TV

Animated Shows You Should Be Watching

I am a huge fan of animated shows (for adults), and often times they get written off as just being another Family Guy or South Park. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying I don’t like Family Guy and South Park, but that is just scratching the surface of what you can watch. At times it can be easy to believe that they are the only options out there, both of them having a fairly large claim over the genre.

Note: I am not including anime, it’s kind of category all it’s own

Rick and Morty

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The most basic description of this show is that it’s a sci-fi dark comedy. Truly that only scratches the surface of Rick and Morty. It’s a comedy, drama, sci-fi, fantasy, horror, slice of life show that seems to tap into just a bit of everything. Some episodes stay more on the surface of things, making you laugh, while giving sci-fi fans easter eggs to enjoy. Other episodes will hit you hard with interesting (often depressing) messages about the nature of relationships and the universe. It’s does a great job at balancing all these different themes, and is one of the most memorable shows you will see. It’s made me laugh, cry, cringe, and even want to turn it off at times. I love Rick and Morty, and you really need to catch up before the third season airs.

Archer

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I often live in a world where everyone already knows and loves Archer, only to find out the show is dismissed by some. If you have blown this off as just another copy and paste adult animated series you are missing out. Archer honors many classic spy shows and movies while following the ridiculous, yet lovable, cast of characters. It stays more on the surface of things, bringing laughs and entertainment, but every once in awhile it goes into deeper character development and stories. The cast is where the show shines, they are easy to love and easy to hate all at the same time. If you love action and dark humor you need to be watching Archer.

The Boondocks

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This show is one of the best for taking on issues of racism, culture, class, and stereotypes. Not one of the best animated shows to do so, one of the best, period. It can be an extremely challenging show to watch, but still more than worth it. It’s funny, but holds no punches when it has a point to make. The show sadly ended a few short year ago, but is on Netflix, with rumors of more services picking it up soon. If you haven’t seen this you need to.

Bob’s Burgers

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I think this show gets easily dismissed because people assume it has the same formula as Family Guy. It really and truly is nothing like those shows. Bob is not a lovable idiot, he is a hard working amazing father. None of the children have a slightly hateful relationship with their parents, in fact the entire family is pretty close. Louise is not a Stewie replacement. The only thing it has in common with Family Guy is it can be ridiculous at times. Don’t dismiss this show. It’s a funny and pretty heartwarming look at family life. It is hilarious, but it’s comedy comes from a completely different place and is rarely on the dark side. Watch. This. Show.

The Venture Brothers

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I am not entirely in love with some of the direction this show has taken, but it still holds a special place in my heart. The show has many themes, and spoofs many different genres and characters. At the heart of the show is looking at what would happen to a character like Johnny Quest when he grows up. Dr Venture was a boy wonder (like you would see on an old tv show) and it’s completely destroyed his life. He is unable to live up to expectations set for him, is incapable of making real connections, and is to an extent a failure. Being a boy wonder has shaped his life, and not in a good way. Those around him are also highly impacted by the way Venture was raised. His friends and enemies have at various points been sucked into the vortex that was his life, and almost exclusively negatively impacted by it. It’s strange, dark, and entertaining.

Honorable Mention: Gravity Falls

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I debated whether or not to include this show for the simple reason that it’s not for adults. Gravity Falls is a Disney animated series about a brother and sister sent to live in Gravity Falls. Not long after being there they discover that there is something strange (or rather a number of somethings) about the town. It brings in a great deal of supernatural with it’s comedy. Despite not being for adults it is a show that adults can easily enjoy. I don’t say this lightly. While I like a number of animated shows for kids I am hard pressed to say that it’s something many adults could like. Gravity Falls is smart, and not in the “we are going to hide sex jokes in Loony Tunes” smart. Rather it focuses on clever humor that both adults and children will enjoy. Many of the jokes in the show that might go over kids heads won’t do so because they are dirty but rather because they are truly intelligent, or easter eggs for things that kids probably haven’t come into contact with. It only gets an honorable mention because it’s still at it’s core a kids show. A few of the episodes, while entertaining, are not as impressive. The main story, and clever nature of this show made me feel like I would be remiss if I didn’t at least mention it.

