Latest 'Survivor' bootee explains why Rob got lucky and Andrea slept on the ground
A farmer from Virginia, Ralph Kiser began the "Survivor: Redemption Island" season as one of the game's most colorful players, displaying carpentry skills, stumbling upon an Immunity Idol and not shying away from confrontation with the notorious Russell Hantz.
How will things change? Will the 2026 Future return? And more...
FOX's "Fringe" wrapped up its third season on Friday night with a brain-bending cliffhanger that left fans expressing themselves with excited combinations of exclamation points and question marks.
Many fans loved the apparent shift in the "Fringe" paradigm. Some fans were less enamored. But for all of them, there was one major question: What the heck is this going to mean moving forward?
On Monday, I got on the phone with "Fringe" showrunners Jeff Pinkner and and Joel Howard "J.H." Wyman to discuss "The Day We Died" and the way it will ripple into Season Four this fall.
It won't surprise "Fringe" fans to know that I got very few concrete answers about next season, but I think that Pinkner and Wyman definitely provided a lot of insight into their approach to the structure and mythology of their show.
Click through for the full interview, but only assuming you've seen the finale...
Dan and Alan preview next week's upfronts, looking at what's in and out
Happy Monday, Boys and Girls. Time for another installment of the Firewall & Iceberg Podcast.
Next week is a big week for TV, with the networks doing their upfronts presentations to advertisers and revealing their schedules for next fall. With that looming, Sepinwall and I spent around 40 minutes looking at the lay of the land and making predictions and analysis and whatnot.
Then, we answered a pile of Listener Mail.
Here's the breakdown:
Upfronts Preview -- 00:40 - 42:00
Listener Mail: TV shows you like despite unappealing heroes -- 42:05 - 47:20
Listener Mail: Non-English-language programming -- 47:20 - 50:30
Listener Mail: Shows with overlapping locations -- 50:33 - 55:25
Listener Mail: Chuck Bass' bad behavior on "Gossip Girl" -- 55:30 - 01:01:25
And here's the podcast...
Lots of talk about rice, race, Phillip and Russell with the latest 'Survivor' bootee
This week's "Survivor: Redemption Island" exit interview was with Steve Wright, 51-year-old former NFL veteran and yet another member of the nearly depleted Zapatera tribe.
And that, of course, meant only one thing: Lots and lots of talk about rice, or at least the circumstances through which a war over rice led to a war over race between Steve and Phillip.
Not surprisingly, Steve still thinks that Phillip is crazy and still insists that calling Phillip crazy is a reflection on the Former Federal Agent's sanity and not the color of his skin.
What else did Steve have to say about The Incident and about how he plans on treating Phillip at the live reunion?Â
The tone is erratic, but Mel Gibson's performance is committed
I may be the only person alive who kinda likes the romantic comedy "Keeping the Faith." It's not a great movie. It features Jenna Elfman as an apparently irresistible love interest, so it's at least partially doomed from the start. And Edward Norton somehow got it in his head that 128 minutes was an appropriate length for a slight romantic comedy.
What "Keeping the Faith" does that I admire, though, is that it takes a premise that seems like the set-up for a really cheap joke -- "So a priest and a rabbi fall in love with the same woman..." -- and finds a way to treat it more semi-seriously than one would ever expect or than you could ever have convinced anybody from trailers or promotion.
To be clear: The Jodie Foster-directed "The Beaver," the film I've actually sat down to write about today, has absolutely nothing to do with "Keeping the Faith." They share almost no common DNA beyond their similar basic medium.
What makes me link the two movies, in the most tenuous way possible -- I promise that after this introduction, I'll never mention "Keeping the Faith" again in this review or possibly ever again -- is that "The Beaver" could easily be a bad joke writ large. "Mel Gibson plays a guy who goes a little nuts and begins to only speak through a tattered beaver puppet." You hear that and you assume either that it's a cheap punchline or that the Oscar-winning director had a particularly wild weekend and TMZ was there to film the whole thing. See? Cheap punchline! To counteract that perception, "The Beaver" has been marketed as an almost whimsical fairy tale of a movie, something about a main character who was only able to become a better man by becoming a better beaver.
The challenge is that "The Beaver" is neither of those two things. It isn't the broad, lazy joke and it isn't the maudlin, life-affirming, self-help movie.
"The Beaver," which goes into limited release on Friday (May 6), is the kind of dark portrait of mental illness you rarely see on the big or small screen. Or at least that's one of the movies that "The Beaver" is trying to be, the one I appreciated most. Unfortunately, there's a wacky sitcom and a manipulative melodrama that are trying to force themselves onto the screen in "The Beaver" and neither Foster or writer Kyle Killen are quite strong enough to maintain the balance, though I found myself really respecting the effort.
