Tag: abc

Castle 7.21 Review: "In Plane Sight"


This week’s Castle had all eyes in the sky as Castle solved a mystery on his way to London. After last week’s jumble of an episode, it was refreshing to get a solid plot with great suspense and well used supporting characters. Though I will add in that Castle’s seeming hesitance about solving the crime in the air and possibly preventing a terrorist attack would be easier if he KNEW WHAT HE DID FOR TWO MONTHS. Still not over the ridiculousness that if Castle saved the world, that he would choose to forget. But anyway, check the recap:

As if we didn’t already know, Castle has the Angela Lansbury curse, where murder follows him everywhere he goes. On this week’s episode of Castle, he cashed in his frequent murder miles and solved a case in the sky.
Castle and Alexis are on a trip to London (on a known to be deadly Oceanic Air… no wonder they come across trouble), where Castle will be speaking at the Sherlock Holmes Society. He’s a bit upset that Alexis won’t come with him, but soon they have other concerns as the air marshal is found dead in the cargo hold. The pilot thinks Castle’s assistance is necessary: “You’re the closest thing to law enforcement we have on this plane.” “Which itself is cause for concern.”

Read more: Castle Season 7 Episode 21 Review: “In Plane Sight”.

PaleyFest Previews

My intro post on my visit to the NYC Paley Center for their Fall TV Previews screenings. I watched ten different pilots and will post reviews on all of them. First four will be up, other links added later. What's the biggest pilot surprise of the season?

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Fall TV 2014: How Packed is Your Primetime Schedule?

What are you watching this fall? What should I be watching? Can you squeeze in all this year's fall TV into your everyday life? Share your potential fall schedules!

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ABC Heralds Diverse Lineup Of Shows At TCA

“Let’s not pretend we’re there yet,” when it comes to the television industry accurately reflecting the demographics of America, ABC president Paul Lee said at the Television Critics Association press tour Tuesday. “I think we’re taking a very good step along that journey. But to be able to pull this off, you need not just stars on air […] [y]ou need the storytellers and you need the executives. I’m very proud of the fact that if you look at the executives who do development and do programming and marketing, across ABC, it’s a very diverse group of people.
via ABC Heralds Diverse Lineup Of Shows At TCA.
Seems like the president of ABC, Paul Lee isn’t trying to say they’ve reached Diversity (yes, capital D) on TV just yet, despite ABC’s wide selection of both supporting actors, leads, and full series that feature diverse families as the lead (though not sure how I feel about Asian “clan,” you already used family twice, either use three different words for family or all the same. Anyway–). It’s nice to see that ABC isn’t trying to say they’ve won anything or that there isn’t more work to be done. There definitely is.

'Castle' Producer David Amann to Replace Creator Andrew Marlowe as Showrunner – TheWrap

‘Castle’ Producer David Amann to Replace Creator Andrew Marlowe as Showrunner – TheWrap

Wow! Big news for my favorite show!

Andrew Marlowe hopefully feels very strongly about this decision and the team backing Amann, but Lord knows fans will be in an uproar. Seasons past cries of “In Marlowe We Trust” are being thrown back at us as we face the fear of a new showrunner (even one whose been on the show for so long). After some fans felt disappointed by the season 6 finale (leaving Castle and Beckett pointedly NOT married), for there to be a new showrunner will certainly cause more angst and anxiety as we fans wait for season 7 this summer.

Let’s hope that Marlowe’s presence will still be “day to day” as the article says, though this probably also means no more episodes penned by Marlowe and wife, Terri Miller, which is definitely a bummer for fans of their joint episodes. Hopefully more on this as the writers get back to work in full…

 

*I guess this means I’ll have to adjust my “Andrew Marlowe” showrunner category!

Upfronts 2014: Black-ish

The show makes me both excited and nervous. I'm excited to see a black family on television. I'm even more excited to see a black family in a network single camera sitcom. But oh boy am I nervous. The title alone is a little worrisome--black-ish implies that through their middle class lifestyle, they're not fully black, only a little black or sort of black. Hopefully the show addresses this with comedy and class.
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Pilot Season/Upfronts 2014


It’s that time of the year, Upfronts (also here for another way to look at what Upfronts actually are), when networks present their pilot season shows and lineups to advertisers and the general public. I’ve been a bit busy or lethargic the last month or so, so I haven’t been posting (though I’ve been pleasantly surprised at the views I’ve still managed to get) but get ready for a deluge as I look at shows coming this summer, fall, and beyond, and discuss current shows’ trajectories (I’m a bit mad about NBC’s treatment of Parks and Recreation. We’ll get there).
I’ll write a bunch and try to spread them out over the week as to not spam. Also, I’ll post my current fall tv chart–it’s looking as busy as usual as I find out about all these new shows!
Let the Upfront madness begin!