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Westworld Trailer

Westworld is set to premier in October, and HBO has finally released a full trailer for the series. It’s an effective look, building excitement for the series, while balancing questions and answers. It gives a deeper look at the plot, including the fact that the creators are losing control of their inventions and thus the world itself. However the intentions of everyone involved seems murkier at best, that is really the best way to go into the experience. If the trailer is correct this show will be intense, probably a bit heartbreaking, and more than a little dramatic. So far I am pretty excited to see what is unfolding for this show, but I guess we’ll know for sure in a little over a month.

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Anne of Green Gables Series Coming to Netflix

Netflix will be bringing the Lucy Maud Montgomery novel to a new home. The book follows orphaned Anne Shirley as she is adopted by a brother and sister in early 1900s. The family adopts her looking for a boy to help them on their farm, and are shocked when a daughter arrives. Anne has a very active imagination, and is unwilling to simply bite her tongue, so she struggles to fit in with her new family and the rural community. The books were considered staples for young girls for many years, but over time have been enjoyed by people of all ages and genders. In the 1980s Anne of Green Gables (and one of the sequels) was adapted into a very popular movie. Breaking Bad writer Moria Walley-Beckett is head writer, and executive producer. Along with her is a pretty solid supporting crew to help produce and write the show. The show is expected to air on CBC and begin streaming on Netflix in 2017. Everyone involved has high expectations for the show, focusing largely on the well loved character of Anne. As someone that remembers Anne from my childhood fondly, I am rather looking forward to what they will do with it. We will bring you more news as we are able.

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Luke Cage Trailer

Netflix is continuing their partnership with Marvel, and bringing the next in their original series. Luke Cage is scheduled to release September 30th. The story takes place after Jessica Jones with Cage moving after their break up. It is set in Harlem and promises the same gritty overtones that have prevailed in the Marvel shows. The trailer gives a good look at a number of characters, as well the story and motivation for the character of Cage. It looks promising, and while it follows a formula for the Marvel shows, it does also look like it has it’s own unique place. Ultimately this is what has made the shows so popular, following a formula that has worked, while allowing what makes each show unique to shine.

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Halo TV Series Still a Thing

It’s hard to believe but it’s been a couple of years since Microsoft said that Halo was coming to TV. The show was set to to be produced by Steven Spielberg, and developed by showtime. However, it’s been roughly a year since there was any news. Phil Spencer confirmed on twitter that the show is still alive. No actual details were given he simply answered “alive” when questioned if it was dead. This is fairly disappointing as we haven’t been told anything with real meat about the series, it is nice to know the show hasn’t been completely abandoned. We’ll keep our fingers crossed that a real announcement comes soon, and hopefully we’ll be able to give you good news.

TV

Notable Spin Off Shows

Spin Off shows get a bad rep. A lot of us remember the failures, and have decided that it’s a format that simply doesn’t work. While spin offs can be formulaic- or just plain bad- there are a number of really great ones out there. In fact while I was working towards finalizing this list I found myself struggling for what to leave out, rather than what to include. The following are a number of spin offs that I think deserve a special nod, and prove that something great can be born from another show.

Daria

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I am actually not sure how many people realize this show is a spin off. Daria was originally a character on Beavis and Butt-Head. If you didn’t know this, it’s not that big of a deal. When they decided to create Daria they set out to create an entirely different show. Where Beavis and Butt-Head was mostly toilet humor, Daria was more of a satire. It was agreed early on that distancing themselves as far from Beavis and Butt-Head as possible would be the best thing for the show, and there was only ever one reference to Daria’s roots, which was featured in a promotional video for the show. The distance worked, Daria became a hit and is well loved and remembered.

