Saturday, June 27, 2020

Around the Tubes: June 27, 2020

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 Stargirl, The Circus, Shannon LaBrie, Pearl Jam, The Score, The Soundflowers, Oh Wonder, Johnny Cash, Chelsea Cutler, Hollywood, the SequelUNSETTLED: Seeking Refuge in America, as well as Showtime and Hulu news.

- Ir’s time for a new generation of justice! Get ready for nonstop action with the release of DC’s Stargirl: The Complete First Season on Blu-ray and DVD on September 29, 2020 from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. Strap yourself in for an exhilarating ride with all 13 episodes from the first season of the original series on DC UNIVERSE & The CW. DC’s Stargirl: The Complete First Season is priced to own at $24.98 SRP for the DVD and $29.98 SRP for the Blu-ray, which includes a Digital Copy. DC’s Stargirl: The Complete First Season is also available to own on Digital via purchase from digital retailers.  Focusing on the character that started creator Geoff Johns’ career in comic books, when he created her, lovingly inspired by his late sister who was killed in a plane explosion, new DC drama series, DC’s Stargirl follows high school sophomore Courtney Whitmore (Brec Bassinger) as she inspires an unlikely group of young heroes to take up the legacy of a long-lost Super Hero team – The Justice Society of America – and stop the Super-Villains of the past.

THE CIRCUS returns to SHOWTIME as America approaches a monumental presidential election, confronts systemic racism and endures a deadly pandemic and economic upheaval. New weekly 30-minute episodes will premiere on Sunday, August 16 at 8 p.m. ET/PT and continue through the election. For a preview, go to:  Co-hosts John Heilemann, Alex Wagner, and Mark McKinnon will again take viewers behind the scenes as the Trump and Biden campaigns hurtle toward a historic Election Day in November. THE CIRCUS launched the first part of its fifth season this past winter and averaged more than 1 million viewers weekly, continuing to be the top docuseries on the network.

Hulu is excited to announce that three Original Series will be participating in Comic-Con@Home. Be sure to check out virtual panels featuring the cast and creators of our upcoming horror series Helstrom, along with newly released animated series Solar Opposites and Crossing Swords this July. Panel timing and details coming soon.

Like a Phoenix from the ashes, Shannon LaBrie shows what grit and determination can do with the release of her new music video for her current single “Firewalker.” The video premiered on Right Chord Music and is now available for viewing HERE. “Firewalker” can be found on all digital streaming services, now available HERE.  Eager to take advantage of her time off the road during the world pandemic, LaBrie got together a crew of two, herself and famed music video director Roger Pistole (Little Big Town, Miranda Lambert, Cage the Elephant), to film the powerful video in the backwoods of Tennessee, “Roger Pistole, is one of the most inventive, endearing and calming directors I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with,” Shannon praises, “He’s got a way of easiness about him when he’s behind a camera. I felt very comfortable being myself…in fact, that’s his one request.” Through the magic of editing, lighting, and pure talent, the two created a commanding visual treat. 

Pearl Jam contribute the inaugural live performance of “Dance of the Clairvoyants” to All In WA: A Concert for COVID-19 Relief today. This marks the first time a track from the band’s new album, Gigaton, has been performed. Watch it HERE. The concert livestreamed at 7pm PT at and broadcast locally in Washington on stations KREM, KING 5, KONG, and KSKN. It is also available globally on Amazon Prime now.

Gold-certified and critically acclaimed Los Angeles-based, New York-born rock band The ScoreEddie Anthony and Edan Dover— unleash a new single entitled “The Champion.”  Stream “The Champion” HERE via Republic Records.  On the track the band said: The world and society is in transition. We desperately need champions to shine their light on positive change and are grateful to all those who have stood up offer their voices & skills to create an impact. Whether that is in the streets or in our hospitals, there are Champions in this country and across the globe who are putting themselves at risk to make the world a better place. This song is meant to keep that spark alive.”

