Monday, December 17, 2007

Some TV News

LOST has been moved from it's 9:00 (central) Wednesday time slot to the 8:00 (again, central) Thursday, following Ugly Betty, which is a far better lead in and time slot than it's had.  Of course with the writer's strike, there won't be too much original non-reality/game show programing to feature, and therefore the 8 episodes of LOST that we have will probably do very well.  One of the pluses from the writer's strike.

Now, to some of the negativity.

While we will get 13 episodes of Battlestar Gallactica (the best show on tv, well... ever), there is some worry that if the writer's strike is not brought to a close, then the show will end without the last 7 episodes ever being shot.  Partly because SciFi might decide to end the show having fulfilled contractual elements to the cast and crew with the 13 already completed episodes, and partly because actors will have the right to negate their contracts and seek other work causing the network to have to resign everyone in order to finish the final season.  Hopefully, things will work out to bring us the end of the greatest television show of all time.

Also, in the bad news category, Journeyman did not receive it's order for the back 9 (often a golf term, this time referring to the last nine episodes of this season) meaning the episodes tonight and Wednesday night are the last episodes scheduled to be made, again, well... ever.

This is sad, because Journeyman has been brilliant, and is definitely in contention for Josh's Choice for Best New Show of the Season Award, in fact it is probably tied for the lead with Chuck.

Of course, this time the writer's strike might help out.  The pilot season is looking to be impacted by the strike, meaning there will be a lot less new shows next season even if the strike is resolved meaning that the network might be more willing to renew a show it normally wouldn't, giving an awesome television show another chance that it richly deserves.

Until Next Time, Despite some negativity that might result from the writer's strike, such as never getting the end of BSG, I still stand firmly behind the writers and recognize the importance of the issues that they are fighting for.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

The Writer's Strike

The Writer's Strike

I know that it is a little annoying having many of our favorite television shows prematurely sent into reruns, but it is necessary.  If you watched the videos above, you know a little bit about what is at stake and how little comparatively the writers are asking for compared to what the studios are making.  Personally, I am willing to go without some of my favorite shows in order for those who make them so good to get a little bit of the pie that wouldn't even exist if it weren't for them.
The crux of the talks right now is new media.  Mainly the internet.  Every time that you purchase a show from itunes or amazon unbox, or watch it on,,, or, you are providing money to the studios to experience that product, either directly by paying for it from itunes or amazon, or indirectly by sitting through the same commercial four or five times while watching the show online.  Either way, the studio is making money, just like they do when the show is shown on television.  The difference is, the writers (as well as the actors, the director, and all of the below the line crew that helped create that television episode) are seeing none of it.  This borders on criminal.  The big rich companies are using the hard work of it's employees to make themselves more money while not paying those who actually did the work.

Recently, the Writer's Guild pulled the request for an increase in DVD residuals off of the table in the hopes of making a deal.  It was a show of good faith.  The Studios responded with no offer of residuals for new money, and lied about it when the talks fell apart again.

The issue of home video residuals shows how important the issue of new media residuals actually is.  Twenty years ago, when the last writer's strike occurred, home video was in it's infancy.  The industry wasn't sure that it would last.  In order to help the industry grow, writers agreed to cut the percentage that they were owed off of video sales by 80%, meaning that they only get 2.5% of video sales.  Now, 20 years later, the video industry is probably the biggest portion of the money made off of television and movies, and the writers are still only seeing 2.5% of the money.  I guarantee you that they are doing far more than 2.5% of the work.  After all, without the screenplay or teleplay, there wouldn't be any dvd.
The writers are determined not to take such a bad deal again with new media, since whatever deal that they make will last for a long time, and chances are that the Studios will be unwilling to up the writers residuals even if the industry becomes the largest revenue stream, which everyone projects that the internet will.

Sure, writers can make good money, but not all of them do.  At any given time, nearly half of the writers guild members are out of work.  Residuals are what pays the bills in those times.  And even those members who never strike it rich are still given health care benefits for being a member, and those benefits are paid for by residuals.

Sure, it sucks that there aren't any new episodes of The Office ( or Numb3rs, if you prefer), but it isn't the writers that you should blame for that, it is the Studios.  The writers just want what they are due, and have already shown that they will accept even less than that, but the Studio won't even offer something close to fair, and therefore, that is where your anger should be directed.  Be pissed at CBS, owned by Viacom, that there isn't any new Numb3rs, be pissed at NBC, owned by General Electric, that we're currently without episodes featuring our favorite Scranton paper pushers at The Office, blame ABC, owned by Walt Disney, that we may only get the eight already completed episodes of LOST, and blame Fox and Rupert Murdoch that we might not get a season of 24 at all.  If only we could send Jack Bauer after the Studios.

Remember, it's writers who come up with the characters, situations, and stories that make any of the shows worth watching in the first place.  Without them, nothing else can go on, as we are learning as more and more shows go dark, but also, none of it would have been there in the first place.

Let me leave you with some of my favorite quotes from the new shows this season, brought to you by writers...


Ned: I'm not a fan of the hug.
Chuck: Then you haven't been hugged properly, it's like an emotional Heimlich.

Emerson: You know what?  I'm glad you did it.  It makes the worst thing I ever did seem insignificant.
Ned: Listen to you all Judgey-judge.
Emerson: "Judgey-judge"?

Chuck: Good day, which I think is much better than hello, cause what does that say? That says I'm here, your turn to talk.  Kinda selfish.


Kasey: I don't kid about quiche.

Chuck: So, in this plan I basically do nothing?
Kasey: Yup.
Chuck: Let's do this.

Lester: Are you kidding?  You have to be better than yourself, by like a factor of 10.
Jeff: More, like 11.


Ted: A bloody customer isn't a happy customer.

Ben: Winston, you are one freaky ass bird who scared the Hell out of me and ruined the way I will feel about birds forever.  Just wanted you to know that.


LAPD.  You're lucky I'm enlightened.

Crews: If I were a cowboy, he'd be my goofy sidekick.
Reese: Kinda like you're mine?

Crews: We've got to use his strength against him.
Reese: What's his strength?
Crews: His weakness.
Reese: His weakness is his strength?


The Darling's Public Relation's Lady: Patrick's lying.  Patrick's going to be the next lying president of the United States of Lying America.

Rev. Brian Darling: Sure, I get weepy at Christmas, the Crucifixion kind of gets to me, but that's not the same as actually having faith.

So, Until Next Time have a little compassion for the writers, and save your anger for the studios,  if you don't believe me, maybe you'll listen to the greatest rock band of all time.  That's right, The D.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Pilot Reviews Samantha Who and Viva Laughlin

The final Fall Pilot Reviews are here for your reading pleasure, even though one of them has already been canceled.  Yup, I was too slow in getting this blog out.  If I had done it yesterday while watching football, I would have beaten the ax, but alas, the ax beat me.  Not that I'm too surprised.  I also wish that I had already done my review before tonight, because I would have made my Tom Baldwin reference before he appeared on Journeyman tonight and I would have looked like a psychic.  Oh well.  At any rate, here are the final two Fall Pilot Reviews...


The show had some funny moments, there is no denying that.  The premise was interesting and for the most part entertaining.  Jean Smart was, as always, brilliant, and the show is worth watching if just for her.  Christina Applegate has grown tremendously as an actor as well since her days as a Bundy, and it is hard to find fault in her performance.  The main problem with this show is that I can't really see it remaining interesting for a long period at a time.  Shannon mentioned that he felt that Pushing Daisies could have easily been done as a theatrical release, and I agree, although I think that as the show has gone on the past few weeks, it has continued to stay fresh and interesting.  I'm not sure that the same could be said for Samantha Who?.  For a few weeks, the premise will work, but how long can it really take the main character to find out the bad things she did before losing her memories and try to become a better person?  I think that this would have made a great romantic comedy.  Girl loses memory, finds out that she was bad and because of it had lost a great guy, remedies it, and gets back said guy.  There are laughs there are tears, and you go home happy and full of too expensive popcorn.  In a sitcom, I think the idea will only be watchable for a few episodes.  I also didn't like the jokes at the expense of the over weight lonely and unpopular girl.  They were too easy and truthfully pretty lame.  Sitcom writers should be able to come up with something better.

Interesting Fact: The cast is made up of recognizable faces from lots of other shows, already mentioned Christina's famous former role on Married/With Children, her best friend Andrea is played by Jennifer Esposito who was on Spin City, Samantha's mother is played by the aforementioned Jean Smart, who has had a recent outstanding turn on 24, but is most well known of course for Designing Women.  The boyfriend is played by none other than Barry Watson formally of 7th Heaven, (making this the second blog entry with a 7th Heaven reference in the last three entries, what are the odds of that?) and Frank the doorman is played by former Vulcan Tuvok of Voyager, aka Tim Russ.

