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The TVaholic Previews...
7 minutes | Oct 12, 2016
Should You Plan on Watching Hulu’s Chance?
Hulu’s Chance On this episode we are previewing Hulu’s new psychological thriller, Chance. It stars Hugh Laurie (House), Gretchen Mol (Boardwalk Empire), Paul Adelstein (Private Practice), LisaGay Hamilton (The Practice), Ethan Suplee (My Name Is Earl), Diane Farr (Numb3rs) and Stefania LaVie Owen (The Carrie Diaries). Chance is based on the novel of the same name by Kem Nunn, which is a psychological thriller that focuses on a San Francisco-based forensic neuropsychiatrist who slowly gets sucked into a violent and dangerous world of mistaken identity, police corruption and mental illness. He makes the decision to help an alluring patient who seemingly is struggling with a multiple personality disorder and that puts him in the crosshairs of her abusive spouse, who is also police detective. Things begin to spiral has he also deals with his impending divorce and teenage daughter. This is a slow mover, but it draws you in quickly. The opening vignettes of past patients really get you into the headspace of Dr. Chance and why he might be end up on the path he ends up on. From top to bottom the cast is great and are all doing good work, but I really like seeing Adelstein as a menacing police detective. I mean, I don’t like the character, but after seeing him in more sarcastic jokey roles recently, it fun watching him return to something more like his Kellerman character from Prison Break. I’ve only seen the first two episodes, but there are some tense scenes with him and Laurie and I can only imagine it gets more so given where things seem to be heading. I look forward to watching the rest and seeing where the mysteries that have arisen thus far go. Watch the Trailer for Chance Does Hulu’s Chance sound like something you’ll want to plan on watching when it premieres Wednesday, October 19th? Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
6 minutes | Oct 9, 2016
Will You Want to Watch USA Network’s Eyewitness?
Julianne Nicholson in USA Network’s Eyewitness – (Photo by: Christos Kalohoridis/USA Network) On this episode we are previewing USA Network’s new anthology crime series, Eyewitness. It stars Julianne Nicholson (Law & Order: Criminal Intent), Gil Bellows (Ally McBeal), Tyler Young (The Avatars), James Paxton (Texas Rising miniseries), Warren Christie (Alphas), Matt Murray (Rookie Blue), and Tattiawna Jones (Flashpoint). Eyewitness is a 10-episode anthology series based on a Norwegian crime thriller. It follows two teenage boys that witness a triple-homicide. They decide not to tell anyone, since one doesn’t want anyone to know what they were doing there. Yet, it looks like someone walked away from the massacre and they are looking to silence anyone that may have seen them. Meanwhile, the sheriff begins investigating, but finds she keeps bumping up against an FBI case that is connected. While I haven’t watched a lot of Norwegian TV, or any at all really, this did remind me of some of the British cop dramas I have liked, like Broadchurch. It has a similar feel in its pacing, how it is shot and how the story unfolds. The cinematography is excellent, as it really gives you a sense of place. The cast for the most part is really good. I’ve always liked Nicholson and continue to here, as she and Bellows play well off of each other, as does she and Murray, she and Young, and she and Jones. But, not everything is good though. Paxton’s Lukas falls into the annoying teenager category and some side characters are kind of over-the-top. Overall it’s very good, unlike USA Network’s other recent offering, Falling Water, I was in after the first episode. But, watched two more before doing this preview and I look forward to checking out the remaining seven. I also like that given it’s an anthology, we are going to get resolution to the story. And, if it does well, we could get another season that would follow another case, set in another place, with a new eyewitness. And, even if it were to fall off a cliff in the second season like HBO’s True Detective, we’ll still have what looks to be an excellent first season that can stand on its own. Watch the Trailer for Eyewitness Does USA Network’s Eyewitness sound like something you’ll want to watch when it premieres Sunday, October 16th? Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
9 minutes | Oct 6, 2016
Is USA Network’s Falling Water a Dream You’ll Want to Keep Having?
