NBC's press tour panel for the 2014 Emmy telecast was a chance for Seth Meyers and his "Late Night" producer Mike Shoemaker to talk about their approach to Seth hosting the show. Mainly, though, it was an opportunity for TV critics to complain to Television Academy chairman Bruce Rosenblum about the broken Emmy category system — and for Rosenblum to smile, talk about his desire to examine the problem, and then make clear that he has no real plans to do anything to fix it.
NBC chairman Robert Greenblatt, who made the final call to cancel "Community," seems not only untroubled by the show's resurrection at Yahoo!, but pleased.
Happy Saturday, boys and girls! Time for a weekend, in-person Firewall & Iceberg Podcast! I'm finally in town for press tour, which meant Dan and I belatedly got to sit down to discuss the Emmy nominations, review "The Strain" and "Masters of Sex" (and, briefly, "The Divide") and discuss a surprising/mortifying moment for Dan at press tour earlier today. We'll hopefully have both a video show and a podcast in the coming week, but we'll see.
"Masters of Sex" Season 2 (30:55 - 38:55)
"The Divide" (39:00 - 44:50)
Jew/Not-a-Jew (44:55 - 52:35)
There's also now a complete archive of all the podcasts to date.
Until about 10 minutes ago, there has been so much conflicting information, if not outright misinformation, about what exactly "Better Call Saul" will be: A straight "Breaking Bad" prequel? A time-bending journey that includes adventures during the reign of Heisenberg? A comedy? A drama with occasional laughs? Huell's story?
AMC's press release about the full cast and basic premise and setting fill in some of the details — including that it begins six years before Saul (then known as Jimmy McGill) meets Walter White — and now co-creators Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould will hopefully bring more of the show (not due to premiere until early 2015) into sharper clarity, without actually giving too much of the fun away. I'll be live-blogging all of Gilligan's charming Virginian self-deprecation, all of Gould's jokes, and whatever nuggets we actually get about the new show.
In about 10 or 20 minutes, Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould are going to be at press tour to discuss the "Breaking Bad" prequel "Better Call Saul," but AMC just released the first real fixed plot details, plus a full cast list, so here we go:
Bill Masters and Virginia Johnson spend much of the second season premiere of the Showtime drama "Masters of Sex" (Sunday at 10) trying to redefine the nature and parameters of their relationship after the events of the show's marvelous first season. Are they now a couple? Is this just an affair? Is it still simply one small component of their groundbreaking study on human sexuality?
Guillermo del Toro is the kind of filmmaker who leaves me wanting more — just not always in the best way. Whether he's adapting someone else's work with the "Hellboy" films, or inventing his own stories with something like "Pan's Labyrinth," del Toro leaves no hallucinatory stone unturned, no burst of inspiration unexplored. I've often walked out of his movies impressed by the depth and breadth of the creativity on display, yet frustrated at how little time there was to thoroughly explore it all. I wouldn't want to take away the big budgets and fancy effects work that he can apply to something like "Pacific Rim," but I've been itching for a while to see what del Toro might do with an ongoing television series, where he could drill down deep and expand each concept to its fullest, rather than rushing to fit them all into two hours.
It should be easy to feel sympathy for Emmy voters in 2014. There is more good television now than ever before, available in more places (including non-traditional streaming video outfits like Netflix and Amazon) than ever before. There is abundant category confusion, where a show like "Shameless" can jump from drama to comedy after presenting its bleakest season ever, where "True Detective" can be considered as a drama series while "American Horror Story" is a miniseries even though the two shows have the same basic structure, where the fourth season of "Tremé" has to be considered a miniseries because it didn't produce enough episodes to qualify elsewhere, where voters are asked to consider what Jim Parsons does on "Big Bang Theory" in the same context of what Louis C.K. does as an actor on "Louie."
A review of "The Bridge" season 2 premiere coming up just as soon as I defend my Rush t-shirt...
A couple of months ago, NBC aired a two-part remake of "Rosemary's Baby" that was completely lacking in suspense, pacing, anything new to say with the material or any reason to exist save for the brand name and the excuse to give Zoe Saldana a pixie haircut. The original film is such a classic that, even if it should never be excused from being remade, at least requires some genuine thought before attempting, which no one involved with the NBC version bothered to try.