This week I’ll begin with a TV alert for tonight: Firefly returns, sort of. Unfortunately it is only in reruns on the Science Channel, which starts airing the old episodes which were remastered in high definition at 8:00 tonight. Future episodes following tonight’s rerun of the pilot will be at 10:00. The network will be including science features which are tied into the show.
If Castle had its series finale tomorrow and Fox said to you and Joss: “We screwed up, let’s try doing Firefly again.” Would you do it?
Yes. Yes. I would examine very closely Fox’s reasoning — I’m a little gun-shy. If I got $300 million from the California Lottery, the first thing I would do is buy the rights to Firefly, make it on my own, and distribute it on the Internet.
There’s even been activity by fans to raise the money, but it will take far more than this to get the old cast, not to mention Joss Whedon, together to make this happen.
Fans of No Ordinary Family are hoping this show doesn’t die like Firefox and are organizing a campaign to try to save the show. The Cape has already been canceled and NBC isn’t even going to broadcast the last remaining episode. They are planning to stream it on line sometime this month. The Event returns this Monday, with commercials for the episode giving away more than we have learned so far by watching the series. It appears they are finally getting to a storyline which Fringe has already began developing.
Many shows are fortunate to be returning, and rare shows have even been renewed for more than one season. CBS recently renewed Big Bang Theory for three seasons. They have now renewed How I Met Your Mother for two more years, giving more time for Ted’s quest to meet his wife more time to play out.
True Blood, like many cable shows, doesn’t have the same worries about being discontinued before having a chance to develop an audience. There are now reports that Eric will lose his memory for much of the season. Anna Paquin is also saying there might be a romance between Sookie and Eric extending beyond the previous dream scenes. There’s no word on whether this is while Eric has lost his memory or at some other time.
This week’s Fringe was not one of the greatest episodes in the show’s history but it did move the story forwards slightly. We saw signs that the problems faced by the alternate universe are beginning on this side and the relationship between Peter and Olivia move forwards. The episode also served to demonstrate that the conflict between the two universes is not one of good versus evil but each side taking the steps felt necessary to protect itself.
The story probably did work best with Mr. and Mrs. Merchant letting go, realizing they were seeing alternate versions of their spouses and not their actual dead spouses, so that the rift would close. It might have been more interesting, however, if they could have had one cross over to the other side. While neither would really be united with their dead spouse, having the version from the alternate universe would have been the next best thing. Could they have continued their former relationships in this manner, somewhat analogous to Peter unknowingly having a relationship with Fauxlivia instead of Olivia?
Apparently Peter was always intended to become involved with our Olivia, with next week’s episode showing them together as children.
Spoiler TV has more from a conference call with Fringe executive producers Jeff Pinkner and J.H. Wyman:
When it comes to Olivia and Peter:
Things “will get worse and better,” said Pinkner. “Since Olivia returned and their relationship sort of shattered, they’ve been trying to pick up the pieces. They’ve been getting closer and they will continue to, but the problems that they’re dealing with are going to continue to complicate … We’re throwing a whole bunch of things at them.” That includes last week’s revelation that Faulivia (aka Bolivia or the alternate Olivia) is pregnant with Peter’s child.
“We’re always trying to get deeper, more complex emotions because we find that’s a really rich area for us to investigate in,” said Wyman. “There are so many facets to a real relationship, and these are incredible circumstances that they’re going through. But we try and make it as deep as we can. So you’ll see a whole bunch of shifting still to come in the entire rest of the season.”
As far as Peter’s shape-shifter killing ways:
Peter’s been killing shape-shifters and keeping it a secret from Olivia and the Fringe team. But “there’s a reason,” said Wyman.
And “Peter will come clean soon enough,” added Pinkner.
Peter has been more concerned about what the shape-shifters are up to “than anybody else on our show. There’s a drawing of him standing inside that machine. So he’s got questions, and by nature he’s a character who for years has only relied on himself,” he said.
“This season was always going to be a season about self-actualization for a lot of the characters. So this is the beginning of those steps,” said Wyman.
There’s still two of almost everything:
“We get to do two shows about one show. So that turned into a great thing,” said Wyman. And that allowed them to explore things like the murder of alternate Broyles “and having our Broyle actually stand next to his own dead body.”
“I think we knew how much there was to discover with Walternate and Bolivia and how much those two characters would provide a counterpoint and shed light on their alter egos that we’ve known for going on three seasons now.” said Pinkner. “I think one of the things that’s been really fun for us [was] the dynamic between Lincoln and Charlie and Bolivia and the energy of the stories on the other side. It feels like a different version of our show that just has a different inherent rhythm and different inherent chemistries in those characters, and that’s been really joyful for us.”
