Saturday, June 30, 2012

The Kellie Pickler Award- Female Reality

Named For: Kellie Pickler (American Idol)
Awarded To: The best female reality competition contestant of the season
2009 Winner: Sugar Kiper (Survivor)
2010 Winner: Parvati Shallow (Survivor)
2011 Winner: Haley Reinhart (American Idol)

10. Michelle Money (Bachelor Pad) 0 points

9. Laura Kathleen (Project Runway) 1 point
5th by Me

8. Vanessa Macias (Amazing Race) 3 points
2nd by Jaydon

7. Lindsey Pavao (The Voice) 4 points
3rd by Tyson

6. Grayson Schmitz (Top Chef) 5 points
1st by Jaydon, 4th by Me

5. Skylar Laine (American Idol) 8 points
1st by Larry

4. Chelsea Meissner (Survivor) 10 points
1st by Cecil

3. Juliet Simms (The Voice) 11 points
1st by Tyson, 1st by Me

2. Daniele Donato (Big Brother) 13 points
1st by T-time, 2nd by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Jessica Sanchez (American Idol) 14 points
1st by Jack and Rizzo, 3rd by Me

This is Jessica Sanchez's first nomination and win for the best female reality competition contestant of the season.  Here to discuss her rapid rise to stardom is Poolie voter, Jack.

For the last three seasons, American Idol has really flipped the script with the female contestants.  After eight years of putting up with the boring girls’ performances, they have recently been the ones who I look forward to the most.  Season nine gave us Bowersox and Didi Benami, and season 10 introduced us to the amazing Haley Reinhart.  With no disrespect to those three, even with how great they were, they could not carry Jessica Sanchez’s gym bags.  Jessica has the best vocal ability I have ever seen in the competition outside Adam Lambert.  And the fact that she is only 16 is all the more impressive.  By the time she hits her prime, she may be in consideration as one of the best voices of all time.  Perhaps the most impressive aspect of Jessica was her versatility.  We have seen such different dynamics before from a guy (the aforementione Lambert), but never from the female side.  She roared out of the gates with “I Will Always Love You,” which was pitch perfection, out-dueling Jennifer Hudson and Jordin Sparks who performed the same song at different award show tributes.  That performance, along with “You Are So Beautiful” and “The Prayer,” proved she could sing the ballads as good as anyone.  Have you ever seen anyone hold those high notes with so much ease?  But there was much more to Jessica than slow ballads.  She brought out her jazzy side on many occasions, most notably her performance of “Steal Away.”  Say what you want about that growl, but I thought it was fantastic.  Just when you think you’ve seen everything this girl had to offer, top four week came, and Jessica brought singing to new heights.  The performance of the season, and maybe the series, was her take on “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going.”  We’ve heard this song done so many times, but she put absolutely everything she had into this two minute show.  I have never seen someone put so much heart and emotion into a performance and still nail every single note.  They should have stopped the show and crowned her right then and there.

Unfortunately, there was a group of people against Sanchez.  It is not possible for any contestant to have no haters, that’s the way our world works.  But the arguments that the haters tried to come up with for disliking her were absurd.  I heard claims of her showing no emotion? Please.  Did you not see that single tear come down her cheek after she left her heart on the stage singing “..I’m Not Going.”  I also heard that she is too pageanty and rehearsed.  So these people are mad that she has been singing her whole life and has been coached how to sing?  How dare someone practice their craft before entering Idol.  And perhaps the most absurd comments were how she was arrogant.  I don’t know what show those people were watching, but what I saw was a very humble, innocent, 16 year old girl who is living out her dream.  And even if she does think she is a great singer, wouldn’t you if you were in her shoes?  There was only one acceptable complaint of Jessica Sanchez.  And that is her occasional bad song choices.  If she had picked the right songs week in and week out, she may have been able to put up the greatest singing season of all time.  But as for now, she will go down as the 2nd best in my book, right behind Adam Lambert.

by Jack Forcella

The Zack and Kelly Award- Best Couple

Named For: Zack Morris and Kelly Kapowski (Saved by the Bell)
Awarded To: The best couple on television
2010 Winner: Desmond and Penny (Lost)
2011 Winner: Michael and Holly (The Office)

10. Brendon and Rachel (Amazing Race/Big Brother) 4 points
3rd by T-time

9. Julian and Brooke (One Tree Hill) 4 points
3rd by Jack, 5th by Me

8. Kevin and Veronica (Shameless) 4 points
4th by Cecil, 4th by Me

7. Brad and Jane (Happy Endings) 8 points
2nd by Bonz, 3rd by Me

6. Kevin and Jenny (The League) 12 points
2nd by Tyson and Rizzo

5. Chuck and Sarah (Chuck) 14 points
1st by Larry, 2nd by Me

4. Andy and April (Parks and Rec) 15 points
1st by Cecil

3. Boyd and Ava (Justified) 17 points
1st by Tyson

2. Peter and Olivia (Fringe) 19 points
1st by T-time and Jack, 1st by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Phil and Claire (Modern Family) 20 points
1st by Bonz, Mags, and Rizzo

This is Phil and Claire's first nomination and win for the best couple on television.  Phil Dunphy also won the Louis and Twitty Award earlier in the Poolie season.

As the above results show, I did not vote for Phil and Claire Dunphy as one of my top five couples of the season, but I can certainly see why others would have.  Phil is obviously a fantastic character, and Claire, well Claire is crazy.  When you put them together, you get a terrific marriage that usually ends in disaster.  Whether it's Phil's hi-jinx, or Claire's anal retentiveness, one of them is usually in trouble.  It's always up to the other one to solve the problem, and that solution is usually hilarious.  Phil and Claire Dunphy are certainly worth of the Zack and Kelly Award this season.

by Dan Forcella

Friday, June 29, 2012

Wilfred 202 Review- Little Bro

Ryan- "Was he pissed off about something?"
Wilfred- "Drew drives hard. Dude's confident behind the wheel."
I have now watched "Letting Go" four times, and it never stops being hilarious. Where last week's preview episode gave viewers the strange but brilliant side of Wilfred, this season premiere was just flat out funny.

Repeatability is key for comedies, not so much in ratings, but when I'm thinking of the funniest series of all time, the ones I will remember are those that were watched over and over again. If Wilfred can continue to produce the redundancy it achieved with "Letting Go," it could become an all-time great show.

Jason Gann knocked it out of the park again, this time turning Wilfred into a little brother type of character, whose sole purpose in life (at least for this 21 minutes) was to make Drewwwwish Community Center proud of him.

Every aspect of Drew's personality that Wilfred replicated was done with such perfection by Gann that it was hard not to crack up every time the dog hit the screen. The nicknames were fantastic - my favorite being the community center bit because of Wilfred's enthusiasm about it - but it was him turning into a complete bro that made the episode.
To read the rest of my review of this week's Wilfred, head over to TV Fanatic.

Wilfred 202 - "Letting Go"

Emmy Wish List- Drama Series

It seems like there are seven shows for six spot in this year's Outstanding Drama Series race, but the big question remains whether or not Mad Men will win for the fifth straight time and break the all-time record. The AMC series is currently tied with Hill Street Blues, L.A. Law, and The West Wing with four Best Drama victories. Its biggest competitors are most likely two-time nominee Breaking Bad or newcomer Homeland.

