1777 posts tagged with television.
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Game of Cards

Game of Cards
posted by univac on Mar 4, 2015 - 9 comments

an existential montage of boobery

The concept first bubbled up out of the pop-cultural ether when competitive reality shows hit upon their formula, in the form of “Survivor” and “The Amazing Race.” TV enthusiasts — part fan, part Roland Barthes with a TiVo — congregated on online message boards like Television Without Pity, creating a new slang with which to dis and deconstruct their favorites. Fifteen years later, the critical language used to carve up the phonies, saints and sad-sack wannabes of reality shows has migrated, and the loser edit has become a limber metaphor for exploring our own real-world failures. Colson Whitehead: The ‘Loser Edit’ That Awaits Us All
posted by everybody had matching towels on Mar 4, 2015 - 25 comments

"I'm here to get what's mine." - Fox's 'Empire'

​​Empire is a Monster That Is Eating Network Television - Buzzfeed​, Feb. 26, 2015:​
"When it comes to ratings, Fox’s Empire is on a trajectory that’s unprecedented in broadcast television’s recent history, which has mostly been marked by — to appropriate a phrase from Hakeem Lyon (Bryshere Y. Gray) — drip drops, if not just​​ plain old slaughter. As of last week, it is the No. 1 show on network television in the 18 to 49 demographic advertisers seek. And once again, the show built on its ratings this week."​
[more inside] posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Mar 1, 2015 - 56 comments

dreams of being in The West Wing and in the West Wing have blended

Beyond Josh Lyman Politics: How The West Wing Miseducated My Political Generation
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Feb 28, 2015 - 63 comments

TL;DR Minorities in Hollywood are underrepresented on every front

"We don't want them to see diversity as a burden or a moral obligation. We want them to see it as a business imperative."
UCLA’s Bunche Center for African American Studies has released its 2015 Hollywood Diversity Report: Flipping The Script [PDF]. The Hollywood Reporter has the exclusive story (with lots of sidebars.)
posted by Room 641-A on Feb 26, 2015 - 3 comments

Hey, Bruce Lee

"I tilted my head in cartoon-like confusion. Where had he picked that up? Bruce Lee? He knew nothing of martial arts nor had he ever watched Kung Fu Panda (this is where my brain went). So I asked Noah to repeat himself. Perhaps I’d misunderstood or heard it incorrectly."
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Feb 26, 2015 - 40 comments

It’s like living your life as a job interview. Forever.

The End of Black Respectability Politics (SL TPM)
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Feb 20, 2015 - 27 comments

Do those munchkins sound a little... off? No, I mean more so.

Cable TV is speeding up its shows slightly to show you more ads. The Wall Street Journal has more including a side-by-side comparison video a sharp eyed viewer made of a "Seinfeld" episode.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Feb 19, 2015 - 86 comments

The Starlost

It could have been the greatest television show ever. Conceived by Harlan Ellison. Ben Bova acting as technical advisor. Special effects genius Douglas Trumbull was on board. Scripts and storylines had been contracted from Phillip K. Dick, Ursula K. Le Guin, Frank Herbert, Joanna Russ, Thomas M. Disch, Alexei Panshin and A.E. van Vogt. Keir Dullea starred. (Dave from 2001: A Space Odyssey). Guest stars: John "Baltar" Colicos (Battlestar Galactica), Walter Koenig (Star Trek) and Barry Morse (Space:1999). And then it all fell apart. In all, 16 deliciously terrible episodes of The Starlost were made. Was it the worst science fiction series ever? Watch and decide for yourself! [more inside]
posted by zarq on Feb 19, 2015 - 119 comments

So, um... Happy Valentines Day, I guess...

Put down the boom box: 28 romantic gestures from Film, Television and Music that are actually creepy (SingleLinkAVClub)
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Feb 11, 2015 - 105 comments

The Green Girl

She was a highly- prolific actress of the ’50’s/’60’s/’70’s/’80’s, a record-setting female aviator, an original member of the AFI Directing Workshop for Women, and one of the only women directing major TV shows in the 1980’s. Tragically taken by cancer in 1990, she’s been inexplicably forgotten by the industry to which she gave so much of herself.
You probably know her as that green Orion slave girl from the Star Trek episode The Menagerie, but Susan Oliver was much more than that, as the documentary The Green Girl attempts to show.
posted by MartinWisse on Feb 10, 2015 - 11 comments

Is this better or worse than The Ghost Whisperer?