And speaking of the joy of the Other Side:
“What we discovered was that the energy of Lincoln and Charlie and Bolivia made up for the lack of Walter,” said Pinkner. “Obviously Walternate’s John Noble was in the episodes, but energetically and rhythmically it made up for missing Walter, so rather than recognizing or discovering that, it became a creative challenge. The discovery for us that was really wonderful was that it was a joy to go to the other side, and it was really a joy to explore another version of our show with cases that affected everything happening on our side with characters that we, as writers, had come to love.”
While Pinkner admits that fans started out “inclined to hate Bolivia, slowly over time they’ve started to … whether or not people want Peter to be with Olivia or Bolivia is a separate issue. But at least as far as we can tell, people are finding the relationship between the characters on the other side and the stories we’re telling on the other side charming and also really intriguing. It’s just deepening everything that’s happening over here. So rather than a challenge, we actually found it to be a really great creative outlet.”
Extinct sheep, myth-a-lones and the dangerously out of control Over There:
“The other side gives us an opportunity to do some pretty wild things, as you can imagine, because things are dangerously out of control there,” said Wyman. “So we’re fascinated enough with the notion that things we take for granted, like sheep for example, don’t exist over there because they were killed out by this beetle.”
Pinkner and Wyman continue to embrace what they call myth-a-lones, “where you’re watching the freak of the week type of concept, but it’s connected to our mythology. You’re going to see a lot of things … taking things and tropes that we know in our world and sort of turning them on their head,” said Wyman.
When it comes to Sam Weiss:
The mysterious bowling dude who has helped both Nina Sharp and Olivia, could be a good guy or a bad one. According to Wyman, “You know, don’t trust that Weiss.”
“If anybody unfurled the anagram that was on the chalkboard in Walter’s lab on the other side, it said, ‘Don’t trust Sam Weiss,’” said Pinkner.
“Sam is a character that I feel safe in saying that he still has many, many, many, many layers to reveal, and his motivations will become clearer and you’ll get a better understanding. I’m saying that we’re not going to keep pushing it down the line and not answering it, because that frustrates everyone. You’re going to find out about him. Hopefully it will be something that you don’t see coming,” said Wyman.
If you’ve been paying attention, things will fit together:
“If you go back into season one and you see the bus … There was a pattern episode that the bus had amber on it. I don’t know if you remember that, but the truth is the people here didn’t really know what amber was. They really didn’t understand what it was, but we knew,” said Wyman.
“So it’s like you can really set things up and they can pay off in really great ways. I think there’s a lot of that stuff coming up that will demonstrate the forethought, and the keen viewer will be able to say, ‘Oh, my gosh. Oh, I remember that.’ Now that’s taken on a whole different meaning. The only way that we can do that is if we know where we’re going.”
“The truth is we’ve been setting up season four in brush strokes very early on in season two, and we’ve been setting up what we imagine, with luck and grace and hoping we stay on the air this far, we’ve been sort of setting up season five since season one. It’s just a matter of whether we have the good fortune of getting to tell these stories,” said Pinkner.
“We need more time, and we’re trying to tell thematic stories,” said Wyman. “The multiple levels that we like takes time. I’m sure that we fall short of our goals all the time, but there’s enough fear every week, and like okay, what story are we going to tell this week … We have kind of a blue print.”
Joshua Jackson (Peter Bishop) has also discussed the show recently, including his thoughts on the First People.
While the major quest on How I Met Your Mother is Ted’s prolonged personal journey before meeting his eventual wife, there is also Barney’s quest to find his father. Imagine the shock when it turns out to be the Trinity killer. Well, not really, but Barney’s father, Jerome Whitaker, will be played by John Lithgow in two episodes. This is Lithgow’s first television role since playing Trinity on Dexter. HIMYM co-creator Carter Bays joked that there are some similarities between Jerome and Trinity:
“[Jerome] is [also] a family man who lives in the suburbs [but] he’s not going to be naked in the bathtub strangling someone,” he quipped.
Toy Story 3 wasn’t the end of the toys. Pixar is going to release at least two shorts with the Toy Story characters, with the storyline of only one of them having been released:
The short that will be shown in front of ‘Cars 2′ will focus on the characters of Barbie and Ken after their exploits in ‘Toy Story 3′. After being left behind for their Hawaii vacation, Buzz Lightyear and Woody attempt to recreate a Hawaii paradise to please the disappointed Barbie and Ken.
Adrianne Palicki, Tyra Collette on Friday Night Lights has been signed to play Wonder Woman in a remake which NBC finally picked up after all the networks had rejected it. I’m sure Tim Riggins and Landry Clarke agree in considering her a Wonder Woman. There are also rumors that Oliva Wilde will play Laura Croft in a movie remake.
I’ve had a number of posts with pictures of actresses in the old Princess Leia Slave Girl costume. The video above, Nerding Out – Tonight I’m Frakking You, features Alessandra Torresani of Caprica in the outfit along with multiple other science fiction references.
