Tag Archives: Felicity

TV Land in Fall 2012 – Why it’s getting LOST (in a good way)

“We have to go back!”

In the weeks between spring finale time, and the summer television season, TV fans tend to do one of two things: (1) reflect on seasons past or; (2) look ahead to the new season.  As for me, my intention in writing this post was to do the latter.  But I ended up doing quite a bit of the former, as well.

Allow me to explain.  You see, having recently watched all the new trailers from this years’ network upfronts, my original goal was to select the five new series with the most potential to end up on my new 2012/2013 TV roster, and review their trailers.  However, after I made my selections, it occurred to me that all of the series I chose shared one interesting commonality: Lost.

You guys remember Lost, right?  You know, the show about the plane crash, where the writers promised that the characters weren’t in Purgatory, until the last season, when it kind of / sort of turned out that was exactly where they were . . .

Why?   Personally, I think these shows failed because they focused too much on trying to emulate the crazy plot twists, erudite literary references,  and rampant conspiracy theories of the older series, while virtually ignoring the one thing that really made Lost shine .  . . its characters.  After all, before all the flashbacks, flash-sideways,  and flash forwards . . . before the polar bears, Hurley birds, and omniscient dogs . . . before there were Others, Dharma Initiatives, donkey wheels, hatches, and secret videos starring a guy with one arm . .  . Lost was simply about fourteen fascinating people, who just so happened to be flying on the same ill-fated plane.

As I mentioned earlier, all five of the news series on my Most Likely to Watch list all seem to possess certain qualities that make them seem particularly Lost-like.  (Well, actually four of them do.  But I’ll get to why I chose the fifth one, in a bit.)  The question is, will any of these series be able to pull off the unique mix of script, characters, plot, and mystery necessary to become TV’s Next Big Thing?

Let’s analyze, shall we?

666 Park Avenue – ABC

Clearly, the most obvious connection between 666 Park Avenue and Lost is this guy . . .

Terry O’Quinn . . . a.k.a John Locke.  In a clever  (and possibly slightly tongue-and-cheek) bit of casting “the producers of Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars” have opted to hire Oceanic Flight 815’s resident Man of Fate, Denizen of Destiny, and an eventual alter ego for The Black Smoke Monster / a.k.a. The Man in Black to play the Devil.  So now we know that at least one character on this show will be exceptionally well-acted.  But stunt casting alone is not enough to make for a successful show.

As for the concept of the series, intriguing as it is, it’s nothing new.  1997’s The Devil’s Advocate boasts a similar premise, in which the Devil takes Manhattan, and faces off against a similarly upwardly mobile late twenties to early-thirty something couple, by tempting them with riches, and only partially disclosing their true cost . . .

And yet in 1997 we weren’t reeling from a recession caused by the burst of a very large real estate bubble.  What better time to explore a television series in which the much maligned 1%ers actually ARE evil incarnate?  So, the series boasts not only a solid cast (Vanessa L. Williams also stars), but also a timely premise.  But there are other Lostian aspects this show offers, which could end up making it a success, if the writers handle them correctly.

Just like that “other show,” 666 Park Avenue offers an over-arching mystery, along with some tantalizing questions that, if producers play their cards right, viewers can chew over and discuss for seasons to come.  What exactly is the Devil doing in real estate?  What happened to the last managers of the Drake Apartments (I think most of us know the answer to that already.  “Warmer climates?”  HA!)  What’s the deal with the dragon etched on the basement floor?  And, perhaps, most importantly,  what are the HOA fees for living in a place like that?

But what’s really going to make or break 666 Park Avenue, I think, is its cast of characters.  Lost explored the lives and backstories of its various survivors with great sensitivity, and depth.  666 Park Avenue has the opportunity to do the same thing with its various apartment tenants.  Who are these people who live in the Drake?  What drives them, and what ultimately enticed them to sell their soul for some extra square footage, a view of Central Park, and an on-site gym?

Only time will tell . . .

CULT – THE CW

Folks who have spent these past few weeks wondering what happened to vampire-slaying history teacher, Alaric Saltzman, after he croaked on The Vampire Diaries, can breathe a sigh of relief now . . .

Though often written off as a “teen television” channel, over the past few years, the CW has enjoyed a surprising amount of success producing shows for a slightly younger, hipper audience who are seeking series that are a bit darker, and grittier than your typical “bright and shiny” network fare.  And from the looks of it, Cult might just prove to be the darkest and grittiest of them all.  Just watching the trailer gave me chills . . . probably because that TV Guy / Possible Cult Leader looks and sounds like a cross between Hannibal Lecter, Kevin Spacey’s character in Seven, and, of course, Benjamin Linus from Lost . . .

But of course, Cult shares more in common with Lost than just an average-looking, kind of creepy, but still oddly charismatic, intellectual type, who might be a cult leader.  Much like it’s predecessor, Cult will offer its fans countless conspiracy theories, clues to unravel, mysterious happenings to be explained, lots of oddly dressed folks with dubious motives to puzzle over, and most importantly, confusing, but compulsively rewatchable, YouTube videos . . .

What intrigues me most about Cult is how unabashedly “meta” it seems to be.  I mean, here is a show that blatantly eviscerates the one thing it needs to survive as a series: a diehard fandom.  This, of course, begs the question, could Lost fans be driven to commit murder, simply because Benjamin Linus asked them to do so?  Well, maybe if he asked really nicely . . .

Revolution – NBC

Here’s another timely premise, in light of the world’s increasing dependence on technology to survive (not to mention Facebook’s catastrophic failure as a stock IPO.)  Imagine a world completely without technology, that’s populated by folks like us, who can’t remember a time before the existence internet, and who can’t let a day go by, without checking our e-mail, sending a text message, or asking SIRI if it’s raining outside.

Of all the shows on my new TV viewing roster, this J.J. Abrams-produced one probably wins the prize for being the most Lost-like.  Let’s see, we’ve got an unexplained supernatural phenomenon and/or terrorist act, that has cut off our main characters from technology,  a sustainable food source, and the benefits of generalized medicine, forcing them to spend hours wandering aimlessly in the woods, looking dirty . . . and hot . . .

We’ve got repeated flashbacks to a climactic event, which, when viewed together, at the end of the series should explain everything . . . almost.  We’ve got various factions of people, some who want things to remain as they are now, and others who want to “go back” to the way things once were . . .

We’ve got snarky rogue-loners, who begin the series looking out only for themselves, but inevitably “learn to love” and become the series’ obvious unlikely heroes . . .

We’ve got nerdy professor types who spend the entire series looking vaguely confused, while trying to “figure it all out.”

Heck, we even have weird ancient-looking symbols, and those dopey, green-screen computers from the 80’s . . .

But beyond all those superficial similarties, I think “Revolution” has the potential to be a true character study,  just as Lost was.  After all, nothing exhibits the true nature of a person better, then putting them in a completely unfamiliar situation, without the benefits or camouflage  that modern-day luxuries provide.  In the words of Hugo “Hurley” Reyes, “DUUUUUUUUDE.”

The Last Resort – ABC

Forget, “You sunk my battleship.”  Something tells me, come this fall, everybody will be yelling at their TV screens, “YOU SUNK MY SUBMARINE!”  If Revolution is the series that most resembles Lost in terms of plot points, The Last Resort most resembles its tone, high production values, and cinematic quality.  In fact, if I hadn’t spied the ABC logo on the corner of screen, I could have sworn this was war movie.  Heck, they even hired That Movie Guy with the Oddly Deep Voice to do the narration!  Conspiracy theorists, war aficionados, and political pundits alike will find much to love in this series, which, like it’s famous predecessor will revolve around an international cover-up  . . .

. . . the result of which will strand our main characters on an island, separating them from the people they love, and putting their lives in constant imminent danger . . .

Hey, this place even looks like Lost island.  Where’s Vincent the Dog?   WAAAAAAAAALT! 

And of course, there will inevitably be dealings with “those pesky others.”

But mostly, I’ll just be watching this one, because Ben from Felicity will be there . . .

Speaking of completely shallow reasons to watch a television program . . .

Chicago Fire – NBC

At the beginning of this post, I admitted to you that really only four of the five series I chose for my Watch List were like Lost.  Chicago Fire doesn’t resemble Lost at all . . . unless you count the repeated obligatory shots of Sometimes dirty-faced and slightly bloody cocky alpha males who never met a shirt they actually liked to wear . . .

