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

 
 
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THURSDAY
JUNE 22
2017

BIANCULLI’S BEST BETS

 

Bravo, 8:00 p.m. ET

The good news: The guest on this new edition of Inside the Actors Studio, in which host James Lipton dissects and highlights a performer’s life, work, and psyche, is talented actress Scarlett Johansson. The bad news: Lipton and the show get her on the heels of what may be her weakest screen appearance, as the star of the poorly received comedy Rough Night (pictured).

 
  
 
 

TCM, 8:00 p.m. ET

This 1962 movie version of the famous musical stars Rosalind Russell as Rose, the stage mother of all stage mothers, and Natalie Wood as Louise, one of her child-performer daughters, who grew up to be famous strip-tease artist Gypsy Rose Lee. Jule Styne wrote the music, and Stephen Sondheim provided the lyrics. Let them entertain you…

 
  
 
 

ABC, 10:00 p.m. ET

SERIES PREMIERE: This is not a recommendation. It’s worth noting, though, how eagerly and heavily ABC has hitched itself to the game-show wagon this summer, presumably under the theory that reality TV is fading at last, at least a bit, and ABC is in search of another equally cheap and potentially, inexplicably popular programming form. Tonight alone, ABC hedges its bets by doing both. At 8 p.m. ET, it premieres Boy Band, a musical competition show that aims to assemble a made-for-TV boy band. (Hey, hey, they’re not the Monkees.) And at 10 p.m. ET, Mike Myers pretends to embody a fictitious British TV personality named Tommy Maitland, in much the same crazily committed way that Martin Short occasionally portrays overweight, under-informed show-biz interviewer Jiminy Glick. Myers, a.k.a. Maitland, is replacing Chuck Barris, the super-smarmy host and creator of the original Gong Show, and reviving this program – even with Will Arnett as an executive producer – is by no means a measure of TV progress. For a full review, see Ed Bark's Uncle Barky's Bytes.
 
  
 
 

Spike, 10:00 p.m. ET

SERIES PREMIERE: This is not a recommendation, either. Ten years ago, writer-director Frank Darabont, whose other credits include Stephen King’s The Shawshank Redemption (as well as TV’s The Walking Dead), made a movie version of another King novel. This one was about a mysterious mist that descends upon a small town, bringing creatures and murder with it. Now the story is expanded to series length on Spike, with new characters added, and, overall, a less effective tone struck. Think of it as a Mist opportunity… For a full review, see Ed Bark's Uncle Barky's Bytes.
 
  
 
 
 
 
Read and add comments HERE for today's Best Bets!
 
 

VIDEO WORTH WATCHING

There’s a Certain Glow About Them – Based on the ’80s show GLOW, the new Netflix series of the same name uses fictional characters to tell the back story of struggling actresses (and others) who were cast and became professional wrestlers. Starring Alison Brie (Community, Mad Men) and Betty Gilpin (Nurse Jackie), the tale of the spandex world of staged fighting gets a positive review from TVWW’s Ed Bark. Mark Maron is also along as the troupe’s coke-addled mastermind. Co-produced by Orange is the New Black’s Jenji Kohan, GLOW seems like the rightful sister companion to that series. All 10 episodes are available Friday, June 23rd. —Eric Gould

 
 

TV WE'RE WATCHING

  
   Visit TV We're Watching for these and other shows on
our DVRs right now...


The Carmichael Show
NBC
Wednesdays
10 PM ET

Flaked
Netflix
Streaming

GLOW
Netflix
Streaming

The Great British Baking Show
PBS
Sundays
9 PM ET

Loch Ness
AcornTV
Streaming

Orange is the New Black
Netflix
Streaming

Orphan Black
BBC America
Saturdays
10 PM ET

Real Time with Bill Maher
HBO
Fridays
10 PM ET

Silicon Valley
HBO
Sundays
10 PM ET

Twin Peaks:
The Return

Showtime
Sundays
9 PM ET
 
 

BUT WAIT... THERE'S MORE!


FRESH AIR FAVES

Audio of Bianculli's favorite 'Fresh Air' reports, and the stories behind them...


FAVES FROM
"THE MORGUE"

Bianculli's favorite newspaper articles, and the stories behind them...


EXTRAS & FEEDBACK

Share your favorite TV in-jokes and first TV loves...
 
 
 

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

 
 

This Day in TV History

 
 
 
 
TV WWorth Buying
 TOP TVWW SPECIAL DEAL$
The Chair

This is a reality show that fans of scripted TV will appreciate: the 2014 Starz series matching two aspiring directors against each other, filming the same screenplay, with the same budget, and both productions using locations in the same city. Brought to you by Project Greenlight creator Chris Moore, this is a fascinating look into how the written word branches off the page into two different visions. The Chair also has The Prize: a $250,000 check for the audience-voted winner. Each contestant cut is included. On sale at Amazon for under $20. —Eric Gould