Previous pictures here (Kelly Brook) and here (Kristen Bell & Olivia Munn), with a picture of the original is here. Interviews with the stars of Tonight I’m Frakking You in the video below:
On Fringe, Olivia expressed the belief that she had difficulty competing with Fauxlivia due to being less fun after having been experimented upon as a child. While Fauxlivia definitely is the hotter of Anna Torv’s characters, Olivia needs to understand that the real problem is that she has been pushing Peter away. I had even been rooting at times for Peter to get back with Fauxlivia, until we learned in this week’s episode that possibly only one universe will survive and it will be the one with the version of Oliva which Peter chooses. Actually I suspect the show will end up with both universes surviving, but it now does sound far too risky to root for Fauxlivia, regardless of how much hotter she is than Olivia.
A major component of the episode involved an excuse to bring in someone who could read minds so that they could read Peter’s thoughts. This led to the scene in the picture above where Olivia read that Peter still had feelings for Fauxlivia. The mind reader might have been more helpful if he also pointed out that Peter clearly also has feelings for Olivia.
Strange that Fringe, which is probably the top American science fiction show now on the air, has essentially turned into a gigantic love triangle.
In an interview with Jimmy Fallon, Samuel L. Jackson revealed that there would be a female side kick for Nick Fury in the upcoming Joss Whedon Avengers movie. The latest rumor is that Cobie Smulders of How I Met Your Mother is the front runner for the role of SHIELD Agent Maria Hill.
Olivia Wilde is rumored to be in consideration to play Lois Lane in the Superman reboot.
Christopher Nolan and Aaron Sorkin won major awards last night at the Writers Guild Awards. Christopher Nolan won for best original screenplay with Inception and Aaron Sorkin won for best adapted screenplay with The Social Network.
Sorkin is currently working on a pilot for HBO which goes behind the scenes of a cable news show. Sorkin has shown interest in this type of show in Sports Night and Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip. Going to a cable news show would allow him to include the type of politically-oriented stories he wrote for The West Wing which didn’t work as well when mixed into Studio 60.
Although it is far from certain that V will return next season, the season will reportedly end on a cliffhanger. This could turn out to be like the original series, which ended on a cliffhanger. By that time the series had gotten so bad that nobody really cared. The Cape also appears in trouble of not coming back, being reduced to only ten episodes. The return of The Event is being postponed until after The Cape concludes its brief run.
Ironically, this occurred the same week on which Jim Parsons, whose show The Big Bang Theory is on opposite Community, admitted in an interview with Craig Ferguson that he doesn’t watch Doctor Who (video above).
Last week I had a video of kids and Daleks. It appears that Steven Moffat is looking into this trend.
Here’s a must buy item. The Doctor Who Site reports that this Tardis mug is available for pre-order. For unexplained reasons it is available in the United States and Australia but not the U.K.
The Event had its premier episode this week and was widely compared to Lost. The unfavorable nature of some of the comparisons is a little unfair as Lost had two hours to set up the situation in its pilot episode. Lost also started out more modestly, appearing to be a show about survivors of a plane crash. We gradually learned how far more complicated the show’s mythology would be.
On The Event we quickly find that things are very complicated–and the conspiracy is far more elaborate than that on AMC’s more cerebral conspiracy show, Rubicon. It appears that a group is being held in a number of prisons for knowing a secret which most of the show’s characters seem to know about but the viewer does not. A new president threatens to reveal the information to the public and set the prisoners free, leading to a possible assassination attempt. The narrative is confused by constantly jumping around in time making Lost’s use of two time periods in many episodes seem easy to follow by comparison.
The other big event of the episode involved Sean Walker going on a cruise with his girl friend, who disappeared without any sign that the two were ever passengers. (It shows that when traveling with one’s girl friend it is unsafe to go scuba diving with an even hotter girl.) This is interspersed with scenes of Sean trying to get into the cabin of a plane being piloted by the girl friend’s father, who we are led to believe is being forced to fly the plane into a presidential compound in Florida because of having his two daughter’s kidnapped. It also appears his wife was killed, but the scene left open the possibility she survived. We also don’t know for certain that Sean’s girl friend was really taken against her will. She might even be in on the conspiracy for all we know.
All the jumping around in time was to build up to the conclusion where the plane disappeared from the sky, setting up a big mystery which will hopefully be answered this week. Theories being discussed include alien technology and jumping to another dimension. If we are really dealing with another dimension, this even leaves open the possibility that Sean somehow was moved to an almost identical cruise ship in another dimension where he was never a passenger traveling with his girl friend.
If this is a matter of two alternative earths it would risk being too much like Fringe, which returned on Thursday. Last season ended with a great cliff-hanger as Olivia was imprisoned on the alternative earth while their Olivia had infiltrated the Fringe squad. Word had leaked over the summer that Olivia would escape during the first episode, but they had a great twist in having the alternative Olivia’s memories be implanted into Olivia.
