Wednesday, May 20, 2009 - 12:19pm
True Blood: The Complete First Season
HBO has been responsible for some of my all time favorite TV series, from The Sopranos to Rome, the network has changed the face of home entertainment forever by presenting entertainment unshackled by worn out television conventions.
Based on Charlaine Harris's Sookie Stackhouse series, True Blood transports you to an upended reality where vampires are an oppressed minority that have eschewed drinking human blood for synthetics and therefore feel safe to finally "come out of the coffin."
Complicating matters, the undead find their life fluid being ingested by humans as a heroin-like aphrodisiac so it's unclear just who the monsters are when a number of horrific murders and kidnappings put this backwater Peyton Place on edge.
The series starts out a straight up thriller but eventually settles in to the realm black comedy, broad comedy at that. Two of my favorite character actors appear in supporting roles, William Sanderson (Deadwood) and Chris Bauer (The Wire) are on hand as local cops up to their swamp boots in intrigue. Stephen Root (Office Space) also appears as a light in the loafers blood sucker.
Mix in a heaping helping of teen angst, redneck rage, and southern fried black sassiness and you've got a seedy, sexed-up soap opera the enjoyment of which will depend on how much you're willing to invest in these undercooked characters.
Overall, I'm not sure True Blood lives up to its lineage but it's fascinating none the less. Like a plate of cold hoe cakes, True Blood is tasty but tepid. Then again, I never liked series creator Alan Ball's earlier effort Six Feet Under, this show suffers from the same cutesiness that infected that earlier series, a smugness that insisted you like it oh so much.
Like Twin Peaks meets Veronica Mars, the quality of this show rests somewhere between the two.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009 - 8:49am
Very often a last episode finale of a popular drama will pull in big ratings but that wasn't the case for Prison Break's finale show, it came in fourth in its timeslot. Look for it on DVD very soon.
Tuesday, May 19, 2009 - 7:29am
BACK TO THE 1970s
After the summer run the brothers were given a season on Saturday mornings in a half-hour format. On both shows one of the regular features was a visit with Chuckie Margolis, here's one of those sketches, from the rarely seen summer series.
Gene Rayburn takes you on a tour of the CBS Television Center studio where The Carol Burnett Show was filmed, in addition to Match Game and The Price is Right.
Sunday, May 17, 2009 - 10:29am
MOVIE STAR DIVAS
'Mildred Fierce,' a Carol Burnett Show parody that hasn't been seen since it was broadcast in 1970. This skit also features Mel Torme, Lyle Waggoner, Harvey Korman, and Soupy Sales.
Finally, Joan Crawford in a British interview that touches on her role in Mildred Pierce.
Friday, May 15, 2009 - 8:56am
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