Breaking Bad - AMC
Downton Abbey - PBS
Game of Thrones - HBO
The Good Wife - CBS
Homeland - Showtime
Mad Men - AMC

The series that many thought had a chance to unseat Mad Men last year, The Good Wife, should be right in the thick of it again. Downton Abbey, moving up after last year's win for best miniseries should also vie for the crown. I'm giving Game of Thrones a slight edge for the final spot over fellow HBOer Boardwalk Empire, mainly due to the fact that it aired its season closer to the voting period.

Emmy Wish List
Breaking Bad - AMC
As Walter and Jesse got themselves into more and more trouble this season, audiences had the pleasure of watching it all unfold. After maybe its best season yet, Breaking Bad deserves to be among those recognized for excellence once again this year.
To read the rest of my Emmy Wish List for Outstanding Drama Series, head over to TV Fanatic.

The Terry Fator Award- Male Reality

Named For: Terry Fator (America's Got Talent)
Awarded To: The best male reality competition contestant of the season
2009 Winner: Dan Gheesling (Big Brother)
2010 Winner: Russell Hantz (Survivor)
2011 Winner: Rob Mariano (Survivor)

10. Tony Lucca (The Voice) 0 points

9. Paul Qui (Top Chef) 2 points
2nd by Jaydon

8. Michael Odokara-Okigbo (The Sing Off) 7 points
1st by Jack

7. Phillip Phillips (American Idol) 7 points
1st by Larry and Rizzo

6. Bopper and Mark (Amazing Race) 7 points
1st by Jaydon and Cecil, 5th by Me

5. Colton Dixon (American Idol) 7 points
2nd by Tyson, 4th by Me

4. Brendon Villegas (Amazing Race/Big Brother) 8 points
2nd by T-time and Jack

3. Troyzan Robertson (Survivor) 13 points
2nd by Larry, 2nd by Me

2. John Cochran (Survivor) 13 points
3rd by Cecil, T-time, and Larry, 1st by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Coach Wade (Survivor) 16 points
1st by Tyson and T-time, 3rd by Me

This is Coach Benjamin Wade's third nomination and first win for the best reality competition contestant of the season.  Coach was nominated for the honor back in 2009 and 2010 for his work on Survivor.  Here to discuss Coach's prowess is Poolie voter, Tyson.

Coach Wade: How could you not love the dragon slayer? A man who was fired for telling the school where he coached women’s soccer that he would be gone for a week and then took two months off to go on Survivor.

A man who claims to have set the world record for the longest solo kayak expedition on the ocean (an amazing 6,132 miles) despite the fact that current record holder Paul Caffyn kayaked more than 9,000 miles in 1980 and 1981, 30 years before Coach claimed the record.

A man who claims to have overcome a ruthless attack by Amazon pygmies.

The one consistent aspect of Coach’s character is that he lies. A lot. Normally, people don’t like liars but when someone is this disconnected from reality it doesn’t feel like lying anymore, it feels like storytelling and everyone loves a good story. I, for one, hope Coach keeps telling them.

by Tyson Brazell

Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Dr. Doug Ross Award- Lead in Drama

Named For: Dr. Doug Ross (ER)
Awarded To: The best lead character in a drama series
2009 Winner: Tim Riggins (Friday Night Lights)
2010 Winner: Greg House (House)
2011 Winner: Eric Taylor (Friday Night Lights)

10. Stefan Salvatore (The Vampire Diaries) 3 points
4th by Jack, 5th by Me

9. Antoine Batiste (Luck) 4 points
2nd by Jaydon and T-time

8. Ben Epstein (How to Make it in America) 7 points
2nd by Rizzo

7. Frank Gallagher (Shameless) 8 points
2nd by Larry

6. Hank Moody (Californication) 8 points
1st by Bonz

5. Peter Bash (Franklin and Bash) 9 points
1st by Tyson, 4th by Me

4. Dan Scott (One Tree Hill) 9 points
1st by Jack, 1st by Me

3. Damon Salvatore (The Vampire Diaries) 10 points
2nd by Jack, 2nd by Me

2. Don Draper (Mad Men) 15 points
1st by Jaydon and T-time, 3rd by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Greg House (House) 23 points
1st by Cecil, Rizzo, Larry, Matt, and Mags

This is Greg House's fourth nomination and second win for the best lead character in a drama series. Here to discuss why House is such a great character is the father of Poolie voter Rizzo, Norm Reuss.

Through a maze of human evolution that traversed Homo erectus and culminated in the present day Homo sapiens the process of natural selection produced the ideal human individual, the one who could take what he wanted when he wanted it just because he could. (page 56 The social Conquest of the Earth by Edward O. Wilson) By any definition a pro pos the vernacular of popular culture such an individual must be called “the man”. The man takes what he wants, just because he can. The question of justification before us must conclude in either the positive or negative: is Dr. Gregory House, “The man”. To qualify he must take what he wants, when he wants is just because he can. House exceeds these expectations and includes the ability to takes what he wants form everyone, anytime he wants it and in so doing positions himself as the arc type for the next step in the evolution of man. To complete the argument though, it is incumbent upon me to identify what House wants and it better be BIG to qualify to the claim of “The Man”. It is big! House wants every shred of cloth that an individual pieces together to cover the insecurities, faults and foibles of their vested ego. House cuts open every person who crosses his life, baring their precious egos for examination, embarrassment, and ridicule. No one is immune; he defrocks the black man, the Jew, the pretty white boy, the oriental, the mother, the father, the child, the clinic patient, the handicapped peer, the dying friend, the boss, the entire penal system and eventually life itself. To once again borrow from the popular vernacular; house fucks with everyone and in the case of Cutty, literally, fucks her. (He does lose points for his failure to only fuck with 13 and not actually fuck her.) To say more would be redundant except to echo the very words of those who would detract from House asserting;”He’s a prick.” What could be more fun than to “house” their words down their throats with the reply, “What appendage of the anatomy qualifies one to be the man more than the one they so freely identify”. House is the man and solidifies his stature every time he swallows a pill without water.

by Norm Reuss

Emmy Wish List- Supporting Actress in a Drama

The Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series race is up for grabs, as last year's winner, Margo Martindale, won't be in contention after hitting up Justified for just one season. The surprise 2010 winner, Archie Panjabi, should be right back in the mix as a favorite, but don't count out Maggie Smith. Remember, she won last year in the miniseries category for her work on Downtown Abbey, which has made the move to series in 2012.

Christine Baranski - The Good Wife
Anna Gunn - Breaking Bad
Christina Hendricks - Mad Men
Kelly Macdonald - Boardwalk Empire
Archie Panjabi - The Good Wife
Maggie Smith - Downton Abbey

Baranski, Hendricks, and Macdonald should all return to the field after falling to Martindale in 2011, and I'm calling for Anna Gunn to make the jump towards a nomination, taking the place of Michelle Forbes. I'm assuming - and hoping - that The Killing is now off of the Academy's radar, as it bored me to tears throughout all of season one, and the beginning of season two, before I finally quit it.

Emmy Wish List
Bethany Joy Galeotti - One Tree Hill
I know there's no way Bethany Joy gets a nom, but she makes my wish list for nine seasons of great work. A show that was much too soapy most of the time to be recognized, Galeotti put forth some of her best work in this spring's final season of One Tree Hill.
To read the rest of my Emmy Wish List for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series, head over to TV Fanatic.