Besides the return of Fringe, Thursday demonstrated why DVR’s are necessary. CBS decided to take on NBC’s comedy line up by putting Big Bang Theory and William Shatner’s new show, $#*! My Dad Says (based upon this Twitter feed) on Thursday. Besides this battle of two of the best comedies on television at 8:00, ABC’s drama My Generation also looks like it is worth watching.
While both shows are worth watching regularly, this week Big Bang Theory started the season with a better episode than Community. Big Bang Theory had two strong plot lines. Sheldon, played by Emmy Award winner Jim Parsons, had his first date with Amy, played by Mayim Bialic, with Penny along to drive and try to stimulate conversation. Sheldon even managed to work in an attack on community college degrees. I wonder if this was a shot meant for the new competition. Meanwhile Wolowitz brought home a robotic arm being developed for NASA and wound up using it in a way Christine O’Donnell would not approve of.
I thought the season premiere of Community was below the quality of many of last season’s episodes because of trying to do too much in one episode. Betty White was fantastic, but her use was limited by trying to resolve last season’s cliff hanger far too quickly. The responses by Jeff and Britta to the situation could easily have been spread out over a few episodes rather than trying to reset the show in the first episode.
If Jeff wasn’t going to wind up with Britta or Professor Slater, there’s that matter of the kiss with Annie at the end of the episode–along with the obvious chemistry between them earlier in the season. Jeff acts as if Annie is a child and the episode suggests their relationship isn’t going anywhere. Annie is played by Alison Brie (who also plays Trudy Campbell on Mad Men) and as can be seen in the picture of her above is clearly no child. I bet that we see more of Jeff and Annie this season.
Chang, now a student instead of Spanish teacher, looked like Golum with his thoughts of revenge against the study group. It was an amusing scene but again it felt like too much was being thrown into one episode. It would probably work better if there were only occasional episodes devoted to Chang but the manner in which network sit-coms are done means that a regular character will be used pretty much every week.
Having moved on to sit-coms, I can’t help but note what we learned on How I Met Your Mother. After going out with Ted, Cindy (Rachel Bilson) has given up on men and wound up kissing the girl who we were led to believe just might turn out to be Ted’s future wife (played by Kaylee Defer). With Cindy no longer mad at him, the chances might be better for Ted to meet her room mate, but we learn that he is fated to meet her while best man at a wedding. (Could it be Barney’s?)
If The Event does turn out to involve contact with extraterrestrials, as some theorize, readers should be relieved to know that the United Nations is prepared should such an event actually occur:
The United Nations was set today to appoint an obscure Malaysian astrophysicist to act as Earth’s first contact for any aliens that may come visiting.
She is scheduled to tell delegates that the recent discovery of hundreds of planets around other stars has made the detection of extraterrestrial life more likely than ever before – and that means the UN must be ready to coordinate humanity’s response to any “first contact”.
Mazlan Othman, the head of the UN’s little-known Office for Outer Space Affairs (Unoosa), is to describe her potential new role next week at a scientific conference at the Royal Society’s Kavli conference centre in Buckinghamshire.
But what if the aliens demand to be taken to our leader? (Or maybe they did come and request this following the 2000 election and left in confusion).
There’s major changes this season for three TV dads: Dexter Morgan, Donald Draper, and Ted Mosby. Some hints as to how Rita’s murder has affected Dexter can be seen in the trailer above which was first released at San Diego Comic Con. Warning, the trailer and this post contain spoilers.
The upcoming season takes place immediately after the events of the last season. Rita’s murder is bound to affect how Dexter takes action against other murderers and there are reports that Julie Benz will be appearing next season. I don’t know if this will be in flash backs, scenes of a dead Rita talking with Dexter as Dexter speaks with his dead father, or if she will be used in some other way.
There are reports that there will not be a new romantic interest for Dexter so soon after Rita’s death. There will also not be a single major villain for Dexter to cope with and instead there will be a number of story lines. Nobody could compete with John Lithgow’s portrayal of Trinity, and it might be best to not even try to compete with that this soon.
As can be seen in the trailer, Quinn is suspicious of Dexter, and he gets Deb to look at him differently. In the books Deb found out about Dexter’s secret hobby. Dexter seems to confess to Rita’s murder in the trailer, but from the rest of the information available this is clearly misleading. Rumor also has it that the police have another suspect in mind–Kyle Butler!
The new season of Mad Men has already begun (full episode on line here), and the story has jumped ahead one year after Don has both lost Betty and is involved in starting up a new advertising company. Personally Don is doing far worse than I’d have predicted. Instead of having lots of girl friends a year later, he is resorting to hiring a prostitute. Perhaps Don is capable of easily getting involved in purely sexual affairs while married, but is having difficulty getting involved in a true relationship now that he is single. It probably has not helped Don’s ego that he lost Betty after she found out about his unimpressive background.
