procrastinator picks – top tv of 2014

February 22nd, 2015

fx_americans_keyart_p_2012The tv seasons don’t really lend themselves to an end of the year roundup. I’m somehow even less able than with films to remember how I am really feeling about a show exacerbated by the fact that I can’t always distinguish one season from the next. I’ve also waited so long for this list I might be judging The Americans and Justified off of this season instead of the last but they’d still be in the running. At the end of the day I could reorder these 100 different ways but here’s where I’m at this moment:

  1. The Americans (FX) – What a couple of bad ass Russian spies, I’m worried about their balancing their layers of deception with all of those around them, including their family, at least I’m always pretty sure they will somehow make it out of the trickiest of situations.
  2. Orphan Black (BBCA) – The lead in this series playing a myriad of characters was enough to sell it but they’ve kept the supporting characters and plot on par.
  3. The Good Wife (CBS) – I’m not sure where they’ve been going this year but am happy with the continued reinvention and the way that they balance these rich characters and story lines that keep ‘good’ a questionable characterization.
  4. Hannibal (NBC) – The lead actors in this show really make the creepy factor sing, with visual and story layers around them to match, can’t wait to see what the next season will bring.
  5. Justified (FX) – Oh Raylan I’ll hate to see you go after this season but I’m glad to see you pulled in for one last go with these characters who may at sometimes be dumb but they’re always complex.
  6. Ink Master (Spike) – Still my favorite reality show, I love the mix of the different skills and artistry it takes to be good at all the aspects of tattooing and of course just a dash of people drama.
  7. Fargo (FX) – What a random show this was capturing the spirit if not the story of the original film, quirky and dark with a cast of well-drawn characters, this is one of those shows I’m just glad gets made, and I’m curious to see what the next will bring.
  8. You’re the Worst (Fx) – This was my favorite new comedy of last year, centered on a couple of dysfunctional people, their dysfunctional attempt at a relationship, and their dysfunctional friends, funny.
  9. Parenthood (NBC) – I didn’t always love the paths that this family was sent on but the departure of the Bravermans will leave a hole in my schedule if not my heart.
  10. Orange is the New Black (Net) – This show continues to be a great go to binge watch if not because of the lead’s story then because of the myriad of surrounding stories to tell.

Honorable Mention: The Middle / SHIELD (ABC), The Walking Dead (AMC), In the Flesh (BBCA), The Big Bang Theory / Elementary /  The Mentalist / Mom (CBS), The 100 / Hart of Dixie (CW), Brooklyn 99 / The Mindy Project (Fox), Louie / Sons of Anarchy (Fx), Sleepy Hollow / Gotham (Fox), The Blacklist / Parks and Recreation (NBC), House of Cards (Net), The Honorable Woman (Sund), Lost Girl (Syfy), Cougar Town (TBS)

procrastinator posted in best, tv | no comments »
AddThis Social Bookmark Button

new and noteworthy tv: 2/16-2/22

February 16th, 2015

mentalistWell Lisbon and Jane have had a tough ride and it’s time for them to live happily ever after. I’ll set to record but not much good word on the new Odd Couple. And of course time to get my Oscar ballot together.

  • Monday – The Book of Negroes, Miniseries Premiere (BET, 8pm), Stevie Wonder: Songs in the Key of Life (CBS, 9pm)
  • Tuesday - Repeat After Me, Series Premiere (ABC, 8:30pm), 19 Kids & Counting/Our Little Family, Season/Series Premiere (TLC, 9/10pm), Countdown to the Oscars (ABC, 10pm)
  • Wednesday – The Mentalist, Series Finale (CBS, 8pm)
  • Thursday – QI, Series Premiere (BBCA, 8pm), The Odd Couple/Two and a Half Men, Series Premiere/Finale (CBS, 8:30/9pm), Vikings, Season Premiere (Hist, 10pm)
  • Friday – Preachers of Detroit, Series Premiere (Oxy, 8pm), Style by Jury, Series Premiere (TLC, 9:30pm), The Jack & Triumph Show, Series Premiere (AdSw, 11:30pm)
  • Saturday – Countdown to the Oscars (ABC, 8pm)
  • Sunday – Countdown/Red Carpet/Opening/Oscars/Red Carpet (ABC, 12:30/5:30/8:30pm)

The procrastinator lists items that may not be on your regular season pass, though notation does not imply recommendation other than those underlined. Times noted are typically PST.

procrastinator posted in tv | no comments »
AddThis Social Bookmark Button

new and noteworthy tv: 2/9-2/15

February 8th, 2015

schittsNot much this week, checking out a couple of unappealing sounding plots with good casts, but not another Amazon show I won’t get since I won’t buckle and pay for yet another method of viewing television.

