Archive for the ‘ Television ’ Category

filed under: Local Yokels | Television

Meta-tastic G.I. Joe Parody On ‘Community’

5PM ON 09/04/2014
BY Beth Comery

gi joe mutineersThe NBC series ‘Community’ aired this season’s alternate-medium episode and it was a beaut. “G.I. Jeff” was an animated parody of the old G.I. Joe cartoons interspersed with live-action faux vintage TV spots for a new product line (see above) and a few scenes back in the show’s reality. Meta doesn’t begin to describe it. There is no mention of the show on their website, and I wondered whether Hasbro had embraced the project. I consulted some random online experts whose credentials and sources are completely unverifiable, although there are certain “indicia of reliability.”

A gentleman at Dork Shelf writes that it was a “Hasbro approved parody.” He goes on to describe various in-jokes involving beloved show creator, Dan Harmon (Dork status confirmed).

Word of the Nerd describes the amusing premise of what looks for all the world like a real G.I. Joe episode.

It seems like a rather odd episode of the old cartoon until ‘Wingman’ kills Destro, and we learn this is the first actual death in the twenty five plus years of war with Cobra. The study group lands in jail, and they meet ‘Fourth Wall’ (Abed, Danny Pudi) who first brings up the idea that their reality may only be an animated children’s show. Meta, meta. There is even a character named ‘Sleep Apnea’ who does not look entirely unlike the show’s creator, Dan Harmon.

Go here to watch Episode 511 “G.I. Jeff;” also available On Demand for Cox customers. Hasbro should embrace this — it’s a gas. And it must be noted no one will ever confuse the somewhat crudely executed faux action figures for an actual Hasbro product. (But they’re not bad.)

filed under: Comedy | Television

Fred Armisen Coming To The Columbus — Sold Out

2PM ON 06/02/2014
BY Beth Comery

armisen/paterson [Update: This show sold out in 6 minutes. According to the Columbus Facebook page there may be an announcement soon about a second show.]

Comic genius Fred Armisen will host two screenings of an unaired episode of IFC’s Portlandia with a Q&A following each screening. (The new season of Portlandia starts February 27th.) According to the IFC website we are one of only three cities (with Denver and Minneapolis) selected for this unusual event. Good get for the Columbus!

The $15 tickets go on sale Friday, February 7th at noon. One show, 7pm. Did we mention, this is upstairs!

Seen here: Fred Armisen popped up for a quick cameo last week on SNL as former New York Governor David Paterson to top off the Seth Myers’ farewell ‘Weekend Update.’ (Do we get Black History Month points for this? Maybe not.)

$17 day of show, Wednesday, March 12th, Columbus Theatre, 270 Broadway (tickets here), all ages, 21+ with ID to drink, cash only

filed under: Television |

New Year’s Resolution — Watch More TV

9AM ON 01/01/2014
BY Daily Dose

how to watch television And so can you.

Thursday, 1/2 — Community

Sunday, 1/5 — Downton Abbey

Monday, 1/6 — Daily Show/Colbert Report

1/11 — Patriots AFC Playoff (tickets go on sale 10am, January 6 . . . backup, in case your tv breaks)

1/12 — Episodes (Showtime)

1/17 — Bill Maher

1/19 — Sherlock

2/27 — Portlandia

filed under: Sports | Television

Colorful Commentator — Andy Gresh

4PM ON 30/12/2013
BY Beth Comery

Patriots Wrap I bumped into this segment last night and became utterly transfixed. On the left is commentator Andy Gresh. According to his bio he attended URI on a football scholarship, graduating with a degree in journalism. He’s been in the sports radio and broadcast business since, notably as part of the Patriots Radio Network Broadcast Team at 98.5 The Sports Hub.

Andy Gresh has been a pre, post and halftime analyst on the Patriots Radio Network since the 2005 season and can be heard weekdays from 10am until 2pm on 98.5 The Sports Hub with co-host Scott Zolak. He’s also the current lead analyst for Comcast/NBC’s coverage of CAA Football, seen on Comcast Sportsnet New England. Gresh attended the University of Rhode Island where he was a two year letter winner as an offensive lineman from 1992-1995. He also has experience talking pro football on the ESPN Radio Network working with Pro Football Hall of Famer Mike Ditka, also on Sirius/XM NFL Radio working with Hall of Famer Jerry Rice and CBS analysts Shannon Sharpe and Rich Gannon, just to name a few.