In some ways the prostitute seemed more normal than Don as she spoke of having to leave early to spend Thanksgiving with her family. Even stranger, Don was paying her to hit him. Maybe he’d be happier with Madeline Zima’s character on Californication who is into such things.
Instead of renting a fancy bachelor pad in midtown, Don has moved to an apartment Greenwich Village which does not appear to be of the quality that would be expected from a successful advertising executive. Perhaps it is where Don thinks that Dick Whitman belongs. Professionally Don seemed down at the start but has made a come back by the end of the episode, as seen with the differences between his two interviews.
Ted Mosley will be moving towards the eventual conclusion of series on How I Met Your Mother. Rachel Bilson, who we know is the room mate of the eventual mother of Ted’s children, will be returning but I suspect we will not actually see the room mate until a later date. We should be moving towards finding out her eventual identity, and reportedly next season puts an end to the game of having every female Ted meets be a suspect for his eventual wife.
Things might also not be entirely over for Ted and Robin. I even wonder at times if they are playing an elaborate game with the viewers. The first episode was written to give the impression that Robin was Ted’s eventual wife, but the episode concluded with Ted telling his children that it was the story of how he met “Aunt Robin.” Since then to recurring question is whether every girl he meets is the actual one with Robin supposedly not being fated to be Ted’s wife.
Ted did date Robin for a while and the two eventually broke up. I’ve wondered, however, if Robin doesn’t eventually become Ted’s wife in that future we’ve seen very limited scenes of. There are several ways, such as death or divorce, in which Ted could have been married to someone else, have the children, and still wind up married to Robin at the time Ted is talking to his kids. An even more bizarre situation would be if Robin is the mother but some reason is developed to have them claim that someone else is the mother.
A recurring story line will involve having Ted working on a project involving the Goliath National Bank building. A new character will be opposing the development. Is there any doubt that if a new female character is brought in to be Ted’s new nemesis he will also try to date her?
In other developments during the season, Barney meets his father–and it is not Bob Barker. Marshall and Lily proceed with plans to have a child, but there will be complications along the way.
Looking for your very own Dalek? A selection of items from Doctor Who will be auctioned off on February 24. Items will include two Daleks, several Cybermen, a sea devil, and a dinner suit worn by David Tennant.
Season five of Doctor Who will premiere on April 3 on the BBC. It is unclear whether it will premiere on BBC America for days or weeks after. If they are smart they will not have much of a delay or a tremendous percentage of fans will find ways to obtain downloads of the BBC episodes. Blogator Who has a trailer for the season.
Wil Wheaton announced via Twitter that he will reprise his role as Evil Wil on Big Bang Theory, with more information now posted on his blog:
Geeks everywhere will be happy hear that Star Trek star Wil Wheaton will be returning to hang out with TV’s hippest nerds on The Big Bang Theory.
“We were very excited when Wil Wheaton appeared as Sheldon’s nemesis, and right now we’re looking to see if he can come back to give Sheldon an opportunity to settle the score,” Executive Producer and Co Creator Bill Prady announced to TV Guide Magazine when the Academy of Televisions Arts and Sciences hosted an Evening With the Big Bang Theory on February 18th. “Fingers crossed that we can do that, I think an arch enemy is someone who appears from time to time.”
Even though my personal motto is Don’t Be A Dick, I’ve wanted to play an arch enemy for pretty much my entire career, and I love that Bill described me that way, because I was kind of hoping I’d earn that position in the Big Bang canon.
I’ve known this was a possibility for just over a week, (coincidentally, I found out the day after I did my Big Bang Theory Q&A post) but didn’t get the official offer until this morning.
They will begin work on February 24 and will tape the episode on March 2. Wheaton won’t say what the episode is about but promises that it will be “a lot more awesome than just eating Chapstick.” Bazinga!
This week had new episodes of Lost and Caprica. Lost was much better than last week’s episode and either misled us or gave clues as to why everyone is on the island. On Caprica my impression of Amanda Graystone has improved considerably from earlier episodes. Fortunately for her, Joseph Adama also changed his mind about her. I also loved Zoe’s robot dance.
Seth McFarlane had a great impression of William Shatner’s Captain James T. Kirk on Real Time with Bill Maher on Friday Night as they compared events in the Star Trek episode A Taste of Armageddon to the Senate filibuster. In other Star Trek news, Leonard Nimoy will reprise his role as William Bell in the season finale of Fringe.
Jennifer Lopez will appear on How I Met Your Mother on March 8. Above is a picture of her seducing Barney.
CBS on Monday night has been surpassing the once must-see TV of NBC on Thursday nights the last couple of years, with the addition of The Big Bang Theory placing CBS well ahead. Who would have thought that a show full about jokes about science fiction, comic books, and physics would attract such a mass audience? Of course I would have loved the premise even if it wasn’t such a success.
