"The Leftovers" debuted on HBO tonight. I published a review of the early part of the season on Wednesday, and an interview with creators Damon Lindelof and Tom Perrotta on Thursday, and now I have specific thoughts on the first episode coming up just as soon as I wonder how Gary Busey made the cut...
We're continuing this periodic summer project where we revisit classic sitcom episode. This week we're going waaaay back to the 1950s for one of the most famous television half hours of them all: "Job Switching," from "I Love Lucy" season 2, coming up just as soon as I show you the creases on these silk stockings...
I wrote my rave review of HBO's "The Leftovers" — which began with me wondering why on earth "Lost" co-creator Damon Lindelof would get involved in a show designed to not offer answers to a cosmic mystery — before I had a chance to sit down with Lindelof (pictured above with director Peter Berg and Justin Theroux) and Tom Perrotta (who wrote "The Leftovers" novel and co-created the series with Lindelof) and ask him that very question directly. His answer fit in with my assumption that he found the show's premise — 2 percent of the world's population disappears in a Rapture-like event called the Departure that equally baffles science and religion — freeing rather than constraining.
Happy Wednesday, boys and girls! Welcome to the first-ever Firewall & Iceberg Podcast to be ended due to one of us being in physical distress. I won't say who it was or what exactly happened, lest I ruin the surprise, but suffice it to say that all involved were fine within minutes of the podcast's end. Before things got weird, Dan and I discussed CBS' summer suds-fest "Reckless" and HBO's ambitious "The Leftovers," answered some mail, and then got to our ongoing "Friday Night Lights" season 2 discussion.
"The Leftovers" (00:12:00 - 00:31:10)
Listener Mail - Trans Characters on TV (00:31:30 - 38:30)
Listener Mail - Desert Island Showrunners (00:38:35 - 00:44:30)
"Friday Night Lights" Season 2 - (00:44:40 - 01:01:20)
There's also now a complete archive of all the podcasts to date.
What divine madness could have possibly compelled Damon Lindelof to involve himself with "The Leftovers"?
Yesterday, I published my review of FX's "Tyrant." (And Fienberg wrote at length about the problematic bit of casting at the center of the show.) Now, it's your turn. For those who watched the pilot tonight, what did you think? Does the setting intrigue you? Did you react strongly to any of the characters? How did you feel about Adam Rayner as Barry/Bassam? About his wife and kids? And will you watch again?
Have at it. This is one I don't expect to be writing about again.
Happy Tuesday, boys and girls! Time for a Firewall & Iceberg Show in which we review a cable drama with a troubled origin story ("Tyrant"), a network drama with a weird origin story ("Taxi Brooklyn"), break down "Orphan Black" season 2 and answer your mail.
"Tyrant" review (0:00- 8:45)
"Taxi Brooklyn" review (8:45- 12:54)
Viewer Mail: "Better Call Saul" (12:54- 17:50)
Viewer Mail: Biggest Emmy acting snubs (17:50- 22:34)
"Orphan Black" finale review (22:34- 33:49)
As always, you can send us questions at email@example.com. There's also now a YouTube channel where you can subscribe to all upcoming Firewall & Iceberg videos, at https://www.youtube.com/show/firewalliceberg.
A quick review of last night's "24: Live Another Day" coming up just as soon as my name is just one word, like Madonna...
The story behind the making of FX's new drama "Tyrant" is ultimately much more interesting than "Tyrant" itself. A lot of people came and went from this project, a lot of people fought for its future, and a lot of obvious stumbling blocks were ignored because there was a real passion to get it made. But the finished product doesn't suggest something nearly worth all the fussing and fighting.