Thursday, 28 August 2014

TRUE BLOOD, 7.10 – 'Thank You' – father of the vampire bride

JASON: It's been a long fuckin' week, and it's been a weird fuckin' week.
Just go with it. That's a phrase you often have to repeat to yourself when watching TRUE BLOOD, but thankfully only once during its series finale. The idea that Hoyt (Jim Parrack) would agree to marry Jessica (Deborah Ann Woll) after only knowing her a day (as far as he remembers), just to please her terminally ill "father" Bill (Stephen Moyer), wasn't the most plausible of things. But this show has done far sillier things over seven seasons, so I went with it. The wedding itself didn't pull at my heart-strings as was intended, alas; mainly because of that underlying stupidity, but also because Hoyt and Jessica were a couple taken to such a tragic conclusion that this eleventh hour decision to right a wrong has always felt like fan-servicing.

TWIN PEAKS, 1.3 – 'Rest in Pain'

TRUMAN: There's a sort of evil out there. Something very, very strange in these old woods. Call it what you want. A darkness, a presence. It takes many forms but... its been out there for as long as anyone can remember, and we've always been here to fight it.
A weird duality licks at the edges of this third episode, as the citizens of Twin Peaks come together for Laura Palmer's funeral. After the extraordinary events of Cooper's (Kyle McLachlan) trippy dream, our intrepid investigator calls Sheriff Truman (Michael Ontkean) and Lucy (Kimmy Robertson) to his hotel's dining room, only to throw cold water on their belief he knows who killed Laura Palmer. Unfortunately, Cooper forgot the most important part of his dream (whodunit), but is convinced that his reverie is a code that can be cracked...

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Video: Fan-made LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN opening titles

As a big fan of Alan Moore and Kevin O'Neill's LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN comics (particularly the original ones set in Victorian times), it has always pained me that the 2003 movie was such a resounding disaster (creatively and commercially). Maybe one day, enough time will have passed for Hollywood to attempt a remake, because the idea's just so brilliant. And, perhaps, fan-made videos like this one could help rekindle the flame...

Monday, 25 August 2014

Intermission: late-summer

I'm taking another week's break (25-31 August), so DMD updates may not be as regular. Luckily, I've planned ahead with some posts queued ready to 'auto-publish' over the next 7 days, but I'm not sure when I'll have time to watch and review the True Blood series finale, Outlander episode 3, The Intruders premiere, next Saturday's Doctor Who, or this Thursday's Amazon pilot releases.

TV Picks: 25-31 August 2014 (Big School, Gadget Man, Hand of God, Hysteria, Through the Keyhole, Under the Dome, X Factor, etc.)

Below are my picks of the most notable new shows, returning or premiering on UK screens over the next 7 days...

Sunday, 24 August 2014

Stuff You (Probably) Didn't Know About... Eva Green

Eva Green's one of my favourite actress's working today, because you can never take your eyes off her when she's around, she always gives the material 100% (no matter the objective quality), and tends to elevate weak projects through sheer force of will (Dark Shadows, 300: Rise of an Empire, The Golden Compass, Camelot). A fascinating presence at the cinema or on television, she's equally fascinating off-screen it would appear...

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Review: DOCTOR WHO, 8.1 – 'Deep Breath' - the same, but different

THE DOCTOR: Look at the eyebrows! These are 'attack-eyebrows'. You could take bottle tops off with these!
The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) now prefers a buttoned-up collar with a conspicuous lack of a bow-tie (famously worn by his immediate predecessor, Matt Smith). This sartorial change suggests a new Time Lord with less clownish behaviour, and a return to the eccentric older gents who played the character pre-Peter Davison. Stepping into the role as the twelfth incumbent is lifelong fan Capaldi, whose combination of visible age, Scottish accent, and piercing stare gives DOCTOR WHO a welcome blast of seriousness, without slipping into darkness. Mostly.


★★ (out of five)

Nick Frost without Simon Pegg is a bit like watching Oliver Hardy without Stan Laurel. It doesn't quite work. Pegg's enough of a quirky leading man not to suffer the same analogy, although both seem to struggle when not directed by Edgar Wright, or, in Pegg's case, produced by J.J Abrams.

CUBAN FURY is an innocuous afternoon time-filler, but generally just goes through the motions (in more ways than one), following a set formula for these kinds of films, and fails in two key areas: Frost doesn't ever convince as a great salsa dancer, and has no obvious chemistry with love-interest Rashida Jones—who appears either as acknowledgement of a British rom-com trope Richard Curtis started (see: Andy MacDowell, Julia Roberts, Rachel McAdams), or a weak attempt to make this film somewhat marketable to the U.S.

Friday, 22 August 2014

BBC America order THE LIVING AND THE DEAD from co-creators of LIFE ON MARS

Writers Ashley Pharoah and Matthew Graham, who co-created Life on Mars and were responsible for its spin-off Ashes to Ashes, have had a paranormal drama picked up by BBC America. THE LIVING AND THE DEAD will concern Nathan Appleby; a "gentleman farmer" living in 1888 who's obsessed with proving the existence of an afterlife. This leads Appleby to investigate various supernatural events in Victorian England. The series will begin filming next year in the West Country of England.

Which HEROES should return?

Has a television show ever soared so high, only to fall so hard? NBC superhero drama HEROES had a phenomenal first season (spoiled by a fudged finale people disliked), before a creatively disastrous second season alienated the mainstream. Only die-hard fans kept watching its prolonged death throes, before the life-support machine was turned off after season 4. But someone at NBC remembers when Heroes was The Biggest Show on the Planet... so it's coming back next year as thirteen-episode miniseries HEROES: REBORN. But which of the original, leading actors should return?