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

 
Save 50% off on 26 weeks of The New York Times Digital
 
2014
May
31
 
 
IBM is AMC’s new villain in residence, having loomed forebodingly over this spring’s Mad Men episodes and now looking even more sinister in the network's new Halt and Catch Fire...
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
May
31
 
 
The haunting poetry in James Dickey’s novel translates well to this 1972 John Boorman movie, in no small part because Dickey wrote the screenplay himself. Burt Reynolds plays a cocky alpha male who persuades three friends – played by Jon Voight, Ned Beatty and Ronny Cox – to shed their comfortable big-city trappings for a weekend for a canoe trip down a soon-to-be-dammed Georgia river. What happens next, from the time they drive their vehicle into the backwoods entry point unti
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
May
31
 
 
Held last month in Brooklyn, rather than in the Hall of Fame’s Cleveland home, the 29th annual Rock and Roll Fall of Fame Induction ceremony is an exercise in panning for gold: There’s a lot of worthless stuff to sift through, but there is gold in them thar hills. Even NBC’s three-hour cut-down of the April 10 event is a long slog, but watch for certain highlights. There’s Bruce Springsteen, giving the night’s best induction speech by honoring (before playing with)
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
May
31
 
 
With Seth MacFarlane’s just-released A Million Ways to Die in the West being hailed as the funniest Western spoof since Blazing Saddles, it’s a good time to see how the Family Guy creator got the clout to make his dream-project genre comedy. It’s by having stunned Hollywood with Ted, this 2002 comedy about a rude and talking stuffed animal (voice provided by MacFarlane, opposite human costar Mark Wahlberg). Upon its release, it earned about half a billion dollars worldwide
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
May
31
 
 
In this new episode, Rachel (seen here, as one of many roles played by Tatiana Maslany) comes face to face with her… father. It’s because of detective work by Sarah (Maslany again), who also is working with three other people, all played by Maslany. Either you’re watching and enjoying this show, as I am, or it’s not worth explaining.
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
May
31
 
 
This week, Norton’s guests include Julie Andrews, Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum. Among the typically unexpected conversational moments: As a delighted Andrews listens, Magic Mike star Tatum reveals details of his first real-life stripping job, as a 19-year-old, dressed as a Boy Scout, as his sister sat watching in the audience. Norton ups the ante by playing the actual song to which Tatum stripped – a selection so unpredictable and unlikely, it’s hilarious. Hint: It’s a n
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
May
31
 
 
The most interesting story about the fall season to come is the incredible number of superhero, fantasy and genre shows on the broadcast networks...
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
May
30
 
 
This is the 2009 reboot of the dormant Star Trek movie franchise – a reboot so successful, it not only led to director J.J. Abrams being handed the reins to this iconic sci-fi series, but to the upcoming Star Wars continuation as well. Chris Pine plays a raucous young Starfleet cadet named James Tiberius Kirk, Zachary Quinto co-stars as Spock, and costars include Zoe Saldana as Uhura (pictured), Simon Pegg as Scotty, Karl Urban as Bones, and John Cho as Sulu.  
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
May
30
 
 
Phillip Noyce, famous for directing Patriot Games, and the man who directed Sam Neill and a young Nicole Kidman in 1989’s brilliantly intense Dead Calm, directed this period movie way back in 1978. It’s a salute to the fading glory of the Australian movie newsreel industry, and is the kind of movie someone could make today about, say, newspapers. As TCM’s month-long Friday salute to Australian cinema continues, Newsfront features some internationally known stars (Wendy Hughes,
 
 
 
  
 
 
2014
May
30
 
 
Up to this point, the NBA playoffs have been, more or less, basketball as usual. But suddenly there’s a strong dramatic subtext, as the Miami Heat, ahead 3 games to 2 in its series against the Indiana Pacers, returns to its home Miami court to try and takes Game 6 and advance to the next postseason level. The drama? Indiana player Lance Stephenson tried to irritate Miami superstar LeBron James by, among other things, blowing in his ear during a break in the action of Game 5, which the Pace
 
 
 
  
 
 
 
 
 

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

 
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