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Fall Is Here – What Kept You Entertained? Part 1.

May I start this off by saying…man, it’s hot in here…like, seriously. it’s so hot outside today, i think my AC unit is dying of heat exhaustion…and my crazy boyfriend is outside mowing the lawn and watering it with his sweat! Gross! Meanwhile, i’m indoors enjoying some US Open and reflecting on what’s kept me entertained this 2014 Summer!

I don’t even know where to start. I am so rusty from blogging, life has been so busy with moving, working two jobs, freelance, and blah-blah-blah, that I haven’t gotten my rant on with you guys in FOREVER!

So let’s talk about the shows that got me through up to our summer drought of entertainment…

Brooklyn-nine-nine

I’d have to say my favorite comedy this past year was Brooklyn Nine-Nine! Andy Samberg, Terry Crews, Andre Braugher and the rest of the cast helped fill the void The Office left behind (wasn’t sure if that would ever happen)! This show just straight up makes me laugh! I’ve known of The Lonely Island for a while, first from their album Incredibad and later from their online series The Bu and seeing TLI join the writers of SNL, specifically Samberg’s success story up to this point has been very exciting! Also, Chelsea Peretti … this bitch is cazy and I f*cking love her! I used to listen often to her podcast Call Chelsea Peretti to get me through the work day and I know she had been doing writing on Parks & Rec, so seeing her on TV just makes me even bigger of a fan! Watch the premier of Season 2 on Sept. 28th 8:30/7:30c on Fox.

Game of Thrones Without going into too much detail, those of you who have seen it i’m sure would agree with me when i say, “DAAAMMNN that was a good season!”  Sh*t hit the fan, so many people died, we had some amazing fight scenes, we met so many new characters and it looks like we are ending the show with SO MANY exciting new stories and undiscovered places! I haven’t read the books, i don’t know what’s to come, but i do know i LOVED this season (and every other) of Games of Thrones.

Being Human You know…it’s not fair, it’s really not fair when you fall inlove with a show, its characters, and the writing gets really good aaaand then it gets cancelled! WTF!? What am I going to do without seeing Aiden’s beautiful face, or hang out with my home-ghost girl Sally, or get frustrated with Nora and Josh’s upside down relationship! The final season introduced a new character that would have led into another interesting and entertaining storyline but NO! they just HAD to end it! It’s blasphemy i tell ya! Being Human was the best vampire/werewolf show on TV and I don’t care WHO argues with me on that. I know i’m right.

Vikings Brutal and fast paced as ever, Ragnar Lothbrok and his group of vikings venture to new lands…there is so much to this story aside from the unnecessary violence, I promise you, this show is worth tuning into if you haven’t already. I’ve said it before, it was the best new edition to my lineup to hold me over till HBO brings back GoT. VERY much looking forward to its return to TV.

Broad CityBroad City I mean, total craziness, right? I was hoping HBO’s GIRLS would satisfy my funny female fix but that didn’t entertain me very much this past season, while Broad City certainly did! I didn’t know what to expect from this show. Comedy Central has been doing a pretty good job with their lineup. I continued watching Inside Amy Schumer but found myself really looking forward to Broad City. Ilana Glazer & Abbi Jacobson really know how to show people what life is REALLY like for young adults. It’s a struggle and I will continue to laugh at their hardships. I think the pair make me laugh in the ways Tina Fey did when working with her all-star women’s cast of SNL, only with these broads, its more dirty, shocking, immature and unexpectedly hilarious. I’ll be looking forward to their 2nd season premier.

 

 

Cosmos A show about the world and beyond! If you haven’t seen or heard of this show, it’s aaaalll science and you need see this 1980s re-installment. Watch this and learn more than you thought you never thought you’d learn about! Get your mind blown. Watch this. Learn something. Thanks to Cosmos I am now a HUGE Neil Degrasse Tyson fan. I subscribe to and have listened to every podcast from his Star Talk Radio show…i love this man, he is a TOTAL Inspiration and to top it off, he’s a really nice, fun guy. I haven’t met him, but you just kind of know 🙂

FaceOff and Jim Henson’s Muppet Challenge have been the only competition shows I’ve been watching (tho I will continue to tune into Master Chef and Top Chef if time permits), always entertaining to watch off the DVR (the ONLY way to watch it, if you ask me…i don’t need commercial breaks or the SAME drama of the SAME complications every week!..Personally, i would love it if they explained the process in more detail rather than have it be about their struggles). The contestants are so talented, it’s really awesome to see their designs from concept to completion – some better than others. I think i would have been good at character designer and creature modeling.

And how could I forget the most EPIC series FX brought to us in early spring….FARGO

 

FargoI don’t usually watch suspense thrillers but this one is a MUST WATCH! I’ve only seen the movie once a long, long time ago that I can’t even really remember it. This show has an ALL STAR cast; Billy Bob Thornton, Martin Freeman (the original Jim from the Office UK), Allison Tolman, Colin Hanks, and Bob Odenkirk (“Just Call Saul!”). Other characters played by many familiar faces such as Glen Howard (It’s Always Sunny…), Oliver Platt (The Big C), and Kate Walsh (Private Practice) just to name a few.
This is the kind of show that makes me feel like I’m watching a movie. Twas absolutely a favorite and i HIGHLY, HIGHLY recommend you watch it!!

Quick Reviews – Summer TV 

Antiheroes (cracked.com) – This was a surprisingly entertaining webseries that feels like Children’s Hospital only it’s not as funny and the acting isn’t very good. Antiheroes is about people who have super powers but don’t use them to save humanity. My inability to really care for the characters solely based on their acting makes me not care THAT much, but It isn’t the worst…I just expect a lot better. Too harsh? Maybe, but I say give it a shot, each episode is like, 5 minutes long and you might sort of like it too.

