"The Newsroom" is back for a new season. I published an advance review earlier in the week, and I have some specific thoughts on the season premiere coming up just as soon as I have the confidence of a tall man...
A new credits sequence, a muted framing device, and 'News Night' in trouble as season 2 begins
Dexter looks into another of Vogel's patients, while the guilt consumes Deb
Aunt Lou's son rides into town, and George Hearst is not happy with anyone
For the third summer in a row, we're revisiting David Milch's classic revisionist HBO Western "Deadwood," this time discussing the third season.
While I once upon a time posted two separate reviews so people who hadn't watched the whole series would have a safe place to comment, almost no one bothered commenting on the newbie reviews last year, and they've been ditched. If you haven't finished the series, just avoid the comments of this review and you'll be fine.
Thoughts on episode 6, "A Rich Find," coming up just as soon as I finish showing water how to run downhill...
Ian Ziering + Tara Reid + horrible effects + sharks = social media paradise
Aaron Sorkin makes some tweaks, but the cable news drama remains too smug for its own good
I've lost track of the number of times in the last year when a major news event — or, rather, the news media majorly bungling its coverage of that event — inspired my Twitter feed to explode with comments about how "The Newsroom" would turn this into an episode two seasons from now. With each mention, there was a clear sense that these repeated, institutionalized screw-ups — the misreading of the Supreme Court's ruling on the Affordable Care Act, the torrent of erroneous information about the suspects in the Boston Marathon bombing, cable news completely ignoring the riveting, made-for-TV drama that was the recent Texas state legislature filibuster — were only proving "Newsroom" creator Aaron Sorkin correct in his thesis that the Fourth Estate has been badly failing the American people. Yet each one also came laced with jokes about the amazing power of 20/20 hindsight, about "News Night" producer Jim Harper conveniently having a second cousin once removed connected to the story, and about which Coldplay song would accompany the montage about a tragedy poorly-covered by the press.
What did everybody think of the new NBC summer series?
I never finished my attempt at an advance review of NBC's "Camp," in part because I ran out of synonyms for "pleasant" after a while. I didn't mind the three episodes that I watched, and even laughed in a spot or two, but nor did any of it stick with me for more than a few seconds after I finished. Though I liked Rachel Griffiths and many of her fellow Aussies-as-Americans, the show seems to be neither fish nor fowl: too much adult nookie to necessarily be a youth-appeal series, and too much sex talk overall for it to be an option for the family to watch together. 10 p.m. seems the right hour for it; I'm just not sure what the target audience is, and I don't think the show does a great job of explaining how family camp here works, as opposed to it just being an excuse to have grown-ups and kids together every now and then.
For those who tuned in last night, what did you think? Did you find the Australian-ness of it all distracting, or did you not notice? And are you going to watch again?
The new FX drama kicks off with an unusual corpse left on the El Paso/Juárez border crossing
Dramedy from 'Weeds' creator Jenji Kohan doesn't come with the hype of 'House of Cards' or 'Arrested Development'
The female prison dramedy "Orange Is the New Black" is the fourth Netflix original series to debut this year (all 13 episodes of the first season should be available to stream after 12 a.m. Pacific tonight), and battling it out with the horror series "Hemlock Grove" for the lowest profile. "House of Cards" was the splashy, expensive acquisition, bought out from under the noses of HBO and company, starring Kevin Spacey, directed by David Fincher, and arriving with all the polish and fanfare of a premiere cable drama. The new season of "Arrested Development" was the resurrection of a beloved comedy series that was canceled much too soon in the mid-'00s. And yet each was something of a disappointment: "House of Cards" felt formulaic and emotionally empty, while "Arrested Development" struggled to recreate the old magic with the characters mostly separated.
Cops Diane Kruger and Demián Bichir investigate a serial killer
Many elements of FX's new crime drama "The Bridge" (it debuts tomorrow night at 10) may seem familiar. One of its two main characters, El Paso homicide detective Sonya Cross (Diane Kruger) suffers (undiagnosed) from Asperger's syndrome, putting her into good, if socially clumsy, current company with the likes of Temperance Brennan on "Bones," Will Graham on "Hannibal" and both the Cumberbatch and Miller versions of Sherlock Holmes. It will spend most of its first season dealing with the pursuit by Cross and Mexican cop Hector Ruiz (Demián Bichir) of a baroque serial killer, which invites immediate comparisons to "Dexter," "Hannibal," the current season of "The Killing" and virtually every other serial killer-obsessed cop show of the moment. And it is, like "The Killing," a remake of a popular Scandinavian series, "Bron," which was set on the border between Denmark and Sweden.
But what makes "The Bridge" special, and potentially great, is an attribute more often applied to real estate than TV drama: location, location, location.
Liam Neesons' biggest fans will emcee for the Television Critics Association on August 3