The Soundflowers, featuring Paris Jackson and Gabriel Glenn, unveils their self-titled debut EP, The Soundflowers, out now via IMPERIAL—listen HERE!  The Soundflowers EP’s lead single “Your Look (Glorious)” is accompanied by a lyric video, which features scenes shot, directed and produced by Prince Jackson via his production house King’s Son Productions—watch it HERE! The EP also includes the highly anticipated song “Geronimo,” which Paris wrote when she was 15, inspired by loss, heartbreak and letting go. “Geronimo” marked Jackson’s first foray into songwriting, allowing her to explore her passion for the craft and develop her songwriting skills.

- Oh Wonder wraps their Home Tapes project with “Don’t You Worry,” their fifth song written, recorded, produced and released during isolation. Listen HERE!  Don’t You Worry” is a beautifully stripped-back love song about the intimacy and connection still possible under lockdown. Like everything Oh Wonder touches, it’s a feeling deeply of the present moment (“We walked the city streets at midnight as the world went quiet”) but also rooted in classic, timeless songwriting.  The band also recently unveiled another fan-generated video for one of the series’ highlights, “Oceansize,” following thousands of entries worldwide—watch HERE!

- In the mid-1980s as Johnny Cash found himself between labels, Mercury Records snatched up the country legend for what would end up being a prolific string of six albums in five years. The records, released from 1986 to 1991, were a diverse collection that included a notable reunion with fellow Sun Records alumni Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins, star-studded collaborations with Paul McCartney and Linda McCartney, Glen Campbell, Waylon Jennings, Emmylou Harris, Hank Williams Jr. and others, inspired takes on songs from Elvis Costello, Guy Clark and Harry Chapin, the Man in Black revisiting his classic hits, and some of the finest songs ever written by Cash. Despite the quality of material, Cash’s stint with Mercury has never been revisited—until now.  Now, Cash's often overlooked and underappreciated chapter of his body of work are available for revisiting with a suite releases via Mercury/UMe including a comprehensive new box set, The Complete Mercury Recordings 1986-1991, and a new greatest hits album, Easy Rider: The Best Of The Mercury Recordings, a newly assembled collection that compiles 24 highlights selected from Cash's Mercury catalog. Easy Rider is available to stream now or as a single CD or double LP.  Stream/purchase: The Complete Mercury Recordings 1986-1991  Stream/purchase: Easy Rider: The Best Of The Mercury Recordings:

Chelsea Cutler recruits Noah Kahan for their new collaboration “Crazier Things” out now—listen HERE!  “Crazier Things” stands out as a fan favorite from Chelsea Cutler’s debut album, How To Be Human, released earlier this year. Adding another layer to the intimate and emotional original, she invited Noah Kahan to join her on this very special duet version. Over delicate acoustic guitar, their voices melt into a heavenly harmony.

#loverecordstores, the campaign launched to raise awareness of the challenges faced by record stores during the current pandemic, and to encourage music fans to continue shopping online with their favorite stores, has announced further details of its 24 hour event, including the world’s biggest online in-store, which takes place at on June 20th.  Record Store Day has become an important fixture in the music retail calendar for UK record stores, labels and music fans alike, so it came as a real blow that the organizers have had no choice but to postpone this year’s event due to the continued Covid-19 crisis.

Kerry Washington appeared on the debut episode of the podcast “Hollywood, the Sequel," which looks at how the entertainment industry can change for the better following this moment of disruption.  Kerry makes some powerful points about how words like diversity and inclusion are inherently creating a world where there is an us and a them, an in and an out. She also addresses those who have asked how “Olivia Pope” would respond to the pandemic, saying “we can get into trouble when we rely on imaginary characters to save us…I have joked at times that part of how we got into the situation we’re in now is that we had a reality television character swoop into an election and people thought that he could save the day.”

Open Door Productions LLC is proud to present the broadcast premiere of UNSETTLED: Seeking Refuge in America, a documentary revealing the untold stories of LGBTQ refugees and asylum-seekers, produced and directed by Tom Shepard and co-produced by Jen Gilomen.  UNSETTLED had its World Premiere at the San Francisco International Film Festival, is the winner of the Best Documentary Feature Film at 2019 Outfest, and played at 55 festivals worldwide - winning 14 other top awards.  UNSETTLED will lead Doc World’s new season which broadcasts on public media’s WORLD Channel on June 28 and will be available for streaming on through July 12.

