Lucy Lawless sports a shiner on Burn Notice.
Lucy Lawless as a damsel in distress? Say it ain't so! In a wild departure from her usual badass roles, the former Xena: Warrior Princess star will appear on USA Network's Burn Notice (tonight, 10 pm/ET) as a weepy, needy, emotionally frazzled mom who hires Michael (Jeffrey Donovan) to track down her missing husband and son. A much ballsier Lawless plays herself on Curb Your Enthusiasm in an episode airing Oct. 21. We gave the actress a call to discuss both gigs, plus the one that got away — the disastrous American version of Footballers' Wives.
TVGuide.com: It's downright surreal seeing you — a fem
Burn Notice's Jeffrey Donovan and The 4400's Billy Campbell
TV's sizzling summer season has saved its best for last. Here is Part 2 of our guide to the season enders you will not want to miss.
Monk, USA NetworkFinale airs Friday, Sept. 14, at 9 pm/ETDonal Logue guest-stars as a grifter, but the big news is Monk's other chance encounter. Says star Tony Shalhoub, "He literally bumps into a woman on the street. She's a total stranger, but he can't get her out of his head. I don't want to give too much away, because it's a poignant ending." Maybe a setup for romance when the show returns in January? "It may be time to open that door," Shalhoub says. "And not a moment too soon."
Psych, USA NetworkFinale airs Friday, Sept. 14, at 10 pmKevin Sorbo (Hercules) guest-stars as a hotshot bounty hunter once idolized
Question: It seems, more and more, that cable television has taken the cynical route. Shows like Damages and Rescue Me offer a very harsh view of the world. Even comedies like Californication serve up bad behavior as a form of entertainment. I don't doubt that, at least with Damages and Rescue Me (I haven't had the opportunity to watch Californication), the writing is top-notch and the acting impeccable. But at what point did television (cable in particular) become bad-as-we-want-to-be? Do you think that cable has now created a landscape where show producers push the envelope just because they can? The offerings may be fun to watch, if you like that sort of thing, but I can only imagine the dreck that will come out in the future, with loads of illicit sex, swearing and sliminess, and viewers may end up desensitized to it. Clearly, I prefer shows in which I wouldn't mind hanging out with the main character (and my parents taught me that swearing too much just meant you had a poor ...
Question: Do you have any scoop on Burn Notice?
Answer: (Spoiler alert) In the two-hour season finale on Sept. 20, Michael has to risk everything to save someone close to him.
I don't know about you, but I was very excited when I saw Michael and Fi holding hands at the beginning of the episode. I thought maybe Michael finally realized Fi's the girl (sorry, woman) for him or that he was just so tired of fighting her on it that he's giving it a chance. I wasn't too disappointed to find out their coupledom was only a cover. I think part of the fun, maybe the charm, of their relationship is seeing them apart. And at least they don't have relationship issues like Nick and his fiancée Dawn.So Dawn's been kidnapped by Reyes. I had to back my DVR up when I saw that Reyes is none other then Steven Bauer. I love me some Steven Bauer. So anyway, he's the lead bad guy. He has his man Lucio scout targets to kidnap. Once they have their victim in the hideout, they demand a ransom. He's made a lot of money from this endeavor and only one target was killed, and that was unintentional. Michael presents himself as the hostage negotiator and gets a massage and a...
Remember summer doldrums? The dog days of August? Didn't happen this year. I can't remember ever being hooked on so much terrific TV during a time when I'm normally conserving my energy for the fall-season onslaught.
A sign of how truly remarkable this watershed TV summer was: Even the miniseries, a long-dormant genre, made a big comeback, reinvented in a limited-run weekly format. The tone ranged from USA Network's glossy romance The Starter Wife to ESPN's engrossing The Bronx Is Burning, Spike TV's riveting The Kill Point and TNT's adult spy history The Company.
But the real action was in the overstuffed arena of the cable drama series, where it seemed nearly every channel was trying to ma
Question: So have you had a chance to catch up on Greek and Burn Notice? Don't you just love them?
Answer: Haven't tackled Greek yet — this weekend for sure — but I did catch a few episodes of Burn Notice and I'm definitely on board. Jeffrey Donovan and Gabrielle Anwar are some kind of wonderful together. But the most pleasant surprise came during the opening credits when I discovered that one of my idols, Jeff Freilich, is a co-executive producer. As I previously gushed, Freilich revolutionized the prime-time soap during his two-year stint at the helm of Falcon Crest. He also gave my girl Mariska Hargitay her big break, and for that I will always be indebted to him.
Vanessa Hudgens, Zac Efron and Ashley Tisdale in High School Musical 2 by Adam Larkey/Disney Channel
The ridiculous (in a good way) ratings for Disney Channel's multiple record-breaking weekend launch of High School Musical 2 was just the most spectacular reminder of what a great TV summer this has been — if you have cable.Not even a big hit like TNT's The Closer can match HSM2's numbers, and some of the best series, like AMC's mesmerizing Mad Men, are only doing so-so. But that's only to be expected given the glut of programming on many nights — including Thursdays, when Mad Men goes head-to-head with USA Network's latest clever breakout caper, Burn Notice. I thought my DVRs would get a break this summer. Didn't happen.Just look at the options weve had over the last few nights, including terrific new episodes of Burn Notice and Mad Men on Thursday. Im really enjoying Burn now that ex-spy Michael Weston is getting closer to the truth about how he was set up to be fired. And what can I say about Mad Men besides the word I used to start my initial review of th...
Things are a little different this week. Michael and Fi have had their romantic encounter and Fis looking to play house. Michael has more interest in his dossier than her and Fi isnt about to put up with it. When she asks Michael for help with a bounty, she turns that situation to her advantage. Fi doesnt want to turn this guy, Thomas McKee, over to the cops. He says hes innocent and she believes him. But more importantly, hes attractive and maybe she can use him to make Michael jealous. In the meantime, they have to keep Thomas away from the other bounty hunter on the case, Wayne Ray. That is one big dude and he doesnt play around.Lets get back to the case. Thomas is being framed for the theft of a $2-million brooch. He had access to it and all circumstantial evidence makes him look guilty. The real thief, Lawrence Henderson, owns the hotel the brooch was stolen from. Hes been cleared by the police but hes got a slightly shady p...
Question: A TV show that (almost) fills the void left by my dearly departed Alias, USA's Burn Notice has become my new favorite show. While it's not as flashy as Alias, and the twists and turns not nearly as breathtaking, it does manage to seamlessly blend the best of all worlds: action, comedy, espionage, sexual tension, family dramedy, escapade-of-the week storylines and a series-spanning mystery to solve (who put out the "burn notice" on Michael and why). It's as if someone threw Alias, Moonlighting, CSI: Miami and MacGyver into the spin cycle and out popped Burn Notice. Jeffrey Donovan, whom I only remembered as the smarmy client in Hitch, delivers such a charmingly witty performance as burned CIA operative Michael Weston. The spectacular casting of his cohorts — bold-n-brassy yet sexy former-IRA assassin (Gabrielle Anwar), washed-up alcoholic ex-spook with uncertain loyalties (Bruce Campbell), not to mention his formerly estranged, not-as-helpless-as-she-seems mother (the ...