George Lopez, TV Show Comings and Goings and Bruce Willis Jumps the Shark for Good

Right to the links, we’re loaded today:

maybe i never watched because publicity photos like this scare the bejesus out of me

maybe i never watched because publicity photos like this scare the bejesus out of me

I can’t say that I watched more than 37 consecutive seconds of any episode of Lopez Tonight. Which also means that I’ve never watched 37 consecutive seconds of anything George Lopez has ever done. So it’s not really moving my needle that the talk show got canned and its last episode is tonight. On my honeymoon in Punta Cana, his sitcom was on about 52 different channels, but I still never watched it. Guess he’s just not my cup of tea. What is interesting, however, is how buddy-buddy he was with Conan a year ago and how much TBS, Conan and Lopez himself said the two talk show thing would work at TBS when everyone else in the world was telling them they were crazy. There’s something to be said for an “everyone’s against us” attitude to motivate you, but when it leads you down a path that you yourself probably know is wrong, there comes a time when you have to stop throwing good money into bad. For TBS, that time probably should have come a week after it hired Conan. At the latest.

More cancellations! Eureka was supposed to not come back, then it got an abbreviated season, now Syfy is all like, “never mind.” I think I watched the first one and didn’t really think much of it, so I never went back. I guess they got one extra episode to tie things up.

Flip side good news, if you’re a fan of watching the same bland show over and over again on USA — Suits will be back for a second season. Watched 10 minutes of the pilot, knew exactly where it was headed, checked out and watched the end of the Phillies game. Move along everyone. Nothing to see here.

And there is the “likely, probably, almost definitely will keep going” category for shows like Breaking Bad. No surprise that once FX possibly entered the picture, AMC caved. At the risk of belaboring the point as I Know I have over the last couple weeks, AMC is in trouble. anytime they hear the two letters “F” and “X” in a sentence together in some kind of context like the network might poach one of its shows, AMC should sit up and beg for the show not to leave. Looks like that’s what happened here.

and he rips on the emmys on twitter. a lot.

and he rips on the emmys on twitter. a lot.

I’m still not a huge Twitter person, but one guy I love on there is Sons of Anarchy creator Kurt Sutter. He basically spends his day calling out everyone that doesn’t think like him, which kinda rules. He said exactly what I said the other day — why would any member of a creative team of a show trust AMC right now? You know you’re not getting paid, and even if you have one of the best shows on TV, you’re going to be treated like the fifth-best show on ABC Family or something.

Since we’re about a month away from the start of the new fall season, it’s about time to start planning your TV viewing schedule. Yeah, it’s come to everyone needing to do things like that with the way people have no time to breathe let alone watch TV and the riduculous amount of TV shows that are out there. So if you’re looking for a good place to start, we’ve got the first words from the critics on what might be the most promising shows. Five of these series are on my list, as are the Pearl Jam and Prohibition specials. 

Anyone that ever played sports has that one scene from that one movie they would watch before their biggest sporting events to get pumped up. Usually, it was from one of these pep talk scenes that unfortunately have become mostly passe because now they’re played on every Jumbotron in every stadium right before the ninth inning or the fourth quarter. Yeah, I’m looking right at you Chelcie Ross in the “Nobody comes into our house and pushes us around” speech from Rudy. Liked it at first, hate it now because Citizens Bank Park had a good five-year streak where they played it all the time, even when the Phils were down 15-1. But I’m glad they the pre-Russia speech from Miracle, the slow-clap state semfinals (and not the finals) from Hoosiers and Bill Pullman in Independence Day. All excellent choices. Some of my favorites that list missed:

Terrence Mann in Field of Dreams. I used this as the opening to my thesis presentation in college, a project producing two different commercials for the Double-A Harrisburg Senators. Any pep talk by James Earl Jones should probably be included in a list like this, because really, who wouldn’t listen to James Earl Jones?

Buttermaker’s made-up story to Ahmad up in a tree in Bad News Bears. How the heck is there no video of this? There is, however, video of Ahmad’s best line:

Chris Knight’s talk at the sex party about the beauticians (student beauticians). FF to the 1:10 mark:

And maybe it wasn’t the most conventional pep talk, it was more of a passive-aggressive, reverse psychology thing, but how do you not include Robin Williams in Good Will Hunting? Criminal. It was on last night, and I think it just may be the most perfect movie ever made. Not saying it’s the best, not saying it’s my favorite. It’s not close to either. But every single piece of that movie is done perfectly. I wouldn’t change a word, a scene or a beat.

In the latest and greatest version of the game “How Old Are You!” I proudly present the 25th anniversary of the release of Top Gun. This comes on the heels of the Ferris Bueller and Stand by Me 25th anniversary parties that already had me looking for gray hairs. AMC is showing a special presentation of it on Friday night with production notes. I’ve seen a couple of their production-note movies, and it’s kind like Pop Up Video, only less obtrusive. After I saw Top Gun in the theater at age 11, I think it was the first time my old man tried to talk birds and bees with me. He said something like, “There’s a big sex scene in there, huh?” and I said yeah. Then he tried to say something else, chickened out, and I didn’t hear another word about it for a couple years. Luckily, by then I was able to say, “I got this all in school, don’t worry.” At that point, he gleefully walked away.