I’d be lying if I said the prospect of having a naked Taylor Kinney on my television screen every week, wasn’t a big draw for my choosing Chicago Fire for this blog post.  But personally I think the trailer for this series boasts more than good looking shirtless guys with bad attitudes.  The in-fighting between the squad members, caused in part by the oh-so-cliched concept of The Fallen Comrade shows promise for solid character development.  The kickass females in the series make my feminist heart proud.  And if done right, those inevitable Burning Building sequences are going to look really awesome in HD.

Besides, who doesn’t love a man in uniform . . . or out of it?

And there you have it folks, my five Lostian . . . and not so Lostian picks for the best new shows of Fall 2012.  So, what’s on YOUR Must Watch List?

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

7 Comments

Filed under 666 Park Avenue, Chicago Fire, Cult, Lost, Revolution, The Last Resort

Fishing, Fistulas and Fake Marriages – A Recap of Grey’s Anatomy’s “Adrift and at Peace”

Cristina really wanted to catch a fish.  So, Derek threw one at her . . .

This week’s episode of Grey’s Anatomy featured two marriage proposals, two (sort of) couple reunions, two hot new cast members, and one REALLY BIG FISH!

Not bad for a single hour of television, right?  Let’s recap!

 There’s No CRYING in Fishing!

When the episode opens, Meredith is nagging Derek about his decision to take Cristina fishing, on his day off.  While Meredith might very well be concerned about Cristina’s emotional state, her PTSD, how gosh darn frustrating and annoying her character has become since The Shooting, and her sudden inability to practice medicine, she seems most worried about Cristina’s bodily functions.  “There’s no bathroom,” whines Meredith.

Clearly, in addition to all the other things PTSD has done to Cristina, it has also made her incontinent . . .

Don’t leave home without them . . .

Ignoring Meredith’s plaintive potty pleas, Derek takes Cristina out on the lake for an exciting afternoon of sitting in a boat and stroking poles.  Cristina tries to impress Derek with all of her newly acquired fishing knowledge.  But Derek basically tells her to shut the hell up.

“Be quiet, or I will CUT YOU!  I’ve done time in the pokey, you know . . .”

Then Cristina catches a BIG FISH . . .

 . . . which makes her cry . . .

“I just pooped in my pants.”

 . . . and makes Derek smile.

“Haha, Owen has to sleep with Poopy Pants tonight!”

Luckily, the moment was captured on camera!

Because, who wouldn’t want to remember a thing like that?  (ME!)

Apparently, Cristina’s dramatic tears are supposed to represent progress in her “Journey Back to Mental Health” or something . . . At least, that’s what Meredith and Derek think . . .

Then again, they aren’t the ones who have to sleep with Poopy Pants . . .

“Thanks a lot, A$$holes!”

Speaking of A$$holes . . .

Wanna Play the Blame Game?

Meredith and Owen have been bickering like an old married couple, because Meredith thinks Owen is “letting Cristina fall apart, and doing nothing about it” (which he is).  And Owen thinks Meredith is a “reckless suicidal wackadoo, who asked a psychotic gunman to shoot her” (which she also is).  Owen even goes so far as to kick Meredith out of his ER!  There is obviously some angry sexual tension here.  But if the writers of this show ever make Meredith and Owen cheat on their respective spouses, and hookup, I will be SUPER PISSED! 

Just sayin’ . . .

Sex with you makes me sad!

Do I have to break out the Rubber Duckie again?

If there was a book of things you should never say to your lover . . .

 . . . “Sex with you makes me sad,” would be on the first page . . . and “while I’m having sex with you, I think about [insert name here] would be on the second.  Nevertheless, these are the words Callie and Sloan exchange with one another, after a morning of sharing hot showers.  After, Callie kicks Sloan out of the shower . . .

 . . . and he “recovers” . . .

 . . . Dr. McSteamy becomes determined to win back Lexie, a girl who doesn’t get sad from screwing him.  First, Sloan does Lexie a sexual medical favor, in exchange for her agreeing to get a drink with him at Joe’s.  Lexie doesn’t really want to go out with Sloan.  So, she tells Avery to interrupt the date, and make an excuse as to why she must leave.

(Unfortunately, Avery was dressed at the time . . .)

Then, Sloan chats with a patient, who started to date her now-husband, because he kissed her while “bowling” ( not a sexual euphemism, sadly), and was a “Really Good Kisser.”

So, when Lexie arrives at the bar, and starts babbling on-and-on about why she can’t date Mark again, he does this .  . .

And, suddenly, Lexie is in luuuuuuuuuuuve again.  Then, Avery arrives . . .

Sorry, Avery!  It looks like you’re stuck with me! 🙂

Eat My Door, Arizona!

“And no, that is NOT a euphemism for sexual favors either . . .”

Callie’s still feeling like crap this week, because her girlfriend, Arizona, dumped her for Africa.  And because she wants to let everyone know that she’s “Still Awesome,” Callie commandeers Alex to help her perform a new non-invasive type of hip surgery on a patient, who has a majorly annoying wife . . .

Alex and Callie rock the surgery . . .

But Alex still wants to specialize in Pediatrics.  So, he turns down Callie’s offer to train him as a Bone Specialist.

Callie:  “Why are doctors who like kids always dumping my ass?”

Speaking of doctors who like kids and dump Callie’s ass, Arizona shows up at Callie’s door toward the end of the episode.  But, rather than apologize for breaking her heart and leaving her ass that the airport, Arizona just tells Callie she missed her a lot, and decided to leave Africa, because not having sex with Callie “made her sad.”

“That’s all you’ve got to say for yourself, B*tch?”

So, Callie slams the door in Arizona’s face, and goes back to rubbing her duckie . . . solo . . .

Marry Me, Noel Crane!

“What will Felicity say?”

Nice Guy, Noel Crane from that old show Felicity has a pretty bad tumor, and has maxed out his health insurance  .  . .

So, he asks his girlfriend, who is NOT named Felicity, to marry him, so that he can get her PPO.  (That’s not a sexual euphemism either . . . sorry!)  NotFelicity ultimately turns Noel Crane down because she is a heinous b*tch. 

Teddy, who is feeling kind of crappy about the whole “Cristina has PTSD” thing, and recognizes that her own character has been generally unlikeable for quite some time now tries to get the hospital to take on Noel Crane’s treatment pro bono.

But THIS GUY says “NO.”

“You can hate me if you want, but I’ve got my SAG card now . . . and no one is taking that away from me.”

So, Teddy asks Noel Crane to marry her and use her health insurance.  Noel Crane says “Yes” . . .

(Somewhere in TV Land, Felicity Porter is crying her eyes out . . .)

“This is worse than the time I got that bad haircut, and everyone stopped watching my show . . .”

In other, New Hot Cast Member news . . .

Greetings, Nurse Panty Dropper!

Making sponge baths fun for TWELVE YEARS!

Bailey is still obsessed with fistulas, ever since Mandy Moore croaked from them . . .

 (well . . . not really . . . but on this show she did!).  Now, Bailey’s got her residents investigating various ways to prevent fistulas.  But they are taking WAY too long in doing so.  So, Bailey gets an idea . . .

After seeing how awed the residents are by watching Bailey extract a gallbladder through a patient’s mouth . . .

 . . . Bailey asks Lexie if she would like the opportunity to do the same thing on her own.  Lexie says she wants it about as much as she used to want a pony when she was a kid . . . In other words, she wants it A LOT!  April (who now has a new hair color, which makes her look like kind of like those old Strawberry Shortcake dolls) . . .

 . . . brags that she worked hard when she was a kid, and actually got herself a pony . . .

April’s Little Pony

Anyway, Bailey tells her “pony-loving” Fistula Research Crew that the resident who’s patient doesn’t get fistulas will win the opportunity to pull a gallbladder out of somebody’s mouth . . .

But NONE of the residents can prevent the fistulas!  You know who DOES prevent the fistulas though?  THIS GUY . . .

I’m talking about hot half naked guy on the left with the BIG Hose!  (Unfortunately, he was dressed at the time . . .)

When Bailey asks Nurse Panty Dropper (that’s my new name for the dude pictured above), why he insisted on removing a patient’s “tube,” despite Lexie’s request that he leave it in for two more days, Nurse Panty Dropper replies that he is not just a “Pretty Face” he is a Majorly Hot Body too!  In fact, Nurse Panty Dropper has been removing tubes from patients for twelve years, and they never got fistulas. 

In other words, “Butt Out, BAILEY!  I’ve got this sh*t under control!”