Lizzie Brochere in USA Network’s – (Photo: Giovanni Rufino/USA Network) On this episode we are previewing USA Network’s new psychological thriller, Falling Water. It stars David Ajala (Black Box), Lizzie Borchere (Versailles), Will Yun Lee (Strike Back), Zak Orth (Revolution), Kai Lennox (The Unusuals), and Anna Wood (Reckless). Falling Water is an intersection between reality and unconscious thought. It plays off the idea of that many have wondered of whether the events in our dreams are trying to tell us something? Here we follow the story of three unrelated people, who slowly realize that they are dreaming separate parts of a single common dream. Each is on a quest for something that can only be found in their subconscious. However, the more they begin to use the dream world as a tool to advance their quests, the more they realize that their visions are trying to tell them something more, and that their real lives may hang in the balance. I was very interested in this one going in, given USA Network’s new direction with shows like Mr. Robot. So much so, that I stood in line, outside, for almost an hour at San Diego Comic-Con to watch the premiere episode, “Don’t Tell Bill,” with about a 1000 others. The vast majority of which were interested in seeing it as well, as the room had mostly emptied out from the previous panel and did so again after this was over. I was hoping it would give me some questions to ask the executive producers in the pressroom, but it only left me confused. Seems I was not the only one, as the episode received a tepid response with a smattering of courteous applause followed by a pretty quiet exit from the audience. This is not the response you get from something that has engrossed the crowd. And not the response you want from a group of people that are more likely than the average TV fan to like this type of show. After listening to the producers talk about the premise and how they are not trying to trick you. That they have provided the cues to help you learn the language of the show, so you will be able to follow what is a dream and what is reality. It made me feel like I had missed something, cause I got lost halfway through and having subsequently watched the second episode, don’t feel I am much better off. The premise is very interesting and there are some really good performances, I could watch Brochere all day long. I do sort of have a feel after two episodes, as to what each is looking for and how things might connect in the future, but not sure I will continue on with this one. It may be trying to follow in the footsteps of Mr. Robot, but I think it stumbles out of the gate. There is being confusingly intriguing and then there is this, which is confusingly not. Watch the Trailer for Falling Water Does USA Network’s Falling Water sound like something you’ll want to pick up when it premieres Thursday, October 13th? Or, you can watch the Falling Water premiere online now and see for yourself. Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
8 minutes | Oct 4, 2016
Will American Housewife Be a Good Neighbor on ABC’s Family Comedy Block?
Katy Mixon and Julia Butters in ABC’s American Housewife – (Cr. ABC/Eric McCandless) On this episode we are previewing ABC’s family comedy, American Housewife. It stars Katy Mixon (Mike & Molly), Diedrich Bader (The Drew Carey Shows), Meg Donnelly (Team Toon), Daniel DiMaggio (Supergirl), Julia Butters (Transparent), Carly Hughes, and Ali Wong (Black Box). American Housewife is family comedy narrated by a strong-willed and unapologetic wife and mother of three raising her flawed family in the wealthy town of Westport, CT that is seemingly filled with perfect moms and their perfect offspring. Was very interested in this one going in, with Mixon and Bader in the leads and Leslie Bibb (Popular) in a recurring role. I’ve liked them all in previous things and ABC has been on quite a hot streak in the family comedy category with the very funny Speechless joining the ABC lineup this year and recent funny additions like black-ish, Fresh Off the Boat and The Goldbergs and now long running stalwarts The Middle and Modern Family. But, this one just missed the mark. Unlike Speechless that finds its humor around a differently-abled child, not at his expense. This one feels more like it is making fun of one of the kids’ difficulties and the incessant fat talk is just too much. Especially, since she isn’t anywhere close to being “fat.” Whether coming from Mixon’s character or those around her, much of the comedy felt kind of mean-spirited to me. Also, the narration sort of works for an introduction, but I think it will get old fast, especially if it is a major part of the show going forward. I wish I could’ve seen more, as comedy is hard and many take a few episodes to find their way. But, as of now this one just didn’t work for me. But, you can always watch the superior Speechless. Watch the Trailer for American Housewife Does ABC’s American Housewife sound like something you’ll be watching when it premieres Tuesday, October 11th following The Middle and before Fresh Off the Boat? Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
6 minutes | Oct 3, 2016
Is Hulu’s Freakish a Scary Good Time?
Hulu’s Freakish On this episode we are previewing Hulu’s new teen horror drama Freakish. It stars Leo Howard (Kickin’ It), Liza Koshy (Tyler Perry’s Boo: A Madea Halloween movie), Adam Hicks (Zeke and Luther), Aislinn Paul (Degrassi: The Next Generation), Tyler Chase (The Walking Dead), Meghan Rienks (AwesomenessTV), Melvin Gregg (Class), Chachi Gonzales (East Los High), Mary Mouser (Body of Proof), and Chad L. Coleman (The Walking Dead). Freakish is about a group of high school students, some there for Saturday detention, practices and other school activities, and the basketball coach that get trapped inside the school after the alarm sounds because something may have gone wrong at the town’s chemical plant. They retreat inside to the old fallout shelter. Yet, it turns out not to be a drill, as the town looks to be decimated and a toxic cloud is surrounding the area. They can’t seem to contact anyone outside the school and see no signs of life out the front door of the school. I am not much of a horror fan, but I really liked Freakish. I’ve seen the first four episodes and while it has some gory moments, it’s really not about that. It’s a survival story, where you have to band together with those you don’t like or agree with to figure out how to stay alive in an extreme situation. It has the feel of those types of horror/zombie movies, where a group gets trapped in a grocery store or mall. Or, in this case a school, with something potentially nefarious and deadly outside trying to get in, but mixed with high school drama. The cast is mostly newcomers to me, as Chad L. Coleman and Mary Mouser were the only ones I recognized from their previous work. But, they are mostly doing solid work here. I like the setup and some of the twists that come up and that you don’t know the what, who or why that caused this. It creates and keeps a spooky vibe and as being dropped at the perfect time leading up to Halloween. I look forward to watching the remaining six episodes. Watch the Trailer for Freakish Does Hulu’s Freakish sound like something you’ll binge when it premieres Monday, October 10th with all 10 episodes? Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
10 minutes | Sep 28, 2016
Should You Tune In to The CW’s Frequency?