Amid the ongoing fluctuations in production operations due to the COVID-19 virus, SHOWTIME is making the following changes to the schedule for its scripted content and is also announcing the acquisition of a series:

·         SHOWTIME has picked up the six-episode drama WE HUNT TOGETHER, an hour-long series from BBC Studios starring Eve Myles (Keeping Faith, Torchwood), Babou Ceesay (GUERRILLA), Hermione Corfield (Star Wars: The Last Jedi) and Dipo Ola (Baghdad Central, Inside No. 9). A gripping twist on a classic cat-and-mouse story, WE HUNT TOGETHER explores the intoxication of sexual attraction and the dangerous power of emotional manipulation. As two conflicted detectives (Myles and Ceesay) track down a pair of deadly killers (Corfield and Ola), the series reveals how finding a volatile form of solace in another can have dire consequences. Written by Gaby Hull and directed by Carl Tibbetts, WE HUNT TOGETHER will premiere on SHOWTIME on Sunday, August 9 at 10 p.m.   

·         THE COMEY RULE, starring Emmy® winners Jeff Daniels as former FBI Director James Comey and Brendan Gleeson as President Donald J. Trump, will air on consecutive nights: Sunday, September 27 and Monday, September 28 at 9 p.m. Adapted for the screen and directed by Oscar® nominated screenwriter Billy Ray, the two-part, four-hour limited series is an immersive, behind-the-headlines account of the historically turbulent events surrounding the 2016 presidential election and its aftermath, which divided a nation.

·         THE GOOD LORD BIRD, starring Oscar® nominee Ethan Hawke as John Brown and Joshua Caleb Johnson, will premiere on Sunday, October 4 at 9 p.m. Based upon the National Book Award-winning novel by James McBride, THE GOOD LORD BIRD is told from the point of view of Onion (Johnson), a fictional enslaved boy who becomes a member of Brown’s motley family of abolitionist soldiers and eventually finds himself participating in the famous 1859 raid at Harpers Ferry. THE GOOD LORD BIRD uniquely and unpredictably spotlights the complicated racial, religious and gender roles that make up the American identity.  

In addition, SHOWTIME is making the following schedule additions and changes with its non-fiction content:

·         THE COMEDY STORE (w.t.), comedian-turned-director Mike Binder’s five-part documentary series that chronicles the evolution of comedy from within the walls of the iconic L.A. club, will premiere on Sunday, October 4 at 10 p.m.
·         THE REAGANS, director Matt Tyrnauer’s four-part documentary series that explores the many surprisingly unexamined aspects of the Reagan White House, and how Nancy Reagan’s paper-doll image was at odds with the power she ultimately wielded throughout her husband’s presidency, will premiere Sunday, November 15 at 8 p.m.
·         BELUSHI, director R.J. Cutler’s feature documentary examining the too-short life of the once-in-a-generation talent John Belushi, who captured the hearts and funny bones of devoted audiences, will premiere Sunday, November 22 at 9 p.m.


On the heels of successful dramas Little Fires Everywhere and Normal People, Hulu continues to deliver awe inspiring dramatic stories with the addition of Dopesick and The Mysterious Benedict Society. The two join previously announced new seriesincluding Nine Perfect Strangers and The Dropout:

  • Emmy-Award® winning writer Danny Strong and Golden Globe®-winning Actor Michael Keaton, join Hulu’s newest limited series Dopesicka compelling look at the epicenter of America’s struggle with Opioid addiction. Strong shared, “I truly believe this is one of the most important stories of our time, and I want to shine a light on the heroes who fought back.”

  • The Mysterious Benedict Society, featuring Emmy Award® winner Tony Hale and based on the bestselling novel, is a tale of four gifted orphans who are recruited by a benefactor to go on a secret mission at a boarding school.  “I am so excited about this because when the story begins, the world is just being bombarded with messages of fear and negativity...and I feel like today we are being flooded with [these] messages… and its stories like these that hopefully emulate a different way of being,” described Hale. 

