Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Web Whiparound: Shatner's Invasion

Tonight, the producers of Joe Schmo bless us with another faux reality show, and this one stars the perfect man for the job: William Shatner, playing an over-the-top Hollywood actor (a stretch!) who allows a small town to help him make a low budget sci-fi movie.

The reviews are pretty good. In our eyes, if it's even close to the level of Schmo, this five-hour miniseries can't fail.

NY Daily News: Oddly endearing and entertaining television
Philadelphia Inquirer: Shatner still can't act
NY Times: Shatner hams it up
NY Post: Shatner gets big laughs
Boston Herald: Bottom line: It's funny
Boston Globe: Invasion more uncomfortable than not
USA Today: Reality invades Riverside, Iowa

Sightless Folks Love To Watch Blind Justice

Ah, the irony.

Regardless- better them than me.

No Grey Areas For Anatomy: It's A Hit

Sunday's premiere of the medical drama Grey's Anatomy took full advantage of its Desperate Housewives lead-in, pulling in over 16 million viewers.

While losing audience from mega-hit DH, it still held on to a larger portion of viewers than the average episode of the vacationing Boston Legal.

Men Are From Mars, Reality Is From Venus

Serena and Venus Williams will serve up a tennis reality show on ABC Family.

"The series will provide our fans with an up-close, inside look at our lives away from the tennis courts," Venus Williams said. Oh, goody.

I'd rather watch The Anna Kournikova Show, quite frankly. But that's just me.

Unions Ready To Rain On Revamped Emmy Parade

Efforts to streamline the Emmys have run into a major roadblock: Hollywood's major unions won't cooperate.

The leaders of the Director's Guild of America and the Writers Guild of America West have told the Academy of TV Arts & Sciences that the plan to streamline the Emmy telecast violates the agreements between ATAS and the guilds.

Unions: America's favorite party poopers since 1790.

Idol Fantasy

Fallen American Idol outcast Mikalah Gordon wants to star in a sitcom?

Yeah, honey, and I want to be part of an Eva Longoria-Eliza Dushku sandwich, but some things just ain't in the cards.

24 in 99: 9:00pm-10:00pm

Here's a 99 Word synopsis of last night's 24.

Jack is now a hostage of Marwan. Mitch Anderson (FakeGeneral), meanwhile, kills his way to clearing the bomber for takeoff. Chloe, working under Edgar can't contain her usual lack-of-tact with Audrey about the Jack and Paul triangle. Paul's surgery is underway in the conveniently located operating room at CTU. Michelle and Tony continue their time-killing flirty thing. Jack creates a short circuit in phone wires so that CTU can track the Marwan warehouse. Marwan proposes a time-stalling Jack-for-Behrooz trade to distract CTU from the dead pilot story. The exchange is safely made. The bomber takes off- but for where?

24 in 99 airs every Tuesday.

Back to

Tonight's Tube

Spike TV starts Invasion Iowa, which is sort of like if Project Greenlight mated with Joe Schmo, and gave birth to an overacting, overrated egomaniac. Sounds great to me. Or, enjoy some Peacock laffs with Scrubs and its new neighbor, The Office. Oh, you want something more serious? Fine, you friggin' killjoy: check out NOVA on PBS, where they'll bum you the fuck OUT by detailing the recent tsumani disaster. Happy now?

Monday Mouth Off! Solution

When this actor isn't behaving badly, it's easy to see his real identity. Who is he?

Well, of course... he's Blind Justice's Ron Eldard!

TV on DVD: This Week's New Releases

America's Next Top Model: Cycle One
Astro Boy: The Complete Series
Big Box of Kung Fu Volume 4 (Set)
Clutch Cargo Cartoon Collection Volume 1
Due South: The Complete First Season
The Lone Gunman: The Complete Series
The Saint: The Early Episodes Set 1
Twilight Zone: Season 2 - The Definitive Edition

Monday Trivia: Who's the Boss? Week, day 1

Which of the following was NOT a spinoff of Who's the Boss?

A) Mona
B) Charmed Lives
C) Better Off Wed
D) Living Dolls

Answer: C) Better Off Wed.

Geek/CounterGeek: Did NBC Make The Office Redundant?

Geek: The Office- Surprisingly Good

Last week, the US remake of the hit British show The Office premiered. When I first heard NBC wanted to develop this, I thought it was a terrible idea. I was sure that they would turn this original, funny and often painful-to-watch show into a typical lame US sitcom.

I was a little heartened when I heard that Ricky Gervais and Stephan Merchant, the creators of the original, would be involved with the remake. After seeing the first episode I think it works well. The episode was very similar to the original's pilot. It was able to keep the structure, tone and humor of the British show but make it more accessible to a mainstream U.S. audience.

I'll be curious to see how it works when it deviates from the plotlines of the original.

CounterGeek: The Office- Been There, Done That

There are two major problems with the US version of The Office.

First, we've seen all of this before, I mean EXACTLY the same thing. Second, the brevity of the UK show was key to its success. The Office ran for two seasons of six episodes and two specials in the UK. The show was brilliantly written and acted and was very funny. They told the stories they wanted to tell and gracefully bowed out, instead of milking the UK audience by rehashing the same thing year after year. We in the US get this remake instead, which I'm sure NBC hopes will run for at least 70 episodes.

Like old crackers, this show is stale right out of the box. How can it possibly improve over time?