Saturday, September 24, 2022

Around the Tubes: September 24, 2022


I have gotten a plethora of cool press releases have been flooding my inbox recently that you may find interesting.  This post includes blurbs on Welcome to Chippendales, TikTok Boom, Guns n' Roses, The Beach Boys, Joy Oladokun, Shania Twain, Jeremy Zucker, Rina Sawayama, Hope Tala, Kid Cudi, Arkells, Ziwi, and Your Honor.

Check out the new teaser for Hulu's upcoming Original limited series "Welcome to Chippendales," which premieres Tuesday, November 22 with two episodes. New episodes stream Tuesdays.  TEASER: HERE  SYNOPSIS: A sprawling true-crime saga, “Welcome to Chippendales” tells the outrageous story of Somen “Steve” Banerjee, an Indian immigrant who became the unlikely founder of the world’s greatest male-stripping empire—and let nothing stand in his way in the process.

 How does a teenage dance app become an issue of national security? From Emmy-nominated director Shalini Kantayya, of the critically-acclaimed film “Coded Bias,” “TikTok, Boom.” makes its broadcast debut on INDEPENDENT LENS October 24, 2022 at 10 p.m. ET (check local listings). The film will also be available to stream on the PBS Video app.  “TikTok, Boom.” explores how a social media app, best known for videos of teenagers dancing, became the flashpoint of a geopolitical controversy between two superpowers—the U.S. and China. This Sundance favorite explores the impact of an app that eclipsed Silicon Valley to become a global cultural phenomenon reshaping the world. A cast of Gen Z influencers is central to the film, making this one of the most needed and empathetic films exploring what it means to be a digital native.

UME/Geffen celebrates Guns N’ Roses’ incredible musical legacy with GUNS N' ROSES - USE YOUR ILLUSION I & II, the ultimate box set for the band’s 1991 multi-platinum releases Use Your Illusion and Use Your Illusion II. Set for release on November 11, 2022, GUNS N' ROSES - USE YOUR ILLUSION I & II SUPER DELUXES feature a total of 97 tracks, 63 are previously unreleased. Available in multiple configurations including a Super Deluxe Seven-CD + Blu-ray, a Super Deluxe Twelve-LP + Blu-ray, Two-CD Deluxe Editions of Use Your Illusion I & II separately, standard 1CD and 2LP versions of Use Your Illusion I and Use Your Illusion II separately. In all formats, the original studio albums Use Your Illusion I and Use Your Illusion II have been fully remastered for the first-time ever, from high-resolution 96kHz 24-bit transfers from the original stereo 1/2-inch analog masters. All versions will be available to stream and as digital downloads, with all configurations available to pre-order and pre-save, HERE.

Four of The Beach Boys’ most timeless and legendary songs – “Barbara Ann,” “Don’t Worry Baby,” “Wouldn’t It Be Nice,” and “God Only Knows” – serve as the soundtrack to a stunning, unprecedented four-part video series that builds on itself to become one long narrative when watched in order or can be enjoyed individually. Available to view now at The Beach Boys Official YouTube Channel, the videos were directed by Andrew Litten, who’s worked with Anderson .Paak, Pusha T, and Earth, Wind & Fire, and the cinematic story was beautifully filmed in South Africa with a local cast of actors. The videos capture what it’s like to be young and in love as they trace a high school romance between surfing-obsessed Helena (Zoe Manoek) and Lucas (Toby De Goede), an aspiring photographer who’s the new kid in town, and the difficult decisions they each must make as graduation looms and their future’s beckon.  The video series, which has played out over the last two weekends, began with “Barbara Ann” on September 9th  and culminated Sunday with “God Only Knows,” where young love is at a crossroads as high school comes to an end. Each chapter explores an aspect of escapism for the two main characters who are at the intersection of innocence and adulthood and mirrors the sentiments of the songs which were written in the mid-1960s when The Beach Boys were teenagers and young adults themselves and which resonant as strongly today as ever. In addition to the emotionally engaging story, the videos are filled with several Easter Eggs that pay homage to The Beach Boys legacy.  Watch the videos here:

Breakthrough singer, songwriter and musician Joy Oladokun’s new song, “Sweet Symphony,” featuring Chris Stapleton, is out today. Listen/share HERE.  Reflecting on the song, Oladokun shares, “‘Sweet Symphony’ is a song I wrote about the love that I got to witness my parents share as a kid. It’s about the vulnerability, the fear, and the ups and downs that come from loving someone. Showing all of yourself so that someone else can accept and celebrate you is what it’s all about. I’m excited to have Chris Stapleton on this song not only because he has one of the most iconic voices on the planet, but also, he’s just an incredible songwriter, artist, and instrumentalist. I feel very lucky and honored that he wanted to be part of this song.”