The nerds on The Big Bang Theory returned from their summer at the North Pole in the season opener last night leading to a milestone for nerds going after girls who are out of their league. Leonard went to tell Penny that they were home leading to a series of scenes such as the above. This was probably the greatest moment for nerds since Jeremy (Joshua Malina) succeeded in dating Natalie (Sabrina Lloyd) on Sports Night. In one of many excellent lines in the episode, Walowitz expressed regret over not going over first. This set up the response from Raj:
Wolowitz: “Damn it, I should have gone over and told her we were back.”
Raj: “Yeah, it was ‘first come, first served.’”
The episode had many great scenes. Some were based upon regular jokes of the show such as Sheldon returning to his beloved side of the couch, a reference back to Soft Kitty, and somehow the manner in which he knocks on Penny’s door manages to remain funny every time he does it.
The trip to the North Pole was a scientific failure but, primarily motivated by self preservation, Leonard, Wolowitz, and Raj provided Sheldon with some fake data. (I won’t even get into what happened the night the heat went out and they slept together in the nude.) After feeling humiliated by finding out he was tricked after telling everyone about the inevitability of winning the Nobel Prize, Sheldon returned home to his mother in Texas. Leonard was reluctant to go after him because he wanted to get into bed with Penny and Wolowitz had his own argument against going:
Leonard: I don’t want to go to Texas
Wolowitz: Alright and I do? My people already crossed the desert once. We’re done
Not that I’ve ever needed an excuse to include a post about shows such as The Big Bang Theory, but the events in Texas do fit in well with the usual topics of this blog. In Texas we saw Sheldon’s response to prayer and when the other guys arrived to try to take him home, Sheldon said he planned to stay in Texas to “teach evolution to creationists.”
As seen in the above clip, Sheldon’s mother responded to this by saying, “You watch your mouth Sheldon. Everyone’s entitled to their opinion.” Sheldon explained, “Evolution isn’t an opinion. It’s fact.” His mother responded, “And that is your opinion.” Sheldon then saw the folly of remaining in Texas and agreed to return home–which his mother saw as proof that prayer does work.
Returning home, there is no longer anything keeping Leonard and Penny from going to bed but afterward they both felt weird. I suspect that the writers felt the need to resolve this matter from last season by having them hook up but realized that having them remain together would not feel right for this show. If this is the case, rather than having them feel weird about friends sleeping together I would have preferred to have one, if not both, realize in a subsequent episode that they really do not have anything in common. Of course this might still be coming.
I didn’t make it beyond CBS last night. I’ll definitely watch Heroes tonight, but I doubt if I’ll watch House. The same formula has been repeated too many times on that show to keep my interest. I’m sure others are thinking the same applies to Heroes, but I do tend to be harder on medical shows. (Gray’s Anatomy didn’t last a single episode in my house).
How I Met Your Mother was good but not at its greatest last night. Do people really sit down and define their relationship as opposed to winging it and seeing where it goes? It was rather contrived to find that Ted was in the wrong class room without finding out for several minutes but this does alter the knowledge that the eventual mother was in the class room. Rather than being one of his students she can now be virtually anyone on campus. There were some new Barnyisms as we learned how the same rules apply to girls as apply to Gremlins, and the Indiana Jones stuff was, well, legendary.
I’ll give Accidentally On Purpose another chance due to staring Jenna Elfman but the pilot was a disappointment, having already seen the much funnier Knocked Up. The set up of having Zach getting Elfman’s character pregnant and then wind up living with her in a platonic relationship felt unrealistic but it will be more important to see what they do with the situation that has been established.
The second season of True Blood is approaching its finale. Help is needed to defeat Maryann and they turn to the Vampire Queen of Louisiana. Reportedly this means more hot vampire sex–in this case between Queen Sophie and Sookie’s cousin, Hadley Hale (Lindsey Haun). Ausiello has additional spoilers about the season finale.
True Blood has been a success due to excellent writing, interesting characters, a compelling plot, and a lot of nude scenes with Anna Paquin. She discussed this in an interview with Nylon:
Anna Paquin, on her Nude Scenes:
“I don’t think a naked body is particularly shocking or interesting… It’s not the culture I was raised in. I was not brought up in the United States. I don’t share the [attitude] that you can have graphic violence, but – God forbid – you see someone’s nipples.”
On Going Blonde for Sookie:
“I don’t look like a Barbie doll, and probably never will. People are incredibly literal in how they view you. You have dark hair and pale skin? You must be brooding. The second you dye your hair blonde and get a spray tan, people treat you as if you’re a bit stupider and happier. Suddenly, it’s like you’re hot and sexy.”
On TV Acting:
“It never occurred to me that one form of acting was better than another. I think if you approach your career like that you’re limiting yourself to a very boring path. For me, it’s about the material.”