  • Tuesday – Amish Mafia, Season Premiere (Disc, 9pm)
  • Wednesday – Schitt’s Creek, Series Premiere (POP, 10pm)
  • Thursday – The Slap, Series Premiere (NBC, 8pm)
  • Friday – Bosch, Series Premiere (Am, 12:01am)
  • Saturday – Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown (ABC, 8pm), Sexy Beasts, Series Premiere (A&E, 10pm)
  • Sunday – SNL 40th Anniversary (NBC, 8pm)

The procrastinator lists items that may not be on your regular season pass, though notation does not imply recommendation other than those underlined. Times noted are typically PST.

procrastinator posted in tv | no comments »
AddThis Social Bookmark Button

critics’ picks – must see movies of 2014

February 4th, 2015

boyhood-posterMovies is always the last list I get to because so many movies come out after the year is technically over. I’ve seen a few. We’ll see if I get to move before I do my own list. Stay tuned.

  • American Sniper – AA, AFI, BA, MD
  • The Babadook – AOS
  • Beyond the Lights – MD
  • Birdman – AA, AFI, AOS, CC, CFC, EW, FW, G, IS, MD, RC
  • Boyhood – AA, AFI, AOS, CC, CFC, EW, FW, G, GG, IS, MD, RC
  • Citizenfour – AOS, RC
  • Cold in July – FW
  • Dear White People – AOS, FW
  • The Dog – MD
  • Edge of Tomorrow – MD
  • Foxcatcher – AFI, GG
  • Gloria – MD
  • Gone Girl – BA, CC, EW
  • Goodbye to Language – MD, RC
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel – AA, CC, CFC, EW, G, MD, RC
  • Guardians of the Galaxy – EW
  • Ida – AOS
  • The Immigrant – FW
  • The Imitation Game – AA, AFI, BA, CC, GG
  • Inherent Vice – FW, MD
  • Interstellar – AFI, MD
  • Into the Woods – AFI
  • Jodorowsky’s Dune – EW, RC
  • The Lego Movie – RC
  • Leviathan – AOS
  • Life Itself – EW
  • Listen Up, Philip – AOS, MD
  • Love is Strange – AOS, G, IS
  • Lucy – RC
  • Manakamana – MD
  • Manila in the Claws of Light – MD
  • Mistaken for Strangers – FW
  • The Missing Picture – MD
  • Mr. Turner – AOS
  • National Gallery – MD
  • Nightcrawler – AFI, CC, RC
  • Paddington – BA
  • The Sacrament – MLS
  • Selma – AA, AFI, AOS, CC, EW, FW, GG, MD
  • Snowpiercer – EW, FW, MD
  • Takes of the Grim Sleeper – FW
  • The Theory of Everything – AA, BA, CC, GG
  • Top Five – MD
  • Unbroken – AFI, CC
  • Under the Skin – CFC, G
  • Violette – MD
  • We Are the Best! – AIS
  • Whiplash – AA, AFI, CC, CFC, EW, IS
  • Wild Tales – RC

AA – Academy Award Nominations, AFI, AOS – A. O. Scott for NYT, BA – BAFTA Nominations, CC – Critics Choice, CFC – Chicago Film Critics, EW, FW – Flavorwire, G – Gotham Awards, GG – Golden Globe Nomination, IS – Independent Spirit Awards, MD – Manohla Dargis for NYT, MLS – Mick LaSalle for SFGATE, RC – Richard Corliss for Time

procrastinator posted in best, movies | no comments »
AddThis Social Bookmark Button

new and noteworthy tv: 2/2-2/8

January 31st, 2015

bettercallsaul

I tuned out of breaking bad at around season two or so, not as excited about Saul as perhaps other but still worth a watch. Have heard good critical buzz about the new Fresh comedy and am trying not to hold Americans comparisons (which shows will always lose) against Allegiance.

