Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Captain Tightpants, space cowboy

Just because everyone needs to see this, although the only people who will get it are the aforementioned upthread Firefly fans...

It gets even better in that when Castle and Beckett find a stabbing victim in the graveyard who thinks he's a vampire, Buffy totally gets a shout-out (Fillion was on that as well).

Whedonverse forever!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Firefly fan alert!!!: Another reason to love Nathan Fillion and Castle

Malcolm Reynolds!

If you are any kind of self-respecting fan of the dearly departed Joss Whedon show Firefly (and I'm sure there are dozens of us! Dozens!!), you must absolutely check out the first minute of this week's episode of Castle. It made me laugh out loud and warmed my heart. And if that doesn't make you want to at least check out this show, I don't know what will. It's no Firefly. But it sure is fun.

Space cowboy! :)

Monday, October 26, 2009

Favorite gimmick of this television season so far...

...the codas on Community episodes featuring characters Abed and Troy. Abed is by far my favorite character on this show, but the little quasi-bromance moments found in the coda are sometimes stupid, sometimes weird, but always funny.

And my absolute favorite so far...

The gypsy and the hobo

I didn't get to watch last night's episode of Mad Men until tonight, but this episode solidified my love for this show. The scene between Jon Hamm and January Jones when Betty confronts Don was the most powerful and moving television I've seen in years and quite possibly ever. I was literally moved to tears. It was devastating to see Don Draper's entire facade stripped away. I couldn't help but feel pride at how grown-up Betty was about her discoveries - rightfully outraged but also willing to not only listen but to hear Don. And I never realized how claustrophobic this show can make me feel (which I'm sure is it's intention with many of the scenes and characters) till I realized how free I felt as Don and Betty had their first honest conversation. Ever. A weight has been lifted. And for the first time ever also, seeing Don and Betty as much as equals as they've ever been. I can't even describe it. You have to watch it. It was a gamechanging conversation between these characters and a gamechanging moment for the series, I think. How wonderfully written and well acted that scene was, and representative of this show when it's on top of its game.

Anyway, two episodes left. If you aren't already on the Mad Men train, you really need to hop on. There's always plenty of room.

Oh, and ps, congrats to Elisabeth Moss, who plays Peggy, who got married to SNL's Fred Armisen this weekend (they met when Jon Hamm hosted SNL and she and John Slattery cute is that??)

Ricky Gervais will host the Golden Globes - From Inside the Box - Zap2it

Ricky Gervais will host the Golden Globes - From Inside the Box - Zap2it

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This news is interesting, as the first time I ever heard about "The Office" and realized it might be a somewhat good show was when it won best tv comedy at the Globes in 2004.

Since I've realized how boated, boring, self-aggrandizing, and annoying television award shows are, I've stopped watching and even really caring. The Emmys were the first award show I've watched in forever, and why was that? Because Neil Patrick Harris was the host. I think the award show people have smartened up and realized that viewers may be willing to forgive the actual inaneness of said show if there is a host who is genuinely entertaining, because guess what? Entertaining makes for good tv.

Ricky Gervais is one of those people who should always be on the hosting short list and I'm glad to see he's finally been tapped. I will even go out on a limb and say that I will definitely watch the Globes this year. Because Gervais always cracks me up. Even when he's on stage for only a few minutes, even when he's a small cog in a big wheel and kind of an afterthought, he still steals the show. Am very excited about this news.

Gervais at past award shows:
60th Primetime Emmys 2008

61st Primetime Emmys 2009

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Top Chef Final Four

We haven't even gotten to Restaurant Wars yet (which, btw, is next week...can't wait!!) but just to reiterate, as if I don't talk about it enough and who I think will make it to the end, if you watched last night's Top Chef, I'm calling the top four - the brothers Voltaggio, Kevin, and Jennifer - , barring any major, super missteps, as this season's Final Four. Even without his win in the first EC (more often than not, whoever wins the first elimination challenge wins the whole thing), Kevin has been beyond solid enough that I'm calling for him to win the whole thing - deservedly so, and like Stephanie from 2 seasons ago, seemingly so nice that you don't begrudge him the win...still, in my heart, I'm still rooting for and captain of Team Voltaggio... :)

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Just to get in my Team Voltaggio reference this week...