Epilogue: Stephen Moyer, on Vampire Sex:
“The thing about vampirism is that it taps into a female point of view – you have an old-fashioned gentleman with manners who is a fucking killer… it’s an interesting duality, because in our present society it would be an odd thing for a woman to say, ‘I want my man to be physical with me.’ How, as a modern man, can you fucking work that? It’s one thing to be polite and gentle… But when do you know it’s OK to crawl out of the mud and rape her [as Bill does in one scene]?… It’s difficult stuff for a bloke, but a vampire gets away with it…. I think that’s the attraction of the show – it’s looking back at a romantic time when men were men, but they were still charming.”
Liz Lemon doesn’t do any nude scenes on 30 Rock, but she has frequently brought science fiction into the show. Io9 has put together a clip with the scifi scenes from the show. The post also includes scifi clips from other television shows including Veronica Mars, The Big Bang Theory, The Office and How I Met Your Mother.
BoingBoing interviewed David Tennant and Russel T. Davies following the filming of their last episode of Doctor Who together–video above.
Stills are being released from the second season of Dollhouse, with an example above. As expected, now that Summer Glau is available, she will have a recurring role in the show, along with a couple of actors from Battlestar Galactica. From the press release:
Summer Glau (“Firefly,” “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles”) reunites with Joss Whedon when the actress joins the cast of DOLLHOUSE this fall in a recurring role as BENNETT, a Dollhouse employee who shares a past with ECHO (Eliza Dushku). The second season of DOLLHOUSE premieres Friday, Sept. 25 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX.
Additional guest stars appearing throughout the upcoming second season include Alexis Denisof (“Angel”), Jamie Bamber (“Battlestar Galactica”), Michael Hogan (“Battlestar Galactica”) and Keith Carradine (“Dexter”). DANIEL PERRIN (Denisof) is a U.S. senator leading a witch hunt to track down the underground organization. Mysterious, charismatic businessman MARTIN KLAR (Bamber) is Echo’s new husband. BRADLEY KARRENS (Hogan) comes to the Dollhouse hoping to stop a psychotic family member’s killing spree, while MATTHEW HARDING (Carradine), a nemesis of Dollhouse leader ADELLE DEWITT (Olivia Williams), stirs up trouble. Additionally, DR. CLAIRE SAUNDERS/WHISKEY (Amy Acker) and MADELINE/NOVEMBER (Miracle Laurie) return this season in multiple-episode arcs.
Developing an American version of a British television show does not always work, such as with Coupling. The American version of Life on Mars has been far more successful. The co-creator of the BBC version told The Hollywood Reporter he approves of the American version, even if it goes in a different direction than the original:
The co-creator of the BBC’s “Life on Mars” gives high marks to the new version across the pond as being in the same gritty spirit as the British version.
“I think it’s marvelous,” said co-creator Ashley Pharoah, who was in Manhattan on Monday to pick up the show’s second International Emmy for best drama. “We’re really very proud of it.”
Pharoah said he understands that the U.S. version was likely to take a different direction than the British version. After all, “Life on Mars” went a planned 16 episodes where the ABC version could have a first season of 22 episodes and maybe more if it’s picked up.
“They’re changing the mythology, which I think is all right,” Pharoah said. “It has to be different. Otherwise everyone just goes on YouTube and sees how it ends.”
And about that ending, a decidedly downbeat conclusion required, in part, because actor John Simm, didn’t want to do more that 16 episodes. Pharoah said he has been talking to the writers of the ABC show but doesn’t know how it’ll end.
“Even we worried about that,” said Pharoah. “Some people back home didn’t like the ending, but that was the end we had in mind from the beginning.”
Writer-producer Cameron Roach also doesn’t mind the changes.
“I think it’s good that it ends in a different way,” Roach said. “It keeps the American audiences guessing.”
There is considerable speculation as to who will be revealed as the final Cylon when Battlestar Galactica returns. SyFy Portal gives a rundown of the speculation with the top five candidates. The top five candidates are rumored to be, in alphabetical order, Lee Adama, Felix Gaeta, Laura Roslin, Elen Tigh, and Cally Tyrol.
Fans of the original Doctor Who series will be interested in the archival material the BBC has posted on line here. For more modern information, The Daily Telegraph has an interview with David Tennant. The BBC has also released a synopsis of the upcoming Christmas special:
It’s Christmas Eve in 1851 and Cybermen stalk the snow of Victorian London, in this special Christmas edition of Russell T Davies’s Bafta Award-winning time-travelling drama. When the Doctor arrives and starts to investigate a spate of mysterious deaths, he’s surprised to meet another Doctor, and soon the two must combine forces to defeat the ruthless Miss Hartigan. But are two Doctors enough to stop the rise of the CyberKing?
A twelve foot float honoring Star Trek was included in the 72nd Annual Sun Bowl Parade in El Paso, Texas this Thanksgiving Day. We can expect to see a lot more of Star Trek leading up to the upcoming movie, include a series of four comics leading into the movie.