Orange Is The New Black – Now, I was late in getting to watch season 2 and I did my best to take my time with the season and omg…Amazing. Yea, I’m really not going to go into any detail except that I thought it started off a bit slow, but then it is just winner after winner after winner! If you’ve watched it, you know…you know how f*cking amazing it was, and once again, left me NEEDING more! I’m ready for Season 3, like today!

This is getting extensive, and there is so much more to talk about! Thanks for reading, to be continued…

What’s On Your Fall Television Schedule?

fall tv schedule feature imageFall is just around the corner, and with it some really great television. I can tell you for certain that some of our staple shows are bound for greatness with their fall premieres: The Walking Dead (October 12, AMC) for instance is already claiming to have the most “intense first six minutes” and with what I have seen so far, I don’t doubt it.

American Horror Story

Even those last season’s American Horror Story: Coven, wasn’t my favorite chapter of the franchise, I have to say that I am completely on board with Freak Show (October 8, FX)! I think, once again, Ryan Murphy has been set up for greatness with this next season and as long as he isn’t trying to shove too much into it like last year, Freak Show has the potential to really scare the life out of us. I mean, this year’s villian is a killer clown that is supposed to make Pennywise look like Ronald McDonald.

The Blacklist

Returning for its sophmore season is one of the only two shows left on NBC that’s worth watching (IMO) and that is The Blacklist (September 22, NBC). Since cancelling Revolution (yeah, not ready to let that one go), NBC hasn’t exactly wowed me with their summer programming, Taxi Brooklyn and Rosemary’s Baby reboot.. REALLY!? Nor has any of their new shows for fall seem like standouts, so as long as The Blacklist is coming back, I will keep NBC on my favorites list.

James Spader is pure awesomeness as Raymond “Red” Reddington, and he breathes life into a network that is full of bad reality TV and poorly scripted dramas. He adds humor and sass in a show that is full of interesting and intriguing plot lines, and is surrounded by an equally talented supporting cast.

Sadly, CBS and ABC have pretty much lost me as a viewer, with Modern Family being about the only thing left on ABC that I make sure to tune in for. I am still in love with the Pritchetts and Dumpheys and cannot wait for them to come back to my Wednesday night line up. Even seven seasons in, they find ways to keep family life really ridiculous, funny, and easy going. 

Sons of Anarchy

In other places, FX is gearing up for their final season of Sons of Anarchy (September 9, FX). My only regret here is that I missed out on the first six seasons as they played out live, only having binged the show over this past winter. I have yet to catch up on season six, but that’s ok. My DVR is set and ready for the Son’s final season, and I will play catch up along the way thanks to the magical addiction that is my Netflix account.

Speaking of which, if you don’t have a Netflix subscription, I highly suggest getting one or making friends with someone who is willing to share. Some of the absolute best television programming right now is on Netflix and you would be doing yourself a diservice if you miss out on Orange is the New Black and House of Cards. Both of which will air new seasons in 2015, so you have plenty of time to catch up!

Even though I am well out of the targeted demo for it, I am really excited for the return of Supernatural (October 7, CW).

Supernatural

Season 10 premieres this October, and I am giddy with excitment. The way that last season ended was a game changer, and a fantastic way to lend life to a show that, most would say should have ended four or five seasons ago. Keep huntin’ boys, I’ll ride along in the Impala until we are all old and gray.

So far, the only new show that looks worth tuning in to, for me anyway, is Fox’s ‘Gotham’. I am admittedly a big fan of the Dark Knight Series, and I think that this prequel tale of Gotham city looks pretty gritty. I like gritty. While I do love some funny stuff, some of the best television I have watched has been down right dirty (either in mud or scandal). Go with what you know, right?

My biggest WTF so far of the fall season is the mysterious return of HBO’s The Newsroom. I feel as though I may be among the ones of people waiting for the third and final season. This show was fresh, funny, smart, and captivating. I am simultaneously pissed and enamoured with Aaron Sorkin for getting me hooked, then taking this little gem away. 

Of course, these are just my picks for what’s worth watching this fall. I know some of my other fellow TV Junkies have their own DVR schedule and will be sharing it in the near future. But for now, I want to know…

…what’s on YOUR viewing schedule?

The TV Times Are A’Changin’ – Can You Keep Up?

televisionBack when I was a kid, with the arrival of summer meant that my television watching days were over until it was time to return to school. With the exception of Saturday morning’s Cartoon Express and the occasional baseball game, I barely even glanced at the TV. Today, that seems to hardly be the case anymore.

 

Television is emerging from its cocoon, and blossoming into this beautiful butterfly, offering an array of choices in not only programming, but in platform and time. People are realizing that not everyone works the kind of schedule that television programming was built around in the early days of the infatuation with the boob tube. So, like many other things in the world, it is time for a revision of how we watch and what we watch.

 

No longer must we suffer through twelve plus weeks of reruns. Thanks to the internet and streaming subscription services like Netflix, Amazon Plus and Hulu, we are able to fill our time with shows we may have missed the first time around, as well as new programming that the networks may have never brought us. Not to mention that networks are starting to offer more new shows that air during the summer season to fill the gap.

 

RELATED: Our Top 10 Binge-Worthy Shows

 

Most recently, Netflix has created smash hits Orange is the New Black and House of Cards, both of which have been lighting the TV industry on fire. For the first time in history, you don’t have to have a cable subscription to watch television. These shows, both of which boast some serious talent, have been winning awards, making people laugh, cry and cringe. Fresh and innovative story telling is keeping people continuing to tune in, and offering that programming at the touch of a finger, any time, any place – is making it King of all entertainment.

