Thursday, June 30, 2011

Soap Discussion - June 2011

And now my usual way to end the month ....

Coronation Street: Becky McDonald - in six years, I've gone from disliking you to tolerating you to absolutely despising you to the point where I'm hoping your exit at the start of 2012 results in death. The sulky, tantrum throwing bitch seems to becoming more and more of a pain in the arse every time she disgraces the screen, that it's amazing new manager Stella hasn't smacked her one yet. Michelle Collins Northern accent might be dodgy as hell but the character's likeable enough and the storyline involving Leanne is interesting enough too. Also interesting this month included Carla's meltdown over her mother's death and Sylvia's acid response to learning about Roy and Hayley's relationship.

EastEnders: Another month, another influx of Moons to descend on the square. Okay, while Tyler falls into the cute but bland category, at least Eddie actually has made a decent impact and Michael has becoming a far more fascinating character. Actually, this has been a great month for the show - the disastrous mendhi, Yusef's reveal of being responsible for Zainab's scars, Janine losing her grandmother and even Max and Tanya's affair have all been good storylines. Less good is surly Shirley and her jealousy over Phil and Rainie but you can't get everything right though.
Emmerdale: Okay, I am not congratulating this show on Jackson's death because like a certain baby swap storyline in another soap, this storyline did not move me - it annoyed me deeply and there's a part of me that doesn't give a damn if Aaron winds up being sent down for it. The acting was fine, great in parts but the whole storyline in general has left a bad feeling for me and it hasn't help that the rest of this month's storylines haven't been interesting. Did I need to see Gennie get rejected by Nikhil or even Debbie miscarry or the tedium of Adam and Ella? Sort it out, show.
Fair City: Otherwise known as the month for an affair between Jo and Tommy that came out of nowhere or the fling between Yvonne and Dean that similarly came out of nowhere. Or the month where Carol wound up pregnant and doesn't know who the father is or the month where Mark snapped, beat the crap out of Suzanne and she briefly went out with David, the son of Esther's we previously knew nothing about. Funny enough, apart from the first storyline, the rest of them have been enjoyable.

Hollyoaks: Leanne, you're becoming a bad joke. Your bunny boiling antics with Lee and Amy were entertaining a while ago but now it's just tiresome to watch. And why would she pull the same stunt with Amy this time that she did beforehand? Oh yeah - because everyone's been downing stupid pills and believe that Amy attacked Leanne. Still, it's not as insulting as gormless Liberty and Theresa being two timed by Ethan or Mercedes being daft enough to keep pretending she's carrying Riley's child. On the plus side, I did enjoy meeting Bart's mates, who were far less annoying than I feared.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Torchwood - Miracle Day UK Airdate

Well, BBC1 have announced that the fourth season of Torchwood (aka Miracle Day) will air shortly after Starz - Thursdays at 9pm from July 14th. So, I'll be watching it at American pace then. On the plus side, at least every date for the new series has been announced now.

Monday, June 27, 2011

My Review of True Blood's 4x01: "She's Not There"

Written by Alexander Woo
Directed by Michael Lehmann

Sookie: “I’ve been gone two weeks?”
Jason: “Sook, you’ve been gone twelve and a half months.”

And if there was a show that could’ve been benefited from a time jump, it would be this series and not Brothers And Sisters. A lot can happen in over a year, especially if you’re Sookie and you think you’ve only been gone for a few minutes at the most.

I knew fairyland would have something sinister about it but even I didn’t think the writers would reveal it so quick. Sookie was only there long enough to realise that humans were being harvested and psychotic Queen Mab wanted to close the portal between the fairy world and the human world for good.

In that brief fifteen minutes of the opening episode, it was nice to see Barry again, nicer to see Claude (if he’s good, does that mean Claudine’s bad?) but more unexpectedly was seeing Earl Stackhouse. I know some viewers felt that Gary Cole was effectively wasted in the role but like fairyland, I have a sneaking suspicion that we haven’t seen the last of Earl Stackhouse yet.

One thing that pleased me endlessly about this episode was the fact that Jason was the first main character to be reunited with Sookie again. For all their ups and downs, I do love their sibling dynamic and while Jason might have been hasty in selling her house, he was great in getting Andy to back off.

Everyone’s reaction to Sookie’s return were interesting – Jason’s very brotherly approach were far more interesting than Bill and Eric’s attempts of trying to act like they cared the most. Similarly I did laugh a little at Arlene’s presumption that a bad boyfriend might have done Sookie and felt a little put out by Sam being more sour faced, even if I understood where he was coming from.

For the time being, Sookie is probably wise not to let everyone know where she was exactly but I did like the fact that she was honest about Jason with it. As for Eric buying her house, how do I put this?

I know there are fan girls out there who think Eric can do no wrong but I found myself irritated during his scenes with Sookie in this episode. Acting like he was the only one who never gave up on her sounded disingenuous and the fact that he bought her house to own her really rubbed me up the wrong way. How again is he supposed to be a better suitor for Sookie than Bill? This episode certainly didn’t suggest that he was.

