Inside Television with Alan Sepinwall
Dan and Alan also near the end of their 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' rewatch
Happy Tuesday, folks, and time for our second press tour-themed Firewall & Iceberg Podcast. Dan and I recorded the bulk of it on Sunday afternoon, but wanted to wait to post it until Dan had seen "Breaking Bad" and we could find a time in our schedules to discuss it. As I head home on Thursday, this will be our last (largely) in-person podcast for quite a while, so we hope you enjoy the different kind of bickering that happens when we're in the same room.
TCA Press Tour (00:02:05 - 00:42:15)
"Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and a little mail (00:42:15 - 00:58:50)
"Breaking Bad" (00:59:15 - 01:26:45)
On Gus Fring, playing villains, and his new NBC series
The seven days beginning on September 17 will be among the biggest in the career of character actor Giancarlo Esposito. On that night at 10 p.m., NBC debuts its new sci-fi series "Revolution," set in a near future where electricity has ceased to exist, in which Esposito plays Captain Tom Neville, enforcer for a dictatorship that's taken over a large chunk of what used to be America. On Sunday the 23rd, Esposito will attend the Emmys, where he's nominated for the first time ever (and the last for this role) as "Breaking Bad" drug kingpin Gus Fring.
I sat down with Esposito at press tour last week to discuss the learning process for the new character, saying goodbye to what he describes as "the favorite character of my life," the difficulties he's had in his career as a biracial actor, and a lot more.
Songs by/about Robin Sparkles, suits, Puzzles, and more
In general, asking questions of the "How I Met Your Mother" creators at press tour is a fool's errand. Because of how they've designed the show, and because they've decided they want to preserve every secret, Craig Thomas and Carter Bays have made an art of coming to press tour events, not saying anything, and apologizing for doing so. And with CBS being "pretty optimistic" about closing a deal for a ninth season (i.e., one past the upcoming one that everyone assumed would end the series), Thomas and Bays have to be even more mum than ever.
(We can discuss the ramifications of a ninth season if/when that happens. All I'll say now is that if Thomas and Bays stick to their original plan for the eighth season and do something different for the ninth, it could work, but if they just wind up elongating the season 8 story arc over twice as many episodes, it will be... ungood.)
But at CBS' press tour party, Thomas actually had some concrete show info he could reveal for once:
After many years of many goofy, catchy, memorable original songs, "How I Met Your Mother" is finally getting its own soundtrack album.
Walt, Jesse and Mike set up their new business, and Skyler surprises Marie
A review of tonight's "Breaking Bad" coming up just as soon as I run down to Costco to get a couple of dehumidifiers...
Don't expect Jonny Lee Miller's Holmes and Lucy Liu's Watson to hook up
Rob Doherty, the creator of the new CBS Sherlock Holmes drama "Elementary," noted of his main character, "Because Sherlock lives in the public domain, he's been through many hands. And I think that if so many people couldn't put their spins on it, I don't know that he exists in the popular culture the way he does."
There have, indeed, been over 200 films based on Arthur Conan Doyle's stories about the great detective and his partner, Dr. Watson. But there's one filmed adaptation in particular that has been dogging "Elementary" a bit leading up to its premiere: the BBC's "Sherlock."
Sherlock Holmes, a Jersey girl from England and Jeff Probst
Good morning, all. Now that the TCA Awards are all done with, it's time to get back to the more typical business of press tour. Today we welcome the last of the Big Four broadcast networks, with a full day of CBS panels. Here's a quick run-down to give you a sense of what a day on tour looks like. After this we have a combined CW/Showtime day tomorrow, a day of set visits on Tuesday, and then various cable channels on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. (HBO is paneling "The Newsroom" on Wednesday, which should be... interesting.)
Bryan Cranston, David Letterman and Louis C.K. provided big laughs, and Claire Danes got a do-over
Good morning, all. Last night was my favorite night of press tour: the TCA Awards (the winners are here), which featured among its highlights:
Television Critics Association also honors '60 Minutes,' 'Downton Abbey' and 'Cheers'
"Game of Thrones" doesn't seem like one of the favorites for the drama series Emmy, but it won the biggest prize tonight at the Television Critics Association Awards.
What will Kurt Sutter and friends have to say about season 5?
FX has had a very busy day today here at press tour, with panels for "Louie," talk shows involving Russell Brand and W. Kumau Bell, and the new comedy "Legit." I'm going to live-blog the day's final panel, featuring Kurt Sutter and the actors of "Sons of Anarchy." The motorcycle club drama's fifth season debuts on Tuesday, September 11 at 10 p.m.
FX also orders another batch of 'BrandX with Russell Brand'
Among the announcements made during FX president John Landgraf's press tour executive session was the decision by the network to order a fourth season of "Louie."
The network also ordered an additional seven episodes of Russell Brand's talk show "BrandX," to debut in the fall. Landgraf said there would be creative changes to the series, which will be paneled later today at press tour.
Though ratings for "Louie" have never been enormous, it's done very well in critical acclaim and Emmy nominations, and the deal FX has with Louis C.K. — he gets a drastically smaller budget than a normal cable comedy in exchange for complete creative control — makes financial sense for the network.
During the panel, I asked Landgraf if he would like to cut a "Louie"-style deal with another creator. He said he would love to, and has even had inquiries about it from the Hollywood community, but the problem so far is in finding someone who can do all the jobs C.K. does, since he stars, writes, directs, works on the music and, until this season, did all the editing. He cited "Legit," an upcoming FX sitcom starring Australian comedian Jim Jefferies, where Jefferies does some writing, but needed help from a pair of other veteran comedy producers.