The Lily Finnerty Award- Worst in Comedy

Named For: Lily Finnerty (Grounded For Life)
Awarded To: The character you most love to hate in a comedy series
2009 Winner: Toby Flenderson (The Office)
2010 Winner: Susie Greene (Curb Your Enthusiasm)
2011 Winner: Gabe Lewis (The Office)

10. Freddie Benson (iCarly) 0 points

9. Eve Baxter (Last Man Standing) 5 points
2nd by Jack

8. Louie (Louie) 6 points
1st by Rizzo

7. Noah Werner (Suburgatory) 6 points
2nd by T-time, 4th by Me

6. Hazel Wassername (30 Rock) 11 points
1st by Bonz, 5th by Me

5. Stevie Janowski (Eastbound and Down) 11 points
2nd by Cecil, 3rd by Me

4. Robert California (The Office) 14 points
1st by Tyson

3. Rodney Ruxin (The League) 14 points
1st by Cecil and Jack

2. Ben Wyatt (Parks and Rec) 19 points
1st by Jaydon, 1st by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Andy Bernard (The Office) 20 points
1st by T-time, Larry, and Matt, 2nd by Me

This is Andy Bernard's first nomination and win for the comedy character you most love to hate. Back in 2009, Andy was nominated for and lost by only one point in the best supporting character award.  Here to discuss how Andy Bernard went wrong is Poolie voter, T-time.

Remember when we loved The Office? It seems so long ago. But it was only twelve months ago that Poolie voters judged it to be the best comedy on television. Of course that was when Steve Carell still graced the program with his unique blend of humor and heart. We knew it would not be as good after Michael Scott got on that plane to Colorado, but we couldn’t have imagined it would fall apart completely.

The program’s fall from grace was quick and severe but it didn’t have to be. There was still a stable of talent in the cast. All they needed to do was spread the load. Go back to classic Jim/Dwight pranks. Give more screen time to Kevin and Ryan. This should have worked. It’s not what they did. The Office instead attempted to force the load once carried by Steve Carell onto one man. Bad idea. That one man was Ed Helms. Worse idea.

It’s safe to say that Andy Bernard, as portrayed by Helms, has destroyed this show. This is in large part because HE IS NOT FUNNY.  It’s also because he thinks that he is. He overdoes every bit. A perfect example can be found in the finale. Andy as the down-on-his-luck janitor had some inherit comedy. But Andy doesn’t know when to stop, pushing every bit until the viewer is just annoyed. STOP TRYING SO HARD. If he had just played that bit to its logical conclusion, it might have been good, but he can’t help himself. Frustratingly, that was one of Andy’s better moments this year.

The sadder part is that Erin, a formerly fun character was dragged down into the morass with him. They keep pushing this Andy-Erin relationship on us like it is something we should care about. For an audience to have a stake in a TV relationship, they need to feel for one of the characters. We never cared about Andy finding love. That was never part of his appeal(when he had any). They were matched up at first because of the jokes and then later it was just assumed we would care. This is the Parks and Rec approach. That’s not the way that The Office built Michael-Holly or Jim-Pam. It is the way that they ruined the affection we formerly had for Erin Hannon.

In the end, this is a comedy. All Andy Bernard needs to do is be funny. There was a time when he was. The Stamford version of the character was amusing in small doses. That time is long past. The Andy Bernard of the past few years was a tolerable annoyance. This year, his step into the bright lights has ruined a once beloved franchise.

by Tim Forcella

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The James Zinkand Award- Worst Reality Contestant

Named For: James Zinkand (Big Brother)
Awarded To: The reality competition contestant that you most love to hate
2009 Winner: Margie and Luke (Amazing Race)
2010 Winner: Aaron Kelly (American Idol)
2011 Winner: Jacob Lusk (American Idol)

10. Oliver Green (Project Runway) 0 points

9. Vienna Girardi (Bachelor Pad) 1 point
3rd by Tyson

8. Sarah Grueneberg (Top Chef) 2 points
4th by Me

7. Beverly McClellan (The Voice) 4 points
2nd by Jack

6. Lawon Exum (Big Brother) 7 points
2nd by Jaydon

5. Kalie Booker (Big Brother) 9 points
2nd by T-time

4. Adam Poch (Big Brother) 12 points
1st by T-time, 2nd by Me

3. Rachel Reilly (Big Brother) 15 points
1st by Jaydon, Cecil, Rizzo, and Larry

2. Astro (The X Factor) 18 points
1st by Tyson, 3rd by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Joshua Ledet (American Idol) 19 points
1st by Jack, 1st by Me

This is Joshua Ledet's first nomination and win for the reality competition contestant you most love to hate.  American Idol has now won the James Zinkand Award for three straight  years.

The interesting thing about my hatred for Joshua Ledet, is that he seemed like a very nice kid.  He was nice, polite, and honestly not supremely annoying when he spoke on American Idol this season.  The problem was that when he performed, I wanted to stab myself in the eye.  Every time it was a run.  Every time it was some kind of vocal Olympics.  I hoped and hoped that he would just sing one song as it is written.  Not because I wanted him to go further in the competition, but because I couldn't handle yet another shout-fest without wanting to jump off of my balcony.  Every time Joshua Ledet made it through to another round, it meant he was passing a contestant I liked more than him, and for that I hated him all season long.

by Dan Forcella

Emmy Wish List- Supporting Actor in Drama

The competition only gets tougher, and deeper, as we move on to the Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series race. The winner from each of the previous two ceremonies should be the favorites going into September.  Peter Dinklage will look to repeat after a bit of a surprise win last year, while 2010 winner Aaron Paul returns to the field after Breaking Bad's absence last year.

Alan Cumming - The Good Wife
Peter Dinklage - Game of Thrones
Giancarlo Esposito - Breaking Bad
Walton Goggins - Justified
Aaron Paul - Breaking Bad
John Slattery - Mad Men

The dark horse to top the two favorites is probably Paul's castmate, Giancarlo Esposito, who was phenomenol as the super creepy Gus Fring this season. Add Cumming, Goggins and four-time nominee John Slattery to the mix, and you have one heck of a group.

Still on the outside looking in may be folks like Andre Braugher and Josh Charles, who both made the field last year, as well as great performers like Neal McDonough, Michael Pitt, John Noble, Mandy Patinkin and everyone's favorite crazy man, Nick Nolte.  It's a very deep field.

Emmy Wish List
Peter Dinklage - Game of Thrones
The second season might not have lived up to the first, but our love of Tyrion Lannister never wavered. Dinklage's performance was a big reason for that, as the actor continued to play sarcastic, loving, scared, and powerful all a the same time.
To read the rest of my Emmy Wish List for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series, head over to TV Fanatic.

The Chris Farley Award- Sketch Performer

Named For: Chris Farley (Saturday Night Live)
Awarded To: The best sketch show performer of the season
2010 Winner: Bill Hader (Saturday Night Live)
2011 Winner: Bill Hader (Saturday Night Live)

5. Kegan Michael Key (Key and Peele) 3 points
2nd by Jaydon, 3rd by Me

4. Jordan Peele (Key and Peele) 4 points
1st by Jaydon

3. Taran Killam (Saturday Night Live) 7 points
1st by Jack, 2nd by Me

2. Bill Hader (Saturday Night Live) 10 points
1st by Tyson, Cecil, Rizzo, and Matt

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Fred Armisen (Saturday Night Live) 11 points
1st by T-time and Bonz, 1st by Me

This is Fred Armisen's third nomination and first win for the best sketch show performer of the season.