Fraiser

Unlike many other spin offs Fraiser actually leaned into it’s roots instead of attempting to separate itself. Fraiser was a character on Cheers. He didn’t exactly fit in with the blue collar people that populated the bar, yet developed a friendship with them. He left the show to move back to Seattle, which is where the show Fraiser comes in. Picking up after Fraiser’s return the character remains largely unchanged, and builds on what Cheers had already establish. There are even a number of episodes where Cheers cast members guest star, and Fraiser mentions his time in Boston often. Fraiser managed to hold on to Cheers while still making it’s own way.

A Different World

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A Different World deserves a lot of credit in the world of spin offs. In fact most people forget that it was actually a spin off. The premise of the show was originally that it would be about Denise from The Cosby Show, going to college. The show was meant to follow her through the years, but Lisa Bonet didn’t want to continue on with the show. Despite the fact that the character that this spin off was supposed to center around only lasted one season, A Different World went on to receive a great deal of success. In fact many critics argue that Bonet leaving the show was the best thing for it. Without Denise being the central character it was able to branch out in it’s story telling and became something all it’s own.

The Colbert Report

This spin off deserves a nod because it’s rather interesting to think of it as a spin off. Stephen Colbert created the sort of satirical version of himself on The Daily Show. He was a misinformed joke on overly conservative reporters. From there an entire spoof of Fox News was created and The Colbert Report found it’s way into many people’s hearts. The show blended well with The Daily Show but still managed to be it’s own thing.

Laverne & Shirley

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Laverne & Shirley got their start on Happy Days as friends of Fonzie. After getting their own show there were some references to Happy Days. Laverne & Shirley sort of existed in a grey area, they never really tried to separate themselves from Happy Days, nor did they lean into it. This could of course have a lot to do with the differences in tone and audience. Either way Laverne & Shirley was rather successful, and to some even surpassed Happy Days. They two stars were compelling characters, and the show is still well loved by those that like to watch older shows.

The Simpsons

This show pushes the limits of what constitutes “spin off”, but it does technically count. The Simpsons began as a feature on The Tracy Ullman show. The shorts were actually featured on a number of different episodes for three seasons. Many people have long forgotten that, but The Simpsons has become something rather unforgettable. Matt Groening really embraced his chance when The Simpsons became it’s own show, and took adult animated humor to a new level.

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Game of Thrones Season 8 Last Season

After the recent announcement that season 7 will only be 7 episodes long, Game of Thrones fans were given another reason to be disappointed. Season 8 of GoT will be the final season of the TV series. While many involved with the series said they would be happy to keep going after 8 seasons, it just doesn’t seem like it will happen. How long the final season will be, and the air dates of the episodes is still unknown. Also unknown is if there will be a spin off series. None are being planned as of yet, but there are those that think there’s a lot of potential. While it is a disappointment, at the same time the series has gone beyond it’s source material, and has the potential to end on a strong note. As more news becomes available we will keep you updated.

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Westworld Coming In October

JJ Abrams new project is producer on the HBO show Westworld. The show as actually announced awhile back, but has hit a few roadblocks on it’s way. However it has officially been announced that the show will premier on October 2nd. Westworld is based on the Michael Crichton movie from 1973. The show will also have a pretty incredible cast including Anthony Hopkins, Evan Rachel Wood, and Ed Harris. I am personally thrilled at the idea of a show blending the sci-fi and western genres. It’s great that the show has a premier date and seems to have worked out many of the hiccups that have slowed it down. We will bring you more news as it becomes available.

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Mystery Science Theater Reboot Details

The reboot of the popular Mystery Science Theater was teased not long ago, but it was at this weekend’s comic con that real details finally started to be revealed. Brain Corbett, Kevin Murphy, and Mary Jo Pehl will all be returning to the series. Corbett and Jo Pehl will be returning as writers. All three will have guest appearances as their characters from the original MST3K. Corbett as Brain Guy, Murphy as Professor Bob, and Jo Pehl as Pearl Forrester. Dan Harmon, most recently known for Rick and Morty, and Community has also signed on as a guest writer. Meanwhile Felicia Day will be playing the character of Kinga, Dr. Clayton Forrester’s daughter. Elliott Kalan, a writer for The Daily Show, will be the head writer. Jonah Ray will take over as the new host.