  • Monday – Kids Baking Championship, Series Premiere (Food, 8pm), Swamp People/Appalachian Outlaws, Season Premieres (Hist, 9/10pm)
  • Tuesday – Street Art Throwdown, Series Premiere (Oxy, 9pm), Being Mary Jane, Season Premiere (BET, 10pm)
  • Wednesday – Fresh Off the Boat, Series Premiere (ABC, 8:30pm), Earth a New Wild, Series Premiere (PBS, 9pm), Mystery Diners, Season Premiere (Food, 9:30pm), Match Made in Heaven, Series Premiere (WE, 10pm)
  • Thursday – Allegiance, Series Premiere (NBC, 10pm), Broke A$$ Game Show, Series Premiere (MTV, 11pm)
  • Saturday – What Could Possibly Go Wrong?, Series Premiere (Sci, 10pm)
  • Sunday – Super Soul Sunday/In Deep Shift with Jonas Elrod, Season/Series Premieres (OWN, 11am/12pm), The Grammy Awards (CBS, 8pm), The Jinx/Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, Series/Season Premieres (HBO, 8/11pm), Better Call Saul, Series Premiere (AMC, 10pm), Coaching Bad, Series Premiere (Spike, 10pm), Legend of the Superstition Mountains, Series Premiere (Hist, 10pm)

The procrastinator lists items that may not be on your regular season pass, though notation does not imply recommendation other than those underlined. Times noted are typically PST.

procrastinator posted in tv | no comments »
AddThis Social Bookmark Button

critics’ picks – best books of 2014

January 29th, 2015

seven-killings-900x500The list of possible books is endless but I can never resist seeing what the recommendations are each year, anything irresistible? And for those who just can’t get enough lists I’ll refer you to the biggest list of lists I’ve found at LargeHearted Boy.

  • Panic in a Suitcase by Yelena Akhtiorskaya – FW
  • The Zone of Interest by Martin Amis – Ti
  • Lucky Us by Amy Bloom – Am
  • The Corpse Exhibition by Hassan Blasim – PW
  • Painted Horses by Malcolm Brooks – Am
  • The Unspeakable by Meghan Daum – HP
  • Wonderland by Stacey D’Erasmo – Ti
  • All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr – Am, NYT
  • Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay by Elena Ferrante – PW, FW
  • The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan – WP
  • The Secret Place by Tana French – Ti
  • The Painter by Peter Heller – Am
  • Fourth of July Creek by Smith Henderson – WP
  • The Book of Unknown Americans by Christina Henriquez – Am
  • A Brief History of Seven Killings by Marlon James – Am, Ti, PW, WP, FW, HP
  • The Laughing Monsters by Denis Johnson – Am, Ti
  • The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd – Am
  • Euphoria by Lily King – Am, Ti, NYT
  • Redeployment by Phil Klay – Am, Ti, NYT
  • My Struggle, Book 3: Boyhood by Karl Ove Knausgaard – FW
  • Nobody is Ever Missing by Catherine Lacey – HP
  • 10:04 by Ben Lerner – FW, HP
  • Preparation for the Next Life  by Atticus Lish – FW
  • Faces in the Crowd by Valeria Luiselli – FW
  • Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel – Am, Ti, WP, HP
  • In Paradise by Peter Matthiessen – Am
  • A Girl Is a Half-Formed Thing by Eimear McBride – FW
  • My Life in Middlemarch by Rebecca Mead – HP
  • The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell – Am, Ti
  • Bark by Lorrie Moore – PW
  • Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty – Am
  • Our Lady of the Nile by Scholastique Mukasonga – FW
  • Self-Portrait in Green by Marie Ndiaye – FW
  • Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng – Am, HP
  • Dept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill – NYT, FW
  • The Dog by Joseph O’Neill – PW
  • Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult – Am
  • Fives and Twenty-Fives by Michael Pitre – Am
  • Lila by Marilynne Robinson – FW, HP
  • Whiskey Tango Foxtrot  by David Shafer – Ti
  • Family Life by Akhi Sharma – NYT
  • I’ll Be Right There by Kyung-Sook Shin – FW, HP
  • The Story of Land and Sea by Katy Simpson Smith – HP
  • We Are Not Ourselves by Matthew Thomas – Am
  • Nora Webster by Colm Toibin – Am
  • The Southern Reach by Jeff VanderMeer – HP
  • The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters – Am, WP
  • Leavetaking by Peter Weiss – FW
  • The Wallcreeper by Nell Zink – FW

AM – Amazon, FW - Flavorwire, HP – Huffington Post, NYT – New York Times, PW – Publishers Weekly, Ti – Time, WP – Washington Post

procrastinator posted in best, books | no comments »
AddThis Social Bookmark Button

new and noteworthy tv: 1/26-2/1

January 24th, 2015

americansTennis to keep us occupied, until the Super Bowl for those who do that. And of course excited for the intriguing Americans, sad for the end of Parenthood (though it’s time), and will continue to dabble in Rescue Me lite with Sirens.

