotti from Academy Award-winning filmmaker Ron Howard on Monday, December 30 at 8 p.m. ET/PT. Featuring Pavarotti's iconic performances and never-before-seen footage, the film is an intimate portrait of the most beloved opera singer of all time. Network subscribers will also be able to watch the film across all platforms including SHOWTIME ON DEMAND®, SHOWTIME ANYTIME® and the SHOWTIME stand-alone streaming service. Pavarotti will also air on Saturday, January 4 at 7 p.m. ET/PT.

- The Battle of the Little Big Horn. Custer’s Last Stand. The Battle of the Greasy Grass. An infamous conflict known by many names is one that has been edited, embellished and sensationalized for over a century. On June 25, 1876, Hunkpapa Lakota Chief Sitting Bull and thousands of American Indians were attacked by General George Custer’s 7th Cavalry as they camped on the banks of Montana’s Little Bighorn River. Vastly outnumbered, Custer’s entire regiment was wiped out. What was to follow was a nationwide media storm – but what led to this deadly encounter, and how did history books get it so wrong? Battle of the Little Big Horn premieres Monday, January 13 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Smithsonian Channel.

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Previewing Marvel's Runaways: Season Three

Marvel Television has died. Long live Marvel Television. All of the signs were there after Marvel Entertainment mastermind Kevin Feige got a promotion in October taking over Jeff Loeb, who oversaw all the decade’s shows. Feige announced an ambitious slate of shows that would directly affect the MCU coming to Disney+. Then all the Loeb shows started to fall like flies. Agents Of SHIELD had already been announced for its final season coming next summer. Then Ghost Rider, which Hulu announced earlier that year, ended up not going forward. Then Cloak and Dagger was canceled, and finally, it announced Runaways would be airing its final season. Ironically, SHIELD, the first show set in the MCU may end up being the last to air too depending on when (or if) the other show Hulu ordered this year, Helstrom, gets released or is renewed for future seasons.

So the third season of Runaways will be its swan song. But at least it will go out with some fan service with something Marvel Television watchers hope for all the shows, a full-fledged crossover when Cloak and Dagger pop up in Southern California. Since SHIELD was last seen jumping back to the time of Peggy Carter, it will likely end with one last crossover too.

But before the Divine paring cross path with the Runaways, the group of teenaged heroes has to deal with some body snatching aliens. After their spaceship blew up, members of Jonah jumped into the bodies of people nearby. Jonah himself snatched Victor’s body. His wife snatched up Stacy’s body, while their daughter took up residence in Tina’s body. The end of the season left us wondering when the son ended up although it is pretty heavily implied it was Nico.

So the new season starts right where the last ended with the Runaways and Pride split up in various factions. Jonah and his family have captured Karolina, Chase, and Janet, keeping them in Victor’s simulator. Gert with Old Lace was captured by Dale after he realized something was wrong with his wife and takes them off the grid. A very pregnant Leslie is with the remaining Runaways Nico, Molly, and Alex as well as Xavin, a stowaway on Jonah’s ship who thinks she is betrothed to Karolina. The adult Wilders are in jail after their son set them up for murder while Robert is in the hospital after a confrontation from his daughter.

Cloak and Dagger are not the only new faces the Runaways run into this season. This season also sees the introduction of Morgan le Fay portrayed by Elizabeth Hurley (Bedazzled) who is a powerful sorcerer from the Dark Dimension. So a witch like the Minoru’s and from the place where Cloak can send people. So it is easy to see how everyone comes together.

This season is mostly split up into two parts, dealing with the aliens than with le Fay although the first part just seems too abruptly. There are actually a couple of surprising deaths along the way; someone actually kind of dies twice. They also up the comedy this season; Tina is much more entertaining as a bratty teenager than the button-uped CEO. Dale seems to have a break from reality. Pride never seemed too evil to be antagonist, but they made a much better comic relief this season.

