The ladies are distressed when Sean upsets the usual order of things
Kenya finally gives Walter the boot - but what took so long?
Sigh. Not a lot happens in this episode of "The Real Housewives of Atlanta," as NeNe is about to take off to Los Angeles and everyone else is busy standing in their kitchens, talking about not a hella lot.
We do learn that NeNe is a "glam-mother" and her son Bryson made a kid with some chick. The really interesting thing here is that the kid is named Bri'asia. They made that up, right? Anyway, the kid is cute. NeNe is disappointed that her son is a dad at the same age she first became a mom, but mostly seems fine with it. Plus, this gives her a chance to shop for teensy designer clothes. She and Cynthia go out in search of extremely expensive clothes that will be covered in spit-up and outgrown in about a month and ponder where they can get baby Louboutins. I think they're joking, but I'm not sure.
A whole lot has happened since last we saw visited the Abbey
So, if you've managed to avoid the "Downton Abbey" spoilers being tossed at you like exploding crumpets in a very refined video game, then this almost two-hour premiere was a welcome return to the hallowed halls of the grand estate. The good news? The soapiness of season two seems to have been (judging from this episode) set aside, and the plot seems character driven as opposed to being the fever dream of a crazed "Dallas" fan. Huzzah (clink glasses discreetly with second knife to your left)!
Before we get started, I solemnly vow to you "Downton Abbey" fans -- no spoilers. Yes, these are recaps, so by their very nature they spoil the episode if you haven't seen it, but even as I watch ahead of air dates, I won't spill. Why not? Because this season has been halfway ruined for me by two spoilers I ran across, and I know how disappointed I am to know what's ahead -- and I won't do the same to you.
So much happened in this opening episode, I'll just break it down by story lines. You can also read Alan's review (again, no spoilers) here.
Issues of class, not race, will take center stage
While "Deception" (premiering Jan. 7 at 10:00 p.m.) may seem molded in the vein of ABC's soapy, mystery-fueled breakout hit, "Revenge," don't tell executive producers Liz Heldens and Gail Berman. Was she inspired by the rival network's "Revenge"? Um, no. "Two of my favorite movies are 'Donnie Brasco' and 'Sabrina'" Heldens said during a press tour panel, adding that her new show is as if those two films "had a baby."
One returning star is dubbed a 'mean, nasty person' while another 'stabs you in the front'
"All-Star Celebrity Apprentice" doesn't return to NBC until Sun. March 3 at 9:00 p.m., but that didn't stop a few dedicated stars from showing up at a press tour breakfast. Marilu Henner, Trace Adkins, Stephen Baldwin, Omarosa, Gary Busey, Lil Jon and Lisa Rinna told gathered reporters about why they returned, who fought with who (short answer: everyone with everyone) and plugged their charities for good measure while throwing in some jabs at one another.
David S. Goyer promises his take on the story will be 'eighty-five percent' true
Think Leonardo Da Vinci just sat around drawing cool stuff? "Da Vinci's Demons," an original series created by David S. Goyer, is set to prove otherwise. During a press tour panel for the STARZ show, the co-writer of "The Dark Knight" trilogy promised that, though the eight-part series will give the legendary creator some "almost superhuman" skills, "eighty-five percent of this is based on reality."
And very little, if any, of that reality-based drama is going to consist of watching the master navel gaze. As Goyer points out, "If we showed Da Vinci painting for two minutes, everyone would be looking at their watches."
Matt Damon 'really enjoyed' costume fittings for Liberace's boyfriend
"Behind the Candelabra" (debuts on HBO Spring 2013) looks like it should be a campy Lifetime movie -- but with Michael Douglas as Liberace, Matt Damon as his love interest, Rob Lowe and Debbie Reynolds making guest appearances and Steven Soderbergh directing, this is clearly serious stuff. During a press tour panel, Douglas talked about getting into character. "Well, there's a tremendous amount of clips and films that give you a sense of character," the Oscar winner said, joking, "[I had to] make Steven secure and make myself attractive to Matt."
Even the most diligent found some leaks hard to avoid
Though the word only became a pervasive part of our lingo a few decades ago, spoilers have likely existed as long as entertainment of any form has been around (you missed "Oedipus the King" at the Dionysia? Dude! Queen Jocasta was his MOM!"). Avoiding them requires constant vigilance, sidestepping blabbermouths and, mostly, staying off the Internet. Of course, in this day and age that's not unlike taking a vacation from breathing. With "Downton Abbey" airing first in the U.K., then three months later in the U.S. (season 3 premieres here Jan. 6), spoilers became like tribbles -- turn your back, and another thousand popped up somehow, and not always where you expected them to be.
And speaking of spoilers, if you haven't watched Season 2 (not Season 3, Season 2, so if you're REALLY behind) for some reason, read no further. Yes, an article about spoilers has a spoiler alert. Fancy that.
The designers must dress real female veterans but some looks should be in the brig
Final four! The end is in sight, and while I'm still shocked that Josh and his very questionable taste level are still in the game, I think this is a pretty strong group. Hopefully this challenge will inspire Uli to use a fabric that isn't white, Emilio to use a color that isn't blinding and Anthony Ryan not to make that same cut-out silhouette he likes so much. Given that they'll be dressing real women, this should separate the real designers from the people who'd rather be dressing coat hangers.
In a show dedicated to weird moments, this may be one of the weirdest
If you've missed "Here Comes Honey Boo Boo" since the first season ended, take heart. Not only is the show back for an oddly timed Halloween special Sun. Jan. 6 at 9:00 p.m. (upcoming specials include a Thanksgiving-themed show Sun. Jan. 13, a clip show Sun. Feb. 10, and a Christmas special Sun. Feb. 17), this latest episode features a very weird highlight -- Mama's mayo phobia. Yes, she's afraid of that staple of redneck cuisine, mayonnaise. Watch this clip to see her personal struggle. With mayo. Also of interest? The family debate over whether or not mayo is a form of meat.