Peyton List in The CW’s Frequency – (Photo: Bettina Strauss/The CW) On this episode we are previewing The CW’s new mystery drama Frequency. It stars Peyton List (The Tomorrow People), Riley Smith (The Messengers), Mekhi Phifer (ER), Devin Kelley (Resurrection), Lenny Jacobson (Nurse Jackie), Daniel Bonjour (The Walking Dead) and Anthony Ruivivar (Third Watch). Frequency, which creates a new story with the same core concept of communicating through time as the film, follows Det. Raimy Sullivan. She has sort of followed in her father’s footsteps, while trying to prove that she is nothing like him. As the story goes, 20 years ago, her father left her and her mother to go deep undercover, where he went bad and ultimately ended up dead. She can barely bring herself to talk about him with her boyfriend or even her closest friend from childhood. But, as you might expect, that might not be what really happened. In the present after a storm she is somehow able to talk to her father back in 1996, through his old and long-broken ham radio. After some confusion Raimy tells him what happened to him and he uses that knowledge survive the night he was killed. But, changing the past ends up changing the present in big ways. Separated in time by two decades, they try to use this ability to fix things without hurting those around them. I really liked the pilot and how they set up the story, especially showing that there are real consequences to making changes to the past. I like that it has a different spin on the time travel than the many other shows in the genre these days. That being that no one is actually traveling back in time, but that you can communicate with someone. The cast is good, I’ve always liked List in her previous shows and Smith is really good as well. The surrounding cast works well, even if the aging up/down of some characters so the same actor can play them in both time periods doesn’t always work so well. There is lots of mystery to solve, even though we as the audience know some of it already. I think this is an interesting framework to tell stories within and that they can go a lot of places with it. I mean, how with this all affect her, if they make too many changes and she can remember all of them? I like the hybrid nature of the show, being a serialized procedural. You are probably going to get her solving crimes while continuing to investigate the ongoing stories of the big serial killer case they setup and stuff surrounding her father. I look forward to watching more, which will have me watching nine of The CW’s 10 shows airing this fall. Watch the Trailer for Frequency Does The CW’s Frequency sound like something you’ll be tuning to when it premieres Wednesday, October 5th after Arrow? Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic. Update 9.29.2016: I also talked about Frequency with @DocBrown_TV and @IAmPollyP on The CW Fall TV Preview 2016 episode of the TV times Three Podcast.
9 minutes | Sep 27, 2016
Should The CW’s No Tomorrow Make Your TV Bucket List?
Joshua Sasse & Tori Anderson in The CW’s No Tomorrow – (Cr. Eddy Chen/The CW) On this episode we are previewing The CW’s new romantic comedy No Tomorrow. It stars Tori Anderson (Killjoys), Joshua Sasse (Galavant), Sarayu Blue (Monday Mornings), Jonathan Langdon (Special Correspondents movie), Jesse Rath (Defiance) and Amy Pietz (Caroline in the City). No Tomorrow is based on a Brazilian show called How to Enjoy the End of the World, which was nominated for an International Emmy. It follows a woman who appreciates order so much that when she makes a list, “make a list” is both the first thing on the list and the first thing crossed off of it. But, living such a regimented life isn’t always that great. Her most recent relationship has seemingly come to an end and she gets no love for her career aspirations from her petty tyrant of a boss. She then meets a charming and free-spirited guy who she is immediately attracted to and the chemistry is electric. He brings some unexpected joy and romance into her life and attempts to get her to break out of her rut and seize the day. But, it turns out that he lives his life that way because he believes the apocalypse is only eight months and 12 days away and because an asteroid is going to end humankind. So, he has put together a list of everything he wants to do before the world ends. With the help of her friends, she must decide if he is a nut-job or if that even matters, as being with him gets her living a fuller life. No Tomorrow has potential, as the cast is very likable and the people behind it have brought us some really good, if short-lived at times, shows. So, I will be giving this one a temporary spot on my watch list. They jammed a bit too much into the pilot, but my main problem with the show is that I am not sure how it works longer than maybe a season. The premise, while interesting, puts a clock on the show and given the time period covered in the first episode, it seems like we will get to the day the world is supposed to end easily within the first season. If he is right, the show is over. If he is wrong, what does that do to the happy-go-lucky fun premise? But, it could be fun in the meantime. Overall, if you are a fan of The CW’s Crazy Ex-Girlfriend or Jane the Virgin, you will want to check this one out. No Tomorrow has a similar wacky premise at its core and both of them have turned out to be really good. And, The CW has seen fit to keep them around, even though practically nobody is watching them. Watch the Trailer for No Tomorrow Does The CW’s No Tomorrow sound like something you’ll be adding to your watch list when it premieres Tuesday, October 4th after The Flash? Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic. Update 9.29.2016: I also talked about No Tomorrow with @DocBrown_TV and @IAmPollyP on The CW Fall TV Preview 2016 episode of the TV times Three Podcast.