More after the break...
Dan and Alan talk 'Justified' and 'Fringe' on the eve of their finales
Happy Monday and time for another Firewall & Iceberg Podcast.
It's a light week this week, so we came in at barely under an hour, even after discussing the state of "Justified" and "Fringe" pre-finale and answering a pile of Listener Mail.
Next week? Much busier, as we preview where the networks stand on the eve of upfronts. Then the week after that, with the upfronts themselves, we'll probably have multiple podcasts. Very busy.
"Justified" pre-finale -- 01:00 - 20:30
"Fringe" pre-finale -- 20:40 - 33:00
Listener mail: Can a comedy be "the best show on TV" -- 33:22 - 39:15
Listener mail: Low-rated networks getting audiences -- 39:15 - 43:10
Listener mail: The decline of the lead-in -- 43:20 - 47:20
Listener mail: Shows that were successful after cast departures -- 47:30 - 58:50
And here's the podcast...
What impresses him about Toni Collette? And why is he in Paris?
Talking to Eddie Izzard is a good way to feel lazy.
An Emmy-winning stand-up comic, stage veteran, TV/movie actor, political activist and occasional marathoner, Izzard can currently be seen on Showtime's "United States of Tara" playing skeptical psychology professor Dr. Hattaras opposite Toni Collette. He's already finished starring in a TV production of "Treasure Island" ticketed for Syfy. He's developing a political-themed drama for FX. He'll become the first solo stand-up act to play the Hollywood Bowl later this summer.
And, as I caught up with Izzard two weeks ago, he was in the early stages of performing his show "Stripped" in Paris. In French. Because he wanted to.
That gave us a lot of room to cover. Full interview after the break...
Latest 'Survivor' bootee talks Phillip, Russell and her new faith
Another week, another "Survivor: Redemption Island" exit interview with a departed member of the Zapatera tribe.
Following the ultimately ill-fated decision to throw a challenge to accelerate the departure of Russell Hantz, the tribe went on a barely interrupted string of evictions with Redemption Island dominator Matt and Ometepe mastermind Rob continuing the process that began at their own hands.
This week's interview is with Julie Wolfe, the lone member of the Zapatera main alliance to express reservations about losing on purpose and tempting "Survivor" karma. Julie wasn't able to save her tribe, but at the end of Thursday's (April 27), she indicated that she'd been saved herself, through the influence of agent-of-God Matt.
What did firefighter Julie have to say about her new faith, challenge-throwing and Phillip's race/rice war?
The opportunities for tears were myriad. Did you cry?
It's not that I'm not a fan of "The Office," but it's not a show I write about regularly or even semi-regularly. That's Sepinwall's terrain. After all, he doesn't go and write about... I dunno... "The Vampire Diaries." That's all me, baby.
But Alan's off the grid and Thursday (April 28) night happened to be a pretty momentous evening for "The Office," what with the departure of Steve Carell's Michael Scott, an event that was four or five episodes (or 150) in the making.
So I'll do the best I can to set thing up, because I'm betting people have opinions on the 52-minute emotional extravaganza. Sepinwall'll surely write something when he's back.
A review of tonight's "The Office" coming up just as soon as I figure out the name of the town I'm moving to in Colorado... [That was fun!]
Which Salvatore brother is Klaus about to take an interest in?
The CW's "Vampire Diaries" has taken a round-about way of introducing menacing Big Bad Klaus.
First, the ancient Original was discussed in hushed tones, a looming threat to all that was good, decent and alive in Mystic Falls.
Then, Klaus inhabited the body of Matthew Davis' Alaric and wreaked at little general havoc.
When we met Joseph Morgan's incarnation of Klaus, he was plenty evil, but also socked away back in the 15th Century in flashbacks.
But last week, Klaus finally arrived in Mystic Falls in the present day and fans are ready to watch things get bloody and berserk starting with Thursday's (April 28) episode.
It's unlikely that The CW's core demo recognized Morgan from his work in films like "Master and Commander" and "Alexander" or his wealth of TV projects (including the similarly supernaturally inclined "Hex"), but he seems to have the tools and the cheekbones to become and audience favorite.
I caught up with the Welsh actor on Thursday morning to talk about his love for vampires, his hopes that his character doesn't become brooding and sympathetic and which Salvatore brother Klaus is going to take an interest in.
Click through for the full interview...