24: The Ultimate Jack Bauer Supercut

I have to admit that I never saw seasons 7 and 8 of ’24’. My daughter was two months old when season 7 began. I think that explains what happened there….

It’s on Amazon streaming now. I’m tempted to go back, but then I also have never seen the two seasons of “Daredevil” on Netflix, or a million other things that would take less time to watch. UGH.

We live in a frustrating era of everything being available and no time to consume even a small percentage of it…

But, thanks to YouTube, I can relive a small portion of those glory days when I did…

Here, then, is the Jack Bauer Yelling and Cursing (“Damn it, Chloe!”) supercut. So much awesome, so little time.

A Streaming Embarrassment of Riches

We live in an amazing time. It’s a time I couldn’t have dreamed of as a child: Hundreds of television shows — all their seasons — available at my finger tips. This season’s shows, last season’s shows, and shows from my childhood. They’re all there for the watching.

I have Amazon Prime —


— and Netflix:


Frustratingly, there’s no time to watch any of it. So I’m the guy from The Twilight Zone.

Twilight Zone Time Enough at Last broken glasses

Time Enough At Last, indeed.

Hurray for Hollywood

Hollywood is an amazing place for creating new ideas. Modern, fresh visions are the bedrock on which the movie and television industry are built.

That being said, are you more looking forward to "MacGyver: The Movie" or "MacGyver: The TV Series"?

Either way, "MacGyver" is a STEM series, so I’m placing my bets on a woman playing the title role in whichever version makes it to an audience. Bonus points she’s not white or Asian.

VR.5: The Timing Is Perfect…

…for VR.5’s return.

Virtual Reality is all the craze again. And, as this Entertainment Weekly article points out, the show was made to complement “The X-Files.”

Since “The X-Files” is now back, the timing is perfect!

the cast of FOX's VR.5

(Yes, Buffy fans.  That’s Anthony Stewart Head.  His turn on VR.5 is part of what made me watch the Buffy the Vampire Slayer pilot when it aired a couple years later…)

That article I linked to above is from 1995, which explains this paragraph:

VR.5 may have one other thing going for it: Cybermania has been sweeping the nation in the last few years, with trendy coffee shops serving up Internet connections and e-mail addresses popping up everywhere from the White House to your local pizzeria. “I think people are becoming so isolated that they’re turning to their computers for intimacy,” theorizes Singer. “People go on-line and meet other people and play all sorts of games. I heard about a couple who met on-line and got married. It sounds strange, but people are using computers to build a new type of community.”  

We never expected on-line dating services, did we? Or ordering pizzas by emoji over Twitter?  Or Hillary Clinton having her own email server?

Firefly Flashback

Not that it took a genius to see it coming or anything, but from the very first month of blogging here:

I like FIREFLY, but I don’t think it’s going to last past its initial half dozen episodes. The ratings are sinking. Another Friday Night At 8 p.m. disaster. Didn’t BRISCO COUNTY/MANTIS/VR.5/HARSH REALM teach FOX anything? (And, yes, I’m sure I’m forgetting another 3 or 4 failures from that time slot.)

Also amusing to see what I thought of the then-new “CSI: Miami” and others…

Grease Live

Grease Live promotional image

That worked out better than anything NBC has put on the air in the last three years.

FOX fixed a number of problems that NBC seems stuck with — too small a stage, no live audience, no ridiculously big name star who stinks in the part (hello, Walken!), and just the look of being a live show.

“Grease Live” had the filmic look and an insane amount of camera wizardry. The way the camera moved around the stages was ridiculously good. It’s amazing that there wasn’t a single slip-up with the cameras that I saw.

I’m glad I was not the one trying to put this production together, because the thought of doing it blows my mind. Moving that many people from stage to stage in such a rigid time schedule cannot be a simple or easy task.

And while some acting was questionable — mostly in the supporting small time characters, honestly — the stars did a great job, particularly with the singing and dancing. That was good stuff.

Sledgehammer at 30

Me, on Twitter the other day:

Alan Spencer, creator of Sledgehammer, responded:

Sledgehammer ran 30 years ago on ABC, and I watched and loved every episode of it. I have the DVDs around here for it. I should dip back in.

Here’s a look back on the show with its creator, Alan Spencer.

Sledge is very big in Germany. My theory is that the show was huge in Germany because David is blond and blue-eyed, and they like those kind of fascists. [Laughs.] They wanted to have an official Sledge Hammer! convention in Germany, but my fear is they were going to call it a “rally.”

The Next Generation Will Lead the Way Out

Meanwhile, not all of comScore’s data is that reassuring. The company says a whopping 24 percent of 18-to-34-year-olds say they’re not subscribing to pay TV. More than half of those folks — 13 percent of the total number polled — say they’ve cut the cord, while 11 percent say they’ve never had a cord, period.

via 24 Percent of Millennials Say They’re Not Paying for TV – Comscore | Re/code.

