Tuesday April 30, 2019

Showtime has renewed Black Monday for a 2nd season.

Netflix has renewed On My Block for a 3rd season.

CBS All Access has picked up The Twilight Zone for a 2nd season.

HBO premiers On Tour With Asperger's Are Us tonight. “From executive producers Mark and Jay Duplass (Room 104Togetherness), On Tour With Asperger’s Are Us is a six-part, half-hour documentary series that follows Asperger’s Are Us, a four-man comedy troupe of friends with Asperger syndrome, as they set out on their most ambitious tour yet. Members Noah Britton, Ethan Finlan, Jack Hanke and New Michael Ingemi hit the road for a six-week, multi-city journey from Boston to Los Angeles, that will test their understanding of friendship, comedy and carburetors. Since 2010, the sketch-comedy troupe Asperger’s Are Us has performed more than 100 shows in nine countries. Now, they’re hitting the road for their first cross-country tour, crammed into a relic of an RV that’s on the verge of collapse.”

Showtime will expand Desus & Mero to two nights per week starting this summer. The show will air on Mondays and Thursdays at 11:00 starting May 6 and running through August 5.

CBS will air Unraveling the Mystery: A Big Bang Farewell after the series finale of The Big Bang Theory on May 16. Johnny Galecki and Kaley Cuoco will take viewers behind the scenes of the show in a 30-minute retrospective. The two will share their favorite memories from the series and revisit some of the most memorable stories from the 12-year run.

HBO is set to air a documentary on the life of Bryan Stevenson, an Alabama public interest attorney who has led a fight against inequality for African Americans in the U.S.’s criminal justice system. The network announced Monday that True Justice: Bryan Stevenson’s Fight for Equality will debut June 26 on the premium cable network and on their streaming platforms.”

Why Arya Stark is likely to die.

What’s the appropriate time to wait before sharing spoilers?

Rest in peace John Singleton.

YouTube  today announced a new partnership with the MLB which will allow the site to exclusively live stream 13 MLB games to both YouTube and YouTube TV during the second half of the regular baseball season. While YouTube TV had previously partnered with MLB — it’s currently serving as the presenting partner for the World Series, for example — this is YouTube’s first-ever exclusive live game partnership with the league. The company says the schedule of the games and dates will be announced in a few weeks’ time, but will include 13 games that will be exclusively available to viewers in the U.S., Canada, and Puerto Rico for free on the MLB YouTube channel, and on a dedicated channel that will come to YouTube TV. The games will also include a pre-game and post-game show, and will contain MLB and YouTube-themed content from popular YouTube creators, who have yet to be announced. The games will be produced and enhanced for the YouTube platform by the MLB Network’s production team. Deal terms were not disclosed.”

“Since becoming president and CEO of Discovery Inc. 12 years ago, David Zaslav has consistently ranked near the top among highest-paid CEOs in media and entertainment. In 2014 and again last year, he was the top-paid CEO of a public company in the United States. His compensation package for 2018 was valued at $129,449,005, a jaw-dropping sum that has drawn outrage at a time when rising income inequality is gaining traction as a political issue, and the decisions of corporate entities like Discovery are under increasing scrutiny from investors, regulators and legislators as well as the public at large.”

Saturday Night Live fans will scan the next episodes of the show for all the usual stuff: the surprise guests in the cold open and the kooky characters who pop up during Weekend Update. But they may want to focus on something else. Kate McKinnon, the popular SNL cast member who has won plaudits for her impressions of everyone from Hilary Clinton to Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg to Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani, is nearing the end of her contract with the show, according to two people familiar with the matter. And while her representatives and SNL producers are working to find a way to keep her appearing on the program, it’s entirely possible McKinnon’s sketches over the next few weeks could be her last as a full-time member of the SNL cast.”

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Per Deadline, “[t]he aftershow phenomenon has taken a new twist. Fox has greenlighted What Just Happened??! with Fred Savage, an actual aftershow to a fake TV show, co-created and hosted by former The Grinder star Savage.

“Teased on Fox’s social pages, The Flare is a fictional sci-fi thriller drama with a very-real aftershow. What Just Happened??! is a half-hour hybrid comedy/talk show dedicated to exploring the fandom surrounding the ‘show.’ It’s set to premiere Sunday, June 30 at 9:30 PM on Fox.

“Here’s the premise: Drama ‘series’ The Flare is based on fictional author TJ Whitford’s sci-fi book series, The Moon Is the Sun at Night, which has been a favorite of Savage’s since childhood. The book revolves around a solar event and its effects on Earth – specifically, the small, blue-collar town of Milford, IL – and slowly unfolds into a postapocalyptic battle for human survival.

“The aftershow will feature multiple segments, including authentic sit-down celebrity interviews, set visits to The Flare and interviews with the ‘cast,’ as well as discussions with fans and more.

