Ask Alan, Episode 11: Which TV star is poised for a Chris Pratt-like movie breakout?

Ask Alan, Episode 11: Which TV star is poised for a Chris Pratt-like movie breakout?

What shows have the greatest gap between their best and worst episodes? How to rank 'Mad Men' seasons?

Happy Independence Day weekend, everybody! To celebrate (and also because it's been two weeks since the last one), it's time for another installment of Ask Alan, where I take your questions about this thing we call TV. 

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<p>Hannibal</p>

Hannibal

Credit: NBC

Is it time to start worrying about 'Hannibal' season 3?

Will and Chiyoh travel by train, Mason issues a reward,and Jack arrives in Florence

A review of tonight's "Hannibal" coming up just as soon as I'm charming the way a cat is charming...

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<p>Wet Hot American Summer</p>

Wet Hot American Summer

Credit: Netflix

The new 'Wet Hot American Summer' trailer is here, and be glad

Few shows debuting this summer have me more excited than Netflix's "Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp," a prequel to David Wain and Michael Showalter's ridiculous 2001 tribute to the summer camp movies of their youth. It could ultimately turn out like another Netflix sequel to a beloved cult comedy in "Arrested Development" season 4, but the new trailer at least suggests we'll be getting much more interaction among the many famous returning castmembers, including Amy Poehler, Paul Rudd, Elizabeth Banks, Bradley Cooper, Janeane Garofalo and Christopher Meloni. It's also amusing to see how the billing has changed, since back in the day, Banks and Cooper were unknowns (and Banks is barely in the original film), and now they're among the most prominent people featured in the trailer:

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<p>The Sopranos</p>

The Sopranos

Credit: HBO

'The Sopranos' Rewind: Season 1, Episode 5: 'College'

In one of TV's greatest episodes ever, Tony gets a chance for revenge, while Carmela spends a night with Father Phil

Welcome to the fifth installment of our summer trip through "The Sopranos" season 1. When I revisited early seasons of "The Wire," as well as the whole run of "Deadwood," I did separate versions of each review for newcomers and veterans, but over time realized that the newcomers weren't commenting much, if at all, and that it therefore made sense to simply do one review. Any significant spoilers for episodes beyond the one being reviewed will be contained in a separate section at the end of the review; so long as you avoid that, and the comments, you should be fine.

Thoughts on the fifth episode, "College," coming up just as soon as I find $50,000 in krugerrands and a .45 automatic while hunting for Easter eggs...

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<p>BoJack Horseman</p>

BoJack Horseman

Credit: Netflix

'BoJack Horseman' season 2 trailer achieves new excellence in blurbing

Netflix's "BoJack Horseman" was a show that snuck up on me last summer, eventually winding up as one of my favorite new shows of 2014. I'm excited to see if season 2 (which debuts July 17) can maintain the same surprising blend of absurdist comedy and genuine pathos that you get when your main character is a clinically depressed human/horse hybrid. The season 2 trailer is mainly a collection of gags, but its critical blurbs — particularly the one from The New York Times — do capture the specialness of the show in a very candid way.

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<p>Donald Trump</p>

Donald Trump

Credit: AP

NBC cans Donald Trump for his lack of 'respect and dignity for all people'

NBC to Donald Trump: "You're fired."

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<p>Transparent, Justified and The Leftovers</p>

Transparent, Justified and The Leftovers

Credit: HBO/FX/Amazon

If I had an Emmy ballot 2015: Who should be nominated?

Making tough decisions in TV's era of plenty

Voting closed for Emmy nominations on Friday. Ordinarily, I would have already completed my usual If I Had An Emmy Ballot exercise by now, but various other projects got in the way, which means what I'm about to post is even more hypothetical than usual, since it's after the voting deadline.

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<p>True Detective</p>

True Detective

Credit: HBO

Review: 'True Detective' - 'Night Finds You': The lone gunman?

Ray's ex-wife makes an ultimatum, Frank has money problems, and Ani meets Caspere's doctor

A review of tonight's "True Detective" coming up just as soon as I support feminism by having body image issues...

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<p>Nurse Jackie</p>

Nurse Jackie

Credit: Showtime

Did 'Nurse Jackie' end at the right time, and in the right way?

An ambiguous conclusion to the story of a morally ambiguous woman

"Nurse Jackie" has concluded its seven-season run on Showtime. I have a few thoughts on the finale, followed by a long conversation with showrunner Clyde Phillips, coming up just as soon as this door gets locked for the first time in centuries...

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<p>Will &amp; Grace</p>

Will & Grace

Credit: NBC

How Pedro, 'Ellen,' 'Will & Grace' and other gay TV icons helped pave the way for gay marriage

The prominence of gay people on TV, real and fictional, helped normalize gay culture and relationships

Whether or not you agree with today's Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage(*), there can be no argument that this was a historic day in America.

(*) And as a reminder, this blog is not the place to debate the merits of that ruling.

In watching the news coverage of the decision, reading the official Court opinion and the four dissenting ones, it was hard not to think of the not insignificant role TV played in paving the way for this decision.

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