Thursday, February 19, 2009

Dollhouse Premiere, Lost, Survivor, Amazing Race Premiere, Idol, & More

The Apple Store Soho Presents Meet the Creator: Joss Whedon
I'm going to start with the long awaited premiere of Dollhouse which is the latest project from Joss Whedon. I really liked this show. The premiere was really good but it would be interesting to see what the original pilot was going to be like. The premiere set up the story well and gave us an idea of where the show is going to go. Echo, played by Eliza Dushku, is recruited to the dollhouse which is an underground deal where they are hired for jobs. I went into the premise of the show last week so I won’t go over it again. We get a glimpse of what life will be like for each of them immediately when we see Echo having a great time with a guy and speaking about how she may have finally found the one. Then, comes the treatment and, boom, no memory of it all. She gets put into her first case which involves saving a kidnapped little girl. I should point out that the treatment involves a complete personality download. They become the person that they are downloaded with. Echo becomes a negotiator and works on negotiating a deal with the girl's father and her captives. The problem with the downloading becomes apparent quickly when the personality that Echo was given turns out to be someone that had been captured by this guy previously and she ended up committing suicide. That was a very interesting turn. She was originally pulled off of the case until Boyd had her put back on it feeling that she was the only one who could get the girl back. What had happened was that Echo had the first in person negotiating deal but she freaked out when she realized who the guy was. The girl was saved and the personality that Echo was given did get some major closure over the whole deal. We did see the premise of the story starting when Echo started seeing flashes of memories showing that her memories aren't getting completely wiped. Yes, Amy Acker!! I have missed Amy Acker since Angel ended and love that she is on this show. She plays Dr. Claire Saunders who keeps an eye on all the "actives" to see how they're doing. You really get the feeling that she is going to play a major role in the story as it goes along. On the outside of the dollhouse, we learn about an FBI guy named Paul Ballard who is apparently hot on the heels of tracking down the dollhouse. Interesting twist at the end of the episode where we saw the yearbook video of Echo speaking about her life. During the episode, we also were shown the progress of another "active" named Sierra who was brought in and then put right in on the case at the end. It's always classic to see a Joss show ending with a Grr Argh. Love it. Overall, I really enjoyed the show. You know that I'm going to be tuning in every week. Dollhouse airs on Fox on Friday nights at 8pm central time. You can also check out the first episode on Hulu at this link:

How were the ratings for Dollhouse? Pretty solid numbers as a reported nearly 5 million viewers tuned in. That is actually just about even with the ratings for Firefly years ago from what I’ve heard. It just goes to show that the Joss audience will tune in for his projects. Point me to a Joss Whedon project and I’m in.

How incredible was Lost this week??!! That was an awesome episode!! Me and my friends that watched it together applauded after it ended cause it was so good. I was glued to it. The episode was just perfectly written with how we saw the members of the Oceanic Six arriving back on the island. Well, except for Aaron. It was revealed that they would have to travel on a plane which would travel right into the position of time of where the moving island would be with that either getting them on the island or not. They also had to do everything the same as in the day of the original crash. That meant that Locke was the replacement of Jack's dad. You also had the woman that was escorting Sayid which replaced the marshall that was escorting Kate originally. That all matches up. We saw Jack, Hurley, and Kate all on the island but no sign of Sun and Sayid yet. However, we did get to see Jin who found them as he was riding in the Dharma van. Some random thoughts on the episode. Just what did Ben have to do that got him all bloody? Did that involve his getting even with Whidmore? That would follow up with is Penny still ok? I’m thinking that she is not and that he just got even. Desmond was away for a bit with the group as he had the message for Daniel's mom. Geez, Kate. How cold was she in this episode? She sleeps with Jack and then basically wants nothing to do with him on the plane. I expected some big long explanation on that suicide note from Locke but it turned out to just say to Jack, "I wish that you had believed me". Wow, simple and very effective. Anyone else think that the woman escorting Sayid looked like Idol 6 winner, Jordin Sparks? How great was it that Frank was on the plane? He is happy to see Jack until he looks and sees the rest of the group onboard as well. Then, he gets his question to Jack of "we're not going to Guam, are we?" answered. That was great stuff!!! The airline logo is that logo that kept flashing in the season five music video promo that was set to The Fray’s song. I was wondering when we would see that logo. I can’t wait for the next episode!!

