Remote Destination

Stuff @ The Start

Sold on Superman – I happened to catch Look Up in the Sky! The Amazing Story of Superman on A&E. I was slayed. I’ve been uber critical of Superman lately both in the comics and on the small screen. However this documentary really showed me why Superman rocks and why he deserves respect. I’ve never been more pumped about Superman than I am at this very moment.

Sold on Sunny – I’m literally jonesing for It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. FX has been running teaser scenes and it’s reminding me how much I loved it the first time around. I’m glad that FX has put a promotional push behind the show and I’m optimistic that it will catch on without losing it’s unique “envelope pushing” identity. But seriously, the season premiere can not come quickly enough.

Addendum – I actually watched the pilot for Windfall again, and I vented on the forum for those interested.

What I Watched Last Week

Deadwood (HBO) – I tried watching this with my roommate and I was way lost. This is one of those shows that you’ve got to adjust your input of. I had to pay attention (and decipher) every line of dialogue, until it became in instantaneous process. This is a densely written show and it deserves the extra attention paid.

I love how it appeared that Al and Bullock were going to be at odds when the series premiered, yet they’ve entered into a partnership of sorts. What a dope curveball. I appreciated how they managed to work nearly every character into the season premiere. Hearst seems to be very much the bastard, and he makes Al look sympathetic, sort of. I loved Bullock’s “tell” as well as his beatdown on Farnum.

But I really dug Jane’s moments. I realized that I’ve grown to appreciate her moments on screen the most. Al and Jane are perhaps the best characters on the show.

Rescue Me (FX) – Tommy shagging his nephew’s ex is quite the soap operatic moment, yet it’s pulled off with just enough crassness to make it tolerable. I’m dreading Franco’s dalliance with the older woman if only because my roommate teases me because I was in a similar situation a few years back.

Sean is funny as always, but it’s tough to watch Kenny fall apart. It was obvious he was going to get taken last season, but that he’d fall completely apart this season is just wrong. He’s in shambles. It’s damn sad.

Huff (Showtime) – Speaking of shambles, Huff is like completely gone. However this week’s episode raises an interesting question; if one is separated and sleeps with another woman, is it cheating? For Huff’s sake, I hope not.

I was disappointed with Byrd’s storyline. It had a great build up, but it just ended. What happened to the kid they tied up? Was there any resolution? Boo. In fact Byrd’s storyline dragged this show so far down, because anytime you’ve got Russell doing “I Will Survive” for karaoke, you’ve got gold.

Entourage (HBO) – Eh, it was tolerable for a premiere. I didn’t appreciate Turtle and Drama leering at Black women (nor the implication that they were “easy.) I did like Ari’s dramas. James Wood’s appearance was decent, but nothing special.

The notion of taking your mom to a big event was a cool one, but the resolution of having every mom make the trip was extra. Also the dialogue seemed very fake this outing. It seemed very written, where usually the show feels pretty natural.

Lucky Louie (HBO) – A sitcom that pushes boundaries and uses profanity? This might have seemed cooler had it premiered last year before It’s Always Sunny in Phildelphia. Still the live audience aspect is interesting. And the teaser was hilarious.

Still the actual show wasn’t as smooth as I wanted it to be. It didn’t have too many “laugh outloud” moments. But it’s still worth watching. I hope this show does evolve into something worthy of being HBO though.

Greatest Show Ever…this week – Saved (TNT)

It’s rare that I’m bowled over by a pilot episode, but this one hit all the right buttons. Who doesn’t love a flawed hero? Wyatt Cole is a med school drop out. He also happens to be an EMT with a gambling problem. What more do you need to know? Oh, that the ex who broke his heart is a doctor, still in his life and moving in with a colleague. And Wyatt’s pop is a successful doctor who’s ashamed of Wyatt’s decisions.

As far as the actual show, it was amazing. I dug the innovation of showing what got a patient into the position where they’re being treated by the EMTs. I also liked the idea of a bookie that had a history (and a crush) on Wyatt. Throw in cool fellow EMTs and great music and you’ve got a stellar show that everyone should be watching. TNT has a real commodity on it’s hands.

A Public Service

I had originally planned on filling this space with something else, but we here at InsidePulse TV are a family. So when I read Josh Clinton’s latest column that he planning on picking up a pay cable channel, either HBO or Showtime, I knew I had to do my part to settle the debate.

(For the record I think Josh should add both channels, because he really won’t regret it.)

COMEDY

HBO has numerous forays into the area of comedy. Da Ali G Show and Curb Your Enthusiasm are some of the more popular. Oh yeah and Entourage is kind of hot too.

Showtime doesn’t have that many offerings. But Weeds is such a strong half hour, that I’d gladly miss every one of HBO’s half hour offerings to catch it.

Advantage: Showtime

DRAMAS

HBO has some great one hour dramas. Forget about the overhyped The Sopranos and set your sights on Big Love which recently wrapped up it’s first season. Couple that with Deadwood (which just began it’s third season) and you’ve got two compelling hours. Plus when you add The Wire and Rome (which have new seasons on the horizon) and you’ve got more quality dramas than most networks.