Upon reviewing Nurse Panty Dropper’s records, Bailey learns that he ALWAYS removes the tube in question after THREE DAYS, instead of FIVE.  And it is this early tube removal that apparently prevents fistulas.  GO FIGURE!

Bailey is very happy!

“I CURED FISTULAS!”  She shouts triumphantly, interrupting the Chief’s board meeting to share the happy news.  (Ummmm . . . actually Bailey, Nurse Panty Dropper cured fistulas, you just kind of watched . . .)

Bailey is so thankful for Nurse Panty Dropper and his Hot Bod of Sin miraculous medical techniques, that when he asks her out on a date, she says, “OK . . . because you gave me Day 3.”

“And because I’m very handsome,” adds Nurse Panty Dropper.

Bailey nods shyly at Nurse Panty Dropper’s assessment.  Then she butt wiggles away, so he can get a nice shot of her rearview.  And why the heck not?  She’s just had the BEST DAY EVER!

Well, that was “Adrift and at Peace” in a nutshell.  And . . . since there are no new episodes of Grey’s Anatomy until January . . .

 . . . I leave you with this promo, to wet your whistle for what’s to come . . .

See you next year!

[www.juliekushner.com]

5 Comments

Filed under Grey's Anatomy

“What’s up, Doc?” – A Recap of Grey’s Anatomy’s “These Arms of Mine”

“This soup tastes funny . . .”

This week on Grey’s, Meredith’s Voiceover had her trachea accidentally eaten by a Person Who Shall Not Be Named. *cough Alex cough*  And so, while Meredith’s Voiceover’s  new trachea was incubating, our Grey’s writers had to come up with another Artificial Story-Framing Device to use during the episode.  Their solution?  This . . .

As we all know (and have been told TIME and TIME AGAIN), Seattle Grace and the doctors and nurses who work there, have all suffered, as a result of The Shooting.

As with all major tragedies, The Shooting left scars on everyone who experienced it.  Some of those scars are easily seen  . . .

 . . . while others are more hidden.

Yet, ever the businessman, Chief Webber would like to gloss over all of those scars with a swift coat of cheery yellow paint, and put a “fresh face” on Seattle Grace — one that is shiny and new.

“Get those ugly extras in the white lab coats OUT OF MY SHOT!  What do you think this is . . . a HOSPITAL?”

And so, Chief Webber invites a documentary film crew inside his hospital, to show the world what a “warm and sunshiney” place Seattle Grace can be!

“You can stand under my umbrella . . . ella . . . ella . . . hey . . . hey . . . hey . . . under my umbrella . . .”

(Speaking of “sunny”  . . . you know . . . this show has been on the air for seven seasons, and, during that time, I don’t recall ONCE seeing it rain!  Did I mention the show takes place in Seattle?  You know, the “Rainy City?”  Where it rains, on average, 158 days per year?)

One of the few times I someone got wet watching on Grey’s Anatomy . . .

Good weather notwithstanding, it is tough to paint a “happy face” on a place, where phrases like the one below are so often included in daily conversation . . .

But that doesn’t mean that Chief Webber isn’t going to try . . .

So, scrub in Grey’s fans!  It’s time to take a little walk on the “Road to Recovery.”

Alex Karev’s Greatest Hits

By far, my favorite storyline of the episode went to Alex Karev.  His patient-of-the-week was a nine-year old girl named Lily, who had a large tumor obstructing her trachea. 

She also had an obsession with Camp Rock 2, and a terrible case of Bieber Fever . . .

It is important to note that Justin Chambers (the actor who plays Alex) has five kids, ranging in age from 8 to 17, four of whom are girls.  So, when Lily couldn’t take her iPOD into the MRI machine with her, and Alex started singing Camp Rock 2’s “Wouldn’t Change a Thing” to the her, so she wouldn’t be nervous during the procedure, I couldn’t help but wonder whether the actor had done this before . . .

Lily’s MRI results show that her tumor has grown so large that she will die, if her trachea isn’t removed.  Unfortunately, the removal of the trachea is, in itself, an often-fatal procedure.

Fortunately, as per usual, Alex and the Seattle Graceans have come up with a Groundbreaking Medical Procedure that could save Lily’s life.  The procedure involves growing a new healthy trachea, using Lily’s own cells. 

Just heat those little buggers up in a microwave and, voila!  You’ve got yourself a BRAND NEW Chia Trachea!

Tra-tra-tra TRACHEA!

For a guy who can be a REAL douche when it comes to dealing with adults, our Alex sure is a softy when it comes to working with kids!

And, although Alex says he’s only sleeping at the hospital to water Lily’s Chia Trachea, it seems pretty obvious that the real reason he’s there, is so that the little girl won’t feel so alone.

All I know, is if I was in fourth grade right now, I would TOTALLY bring that Adorable Doc in for Show-and-Tell, just like Lily did . . .

I’d probably have him wear less clothes, though . . .

Lexie Grey – Renegade Outlaw

While Alex is spending all of his time in the hospital, Lexie is spending most of hers right outside of it.  You see, ever since The Shooting, Chief Webber has significantly “enhanced” the security at Seattle Grace.  One of these new “enhanced” security procedures requires all staff and vistors entering the hospital to submit to a full body scan and metal detector check.  As for the doctors and nurses, they must also show the security guards their Picture ID Badges, upon entering the hospital.

The problem is that Lexie’s ID picture looks like this . . .

 . . . and she now looks like this . . .

So, rather than do the logical thing, and ask the Chief to have a new ID picture taken, Lexie spends most of the episode fighting with the security guards –trying desperately to convince them that she’s the same person as the blonde in the picture.

Eventually, Lexie  gets fed up with arguing, and runs past the guards into the hospital.  Lexie’s breach of protocol causes the ENTIRE hospital to go into lockdown.  This “innocent” rebellion results in major problems for one of Lexie’s colleagues Dr. Hotness Jackson Avery.

Jackson’s Emotional Breakdown

Jackson is rolling a patient with respiratory problems into surgery, when the automatic procedures associated with the lockdown result in his being trapped in a small glass vestibule, without any medical equipment.  Undoubtedly, having his own PTSD-fueled flashback to the day of The Shooting, Jackson begins to scream, pound ferociously on the glass doors, and doggedly  administer CPR to his patient, who is now frantically gasping for air.

The event frightens Jackson so much, that even when the doors reopen, and other doctors are allowed into the room, Jackson, now hysterically crying continues pounding uselessly on his patient’s chest.

On camera, an embarrassed and grief-stricken Jackson admits just how hard on him The Shooting, specifically, his loss of two friends and colleagues during it has been . . .

Finally, at the end of the episode, The Chief takes his head out of his ass long enough to order the removal of Seattle Grace’s short-lived and utterly ridiculous security system from the premises.  Goodbye and GOOD RIDDENS, I say!

Hello to Arms

I had literally a TON of ideas for jokes to put in the caption underneath this picture, all of which would make me look like a total douche, and none of which were the least bit appropriate.  Therefore, feel free to insert your own Inappropriate Joke About People With No Arms here . . .[ ]

I’m a totally terrible person, aren’t I?

Remember that picture at the top of this recap, featuring the caption about someone’s brains being on the floor?  Yeah . . . that was THIS GUY . . .

The bad news is . . . he’s dead obviously.   The good news is, he’s an organ donor with pretty arms.  That second part makes our Attendings pretty darn happy, because it will provide them with the opportunity to perform . . .you guessed it . . . a NEW Groundbreaking Medical Procedure. 

(That’s TWO Groundbreaking Medical Procedures in one episode, for those of you keeping score . . .)

“Hey, remember when No Arm Guy’s wife stole a baby from the stomach of that chick on Private Practice?  That was AWESOME!”

So, the trio of Super Docs (actually, it ends up being Callie, who does most of the work), plan to extract Dead Guy’s arms, and put them on No Arms Guy.  (Dead Guy isn’t really using them, anyway. . .).  There’s just one slight problem . . .

“Nicole” is not No Arms Guy’s Wife’s name . . . AWKWARD!

Honestly?  I wasn’t as surprised by the couple being so cool with taking the arms, despite the tattoo, as I was by the fact that all the doctors thought that they wouldn’t be.  After all, in the “What Would Rather” game, I’m pretty sure “Have a Random Tattoo” would win out over “Have No Arms” EVERY TIME . . .

