Thursday, March 23, 2023

Around the Tubes: March 25, 2023


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 How I Met Your Father, Couples TherapyHey Yahoo!, Jack Johnson, Elton John, Hailee Steinfeld, Shania Twain, Claire Rosinkranz, Coi Leray, John Wick: Chapter 4, and Doc Martin.

The 2-episode mid-season finale of How I Met Your Father will stream on Hulu Tuesday, March 28th.  Season two will continue with additional episodes on Tuesday, May 23rd with 1 new episode each Tuesday through the 2-episode season finale on Tuesday, July 11th.  On Tuesday's mid-season finale, Neil Patrick Harris will reprise his role as ‘Barney’.

COUPLES THERAPY, the TCA Award-winning documentary series following world-renowned psychologist and psychoanalyst Dr. Orna Guralnik as she guides couples through real-life therapy sessions, is returning to SHOWTIME for the second installment of season three, with nine new episodes featuring four new captivating couples. All episodes will drop on Friday, April 28 across streaming and on demand for all SHOWTIME subscribers.  Episodes will also premiere on-air in back-to-back increments weekly on Friday nights at 8 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. ET/PT starting April 28 on SHOWTIME.  To watch and share the latest trailer, visit:

Game Show Network, the leader in game shows and competitive entertainment, and Yahoo have announced a new series, “Hey Yahoo!” hosted by actor and director Tom Cavanagh. The half-hour original series is scheduled to premiere early this summer.  In “Hey Yahoo!” two teams of three players each compete to guess what millions of people are searching for on Yahoo Search. Contestants are given the first half of a search, and then have to fill-in-the-blank based on what they think America is searching for. For each correct answer, the dollar value of that answer is added to the team’s bank. At the end of three rounds of play, the team with the most money wins and will go on to the bonus round for a chance to add an extra $10,000 to their winnings.

Multi-platinum musician Jack Johnson announces a new music video to accompany “Traffic In The Sky (Lee “Scratch” Perry Dub),” lead track and one of two Lee “Scratch” Perry dub remixes included in Johnson’s upcoming summer album, In Between DubThe new video features never before seen Lee “Scratch” Perry footage from the making of studio sessions in Jamaica, along with animation from Greatwork.  “It’s exciting to hear Lee “Scratch” Perry’s interpretation of my song, and then to see Greatwork’s visual interpretation of our collaboration” said Johnson. Johnson has also released a second album track, a remix of his classic hit “Better Together,” from Nightmares on Wax. Nightmares On Wax, Warp Records’ longest serving signing, has been at the forefront of contemporary music for over 30 years, creating a unique blend of dub, electronica, jazz, hip-hop, funk, soul and techno. Listen to “Better Together (Nightmares On Wax Mix)”  here.

UMe releases the 50th anniversary edition of Elton John’s seminal album Honky Château, out now on 2CD, 2LP, and limited-edition gold vinyl LP. Purchase HERE.  Originally released in May 1972, Honky Château was Elton’s step into global superstardom, spawning classics such as “Rocket Man,” “Honky Cat” and “Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters.” His 5th studio album ushered in a to-this-day unparalleled hot streak of classic albums, and was the first time he recorded at the now legendary Château d’Hérouville, a residential recording studio situated 25 miles north-west of Paris. It was here where he and Bernie Taupin were to write – and the band subsequently record – some of the biggest global hits of his career. Elton, Bernie and the band - performing together on record for the first time - decamped to the Château for week’s pre-production on Honky Château in January 1972. Bernie brought his typewriter; the band set up in the dining room. Bernie would write lyrics at night and leave them on Elton’s piano for him to work on in the morning.

- Multiplatinum pop singer, songwriter and Academy® Award-nominated actress Hailee Steinfeld returns with a soaring and sunny new single entitled “SunKissing” today. Listen to “SunKissing”— HERE.  Once again, Hailee releases an instant bop with “SunKissing.  From the irresistible and chantable chorus to the infectious refrain, this upbeat anthem has all the ingredients of a summer smash.

- Five-time GRAMMY® Award-winning legend and the best-selling female artist in country music history Shania Twain announced the release of a collaboration with trailblazing female producer Malibu Babie [Megan Thee Stallion, Nicki Minaj]. Babie, who is the first and only woman to debut at No. 1 on Billboard‘s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs as a producer this century, has put her twist on Twain’s current single “Giddy Up!” with a new remix.  Listen to “Giddy Up! (Malibu Babie Remix)”HERE.  The remix arrives on the heels of Shania’s three exclusive Spotify Singles“Queen of Me (Acoustic)” and her covers of “Falling” by Harry Styles and “Spoonful” by Howlin’ Wolf.

