Monday April 2, 2018

I really enjoyed season 2 of Santa Clarita Diet.  Timothy Olyphant's performance alone makes it worth watching.

If you're looking for a good podcast, albeit a lengthy one per episode, check out Armchair Expert with Dax Shepard.  The Ashton Kutcher ep is a good listen.

You should also be watching Barry on HBO.

For some reason I'm enjoying Champions on NBC.  Consider it a last resort.

The Zen Diaries of Garry Shandling is a lengthy 2-part doc on HBO, but worth your time.  

Friends of Shandling have revived his Twitter account.

Scandal cannot end quickly enough.  It's become a very tough watch.

Who did Negan invite into his car last night?  Here are a few theories.

David Letterman's next guest is Jay Z.  Here's a sneak peak.

Rosanne will never mention Trump by name.

And on that note, "ABC has wasted no time securing a second season of its 'new' hit comedy. The broadcaster announced Friday that it has renewed Roseanne for what it’s calling the show’s 11th season. The move comes just three days after the multi-cam revival starring Roseanne Barr debuted to massive ratings that shocked the industry and observers and drove national news. 'We’re thrilled that America has welcomed the Conner family back into their homes,' ABC president Channing Dungey. 'The show is as fresh and relevant today as it was when it left the air 21 years ago. We can’t wait to see what the ‘Roseanne’ team has in store for next year."

"There’s been a shuffle among the directors for season three of True DetectiveVariety has learned exclusively. Jeremy Saulnier is exiting the show after completing the first two episodes, while veteran TV helmer Daniel Sackheim has joined the series. Sackheim will divide up the directing assignments on the remaining six episodes with series creator/exec producer Nic Pizzolatto, marking his directorial debut. HBO confirmed the switch in a statement issued Friday, citing scheduling conflicts as the reason for Saulnier’s departure. He had been expected to helm the first three episodes."

"Millie Bobby Brown must've channeled Eleven's superpowers when it came time to renegotiate her Stranger Things contract ... because she's getting an ENORMOUS raise. Brown -- who plays the teen girl with psychokinetic abilities -- was scheduled to get paid just shy of $25k per episode for season 3 of the popular Netflix series ... according to her original contract, obtained by TMZ. That would've been an increase of about $1,000 per episode from season 2, but as we reported ... the main cast of kids renegotiated and got fat pay bumps for season 3 to around $250,000 per episode. Millie's raise is reportedly even more, though ... possibly as much as $350,000, which would match the salaries of the adult stars of the show, David Harbour and Winona Ryder. That means for a 9-episode season 3, Brown could haul in as much as $3.15 million ... as opposed to the roughly $225k she'd have gotten in her original contract."

Per The Hollywood Reporter, "Amazon Studios is ready to take a big swing.

"The retail giant/streaming service is developing a TV series based on Penny Marshall's Tom Hanks and Geena Davis feature, A League of Their OwnMozart in the Jungle's Will Graham and Broad City's Abbi Jacobson will co-write and executive produce what is being described less as a traditional reboot and more as a modern look at the story. The project is being envisioned as a half-hour comedy series. For now, the Amazon take is in development, with a mini-writers room set to open and deliver scripts before Amazon makes a decision. Jacobson will not have an onscreen role. Amazon and Sony declined comment, as Jacobson's deal is not done yet.

"Graham's Amazon Studios-based Field Trip Productions topper Hailey Wierengo will also exec produce alongside Graham and Jacobson. Amazon's modern take will not feature either Davis' Dottie or her kid sister, Kit (Lori Petty), both of whom served as the central characters of the 1992 movie.

"Here's the official logline: 'A League of Their Own is a half-hour comedy infusing the warmth, humor and DNA of the classic film, while taking a contemporary spin on the stories of the women surrounding the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. The show will begin with the formation of the league in 1943 and follows the Rockford Peaches, season to season as they struggle to keep the team alive through close games, injuries, late night bar crawls, sexual awakenings, not crying and road trips across a rapidly changing United States. The series dives deeper into the issues facing the country while following a ragtag team of women figuring themselves out while fighting to realize their dreams of playing professional baseball.'

"Amazon's League of Their Own will be produced by Sony Pictures Television Studios, whose Columbia Pictures produced the classic film about the real-life All-American Girls Professional Baseball League that was formed when World War II threatened to shut down Major League Baseball. The film — which celebrated its 25th anniversary last year — followed two sisters, Dottie and Kit, as they were recruited to join the AAGPBL and wound up playing for the Rockford Peaches (before a trade that would see them face off in the World Series). Hanks played manager Jimmy Dugan, a character inspired by former big leaguers Jimmie Foxx and Hack Wilson. The cast also included Madonna (Mae), Rosie O'Donnell (Doris), Megan Cavanagh (Marla Hooch) and David Strathairn, who played Ira Lowenstein, the league's GM who kept it going after owner Walter Harvey (played by Garry Marshall) wanted to shut it down after the war.

"Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel penned the screenplay based on a story by Kelly Candaele and Kim Wilson. Marshall directed the film. The feature, produced on a budget of $40 million, went on to gross $132 million worldwide. In 2012, the Library of Congress selected the film for preservation in the U.S. National Film Registry for its portrayal of women's choices and solidarity during World War II that was both funny and feminist.

"Sources say Graham and Jacobson reached out to both Marshall and Davis ahead of time to get their blessing for the Amazon take, which will — like the film — explore themes including prejudice and equality, among others. (The original movie included one short but important moment during which a black woman throws a ball back to Dottie in a scene that briefly illustrated the segregation that existed at the time.)

"This is the second time that A League of Their Own has been rebooted for the small screen. CBS tried unsuccessfully in 1993 with a sitcom that featured Cavanagh and Tracy Reiner (Betty 'Spaghetti') reprising their roles. Ganz and Mandel created the series, with Marshall directing. Sam McMurray took over Hanks' role. The series was pulled after three episodes. (A total of six episodes were produced, with three airing in April 1993 and two more in August of the same year.) Watch the pilot, below."

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From the Stupid Department: "Michelle Beadle just spent a good chunk of time verbally sparring with professional wrestler Ronda Rousey. She’s got another battle looming on Monday morning.

"Beadle, the veteran ESPN sportscaster, will team up with popular ESPN radio host Mike Greenberg and former pro-basketball player Jalen Rose to help the Walt Disney-backed sports network open a new front: Get Up, a morning show that aims to deliver sports with a little something extra. Or maybe not. But probably.

"Can we get back to you in a few weeks?

“'Failure is not an option,' says Rose, holding forth in a brand-new studio ESPN designed in Manhattan’s South Street Seaport. 'Yes it is,' cracks Beadle, responding to her co-host. 'But it’s sort of out of our control.' The set is festooned with neon signs, giant wall screens and a spiral staircase. Viewers will be able to see the sun rise over the water behind the hosts and the network has put filters over the windows to keep out glare when necessary.

"No sun screen, however, will keep this trio from being scrutinized in days to come. The three hosts spent several days at both ESPN’s Bristol, Conn., headquarters and in New York in rehearsals (one included the back-and-forth with Rousey), and are part of one of ESPN’s biggest programming swings in years. Beset on all sides by rivals with 'hot-talk' studio shows and radio hosts who can say almost anything they like about sports and its links to life and culture, the “Worldwide Leader in Sports” has been casting about for ways to give fans the news, stats and highlights they crave, but with a little more personality. A little swagger. But not too much.

“'Part of the charge is to try and deliver something fresh for ESPN, and we have that on our minds,' says Bill Wolff, the show’s executive producer. 'But we also can’t get untethered from the basic mission, which is to serve sports fans.'

"ESPN has for several years tried to make a bigger play for the morning audience. In 2015, ESPN and its Disney sibling, ABC announced that Greenberg and his longtime radio partner, Mike Golic, would move their program to New York and share resources with ABC’s Good Morning America. The two networks planned to sell joint ad packages involving both programs. ESPN executives changed their minds a few months later. Costs were suspected to be at issue.

"They don’t seem to be any longer. Get Up is broadcast from a large facility that is expected to house other network programming as well – including NBA Countdown, in which Beadle and Rose will continue to participate, adding some late nights to their early mornings.  Construction is well underway, for instance, on a studio for podcasts. The roof offers panoramic views of the city and New York’s East River and is slated to serve as a place for concerts and events orchestrated by a different company. Get Up will likely broadcast on occasion from the top of the building. Cameras are already mounted outside to bring Manhattan views to the audience. And the show’s New York presence is likely to bring a wider array of guests and visitors than a program based in Bristol.

“'Any time you can be away from the mothership, you feel like you have more freedom,' says Beadle. 'It’s sort of the parents-aren’t-in-town feel. Let’s try to loosen up and have a little more fun. That’s what you will have here.'

"ESPN joins a crowded A.M. market. Get Up isn’t trying to compete with Morning Joe or Good Morning America, but it may do so anyway. And besides,  there are other sports options in the morning, including Fox Sports 1’s First Things First. NBCSN simulcasts a broadcast of Dan Patrick’s radio show. CBS Sports Network offers a similar airing of Boomer Esiason and Gregg Giannotti’s WFAN morning-drive program.

"Greenberg, Beadle and Rose 'have the potential to do and say really compelling things that will drive the internet and in turn drive viewership,' says Brian Donlon, a TV producer who executive produced Cold Pizza,  a morning show for ESPN 2, last decade. Even so, he urges patience. 'Morning viewers are brand loyal and that’s why it takes forever to get people to change their habit,' he notes. 'You really have to prepare to stay in the trenches and slug it out.'

"The show debuts as ESPN continues to wrestle with the voice and tone of some of its studio programs and its flagship SportsCenter. The network has a success on its hands with Scott Van Pelt’s late-night SC broadcast, which mixes humor and the host’s eye-view with the requisite sports results. But executives found viewers less enamored of the commentary-driven SC6 anchored by Michael Smith and Jemele Hill. Both anchors have moved on to other duties within the company.