9 minutes | Sep 26, 2016
Should You Make Time for NBC’s Timeless?
Malcolm Barrett, Matt Lanter and Abigail Spencer in NBC’s Timeless – (Photo by: Joe Lederer/NBC) On this episode we preview NBC’s new time traveling adventure series Timeless. It stars Abigail Spencer (Rectify), Matt Lanter (90210), Malcolm Barrett (Better Off Ted), Goran Visnjic (ER), Patterson Joseph (The Leftovers) and Sakina Jaffrey (Mr. Robot). Timeless is a time traveling action-adventure series that follows a history professor, a scientist, and a soldier that have been brought together and tasked with tracking down and stopping the person who stole a secret state-of-the-art time machine, with which he could change the past and destroy the America we know. They must use the original prototype to travel back in time and try not to change things themselves while trying to stop him. If you like time travel stories, then I think you will like Timeless. The cast is solid and the people behind it, Supernatural creator Eric Kripke and The Shield creator Shawn Ryan, have brought us some pretty good TV previously. I enjoyed the first episode, even if clunky in a few places. It looks like it will be a fun romp through America’s past with an interesting central mystery. It falls into the category of serialized-procedural. Where you’ll get an adventure of the week, but it will play into the bigger ongoing story, as they try to piece together motives behind the people who stole the time machine and attempt to stop them. Plus, you’ll get a little period costume drama in the middle of every episode, which, as far as I could tell, they did a good job of recreating the time period of the Hindenburg crash. I look forward to checking out more. Watch the Trailer for Timeless Will you be checking out NBC’s Timeless when it premieres Monday, October 3rd after The Voice? Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
10 minutes | Sep 16, 2016
Did CBS Finally MacGyver the New MacGyver Into Something Worth Watching?
Sandrine Holt, George Eads, Tristin Mays & Lucas Till in CBS’ MacGyver – (Photo: Guy D’Alema/CBS) On this episode we preview CBS’ new action-adventure series MacGyver. It stars Lucas Till (X-Men: Apocalypse), George Eads (CSI: Crimes Scene Investigation), Tristin Mays (The Vampire Diaries), Sandrine Holt (The Returned) and Justin Hires (Rush Hour). MacGyver is a re-imagining of the classic series as an action-adventure dramedy about a young man who works for a clandestine organization within the U.S. government and uses his extraordinary talent for unconventional problem solving and vast scientific knowledge to save lives. Along for the ride are his partner, a former CIA agent, and a hacker. Their boss is an ex-field agent that is now the director of operations. When not out saving the world, he hangs out with his ambitious longtime friend and roommate. Working for the Department of External Services, he sets out to save the world, with little more than his resourcefulness and a pocket knife. Well, turns out the third time might have actually been the charm. While it’s not great by any stretch, it is way better than I thought it ever could be after its production troubles. CBS picked the show up in May and then didn’t just do some reshoots on the pilot, but scrapped the whole thing and kept only the two lead actors and started over. It’s actually kind of amazing that it didn’t turn out to be a giant pile. It’s actually pretty entertaining. It’s very similar to CBS’ shows like Hawaii Five-0 or Scorpion or something like USA Network’s Burn Notice on an action level, which is amped up here more than I remember it on the original series. But, it mostly works, even if it comes with a big side of cheese at times. Yet, part way through the episode I was not happy with something they had done story-wise, but by the end they turned me around. While it ultimately sets up something we’ve seen in many shows like this before, it does it in a way that made all the difference. This gives it a small bit of potential serialization to what looks to be mostly an adventure of the week procedural. Overall, I’ll probably check out a few more episodes. Watch the Trailer for MacGyver Will you be checking out CBS’ MacGyver when it premieres Friday, September 23rd on CBS to lead off the night before new seasons of Hawaii Five-0 and Blue Bloods that follow? Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
8 minutes | Sep 14, 2016
Does ABC’s Speechless Find Its Comedic Voice?
