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New Heroes at NBC: Charming Chuck, Dark Bionic

Zachary Levi as Chuck by Chris Haston/NBC Photo

The network of Heroes is going hero-crazy this fall. But two of NBC's more buzzed-about new genre series couldn’t be more different: a dark and disturbing "reimagining" of '70s superhero series Bionic Woman and the laugh-out-loud action-comedy Chuck, about a computer nerd whose brain is accidentally wired with government secrets, catapulting him into the spy game. Both were presented in back-to-back sessions at the TCA critics' press tour Tuesday morning.Of course, much of the latest Bionic buzz has focused on this week’s announcement that the ever-controversial Isaiah Washington is joining the show for an early five-episode arc as a mystery man brought into the secret bio-science organization that turned Jaime Sommers (Michelle Ryan in a new twist on the old Lindsay Wagner role) into a part-machine superhuman. It’s a casting stunt that at least a few journalists in the room feel could backfire. Executive producer Jason Smilovic defended the casting stunt by saying, &... read more

Sam I Am Wild About! Plus: Jaime Sommers and Sarah Connor

I'm working my way through the 2007-08 TV season pilot screeners, and thought it time to share my initial batch in a series of kneejerk thoughts. The theme for this one, you might say, is "Ladies first," as it covers ABC's new Christina Applegate comedy, NBC's Bionic Woman and Fox's The Sarah Connor Chronicles.Samantha Be Good (né Sam I Am, thanks to Dr. Seuss), is, I am prompted to rave, an early and huge favorite. I watched the pilot last Friday (and again with the wife on Saturday) and both times was disheartened to see it end. Applegate, you may know, stars as a young woman who awakens from an eight-day coma with no knowledge of what she soon realizes was a very bad-girl past. Pre-amnesia, Sam was a boozing floozy of a party gal who could probably drink Lindsay Lohan under the table... at rehab. Now she's an innocent desperate to come to terms with her "reputation" and prove that she need not revert to it. But oh, is it fun seeing her juggle who she was with who she believe... read more

Unending

Well, its all come down to this: 10 seasons. Over 200 episodes. Adventure. Laughter. Tears. And as this is the last episode of our journey together, I will make this my last TV Guide blog entry.Thanks be to all of you who have grown with us over the years. It has been a true pleasure, and one I’m sure I will not see the likes of again. The years have gone by so fast… so fast. So much has changed, in my life, and in the lives of those around me. And I’m sure of yours too.I was reminded as recently as yesterday how much can happen in 10 years. I shared a conversation on the plane with Katee Sackoff (of Battlestar Galactica fame — for those living under boulders) who enlightened me that she used to watch the early seasons of Stargate with her father… when she was 17. Holy crap. That aged me.I was a single boy of 26 years when we took our first steps through the gate, and now I speak to you as a father of three at 36 years old. It really does fly, doesn... read more

Starbucks to Go: Inside Galactica's Season 4 Preview Bash!

Battlestar Galactica's Lucy Lawless, Mary McDonnell, Jamie Bamber, Katee Sackhoff and Edward James Olmos

Admiral Adama, President Roslin, Apollo and Kara finally made it to Earth. Well, at least to the Arclight Theater in Hollywood, California, where on Wednesday night stars and producers of Battlestar Galactica met with roughly 1,000 fans of the critically acclaimed Sci Fi Channel series. Rather than focus on the recently announced sad news that the show's upcoming fourth season, which begins in January, will also be its final one, cast, producers and devotees of the show spent hours praising the space opera's past — and contemplating its immediate future. Attendees erupted into applause upon seeing a trailer for Battlestar Galactica: Razor, a two-hour TV-movie that tells the stor read more

Casting About: Galactica Star Gets Her Wish

Battlestar Galactica's Katee Sackhoff will star in the Lifetime movie Be Careful What You Wish For, playing a teenager who, because of an eclipse, is shot forward 20 years into the future, where she is about to wed her high-school crush.... Frasier's Peri Gilpin guests on Desperate Housewives April 22.... Prizefighter Oscar De La Hoya plays the son of George Lopez's longtime rival on April 24.... Peter Stormare (Prison Break) and Tony- and Emmy-winner James Whitmore will guest on CSI April 26.... X-Files' Mitch Pileggi visits Seattle Grace on the April 26 Grey's Anatomy.... Eric Stoltz is on trial for murdering a fellow police officer on Close to Home April 27 and May 4. read more

Was the supposed death of ...