Pilot Grade: 83%


I honestly don't know where to start with this show.  Seeing as it has already been canceled, perhaps it doesn't really matter, but I'll give it my best shot anyway.  The show is horribly acted, it doesn't come off as realistic at all, and that's even without taking into account the "musical numbers", if you could even really call them that.  (More on that in a moment.)  The emotions portrayed by the actors in this pilot made soap opera acting seem Academy Award worthy.  It would have been humorous if it weren't so obvious that the show was taking itself so seriously.  Hugh Jackman at least seemed to be having fun with his role, but he was the only one.  Of course, considering that his character was introduced as being synonymous with the devil, his was the only character worth having fun with.  And what a waste of D.B. Woodside, recently brilliant in the last few seasons of 24 and before that on the final season of Buffy, the Vampire Slayer.  In this he's a kiss ass who likes to laugh sycophantly, not pretty, and not a role worthy of the talent that D.B. has so recently shown.  Speaking of wasted talent, what the hell is Melanie Griffith doing in this mess?  Oh well, it's very likely that within a couple of years no one will remember that this ever took place, and the IMDb reference will be the only reminder of this shameful moment in her career.  Just looking at the idea, it seems interesting.  A murder mystery musical.  Okay, I'm intrigued.  The execution, however, was terrible.  I'm not sure that Lloyd Owen was the right choice for the lead role in this series, he comes off as a lame Tom Baldwin (from the 4400, and I swear I was going to say that even before his cameo in Journeyman tonight as Dan Vasser's father in the past), he definitely doesn't do the job that other British actors have done in playing American (or at least with American accent) characters have lately such as Kevin McKidd in Journeyman, Jaime Bamber in Battlestar Galactica, or Michelle Ryan in Bionic Woman.  But the poor acting isn't the only problem.  The characters are completely unlikeable, which is a bad thing for a murder mystery, because if you don't care about the characters, you don't really care who did it.  Even that isn't the only problem, the "musical" portion of the program comes across (I guess I should say came across seeing as the show is now canned) as cheap karaoke.  The original versions of the songs are playing while the character sings along with the original artist.  It's like a bad talent show where the person's "act" is singing along with the cd

Interesting Fact: Lloyd Owen, the miscast lead actor (and Tom Baldwin wannabe) was once Dr. Henry Jones Sr. That's right, the father of our favorite archaeologist Indiana.  He played the role popularized by the great Sean Connery in the television series, The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles.

Pilot Grade: -25%, that's right, I went negative.

Until Next Time, how about Veronica Mars on Heroes?  Creepy.  I love Micah's cousin's power, that's awesome, and it looks like Parkman has even more powers to look forward to, but his daddy's evil, let's hope he can stay the same great guy we've known and loved since Felicity.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Pilot Reviews Woman's Murder Club

The Reviews of the new fall pilots on network television continue, but are winding down.  Tonight was the return of Angie Harmon (Law & Order) to television in...


I'm glad that Angie Harmon is back on television.  She's very good, and there is no denying that.  Unfortunately, this show is nothing compared to Law & Order.  It's not at all believable in my opinion.  Women might talk like this amongst themselves, I can't claim to know for sure not being a woman, but it doesn't feel real to me the way that, for instance, Sex and the City did.  I do know that it is extremely unlikely that the detectives would take their main suspect into the morgue to get a look at the victim.  As for Angie Harmon, I still think she's a great actress, but her character's got some flaws.  For a character that supposedly has a problem with how seriously she takes work, she sure spends a lot of time at work with her friends talking about their personal lives.  You'd think that she wouldn't be so keen to talk about personal stuff with a dead body just outside the window if she takes her job as seriously as everyone claims.  The show, like Journeyman is set in San Fransisco, but it doesn't feel like San Fransisco the way that Journeyman does.  The set for the San Fransisco Register is completely boring and as a main character works there, you'd think they'd have put a little more into the set.  (Something that Journeyman definitely did, their San Fransisco Register set is awesome).  They have the establishing shots, but San Fransisco is a very unique city, and it takes a lot of effort to make wherever you are shooting emulate it, it certainly takes more than just some establishing shots, and I don't feel like Woman's Murder Club made that effort.  All in all that's what I feel about the entire show, there just doesn't seem to be that much effort, its as if they just wanted to make a cop show, Sex and the City style, but without the style and believability that Sex and the City had.

Interesting fact: the show is based on a series of novels created by best selling author James Patterson, and he serves as an executive producer.  The creators of the television adaptation were writers on the fx show The Shield, although this show is much lighter fare than that cop show.

Pilot Grade: 57%

Until Next Time, I hate that for the second consecutive week, the TCU Horned Frogs will not be available to me on television, what the hell is up with that?

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Pilot Reviews Life is Wild and other tv thoughts

Well, the pilots have been slowing down, there are just a few left.  One of them was last Sunday, I watched it online, Life is Wild on the CW.


The show is your typical Sunday night family type show that used to dominate the screen.  You remember, Highway to Heaven, Life Goes On, Touched by an Angel, 7th Heaven: the family drama.  I don't know how successful this one will be, partly because if I wasn't such a big fan of Smallville, I might not have even realized that this show existed.  I hadn't heard a thing about it despite having read about (I thought) all of the upcoming shows so that I would be able to review each of them.  Somehow this one slipped through the net.  I actually saw the commercials for it during Smallville, but quickly forgot about it, until I saw trailers for the second episode during Reaper this week, so I went online to see if I could watch it.  Thankfully, the pilot was available on and I am able to give you this review.  As I said at the beginning, it reminds me of the old family friendly dramas, not that there is anything wrong with that.  Life Goes On was a great television show, and 7th Heaven was pretty good in it's prime.  It seems that the show is going for the realistic family feel that Kyle XY has down pat, but Life is Wild falls a little bit short of that.  The family for the most part doesn't feel completely realistic, in fact it feels forced.  The premise of the show feels a bit forced as well.  The whole show has a cheesy feel to it.  Of course so did 7th Heaven; this show can overcome the cheesiness just like that one did.  Despite it's flaws, the show has undeniable heart, and the fact that it's set in Africa is pretty cool, if only because Africa itself is undeniably cool.  While it took a long time for me to really get into it, primarily because I didn't find the family too realistic, the story (while predictable and cheesy) ultimately won me over in the last act.  I let myself just fall for the traps that the show was setting, and ultimately enjoyed it.  Yeah it's predictable, yeah it's cheesy, but it is what it is, and if you just accept that, than you can enjoy the show.  As another plus, the lead actress, Leah Pipes is amazing.  She's the best actor on this series, by far, and adds believability to the rest of the cast simply by having the story told through her character.  I really think that Life is Wild has the potential to be the type of show that the others I mentioned were, but it's going to have to have a lot more visibility first.  It deserves a look just because I think that there is a place for that type of show on network, even if the network is the CW.  I'll always remember growing up and watching Highway to Heaven, then later watching Life Goes On, and finally 7th Heaven together as a family.  I would like for other families to have that same experience, and I think this show can provide it.

Interesting fact:  The show is actually filmed on location in South Africa, and is based on a British TV show titled Wild at Heart.

Pilot Grade: 79%

Other thoughts about tv shows...  SPOILERS INCLUDED

Chuck: I'm caught up now, and this show just keeps getting better, the third episode was the first to have the opening credits.  The theme music is Short Skirt, Long Jacket by CAKE!

Heroes:  At first I really didn't like the fact that Claire's new friend could fly, we already know someone who can fly.  But with the reveal about Sark's power (I call him Sark because that's who he was on Alias, I'm talking about Hiro's hero from ancient Japan) it is clear that powers can and do repeat, which I guess makes sense considering that it is an evolutionary thing there would be some repeats.  My other problem was with Peter.  I didn't understand why he didn't just use his power to get the box, but I guess that it makes sense that without knowing who he is, he doesn't have any faith in his powers either (much less know exactly how to use them).  I'm wondering if because of the plot holes in season one, I'm just expecting them here in season two, or if there actually are weaknesses in this show.  I honestly am not sure which, but I'm not ready to give up on Heroes yet.

Friday Night Lights:  As regular readers might recall, this was last years winner of Josh's Choice for Best New Show of the Year Award.  After one episode of season two, I am very worried it will not be able to sustain it's success.  Granted, that success was largely critical, as it was not watched by a large amount of people, but the first episode had a few moments in it that I found incredibly hard to accept.  That is very disappointing as the best part of this show last year was that it was incredibly real.  I hope that it corrects itself soon as I love this show too much to watch it destroy itself.

Prison Break:  This show is strangely addictive.  I've quit on it three times only to get myself caught right back up on it and watching it again.  I can't explain why.  I really hope that Sarah Tancredi

NBC: Man, even with the worry about Heroes and Friday Night Lights, you've got to be impressed with NBC.  Every one of their new shows was impressive, and with each episode, Chuck, Journeyman, Bionic Woman, and Life each just get better.

Until Next Time, Kudos to NBC.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Catching Up and it Turns Out I'm Not the Only One Missing LOST

So, due to all of the sports, I'm a little behind on my television viewing.  That should be easier now that baseball is over.  (Yes, I realize that technically baseball is still going on, but the pain of being swept out of the first round makes it hard for me to watch baseball without bursting into embarrassing tears.)  What's also bad is that the one series I predicted would be a sweep was the only series that wasn't.  Oh well.  Try again next year.  (For the record though, I have the Indians beating the Rockies in the World Series.)

Anyway, to get to my point, I only just watched the second episode of Chuck.  In the episode, Chuck is undergoing tests by some Government Doctor, and he's looking at pictures that trigger the computer in his brain, one of which is of an airplane.  Seeing it Chuck says, "Oceanic Flight 815 was shot down by surface to air missiles ... who worked on subterranean ... beneath the ... international airport."  That's all I was able to understand despite watching the scene about a hundred times.  Not that it really has any bearing on our friends so recently from the mysterious island, as so far as I can tell there is no connection between this show, Chuck, and LOST.  My feeling is that it was just a tiny shout out to LOST, but still it was a heart stopping moment when Chuck mentioned that fateful flight.

Anyway, I thought I'd share this shout out sized treat with you, my reading public (small though you are) as something to help tide you over a little bit at least as we patiently (or try anyway) wait for LOST to return.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Pilot Reviews Moonlight, Aliens in America, and Pushing Daisies


Now, those of you that know me well know that I love sci-fi and fantasy, and that includes shows with mythological creatures such as Vampires.  I also love mystery due to reading lots of Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew growing up, moving from that into the great Agatha Christie.  So, a melding of the two is a recipe for success, at least in my opinion, and I'm glad that a television show finally melded these two loves I have into an exciting and interesting show.  Of course that sentence was relevant years ago when Joss Wheden brought us the fantastic show ANGEL.  Then, also, there is the amazing book series, recently turned into a pretty good television series, The Dresden Files.  Both of those are far more interesting and original than Moonlight, a show about a private investigator who also happens to be a Vampire.  Unfortunately, the show is pretty uninspired.  The pilot is incredibly predictable, I had the whole thing figured out less than 15 minutes in.  The acting wasn't anything special, and the dialogue was pretty boring.  The only thing in the pilot that I liked was the friend vampire of the main character vampire (sorry it wasn't interesting enough of a show for me to remember names).  He had some life to him (interesting since the character he was playing is one of the undead).  Other than some funny moments provided all to briefly by him, the show had no real redeeming qualities.