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Pilot Season Diversity: Various Network Pilots

For the last few days, I’ve been showcasing some pilots being worked on this season with diverse casting. Here are some more that might be coming to our screens in the fall, but maybe I am less invested in. I found them by checking the TVLine descriptions and seeing which actors/producers are PoCs. If a show coming up with PoCs is being made but not on this list, I just didn’t notice. Definitely not an extensive list, and I’ll be keeping an eye out for more along the way.
Descriptions are from TVLine

Fresh Off the Boat (Comedy)
EPs | Nahnatchka Kahn (Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23), Jake Kasdan, and Melvin Mar
It’s the 90’s and hip hop loving Eddie is growing up in suburban Orlando, raised by an immigrant father who is obsessed with all things American and an immigrant mother who is often bewildered by white culture. With his father owning and operating an All-American Steakhouse chain, this loving family of FOB (“fresh off the boat”) Taiwanese Americans try to live the American dream while still maintaining their cultural identity and sense of family. [ABC]

I hope this makes it just because its an ethnicity we don’t get to see much of on television. The specifics of Asian culture is often grossly glossed over. I went to school with Asian students with families from all over the continent, so I got a chance to learn about different aspects of Asian life and how each nationality differs from each other, but most Americans don’t know Asian from being specifically Chinese or Japanese. Just because TV is entertainment, doesn’t mean you should never learn anything about different people.

How to Get Away With Murder (Drama)
EPs | Peter Nowalk (Grey’s Anatomy), Shonda Rhimes, Betsy Beers
A sexy, suspense-driven legal thriller about a group of ambitious law students and their brilliant, mysterious criminal defense professor who become entangled in a murder plot that will rock the entire university and change the course of their lives. [ABC]

No guarantees on who the casting will be for this one, but as a Shonda Rhimes show, it is sure to have color-blind casting.

Untitled Kevin Hart Project (Comedy)
EPs | Kevin Hart, Dave Becky, Neil Goldman and Garrett Donovan (Community)
Based on Kevin Hart’s life and stand-up, it takes a candid look at the post-divorce life of a couple trying to forge a friendship for the sake of their kids, despite differences. [ABC]

Kevin Hart has been everywhere. He has like 4 movies out, 3 shows in development, and who knows what else. I don’t know if that over-saturation is stifling his true funniness (some people have said his stand-up special wasn’t as good as the previous ones), but hopefully this turns out good. Kevin Hart is funny and we have zero black sitcoms on network TV. If this AND Blackish get greenlit, that would make a grand total of 2. #sigh

The Flash (Drama)
EPs | Greg Berlanti (Arrow), Andrew Kreisberg, Geoff Johns, David Nutter, Melissa Kellner Berman
DIRECTOR | David Nutter (Arrow)
CAST | Grant Gustin (Glee), Jesse L. Martin (Law & Order), Danielle Panabaker (Shark) and Rick Cosnett (The Vampire Diaries)
The Arrow spin-off follows Barry Allen, a Central City assistant police forensics investigator with a tragic past.

Jesse L. Martin is all I have to say. I bit token-esque, but I’ll let it go lol.

Cabot College (Comedy)
EPs | Matt Hubbard, Tina Fey, Robert Carlock, Pam Fryman, David Miner
DIRECTOR | Pam Fryman (How I Met Your Mother)
CAST | Bonnie Dennison (Third Watch), Jack Cutmore-Scott, Brandon Jones, Margaret Cho (Drop Dead Diva)
A women’s college begins accepting men for the first time in its history.

While I’ll give any new show from Tina a chance, it featuring Margaret Cho is a plus in the diversity factor. Also Pam Fryman from HIMYM fame is a plus for me.

Empire (Drama)
EPs | Danny Strong (The Butler), Lee Daniels (The Butler), Brian Grazer, Francie Calfo
DIRECTOR | Lee Daniels (The Butler)
A unique family drama set in the world of a hip-hop empire [FOX]

I probably wouldn’t watch this, but it could be a great black drama, which are even harder to name than black comedies…

Mr. Robinson (Comedy) — ORDERED TO SERIES
EPs | Mark Cullen and Rob Cullen (Back in the Game), Howard Klein, Mark Schulman
CAST | Craig Robinson (The Office), Larenz Tate (House of Lies), Amanda Lund, Jean Smart (Harry’s Law, Hawaii Five-0)
A talented musician adjusts to his new life as a middle school music teacher, where he maneuvers precocious kids, teacher politics, and the temptations of single moms. [NBC]

This one’s already been ordered to series and stars Office alum Craig Robinson. So there will be at least one new black sitcom coming in fall. It sounds very similar to the Steve Harvey Show, so I’ll have to check it out to see how it’s different/updated for the new millennium.
It surprises me not one bit that none of these shows are for CBS… I don’t remember any for the CW either (and with it’s WB/UPN  strong PoC cast roots, this is sad to say).
IO’m excited for all of these shows featuring people of color. It’s about time we got some new faces on our TV screens. Hopefully these survive pilot season and we get to at least give them a test run in September.
for more, check TVLine’s Pilot Scoop
 

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Pilot Season Diversity Watch: Anthony Anderson to Star in ABC Comedy Pilot 'Black-ish'

