Category Archives: TV Shows

Lost: The Man Behind the Curtain

Before I get to talking about this amazing episode, an update on what I was talking about earlier in regards to Lost having two more seasons. Turns out it is 3 short seasons, with a total episode order near that of 2 full seasons. 3 more seasons of 16 episodes each, with the final for the 2009/2010 season.
The Man Behind the Curtain was an amazing episode and moves Lost back up the list of best shows on TV, with this and Heroes, they are the best things currently airing new episodes. Lost is back in true form of late, and this may be one of the best yet.
Spoilers will be discussed, so I’ll put things below the break.
Continue reading Lost: The Man Behind the Curtain

Get Lost for Two More Seasons

It apparently will be announced soon that Lost will end after two more seasons. The producers have long said the story would take 5 to 7 seasons to tell in full. ABC and the producers have reached an agreement on how long to give the story to finish out, which apparently works out to 2 more seasons (the exact number of episodes and seasons is apparently “complex,” so perhaps they’ll call it a single season with lots of extra episodes compared to normal). This is a good development. If ABC has given the green light to finish the story properly and committed to two more seasons, this means the producers can pace out the mysteries having a known end date in sight.
I have to say, I have been very impressed with Lost ever since the return from the break. They have been answering some of the longer standing questions while opening new mysteries They have also shown that the people are talking to each other off camera, answering the long standing complaint that it didn’t seem the Losties talked to one another about what was going on. The explanation is that it would be even more irritating having to watch them talk about stuff the viewers already know. Exposition on stuff the audience knows would be worse than seeing them talk, letting us know they are talking about the stuff on the island off camera at least clears up the fact they are indeed talking.
EDIT: I just saw that the return date may be delayed to 2008. That is too long a break, don’t do it ABC. I don’t care if we get all the episodes left in one big set or not, don’t make us wait until 2008.

Meanwhile Heroes, long a very good show is coming on strong as one of the best shows on TV.
Battlestar Galactica continued to be one of the best shows on TV, though with the recent developments on Lost and Heroes, it might not be #1 anymore. It however won’t return until 2008. I am not sure who’s idea that was, but it looks like it will be the last season for it, which is why the order for episodes went to a full season instead of the half(ish) season that was originally ordered. 2008 is too long a break IMHO.

I have mixed feeling on the big break, big run nature of TV seasons of late. It is nice that we don’t have to have a ton of repeats during the whole season, but a long break from October or something to February makes for a long time to wait. However, it does break the season into two or three nice chunks which works out nice as well. I think it is probably better for the networks, since during the break of one show, they can show something else, allowing for a bigger show rotation schedule. Perhaps have one show start at the “normal” season time, break and return in February and again in May (or run from late February to mid May), then have another show air during the break each season. Some shows are already mid-season starters every year, mid-season is no longer the domain of just new shows to replace failed shows, but the time to return some shows. 24’s schedule is nice in that you get all the episodes week after week without a break, but I don’t think the networks are ready to make that big a move yet for every show, however, the changing nature of the way people watch TV might make it worthwhile for them. TiVo and the other DVRs, and online viewing have changed the traditional rating model, it is just a matter of the networks moving to that rating model from the old watch it live type ratings… even Nelson Ratings have made moves to account for time shifting of shows.
The way I want to do the shows I have in my head? Each episode would be 2 hours long and you get 12 episodes a year, so you still get a full season, but each episode then is sort of a movie and is made to pace accordingly. The read trick would be having stuff to fill the time slot during the other weeks. One solution could be to have four such shows in rotation, week one of the month show A is show, then week 2 show B and so on. During any extra days, some kind of filler stuff, behind the scenes or something. Actually my plan on a couple of them was to release at theaters first, and to get the theaters to go along, I give them a far bigger cut than they normally get from a theatrical movie. This theatrical cut would be longer than the TV cut, and obviously not have commercials. A couple or few weeks later, it goes to TV, at the end of the season the DVD comes out with a longer cut than the theater had on some episodes. Hopefully the theaters could charge their “bargain” price at all showings, even those during their more expensive times, to really help pull people in. Since they get a huge cut of the ticket (for most new movies, they may only get 10% of the ticket, with the rest going to the studio, a couple weeks later they may get 20% then 25% and so on, so the longer a movie lasts the better chance they have of making something off the ticket) they may be willing to price it at bargain prices for all showings. Perhaps cut them 90% of the ticket first week, and 100% the next. Perhaps, to make the theater experience worth while it can be done in Real D, Cameron’s Fusion 3D or one of the other major digital 3D formats. (The premium to see a movie in Digital 3D has to go if the theaters really want to make Digital 3D work.)