Cedric Yarbrough, Mason Cook, Micah Fowler, John Bowie Ross, Minnie Driver, Kyla Kenedy & Marin Hinkle in ABC’s Speechless – (Cr. ABC) On this episode we preview ABC’s new comedy Speechless. It stars Minnie Driver (About a Boy), John Ross Bowie (The Big Bang Theory), Micah Fowler (Labor Day movie), Mason Cook (Legends), Kyla Kenedy (The Night Shift), Cedric Yarbrough (Reno 911!), Jonathan Slavin (Better Off Ted) and Marin Hinkle (Two and a Half Men). Speechless is a family sitcom that in the premiere follows a mom on a mission. She will do anything for her husband, her daughter and two sons, especially the eldest with son with cerebral palsy. She goes full throttle against both real and imagined injustices, as the family tries to make yet another new home for themselves and she continues her search to find the right person to give her son a voice. Of the seven new comedies coming to the broadcast networks in Fall 2016, this is my favorite. It’s the one that actually made me laugh multiple times and didn’t feel like a mediocre retread from the late 90s/early 2000s, like so many of the others coming our way. I also like that while it revolves around a differently-abled child, he is not the butt of the joke. The comedy comes more from poking fun at the people around him that don’t understand or would make fun of him. Actually, a lot of the comedy comes from his character through whoever is voicing what he wants to say. Much like CBS’ Mom, it takes a serious subject and mines comedy out of the situation around it, without making fun of it. Unlike ABC’s other new comedy American Housewife, which felt more mean spirited in its comedy. Speechless has a great cast. I’ve always liked Minnie Driver and continue to here. Really like seeing John Ross Bowie getting to do something more than his one joke Kripke character on CBS’ The Big Bang Theory. The kids are all very good and you can’t really go wrong filling out your cast with the likes of Hinkle, Slavin and Yarbrough. This one will definitely be getting a DVR season pass. Watch the Trailer for Speechless Will you be checking out ABC’s Speechless when it premieres Wednesday, September 21st on ABC following The Goldbergs and before Modern Family. Or, will you watch it online right now before it premieres? Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
8 minutes | Sep 13, 2016
Is NBC’s new dramedy This Is Us for You?
Mandy Moore, Milo Ventimiglia, Chrissy Metz, Justin Hartley, Susan Kelechi Watson & Sterling K. Brown in NBC’s This Is Us – (Cr. NBCUniversal) On this episode we preview NBC’s dramedy This Is Us. It stars Mandy Moore (Red Band Society, Milo Ventimiglia (Heroes), Chrissy Metz (American Horror Story: Freak Show, Justin Hartley (Smallville), Sterling K. Brown (The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story), Susan Kelechi Watson (Louie), Ron Cephas Jones (Mr. Robot) and Chris Sullivan (The Knick). This Is Us follows a group of characters that all share the same birthday. We watch as their paths cross and their stories intersect. NBC says, “it is a smart, modern dramedy that will challenge your everyday presumptions about the people you think you know.” Of the 20 new shows debuting in Fall 2016 on the broadcast networks, This Is Us is bar far my favorite. As you can see above, the cast is stellar and they instantly draw you into their characters and situations. The “Pilot” is absolutely fantastic. Yet, it tells the story in such a way that can’t really be duplicated in subsequent episodes. While that is part of why this stood out so much in its first episode, given the interesting story elements presented and a group of characters that you will want to continue getting to know, I think it won’t really be a problem going forward. If you liked NBC’s Parenthood, then this is definitely one you will want to check out. It has that same style of drama where you are following a group of characters through the ups and downs of daily life. And, even though it will be pulling at the heartstrings, there is comedy that comes out of some of those situations. If you’ve been looking for another show like that, This Is Us will fill that void. Watch the Trailer for This Is Us Will you be checking out NBC’s This Is Us when it premieres on Tuesday, September 20 following a two-hour The Voice? It will follow a two-hour The Voice the following week as well, before settling into its regular timeslot after The Voice and before Chicago Fire on October 11th. Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
8 minutes | Apr 25, 2016
Should You Join FOX’s Houdini & Doyle on Their Mysterious Adventures?
Stephen Mangan, Rebecca Liddiard & Michael Weston in the series premiere of FOX’s Houdini & Doyle – (Cr: Robert Vigliasky) On this episode we preview FOX’s mystery dramedy Houdini & Doyle. It stars Michael Weston (House, M.D.), Stephen Mangan (Episodes), Rebecca Liddiard (Between), Adam Nagaitis (Banished) and Tim McInnerny (Sherlock: The Abominable Bride). Houdini & Doyle flows master magician, escape artist and paranormal debunker Harry Houdini and prolific writer, creator of “Sherlock Holmes” and paranormal aficionado, who end up consulting for New Scotland Yard to investigate unsolved, inexplicable and possibly supernatural crimes. They are teamed with the first female Constable Adelaide Stratton. They take on the cases cases that nobody else seems to be able to solve and will challenge their sense of what is real and what isn’t. Each brings their diverse viewpoint to crime solving investigate cases involving vampires, ghosts, monsters and poltergeists… or maybe those are just being used to misdirect and conceal the real cause? I enjoyed the first episode and found it to be a lot of fun. Mangan has been great in Showtime’s Episodes and is very good here as Doyle. I’ve always liked Weston when he’s appeared in various things and it’s nice to see him in more than a one-off or guest stint. Being set in 1901, Houdini & Doyle comes off like an early 20th century The X-Files, but goes for a bit more comedy, with Houdini in the skeptic Scully role and Doyle in the believer Mulder role. The first episode really plays more like one of the fun alien/supernatural type episodes of ABC’s Castle, where ultimately there is a rational explanation for the crime. I like that the magician is the supernatural debunker and the creator of the deductive reasoning Holmes is the supernatural believer. On the face of it, you’d think it’d be the other way around. I look forward to following their adventures over the nine episodes that follow. Watch the Trailer for Houdini & Doyle Will you be checking out FOX’s Houdini & Doyle when it premieres on Monday, May 2nd following Gotham? Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
9 minutes | Apr 12, 2016
Should You Get Infected by The CW’s Containment?