Three people have made it on to the final twelve on American Idol. After the competition this week, Danny Gokey, Alexis Grace, and Michael Sarver have moved on. I'm definitely all for Danny and Alexis as I have been fans of theirs from the beginning. I don't know enough about Michael just yet but he is very talented. Alexis Grace just comes off like a star. She is going to go very far in this competition. Danny is much the same. He is going to carry on far too. The unfortunates that competed this week but didn't make it through included: Brent Keith, Jackie Tohn, Ricky Braddy, Ann Marie Boskovich, Casey Carlson, Stevie Wright, Anoop Desai, Tatiana del Toro, and Stephen Fowler.

Lost and American Idol will go head to head on March 11th as Fox is switching American Idol's time slot on Wednesdays. Yeah, I'm picking to watch Lost head to head. Not even a question.

Wonder what some of your past Idol contestants are up to? Well, Taylor Hicks has been on Regis and Kelly this week taking part in their dating contest. It has been fun and he took part in the dating game type of deal today where he picked his date. Katharine McPhee appears to be set to make an appearance on CSI: NY.

Tonight’s Survivor showed that the target remained on Sierra’s back from her tribe. Sierra still went after the hidden immunity idol and decided that she needed help with it. So, she went with the one person that didn’t vote against her in the first of the game which was Brendan. The two searched for the idol and were digging a major hole in the beach when the rest of the tribe worried about if they were ok cause they had been gone for so long. Debbie walked up on them and Sierra had the great story of that they were building a fire pit for a beach bonfire for later. Everyone seemed to buy the story but the task to find the idol was called off. The immunity challenge was held next and was a rough one. Basically, a ball was thrown out in the water and you had to go for it and throw it in the hoop. Kind of like a football meets basketball challenge in water cause you could do whatever to stop them. These challenges are always rough. Jalapao won the immunity challenge. They were able to choose who would go to exile island on the other tribe and they chose Brendan. A twist with that though is that Brendan got to choose a member of Jalapao to go with him. He picked Taj. He did get a clue on the immunity idol and also the option of switching tribes. He wasn’t about to change tribes but did let Taj in on the clue. Kind of a useless clue though as it said “homelands” making it sound like the idol was back at camp but is a different idol from the one that he had been looking for. Speaking of Taj, I am not sure if revealing that you’re the wife of NFL superstar Eddie George is a good idea. People are just looking for reasons to vote people out and revealing something of that magnitude often works against you. At Timbira, talk turned on who to vote out. The target was originally Sierra but Coach and Candace had started clashing. The plan then turned to voting out Candace. She was indeed voted out on a 7-1 vote and was blindsided.

While we wait in very impatient and hopeful anticipation for a Veronica Mars movie, it has been announced that Kristen Bell and Rob Thomas will be teaming up in another project. Thomas is producing a show for Starz which is called Party Down. The show premieres on Starz on Friday, March 20th and Kristen Bell will be appearing on the show in its season finale in May. Very exciting news.

One of my favorite comedies, My Boys, is set to return for its third season on March 31 on TBS.

An all right premiere of The Amazing Race. Nothing can't miss just yet but it is only one episode. The teams started from Los Alamitos, CA and were on their way to Switzerland. As far as challenges, it was some tough ones. To start, the teams had to send one of their own to bungee jump off of the second highest bungee jump in the world. It looked intense!!! After that, it was taking rolls of cheese down a very steep and slick hill. Finishing in first place for the leg of the race was Margie and Luke. So impressed with them. Luke is deaf and said that he doesn’t even read lips that well. So, his mom is his link to what is going on in this race. Wow, they did so good and have made teams take them seriously. Not far behind them in second and third was Tammy & Victor and Mark & Michael respectively. Last place came down to a foot race between two teams. Jodi & Christie were able to beat Preston & Jennifer to the line. Preston & Jennifer are the first ones out of the race. Here are the standings at this pit stop. 1. Margie and Luke. 2. Tammy and Victor. 3. Mark and Michael. 4. Mel and Mike. 5. Amanda and Kris. 6. Brad and Victoria. 7. Jaime and Cara. 8. Kisha and Jen. 9. Steve and Linda. 10. Christie and Jodi. I really liked the new opening for the show with had a new music mix and also a new look to it as well. It looked really sweet.

