TV

Portlandia: Battlestar Galactica

So funny and true.  Here is the first segment:

Here is a "behind the scenes" clip that shows a bit from the second segment, but the second segment (with Olmos, Callis, and Moore) isn't online:

Dream of the 90s

One more:

House Sitter

Another Portlandia clip:

Did You Read?

Stewart Skewers Olbermann and Colbert Discusses Adolf Carter

Here are a couple videos from last night...First, Stewart laments what Olbermann has become:

Then, Colbert discusses how Obama is apparently "Adolf Carter": somehow "both an iron-fisted autocrat and a laughably incompetent waffler":

Flight of the Conchords

220px-Flight_of_the_Conchords_@_Gramercy,_2007 Last night Lisa and I went to see Flight of the Conchords at the Fox Theatre in Detroit.  If a slow internet connection at work hadn't caused me to time out in my first attempt to order tickets, we would have been on something like the fifth row.  As it was, we still had decent seats.  On the positive side, we were far enough back that Lisa couldn't throw her skivvies at Jemaine.  The Fox Theatre is an amazing place, built in the 20's and restored for $12 million in the 80's.  Jemaine and Bret got several jokes out of it:  since it's the only place they've been in Detroit, they assume that all of Detroit is decorated as ornately as the Fox...or that Detroit obviously spent all of its money on the Fox and had no money left for anything else of decent quality in the city.  Lisa thought the Fox was very cool but was annoyed by the uncomfortable seats.  It was definitely a fun, enjoyable show.

"Business Time" is still our favorite from FotC (Beware, don't play if easily offended by crude or risque musical humor):

Update: the photo I took of the marquee:

Miscellany 25 April 2009

» I was bummed to hear that This I Believe was being dropped from NPR but then glad to hear that the project and podcast will continue.

» This guy (Major David Frakt, Air Force Reserves judge advocate and defense counsel in the Pentagon’s Office of Military Commissions, guest on "On Point" in January in an episode on Closing Guantanamo) must get a lot more jokes about his name in the post-BSG era

» I was disappointed to hear that Reaper won't be coming back for a 3rd season...also worried that Life may suffer the same fate.

» Situations like this (link) give civil rights efforts a bad name.  New Haven, CT, gave their firefighters a test to determine who was qualified to be promoted.  Then they threw out the results because it would have meant that no blacks and few Hispanics would have been promoted this time.  Either they should be ashamed for giving a test that did a lousy job of judging worthiness for firefighter promotion...or they were embarrassed by the results and would rather promote to leadership roles people who are less prepared to lead in the life-or-death job of firefighting than face the apparent reality that there happened to be no blacks and few Hispanics who are currently ready to be promoted in the New Haven fire department.  It's not hard to understand why folks get upset when we discriminate in the name of eliminating discrimination.  Let's get rid of racial and other pernicious forms of discrimination, but I don't think this helps.

Canceled Shows

It's always a bit of a disappointment when you watch a season or two of a show only to see it cancelled...especially if it has a serial story line that's gets abandoned mid cliffhanger.  The more episodic ones that die are a bummer too but to a lesser extent.

Today I went through the season pass lists on the Tivos and did some investigating about the shows I suspected might be dead.  I noticed a trend in which the creators of some of the canceled shows are making an effort to provide some resolution for their fans.  The other trend I noticed: ABC.

octoberroad13a

October Road (ABC)

Can you ever really go home again?

That's the question that confronts acclaimed novelist Nick Garrett when he returns home after being away for ten years. Once back home on October Road, he quickly discovers that the circle of friends whose teenaged lives he wrote about have since settled into blue collar careers and started families.

Canceled.  I was definitely sorry to see that this one was gone.  It grew on me over a couple of seasons...lots of likeable characters and storylines.  When they heard it was canceled, the creators wrote a 15-minute finale and contacted each of the cast-members.  It will be on the season 2 DVD when it's released in about a month.

traveler

Traveler (ABC)

College friends go on the lam after becoming suspects in a terrorist bombing. Along the way, they attempt to track down information to clear their names and expose a conspiracy.

Not as disappointed that Traveler died.  That's probably because it was only 8 episodes in.  Anyway, after it was cancelled, the show's creator posted an "answers blog."

notescast Notes from the Underbelly (ABC)

Andrew and Lauren are deciding if they really want a family or not. But the advice from their friends is not helping them at all! Are they going to have a baby or are they going to continue their lives without one?

Underbelly was cute and enjoyable and always good for a few chuckles.  Not glad to see it go.



250px-Dirty_Sexy_Money-Logo Dirty Sexy Money (ABC)

When idealistic attorney Nick George's father dies, he ends up taking his father's clients, the Darlings, led by patriarch Tripp.  It's not always easy for Nick handling both legal and sometimes illegal matters.

I liked DSM at first but then it seemed to devolve into just a prime time soap opera, so I wasn't too sad to see it go.  There were a few episodes that didn't air in the U.S.  Guess those will come with the DVD.  It'd be nice if they showed up on ABC.com too.

230px-PushingDaisieslogo2

Pushing Daisies (ABC)

...centers around a pie-maker with the ability to bring the dead back to life with minor stipulations.

I like Daisies and enjoyed it, but in the end it just seemed like a gimmick with no where else to go.  There are 3 as-yet-unaired episodes.  Reportedly they'll air this summer but won't provide a narrative conclusion (per ABC's instructions).

Capture_03292009_160716 Aliens in America (The CW)

A Wisconsin mom arranges to host a foreign exchange student, believing the visitor will help her shy son become more popular. When the student turns out to be a Muslim teenager from Pakistan, her plans go awry - and everyone is likely to learn a little lesson about life.

I enjoyed this Aliens and was disappointed to see it go.  It was a nice combination of comedy while also dealing with issues of religion and culture.

Capture_03292009_160847 Dirt (FX)

The series follows the exploits of Lucy Spiller, an executive editor at two tabloid magazines. Lucy possesses the power to manipulate the lives of celebrities through the articles she prints in the magazine.

I liked this Dirt OK, though it seemed liked it went out of the way to push the decency standards of basic cable just for the fun of it.

I was thinking that Reaper was dead too (even though I'd heard it was coming back) because the episodes weren't appearing on the Tivo.  Turns out that new episodes have been airing since early March but the season pass wasn't functioning for some unknown reason.  I fixed that and am catching up on the missed episodes online.  I'm also currently enjoying the second seasons of Damages and Breaking Bad.

Out of all of those dead shows, if you haven't seen the following then I'd recommend adding them to your Netflix queue: Pushing Daisies, October Road, Aliens in America, and Notes from the Underbelly.

Gavin and Stacey

Gavin_&_Stacey_DVD_BBC Lately I've been watching the Gavin & Stacey series on BBC America.  From IMDB:

Gavin and Stacey have been continuing their romance on-line and by telephone for the last six months. Now they want to be together but will their friends and family let them?

Over lunch today I watched episode 7 of the second series (or season, as we yanks would say).  I’m sure I was feeling the build up and culmination of watching the first two series over the last few months (and not just the quality of this episode)…plus it is well-documented that I love me some British TV…but I thought it was fantastic.  Smithy, in particular, is a wonderful character.

Supposedly NBC is going to make an American version (link), but they said the same about Saxondale and I never saw it realized.  Better to watch the original anyway.  Adjust your Netflix cues accordingly (though it looks like you’ll have to wait for season 2).

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