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
Mar
31
 
 
SEASON PREMIERE: Season 2 of this stellar series, with its generous doses of both humor and drama, gets underway today. If you’re a Downton Abbey fan and want more of that sort of thing, here you go. For a full review, see Eric Gould’s Cold Light Reader. Check local listings.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Mar
31
 
 
What a strong season this show is having. And what great use of its guest stars. Matthew Perry was wonderful last week, as a rival candidate on the painful end of Peter’s fist – and this week. Dylan Baker returns as creepy killer Colin Sweeney, who has a new wife (played by Morena Baccarin of Homeland) – and, once again, Alicia (Julianna Margulies) as his often flustered counsel.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Mar
31
 
 
SERIES PREMIERE: Jeremy Piven goes from modern L.A. in Entourage to turn-of-the-century London (the 20th century, that is) in this new series from Andrew Davies, who gave us those tasty adaptations of Pride and Prejudice, Little Dorrit and so much more. Piven is at this show’s center, as an American businessman who goes to London to revamp and all but invent the modern department store. But it’s the women around him who rule, and demand the most attention, starting with Zoe Tapper as
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Mar
31
 
 
SEASON FINALE: Last week’s episode was another stunner, managing to serve up a surprise – and a major dramatic moment – that caught even the most ready-for-anything fans by surprise. And we don’t even have time to shake that off, because tonight’s episode has Rick and company squaring off against the Governor in the battle that’s been brewing all season. Expect a high death count, and not just among the already dead.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Mar
31
 
 
SEASON PREMIERE: This new season manages to escalate things slowly, but surely, to a point where they’ve never been before, and Season 3 of Thrones benefits from the increased volatility. The best plot line, in the seasons sent for review, concerns the efforts of Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke, pictured) to assemble an army strong enough to claim the Iron Throne. Her search for that army leads to my favorite Game of Thrones scene to date, which involves some very liberal translations of
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Mar
30
 
 
Mr. Selfridge may not provoke the full-blown tizzy that Downton Abbey has for the Masterpiece Classic franchise. Still, it very much works its own charms...
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Mar
30
 
 
It's down to the Elite Eight, with two games played today and two more tomorrow. Today's opener in this college ball doubleheader is from the East bracket, with No. 4 Syracuse vs. No. 3 Marquette, and the second game, at 7 p.m. ET, is from the West, and pits No. 2 Ohio State vs. today's lowest-ranked surviving seed, No. 9 Wichita State.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Mar
30
 
 
You might not expect to find this 1939 classic musical on this particular network – though there have been animated versions of L. Frank Baum’s tale, this is the familiar Judy Garland vehicle. But on a holiday weekend, with families gathered around together, it’s a welcome sight no matter where it surfaces. Forget the prequel. Here’s the real deal.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Mar
30
 
 
SERIES RETURN: On the BBC America website, this new run of Doctor Who episodes is labeled Season 7, Part 2. I’m glad someone can keep it straight. All I know is, I’m glad the show is back, with Matt Smith continuing as the Doctor, and Jenna-Louise Coleman establishing her place as the Doctor’s newest companion.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2013
Mar
30
 
 
This is the cable premiere of one of two Snow White movies released last year. This one stars Charlize Theron as the evil Ravenna, Kristen Stewart as Snow White, and Chris Hemsworth as the Huntsman who is ordered to kill Snow, but saves her instead. It’s a profitable decision, as well as a noble one. After all, there’s no business like Snow business.
 
 
 
  
 
 
 
 
 

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.

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