Castle (Monday, 10/9c, ABC)
Meet Nikki Heat — not to be confused with Kate Beckett, although Beckett isn't amused when Hollywood siren Natalie Rhodes (That '70s Show's Laura Prepon), who's been cast to play her fictional alter ego in a movie version of Heat Wave, starts tagging along with her and Castle and begins a physical transformation as well. Castle thinks it's a hoot, which only annoys Beckett more...
Blake Edwards Tribute (Monday, 8/7c, TCM)
Turner Classic Movies pays homage to the late filmmaker, who died earlier this month, with a five-film festival featuring several of his most iconic movies: Breakfast at Tiffany's, starring the divine Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly; Days of Wine and Roses, starring Jack Lemmon and Lee Remick as an alcholic couple; The Pink Panther, the comedy that introduced the world to Peter Sellers' bumbling Inspector Clouseau; and Victor/Victoria, Edwards' last great success, starring his wife Julie Andrews in a comedy about gender and sexual confusion and Le Jazz Hot. Andrews, Robert Preston and Lesley Ann Warren were all nominated for Oscars.
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Question: I was just watching Human Target, and as someone who lives in San Francisco, I was wondering how often shows are actually shot on location and what are the factor conditions. I get a San Francisco vibe from Human Target, which I didn't get from Monk. Both Dexter and Burn Notice take place in Miami, but I usually get more of a Los Angeles vibe from Dexter. Many shows have episodes that take place at universities and I swear I am always looking at the UCLA campus.
Million Dollar Money Drop
Million Dollar Money Drop (Monday, 8/7c, Fox)
This is how game-show sensations are born — and Fox certainly hopes this will be their version of Who Wants To Be a Millionaire. Airing Monday-Thursday this week (Tuesday and Wednesday's installments air at 9/8c, with a two-hour finale on Thursday), this game, hosted by comedian Kevin Pollak, is pretty simple. Contestants are asked multiple-choice questions with a million dollars in cash on the line. They put the cash on the answers they think are correct — one must always be left blank — and if they're wrong, the cash they've distributed on the wrong answer disappears down a chute. Panic sets in pretty quickly. The two-hour premiere goes head-to-head with the finale of NBC's holiday hit The Sing-Off.
Men of a Certain Age (Monday, 10/9c, TNT)
Yes, Virginia, there are some new episodes of non-reality series airing this week. You just have to know where to look for them. On Men...
Big Bang Theory
As we approach the holidays, with the TV year winding down (if only briefly), it's typically the time to look back — and so it is with a flurry of awards nominations and best-of-year lists raining down.
My own top-10 (and then some) list of shows and networks that made 2010 memorable can be found here. I also had the honor once again to participate on the American Film Institute's TV jury to select a list of 10 top programs of the year. You can do your own comparison to see how these lists differ. The one show that took me by surprise on the AFI list is The Big C. Great performance by Laura Linney, iffy show. And if we must honor an NBC comedy, why not go with an on-the-rise upstart like Community instead of the tired...
Christmas in Washington (Friday, 8/7c, TNT)
It's the most wonderful time of the year — for musical holiday specials, at the very least. Mariah Carey, who kicked the TV week off with an ABC Christmas special on Monday, is part of the all-star lineup of this concert extravaganza, taped last weekend at the gorgeous National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. Ellen DeGeneres hosts, and joining Carey onstage are ...
As we face our first winter without the prospect of a new season of 24 and Lost to look forward to — and debate — here's my list (expanded somewhat from the magazine version) of the shows, and in some cases networks, that made 2010 a TV year to remember.
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Question: In season 3 of Fringe so far, the focus has heavily been on Olivia and her emotional turmoil. Any chance we'll be seeing more from Peter? He's been painfully absent and with everything he's gone through recently, it must all build up and make him close to breaking-point, right? We often see Olivia and Walter have meltdowns and heart-breaking scenes, but there are so few from Peter. Joshua Jackson's an amazing actor when given the opportunity! — Helen
Michael C. Hall
As big finishes go, Dexter's was a nail-biter, leaving us pretty breathless — though tripping over at least a few loose ends along the way. The Amazing Race on the other hand coasted to its finish line with minimal suspense — but maximum satisfaction in crowning the first all-female champs, the likable doctor duo of Nat and Kat, who stayed comfortably in first place for the entire last leg. The unflappably perky Home Shopping hosts Brook and Claire landed in second, amusing themselves and the audience all the way to the end. Everyone seemed pleased, and even the ultra-competitive last-guy-standing Thomas (who ran afoul of an L.A. cabbie who'd never heard of the Internet) took his defeat like a pro.
The Vampire Diaries (Monday-Friday, 8/7c, The CW)
Get bit. The CW's Southern Gothic answer to Twilight-mania is at least as sexy and twice as fun, burning through so much bloody story in its second season that this weeklong marathon of the sophomore year's first 10 episodes should come in handy, with two episodes airing each night. This time around, admire the ladies of Mystic Falls, in particular Nina Dobrev doing double duty as the virtuous Elena and the evil vamp Katherine, and Candice Accola as Caroline, whose transformation into one of the show's most fascinated and tormented characters took nearly everyone by surprise.