Interesting fact: The one character that I liked in the show, played by Jason Dohring, is a cult favorite character in the sadly departed show Veronica Mars.

Pilot Grade: 11%


There has been a lot of talk about the death of the sitcom, which in my opinion is a very sad thing if it is true.  When a sitcom is really good, it can remain in the watching public's consciousness forever.  I'd like to think that the sitcom isn't dying, we're just in a lull of good sitcoms being produced.  Thus far this season doesn't seem to be changing that situation for the most part.  Happily, Aliens in America is the exception.  This show was extremely funny (which is a necessity for a sitcom, it's part of the definition people, yes ABC I'm talking to you), the situations, while taken to a bit of a funny extreme, where at the same time extremely believable, as were the characters, which made for that all important element, heart.  So far Seinfeld is the only show that survived (and indeed prospered) without it, and no one else is Seinfeld.  It was funny, the dialogue was sharp and funny, and the actors were all excellent.  It managed to take a possibly sensitive subject and find the humor and heart in it.  For those of you who don't know, it's about a middle class family in Wisconsin who decides to take on a foreign exchange student, expecting a blond haired, blue eyed, athletic European, but instead they get a Pakistani Muslim.  Horrified, the mother wants to return him.  She tries to explain to her husband that he could be a terrorist,
"Some of them pass themselves off as students.  Bill O'Reilly says so.  You need to watch more news."

"Honey, it's Midora Wisconsin."

"What so now Midora's not important enough to blow up?  Where's your civic pride?"

Through a majority of the episode, the mother is not shown to have the best qualities, but that's just to set up the moment at the end that brings a little bit of a tear to your eyes for a reason other than because you've been laughing nonstop (although that is also true).  This is a show that comes around at the right time, but it is about more than Muslims are a lot like us, it's also funny, like a sitcom should be.

Interesting Fact: David Guarascio and Moses Port, the creators of this program are both former writers of the sitcoms Just Shoot Me and Mad About You.

Pilot Grade: 94%


Visually stunning, well acted, and superbly written, this is a show with some promise.  The pilot was very well executed.  It was funny and suspenseful at just the right times.  It had some great lines and great moments between the characters.  The main character, Ned says to his childhood sweetheart, who he is unable to ever touch again, "I'm not into the hug."
She responds, "Than you haven't been hugged properly, it's like an emotional Heimlich."

That's awesome.

Later in the episode there is this exchange between Ned and his business partner played by the great Chi McBride.

Chi: "You know what?  I'm glad you did it.  It makes the worst thing I ever did seem insignificant."

Ned: "Listen to you all Judgey-judge."

Chi: "Judgey-judge?"

Priceless.  The comedy is primarily dark comedy, which is dicey, but when it's done right, I love it.  This show does it right.  Add in the visual look of the show, which is beautiful on top of being original, and you've got a good show.  Add in the emotional punch of the un-requitableack to life, but if they ever touch again, then she's dead for good.  That's just genius.  So there is a lot to like about the show.  I wasn't a huge fan of the omnipotent narration.  It fits, I guess, but I would have liked to see them go a different route.  The other thing is I'm not exactly sure where the show goes from here.  I'm guessing it becomes a bit of a mystery show, with them having to solve various cases each week, which is different than I was expecting.  I would have liked a better idea of the direction the show was headed from the pilot.  Overall, however, it appears that it might be a good show.  At the very least it will be a treat for the eyes each week.

Interesting fact: It is Executive Produced by the great Barry Sonnenfeld who directed Men in Black and Get Shorty, and used to be the Cinematographer for the Coen Brothers.

Pilot Grade: 91%

Until Next Time, Glad to see we finally got some positive reviews again.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Pilot Reviews Cavemen and Carpoolers

The reviews of the fall pilots continues with what ABC is advertising as a "Man Date", I know that some men are bad at planning dates, but this is just embarrassing.


Well, I was actually looking forward to this show.  I love the commercials.  Unfortunately, the actors from the commercials aren't in the show.  Sadly, what works brilliantly in a 30 second spot fails miserably in a 30 minute show.  In the commercials, one of the cavemen takes huge umbrage to the portrayal of his people in the Geico commercials, and his sarcastic response to the situation is hilarious.  In the show, they make Nick more of a Sape (short for Homo Sapian) hater than a Caveman defender.  It's not funny, it's a little sad actually.  Speaking of funny, I wonder if they even attempted for funny in this show.  Generally that's the point for sitcoms, but I didn't laugh at all during the episode.  I was greatly disappointed, and will most likely just wait for more commercials to get my caveman fix.

Interesting fact:  This is the second show that was based on a commercial.  Bob the talking baby got a television show after pitching for an Internet business.  That show failed miserably, but luckily, Bob was able to get another job as the pitch man, er, baby, for Quiznos.

Pilot Grade: 0%


When you have two television shows in one hour, you hope that at least one of them is good.  Sadly for ABC Tuesday nights, such is not the case here.  While I'm a fan of Jerry O'Connell from his fine, fine work on that awesome television show Sliders, he's not the greatest actor in the world.  He could probably do alright in a comedic role on a sitcom, after all he was really good in Jerry McGuire, but it would require better writing, and a much better situation than this one.  I really don't know how this even got green-lit.  Is there anything worse than driving to work?  Not much.  So why in the world would you think that the drive to work is a good place to stage a television show?  The characters aren't very interesting, and the pilot did a very poor job of making them seem at all realistic.  For the second consecutive supposed comedy I failed to laugh.  At least in this show, I could tell they were jokes, unlike in Cavemen.  Sadly, they still weren't funny.  At least they tried though.

Interesting fact: Fred Goss who plays Gracen was last on the ABC comedy Sons and Daughters which was a largly improv type show and despite not being watched by many people was a very enjoyable show that has become a cult favorite.  I don't see the same for this show.

Pilot Grade: 7%

Until Next Time, tonight is the pilot of Pushing Daisies, one of the most anticipated shows of the year

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Pilot Reviews Big Shots and Gossip Girl

I contemplated not even doing Gossip Girl.  No one would notice, right?  I mean it's on the CW for goodness sake.  Most people haven't even heard of the CW and no one I know knows what CW stands for (for the record, neither do I), but I have taken on this responsibility, and so preform it fully I shall.  (Okay, sorry about the Yoda there, sometimes I get a little carried away.)  Anyway, the pilot reviews continue, and while there's been a string of mostly positive reviews, well, as they say, all good things must come to an end.


I sort of had some hopes for this show, after all, I have loved each of the four stars in previous shows, The Practice, Alias, Sports Night, and Titus, the four of them together should be great, right?  Wrong.  Don't put all the blame on the actors, though.  This was probably some of the worst dialogue I have ever heard.  And actually, I think Christopher Titus has grown tremendously as an actor.  I really look forward to seeing him in something good.  His schedule will most likely be open pretty soon.  I talk a lot about the vaunted Josh's Choice for Best New Show of the Year award, well I'm giving Big Shots a "shot" at a different award.  Josh's Choice for Most Likely to Be Cancelled First Award.  Not only was the dialogue bad, but the storylines were forced and ridiculously predictable.  It was like, what would be the most ridiculous bad television story we can come up with next?  Oh, yeah, let's do that, we'll have the mistress and the wife be friends. That's good, but I have a better one, let's have a different character accidentally pick up a hooker with a penis, that'll be classic.  Yeah, but not as classic if a cop catches them.  Good point, we'll put it in the pilot.  Oh, then we can use the catch phrase "Track down the Tranny."  It'll be as big as "Save the Cheerleader, Save the World."  There is more, but I'm getting tired of rehashing a very painful hour of television.  This show had no redeeming qualities, and I really can't imagine anyone being interested.

Interesting fact: Four really good actors, who have been in really good shows, for some reason agreed to be in this one.

Pilot Grade: 1% (Because Titus's acting skills have actually greatly improved from his sitcom when he was just funny, now he's funny and he can act.)


This show should probably also be cancelled, but I recognize that I am no where close to the target audience for this show, and they therefore couldn't care less what I think.  I haven't read the books on which this series is based, so I don't know how true to them the storylines are, but for as well as those books sell, I figured the premise would be stronger than the one in the tv show.  There is a secret person who has a website and she calls herself, are you ready for this?, Gossip Girl.  She knows all and sees all, and then tells everyone about it.  And of course everyone is checking the website at all times for the latest gossip except for the two main characters who coincidentally all of the gossip is about.  Right.  Well, at least the dialogue is more believable than in Big Shots.  I'm assuming that 12-17 year old girls (at least some of them) might like this show, but I can't imagine anyone else being able to garner any enjoyment out of it.  The characters are completely unlikeable.  One of them has a rant similar to the one given by the youngest Darling son in Dirty, Sexy, Money, about how hard it is to be a rich kid from a rich family.  Boo eff-ing hoo.  In DSM, however, the great Peter Krause calls him on it immediately, and we're supposed to realize how utterly spoiled these people are to imagine even a moment of regret for the lives that have been handed to them.  In Gossip Girl on the other hand, I think that we're actually supposed to feel sorry for the character saying it.  Yeah right.  I'm sorry his character's so stupid.

Early in the episode there is this exchange.

Girl: Someone saw Serena getting off at Central Station.
Boy: Good, things were starting to get dull around here.
Me: Doesn't look like this is helping any.

