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by Larry Brody
The latest list of series I’ve recorded the latest episodes of but know damn well I’m never going to watch:
- DOCTOR WHO
When Russell T. Davies brought back DOCTOR WHO 10 years ago the Doctor was a hero who took as much delight in being in danger as he did in extricating himself and others from it. Under Steven the Imposter Moffat the Doctor became, first, a self-doubting human-like fool, and now, a true villain who destroys everyone with whom he comes into contact. I love Peter Capaldi as an actor but won’t watch the show again till the Moff’s been replaced by a real showrunner who knows what the gig’s all about.
This cute romantic buddy show has aged into one in which star David Boneanaz has aged into a new personification of the role that made him famous. No, I don’t mean Angel from the show of the same name, I mean Angelous, Angel’s dark side. This is what happens to formerly nice people who become producers, whether they start out as actors, writers, or lovers.
- THE LIBRARIANS
I tried, really I did, but if I wanted insipid pseudo-science adventures about ancient, magical artifacts, I would have watched WAREHOUSE 13. And THE LIBRARIANS, unfortunately, is an even weaker version of the same premise, proving that TNT makes even worse sci-fi than SyFy.
The stupidity of this series’ action-packed yet purely technological MacGuffins and the absurdity of its premise that high I.Q.s are what define genius and all geniuses have the most obnoxious forms of Asperger’s Syndrome have combined over the past year and a half to create genius-level boredom. The show has been pure self-parody since halfway through the pilot, and although I wanted to believe that was deliberate, I’m sad to say that I can’t fool myself anymore.
I discovered NCIS while recovering from a heart attack and accompanying surgery. Now, after seeing almost 13 full seasons I finally have healed enough to realize that as much fun as this series’ ’70s TV-like presentation can be, its gung-ho chauvinism and repetition of the same 2 plots week after week have severed its spine…which ain’t easy considering that it was made of jello.
And here’s a special bonus disappointment currently on Netflix:
- LAST TANGO IN HALIFAX
This BBC loser started off as a serious drama about something to which I totally related: Romance and the rediscovery of what’s important in life at an age when most people are just sitting around and waiting to die. I identified with Derek Jocobi as the male lead, Alan (even though both the actor and the character are substantially older than I am), and my wife felt the same about Anne Reid’s female lead, Celia. But at this moment, with 3 episodes left to watch in the third series, I’ve had it with the weak, self-pitying men and strong but catastrophically rigid women. All the characters keep on making the same mistakes, over and over and over, and I’ve written – and maybe lived – enough soap opera to never be able to put myself in a place where I can enjoy it.
That’s it for now, kids. Off I go to spend a few pleasant moments of pushing, “Delete, delete, delete….”
In case you missed Amazon’s latest announcement about how they’re going to pretend to be interested in newbie screenwriters while still making all their major deals with, you know, major players:
by Team TVWriter™ Press Service
Amazon has announced Amazon Storywriter, a free, cloud-based screenwriting software for writers of all levels to create movie and TV screenplays in standard format, offering an alternative to pricey industry options. Also, in an effort to further enable talented writers to present their work for consideration and to expand its search for the next great movie or TV series, Amazon will now accept drama submissions and will no longer take a free option on scripts submitted directly to the amazonstudios.com site.
Creators can simply log in with their Amazon account to access Amazon Storywriter. The free software promises to take the pain out of formatting, with features including auto-format as you type and import/export of PDF, FDX and Fountain formats. Screenwriters can write online while their scripts are saved as they work, knowing all their material is being stored securely in the cloud. Additionally, they can write offline with a free installable Chrome app for Mac and PC.
“Amazon is thrilled to support the evolution of our creative community by offering advanced tools like Amazon Storywriter to assist both established and aspiring writers in telling their stories,” said Roy Price, Vice President, Amazon Studios. “Amazon is dedicated to producing high-quality, original films and television series that customers love, and enabling more writers to obtain access to creative resources will ultimately help us discover great new talent. Just recently we were thrilled to debut the second season of “Gortimer Gibbon’s Life on Normal Street,” a kids show that came to us as a script submission. The show has been a huge hit with customers and a testament to the open door process–we can’t wait to see what comes in next.”
Amazon says that the company is always on the lookout for compelling new voices and interesting characters in series and movies that have the potential to become hits. Amazon continues to accept original scripts for feature films, primetime comedy series for adults, series for children between the ages of 2-14, and now for the first time also welcomes drama series submissions. In addition, Amazon will no longer take a free option on script submissions, thus allowing Writers Guild of America and the Animation Guild members to submit their original material through the online submission process.
by Diana Vaccarelli
Wicked City is a classic story of a man looking for love…or it is it? The thriller opens up with Kent Galloway (Ed Westwick) hooking up with a young girl on the Sunset Strip in the 1980’s.
When Kent can’t perform sexually, he pulls out a knife and stabs the woman to death, at which point enter Detective Jack Roth (Jeremy Sisto) to investigate the murder. From there on you get a classic cat and mouse game, but, sadly not one nearly as interesting as in, say, Criminal Minds.
- The chemistry between Jeremy Sisto and his partner, played by Gabriel Luna. They make the absolute best of their familiar characters, playing the hell out of their roles as rival Cops.
- Creator and writer Steven Baigelman writes a pilot so offensive to women that it made me cringe. Right before each murder Kent commits, the female victim is down on her knees giving him, well, you know. And then there’s the fact that Kent himself is so predictable that no matter how hard Ed Westwick, who plays him, tries, there’s no way he can breathe life into the character.
- We’ve seen all of this before, and most of the time, sadly, we’ve seen it done better.
The one thing keeping me watching this show is Jeremy Sisto. I want to see his Jack Roth character win and keep the bad guy from ever having a chance to bore me again. Sisto is a fantastic actor, who plays the part in a way that saves it from being a typical detective, but not even he can keep this going for an entire series.
EDITOR’S NOTE: As surprising as this may seem to more cynical TV viewers, Diana’s words in her conclusion have proved prophetic. ABC demonstrated a modicum of good sense and cancelled WICKED CITY shortly after we received her review.
Diana Vacc is TVWriter™’s Critic-At-Large. Find out more about her HERE
And no, it isn’t for being the Most Unlikable Talent Inflicting Himself on the Public This Year. It’s because whether you like this dude or not, he’s a helluva writer:
by Patrick Hipes
Seth MacFarlane has been set to receive the WGA West Animation Writers Caucus’ 2015 Animation Writing Award. It’s a lifetime achievement honor for MacFarlane, and will be bestowed tonight in a ceremony at the Writers Guild Theater in Beverly Hills. He follows Len Uhley, who won the award last year, andThe Simpsons‘ Sam Simon the year before.
MacFarlane created Family Guy and at 25 became the showrunner of the animated comedy, now in its 13th season. American Dad and The Cleveland Show followed, as well as a feature film career as an actor-writer-director, Fox’s science series Cosmos: A Space Time Odyssey, and a stint as Oscar host. He also is a Grammy-nominated crooner.
This is fucking funny. Indie video scores again!