Chris Wood talks about Containment at Comic-Con 2015 – (CR: Jason Griffin/TVaholic) On this episode we preview The CW’s new drama series Containment. It stars David Gyasi (White Heat miniseries), Christina Moses (Starship: Rising movie), Chris Wood (The Vampire Diaries), Kristen Gutoskie (Beaver Falls), Claudia Black (Farscape), George Young (Grace miniseries), Hanna Mangan Lawrence (Spartacus: War of the Damned) and Trevor St. John (One Life to Live). Containment is based on the Belgian series Cordon. This version tells the tale of a mysterious and deadly virus outbreak that ends up requiring a large area of Atlanta to be quickly quarantined. Those on the inside are left to fend for themselves and stay safe, while local and federal officials attempt to figure out what is going on and hopefully find a cure. This also separates families and loved ones with some on the inside and others out. I’ve seen the first four episodes of this 13-episode limited series that if successful could continue on in subsequent seasons. Each episode left me wanting to watch the next one and I am looking forward to continuing on with the series. The cast is solid, even if I didn’t recognize anyone but Wood, and is doing good work here. The show puts a group of mostly interesting characters in a terrible situation and we see how they react. It is sort of like The Walking Dead in that way. Except, here we are interested in where the virus came from and trying to stop it. It’s definitely worth checking out, if you like these types of shows. A character drama wrapped in a horror/mystery/thriller. Watch the Trailer for Containment Will you be checking out The CW’s Containment when it premieres on Tuesday, April 19th following The Flash? Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
10 minutes | Dec 29, 2015
Should You Adventure Into the World of MTV’s The Shannara Chronicles?
Author Terry Brooks talks about The Shannara Chronicles as John Rhys-Davies attentively listens at Comic-Con 2015 – (CR: Jason Griffin/TVaholic) On this episode we preview MTV’s new fantasy series The Shannara Chronicles. It stars Austin Butler (The Carrie Diaries), Poppy Drayton (When Calls the Heart TV movie), Ivan Baquero (Pan’s Labyrinth movie), James Remar (Dexter), Manu Bennett (Arrow, Spartacus) and John Rhys-Davies (The Lord of the Rings movies, Sliders). The Shannara Chronicles is an adaptation of the best-selling fantasy novels by Terry Brooks. Set thousands of years after the destruction of our civilization, the story follows Will, an elf-human hybrid, Amberle, an elven princess, and Eretria, a human rover, as they embark on a quest to stop a demon army from destroying the Four Lands. The first season of the show follows the story of The Elfstones of Shannara, which was the second novel of the original Shannara Trilogy. I’ve seen the first four episodes and I quite like what I’ve seen so far. I look forward to checking out the rest of the 10-episodes. The special effects and visuals are fantastic. Drayton and Baquero are quite good and Bennett, Rhys-Davies and Remar are always good, which continues to be the case here. The first two episodes do a good job of introducing you to the world of the show and the main characters. While the show isn’t slow by any means, I do like that they take a little time bringing the trio together to begin their quest, as it didn’t feel forced. This is one I’ve been looking forward to since hearing the actors and Terry Brooks himself talk about the show in the pressroom at San Diego Comic-Con last July. Then after seeing the first trailer they played during the panel there, it was definitely on my list. And it’s always nice when something actually lives up to the expectations set forth by both of those happenings. Watch the Trailer for The Shannara Chronicles Will you be checking out MTV’s The Shannara Chronicles when it premieres with the first two episodes on Tuesday, January 5th following the premiere of the back half of Teen Wolf season five? Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
9 minutes | Dec 27, 2015
Should You Follow Cooper Barrett’s Guide to Surviving Life on FOX?
