AMC has canceled "The Killing" — again.
AMC has canceled "The Killing" — again.
Twenty years ago tonight, FOX debuted a strange little show called "The X-Files." Its stars were virtually unknown — Gillian Anderson was only 24 when the pilot was filmed, and if you recognized David Duchovny at all, it was either as the cross-dressing FBI agent from "Twin Peaks" season 2 or as the man who read letters at the start of every episode of "Red Shoe Diaries" — and the format was an odd mash-up of science-fiction and police procedural, as FBI partners Mulder (the believer) and Scully (the skeptic) traveled the country investigating reports of paranormal activity.
Only four topics for this week's Firewall & Iceberg Podcast, but they were all meaty enough to add up to a good-length show, including the return of "Sons of Anarchy," the American premiere of Ricky Gervais' "Derek" on Netflix, some contentious "Breaking Bad" discussion and the conclusion of our summer pilot rewatch with "The Wire."
Note: While this is the 200th episode of the podcast, Dan objects to the notion of it being our bicentennial, since I recorded one podcast with Mo Ryan while he was out of the country. So whatever anniversary things we do (if any) will be on next week's show.
As always, you can subscribe to The Firewall & Iceberg Podcast over at the iTunes Store, where you can also rate us and comment on us. Or you can always follow our RSS Feed, download the MP3 file or stream it on Dan's blog.
A review of tonight's "Breaking Bad" coming up just as soon as we flip a coin for the honor...
I reviewed season 3 of "Luther" earlier in the week, and promised I'd put up a second post to allow for full discussion once the entire season had aired in America. Well, it's all done, so let the spoilers fly, ladies and gentlemen. How'd you feel about the portrayal of either of our two killers? Given the limited use of Ruth Wilson, did you feel this was the right limited use of her? Did you feel any sympathy for the internal affairs investigators, or were they clearly strawmen for Luther to knock down? Did you agree with me that the vigilante story was a missed opportunity to actually discuss Luther's ethics? Did you invest at all in the romance with Sienna Guillory's Mary, or did that just feel like an acknowledgment that Idris Elba's a sex symbol and should be used as such? And how did you feel about what happened to Justin?
Have at it. What did everybody else think?
Earlier in the week, Cinemax announced that they'd finally be airing the original British-only season of "Strike Back" under the title "Strike Back: Origins." Tonight's episode of the Winchester/Stapleton version of the show, meanwhile, was notable for a few reasons, and I have some quick thoughts coming up just as soon as I call you Braveheart...
Because HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire” was created by one “Sopranos” alum (writer/producer Terence Winter), because it stars another (Steve Buscemi) and is crewed by many more (most notably lead director Tim Van Patten), and because it takes place in Tony Soprano’s home state — albeit way back in the 1920s — it was easy to wonder in the show’s early days if this would finally be the rightful heir to “The Sopranos” legacy. Instead, as “Boardwalk” returns for a fourth season Sunday night at 9, the classic HBO drama it seems to have more in common with is “The Wire.”
A review of tonight's "The Bridge" coming up just as soon as we discuss this over a ham salad...
Every time I write about Cinemax's "Strike Back" returning for another season, I always have to include a footnote explaining that the show aired for a year in the UK with an entirely different cast, headed by Richard Armitage and future "The Walking Dead" star Andrew Lincoln. Armitage's John Porter appears briefly at the start of the Cinemax/Sky co-produced version of the show, but Cinemax has largely treated its episodes as the start of the series, while British audiences know the series predates Philip Winchester, Sullivan Stapleton and company.
That situation is about to change, as I'm hearing that Cinemax will be airing the six-episode Armitage season later this fall, on Fridays at 10 after the current Winchester/Stapleton season wraps.