Do you love to hate TV? Join the podcast The Televoid as they "travel to the deepest depths bad TV has gone." [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Feb 8, 2015 - 12 comments

Fiction influences reality: Quincy M.E.'s role in the Orphan Drug Act

How Quincy M.E. Changed American Law and Saved Lives discusses the serendipitous way that a young man's need for medication for Tourette's syndrome came to the attention of a family member of actor Jack Klugman and resulted in the Orphan Drug Act of 1983. (main article by MeFi's own Garius) [more inside]
posted by sciencegeek on Feb 8, 2015 - 16 comments

CBS could not give a fart

Want to hear Martellus Bennett's thoughts about fonts, including bold? Curious to see an impression of Regis Philbin doing an impression of Nicholas Cage eating too hot soup in Bangkok Dangerous? Ever wanted to find out what would happen when Adam "Not A Great Fit For Guest Host of the Late Late Show" Pally acted as guest host of the Late Late Show? During a snow storm? In front of no studio audience? With no laugh track but the muffled responses of the crew, who apparently hate him? With his trusted companion, Ben Schwartz, at his side, Adam Pally made a nearly unimaginable, nearly incomprehensible, at least partially unintentionally brilliant and absurd hour-long mockery of the late show format. Watch it all. [more inside]
posted by meese on Feb 4, 2015 - 29 comments

While you mouth-breathers are at Chipotle I’m rockin’ the omakase

On the eve of the premiere of his sitcom, Eddie Huang (previously) aka Rich Homie Huang aka Sars Blackmon aka the Human Panda gets profiled by Wesley Yang (previously) in the New York Times. [more inside]
posted by AceRock on Feb 3, 2015 - 5 comments

In Praise of Sweet Dee

"I think a lot of men are scared to act opposite a woman who is as funny as they are, and who will give them a run for their money for being the funniest person in that project,” he says. “And I think a lot of times she doesn’t get cast in things because she’s so funny, and I think that’s fucked up.”
Kaitlin Olson And The Perils Of Being A (Funny) Woman In Hollywood [more inside]
posted by The Gooch on Jan 18, 2015 - 35 comments

I seldom use it myself, sir. It promotes rust.

Robert Kinoshita, the production designer and art director who created Forbidden Planet's Robby the Robot and Lost In Space's B-9 Environmental Control Robot [previously], has passed away at the age of 100.
posted by brundlefly on Jan 14, 2015 - 22 comments

The Dukes of Hazzard

This project analyzes The Dukes of Hazzard as a representation of the contemporary white southern working class and its validity, and how this characterization fed the appetites of both Southerners and non-Southerners alike in the early 1980s. [more inside]
posted by josher71 on Jan 14, 2015 - 73 comments

All hail the complicated woman: the 2015 Golden Globes

"As Maggie Gyllenhaal put it in accepting an award for her performance in 'The Honorable Woman': 'What I see, actually, are women who are sometimes powerful and sometimes not, sometimes sexy, sometimes not, sometimes honorable, sometimes not. And what I think is new is the wealth of roles for actual women in television and in film.'" The 'strong female character' is dead. All hail the complicated woman., by Alyssa Rosenberg for The Washington Post. [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jan 14, 2015 - 13 comments

"We are culturally destitute in America, and this is our ground zero."

Eddie Huang on the making of a tv show about his memoir growing up Chinese in the US. (slVulture) [more inside]
posted by Kitteh on Jan 14, 2015 - 16 comments


YouTube user Mario Wienerroither (previously) has turned his attention away from music videos to something new to remove music from: The opening credits of "Macgyver".
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Jan 12, 2015 - 17 comments

It's difficult to improve upon perfection

It may have taken him over ten years to do it, but Tommy Wiseau has finally followed up on his cult hit "The Room" (previously). "The Neighbors" originally existed as some rarely seen footage Wiseau shot in 2004 (only the wacky trailer was ever released to the public). Cut to ten years later when a newly shot pilot for a "Neighbors" TV series (Official website and trailer) has been making the rounds in big cities across the country to give Wiseau fans the follow up they have been craving. Both the Gothamist and the AV Club weigh in on the show (with a bonus AV Club interview with Wiseau).
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Jan 8, 2015 - 35 comments

Wicked Professor!

Doctor Who: how Ace set the template for modern companions [more inside]
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Jan 5, 2015 - 58 comments

Tonight I'm going to party like it's 1949.