Movie box office numbers for last weekend. 1. Friday The 13th - $43.5 million. 2. He's Just Not That Into You - $22.3 million. 3. Taken - $21.8 million. 4. Coraline - $18.8 million. 5. Confessions Of A Shopaholic - $17.8 million. 6. Paul Blart: Mall Cop - $13.5 million. 7. The Pink Panther 2 - $10.76 million. 8. The International - $10.70 million. 9. Slumdog Millionaire - $8.7 million. 10. Push - $7.9 million.

Fun NBA All Star Weekend. Seeing Shaq and Kobe teaming back up together was fun. They put the exclamation point on the reunion by sharing the MVP award for the All Star Game. How great was Shaq with his dancing during the player introductions? One thing about Shaq has always been that he is an entertainer besides just a basketball player. Good for Kenny Smith and Reggie Miller calling out LeBron James about entering the dunk contest. After Dwight Howard dunked the 12 foot basket with ease, LeBron committed to enter next year and said that he could dunk a 13 foot basket. I get tired of the stars not entering the slam dunk contest claiming that it makes them limited as only a dunker. It just another event and isn’t going to overshadow your career. Good for LeBron for jumping in and I look forward to a possible LeBron/Howard matchup next year in Dallas. The three point shootout was just kind of eh to me this year. It wasn’t really that exciting. Bulls rookie, Derrick Rose, won the skills challenge.

Note to Nascar. Start your races earlier. You could get so many more races in if you would start them at a decent time. This weekend's Daytona 500 didn't get the green flag till almost 4pm Daytona time. The rains came almost 3 hours later. If the race had been started earlier in the day, there would have been no problem getting the race completely done. I don't know why Nascar is so obsessed with starting races so late in recent years but I'm sure its ratings driven.

USA has cancelled The Starter Wife.

Conan O'Brien's last week of programming is currently ongoing. He has been airing old footage all week of his run of shows. He will take over The Tonight Show in a few months and is ready to move out west. Jimmy Fallon will be taking over for Conan on March 2nd. I’ll definitely miss seeing Conan on Late Night and wish him all the best of success with The Tonight Show.

I'm going to have to see Race To Witch Mountain starring The Rock. That looks like a fun movie. Quite a few movies that I want to see coming up so I'll have to make some trips to the theatre.

Speaking of movies that I want to see, how about the new trailer for Transformers 2? It looks incredible. I was a Transformers fan growing up and was very concerned upon the news of the movie a couple of years ago. Just one of those fears of a long time fan saying "please don't mess this up" if you're going to do it. I loved the movie and am really looking forward to seeing the sequel this summer. The release date has been moved up to June 24th. Here is a link to check out the trailer and more info.

If you didn’t see it, The Simpsons has a new opening to go along with their high definition launch. I thought it looked really cool just in standard defintion and it was nice to see it get updated.

Want to storm chase with Reed Timmer and the crew but can't go in person? Well, you're in luck. The TVN crew is about to launch a new live streaming video system. This will include storm reports, radar, GPS locations, watches and warnings, and more. I will definitely be checking this out!! The TVN crew was of course featured on season two of Storm Chasers.

TV on DVD releases for Tuesday, February 24th. Breaking Bad (Season One), Girlfriends (Season Six), Just Shoot Me (Season Three), The Lair (Season Two), Make Room For Daddy (Season Six - Volume One), My Wife and Kids (Season One).

Line Of The Week: From Lost. Jack asks Ben about the fate of the others that happened to end up on the plane with the members of the Oceanic Six. Ahh, that cold blooded Ben. The writers give him great lines.
“The other people on this plane. What is going to happen to them?” - Jack
“Who cares?” – Ben

You Tube Video Of The Week: Yeah, I have to promote the new Joss Whedon show Dollhouse, so here is a feature on the story of the show.

Hope all of you are doing great and I wish you a great weekend!! Take care and God bless!!

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