  • Coming to Hulu in 2021, starring Academy Award® winner Nicole Kidman and based on the book by New York Times best-selling author Liane Moriarty, Nine Perfect Strangers takes place at a boutique health-and-wellness facility that promises healing and transformation, as nine stressed city-dwellers try to get on a path to a better way of living. Kidman explained“Sometimes thrilling, sometimes mysterious and sometimes funny, the series dares us to dream, transform, transcend… all you have to do is check in. Give us 10 days of your life.”  

  • Kate McKinnon stars and executive produces The Dropout, a limited series inspired by the ABC News podcast on the rise and fall of Elizabeth Holmes and her company, Theranos. McKinnon states “It’s a story about ambition, about the pain behind that ambition, and about the pain that the ambition wrought... That’s good. I’d watch that.”

With recent hits like Solar OppositesRamy, Pen15 and Shrill, engagement of Hulu Original comedies have seen an 80% increase year-over-year. Joining the category, featuring world-class comedy talent, includes:

  • Only Murders In The Building, starring comedic legends Steve Martin and Martin Short and from executive producer Dan Fogelman, the series follows three New Yorkers who find they have a mutual interest in solving true crime - but limit their amateur sleuthing to only murders in their building. Martin and Short are excited to embark on the show together, stating “I’m so proud to say that this show is already one of the highlights of my career” said Short, quickly followed by Martin “I’m proud to say it’s a blip on the radar of mine.” “It is…” Short agreed. 

  • Love, Beth, starring and executive produced by Amy Schumer, is an upcoming 10-episode comedy series that Schumer describes as “...hilarious, it’s raw and it's very me. About three years ago, I found my journals from growing up, from age 13 - 21… And it made me remember the time when I had all this confidence and life was fun and full of possibility. So, I really wanted to make a show about a woman who blows her whole life up and returns to the things that really make her happy.”

  • Semi-animated live-action series Woke, featuring Lamorne Morris, is a series that Morris shares as, “Simply put—this series is smart, funny and right on time. And the cast is unbelievable.” Inspired by the life and art of cartoonist Keith Knight, the show follows Keef (Morris), a Black cartoonist living in San Francisco, who is finally on the cusp of mainstream success when an unexpected incident changes everything. 

  • As the home to the largest streaming TV library of Adult Animation, Hulu continues to infuse fresh new content into the genre and recently announced season renewals of Crossing Swords and Solar Opposites. These renewals expand Hulu’s massive collection of adult animated series with award-winning hits like Family GuyBob’s Burgers, Rick and Morty, Futurama and King of the Hill.

Launched in early March, FX on Hulu is the dedicated content hub that brings together more than 40 of FX Networks’ acclaimed and award-winning current and legacy series, features over 1,600 episodes and includes Hulu exclusive FX originals. Since launch, over 50% of Hulu subscribers have engaged with FX on Hulu and the content hub has expanded FX’s reach by 130%.  Upcoming originals include:
  • The Old Man, starring Jeff Bridges and based on the bestselling novel, is a drama series centered on “Dan Chase” (Bridges) who absconded from the CIA decades ago and has been living off the grid since.  When an assassin arrives and tries to take Chase out, the old operative learns that to ensure his future he now must reconcile his past.
  • A Teacher, an upcoming miniseries starring Kate Mara and Nick Robinson, examines the complexities and consequences of an illegal relationship between Claire Wilson (Kate Mara), a young teacher at a suburban Texas high school, and her student, Eric Walker (Nick Robinson).
  • Y: The Last Man, based on the DC Comics series of the same name by Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra, traverses a post-apocalyptic world in which a cataclysmic event decimates all but one cisgender male, Yorick Brown, and his pet monkey. The series follows the survivors in this new world as they struggle with their efforts to restore what was lost and the opportunity to build something better. Diane Lane leads a star-studded cast featuring Ben Schnetzer, Imogen Poots, Lashana Lynch, Juliana Canfield, Elliot Fletcher with Marin Ireland and Amber Tamblyn.
  • American Horror Stories is the highly anticipated new weekly anthology series from Ryan Murphy and will feature a different horror story each episode.