Question: Was the supposed death of Kara "Starbuck" Thrace on the March 4 episode of Battlestar Galactica legitimate, or will Katee Sackhoff be returning to the series? I noticed on the next episode that her name was not shown in its usual place during the opening montage that begins each show. I've been checking TV Guide to see if there was any mention that Sackhoff was leaving for good, but I found nothing, though I did read on the BG website on Sci Fi that a pilot episode for some new series is being developed for her. Do you have any information as to whether we have seen the last of Sackhoff/Starbuck, and what reasons she might have had to leave the show? Answer: There is no way I would answer this question even if I could. My advice, as it always is when it comes to shows like this, is to just sit back and watch and let things unfold in their own time. In this Internet age, I am dismayed at how much people need to know about every twist on shows that rely on surprise, reversals ... read more

Wow! What a powerful ...

Katee Sackhoff, Battlestar Galactica

Question: Wow! What a powerful performance by Katee Sackhoff in the March 4 episode of Battlestar Galactica. She has been one of the most interesting characters on TV since the show started. She has problems with authority, alcohol and the people around her. Yet she is the best at what she does, so she is allowed to get away with things that other people wouldn't. Starbuck is quite similar to the character of Gregory House. The question is: Will Sackhoff get the Emmy that her performance in this episode deserves? Unfortunately, she probably won't even get nominated, because every actress on Grey's Anatomy (a show I have never watched, thank the gods) will get a nomination. What are her chances? Answer: It's not a question of Battlestar Galactica against Grey's — and much as I enjoy what Katee Sackhoff has done with Starbuck, I would deny Chandra Wilson nothing — but more of a question of the Emmys versus sci-fi in general. Sackhoff is hardly alone in doing Emmy-worthy work on the show: read more

Starbuck's Tailspin: More Shocks to Come

Although the February sweeps officially have been over for several days, Sunday night sure felt like a sweeps extravaganza, with game-changing episodes of two major series. Both pivotal hours, of Sci Fi’s Battlestar Galactica and ABC’s Brothers & Sisters, dealt with the fate of daughters whose respective departure and arrival is setting off shock waves for their unconventional families (the Galactica crew and the Walker clan).The episode that undoubtedly will cause the largest stir in TV fandom was Galactica’s riveting and ultimately devastating journey into the metaphysical, as Starbuck (a brooding, tormented Katee Sackhoff) finally faced and embraced her destiny. Which meant, in a series of visions and hallucinations guided by the specter of the not-quite-Leobon as if he were the Ghost of Psychodramas Past, that Kara had to confront the soul-crushing memories of her abusive mother, who instilled in the self-destructive Starbuck a belief that suffering was good f... read more

There's a rumor circulating ...

Question: There's a rumor circulating about Katee Sackhoff's name being removed from the credits for the last three episodes of Battlestar Galactica. Are they killing her off?


Answer: I haven't heard that. Besides, as one BSG insider points out, "Seems odd that anyone would be seeing credits for the last three episodes of the season when the finale doesn't air until the end of March."

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Shocking Preview: Battlestar Galactica's Cylons Go to Extremes

Tricia Helfer and James Callis, Battlestar Galactica

Acting on Sci Fi Channel's Battlestar Galactica (Fridays at 9 pm/ET) can be torture. Case in point: Fan favorite James Callis is lying in a beautiful, zen-like chamber on the show's soundstage in Vancouver, but the visual serenity of the locale is repeatedly shattered by his head-splitting screams. This week's episode finds Callis' character, Gaius Baltar, held prisoner by the Cylons, who suspect he has information about a virus that could kill them. When a full-body electroshock — administered by the ruthless Cylon ringleader D'Anna (Lucy Lawless) — doesn't elicit the desired confession, she chooses a wicked-looking item that pierces the eardrum. His screaming begins anew. After three-plus hours of this sadism, lunch is called, read more

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