If I ever get around to writing up the sheer hell Verizon has put me through this past week, you’ll see why I find this future a beautiful place. It’ll be one less avenue for cable companies to attempt to screw people out of hundreds of dollars due to their own incompetence and/or lies (er, “misrepresentation.”)

Posted in TV

The Morning TV Show Format

O.A.R. was on the VH-1 Morning Buzz show this morning. They were performing a new song I hadn’t heard before, so I watched the show.

It was painful. Not O.A.R. They were great, even with a stripped down four piece version of the band. (Chris and Benj were absent.) It’s the television show: A cheap, stripped-down, grasping-at-straws-for-content version of Today or GMA, which are similar poor shows just with bigger budgets.

I don’t watch much television anymore, and I definitely don’t watch any of the morning shows. So while I’m familiar with the format from so long ago it feels like a previous life, I haven’t sat through an example of it in years.

It’s bad.

In the half hour or forty minutes I saw, host Nick Lachey and his two co-hostesses ran through a ridiculous number of spots, one more hollow than the next. There was the bartender showing them how to make fancy mixed drinks. There was the pole dancer showing the three hosts how to pole dance (I notice the second hostess stood by and never got on the pole — she must be the smart one). There was a three minute interview with Akon, following by two questions asked from tourists on the street. Nick Lachey sang 20 seconds of a song coming out of a break. An even more annoying co-host helped introduce O.A.R. and smiled like a doofus when Lachey teased the next show. Lachey went out into the “crowd” of about 20 people in Times Square to answer a couple of Tweets, and then took a selfie or two with the people.

Bam bam bam bam. Don’t blink or you’ll miss a segment. Better idea: Blink and you WILL miss a segment. One more vapid than the next. Lachey reading his questions off index cards is painful, especially when he can’t pronounce the name of an artist he just referred to as a “major” one, like he had never heard of Matisyahu before.

Later on, I listened to a Nerdist podcast where the host and friends interviewed Donald Fasion for an hour.* Sure, the topics were a bit scattered, but there was a flow of conversation that didn’t seem scripted or rehearsed. It felt natural. It was funny. It was entertaining. I learned a thing or two and had a couple fun flashbacks to things I had forgotten about. Obviously, they went into the podcast with topics to discuss, but it wasn’t carefully planned. All the proof you need of that is the awkward way it ended, like all Nerdist podcasts. There’s about three rounds of good-byes before the tangents stop and they actually end the recording.

Morning Television is the true vast wasteland, showing us on a daily fast-forwardable basis just how scattershot and minimally attentive television audiences are assumed to be. I’d rather sit in a chair, close my eyes, and listen to a podcast, where there’s no commercial breaks, no need for multiple segments, the freedom to talk about anything using whatever language they see fit, and a sense of spontaneity not created by cringe-worthy audience interaction.

Give me podcasts or give me — well, boredom!

Jack Is Back

I have to be honest. I never watched the last couple seasons of ’24.’ Or that television movie that led into the one season. I’m not even sure where we left Jack.

But it’s been just long enough that all the nostalgia flows through me and I’m super excited that Jack Is Back:

Besides, once upon a time, ’24’ talk was a regular feature around here. I didn’t forget you.

Posted in TV

The Voice Semi-Finals Results

The judges have run out of interesting things to say by now. They’re just repeating themselves, and the honesty is long gone. Also, we can drop Shakira. She seems nice enough, but she never says anything interesting. Aguilera can be annoying at times, but at least she adds something to the show.

Sasha’s Whitney song wasn’t nearly as good as the judges hyped it up to be. And the second song — well, Judith Hill lost when she decided to be a techno dance music singer instead of the power balladeer diva everyone wanted her to be. Sasha didn’t learn that lesson.

Amber’s version of “Sad” was amazing, but nothing that would ever get her votes. And “Firework” was painful for the first 3/4ers. That’s NOT a song that anyone should ever do in a singing competition without a major rewrite of it.

Danielle and The Swon Brothers gave their voters more of what they like. Ditto Michelle Chamuel. They go through to the finale. Who wins? Michelle has a chance with the inevitable vote splitting amongst the country fans. But the country fans LOVE to support their people. I think Danielle has the best chance to win it.

Can we please now stop with these group singalongs? They’re awful. “Every Rose Has Its Thorn” could have been awesome if just Sasha sang it. Maybe Michelle could have pulled it off as a solo. The Swon Brothers might have been an interesting country version of it. But having them all trade off lines meant the song never went anywhere. Just when you had a clear direction and a strong voice (usually on Sasha’s line), it immediately got reeled back in so someone else could have their turn, or so that the group would sound in harmony. It was painful. And it’s just as bad on Idol.

Oh, and the returning contestants who have EPs ready to go soon because the world moves too fast to wait for a full record and The Voice’s season ends soon as does their window for best publicity? They all need to learn how to write better bridges, because all their songs sounded the same for those three to four minutes. Very little variations or breakout moments in there. I liked Adam’s guy (Tony Lucca) the best.