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The President has nothing but free time, Toby

A Definitive Ranking of Every Character on 'The West Wing' [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Sep 12, 2014 - 86 comments

Star Trek in Widescreen

"I was able to create these shots by waiting for the camera to pan and then I stitched the separate shots together. The result is pretty epic. It reminds me of the classic science fiction movies of the 50’s and 60’s. Suddenly the show has a 'Forbidden Planet' vibe." [via]
posted by brundlefly on Sep 9, 2014 - 51 comments

Giving up on Doctor Who

I gave up mainly because I’d got tired of watching talented actors reduced to eye candy and acting out the fantasies of overgrown adolescents who had somehow finagled their way into writing scripts. Where they were writing scripts that looked like old-time Doctor Who, without necssarily understanding why old-time Doctor Who worked and more importantly why it didn’t.
Maureen K. Speller: I’m giving up on Doctor Who again. This time it may be final.
posted by MartinWisse on Sep 8, 2014 - 139 comments

i want the regina dress now

Geeky women's clothing company Her Universe teamed up with Hot Topic and Nerdist to present a fandom couture competition and fashion show. Here are some highlights. [more inside]
posted by divabat on Sep 4, 2014 - 34 comments

When he answered the "Did Tony die" question, he was laconic.

David Chase finally answers the question he wants fans to quit asking. (Agita warning: spoilers. Whaddya, nuts? ) [more inside]
posted by scody on Aug 27, 2014 - 134 comments

I vould like to feed your fingerteeps to the volver-eenes

In honor of Saturday Night Live's 40th season, Grantland has been publishing an ongoing series of essays, remembrances, podcasts, and interviews, as well as asking you to cast your votes in The Battle for the Best SNL Cast Member. (They're already down to the final eight; sorry, your favorite cast member has already been eliminated.)
posted by not_on_display on Aug 25, 2014 - 85 comments

"Captivated" on HBO

'"The good news is we solved the murder of your husband. The bad news is you're under arrest.' Everyone's a noir hero!" A new HBO documentary explores what happens when the media are mixed up in a crime from the very beginning-- with fiction and film added in for good measure. A local news writer is incensed with HBO for bringing it all up again. (She will not be watching the documentary.)
posted by BibiRose on Aug 19, 2014 - 36 comments

Don Pardo, 1918-2014

Don Pardo, announcer for Saturday Night Live, The Price Is Right and Jeopardy!, has died. [more inside]
posted by kagredon on Aug 18, 2014 - 67 comments

Who are you now, Doctor?

A hypnotic video merging every actor who's played Doctor Who into one average face. [SLYT] (Laughing Squid via)
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Aug 17, 2014 - 29 comments

John is the new Jon

With a combination of humor and fearlessness, Last Week Tonight has done an unlikely thing: spurred action. John Oliver’s segment on net neutrality this past June perfectly summed up what his HBO show Last Week Tonight is so good at: transcending apathy. It’s an ingenious formula that’s making a difference in the real world. “Making a difference” isn’t hyperbole. The FCC’s website actually crashed from overwhelming web traffic the day after Oliver’s segment originally aired. The Atlantic looks at How John Oliver Beats Apathy.
posted by Room 641-A on Aug 16, 2014 - 89 comments

RIP Robin Williams

Robin Wiliams famous for his impressions, role as Genie in Aladdin, standup comedy, Mrs. Doubtfire and many other comedy roles has died at the age of 63.
posted by Carillon on Aug 11, 2014 - 856 comments

"An awfully classy hook"

The Wonder Years. An Oral History.
posted by zarq on Aug 8, 2014 - 21 comments

Jessica Fletcher Eternal

The Formula For An Episode Of Murder, She Wrote
posted by rollick on Aug 8, 2014 - 55 comments

"You can sort your life out anytime, the pub closes in five hours."

"Surprisingly, Black Books has no affliction with the BBC whatsoever; created by Dylan Moran (who also plays the lead) and Graham Linehan, the show was filmed at Teddington Studios and broadcast on Channel 4. It centers around Bernard Black (Dylan Moran), the careless, grumpy, wine-inhaling owner of Black Books, his friend Fran (Tamsin Greig) and his assistant shop keeper Manny (Bill Bailey). Specked with a few fun cameos by people not yet famous at the time, this show is a hilarious roller coaster ride that will make you laugh until you cry." Black Books: 4 Reasons the British Sitcom Remains a Classic [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Aug 6, 2014 - 90 comments

Information wants to be… good.

