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TV Review: ‘The Following’ Pits Kevin Bacon Against a KIller

CHICAGO – The fascination with extreme criminals basically fuels the most popular prime time TV dramas. In “The Following,” it’s a serial killer – in the mold of Hannibal Lecter – that befuddles an FBI agent portrayed by Kevin Bacon. The premiere is on FOX on January 21st, at 9pm ET/8pm CT.

TV Review: ABC’s ‘Once Upon a Time’ Gets ‘Lost’ in Faerie Tale Land

CHICAGO – With two “Snow White” films currently in production, it’s tempting to believe that Hollywood’s well of originality has run dry. Sure, faerie tales have always been reinterpreted for new generations, but how many re-imaginings does one generation need?

TV Review: ABC’s Abysmal ‘Man Up’ Inspires Hatred of Mankind

CHICAGO – What can be said about “Man Up” that wasn’t already said about “Last Man Standing”? Neither show has the slightest shred of insight into the mind of modern man. They appear to have been conceived by network executives who hate men with a fiery passion. How else to explain the thoroughly insulting, utterly asinine portraits of masculine arrested development?

TV Review: Tim Allen Sinks to Idiocy & Beyond in ‘Last Man Standing’

CHICAGO – There’s something inherently unmanly about the need to prove one’s own manliness. What passes for virility in the mind of Mike Baxter (Tim Allen) is clearly masking a deep well of insecurity. He never passes up an opportunity to prove that he is, in fact, a man.

TV Review: Second Season of ‘Happy Endings’ Delivers More Hilarity

Happy Endings Season Two

CHICAGO – It’s a good thing ABC’s sitcom “Happy Endings” is only 20 minutes, since the frenzied pace of its gags run the risk of exhausting its audience. With so many rapid fire punch-lines bouncing off the screen, one quickly suspects that the perpetually hyper energy level is a sign of desperation. Sampling any given moment from this show could easily repel potential viewers.

TV Review: Torturous ‘Suburgatory’ Ineptly Imitates Diablo Cody

CHICAGOABC reaches a new low with “Suburgatory,” one of the least funny comedies of the fall TV season. It’s only appropriate that the pilot premieres after ABC’s other torturous suburban sitcom, “The Middle,” since neither show seems to have been conceived by a writer willing to step foot outside of the L.A. city limits. Yet while “The Middle” was admittedly likable during its first season, “Suburgatory” tanks in its opening moments.

TV Review: Breezy ‘Pan Am’ Pilot Exudes Promise in Flawed Launch

CHICAGO – Feminism continues to be redefined for a new generation in this season’s slate of TV dramas. While NBC’s “The Playboy Club” makes the age-old error of confusing exploitation with empowerment, ABC’s “Pan Am” argues that flight attendants paved the way for the modern woman.

TV Review: ABC’s Latest ‘Charlie’s Angels’ Reboot Fails to Take Flight

CHICAGO – Out of all the franchises recently resurrected on the small screen, “Charlie’s Angels” is perhaps the least necessary. Does the world really need yet another rehash of the hit ’70s show that has been hailed for its female empowerment but was mainly popular because of its scantily clad female ensemble?

TV Review: Entrancing ‘Revenge’ Serves Up Plentiful Guilty Pleasures

CHICAGO – With lobbyists controlling the nation’s capital and the middle class perched on the edge of poverty, an increasing number of American viewers are seeking modes of escapism. And what better way to escape than watch a wronged girl wreak havoc on a cultish clan of rich snobs? Creator Mike Kelley (“Swingtown”) has the current economic woes to thank for making his new ABC drama serial, “Revenge,” all the more enticing.

TV Review: ‘Combat Hospital’ Fails to Get the Pulse Pounding

CHICAGO – Is there a script doctor in the house? ABC is in dire need of one. How could the network possibly greenlight “Combat Hospital” in light of its recently botched, strikingly similar effort, “Off the Map”?

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Orange is the New Black

    CHICAGO – Orange Day is Friday (July 27, 2018)… as in “Orange is the New Black.” That’s when Season Six will be available for download from Netflix, as the online series continues to showcase the women inmates at Litchfield Penitentiary, three of whom are played by Taylor Schilling (Piper), Kate Mulgrew (Red) and Dascha Polanco (Daya).

  • Everybody, Brown Paper Box Co

    CHICAGO – When is the last time a stage play, based in an intimate setting, made you think about your life, death, and the destiny inherent in both? “Everybody,” staged by Brown Paper Box Co. (BPBCo), is such a play, and the energetic aura and sense of surprise that the show contains is soul soothing wonder. The show has various evening/matinee performances at the Pride Arts Center in Chicago run through August 12, 2018. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

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