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DVD Review: Frustrating Fourth Season of ‘Community’

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CHICAGO – The fourth season of NBC’s “Community” was its most controversial by some margin. The program was barely renewed, its showrunner (Dan Harmon) was unprofessionally fired, and the on-set feuds with co-star Chevy Chase continued. To start the fifth season, Chase is gone and Harmon is back. No one has made out well in the court of public opinion and the fourth season was sometimes unwatchable. You would never know any of this from the recently-released DVD set.

TV Feature: What Will Happen to Your Favorite 2013 Network TV Shows

CHICAGO – The full 2013-2014 Fall TV schedules for the five broadcast networks will be announced next week. Will NBC give “Hannibal” more time to find an audience? Will The CW close the book on “The Carrie Diaries”? Can CBS viewers plan to visit “Vegas” again?

TV Feature: The 5 Network Shows Most on the Bubble

CHICAGO – As the networks finalize their schedules, there are more periods than question marks. CBS has already renewed most of their line-up while some programs on other networks have nothing to worry about. At the same time, there are some axes that everyone knows are going to fall. But what about the shows in the middle?

TV Review: Beaten, Battered ‘Community’ Finally Returns to NBC

CHICAGO – Rarely has a low-rated show survived as much off-screen drama as NBC’s “Community,” returning tonight to the network bruised, battered, and slightly damaged but still funnier and smarter than most of the alternatives. Where do we begin?

DVD Review: Third Season of NBC Critical Darling ‘Community’

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CHICAGO – The third season of “Community” was more inconsistent than the brilliant second but it still featured some of the smartest writing and best performances on network TV. I think the writers lost sight of some of their characters in pursuit of concept over substance at times but has there been a modern show that was more unpredictable than this one? You never know where they’re going to go, what they’re going to reference, or how far they’re going to take their concepts.

TV Feature: The 10 Biggest Emmy Snubs of 2012

CHICAGO – Last year represented a notable leap forward for the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences as they finally embraced a few critical darlings over popular favorites, finding room for major nominations for shows like “Louie,” “Justified,” “Game of Thrones,” and “Parks and Recreation.”

If I Had an Emmy Ballot: The Best TV of 2011 to 2012

CHICAGO – So you’re an Academy voter who has put off filling out your ballot for the 2011-12 season. I understand. It’s been a ridiculously tough year for me to pick and choose my dream nominees for the major categories and my votes don’t even count. Maybe you want some help? We’re all about charity here. As someone who’s seen more TV in the last year than most people do in their lives, let me guide the way.

Slideshow: John Oliver Performs at Just for Laughs Chicago

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CHICAGO – The British wit John Oliver has stormed the shores of the former colonies with his dry antics, as featured correspondent on “The Daily Show” and his recurring role on “Community.” His stand-up was featured at the TBS “Just for Laughs Chicago” comedy festival, playing before a packed house at The Vic Theater.

TV News: NBC Fall Schedule Includes ‘The Voice,’ Six New Shows, ‘Community’ on Fridays

CHICAGONBC revealed their Fall schedule today and there were multiple surprises including comedies moving to Tuesday and Friday nights (we were wondering where all of the sitcoms would go) and a Fall cycle of the hit singing show “The Voice.”

TV News: NBC Renews ‘Community,’ ‘30 Rock,’ ‘Parenthood’

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CHICAGO – Good news, TV fans. NBC has made official several of their on-the-bubble shows, renewing “Community,” “30 Rock,” and “Parenthood.” The good news is a bit tempered though as “30 Rock” has been cleared for only 13 episodes and most are assuming its a final season.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Star Trek Into Darkness

    CHICAGO – With J.J. Abrams not involved with the creation of a third “Star Trek” movie, a compendium of his work within the franchise only seems fitting. Loaded with special features but only a few new ones, this disc set is a strong choice for those who don’t already have both entertaining blockbusters in their collection.

  • References to Salvador Dali Make Me Hot

    CHICAGO – In “References to Salvador Dali Makes Me Hot,” now at the Den Theatre in Chicago through September 7th, the intersect of author José Rivera and the strong cast of actors make for a formidable partnership. Committed and passionate interpreters take both the soft and edgy parts of the narrative to task.

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