But the highlight of the season, and probably the series, was when Cloak and Dagger show up. It does show just how much better the Freeform show did at casting because I was left hoping the duo shows up later in the MCU but am pretty ambivalent if we ever see the Runaways ever again. Each group up with two of the Runaways to rescue someone which leads to some interesting revelations like Dagger sees a pretty dark hope of one of the Runaways. Sadly the episode ends with the two groups saying it is likely they will cross paths again but unfortunately we the viewers know that is highly unlikely.

All episodes of Marvel’s Runaways are released on Hulu tomorrow.

Sunday, December 08, 2019

57 Channels and Only This Is On: December 8, 2019

Ray Donovan: Oh no Daryl, I fear that the cop asking if she could hold on to the VIP pass was a test and he failed. If you were such a fan you should not part with the merch that easily. Then if Micky not dying was not annoying enough now they are pretending that he is going to the Maldives as is he is not going to return later this season.

Supergirl: So Martian Manhunter’s brother is going back to Mars and Assistant Director Skinner is defeated? Hopefully they do not revive either storyline after Crisis and also recon Lena into not irrationally hating Supergirl, or at the very least give a ready to hate.
You can download Supergirl on iTunes.

Watchmen: Last week I read an article that ran down a bunch of popular Reddit theories, most so convincing they almost felt like spoilers. The last one they posted was so stupid that I kind of rolled my eyes at how non plausible it was: Cal is really Dr. Manhattan. Then Lady Truie mentioned Dr. Manhattan was in Tulsa, and I thought, oh now. Then she mentioned how Angela did not react to that new and I thought, well fork, this is why I do not read fan theories. Earlier, Lady Truie mentioned her father will be joining her soon, and her father was also one of the popular fan theories that is also going to be right.

Shameless: Oh hey, Xanthippe Lannister Voorhees. But it was weird to see her play poor. I wonder if she will be back (I had to look her up to see if she was on the show before Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and that is how she knew Debbie, she was not… man this show has been on for a while). I was sad to see Mikey go so she could get free health care, but then I realize, oh, he could just run into Ian.

Mr. Robot: So we get multiple shots of Angela in the “Previously On,” White Rose says she is alive, yet she does not show up at all. Meh. I have always thought White Rose’s end game was some sort of time machine but I guess we will not find that out. Or will we? I wonder if White Rose put on the make up and dress so (s)he will get arrested in what (s)he thinks is its true form or if it was to evade the police some how.
You can download Mr. Robot: on iTunes.

His Dark Materials: So that kid is like the male, real world version of Lyra? I wonder if we already met his father. I wonder if they gave us any good looks at family photos, but I do not care enough to rewatch.

Castle Rock: So where exactly is the creepy dude from the first season? When he was gone from his cage earlier this season I thought the old body snatchers took him. So did Henry take him somewhere? They did snatch his mother’s body I presume looking for answers so maybe he will show up in the finale.
You can watch Castle Rock on Hulu.

Survivor: Island of Idols: It seems like every season there is someone who is clearly on the bottom on their alliance and we the viewers scream at the television to flip and they rarely do unless they do one of those pecking order challenges. Dean was clearly that person this season, going as far as trying to form an anti-goat alliance not realizing he has not done anything to win yet this season. But after the loved one’s visit, it became abundantly clear that he was fifth in a four person alliance. And it worked out perfectly because Noura and Karishma were the only people he had a chance at beating this season. Then he inexplicably tells Tommy he is the target, sending home Karishma. Just when you thought this season could not get any worse…
You can download Survivor: Island of the Idols on iTunes.

The Challenge: War of the Worlds 2: So the Brits get a ten minute penalty for interference, but the Americans seemed to be doing a lot of interfering too and I thought TJ say they no one could carry the stuff individually. Granted they still have not gotten to TJ yet, so that may be coming.
You can download The Challenge: War of the Worlds 2 on iTunes.

Stumptown: Well, cannot say I blame Dex for that.
You can download Stumptown on iTunes.

The Blacklist: o Red shows up when Katerina was supposed to show up and misses her… too cute. But at least they ended this charade when Lizzie figured it out. Too bad they gave the conclusion to that confirtation in the “Next Time On…”
You can download The Blacklist on iTunes.