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The Simpsons

Film News: Adam West, the 1960s TV Batman, Dies at 88

LOS ANGELES – When Adam West had a voice role on “The Simpsons,” portraying the Batman – as he had in the iconic TV series from 1966 through 1968 – he remarked, in reference to the rubber muscle costume that the movie actors wore, that his Batman was “All Pure West.” West died on June 9th, 2017, at the age of 88.

TV News: Marcia Wallace, Edna Krabappel on ‘The Simpsons,’ Dies at 70

Marcia Wallace, photo by Joe Arce.

LOS ANGELES – Marcia Wallace, who created two classic TV roles on “The Bob Newhart Show” and “The Simpsons,” passed away in Los Angeles, according to her agent on Saturday. She was 70 years old. In the 1970s, she was known as Carol Kester, Bob Hartley’s assistant on that Newhart show. In 1990 – one season after “The Simpsons” began – she took on the voice role of Edna Krabappel, the frazzled and man-hungry fourth grade teacher of Bart Simpson.

Film Feature: Ranking the ‘2013 Oscar-Nominated Animated Shorts’

Paperman

CHICAGO – Want a leg-up in your Oscar pool? The five short films nominated for the Academy Award for “Best Animated Short” are now playing at the Landmark Century Theatre in a special presentation with three other shorts (the non-nominated “Abiogenesis,” “Dripped,” and “The Gruffalo’s Child”). The program runs 88 minutes and we have mini-reviews of all five below, ranked in the order we’d like to see them win the Oscar.

DVD Review: Fifteenth Season of FOX Hit ‘The Simpsons’

The Simpsons: S15

CHICAGOTV on DVD has been shaped by Twentieth Century Fox and their releases for “The Simpsons,” one of the best shows in the history of television. It makes a certain degree of sense that one of the longest-running and most beloved programs in history would get the most detailed and elaborate DVD releases but the producers of “The Simpsons” always go above and beyond, as they have again with “The Simpsons: The Complete Fifteenth Season.”

TV News: Audiences Refuse to Check Into ‘666 Park Avenue’

666 Park Avenue

CHICAGO – The new Sunday ABC line-up of “Once Upon a Time,” “Revenge,” and “666 Park Avenue” looked very promising on paper. I think I even called it one of the smartest moves of the season. I was wrong. While the first two sophomore programs had decent ratings on their first night of the ‘12-13 season, “666” is empty, producing the kind of numbers that start the cancellation clock ticking. ABC just can’t win at 9pm on Sunday nights.

TV Review: Sunday Nights on FOX Showing Serious Creative Fatigue

Family Guy 2012

CHICAGO – With shows like “Archer” and a still-creative “South Park” leading the way in TV animation along with all of the fascinating risks being taken by Adult Swim, what are we to make of a Sunday night lineup on FOX that feels more creatively stagnant than ever?

TV News: FOX Moves ‘Glee,’ ‘Touch,’ Launches Three New Shows

CHICAGO – When so much of your already-limited primetime schedule is devoted to reality singing competitions and animated programming, it gives a network little room to play. FOX only has a few timeslots once one takes “The X Factor”/”American Idol” and “Animation Domination” out of the equation. But play they will.

TV News: 2012 Hugo Television Awards Honors Kelsey Grammer

Kelsey Grammer, photo by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – The 48th Annual Hugo Television Awards took place last Thursday, April 19th, and the honoree for the career achievement award at the event was Kelsey Grammer, best known for portraying Frasier Crane on the series “Cheers” and “Frasier,” and currently portraying Mayor Tom Kane in the Starz Network cable drama “Boss.” Among the attendees paying tribute to Grammer was his long-time costar, John Mahoney, who played Frasier’s father on the sitcom.

TV News: Kelsey Grammer to Be Honored in Chicago at Hugo Television Awards

Kelsey Grammer in "Boss"

CHICAGO – Cinema/Chicago and the Chicago International Film Festival will be honoring television icon Kelsey Grammer at their 48th Hugo Television Awards, in Chicago on April 19th. Grammer portrayed Dr. Frasier Crane on the sitcom “Cheers” and the spin-off “Frasier” for 20 years, tying a record for playing the same TV character continuously.

Blu-ray Review: Latest Volumes of Animated Hits ‘The Simpsons,’ ‘Futurama’

The Simpsons S14

CHICAGO – If one were listing the most influential people in the history of television, right there next to legends like Rod Serling, Gene Roddenberry, and Norman Lear, would have to lie Matt Groening, the man who reinvented TV animation for all time. Two of his creations, “Futurama” and “The Simpsons,” had volumes released recently on Blu-ray and both are typically FILLED with remarkable special features. We’ve said it before — Fox animation is the standard when it comes to TV on Blu-ray.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Transformers 5 front

    CHICAGO – Knock me over with a feather kids, but I enjoyed “Transformers: The Last Knight.” Maybe it was in comparison to the others or maybe director Michael Bay has beaten me into submission, but this one had the right story elements and casting to make it work, with exceptions of course. It’s goofiness is its charm, and it was released on Blu-Ray/DVD on September 26th, 2017 (Digital HD already available).

  • Wonder Woman

    CHICAGO – There are few films in 2017 that are as historically important as they are cinematically well-crafted. Of those, there is only one I saw three times in theaters. That honor comes in the form of the revolutionary “Wonder Woman,” which not only shows huge promise for the future of DC Comics films but for comic book-based films as a whole.

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