Why ring out 2014, when you can celebrate the end of 1976 with Donny & Marie (along with Tina Turner, Rip Taylor, and Billy Preston). Or try 1961 with Dinah Shore and Nat King Cole. But if television is too modern for you, you can always just sit back and listen to a old-time NYE Radio Show.
posted by fings on Dec 31, 2014 - 11 comments

R.I.P. Edward Herrmann

Tony and Emmy winning actor Edward Herrmann, who is perhaps best known for his role as Lorelai's father in "Gilmore Girls", has passed away from brain cancer at the age of 71. His recent role as the voice of Franklin Roosevelt in Ken Burns' documentary "The Roosevelts" ironically brought him full circle to his breakout portrayal of FDR in the miniseries "Eleanor and Franklin" nearly forty years ago.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Dec 31, 2014 - 57 comments


The Art Of The Title's Top 10 Title Sequences of 2014
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Dec 31, 2014 - 13 comments

It's a great day for America, everybody!

Tonight Craig Ferguson will host The Late Late Show for the last time and wrap up with an interview with Jay Leno. If you can't stay up late enough to watch it live, you can stream it tomorrow (at least in the USA.) [more inside]
posted by pwb503 on Dec 19, 2014 - 36 comments

"Stephen Colbert": Great host? Or *the greatest* host?

Tonight! He's "a well-meaning, poorly informed, high-status idiot." An it-getter. A knight. A doctor (of fine arts). A Real American Hero. And after tonight, his arched eyebrow of justice will never again grace American television screens in quite the same way. "Stephen Colbert": a brief retrospective. Truthiness - The White House Correspondents' Dinner - Better Know a District - Formidable Opponent - Tek Jansen - Papa Bear - I Am America (And So Can You!) - Americone Dream - The ThreatDown - Late Night Fight! - Testifying to Congress - The Rally to Restore Sanity - Colbert Super PAC - Maurice Sendak - Wheat Thins - Lorna Colbert - Tolkien-off - Ask a Grown Man - The Decree. So much more inside. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Dec 18, 2014 - 133 comments

Shooting the hand that feeds the fire

After nearly a decade, it was time. The old fire was still burning, sure, but technological advances meant the flame could be brighter, the sparks a little sparklier. And so in the driving rain, exactly seven weeks before Christmas, a crew of four (plus one mysterious cast member) descended on a rustic homestead on Vancouver’s North Shore, to build – and record – a fire.

“We all said, ‘Can we be the hand that just pokes the fire?’”
The answer was no.
[more inside]
posted by Kabanos on Dec 3, 2014 - 6 comments

Melvyn, no need to Bragg

Melvyn Bragg's been digging deep for more than 40 years. You may know In Our Time [previously], The South Bank Show [previouslier] or The Adventure of English. If you don't, you probably should. [more inside]
posted by stinker on Nov 29, 2014 - 57 comments

Punching in a nightmare

Requiem for Rod Serling "In his work, Serling would return often to the hardships of the war-weary, but he reserved some of his most powerful observations for broken-down boxers, particularly those who failed to achieve stardom."
posted by bitmage on Nov 20, 2014 - 25 comments

"I tried to stay with things until I thought they were on their feet."

Prolific television producer Glen A. Larson has died. Mainstream audiences might remember him as the creator of Alias Smith and Jones, his first hit series; and of such shows as Quincy M.E., Magnum, P.I., and The Fall Guy. But to science-fiction fans, he will always be remembered as the man behind TV's first million-dollar-per-episode series, Battlestar Galactica, and as a Consulting Producer on Syfy's highly regarded remake of the series. He also brought us Knight Rider; The Six Million Dollar Man, which may soon be getting a reimagining of its own; and Buck Rogers in the 25ᵗʰ Century, along with a handful of less successful, but still fondly remembered, sci-fi TV adventures. [more inside]
posted by webmutant on Nov 15, 2014 - 62 comments

Looking at Isaac Asimov's "Foundation" series.

Isaac Asimov's Foundation: The little idea that became science fiction's biggest series [SPOILERS] (io9)
On the planet Terminus, a group of academics struggles to survive as the Galactic Empire crumbles. With no weapons, all they can rely on are the predictions of a dead genius named Hari Seldon. That's right — it's time to discuss Isaac Asimov's Foundation!