Interesting Fact: The Gossip Girl is played by Kristen Bell, otherwise known as Veronica Mars, which used to be on UPN before it was the CW, and was a far superior show.

Pilot Grade: 13% (I might not have liked the characters, but I believed in them a lot more than the ones in Big Shots.)

Until Next Time, the positive reviews had to end at sometime, right?

Pilot Reviews Life and Dirty, Sexy, Money

The premiere reviews continue (for others, see below)...


So, the first of these that I did was for the Fox show K-Ville, which I felt was just a stereotypical cop show.  Truth be told, before watching this one, I figured that it would be too.  I was wrong.  Sure, it is a cop show, and there are plenty of cop show things that happen in the episode, but at the same time it's original.  First of all, I really like the premise, it's about a cop who was wrongly imprisoned.  He spent 12 years in jail for something that he didn't do.  When he got out (and was given a fat settlement by the city) he rejoined the police force that had turned its back on him.  It gives an interesting set up for a serialized show.  The running plot line will of course be the main character working on figuring who set him up, but at the same time, he's a cop and he's going to do his job.  When his partner asks him why he came back, he tells her (again NBC with the interesting female character) that while he was locked away, he thought "I'm a cop" and that's what kept him going, that knowledge of himself.  I talked about in my K-Ville review that there wasn't anything that special to put it above any of the other cop shows on tv, with Life, however, it's different.  The main character is very intriguing.  He's got an attitude that's original.  The show intersperses the action with documentary style talking heads about the main character, giving it an interesting take on getting to know the character by seeing what others think about him, as well as seeing how he acts by himself as well as around others.  His partner is interesting too, very multi-dimensional, and I'm looking forward to the development of her almost as much as the main character.  There is a central mythos to the show which is intriguing, but the show seems content to work like the procedurals (CSI, Law & Order) and give the main importance to the case of the week.  It's an interesting combination that I have been thinking would be a good idea for a television show and I'm interested to see how they make it work.

Interesting Fact: Damian Lewis who plays the main character was Major Dick Winters in HBO's Band of Brothers.  Sarah Shahi, his partner, was the best part of NBC's short lived sitcom Teachers, and before that was Will Tippen's assistant and some time love interest on the great Alias.

Pilot Grade: 98%


Peter Krause is, as always, awesome, as is Donald Sutherland as the head of the rich and spoiled Darling family.  At first, I thought this show might be a bit of a one trick pony, how will Peter Krause get the wacky rich family members out of trouble this week?  While that will certainly play a part in the show, I think that the writers will do a decent job of developing the characters enough that you might care what trouble they're getting into.  I certainly started to care for the characters just based on the pilot, and that's somewhat of an accomplishment seeing as they are all rich, spoiled brats and generally unlikeable in all respects.  But what really sold me on this pilot (besides the brilliant acting of Peter Krause and Donald Sutherland) is the mystery plot line reveal towards the end of the episode.  I totally didn't see it coming, and am drawn in by it completely.

Interesting Fact: The senator hopeful Darling's (played by Stephen Baldwin, unlike Adam from Chuck, actually of the Baldwin clan) transgendered girlfriend is actually played by a transgendered woman, born Brenden McDaniel, and now known as Candis Cayne.

Pilot Grade: 96%

Until Next Time, I'm not doing one for Private Practice if you're wondering, because the pilot for this show was actually last season as an episode of Grey's Anatomy.  Truth be told, I'm glad that that's the case as I'm not a fan of Grey's Anatomy I wouldn't like Private Practice anyway.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Pilot Reviews Reaper and Cane

So, the fall premieres have continued, and thus so will my takes and grades on them.  So far I've done K-Ville, Back to You, Big Bang Theory, Chuck, Journeyman, and Bionic Woman, today I give you my thoughts on Reaper and Cane.


This premiere was pretty good, and definitely funny.  The cast is exceptional and the dialogue was spot on.  I hope that the series will continue to have the type of dialogue that it had in the premiere, as the influence of the director was quite evident, and I'm not sure that the show will be able to still have that feel without him at the helm.  Kevin Smith (aka Silent Bob) directed the pilot, and his influence in many of the one on one scenes in particular was clearly strong.  There were many moments that felt like Kevin Smith moments, and that's a good thing, I just hope that it continues even when he isn't directing.  On the negative side, I felt like for a comedy (which this mainly is) the dark moments were just a little too dark, particularly a moment with a dog and a car door and a man and his Zamboni.  Both those scenes really felt out of place with the feel of the rest of the episode.  I'm certainly not against dark humor, and there is a place for some dark humor in this show, but it needs to be proportionate to the humor throughout the rest of the show, and at times I don't think that it was.  My other big problem with the show was the portrayal of the female characters.  Now this is something that I think there is plenty of time and room to correct, but in the pilot I was very disappointed with the female characters, they were not strong characters at all.  Maybe it's because in the majority of the other pilots that I've seen thus far, strong females play a part in them (and a major role in Bionic Woman, Chuck, and Journeyman, good job NBC.), but it was very disturbing how weak the female characters were in this show, which is kind of surprising since the show is created by two females.  Hopefully this will be something that the show addresses as it continues.

Interesting fact: The main character, Bret Harrison, was last seen (well maybe not actually "seen" since I seem to be one of the few to actually have watched the show) as the main character in The Loop, on Fox, which was actually a pretty funny comedy which was a previous contender for Josh's Choice for Best New Show of the Season, and his best friend on Reaper, Sock, played by Tyler Labine, was Dave on former Josh's Choice for Best New Show of the Season award winner Invasion.

Pilot Grade: 87%


The new show on CBS starring Jimmy Smits (West Wing, NYPD Blue, Star Wars Episode III) wasn't one that I really expected to like despite being a fan of Smits, but I have to admit the pilot really intrigued me.  Jimmy Smits, along with producing the show, stars as an adopted son as well as son in law of the head of a Sugar Cane CEO played by Hector Elizondo (Chicago Hope).  Elizondo finds out that his cancer has returned and he doesn't have long to live, prompting him to give control of the company over to his son in law Alex (Smits) instead of his natural son Frank (played superbly by Nestor Carbonell).  This seemed rather straight forward from the previews, and I figured that the show would be pretty predictable.  Well, there is a whole lot more going on, and the pilot is chock full of intrigue, drama, and suspense.  I suppose that it has a bit of a soap opera-ish quality to it on the basest level, but the acting and dialogue are so superb that you buy into it completely.  It has been compared to Dallas in some reviews, and while that isn't a show that I ever watched, I know enough to say that on some levels I can see the comparison (and in the show they even make a blatant sugar to oil comparison) I think that this show will be a lot less campy than Dallas on occasion was.  I'm looking forward to seeing more and finding out what the repercussions of the actions in the pilot will be.

Interesting Fact: Kevin McKidd on Journeyman is not the only former star of Rome finding their way to network television, Polly Walker who was Atia of the Julii appears as Ellis Samuals, the daughter of Elizondo's chief rival, and it appears that despite the far different accent (Southern instead of the English accent that Romans always have in film and television) she is up to her old tricks of using her sexuality to achieve what she wants.  Also, Nestor Carbonell who plays Frank is the mysterious non-aging Richard from LOST, so I hope that his job on Cane doesn't keep him from continuing to make the occasional appearance on our favorite Island.

Pilot Grade: 96%

Until Next Time, the new season is shaping up to be a good one!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Pilot Reviews Big Bang Theory and Journeyman

Continuing with the theme of the last few posts, I'm giving my thoughts and grades to each of the new premieres on network television this fall (excluding the reality shows which I prefer to ignore).  So far I've done K-Ville and Back to You (three posts ago) and Chuck and Bionic Woman (two posts ago).  Here are the other two shows that premiered tonight


Yeah, it had it's moments, and I like the lead Johnny Galecki a lot.  You might know him from Suicide Kings, but more likely as David Healy on Roseanne.  Not so sure about his roommate, played by Jim Parsons.  He got some great lines in the episode, but I never really laughed at them.  Looking back at the lines, I should have laughed, but I just didn't like the delivery.  The character really seems a little too ridiculous to me, I guess.  I also wasn't too thrilled with the female lead, mainly, again because the character didn't appeal to me.  I doubt I'll pay too much attention to this show.  If I'm too lazy to find the remote after How I Met Your Mother (which was, as always, Legen... wait for it, and I hope you aren't lactose intolerant, because the next part of the word is... dary) I might leave it on, but it's not one that I'll have to watch.

Interesting fact, Kaley Cuoco who plays the female lead in the show was on an episode of My So Called Life as young Angela Chase, Claire Danes's character.

Pilot Grade: 74%


Less than twenty four hours ago I called Chuck perhaps the greatest pilot ever made.  Fester (capitalized only because it is starting a sentence) always says I am too quick with the word "genius", well, perhaps I was a little too quick with my pilot praise for Chuck, because at that time I had yet to see Journeyman.  This show blew me away.  The trailers, that anyone who has been to the movies or watched NBC recently has surely seen, fill you in on the basic plot, somehow, the main character, played with great intensity by Kevin McKidd last seen as Lucius Vorenus on HBO's brilliant Rome, travels back in time.  But it's far more than that, he is sent back with a purpose, sent back to change someone's life.  He travels to various times in the life of that person, to put them in a spot to do something important.  Right as the viewer figures this out, along with our hero, they most likely start to think, okay, yeah, it's cool and all, but I've seen this before, it was called Quantum Leap, that's when the pilot pulls off an amazing "what the fu..." moment, thirty minutes into the episode (in real time, with out commercials, I don't know when it happens with commercials, sorry, watched it online thanks to Amazon Unbox.)  This is definitely a powerful show, that I can not wait to keep up with.  It's got a thriller oriented premise, but it packs an emotional punch, and the story is set up in a way that I think that is going to continue.  I can't wait to find out.

Interesting fact: Moon Bloodgood, who plays Olivia, was last seen on Daybreak, where Taye Diggs lives the same day over and over again.  Apparently, she's really drawn to shows about mishaps in the space-time continuum.