Five Lessons the Faltering Music Industry Could Learn From TV
posted by flapjax at midnite on Aug 3, 2014 - 49 comments

TV: Rewind and Rehash

Are you combing Netflix trying to find all the TV shows you missed the first time around? Or maybe you just want to take a nostalgia trip and revist all of the great television that is gone but not forgotten? So much good TV! Problem is, it's not like you can stand at the office watercooler chatting about that awesome episode you saw last night...especially if it first aired in 1994. So what do you do when you want to really mull over an episode you just watched? You listen to some great podcasts with fans discussing in depth your favorite shows, that's what. [more inside]
posted by BeBoth on Jul 31, 2014 - 19 comments

Korean fashion and design that is Having a Moment

Korean fashion and design is having a moment, but what is fueling it? It's complicated. Let's explore the K-wave. [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jul 26, 2014 - 23 comments

Columbo himself was never this stylish.

Columboldies is a tumblr featuring furniture/clothing/etc. from the tv show Columbo.
posted by Room 641-A on Jul 22, 2014 - 31 comments

REQUIEM FOR A FRONT PAGE POST - A Quinn Martin Production (In Color)

15 Main Title Sequences From Quinn Martin TV Shows. [more inside]
posted by Room 641-A on Jul 21, 2014 - 14 comments

R.I.P. James Garner

James Garner, star of two classic television shows ("Maverick" and "The Rockford Files") and a wide slate of films including "The Great Escape", "The Americanization of Emily" and "Victor/Victoria", has died at the age of 86.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Jul 20, 2014 - 149 comments

Orphan Black: "the TV embodiment of modern feminism"

While the New Republic praises Orphan Black for its portrayal of the Female Gaze and avoidance of the usual male orientated titillation:
As a show chiefly concerned with the ways women’s bodies are commodified and controlled, “Orphan Black” is careful not to view its female characters with that same hungry eye. This is a triumph: On so many shows, the camera works at cross-purposes to the high-minded themes. “Game of Thrones” depicts women and girls straining against a world that abuses and sexualizes their bodies—then it glamorizes and fetishizes that abuse. “True Detective” criticizes men who violate girls, then lovingly reduces women to bouncing breasts or artfully posed corpses.
(Spoilers inside) [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse on Jul 16, 2014 - 47 comments

Buffy Stunts

Revelations. Dopplegangland. The Wish. Graduation Day. This Year's Girl. [more inside]
posted by a fair but frozen maid on Jul 12, 2014 - 37 comments

The Gang Meets Putin

The City Paper looks at a Russian adaptation of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia.
posted by Lemurrhea on Jul 9, 2014 - 17 comments

Rule number one is: young men die. And rule number two is...

Doctors can't change rule number one.

The televisions series, M*A*S*H, developed by Larry Gelbart and Gene Reynolds, was broadcast on CBS for over a decade, from the pilot on September 17, 1972, to the highly-rated final episode on February 28, 1983. Yet reports of its demise are fictional, M*A*S*H is alive and well. [SPOILERS within if you haven't seen the series.] [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jul 2, 2014 - 130 comments

Murder, She Wrote. And Played.

"But I’m getting ahead of myself. First, let me tell you a story: a story about a board game. The Murder, She Wrote board game. You didn't know such a thing existed? Neither did I, before my friend Sarah brought it one summer to camp. (For the sake of clarity: I mean camp in the upstate New York sense, i.e., a small un-insulated cottage on a freshwater lake that has a preponderance of mismatched glasses and forks with wonky tines and maybe exposed studs but is the greatest place to family-vacation on earth.) Sarah and I met in day care, and had been friends for years—but this year, when she came to visit, she unknowingly brought the one thing that would enflame my jealousy." [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jul 1, 2014 - 35 comments

Ep. 6: Ben and Johnny spill unstable molecules on Sue’s good tablecloth.

The greatest TV show never seen: "The Fantastic Four" (1963-64)
posted by Faint of Butt on Jun 25, 2014 - 25 comments

How bout them Oar Doovers, ain't they sweet?