Welcome to Foundation Week, a Blogging the Hugos special event. In 1983, Isaac Asimov won the Hugo Award for Best Novel for Foundation's Edge, in which he revisited his groundbreaking Foundation mythos for the first time in over thirty years. Because the Foundation series is such classic, quintessential, and beloved science fiction — the original stories won their own unique Hugo for Best All-Time Series in 1966, and influenced artists from Douglas Adams to George Lucas — Josh Wimmer and Alasdair Wilkins will be discussing each of the seven books between today and Sunday. We begin with Foundation, published in 1951.
[more inside] posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Nov 13, 2014 - 87 comments

"Something amazing and enlightening and terrible and haunting happened"

Today is the 20th anniversary of the death of Pedro Zamora, the cast member of MTV's The Real World: San Francisco who was openly gay and lived with HIV. [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Nov 11, 2014 - 22 comments

Orson Welles’ little-known TV pilot

Imagine a Twilight Zone or Alfred Hitchcock Presents, but with Orson Welles in the auteur/narrator’s role.

Orson Welles wrote, starred in, directed, art directed and even produced the music for “The Fountain of Youth,” an ingeniously devised and wryly funny half-hour that was made as a television pilot for The Orson Welles Show, an ill-fated anthology show that Welles developed for Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz’s Desilu production company in 1956.

From the first minutes of “The Fountain of Youth” it’s very obviously different from any and every television show of that era, with a clever use of rear projection, consecutive photo stills, illustration, on-camera set changes, innovative sound editing, experimental narrative techniques and multilayered storytelling.

(Direct link to "Fountain of Youth" on YouTube)
posted by Room 641-A on Nov 9, 2014 - 12 comments

Decopage! (Not the paper kind, the 1989 L.A. public access tv kind!)

Decoupage! was a 1989 Los Angeles-area public access show produced by Kathe Duba and hosted by Summer Caprice. The original concept was an emulation of early 70s sydicated talk shows such as The Mike Douglas Show and Dinah! and featured elaborate sets, sourced from hours of scouring thrift stores. Also, there are wigs. Lots of wigs.

Many of the guests were culled from the L.A. club and arts scene, including Redd Kross, Phranc, and Fred Willard. The show returned to the airwaves in 1997 as Decopage! 2000 and featured a spoken-word performance by Exene Cervanka (using her real last name, Cervankova) and Karen Black singing "Bang Bang" with back-up band L7.

• Direct link to the Decopage! You Tube Channel

posted by Room 641-A on Nov 7, 2014 - 9 comments

We're Witches Of Halloween... Woo-Ooo!

Words And Pictures was a long running BBC television series created to help small children to learn to read and write. From back in an era when most broadcasting seemed designed to utterly terrify its younger viewers here is the Halloween episode that managed to traumatized several generations as it was repeated year-in year-out (if not on television, then on scratchy VHS recordings in school classrooms) seemingly forever. [more inside]
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Oct 31, 2014 - 18 comments

Very 70s Halloween tv specials. How very? Paul Lynde and KISS very.

Some 70s television programming for your Halloween viewing pleasure:
posted by Room 641-A on Oct 30, 2014 - 21 comments


Film Crit Hulk is back with a long essay about more-than-gamergate. Building off his previous ethical criticism (especially his multipart James Bond series) Film Crit Hulk gives us his opinions on "THE VOID OF THIS PARTICULAR HOUR". [more inside]
posted by Hypatia on Oct 30, 2014 - 78 comments

I cried and cried in my Mad Men dress.

Amy Poehler on What It Was Like to Tape Saturday Night Live While Pregnant (SLVulture)
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Oct 30, 2014 - 50 comments

Mayberry, Metropolis and Rigel VII

It was called a number of things in its fifty years of existence, but the RKO Forty Acres (which actually measured just over twenty-eight) was above all a prolific movie and television studio located in Culver City, California. It started off as a film studio during the silent era that continued prominent use in sound films including Gone With The Wind, The Magnificent Ambersons and King Kong. Later, it was widely used for television shows like Bonanza, The Adventures of Superman and, most prominently, The Andy Griffith Show. It even got used in a number of classic Star Trek episodes (and be sure to visit this site for some nice screen caps revealing Enterprise crew members walking around Mayberry). The RetroWeb has a very thorough history of the studio, complete with prodigious pictures.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Oct 26, 2014 - 10 comments

And yet, I still haven't discovered what the heck "Snarf Farms" are.

