I never write these entertainment news blogs as frequently as I would like. This particular one is probably the latest I’ve ever done considering it’s currently mid-July and my previous one was late March. But since then I have been adapting to a new motorized wheelchair, spending a week in the hospital with a UTI and surgical implantation of a G-tube, and getting sued for copyright infringement. So I’ve had a full plate lately. Perhaps we ought not to call this “entertainment news” as much as it should be called “entertainment recent history”. So basically the probably won’t be many “spoilers” and there will be lots of end of season postmortem interviews with cast and show runners. And at some point along the way we will actually get some news about next season.
First a couple of notes about movies. Batman v. Superman was pretty good. Any concerns about whether or not Ben Affleck could play the role of Bruce Wayne/Batman I think are pretty much ancient history. It is confirmed he will be directing himself in that sequel which we look forward to. I liked Batman v Superman better than the most recent Superman movie which kind of got boring with Superman and Zod spending so much time throwing each other through skyscrapers. So this was a step up for the DC universe.
Then I went to see Capt. America: Civil War and I realized that DC has a long way to go before they ever get in the same league (no pun intended) as the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This latest installment from Marvel was probably the best comic book movie I’ve seen in many, many years. Maybe the best ever. One critic of CA:CW complained that it didn’t really resolve anything. That might be its only plot flaw. I’m not saying we can’t leave some loose ends. I guess I’m just saying the ending wasn’t that satisfying. But everything else about it was well worth seeing. Some very memorable and iconic moments throughout.
I also saw “Finding Dory” which was the first Pixar movie I managed to catch in the theater since Toy Story 3. Reviewers have said it was better than Finding Nemo but I’m awfully fond of the original so I will say it’s a worthy sequel every bit as good. Of course as a CGI enthusiast I find myself looking at the technical details. It’s been reported that Pixar spent 2 years trying to figure out how to get the Octopus character to move realistically. Most of the time he moved so quickly that it was hard to tell if his movement was natural or not. But everything else about the film was visually well-crafted. And the opening short subject was not only very funny but had some amazing photorealistic rendering that blew my mind.
As for summer replacement TV shows, you can skip “”Feed the Beast” featuring David Schwimmer as a restaurant owner whose brother has mafia problems. If you like over the top, ridiculous, sci-fi humor with a healthy dose of political sarcasm that you definitely need to check out “Brain Dead”. It’s a political comedy where politicians brains are being eaten by insects that came from a meteor from outer space. Especially funny are the recaps of previous episodes that appear at the beginning of each new episode. They are set to music and very funny. They also did a really good job of recapping the previous episodes. This show is pretty stupid but there’s nothing much else to watch during the summer and it does have its funny moments.
If you did not see the AMC spy thriller miniseries “The Night Manager”, definitely try to catch it on demand or streaming if you can. Absolutely awesome.
Also on AMC the new supernatural comedy based on a graphic novel “Preacher” is well worth watching if you’re into that particular genre. Chris Hardwick had a special “Talking Preacher” after the first episode and will have another one after the finale. The current season will run 10 episodes and season 2 has already been ordered for 13 episodes.
Speaking of after shows… we have seen that Chris Hardwick has managed to spawn a whole new genre of TV shows with “Talking _whatever_” as other shows have developed their own similar talkshows. However imitators are having a difficult time matching the quality of what Hardwick does in his after shows. They tried it with “Sons of Anarchy” and did an abysmal job. The latest additions are “After the Black” for fans of “Orphan Black” and “After the Thrones” for “”Game of Thrones”.
The actual talkshow portion of After the Black is watchable but not great. It consists of 2 hosts typically 2 guest cast members. The problem is you have one actress playing about a third of the roles of the series and you can’t have her on every week. The best part of the show are the behind-the-scenes features that show some of how it was filmed. The show is watchable but definitely not up to the quality that Hardwick in his shows.
For fans of “Game of Thrones” we want to highly recommend “After the Thrones”. The formula is little bit different than Hardwick/Anarchy/Black. There are no cast members or show runners as guests. It only consists of extremely knowledgeable hosts discussing the finer details of the episodes. Most useful is a regular segment called “Who the fuck was that?” in which they remind you of the back story behind some minor character you haven’t seen since season 2 but who pops up in the current episode. These people know their episodes and the books inside out and when the regular hosts need help they call in other fan experts who have an even deeper understanding of the back stories. Because the show is politically complex and has so many characters it’s really great to have this analysis to point out some of the more subtle parts of the plot. Because this season uses flashbacks is especially helpful. If you have already watched the entire season of Game of Thrones but have not seen After the Thrones, you might want to go back to your HBO on Demand or HBO go and catch up on this.
Late word is that USA Network’s Mr. Robot will also have an after show for its season premiere July 13. The show will be hosted by Andy Greenwald who is one of the hosts of After the Thrones. Additionally season 2 has been expanded from 10 episodes up to 12.
