Friday, October 28, 2011

Grimm On NBC Season 1 Pilot Episode

Thanks to @Grimm i got a sneak peek at NBC's Grimm before it aired for broadcast. OMG! from the first few seconds i was hooked. i don't want to give away too much about the action because the suspense, a bit of winking humor and [mild] horror of Grimm are what make it work. Suffice it to say that NBC's Grimm places the plots villains and victims of the classic Grimm's Faerie Tales neatly into the modern world.

Grimm is like a stew comprised of bits of many of my past and present tv favs: a bit of Charmed---Grimm's protagonist has a familial destiny to protect innocents and there's an heirloom book and other trinkets to assist in the task. A touch of TrueBlood, Angel, and Supernatural, because of the creatures that morph into beings that are something other than human and not all of them are bad guys even if they might have been thought to have been at first glance. A dash of Legend of The Seeker---the lush beauty of the pacific northwest rivaling that of the Seeker's New Zealand locales. And a pinch of The X Files coupled with every great cop show that had partners with good chemistry.

Grimm is set in Portland, Oregon and the two main characters are homicide detectives Nick Burkhardt and Hank Griffin. In the pilot episode's opening minutes they are working on a murder/missing person case. i feel safe in saying it doesn't take a detective to figure that the Grimm story for this particular case is derived from Little Red Riding Hood but i'm not going to say more than that because as i said earlier it would spoil the scene's effect.

Burkhardt's aunt Marie [yea! Kate Burton] unexpectedly pays him a visit. Marie is terminally ill and has come to reveal the family history to Nick. He is a descendent of the Grimms---yes those Grimms. Just as she's about to go into more specifics a nemisis attacks. From that point on Burkhardt's destiny begins to unfold.

All of Grimm's pilot ep was entertaining but for me the best part was the casting of Tim Bagley. Usually plays sweet & loveable [fans most likely remember him as Larry from Will & Grace]---on Grimm he does a 180---an impressive departure. Also a fun surprise was that Sean Hayes [best known for his portrayal of Will & Grace's Jack McFarland] is one of Grimm's executive producers. Good job Mr.Hayes, good job.

my favorite character of NBC's Grimm is Eddie Monroe, a Blutbad aka 'Big Bad Wolf' who assists Nick in tracking the faerie tale bad guys. Through a "strict regimen of diet drugs and Pilates" Eddie is able to curtail his wild canine tendencies. But sometimes he has to step back and let Nick take the lead when he is hormonally predisposed to doing what comes naturally for a wolf.

Grimm airs on NBC Friday nights at 9:00pm eastern. Please check your local listings.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Once Upon A Time Season 1 Pilot Episode On ABC

"Believing in even the possibility of a happy ending is a very powerful thing" ~

my favorite line from ABC's Once Upon A Time. Many on twitter agreed. As of this posting that quote has been retweeted 34 times and counting. During the hour the Once pilot episode aired it's tweet stream was being "throttled". S/O to @ThreeIfBySpace who have invited me to share my review of Once Upon A Time.

The ratings faeries were kind to Once, 12.8 million viewers tuned in to get acquainted with the residents of the fictional New England town of Storybrooke. Scripted by the same writers who gave us Lost, the citizens of Once's Storybrooke inhabit a parallel universe. They straddle an existence between our time and place and that of faerie tale characters---Snow White, Prince Charming, Rumpelstiltskin, Geppetto, Pinocchio, Jiminy Cricket, The Evil Queen and others.

In an enchantingly trippy premise, the present day characters are not aware that they are living in two worlds. The Evil Queen has cast a spell that prevents anyone from remembering this fact when they travel to the other world. As a deterrent to breaking free from the spell to have sanctuary in the modern world, whenever anyone tries to "terrible" things happen to those who remain.

All of the characters are entertaining but i especially enjoyed Robert Carlyle's Rumpelstiltskin/Mr.Gold and Lana Parrilla as The Evil Queen. Carlyle's Mr. Gold owns the entire town of Storybrooke and as both Gold and Rumpelstiltskin is flesh-crawling creepy. The actor says of his Mr.Gold incarnation "Mr.Gold is not to be anyone".

The Evil Queen is beautiful, stylish, and well...evil. In the Storybrooke world The Evil Queen is Regina, the mayor of Storybrooke, and adoptive mother of 10 yr old Henry. Regina is not a neglectful or abusive mother but she's not real big on warm & fuzzy interaction with Henry.

Henry, after being gifted by his teacher Mary Margaret with a book of faerie tales, figures his birth mother, Emma, is the offspring of Snow White and Prince Charming. Emma escaped the town's curse because her faerie tale parents hid her in a magical armoire to protect her. Henry, believing Emma to be the only one who can break the curse, takes the risk of venturing out of Storybrooke to find her, who naturally upon hearing his tale takes him to be a runaway with an extremely active imagination.