About the multi-talented Mason Williams [previously, and best known as composer of the iconic "Classical Gas"] -- Throughout his years in the Navy and college he wrote a series of poems he titled Them Poems. As he entered the folk music scene in the early 60's he wound up rooming with long time friend Ed Ruscha in Los Angeles. Some of the language from Them Poems is a consequence of creative word play that Ed and Paul Ruscha riffed on with Williams over the years. Ed Ruscha provided us with this recording [also released as "The Mason Williams Listening Matter", and reviewed here on allmusic by Eugene Chadbourne] from 1964. Recording starts around 35 seconds in. Also, here's Mason performing "Them Tummy Gummers" on Johnny Cash's variety show. Finally, Mason Williams Online.
posted by not_on_display on Jun 23, 2014 - 12 comments

Scene from a bygone era

For those of you born in the 80s or later, this is what counted for primetime entertainment back in our day.
posted by mudpuppie on Jun 20, 2014 - 150 comments

Squirrel and Hedgehog

Squirrel and Hedgehog - Yes folks, this is a North Korean cartoon produced in house ... The animation is really good, (episode 24 and on is animated in Flash, while before it was all hand drawn) the story is pretty complicated sometimes, and the characters are cool. The only thing actually wrong with this show, other than it being blatant propaganda, is that the lipsync is awful. [more inside]
posted by Wolfdog on Jun 19, 2014 - 8 comments

Nathan for You

Nathan Fielder's Ingenious Dumb Humor - "How the star of Comedy Central's 'Nathan for You' makes the most of uncomfortable moments." (via; previously 1,2,3)
posted by kliuless on Jun 14, 2014 - 10 comments

McLeod's Daughters

The award-winning Australian television series McLeod's Daughters aired from 2001 – 2009. A drama, the story begins by following the lives of half sisters Claire and Tess McLeod, reunited after they inherit a vast outback cattle farm (“Drover’s Run”), that has been handed down through the men in their family for generations. 224 episodes were produced, and all are available on YouTube. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 6, 2014 - 11 comments

"Bonanza in the Middle Ages"

Before Game of Thrones (before Xena even), D&D geeks who wanted to see prime time TV shows with castles and swords and such were mostly out of luck. However, if one looks deep into the ranks of one-season-wonders, one will find the curious artifact from 1992 called Covington Cross. [more inside]
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Jun 6, 2014 - 30 comments

the Romeo & Juliet of government funded digital TV social media accounts

While Australian public TV channels ABC2 and SBS2 contemplate a possible merger, on their official Twitter accounts sparks fly.
posted by divabat on Jun 4, 2014 - 18 comments

Trudy Campbell Is A KGB Spy

Trudy Campbell Is A KGB Spy Mefi's own The Whelk offers a modest proposal [via mefi projects].
posted by box on Jun 1, 2014 - 27 comments

Ezekiel saw the wheel. This is the wheel he said he saw.

Years before the X-Files appeared on TV, there was Project U.F.O., produced by Jack Webb, famous for creating Dragnet and many other popular television series. The show features two U.S. Air Force investigators with the Foreign Technology Division at Wright-Patterson AFB, charged with investigating UFO sightings. The first season starred William Jordan as Maj. Jake Gatlin alongside Caskey Swaim as Staff Sgt. Harry Fitz. Jordan was a rather nondescript leading man, while Swaim, who had never had any significant acting experience before landing the role, added diversity as a Southerner with a pronounced accent. In season two, Jordan was replaced by Edward Winter as Capt. Ben Ryan. Many of the episodes were loosely based on case files from the Air Force's Project Blue Book, which ran from 1952-1970. Project U.F.O. only ran for two seasons, from 1978-1979, and was never re-aired in the USA, nor was it released on video. [more inside]
posted by smoothvirus on May 31, 2014 - 62 comments

Bah-beee!

"The Demo" [SLYT] is the original pilot episode of the animated tv show, Bob's Burger's (previously).The theme remains the same, although the art style is a bit rough. The plot is exactly the same as the first episode, "Human Flesh", with minor differences in animation and timing. Oh, and Tina was originally a Daniel! [more inside]
posted by Room 641-A on May 30, 2014 - 23 comments

RIP Saturday morning cartoons

Vortexx, the last non-E/I children's Saturday morning programming block on broadcast television, is ending this fall.
posted by Small Dollar on May 30, 2014 - 67 comments

Gender and Jeopardy

Julia Collins of Kenilworth, Ill, is now the winningest woman in Jeopardy! history, the third winningest non-tournament player, and she isn't done. She'll be playing her 20th game tomorrow night, wherein followers hope she'll break the $400,000 mark on her steady climb. You can catch up on her run at YouTube.