Five-time GRAMMY® Award-winning legend and the best-selling female artist in country music history Shania Twain has unveiled her first new single since 2017, “Waking Up Dreaming”. The single serves as her first release with her new label partner Republic Nashville, a division of Republic RecordsShania also released a video for the single, which was directed by Isaac Rentz.  Listen HERE.  Watch the video HERE.


Jeremy Zucker releases the official video for his latest single “I’m So Happy” feat. BENEE—watch HERE.  The video shows the Multi-Platinum Certified singer, songwriter, and producer team up with the New Zealand alt-pop star to bring their breakup anthem to life. Released on Friday, the song has already received widespread praise, with UPROXX proclaiming, “Two of the faces of cynical gen-Z pop have combined forces for a new tongue-in-cheek breakup anthem,” and Consequence declaring, “One thing about Jeremy Zucker? He’s always going to tell it like it is.”

Vevo, the world's leading music video network, announces the release of Rina Sawayama's live performance of "This Hell." "This Hell" follows Rina's previous Vevo Studio Performances of "Hold The Girl" and "Hurricanes."  All three tracks are off of Rina's new album Hold the Girl, released on September 16th, and follows her critically acclaimed 2020 album SAWAYAMAHold the Girl melds influences from across the pop spectrum and is a bold and honest statement of Rina’s personal evolution; coming to terms with her own past and the jubilation of turning to the future.

West London-based songstress Hope Tala is back this week with the official video for her critically acclaimed new single, “Leave It On The Dancefloor,” out now via Republic Records—watch HERE.  In the John Hughes-style cinematic visual, which was directed by Eliot Lee and globally debuted on Facebook, Hope and “The Students in Detention at Talatown High School” idle away at their desks as the clock slowly ticks. However, they break out of this boredom and translate the dancefloor-ready energy of the song to the screen seamlessly. Just in time for back to school, this little slice of pop escapism grips onto the spirit of the summer and doesn’t let go. “Leave It On The Dancefloor” was made alongside songwriter Mozella (Miley Cyrus, Madonna, Jonas Brothers) and producer Greg Kurstin (Adele, Sia, Beck).

GRAMMY® Award-winning multiplatinum sonic visionary, artist, producer, actor and director Kid Cudi reveals a new single entitled “Willing To Trust” today. Listen to “Willing To Trust” HERE. It paves the way for his anxiously awaited tenth full-length album and one of the most anticipated projects of 2022, Entergalactic. The show and the album arrive on September 30th.  Watch the trailer HERE  Pre-save Entergalactic HERE

Arkells release their brand new studio record, Blink Twice, via Virgin Records. As the band stayed busy making music during the last two years, they always knew they would come out of the pandemic with two distinct records - Blink Once (50M+ streams) and its companion, Blink Twice, which showcases a new collection of songs and collaborations. Blink Twice’s current single “Past Life (ft. Cold War Kids)” sits atop the alternative radio charts in Canada this week.

 The second season of the critically acclaimed late-night variety series ZIWE, starring and executive produced by Ziwe (Dickinson, Succession, The Great North) will return to SHOWTIME with six new episodes starting Friday, November 18 on streaming and on demand for all SHOWTIME subscribers, before making its on-air debut on Sunday, November 20 at 11 p.m. ET/PT. The season will continue to drop new episodes every Friday via streaming and on-demand platforms before appearing on air Sunday night.   The second installment of episodes will feature Ziwe’s signature sit-down interviews with guests including Michael Che, Julia Fox, Amber Riley, Blake Griffin, Joel Kim Booster, Bob The Drag Queen, DeRay Mckesson, Drew Barrymore and Wayne Brady. ZIWE will also feature special guest appearances by Marie Faustin, Benito Skinner, Chloe Cherry, Aparna Nancherla, River L. Ramirez, AnnaSophia Robb, John Reynolds, Larry Owens, Amy Sedaris, Laura Benanti, Scott Adsit, Jackie Hoffman and Josh Sharpe along with musical performances by Ziwe, sketches and more – including unscripted and unpredictable interactions with everyday people.  

