Monday November 18, 2013

Grantland's David Jacoby weighed in (as expected) on the format change on The Real World and the implications that could flow therefrom.  Most importantly, Jacoby lays out how this format will impact casting upcoming seasons of The Challenge:

"The first takeaway is that the new format will create a larger pool of Challenge candidates. While last year's Portland crew provided a draft class for the ages with the surprisingly effective Marlon and Jordan duo and the violent force of beweaved nature that is Hurricane Nia, this Ex-Plosion cast will produce nearly twice the amount of alcopsychoholics from which to choose.

"The second thing worth noting is that Real World couples and exes have a long history of providing memorable Challenge moments because of the baked-in drama. Don't let the fact that CT and Diem are now so boring make you sleep on the fact that Johanna tried to murder Wes, or that Danny and Melinda’s marriage fell apart in front of our eyes. It's always a good thing when cast members on The Challenge have history.

"The third, and most important, thing is that this twist displays Bunim/Murray’s ability to change out formats as things start to get stale, and I'm not afraid to say The Challenge is starting to get a little stale. While the execs may not adhere to my previous suggestions of having a live season, a college tour season, or an urban scavenge season, this means they might mix up the format soon. In fact, if you take a hard look at the recently leaked Challenge cast and the predicted team groupings listed on Vevmo, things don't break down as neatly as you'd probably like. I mean, Frank is no 'rookie.'”

I checked out two original shows on Amazon this weekend: Alpha House and Betas.  Alpha House stars John Goodman and Mark Consuelos as US Senators living together (with two other Senators) under one roof and dealing with politics in Washington, DC.  The show is the much softer, lighter and more satirical version of Netflix's House of Cards.  The first three episodes are available on-line and I watched them all.  They are each only 30 minutes, but I would recommend checking out the pilot to see if it piques your interest.  It's a good, not great show so far.

Betas is described as follows: "Trey and his guys have an app, and a plan - now they need an investor. It's party-crashing time."  It's a 30-minute Silicon Valley sitcom that also piqued my interested.  Only the pilot has been made available by Amazon, but if this is an indicator, I went right to find episode 2 after watching the pilot.  I think one has some promise as well and I will definitely continue to watch.

I have not read a review of either show and am curious to hear what others think.  Here's a review of Alpha House from Politico (which I have not read).

I ALSO caught up on the first 2 episodes of TBS' new workplace comedy Ground Floor, which was exactly as advertised.  It was entertaining, sort of funny and another show I'll continue to watch until it really disappoints me (which takes a LOT).  

CBS is 100% proceeding with plans for a How I Met Your Mother spinoff with a pilot production commitment. A How I Met Your Dad (why is it not How I Met Your FATHER?) incarnation from 20th Century Fox will be exec produced by HIMYM creators Craig Thomas and Carter Bays with Emily Spivey (Up All Night), featuring new characters and told from a female perspective. PLEASE NO!!!

Thankfully HIMYM will not be introducing new characters for HIMYD(F).

Netflix has ordered six more episodes to wrap up - once and for all, it says - The Killing. This is truly the show that has nine lives.  The drama was canceled in 2012 after two seasons on AMC, resuscitated when Netflix partnered with AMC for a third season, then canceled again due to low ratings. The final episodes will be exclusive to Netflix subscribers.

If you watch Parenthood, click on this link, NOW.

The Tribune company has picked up Celebrity Name Game per Variety.  "The strip from Debmar-Mercury teams celebrities and contestants in a pop culture-centric quizshow, produced by Coquette Prods. and FremantleMedia North America. Gameshow vet Scott St. John is on board as showrunner."

Patton Oswalt is NOT a fan of Last Comic Standing.

This one gave me pause.  "Pasco County, FL is home to one of the world’s largest nudist communities and real estate agent Jackie Youngblood has proven to be the authority figure on finding prime real estate for her clothing-optional clientele. TLC’s Buying Naked, premiering Wednesday, November 20 at 10 PM ET/PT, will follow two couples as they bare all and join Jackie in their search for a dream home.

"Aside from strict budgets, location and basic property demands, finding a residence for a nudist couple is no easy feat. What these couples lack in clothing, they gain in everyday hazards. Simple tasks like cooking, cleaning and even walking pose safety threats as sharp counter corners and cramped kitchen alleyways can injure the house’s inhabitants without the barrier of a basic t-shirt."

Eastbound & Down drew to a close last night and tied things up quite nicely.  Vulture offers up a recap here.  They also talked to co-creator Jody Hill about the show's most "cringeworthy" moments.

This alternate Breaking Bad ending is making its way across the internet.

I missed this last week, but check out the perspective of the mind-blowing ratings that have been generated by The Walking Dead.  Crazy.