 

Since the internet came along and allowed people to connect in much easier, less stressful environment, fandoms have formed. Millions of dedicated people are creating communities, conventions, and in some cases, life long relationships. Their collective voices have caused networks to change their minds on the fate of a show. They’ve caused others networks to sit up and take notice, saving an axed program from oblivion (lookin’ your way Cougar Town).

 

It’s allowed people like myself, to find a new way to express my love for good storytelling. Being able to sit here and gush about some amazingly crafted hour of television, or rant about inconsistencies in the character arcs is what my dreams are made of. The best part is, I know that I am not alone.

 

So, the next time you think to yourself… “there is nothing on right now!” head to one of the other many platforms and explore what you may have missed. Look through your On Demand menu, fire up the computer and check out Netflix or Hulu. I guarantee you, something will catch your eye and you will be beyond glad you dove in.

 

Funny Movies to Watch…or NOT Watch on a Snow Day

this is the endJanuary has just begun and already we are snowed in here, in NYC. But that’s okay, because we are exceedingly eager to cozy up under the covers and watch a movie with a cup of hot cocoa! Thankfully, Hollywood has presented us with an abundance of comedic films in 2013 from which we can choose: The Hangover Part III, Grown Ups 2, Identity Thief, Scary Movie 5, Last Vegas, This Is The End, Movie 43, 21 & Over, We’re The Millers, The Heat, just to name a few.

If you’re looking for a hardy laughter-, even cackling-, inducing movie, you must, I repeat, MUST go with This Is The End. The cast alone should be enough to convince you of this movie’s hilarity. It will make you #LOL from beginning to end as it features Judd Apatow favorites like Seth Rogan, Jonah Hill, James Franco, Jay Baruchel and includes Danny McBride and Craig Robinson. Plus, there’s a significant number of cameos including (beautiful and ass-kicking) Emma Watson, Paul Rudd, Mindy Kaling, Aziz Ansari, Jason Segal, Rihanna, McLovin (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), and (a hilariously dirty performance by) Michael Cera. The leading cast interacts with great chemistry. It’s no wonder considering most have known each other from a young age, from the days of (the way too short-lived) Freaks and Geeks, and have grown up together, collaborating on multiple films such as Knocked Up, Superbad, Funny People, Pineapple Express etc . What a treat seeing them play themselves: a group of goofy, weed-smoking, mostly Jewwy, dudes, boasting bromances and making fun of each other when necessary, if not at all times. Not only are they hysterical with their self-written and improvised jokes, but the story itself was great, with an unexpected plot and impressive CGI. This Is The End  is a movie that tests the friendships and courage of six buddies and colleagues upon the arrival of the Apocalypse, and they must prove they are worthy of being accepted into heaven, despite their questionable pasts. If you are a fan of the cast, or movies they’re in, and happen to share their opinions and habits, I am confident that you too will love this movie. This is the best movie of the year in my opinion, at least as far as comedies go, and will keep you #ROTFL.

If you don’t want your snow day to be a complete bummer, then surely DO NOT watch Movie 43. The film may seem promising on its surface, as it features A-list actors like Kate Winslet, Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Richard Gere, Kate Bosworth, Justin Long, Kieran Culkin, and Emma Stone, and many others. But beneath the exterior lives a sick, twisted creature that should never be seen. The film is about a desperate producer, Dennis Quaid, who threatens film industry professional, Greg Kinnear, at gun point, in order to pitch his movie and have it be made. You’ll experience a visually unbearable scene where Kate Winslet goes on a first date with the handsome Hugh Jackman. Yes, it seems perfectly normal until you see a scrotum hanging from him chin! In another pitch, parents Liev Schrieber and Naomi Watts provide a high school education to their son through homeschooling. Yes, it seems perfectly normal, but quickly turns your stomach when they role play as high school students themselves and separately prey on their son in a sexual manner. In another short, Anna Faris  requests her husband, Chris Pratt, to defecate on her, as if it is a normal request according to her and his male companions. Soon enough you see what he had in store for her, all over the windshield and all over the street Yuck! I honestly don’t know how Hollywood recruited such A-list actors to commit to such filth and perversion. Did they have them at gun point too?  Movie 43 is extremely immature, uncomfortable, and obscene…nowhere close to funny. You can RedBox this flick, but it’s not even worth a dollar and change.

We Are The Millers is another movie I’d recommend seeing as it had a good story, a strong cast, it was funny, and only had a few unnecessary scenes, like the baby made of a bag of weeds and grass. Identity Thief had a great concept! But there were too many inconsistencies and needless characters. Also, why did there have to be resolution at the end? Melissa McCarthy was a criminal! Why did Jason Bateman and family express sympathy and stay in contact when she nearly ruined their lives? Not every movie needs to have a happy ending. Her other movie, The Heat, alongside costar Sandra Bullock, was laugh out loud funny….even if I was only one of three audibly laughing. It could have been even funnier, however, had Sandra Bullock’s character not been such a textbook goody-good and if they added more tiffs between the two leading ladies. I didn’t see Grown Ups 2, but I can only imagine how incredibly predictable the plot and jokes were. I recall seeing most of the first one (I could not finish it) and knowing exactly what punchline was ahead, a clear indicator of overdone, calculated comedy. But you can’t hate Adam Sandler for this. He has built a huge fan-base for his Happy Madison empire, after all. The Hangover III may not have been my favorite of the three (I favor Part II), but it provided an appropriate and undoubtedly funny resolution to the trilogy. And come on, who doesn’t love Zach Galifianakis? I can always count on him to make me #LMFAO. And more importantly, who doesn’t like looking at Bradley Cooper? He’s hot, hot, hot, and there’s no denying that!

What can we expect for 2014? Here are some comedies we can look forward to in the new year: 22 Jump Street, Neighbors, That Awkward Moment, Blended, Ride Along, Dumb and Dumber To, Muppets Most Wanted, Sex Tape, Filth, among others. This Is The End has set a very high bar. Maybe, just maybe, one of these movies will surpass it on the Richter scale of funny, but it will be very difficult. I guess we’ll have to wait and see!