What Just Happened??! with Fred Savage, which had been in the works at Fox since last fall, is produced by 20th Century Fox Television, Double Hemm and The Crest Lamp Company. The show was co-created by Savage, Dave Jeser and Matt Silverstein, who executive produce alongside David A. Hurwitz, Jen Patton and Adam Lowitt. Additional writers include Abbey McBride, Edgar Momplaisir, Chase Mitchell, Agathe Panaretos and Sean O’Connor. Jon Cassar serves as director on The Flare, and Carrie Havel serves as director on the talk show.”

What am I missing? This sounds dumber than dumb.

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From The Hollywood Reporter: “The creative team behind Ozark hope their gritty drama will buck the recent trend of Netflix shows getting canceled early in their runs.

“In fact, the producers of the drug-fueled family saga have a five-season plan in mind for the series, showrunner Chris Mundy said Monday during a panel at the Milken Global Conference in Beverly Hills that was moderated by The Hollywood Reporter editorial director Matthew Belloni. 

"‘We've always talked about it as five seasons. It could be four, it could be seven ... but that always seemed like a good number to us,’ said Mundy, who was joined on the Beverly Hilton panel by star-producer-director Jason Bateman, star Laura Linney and Modi Wiczyk, co-CEO of Valence Media and show producer Media Rights Capital.

“The comments come days after Netflix canceled the comedy Santa Clarita Diet, starring Drew Barrymore and Timothy Olyphant, after three seasons. Showrunner Victor Fresco previously told THR that he, too, had a five-season run in mind for his show. Santa Clarita Diet became the latest series to be prematurely canceled at Netflix, which also axed critical darling One Day at a Time after three seasons. Of the streamer’s more than 30 scripted live-action shows, only three have gone beyond three seasons, according to THR research

“Mundy said that although he doesn't have a set idea for how he wants the series to wrap up, ‘we're building little things in, if we keep on track for the emotional ending we're guessing we'll have.’ Added the showrunner, ‘There's people that are in bigger chairs than mine who make those decisions.’

Ozark, which is set to return for its third season later this year, is about to resume production in Georgia. The new season will pick up with Bateman and Linney's Marty and Wendy Byrde struggling with their power dynamic and ‘dealing with outside forces,’ according to Mundy. Seven of the episodes for the new season have been written, with a large shakeup in the arrival of Wendy's brother, ‘who we've hinted at the first couple years as having some mental illness in the past, so [her] big brother is going to be a very destabilizing factor.’ Linney and Bateman laughed as Mundy said ‘destabilizing.’

“The cast will head to the Atlanta area to shoot season three in the coming weeks, with Bateman expected to direct the first two episodes, as he has done in the past.”

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From The Ringer: “The Great War is over; the Night King is dead; my predictions for the Battle of Winterfell are in the toilet. That really just happened.

“In the Inside the Episode segment for The Long Night, co-showrunner D.B. Weiss said, ‘We thought it was important that, whatever the plan was, that it would not just work out because that would be kind of dull.’

“Yet … the plan did work! Our heroes wanted to lure the Night King to the godswood by using Bran as bait, and while there are still questions about why exactly the Night King exposed himself to come for the Three-Eyed Raven, Westeros’s big bad fell for the trap hook, line, and sinker. Sure, the heroes probably should have planned to have more than Theon there for protection, but Arya arrived in the nick of time, plunging her Valyrian steel dagger in the exact spot where the Children of the Forest stuck a dragonglass blade to create the Night King eons ago. Just as Jon suspected, once the Night King was defeated, every creature he’d ever raised fell.

“The plan didn’t go off perfectly, sure: Jorah, Beric, Edd, Lyanna, and Theon all gave their lives fighting for the living, and Melisandre, as she promised, didn’t make it to the dawn. Pour one out for each of them; their sacrifices were not in vain. Capital-W Winter is over. We can now dream of spring.

“Well, not quite. We’ve still got three episodes after all, and Cersei waits in King’s Landing. Here are 10 questions about what comes next:

First off, where the hell is Ghost?

Jon’s long-missing direwolf showed up in “A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms” for the first time since Season 6, and he was featured prominently on the front lines in this episode, running into the horde of wights alongside the Dothraki at the beginning of the battle. But while Jorah and some other Dothraki came running back to Winterfell, we never saw Ghost again.

Did they just kill Ghost offscreen? I’m here to tell you that—thank the Seven—they did not. Here Ghost is in the teaser for next week, hiding behind Sam:

Ghost lives!

So Cersei is the big bad now?

As Daenerys says in the teaser for next week, “We have won the Great War. Now we will win the Last War.” Her eyes are on Cersei and the throne she sits upon.