Pilot Grade: 100%

Until Next Time, NBC which did so well in last year's JCFBNSOTS awards is definitely off to a hot start!

Heroes Season 2, first thoughts

Well, I'm really not sure that this show can sustain the success that it had last season.  It ended pretty poorly, so I'm hoping that the writers can recreate the magic.  New mysteries were introduced in the premiere, and it kept my interest (I don't get NBC very good, so I figured I would just wait and watch it later on-line, but I stuck through the bad reception, and I really didn't think I would, even through the annoying car commercials played over and over every commercial break.)  I was disapointed that there was no Nikki, Micah, D.L. moment in the episode, however I loved the introduction of Hiro's hero, the samurai of the past played by none other than David Anders who was the deliciously evil Sark on Alias.  Anyway, here's hoping that the show can regain the momentum it somehow lost at the very end of last season, it was at the very least a good start.

Until Next Time, stay tuned for some new premiere reviews!

Pilot Reviews Bionic Woman and Chuck


First off, let me say how much I love Katee Sackhoff, she plays Kara "Starbuck" Thrace in the reimagined Battlestar Galactica, and what appears to be the villain of this show.  And she's a great villain.  She adds all kind of life to the show.  That isn't to say that Michelle Ryan doesn't add life to the show, it's just that her character is really freaked out and trying to figure things out, Katee's character (I feel like we're close enough to be on a first name basis) on the other hand is used to her, shall we say, accouterments, and actually quite proud of them (and proud of where some of them are).  It's safe to say that she steals the pilot, and I really hope that she sticks around for awhile, and considering where she was at the end of last season of BSG (that's the cool way to refer to Battlestar Galactica) she'll probably have the time to give this show, although you never can tell with Galactica.  From the looks of the pilot, that'll be the case on this show as well.  The car crash scene, which if you've seen a movie in the last two months, or watched any NBC at all in the last few weeks you've seen a bit of, is unbelievable.  I actually watched it like ten times in a row trying to tell if it was CGd.  I'm sure that it was, but it looks incredibly real.  Not to mention horrifying.  The action is great, the central mythos of the show is set up well in the pilot episode, but I'm not sure that I buy the relationship between Jaime (our heroine) and Will (her doctor boyfriend).  The dialogue between them seemed really forced, which is odd since this show comes from the creators of BSG who make not only the dialogue but the entire strange senario in which the show takes place seem incredibly believable.  There are extenuating circumstances to their relationship which are revealed early on in the episode, and since part of their discussion is really a DTR, which are never easy, and probably always seemed forced from the outside, I'm willing to suspend the disbelief and see where it goes.  The other thing I found a little lacking in the episode was the feeling that it was extremely rushed.  I think that this would have worked much better as a two hour pilot instead of trying to convey the entire idea and introduce all of the side characters and the mystery that is requisite in a show such as this in just one hour.  Other than those two minor quibbles, I found Bionic Woman to be an outstanding hour of television, and I can't wait to see more.

Interesting fact: Katee Sackhoff is not the only BSG actor to have a role in the show, Mark Sheppard, who played Baltar's lawyer on a recent storyline (and was Badger on Firefly), and Aaron Douglas, who plays Chief Tyrol, also appear in the pilot, and will likely have at least a little bit of a run on Bionic Woman.

Pilot Grade: 95%


I honestly thought after I finished watching Bionic Woman that it would get the highest grade I would give out.  Sure it had a couple of minor issues, but I was pumped after watching it, and knew that it was a strong pilot.  Let me start by saying that Chuck might just be the best pilot ever shot.  I have absolutely nothing negative to say about this show.  It is hilarious, the action is at times breathtaking, the acting is superb, the dialogue is spot on, and the premise of the show is a perfect match for the type of show that it is.  Yvonne Strzechowski (and I have no idea how to pronounce that) is going to be the breakout star of the season.  She's unbelievably hot (and the filmmakers take full advantage of that fact) but she's also got action ability (she could probably teach Sidney Bristow a thing or two) and acts as a great "straight man" to the comedic stylings of Zachary Levi, our unwitting hero.  Levi is dead on as a charming, yet nerdy guy, who finds out that he's now a part of something far bigger and more important than anything he's used to, saving the world at $11/hour.  Add in Adam Baldwin (no relation) as another fed, and you've got a great comedic threesome to carry this show.  Adam Baldwin, of course, was Jayne on the short lived, but much loved, Firefly, and it appears that the spirit of Jayne is alive and well in the character of John Casey.  Morgan, Chuck's best friend, played by Joshua Gomez (who had a run on Invasion, a previous Josh's Choice for Best New Show of the Year award winner) is very funny, especially in his interactions with Chuck's sister, played by Sarah Lancaster (from Saved by the Bell: The New Class, I admit, I looked that up on IMDb, I didn't know it off the top of my head, I recognized her as the gift shop girl from season 2 of Scrubs).  But no question, the top secondary character is the boyfriend of Chuck's sister, Captain Awesome.  I hope that he becomes a recurring character, because he cracked me up.  Anyway, the episode is perfectly plotted, considering that it has to introduce the characters, the concept, and has an action filled "mission" of sorts added in.  It pulls all of this off perfectly.  Another great thing about this show is that while it's an action/spy show, it is also a comedy, and it recognizes that by not taking itself too seriously, but by relying on the comedic arena for the most part, making the thriller aspects that much more thrilling when they occur.

Interesting Fact: It is produced by and the pilot was directed by McG, who also directed the two Charlie's Angels movies as well as the just released We Are Marshall.

Pilot Grade: 100%

Until Next Time, more pilot reviews to come!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Pilot Reviews K-Ville and Back to You

So, I've decided to try and see every one of the pilots for the new fall season on the network channels, excluding of course reality tv as I am opposed to it.  So far, K-Ville and Back to You have premiered, so here are my comments and grades.


Overall, I was very disappointed with the pilot for K-Ville.  It's seems like it is just going to be a stereotypical cop show, kind of like Miami Vice only set in New Orleans.  That would be fine, except for the fact that they promoted it (and titled it) as though it would be something with a little more substance.  There are moments when the city and it's situation plays a role in the show, but mostly it doesn't seem that important.  Despite the fact that the hurricane ravaged city and the rebuilding project play a role in the plot of the first episode it still has the feel of a predictable, cheesy cop show plot.  They need to focus on the moments that seemed real, and try to be more original instead of a car chase, shoot em up, oriented cop show.  I haven't given up completely on this show, but truth be told, I probably wouldn't be too worried if I didn't catch another episode.

Interesting fact, one of the supporting characters is played by the actress who played Simone last season in Heroes.

Pilot Grade 66%


For some reason, the traditional sitcom just doesn't seem to appeal to me as much anymore.  I much more prefer the one camera, studio eschewing, no laugh track sitcom that has recently taken over (Arrested Development, Scrubs, The Office, My Name is Earl).  Overall they don't seem as real, and as everyone knows, comedy comes from real situations.  However if the traditional sitcom is going to make a comeback, it might as well be powered by Kelsey Grammer (from Cheers and Fraiser fame) and Patricia Heaton (the wife on Everyone Loves Raymond).  The two sitcom stars have obvious chemistry, and are both extremely talented in this arena.  The pilot had its funny moments, but was very predictable.  I wanted to see more of the supporting cast who seem to have a lot of promise, but the pilot mainly focuses on introducing us to the two leads.  Overall, I'd say that the show has a chance to find it's groove and become a pretty funny half hour of television.

Interesting fact, this show is from the same people who created Fraiser, arguably the last good traditional sitcom on network television.

Pilot Grade 78%

Until Next Time, I'm downloading Bionic Woman, Chuck, and Journeyman from Amazon Unbox, and will be giving my thoughts and grades on each of those soon.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

3rd Annual Josh's Choice For the Best New Show of the Season Award

It's that time again.  Remember, only network shows count (FOX, NBC, CBS, ABC, and the revamped WB/UPN combo the CW).

5. Heroes - NBC

I know, I know, I was all about this show for awhile, but there turned out to be way too many plot holes as the season went on, and the season finale was one of (if not the) worst season finales that I have ever seen.  Plenty of time for it to get back to the greatness it showed early on.

4. 30 Rock - NBC

Holy Crap, Tina Fey is hilarious.  And kind of hot.  Tracy Morgan is brilliant, and there is no way to say enough about Alec Baldwin.  With the brilliance of The Office and My Name is Earl, Thursday nights on NBC are once again Must See!

3. Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip - NBC

Aaron Sorkin is amazing.  A lot of people didn't like this show, but I, for one, loved it.  I'm very sad to see it go.  In my mind there is always a place for Sorkin's smart (and, yes, sometimes political) fast talk.

2. Jericho - CBS

For a little bit it looked like NBC might run away with this years top five, but this fantastic show (that I'm frankly a little surprised was ever picked up by CBS in the first place, doesn't really seem like a great fit) kept the NBC sweep from happening.  It looked for a little bit like this show wasn't going to make it back either, but it has gotten a seven episode pickup for the new season, so good job to the fans that helped make that happen!

and finally, the number one show...

1. Friday Night Lights - NBC

It is about so much more than Football, it is about life, and it is the most realistic portrayal of a family that I have ever seen on TV.  If you didn't catch this show last season, get on it and join the Dillon Panther bandwagon.  There's room.