Binge-Worthy TV: Top 10 Shows to Fill Up On

Homer Simpson - couch potatoOur Picks for the Top Ten Shows to Fill Up On

Oh, how the holidays are filling! Family dinners, luscious desserts… from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Eve, our waistlines suffer, as does our need for good entertainment. Most shows go on hiatus near the end of the fall, and, while reruns are OK from time to time, I like to try and find something that’s brand new to me. And totally binge-worthy.

We here at EMTV have a tendency to dive in and get wrapped up when we find a new show that catches our interest. I remember over one Christmas break from work, I got through the first two (and sadly only two) seasons of Carnivale. Watched the first few episodes, and two days later had watched all twenty-four. Since then, there have been quite a few vacations, weekends, and holidays where we’ve given our Netflix subscriptions a severe workout, and we want to share our top ten favorite binges with you.

While arguments can be made for a lot of shows that have aired over the years, we tried to find a representative of various genres. Ya know, cause sometimes you just wanna bring on the funny, while others you want to dive deep into a mythical realm where dragons and imps reign supreme.

In really no particular order, I give to you – Shows to Waste Enormous Amounts of Time On!

Sons of Anarchy (2008-Present) – This past fall I had seen so many people freaking out about what was happening on Sons of Anarchy, I knew it would be one to check out. It had always been one of those those shows I noticed, but had such a busy viewing calendar, I put it off. Luckily I had a few hours to kill when my other shows went on hiatus. Now, here I am three weeks later and five seasons deep.

Like most violent dramas, SOA has no shortage of blood, bullets, and boobs. But, unlike other shows of its’ type, it actually surprises you. Every time I thought, oh, well, it’s gonna go this way… it shifts gears and goes in a completely different direction. I must shout WTF! at least two times per episode.

Much like a lot of characters on TV lately, this gang of hoodlums are definitely of the anti-hero ilk. Criminals at heart and by choice, this is a bunch of men (and women) that you would never normally root for. So why is it that you can’t help but want them to constantly get away with the bad things they do? Because deep down, you know these guys (and gals) love their family and are only trying to provide for them and protect their home town.

The cast is pretty stellar, and they inject a certain something into their characters that makes their bad sides kinda hard to hate. Well, except Clay. I think I will ALWAYS hate Clay. The show is a bit like crack, but if you can handle the addiction, I say this is a show you could easily binge on.

The “L” Word (2004-2009) – What makes a TV show one to binge watch? I think you need to ask yourself what you LIKE to watch. Now, I’ve tried watching shows that people suggest or even what smart search suggests, but I find it’s best to binge on what you know and love. Do you like non-stop drama and attractive women? Well, The L Word could be the show for you to binge on!

There’s 6 seasons of non-stop drama for your mama, an amazingly beautiful and talented cast of women, and an array of characters with various personalities. With this show you’re going to learn so much about the Gay Culture along with the pride and struggles behind same-sex partners. Meanwhile seeing these women deal with the problems relationships bring, on top of real life responsibilities – work, family, love, and survival.

This show will give you an introspective look at the minds and hearts of women. How they think and feel. What friendship and love is really about, and lots of hook ups too! These lesbians know where it’s at in L.A.! Gay rights is a hot topic on this show, so if you’re homophobic, don’t skip this one! You should tune in and learn something!

There’s LOTS of depth and substance throughout this show, despite it’s questionable and frustrating 6th season finale. But at least you had a HELL of a run! I HIGHLY recommend watching The L Word – it made me laugh and cry. It made me pick sides and then switch perspectives! It’s an interesting show with a good sense of humor and whole lot of heart.

Supernatural (2005-Present) Two hot guys, a cool car and lots of other-worldly adventures. How could you NOT want to pour yourself into this show? But even beyond its pretty packaging, the story itself is an epic tale of Cain and Abel proportion set in modern day. Supernatural is a story of a family torn apart by a life-long destiny that no one wanted, and everyone tried to run from.

Take every story you’ve heard about monsters going bump in the night, and you have your MOTW (Monster of the Week) stories, being held up by a strong and deep mythology that will leave your mouths agape as it unfolds. The show is able to make fun of itself one week and leave you in a messy pile of feels on the floor, the next.

What makes this show binge-able (and sustainable) after nine seasons, is the amazing acting chops of said pretty packaging: Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki. These guys are goofballs and best friends off set, but when the cameras roll, they can set your emotions off in a tail spin. From laughing to tears all in one episode, THEY are what makes this show just that much more amazing than the others of its’ kind. Go ahead, jump in the Impala and take the ride with the Winchesters… you won’t regret it.

The Walking Dead (2010-Present) This show… well, unless you have been living under a rock these past few years, you have to have at least heard of The Walking Dead. If you are generally a fan of horror, blood, guts and zombies, then this is the show for you to spend countless hours diving into.

From the first minute, it is compelling, character driven television. Sure there are lulls in the story, but when you are battling slow moving, brainless flesh eaters, sometimes there just happens to be a little down time. What The Walking Dead offers in the study of human nature is nothing short of spectacular. That, and the unique way the writers find to kill the zombies, is what makes TWD a fairly binge-able show.

Besides the awesome make-up and special effects, the characters themselves are pretty bad ass (for the most part). As the story unfolds, and people come and go, you will find yourselves more wrapped up in the warped thinking of some characters, than the zombie threat they live with. Questionable decisions, and unlikely heroes will keep you watching episode after episode until you feel like one of the zombies yourself.