However not everything Eric did in this episode actively pissed me off. He was great with Nan’s PR campaign in trying to win back public support and much as I’ll always love Pam and her snarky putdowns, I think this might have been the rare episode where her scanting banter actually worked against her for once.

Speaking of PR – Bill as the King of Louisiana? This is an excellent plot stratagem. He can’t be much worse than Sophie-Anne and by the way, writers, let us know what’s happened with her and it might be a little fun to see him lording it over Eric for a bit as well. Also Bill is acting smartly, if spy lady Katarina is anything to go by.

After Rene, Maryann, the Fellowship and Russell Edgington, it’s nice to see that the witches are coming out to play this season and I have to admit, the low key introduction of Marnie was the best way of going about bringing this character into the mix. I’ll also keep my gushing of Fiona Shaw to a minimum but great casting, show.

I like that in spite of Jesus and Holly’s encouragement that Lafayette has some open scepticism about the witching world. Marnie’s starting (and not succeeding) with trying to raise dead birds. Lafayette is doing what everyone else in that coven isn’t doing – he’s being cautious and more power to him for it as well. Nice to know that since last season, Lafayette hasn’t lost his general savvy.

Too bad that Jason’s savvy seems to vary. He’s great with helping Sookie and trying to keep Andy of the vampire blood but he’s sort of hopeless with the Hotshot kids and now they have him trapped in a freezer. This was one plot I didn’t love last season and I have a feeling that my mind isn’t going to change on that one either. As always, I’ll concentrate on the good stuff though.

As for Tara – cage fighting and dating a woman? Well, considering her history, perhaps cage fighting is a healthy way for Tara to channel her anger but I’m not sure about her relationship with Naomi. Don’t get me wrong - Naomi’s lovely but Tara’s never really shown any inclination of being attracted to women and the fact that she’s lying to her girlfriend ain’t so good either. This is a story I’ll keep an open mind on.

Another thing or two to keep an open mind on – Tommy being looked after by Maxine. I’d liken it to a fate worse than death but it could be an amusing plot that ends up making two unlikeable characters more likeable and it’s a bit more original than Sam’s anger management club with shifter Luna, Suzanne and Emory, which is another storyline that could go either way.

Last but not least, there was Hoyt and Jessica. I really do not want to see this two split up but there are definitely issues there between them that need more than a night in Fangtasia to fix. Even though Pam’s snarky banter wasn’t great here, she raised a point and now I’m worried a little. I like Jessica and Hoyt too much to see them split up. I really hope they pull through this season but for now, they look like they’re on shaky ground, domestic wise.

Also in “She’s Not There”

One of the HBO stations in Canada aired the second episode, so be cautious of spoilers looming about. Also Jessica Tuck (Nan), Fiona Shaw (Marnie), Lauren Bowles (Holly) and Janina Gavankar (Luna) are in the opening credits.

Sookie: “Okay, if your job is to look after me, can I say you suck? Do you know how many times I could’ve used a fairy godmother?”
Claudine: “Well, you’re still alive, aren’t you? You’re not exactly Miss Trouble Free, you know.”

The light fruit seems to be a bad thing to eat. Sookie had enough savvy to stay from it. Too bad Barry and Earl couldn’t do the same.

Claude (to Sookie): “It was once our world. We have a right to travel there.”

Sookie: “Time stands still there and no-one knows it. It’s how I lost a year of my life and granddaddy lost twenty.”
Jason: “Where is he? You didn’t leave him there, did you?”

Also in the last year, Arlene and Terry had a baby boy named Mikey and his Barbie breaking ways have freaked Arlene out. We also met Andy’s lawyer sister, Portia as well in this episode and she was a bitch to Sookie.

Andy (to Sookie): “You owe me a plaque.”

Lafayette (re Marnie): “Greatest witch ever, huh?”
Jesus: “Don’t be an asshole.”

Lafayette, Tara and Arlene have all changed their hairstyles and Jason seems to have some facial hair. Also Marnie’s place is called Moon Goddess Emporium while Bill and Sookie’s homes have been redecorated.

Pam: “What’s idiotic is that the AVL believe the public to be so naive.”
Nan: “I have proof. Scientific. People are far dumber than they realise.”

Eric: “We welcome you into our world as well. We’re always more than happy to serve humans here at Fangtasia and I don’t mean for dinner.”

Standout music: Nick Cave and Neko Case’s version of “She’s Not There” to end the episode worked well.

Sam: “A lot’s happened, Sookie. A lot’s changed.”
Sookie: “Yeah, you’ve gotten a lot more prickly.”

Sookie: “Is this another dream? It’s been a year. How much more of your blood is left inside me?”
Eric: “It’s not a dream, I assure you.”

Chronology: October 21st or twelve and a half months since “Evil Is Going On”.

As an opening episode, “She’s Not There” had to cover a lot of ground and for the most part, it did it well. Both the fairyland and witch antics are important as is the attempts of damage control in a post Russell Edgington world but the stuff with the shifters and Hot Shot is going to need some working out though. Still, it’s good to have the series back again.