Until Next Time, lot's of television to be excited about this season.  The incoming shows that I'm most excited about, and are on the watch list for the next season's coveted Josh's Choice for Best New Show of the Year Award, are Bionic Woman (from the creators of the new Battlestar Gallactica, easily the best thing on TV, well, ever), Journey Man (A: because I love time travel, B: because it stars Lucius Vorenus from HBO's Rome and he's awesome), Chuck (who doesn't like the idea of a computer nerd becoming a super spy, it's Alias for the nerd crowd), Reaper (the main character, who was the main character on former JCFBNSOTS Award honorable mention The Loop, finds out when he turns 21 that his parents sold his soul to the devil and now he has to work for him, happy birthday.  Oh, and the pilot is directed by Kevin Smith, sweet.), Pushing Daisies (the set up to this show is perfect, if the main character touches someone who has died, they come back to life, but if he touches them again, they're dead for good.  Well, he touches his old flame and brings her back to life and then they fall in love, the only problem, if they ever touch, she's dead again, this time forever, sexual tension much?  Plus it looks like it was filmed by Tim Burton.  Perfect.  It's between this and Bionic Woman to start.), Dirty Sexy Money (just because it has Peter Krause, I love me some Peter Krause.  Not only is he one of the worlds best actors, not only is he from great shows such as Sports Night and Six Feet Under, but his last name is really fun to say, it's pronounced KROW-zuh.  That's awesome.), and lastly, yes I am really excited about this show, Cavemen (I can't help it, my hopes are raised.  I love the commercials, so I'm ready for the show.)  Lots of new shows looking for the Josh love this season.  There are also some more that didn't have the pre season hype to make the list, but that doesn't mean that they won't be in the running if the pilot is really good and I get caught despite myself.  Wow, that was a really long Until Next Time.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

The Day in History and Some Reviews

30 years ago today, (well, now I guess yesterday) Star Wars was released.

It was released on an absurdly small number of screens due to the fact that the studio releasing it assumed that it was going to bomb.

They weren't the only ones.

Before it was scheduled to be released, George Lucas showed the film to some of his closest friends.  (Now to be fair, it wasn't yet completed when he showed it to them, some of the special effects still had to be added.  Instead of the space battle scenes, for instance, there were scenes of World War II fighter planes in battle, which I'm sure looked kinda cheesy.)

Resoundingly, those friends hated the film.  His own wife said it would be a failure, comparing it to a well known bomb at the time.  In modern language she would have said something to the effect of "it's the sci-fi Gigli."

Only Lucas's friend Stephen Spielberg had anything pleasant to say when he correctly predicted it would be unbelievably huge.

Lucas himself wasn't convinced however, and went so far as to be on vacation and unreachable thirty years ago today.  He didn't want to have to hear about what a flop his extremely personal film had turned out to be. 

Of course, in the theaters lucky enough to be showing it, the exact opposite was in fact true as lines were leading out blocks away as people waited to see it.  Ultimately it would become the highest grossing film of all time.

It also had a lot to do with making me who I am today.  I became a writer because of Star Wars, or more precisely, Empire Strikes Back.  I was three when Empire was released in theaters, which means I had to wait an additional three years (or the entirety of the life I had lived to that point) in order find out what the hell happened to Han Solo.

Since waiting three years (and again, I'd only been alive for three years at that point, so this seemed like an eternity) was clearly unacceptable I began writing in my head various versions of Return of the Jedi, even going so far as to put myself in the exact position that Solo had been frozen into whenever I was in the bathtub.  (My own version of method acting, I suppose.)

At any rate, that event (along with many other factors, granted) went a long way towards my realization that I wanted to write and make movies myself some day.  So, today, I thank George Lucas for introducing us to that Galaxy far, far away.

Speaking of movies, two were released today, Pirates 3 and Bug.  I saw them both.

Bug was brilliant.  However, it is very different from the movie that has been advertised.  If you go in expecting to see something in the vain of Saw or Hostel, you will be disappointed, as evidenced by the huge exodus of people about halfway through the movie.  (Can't say I'm sorry that a lot of them left, however, since all that they were doing was disrupting the viewing for everyone else.)

If instead you go in with an open mind, I think you'll be very pleasantly surprised.  The movie was based on a play, and the adaptation doesn't stray far from its source material as much of the film takes place in a rundown motel room.  Due in part to the story and in part to the wonderful camera work, the single set doesn't get a bit tiring.  While one could classify this film as a horror movie, it is much more then that.  It is a psychological character study that takes you into the disturbing world of the two main characters played superbly by Ashley Judd and the relatively unknown (in film anyway, he also played the same character on stage in New York and London) Michael Shannon.  The acting in this film (by both of the main characters and by Harry Connick Jr. in a supporting role) are worth the price of admission by itself.  I highly recommend it.

Honestly, I wasn't going to see Pirates of the Caribbean 3.  If I hadn't gone to the movies with a girl who wanted to see it, I probably wouldn't have.  However, I was pleasantly surprised.  Personally, I loved the first one and detested the second.  The third was likable.  It wasn't anywhere near as good as the first, but seemed to recapture some of the magic that the first one had.  Sure there were parts of it that were tedious (like the majority of the second film) and it was unnecessarily complicated, but there was a lot of it that was just plain fun (like the majority of the first film.)

In the interest of telling the whole truth, I was tempted to walk out early on in the film, but once Johnny Depp

Until Next Time, May the Force Be With You... Always

Thursday, May 24, 2007

LOST Through the Looking Glass, first thoughts

Wow.  Okay, here's what we know for sure.  It is possible to get off of the island.  At least Jack and Kate do.

What we don't know...

What is the Island, Where is the Island, When is the Island?  (I think this last question is extremely important.)

Let me first say, at the very first "flashback", I believed it was actually a flash-forward.  And stuck with that until the moment Jack told the new chief doctor to get his dad down there, but, after all we'd seen him walking around on the island, right, he could still be alive.  The Island cured Rose, cured Locke, and allowed Jin to have a baby, couldn't it conceivably have brought Jack's dad back to life as well?  So I wasn't too surprised to see Kate meet Jack.

Now, of course, everything has changed.

What does the show become?  Do we go to the future?  Does it become about Jack trying to get back to the Island?  Does it pick up on the island with the rescue and we see how Jack gets to this point?

Either are possible.

Important things to keep in mind: one, they supposedly found the plane and there were no survivors.  Okay, this info came from Naomi, and I'm not sure how much she can be trusted since Penny claimed to have never heard of her.  But somehow she knew about Desmond and Penny, and somehow she knew a little bit about Charlie, at least.  Is it possible that Benry Gale isn't the most evil person our Losties can meet up with?  That perhaps there is a more sinister force (that Benry Gale really feels are the "bad guys") out there with far more information about the island and the plane?  I think that it's likely.  Two, not only is Jack's dad still alive in the Flash Forward, but Kate is not (apparently) a fugitive.  Three, Jack says to Kate, I'm tired of lying or something to that effect (as Locke says, I'm going to have to watch that again), what did he mean by that?  And, finally four, at the viewing, when asked if he is a friend or a relative, Jack says neither.  If, assuming as I am, the viewing was for someone else on that plane, why does Jack not say friend?

Okay, now, it has only been about 25 minutes since the episode ended, and I'm still theorizing as I'm writing, so a lot of this isn't as developed as it will be once I think a little more on it, and talk to a few more people.  But here are my new theories...

1. The show picks back up on the island, but instead of flash backs, we start to get flash forwards to a possible (maybe even certain) future.  For instance, we start on the island right where we left off, but there are still some things to be done in order to get everyone off.  There are still all of the other Others, who might have something to say about it, and we know Locke doesn't want to go.  Was that really Walt or the Island/Jacob manifesting itself/himself as Walt.  If the Island/Jacob doesn't want them to go, isn't there more it can do to at least stall them?  I believe so, and it won't be super simple to get off of the Island, so we'll get episodes on the Island interspersed with flash forwards to what happens after the Island.

2.  I believe that the Island is in another Dimension.  I believe that in the dimension that our Losties are from, Oceanic Flight 815 really did crash and they really did find all of the survivors dead.  I believe that it's possible, in the right circumstances, for you to die in our reality, but simultaneously appear on the Island.  So that brings up the question (if I'm right in Theory 2) of how is the found plane and dead bodies explained away with the reappearance to his former life of one Dr. Jack Shepard?

3.  I believe that in order to get off of the Island some sort of dimensional travel is involved, which only makes sense since I believe that the Island itself is in a separate dimension.  Now, with dimensional travel (according to some theories in physics) there is also time travel.  In order to get everyone off of the Island, Dr. Jack is going to be offered, I think, some sort of deal.  It will involve going back in time before the flight happened.  It will involve going back to their lives as they left them before the circumstances that caused them all to get on the flight.

4. Okay, we have been shown in the flashbacks these last three seasons the fact that everyone on that flight was somehow connected far more then your usual "6 degrees".  In the recap episode "The_Answers" we were told that the connections are part of what caused everyone to be on that flight.  In other words, it wasn't an accident that got those exact people on that exact flight.  The creators used the example of Anthony Cooper, Locke's father.  If not for his actions, Locke would not have become the man that he did, and Sawyer certainly wouldn't have become the man that he did.  By conning Sawyer's parents (and causing their death) and by throwing Locke out of an 8 story window (and paralyzing him) he led directly to the events that put each of them on that plane.  Locke was trying to prove he could still be someone productive despite his paralysis, and Sawyer following a lead that he thought would take him to the man that killed his parents.  It isn't too big a step to think that if the events don't lead to the right people getting on that plane, then that plane won't crash.

5. So, this is explained to, at least, Dr. Jack and Kate, and most likely one other whose funeral it is that Dr. Jack goes to.  They go back to the past and have to make decisions that change whatever the reason is that they would have gotten on that plane.  And in doing that, the plane never crashes.  That means, that they save EVERYONE.  Not just the other Losties that are still alive, but everyone who perished in the crash as well.  And everyone who has died since they survived the crash.  Eko, Ana-Lucia, Libby, Boone, Shannon, and Charlie would be alive.  How could Jack not agree to this.  Of course it would mean that only they (at least Jack and Kate) would remember.  In addition to their lives back, they get passes allowing them to fly free wherever they desire.