19-year-old Southern California singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist Claire Rosinkranz reveals her highly anticipated debut album Just Because will be released on May 5th via slowplay/Republic Records. In celebration of the announcement, Claire also announces she will be the main support for Dermot Kennedy on his North American tour this summer.

multi-platinum superstar Coi Leray reups her chart-dominating smash “Players” with a verse courtesy of legendary rapper Busta Rhymes out now via Uptown Records/Republic Records. Listen to “Players (Busta Rhymes Remix)”—HERE.  Busta blesses the track with a head-spinning display of his signature lyrical virtuosity. His turbulent rhymes only bolster the track’s bounce as Coi’s instantly irresistible hook remains undeniably unshakable. From the moment you hear Busta Rhymes say "Coi Leray" on the intro, you know that this remix is an epic merging HipHop royalty of the past and present generations. Together, they lock into a dynamic volley on their very first collaboration together.

Lakeshore Records is set to release John Wick: Chapter 4—Original Motion Picture Soundtrack digitally March 24 with an original score by Tyler Bates (John Wick, Guardians of the Galaxy), and Joel J. Richard (John WickThe Andromeda Strain). Bates and Richard, their scores an integral part of the success of the first three installments of John Wick, return with another masterclass in high intensity compositions that feature an array of instruments – including treated piano, mandolin, acoustic & electric guitar, bass, harmonica orchestra, synths, and found object percussion. Bates also produced songs performed by Lola Colette with Nick and Sam Wilkerson of the punk band White Reaper on drums and bass respectively, as well as tracks with In This Moment and Manon Hollander. In addition, the track co-written and produced by Bates with vocals by Avant pop phenomenon and cast member Rina Sawayama, “Eye For An Eye,” is available digitally today, March 22. The Lionsgate film directed by Chad Stahelski and starring Keanu Reeves, Donnie Yen, Bill Skarsgård, Laurence Fishburne, Hiroyuki Sanada, Shamier Anderson Lance Reddick, Rina Sawayama, Scott Adkins and Ian McShane is in theaters and IMAX March 24.  John Wick (Reeves) uncovers a path to defeating The High Table. But before he can earn his freedom, Wick must face off against a new enemy with powerful alliances across the globe and forces that turn old friends into foes.  Purchase/Stream: 

American Public Television (APT), the leading syndicator of content to U.S. public TV stations nationwide, today announced that new seasons of the popular British series Doc Martin will be made available to licensing public television stations later this year.  Season 8 and the latest new season 9 of Doc Martin will be available beginning July 1 for broadcast and streaming with Passport via and the PBS App. The final season of the series will be offered for an expected release for local station broadcast and Passport availability this fall. The offering of seasons 9 and 10 in 2023 marks the first time these episodes will be available to public television audiences.

Previewing Yellowjackets: Season Two


You would have to go back to “We have to go back” for a final line of dialogue that got me so hyped for the next season as, “Who the fork is Lottie Matthews!?!?”  While we only had to wait seven months to figure out why Jack wanted to go back on Lost, it has been over fourteen months since the last episode of Yellowjackets where Nat’s banking buddy, who was looking into who exactly emptied Travis’s bank account, asked that question.   It only takes a short eight minutes into season two until we get our first look at adult Lottie in all her cult leader glory, though it is weird that her cultist refer to her as “Charlotte” (almost as weird as Lottie going from towering over Nat in high school to basically the same height in present day).  Do to their addiction to the color purple, her followers are occasionally referred to as “Purple People” and I cannot hear someone call them that and not think of the song Purple People Eater.  This cannot be a coincidence.


While it was not that much of a surprise when Simone Kessell (The Crossing) was cast as adult Lottie since her name was mentioned in the finale, it was really disappointing that a press release spoiled that Van, who almost died multiple times during the first season and will be played as an adult by Lauren Ambrose (Can’t Hardly Wait), made it out of the Canadian wilderness.  But unlike Lottie who we meet fairly quickly, it is a while before we see adult Van on screen, which manages to make the spoiler worse.  With the addition to the cast of the older version (and both younger version getting promoted to cast members) we do get and updated title sequence with more Lottie and Van, but thankfully the dearly departed Jackie and her throat slash / wink segment remains.


