Sunday, August 13, 2006

While I was out...

Never in my life have I been so happy to take a six-hour drive (including traffic back-ups) from New England to New Jersey as I was on our return trip, since it didn't involve going into an airport post-Shampoogate. I'll take the longer hours with the ability to control my environment, eat and drink whatever I want, randomly shampoo my hair, etc., etc.

I still have to sift through a lot of what's on the TiVo, but in the meantime, some things I noticed upon my return to the series of tubes:
  • Screw the "Seinfeld" Curse (which would imply that the actors had done something like sold Babe Ruth or kicked a goat out of Wrigley, instead of just getting new jobs). "Project Greenlight" is now 0-for-3 after the news that John Gulager's "Feast" is coming to movie theaters in September... for all of two nights. Apparently, the Weinsteins have decided to just have latenight screenings on Sept. 22 & 23, then send the thing directly to DVD. Can I just say "Boooo!!!"? I have no idea if the movie is any good or not, but a virtual straight-to-video release can't do any good for Gulager's career prospects -- or for the chances of him doing a second movie with a DVD supplement in which he discusses the movie while sitting in the tub for 45 minutes. Sigh...
  • About time "Rock Star" did a double elimination -- not only because the show has to be off the air by mid-September, but because it's abundantly clear that, at best, four or five of these people (Lukas, Dilana, Storm, Magni and maybe Toby) have a realistic shot at winning this thing. Josh was all wrong for this group (as I understand, casting was done before the producers knew who the band would be, which would also explain the presence of Zayra and that guy from week one who liked Duran Duran), and all three guys despised Jill, so buh-bye. Since I'm a Storm fan, I'm hoping she gets to play with one of the guys this week and really hits it out of the park.
  • Well, my campaign to get Steve McPherson to move "Ugly Betty" off of Friday nights and into the post-"Desperate Housewives" slot (currently held by this year's Show In Trouble, "Brothers & Sisters," which is a broken foot away from "Commando Nanny" status) was half-successful. "Betty" is off Fridays, but now it's on Thursdays at 8. If the "Grey's Anatomy" halo effect extends to the hour before it airs, this could be a good move, but it now means I have to deal with "Survivor," "The Office" and "Betty" in the same timeslot. (Plus "Earl," I suppose.) I think I'm going to have to move the TiVo to an upstairs room and get a dual-tuner DVR from Comcast for the main TV if I'm going to have a prayer of surviving the early parts of this season.
And, unrelated to TV (save that you could watch them on a TV), I took three Netflix movies with me on the trip and got through "The Greatest Game Ever Played" (a sop to my Underdog Sports Movie addiction), "Transamerica" (Felicity lived up to the hype) and "Brick," a really odd but cool movie in which Joseph Gordon-Levitt (the kid from "3rd Rock from the Sun") stars in a contemporary high school drama where all the characters talk like they're in a Dashiell Hammett or Raymond Chandler novel.

Back tomorrow with "Deadwood" and "Entourage."


Anonymous said...

You may already know this, Alan, but you don't have to go to Comcast for a dual-tuner DVR. TiVo makes one now, too.

Matt said...

"Ugly Betty" will never move to 10 PM Sunday because the content is designed for an 8 PM show. More likely would be a move of What About Brian or Six Degrees to that slot, with Traveler going into the Monday or Thursday 10 PM slot.

My bet would be Six Degrees to Sunday, Traveler to Thursday at 10, after Brothers and Sisters is the bomb story of the year. Seriously, anything looking more doomed more quickly than Brothers and Sisters at this point (at least on the big 4--I don't see Runaway lasting more than 4-5 episodes).

Anonymous said...

I absolutely loved Brick. Very noir, and a very beautiful film to watch. The color tone, the cinematography, the story was fresh. You dont get the feeling that you've seen it before like a lot of films out of Hollywood today.

Feast is the exact film that studios are looking for(low budget horror aka a Saw type film), I dont understand it's failure for release.

Alan Sepinwall said...

Pete, that's cool, but that's also a $300+ expense, not to mention the service fee (even reduced since I already own a unit). I know the Comcast DVR won't be as good, but it'll be a helluva lot cheaper.

Matt, it doesn't matter whether Ugly Betty is a 10 o'clock show. It's the best new show ABC has and Sunday at 10 is far and away the network's best, safest timeslot. You put it there, you let people sample it, and if it finds an audience, then maybe you try it earlier in the evening next year. I have a feeling somebody higher up than McPherson is pushing for the Calista show, because I'm baffled it's still there after all this mishegoss.

Dan, my only theory on "Feast" is that the Weinstein Company isn't up on its feet as fast as the brothers were expecting; maybe they don't have the resources to do another mass release this year. If the split with Disney hadn't happened (or if Disney had held onto "Feast"), I'm guessing the release plan would be different.

Adam said...

Re RockStar, that the show was cast before they knew who the band was explains a great deal -- like Dana.

I still think Ryan has a chance -- he's very hit or miss, but I like him when he's on. But really, it's Storm, Dilana, and Lukas, as far as I'm concerned, and Dilana's falling behind.