Category Archives: Television

Common Sense Ratings

Noticed something new on Netflix: a rating that wasn’t from the MPAA. Turns out it’s from an organization called Common Sense Media. It strives to do what Roger Ebert has been doing for years – let parents know when the MPAA got it wrong. However, it goes beyond movies into TV and video games, and goes beyond covering sex and violence into areas like consumerism. It also seems to stress – gasp – talking to your kids about how they should think about what they’re watching.

Sadly, this will probably go completely unnoticed by the parents who need it most. Like that couple complaining that the “free under 3” policy doesn’t apply to R-rated movies. Like the Exorcist. And yes, that’s a true story. We are doomed.

I love a parade–Stephanie Edwards is back!!

Sometimes, the Universe surprises me.  Karma balances out and all is well with the world.

I was pleasantly surprised on New Year’s Morning to find out that Stephanie Edwards is back as co-host of the big Pasadena Rose Brou-ha-ha.  As you may recall, she was unceremoniously dumped several years ago to the surprise of many traditionalists and to the detriment of the local KTLA parade coverage.   I covered the outrage here  and others also picked up this story.    Here she is, soldiering on under one of the few rainstorms to hit the Rose Parade (2006):

Stephanie Edwards in the rain.

But now she is back and her replacement was moved to the sidelines in an ironic turnaround that makes for gossipy good fun.  And for good measure, she returns to a higher-paying salary;  payback is a bitch.

A Lifetime Of Delusions

I’ve been hearing radio commercials for something called Flirting With Forty starring Heather Locklear. It is, unsurprisingly, a Lifetime movie. According to the commercials, Locklear plays a lonely single mom who just turned 40 (even though Locklear is 47). While on vacation, she meets a much younger guy who’s all over her. Apparently, in Lifetime movies, this is how guys in their late 20’s think:

She’s 13 years older than me AND she’s got kids? Sounds a little too good to be true. There’s gotta be a catch! But I’ll stick with her and show her complete devotion until the other shoe drops. Seriously, though, how can she be single? Her husband must’ve died hours ago…

Lifetime is the female equivalent of the Spice Channel.

And I Jizz In My Pants

I finally saw the last SNL and the highlight was the Lonely Island music video Jizz In My Pants. Not terribly safe for most corporate environments, but the funniest video since Dick In A Box. This one stars Andy Samberg and Lonely Island cohort Jorma Taccone, with cameos from Justin Timberlake, Molly Sims, and Jamie-Lynn Sigler. I guess she’s in NYC visiting Turtle.

Also worth checking out are these tips on talking to girls, offered by a 9 year old. They were startlingly accurate:

If you liked those, check out these other Lonely Island and SNL videos.

Getting old at Best Buy

I’m at Best Buy with my kids looking for a DVD for a show called “The PJ’s”. Does anyone remember this show?
I remember loving it, but not too many details because it wasn’t on for more than a few seasons.
So I ask the chick working in the DVD section, “Do you have a DVD for ‘The PJ’s’?”.
She answers with a glossy look.
“The PJ’s? On Fox? Couldn’t have been more than ten years ago???”
This is when my world comes crashing down around me as I realize that the 20-year-old standing in front of me would more easily remember her trip to the petting zoo when she was 10, than what was on prime time television a decade ago.
Dang it, “Let’s go to the computer and check inventory so at least you don’t think I’m crazy.” She types in PJ’s, but the closest thing that comes up is PJ Harvey. “No not that. Type in Eddie Murphy.”
Coming to America, Raw, Shrek no no no. What the *uck?
I leave Best Buy feeling like a crazy old fool.
At home I immediately searched the web. Yep, I’m not crazy. Ran for 40 episodes. Won Three Emmys. and…. no DVDs were produced for the series. Come again? Emmy award winning series and no DVDs are out?
Turns out there is some legal despute or some nonsense preventing a DVD release. Equally vague is the reason for a top rated series getting canceled. It ranges from Eddie Murphy clashes with Fox/WB to high production costs.
Either way I felt like returning to Best Buy with this information just to show them I’m not an idiot.
Bottom line: Have a 20-year-old train in the Nickelodeon and MTV section first, before giving her run of the entire TV DVD section. Thank god I wasn’t looking for a season of M*A*S*H. “oooh my grandpa told me about that show! Right this way, sir.”

True Blood Goes Down Easy

When I first saw the promo photos for True Blood, I figured it was CBS female spook-fest a la Ghost Whisperer and other Friday night shows I don’t watch. Sultry southern vampire stories without nudity or profanity or any reason to watch them.