Now, usually the actual “surgery” parts of Grey’s episodes bore the stuffing out of me.  But I have to say, this arm surgery was pretty darn cool to watch.  The way they literally sawed off Dead Guy’s arms, and wheeled them down the hospital corridor — the disembodied fingers wiggling, as the gurney lurched and bumped its way toward the OR — was like something out of a horror movie!

And then, the way the arms turned, pink, once they were reconnected to the Patient Formerly Known as No Arms Guy’s body, was so VERY Frankenstein . . .

 . . . or, it would be, if the original Frankenstein movie wasn’t in black-and-white . . .

I also liked the little epilogue part, where we learned that the Patient Formerly Known As No Arms Guy tattooed the word “Thank you” next to Nicole’s name.  That was sweet.  It was nice of Crazy Lady from Private Practice and the Patient Formerly Known As No Arms Guy to remember that, even though the arms belonged to Dead Guy, originally, it was his wife, Nicole, who actually agreed to donate them — thereby, making this whole thing possible . . .

LOOOOOOOONG Distance Relationship

Ummmm . . . what’s up with the Fugly Hat?  You’re going to Africa, not the Easter Parade.”

Sometimes, spending time fixing Tiny Humans really pays off.  Arizona learned this, when she won the prestigious Carter Madison grant.   Said grant would allow her to go to Africa, and facilitate the process of ensuring that the children there receive top-quality medical treatment. 

While some of Arizona’s colleagues were pleased to hear about the honor she received  .  . .

(The increasingly opportunistic Chief Webber treated Arizona like she was his prize poodle, who had just won Best in Show at the Purina Dog C0mpetition.  I kept waiting for him to pat her on the head, and give her a biscuit . . .)

 . . . others were less than enthused . . .

Callie, for one, couldn’t understand why ANYONE would possibly give up Earth-shattering sex with her (YAY!), in exchange for something as mundane as The Opportunity of a Lifetime (Snooze!).

Fortunately for Arizona, Callie decided, at the last minute to come to Africa with Arizona. 

See?  Sometimes you CAN have your pound cake, and eat it out too!

Miranda Bailey can’t win . . .

You know, everytime I see Miranda Bailey on my screen lately, I want to reach out and give her a hug.  Let’s review, shall we?  Her husband left her, her boyfriend ditched her for a spinoff .  . .

. . . Dr. Percy died in her arms . . . and now . . . our girl is FINALLY ready to go out and have a drink with her buds . . .

 . . . when she finds out that SHE KILLED MANDY MOORE!

It all started when Mary, the girl attached to the colostomy bag, who braved The Shooting with Bailey, returned to Seattle Grace, with her husband in tow.

 Mary plans to have Dr. Bailey complete a medical procedure, which she had never gotten to perform during Mary’s first visit to the hospital, for obvious reasons.  The procedure is a routine colostomy reversal, one that should have Mary in and out of the OR in about an hour.  Dr. Bailey, having grown attached to Mary, during The Shooting, is eager to finish the procedure.  She hopes that it will provide them both with some much needed closure on a difficult chapter in their lives.

While Bailey preps Mary for surgery, the two chat like old girlfriends.  We learn that Mary and her husband, realizing that life is short, blew through their entire savings, and traveled the world, in the months following the shooting.

 

We also hear Mary tell the documentary film crew that she hopes to “have lots of babies.”

The procedure itself goes off without a hitch.  We see Dr. Bailey give Mary’s adorable husband (played by Ryan Devlin) the good news.  Dr. Bailey, still on a high from her friend’s successful surgery, tells the documentary crew that she is plans to treat herself to a drink after work — something, which, surely she has earned.

Unfortunately, this wouldn’t be Grey’s Anatomy if there wasn’t at least one maudlin moment in the episode.  And this moment belonged to poor Mary, who, we later learn, never woke up from surgery.

After watching his wife spend months in a coma, Mary’s husband is ultimately forced to terminate her life support.   In a heart-wrenching scene toward the end of the episode, we see Bailey break down and cry over Mary’s death, in an empty hospital room . . .

Well THAT was completely unnecessary, Grey’s!

“Being a Hero Has Its Price.”

Although Meredith and Cristina didn’t have their own “medical” storyline this week  (Cristina, after all, is still on her way too long “I don’t do surgery” PTSD/depression kick.), we did get to see a lot of them both, during the “interview” portion of the episode.  Meredith remarks to the interviewer about how close her and Cristina are — a fact which Derek readily confirms.  “Dr. Yang and my wife sometimes have sleepovers . . . in my bed  . . . with me in it.”

That’s HOT!

But when Meredith calls Cristina “her hero” for saving Derek’s life, during The Shooting, Cristina breaks down, and has to stop the interview.  She later returns to complete the interview, after she has composed herself.  “What did you take away from all of this?”  The interviewer asks Cristina.

“Being a hero has its price,” replies Cristina sadly.

Indeed . . .

But, that’s kind of a depressing way to end a recap.  And I always like to end my recaps on a HAPPY note.  So, let’s try this ending on for size . . .

Ahhhh . . . much better!

See you next week!

[www.juliekushner.com]

Leave a comment

Filed under Grey's Anatomy

The post where I pretend to have a Twitter Account, and help Jimmy Fallon host the Emmys

 

As you probably already know, the 62nd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards will be airing live this Sunday night (August 29th), at 8 p.m on N.B.C., with Jimmy Fallon acting as host.  What you may NOT know, is that YOU have the opportunity to write some of his jokes!  And who do we have to thank for this groundbreaking opportunity?  Why, Twitter, of course!

You see, unlike during other Emmy specials — where you spend half the time cringing at the lame one-liners the hosts come up with to introduce the show’s various celebrity award presenters — this year, you get to write them, YOURSELF!

Here’s how it works.  When you click on this website, you will be directed to a list of all of the presenters for this year’s Emmy awards.  Do you have something funny, amusing or poignant to say about a particular celebrity?  Do you have an existing Twitter account?  If you have answered “Yes” to both questions, simply click on your favorite actor or actress’s name, and you will be directed to a place where you can tweet about them to Jimmy Fallon and his writing staff. 

If Jimmy and his staff like what you wrote, there’s a chance Mr. Fallon will read it LIVE ON TV (giving full credit to YOU and your creative Twitter handle, of course)!  You can tweet to Jimmy throughout the Emmy Broadcast (or, at least until your choice presenter has presented).  Pretty cool right?

Well . . . here’s the problem.  I don’t have a Twitter account . . .

 . . . and I don’t plan on opening one just for this contest, cool as it may be.  So, here’s what I decided to do.  I’ve written a Twitter-sized Emmy intro for EACH of the presenters.  You can read them.  If any of them don’t make you groan or roll your eyes, feel free to tweet them to Jimmy Fallon.  If you do that, and throw at least partial credit to “KJewls” or “TV Recappers Anonymous,” I will be your best friend for life! 

If not . . . well, at least I tried. 

So, without further adieu, my Emmy presenter introductions:

1) Ann Margret

You might remember her from classic films like Bye, Bye Birdie, The Cincinatti Kid, and Viva Las Vegas.  But what really stands out in my mind is her brilliant performance in The Santa Clause 3.  It’s Ann Margret!

2) Anna Paquin

On HBO’s True Blood, she plays the coolest fairy to ever date a boy that doesn’t age, since Tinkerbell.  It’s Anna Paquin!

3) Alexander Skarsgard

Bite into America’s favorite Swedish meatball  . . . It’s Alexander Skarsgard!

4) Betty White

Before Twilight, or True Blood, or The Vampire Diaries, before the wheel was invented, America’s first true vampire was a Golden Girl.  Please welcome the immortal, Betty White.

5) Blair Underwood

Barak Obama was busy tonight, so we got the next best thing.  Set to play the President of the United States, in the upcoming NBC Drama Series, The Event , it’s Blair Underwood!

6) Boris Kodjoe

He’s sexy.  He’s bald.  He’s black.  He’s beautiful.  I’d do him.  Everybody welcome, Boris Kodjoe!

7) Christopher Meloni

Question:  If Detective Elliot Stabler from Law and Order SVU fought convicted murderer, Chris Keller, from Oz, who do you think would win?  Only this guy knows . . . It’s Christopher Meloni.

8 ) Claire Danes

When Jordan Catalano broke up with Angela Chase, I cried.  When Beth died in the Little Women movie, I cried.  When Juliet died in the Romeo and Juliet movie, I cried.  Stop making me blubber like a baby, Claire Danes!

