Chris Spicer, Fanbase Press Contributor

Chris Spicer, Fanbase Press Contributor


Justified s4Last week was the big reveal of the central mystery that had consumed Justified’s fourth season so far. Now that we know that Sheriff Shelby is actually Drew Thompson, the fugitive drug runner that’s eluded the authorities since the early 1980s, the real fun is likely going to begin. Of course, Drew/Shelby has Ellen May with him.



Oz James FrancoBack in the day, back when Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez were a couple, there was at least somewhat serious talk of them starring in a remake of Casablanca.  How serious that talk ever was I have no idea, but it was talk that made its way into the mainstream media.  It was a terrible idea for an infinite number of reasons, the least of which was that it would star Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez.  Casablanca is a stone cold classic.  It’s one of the three or four greatest films of all time.  The screenplay is considered one of the best ever written, if not the very best of all time.  It contains reams of great quotes.  “Here’s looking at you, kid.”  “We’ll always have Paris.”  “Round up the usual suspects.”  “The problems of two people don’t amount to a hill of beans in this crazy world.”  “Play it, Sam.  Play As Time Goes By.”  “How extravagant you are, throwing women away like that.  Some day they may be scarce.”  (Listen to that movie some time without looking at it.  It sounds incredible.)  The cast is impeccable, with Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, and Claude Rains doing career-defining work.


PaleyFest ArrowReporting from the 30th Annual PaleyFest: The William S. Paley Television Festival

One of the cool things the Paley Center staff has done for the festival is to begin each panel with an archival clip that is somehow related to the show being discussed.  For The Newsroom, they played a clip from Aaron Sorkin’s series Sports Night.  For Parenthood, they dug up a clip from the early late '80s iteration of the show that featured a young Leonardo diCaprio.  For last night’s panel featuring the CW’s series Arrow, they played a Robin Hood-themed clip from a 1979 episode of The Muppet Show.  It was pretty cool.


Parenthood PaleyFest CTNReporting from the 30th Annual PaleyFest: The William S. Paley Television Festival

The Bravermans of Berkley, California, were in the house tonight.

You know what you’re getting into when the free swag the network is handing out is tissues with the Parenthood logo on them.  One of the things that’s made the show famous among its small (significantly growing), but loyal, audience is its ability to almost weekly make viewers break down and cry.  As actress Monica Potter explained tonight, there’s been a drinking game created in which you drink whenever somebody associate with Parenthood cries.  I’m not a mental health professional, but it may not be such a great idea mixing booze with crying.  Be that as it may, this is a show that regularly brings the waterworks, but in a good and honest way.


Bruce SpringsteenI’m a huge Springsteen fan.  To be fair, I’m not sure if there are any other kinds of Springsteen fans.  There aren’t really any casual Springsteen fans.  It isn’t allowed.  There’s a sense of competitiveness to being a Springsteen fan.  I had the chance to see the Boss here in LA last April, and I had a great time just visiting with all the other fans.  Everybody probably thinks this about their own stuff, but Springsteen fans really are the best.  I’ve seen him live five times, but that night I felt like a right sad excuse of a fan, an amateur really.  I was talking to an older gent for whom that night was his 37th Springsteen show.  He’d seen Bruce for the first time at the Roxy on Sunset, way back in the early '70s.  He’d seen Springsteen at a small club in the early days?  No way!  How incredibly awesome!

How to Fix the Oscars


Oscar 2013

*Please note that this article is an opinion-editorial.

For the past several years, I’ve asked myself a couple of questions.  One of them is “How hard can it be to produce a decent Oscars show?” The other is “How hard can it be to produce a decent pirate movie?”

Like a lot of people, I wrote a pretty negative review of last Sunday’s Academy Awards show.  I was kind of neutral about host Seth MacFarlane while other people really despised him.  My issue was that, outside the host, the rest of the show was a total mess.  The show was 40 (40!) minutes over time.  There were massive technical glitches all night.  The presenter banter was terrible, the worst I can ever remember.  The producers used the occasion to congratulate themselves for being tangentially related to Chicago.  The jury may still be out on Seth, but the rest of the show was truly awful.

So, I took it upon myself to stop complaining about it.  I decided to remove the “rhetorical” status from my question about why the Oscars show is always so bad.  Here’s my list of things that will fix it.  You’re welcome, Academy!


Justified S4E9The weird thing about reviewing a TV show on a week-to-week basis is you can never be commenting on the big picture.  It’s like reviewing a movie in 15-minute chunks instead of looking at the whole thing.  One episode may seem slow and inconsequential only to have had enormous significance in the 13 or 22-part story the series is telling.

Tonight, Justified gave us one of those payoff nights that you can’t see week-to-week.  Tonight, all the trees became a forest as Graham Yost and his writing staff threw a bunch of puzzle pieces into the air and watched them land in pretty much perfect place. 


The Newsroom Paley SorkinReporting from the 30th Annual PaleyFest: The William S. Paley Television Festival

It’s an interesting thing when you have the creative team behind a television series about the goings on at a cable news show gather to discuss their work.  Who do you get to lead the questions?  PaleyFest got quite a coup when they enlisted real-life cable news personality Piers Morgan to moderate the panel discussion of Aaron Sorkin’s latest series.

Ron Swanson*Please note that this article is an opinion-editorial.

Leslie Knope and Ben Wyatt got married Thursday night.  If you don’t know who Leslie and Ben are, let me take a moment to first politely, but sternly, scold you.  Leslie Knope works for the Parks Department of Pawnee, Indiana.  In 2012 she was elected to Pawnee’s City Council.  Ben Wyatt was an Indiana state auditor who is now the president of the charitable fund operated by the Sweetums, a large Indiana company that produces high fructose corn syrup. 


Justified S4E8There’s likely no way to discuss the events of tonight’s episode without dealing with some major spoilers, so if you haven’t seen “Outlaw” yet, you’ll want to avoid reading further.


Page 11 of 18
Go to top