  • Monday – Super Bowl’s Greatest Commercials (CBS, 8pm), Black Ink Crew, Season Premiere (VH1, 9pm), Ellen’s Design Challenge, Series Premiere (HGTV, 9pm), Fat n’ Furious, Season Premiere (Disc, 10pm)
  • Tuesday – Sirens, Season Premiere (USA, 10pm)
  • Wednesday – The Americans, Season Premiere (FX, 10pm), Mississippi Men, Series Premiere (Hist, 10pm), Secrets of the Dead, Season Premiere (PBS, 10pm)
  • Thursday – Parenthood, Series Finale (NBC, 10pm)
  • Saturday - SNL Presents a Sports Spectacular/NFL Honors (NBC, 8/9pm)
  • Sunday – Australian Open (ESPN, Women’s Final Sat 12am/Men’s Final Sun 12am), Super Bowl (NBC, 3pm), Kitten Bowl (Hall, 12pm), Puppy Bowl (AnPl, 12pm)

The procrastinator lists items that may not be on your regular season pass, though notation does not imply recommendation other than those underlined. Times noted are typically PST.

procrastinator posted in tv | no comments »
AddThis Social Bookmark Button

new and noteworthy tv: 11/19-11/25

January 19th, 2015

backstrom

A little tennis, the start of the final run of Raylan, and worth checking into the new he’s a jerk but a smart jerk formula, this time with Rainn Wilson, and of course some new reality.

  • Monday – Australian Open (ESPN2, Various)
  • Tuesday – State of the Union (Various, 6pm), Friday Night Tykes/The Short Game, Season/Series Premieres (Esq, 6/7pm), Justified, Season Premiere (Fx, 10pm)
  • Wednesday – Dual Survival, Season Premiere (Disc, 9pm), All-American Makers, Series Premiere (Sci, 10pm), Best New Restaurant, Series Premiere (Brav, 10pm)
  • Thursday – Backstrom, Series Premiere (Fox, 9pm), Morgan Spurlock, Season Premiere (CNN, 9pm), Nightwatch, Series Premiere (A&E, 10pm), Million Dollar Critic, Series Premiere (BBCA, 10pm)
  • Friday – Bring It!/Preachers’ Daughters, Season Premieres (Life, 9/10pm), King of the Nerds, Season Premiere (TBS, 9pm), Love, Lust, or Run, Series Premiere (TLC, 10pm)
  • Saturday – Black Sails, Season Premiere (Starz, 9pm)
  • Sunday – Miss Universe (NBC, 8pm), Sons of Liberty, Mini-series Premiere (Hist, 9pm)

The procrastinator lists items that may not be on your regular season pass, though notation does not imply recommendation other than those underlined. Times noted are typically PST.

procrastinator posted in tv | no comments »
AddThis Social Bookmark Button

new and noteworthy tv: 1/12-1/18

January 11th, 2015

12-monkeys
Pass on Eye Candy a dabble into serial killing via dating app, ready to check out Man Seeking following Sunny and the tv version of 12 Monkeys, but may pass on Granchester which isn’t getting quite the buzz of other British mysteries. I also have M&J and Muskateers on my guilty list but not sure I recommend either other for anything but fluff, which isn’t bad. And of course the final season of Parks.