Normally when it comes to remakes, you want to remake something that was popular. You don’t want to remake something that sucked worse than the Bewitched movie. So … then why would anyone wanna make another Bewitched? Technically, they’re remaking the TV show into another TV show, and disassociating themselves with the movie in any way possible. In fact, you might not even see the show on the air before there is technology available for the studio to go to everyone’s house that saw the movie and wipe their minds clear of any memory they have of it.

And because one crazy-silly reboot is never enough, The Munsters could be back on the docket. On the bright side, Bryan Fuller is the man behind it, and he hasn’t steered us wrong yet.

come out to the coast, we'll get together, make a crappy movie ...

come out to the coast, we'll get together, make a crappy movie ...

He’s kidding, right? Bruce Willis wouldn’t dare do GI Joe 2, would he? He couldn’t! He wouldn’t! Ummmmm … he will. Looks like the greatest action hero of the last 25 years is going to hook up with the worst action franchise of the last five and take a starring role in GI Joe 2. Talk about a franchise really trying to get me back. After I saw the first one, I’d say there was a better chance of me asking B.A. Barracus to the prom than me even considering watching the inevitable second movie. Adrianne Palicki signing on started to change my mind. If Bruce Willis really does make it in to the movie, it at least gets upgraded to “when it comes on FX on a Saturday afternoon” and maybe even elevated to the bottom of my DVD queue. I never watch those anyway. Wanna know what’s sitting at the bottom of my queue right now? Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, Battle: Los Angeles and Rabbit Hole. There is zero chance I order any of those.

Today’s entry in the “duh” file — pay-TV is losing subscribers. I’ve totally felt like an outsider when my friends talked about The Sopranos, or The Wire, or the current season of Dexter, but I’m not paying anything more to watch TV. I just won’t do it. From November 2006 to November 2007, I had free HBO, and I’m not gonna lie — it rocked. I watched the last season of the Sopranos, completely caught up on Entourage, got hooked on Flight of the Conchords, loved Eastbound and Down, and watched approximately 17 movies that I really enjoyed (Mr. and Mrs. Smith at the top of that list) I wouldn’t have seen otherwise. I renewed in February 2009 for two months to watch the second season of Flight of the Conchords at $10 a month, then got out. It sucked for a couple weeks when I got rid of it, but I got over it. I just can’t justify paying for TV when I already pay to watch a boatload of other regular channels. I’m sure when people started really looking hard at their household budgets, HBO and Showtime were (rightfully) the first to go.

Admittedly, I don’t check out Funny or Die enough. I really should do it more. It’s probably because I don’t always have the time to watch the videos on there, they’re usually like four minutes or more. But this one is like three minutes and it’s the kind of Paul Rudd I like. I’m a Paul rudd fan, but not necessarily of his last three years or so. I wanna see Wet Hot American Summer Paul Rudd. Kinda like this:

It’s a sad day in PopRox land. Well, it was on Tuesday. One of the most entertaining summer reads on the Internet over the last three or four years was the weekly NewsRadio retrospective reviews at the AV Club. I looked forward to them not just because NewsRadio will always be one of my favorite sitcoms, but because writer Donna Bowman is one of the most interesting writers I’ve ever read on the Internet. I’ve really tried to learn from reading her as she successfully, thoughtfully and extremely humorously reviewed each of the series’ 97 episodes. The few people that did watch NewsRadio started watching because it was Phil Hartman’s first post-SNL departure, but I watched because of Dave Foley in his first post-Kids in the Hall show. NewsRadio was one of the classic “Get through the first 10 episodes, and you’ll be handsomely rewarded” shows, the 30 Rock of its day. It was pretty brutal to watch at the start. Almost at “Happy Days with Chuck” levels. But right around the start of the second season, I’ll put NewsRadio up against just about any live-action sitcom of the 90s not named Seinfeld. Better than Friends, better than Roseanne, better than Frasier … it was better than everything other than Seinfeld. I just checked to be sure. Bowman put her passion and appreciation into every one of the reviews she wrote way better than I could have and probably better than anyone even involved with the show could have. Andy Dick probably doesn’t even remember he was on the show at this point. Anyway, if you were at all a fan of the show, you should take some time to go back in the archives and relive it through Bowman’s words. It’s completely worth it. And as a general rule, anytime you can relive NewsRadio, you do it.


In case you missed it the other day, the Monkees canceled their tour, and they’re not coming to Mountain Laurel on Sept. 10. I got a third-hand tip about it last week and asked Mountain Laurel co-director Marc Jason about it, I think on Thursday. He said nothing like that was true, that he just spoke with them, that everything was ready to go. Then five days later, the band is cancelling. Hmmmmmmmm.

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