The Office (2005-2013) I could go on and on as to WHY The Office is the best comedy in the world to binge on, but in the words of Dunder Mifflin’s boss Michael Scott, I’m going to K.I.S.S. the topic instead (K.I.S.S. – Keep It Simple Stupid)

It’s funny. Period. No, wait… its REALLY funny. Like, side splitting funny. And dumb, really, really dumb. What separates this from the average funny show you ask… The people who work in the office. Michael Scott is a normal guy, who just wants to know what it feels like to have friends, family, and be the best boss in the world. Oh, and be the best improv comedian, magician, screenwriter, actor, etc. in the universe. Wrap all that up in one average paper salesman turned manager, and let the hi-jinks ensue. Then, back him up with a sidekick like Dwight Schrute, and all bets are off. Michael and Dwight are just TWO of the laundry list of reasons why this show should be THE comedy to watch – again and again and again.

What really makes this the comedy to binge on isn’t just the laughs, but all the little things that support the funny. There are also these moments in the documentary-style off-beat comedy that are sweet and poignant. It’s smart and ridiculous all at the same time. And with each episode only twenty (or so) minutes long, you could easily breeze through nine season’s worth of episodes. Trust me, once you get a load of Michael Scott’s screenplay, you won’t want to stop watching!

Fringe (2008-2013) You either like Sci-Fi or you don’t. But I suspect that even if you fall into the latter category, you could easily get wrapped up in Fringe. I happen to be a big fan of sci-fi shows, books and movies. So when I saw this show and that it was combined with a name like J.J. Abrams, I really couldn’t pass up a little gem like this.

I watched this show as it unfolded in real time on FOX. Somewhere between seasons 3 and 4 I got behind, and ended up binging on DVDs of seasons 1-4 in order to get ready for the shortened fifth and final season. While the story is mythology heavy and the “fringe” part of the science discussed is way over my IQ level, I couldn’t stop watching this show.

I’ll give you the four main reasons to give Fringe a chance: Walter, Peter, Olivia and Astrid. Remember that last name, because Walter always forgets; but the alternatives he comes up with are just the icing on the cake. Walter is one of the most amazing characters I have ever watched on TV. Of course, you have to completely suspend belief in realism to fully immerse yourself in it, but I think if you can shut off your brain for a while, you would easily get sucked in to the alternative Fringe-verse that awaits. Besides, Walter makes some really amazing drugs in his lab. Do you really want to miss out on that? And did I forget to mention there’s a cow?

Breaking Bad (2008-2013) There is a very popular trend on television over the past ten years of showcasing the anti-hero main character-type. I mentioned it earlier that the SOA crew was made up of personalities like that, but no show did that character type better than Breaking Bad’s Walter White. I know, it’s hard to imagine a man in his 50’s, wearing khakis, a cheap button down dress shirt and sneakers as a scary villian. But. somehow Bryan Cranston did that with cancer-stricken chemistry teacher, Walter White.

Along with his meth-cook sidekick Jessie Pinkman, Walter White made his mark on everyone’s Sunday night for five years. Having a break in my TV schedule last year, I found it on Netflix and caught up with the rest of the world, watching Walt struggle with a poor health diagnosis and a growing methamphetamine business. On more than one occasion I found myself watching, completely captivated, mouth agape, at what I was watching unfold.

I don’t think there is another show on television that had such a strong run as Breaking Bad. From start to finish it told a complete story, with a very satisfying ending. Because of the way the show is formatted, binging on it is just as easy as binging on Walt’s special blue meth, or so I presume. Most endings are left in a cliffhanger, and most of the beginnings foreshadow a oncoming disaster, so it is nearly impossible to tell yourself, “Just one more episode.” 

How I Met Your Mother (2005-2014) It all started in January 2013. I had no work… for the whole month! So, what did I do? I sat on my comfy-@$$ couch and binged on Netflix! And what did I watch you ask? Eight and a half seasons of How I Met Your Mother until I caught up to present day airing. That’s gotta be some sort of a record!!! HIMYM is an easy show to binge on. Each episode is only 22 minutes, which means, I could view about 3 episodes per hour, and if on average I watched 6-8 hours of TV, that’s 18-24 episodes a day. We’re looking at 1 season, or just shy of 1 season, a day. So, the viewer just flies through the show, getting a lot of TV for a “lesser” time commitment.

HIMYM is just down right cute and fun, and extremely relatable! With nothing to do for the month of January, I decided to make some new friends: Lily, Marshall, Robin, Barney, and Ted! They are a group of true friends who can be extremely silly and completely honest with each other. They will call each other out when necessary, even hold an intervention for one another, and will always have each others’ backs! The show’s use of call-backs, past references, and countless inside jokes allows the audience to feel as though they’ve been seamlessly admitted into the crew, without any questioning or hazing. The writing is inviting and open-minded, very appropriate for today’s young adult generation. Nothing is off-limits on HIMYM. They address topics like dating, parenthood, mommy & daddy issues, employment and relationship issues, sex, drugs, alcohol, friendships, friends with benefits, bromances, bachelor-life… you name it, it’s in there! Any viewer can easily relate to any one or more of the characters.

Barney Stinson is reason enough to watch the show! Though Robin is my personal favorite, Barney steals the show. He may be cocky, chauvinistic and outrageously ridiculous, but that’s what gets you hooked. His shenanigans are worth seeing and keep you wanting more. Neil Patrick Harris is an exceptional actor, period. If anything, at least watch the episode where Barney sings “Suits.” Who doesn’t love a musical episode? And if you enjoyed that, be sure to catch episodes featuring Robin Sparkles to hear “Let’s Go to the Mall,” and “Sandcastles in the Sand.” #Hilarious

The final reason to stay tuned is to find out who the eff Ted’s wife will be! So be sure to catch up, it’s quick and easy, and most importantly, it’s fun! Watch it on Mondays at 8pm on CBS because it’s going to be LEGEN wait for it…. DARY! LEGENDARY!