9) Edie Falco

Last night I had this dream that Carmela Soprano was getting high in the on-call room with Nurse Jackie.  Thanks for the memories, Edie Falco!

10) Emily Deschanel

If this lovely lady is leaning over you and stroking your face, it probably means you’re dead!  She plays Temperance Brennan on Bones.  It’s Emily Deschanel!

11) Eva Longoria Parker

Though perhaps best known  for playing the delectable Gabrielle Solis on Desperate Housewives, our next guest REALLY won my heart as Flight Attendant 3 on Beverly Hill, 90210.  It’s Eva Longoria Parker!

12) Gugu Mbatha Raw

She bears the distinction of having the hardest name to pronounce in Emmy history.  Dr. Who is she?  It’s Gugu Mbatha Raw!

13) January Jones

We can’t really blame Betty for dumping Don Draper on Mad Men.  Her people are Nordic.  It’s January Jones!

14) Jeff Probst

He’s been on Survivor for TEN YEARS, and NEVER once been voted off the island.  Everybody welcome, Jeff Probst!

15) Jim Parsons

In order to invite Dr. Sheldon Cooper to present this award, we had to disinvite Leonard Nimoy and Stan Lee.  They both have restraining orders against him.  Sorry guys!  It’s Jim Parsons!

16) Joel McHale

Joel McHale is the nicest, smartest, hottest, and most wonderful man on the planet.  Shh, I’m only saying this, because I don’t want him to make fun of me on The Soup.  It’s Joel McHale.

17) John Krasinski

For our next presenter, we wanted to get the hottest paper salesman at Dunder Mifflin.  But Dwight Schrute was unavailable, so we settled for Jim Halpert.  Everybody welcome, John Krasinski!

18 ) John Lithgow

What is this world coming to? The world is at war, the economy is a mess, and the dad from Harry and the Hendersons is a serial killer!  Say hello the Evil John Lithgow!

19) Jon Hamm

The Dapper Don Draper is here.  An attendant will be stopping by to retrieve all the panties that just dropped on the floor.  Everybody welcome, Jon Hamm!

20) Julianna Margulies

Women scorned by slutty manwhore hubbies the world over, can take a page out of this lady’s book.  She plays Alicia Florick on The Good Wife.  It’s Julianna Margulies.

21) Keri Russell

Please give a big round of applause for the gal who played Felicity Porter . . . or she might cut her hair again.  Ladies and gentleman, Keri Russell!

22) Lauren Graham

She went from playing the fast talking, coffee swigging Lorelai Gilmore, to the bartending, teacher smooching, Sarah Braverman.  It’s everybody’s favorite MILF, Lauren Graham!

23) Laurence Fishburne

Our next presenter is the only guy who could possibly explain The Matrix movies to me.  It’s Laurence Fishburne!

24) L.L. Cool J.

Someone tweeted me this really funny L.L. Cool J. joke.  But when I told him about it, his mama said knock me out.  Please don’t hurt me, L.L. Cool J!

25) Mariska Hargitay

This next presenter could totally kick my ass.  She plays Dr. Olivia Benson on Law and Order:  SVU.  It’s Mariska Hargitay!

26) Matthew Morrison

On Glee, he plays Will Schuester, a teacher who can Bust a Move, Alone, Like a  Gold Digger, Somewhere Over the Rainbow.  He also looks great in a thong.  It’s Matthew Morrison!

27) Matthew Perry

He’s the Friend who got it on with Courtney Cox BEFORE David Arquette.  Could he BE any luckier?  It’s Matthew Perry!

28) Maura Tierney

Nurse Jackie learned everything she knows about addiction from this next presenter.  She played Dr. Abby Lockhart on ER.  It’s Maura Tierney!

29) Nathan Fillion

I had this great idea for a mystery novel.  So, I tweeted it to Rick Castle.  Then I realized he’s not a real person.  Thanks a lot, Nathan Fillion!

30) Neil Patrick Harris

If Barney Stinson gave relationship advice to Doogie Howser, M.D.  and Dr. Horrible, they’d all look a bit like this guy.  Please don’t steal my job, Neil Patrick Harris!

31) Ricky Gervais

When I made that comment about Dwight Schrute being the hottest paper salesman at Dunder Mifflin, I really offended this guy.  Everybody welcome, Ricky Gervais!

32) Sofia Vergara

I’ll admit, I don’t always understand what she’s saying on Modern Family.  But it always sounds beautiful.  It’s Sofia Vergara!

33) Stephen Colbert

I’m proud to present the next President of the United States, Stephen Colbert!

34) Stephen Moyer

He’s the only person in the world who can make the name “Sookie” sound like a sex act. It’s Stephen Moyer!

35) Ted Danson

This man needs no introduction, because he only goes where “everybody knows his name.”  It’s . . . shoot  .  . . what’s that guy’s name again?  Oh yeah!  Ted Danson!

36) Tina Fey

She’s a writer, producer, actress, and an Emmy and Golden Globe winner.  Thanks for making us all look stupid and lazy, Tina Fey!

37) Tom Selleck

I’m so excited about this next guest.  He’s been such a role model for me throughout his distinguished career.  Everybody, put your hands together for Tom Selleck’s MUSTACHE  . . . oh, and Tom Selleck too, I guess.

38) Will Arnett

Our next presenter is perhaps best known for his role as magician GOB Bluth on Arrested Development.  Well, if you’re such a great magician GOB, why don’t you make your show reappear!  It’s Will Arnett!

There you have it, 38 celebrity Emmy presenters, and 38 introductions for Jimmy Fallon.  I sure hope he appreciates it!  See you at the Emmys!

[www.juliekushner.com]

2 Comments

Filed under Emmy Awards

A Lesson in Etiquette from the Cast of Mad Men and the Mister Men Series – A Recap of Mad Men’s “The Chrysanthemum and the Sword”

“A lesson in whhaaaat?  From the cast of whoooooo?  DON, this damn phone don’t work and neither do I!”

Whether we are still kids, or just kids at heart, there are times in all of our lives, when we could stand to be reminded of the importance of minding our proverbial “Ps and Qs.”  And in this most recent Mad Men episode, EVERYONE fell a bit short on the Etiquette Scale. 

Let’s revisit, shall we?

Lesson One:  When you have nothing nice to say, it’s best to say nothing at all . . .

In the opening moments of the episode, Don receives a phone call from the New York Times.  Apparently, one of Don’s competitors at another advertising company(Cutler, Gleason, and Chauough), has been talking smack about him. 

(Riiiiiight! Because THAT’S what top New York Times reporters cover on the front page of their paper, Word Wars between anonymous Ad men.) 

The reporter wonders whether Don has a response to his competitors’  snide remarks.  If Don was POLITE, he would simply say, “No Comment.”  However, because Don is . . .

 . . . he, instead replies, “Never heard of him.” 

Lesson 2 – Be flexible.  There is no shame in compromising to get the job done.

“Compromise is for pussies!”

Later, at a meeting of the SCDP partners, Pete mentions that he has scored a meeting with Honda, where SCDP will have the opportunity to pitch the well established Japanese corporation a campaign for their motorcycle account.

Rumor has it that Honda is dissatisfied with their current representation by Massive Ad Agency, Grey.  The “catch” is that each competing agency will get just $3,000 to create a mock pitch for Honda.  Most of the partners are THRILLED . . .

. . . but Roger is NOT!

A World War II vet, who lost a lot of friends to the Japanese war effort, Roger REFUSES to represent a Japanese company, no matter how lucrative such representation could potentially BE for SCDP.  This is because Roger is . . .

“Why don’t we just bring Doctor Lyle Evans in here?”  Roger quips.

“Huh?”

*         *         *           *

Please forgive me this slight departure from your regularly scheduled recap, while I wax poetic on Roger’s so-called “historical reference.”

Who the heck is Doctor Lyle Evans?  If you didn’t catch the reference, fear not, because the rest of the staff of SCDP didn’t either.  Seeing as I was still about two decades away from being born, back in 1965, I just shrugged the name off, assuming it referred to some villainous doc, who worked for the enemy back in World War II.  (I was never exactly what you would call a “History Buff,” anyway . . .

But, apparently, there was much more to it than that.  You see, the interesting thing about Dr. Lyle Evans, is that he DOES NOT EXIST! 

OK.  There’s probably SOMEONE out there named Dr. Lyle Evans, but he’s certainly not a historical figure.  Evidently, Matt Weiner dropped the name into the script to have a little fun with those crazy Mad Men fans who like to look up every single historical reference they hear on the show.  It WORKED!  Google and Twitter trends for the mysterious “Dr. Lyle Evans” went through the ROOF, Sunday night!