Armisen might have actually had a better season last year, but it is about time the man is recognized for his fantastic performance over the past few years.  Whether it be the Turner Classic Movies bits, his countless impressions that are always spot on, or his most recent performance on The Californians, Armisen has been the unnoticed SNL MVP for a while.

by Dan Forcella

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Emmy Wish List- Lead Actress in a Drama

It's time for the ladies. The Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series race has been very interesting as of late, mostly due to the fact that each year we assume it will be the year that Mariska Hargitay is left out as a nominee. I think it's going to take her not being on the ballot to stop the SVU star from being nominated. However, she certainly isn't the favorite. That title should go to Claire Danes, who is new to the field, but whose work on Homeland was undeniably fantastic.

Kathy Bates - Harry's Law
Glenn Close - Damages
Claire Danes - Homeland
Mariska Hargitay - Law and Order: SVU
Julianna Margulies - The Good Wife
Elisabeth Moss - Mad Men

Last year's champ Margulies, as well as 2008 and 2009 winner Close, should also vie for the crown in 2012. I correctly predicted Bates to join the field to her huge name, and I don't see the Academy getting rid of her just yet. Elisabeth Moss rounds out my group of nominees, and it was so difficult to leave her new costar Jessica Pare off of this list given how much the Emmys love to nominate Mad Men actors.

Emmy Wish List
Claire Danes - Homeland
It's tough to make an argument against Danes being the best overall performer of the year.  er depiction of the slightly (dramatically?) insane CIA agent Carrie Mathison was the cornerstone of the season's best new drama.
To read the rest of my Emmy Wish List for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series, head over to TV Fanatic.

Emmy Wish List- Lead Actor Drama

It's time to get serious. That's right, it's the Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series race.  Chock full of possible nominees, all five of last year's runners-up return to the field. None of them are the favorite, though, as three-time winner Bryan Cranston is back in action after a season of no new episodes in 2011.  Although he's never lost for a season of Breaking Bad, Cranston will face plenty of competition from Kelsey Grammer, who has won four Emmys over on the comedy side of things.

Steve Buscemi - Boardwalk Empire
Bryan Cranston - Breaking Bad
Kelsey Grammer - Boss
Jon Hamm - Mad Men
Dustin Hoffman - Luck
Damian Lewis - Homeland

Jon Hamm and Steve Buscemi should return to the field as members of two of the Academy's favorite series, and I predict Damian Lewis and Dustin Hoffman to round out the field. That means that Michael C. Hall, Hugh Laurie and Timothy Olyphant are in serious trouble of not making the cut. Laurie was the most difficult to leave out, since House just aired its final season, but there are just too many quality performers in the category.

Emmy Wish List
Bryan Cranston - Breaking Bad
It's a tough question with this group of actors, but is there anyone you are scared of more than Walter White? Cranston continued his award-winning performance of the high school teacher turned drug dealer with maybe the best season to date.
To read the rest of my Emmy Wish List for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series, head over to TV Fanatic.

The Teri Bauer Award- Worst in Action

Named For: Teri Bauer (24)
Awarded To: The character you most love to hate in an action series
2009 Winner: Olivia Taylor (24)
2010 Winner: Skyler White (Breaking Bad)
2011 Winner: Sarah Linden (The Killing)

10. Nelson Van Alden (Boardwalk Empire) 3 points
3rd by Mags

9. Tara Knowles (Sons of Anarchy) 5 points
3rd by Jack, 5th by Me

8. Margaret Schroeder (Boardwalk Empire) 10 points
2nd by Jaydon, 2nd by Me

7. Sarah Linden (The Killing) 11 points
1st by Tyson

6. Marnie Stonebrook (True Blood) 12 points
3rd by Jaydon, 1st by Me

5. Maria Laguerta (Dexter) 14 points
3rd by Larry and Matt

4. Carl Grimes (The Walking Dead) 17 points
2nd by Tyson, Rizzo, and Larry

3. Constance Langdon (American Horror Story) 18 points
1st by Matt and Mags, 3rd by Me

2. Lori Grimes (The Walking Dead) 25 points
1st by Rizzo and Jack, 4th by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Joffrey Baratheon (Game of Thrones) 35 points
1st by Jaydon, Cecil, T-time, and Larry

This is Joffrey Baratheon's first nomination and win for the character you most love to hate in an action series.  Here to talk about about Joff's performance this season is Poolie voter, T-time.

There are two types of characters that get nominated in this category. The more common type is the character that is just obnoxious. Whether it is written that way, or if the actor is just awful, this is the character that is doing his part to ruin an otherwise good show. This type is by far the more common. Joffrey Baratheon belongs to the second type.

The rarer type of nominee in this category is the one that is meant to be despicable. This character torments your protagonists. This character owns a variety of traits that make it impossible to like him. And this character is well-acted, enough to lend some sort of twisted logic to his predations.

This is not to say that all well-acted villains can be hated. Mags Bennett, in particular, was a phenomenal big bad but one which earned our sympathy. That’s not what we are talking about here. Joffrey is an antagonist who is completely without value as a person. But, as portrayed by Jack Gleeson, he is so believably sadistic that you know the show is much better for having him on it.

In a show like Game of Thrones, where the majority of the characters are morally grey, (at least by intention) it is welcome that there is at least one character we can all root against wholeheartedly. Joffrey is cruel, cowardly and selfish. The entitlement he displays towards the kingship is loathsome. He torments characters we know, as well as bit players.

A character this loathsome should be recognized. Thanks to the accurate portrayal by Gleeson, Joffrey is finally getting what he deserves: a Poolie for the character you love to hate in action.

by Tim Forcella

Monday, June 25, 2012

The Kara DioGuardi Award- Worst Reality Personality

Named For: Kara DioGuardi (American Idol)
Awarded To: The reality competition personality that you most love to hate
2011 Winner: Nick Cannon (America's Got Talent)

10. Michael Kors (Project Runway) 0 points

9. James Oseland (Top Chef) 1 points
5th by Jaydon

8. Steve Jones (The X Factor) 4 points
2nd by T-time

7. Randy Jackson (American Idol) 7 points
4th by Jaydon and T-time

6. Nicole Scherzinger (The X Factor) 7 points
2nd by Larry, 5th by Me

5. Christina Milian (The Voice) 8 points
2nd by Jack, 2nd by Me

4. L.A. Reid (The X Factor) 8 points
3rd by Tyson, 1st by Me

3. Jennifer Lopez (American Idol) 21 points
1st by Jaydon, 4th by Me

2. Nick Cannon (America's Got Talent) 23 points
1st by T-time, Larry, and Jack

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Christina Aguilera (The Voice) 24 points
1st by Tyson, Cecil, and Rizzo, 3rd by Me

This is Christina Aguilera's first nomination and win for the reality competition personality you most love to hate.  Here to tell you why Xtina was horrid this year is new Poolie voter CJ.