Returning for a trilogy, Huluween streams this Fall with even more chilling Hulu Originals. After viewers watched 6.2 billion minutes of Halloween content in 2019, October continues to be a high-engagement driver for Hulu. Brands are also reaping the benefits, as marketers that partner with Hulu during Huluween have seen a +55% increase in ad recall and an 80% increase in brand association. Brand-new Hulu Originals featured in Huluween this year include: 
  • Based on Clive Barker’s acclaimed and influential horror anthology, Books of Blood takes audiences on a journey into uncharted and forbidden territory through three uncanny tales tangled in space and time.  Starring Anna Friel, Rafi Gavron, Britt Robertson and Yul Vazquez. 
  • In this horror satire set in 1989, Bad Hair follows an ambitious young woman (Elle Lorraine) who gets a weave in order to succeed in the image-obsessed world of music television. However, her flourishing career comes at a great cost when she realizes that her new hair may have a mind of its own.
  • As the son and daughter of a mysterious and powerful serial killer, Helstrom follows Daimon (Tom Austen) and Ana Helstrom (Sydney Lemmon), and their complicated dynamic, as they track down the worst of humanity — each with their own attitude and skills.
  • Encounters with mermaids, fallen angels, and other strange beasts drive broken people to desperate acts in Monsterland, an anthology series based on the collection of stories from Nathan Ballingrud, featuring Kaitlyn Dever, Mike Colter, and Taylor Schilling.

Sunday, June 21, 2020

57 Channels and Only This Is On: June 21, 2020

Billions: That was an interesting dinner party. Though it was weird that Wags brought the coach from Dare Me who really did not add much to the episode. Whatever happened to his children storyline? Wait, was she his daughter? Do I miss that? I did not miss Chuck quoting Billie Eilish but I wish I did.

Snowpiercer: So the show went from a cop shot to a courtroom drama? Meh, hopefully that is now over and something interesting can start happening.
You can download Snowpiercer on iTunes.

Penny Dreadful: City of Angels: Wait, so the Nazi is not one of the evil Nazi’s? But I guess if you are going to give your Mexican housekeeper a raise, or even hire one in the first place, you must not be extremely evil. Make me wonder why Margeary Tyrell picked him.

Barskins: So we do not get to see how bad the chick’s scar is? I thought that was going to be a Chekov’s scar situation. Oh well. Shame they left it on a cliffhanger because I am not sure if we will get to see how that plays out. I also want confirmation if the crazy French dude is really alive. Did his baby mama knowing give him something that would paralyze him or was that just some poetic license with him coming back to life.
You can download Barkskins on iTunes.

Stargirl: It is always good for superpowers to have superpowers to have limitations because being too powerful would be boring, but having super strength for just an hour a days has to be up their as one of the lames superpowers.

The Challenge: Total Madness: Really silly how they completely edited Dee out this week. She wins, is in the Tribunal, but we only manage to hear her say two words, and one was who she was voting for. I wonder if they will bother to say where she places in the finale (assuming she makes it). Speaking about who makes it, could this be the last male vote? There are only two guys left without a Red Skull and if they go another round, and Josh goes against Kyle, it would mean every guy would have a Red Skull. With three Skull-less girls left, if they get two more rounds, they could easily have everyone have a Red Skull going into the finale (unless they keep throwing Dee in out of spite). Hopefully this is it.
You can download The Challenge: Total Madness on iTunes.

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Poor Enoch, the team finally catches up with him, but then leaves him behind again. Though I would be fine with him being left behind after every jump as a running joke. To make things worse, it seems like he has been replaced by Souza who gets to die a hero without actually dying.
You can download Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. on iTunes.

The Bold Type: So the conservative chick got Kat fired… again. But then got her reinstated. I said in the finale those two were going to hook up at some point and I am more convinced after that.

In the Dark: Blind Chick is being really dumb again. Isn’t having one of them go with the drug addict worth have the cop follow them? At least hide in the back seat. But that was a tense final moment. Obviously we knew the Blind Chick would not die because we saw her clean up the body (the addict dying by overdose was a silly twist). At least it was until you start to wonder why the lesbian was there in the first place. I sure there will be some find my phone app reason, but why make this big show of it only to stalk your roommate?
You can download In The Dark on iTunes.