Tsk, tsk, Matt Weiner!

I hearby dub you . . .

We now return to our regularly scheduled recap . . .

*      *      *      *

Lesson 3 – Before making drastic changes to your appearance, always consult with your elders . . .

Felicity’s Keri Russell learned THIS lesson the hard way . . . So did Sally Draper.

OK.  I REALLY don’t like this Nurse Phoebe chick!  I didn’t like her when she was Reed on Grey’s Anatomy . . .

 . . . and I DON’T like her now!  Apparently, neither does Sally Draper.  Because when Nurse Phoebe was babysitting the little Drapers, over at Don’s house, while Don was out on a date, Sally did something to ensure that Phoebe would NEVER be invited back into Don’s apartment again!  She did THIS . . .

She then asked Phoebe whether she and Don were doing The Nasty together.   Well, if they WERE, they won’t be NOW! 

When Don got back from his Dull Ass Date with Boring Bethany at Benihana’s . . .

 . . . (where he learned that his advertising rivals from Cutler would be competing with SCDP for the Honda account), he fired Nurse Phoebe on the spot!

Lesson 4 – Use your words, not your fists, B*tch (especially on YOUR KIDS)!!!!

The SLAP heard round the world . . .

While Don blamed Nurse Phoebe for the whole “Sally Hair Fiasco,” Betty blamed EVERYBODY BUT HERSELF!  Poor, poor, Betty!  Apparently, the whole world is conspiring to make your life miserable.  Your daughter’s rebellious actions have nothing to do with her inner turmoil over her grandfather’s death or her parents’ divorce, they are all about YOU.  Everything is about YOU!  YOU, YOU, YOU!

“Me?  Ahhh, my favorite subject.”

Betty slaps Poor Troubled Sally so hard, it looks for a moment like her teeth might fall right out of her mouth!  And although Hen-pecked Henry and Disaffected Don look appalled by her behavior, both do astonishingly little to help the crying ten-year old, whose just been physically abused.  “Betty,” Henry whispers half-heartedly.

“Well, gosh, I’d love to help ya, Sally.  But I don’t wanna get beat up by a girl . . . AGAIN!”

Sally dashes to her room, and Don scampers out the door like a coward.  Then, Betty, clearly the wronged one, whines to Henry about how much she wants to MURDER Don!

WOAH!  Take it easy there . . .

Lesson 5 – Be respectful of that which makes others “different”

“I really don’t understand why people think I’m racist.  Can’t a guy wear a mud mask without ridicule?  I hear helps clean the pores!”

The time has come for the men of SCDP to hold their meeting with the good folks at Honda.  Preparations have been made.  “The Chrysanthemum and the Sword” has been not read.  White flowers (which signify death in Japanese culture) have been hidden.  Gifts have been purchased, including expensive bottles of booze.  Old Fogey Roger has been sent off on a loooonnng lunch, and told precisely nada about what is set to occur.

Things go pretty well . . . at first.  Pleasantries are exchanged and translated.  Joan’s assets are admired.  “How does she not fall over?”  One of the business men inquires “cutely” in Japanese.

“Actually, sir, I fall over all the time.  That’s why I always try to have Japanese business men in front of me, to break my fall.”

But then Roger comes, and screws everything up.

Pissed that he’s been lied to, and that his opinion has been blatantly ignored by his colleagues, an uncharacteristically belligerant Roger starts hurling insults at the Japanese businessmen, left and right.  “They won’t know it’s over until we drop a bomb on them . . . twice,” jokes Roger, insensitively.

“We don’t want your JAP CRAP!”  He says later. 

Now, Roger, there’s no need to be . . .

After the meeting ends abruptly, Roger whines some more about the Japanese and World War II.  Don berates Roger for acting unprofessionally, and killing the Honda account, all for something that happened twenty years prior.  Pete takes the lecture session one step further, accusing Roger of being . . .

 . . . and sabotaging Pete’s ability to gain accounts, so that Roger can maintain financial supremacy over the company.  Roger tries to deck Pete, but Don intervenes. 

 Sure, Don!  NOW YOU INTERVENE!  What about when the recipient of the fist was your own DAUGHTER?   You weren’t so tough then, were you?

Lesson 6 – Keep your hands to yourself, but not IN yourself . . . At least, not when others might see you do it.

For actress Kiernan Shipka’s sake, I’m hoping she’s too young an actress to think to ask what her “motivation” is for scenes like this one.  I’m also hoping that when she’s a teenager, Kiernan’s friends never dig out DVDs of this episode for blackmail purposes . . .

Speaking of Miss Sally Draper, she’s up late at a sleepover party, watching what looks to be the LEAST sexy television show on the planet . . .

I don’t know, Sally.  These guys just don’t do it for me . . .

 . . . when she starts digging for gold underneath her nightgown. 

She doesn’t find any.

(OK.  I’m no Betty prude.  I get that kids Sally’s age experiment with their bodies.  I also get that it’s normal and natural for them to do that . . . hopefully, IN PRIVATE.  But I REALLY didn’t need to watch this, and would have preferred the producers opted not to show it.  It made me feel uncomfortable, and dirty, in a way that soap can’t wash . . .)

Apparently, Sally’s friend’s mom felt the same way, when she walked in on Sally’s “Gold Rush.”    After having a little freak out, the lady immediately drove Sally home, interrupting Betty and Henry’s own sex session, to inform them that their kid was a sexual deviant.  As per usual, Mommy Dearest makes this all about herself.  After threatening to chop Sally’s fingers off . . .

How pleasant!

 . . . Betty moans to Henry in bed about how UNPOPULAR Sally’s actions are going to make Betty with the other mothers.

“Now I’ll NEVER be prom queen!”

Concerned that Sally’s willingness to play fast and loose with her flower, might ultimately result in her becoming . . .

. . . Betty reluctantly considers Henry’s idea that Sally start seeing a therapist. 

“My daughter MUST be certifiably insane!  Where on Earth would she learn to pleasure herself on the couch?  Who DOES that?”

Ultimately, Betty suggests the therapy idea to Don, and he eventually agrees to it. 

Then, of course, when the therapist calls Don to confirm Sally’s appointment, the Lovely Miss Blankenship greets him, in his small office, with the paper thin walls . . .

 . . .  screeching, “DON, YOUR DAUGHTER’S PSYCHIATRIST IS ON THE PHONE!”

Oh, Miss Blankenship . . . You are most certainly . . .

How Don hasn’t fired you yet, is BEYOND ME!

Lesson 7 – Honesty is always the best policy . . . unless you’re in advertising.

Just when it seems as though all hope is lost for SCDP to win over the Honda campaign . . .

Don reconsiders his newfound knowledge of Japanese business, and comes up with an idea to sabotage his competitors, while, at the same time, potentially saving the account.

Recognizing that neither SCDP nor its main competitor, Cutler, have the funds necessary to produce a full advertising campaign for Honda, Don decides to make Cutler THINK that SCDP is breaking Honda’s rules and paying for a television campaign out-of-pocket.  The underlying assumption is that, by doing this, SCDP will goad Cutler into breaking the rules, thereby, shooting themselves in the foot.  Not to mention, potentially bankrupting themselves.  A few “clandestine” meetings, a fake filming session, and some carefully placed words later, the trap is set. 

 On the morning of the presentations, Cutler, as expected, goes forward with presenting Honda the television campaign, in violation of the prescribed rules for the advertising competition.  When Don enters the office, he expresses feigned outrage at Honda for entertaining such a blatant rule violation, and returns the $3,000, refusing to make any sort of presentation at all.  Interestingly enough, the Honda CEO likes Don’s attitude, he, himself, being somewhat of a  . . .

And so, even though Honda ends up keeping their motorcycle account with Grey.  They ultimately decide to throw SCDP a bone, by allowing the agency to represent their “small” car business.

Well, played, Don!  You . . .

The episode concludes with, among other things, Don sharing some Sake with the joyless Marketing Research Lady . . .

During this meeting, he learns that she is NOT married, and is only pretending to be, because, OF COURSE, once men learn Marketing Research Lady is single, they DEFINITELY won’t be able to control themselves around her. . .

I think we all know where THIS is heading . . .

Here we GO AGAIN!

Also, Betty speaks briefly with Sally’s new therapist, Dr. Edna  . . .

