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Entries in TV (685)

Thursday
Jun132019

Emmy FYC: Kristin Scott Thomas in "Fleabag"

Team Experience will be sharing FYCs as the Television Academy votes on Emmy nominations over the next two weeks. Here's Ben Miller...

I have an appreciation for a skilled performer’s ability to shut up.  Watch the scene in Doubt between Viola Davis and Meryl Streep.  Once Davis gets going, Streep knows to step aside and let Davis do her thing.  Fleabag creator and star Phoebe Waller-Bridge does the same thing with Kristin Scott Thomas in her standout scene in the third episode of Fleabag’s (pretty much perfect) second season.

After chasing down Thomas’ Belinda to take back an award, the main character spends some time drinking and flirting at a bar, listening to Belinda speak about the patronization of women in business.  Then comes the speech --sit back and enjoy...

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Wednesday
Jun122019

Big Little Lies MVPs: Episode 2.1 "What Have They Done?"

by Nathaniel R

The first season of Big Little Lies won 8 Emmys, 4 Golden Globes, and 2 SAG Awards and, most importantly, the hearts of actressexuals everywhere. It would be foolish to expect the possibly unneccessary Season 2 to deliver at quite the same level. But for now, just one episode in, it more than satisfied, if only for the chance to see these exceptionally well-drawn characters again. 

The first episode begins with the new school year and charts the after-effects of Perry's (Alexander Skarsgård) death. The death has (mostly) been deemed an accident  but "the Monterey 5" (Kidman, Witherspoon, Woodley, Dern and Kravitz aka Celeste, Madeline, Jane, Renata and Bonnie) are still the talk of the town. To add to the combustible mix of those five strong personalities, now closer friends due to their shared tragedy/lies, Perry's mother Mary Louise (Meryl Streep) is making everyone uncomfortable not just with her questions about the death of her son, but the brusque manner in which she delivers them.  As with season 1, we'll conquer each episode in list format. Herewith...

Top 10 MVPs of Big Little Lies. Episode 2.1 "What Have They Done?" 

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Tuesday
Jun112019

FYC: "Counterpart" 

Team Experience will be sharing FYCs as the Television Academy votes on Emmy nominations over the next two weeks. Here's Abe Fried-Tanzer...

Last year, Counterpart won exactly the number of Emmy Awards it was nominated for – one. Its Main Title Design victory, while deserved, is hardly indicative of its tremendous quality. Starz has struggled generally to find a footing in the non-technical categories, earning only Best Limited Series mentions in the past decade, for The Pillars of the Earth and The White Queen. Golden Globes enthusiasm for Outlander, Boss, and Blunt Talk didn’t translate to Emmy love, and so there’s little hope that Counterpart, which was cancelled back in February by Starz, will break through in the way it should this year.

Season two represented the opposite of a sophomore slump for this sci-fi political thriller. The ideas presented in season one were expanded upon and the show transformed into something completely different. What initially began as a showcase of an incredible two-handed performance from Oscar winner J.K. Simmons as the same man from two different worlds turned into so much more, with his two starring characters shying away from the spotlight as other players came into focus...

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Thursday
Jun062019

The one that got away from Bruce Lee: Season 1 of "Warrior"

by Lynn Lee

Did you know that the 1970s TV show “Kung Fu” was based on an uncredited pitch by Bruce Lee?  According to Lee’s widow, Warner Brothers liked (and poached) his idea of a martial arts master wandering the American West but passed him over for the lead role in favor of David Carradine. Warner Brothers claims they’d already had the concept for “Kung Fu” in the works when Lee proposed his own series (called “The Warrior”) to the studio in 1971.  But even if you believe them, it’s hard not to wonder what a version of the show that starred Bruce Lee might have looked like. 

Nearly half a century later, Lee’s daughter Shannon, director-producer Justin Lin (Better Luck Tomorrow, various The Fast and the Furious installments), and writer-producer Jonathan Tropper (This is Where I Leave You, “Banshee”) have created a Cinemax TV series that attempts to realize his original vision while updating it for a new generation...

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Monday
Jun032019

Review: When They See Us 

By Spencer Coile

Ava DuVernay, notable for her righteous films like Selma and 13, is unafraid of holding a mirror up to a culture that has condemned the subjects of her work. Her Netflix limited series, When They See Us is a piece of television that is rooted in the history and the humanity of its subjects. Following a contentious court battle, five boys (all either Black or Hispanic) were convicted of a crime they did not commit.

Accounts of the Central Park Five have been speculated and picked apart for decades, including necessary think-pieces, documentaries, and protests. After all, they were exonerated of all their crimes in 2002. When They See Us presents the timeline of this case; interrogation to court to their eventual release. These are all facts that a simple Wikipedia search would produce. What makes DuVernay’s work so astonishing, though, is the way she imbues this narrative -- one that is deeply embedded in our public consciousness - with traces of anger, and above all else, grace.

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Friday
May312019

Fosse/Verdon - Finale!

by Eric Blume

Michelle & Sam as Gwen & Bobby

Fosse/Verdon wrapped its 8-episode run this Tuesday, and here’s a quick recap on the final three episodes, and some overall thoughts on this captivating mini-series.

Episode Six, “All I Care About is Love” 
Episode six concerned Fosse’s heart attack during the editing of Lenny (1974) editing and rehearsals for Chicago on Broadway.  It was one of the weaker episodes of the series, especially coming off the previous episode, the almost-staged-play episode with the characters locked in a Hamptons house, arguably the show’s high-water mark.  That episode gave director Thomas Kail (who went from Hamilton to TV with graceful ease) the opportunity to put in the nails early on and keep screwing tightly, with all the actors laser-focused on their objectives and obstacles.  Episode Six, on the other hand, contained some material handled directly in All That Jazz, and it felt more like a transitional episode for the final narrative haul of the show...

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