James Earl, Justin Bartha, Charlie Saxton and Jack Cutmore-Scott in Cooper Barrett’s Guide to Surviving Life – (CR: Joe Viles/FOX) On this episode we preview FOX’s new comedy Cooper Barrett’s Guide to Surviving Life. It stars Jack Cutmore-Scott (Kingsman: The Secret Service movie), Meaghan Rath (Being Human U.S.), James Earl (Ground Floor), Charlie Saxton (Betas), Justin Bartha (The Hangover movies) and Liza Lapira (Battle Creek). Cooper Barrett’s Guide to Surviving Life posits the idea that it would be great to have a friend that has already made all the mistakes there are to make in life and then have them tell you exactly where they went wrong, so you can avoid doing the same things. Each episode covers some type of problem, like losing your wallet or traveling, and shows you where Cooper and his pals went wrong. While I really like the idea of the show, the execution wasn’t quite there. I’ve seen the first three episodes and it wants to be like a Ferris Bueller’s Day Off or a Parker Lewis Can’t Lose. But, in this case the twist is that Cooper Barrett can’t win. It breaks the fourth wall like those do and has Cooper talking directly to you, as he and/or his buddies have gotten themselves in a jam. Then it jumps back to when things started to go wrong and shows you the story leading up to the point where the episode started and then goes past and shows you the resolution. If it had just been funnier, I might have been able to look past how annoying the Cooper character is. Even though I did kind of like the rapport between Cutmore-Scott’s Cooper and Rath’s Kelly. But, if we could chop Cooper and his pals out of the story and just follow Bartha’s Josh and Lapira’s Leslie and make Kelly their neighbor, that might be a fun show. Watch the Trailer for Cooper Barrett’s Guide to Surviving Life Will you be checking out FOX’s Cooper Barrett’s Guide to Surviving Life when it premieres on Sunday, January 3rd after The Simpsons? Or, you can watch it out now at FOX.com or via Amazon Video, Hulu, iTunes or YouTube. Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
10 minutes | Dec 7, 2015
Is Syfy’s Childhood’s End Miniseries the Serious Sci-Fi You’ve Been Wanting?
Mike Vogel in Syfy’s Childhood’s End – (Photo: Ben King/Syfy) On this episode we preview Syfy’s new miniseries Childhood’s End. It stars Mike Vogel (Under the Dome), Charles Dance (Game of Thrones), Daisy Bets (The Player, Last Resort), Colm Meaney (Hell on Wheels), Star Trek: Deep Space Nine/The Next Generation), Julian McMahon (Nip/Tuck), Yael Stone (Orange Is the New Black) and others. Childhood’s End is an adaptation of the novel by the same name, written by Arthur C. Clarke and published in 1953. It is hailed as a revolutionary work of science fiction, which follows the peaceful alien invasion of Earth by the mysterious “Overlords,” whose arrival begins decades of apparent utopia under indirect alien rule, but at the cost of human identity and culture. The premise of Childhood’s End is interesting, but I found the miniseries to be slow and boring and not worth the 4+ hours I spent watching it. It seems to change the rules of how things work as the miniseries progresses, as well as doing a lot of telling and not showing of all the big things happening all over the globe. Ultimately, maybe I missed something, but I didn’t get the point. Or, maybe I did and just didn’t think it was a good one or the story that gets you there to be all that engaging or engrossing. You’d probably be better off just watching The Expanse, which premieres the same night. Watch the Trailer for Childhood’s End Will you be checking out Syfy’s Childhood’s End three-part miniseries when it premieres on Monday, December 14th? Part two plays Tuesday, December 15th and the conclusion on Wednesday, December 16th. The first two episodes of The Expanse follow it on the 14th and 15th and then will continue on Tuesdays going forward. That’s a series that does look like it is worth your time. Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
7 minutes | Nov 30, 2015
NBC’s Telenovela: Is This New Eva Longoria Comedy Worth Checking Out?
Jencarlos Canela, Eva Longoria and Jose Moreno Brooks in NBC’s Telenovela – (Photo by: Danny Feld/NBC) On this episode we preview NBC’s new comedy Telenovela. It stars Eva Longoria (Desperate Housewives), Diana Maria Riva (The Good Guys), Amaury Nolasco (Prison Break), Jencarlos Canela, Jose Moreno Brooks, Alex Meneses, Jadyn Douglas and Izzy Diaz. Telenovela follows the on and off stage lives of the stars of a popular Spanish language soap opera and just like a real telenovela, it is full of drama, life and death, love and hate and of course twists. Despite all the chaos, this telenovela’s cast and crew is a family. Or, at least, they are trying to be. I like Longoria and Riva and think that a workplace comedy taking place on the set of a telenovela is a great idea for a sitcom, but after two episodes this one just isn’t working for me. Too much of the comedy is telegraphed. Yet, with the people behind it and in it, it does feel like it has some potential. Yet given episode order cuts and this weird introduction it is getting a month before it will air regularly, I’m not sure it will get a chance to attempt to reach it. Watch the Trailer for Telenovela Will you be checking out NBC’s Telenovela when it premieres on Monday, December 7th following The Voice with a two episode special preview. It will start its regular run on Monday, January 4th following new comedy Superstore. Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
9 minutes | Nov 23, 2015
Should You Go Shopping for Laughs on NBC’s Superstore?