SHOWTIME announced today that the second season of YOUR HONOR, starring and executive produced by Oscar® nominee and Emmy® winner Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) will return on Friday, December 9, available on streaming and on demand for all SHOWTIME subscribers, before making its on-air debut on Sunday, December 11 at 9 p.m. ET/PT. Currently in production on the 10-episode second season, the series is executive produced by Emmy nominees Robert and Michelle King (The Good Fight, The Good Wife, Evil) and Liz Glotzer (Evil, The Good Fight), with Joey Hartstone (The Good Fight) serving as showrunner and executive producer for season two. The first season of YOUR HONOR ranks as the top debut season ever on SHOWTIME.  YOUR HONOR stars Cranston as Michael Desiato, a respected New Orleans judge whose upstanding life is derailed when his teenage son’s accidental hit-and-run killing of the son of notorious crime boss Jimmy Baxter (SAG Award winner Michael Stuhlbarg) led to a high-stakes game of lies, deceit and impossible choicesEmmy nominee Hope Davis (Love Life, American Crime) stars as Jimmy’s wife, Gina, who is at times more dangerous and driven than her husband, and Isiah Whitlock Jr. (The Wire) stars as Charlie, a local politician and Michael’s best friend.

Sunday, September 18, 2022

57 Channels and Only This Is On: September 18, 2022


House of the Dragon:  Finally some of the famous Targaryen incest we have been so much about.  Though that turned out to be very tame by Targaryen standards.  But pretty shocking that the princess would swear on her mother’s grave when she did let her guard go to town.  But kind of icky that the king did not believe either of their protests and still sent the moon tea anyway.


Tales of the Walking Dead:  I appreciate the attempt more than the execution of the episode.  But I guess that is the advantage of anthologies


City on a Hill:  I am not sure what I needed to see less, Jackie get excited post-surgery or the male nurse dealing with it.  But I felt like I miss something with Jackie getting shot seemingly out of nowhere.  I had to check and make sure I did not miss an episode.  So the mob is just trying to gun him down.  But it is interesting that, with the season winding down, we get a bottle episode with Jackie in the hospital.


The Handmaid’s Tale:  I know she went through something horrifically traumatic, but they are making June extremely unlikeable to the point that Serena the sympathetic one.  I say almost because then Serena had to go and use Hannah as a prop at Fred’s funeral.  But are other countries really going to show videos of the evil countries founding founders in whatever their version of Times Square is? 


I kind of forgot about Janine and the extremely young Handmaid.  We see Janine in the hospital, but did young Handmaid.  Might be a better alternative than being a rape doll for the old Commander.  But just how does Aunt Lydia know she is “fertile?”   I thought all of the current Handmaids were picked because they had kids when everyone else could not, certainly she had not become baby making age prior to Gilead becoming a nation.


Tell Me Lies:  They let us binge three episodes, ended that third episode with the shocking revelation that the skeazy dude took naughty pictures of the dead chick, and then they did not mention that at all this episode.  How rude.  But what is with all these dudes lasting seconds?  I am embarrassed for them all.


The Challenge: USA:  What a clusterfork from the start with Ben not being medically cleared to compete.  They should have either brought back the last eliminated guy or just have some quick competition that eliminated one of the women so there would be even teams.  Or, with Enzo quacking within seconds, let Desi continue and just have a team of two females for the rest of the finale.  Sarah got really lucky with one of the few legs that it might of actually been better to be alone  I would have thought the eating an onion would also be a nice stage to do by yourself, but Cayla could not even finish that by her.


Jasmine, who had to remember ten sets of numbers when the others had to memorize five each, and Angela, who was doubly screwed by having to shovel all that dirt (not even half the amount of everybody else, but 2/3’s the pile according to Tyson) and not being able to sleep at all.  Though if the rules state one had to shovel while the other slept, why was Angela not allowed to do the second part?  Just the selective rules where some people were allowed to time out, like Cayla and Jasmine when they were alone, but not Angela, or Sarah at the puzzle, but no one was allowed to time out in others, like everyone like everyone else at Sudoku.  Gee another part of the finale where Sarah got extremely lucky.  Ugg, now we are stuck with her with the world championship.  If you are going to go willy nilly with their rules, why are you doing it so someone so unlikable like Sarah gets to come back for another show?


Stargirl:  Shiv still acting very shady releasing the blackmail evidence.  But I am still going with Icicle Jr. as the killer who was acting just as shady this week.