12/26/14 The Feed
By Michelle Stark • Times Staff Writer
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, in keeping with the low (ish?) temperatures and shorter days, the 2015 winter TV season is going to the dark side. Murderers, detectives, spies — they're all here in a particularly heavy lineup of new and returning dramas (and some comedies) queued up for the first few months of 2015. ...
12/23/14 The Feed
If you have eyes and a television, you know about a little show called Friends, the NBC Must-See-TV-era megahit that turned 20 years old this year to the chagrin of aging Gen-Xers everywhere.
Santa must be a fan, too, because all 10 glorious seasons of Friends are finally coming to Netflix, one week from today. Sure, the show is on TV all the time courtesy of reruns, but now you'll be able to pick and choose which episodes you want to watch. (Also, it's a major and necessary life development for those of us without cable.) 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. ...
12/23/14 The Feed
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. My top 10 shows are ones that made me laugh, cry, feel and, more than anything, made me want to keep watching. These days, that's worth everything. ...
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....
12/12/14 The Feed
The Great Christmas Light Fight, 8 p.m., ABC
Four households attempt to outdo each other with outlandish Christmas decorations, all in the hopes they can nab a grand prize worth tens of thousands of dollars ... that they'll likely just spend on more Christmas decorations.
SEASON FINALE Jane the Virgin, 9 p.m., CW...
Golden Globes TV nominations: From pleasant surprises (Transparent) to egregious snubs (The Americans)12/11/14 Blog
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.)...
The Voice goes from five singers to three, Rudolph celebrates its 50th anniversary and Disney pays tribute to all of its Broadway shows. Click here for this week's list of top TV.
If you can’t be honest with your sitcom pals, who can you be honest with?
New Girl, you did not have a good third season. When you debuted on TV’s struggling sitcom scene in 2011, you quickly became one of my favorites, a witty, joke-laden show with strong characters and even stronger actors playing them. Season 2 was your best, culminating in that thrilling kiss between leads Nick (Jake Johnson) and Jess (Zooey Deschanel)....
12/05/14 The Feed
The Great Christmas Light Fight, 8 p.m., ABC
The house-decorating contest is back for another season of elaborately lit homes and super high electric bills.
The Voice, 8 p.m., NBC
It's the semifinal performance show for the remaining five contestants, before the field is narrowed down to just three. Frankly we've lost all interest since Team Pharrell's DaNica Shirey and Luke Wade were eliminated last week. That's just wrong, America....
On Thursday night, NBC staged its second annual live musical, a heavily (heavily) promoted three-hour production of Peter Pan. It was colorful. It was elaborate. It was also extremely boring. And, judging by the ratings, viewers agreed: Peter Pan Live! averaged 9.2 million viewers, less than half the viewers of last year's Sound of Music Live!. (It also dropped more than a third of its viewers in its final hour.) ...
If nothing else, all of the big names we're about to drop make this new TV show HBO just ordered worth paying attention to: Martin Scorsese, Mick Jagger and Terence Winter (The Sopranos, Boardwalk Empire) are making an "Untitled Rock and Roll Series" for the channel.
It gets better. The as-yet-untitled hour-long drama has a strong cast, starting with Boardwalk Empire alum (and Emmy winner!) Bobby Cannavale, the increasingly interesting Olivia Wilde and Ray Romano, who's currently over on NBC's Parenthood doing the best acting work of his career. He's our TV MVP right now. Winter (who created Boardwalk and wrote for Sopranos) will be the showrunner and writer, while Scorsese will be an executive producer (and direct the pilot), along with Mick freaking Jagger....
It's December, which means it's time for an avalanche of Christmas programming. There are plenty of classic Christmas shows, movies and specials airing on network and cable TV this month, but for those (like me) who don’t have cable, instantly streaming holiday fare on Netflix will have to do. Even if you do have the ability to watch Elf on ABC Family 17 times in the next 30 days, this list may come in handy. We’ve put together 10 classic Christmas episodes of shows both older (Cheers) and newer (New Girl)....
Christmas TV: When and where to catch holiday classics 'It's a Wonderful Life,' 'Home Alone,' Peanuts special and many more11/26/14 Blog
Grab a mug of hot cocoa, wrap a scarf around your neck, and make sure to crank the air down real low in your house because it’s probably not actually cold enough outside to do any of that: Christmas TV has officially arrived! Real talk: Some of this has been going on since Halloween. (Giving you serious side eye, Hallmark Channel.) But the glut of holiday programming kicks off in the next few days, with the start of ABC Family’s 25 Days of Christmas, network specials like the Rockefeller Center tree lighting and Peanuts Christmas classic, and this year’s crown jewel, the Grumpy Cat Christmas movie. Here are the highlights (date and times subject to change):...
What better day is there to curl up on the couch and watch TV than Thanksgiving? You’re stuffed, you’re sleepy from all that tryptophan, you’re trying to avoid annoying family members — whatever the reason, you need some solid viewing options. The Peanuts’ Thanksgiving classic gets a head start Wednesday, but most of these (including some off-the-wall marathons) will be perfect for relaxing in that post-feast malaise....
This week's list of top TV is all about the holidays, with Thanksgiving shows leading the way, and Christmas sneaking in toward the end. Plus, the top 10 perform on The Voice, Dancing with the Stars wraps up its current season (go Alfonso!) and there's a frightening show airing called When Turkeys Attack.