A road trip and a hard-fought victory bring the East Dillon Lions closer together
"Success is not a goal. It's a byproduct." – Eric Taylor
"Friday Night Lights" has had its share of big moments; the locker room speeches that give you chills and the football victories that make you yell out loud. It has also had many emotional punches to the gut, like Matt Saracen digging his father's grave or Tami Taylor's tearful sex-ed talk with her daughter. But sometimes, the quieter scenes can be just as affecting in a more subtle fashion, and "Kingdom" has plenty of those kinds of moments.
For once, the focus was almost completely on one important game - the road trip to Kingdom and hardscrabble victory over the same team that the Lions forfeited to last year. By separating Coach Taylor and the team from Dillon for one episode, the writers were able to tell a more rambling story that touched on everything from Vince's recent adventure at TMU to Buddy Jr.'s hazing right of passage as the team's newest member. There will most likely be more important consequences later on; who knows how long Vince and his father can keep their promise to Coach and not be seduced by the temptations of the college recruitment machine? Is Luke heading for a rude awakening of some kind in the midst of all of this? Is Hastings a charming smart-aleck or did his little "are you a virgin?" conversation with young Garrity portend some sort of bad (or good) influence in the future?
In the meantime, we got to see the easy camaraderie amongst the boys in that extended scene on their hotel patios, talking trash and fooling around, and smiled along with Buddy Jr. as he held the girl's lipstick the next day. We got to watch all the coaches unwinding with poker and beer, resulting in a bit of a drunk dial from Coach Taylor ("So…what are ya'll wearing?"). We got to bond even more with a football team with heart and guts, a team that is discovering their own strengths with every win and every loss. Like the man said, we're not there yet, but slowly and surely, we are getting there.
- On a more sour note, the Julie storyline cannot be over soon enough. If the whole point was just to get her home, I'm going to be very disappointed, although I can't imagine that an adjunct professor basically assaulting an undergraduate (on campus and in front of witnesses, no less) will not have bad consequences.
- Bacon frying up in the office! East Dillon's not so bad.
- How nice of Eric to let Stan do that whistle thing he loves to do.
- "Pork and pig are two different things."
- Words to live by: "Stay away from dumb, gentlemen."
- I pretty much adore Drunk Luke and want him to come back again.
- The branding scene was somehow both outlandish and completely believable.
- "Coach, this is my team. I ride with my team."
A superb double feature hits several comedic and emotional high points
One of the most wonderful things about the utterly wonderful world of "Parks and Recreation" is that even when everyone is acting like goofballs, their basic motivations are pretty realistic. Each of us has tried to help a friend and somehow overstepped, or debated about whether to escalate a friendship to a romantic level, or been too invested in being right instead of being supportive of a partner. All of these moments were played honestly, so that the poignant payoffs felt completely earned. It is only when those moments are combined with Snake Juice-induced role-playing, a fake game show called "Know Ya Boo", and Ron Swanson handing out land mines to precocious fourth-graders that the situations become comedic.
Leslie experienced a turning point with her best friend and her potential boyfriend, and each relationship came out stronger in the end, although only one was sealed with a kiss. In a slyly subversive twist, excess alcohol played an important role in each crisis; first when Leslie and Ann clear the air in an incoherent ("no offense") argument about Ann's potential job in the city government and then when Leslie is emboldened by red wine to make out with Ben "on his face" (although Chris kills that plan by crashing their dinner). In the town of Pawnee, nice girls do get what they want, by asking for forgiveness, and taking responsibility for their actions.
Each of the back-to-back episodes was bursting at the seams with comedy ringers, (Jean-Ralphio's pathetic non-rhyming rap, the return of "The Douche") and laugh-out-loud moments like Ron dancing up a storm in April's pillbox hat, or Chris going to town on air banjo. It's really refreshing to see a show with a true generosity of spirit; comedy writing with no mean-spiritedness is fairly rare on network television. OK, maybe April, but she is just grouchy about having to talk. You know, to people. About things.
Thankfully, this season didn't end on that cliff-hanger of the kiss, and we will get to see at least some fallout from their decision to go for it, despite the department rules, and also perhaps from Tom's decision to sell his shares in his beloved Snakehole Lounge. It is certainly a tall order to keep topping yourself every week, but even in advance of next week's hour-long season finale, it seems more and more likely that they will do just that.
- "My only official recommendations are U.S. Army-issued mustache trimmers, Morton's salt, and the C.R. Laurence Fein two-inch axe-style scraper oscillating knife blade."
- "Were you on the show where we had the stripper do math?"
- Some of Tom's business ideas: white fur earmuffs from men and inventing a phone that smells good
- I have seriously watched that montage of the drunken talking heads at least a dozen times. And April with the gigantic pillows tied to her head the next morning was icing on the cake.
- "First you take the cow to the killing floor…"
- "That was the most sexual tension I have ever seen in a conversation about documents."
- Neutral Milk Hotel, huh? That's a bold statement Mr. Schur.