It does not take long to meet the other big casting news for the second season, Elijah Wood, in a The Ice Storm reunion with Christina Ricci, playing a fellow Citizen Detective alongside Ricci’s Misty.  Though, I do fear the longevity of anyone who crosses path with Misty, who is still a raving psychopath.  Early in the season, adult Misty makes a very inappropriate cookie while teen Misty gives another type of inappropriate present.  Of course, this is why Misty remains the most entertaining character on the show.


Those are not the only new faces this season.  Three of the background Yellowjackets are brought more to the forefront with a little more screen time and a couple lines of dialogue.  Of course all three are stuck together at the start of the episode before one starts spending a lot a time with Misty (again, I fear for anyone who spends too much time with Missy).  One of them seems like they are more of a theater kid than athlete, another I actually mistook for Laura Lee when I first saw her, and the third has to shoot to the top of the Who Is Pit Girl Power Rankings.  Oh, and it should be noted that Akilah has been recast, so that is not a fourth new Yellowjacket.


In 1996, it has been two month since Jackie was turned into a Popsicle and now resides in a meat locker because the ground is too cold to bury her.  I cannot confirm nor deny that my Encino Man theory is correct and she is thawed out in present day.  But I will say not much time has passed in current day. Now eight months into their Canadian adventure, everyone is starting to look rough (except for some reason Mari who is still looking really good) while cabin fever is setting in.  They even had to start burning porn for warmth.  But more disturbingly, there are also some creepy rituals that people are doing just to go outside.


In present day, we ended the season with Nat being kidnapped right after putting a shotgun in her mouth, Tai won her state senate race which may or may not have been aided by her (or someone else) cutting off the head of her dog and putting it on an alter in the basement, and Shauna murdered someone who seems like may have just been some random dude with a mysterious back tattoo and no digital footprint. 


While Shauna’s bored housewife routine was the least interesting part of the first season, it may end up being one of the more entertaining storylines this season.  Her daughter Callie, who gets more screen time in the first two episodes this season than maybe all of last season, is the big surprise of this season.  Obviously she is not as messed up as her mother who experienced extreme trauma at that age, but that girl is a little messed up too.  Then throw in Jeff, who we now know is actually kind of a good husband and a a big doofus.


Sure, the show sometimes stumbles under the weight of expectations after becoming a surprise hit in its first season and it is even more annoying this season that the show continues to lean into the supernatural without actually confirming nor deny the existence of some sort of supernatural element (what happens at the end of episode two will be extremely eye rolling if they want us to think what happens is just a coincidence), but you still have to be highly entertained whenever Misty does her Misty things.  While slow and plodding at times (each episode of the six I saw are very close to being an hour long), there is still always at least multiple highly entertaining things that happen each episode that will keep the Yellowjackets subreddit buzzing for a full week until the next episode.

Yellowjackets airs Sundays at 9:00 on Showtime, though episodes premiere on streaming the Friday before.

Sunday, March 19, 2023

57 Channels and Only This Is On: March 19, 2023


The Blacklist:  So this guy was able to find the greatest pickpockets in the world, but could not find anyone who could hit a target?  For a mastermind, that was a very big oversite.  I did recognize the guy Red tried to poison, but cannot place him at all.  This show really could use “Previously On” montages when they bring back people like this.


The Last of Us:  Well that was a horrible finale.  If you have to sacrifice one person to save all of humanity, you do it.


Your Honor:   So this is how the show is going to end?  The judge is going to get on the stand and answer all the questions truthfully, exposing all the criminality, from police corruption that killed his wife, everything he did that kept his son out of prison, and all the gangster activities was the two warring factions.  Everyone but the young mother goes to prison.


The Mandalorian:  Um, did we really need an episode of Andor inside of this show?  Unfortunately I really do not care about two characters I barely remember.   So all of that was just an elaborate way to zap the doctor’s brain?


Wu-Tang: An American Saga:  Why were they wasting an episode on RZA’s brother this late in the series?


The Challenge: World Championship:  Seriously, they waited until the end to do the elimination?  This show really should stick to a one challenge and one elimination per episode  But poor Jujuy, stuck with someone giving the single worse elimination performance ever.  Everyone was helping Nelson and still he did not listen.


Survivor:  Is a dude ever going to be voted out?  I wonder what longer streak for one gender being voted out is?


School Spirits:  Why does the teacher have the cheerleader’s number?