Showtime doesn’t slouch in this department either. Huff is a solid offering and both Brotherhood and Dexter look interesting. While I’ve never watched it The L Word gets tons of praise.

Showtime might have some potential on deck, HBO has proven greatness on deck in the form of The Wire and Rome, plus Deadwood always slays.

Advantage: HBO

OTHER STUFF

There are other factors to consider. For instance there are the shows that are difficult to define. HBO has Real Time With Bill Maher and Showtime has Penn & Teller’s Bulls#!t and both are quality shows.

Thanks to On Demand, you can also factor in on shows. HBO has Six Feet Under, the criminally underrated Carnivale and superb Oz. Showtime has Dead Like Me and Queer As Folk.

HBO has better documentaries, but Showtime has better musical offerings.

Overall, I’d have to give it to HBO, just based on the quality of it’s old shows.

Advantage: HBO

Drawn Conclusions

I’d really have to say that HBO is the way to go. I love Showtime (especially Weeds) and I think that it’s got some potential hits on the horizon, but HBO has a backlog of hits and plus the ones that are already established. If you’re going to pick up a pay cable channel based on original programming, you’ve got to for HBO.

An Entourage or Friends?

Last week I posed the following scenario;

Good News; you’ve found yourself a new crowd to hang with. Bad News; this new crowd couldn’t be called diverse. Good News; both crowds are pretty popular. Bad News; they’re on separate coasts. Maybe you’re relocating and you stumble across them. Perhaps you get in because of an old classmate. Either way, you’re in with the in crowd. Good News; everyone is pretty successful. Bad News; you’re the “new guy/gal.”

So would you rather be a character on Entourage or Friends?

For IP Movies Michaelangelo it’s not a question;

Entourage or Friends? You’re joking, right? Hang out wih a bunch of uptight, bed-swapping yuppies or kick it in Hollywood with a movie star? Get laid because I’m hanging out with a movie star? Live in a mansion because I’m living with a movie star? Drive a phat ride because I’m living with a movie star? Pretty much have my every whim catered to because I’m living with a movie star? And my only job is to hang out with a movie star so he feels comfortable? Where the heck do I sign up?

Talowolf has a different take;

I never got into watching Entourage, but if those guys are as cool as everyone says they are I think they’d support my decision to go to NY and bed all three female Friends, which, given the progression of the show could have so totally happened. Plus in NY I could pass for Puerto Rican.

IP TV’s Kevin Wong pleads ignorance, kind of;

Friends or Entourage? Well, I have no idea what Entourage is about, but I’m Asian, so that obviously rules Friends out…

IP Music vet Aaron Cameron has a fertile imagination;

Math, I’ve like watched maybe one whole episode of both series during their combined runs. I mean, if I REALLY wanted to hang around a bunch of snarky white folk, I’d have actually attended the last two or three Inside Pulse Group Photo Days. Anyways, let’s go with “Friends”, but only the first season version, before all the women contracted a combo of anorexia n’ tapeworms. By the end of the show’s run, the three broads had lost a combined 350 pounds since the first season and Matthew Perry, of all people, seemed to be the one who found most of it. Truth be told, I’m only picking “Friends” so I can see how a white writing staff would portray me, as the sole Black character. The thought of an informal script reading session where I get such gems as, “Feets don’t fail me now” and “wiggedy wiggedy whack” has to have some value.

Column regular Thomasina put it concisely;

I gotta go with friends on this one because I think I could hang out at Central Perk, and sing Smelly Cat with Phoebe.

As for me, I’m going with Entourage. Truth be told that show is pretty much like my college and immediately post college years, only with a larger budget. My two roommates and I used to shag hot chick, play video games and spend money of stupid things. We were living the dream, and that’s all Entourage is. So for me it wouldn’t so much be acting as much as reliving the past. Plus they could use me as an excuse to play even more Hip Hop on the show.

Naturally this brings us to…

Good News/Bad News/Question of the Week

Good News; you got a promotion. Bad News; the job means more work on your part. Good News; it means more money. Bad News; you’ve got less time to spend at home. Maybe your promotion requires you to work night. Maybe it requires you to work weekends. Who knows? The point is you’ve got cut something out of your life. Good News; you’re cutting housework out. Bad News; you’ve got to get a maid.

So who are you going to pick; Alice (The Brady Bunch), Florence (The Jeffersons) or Rosie (The Jetsons)?

(Feel free to email me your answer, or you can post it in the Forums on the Remote Destination thread.)

Links

The Pitch Your Show thread is probably my favorite from the Forums.

The aforementioned Josh is contemplating HBO vs Showtime among other things.

Kevin when the satellite route.

Farah has a warning to all.

Song for Joe Reid

Over on his Blog, Joe hints that he’ll be returning to The Film Experience, to which a respond with a hearty “good gravy!”

Meanwhile On his Blog Joe blasts Ann Coulter, praises libraries and Wikipedia and gushes about his reinvigorated love for the movie theatre.

And with that I’m going to bed. I’ll catch you next week. Unless you wish to catch up with me on the Forums.