Game of Thrones (2011-Present) Watching Game of Thrones (GoT) at first was a little bit like one of those crazy dreams where it was high school history class combined with a strange acid trip, and flavored with ancient fairy tales… and not the kind granny used to tell. You know, those crazy, old, scary ones that were meant to frighten little children to keep them out of the woods. Yeah, that was my initial taste of GoT when I gave it a shot last February. But, you know what? After the end of episode two, I was diggin’ it. So, two seasons in about a week, really wasn’t hard.

Game of Thrones really is epic. Sometimes I think that word is thrown around a little to liberally with TV Shows these days, but in this case, its fitting. Even though there are a lot of characters, (even now I still get names confused) you will end up coming to love or loathe all of them. Its a great fit for a trip to fantasy island, where you just want to immerse yourself in a new realm, full of kings and queens, horrible and wonderful, swords and dragons, dire wolves and whitewalkers…

While there are only three seasons available, and only ten episodes per seasons, GoT is a great binge show. Yes, its heavy in dialogue, accents and, well, boobs, but there are dragons! Seriously, people, dragons!! How could you NOT want to see that! It’s clever, surprising, fascinating and captivating television. Winter is coming, don’t be the last one in from the cold.

Mad Men (2007-Present) Ok, to be honest, I struggled a little in choosing one last show for this list. Ultimately, what made me choose Mad Men is still a bit of a mystery to me. I started the show through DVDs from Netflix, and had a hard time getting past the first disc. When it became available for streaming, I decided to try again and picked up where I left off. Not exactly sure what it was, but from that second chance, I devoured four seasons in no time.

Here’s the funny part – one of my fellow TV Junkies asked me what I found so compelling about Mad Men. The more I thought about it, I couldn’t come up with a good answer. I just went blank. Yet, I couldn’t wait to get to the next episode. When season 5 became available, I watched it in a handful of days. What I think I enjoyed about it most, is the era and the business of advertising on Madison Avenue in the 1960’s. A period in time that sparks an interest and an industry that is close to my heart, I guess there was just an attraction for me to this show. BUT, as I got further and further into the seasons, the more I dug it.

Aside from the main character, Don Draper, the surrounding cast is phenomenal. Peggy, secretary turned Copy Editor, is a force to be reckoned with and Roger Sterling is just pure entertainment to watch. Don eventually gets interesting and his character slowly becomes a perfect study of childhood trauma affecting adult behavior. If you have any interest in psychology or study of social behavior, than this show is REALLY for you! Action-free but full of booze, sex and lies, Mad Men is a great way to fill your need for some serious drama-centric entertainment.

HONORABLE MENTIONS: These are some one or two seasons shows that are definitely worth considering for a quick binge-fix:

Orange Is The New Black (2013-Present, Netflix Original) – Excuse my language, but this show is the sh*t. Funny, sad, ridiculous… oh, and a character named Crazy Eyes. Need I say more?

The Newsroom (2012-Present, HBO) – Easily the best drama of its kind on television. Jeff Daniels won that Emmy for a reason folks, Watch it. Delight in it. Then watch it again, because you will hear things you missed the first time around. Brilliant and exciting television. HBO better give MORE than nine episodes for its third season, due to air sometime in 2014.

Revolution (2012-Present, NBC) – This show is intense. It gets a little mucky in the middle of season one, but the season that is currently airing on NBC has been nothing short of fantastic. Revolution is scientific, apocalyptic and has hot dudes fighting with swords. You really can’t go wrong.

American Horror Story (2011-Present, FX) – The ONLY reason AHS wasn’t included on the initial list was because it is currently airing its third season on FX. But, you can easily watch the first two stories in this horror series on Netflix now. Season 1: Murder House and Season 2: Asylum, are completely separate stories, and both fun and horrid in their own ways. But the real reason to dive into this show – two words… Jessica Lange. That is all.

Thanks for following along, and I hope this little review helps you pick some binge-able shows to add to your roster to fill in the gaps of what’s new on TV. As I wrap up the last few episodes of Sons of Anarchy, I am ready to line up my next one – any suggestions?

Here’s hoping 2014 brings us some great new television that doesn’t include any laugh tracks or procedural cop shows. Happy New Year to all, and don’t forget to set those DVRs!

JUSTICE, or Lack Thereof, for the Wicked…

So, I’m a little annoyed with The Walking Dead. I’m tired of shows trying to make me sympathize with horrible people. This past week we caught up with The Governor. This is one bad-ass dude and you can feel it even when watching Talking Dead when host, Chris Hardwick introduces David Morrissey to the audience…the silence is deafening…everyone’s SO SCARED of this guy! He’s just an actor, people – give him your respect, not fear and hatred! I feel bad for David.

The Walking Dead Season 4Anyways, what was this episode trying to show us? That the Gov’s s got some of his humanity back? That he’s a changed man? He’s had X-amount of time alone, abandoned by his henchmen (it’s about time they turned their back on him, too!) and that he’s basically given up on life, grows old-grandpa beard and uses his awesome skills to dodge zombies left and right..or one at a time…that was funny..I liked that part! Zombie —12 o’clock! Quick!…Dodge!..Fake to the left!…ZOMBIE DOWN!!!! Ooh, the Gov’s got skilllzzzzz…Haha…

So now he has a second chance to start over with a small group of survivors – some feat…a dying man, 2 small women and a little girl. He puts his past behind him with a fresh new name and a big fat lie in his back pocket…it’ll be wonderful when this group finds out the truth of Brian Heriot next week.