Rating: 9 out of 10

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Top TV Pairings Part 1

Okay, so I've decided to pick thirty shows I'm currently watching in various ways and picked some of my favourite pairings. A lot of the pairings are romantic, a few quasi-romantic or platonic. Hope you enjoy the first part of this.

K9 - Alistair Gryffen/June Turner

Falls into the category of a non romantic pairing but if this show actually goes from having a second season in development to a second season on the air, who knows? There's certainly a nice rapport between Department lady June Turner and now not so agoraphobic Professor Alistair Gryffen.

Sugar Rush - Kim Daniels/Saint

I've been watching repeats of the second season on 4Music (and I'll be doing some blogs relating to the series soon) and I realise that I really did love Kim and Saint as a couple. They certainly weren't perfect but they were interesting though and it's a shame the show was cut so shortly as well.

Carnivale - Ben Hawkins/Sofie Agnesh Bojakshiya

Something of an odd pairing this one, it's kind of a shame that the writers didn't explore them further but their scenes together on TV were quite good. I wish we had seen more between Ben and Sofie.

Sex And The City - Miranda Hobbes/Steve Brady

This show has always been a mixed bag with couples but somehow, the writers (if you ignore the subsequent movies in 2008/2010) got it right with Miranda and Steve. Great chemistry with the actors and far more believable than the Carrie/Big rubbish that's bogged the show down as well.

Modern Family - Phil Dunphy/Claire Dunphy

I know I should talk about this show a lot more than I do, so I'm adding Phil and Claire to this as well. A great couple, brilliant rapport between the respective actors portraying them but also rather believable as well, though this show excels with all the couples.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

True Blood - Season 4 (10 Teasers)

From SpoilerTV/TGuide, here are 10 things you need to know about Season 4 of True Blood before it's premiere tomorrow night on HBO ....

1. It's all about the witches:
A band of witches tap into a new form of power, causing Eric (Alexander Skarsgard) to lose his memory. At the head of the coven is Marnie (Fiona Shaw), a vengeful witch coming into her powers and out for revenge. Unfortunately for Lafayette (Nelsan Ellis), he will be dragged into the increasing vampire vs. witch tension. "Lafayette loves his boyfriend, [Jesus, a practicing brujo], so he's trying to deal with [magic] in stride, but it keeps sucking him in and he doesn't know what's going on," Ellis says. "He discovers who he is in the middle of all this stuff."

2. Sookie, independent woman: After discovering that Bill (Stephen Moyer) was working for Queen Sophie-Anne to gain information on her, Sookie is "learning to stand on her own," Anna Paquin says. "At the end of last season, she was at a point where she was willing to walk away from everyone and everything, particularity those troublesome boys. It's not that she doesn't want or need anyone, she just isn't dependant anymore." That's OK for Bill, though. "Bachelorhood kind of turns out all right for Bill," Moyer says. "He's decided to enjoy it while he can."

3. Vampires in trouble: Eric's unfortunate run-in with the witches will send his lieutenant, Pam (Kristin Bauer), into a downward spiral, which is bad timing in the current vampire climate. "The post-Russell Edginton world is hard for Pam," Bauer says. "It's a political environment this year, so she's supposed to be doing what the other vampires are doing — holding babies and shaking hands — but she's incapable. So we see her cause some trouble."

4. Tara returns as a new woman: After getting out of Dodge in the season finale, Tara (Rutina Wesley) will return to Bon Temps hoping to turn over a new leaf, but will immediately find herself in a mess of trouble. "She gets swept back into the world of vampires so quickly," Rutina says. "She doesn't want it, but she has no choice." Fortunately, there may be hope for her yet. "If there was to be love for Tara, I think she's ready for it because I think she's learned to love herself and has opened up in a way."

5. Shifty shapeshifters: The days of Sam (Sam Trammell) turning into a dog or bird are child's play compared to what he'll do this season. "My character explains the full-range of capabilities that shapeshifters have, and a lot of people that she's talking to at the time don't even know some of that," says Janina Gavankar, who'll be a love interest for Sam this season. "There's a really dark side to shapeshifters as well and that's something we'll explore this year. There's potential wrongdoings that can happen."

6. Jessica, domesticated? Jessica (Deborah Ann Woll) and Hoyt (Jim Parrack) will make a go of living together, but a human and a vampire cohabitating isn't going to be easy. "Jessica is a vampire and I'm not quite sure that domestic life is really what she's in for or what she desires," Woll says. "She's still gotta figure that out because they moved into this very quickly." Helping her navigate this life is Pam, who acts as a "big bad" older sister, says Bauer. "Pam is a very different kind of mentor for Jess than Bill is," Woll adds. "The things you might not want to tell your dad, you may tell your cool aunt."

