Category Archives: Television

Flashback Friday: Animal Cribs (2017-2019)

When it comes to our pets, we love them as if they were our own children.

Animal Cribs aired on Animal Planet from 2017 to 2019. Antonio Ballatore is both a respected designer and an animal lover. This reality show followed Antonio and his team as they renovated the client’s homes to fit the needs of the humans and the nonhumans who called the property home.

I enjoyed this program when it was on the air. It was an interesting take on what could have been standard for this genre. I loved the passion that Ballatore had for not only his work, but for the creatures who would call his creations home.

Do I recommend it? Yes.

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Throwback Thursday: Hidden Potential (2017-2019)

The design of one’s home is a personal decision. It can be simple, out there, or somewhere in between.

The HGTV series, Hidden Potential, was on the air from 2017 to 2019. Meeting with a new homeowner every week, designer Jasmine Roth transforms each property according to the needs of the owner(s). Along the way, there may be a few bumps in the road. By the end of the episode, the building is as unique as the people who call it home.

The narrative of the program is standard for the genre. As much as I appreciate the show, it was merely ok. It comes down to the question of how many episodes you can watch before the repetitiveness becomes too much.

Do I recommend it? Maybe.

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Joss Whedon Needs to Grow Up and Apologize

I’ve been a fan of Joss Whedon for more than twenty years. He is one of those writer/director types that is only bound by his imagination and his ability to create a compelling narrative.

Between Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, the 2012 Much Ado About Nothing, The Avengers, Avengers: Age of Ultron, etc, his career is nothing to sneeze at.

That being said, that does not mean that he has the right to be an asshole.

After multiple accusations of being an all-around jackass on various sets, he threw the blame back on the performers. Speaking of Ray Fisher (Justice League) he claimed that Fisher is a bad actor. If he was so bad, why did he not just fire him and recast the role? It wouldn’t have been the first time and I am sure that it won’t be the last time. The fact that he is making these claims now does not exactly hold water. At least Fisher was the bigger person, which I cannot say about Whedon.

Whedon also claimed that his working relationship with Wonder Woman actress Gal Gadot went sour because her native tongue is Hebrew.

“I don’t threaten people. Who does that?” Whedon told New York. “English is not her first language, and I tend to be annoyingly flowery in my speech.”

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There are plenty of actors whose second (or third) language is English. That is no excuse for treating anyone on set as if they are an annoying fly needing to be squashed.

The key to any workplace success (regardless of where one works), is the capacity to be professional, even if we don’t get along with everyone we work with. Whedon either lacks this capacity or thinks that he is above it. Either way, he needs to grow up and apologize.

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Filed under Movies, Television, William Shakespeare, Writing

Happy Heavenly Birthday, Betty White

To say that the death of Betty White a few weeks ago was devastating is an understatement. A legend by every sense of the word, she entertained generations of audiences. I could go on, but I will let Ms. White’s work and legacy speak for themselves.

Happy Heavenly Birthday, Betty White.

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Filed under Feminism, History, Television

Flip or Flop: Fort Worth (2017-2018)

Getting into real estate as a profession is a gamble. The potential of earning more than a reasonable income is more than compelling. But, the risk is that if things go south, those involved could lose their shirt.

Flip or Flop: Fort Worth aired on HGTV from 2017-2018. A Texas offshoot of the original California-based series, the show follows married couple and military veterans Andy and Ashley Williams as they buy, renovate, and sell run-down houses. As with every show within this genre, there are always problems and the possibility of not being able to sell the finished product is always there in the background.

Unfortunately, some shows are not meant to last. As much as I enjoyed it, my opinion was not enough to keep it on the air for more than a year.

Do I recommend it? Yes.

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Filed under Flashback Friday, Television, TV Review

Throwback Thursday: Ellen’s Game of Games (2017-Present)

TV game shows are a dime a dozen. A part of the television landscape since the beginning of the medium, the variety of programming within this genre is nearly endless.

Ellen’s Game of Games has been part of the NBC schedule since 2017. Hosted by Ellen Degeneres, the games the contestants play are an outsized version of the games that are played on her daytime talk show. As per the standard structure of this type of program, the participants are put through their paces in hopes of walking away with a cash prize by the end of the episode.

Obviously, there is enough of an audience that has kept this show on for a few years. But I have yet to find it appealing. I can’t put my finger on it, but I just don’t enjoy it.

Do I recommend it? Not really.

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RIP Bob Saget

Every generation has that TV parent that we wish for.

