DAVID BIANCULLI

Founder / Editor

ERIC GOULD

Associate Editor

LINDA DONOVAN

Assistant Editor

KARLE DUNBAR

Social Media Manager

Contributors

ALEX STRACHAN

TOM BRINKMOELLER

GERALD JORDAN

MONIQUE NAZARETH

CANDACE KELLEY

GABRIELA TAMARIZ

DAVID SICILIA

NOEL HOLSTON

JONATHAN STORM

 
 
2013
Nov
30
 
 
Next year, the Farrelly Brothers will be releasing a 20-years-after sequel to this bizarre buddy comedy. Like this 1994 original, it will star Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels as Harry and Lloyd. And just after Daniels won an Emmy as the smart and smarter news anchor on HBO’s Newsroom, the contrast ought to be especially entertaining. One element of the new Dumb and Dumber To movie that isn’t in the one shown tonight: co-star Jennifer Lawrence.  When the first Dumb and Dumber hit the
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Nov
30
 
 
This 2013 movie, a stab at appealing to the Twilight crowd with another adaptation of a Young Adult series of novels, is noted because a) it’s a slow Thanksgiving weekend, and b) it has some participants worth watching, if only to contrast with other current roles. Emmy Rossum (pictured), who plays Ridley, for example, is playing a completely different role here than her rebellious yet responsible Fiona Gallagher in Showtime’s Shameless. Then there’s Emma Thompson, currently st
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Nov
30
 
 
I consider this 1956 John Ford Western one of the very best John Wayne movies ever made. His Ethan Edwards is a complicated character, and not an especially flattering one. He embarks on a long, obsessive quest in search of his young niece, who was abducted by Comanches during a raid in which they slaughtered her family. Co-stars include Jeffrey Hunter, Vera Miles and Natalie Wood – and the plot, like the scenery, is singular and unforgettable.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Nov
30
 
 
If you watch this on a holiday weekend, it’s only because you’ve got pre-teens around. BBC America used all its Doctor Who golden-anniversary promotional muscle to promote this new series import, which premiered last week. It turned out, however, to be a decidedly juvenile affair, with a tone, and a script, that made it seem like a TV sibling of Young Hercules. Oh, and Hercules is in this new series, but not as a teenager – though there is a young Jason. And a young Pythagoras.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Nov
30
 
 
If you watched the mini-Star Wars marathon begun yesterday on Spike, today you can see the movie that launched the entire franchise: George Lucas’s 1977 space epic, originally called, simply, Star Wars. But that was before Lucas produced a trio of prequels – which can be seen today as well, beginning at noon ET.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Nov
29
 
 
It seemed a bright idea at the time: Why not hold a 50th anniversary conference, bringing together as many scholars as possible to investigate and celebrate The Doctor?...
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Nov
29
 
 
Well, it’s a mini-marathon, really: a sequential showing of what are now the first three movies in the Star Wars cinematic narrative. (In other words, these are the three prequels to the story begun with George Lucas’ first Star Wars film in the mid-Seventies.) The action begins at 2 p.m. ET with 1999’s Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace. And features a markedly young Natalie Portman as Padmé, a role she would repeat in the next two films as well. 2002&rsquo
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Nov
29
 
 
Here’s how I, as a TV critic Grinch, review tonight’s telecast of this 1966 holiday classic: It’s shown on the wrong #&$^*! holiday. This is the day after Thanksgiving, and it’s far too early for me to watch, much less recommend, a Christmas special, when the calendar still reads November, and when I haven’t even had my first meal of turkey leftovers. Ebenezer Scrooge would say “Humbug.” Today, so do I. If you want to record tonight’s ABC telec
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Nov
29
 
 
Another Preston Sturges comedy masterpiece, this one, from 1941, gave Henry Fonda one of the funniest straight-man roles of his career, and absolutely gave Barbara Stanwyck one of the best and sexiest and most outrageous of hers. She plays a con woman who encounters newly minted millionaire Fonda on a cruise ship, and, after perceiving he insulted her, sets out on an elaborate, and delicious, plan for revenge.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Nov
29
 
 
Barbra Streisand was 69 when she filmed this 2012 concert at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center, and demonstrates how to hold a large crowd (19,000) without expending Mick Jagger-like arena energy. She does it with her voice, and a few guests (including her son, Jason Gould, singing solo and with his mother) – and with some very funny vintage film clips. Not of her, but of old fans from Brooklyn. Songs include “The Way We Were,” “My Funny Valentine,” and “Funny
 
 
 
  
 
 
 
 
 

Good news, TVWW readers: David’s new book from Doubleday, The Platinum Age of Television: From I Love Lucy to The Walking Dead, How TV Became Terrific is available on Amazon for $20. (Paperback will be available September 5th, here.)

Doubleday says: “Darwin had his theory of evolution, and David Bianculli has his. Bianculli's theory has to do with the concept of quality television: what it is and, crucially, how it got that way."

"The Platinum Age of Television is an effusive guidebook that plots the path from the 1950s’ Golden Age to today’s era of quality TV. For instance, animation evolved from Rocky and His Friends to South Park; variety shows moved from The Ed Sullivan Show to Saturday Night Live; and family sitcoms grew from I Love Lucy to Modern Family. A high point is the author’s interviews with Carl Reiner, Mel Brooks, Norman Lear, Bob Newhart, Matt Groening, Larry David, Amy Schumer and many others...Bianculli has written a highly readable history." —The Washington Post