7. Jason's growing up: Once the older slacker brother of Sookie, Jason (Ryan Kwanten) has now stepped into a role of responsibility that will get him into even more trouble. "This is the season of the biggest growth for Jason, where the young boy turns into a man," Kwanten says. "He's forced to try and raise a tribe of people and eventually fight for his life."

8. PD's into V: The end of last season teased impending trouble for Andy (Chris Bauer) when it comes to V, otherwise known as vampire blood, an addictive drug that can ruin your life (See: Jason Stakchouse, Debbie Pelt and the rest of the werewolves from Season 3). "It's like old demons, new problems," Bauer says of Season 4 for Andy. "At first V does a lot of good. He had that cast on forever, but after a couple of drops, all of a sudden he's ready to box. He's a guy who we know has issues with substance, and he keeps saying he's done, but he's not done."

9. Arlene and Terry tackle parenthood: As if Arlene (Carrie Preston) could ever be the voice of reason, she's especially on edge this season. "I wouldn't be playing Arlene correctly if I wasn't playing her fully, fully stressed out," Preston says. "When you're talking about a child or potential child, and you're talking about it having a father that was a serial killer, in Arlene's mind, she's absolutely justified in freaking out. Luckily, Arlene has found Terry [Todd Lowe], who will put up with all her insecurities." On a possibility related note, Preston adds, "Arlene is going to come face-to-face with something that we haven't even seen on the show yet."

10. Debbie's back, baby: Alcide's psychopathic, V-addicted ex-girlfriend, Debbie Pelt (Brit Morgan), will return this season with a new prerogative. "You're going to get to see a different side of Debbie," Morgan says, adding that Debbie will attempt to make amends with Sookie and find some normalcy. But the werewolf in her isn't gone. "You're going to get to see cool things with some of the wolves that you didn't get to see last season," she says.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Torchwood - Miracle Day Teasers

Starz have the synopsis for the first 7 episodes of Torchwood's Miracle Day ....

1.When death itself comes to a halt, the whole world faces its greatest danger yet. CIA agent Rex Matheson has only one clue - Torchwood.

2. As the Torchwood team is reunited, Jack realizes he's the most vulnerable man on Earth. A flight to the United States turns into a desperate battle for survival.

3. Torchwood goes on the run and finds a new enemy, but as they launch a raid on PhiCorp headquarters, Jack must confront the mysterious Oswald Danes.

4. The fight against PhiCorp takes the Torchwood team to California, where a trap is waiting. Meanwhile, Oswald and Jilly find themselves with an enemy of their own.

5. Torchwood goes undercover and discovers the terrible truth behind the Miracle. The enemy is closing in, and death is about to make a shocking return.

6. With Gwen, Rex and Esther trapped on both sides of the Atlantic, it's a race against time as Jack goes straight to the heart of the conspiracy.

7. Gwen must fight to protect her family and takes a terrifying journey, covering both miles and decades, as the long history of the Miracle is revealed.

Miracle Day airs on Starz, Fridays at 10pm from July 8th. An airdate for BBC1 has yet to be confirmed.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

My Review of "Dead Reckoning"

Written by Charlaine Harris
Released in 2011

Sookie (to herself): “Dangerous Creatures for two hundred, anyone?”

Last year when “Dead In The Family” was released, I decided to wait until the third season had finished airing before reviewing it but this year is a different kettle of fish. It’s less than a week until the fourth season airs on HBO and I have already read “Dead Reckoning” and so, a review is here.

I don’t know if it’s me but the last couple of books have had a feeling that the end was drawing near and this book continues the trend as well. For Sookie and Eric, it’s definitely obvious that their relationship is drawing to a close.

Even if Eric hadn’t been promised to the Queen of Oklahoma by his maker, the fact that Sookie had gotten Amelia’s help in breaking the blood bond between her and Eric speaks volumes. I have to admit that I agree with Bill about what Sookie did – breaking the bond with Eric was a wise decision on her part.

I’ve never been a big shipper of Sookie and Eric in either mediums but I’ve never hated their relationship either. However, I do think that in the context of the books and the fact that there will be consequences for their part in Victor’s death, Charlaine Harris is being smart by paving the way for Sookie and Eric to go their separate ways.

Also, another thing I’ve noticed in the books of late is how much closer Sookie and Sam have gotten too. I love the dynamic and growing affection between the two of them and Jannalyn’s nasty set up with Alcide aside, I actually do want a Sam and Sookie pairing in the last two books and judging by this one, it’s likely I’ll get my wish too.

Though the book also reminded us (in case we had forgotten) how much Bill is still in love with Sookie. Comments about her breasts aside, Bill’s other declarations included being dumped by Judith as well as protecting Sookie from some would be kidnappers, hired by Sandra Pelt.

Other noteworthy stuff in this book included delving a bit further into the fairy lineage of Sookie. It was nice to learn more about her grandmother’s relationship with Fintan and it was also interesting to learn why both Claude and Dermot really are around Sookie and Mr Cataliades own involvement in the Stackhouse family. I’m also pretty sure that the cluviel dor Sookie now owns is going to become vital pretty soon.