In addition to the news of writers and actors we also now know that the series will be a Netflix exclusive. The exact date it will premier is still unknown but “very near future” is typically the answer when people involved are asked for a date. The show will be available (via Netflix) in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, UK, and Ireland. So there is a lot of information on how to watch it, who is involved, but sadly no clue as to a date. “Soon” could range from a few months from now, to sometime in the next year or two. Hopefully we will be able to bring you news about a premier date soon.

Are you excited for the new MST3K?

 

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More Details on New Star Trek Show

Bryan Fuller who will be the show runner for the new Star Trek series, has come forward to give a few details. First and foremost the first season will be 13 episodes long, and will cover one major story line. Fuller has said the reason for this is because Star Trek has so many episodes across many different shows, so they had to come up their own unique way to tell their story. Doing a season devoted to one major story line seemed to be the way to get that. Fuller is excited to be working on the show, saying that it was the reason he got into TV writing. While he’s enjoyed the other projects he’s been involved in (Pushing Daises and Hannibal) to him the ultimate goal was to work on Star Trek. Among the many reasons he loves Star Trek, it being so progressive is one of them. He has promised that the new series will push the boundaries, as it’s predecessors have. We are very excited to hear more about the new series, and we will bring you those details as they become available.

Are you excited to for the new Star Trek series?

TV

Great Openings: TV Edition

There is something about a good opening, it can grab us, and help excite us. TV shows have a particularly rough time, because you will watch the opening over and over. In fact often many people end up skipping the opening for the shows they love (depending on how we watch). It really says something when a show manages to create an opening that’s not something we just sit through but rather want to engage in. So with that in mind we’d like to give a nod to some of our favorite TV Shows openings.

1: Dexter

The Dexter opening is very cleverly designed metaphor for the entire show. Dexter is doing the most mundane of tasks yet somehow it’s much darker, much more creepy. Everything is slightly off from how it should be, and almost uncomfortable at moments. It’s very well shot, a smart take on the idea of an opening, and a catchy enough tune. It fits perfectly for the show, and is even more interesting than certain episodes (seasons).

2: The Walking Dead

A dark and eerie song, mixed with broken visuals, and you have an opening that is perfect for the show. Instead of over doing it with horror and gore, the opening is more subtle and it works. It makes an impact without being in your face, and sticks in the memory of those that have seen it.

3: Daredevil

This Netflix original series has one of the most artistic openings I have ever had the pleasure to see. It takes visual elements that you associate with Daredevil, but done in a stunning way. The melting pieces look slightly bloody, waxy, and just plain beautiful. It’s hard to exactly put words to this opening so I leave you with one, wow.

4: American Horror Story

It is no secret that I am not a fan of this series. I have given it many tries, and been disappointed every single time. That being said it has one of the most well composed opening songs I have ever heard. It’s haunting, and the slight changes done to it every season work well. Aside from that each season’s opening sequence manages to fit perfectly in with the theme for that season. Dark, disturbing, it deserves to be the opening for a much better show.

5: The Addams Family

Older shows have a slightly different take on openings than what we are used to with today’s TV. Even knowing that Addams Family opening is one of the best of all time. The song is catchy, and each of the characters does their part well. You get a quick look at the family (both through song and visuals) and you understand them instantly. It also paints the picture of a weird, but still loving family. It’s a great introduction for the show.

6: Six Feet Under

A show all about life, death, and being on the edge, this opening embraces that. It manages to introduce the audience to the idea of watching a show with a number of dead people, without banging you over the head with it. There are also a number of visuals that represent the the small line that divides life from death. Everything feels slightly melancholy, and sadly a little disconnected which fits the themes of the show well. Like many good openings it’s a good visual representation of what you will experience while remaining subtle.