  • Monday - Eye Candy, Series Premiere (MTV, 10pm), Friends to Lovers?, Series Premiere (Bravo, 10pm)
  • Tuesday – Genealogy Roadshow, Season Premiere (PBS, 8pm), Parks & Recreation, Season Premiere (NBC, 8pm), Face Off, Season Premiere (Syfy, 9pm), Big Giant Swords, Series Premiere (Disc, 10pm), Wrestling with Death, Series Premiere (WGN, 10pm), The Kroll Show, Season Premiere (Com, 10:30pm)
  • Wednesday – Melissa & Joey/Baby Daddy, Season Premieres (ABCF, 8/8:30pm), Nova, Season Premiere (PBS, 9pm), It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia/Man Seeking Woman, Season/Series Premieres (Fxx, 10/10:30pm), Workaholics/Broad City, Season Premiere (Com, 10/10:30pm)
  • Thursday – The World Dog Awards (CW, 8pm), Critics’ Choice Awards (A&E, 9pm), Chopped Canada, Season Premiere (Food, 9pm)
  • Friday – World’s Funniest Fails, Series Premiere (Fox, 8pm), 12 Monkeys/Helix, Season/Series Premieres (Syfy, 9/10pm), Diners, Dive-ins & Dives, Season Premiere (Food, 10pm),
  • Saturday – Beverly Hills Pawn, Season Premiere (Reelz, 9pm), The Muskateers, Season Premiere (BBCA, 9pm), My Big Redneck Family, Season Premiere (CMT, 9pm)
  • Sunday – Christina Milian Turned Up, Series Premiere (E!, 10pm), Granchester, Series Premiere (PBS, 10pm)

The procrastinator lists items that may not be on your regular season pass, though notation does not imply recommendation other than those underlined. Times noted are typically PST.

procrastinator posted in tv | no comments »
AddThis Social Bookmark Button

critics’ picks – top tv of 2014

January 8th, 2015

transparentWe’ve said goodbye to 2014 and when I think of how we spent it, it mostly with some television. The critics have posted their top picks so take a look and see what they think. Stay tuned for more top picks including my top tv.

  • The Affair (Show) – MRo, GG
  • The Americans (Fx) –  JP, MR, MRo, TG, AS, HS, MZS, DF, AFI
  • Broad City (Com) – JP
  • Cosmos (Fox) – MZS
  • Downton Abbey (PBS) – GG
  • Enlisted (Fox) – MR
  • Fargo (Fx) – JP, MRo, TG, AS, HS, EW, DF, AFI
  • Game of Thrones (HBO) – MRo, TG, HS, EW, DF, AFI, GG
  • Girls (HBO) – GG
  • The Good Wife (CBS) – JP, MRo, HS, EW, GG
  • Hannibal (NBC) – AS, EW, MZS, DF
  • Happy Valley (Net/BBC) – MR
  • High Maintenance (JP)
  • The Honorable Woman (Sund) – TG
  • House of Cards (Net) – GG
  • How to Get Away with Murder (ABC) – AFI
  • Inside Amy Schumer (Com) – EW
  • Jane the Virgin (CW) – MR, MRo, AFI, GG
  • The Knick (Cin) – AFI
  • Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO) – JP, MZS, DF
  • The Leftovers (HBO) – AS
  • Louie (FX) – JP, TG, EW
  • Mad Men (AMC) – TG, AS, EW, MZS, DF, AFI
  • The Missing (Starz) – MZS
  • The Normal Heart (HBO) – MRo
  • Olive Kitteridge (HBO) – MRo, HS, MZS
  • Orange Is the New Black (Net) – JP, MR, TG, AS, HS, DF, AFI, GG
  • Penny Dreadful (Show) – MR
  • Private Violence (HBO) – MZS
  • Please Like Me (Piv) – EW
  • Rectify (Sund) – MR, AS, EW, DF
  • Review (Com) – MR, AS, DF
  • The Roosevelts (PBS) – MRo, HS, MZS
  • Shameless (Show) – DF
  • Silicon Valley (HBO) – JP, HS, AFI, GG
  • The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon (NBC) – MRo
  • Transparent (Am) – JP, MR, MRo, TG, AS, HS, EW, AFI, GG
  • True Detective (HBO) – TG, AS, MZS
  • The Walking Dead (AMC) – TG, HS
  • You’re the Worst (Fx) – MR

AFI, AS – Alan Sepinwall for HitFix, MR – Maureen Ryan for Huffington Post, MRo – Matt Roush for TV Guide, TG – Tim Goodman for The Hollywood Reporter, JP – James Poniewozik for Time, HS – Hank Stuever for The Washington Post, EW – Entertainment Weekly, MZS – Matt Zoller Seitz for Vulture, DF – Daniel Fienberg for HitFix, GG – Golden Globe Awards

And for a roundup of more lists check out: News for TV Majors 

procrastinator posted in best, tv | no comments »
AddThis Social Bookmark Button