Ari’s Favorite Show

Since I am talking about new TV shows, Ari’s favorite new show, and it would seem favorite show of the moment is Upside Down Show. It is an odd kind of show, with brothers David and Shane who have their viewers use their imaginary remote control to help them with stuff… Okay, bad explanation… just go to the website and check a clip or few out and you’ll see what I mean.
He also likes Sesame Street and Blue’s Clues. Although Blue’s Clues seems to be falling into the same category as Dora, shows he still likes a lot, but isn’t as into.
His favorite movie is Alice in Wonderland. He’ll watch some other animated movies, but he loves Alice.

The New TV Season

I haven’t really commented yet on the new TV season.

Best show on TV continues to be Battlestar Galactica. I continue to love Lost as well.

Best new show: Jericho. CBS just announced they will not be showing any repeats of the show when the show goes on hiatus here soon. Right now, and during the break, every episode shown is available online. It is their most popular steaming show on their “innertube.” During the break they will also be showing mini-episodes of some type online. Breaking the show into 2 partial seasons seems to be a growing trend. Battlestar Galactica did it last year, and Lost is doing it this year and now Jericho. For those who don’t know, Jericho is a show about a small isolated town after some of the United States was attacked by nuclear weapons. I don’t want to give away too many spoilers, but beyond the mystery of who attacked us, and what cities are or are not destroyed, there is a mystery man who moved to Jericho shortly before the blasts who seems to know more then he is saying.
Tied for best new show: Heroes. A kind of X-Men/Rising Stars show. A few people start discovering they superpowers. We have a few saved up on the DVR, so we aren’t too far into the series yet, but we are getting there. It starts out a bit slow but picks up speed as it goes along. Like so many other shows, the show is available online at their website so you can catch up online if you need to.

Shows I stopped watching: Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. West Wing meets Saturday Night Live. I just wasn’t enjoying it enough for a variety of reasons.

Battlestar Galactica Survivor Counts on the Wiki

I still haven’t watched the Season 3 premier yet, so no comments on the episode.

However, rather then track the survivor counts myself, it looks like the Battlestar Wiki is doing a good job of it already (they don’t have the Season 3 premier count in yet, but otherwise a good count). Their Survivor Count page also includes dates and mortality rate information.

Battlestar Galactica Season 3 this Friday

Just a reminder, the best show on TV comes back for season 3 this Friday on Sci-Fi.
If you need to catch up on seasons 1 and 2 watch this video.
Then be sure to go to this page and watch each of the webisodes. The webisodes takes place between season 2 and 3, from the looks of them, just before season 3. Each is just a few minutes long counting the commercial for season 3. Having watched the first act of the first episode noted below, it is apparent that not only has a lot happened between season 2 and the webisodes, a lot happens between the webisodes and season 3.
If you want to see the first act (about 12 minutes) of the season premier check this link.

Star Trek Remastered Starts This Weekend

Just in case you haven’t heard, select episodes of Star Trek the original series are being remastered. They have cleaned up special effects (essentially new ones using computers but with film grain scanned in so it matches), redone the score, all to make things ready for High Definition. More details here. This isn’t a Star Wars Special Edition style makeover, but a far more reasonable update to bring it up to high definition video and audio.
The remastered shows start this weekend (details on Airdates and Affiliates) so be sure to check it out. The best of the original series, City on the Edge of Forever will be on November 25th, and the weekend before that gives us Space Seed, where we first met Khan.