- "It's never too early to learn that the government is a greedy piglet that suckles on a taxpayer's teat until they have sore chapped nipples. I’m going to need a different metaphor to give this nine-year-old."
- "I'm allergic to fingers."
- Perd's Hapley's hair!
- "Welcome to the super awesome bonus lightening round."
Despite a big climactic shootout, season two ends on a reflective note
It seems our old friends at Greendale Community College may have peaked one episode too early. Last week's show was loads of fun, full of clever references, great action set-pieces and funny jokes that supported the Sergio Leone western spoof but also sprang directly from each character's personality. Tonight's, on the other hand, was a more direct copy of last year's high point "Modern Warfare", albeit with a specific and focused parody of one beloved classic – "Star Wars."
Taking this episode on its own, it was an enjoyable and high-energy ending, nicely balancing the genuine investment everyone had in actually winning the contest (Magnitude jumping on the "grenade", all of the "inspirational" speeches from Troy and Jeff) with constant reminders that this was, after all, paintball (in particular, Jeff's nonchalant exit from the game - "Well, I'm out. We lost"). Abed channeling Han Solo was another chance for Danny Pudi to show off his considerable acting chops, not to mention get to make out with Annie. And by having newly acknowledged study group pariah Pierce be the one who wins the game for Greendale seemed to pave the way for an emotional group-hug in the final scene.
Instead, we got Pierce explaining (sort of) his obnoxious behavior for the past year, and dumping the study group just as they agreed to let him stick around. I have no illusions that Chevy Chase is going to be leaving the show; most likely Pierce will be on the periphery of the main cast for a while before working his way back in. But Dan Harmon and the creative team of "Community" have constantly surprised us during a sometimes uneven, frequently frustrating but always ambitious and often hilarious second season. In my opinion, the inspired highs of "Abed's Uncontrollable Christmas" and "Paradigms of Human Memory" are worth the missteps along the way. See you all here next season. Cool. Cool cool cool.
- "How could any Dean be so mean?"
- "Damn it, Shirley! Forget your newborn child and think about the people that need you."
- "What are we, The Little Rascals?" "I was."
- "Now we have the tactical advantage of knowing that Jeff Winger wants to be a ballerina, and that his Achilles heel is….wieners."
- "Operation Troy's Awesome Plan is living up to its name."
- "Some of us won't make it, but there is a place where we will see each other again. And that place is Denny's."
- "Commence Operation Troy's Awesome Leadership is Never in Doubt"
- I missed you, Quendra with a Q-U.
- Denny's IS for winners.
- "I've seen this behavior before in cats. My cats."
- Yes, that was Dan Byrd and Busy Phillips hanging around the crowd. Community + Cougar Town 4-eveh!!!!!111!!!
As a werewolf-bitten Damon goes a bit mad, Stefan and the gang race for a cure
Travis nurses a broken heart and Ellie clashes with Andy's family in a muted episode
Of course, any show that has that warmhearted advice from Grandpa take place on a golf cart that is towing a grown man in roller blades is never going to take itself all that seriously. And I laughed out loud several times at Ellie's ever-more creative ways to insult Laurie "Jellybean" Keller, her "human stress ball". Although this wasn't the most gut-busting episode, it's always nice to make room for some real emotion in-between the mangled Spanish and roller hockey pratfalls.
- "Long intro."
- "Thank you, I have lost weight."
- Now we have Laurie doing an imitation of Bobby. Maybe someday there will be an episode of everyone doing everyone else.
- "What? No!" "Yes." "Stay." "Can't." "Ham." "Cheese."
- "On the other hand, you never know. Things change. People die."
- "The boy needs to forget his troubles by looking at some honks."
- "It's like looking at a sandal full of bratwurst."
- "I'm just an old man eating fries."
- "Maybe to feel more Spanish, you should take off your shirt."
Funnyman back for a second time
CBS' Wayne Brady is set to host the Daytime Emmys again this June. Brady, who first hosted the event back in 2003, is certainly no stranger to leading the proverbial show. Before taking the lead on CBS' "Let's Make a Deal" in 2009, he served as host of "Don't forget the Lyrics" from 2007-2009 and also clocked in to host the 2002 Miss America Pageant.
Bing: More about Wayne Brady
The charming funnyman has even won Emmys for hosting! “The Wayne Brady Show” nabbed four Daytime Emmy's , including two Outstanding Talk Show Host nods for Brady himself, during its short run in daytime. Those statues are likely on display for with Brady's Primetime Emmy, which he won during his time on “Whose Line is it Anyway?”
The Daytime Emmys celebrate the best in Daytime television and will take place on Sunday, June 19. The celebration will be broadcast live from Las Vegas on CBS beginning at 8:00 p.m. ET and be tape delayed on the West Coast.
Daytime Emmy snubs and surprises!