.  . . who seems pretty cool . . .

 Betty even agrees to visit the therapist, herself, a few times, in accordance with Sally’s “treatment.”

At the very end of the episode, Sally, accompanied by the Most Fabulous Housekeeper / Caretaker who ever lived, Carla . . .

 . . . heads off to visit Dr. Edna for the first time.  We’re rooting for you, Sally!  Because the world REALLY doesn’t need ANOTHER Betty Draper . . .

Well, that’s all I’ve got for this episode, folks!  Special thanks go out to Roger Hargreaves, and the spectacular Little Miss and Mister Men series, for helping me to illustrate this recap.

See you next week!

[www.juliekushner.com]

Leave a comment

Filed under Mad Men

The Vampire Diaries Newest Villain, Mason Lockwood – Who would YOU cast?

Have you been chomping at the bit (no pun intended) for The Vampire Diaries to return from its already WAY TOO LONG hiatus?  Well, here’s some Season 2 scoopage to tide you over.  Apparently, bloodsucking vampires and witches on a rampage won’t be the only “supernatural problems” Mystic Falls will have to deal with next year.  Now, the not-so-sleepy Virginia town will also have to contend with . . . WEREWOLVES.

If you recall, during the show’s spectacular Season 1 finale episode, “Founders’ Day,” both Tyler Lockwood (played by Michael Trevino) . . .

. . . and his father, the Mayor, exhibited some “wolfy” tendencies, when faced with a “witchy” invention, whose intended purpose was to immobilize supernatural creatures.  Unfortunately, Mayor Lockwood didn’t survive the episode.

But, apparently, this means that his younger, hotter, brother must come to town and step into his shoes, or, perhaps more accurately, his doggie booties . . .

According to Michael Ausiello, over at Entertainment Weekly, the folks down at The Vampire Diaries have recently put out the following casting call:

Mason Lockwood: Described as Tyler’s “cool” uncle, Mason is sexy and athletic and possesses an easygoing charm. Though he has more control than his nephew, he can “flip in an instant” if crossed. Seeking Latin or Caucasian actors in their 30s for this recurring role.

Riiiiight, because that’s EXACTLY what The Vampire Diaries needs . . . MORE HOT MEN THAT LOOK GOOD WITH THEIR SHIRTS OFF (or open) . . .

Blatant male objectification aside, I thought it might be fun for me to try my hand at casting Mason Lockwood.  Here are my top five picks, in no particular order . . .

1) Michael Rosenbaum

Age: 37 (but he turns 38 on July 11th)

Where you’ ve seen him before:  He played Lex Luthor on Smallville.

Why he’d make a good Mason:  Let’s face it, no one does “sexy villian on a teen drama” like Michael Rosenbaum (except, maybe, Ian Somerhalder,  ;)).  Not only is Michael already a familiar face on the CW network, he’s definitely got the acting chops to pull off a “two-natured” (in more ways than one) role like this one.  It also might be nice to seem him in a role where he has HAIR, for a change . . .

2) Milo Ventimiglia

Age: 33 (just turned on July 8th – Happy belated, Milo!  What’s with me picking all these July babies for this role?)

Where you’ve seen him before: He played Peter Petrelli on Heroes and Jesse Mariano on Gilmore Girls.

Why he’d make a good Mason: Like Michael Rosenbaum, Milo is no stranger to the CW network (See Gilmore Girls reference above).  Nor would he be out of his element on a show featuring supernatural elements (See Heroes reference above).  Milo has already proven himself capable of playing a charming and likeable, yet volatile, persona.  He also bears a striking resemblance to Michael Trevino, who would play his nephew on the show.  And did you SEE that body?  Need I say more?

3) Scott Speedman

Age: 34

Where you’ve seen him before:  He played Ben Covington on Felicity, and Michael Corvin in all those Underworld movies.

Why he’d make a good Mason:  I can’t think of better preparation for playing a werewolf on a show featuring vampires and werewolves, than starring in a movie series as a  vampire / werewolf hybrid.  Can you?  Unlike Michael and Milo, Scott never starred on the CW, but he DID star on its predecessor channel, the WB, during his Felicity years.  Through Scott’s previous roles, he has definitely shown that he has enough innate masculinity and barely suppressed rage to fit in with the Lockwood clan.  And that uniquely raspy voice of his?  Pure sex . . .

4) Paul Walker

Age: 36

Where you’ve seen him before: Those Fast and Furious movies

Why he’d make a good Mason:  I’m not gonna lie.  I chose Paul almost exclusively for his beauty . . . and his body . . . and because Kerr Smith and Benjamin McKenzie are both already tied up with other television shows.  What can I say?  I’m only human!

5) Jesse Metcalfe

Age: 31

Where you’ve seen him before: He played that hot lawnmower dude, John, who got it on with Eva Langoria on Desperate Housewives.  He also played the title role in John Tucker Must Die.  (Too bad this character isn’t named “John.”  Because Jesse would have had the role in the bag.)

Why he’d make a good Mason:  Like Milo, I think Jesse kind of looks like Michael Trevino, which would weigh in his favor, for a part like this.  Plus, if these werewolves are anything like the werewolves in the Twilight series, they are going to have to be shirtless A LOT.  Clearly, this will be NO problem for Jesse.  On a more serious (and slightly selfish) note, Jesse Metcalfe is a very talented actor, and I’d really like to see him on my small screen again. 

 (Note:  When I was researching this post, I learned that Jesse Metcalfe is actually set to star in a new Jerry Bruckheimer-produced NBC pilot this fall, entitled ChaseBut everyone knows that most pilots don’t actually get picked up by the networks.  So as far as I am concerned, he’s still in the running  😉 . . .)

So, those are my picks.   Who would YOU cast as Mason Lockwood?

[ Season 2 of the Vampire Diaries premieres Thursday, September 9th at 8 p.m. on the CW Network. ]

P.S.  Apparently, less than 24-hours after I wrote this blog post, the producers over at The Vampire Diaries released their ACTUAL casting choice for Mason Lockwood.  (Special thanks to Amy, over at the always entertaining and fabulously fangirly imaginarymen blog, and first commenter Ellen O., for the late-breaking scoop!)  And the winner is . . . THIS GUY . . .

Taylor Kinney, who was best known for his role as EMT Glenn Morris on the NBC drama Trauma.  (Hey, that rhymes!)  And, just in case you were curious, here’s what he looks like without his shirt on . . .

Welcome to Fangirl Land, Mr. Kinney!  Prepare to be shamelessly objectified!

24 Comments

Filed under casting, Spoilers and Sneak Peaks, The Vampire Diaries

OMFG? Not so much . . . – The Top Ten “Been There, Seen That” Teen Television Cliches (Part 2 of 2)

A couple of days ago, I came up with a list of the top ten plotline cliches featured in teen-oriented television dramas.  In the first installment of this blog entry, I posted the first five of these cliches.  That list included: (1) the Pregnancy Plotline; (2) the Death of a Peripheral Character Plotline; (3) the Student / Teacher Relationship Plotline; (4) the Cheating on a Test  / Plagiarism Plotline; and, finally, (5) the “Bad Influence” Plotline.

This installment will focus on the following popular Teen Television Cliches: (1) the Love Triangle; (2) the Summer in Europe; (3) the Love / Hate Relationship; (4) the School Ski Trip; and, of course (5) the Prom.  So, without further adieu, what do you say we take off our creative thinking caps, embrace conformity, and get started?

1) “Can’t we all just . . . have a threesome, instead?” – The Love Triangle Plotline

The Storyline:  Girl meets boy.  Boy is attractive. 

Boy is also nice and sweet, albeit a tad boring (and, sometimes, a bit of a whiny b*tch). 

Or, conversely, Boy is total douche; 

but Girl’s parents love him;

He looks “good on paper.”

and Boy is sure to make Girl a very wealthy, but very bored, housewife, some time in the not-so-distant future, if she plays her cards right.

But then . . . Other Boy magically appears.

Unlike the original Boy, Other Boy is a little dangerous . . .

Maybe he’s from the wrong side of the proverbial “tracks” . . .

Or, perhaps he has a reputation for being a bit of male slut . . .

 . . . or a criminal.

 Or maybe he has a bit of a mean streak, so Girl isn’t sure she can really trust him.

But there is just something about the way Other Boy makes Girl feel . . .

She smiles and laughs more when she’s around him. 

(Click the internal link to watch.)

He makes her more fun!