7: Game of Thrones

For me this opening as all about the visuals. The map begins to fill itself, and introduces the audience to how complex this world is, and how many players there are in this world. If the visuals don’t get you then the epic song should.

8: The X-Files

Look at the cinematics, this is not the best opening on the list. However, the song is instantly recognizable and will bring smiles to the faces of fans. Not only that but they do manage to pull together some fairly good pictures to represent what people will see in the show.

9: Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

Hear me out before dismissing it. Can you honestly say there is an opening that sticks in your mind more than this one? It’s goofy, colorful, over the top, and fits in perfectly with the show itself. It introduces you to the idea of the show in a very lively way, and how much of an outcast our main character really is in this world.

10: The Twilight Zone

Add some weird visuals, with Rod Serling’s perfect narration and you have the perfect opening sequence for this show. Like the show itself it’s odd, can be a little off putting, and it also makes you wonder what exactly is to come.

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Impressions: Archer Double Indecency

After our two part episode Archer is back with another stand alone. It picks up shortly after the Bel Panto, with the fall out from that event still looming. How does this episode manage to stack up to the rest of the season?

Story:

The Figgis Agency is hired by a husband and his wife. Both believe the other is cheating on them, and want the crew to seduce their partner and film it. The wife hires the women, and the husband the men, neither group knows about the other’s involvement. The main chunk of the story is about Lana betting that Pam could seduce the man while Mallory sides with Cheryl. Ray believes that for the men Cyril will get it, while Archer believes any other man would be more sexy and bets on Krieger. Cyril, Krieger, Pam, and Cheryl go through various make overs while the others settle their bets.

Impressions:

Frankly this episode is not the best. It’s not a bad episode, just rather lacking. Most of the comedy is from the make overs and Lana, Mallory, Archer, and Ray trying to both up the bets, and back out at the same time. The pacing is rather stale, and the jokes get repeated one too many times. Possibly the funniest part of the entire episode is Krieger just being Krieger in the background pretty much the entire time.

Despite this not being the funniest episode it still does a number of things I like. One, Archer and Lana both agree (on their own no less) fairly quickly not to be involved in the seduction. The episode sets up the expectation that they will participate and we will have another misunderstanding/jealousy face off. I said in the Bel Panto Impressions that I was tired of that joke being repeated, and I meant it. I was extremely glad that wasn’t the way they went with it.

The other major thing this episode does well is the unexpected character development. The episode doesn’t have a lot of it, in fact more confirmation of what we already know. However at the end the group gets angry because Pam, Cheryl, Cyril, and Krieger are repeatedly insulted by the very people that hired them. Archer snaps, and a very clear message is sent. The characters in this show are down right cruel to each other at times, and it can (for me at least) almost get hard to watch. The climax of this episode is a stern reminder that while they might insult one another, none of the characters are willing to allow outsiders do it. Their frustration with the people that hired them, and anger over the insults they’ve endured makes the group come together and kick butt. It’s a nice ending actually.

Bottomline:

It’s again not a terrible episode, but not my favorite. It made me giggle a few times, and the end was a little heart warming, or at least as heart warming as this show can be. It’s not an episode I will be in a hurry to watch again.

TV

Shows That We Liked the First Season the Best

Shows go through peaks and valleys during their time on TV. Sometimes they get better as time goes on, sometimes though a show really hit it’s stride early on, then dips off. The following is a list of shows that we felt the first season was truly the best. It’s not that we dislike the following seasons (or always dislike them). Rather that the first season was something special, and the follow up just couldn’t live up to it.

Dexter

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It might have a lot to do with the fact that the first season is the most closely related to the books, or it might be that the idea of the show started to feel stale, regardless of the reason season 1 of Dexter was really the best. Dexter’s interaction with The Ice Truck Killer was well written, and played out in an extremely interesting way. Following along with Dexter as he discovered more about his past kept us drawn in. Dexter himself was also the best, telling the audience about being a killer, and give us random facts like that a Cuban sandwich is the best driving food. Overall season 1 had charm that the show was never able to totally recreate. I would say that season 2 was as good if not for Lila.

