Chris: So I've been more down on Better Call Saul than most for the first three episodes, but I feel like the show hit a bit of a stride with its fourth installment - "Hero." What's grabbing me the most is the relationship - both present and past - between Jimmy and his lawyer friend Kim, played by Rhea Seehorn. I loved how she smirked at Saul's efforts to undermine Hamlin; she is the most compelling supporting player in the show so far.Full Story
Oh, and what about her invitation to go see - of all things - John Carpenter's 1982 remake The Thing? Some "Kurt Russell action," she said. How about some Wilford Brimley as a bad guy action? What's next week's feature, The Firm? (Really, Tisch? Michelle and Sean invite you to join them on this and you give them Wilford Brimley jokes?) …
If you watched last night's Oscars ceremony, you saw plenty of lengthy speeches from just about any and everybody, including a few who pushed back against the usual play-off music. It all seemed to start with Ida director Pawel Pawlikowski's refusal to back down when the music started playing on his acceptance speech for that film's Best Foreign Film Oscar, instead outlasting the music.
The Feed vets Michelle Stark (new Food Editor) and Sean Daly (biz whiz) couldn't stay away from TV forever. For the former Mad Men debaters, the allure of another AMC show proved too strong. And this time, they're bringing Business Editor Chris Tisch, a Breaking Bad fanboy who once paid homage to Walter White's love of tighty-whities at a Halloween party, along for the ride. After drooling over the first two episodes of could-have-been-terrible Breaking Bad spinoff Better Call Saul, the trio take it to the Feed to discuss this week's third installment, "Nacho."
Michelle: "I knew it, I knew it! Finally someone believes me!" - Jimmy McGill
The highest praise I can give Better Call Saul, especially after Monday’s third episode? It doesn’t make me think of Breaking Bad.
A good spinoff has to jibe with the show it’s spun off of, honoring the specific setting or character or idea it’s based on enough to hint at its origin. But it also has to move things along, grow a new world from the ground up, and do all of this in such an entertaining way that, eventually, you’re not watching the new show because you liked the old show. Saul checks all of those boxes. …Full Story
Tina and Amy, back at it tonight.
Watching the Golden Globes tonight? We are. Between the fashion, the fun, the drunk celebrity speeches and, oh yeah, seeing who wins, it's one of our favorite pop culture nights of the year.
Follow along live with us at tbtim.es/goldenglobes starting at 8 p.m., where we'll be compiling our favorite tweets, fashion photos and commentary of the night. You can weigh in with your snark, too. (Bonus: Keep an eye out for Deal Diva Stephanie Hayes' fashion tweets during the red carpet festivities.)
The Globes start at 8 p.m. on NBC.Full Story
This is the week for FX casting news. Some of it's extremely bizarre, like yesterday's news about John Travolta (JOHN TRAVOLTA) coming to TV. And some of it is just feels so right you wonder how you ever lived in a world where it wasn't a thing, like today's news that Ted Danson, Patrick Wilson and Nick Offerman are coming to Fargo.
That's right, the second season of the FX miniseries is building its ensemble cast, which started with news that Jesse Plemons and Kirsten Dunst would star as two of the season's major players, a nice married couple who encounter a local crime gang. Season 2 is set in 1979 in Sioux Falls, S.D., and Luverne, Minn., and will tell a story alluded to in the present-day first season by Molly Solverson's (Allison Tolman) dad, Lou (Keith Carradine). …Full Story
Daniel Wallace, Tampa Bay Times
In the past year especially, we've gotten a ton of press releases about big-name movie actors making their way to TV. Clive Owen starred in the first season of Steven Soderbergh's The Knick in 2014; Billy Crystal is set to star in an FX comedy due this year.
But for some reason, we were really not expecting this one: "John Travolta takes starring role in FX's American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson," a press release said Wednesday. We assumed Travolta was essentially retired, off flying planes and whiling away the days in Ocala, content to have his final television appearance be that Adele Dazeem gaff at the Oscars in March.
He's joining the 10-part FX miniseries as one of the leads, attorney Robert Shapiro, returning to television, as the press release reminds us, for the first time since Welcome Back, Kotter. That show debuted 40 years ago. (1975, folks!)
The show is from Ryan Murphy, who's producing it and directing the first episode, and it's ostensibly another iteration of his American Horror Story series, which has now told four separate stories over four distinct seasons. Though with crime. …Full Story
The winter TV season is in full swing, with a handful of new shows premiering this week. We highly recommend Fox's bold new hip-hop drama Empire. Also, Parenthood returns for just a few more episodes before it ends for good, and Tina Fey and Amy Poehler host the Golden Globes on Sunday.
Click here for our full list of this week's top TV.Full Story
Ellie Kemper in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Ah, January. Time for the networks to roll out a slate of fresh TV shows, to rejuvenate their brands after a lackluster fall season and to head into the new year with some more high-profile fare.
And since it's officially 2015, here are 15 shows we're looking forward to, both new and returning. There's 12 Years a Slave writer John Ridley's American Crime, Fox's soap opera Empire, AMC's Breaking Bad spinoff Better Call Saul, Fox's M. Night Shyamalan thriller Wayward Pines, plus a few comedies to lighten things up. Click here for the full list. Full Story
The One with All the Thanksgivings
I'm a Friends fanatic. And, without cable, my options for watching it constantly are limited. That's why I'm thrilled that all 10 seasons are coming to Netflix this week, on Thursday. Happy New Year, indeed. To get you started, here are my top 10 Friends episodes, in no particular order, because ranking them seems more difficult than trying to decide whether Ross and Rachel really were on a break.