Stan Lee, creator of comics including Spiderman, The Incredible Hulk and The X-Men, was one of nine recipients of the 2008 National Medal of the Arts at a ceremony in the East Room of the White House.
Among the various shows on in the past week, there was the season finale of True Blood, Dexter learned that Miguel has not been honest with him, leading me to be even more suspicious that Dexter will wind up killing him as I discussed last week, and How I Met Your Mother presented a new technique to get a woman into bed–The Naked Man. Ted and Barney tried out various poses in the video above. At least if Ted was going to try this he only did so after he was certain he had no interest in ever seeing the woman again as in most cases this would be the most likely result.
While I doubt it would be very successful, except in cases where sex was already a sure thing, the idea was off the wall enough to make for an entertaining episode. Another highlight was Lily compiling a list of 50 Reasons to have SEX. TV Squad got a copy of the original list as written on a napkin at MacLaren’s Irish Pub. Click on the image below for a larger version.
The promo is out for the upcoming season of Lost (video above), along with lots of other reports going around. Nothing specific here, but there are reports that the upcoming season of Lost “is definitely going to be the strangest thing that’s ever been on network television. Ever.” Reportedly Locke fans will be stunned.
Bryan Fuller, former Star Trek Voyager producer and creator of Pushing Daises, wants to produce the next Star Trek television series. Just don’t make the mistakes that Voyager made. There is hope as he said, “I told my agent and told the people of J.J. Abrams team I want to create another STAR TREK series and have an idea that I’m kicking around. I would love to return to the spirit of the old series with the colors and attitude. I loved VOYAGER and DEEP SPACE NINE, but they seem to have lost the ‘60s fun and I would love to take it back to its origin.”
The BBC has issued a press release for this year’s Children in Need show on November 14. A clip will be shown with two minutes from an upcoming Christmas Special entitled The Next Doctor. My guess is that they are announcing this to create discussion about a potential change in The Doctor, but by the end David Tennant will remain in the role, at least through the planned specials through next year.
I’ve been wondering if Kristin Bell’s character would be returning to Heroes after being fired from the Company. While there are probably too many characters and subplots going on, one thing I do like about the show is that they don’t feel the need to give every character a part every week as occurs on most television shows. Watch with Kristin reports Kristin Bell is returning in tomorrow’s episode:
Kristen Bell is back next week as Elle! It seems Elle’s powers now control her, not the other way around. She’s overcome by the electrical forces within her, and when she can’t find HRG to help her, she goes with the next best thing: Claire. Yep, next week Claire and Elle try to team up against Pinehearst—but first they have to overcome the fact that they, you know, hate each other.
Ausiello quotes Edward James Olmos as saying the conclusion of Battlestar Galactica “is like a great book. You love reading it and you want to find out what happens in the story, but you also are so sad it is ending. That’s how I feel about Battlestar. It has been a great experience for me. I don’t want it to end, but I think the ending is so strong that I am happy to have fans see it. People are going to get their minds blown.”
How I Met Your Mother was written to suggest that Sarah Chalke would be the mother in last season’s final episode in case the show was not renewed, but last week’s episode shows Ted is moving on as his wedding to Stella fell apart due to the invitation of their ex’s. Last week’s episode won’t be the last we will see of Chalke, but Ausiello does say that her last episode will air November 3.
House was out to pick up their ratings with last night’s episode, Lucky Thirteen. As House described it, Penthouse Forum met medical mysteries as we learned about Thirteen’s sex life. FOX hopes that higher ratings for House will also spill over to Fringe. I think that J.J. Abrams is going to have to advance the underlying mystery on Fringe further (or resort to lesbian sex as on House) to maintain an audience for Fringe.
We might learn more about the underlying mystery on another show. The promos for next week’s episode of Life on Mars show that it will involve Sam’s mother and give more information as to why Sam is back in the 1970′s.
Billy Piper , formerly of Doctor Who and currently staring in the second season of Secret Diary of a Call Girl on the BBC, underwent an emergency c-section last Tuesday, giving birth to Winston James Fox. On Saturday Night Live’s Weekend Update last night Seth Myers announced he was working alone as Amy Poehler was busy having a baby, giving a new meaning to Live From New York and making Poehler a real Baby Mama to Archie Arnett. Poehler will be off on maternity leave but there are rumors of a guest next weekend, just prior to the election–Barack Obama.
Last night’s episode of Saturday Night Live was guest hosted by John Hamm, Don Draper of Mad Men, who did some of the rare non-political skits on SNL this year which were actually amusing. The first video shows a skit entitled Two A-Holes Go An Ad Agency In The 1960s, and includes guest appearances by Elizabeth Moss and John Slattery. The second clip shows Don Draper’s Guide to Picking Up Women:
Mad Men has been picked up for a third season on AMC. In other renewal news,Dexter, currently in its third season on Showtime, has been renewed for two additional seasons.