I know, that's the big one, theory number five.  Let me give you some of the reasons I came to this conclusion.  Jack says that he's tired of lying.  This would explain that.  What might happen if everyone were returned to before the crash?  Well, Charlie would still be addicted to drugs, and nowhere near the fame he thinks he desires.  Of course we know what he really desires, but we also know without the crash he doesn't really have any hope of achieving it.  And I think he was resigned to his death,  he definitely didn't go into it blindly.  Which do you think he'd prefer, having died a hero and having known and loved Claire and Aaron, or continuing in his drug addled unfulfilled life as a former rock star?  Eko would still be a fake priest living with that guilt as well as the guilt of having killed his brother.  He came to terms with his past actions due to the Island, but I'm not sure he could have gotten there without it.  Rose would still have cancer.  Sun and Jin would still be in a horrible and unhealthy marriage.  Boone would still be helplessly in love with his step-sister, and she would still be using it to torment him.  I could go on and on, the point is that the experience of the crash has actually improved these peoples lives.  If they were placed back in those lives with no memories of the crash and their experiences there, they are right back into those awful situations.

Now we know that Dr. Jack and Kate at least still remember what happened to them, right?  So, one could assume that their lives are better because of what they've learned.  Obviously not, in Dr. Jack's case at least.  He's bottomed out.  A huge low, even for him.  What could have brought this on?  If I'm right, he had to change the decision that led to him getting on that plane.  That means he had to keep from getting his dad fired.  If his dad doesn't get fired from the Hospital, then he doesn't drink himself to death in Sidney, Jack doesn't have to go get his body, and they don't crash.  Plus this would explain how Jack's dad is still alive. 

Okay, Kate.  If she isn't a fugitive, she can't get caught and brought on board the flight.  Therefore, she can't kill her stepfather.  Now, remember, not only was he hurting Kate's mom, but it appeared he had the hots for Kate as well.  If he's not dead, couldn't he have some hold on her.  Enough that when she goes to meet Jack, she has to say to him, I've got to get back before he notices?  I'm betting that she was referring to her Stepfather.

That brings us to the mystery person, the one with the funeral.  I think they know as well.  So, who are they?  Well, Jack goes and answers the man's question of friend or family with neither.  There's really only one person that would elicit that response from Jack.  Sawyer.

Not only that, but he was hoping that Kate would be there.  (No doubt they've had a falling out, however.  It was pretty well foreshadowed in the episode that a Kate/Sawyer falling out was in the cards.)  If Sawyer's back in his previous life, all he has to do is not go kill the person that wasn't the real Sawyer anyway.  Easy enough.  But that doesn't change the fact that he's not in a good position, and there are no shortage of people that want him dead, even with a memory of everything that happened, and the knowledge of who the real Sawyer actually is.

Now, Jack has gotten everyone safely home, but what if while using the pass to fly all over the place, he starts reconnecting with the other people who were supposed to be on that plane.  They would have no idea who he is, of course, but he would know them.  He would begin to see what horrible shape they were all in, especially the people who died on the Island.  He would begin to understand that they would be better off having died there then living the lives that they had left behind.  Perhaps he would come to understand that they had died as better people on the Island, and because of the Island, then they ever could hope for if they hadn't had that experience.

With me so far?  Okay, the obvious question becomes why don't Kate and Jack end up getting together?  They both know what really happened, and they clearly feel for each other.  This, one would think, would especially happen if there was a big falling out in the Kate/Sawyer relationship.  My theory is that the trip back in time also gives Jack the chance to fix the relationship with his ex-wife.  He goes back to before they get divorced.  Benry Gale asks him what he has to go back for, his wife had left him for another man, but what if the trip back took him to before that happened.  We know how much Dr. Jack likes to fix things, don't you think that this would be something he couldn't resist?  Now, we know that it doesn't work, we see that in the Flash-Forwards.  Failing at his marriage again, when he knows that the trouble is coming this time, combined with the state of affairs that all of the other former Losties' lives are in, and finally the death of one of the only other two people who knows what really happened cause his to finally hit rock bottom.

These are my thoughts.  Can't wait to talk to more people, see what they think.  Once again, however, this show has changed everything.  The fact that this theory is so completely different than anything I had previously posted or even thought about, shows you how amazing this show has the capability of being.  Whether my theories prove to be completely, partially, or not at all correct doesn't change the fact that I'm glad I've been along for the ride so far and can't wait to take the rest of the way.  48 more episodes until everything is made clear.

Until Next Time, I'll see you in February LOST.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

LOST One of Us, first thoughts

We found out last week that no babies could be born on the island, but Benry Gale has said before that he has been on the island his whole life; how is that possible if no one can be born on the island?

Entertainment Weekly has an article on LOST in the current issue, and it talks about the Nikki/Paulo debacle. Apparently, there was going to be a longer arc concerning the characters, but due to fan backlash against them, they decided to pull the plug on them.

That's just annoying.  If you had something good set up with them, use it and make us change our minds. Don't just give in because everyone is complaining about them online.

Until Next Time, This has been an uneven season so far. A majority of the episodes have been better then anything last season, some have been better then even season one, but a couple have been just plan awful. It looks headed to a strong finish though.

Sunday, April 8, 2007


Just saw Zodiac and it is amazing. It's very rare for a film that came out in March to be this good. Unfortunately, I don't think many people went and saw this film, I had to go to Angelika to see it, but I'm so glad that I did. For a movie about a serial killer case that has officially never been closed, there is still closure for the film and the film remains truthful to the material on which it is based. But this film is about so much more than a serial killer, it is about obsession and what that obsession can do to a life. The effect this case had on so many people is what makes this film so fascinating to watch.

Apparently, Fincher had a tough time finishing the film (otherwise it might have been released late last year putting it in award contention and in what would have been number 3 on my top ten although it's currently number 1 for 2007 so far) and ultimately cut thirty minutes off of the film to get it to the 2:35 mark. I wish he had just made it a 3 hour movie, because as it was it didn't feel long at all. I personally can't wait for the DVD, to see the deleted scenes.

Hopefully the March release date won't hurt this film when it comes back to awards season, because this is a film incredibly worthy of winning some.

Fincher's previous films include Seven, Fight Club, and Panic Room.

Until Next Time, Do yourself a favor go out and see this one while you still can.

Saturday, April 7, 2007

LOST Left Behind, first thoughts

Kate flashbacks are always good, and it was neat to see Fugitive Kate before she was any good at being a fugitive. Plus, an interesting connection made between Kate and Sawyer as she meets someone he has conned.

More importantly, the smoke monster made an appearance, and we learned that the Others' security system, which seemed so easy to get past a few episodes ago, actually serves to protect them from the smoke monster. Interesting.

So John Locke has apparently joined the Others now, that'll be fun to keep an eye on, but they will keep us in suspense a little while longer on that, until, I'm guessing, we find out the Sawyer from our Sawyer's past is none other than Locke's dad.

Speaking of Sawyer, that was some great stuff with him this week. My guess is he settles into his leader role nicely, probably just as Dr. Jack saunters back into camp. Amazingly, that's going to happen next week; no waiting for that. Maybe this means that the pointless episodes are over now.

The last little thing I'm liking is what's going on with Sun. After Charlie told her the truth, she has become completely angry with Sawyer. Remember earlier this season she killed one of the Others, but it was probably justified in her mind in part because of what she thought they had done to her. She has now found out they did nothing to her, and is therefore blaming Sawyer for turning her into a killer.

Until Next Time, hopefully the see-saw, Jekyll and Hyde, good one week bad the next, time is over and LOST can return to the strong show it once was and clearly is still capable of being.

Thursday, April 5, 2007

LOST Expose, first thoughts

What a huge letdown.

When these characters were half-ass introduced in the mini-season, fans were upset.  Mainly, I think, because the introduction was botched. It isn't as if we as fans are completely unwilling to allow any new characters.  In fact many of the fan's favorite characters were added after season one.  Benry Gale and Eko to name two. The intros of those characters, as well as many others, were handled extremely well; this was not the case with Nikki and Paulo.

But like it or not, the characters were here, and we were promised by the powers that be that we would come to like them once we knew their story.


It turns out, their story was just a ploy to have a joke ending. Not a damn thing important occurred in that episode. Except perhaps for the fact that Sun's anger against the Others caused Charlie to come clean about his role in Sawyer's earlier power play. This could come into play in my theory about the island killing you in order to release you after your slate is clean. One more thing Charlie has atoned for, his death could actually be immanent. Other then that though, (which easily could have been accomplished elsewhere) this was a throwaway episode. 

Until Next Time, I did at least like seeing Lando Calrissian.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

LOST The Man From Tallahassee, first thoughts

I have got to talk about the episode of LOST that aired tonight. While many of the episodes this season have been weak (especially in view of the heights this show reached in its first season) tonight's episode blew away (like an exploded submarine) anything this show had ever done previously. I'm truly at a loss for words, but as a writer, I will attempt to fight through it and say a little bit about what I thought.

There are spoilers ahead, so if you're behind on LOST you should stop reading.

Okay, first of all, the big question that was actually answered this week (because lately the show has been promising answers while delivering crap, the security system you just have to go over instead of anything on the smoke monster, or stuff we pretty much already knew, Claire's dad is Jack's dad) is how Locke got paralyzed, and there was potential for this to be a big letdown. To put it mildly this was the exact opposite of being a big letdown. First of all, we got more of the Locke and his father storyline which is one of the best flashbacks the show has to offer. To have his father be directly responsible for his paralysis and through trying to kill him, no less, added a huge dimension to Locke's character. One we will get to see through due to the fact that Benry Gale has Locke's dad locked up. I haven't been this excited about the show after an episode's conclusion since the first episode, which I watched on DVD, allowing me to go ahead and immediately watch the next one when necessary. Man I wish it was already next week.

