Matt Roush


Critic's Notebook: The NBC Upfront

Christina Applegate

The Peacock has finally found its voice. But as a critical new season of rebuilding beckons, they've got to be careful not to wear it out.

That was the takeaway from NBC's cautiously optimistic kickoff to Network Upfront Week on Monday, as new NBC chairman Bob Greenblatt announced, "Today is the start to the road to recovery," while warning the turnaround could take years. Unspoken was the acknowledgement that it could hardly get worse. While not everything on the new season's slate looks like a winner, NBC is once again showing signs of life. And by midseason, when the new shows look to be much stronger, the buzz is likely to get much louder.

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Roush Review: Reliving an Historic Ride

Freedom Riders

Even with so many season finales and cliffhangers clamoring for our attention this month, I doubt you'll find two hours of TV more riveting, harrowing and inspiring than Freedom Riders, the latest triumph from PBS' American Experience series.

As heralded recently ...
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Ask Matt: The Cancellation Blues, Finales, and Other TV Matters

Jason Clarke and Matt Lauria

Send questions to askmatt@tvguidemagazine.com and follow me on Twitter!

Question: The recent cancellation of almost all of Fox's bubble shows seems to stem at least partially from a lack of "shelf space," since they don't program shows in the 10 pm/ET hour. My question is, why not? There must be a story here, though being 22, I haven't been watching adult-skewing prime-time shows long enough to remember it, so please enlighten me. I am ...
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Matt's Picks: May 16-19

NCIS: LA, Claire Forlani

Castle (Monday, 10/9c, ABC)
This week is a smorgasbord of season (and in some cases, possibly series) finales, and Monday is overstuffed with them, including CBS's comedies, a Chuck wedding on NBC, a 90210 graduation on the CW, and a showdown with the legendary villain Wo Fat capping the first season of Hawaii Five-0. But the nicest surprise of this spring has been the resurgence of ABC's comedic crime procedural Castle, which wraps its season by returning to the ongoing mystery surrounding the murder of Kate Beckett's mother. When hitman Hal Lockwood (Max Martini) escapes from... read more

Matt's Weekend Picks: May 13-15

Tom Welling and Erica Durance

Smallville (Friday, 8/7c, The CW)
After 10 seasons of learning-curve, rite-of-passage superheroics, how better to graduate Clark Kent from Smallville than a super-sized two-hour series finale. Michael Rosenbaum returns as Lex Luthor (as fans chant, "It's about time"), and there will be appearances as well ...
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Ask Matt: Fringe, The Voice, Justified, Glee and More!

Anna Torv

Send questions to askmatt@tvguidemagazine.com and follow me on Twitter!

Question: To say that I loved the season finale of Fringe would be an understatement. It was amazing! And I know I will be thinking about it all summer long, so I applaud the fantastic writers of this show. What did you think? — Rachel

Matt Roush: I thought what most of the readers of this column probably imagine I thought: Wow! As an hour of emotionally engaging and suspensefully perplexing entertainment, I thought it was a terrific way to end the show's very best season to date. (And so, it seems, did those who've weighed in so far in my mailbox.) Time paradox storylines are always tricky, and risk ...
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Matt's Picks: May 9-12

Glee

Glee (Tuesday, 8/7c, Fox)
Don't expect a firestorm like in the classic Carrie, but the battle for prom queen and king intensifies as our singing heroes provide musical background for the school dance. In other musical news Tuesday night, NBC's new hit... read more

Matt's TV Week in Review

Patricia Heaton, The Middle

In honor of Mother's Day, let's start there. I've already penned a tribute to the mighty Mags Bennett of FX's Justified, a poison-packing mountain mama fiercely and fatally devoted to her degenerate brood, as we saw in this week's fabulous finale. Brava, Margo Martindale. But that same Wednesday night, another Midwestern mom — The Middle's Frankie Heck (Patricia Heaton) from Orson, IN — gave us a pungently funny reminder of why our moms deserve a big hug every day...
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Roush Review: Justified Praise for Finale

Margo Martindale

Aw, shoot.

Wait, not literally. Them's fighting words on FX's Justified, where even an orphaned teenaged girl is packing heat and means business.

After Wednesday night's intense finale to a thoroughly gripping and enjoyable second season, I'm still trying to cope with the fact that we've seen the last of the mighty Mags Bennett, that mountainous and monstrous backwoods matriarch whose ...
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Matt's Weekend Picks: May 6-8

Joshua Jackson and Anna Torv

Fringe (Friday, 9/8c, Fox)
With time-tripping future shock and head-spinning "what world is this" chaos, the literally fantastic third season of Fringe wraps with what should be a spectacular finish. Having put himself in the doomsday device and glimpsing an apocalyptic future, Peter is about to realize his destiny as the warring parallel worlds continue to collide. As in past seasons, the grand finale promises to be a true game-changer, and how happy are we that Fox looked beyond the dismal Friday ratings — what did they expect — to ensure the show a fourth season to keep blowing our minds.

Lady Gaga Presents The Monster Ball Tour (Saturday, 9/8c, HBO)
Who else but HBO could truly do justice to an unexpurgated concert special showcasing the Madonna of the new millennium: the protean and prolific and perversely unpredictable Lady Gaga. Culled from two February performances at Madison Square Garden, the special features... read more

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