I find it hilarious that a Netflix poll found 34 percent of parents trick their kids into going to bed early on New Year's Eve by pretending it's midnight already. That's genius. And kind of evil too, but parenthood ain't for sissies. So starting today, Netflix has added a service that lets you stream a three-minute countdown any time you want with King Julian from Madagasgar, the hyperactive dancing lemur, playing the part of Ryan Seacrest.
This is available now for Netflix subscribers, but you can see a preview here: Full Story
This was a memorable year for television. Jay Leno and Stephen Colbert stepped down from their late-night franchises. HBO's buzzy True Detective struck right in the middle of the Matthew McConaissance and set ratings records for the channel. Amazon took a giant leap forward in its original programming department with the transgender drama Transparent. Each year, as more of these outlets churn out original shows, it gets harder to watch everything, or even to be familiar with everything.
I certainly can't and don't watch everything. I know there are terrific shows out there that I haven't made time to catch up on. Game of Thrones. Justified. Rectify. Heck, Parks and Recreation. So my top 10 shows are ones that made me laugh, cry and feel but, more than anything, made me want to keep watching. These days, that's worth everything.
Click here for the full list.Full Story
Well my family just got a party game to play over the Christmas holidays: Name all the celebrities, authors, world leaders (yes, an ex-president), Hollywood actors, media pundits and bold-faced names who joined Stepen Colbert in a touching singalong of We'll Meet Again for his series finale Thursday night. Check out the video here and add names of the faces you recognize in the comments section. (bonus points for titles, like the US Ambassador to the UN)
And Colbert continues to astound me with how smart and full of layers his show is. It's been the gold standard of satire and if you don't believe me note that the lovely parting ditty from World War II that was sung to soldiers heading off was also the closing song of the ultimate satire, 1964's Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb. We'll Meet Again closes out the final scenes while showing a montage of atomic explosions.Full Story
Exciting streaming news, everyone! Hulu and FX have bestowed upon us Hulu subscribers a most joyous gift for the holiday season: The streaming site has just announced a multi-year deal for FX Networks' original series, meaning they'll exclusively be streaming shows like Tyrant, The Strain, Married and You’re The Worst, plus upcoming shows like Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll, Taboo, and Fox's buzzed-about May show Wayward Pines.
Hulu says the first seasons of FX and FXX shows including Tyrant, The Strain, Married and You’re the Worst will be available before their second seasons premiere. (We strongly urge you to check out You're the Worst. It's, well, the best.) Plus, prior seasons of FX's Sons of Anarchy, American Horror Story, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Louie and Archer will all be available too.
But the upcoming shows Hulu's getting in this deal might even be more exciting. Future series that will be available for streaming include Jay Baruchel's Man Seeking Woman (premieres Jan. 14 on FXX); The Comedians, which stars Billy Crystal and Josh Gad (premieres spring 2015); Denis Leary's Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll; and Ridley Scott's period drama Taboo, starring Tom Hardy. …Full Story
If you didn't get enough of Bollywood in America when the so-called Bollywood Oscars rolled into Tampa in April, more will be coming to a TV near you next fall.
Bollywood A-list actor, singer and model Priyanka Chopra, who flashed her dazzling smile all around Tampa before and during the awards, has signed a deal with ABC to star in a production, according to the Hollywood Reporter. According to the terms of the one-year deal, ABC will either develop a new project around her or make her the lead of an existing project.
It's just the latest foray Miss World 2000 Chopra is making into world domination after her debut single In My City was featured on the NFL's Thursday Night Football in 2012, her sophomore single Exotic was a trilingual collaboration with Pitbull, she lent her voice to Disney's Planes, and she became the first Indian Guess Girl last year.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, the deal with ABC is thanks to exec Keli Lee, who heads up the network's diversity casting program that has also been responsible for casting Scandal's Kerry Washington, Modern Family's Sofia Vergara and Grey's Anatomy's Sandra Oh. …Full Story
The Golden Globes nominations were announced today, and Tampa Bay Times TV fanatics Michelle Stark and Brittany Volk have some thoughts on the pleasant surprises (hey look, it's Transparent!) and some of the less good ones (no Mad Men?). (Times movie critic Steve Persall has thoughts on this year's movie nominations here.)
Michelle: First of all, Brittany, we must pay our respects: ALL HAIL THE GOOD WIFE! Let's take a minute to grasp just how rare it is for a network drama in its SIXTH SEASON, and one on CBS no less, not exactly the home for creative and boundary-pushing programming, to continue to hold court with the big cable dogs in the Best TV Drama category. Yes, The Good Wife was again the lone network show nominated in the category and, boy, does it deserve it. (RIP WILL.)
While we're talking drama, I'm happy to see Viola Davis up for Best Actress for her role in ABC's How To Get Away With Murder, because she delivered the best nine words on TV this season. If she doesn't get the Globe, the winner better watch her back. Full Story