One of the champions whose records she has now surpassed is Arthur Chu, who has also made big waves this week, speaking out on misogyny in geek culture, in response to the murders in Isla Vista. Writes Chu: The overall problem is one of a culture where instead of seeing women as, you know, people, protagonists of their own stories just like we are of ours, men are taught that women are things to 'earn,' to 'win.'

The show's history and the iconic host's banter seem to reveal that in terms of gender, Jeopardy! is not, as etymology would have it, "an evenly divided game," but could this be the year things change?
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur on May 29, 2014 - 65 comments

little patience for intellectual phumphering

Finding the Next Lost: What Is an “Operational Theme” and Why Don’t I Have One? by Javier Grillo–Marxuach (Previously)
posted by Potomac Avenue on May 28, 2014 - 36 comments

“Where do left and right meet? At the truth.”

Politically Incorrect was an American late-night, half-hour political talk show hosted by Bill Maher that ran from 1993 to 2002, first on Comedy Central and then on ABC. Four guests (usually including at least one comedian) would debate topics across the political spectrum in what Maher once described as “The McLaughlin Group on acid.” Of the 1300+ episodes produced, 190 can be viewed on YouTube. [more inside]
posted by zarq on May 23, 2014 - 66 comments

"All Good Things..." 20 Years Later

Ronald D. Moore and Brannon Braga discuss writing the Star Trek: The Next Generation series finale. [more inside]
posted by audi alteram partem on May 23, 2014 - 43 comments

Mr. Vice President, is there something you know that I don't know?

Seventeen People. A modest tribute to—and deconstruction of—my favorite hour of television.
posted by Cash4Lead on May 20, 2014 - 35 comments

I bet this FPP is even scarier inside!

"Looking back on it, one of the things that's crazy is I don't think I even realized that first of all, Joe Flaherty is supposed to be a vampire but he's howling like a werewolf. [laughs] I just took that for granted, and it must've been years until I saw it and was like "Wait a minute, that's a joke!" Furthermore, Count Floyd's always wearing a turtleneck which is the least vampire thing ever." "Splitsider kicks off its new column, Sketch Anatomy, with television writer Bill Oakley breaking down SCTV’s "Dr. Tongue’s Evil House of Pancakes" (previously). Oww owww oowoooooo!!!
posted by Room 641-A on May 20, 2014 - 73 comments

And together, THEY FIGHT CRIME!

During the late 1970's and 1980's, Glen A. Larson's lighthearted television dramas were incredibly popular: Knight Rider. B.J. and the Bear. The original Battlestar Galactica. Quincy M.E. The Fall Guy. Magnum, P.I. Buck Rogers in the 25th Century. Larson had hit after hit and it seemed he could do no wrong. But he did produce three flops in the 80's, (and another in the 90's that managed to last two seasons): Automan, The Highwayman, Manimal and Night Man. [more inside]
posted by zarq on May 16, 2014 - 138 comments

"When you’re a fat woman, taking up space is an affront to femininity."

What that Louie episode got right and wrong about fat women. After Sunday night's airing of Louie, some thoughtful, angry, interesting articles about how the show dealt with the issue of female body-shaming have popped up. But should the issue of fat-shaming women really be brought up by men?
posted by Kitteh on May 14, 2014 - 126 comments

Cultural Dealbreaker

The A.V. Club asks readers What’s your cultural dealbreaker? which they define as "cultural products that someone can profess to enjoy only while losing all of your respect."
posted by arcolz on May 10, 2014 - 211 comments

There's No Crying In Pilots

Actual Network notes given to actual shows BONUS: What network notes say vs. what they mean.
posted by The Whelk on May 9, 2014 - 43 comments

Screen Gems

Slightly unheralded prince of television themes, Steve Barri. Plus, a look at his early songwriting career with P.F. Sloan. [more inside]
posted by saintjoe on May 8, 2014 - 0 comments

There's never been a major character like her on the small-screen.

Why Tina of Bob's Burgers Can't Be Ignored
"The eldest Belcher child is a unique character in the world of modern television. And this is a very good thing."
posted by davidstandaford on May 6, 2014 - 71 comments

How to communicate like Jack Bauer.

Jack Bauer has a distinctive approach. He repeats it (SYTL).
posted by entropone on May 5, 2014 - 47 comments

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