Oh Christina, what ever happened to you? Being compared to Snooki isn’t something you would ever think possible for the former pop idol. One would hope she could make some form of a comeback, something similar to what Britney has managed, wishful thinking probabaly...Possibly weighing twice as much as Cee-Lo and looking worse than an oompa loompa, I say leave this genie in the bottle and bury it on the ocean floor.

by Cecil Alleyne

Friday, June 22, 2012

The Flintstones Award- Animated Series

Named For: The Flintstones (ABC) 1960-66
Award To: The best animated series of the year
2009 Winner: Family Guy (FOX)
2010 Winner: Family Guy (FOX)
2011 Winner: South Park (Comedy)

5. Unsupervised (FX) 0 points

4. Bob's Burgers (FOX) 3 points
1st by Me

3. Archer (FX) 5 points
1st by Jaydon and Cecil

2. Family Guy (FOX) 6 points
1st by Rizzo and Jack, 3rd by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. South Park (Comedy) 10 points
1st by Tyson, Larry, and Bonz, 2nd by Me

This is South Park's fourth nomination and second straight win for the best animated series on television.

The group of animated series is stronger than most people would think.  I know Jaydon would put Archer as one of the best comedies on television, and I didn't even vote it in my top three.  South Park was my second favorite this season, but it's ability to appeal to so many earned it a second straight Flintstones Award in 2012.  Cartman and the gang had plenty of great adventures this season, including "I Should Have Never Gone Ziplining," which was weird even for this Comedy Central series' standards.

by Dan Forcella

Teen Wolf Exclusive: JR Bourne Discusses Family, On and Off Screen

"The group that we've got, we're like a family," JR Bourne told me of the crew making MTV's hit series, Teen Wolf. The veteran actor - who plays the mostly antagonizing Chris Argent - went on to say that "you realize how grateful you are for not just loving the job, and the character, but also loving everyone involved."

It comes off exactly like that on screen. Teen Wolf has been an extremely fun series to watch, and a lot of that can be credited to what seems to be a very enjoyable atmosphere among those creating it. Bourne reiterated a number of times during the interview: "I have fun with [Tyler Posey]."

So much fun that while filming the scene in which Chris and Scott pick up desserts in the kitchen during last week's "Abomination," Bourne said "that was the only [take] they could have used. I cracked up every time."

The characters might not all get along on screen, but it's apparent that the actors, writers and everyone else involved with the show are like a family. Teen Wolf gives off that vibe every week, as we watch Scott, Stiles and the gang traverse this crazy world they're inhabiting.
To read the rest of my exclusive with JR Bourne of Teen Wolf, head over to TV Fanatic.

Emmy Wish List- Comedy Series

Finishing up our look at the funniest folks on television, we conclude with the Outstanding Comedy Series race. I'm sure there is no doubt in anyone's mind that two-time defending champion Modern Family is on its way to a three-peat, but there should not be any chicken counting before they get a chance to hatch. Three-time champion 30 Rock, and critical favorite Parks and Recreation should give Modern Family some stiff competition in the category.

The Big Bang Theory - CBS
Curb Your Enthusiasm - HBO
Louie - FX
Modern Family - ABC
Parks and Recreation - NBC
30 Rock - NBC

Six-time nominee Curb Your Enthusiasm should return to the field after not airing any episodes last year. Louie and The Big Bang Theory, which were both highly represented in a number of categories at the most recent Emmys, round out my group of predicted nominees.

Emmy Wish List
Chuck - NBC
There's no way that this action comedy earns a bid, but after its final season it would be a dream come true for Chuck to be nominated for an Emmy. The series that kept coming back year after year, to the delight of passionate fans, went out on a very high note in its final season.
To read the rest of my Emmy Wish List for Outstanding Comedy Series, head over to TV Fanatic.

The Heroes Award- Worst Season

Named For: Heroes (NBC) 2006-10
Awarded To: The series with the worst season of the year
2010 Winner: Heroes (NBC)
2011 Winner: Eastbound and Down (HBO)

10. Dexter (Showtime) 2 points
1st by Jaydon

9. Smash (NBC) 4 points
5th by Larry, 3rd by Me

8. Ringer (The CW) 5 points
3rd by Jack

7. American Horror Story (FX) 6 points
2nd by T-time

6. Hung (HBO) 7 points
3rd by Larry

5. Louie (FX) 8 points
3rd by T-time, 2nd by Me

4. Glee (FOX) 9 points
2nd by Larry and Tyson

3. Girls (HBO) 12 points
2nd by Cecil, 1st by Me

2. The X Factor (FOX) 19 points
1st by Jack and Larry, 5th by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Terra Nova (FOX) 28 points
1st by Tyson, Cecil, Rizzo, T-time, and Mags, 4th by Me

This is Terra Nova's first nomination and win for the worst season of the year.  Poolie voter T-time is here to tell you why this FOX series deserved the 2012 Heroes Award.

Terra Nova stands out among previous winners of this award. Both Heroes and Eastbound and Down were shows that Poolie voters had enjoyed in previous seasons before ignominiously falling. When you’ve committed to a show, you keep watching as it falls apart, hoping that it will return to form. But Terra Nova was a new show.  People should have just stopped watching if it was that bad, right? Somehow enough people continued to keep watching the freshman effort so that they could later vote on how much they hated it.

The cast was forgettable. Jim Shannon, the nominal lead, was just dull. I don’t hate him. I don’t even dislike him. I’ll say this for Jason O’Mara’s character: he was in the show. Stephen Lang’s Commander Taylor threatened to steal the show at the beginning of the series. He was decidedly grey and inherently interesting. That lasted about three episodes before they started softening him. The rest of the cast is no more notable. Their actions ranged from pointless to foolish. Their character traits ranged from cliché to nonexistent. Only one character truly stood out. Josh Shannon was completely insufferable. In a year where whiny teenage boys filled our television screens, Landon Liboiron’s character surpassed all in eye rolls garnered. Seldom has one man caused so many viewers to make strangling gestures on their couches.

The plot was additionally uninteresting. They partially serialized it, with the story leading up the struggle with the Sixers, and that may have kept some people going, but often it got bogged down with one-off episodes that were often ridiculously stupid. I’ll only mention the amnesia disease because frankly that speaks for itself. Plot holes and inconsistencies were legion but again, I’ll only mention one. The super-advanced society from the future does not have weapons that can kill dinosaurs. Yes, at some point in the future we will abandon the perfectly adequate artillery of the twentieth century in favor of guns that shoot puffs of air and occasionally scare the beasts off.

So why? Why did I watch all of these episodes when I quit on arguably better shows like Magic City and American Horror Story. Well, from the beginning, Terra Nova had one thing in spades: potential. The pilot was surprisingly good considering what came afterward. It opened up a new world for exploration. That sandbox was always there. In Terra Nova, anything could have happened. So what if it hadn’t yet: it still could. More than that, there were dinosaurs. And a fantastically beautiful setting in Australia. The best shots of the series involved no dialogue and no characters. A pterodactyl lazily floating over a primordial cliff. A brachiosaurus lifting its head from a grove of vegetation. These things look good in HD. Every time that camera swept over the pristine wilderness, I thought that maybe this next episode would be the one where they lived up to that potential. It never was though.

And possibly, that’s the worst thing a television show can do: suck you in, promise more on the morrow and fail to deliver in any way. When it’s over you’re mad that you watched it. When the season’s over, you’re relieved. This year Terra Nova was the worst thing I watched on TV. Apparently, I wasn’t alone.

by Tim Forcella

Wilfred 201 Review- Getting Your Chinas Crossed

Ryan- "How'd you get this van?"
Wilfred- "We hot-china'd it."
Wilfred is one of the best shows on television, and the second season premiere proved that once again. It is an absolutely hilarious comedy that mixes in intense dramatic and suspenseful moments with a great long-running mysterious plot that makes the viewer question every single thing that is happening on screen.