Figuring out some of the more obscure references in an episode of MST3k is a labor of love for some devoted fans. The folks over at The Annotated MST3k (previously) have been at it for eleven years now and have 113 episodes completely annotated. But for those who prefer their annotations in real time, you're in luck. The official YouTube channel for the show has posted two completely annotated episodes (Mitchell and Manos - The Hands of Fate) for your viewing pleasure.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Oct 21, 2014 - 39 comments


Following a record-breaking $750 million syndication deal with parent company Fox, the FXX network most recently made headlines back in August with its twelve-day marathon of Every. Simpsons. Ever. But that was just the prelude to the real deal launching today: Simpsons World, a staggeringly comprehensive multiplatform video database including clips, news, featurettes, curated playlists, a heartbeat tracker of each season's popularity, and (for the intrigued who'd like to subscribe to their newsletter network) on-demand streaming of all 552 episodes and counting. Coming early next year is an even greater expansion of features, bringing full-series dialogue search, real-time script tracking, and "geolocation" of all scenes throughout Springfield -- something very close to Myles McNutt's vision for a shareable Simpsons clip database (previously). I, for one, welcome our new Simpsons-quoting overlords. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Oct 21, 2014 - 78 comments

"...to stay conscious and alive, day in and day out."

Endnotes: David Foster Wallace, BBC Documentary. [more inside]
posted by Fizz on Oct 19, 2014 - 5 comments

It's like “Politically Incorrect”, but with less politics and more wine

In 2001, long before he helped launch the Marvel Cinematic Universe juggernaut, Jon Favreau could reasonably be described as “that guy in Swingers”. But sometime between Swingers and Iron Man, Favreau used some of his clout to create and host a new show for the Independent Film Channel. It was called "Dinner for Five". [more inside]
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Oct 14, 2014 - 47 comments

Zach Anner's (usually) comedic adventures with friends

"Hey America, my name is Zach, I'm from Austin, TX. I think we met at Jeanine's party once and really hit it off, but I think we should get to know each other bit better ... I have a lot to say, but I don't know where I would fit, because I have something called cerebral palsy, which I believe is the sexiest of the palsies...." That's Zach Anner's audition for Oprah's Your OWN Show, a reality competition show, where Zach was one of the two winners. His show was called Rollin' Around the World with Zach Anner, which got shortened to Rollin' with Zach, and you can see many clips from that on OWN's YouTube channel. But the show didn't last, and instead Zach and friends turned back to the internet to get involved with a travel show about more realistic travel adventures, called Riding Shotgun (YouTube playlist). But that's not all ... [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Oct 13, 2014 - 14 comments

The rise of Direct to Consumer advertising of perscription drugs

There are various changes that come with the greying of the traditional television audience, including the kinds of ads being aired, as the median age of a broadcast or cable television viewer is increasing faster than the median age of the US population at large. Older people are treated to a litany of drug ads, filled with lists of horrifying side effects, thanks to the ability for drug companies to market directly to customers. The rise in such advertising is now the most prominent type of health communication that the public encounters, but it hasn't always been the case.
posted by filthy light thief on Oct 10, 2014 - 41 comments

"What do we say to the dead?"

On the fiftieth anniversary of its theatrical release, Slate is taking a look back at the Cold War thriller Fail Safe (trailer), which stars Henry Fonda as a U.S. President who has to deal with a computational accident that risks nuclear war. The film was preceded at the box office by Dr. Strangelove, a film very similar in plot but drastically different in tone. Fail Safe bombed as a result of the comparison with Kubrick's masterpiece, but the story itself would have a second chance at reaching audiences come the year 2000. [more inside]
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Oct 7, 2014 - 54 comments

"Where ignorant armies clash by night."

Sea of Faith: a six-part documentary television series, presented on BBC television in 1984 by Don Cupitt. [youtube]
"The programme dealt with the history of Christianity in the modern world, focussing especially on how Christianity has responded to challenges such as scientific advances, political atheism and secularisation in general"
[more inside] posted by Fizz on Oct 7, 2014 - 4 comments

It's 11:30 – do you know where your children are?

Saturday Night's Children: "Saturday Night Live has been home to over a hundred cast members throughout the past 39 years. In our [2011-2014] column Saturday Night’s Children, we present the history, talent, and best sketches of one SNL cast member each week for your viewing, learning, and laughing pleasure."
posted by not_on_display on Oct 6, 2014 - 14 comments

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