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May 16, 2011

NBC's upfronts 2011

Posted on May 16, 2011 | Post a comment | Bookmark and Share

NBC upfronts

Well, it's that time again when NBC unveils all the pilots it's decided to order up for the Fall schedule, as well as some it's keeping in reserve for January.

Unlike last year, when frankly, the idea of watching any of the new NBC shows filled me a feeling not unlike food poisoning, this year, NBC seems to have a feast of riches for us to choose from. So we have a remake of Prime Suspect with Maria Bello, a big hello to Jason Isaacs in the Inception-like Awake, a drama series based on the Grimms' fairy tales, a series based on John Grisham's The Firm, not to mention comedy starring Christina Applegate and Will Arnett, a remake of Channel 4's Free Agents with Hank Azaria, a comedy based on Chelsea Lately's autobiography and an Amanda Peet vehicle.

What to pick? What to pick? Oh, yes, here we go. The Playboy Club, a Mad Men-esque period crime drama targeted at women that's also a bit of a feminist history. And as if that weren't good enough, here's three other good reasons for men to watch it, too:

  1. Amber Heard 
  2. Amber Heard
  3. Amber Heard

Every week.

If there's a man among you all who isn't going to watch it on those strengths alone, you need to hand your man licence back on the way out so that someone can re-train you.

Details and videos for all the shows after the jump.

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May 11, 2011

Review: Atlantis

Posted on May 11, 2011 | Post a comment | Bookmark and Share

Atlantis

In the UK: Sunday 8th May, 9pm, BBC1. Available on the iPlayer

Ah, drama documentaries? Is there a more benighted category of programming? The idea is simple: documentaries are dull things in which people who know stuff talk to you; a drama-documentary makes it all exciting, and it comes to life since it's dramatised.

However, while there's the occasional exception - usually when there's a reasonably good amount of evidence to go on - the average drama-documentary combines the worst aspects of both dramas and documentaries: not enough information for a proper documentary, too little time to do a decent, well written story for a drama.

So it is with Atlantis, BBC1's recent one-hour documentary about the Bronze Age volcanic eruption on the Greek island of Santorini (aka Thera) that destroyed much of the island and pretty much ended the 'Minoan' civilisation that had thrived on both it and the nearby Crete for 1500 years. It was this that possibly inspired Plato's tale of Atlantis over 1,000 years later. A combination of history documentary, geology documentary and a doomed romance, Atlantis wasn't without its merits and indeed in some areas was very good, but it wasn't on a par with any of the great Bettany Hughes' documentaries on the subjects, even though she was one of its advisors.

Here's a trailer.

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May 8, 2011

Season finale: Engrenages (Spiral) 3x11-3x12

Posted on May 8, 2011 | Post a comment | Bookmark and Share

Karlsson in Spiral

In France: Some time last Summer
In the UK: Saturday 7th May, 9pm, BBC4. iPlayer: Episode 11, Episode 12

Given they had a full 12 episodes this time, you'd have thought they'd have been able to fit everything in, wouldn't you?

Spoilers and stuff after the picture of Laure looking moody.

Laure in Spiral

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