American Horror Story has been doing the same thing for three seasons with Jessica Lang’s characters. She’s the Queen of Terror for most of the season(s) and then at some point, the story shifts and we have to feel bad for this person who has done terrible things? Hmm…is there no justice for the wicked? Despite his popularity and existence in the comics, I just don’t see the point in the Governor coming back. Come on, how is it that Andrea, Rick, Michonne and the rest of the Woodbury clan couldn’t take this ONE man down?? They could have given him a great ending/death!

I admit, it was quite refreshing seeing new survivors (as I’ve been growing quite bored of the prison-life and the gang’s pathetic attempt to survive this virus and cutting Carol loose….BLASPHEMY).  Nonetheless, it’ll be interesting to watch this “great” man overcome his “fall from grace”.  Has he really changed? Is he going to try to get back to the top as soon as he can? That’s why they did that whole bit with the chess game, right? (yeah, like in Lost with Othello….BULL SH*T!!…I still hate you, Lost…)

TV knows everyone is a sucker for the rehabilitated – we LOVE to watch people who are at the top fall. Not me. I prefer consistency and progression in a story. Sometimes it doesn’t really matter if they make it out from under the bottom…and if they do, can we wait another few seasons for their comeback to truly be EPIC? Didn’t Michonne lose the Governor’s trail a while ago?? Come on, TWD…let’s move on, let’s get some freakin’ answers already!!

What I learned from this episode: The Gov is still a bad-ass and his parenting skills are top notch. He’ll teach you to play chess and kill zombies with his bare hands for you! Thanks, New-Dad! Also, zombies must not be THAT unsettling considering some people can sleep soundly through the night, vulnerable in a parked truck while SOME OTHER INCONSIDERATE PEOPLE make out RIGHT NEXT TO those sleepy heads…get another truck, you two! Ain’t nobody got time for that…’cept The Gov’na! Bow-chika-wow-wow!

So Much TV, So Little Time

TV has been pretty great this season, don’t you agree? Though I’ve been quite behind on pretty much every single program i’ve promised to tune into (and write about…thanks a lot, life, for throwing me curves balls made of stress and uncertainty…life’s changing and my plate is QUITE full), I’m slowly gettin’ caught up and boy do i have a lot to say – and since i’m limited on time, i’ll only blog about one – American Horror Story: Coven

American Horror Story I love you and all I want is you. Day and night. And more Lily Rabe. A lot more Lily Rabe! Friday night, not my usual AHS night, i caught up with episode 6, The Axeman Cometh where Zoe, Queenie, and Nan play Nancy Drew – and why not? All classes get cancelled if teacher doesn’t show up after 45 minutes, right? Yeah, well, teacher never shows up for class so….SCHOOLS OUT! Best school ever? Minus the impending voodoo / coven war these poor kids have gotten themselves inherited into! I could go on all day about how poorly this instution is treating their students.

So let’s talk about their ONLY supervisor, Cordelia. Delia’s got LOTS of problems and honestly, I think i feel most sorry for her. She’s a really nice lady and so much has gone wrong for her! She can’t get preggers, she’s got a terrible relationship with her mother, aaand she’s f***ing blind now….she’s got the touch tho – Cordelia’s visions reveal truths (and possibly terrible headaches or something, I can’t stand her scream…).Witch can’t catch a break!

Fiona’s too busy to truly care about anything/anyone but herself (as usual…), only this time she’s going through chemo and develops telepathy which is a pretty cool side effect. Meanwhile, Voo-Doo Queen Laveau is on the warpath, which is where we come to learn that Hank is a witch hunter, working for team VooDoo. LOTS revealed…

Misty Day’s keeping busy growing witches back to life and really tries to do what she can to preserve life around her – she’s by far my favorite witch. My hope and prediction is that she’ll be the next supreme. It might also be because I think Lily Rabe looks so hot this season…her hair looks AMA-ZA-ZING!

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Things i learned from this episode: since its birth, Jazz is a genre of music no one likes. Get over it, Axeman. VooDoo is a waste if your victim is tied down…why was it so fun for Queenie to burn Spalding when Zoe JUST did it…that wasn’t impressive, girl..now, go run a lap or 12. And what is going to be in store for Kyle? I’m almost feeling like he’s got no real use in this story, but, AHS often twists the story in unexpected ways. And where was LaLaurie?? I guess we’ll have to wait for next week!!

More to blog about soon, but here are some quick thoughts:

  •  It’s Always Sunny is having the best season ever
  •  Revolution has actually been keeping my interest despite my continued hatred for Juliet..I, I mean Rachel
  •  Super Fun Night hasn’t been THAT fun, let’s be honest.
  •  The Walking Dead is killing me..how slow can this season go?? And can the Govenor just GO AWAY already? He’s so last season…Bring back Carol, leave the prison and go find some answers already!!!
  • Hello Ladies so deliciously uncomfortable – wanna learn why men suck? Watch this show!
  • How I Met Your Mother really wants to piss us all off…how many episodes do we have to drag out till Ted meets the Mother????? So everyone’s gonna meet her first? Shut up.
  • The Mindy Project is slowly becoming New Girl’s ugly sister. The format, the story line, the characters..i’m getting bored…
  • I completely forgot about The Michael J. Fox Show, Trophy Wife and The Goldbergs woops!
  • Master Chef: Junior was awesome and I look forward to Master Chefs vs. Junior Master Chefs
  • Parks & Rec  where have you beeeeenn and…please don’t go away!! I’ve been hearing bad things about ratings…don’t screw this up, NBC!!!
  • I’m still watching SHIELD, Modern Family, Bob’s Burgers and South Park and I hope you are toothese programs have still kept me entertained!

The Blacklists’s Liz & Red – What’s The Connection Between?