"Progress" was a magnificent return for Wilfred, as the 21 minutes really felt like the climax of a major motion picture, with all of cutting back and forth between dream and reality. A ton of credit should go to Randall Einhorn who did a great job directing, causing me to constantly wonder what was real and what wasn't.

Not only was the main theme of dream vs. reality responsible for some unbelievably dramatic moments - like Ryan getting taken in for electric shock therapy or the getaway scene in which he finally realized the meeting was actually real life - but it also created some of the funniest scenes I've witnessed in a while.

As the hospital moments began getting stranger and stranger, with the lightning making Robin Williams' face even more creepy and the flickering of the lights every second, you had to know something big was coming.
To read the rest of my review of last night's season premiere of Wilfred, head over to TV Fanatic.

Wilfred 201 - "Progress"

Thursday, June 21, 2012

The Louis and Twitty Award- Best Buds

Named For: Louis Stevens and Alan Twitty (Even Stevens)
Awarded to: The best buds on television
2011 Winner: Troy and Abed (Community)

10. Hank and Charlie (Californication) 5 points
2nd by Cecil

9. Ryan and Wilfred (Wilfred) 6 points
2nd by Jack

8. Blake and Adam (The Voice) 6 points
1st by Cecil

7. Walter and Peter (Fringe) 8 points
2nd by T-time, 3rd by Me

6. Bobby and Andy (Cougar Town) 10 points
1st by T-time, 1st by Me

5. Franklin and Bash (Franklin and Bash) 11 points
1st by Larry

4. Steve and Danny (Hawaii Five-0) 13 points
1st by Tyson

3. Chuck and Morgan (Chuck) 13 points
2nd by Larry, 4th by Me

2. Troy and Abed (Community) 23 points
1st by Jack, Mags, and Jaydon, 2nd by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Phil and Luke (Modern Family) 26 points
1st by Bonz and Rizzo, 5th by Me

This is Phil and Luke's first nomination and win for best buds.  Phil Dunphy has been the runner-up for the Cory Mattews Award the past two seasons, and Luke is a two-time nominee for the Arthur Spooner Award.

While Modern Family has almost entirely fallen off the map at the Poolies, both Phil and Luke Dunphy continue to keep the series alive after three seasons.  The best part about this father/son duo is that they only get better as characters when they're together.  Both ridiculous, both completely oblivious most of the time, Phil and Luke Dunphy made up about 90% of Modern Family's comedy this season, and much of that came when the two were up to shenanigans as the best buds that they are.

by Dan Forcella

Emmy Wish List- Supporting Actress in a Comedy

The Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series field should look very familiar to Emmy fans in 2012. I'm predicting all six nominees from last year to return to the field this summer, including the 2011 champion Julie Bowen, who should be the favorite once again. Bowen will face stiff competition from the now 90-year old Betty White, and maybe Kristen Wiig for her last season on SNL.

Julie Bowen - Modern Family
Jane Krakowski - 30 Rock
Jane Lynch - Glee
Sofia Vergara - Modern Family
Betty White - Hot in Cleveland
Kristen Wiig - Saturday Night Live

Bowen's castmate on the Emmy's favorite comedy, Vergara, should also vie for the top spot. Three-time nominee Jane Krakowski and 2010 winner Jane Lynch round out the field of nominees I expect to see this July.

Emmy Wish List
Elisha Cuthbert - Happy Endings
She went from the girl most people couldn't stand watching on 24, to the girl I can't stop laughing at and with on Happy Endings.  A series riddled with female talent, Cuthbert takes the cake as the top performer on this hilarious ABC sitcom.
To read the rest of my Emmy Wish List for Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series, head over to TV Fanatic.

The Cheers Award- Best Theme

Named For: Cheers (NBC) 1982-93
Awarded To: Best opening credits/theme song
2010 Winner: Sons of Anarchy (FX)
2011 Winner: Community (NBC)

10. New Girl (FOX) 4 points
2nd by Bonz

9. Treme (HBO) 6 points
2nd by T-time, 5th by Me

8. Suburgatory (ABC) 6 points
2nd by Jack, 4th by Me

7. Fringe (FOX) 7 points
3rd by Jack

6. iCarly (Nick) 8 points
1st by Jack

5. Sons of Anarchy (FX) 10 points
1st by Cecil

4. Justified (FX) 11 points
2nd by Cecil

3. Community (NBC) 14 points
1st by Bonz, 2nd by Me

2. How to Make it in America (HBO) 18 points
1st by Mags, Rizzo, and Tyson, 3rd by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Game of Thrones (HBO) 24 points
1st by Jaydon, T-time, and Larry, 1st by Me

This is Game of Thrones' second nomination and first win for best opening sequence and theme song.  The series was also nominated last season for The Sopranos Award.  Here to talk about its fantastic intro is Poolie voter Jaydon.

The great intros feel like the essence of the shows they precede. The Game of Thrones intro is a marriage of an epic, propulsive and eminently hummable theme with a sprawling, dynamic visual journey through the world of Westeros. In each season the show expands into new territory. As we are introduced to new locations like Harrenhal or Qarth, they are added to the intro’s world map. The passage through the geographical scope of the lands culminates in the Game of Thrones title card which combines the sigils of the four dominant houses (Lannister’s Lion, Baratheon’s Stag, Stark’s Direwolf, Targaryen’s Dragon) that compete for power. The visuals locate all the factions in play and give us a sense of how much is at stake. The theme fits perfectly with the medieval fantasy context and primes us for complex political maneuvering, sexposition and bursts of inventive violence. You can tell which intros are the best pretty easily. The best ones you rarely skip. This one gets the full play through almost every time.

by Jonathan Stuart

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Emmy Wish List- Supporting Actor in a Comedy

Moving onto Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series, we are handed one of the stranger categories of the Emmys. Stacked with talent, it is amazing that the Academy continues to give all the nominations to the Modern Family guys. Last year's winner, Ty Burrell, should be the favorite once again, but his pretend relatives will be right behind him.

Ty Burrell - Modern Family
Jesse Tyler Ferguson - Modern Family
Max Greenfield - New Girl
Nick Offerman - Parks and Recreation
Ed O'Neill - Modern Family
Eric Stonestreet - Modern Family

With Jon Cryer moving up to lead, and my assumption that Chris Colfer and Glee are falling out of favor, there should be room for up-and-comers Max Greenfield and Nick Offerman to join the Pritchett-Dunphys clan at this year's Emmys.

Emmy Wish List
Ty Burrell - Modern Family
Modern Family hasn't been nearly as good as it was in its first season, but Ty Burrell hasn't slowed down one bit. His performance, and mainly his dynamic with Nolan Gould, has been the only thing keeping this show all that watchable.
To read the rest of my Emmy Wish List for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series, head over to TV Fanatic.