So he knows his stuff, but I’m inclined to believe he’s not used to television, or sports jackets. He stares confidently straight into the camera for longer than feels right, finally remembering that he should probably talk to that other guy again. Who, by the way, I would identify but I forgot his name and I can not find him on the Channel 12 Sports page nor anywhere else on the Channel 12 site (grr). Whoever he is, excellent straight-man! How he keeps his composure listening to Mr. Gresh’s quirky rapid-fire delivery, sound effects, raspberries, and unfiltered vocabulary I do not know. I just wish I could hear as fast as Mr. Gresh talks, because I know I would learn a  lot.

I don’t think he’s trying to be funny; I think it’s just him.

filed under: Film | Television

A Year Of Music Watching — 2013

4PM ON 29/12/2013
BY Beth Comery

HMTAC The dark days of winter approach — a perfect time for catching up on movies and shows you missed. Here’s some titles for your queue.


Keep eyes peeled for a rebroadcast of “Jimi Hendrix: Hear My Train A Comin’” on the PBS show ‘American Masters’ and get ready to swoon. What a sweetie he was. There’s lots of new old footage, inside background anecdotes, and great music. And the clothes! Utter Edwardian-psychedelic-hippie fabulousness . . . what an exquisite creature.  Be warned, you will immediately have to go fill in the tracks missing from your iPod.

Hair as metaphor: Al Pacino is stunning in the HBO movie “Phil Spector,” and the writing is fantastic.  It is also something of a lawyering procedural (is that a genre?) although this is not a defense either you or I could ever afford. When Spector arrives for his last court appearance . . . priceless.

Also on HBO this year, “Pussy Riot: A Punk Prayer” which will be much easier to watch now that they have been released from prison. The courage of these young women is humbling. The fearful pride exhibited by family members is wrenching. The New York Times reported yesterday that “The first public screening in Russia of a documentary about the activist group Pussy Riot was canceled by the government at the last minute on Saturday.” Stay tuned.

Showtime recently ran “Sweet Summer Sun” a documentary of last July’s Hyde Park show (featuring Lisa Fischer of “20 Feet From Stardom” on “Gimme Shelter”). And that’s Mick Taylor on guitar. Showtime is running it again 11pm on New Year’s Eve. It’s available On Demand through January.

Saturday Night Live used to be a great place to discover exciting new talent, but now features Top 40 millionaires like Katy Perry/Rihanna/One Direction, or acts like the dreary and mystifyingly successful Kings of Leon/Arcade Fire — with the egregious Justin Timberlake laser show extravaganza being the worst anything of 2013. But then, one magical night, the audience was treated to the insanely delightful exuberance of newish sister act Haim (rhymes with ‘rhyme’). The studio audience exploded at the end of their song “The Wire.” I wish I could link to the video but Hulu has pulled it, and SNL has buried it, so I give up.


Top honors go to “Twenty Feet From Stardom.” Shown at the Avon this long-overdue story of the backup singers behind some of the greatest musical legends of the 21st century finally gave the spotlight to the likes of Darlene Love, Lisa Fischer, and my fave, the stylish, muse Claudia Lennear. (Lennear was probably Jagger’s ‘Brown Sugar.’ Nice piece in HuffPo 9.16.13 by another Lennear fan. Her solo album has been reissued.). The movie covers decades, from early Ray Charles sessions up through Joe Cocker, Humble Pie, the Rolling Stones and more. The Brits sure kept these gals working and still do; Lisa Fischer performed with the Rolling Stones in Hyde park this summer (see above).  The story of rousing Merry Clayton out of bed in the middle of the night to lay down the “Gimme Shelter” track is hilarious. Then the isolated track echoes through the theater speakers . . . absolute chills.

In May the Cable Car ran the absorbing documentary “The Source Family” which examines 70’s guru Father Yod, his gaggle of sister wives, obligatory Rolls Royce, and the dynamics of psychological manipulation. Unlike other cults this California group was much more out in the world, even launching a rock band of sorts. And the music wasn’t horrible.

Also at the Cable Car this year, now in my queue: “A Band Called Death,” which has revived interest in these black 70’s proto-punkers — Detroit brothers who wanted to play hard-rocking “white boys music” (NYT review); “Sound City,” for musicians and engineers as well as fans (NYT review); and “The Punk Singer” about Kathleen Hannah of Bikini Kill (NYT review).

filed under: Local Yokels | Television

Deer Tick Cover ‘Father Christmas’ on Conan

10AM ON 19/12/2013
BY Beth Comery

deer tick

Deer Tick don ugly sweaters to perform the Kinks classic ‘Father Christmas’ on “Conan Holiday Music for the Holidays.”