More importantly this book finally put the Pelts plot to an end with Sandra causing trouble for Sookie and meeting her comeuppance as a result for it. It’s not quite as good as the bloodbath that ensued in the dispatching of Victor but it’s finally nice to be free of that particular plot strand, once and for all.

- Yet again, this was another book where Jason had naff all to do. I like that Sookie has Hunter, Claude and Dermot in her life but it’s about time Jason contributed more, plot wise and interacted more with his sister.
- Pam had a girlfriend in this one called Miriam. Sadly she died because Victor prevented Pam from turning her.
- I was a little shocked with Eric and Pam brawling at one point in this story.
- In news that will shock no-one, it’s obvious that Jannalyn clearly doesn’t like Sookie. I wouldn’t be surprised if she goes psychotic in the next book.

“Dead Reckoning” is a good book and certainly has some nice moments but it’s not my favourite. It’s better than the previous one and does deserve points for progressing storylines that will inevitably factor in the next two books.

Rating: 7 out of 10.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Game Of Thrones Finale Discussion

I was going to leave this until my TV jumble but the Game Of Thrones finale, Fire And Blood was so good, I had to talk about it now ...

Bloody hell, this was a finale and a half. I want season 2 now, not in 2012. Though filming will be starting in Northern Ireland for the next season in July. Danaerys arc has been my favourite throughout the entire season and I loved the way it came to a head tonight. The woman lost her husband and her unborn child but managed to rise from the ashes with three dragons in an epic last season. I can't wait to see how that plays out next season and while I can understand the witch's desire for vengeance, it did backfire spectacularly on her here. And can we have more of Ser Jorah, the bestest ally a Khaleesi can have?

I don't care if Joffrey is a child, I still hope he meets a horrible ending next year. That boy is a tyrant in the making and his glee over humiliating others will hopefully be instrumental in his downfall next series. Sansa has my sympathies and then some. Until Joffrey is taken out, that girl is destined for a horrible life ahead of her. Cersei slept with her cousin in this one as well. Can't that woman not keep it in the family for once? Also, Jaime doesn't fear death? Methinks he doth protest too much. I wasn't too bothered with the Jon Snow bits but I did like the respective looks into both Cat and Robb's grief for Ned though. Arya might now be forced into disguising as a boy but at least she's in safer hands than her sister at the moment. I want Renly back sooner than later as I missed his character in this one. Tyrion continues to be a brilliant character. It's a shame his father's a dud though.

I'm going to do a Season 1 review when the DVD surfaces for the show.

Monday, June 20, 2011

The Start Of A Love Story

And here's another look at some of the stuff I've caught up with recently ....

Angry Boys: I was a huge fan of Summer High Heights and with BBC3 not doing a lot of decent comedy themselves, I was pleased that they decided to air the third show from Chris Lilley and as a series go, I like this one. The characters might not be as well defined (though Prison Gran is priceless) but there's definitely a lot of potential and some of the stereotyping is handled better than other comedies. Definitely one to look out for, though I can't help but think that BBC3 are trying to rush through it with the double bills.

Camelot: I was dubious about this series and with Merlin, did we need another Arthurian series? Apparently we do and while this one is obviously geared for adults (swearing, sex scenes, violent deaths), it's actually a pretty good show. All of the actors are decent in their roles, even Jamie Campbell Bowers as Arthur and the banter between him and Merlin is less bromance and more student/mentor, which should please the purists. I quite like Eva Green's take on Morgan who managed to achieve killing Uther in the first ten minutes of the series whereas Morgana has managed to fail with that task in three seasons of Merlin. I guess I owe my sister an apology for thinking this would be rubbish then. Looking forward to the remainder of the season.

Game Of Thrones: Again, I went from liking this show to utterly loving it. The last few episodes just kept upping the game and the seeming deaths of Drogo and Ned certainly raised the stakes. Is it wrong that I hope Joffrey meets a violent ending next year? Even Cersei looked shocked when he opted to have Ned beheaded. More importantly the continuous bigger roles that Dany, Cat and Tyrien have had in the last few episodes are another highlight of this series. I only have the finale to catch up on now.

Smallville: Ah, at long last - E4 got off their backsides to air the 10th and final season of the series and the first two episodes were wonderful. Let's see - there's a young Lex type clone that Tess has taken under her wing, Clark continues to get closer to his destiny, Lois finally knows who Clark and had Carter for company in Egypt, Cat Grant made a brief appearance and gave some food for thought to Clark, Chloe faked her own death and Oliver got tortured for most of the first episode. That aside, this was a nice return to form for the series.

The Vampire Diaries: I planned to catch up with this series earlier but when TG4 announced they were airing it in June, I decided to wait. The first episode of Season 2 certainly seemed to prove this show wasn't a one trick pony. Katherine is an excellent thorn in the arse for Elena, Damon and Stefan, Damon is still an asshole at times (though even I don't blame him too much for his attempted kill on Jeremy), Bonnie is still fantastic (loved her being a bitch to Damon) and Caroline looks like she's about to have a bigger role on the show. I'm totally sticking with this series.