Secondly, Benry Gale told us a little more about the island. I don't know if we can take the idea of the "magic box" that manifests your every desire 100% literally, but the idea at least is intriguing. It would also explain quite a lot, the Horse Kate saw and Charlie's miraculously undamaged guitar to name just a couple. One of the things that I've wondered is if this were strictly a sci-fi premise, in that there is a scientific (if possibly far-fetched) explanation for everything on the show, or if some part of the island was in some way mystical, I'll get to that in a bit.

Taking just the first two seasons into account, I was beginning to lean towards a completely scientific theory. In fact I put the beginnings of one forth earlier this season. I argued that the show was a purgatory themed experiment, troubled people (and every character is certainly that) are forced to face their mental demons and come to terms with who they are, after which they were given their freedom in the form of death. I made this argument based on the belief that there is no other way off of the island. We still aren't sure that there is another way off of the island. It's possible to get to the island, but are we sure that anyone has ever left it? In the "Not in Portland" episode that brought us back from hiatus, we saw Ethan off of the island, but isn't it possible that he was a recruit that had yet to get to the island when he was working on getting Juliet there? Benry Gale told John tonight that the submarine was a comfort for those he had recruited, a sign that they could leave if they wanted, even though, he hinted, that was a lie. Maybe it isn't that Benry feared he would appear weak if he let Dr. Jack go, but he feared the mutiny that would occur if the non-native Others then realized that they could never leave. The real hitch in this theory of course is Michael and Walt. What is their fate, a question that from what I've read won't be resolved until next season, but until the show tells me otherwise I'm sticking with the belief that they did not get safely away. I still like this theory, but now I believe that the island plays a larger (and more mystical) role.

I believe that Darmha planned on using the Island for experiments of some kind, but when they started their experiments, they were unclear on A) exactly what they were dealing with in terms of the island, and B) the fact that the island was already inhabited. The island allowed Darmha to set up its stations, including somehow tapping into the electromagnetic force of the island which caused the need for the button, but retaliated after Darmha's usefulness had ended by releasing some sort of virus that wiped out the remaining Initiative members, as well as the rest of Russeau's team.

Whether the Purgatory like experiments are taking place on behalf of whoever is in charge of the Others (Benry's hinted at boss) or by the Island itself remains to be seen, but the fact that the Island is somewhat mystically sentient seems clear to me now. (However each week everything has the potential to change.) The Island has its own purpose, as evidenced by John being out of a wheelchair, and Benry Gale being in one. It seems to either answer to a higher power then Benry Gale or to be a higher power into and of itself. Desmond's flashes and even Hurley's getting the van to start through pure faith could be further evidence of the Island's mystical power. Maybe Desmond needs to unlearn what he thinks he knows about the certainty of his visions in order to finally save Charlie's life; maybe he, like Locke before him needs to believe in the power of the Island.

These are some of the things tonight's episode caused me to think about. An interesting theory I read, which I believe gained credence in tonight's episode, is the theory that Locke's father is the real Sawyer, the con-man who caused the death of Cast-away Sawyer's parents and turned him into the man Sawyer/James Ford is today. While in earlier episodes we saw Locke's father perpetrate cons, he was never specifically referred to as a con-man until tonight. Not only that, but we also learned that he's changed his name at least once, so why couldn't he have at some point gone by the name of Sawyer? If this is true, then I fell like this character has some tough times ahead of him, because not only will he have to answer to Locke for his past deeds, but I have to believe Sawyer will get a shot at him as well.

Until Next Time, This season took a huge turn for the better tonight, and I am greatly looking forward to see where it is headed next. If you are behind on, or God forbid have never watched, LOST, what are you waiting for? The first two seasons are on DVD and the entirety of this season is available at

Sunday, March 18, 2007

2nd Annual, My Thoughts As I Had Them During the Oscars

Sorry for the lateness of this blog, one might almost say it is pointless now, but I'm putting it up for posterity.  Otherwise, next year, I won't be able to call it the Third Annual My Thoughts as I Had Them During The Oscars.

So, without further ado (is that how you spell that?)...
Ellen's starting off nicely, and with an Al Gore joke, I wonder how many of those there are going to be tonight.

Hey, it's Ellen's mom.  I've met her.

BOO!! BOO!! Daniel Craig.  Where did all the Daniel Craig haters go.  Before the movie they were everywhere, now you never hear from them.  I'm the lone voice.  Daniel Craig is not Bond.  I wonder if he's going to pause before he announces the winner.  He doesn't when he says Bond James Bond.

Pan's Labyrinth.  It was a beautifully shot film.

The good thing about watching the Oscar's on "tape delay" last year is that I didn't have to watch the damn commercials.  Remember when commercials for this thing were good?  Remember when commercials for the Super Bowl were good?

Will Farrell.  It's already funny and he hasn't even done anything yet.

Sweet, Jack Black.  Could this get any better?

Just did, John C. Reilly has joined them.  Genius.

Okay, I could turn off the TV now, it won't get any better then that bit.   Man, those guys are funny.

2 for 2 for Pan's Labyrinth.  Why didn't this film get a best pic nod?

How many names did the Fresh Prince give this kid?

Okay, animated shorts, I haven't seen any of them, but from what they just showed I can tell you what won't win.

And it just won.  Maybe it's better if you see the whole thing, but that animation looked pretty crappy.  Oh, who am I to talk, I can't draw.  I wonder if I can win an Oscar with a stick figure animated short?

"Stick-to-it've-ness"  Is that really a word?  Good speech, though, even with the made up word.

Damn.  More commercials.

Okay...  This is weird, I'm not gonna lie.  A special effects choir?  I don't get it.  When everyone complains that the Oscars are too long, do we really need time wasters such as special effects choirs?

Wow, they found two seconds of Mark Walberg dialogue without curse words in it.  Impressive.

Alan Arkin was by far the best part about this film.

More weird stuff going on, interpretive dancers becoming a penguin?  What is the world coming to?

I could really do without the song performances.

Please tell me they aren't going to do all five in a row.

A line in that song was "I think I need to break up."  What the hell does that have to do with the environment, Mellissa?  Couldn't think of anything else to rhyme with "wake up", could ya?  Or did you just write the song in like five minutes?

Thank goodness, a break from the songs.

That was funny.  If Al Gore had been this funny six years ago, W and his team wouldn't have been able to steal the election.

"Maybe you should have uglier friends"  Nice.

Already positioning to win best Animated Feature next year, Shrek the 3rd.

WHAT?  Happy Feet?  I mean Cars wasn't as good as some of the other Pixar films from the past, but it has to be better then Happy Feet.  Oh my, that guy actually looks like a penguin.  Am I the only one who thinks the penguin thing is getting way over done?

This guy just said three major surprises.  I'll give him Happy Feet, but I wasn't at all surprised by Alan Arkin, and don't you have to actually see the Animated Shorts in order to be surprised by which one wins.  I'm just saying.

Ohh.  The Wes Anderson AmEx commercial.  I apologize for everything bad I said about having to watch the commercials.  The brilliance of this one makes up for all the other crappy ones.

Tom Cruise.  Did anyone bring a couch for him to jump around on?

Ellen is doing a great job.  And who wouldn't want Spielberg to take the picture?

Did you hear that huge cheer Children of Men got?  Way louder then the other nominees.  People really loved this movie, justifiably so.

And Pan's is 3 for 3.  The only thing more of a lock for a win is Hellen Mirren.

Pirates.  Humph.  The only good thing about this movie was the effects.  Too bad they couldn't create a storyline to go with them.  Hee hee.  That one made me laugh.  Bad form Josh, laughing at your own jokes.

Hey, they brought back the blind kid from the Bronx bit that Ellen did earlier, nice.

Holy Shit.  Now THIS  is a surprise.  Pan's was 3 for 3 coming in and it doesn't win Best For. Film?  Did not see that coming at all.

Ah, Jerry doing comedy.  All is right with the world again.

Al Gore finally won!  Take that W.

God, I hate Celine Dion.

Did they just say "Volverine"  Tell me that I misheard that.

Pan's is in a slump.  Now 3 for 5, 0 for it's last 2.  (man I miss Baseball.)

Well, no clues.  Both Departed and Little Miss Sunshine won in their respective screenplays.

Pan a big winner?  Yeah it has 3 Oscars, but it missed out on the big one it was up for and is now 0 for it's last 3, I don't like this behind the scenes guy.

Let me guess.  We have to hear 3 straight songs.

Well, at least these songs are good.  I still have nightmares from 3 6 Mafia.

Did that commercial just show Ally McBeal with Sam Seaborn?  Weird.

A lot of introspectives this year.

Sweet, Thelma!!  That makes me feel better about Marty's chances.

Hey, Jodie Foster.  She also got her start thanks to Martin Scorsese.

Damn it, this part always makes me cry.

Scotty died?  How did I miss that?  I will refrain from the "Beam me up" joke in honor of his memory.

What?  Now Sam Seaborn just said he's a Republican?  What the hell show is this commercial for?

Anti-climactic much?  They should have just given Helen Mirren the award at the beginning of the show.

I find myself really rooting for Peter O'Toole.  There have been bigger surprises tonight.

Oh well, Congrats Forrest.  Let's see how the speech goes.  He's been getting ridiculed for the ones he's given thus far.

Wow, along with Jennifer Hudson's, I have to say that might be the best of the night.

These are the reasons I want to make movies, right there on stage.  (Mainly Lucas, I'm sure that's why they included him.)
Drumroll.  I am so nervous right now.  Come on Marty!


I'm currently envisioning a blue see-through Jedi-like Alfred Hitchcock and Stanley Kubrick up on stage with Copella, Spielberg, Lucas, and Scorsese.  The greatest Directors of all time in one place.

I'm crying.  I'm so happy for him right now.  I really hope Departed wins.

YES, again!!!

Look Spielberg is congratulating Marty for beating him, that's awesome.

Good Oscars.

Until Next Time, it's nice to see that occasionally, the films that deserve to win Oscars do.