Go here to order Deer Tick’s latest cd “Negativity” — an ideal Christmas present because you can’t spell Negativity without Nativity.

filed under: History | Television

Fifty Years Ago

10AM ON 22/11/2013
BY Beth Comery

what cheer? vintage (11.22) Television coverage of this anniversary has been intense with the most compelling work airing on PBS. For the forensic approach to the evidence, and analysis of the various conspiracy theories, check out NOVA’s “Cold Case JFK.”

Frontline producers have unearthed rare footage of an irrational and energetic Lee Harvey Oswald mixing things up with Cubans in New Orleans; they have also located the former KGB agents and Russian officials who had to deal with this naive wingnut when he showed up on their doorstep. Watch “Who was Lee Harvey Oswald.”

Can’t get enough old footage? is going all in starting today at 1:38pm ET with four straight days of a live-streaming of their original broadcast. Go here for the schedule.

And let us reflect on how important it is to have a reasonably competent vice president on deck.

(Pictured here: some of the memorabilia available at What Cheer Antiques and Vintage, 180 Angell Street.)

filed under: Comics | Television

Julie Newmar At Rhode Island Comic Con

12PM ON 01/11/2013
BY Beth Comery

julie newmar (11.2) Actress Julie Newmar has Con-cred for miles. While her appearance this Saturday at the Rhode Island Comic Con (RICC) owes to her unassailable title as Best Catwoman Ever — that never starts an argument — let’s not forget her first starring role as Rhoda the robot (the original Fembot if you will) on My Living Doll. The actress gets extra points from this environmentalist for her battle against the evil leafblower empire and her feud with neighbor Jim Belushi (what’s not to like?).

Kudos to the organizers of the RICC for rounding up some real A-Listers this year. The Batman reunion features Newmar, Adam West (now much beloved for his role on Family Guy, proving that American lives can have second acts), and Burt Ward. (Batman panel at 3pm on Saturday.)

Other big names include: Danny Glover, Nichelle Nichols, Ernie Hudson, Gil Gerard.

Also on tap: quidditch, cosplay, gaming, Star Wars trivia, lightsaber training, and . . . sci-fi speed dating.

Saturday, November 2, Sunday, November 3, Rhode Island Convention Center (directions), One Sabin Street, full schedule here

filed under: Television | art

Chalk Homage To TV Event

7AM ON 29/09/2013
BY Beth Comery

BB in Chalk

Walter White in green? Is that a clue? What does it mean? This was one of the more popular panels to photograph last night at the Providence Rotary Street Painting Festival, but there were many special pieces. It should all still be out there; take a walk and check it out.

Nothing much on television tonight — just Breaking Bad, Homeland, Masters of Sex, Boardwalk Empire, the Patriots’ game, Eastbound and Down . . .

filed under: Local Yokels | Television

Sheldon Gets The Colbert Bump

9AM ON 13/08/2013
BY Beth Comery

sheldon whitehouse Rhode Island’s junior senator, Sheldon Whitehouse, appeared on Monday night’s The Colbert Report to promote his new book “On Virtues” and, I suppose, the virtues themselves. His publisher must be happy.

The full title of the book is “On Virtues: Quotations and Insight to Live a Full, Honorable, and Truly American Life.” Is it me or is there some awkward syntax in that tagline?

Anyway, they said “Rhode Island” on a television show!

filed under: Television | War on Drugs

DOJ Coming Around On Drug War/Mass Incarceration

9AM ON 12/08/2013
BY Beth Comery

DPA/Beyond Bars Attorney General Eric Holder will be announcing a policy shift today at the annual meeting of the ABA, simultaneously issuing new guidelines to U.S. attorney offices regarding drug prosecutions. The New York Times reports from Holder’s prepared remarks,

. . . “too many Americans go to too many prisons for far too long and for no good law enforcement reason,” Mr. Holder is planning to justify his policy push in both moral and economic terms.

It’s a start. New guidelines in a nutshell: “. . . prosecutors will be told that they may not write the specific quantity of drugs when drafting indictments for drug defendants who meet the following four criteria: their conduct did not involve violence, the use of a weapon or sales to minors; they are not leaders of a criminal organization; they have no significant ties to large-scale gangs or cartels; and they have no significant criminal history.” This would allow for a sentence less than would be required under the mandatory minimum law.

Meanwhile, Beyond Bars (a project of Brave New Foundation) in partnership with the Drug Policy Alliance has produced a short video “What Breaking Bad reveals about the War on Drugs.”

