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Summer TV Preview Part 5: Sunday

Here is the fifth and final part of my Summer TV Preview.

 

Sunday

 

NBC – As part of NBC’s continued effort to lower their production costs, they have partnered with the BBC to co-produce Merlin, a re-imagining of the classic tale that takes place when the magician is a young boy. The second season of the program is set to premiere in the UK, so we know at least the British viewers like it. We’ll find out what Americans think at 8/7c on June 21st.

 

HBO – Our favorite alternate-reality bloodsuckers are back for more when True Blood premieres its second season on June 14th at 9/8c. On June 28th at 10/9c we will get a chance to see Thomas Jane in Hung, the new show about a man who decides to take up the world’s oldest profession. Then the boys return on July 12th at 10:30/9:30c for a sixth season of Entourage.

 

HGTV – Home improvement meets reality tv with the fourth season of HGTV Design Star, in which a group of potential host battle through a series of do-it-yourself challenges to see who gets a show of their own. The group will strap on their toolbelts on July 19th at 10/9c.

 

WE – She doesn’t know it yet, but I’m putting this one on the list for my wife. Amazing Wedding Cakes combines a competition atmosphere with the joy of creating cakes for each couple’s big day. The show airs at 10/9c starting June 7th.

 

101 – DirecTV’s exclusive HD showcase channel will be hopping this summer with complete series runs of Deadwood and Oz (link contains spoilers), two beloved shows that many wish could have lasted longer. For DirecTV subscribers, this certainly beats taking up slots in your Netflix queue or paying big bucks to buy the DVDs.

 

BBC2 – Jeremy, James, and Richard are back to create more automotive havoc when the 13 series of Top Gear premieres on June 21st. While I understand that we are stuck with BBC America and the edited series 12 episodes that are currently airing, I know that intrepid viewers will look for other alternatives to see the most current episodes as soon as they air.

 

This concludes my summer preview, so I hope you find it helpful as you plan your tube time for the next few months. I only included the things I’m going to watch, so if you want to see everything, check out the comprehensive grid over at The Futon Critic.

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May 31, 2009 Posted by | Comedy, Drama, New Series, Premiere, Reality, Renewed, Television | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Summer TV Preview Part 5: Sunday

Movie Review: Up

UP

Up – Animated/Family – Starring Ed Asner, Jordan Nagai, Bob Peterson, Christopher Plummer – Directed by Pete Docter – PG – 96 minutes

What is it like? A mash-up of Secondhand Lions, Indiana Jones, The Goonies, and White Fang.

Favorite Scene? The montage of Carl and Ellie’s relationship was an example of what makes Pixar the undisputed champion of animated features. It hit every emotional note I can think of, and all with no dialogue. The marriage of the most advanced computer animation with all the classic techniques of silent film show us that the creators at Pixar have a huge amount of respect for the medium they work in.

Will kids like it? Based on the full theater I sat in, the kids enjoyed it very much. However, there were a few scenes that hit more adult notes and lost the kids in the process. I heard a lot of fidgeting and talking during those moments, although for the most part the kids were entranced. I saw it in 3D, and there were lots of oohs and aahs throughout.

Will adults like it? Absolutely. Pixar films are always good at appealing to the adults who have to bring the kids to the theater. The difference with Up is that I think the adults will actually enjoy the movie even more than the kiddies. As I mentioned above, there are a lot of adult emotions in this movie, which by definition are better understood by adults.

Theater or Rental? Theater, without a doubt. It’s easy to think that 3D isn’t that big of a deal since every big animated movie this year is being released in 3D. That is not the case with Up. Pixar took the time to invent a whole new method for creating 3D animation, and it shows. The movie is not filled with gimmicky 3D that jumps out of the screen for no reason. Instead, they use the technique to create the depth and scope that makes you feel like you’ve really traveled to a South American jungle plateau. As for the rental, don’t bother.  You’ll want to go ahead and pre-order this one on blu-ray (or dvd if you must) in plenty of time for Christmas 2009.

May 31, 2009 Posted by | Blu-ray, dvd, Family, Movies, Premiere, Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Movie Review: Up

Summer TV Preview Part 4: Thursday, Friday, Saturday

Here is part 4 of my Summer TV Preview.  Most of this is focused on Thursday, and I also included Friday and Saturday as well since there isn’t much going on.

 

Thursday

 

NBC – I have zero interest in The Peacock’s sad attempt at reality tv, but I strongly recommend catching up on the repeats of The Office and 30 Rock if you didn’t catch them during the season. There is also one new show I’m going to check out–The Listener is about an EMT who can hear people’s thoughts. The show originally aired in Canada, and stars newcomer Craig Olejnik as main character Toby Logan. It reminds me of several other shows I have enjoyed in the last couple years, with one man using his unique knowledge to try to save people or prevent wrongdoing. Think Eli Stone or Journeyman.

 

Comedy CentralTosh.0 is a new show featuring comedian Daniel Tosh that takes the internet to task with segments on viral videos, tweeting, blogging, vlogging, poking, and everything else we spend so much time doing. Based on the clips, the show looks like what would happen if The Daily Show got The Soup pregnant. Tosh.0 premieres on June 4th at 10/9c.

 

Lifetime – You’ll have to wait until August 20th, but Project Runway has finally emerged from pissing contest between Bravo & Lifetime. This sixth season will air at 10/9c, and both Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn will be back. No one has to point out to me that I’m hooked on the new flagship show for the “#1 Network for Women”. I enjoy watching these eager young designers create each week, while simultaneously proving I know absolutely nothing about fashion.

 

Showtime – Penn & Teller are back with more Bullshit! on June 25th at 10/9c. As for this season’s topics, I’ve only seen the topic for the first episode–Orgasms. I think it’s safe to say P&T won’t have any trouble working some of their trademark gratuitous nudity into the premiere episode.

 

USA – I haven’t watched it, but I keep hearing about how good Burn Notice is. I don’t think I’ll take the time to catch up, but I am planning to check out the third season premiere on June 4th at 9/8c. On new series front, Royal Pains stars Mark Feuerstein (The West Wing, What Women Want) as shunned New York doctor Hank Lawson and Paulo Costanzo (Road Trip) as his younger brother Evan who convinces him to take a weekend in The Hamptons after Hank gets fired. I find Costanzo hilarious, so I’m looking forward to this one.

 

Fridays

 

SyFyEureka returns for a third season on July 10th at 9/8c. I’ve never watched the show, but I know my fellow geeks enjoy it.

 

USA – Your Tony Shaloub and Dule Hill withdrawal will be gone on August 8th as new seasons of the popular Monk and Psych premiere at 9/8c and 10/9c respectively. Cherish the 16 episodes of Monk, because they are the last ones you’re going to get.

 

Saturday

 

ABC – The alphabet network runs out the clock on Pushing Daisies, Eli Stone, and Dirty Sexy Money in the 10/9c timeslot starting May 30th. Don’t look for any of these shows to be tied up with a pretty bow though since these episodes were all in the can before the shows were cancelled. Good news for Daisies fans though, as an upcoming comic book mini-series will give us some closure.

 

Look for the final part of my summer preview to be posted later today.

May 31, 2009 Posted by | Cancelled, Comedy, Drama, New Series, Premiere, Reality, Renewed, Scifi, Season Finale, Television | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Summer TV Preview Part 4: Thursday, Friday, Saturday