It’s early pilot season, so it’s a good time to start looking at the shows coming to our screens in the fall. Let’s look at the shows with diverse casting or production staffs that have been greenlit by the network. This doesn’t mean they’ll air in Fall–that depends on various things and most decisions are put forth in May–but they’ve been approved to be shot.
One pilot to look for is Black-ish, starring Anthony Anderson. Here’s the  TVLine description:

Black-ish (Comedy) [ABC]
EPs | Kenya Barris, Anthony Anderson, Laurence Fishburne, Helen Sugland, Tom Russo, Peter Principato, Paul Young, Brian Dobbins
CAST | Anthony Anderson (Guys With Kids)
An upper-middle class black man struggles to raise his children with a sense of cultural identity despite constant contradictions and obstacles coming from his liberal wife, old-school father and his own assimilated, color-blind kids

Sounds interesting. I hope it doesn’t go the way of Guys with Kids, which failed to really spark anything in me and I gave up after like 2 episodes. I think this wants to hearken back to the Cosby Show, which I loved, but updated for a modern era. The Cosby Show was more insulated in terms of who the kids hung out with than this sounds like it will be.
I wonder why there are so many executive producers, usually we get one or two main names, rather than the list of 8 like above. And is the last time ABC had a majority/all black comedy cast My Wife and Kids (another show it relates to in terms of being a black family comedy, but again, that show was very isolated in terms of who the family interacted with on camera)?
I’m not sure how I feel about the title, or some of the implications. I can only hope that while maintaining “cultural identity,” the show also focuses on and allows the kids and the family to like “non-traditional” things and it being ok or at least a plot point. I could see Anderson’s character trying to get his kids to like classic hip-hop but they like rock instead (just a random example). Which, it’s great and necessary for black children to know their culture and where they came from, but also realize that black people are not a monolith and can enjoy a variety of pursuits not traditionally seen as a part of black culture. A fine line to walk, but one that might be necessary going forward.
I hope we hear more about this.
for more, check TVLine’s Pilot Scoop
Anthony Anderson to Star in ABC Comedy Pilot ‘Black-ish’.

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ConStar Watches Castle "Time Will Tell"

My first thought during this episode was, “wow, it’s still not October yet?” Usually we can use the current date of (most) shows to guess the time of year the narrative is set in, but here, we’re still in August. Alexis has been with Pi for (only) a month. I thought the time skips between episodes would have been longer. There was the six week jump after the engagement, now its a month after DC started. So Castle and Beckett have been engaged for 2 and a half months? She only worked in DC for 2 months? I really thought we were heading into Fall, but I guess even wardrobe wise, they haven’t started wearing jackets yet?
Which all makes Alexis’ decision really the dumbest thing she’s ever done. Castle was right! You can’t move in with someone after only a month and say that, because you’re the “smart” one in the family and you “know what you’re doing” that it means it’s a good decision and it will all work out. It’s been a month. You don’t know him, you’ve never lived on your own, and I assume she’s going to try to make it work without Dad’s money (her mention of work-study job)? All of that makes this situation even harder, and I get that it’s a story to give Alexis something to do, but it makes her character seem really out of touch with her supposed smartness. Even Castle probably waited more than one month after knowing someone, before moving in with them (even if he was 19 also). I get that Pi and Alexis mirror Castle and Beckett, but I don’t get the having them move in together. The only parallel I see is this being what might have happened between Castle and Beckett had they gotten together after that first case. They could have sped into things and then things may have blown up later. So I’m waiting for the blow up between Alexis and Pi; because there’s no way she makes a rash decision like that and it all comes out okay.
The rest of the episode was pure fun, but is it the least grounded in reality than any of the other fantastical episodes? The alien one had a logical meaning, as did the ghost ones, etc. They didn’t try as hard as previous episodes to give a real life meaning to things; they crammed that last explanation in there but it was clearly not meant to stick. (I hadn’t even noticed the coffee stain detail on the letter until it was pointed out to us at the end.) Interesting choice; but I love time travel, and it was fun to see Josh Gomez and the Beard, and his future Caskett predictions had me on the floor with squee! Senator Beckett! Three kids! Serious literature (but the impending end of the Nikki Heat series?)! I wonder what this means in an overall timeline for the show. Fans have gleamed that maybe season 7 could be the last in terms of references by Andrew Marlowe to the future and contract negotiation years and stuff. I wonder if they have an endgame planned, however vague. Because usually when things like future jobs and kids are mentioned early, it means the audience won’t get to see them. But it could have also been a way to assure the audience that they’re not breaking them up any time soon (or! it could be that they are for a bit and to assure us they will get back together–but I don’t think they’ll go that way because Andrew loves us too much). Either way, it was a fun and wonderful moment for us to imagine Castle and Beckett’s future, whether we’ll get to see it or not.
Can I be a temporal anthropologist? I want to create that major at NYU Gallatin.
DOCTOR WHO REFERENCE!! And Espo watches it!!! Loved that!

“Maybe we should put something in our vows about following each other to creepy places.”

[Usually my Castle thoughts are after my second watch with the US airing, after I watch it Sunday after the Canadians–but I’m working late all week, so blog posts will be infrequent this week.]