- James Frain will be guest starring on Burn Notice.
- Kristin Chenowith has mentioned that Good Christian Belles is unlike any show on TV. I think I can compare it to at least one.
- BBC controller Danny Cohen has announced that they will air The Voice in 2012. Judges have yet to be announced.
- Molly Parker is the latest cast addition to be added to Dexter's upcoming sixth season.
- Elizabeth Rodriguez has joined the cast of the US version of Prime Suspect.
- Gilles Marini will be appearing in the new series of Seperated At Birth.
- Emmy Rossum has joked that all the cast for the US Shameless are going to hell next season. UK viewers can see the series on More4 from Thursday at 10pm.
- E4 have claimed the rights to new series Happy Endings, which they will air in September.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Glee - Season 3 News/Other Stuff

Okay, it's going to be a while before Season 3 of Glee hits the airwaves (that's Sky1 for UK viewers now) but with the cast on tour in the US and by next week, the UK and Ireland, there's some stuff to savour.
Six new staff writers have been added to the series for it's third year. Amongst the writers are Allison Adler, Roberto Aguirre Sacasa, Ross Maxwell, Matt Hodgson Michael Hitchcock and of course, Marti Noxon, the woman who has written for Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Angel, Brothers And Sisters, Grey's Anatomy, Private Practice and Mad Men. It seems the new influx of writers are here to help with the four new characters being added to the series as well as the main characters.

I should point out one of the four new characters being added for a seven episode arc will come from the reality show The Glee Project, airing on the Oxygen Network. No UK broadcaster has decided to take on this show yet but I'm hearing the ratings aren't exactly impressive for the series. Maybe you can have too much of a good thing. Darren Criss was a guest judge on the first episode of the series.

Elsewhere with tours and stuff, the cast have been sticking in the media for different reasons. Naya Rivera has gotten a solo album deal, both Darren Criss and Kevin McHale have appeared in the video for Katy Perry's Last Friday Night, Dianna Agron's "Likes Girls" T-Shirt has generated headlines and both Chris Colfer and Lea Michele have been showing up in Emmy Roundtable videos with various other actors from TV shows. Even when it's not on the telly, it seems you can't escape from Glee.

Last Friday Night Video:

Friday, June 17, 2011

Dexter - Season 6 Trailer

"I wanted to be the first to tell you, I'm feeling like my own self again. Renewed, recharged, refocused. With nothing to stop me from being me."

FXUK might finally be airing the fifth season of Dexter tonight at 10pm but Showtime are already gearing up for the series sixth year with an excellent trailer that seems to suggest that Dexter is more than back in the game and I think this year, I might actually review the sixth season as America airs it. Even I'm beginning to tire of FXUK's treatment of the series.

Season 6 Trailer:

Season 6 premieres on Showtime in late September.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

My Review of Brothers And Sisters 5x22: "Walker Down The Aisle"

Written by David Marshall Grant And David Babcock
Directed by Ken Olin

Kevin: “I promise you, Paige is not pregnant.”
Sarah: “She’s got a boyfriend.”
Kevin: “You’re insane, breathe. You’re about to get married.”

And guess what – Kevin’s right about Paige not being pregnant but you could tell that if this show hadn’t the axe swung at it that would’ve been a future storyline for the series. Thank goodness for small mercies then.

Sarah’s wedding day has been long discussed and sub plotted in various episodes this season but the most amazing thing about the wedding in question is how it actually brought all the Walkers together and gave them plenty to do. I may never care about Sarah and Luc as a couple but I am grateful for that.

Kevin seemed to be mostly in his element as wedding planner, despite the little meltdowns he had with the missing cake but more importantly, we finally got a kiss between him and Scotty. Yes, it would’ve been nicer if it had been longer and it certainly doesn’t make up for the lack of affection between the pair of them this year but it’s still better than other kisses we’ve had this season, so there.

I loved the scene where Kevin was trying to initiate sex with Scotty on the couch, even if it didn’t work and I also liked the fact that Kevin was the first person Kitty spilled her pregnancy to as well. It was obvious that he got the wrong end of the stick when he was talking to Seth about it but I liked that he related his own parenting experiences into the matter.

As for Kitty and Seth becoming parents – this is definitely shades of Desperate Housewives with Lynette/Tom but it seems here that Seth’s fears are less to do with fatherhood and more to do with Kitty’s health. I get that Kitty’s excited to be pregnant but again if the show had not be axed, there would be some hard times ahead for her and Seth in relation to both Kitty and the baby’s health.

It was something that even Nora attempted to address and it’s a pity that Kitty didn’t listen to her. Kitty did however have the use for reassuring Sarah on a few occasions – on her relationship with Nora and the fact that Paige wasn’t with child and while I’ve had issues with Kitty not being so present this year, this was a nice use of her in the finale.