The Marissa Cooper Award- Worst in Drama

Named For: Marissa Cooper (The O.C.)
Awarded To: The character you most love to hate in a drama series
2009 Winner: Jason Street (Friday Night Lights)
2010 Winner: Ashley (Entourage)
2011 Winner: Kurt Hummel (Glee)

10. Dixon Wilson (90210) 3 points
2nd by T-time and Bonz

9. Jamie Scott (One Tree Hill) 6 points
1st by Jack, 5th by Me

8. Eric Murphy (Entourage) 7 points
1st by Jaydon, Rizzo, and Bonz

7. Ellis Tancharoen (Smash) 7 points
1st by Tyson

6. Tanya Skagle (Hung) 7 points
2nd by Larry

5. Toni Bernette (Treme) 7 points
1st by T-time, 3rd by Me

4. Jabbar Trussell (Parenthood) 9 points
3rd by Jack, 2nd by Me

3. Declan Porter (Revenge) 16 points
1st by Mags

2. Will Schuester (Glee) 17 points
1st by Matt, 4th by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Kurt Hummel (Glee) 22 points
1st by Cecil and Larry, 1st by Me

This is Kurt Hummel's third nomination and second straight win for the character you most love to hate in a drama series.  Here to talk about Kurt's continued success in the category is Poolie voter, Tyson.

Kurt Hummel was named most hated character in a drama series by Poolie voters. To many, the most hated title may seem like a strange result. I mean, the actor who played Kurt was named as one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people. You read that right. Kurt Hummel is one of the 100 most influential people in the world. To explore reactions to Kurt, it may help to describe the lens through which typical television viewers see him.

Traditional television viewers have historically been presented with two types of male, homosexual characters:

  1. Flamboyant gay: the character is not meant to be taken seriously and mainly serves as comedic relief
  2. Secret gay: secret/hidden/taboo homosexuality is the defining feature of these characters

Only in the past few years, have viewers been exposed to characters who deviate from the archetypes mentioned earlier. The Kurt-hate comes from a pronounced lack of familiarity with his type of character.

He is a singing, dancing, fashonista and should fit squarely into the flamboyantly gay character-type but he just doesn’t.

The pesky Glee writers constantly feature him in situations typically reserved for straight characters. We explore the relationship with his hetero dad. We explore his struggles with bullying, relationships, and the future. We don’t have context for this sort of thing and so we hate him for making us feel awkward. If you are gay you need to be gay in an accessible way where accessibility is determined by what we have been exposed to in the past. Gay characters are supposed to be caricatures we can place in a box labeled “gay” and not have to think about. At first glance, Kurt belongs in that box but he just keeps breaking out of it. That’s why he is so influential and that’s why he is so hated.

by Tyson Brazell

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Emmy Wish List- Lead Actress in a Comedy

Today we'll take a look at the Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series race. A category truly stacked with the Academy's favorites, I can imagine last year's winner, Melissa McCarthy, not even making the six woman field. Instead, watch for Golden Globe winner Laura Dern, long-time Emmy favorite Julia-Louis Dreyfus or the best darn politician in Indiana to vie for the crown.

Laura Dern - Enlightened
Zooey Deschanel - New Girl
Tina Fey - 30 Rock
Laura Linney - The Big C
Julia Louis-Dreyfus - Veep
Amy Poehler - Parks and Recreation

Poehler has been nominated in either lead or supporting the past four years, but is yet to take home the trophy. Tina Fey has won it before, I thought Laura Linney was sure to win last year and Zooey Deschanel is on everyone's radar, so the competition is stronger than ever.

Emmy Wish List
Rachel Bilson - Hart of Dixie
The decision to put Hart of Dixie in the comedy race is interesting, but since it's here, I can't think of anyone I'd rather see nominated than Bilson. I might have enjoyed her Zoe Hart even more than Summer Roberts!
To read the rest of my Emmy Wish List for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series, head over to TV Fanatic.

The Johnny Carson Award- Late Night Host

Named For: Johnny Carson (The Tonight Show)
Awarded To: The best late night host of the season
2009 Winner: Saturday Night Live (NBC)
2010 Winner: The Tonight Show w/ Conan O'Brien (NBC)
2011 Winner: Jimmy Fallon (Late Night)

5. Stephen Colbert (Colbert Report) 6 points
2nd by Matt and Mags

4. Joel McHale (The Soup) 7 points
1st by Jaydon, 2nd by Me

3. Jon Stewart (The Daily Show) 12 points
1st by Matt

2. Jimmy Fallon (Late Night) 12 points
1st by T-time and Jack, 1st by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Daniel Tosh (Tosh.0) 18 points
1st by Tyson, Cecil, Rizzo, Larry, Mags, and Bonz, 3rd by Me

This is Daniel Tosh's first nomination and win for the best late night talk show host of the season.  Here to let you know how Tosh has been killing it on Comedy Central these days, is Poolie voter Rizzo.

Daniel Tosh is the man. He makes jokes so offensive you sometimes wonder how he is even allowed to say the things he does. His stand up comedy is hilarious and he brings all of that to Tosh.O. He is in the middle of a twitter war with Rod Dydrek, and although Rob seems like a good dude, Tosh absolutely murdered him with this bit. For those of you who don't know, Rob is in the middle of a shitty show that tries to emulate Tosh.O.  It also features the most annoying and horrible chick on planet earth. She thinks she is hot, tough, a great singer and funny. She is not even remotely close to being any of these things.

Another bit that was great was his improv tweet and greet at ASU. Not a lot of comedians could make this so good. I guess this would be a good time to mention that none of his original content is on youtube, that's the worst.

A great way to gauge someone is to google their name and then hit the spacebar and see what auto fills. For "Tosh.O is" you get "... racist" and "...he gay". That's how you know he is doing something right.

Everyone loves watching viral videos, and the internet has 100 new good ones a day. Tosh does a great job of putting it all together and making it one of the finniest shows on TV.

I leave you with what is probably my favorite viewer video of the week ever.

by Andrew Reuss

Teen Wolf 204 Review- Off To See The Lizard

Coach- "The bigger they are, the bigger they are."
After the season premiere, I stated that "Teen Wolf is good television." Following this week's "Abomination," I have to take that statement back. The hour was certainly fun, with plenty of excitement and twists, but there continue to be way too many WTH moments to warrant the term "good."

That's not to say that I didn't enjoy this week's installment. Just because it isn't of the utmost quality, that doesn't mean that we can't all enjoy Teen Wolf just as much as something like Mad Men, which is renowned as some of the best work on television.

Honestly, there were moments in "Abomination" when I started to think that the series might dumb itself down purposefully. It is on MTV after all. Maybe the overacting, and the obvious writing is simply playing to its audience. More subtle, complex characters and stories might not go over as well in the market.

I'm not trying to put any fan of Teen Wolf down, because at the end of the day, I am a fan as well. Watching Stiles sprint back and forth between Scott and Allison in order to help them converse, Gerard conducting the most awkward dinner ever and the entire Lizard on the pool deck scene were some of the most fun I've had this summer!
To read the rest of my review of last night's Teen Wolf, head over to TV Fanatic.

Teen Wolf 204 - "Abomination"

Monday, June 18, 2012

Emmy Wish List- Lead Actor in a Comedy

We begin with Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, which returns a healthy contingent from last year's nominees. Two-time defending champion Jim Parsons should prove to be the favorite come September, but he will face plenty of competition from two-time winner Alec Baldwin, critical favorite Louis C.K., and long-time Emmy darling Jon Cryer, who makes the move from supporting to lead this season.

Alec Baldwin - 30 Rock
Don Cheadle - House of Lies
Louis C.K. - Louie
Jon Cryer - Two and a Half Men
Larry David - Curb Your Enthusiasm
Jim Parsons - Big Bang Theory

Larry David, who has been nominated four times for his Curb performance, and Oscar-nominated movie star Don Cheadle round out the crew that I expect to see listed as this year's nominees.