But of course, nothing on Thrones is that simple (except for killing the Night King; apparently that’s simple as hell). Thrones has always been defined by interhuman squabbles, and there are still fissures present between the survivors of the Battle of Winterfell. In all the blood and bombast, don’t forget this conversation among Sansa, Tyrion, and Missandei:

Tyrion: Maybe we should have stayed married.
Sansa: You were the best of them.
Tyrion: What a terrifying thought.
Sansa: It wouldn’t work between us.
Tyrion: Why not?
Sansa: The dragon queen. Your divided loyalties would become a problem.
Missandei: Yes, without the dragon queen there’d be no problem at all. We’d all be dead already.

There could still be a conclusion that puts some of our favorite characters—Jon, Daenerys, Sansa, Arya, Tyrion, etc.—on opposing sides. And the show just killed off the Night King halfway through the final season—who is to say Cersei couldn’t have her head on a pike by the end of the next episode? Evidently, big bads don’t have to live until the finale.

Speaking of complications, the next question is a big one:

What is the future of Jon and Dany’s relationship?

The realm still does not know of Jon’s Targaryen ancestry and potential claim to the Iron Throne, and he and Daenerys never had a chance to talk through the implications of his parentage. Jon may say the magic words, “I don’t want the throne” and nip this in the bud quickly, but that wouldn’t extinguish the questions about how the realm moves forward with Daenerys. Sam’s words about Jon’s giving up his crown to save his people still echo.

In the teaser, Daenerys appears to have won some of the hearts of the Northern lords, as is typical when your dragons save their skins:

Will they bend the knee to the queen who saved them? That question will be a lot more complicated if they learn Jon is a Targaryen with a claim to the throne. Just think of it this way: What will happen when Sansa, who still clearly has hopes for an independent North, finds out who Jon’s real parents are?

How many troops does the North have left?

Some of the later scenes in the Battle of Winterfell were oddly quiet, and Viserion was mopping up in the last few minutes. It’s safe to say that all of the armies present—the Dothraki, Unsullied, Knights of the Vale, and Northern forces—were decimated. In particular, the lack of horses inside the walls later in the battle indicates that no Dothraki survived. And the Unsullied looked to have only a handful of troops left. Most of the soldiers who retreated into Winterfell looked to be Northern or Vale forces, so there may be more of them remaining—but it won’t be anything like the 20,000-strong Golden Company that Cersei has in King’s Landing, even if the sellswords didn’t bring elephants with them.

When Daenerys first came for the throne in Season 7, she did so with massive armies at her back and alliances across Westeros. Those alliances are mostly gone, those armies mostly destroyed. Yet still in Dany’s corner: two dragons. Rhaegal took some licks in this battle, but both he and Drogon can be seen in the teaser for the next episode.

Is there a power imbalance heading into the back half of the season?

Famously, Aegon the Conqueror brought Westeros to heel with the help of three dragons and his two sister-wives. No one had ever united the Seven Kingdoms before Aegon. He did it with fewer than 1,600 men when he first landed in Westeros; the sole difference was that he had dragons and the Westerosi lords did not. Armies are no match for dragons.

So how will Cersei and Co. deal with Daenerys’s fire-breathing trump card? Last season, Qyburn unveiled Operation Big Crossbow, and despite the beating the Lannister forces took at the Loot Train Attack, Bronn did nearly kill Drogon with that weapon. While our heroes were fighting the Night King, Cersei may have been building hundreds of these crossbows. Or perhaps she’s found some other kryptonite for the dragons; in the books, Euron Greyjoy claims to have a magical horn called Dragonbinder that he could use to take control of a dragon. We may not see anything so magical on the show, but Cersei must be planning something to deal with Daenerys.

The Mother of Dragons, meanwhile, will be more tempted than ever to put her children to use in her quest for the throne. Without large armies at her back, what other options does she have? Tyrion and Jon repeatedly counseled her to avoid burning cities and killing innocents, yet Dany has occasionallyacted like more of a conqueror than a liberator. Thrones has always entertained the idea of Dany becoming the Mad Queen while still positioning her as a just and benevolent ruler. It’s been a delicate act to balance; soon, we’ll find out which path Dany will go down.

Where is Bronn?

Speaking of the guy who almost killed Drogon, where is he? We last saw him in a brothel, with Qyburn promising him a wagon full of gold to head north and kill either Jaime or Tyrion. I’m still a fan of this theory:

But more likely than not, he’ll show up again. Remember Tyrion’s promise to the sellsword in Season 1: “Whatever they’re paying you, I’ll pay double.” The problem: Tyrion may not have double what Cersei is offering. Bronn’s loyalties may soon be tested—does he value gold or friendship? I tend to think he can have both: Qyburn said that Cersei pays up front. What is to stop him from now switching sides?

Cleganebowl? Get hype?

The Hound survived! And presumably, he’ll now head south, where his brother awaits. Thrones may be a dark show, but it hasn’t been shy about fan service in recent seasons. This has to happen now.