Heroes

The big problem with Heroes was the writer’s strike. The first season was compelling, had interesting characters, and brought the sci-fi adventure to prime time. The problem was season 2 didn’t live up to season 1 in any way shape or form. The characters became lack luster, their stories were often boring, and the show took the idea that “convoluted” somehow means the same thing as interesting. A lot of it was the writer’s strike, losing the team that wrote such a good first season was damaging to the show. But when the strike ended the show didn’t start to improve. It’s actually sad that such a great show had such a horrible follow up second season, and as a result the show never hit it’s stride again.

30 Rock

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I am actually a fan of 30 Rock, and liked almost every season. However when I really sit down and think about it, 30 Rock was really only that special for the first season. Liz Lemon and Jack’s relationship was at it’s perfect time in season 1. They were reluctant friends with a mentor mentee relationship, that just got more confusing as time went on. Jack’s influence on the show, while Liz fighting him worked the best. After season 1 it kind of started to be the same fights, same advice, and same cycle. While it remained entertaining the first season really shines.

Twin Peaks

Not all of season 2 is actually worse than season 1. However the big problem with the show happened when Laura’s murder was solved. A lot of what kept the show together, dealt directly with how people were responding to the death of Laura. Lynch himself actually admitted that the murder was never meant to be solved, though is a little more closed lipped on why he changed his mind. After the solving of the murder the “weirdness” that marked the show lost a lot of it’s charm. The plot lines were less compelling, and people just couldn’t stay into it. Twin Peaks could in fact save itself with the future mini series, however for now we are left wishing that season 2 had reached the level of season 1.

Breaking Bad

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A controversial choice, but one I stand behind. Walter White’s story was pretty interesting and actually rather sympathetic. Seeing him as a new man in this crime ridden world is really when people were the most willing to root for him. After season 1 White became more vindictive and evil, the family dynamics got even more unbelievable, and none of the characters were really as sympathetic anymore. A lot of people liked the cruelty that marks the later series, but to me it was best when it was new. When we the audience were discovering this world with the characters, instead of when they were hard wired in.

Prison Break

Prison Break was a rather clever show, with characters that you really found interesting. Despite the fact that they were criminals and not all of them were worth rooting for, we still found ourselves doing it. Then they broke out of prison, which was the point. The entire show was about this prison break so when it happened they should have cut it. Instead of doing that they got thrown into another prison and involved in crazy and uninteresting plot lines. Honestly there was only two solutions for this show. Either make it take longer than one season for them to break out, or have the guts to do a one season show. Instead we got a show that wasn’t awful (at least not at points), but never managed to recapture the first season.

VEEP

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Much like 30 Rock it’s not that the later seasons of VEEP are bad, but rather that they just lost something that was really there for season 1. It seems that the closer the title character actually got to The White House, the further away from the charm that marked season 1 the show got. Jonah became less of a silly joke, and kind of went crazy. Introducing Kent and Ben added an extra dynamic, but one that was maybe not needed. Selina also changed in a number of different ways, most of which just meant I couldn’t get behind her has much. The later seasons have given me a few laughs, but when I talk about how much I like VEEP it pretty much always comes back to season 1.

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New Philip K. Dick Anthology Series Coming Soon

Bryan Cranston and Ronald D. Moore are teaming up as producers of a new anthology series based on the works of acclaimed sci-fi author Philip K. Dick. The series will be called Electric Dreams: The World of Philip K. Dick, and will premier on Channel 4 in the UK. There is no NA network that is attached to the project, but there are promises that the anthology will receive international releases in some form, in a timely manner. In addition to producing Moore will be writing the series, and Cranston will star in the anthology in some form. There will be ten episodes in the anthology, and each will be a standalone based on one of the many works of Philip K. Dick. Philip K. Dick published an astounding 44 novels and over 100 short stories, so there is no lack of work to inspire the anthology.