Emmy Wish List
Larry David - Curb Your Enthusiasm
Although it wasn't one of the better Curb seasons of late, LD always brings the heat. Between admitting he was a social assassin and going to war with Michael J. Fox, Larry David had audiences laughing as much as any actor on television.
To read the rest of my Emmy Wish List for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, head over to TV Fanatic.

The Ed McMahon Award- Best Reality Personality

Named For: Ed McMahon (Star Search)
Awarded To: The best reality competition personality of the season
2011 Winner: Ryan Seacrest (American Idol)

10. Michael Simon (Next Iron Chef) 0 points

9. Chris Harrison (Bachelor Pad) 2 points
4th by Me

8. Phil Keoghan (Amazing Race) 4 points
3rd by Cecil

7. Ben Folds (The Sing Off) 4 points
3rd by T-time

6. Tim Gunn (Project Runway) 5 points
2nd by Jaydon

5. Tom Colicchio (Top Chef) 5 points
1st by Jaydon, 5th by Me

4. T.J. Lavin (The Challenge) 14 points
2nd by Tyson, Cecil, and Mags

3. Blake Shelton (The Voice) 21 points
1st by Tyson, 3rd by Me

2. Ryan Seacrest (American Idol) 23 points
1st by Rizzo, Larry, and Jack, 1st by Me

and the Poolie goes to...

1. Jeff Probst (Survivor) 26 points
1st by Cecil, T-time, and Mags, 2nd by Me

This is Jeff Probst's first nomination and win for the best reality competition personality of the season. Last season he was nominated for the reality personality you love to hate.  Here to discuss Probst's success this year is Poolie voter, T-time.

I’m probably one of the newest Survivor fans around. I’ve seen two seasons in their entirety, and parts of the previous two. It wasn’t long into that run that I began to dislike Jeff Probst. “He’s affecting the game,” I complained and disparaged his leading comments at tribal councils. I shook my head as he stirred the conversation in specific directions, perhaps undermining the careful alliance-building I had just seen. “Just shut up,” I found myself saying as he narrated every challenge with repetitive notes on which player was doing well.

It wasn’t long after that I began to love him, and for all the same reasons that had so angered me previously. When he smugly stirs the pot at council, that’s what brings the good stuff to the surface. Without Probst, these affairs would be a bore. A less skillful host could have me hitting the fast-forward button. While on other shows, the elimination can be a dreadful bore. On Survivor, even when we know who is going home, the debate is always watchable.

Even the narration became a positive thing. “Troyzan’s making progress,” “Kim’s on her second bag.” It’s not insightful, but knowing that the footage is going to be cut up, what else can you do? It has become humorous, familiar. Like Probst himself, Survivor wouldn’t be quite the same without it.

by Tim Forcella

The Fourth Annual Poolies- Year In Review Video

With the Fourth Annual Poolies set to begin announcing this year's winners, we have a special treat for you all.  Poolie voter Jack has put in the man hours to bring us all a fantastic video, recapping the 2011-12 year in television.

15 minutes in length, the video focuses on those shows and characters that were nominated for Comedy, Drama, Action, and Reality awards this year.  I wholeheartedly suggest you watch this great trip down this season's memory lane.

However there are MAJOR SPOILERS for a number of the most popular shows on television.  So if you plan on watching, or are currently catching up on any of the following shows, I would think long and hard about watching this video:

Hart of Dixie, Mad Men, Revenge, Vampire Diaries, Californication, House, Homeland, Breaking Bad, Sons of Anarchy, Fringe, Justified, Dexter, Boardwalk Empire, Walking Dead, and Game of Thrones.

Without further ado, watch the video by clicking on the link...

Television Year In Review - A Video Tribute

The Borgias 210 Review- One Wedding and a Funeral

Vanozza- "So Cesare, what exactly are you celebrating? Your sisters betrothal, or the death of your brother?"
Even though the breathtaking act of Cesare murdering Juan left most of us wondering what could possibly happen next, just as François Arnaud assured me last week, the season finale of The Borgias was not without its own surprising and tension-filled moments.

The "new Cesare" that Arnaud teased to TV Fanatic was born, Lucrezia continued her ascent to the Lady of supreme confidence, the Friar Savonarola was finally put to death in front of all of Rome, the Pope struggled with the news of Juan's death and then succumbed to Della Rovere's poison plan in the final seconds of "The Confession."  Yeah, it was quite the hour.

Much of the final installment of the year felt like a sneak peek at what's to come. Nothing accomplished that more than Cesare's new stone cold attitude. He has always been the man that wanted to be the tough guy, but now it's seems like he is.

He shed no tears for the brother he just murdered. In fact, he celebrated his sister's marriage instead of mourning the loss. He forged Savonarola's confession so that the friar could be burned in the street. Cesare even admitted to his father that he murdered dear Juan, and there was not an ounce of emotion coming out of him.
To read the rest of my review of last night's The Borgias season finale, head over to TV Fanatic.

The Borgias 210 - "The Confession"

Saturday, June 16, 2012

The Borgias Exclusive: François Arnaud Teases New Cesare In Season Finale

"I can assure you that Cesare's drive and anger isn't diminished in any way," François Arnaud assured me over the phone earlier this week.  The star of The Borgias went on to say that his character, after murdering his brother Juan last Sunday, has "grown into the warrior that he will be."

Arnaud said that Cesare killing Juan "was a beautiful moment."  Although it was indeed the horrible act of one brother gutting the other, Arnaud believed "there is that final embrace that I think helps letting go in a way."

We will all have to let go of Juan, and the great performance by David Oakes, as Arnaud realized, "It's very hard to imagine The Borgias without him.  He's been the one who drove Cesare to become what he is now."

Who is that? The aforementioned warrior? "In the finale, you see a new Cesare," Arnaud teased.
To read the rest of my The Borgias exclusive with Francois Arnaud, head over to TV Fanatic.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Borgias Exclusive: David Oakes on Juan Borgia's Rise and Fall

"The last thing I did on The Borgias, was literally throw myself off a bridge," David Oakes reminisced on Monday afternoon.  One of the stars of the Showtime series, Oakes' run as troublesome brother Juan Borgia was fantastic, but it sadly came to an end with the character's inevitable death on Sunday's penultimate episode of the year.

It was a moment that Oakes knew was coming. "I always knew I was going to die in season two," he said. "That was never in doubt, but I didn't know when I was going to die." After Juan's failure at Forli, and his subsequent syphilis, gangrenous leg, and opium addiction, everyone saw this character's end in sight.  As Oakes says, "There really wasn't much keeping him alive."

That is truly sad, because Juan Borgia was an extremely compelling character over the past two years.  Oakes was brilliant at playing both the on-top-of-the-world leader of the Papal armies, and also the down-on-his-luck coward.

"I enjoyed the contrast," Oakes told me. "You got this wonderful meeting between what [creator] Neil Jordan wanted initially for Juan to be, and what they ended up with having cast me in the role.  I was always trying to show Neil that behind the arrogance and uselessness, there sort of was this true human being that desired to impress people. Towards the end you ended up with this great, great clash of the two."
To read the rest of my exclusive with David Oakes of The Borgias, head over to TV Fanatic.