When I was growing up, that parent was Danny Tanner (Bob Saget) in Full House. Danny was a widower who was raising his three young daughters with the help of his brother-in-law and best friend. When the series premiered in 1987, the premise of three men raising young girls without a maternal presence was revolutionary. Widows with children (i.e. The Partridge Family) was not a novel narrative. But a widower in the same situation represented a change in the family sitcom and how society was changing in general.

Saget passed away today. He was 65.

Though Danny was a bit corny as fathers go, he did his best to raise his girls. Like many TV dads, he represented an ideal image of fatherhood that may not have been entirely realistic, but we loved him anyway.

Away from his role as the Tanner family patriarch, Saget was a comedian whose jokes were not exactly appropriate for prime time television.

Warning: This video contains adult language.

Z”L Bob. May your memory be a blessing.

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Best New TV Shows of 2021

*I apologize for the delay in posting. I should have written this before New Year’s Eve.

  1. Loki: Tom Hiddleston shines once more as Loki, the complicated immortal who has become much more than the standard antagonist. Forced into new circumstances, he goes on a journey that forever changes him.
  2. The Wonder Years: This reboot of the beloved 1980’s/1990’s series is just as poignant as its predecessor. The choice of making the main character and his family African-American only adds to its relevancy.
  3. Law & Order: Organized Crime: This spinoff of Law and Order: Special Victims Unit starring Chris Meloni as returning Detective Elliot Stabler is a thrilling and spine tingling hour of television.
  4. Ordinary Joe: This new NBC series is the story of one man and three distinct life paths before him. Told concurrently and using different colors for each decision, is is a reminder of how one choice can affect the rest of our lives.
  5. Impeachment: American Crime Story: The latest chapter of this long running F/X series focuses on the affair between Monica Lewinsky (Beanie Feldstein) and former President Clinton (Clive Owen) and the impeachment trial that followed. Instead of focusing on Clinton, the story is about the women who were directly affected by his less than honorable actions.
  6. WandaVision: This first foray by the MCU via DisneyPlus is everything it promised to be. Wanda Maxmioff and Vision (Elisabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany) are living in family sitcom wedded bliss. But it not what it seems to be. With a star making turn by Kathryn Hahn as Agatha Harkness, this series is a must see.
  7. All Creatures Great and Small: Ths unexpectedly Masterpeice/PBS series is adorable and charming. A rookie vetenarian starts his career in rural Yorkshire in the 1930’s and grows in unexpected ways. The new season starts tonight at 9PM ET/ 8PM CT.
  8. Atlantic Crossing: This second Masterpeice/PBS series tells the story of the friendship/supposed affair between Franklin Delanor Roosevelt and Crown Princess Martha of Sweden during World War II. Forgotten for nearly a century, this tale of one woman’s drive to save her nation is truly worth watching.
  9. The Book of Boba Fett: This latest entry into the Star Wars universe from DisneyPlus just premiered on December 29th. Though only two episodes have been released, it is already asking questions that are begging for answers.
  10. Behind Her Eyes: Based on the book by Sarah Pinborough, this six part Netflix series about a married man’s affair with his secretary has a delicious ending that is jaw dropping and completely out of left field. Few endings have wowed me as this did.
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Filed under Books, DisneyPlus, Feminism, FX, History, Netflix, Star Wars, Television, TV Review

Flashback Friday: The Nineties (2017)

It’s easy to look back on the past with rose-colored glasses. It’s harder to look at it it was in reality, not what we want it to be.

The Nineties was a CNN miniseries that aired in 2017. It explored everything about the decade from politics to entertainment to technology to major news stories, etc. While going into the different aspects of the era, it also discussed how we are still living with the after-effects today, whether they be good or bad.

I really liked the program. It was a nice dive into the 1990s without being melodramatic, academic, or dreamy.

Do I recommend it? Yes.

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Throwback Thursday: The President Show (2017-2018)

When times are tough, we turn to comedy and satire to let some air outside of the tires and let us breathe a little.

The President Show aired on Comedy Central from 2017-2018. Stepping into the shoes of you know who is actor/comic Anthony Atamanuik. Set in the format of a late-night talk show, the former guy and his sidekick/Vice President, Mike Pence (Peter Grosz) talk about the day’s events as only they can.

Among the performers who have played he who shall not be named, Atamanuik is the best of the best. He hits all of the marks in a way that creates nothing short of gut-busting laughter. It’s too bad that this show only lasted one season, it was the medicine we needed and still need.

Do I recommend it? Absolutely.

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