Philip K. Dick is probably best known for Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, which was the inspiration for the Blade Runner movie. Other notable adaptations of his work include A Scanner Darkly, Total Recall, Minority Report, and the recent Amazon Prime original The Man in the High Castle. We are very excited to hear this news, so we will bring you more updates as we can.

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Lethal Weapon Series Coming to Fox

Fox has ordered up a Lethal Weapon series. It will follow the story of Riggs who moves to LA after the loss of his wife and child, he is teamed up with Murtaugh an older detective that has just suffered a heart attack. This is fairly similar to the plot of the original movie, while the details are slightly different the actual feel and what brings the two cops together is the same. Damon Wayans has been cast as Murtaugh and Clayne Crawford has been cast as Riggs. Reaction to the news has been mixed at best. The movies were fairly popular and long running, and it does make sense to move that formula to TV. However a lot of people feel it won’t work without the original actors, and it’s better to just let the franchise stay dead. At this point really only time will tell.

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Impressions: Archer Bel Panto Part I & II

Alan Shapiro and Veronica Deane return for this two part episode. Multi-part episodes have been important to Archer for the last few seasons. They have managed to bring in some of the best development, and are often highlights. So far Archer has done fairly well in California, can they keep it up?

Story:

Alan Shapiro hires The Figgis Agency to protect a jeweled necklace that Deane insists on wearing to a fancy party. The necklace is worth a couple million, but she wants to show up her ex and Shapiro can’t talk her out of it. Half of the crew is there as party guests, the other half as waiters. Of course after a short amount of time the party is crashed, and the bad guys attempt to steal the necklace. Archer is separated from the crew with Deane, and tries to infiltrate the robbers. The others of course come up with their own plan. What follows is a lead up to farcical climax.

Impressions:

This episode is rather predictable. It sets up a clear path in which everyone is going to end up infiltrating the group, but then fighting each other because they don’t know who else infiltrated the group. Despite how predictable it is, it’s still a rather enjoyable ride. The gags and overall plot have been seen before, but it does feel like a bit of an homage to other slapstick comedies. What makes Archer Archer isn’t really the plot line, but rather the charm that it brings.

Archer attempts to be the hero, and for the most part does fairly well. Cheryl falls for one of the robbers, and spends the episode being Cheryl. Pam steps up as an unexpected hero, and actually does rather well. Lana of course underestimates Archer, but eventually is convinced that she should be fighting with him instead of against him. It’s a formula we’ve seen but with gags and jokes that sell it well.

For the multi-part episodes that have been so important to Archer lately, this one is not the most compelling. It does make you laugh though, and the ending of the standoff is beyond hilarious. It also does a good job of bringing Deane, and her shady lawyer Shapiro back to the forefront of our minds, this to me implies that they will be important to the end of the season overall.

Bottomline:

Like a lot of this season, this is not the best, nor is it the worst. Archer seems to be on a plateau, it’s funny, but not hitting any peaks. Also being middle of the road for such a great show is really not a bad thing. Archer on a plateau is better than some shows at their peak.

News, TV

Seth MacFarlane to Star in Live Action Show

FOX and Seth MacFarlane are teaming up once again, only this time for a live action dramedy (comedy-drama) series. FOX has ordered 13 episodes of the show, which was created by and will star Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane. MacFarlane wrote the pilot episode, of the yet to be titled show. It is set 300 years in the future and will include a band of explorers, in their less than top of the line ship, Orville. MacFarlane has stated that he wanted to do something like this since he was young, and that “the timing finally feels right”. There are hopes that the show will make it for the 2017-2018 season. There is little word on the show beyond that, and no word if this will effect Family Guy at all. While people might have mixed feelings about MacFarlane, we here at GNU are actually curious to see where this project goes. MacFarlane already tackled live action with his film, A Million Ways to Die in the West, and we’re big fans of sci-fi. This could be the perfect blend, to bring something fresh to FOX and from MacFarlane himself. We will bring you more news as it becomes available.