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“Good Lord, I just hope he isn’t her father,” is what I suspect MOST of The Blacklist fans are thinking and saying. I know I am. After all, what other reason could there be for Red to take a liking to her, only work with her, and go out of his way to expose her husband as a fraud? Despite last week’s episode, can I at least suspect we are all in agreement that Tom is a shady MOFO. I don’t care what he says, I don’t buy it. How or why would he have just been looking under the dining room rug and found the secret hatch unless he put it there? HMMM TOM??? Explain that one buddy! Oh, and Miss “I’m an FBI Agent but not really” Lizzie, what didn’t you ask him that?

Sorry, I digress from the topic… Red and Lizzie. Red’s concern for her seems like it extends pretty far. It’s a very odd tennis match that they play with each other and I think goes on like it does because Lizzie has feelings for him. Not saying its a romantic one, but she certainly runs to him a lot for just about everything. Yet, the second he does something that reiterates his criminal status, she chastises him and runs away. Sounds like a parent/child relationship, doesn’t it?

Red is supposed to be this bad ass criminal master mind, yet they were sitting on the steps together (or was it bench, I forget) and Li9z holds his hand for comfort… She clearly doesn’t know why, but (and god help me for the metaphor) she goes to him like a moth to a flame. Of course you’ll get burnt dummy, its fire, and Lizzie is knee deep in the pit with a match.

Of course, the mystery of Red isn’t the only thing I am curious about. It’s fairly clear the other agents have secrets. Those, however, I can wait to watch unfold as the season progresses. But the mystery bugging me the most, the one I want to know now… why does Red have such an affection for Liz. Anyone know? Anyone? Bueller… Bueller…

 

AMC Renews The Walking Dead for Fifth Season!

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I mean, really, how can you not? With a spin-off in the works, and a record-setting premiere, AMC has made the incredibly wise choice to bring back The Walking Dead for a fifth season. Even as AMC reported the news, which they referred to as “the most anti-climactic renewal announcement ever”, they were thrilled to make it, especially considering that its become the biggest non-sports telecast in cable history.

Season five will still have Scott Gimple at the helm, along with executive producers Gale Anne Hurd, David Alpert, Robert Kirkman, Tom Luse and Greg Nicotero. One can only imagine what new horrors the group will face, those who are left after this intense season 4 that is.

With the 20 plus million people that tuned in for the season 4 premiere, I’d be surprised if the Season five premiere doesn’t crack that record. And, don’t forget about that spin-off series that’s coming our way. A new story based on characters from Robert Kirkman. If that series can bring the depth, anxiety, and complex characters like its predecessor, AMC will surely have another hit on their hands.

What is it that Makes TWD So Successful?

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With a show like this, there could be a laundry list of reasons for its success. Cast, story, special effects, characters, couples, and in the case of The Walking Dead, some really kick ass zombies. There has been an explosion of love for the idea of zombie apocalypse as entertainment, and paired with the characters placed in this world of death and sickness, you have something really special. These people are polarizing, complicated, primal and flawed. They are simultaneously fun and scary to watch.

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With the renewal of The Walking Dead, one can only hope that The Talking Dead will be renewed as well. I’ve quickly become a fan of Chris Hardwick and the show. I find the different takes and opinions on the characters and situations intriguing. For the most part think that the guests that sit on the panel are fun, engaging and bring a unique point of view to the discussion.

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What do you think about the renewal? If you have any early predictions for the next season, let me know in the comments below! The next new episode of The Walking Dead 4×04 Indifference airs on Sunday, November 3rd at 9/8C.

Super Fun Night IS Super FunnnnNY!

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Review: Super Fun Night premiered Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013 on ABC stars Rebel Wilson. You know her from Bridesmaids as Kristin Wiig’s roommate. She was also in Bachelorette (an underrated movie, if you ask me…i thought it was funnier than Bridesmaids) and Pitch Perfect. She’s fat and she’s a blonde and she’s awesome. Let’s talk about the show!

The opening scene is great; We’re introduced to Fat Amy, I mean, Kimmie Boubier. The scene starts with Kimmie recording her first video blog, which is based on her diary Ha Ha! 

We get hilarious flashbacks of Kimmie’s youth. VERY funny and I hope they keep this up because I like young Kimmie. She’s unfortunate. It’s OK tho, because today, Kimmie is really happy, things are going good, she’s got a promotion, a little crush, she’s very silly and most times borderline embarrassing – but she always plays it cool! I really like Kimmie’s personality, i think we may share similar characteristics!

It’s nice to see a show with some new faces – Kimmie’s got two best friends [with whom she is going on the super fun night out with.] Let me describe them to you. You got Marika – she’s gotta be Marla’s daughter (from A League of Their Own I’m singin’ to Nelson!”). She seems brutally honest in the ways of Melissa McCarthy (see Bridesmaids, Identity Thief, and The Heat). She sounds a lot like Emma Stone and can carry that sassy, intellectual attitude aswell. She’s a hard ass, I like her, I’d be friends with her. Then we got Helen-Alice, a nice, smart, innocent asian. She’s a dork. She wears glasses and has a ponytail!

The show is about the winners and the losers and how those losers are gonna try to be winners! The characters themselves are funny, and the writing holds some very memorable one-liners! There seemed to be some recycled jokes, but whatever. That just means the writers know what’s funny. I will never get enough fat jokes, though, so keep those coming!! Seconds, please! I’m confident this show will find itself a unique style of its own – and it doesn’t have very far to go.
The show ain’t over till the fat lady sings….and this episode, she’s singin’ her heart out! I am very excited to tune in to future episodes. I’m very relieved to have this show keep me interested, along with many other new comedies [that premiered this Fall]. There’s hope for primetime tv again!

Other thoughts:
• The theme song is really fun PLUS it’s good and SHORT. Take the hint, other shows with ridiculously long theme songs!! I WANNA WATCH THE SHOW! 
• Sometimes I think Rebel Wilson is like the female Jonah Hill…
• I Really like the cheesy jokes, more please!