...on Top Chef last night when Michael was in the bottom and Bryan was obviously worried about him, so much so that he got snippy with Kevin, who appears to be one of the nicest guys on the planet, it just made me love the Volts even more...

Friday, October 2, 2009

Show, don't tell!!

Ok, my editor at my real job is always telling me that. So, if that's a must for a written medium, it must certainly be even more of a must (how that's possible, I don't know) in a visual medium like television.

This is my major gripe with Parks and Recreation this season. It's a funny enough show. It's getting better as it goes along and while it's funny enough, I don't think it's hit its stride yet. Anyway, last season the character Ann was dating the character Andy, and Amy Poehler's co-worker crush, Mark, was a bit of a ladies man cad but with a sweet side, and they briefly, very briefly in the last two or three episodes hinted at a possible romantic entanglement between Mark and Ann. It was intriguing. It's a cliche but I like the whole bad-boy-reforms-for-the-right-girl storyline. Yes, sometimes I'm that easy. But the best part was that Ann, though she broke up with Andy, totally rebuffed Mark. Bad boy's gotta earn that right girl, love.

Ok, so this season starts and suddenly, in the very first episode, Mark asks Ann on a date and Ann says yes. Without even so much as hemming or hawing. And these are the exact words out of her mouth:

"Mark was brought to my hospital the night of the accident. He was here for a week. I think when his head hit the ground it must have knocked something loose because he's actually a pretty nice guy now."

In the very next scene, Mark asks Ann out, and she says no. Not because he's a cad, but because he's sorta her best friend's ex. She so wants to say yes.

When I watched that, I wanted to reach into the television and shake Rashida Jones, vicariously shaking the writers. Don't just tell me that Mark is now a nice guy. *Show* me he's a nice guy. It's difficult but definitely not impossible to show when I'm writing a news story, but when you're using a visual medium, *showing* is your main form of communication. How hard would it have been to show me Mark acting like a decent human being worthy of consideration for a date by Ann. But no, Ann says he's nice, so now he's nice. And the writers use a fall into a pit as a deus ex machina to completely rewrite Mark's character and make him both lame and boring.

Anyway, rant over. Amy Poehler's character of Leslie is smarter this season, which is a pleasant change. Chris Pratt, forever my crush Bright from Everwood, is now a series regular. Ron, the parks and recreation boss who hates government, hasn't changed and that's a plus. They've found better use of the character April. And I'm loving Louis CK's police officer Dave as Leslie's awkward yet earnest love interest.

Back to rant momentarily: Trust in your viewers' intelligence. We don't have to be spoon fed information to understand a change in character/story. End rant.

Parks and Recreation is on NBC on Thursdays.

Keeping it in the family...

This is Steve McQueen. He's from movies, not tv, and he died when I was very little, but I've had a crush on him ever since I saw him in The Great Escape. Good-looking, rugged, brave, and a rebel to boot.

Now, this is Steven R. McQueen.

He was just a kid when he played Efrem's prodigy piano student on Everwood, but he's 21 now and playing troubled stoner Jeremy Gilbert on The Vampire Diaries. If you think there's a resemblance in the way they look, you're right. There's a reason they have the same name (well, not the exact same name, since Steve's real first name was Terence, but close enough) - Steven is Steve's grandson. And I have a huge crush on them both. Maybe it's a little twisted. Or maybe it's incredibly sweet, tying together the generations. Maybe a little bit of both? Either way, if you've never watched The Great Escape, rent it. And if you don't watch The Vampire Diaries, you may want to check out Everwood. It could be incredibly cloying at times, but mostly this show about a father and son learning to be father and son and even friends would make me cry. Check it out.

Go now. Go!