The sets, costumes and photography of Once Upon A Time are luxurious and the script, direction and performances consistently hit the right notes whether in faerie tale or Storybrooke setting. As implausible as it may have initially been thought, it is not at all difficult for the viewer to suspend disbelief of the existence of these parallel worlds.

The full episode of the Once Upon A Time pilot is available at

Once Upon A Time airs Sundays at 8:00pm Eastern on ABC. Please check your local listings.

Monday, October 17, 2011

The Walking Dead Season 2 Premiere Episode What Lies Ahead

Now i know what all the excitement has been about. i missed the first season, and it's marathon, but after seeing AMC's The Walking Dead season 2 premiere episode, "What Lies Ahead", i am no longer a Walking Dead virgin.

The Walking Dead is suspenseful, scary, gorey, and FUN! i've loved zombie themes since seeing George Romero's "Night Of The Living Dead", Ubaldo Ragona's "The Last Man On Earth", which starred Vincent Price and more recently that film's remake re-titled "I Am Legend" starring Will Smith, and Ruben Fleischer's "Zombieland".

This is precisely why i like The Walking Dead: because it skillfully blends all the aspects of my fav zombie themed movies and does it in an episodic television format. Frankly i was a bit skeptical this could be successfully done for the small screen.

Since i'm late to the Walking Dead party some of the characters have already been killed off. But some have survived. There are also some who have been doomed to an undead fate. my fav alive character is Daryl Dixon played by Norman Reedus.

In the season 2 premiere, my man Daryl gutted a zombie suspected of killing a missing little girl. It was necessary to open up the monster's chest and abdominal cavity to check his innards to confirm the missing kid wasn't inside him. And opened up he was---as easily as one would open a can of peas. And bravo to the special effects make-up. Sure we all know what to expect when we see a slow moving zombie coming toward us. The hollowed eye sockets. The rictus mouths. The exposed skulls. But i tell you i have never seen anything quite as putrid looking as decayed zombie-fied sweet meats. Gloriously gorey.

my other favorite scene was when a zombie has Andrea cornered in a trailer and he's just about to break down the bathroom door and Dale drops a screwdriver down to her from the trailer's sunroof. Just as i'm thinking 'if i was in that predicament i'd take that screwdriver and stab that zombie right in the eye'---no sooner had i thought it, than Andrea did exactly that. Sooo satisfying.

For a limited time the full episode of The Walking Dead season 2 premiere What Lies Ahead will be available online at

The Walking Dead on AMC airs Sundays at 9:00pm eastern Please check your local listings.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Breaking Bad Episode 13 Face Off Season 4 Finale

"WOW!" "Holy F*@k!" "Bravo" "Gangsta" These expressions and other words of praise and amazement were tweeted by viewers of Breaking Bad's season 4 finale episode Face Off. And with good reason. Breaking Bad creator Vince Gilligan [who also wrote and directed the season 4 finale] gave the fans plenty to cheer about. Suspense betrayal horror and a touch of dark humor were on full display. To my surprise Walt turned out to be the baddest of the bad-asses. Cold, calculating and remorseless. Even if his actions meant betraying and manipulating Jesse [more than he usually does]. Even if he ended up being the one who poisoned a child and framed Gus for the deed. And in his triumph torching any trace of Gus and Gus' meth lab.

Vince Gilligan succeeded in satisfying the fans and simultaneously leaving them craving more. Something tells me that lily of the valley plant by Walt's pool is not going to remain inconspicuous for long. AMC has not released a schedule for Breaking Bad's season 5 premiere date. Production for Breaking Bad's 5th and final season is scheduled to begin in early 2012.

AMC will re-air the episode 13 season 4 finale Face Off Wednesday night/Thursday morning October 13th at Midnight. Please check your local listings.

Meanwhile check out the link to the most talked about scene of Breaking Bad's season 4 finale episode 13, Face Off at WARNING This clip contains scenes of graphic violence AMC Breaking Bad Video Clip Season 4 Finale

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Dexter Season 6 Premiere Those Kinds Of Things On Showtime

Showtime's Dark Passenger has returned and with killer guest stars. Mos Def as Brother Sam. Dexter had intended to have him on the slab but as he's stalking his prey finds out that prayer has saved him. Edward James Olmos as Professor Gellar a theologian whose works are less than divine. Colin Hanks is Gellar's protege Travis Marshall who has a few demons of his own that need exorcising. Aimee Garcia as Jamie Batista, detective Angel Batista's sister and new nanny for Dexter's son Harrison. Jamie's a real cutie and is as sunny as Dexter is dark and brings a maternal and positive influence that's been lacking in his child's life. Billy Brown as Mike Anderson. A transfer from 'the city of the big shoulders' and lieutenant Debra Morgan's top pick for Miami-Dade's newest addition to law enforcement. A bit of a chauvinist and a hard ass but easy on the eyes and ears.

In the season 6 opener Dexter attends his high school's 20th reunion. That could be murder.

Dexter season 6 begins Sunday October 2nd at 9:00pm eastern on Showtime. Please check your local listings.