Is there anyone else who could help our heroes?

I’m still holding out hope that either Edmure Tully or Robin Arryn could show up this season, given that the actors for those two characters appeared on an early cast list for Season 8. Neither appeared in Season 7, either, so the idea that their names were lazily copy and pasted over seems unlikely. It could be a red herring, but often where there is smoke, there is fire.

The Knights of the Vale already fought for the heroes in the Battle of Winterfell, so it’s unlikely they have many more troops they can commit to Daenerys’s cause. Meanwhile, Edmure has been a prisoner of the Lannisters for nearly five full seasons now. Where even is he? If they can find him, the seed of Tully reinforcements has already been planted; Sansa tried to get the Tullys to help her reclaim Winterfell in Season 6—the Tullys may still be able to contribute.

As much as this pains me, I’m no longer holding out hope for the Reeds. If they had a role in this season, I believe they would have shown up by now.

Also technically in play: Before Euron destroyed Yara’s fleet in Season 7, she was headed to Dorne to pick up the Dornish armies there. We don’t know what happened to those troops—are they still waiting to be picked up?

What is the heroes’ next move?

A teaser for Season 8 showed that Jon and Daenerys end up in Dragonstone at some point. That’s one of the few glimpses we’ve gotten at anything past Episode 3 of this season. Dragonstone makes sense: Daenerys is familiar with it, it’s located near King’s Landing, and it’s where she was born. This could be where the heroes plot the next steps as Dany’s eyes turn toward the Iron Throne.

How will Bran’s powers affect the rest of the show? (Will they?)

What was up with the Three-Eyed Raven spending nearly the entire Battle of Winterfell warging into some ravens so he’d get a literal bird’s-eye view of the fight? He had nothing better to do than that? And what was up with his connection with the Night King? And the time travel? And just … all of it? That’s it?

I have no answers here, only more questions. It’s always been unclear what the show has intended for Bran. After Sunday night, I’ve never been more confused.”

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Per The New York Post, “50 Cent says he finally got his $1 million back after going on a social media tirade against movie producer Randall Emmett.

“50 Cent, born Curtis Jackson III, and Emmett have been at war since Friday when Fiddy posted a video from a recent episode of Vanderpump Rules in which Emmett’s fiancée Lala Kent discussed their sex life. Their fight since escalated into an accusation that Emmett owed the rapper $1 million — and started countless memes and merchandise opportunities. 50 Cent allegedly made $300,000 off of just one T-shirt.

“Emmett is a producer on Fiddy’s show Power.

“He posted a screenshot of his conversation with Randell (Emmett’s name is misspelled in 50 Cent’s phone), which began the “Please fifty no more” memes. He then added that Emmett apologized, but called him ‘fofty’ instead of his actual name. He shockingly alleged in the texts that Emmett ‘owed me a million dollar over 6 years [sic].’ In the caption of another photo, he said that Emmett paid him $250,000 of the money.

“The rapper even posted a photo that Emmett seemingly sent him of himself getting testing done at a hospital as their feud worsened. Bravo superfan Chrissy Teigen even got involved at that point, writing: ‘I never ever want 50 cent to be mad at me. Please love me, fifty.’

“According to 50 Cent’s rep, Emmett eventually paid the rapper the amount he says he was owed on Monday, and it appears that their feud may be coming to an end as 50 Cent is starting to delete posts from the weekend.

“‘Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson AKA Fofty has confirmed that the 1 Million Dollars debt owed has been paid in full,’ the rep told us.

“Meanwhile, Emmett has remained silent on social media.

“Kent has stayed out of the feud for the most part, only posting — and then deleting — a video on Instagram accusing 50 Cent of making a mockery of the #MeToo movement. Ironically, Emmett’s ex-wife Ambyr Childers kept silent during their split but added her two cents by liking comments left on her photos in relation to the fight.

“Emmett didn’t return our request for comment.”

So stupid.

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Speaking of which, per Realscreen, “Kinetic Content, a Red Arrow Studios company, has greenlit a new digital series featuring The Bachelor alums.

“Rose Buds will feature fan favorites Ashley I. and Jared Haibon, alongside other former cast members Jade, Tanner, their baby Emmy, Dean and Nick, following the group of friends beyond the show where they first met.

“The six-episode series is produced for KineticContentTV by Kinetic Content.

“‘We are excited to have commissioned this major new reality series for our own digital channels,’ said Kinetic VP and head of communications Paria Sadighi in a statement. ‘Ashley, Jared and the rest of the cast are much-loved by viewers in the U.S. and around the world, and we are delighted to bring fans more of their stories, and reveal life after searching, finding, and in some cases losing love on TV.’

“Rose Buds premieres May 8 at 6 p.m. ET/PT, with two back-to-back episodes, exclusively on the Kinetic TV YouTube Channel.”