Battlestar Galactica: The Resistance – Webisodes

How did I miss this happening? I knew they were coming, but somehow missed them showing up. The best show on TV is going to start it’s third season soon, and to hold us over, there will be 10 mini episodes available online each Tuesday and Thursday until the show launches its new season. You can get to them here. (Actually you can get to the current episode, which is episode 2, from their front page, but if you are like me and have to back track some… then you’ll have to use that link.) Click the link for the web episodes and then when the window pops up (you may have a popup blocker, in which case holding your CTRL key will normally allow it to pop up) select which episode you want to watch. Each episode is only 2 and half minutes long or so counting the very cool previews of Season 3… at least the first 2 episodes are.
These episodes take place between Season 2 and the upcoming Season 3 and lead us right into Season 3.
Oh the excitement… “I’ll be in my bunk.”

Natural Rights and Lost

From the Wikipedia article on Natural Rights:

Some thinkers like John Locke emphasized “property” as primary. Indeed, Locke’s influential defense of the right of revolution is represented in the Declaration of Independence, where Thomas Jefferson cited “life, liberty, and private property” in his initial drafts. For political reasons, the committee approving the Declaration later substituted “pursuit of happiness” for property. The Declaration of Independence also based natural or “unalienable rights” on human nature, arguing that it was “self-evident” that human beings by their very nature seek life, liberty, and happiness. This assumed, like Hobbes, Locke and Jean–Jacques Rousseau – also a major social contract thinker – the right of human beings to follow their nature as a natural right antedating and not bestowed by government.

Locke and Rousseau, two of the names of Lost characters who were named after the above mentioned Philosophers. Perhaps Lost is an exploration of natural rights? I am just too tired right now to think clearly and elaberate further, but something is clicking in the back of my mind, something along the lines of natural rights vs civil rights. Too many people think rights come from the government, rather then recognize that function of government is more to hinder rights then give them. Perhaps after some sleep it will make more sense and I can draw a larger picture of what is going on in the back of my head.

Battlestar Galactica: The Story So Far

Just in case you have been missing the best show on TV and want to catch up, Battlestar Galactica: The Story So Far

Here is when it can be caught:

Sunday, August 13 at 10PM NBC West Coast (following Football)
Monday, August 28 Free On Demand via SCI FI’s cable affiliates
Friday, September 15 at 12AM USA
Sunday, September 17 at 7PM Universal HD
Monday, September 18 at 9AM USA
Friday, September 22 at 8PM Universal HD
Friday, September 22 at 6PM Sleuth
Friday, September 29 at 7PM BRAVO
Saturday, September 30 at 11AM BRAVO
Saturday, September 30 at 4PM Universal HD
September SCIFI.COM’s Pulse
Friday, October 6 at 7PM SCI FI

It will also be available on iTunes and for a first, XBox Live (the online component of the XBox and XBox 360). More airings on Sci-Fi to be announced.
Galactica returns itself 9 October. Still no word on when the new prequel show, Caprica comes out. All we know for sure it seems is that it isn’t an action show.

Fall Lineup

Shows that I intend to check out this fall (at least on the big networks):

None of the new Sunday shows appeal to me, so the only thing I’ll probably watch is Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. Perhaps just as well as I probably should try to get to church on Sunday nights…

Heros (NBC, 9PM) – Drama about a group of people who find they suddenly are developing super hero powers. A kind of Rising Stars (a comic book by JMS, who made Babylon 5).
Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip (NBC, 10PM) – Perhaps, not sure on this one yet. It is from the creator of West Wing, about a skit comedy series like Saturday Night Live.
Old Monday shows that I’ll probably watch:
CSI: Miami, but if it conflicts with WWE: RAW and the above two, then it gets dropped.

None of the new shows so far apeal to me, so I’ll stick with House (FOX, 9PM) and Veronica Mars (one of the best shows on TV outside of Lost and Battlestar Galactica, on CW 9PM).