Colton Dunn, Ben Feldman, America Ferrera, Nichole Bloom in NBC’s Superstore – (Photo: Trae Patton/NBC) On this episode we preview NBC’s new comedy Superstore. It stars America Ferrera (Ugly Betty), Ben Feldman (Drop Dead Diva, Mad Men), Mark McKinney (Slings and Arrows), Lauren Ash (Another Period), Colton Dunn (Parks and Recreation), Nichole Bloom (Shameless), and Nico Santos (Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2). NBC describes Superstore as a hilarious workplace comedy about a unique family of employees at a supersized megastore. From the bright-eyed newbies and the seen-it-all veterans to the clueless summer hires and the in-it-for-life managers, together they hilariously tackle the day-to-day grind of rabid bargain hunters, riot-causing sales and nap-worthy training sessions. I describe Superstore as a show set in a workplace that has some characters that are too unique. As in wacky for wacky’s sake and not real characters. More like caricatures, but with no signs of growth or being rounded out in anyway most of the way through the first season. The setting seems to be ripe for revelry, but really comes up short on that front. It was like going to the store to get your favorite item on sale and finding out they are all out, very disappointing. Watch the Trailer for Superstore Will you be checking out NBC’s Superstore when it premieres on Monday, November 30th following The Voice with a two episode special preview. It will start its regular run kicking off Monday nights on January 4th followed by new comedy Telenovela and The Biggest Loser. Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
9 minutes | Nov 13, 2015
Should Amazon Prime’s The Man in the High Castle Be Your Next TV Binge?
On this episode we preview Amazon Prime’s new drama The Man in the High Castle, which is an adaptation of the Philip K. Dick novel of the same name. It stars Alexa Davalos (Mob City, Reunion), Luke Kleintank (Pretty Little Liars, Bones), Rupert Evans (The Village, Rogue), DJ Qualls (Z Nation), Rufus Sewell (The Pillars of the Earth, Eleventh Hour), Joel de la Fuente (Hemlock Grove) and Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa (Revenge). The Man in the High Castle posits an alternate reality where America has lost Word War II and it is now 1962 and the eastern United States is the Greater Nazi Reich and the western states are now the Japanese Pacific States. New hope rises amidst this oppression from films that are circulating that seem to show a different world. One where the outcome of WWII is what we know from our history books. When a woman gives her sister, played by Davalos, one of these films and is then gets murdered, so the sister wondering what could be so important watches comes to believe the films hold the key to freedom and becomes obsessed with finding their mysterious guardian, known as The Man in the High Castle. I’ve never read the novel, but find the whole idea put forth by it to be fascinating. And, the series is able to delve deep into that dystopian alternate history. It instantly sucks you in and you want to know more about what is going on. The visualization of the times, but with the historical tweak, is so well done. The acting is good too, but this idea being carried through via the “propaganda” films is what really hooks you. I can’t wait to watch the rest and find out more about what is going on. Watch the Trailer for The Man in the High Castle Will you be checking out Amazon Prime’s The Man in the High Castle when it premieres on Friday, November 20th with all 10 first season episodes? If you don’t have Amazon Prime, Get a 30-Day Free Trial Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
7 minutes | Nov 7, 2015
Spotless: Is Esquire Network’s First Scripted Series Worth Watching?
Spotless on Esquire Network On this episode we preview Esquire Network’s new crime drama Spotless. It stars Marc-André Grondin, Denis Ménochet (Inglorious Basterds film), Miranda Raison (24: Live Another Day, MI-5) and Brendan Coyle (Downton Abbey). Spotless is about a troubled family man whose life begins to spin out of control when his crooked brother that he hasn’t seen in years shows up in a bit of a jam. They were both part of the same childhood tragedy, but have gone their separate ways. One now has a pretty good life with a wife, two children and a business cleaning crime scenes and the other who has been in and out of jail. Because of circumstances and poor decisions they end up being forced to put those crime scene cleaning skills to use for a local mob boss. Spotless is a solid first outing scripted-wise for Esquire Network. While we’ve seen many a mob or crime drama, I like the slightly different twist on it here with how the brothers get mixed up in things. Each episode builds nicely to an ending that leaves you wanting to watch the next one. Similar to Empire or Scandal, but with a much slower pacing like Broadchurch or Fortitude. Watch the Trailer for Spotless Will you be checking out Esquire Network’s Spotless when it premieres on Saturday, November 14th with the first of its 10 episodes? Find out where Esquire Network is in your area. Or, you can watch the first episode now online before it premieres. Listen and then let me know what you think in the comments or via Twitter @theTVaholic.
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