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TV Review: ABC Launches New Comedies ‘The Goldbergs,’ ‘Trophy Wife’

CHICAGO – It takes guts or stupidity to launch an entire night of new programing but that’s what ABC is attempting this evening, September 24, 2013. And they’re not even doing it consistently in terms of genre and quality. It starts strong with “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” and ends on a whimper with “Lucky 7.” In between?

TV Review: ‘Lucky 7’ Misses Chance to Win Creatively

Lucky 7

CHICAGO – “Lucky 7,” debuting tonight on ABC to end their practically unprecedented attempt at an entire night of new programming, is a case of concept over actual character. The creators of this inert drama think cluttering their storytelling with various subplots will make up for the fact that you just don’t care about any of them. It’s a case of quantity over quality and that never works. I could be wrong but this one’s high on my list of shows that could be cancelled before Christmas.

TV Review: ‘Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ Hits Target Audience

CHICAGO – You can all breathe easy. It’s not bad. Serious Marvel and Joss Whedon fans are probably having flashbacks after reading those two sentences. We were all incredibly nervous that one of the best writers in the history of television was going to get the biggest blockbuster in recent years and find a way to screw up “Marvel’s The Avengers.”

TV Review: Fascinating Character Fuels James Spader in ‘The Blacklist’

CHICAGO – When he gets a part that he can bite his teeth into, James Spader chews it up. He got such a part when his agent got him the lead role on NBC’s “The Blacklist,” premiering tonight, September 23, 2013.

TV Review: CBS Has Another Likely Hit in ‘Mom’

Mom

CHICAGOCBS must have a whole wing of their headquarters dedicated to Chuck Lorre. Why not? He paid for it. He has been such a key part of their success over the last decade that it’s hard to think of any network-creator relationship that’s been more financially notable. “Two and a Half Men,” “The Big Bang Theory,” “Mike & Molly” — all winners of acting Emmys and at least the first two stand among the most popular comedies of their era. Can he do it again with “Mom,” premiering tonight, September 23, 2013? Don’t bet against him.

TV Review: Great Cast, Clever Concept Carry ‘Hostages’

CHICAGOCBS’s “Hostages” is the first interesting new drama of 2013 (well, tied with NBC’s “The Blacklist,” which airs at the same time tonight, Monday, September 23, 2013). It’s not an instant hit creatively but there’s a lot to like here, particularly in its great cast and clever concept, one that engages the viewer enough with the promise of excitement for all fifteen weeks of this shortened season.

TV News: The 65th Annual Emmy Awards Winners

CHICAGO – The 65th Annual Emmy Awards, hosted by Neil Patrick Harris, were handed out on September 22, 2013. The awards were spread around to a number of shows, including “The Newsroom,” “Homeland,” “Veep,” “Breaking Bad,” and many more. The winners were as follows:

TV Feature: Predictions For the 65th Annual Emmy Award Winners

CHICAGO – The 65th Annual Emmy Awards, hosted by Neil Patrick Harris, will unfold on Sunday night and I’m back for that annual game of guess the winners. More than any other show, the Emmys seemed designed to make those of us who try to figure them out feel stupid.

What to Watch: Sept. 17-23, 2013 – TV Edition

Bates Motel

CHICAGO – This time of year is so rich with Blu-ray and DVD releases of last year’s television seasons that we thought we’d break out the latest ones into their own special edition of What to Watch. Stay tuned for a movie-specific one later in the week that includes “World War Z,” “The East,” “All is Bright,” and more, but this is just for you TV junkies. Pick your faves from the recently-released seasons of television on Blu-ray, DVD, and streaming platforms. Most of these are new to Blu-ray and DVD today, September 17, 2013. If I had to rank them in order of preference, here’s how it would go…

TV Review: FOX Debuts New Comedies in Promising ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine,’ Horrendous ‘Dads’

CHICAGOFOX started the season last night with the season premiere of “Bones” and series premiere of “Sleepy Hollow,” and they continue their effort to fill your DVR with the return of “New Girl” & “The Mindy Project” tonight, preceded by the series premieres of “Dads” and “Brooklyn Nine-Nine.”

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Bobby Pin Girls

    CHICAGO – The “breeder years” are difficult on everyone, as the biological imperative becomes overwhelming and the couplings that result yield both discovery and misadventure. Nothing Without a Company’s new play “Bobby Pin Girls” highlight two such Millennial women, roommates who are having man trouble, although the argument can be made that it’s eternally “boy trouble.” The show has a Thursday-Sunday run at the Chicago Mosaic School through December 3rd, 2017. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

  • 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).

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