Normally at this point I would say “In the links below read about…” And then list a bunch of topics. But to see the actual articles you would have to jump to be in the blog to actually click on the links. I did this because often I wanted to describe the link in my own words rather than the headline of the actual article. But my particular description wasn’t significantly different from the headline itself so this time I’m just going to give you the links right here. After we do that, there was typically a section which would begin with “Also of interest but not linked…” And then there would be a lengthy list of news bits that were one or two sentences each. They were in the order in which I discovered them while browsing through the various websites that I follow using an RSS reader. This time were going to try to organize things a little bit and put news items into various categories.
So here we go. Linked articles that you might find interesting. Note that there were other “spoiler” articles I did not include because they weren’t really spoilers because we’re so far behind.
‘Supergirl’-‘Flash’ Crossover: EP Andrew Kreisberg On How It Came Together & What Else The Multiverse Might Bring Note: this article was before it was announced that Supergirl was moving to CW network.
Renewals and Cancellations
We’ve already reported many cancellations and renewals that were done early in the renewal season but there have been some last-minute renewals and cancellation that we are going to mention here. For an overall look at what’s been canceled or renewed as always we refer you to these links from TVline.com.
And if you want to be ahead of the new fall schedule follow the next link to a graphic showing the entire schedule. If it comes up small on your screen try clicking on the image again after it comes up.
We will have a more in-depth look at the new TV schedule in a later blog installed.
Here are some specific renewals and cancellation of interest as well as news about changes for upcoming seasons
Supergirl was canceled by CBS and then almost immediately picked up by CW network. CW will rerun entire season 1 beginning August 1. Before season 2 premieres on October 10.
CBS finally decided to renew Criminal Minds for season 12 long after other renewals announced.
CBS has renewed sitcom Life in Pieces. I tried it for a short piece and didn’t care for it.
Apparently “Limitless” didn’t live up to its name. Canceled by CBS after one season and definitely will not be picked up by any other network or streaming service. The show was barely watchable. It tried to play up the comedy too much compared to the serious of the movie upon which was based.
Producers of Arrow admit that season 4 flashbacks didn’t really work very well. Season 5 will continue to have flashbacks but probably that will be the end of them as we finally catch up to the start of the show.
BBC has announced Sherlock season 4 is definitely coming
Fox has renewed Lucifer which I really liked and Rosewood which I didn’t care for.
Fox has canceled Grinder, Grandfathered, Bordertown, and Cooper Barrett. I only watched Grinder and I was surprised it wasn’t canceled midseason.
To my surprise Sleepy Hollow has been renewed for season 4. I like it okay but I’m just surprised.
After spending all of last season in Europe and the Middle East, Showtime’s “Homeland” season 6 will take place back at home specifically New York City.
ABC first announced Stana Katic would not return for next season of Castle. This wasn’t a surprise because she appeared to want out last season. It was also no surprise that a few weeks later they canceled the show altogether because the final season was barely watchable and without Detective Beckett to play off of there was nothing for Castle to do. Their relationship was the heart of the show.
ABC canceled the Muppets and Galivant
ABC’s Scandal will not return until midseason because of Kerry Washington’s pregnancy
Agents of Shield spinoff series to feature agents Bobbi and Lance has been on again off again many times. Currently off.
ABC has canceled Nashville after 4 seasons. Also has canceled midseason comedy Uncle Buck after 1 season.
ABC’s Once Upon a Time will have a single storyline throughout its 22 episodes rather than having 2 story arcs split over 2 half seasons of 11 episodes each.
MTV has renewed fantasy series Shananara Chronicles for season 2. This was a pretty good fantasy series except for the really bad makeup effects on the elves pointed ears.
NBC announced that Grimm season 6 will only be 13 episodes instead of the usual 22. I still watch it but it has lost much of its appeal. Would not be surprised if season 6 was the last although that’s not yet official.
NBC canceled Game of Silence after one season. Never saw it.
NBC has canceled sitcoms Crowded and Undatable. And medical drama Heartbeat
NBC has renewed sitcom The Carmichael Show for season 3. I kind of like it.
FX series “The Americans” has been renewed for a 13 episode season 5 to show 2017 and a 10 episode final season 6 in 2018.
Outlander has been renewed for season 3 and 4 Starz and were very well pleased.
TNT’s Major Crimes season 5 has been increased from 13 to 21 episodes for season 5
TNT has renewed Animal Kingdom about a family of criminals for season 2.
HBO has reversed its decision to renew rock ‘n roll series Vinyl. Now officially canceled.
SyFy Channel has renewed 12 Monkeys for a season 3.
Supernatural show “Hunters” has been canceled from SyFy Channel after one season. I tried one episode did not care for it.
CW network will not renew Containment for a second season
New TV and Movie Productions
There will be a new Dr. Who spinoff series for kids called “Class”. Is about the students of the Coal Hill School which has been featured in various Dr. Who episodes since 1963.
NBC will air a live presentation the play “A Few Good Men” written by Aaron Sorkin with was the basis of the movie of the same name. Coming in 2017
Warner Bros. is considering an animated feature “Speedy Gonzales”
After FX success with the OJ story CBS is developing a true crime anthology series that will start out with JonBenet Ramsey story.