Speaking of nice uses, it was interesting that Brody’s youngest daughter would gatecrash the wedding to make herself known to Sarah. She seems like fun and a bit nuts at the same time. I wasn’t surprised that Brody had more kids out there apart from Sarah and I wasn’t surprised with the breakneck speed in which he and Sarah came to connecting with each other as well.

As for the wedding bit, apart from some stuff with Luc learning that his father was in financial crisis and Gabriella being more toned down, I liked the fact that it didn’t dominate proceedings. Sarah and Luc got married, we got the song and dance with the guys, which managed to be a lot less cringe inducing than I thought it would be and we didn’t get anything too sappy from Luc either. All in all, I’d say that was a result really.

As for everyone else, it was nice to see Tommy back into the mix as well. It’s kind of a shame that he didn’t have much to do overall in the episode but seeing him was what mattered. I don’t think this episode could’ve gotten away with not featuring him, given how important he was when the show first started.

Justin and Tyler – I liked the mature approach that he had with her marital status and it continued to cement his maturity but I also liked the fact that Tyler officially chose him. I never thought we’d see Tyler back on the show, but I’m glad she was brought back and ultimately, Justin is probably with the woman he was meant to be with all this time – no disrespect intended to Rebecca though.

And to cap it off, an engagement between Saul and Jonathan as well. Now that means the show has ended perfectly with everyone paired – Nora/Brody, Saul/Jonathan, Sarah/Luc, Kitty/Seth, Tommy/Rose, Kevin/Scotty and Justin/Tyler. It’s a little hard not to love that sense of happy ending to the mix, right?

Also in “Walker Down The Aisle”

Matthew Rhys and Sally Field are the only two actors to have appeared in every single episode of the series, which is funny considering they were the last to be cast.

Kitty: “It’s your wedding Sarah and I don’t want you to regret anything.”

As well as the song and dance number at the wedding, we also had Kitty and Kevin breaking into one when they decided to tease Sarah over her first boyfriend.

Sarah: “I can’t believe you’re here.”
Tommy: “You asked me to walk you down the aisle. Where’d you think I’d be?”

Saul: “I’ll tell you something, Kevin, I’m gonna call Sarah because you’re a wuss.”

Ken Olin directed the first ever episode for the series – “Patriarchy”, so it made a lot of sense that he would direct the last episode.

Kevin: “Okay, what’s going on with you?”
Kitty: “I’m pregnant.”
Kevin: “You’re pregnant?”

Sarah (to Nora, re Brody’s necklace): “This is it. This is my something old.”

Apart from Sarah, Brody has at least four other kids and possibly a grandchild from his youngest daughter.

Justin: “When did you become Jack Nicholson?”
Tommy: “I’m just your brother trying to help.”

Kevin (to Cooper): “It’s not funny. You’ll give me a heart attack one day and I’ll die. Live with that.”

Despite the fact that Paige, Cooper, Olivia, Daniel and Evan were all here, it’s a shame the show missed out on Elizabeth and we got one last phone tree as well in this episode.

Brody: “Your mom’s the love of my life you know.”
Sarah: “I’m literally having an out of body experience right now.”

Jonathan: “Oh for God’s sake, marry me Saul.”
Saul: “You don’t believe in marriage.”
Jonathan: “You do and I believe in you.”
Saul: “Don’t do this unless you mean business because I might say yes.”
Jonathan: “Then say it.”
Saul: “Yes.”

Standout music: Lots here to be honest – Honey Honey’s “LA River”, The Four Tops “Baby, I Need Your Loving”, Elton John’s “Mona Lisa And Mad Hatters” and Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way”.

Nora (to herself): “I think of this wonderful quote by George Elliot. It’s never too late to be what you might have been.”

Chronology: Around May 2012, I suppose but not long after “For Better Or For Worse”.

As a series finale goes, “Walker Down The Aisle” was actually a great way of ending the series. Much as a part of me would’ve loved to see this series last longer and even though I’ll miss my weekly doses of Kevin and Scotty, I think this show had come to it’s natural conclusion and this was the best way of ending it.

Rating: 9 out of 10

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Doctor Who - Series 7 News In Tweets

Okay, how to break the news about Doctor Who's fate in relation to Series 7 and the next two years. I know, I'll let the tweets do the talking.

Now, this was stupid considering that last week, Moffat and company announced fourteen new episodes. I know they didn't say those episodes would air in 2012 but that doesn't lessen the blow either.

I'd rather a full series than another series of specials but here's hoping they're worth it though. Damn you, BBC.

And more of an official statement here ...

BBC1 Controller Danny Cohen today revealed that, after much speculation generated since the Private Eye article and subsequent BBC announcements last week, Doctor Who will indeed be returning in a curtailed form during 2012.

Speaking at the Church and Media Conference this afternoon, Cohen's comments were relayed via Twitter, with BBC Merseyside's Religious Editor Wayne Clarke reporting: "Danny Cohen says there won't be a full series of Doctor Who in 2012, but a special run for the anniversary in 2013". The BBC's Entertainment Correspondent Liza Mzimba confirmed the comments this evening, adding that other reported comments by Cohen on the decision being made to enable head writer Steven Moffat more time to write his other hit series Sherlock were light-hearted and not meant to be taken seriously.