I was wrong. On many counts.

First, it’s not TV, it’s HBO, who has no problems with profanity or nudity. In fact, they put boobies right in the opening title sequence.

Second, it stars Anna Paquin, who I adore. What can I say, she is adorable. She’s also a blonde in True Blood, and Alan Ball had fun with a Lolita sunbathing homage.

Anna Paquin as Sookie Stackhouse

And third, yes, it’s written and directed by Alan Ball, who wrote American Beauty. I saw that 4 times in the theater, as I was so impressed with the writing. OK, sure, Thora Birch and Mena Suvari’s revealing portrayals might have had an influence. But it takes a brilliant writer to get actresses to be so… revealing.

Anyway, it’s a great show, so be sure to catch a rerun of the pilot before the next episode airs Sunday night.

Set Your DVR

You might want to check out the TV Guide Premier Calendar to find out what shows start when this fall (some have already started). On my DVR (in premier order):

I was surprised to find out how well I could compare – in Chuck Klosterman-like1 detail – this new series to the original. I was also surprised that the original debuted 18 years ago (I’m old). Anyway, the kids are more attractive (apparently, no producer has an unattractive daughter who wants an acting career) and have more money this time around. And, of course, by “kids” I mean hotties 18-23 years old. So this generation of teenage viewers will have an even bigger inferiority complex than we did.

I have to say, I was a bit disappointed with the first episode, considering that the creator of the original series was involved along with Freaks and Geeks producers Jeff Judah and Gabe Sachs. Freaks and Geeks is the best HS series of all time, and this is, well, not. They also have Jessica Walters, who played Lucille Bluth on Arrested Development, which is probably the greatest sitcom of all time. Her character is similar, but the dialogue is such a pale, whitewashed version of Lucille’s it’s distracting. Please pay Mitchell Hurwitz whatever he wants to write her lines. Or just let Jessica channel Lucille and say whatever comes to mind; anything to punch it up.

Dunno how they’ll replace Zack Addy and I think it sucks they have to. Maybe they’ll follow the lead of House and 90210 and replace him with some hot babe.

True Blood
I wasn’t sure about this until I discovered a) it’s on HBO and b) it’s got Anna Paquin. If I were an X-Man, my mutant power would be the ability to have sex with Rogue without dying. Great success!

Sex, drugs, and alcohol. And mansions. And supercars. And, occasionally, Seth Green.

Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles
Lena Heady and Summer Glau. Two great tastes that taste great together. Now please replace Brian Austin Green with anybody. Maybe Jason Priestly or Ian Ziering.

Fox replaced X-Files with Bones, but removed the supernatural part. I guess they want to replace it more directly? Could be interesting.

You know they’ll bring back Tina Fey to play Sarah Palin. My prediction: Terminator: The Sarah Palin Chronicles.

I like the new cast, especially the hot, young, bisexual doctor. There’s just something about her. Something hot, young, and bisexual. Also, Kal Penn is cool. And so is House, for that matter.

Final season – ACK! And Lex Luthor (Michael Rosenbaum) is gone! And apparently Lana Lang. At least we’ll get to see Kristin Kreuk in the Street Fighter movie. And I hear there will be more Justice League action this season. Let’s hope for a spin-off.

I haven’t seen this yet, but it’s next in the Netflix queue. Combined with Dexter, it finally makes Showtime justifiable.

It sucks that last season was truncated, but hopefully this one will make up for it. Just getting to watch Hayden Panettiere again will be nice, although I miss that cheerleader outfit.

Knight Rider
Ehhhh. I don’t know. I really doubt it. Maybe. But almost certainly not.

The Office

The Simpsons
King of the Hill
Family Guy
American Dad

Just happy none of these were canceled (again).

Just finished season 2 on Netflix. It’s weird; as the character becomes more human and relatable, his actions become more repulsive. So his motives/needs aren’t so clear now. I hope they work on that this season. But overall, great show.

Yes, more Yvonne Strahovski. Also, please bring back Rachel Bilson.

I got into this when I was without a TV and the writer’s strike had me watching stuff I missed. Very glad I caught this. Interesting characters. Hot babes.

Life On Mars
About all I know is that Harvey Keitel stars, and that’s all I need to know to give this a shot.

30 Rock
Duh, Part Deux.

  1. “You used to [not] be able to tell the difference between hipsters and homeless people. Now, it’s between hipsters and retards. I mean, either that guy in the corner in orange safety pants holding a protest sign and wearing a top hat is mentally disabled or he is the coolest fucking guy you will ever know.” -Chuck Klosterman []