And Other Boy continues to believe in Girl, and support her, long after everyone else has seemingly abandoned her (including the original Boy).

So, what’s a Girl to do, when she wants them both?

Who does she choose?  Well, that depends on the season . . . the Television Season, that is . . .

Examples: Joey, Pacey, and Dawson (Dawson’s Creek); Veronica, Logan, and Duncan (Veronica Mars); Marissa, Ryan, and Luke (The O.C.); Elena, Damon, and Stefan (The Vampire Diaries); Rory, Jesse, and Dean (Gilmore Girls); Blair, Chuck, and Nate (Gossip Girl); Peyton, Lucas, and Nate (One Tree Hill); Emma, Sean, and Peter (Degrassi: The Next Generation); Felicity, Ben, and Noel (Felicity); Casey, Cappie, and Evan (Greek); Lyla, Tim, and Jason (Friday Night Lights)

Why it’s a cliche?  Three words (One of them is a contraction).  Because . . . It’s . . . AWESOME!

When it comes to successful teen drama plotlines, The Love Triangle, is a surefire WIN!  After all, what girl wouldn’t want to have two totally hot guys, who are complete opposites of one another fighting over her!  Aside from allowing female fans to vicariously fulfill their deepest fantasies, Love Triangles provide the added benefit of making Teen Television watching a TEAM SPORT!  Boys have football and basketball.  Girls have  THIS . . .

Yes, boys and girls, choosing sides in a Love Triangle War is SERIOUS business!  (Girls have been shot over WAY less!)  Don’t believe me?  Check out the sheer intensity of THESE fan-fueled debates  . . .

About Blair, Chuck and Nate

About Elena, Damon, and Stefan

About Felicity, Ben, and Noel . . .

(The above video debate between these two twenty-somethings kind of goes off the rails, after the first five minutes.  But I love their obvious enthusiasm for a show that’s been off the air now for nearly a decade!  I also love their accents . . . and the very impressive “Portrait of Ben” one of them created.  Scott Speedman, himself, would be proud!)

2) “Go to Europe . . . because no one could possibly ‘find themselves’ in the States!”  – The Summer in Europe Plotline

“When in France, do as the French do . . . French kiss!”

(Here we go again!  Internal link clicking time!)

The Storyline: It’s close to the end of the Season.  Our female protagonist’s life is a mess!  It’s just jam packed with unresolved love triangles, family issues, and massive blowout fights with former friends.  And what better way is there to deal with all of your problems, than to run away from them?  So, our female protagonist jaunts off to Europe (usually Paris), leaving pining boys and cliffhangers in her wake . . .

 Once there, our female protagonist sees the sights . . .

and miraculously FINDS HERSELF!  When she comes back, she’s a COMPLETELY different person, than when she left.  Who knows?  She might even have a new completely random, doesn’t belong on the show at all boyfriend!

Examples: Serena and Blair (Gossip Girl); Joey Potter (Dawson’s Creek); Brenda and Donna (90210); Holly (What I Like About You)

Why it’s a Cliche?  The main character’s temporary departure from his or her home base is a great way to bring about a Teen Television Drama’s summer hiatus.  If us fans are forced to spend an ENTIRE summer away from our beloved gang of characters, at least we can sleep better knowing that they aren’t hanging out with one another EITHER!  Plus, filming a scene or two “across the pond” makes for a great excuse for the show’s writers to say to their producer, “I’d like an all expense paid European vacation, please.  What!  It’s for THE SHOW!”

A summer in another country is also a pretty good excuse to suddenly change the entire personality and demeanor of a character, without any rational explanation whatsoever .  . .

“I got my new girlfriend and a frontal lobe lobotomy in Prague.  Doesn’t everybody?

3) “He Loves Me  . . . He Hates My Guts . . . He Loves Me . . .” – The Love/ Hate Relationship Plotline

The Storyline: He’s a playboy, and a real ladies man.  But he comes across as mean, and kind of shallow.  She’s a Type A personality, who comes across as cold and a bit uptight. 

They butt heads from the moment they first appear on screen together.  They fight, and call eachother names.  They insult one another, and play nasty tricks on eachother. 

But there is a passion boiling beneath the surface, that both he and she are trying desperately to deny. 

At the time, he and she are both involved with other people.  Their significant others notice the sexual tension laced beneath their supposed hatred, and try in vain to ignore it.  But the tension only grows.  Jealous and longing looks become prevalent.  Lingering touches, and moments of out-of-character “niceness,” between the two make each member of the pair begin to question their feelings. 

The guy in this scenario typically recognizes his feelings for her first. 

(You know the drill . . .)

But he usually keeps this to himself, out of fear of being ridiculed by the new object of his desires.  Then the two are placed in a dramatic situation.  Suddenly their mutual passion for one another overtakes them.  And they both give in to their desires.

Examples: Joey and Pacey (Dawson’s Creek); Buffy and Spike (Buffy the Vampire Slayer); Veronica and Logan (Veronica Mars); Seth and Summer (The O.C. – sort of . . . well . . . she hated him); Elena and Damon (The Vampire Diaries); Blair and Chuck (Gossip Girl)

Why it’s a Cliche?  You know how everyone always talks about how hot Makeup Sex is?  A couple fights, and then they make up.  All that angst and sexual energy, built up from all that red-faced arguing, is just kindling for the inevitable Orgasmic Fire of “Getting Back Together.”  And THAT’S from a fight that might last a day!  You can just imagine how hot Makeup Sex would be if the couple fought nonstop for TWO SEASONS!

4) “When the temperatures get COLD, the action gets HOT!” – The Ski Trip Plotline

The Storyline:  I’m going to be honest, this one was less of a “storyline” and more of a “plot convention.”  (Hey!  YOU try to come up with ten of these things . . . It’s not as easy as it looks.)  But did you ever notice how virtually EVERY teen drama features at least one ski trip?  BIG THINGS always happen on ski trips too!  People get drunk, get laid, get raped, or cheat on their significant other!   And someone ALWAYS hurts their foot, and conveniently can’t ski!

Examples:

Dawson’s Creek:

Jenn hurts her foot, gets wasted, and almost screws Gay Jack. 

Pacey and Joey do it for the first time!

Boy Meets World:

Cory hurts his foot too!  And makes out with Linda Cardellini!

Other fabulous shows featuring wild and crazy teen ski trips include Degrassi: Next Generation (Darcy gets date raped), and What I Like About You (Holly comes to terms with her feelings for Vince).

Precisely NONE of these characters were ever shown ACTUALLY skiing . . .

Why it’s a Cliche?  There’s just something about being away from home and your parents . . . about sleeping in a log cabin, right next to the fire.  You relax.  You let your guard down.  You get a little slutty and make bad choices.  (Except in the case of Pacey and Joey . . . that choice was GOOD!)  Plus, it’s WAY cheaper to film on location in some fake ski lodge than say . . . taking your entire cast and crew to Europe.

5) “Question:  What happened at Prom?  Answer: EVERYTHING!” – The Prom Plotline

The Storyline: It’s the event of the WHOLE season!  The entire cast will be in attendance!  But not everybody is going with the person they WANT to be going with. 

 A couple will break up.  A couple will get back together. 

Someone will win prom queen. 

 

Someone’s heart will be broken. 

A couple will finally do it. 

Another couple will ALMOST do it, but decide to wait . . . Oh, and someone will get wasted and make an ass of herself.

Examples: Dawson’s Creek, The O.C., 90210, Veronica Mars, Gossip Girl

Why it’s a Cliche?  For every high school girl, the Prom is the culminating social event of her entire pre-college academic career.  Even the most jaded of high school students (and I, myself, was already pretty jaded by that time) can’t help but dream of having the perfect dress, the perfect limo, the perfect Prom date, and the perfect slow dance.  For most of us, with all that build up and preparation, Prom itself ends up being pretty anti-climactic.  (The Post Prom Beach Trip, on the other hand . . . now, THAT ROCKED!).  But if we CAN’T have the perfect Prom, at least we can get the joy of seeing our television friends experience it for us.

So, there you have it – Ten Trashtastic Teen Television Cliches for your viewing pleasure!  Doesn’t it all make you feel OLD?

 

7 Comments

Filed under 90210, Boy Meets World, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dawson's Creek, Degrassi: The Next Generation, Felicity, Gossip Girl, Greek, nostalgia, teen dramas, Television Super Couples, The O.C., The Vampire Diaries, Top Ten Lists, Veronica Mars, What I Like About You