No other details on how many episodes will comprise the 2012 run at present, though the BBC confirmed last week that fourteen episodes had been commissioned, including this year's Christmas Special, with Matt Smith at the helm in the role as The Doctor.

Update: commenting on the various media stories circulating over Cohen's announcement, Steven Moffat said: "Dr Who: misquotes and misunderstandings. But I'm not being bounced into announcing the cool stuff before we're ready. Hush, and patience."

Skins US - Yes, It's Been Canned

In news that's unlikely to shock anyone, the US version of Skins will not be returning for a second series. MTV pulled the series after lacklustre ratings and I have to admit that I'm not too shocked to see it go.

After being pleasantly surprised by both SyFy and Showtime commissioning second seasons for their versions of Being Human and Shameless, I was pretty certain that Skins would be the unfortunate show not to get another chance.

In some ways, it's a shame because while it started off badly, miscast the role of Tony (sorry, James Newman) and mucked the Tea arc around the place, it did improve in it's final episodes and might have continued to improve if it had been renewed but I guess with the terrible ratings and controversy surrounding it, MTV decided to cut their losses.

Still, there's at least the sixth (and more than likely, final) season of the UK series to look forward to in 2012.

Article On The Cancellation:

Sunday, June 12, 2011

True Blood - Season 4 Cast Pictures The Men

Blimey, HBO really are going all that out for Season 4 of True Blood. Here are the cast pictures of the men.
Bill Compton (Stephen Moyer): Bill might not be dating Sookie this year but he's definitely still going to playing a more active role this season, especially considering the fall out from last season and his cliffhanger battle with Sophie-Anne.

Eric Northman (Alexander Skarsgard): The infamous amnesia plot in the fourth book is about to befall Eric this year as his relationship with Sookie takes a new turn.

Alcide Hearveaux (Joe Manganiello): He's got feelings for Sookie too but he's also bound by pack duties and the return of Debbie is certainly going to put him through the ringer.

Sam Merlotte (Sam Trammell): He's still got a frosty relationship with his brother to contend with, his shady past and a new love interest in Luna.

Jason Stackhouse (Ryan Kwanten): His life is about to take one hell of a turn as Crystal decides to fully embrace him into her mixed up world.

Lafayette Reynolds (Nelsan Ellis): He's got some power going on and with Jesus's influence, he's about to become involved in Marnie's world as well.

Jesus Velasquez (Kevin Alejandro): Is the witch/nurse all he seems to be or has Lafayette gotten himself a wrong 'un? Let's find out, shall we?

Hoyt Fortenberry (Jim Parrick): Him and Jessica are still together but there are rumours that they might not be for much longer.

Andy Bellefleur (Chris Bauer): In recent trailers, we've seen him and Sam scrapping, but we also know that Andy will have some trouble when his sister, Portia makes her presence known in Bon Temps.
Terry Bellefleur (Todd Lowe): Are him and Arlene about to have a devil child? Here's hoping that mystery is solved quicker than anything else this year.

Tommy Mickens (Marshall Allman): He's still alive and still a bad influence for Sam. Also still seems to be holding a torch for Jessica.

True Blood - Season 4 Cast Pictures The Women

Okay, here's the cast shots of True Blood Season 4 of the ladies.

Sookie Stackhouse (Anna Paquin): Spends most of the first episode in fairyland with her grandfather but when she returns to Bon Temps, her attempts of not getting involved in vamp politics and Bill/Eric goes awry.

Tara Thornton (Rutina Wesley): She left Bon Temps last season as well and now's she back with a new friend and a new job. She also gets involved in the witches plot this season.

Jessica Hamby (Deborah Ann Woll): Jessica and Hoyt are still dating but it's rumoured not for long, especially considering that Tommy's still present on the series. And there's the issues with Jessica's bloodlust.
Pamela Swinford de Beaufort (Kristin Baure van Staten): Eric's right hand woman is going to have to deal with a lot more shit this year when her maker is put under a witch's spell.

Arlene Fowler (Carrie Preston): She's got a baby on the way but is it as evil as she fears? Only time will tell.
Nan Flanagan (Jessica Tuck): The spokeswoman for vampire rights is doing her damndest to clean up the PR mess Russell Edgington left last year and she's also got a bone or two to pick with Bill.
Marnie Stonebrook/Hallow (Fiona Shaw): Formerly a z-list palm reader, the spirit of a dangerous witch is about to make Marnie the most dangerous woman in Bone Temps, especially when Eric comes into her sight.

Luna Garza (Janina Gavanker): A shapeshifter who becomes a love interest for Sam but is there more to her than meets the eye?

Holly Cleary (Lauren Bowles): Arlene's friend and Wiccan, but Holly is also one of several characters this season will be involved with the Marnie/Hallow storyline.