Spike TV has ordered a 10 episode series based on Stephen King’s “The Mist”
James Cameron reveals that there will be 4 sequels to Avatar but who knows how many of us will live to see them all. Currently scheduled for 2018, 2020, 2022 and 2023.
TNT is rebooting Tales of the Crypt for 10 episodes.
Warner Bros. is making a movie version of the 80s TV show CHiPs scheduled for summer 2017.
ABC has ordered a series “Time after Time” based on the film which pits HG Wells versus Jack the Ripper
EPIX network has ordered a 10 episode series “Get Shorty” based on the Elmore Leonard novel which was famously made into a movie with John Travolta.
Netflix is working on obtaining series based on Marvel’s Iron Fist.
There will be a spinoff series of The Good Wife based on the Diana Lockhart character played by Christine Baranski. It will only be on the CBS streaming service however in the spring of 2017.
Netflix has ordered a 10 episode reboot of “Lost in Space” in 2018
Disney announces a sequel to Wreck It Ralph set for 2018
Much to no one’s surprise Caitlyn Jenner will join the cast of Amazon transgender themed series “Transparent”. Also show has been renewed for season 4.
Actor Echo Kellum who plays the tech whiz Curtis Holt on Arrow has been promoted to series regular for next season.
Joanne Kelly a.k.a. agent Myka Bering on Warehouse 13 will be a regular on season 2 of CBS’s Zoo
Clara Renée a.k.a. Hawkgirl is leaving DC Legends Tomorrow because she beat the bad guy in the season finale.
Wonder Woman is joining Supergirl. Not the character the actress. Lynda Carter has been cast as the president for the upcoming season of Supergirl. Also we will finally meet cousin Superman in the first two episodes next season.
Ewan McGregor will play twins in season 3 of FX series Fargo in 2017
Helen Mirren has joined the cast of Fast and Furious 8.
Archie Panjabi a.k.a. Kallinda on The Good Wife has joined the cast of NBC’s Blindspot
William Fichtner played the paraplegic boyfriend Allison Jannery on CBS sitcom Mom has been promoted to series regular for the next season.
Tom Felton a.k.a. Draco Malfoy is joining the cast of The Flash as a series regular. Will play a CSI who is suspicious that Barry Allen has a secret.
As expected Jeffrey Dean Morgan is now officially series regular on The Walking Dead along with Tom Payne who plays “Jesus”.
Kiefer Sutherland will appear in a reboot 1990 movie Flatliners
John Barrowman is now considered a series regular on all of the CW/DC comic book shows.
Sara Ramirez a.k.a. Dr. Callie Torres is leaving Grey’s Anatomy after 10 seasons.
General Entertainment News
Comcast and NBC Universal have purchased DreamWorks animation for $3.8 million
Production on season two of Amazon series “The Man in the High Castle” has been suspended because the showrunner made an abrupt exit.
After the Orlando mass shooting the cast of Hamilton decided not to carry prop guns during their Tony awards performance. Also the season premiere of TNT’s “The Last Ship” was delayed one week because it featured a shoot out in a nightclub.
Stephen Colbert will broadcast live episodes the reefs of the Cleveland and Philadelphia political conventions but will still be based in New York. Also Seth Myers will be live after the night in which Donald Trump accepts his nomination.
Winter isn’t coming fast enough. Production on Game of Thrones final season has been delayed so that their shooting locations will have less sunny weather.
It is been revealed that in the new Star Trek movie we will find out that Sulu is gay. Strangely actor George Takei who previously played the character in the original series and who he himself is gay is opposing the move. Claims that he lobbied Gene Roddenberry for a gay character in the original series although not that his own character should be gay. Roddenberry was sympathetic but said the world wasn’t ready for it yet and he was probably right. Takei wanted the new film to include gay characters but not Sulu because “that wasn’t Roddenberry’s vision”. He forgets that this is a rebooted universe in which a number of details about characters have significantly changed for example the romance between Spock and Uhura. I don’t understand his opposition to the move given that he such a vocal LGBT advocate. Various cast members have expressed their disappointment to Takei’s opposition.
RIP Oscar winner Patty Duke at age 69
RIP James Noble who played the goofy governor on “Benson” dead at 94
RIP Erik Bauersofeld who was the voice of fish-headed Adm. Ackar in the Star Wars films with his famous “it’s a trap” has died at age 93.
RIP 60 Minutes correspondent Morley Safer age 84. He had just retired from the show a few weeks earlier after 46 years.
RIP actor Alan Young who played Wilbur on the 60s talking horse show Mister Ed. He was 96
RIP actor Michu Mezaros who was the voice of alien puppet ALF in the 80s TV show. He was 76.
RIP actress Janet Waldo who was the voice of Judy Jetson on the animated series. Age 98
RIP actor Anton Yelchin who played Ensign Checkoff in the latest Star Trek movies. Car accident age 27
RIP Oscar winner director Michael Cimino known for The Deer Hunter and Heaven’s Gate. Age 77
RIP actress Noel Neill who played Lois Lane in the TV series Adventures of Superman from 1953-1958 she was 95. Had cameo parts in a variety of Superman films.