Watch video after the jump. It’s short (and shows violence of course). The end is actually pretty funny.

more »

filed under: Comedy | Television

Eric Andre At Comedy Connection

7PM ON 31/07/2013
BY Beth Comery

the eric andre show (8.2) “The Eric Andre Show” will be returning for a second season this fall on the Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim. This absurdist take on the traditional talk show has Mr. Andre and his disinterested co-host Hannibal Burress interacting with various baffled B-listers between occasional cameo eruptions (Sebastian Bach nailed it — not sure what he said, but it was perfect). They regularly dismantle the set itself as if to underscore the theme of deconstruction for the satire-impaired, but also because it’s fun to break things. In addition to the studio bits, the show features candid camera, Ali G-type, ambush scenes. My introduction to this mayhem occurred when I woke up on my couch late one night  — I’m awake — just as Mr. Andre was barrelling around a Mensa meeting where, interestingly, no one could figure out how to handle the problem. It was delightful. The new season starts in October.

In the meantime fans can catch Eric Andre performing stand-up this Friday at the Comedy Connection.

$24, doors 7pm, show 8pm, Friday, August 2, Comedy Connection, 39 Warren Avenue, East Providence, 18+

filed under: Music | Television

Rhode Island PBS Fundraising Drive On Channel 36

12PM ON 04/03/2013
BY Daily Dose

circus(3.4) Several must-sees on tap Monday (March 4) during the annual WSBE/Channel 36 March pledge drive. Tune in at 9pm to watch “The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus” — a film Janet Maslin called “uneven but ripely nostalgic.” The final cut of this near-mythical 1968 “happening” — organized by the Stones and featuring The Who, Marianne Faithful, John and Yoko, Jethro Tull (with Tony Iommi), and Eric Clapton, among others — was finally reassembled, cleaned up, and released in 1996.

The fundraising broadcast starts at 7:30pm (airing “Albert King and Stevie Ray Vaughn: In Session”) with area musicians and live performances during the pledge breaks. Look for 10-year-old guitar phenom Nolan Leite (video after the jump) and many local faves.

Finally, during the evening’s broadcast, Jonathan Flynn and Rudy Cheeks will be introducing their new performance series “Meet Me at the Met” airing later this year. Bob Kerr has the details at the Providence Journal.

. . . Flynn and Cheeks want to make it a public television showcase for the best in Rhode Island music. They want to produce a series of shows that bring established musicians and up-and-comers to a wider audience. They want to bring that great music scene right into the living room.

more »

filed under: Fashion | Television

RISD Instructor On New Project Runway

9PM ON 12/01/2013
BY Daily Dose

crazy kittie sweater Providence has another designer on “Project Runway.” (Jonathan Joseph Peters represented on Season 7.) Joseph Aaron Segal currently teaches Industrial Knitting at RISD while working as a freelance knitwear designer and lead designer for his two brands, World of JAS and Pretty Snake. He could probably retire right now on the success of his Crazy Kitty sweater (this is one of many iterations, colors, styles).

To see his looks from the 2011 StyleWeek Providence go to ProJo.

“Project Runway” premieres Thursday, January 24th at 9pm on Lifetime.

filed under: Television | holidays

New Year’s Eve TV Marathons

3PM ON 30/12/2012
BY Daily Dose

feminist bookstore And some of New Year’s Eve day. And most of New Year’s day.

Portlandia on IFC: 6pm Monday through 5:30pm on Tuesday. Do yourself a favor and catch the 10:30pm episode, “Spyke and Irys want an unconventional wedding; Toni and Candace (the feminist bookstore owners seen here) have a book signing.” (Marathon schedule.)

The new season of Portlandia starts Friday, January 4th at 10pm.

Twilight Zone on SyFy: 8am Monday through 4:30am Wednesday.

The Walking Dead on AMC: 9pm Monday through 4am Tuesday.

Plan accordingly.

filed under: News | Television

“First Birthdays” Gift

9AM ON 12/11/2012
BY Daily Dose

A big thanks to loyal Dose reader Heywood Jablome for tipping us off to this segment from Jimmy Kimmel Live exposing a recent pranking of our local NBC 10 news team. Coming as it did right between Sandy and the election, it kind of got lost in the shuffle. Also, we immediately had qualms as to whether this piece meets our usual editorial standards. This issue has resulted in endless arguments at the morning meetings; “We’re better than this!” “No we’re not!”

But it was finally decided that if this publicity could in any way help drive a stake through the heart of the “First Birthdays” feature, then we had a duty to run with it.



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