Jericho (CBC, 8PM) – Are the people of Jericho, Kansas the only people left in the world? A mushroom cloud appears on the horizon, possibly Denver, then reports come in that Atlanta was destroyed. The people of the town become isolated, paranoid and agendas come out…. Okay, a really bad description, but it looks like one of the best bets for the new shows based on the previews.
The Nine (ABC, 10PM) – I doubt I’ll watch this show, but I’ll give it a few episodes. 9 strangers are forever linked after being held hostage together in a bank robbery.
Old shows we’ll watch. Lost of course (ABC, 9PM), Sara will watch Dancing with the Stars (ABC 8PM) and Biggest Looser (NBC 9PM). During repeats we’ll probably watch Wednesday Night Fights (ESPN).

Six Degrees (ABC 10PM) – Like The Nine, I’ll give it a few episodes, but I am not sure on this one, but it is from Lost creator J.J. Abrams. 6 strangers in New York who never meet are connected to each other through a variety of mysterious circumstances… based on the idea that you are connected to anyone else in the world through no more then 6 other people.
Old shows we’ll watch: Survivor (CBS 8PM) and perhaps CSI (CBS 9PM) although I am kind of tired of CSI.

Sci-Fi Fridays is probably the rule of the day… assuming Sci-Fi channel returns Battlestar Galactica and the new spinoff Caprica on Fridays. Otherwise the only thing on the networks we’ll probably be watching is WWE: Smackdown (CW 8PM). We’ll probably record and watch Friday Night Fights (ESPN).

Absolutely devoid of any programming. Heck, from 8PM to 10PM CBS will show various programming under it’s “Crimetime” banner, and NBC follows suit from 9PM to 11PM with drama series encore (perhaps to be read as Law and Order encore… Since they own Sci-Fi they should show Battlestar Galactica/Caprica repeats… perhaps delayed a week, but that is just me).
Of course I am normally at church on Saturday night directing/engineering the video recording of the service. (For those that don’t know, we hold service on Saturday night, then two Sunday morning services as there are too many people to fit in one or two services, at least until we move to our new building in 2008. I direct and/or do the engineering of the video recording every other Saturday. The Saturday evening service is normally not broadcast, but is still recorded and what we do is fed to the large screens in the sanctuary so people near the back can still get a good view. The screens also show the lyrics during praise and worship and the like.) Anyhow, it probably is a moot point that there is nothing worth watching on Saturday since I’ll be gone… of course odds are I’ll be gone during the week as well at work, since I work until 11PM, thank God for TiVo… well, in our case the cable company supplied DVR.

Lost Season 3

When Lost returns this fall, it will be in two big blocks. The fist block of 6, then the rest will start in February. Meaning we’ll get a big break between the two.
The producers are apparently looking at the first block of 6 as a mini-series.
I am not overly happy about how big a gap there is, but what can we do. At least it is better than the couple episodes, tons of repeats then more episodes, repeats, episodes, cycle of last year.
Spoilers may follow…
Continue reading Lost Season 3

The Return of Buffy

For seven seasons Buffy entertained us. Finally, after a long hiatus, Buffy returns for Season 8.
The army of Slayers is organized, but an old enemy returns and Dawn goes through some “growing pains.”
Okay, so it is in comic book form, but it should still be great. Now if they can show how Angel and the gang got out of their series finale…
Season 8 of Buffy comes out soon. Details here.

Another Example of Problems with Ruby and Max

I talked before about some of the problems with the show Ruby and Max.
Here is what just happened in this episode. Ruby is trying to earn some Bunny Scout (think Boy Scouts/Girl Scouts, but for bunnies, sorry Anya) badges. She is working with her friend on learning the first aid merit badge. When it comes time to using bandages, her dolls are too small, so she makes Max her example and wraps him all up. Max meanwhile wants a popsicle. When she is done, she take off to answer the door or something (I can’t recall why she left the room). While she is gone, since he’s in the kitchen, Max opens the freezer and gets a popsicle, but it falls on his fire truck and he has to chase the firetruck all over the kitchen. While he chases the firetruck the bandages start unwinding. When the Bunny Scout leader comes in, all the bandages are up in knots. The Bunny Scout leader thinks this is what badge Ruby was going for, and while Ruby does at least start to object, her friend overrides her and points out she even doesn’t have a knot badge yet.
Is this the kind of thing we really should be teaching kids? To get things without actually earning it?