"The team knows what viewers want, says Greenberg.  'If I put on ESPN, it is because I have a right to expect I’m going to get the very best sports coverage that you can get, and I don’t think we want to stray too far from that. It doesn’t mean the day after the Oscars we aren’t going to talk about who should have won. It doesn’t mean on any day – I saw Paul McCartney at the Garden last fall and I talked about seeing the concert. We will do that. And it doesn’t mean if a really cool movie star is going to be in town – we’ll do a little bit of that,' he says. 'But if I put on ESPN, I want sports and I think that’s what we’re going to give them.'"

Beadle is an utter piece of trash.  One of the worst humans I've ever met. I like Jalen, but this show is a failure waiting to happen.

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Per EW, "Sammi 'Sweetheart' Giancola is leaving her guidette days behind.

"Ahead of the April 5 premiere of Jersey Shore Family Vacation, the reality star revealed her reasons for not joining the MTV reboot. 'I have chosen not to join the show this season because I am at a completely different place in my life right now focusing on my businesses and my relationship,' the MTV alum explained on Instagram Friday.

"Giancola, who has been dating boyfriend Christian Biscardi, also shared that she’s moved on from her three-year run (2009-2012) on the show and its subsequent spin-offs.

“'I am not the same as I was when I was 22. At 31, I am currently extremely happy in every aspect of my life and want to avoid potentially toxic situations,' she said.

"Adding, 'However, it was a difficult decision as I love my roomies. I’ve decided to focus on me, my future and what truly makes me happy. I will forever be grateful to Jersey Shore and everything it has brought to me! I’ve just decided to live my life for me these days. Also I am forever grateful & thankful for all of you!! Special shout out to my fans, but I’m not going anywhere!'

"Giancola also shared the message on her Instagram Story along with another thank you note to her fans. 'Special shout out to all of you!! I see you! Thank you for all the amazing comments, DMs, messages and kind words! Forever grateful & thankful for all of you! I love you guys!'

"Meanwhile, her former castmates, Pauly Delvecchio aka Pauly D, Jenni 'JWoww' Farley, and Deena Cortese, recently told PEOPLE Now about their thoughts on Giancola being part of Jersey Shore Family Vacations second season which has already been approved.

“'I can almost bet on it. For somebody to say no to that this time and then all the media and everybody. All those comments, she must see them. She must want to do it. I got to say, she must want to do the second one,' Delvecchio, 37, said on Wednesday.

“'I look at it like this, if she was never brought up again in the world and part of Jersey Shore, fine move on with your life and enjoy whatever life changes you have that don’t make you want to come back,' Farley, 32, shared.

“'But for the simple fact that she will always be a part of us and she’ll always be mentioned or brought up, at least capitalize on it, speak your own truth. Come in, fight us on whatever or love us or be around us. It’s kind of bulls— that she’s not taking the opportunity.'

"Cortese, who recently spoke with Giancola, added: 'We talked to her about that. She was like, "I would love to," but she’s just not into it anymore.'"

Jersey Shore Family Vacation premieres April 5 at 8 p.m. ET on MTV.

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Per Refinery29, "Nancy’s mom has got it going on – or at least Billy thinks so. Season two of Stranger Things biggest cliffhanger without a doubt is the unignorable sexual tension between season two addition Billy Hargrove (Dacre Montgomery) and quintessential ‘80s mom Karen Wheeler (Cara Buono). Ever since Billy first dropped by the Wheeler’s house unannounced, fans have been wondering if the moment will turn into more than just chemistry.

"Some cast members aren’t entirely sure how they feel about the match, while others are all for it. 'I would love to see that happen as much as probably a lot of the fans would,' Charlie Heaton, who plays Jonathan, told TV Guide through uncontrollable laughter. It seems that the actors are as in the dark as we are about season three, especially since they haven’t begun filming. Executive producer Shawn Levy knows how to keep fans interested by telling us just enough of what we want to know. 'That scene where she was in the bath and then he ate the cookie in her kitchen,' recalls Levy. 'I don’t know if it was a fan favorite, but it was a producers’ favorite. The Duffers and I love that scene, and so I’m just going to say that the Billy and Mrs. Wheeler dynamic is not yet done.'

"Setting aside his raging anger issues to lay on the charm, Billy catches the attention of Mrs. Wheeler instantly. It’s as if he leapt right off the pages of her bathside book. Do we really think it’s a coincidence that the two people on the cover of her book look remarkably similar to her and Billy? We don’t.

"The sexual tension is palpable, but is it appropriate? After all, Billy is still in high school, which means that he’s maybe 18, but likely younger. Sure, he sort of has a mustache, but he’s still a kid, like much of the Stranger Things cast.

"'I mean, I think it's weird, but hey, if they do, it's going to be an interesting story,' Caleb McLaughlin, who stars as Lucas, said to TV Guide. 'But I don't know. I'm going to try not to think about it.'

"We’re with Caleb on this one."