By Deanna Barnert
Special to MSN TV
The 38th annual Daytime Emmy Awards nominations were unveiled this morning, May 11, 2011! "General Hospital" stole the race, but there were no nods for daytime dabbler James Franco or exiting icons Susan Lucci and Erika Slezak. Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert and "American Idol" judge Steven Tyler mark the Daytime Emmy surprises.
Bing: 2011 Emmy Nominations
"The Young and the Restless" has reigned in the ratings game for decades, but "General Hospital" took the lead in the 38th Annual Daytime Emmy race this morning, landing 21 nominations. "The Young and the Restless" still fared well with 20 noms, while "Sesame Street" took third place with 16.
PBS won the network battle, bringing home 57 nominations, but stronghold ABC may now be questioning its recent daytime overhaul. After canceling "All My Children" and "One Life to Live" and announcing two "transformational" talk show as replacements, ABC's current daytime lineup came in just behind PBS, with 56 nominations.
"All My Children" nabbed 13 of its own nominations and will even battle "The Bold and the Beautiful", "The Young and the Restless" and "General Hospital" for Outstanding Daytime Drama Series.
Susan Lucci, however, didn't land in the game for her lifelong role, Erica Kane. She and equally snubbed Erika Slezak ("One Life to Live") could show up in next year's Daytime Emmy race, just as actors from last year's canceled CBS drama, "As the World Turns," managed to nab noms this year.
Other notable snubs include Anthony Geary ("General Hospital"), Katherine Kelly Lang ("The Bold and the Beautiful"), Steve Burton ("General Hospital") and Jon Lindstrom ("As the World Turns"), all of whom were considered contenders.
While some insist "General Hospital" James Franco played a part in nabbing so many honors for the drama built around mobsters and medicine, the movie star didn't get a nod himself. There's no category to honor daytime's dabblers and guests.
NBC and "Days of Our Lives" are not big performers this year, though James Scott did again land a nom in the Lead Actor race. Scott is up against heavy hitters Ricky Paull Goldin ("All My Children"), Michael Park ("As the World Turns"), Maurice Benard ("General Hospital") and Christian Le Blanc ("The Young and the Restless").
This year's lead actress contenders include Alicia Minshew ("All My Children"), Debbi Morgan ("All My Children"), Colleen Zenk ("As the World Turns"), Susan Flannery ('The Bold and the Beautiful"), Laura Wright ("General Hospital") and Michelle Stafford ("The Young and the Restless").
CBS' "Early Show" and "The Talk" missed the Emmy boat, entirely. "Good Morning America" only nabbed one nomination, while "Today Show" and "The View" each earned six in a talks show race ruled by "Ellen".
Oprah Winfrey didn't put herself or her show back in the game for the 25th and final season of "The Oprah Winfrey Show," leaving "Ellen" to again rule the scene. Though Ellen DeGeneres doesn't enter the race as a host either, her show bagged 12 nominations, including Outstanding Talk Show--Entertainment, alongside "Rachael Ray", "Live With Regis and Kelly" and "The View".
Outstanding Talk Show--Informative nominations went to "Dr. Phil", "The Dr. Oz Show" and "The Doctors", while Dr. Oz, Ray, The Doctors, Regis Philbin and Kelly Ripa and the ladies of "The View" will battle it out for Outstanding Talk Show Host.
In a surprise turn, late night funnymen Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert made the Daytime Emmy nom list, thanks to "The Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear." The Comedy Central political rally nabbed four nods in the Outstanding Special Class categories.
Steven Tyler landed in the Daytime Emmy game as well and is up for Outstanding Performer in an Animated Program for playing The Mad Hatter in the "The Wonder Pets!" The "American Idol" judge is up against Martin Short's lead in "The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That."
With "Let's Make a Deal" host Wayne Brady set to host the Daytime Emmys and nominated for another Emmy himself, this year's Lifetime Achievement Awards will go to his old school gaming colleagues, Pat Sajak and Alex Trebek. Sajak's "Wheel of Fortune" and Trebek's "Jeopardy!" are also nominated for Outstanding Game/Audience Participation Show, going up against last year's big winner Cash Cab.
The 38th Annual Daytime Emmys, hosted by Wayne Brady, will air live from the Las Vegas Hilton June 19 on CBS. The unaired Daytime Creative Arts Emmy Awards Gala will take place June 17 in Los Angeles.
Here's a list of the big players in the 38th Daytime Emmy Drama race.
Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Alicia Minshew ("All My Children")
Debbi Morgan ("All My Children")
Colleen Zenk ("As the World Turns")
Susan Flannery ('The Bold and the Beautiful")
Laura Wright ("General Hospital")
Michelle Stafford ("The Young and the Restless")
Lead Actors in a Drama Series
Ricky Paull Goldin ("All My Children")
Michael Park ("As the World Turns")
James Scott ("Days of Our Lives")
Maurice Benard ("General Hospital") Christian Le Blanc ("The Young and the Restless")
Supporting Actress in a Drama Series in a Drama Series
Melissa Claire Egan (Annie Chandler, "All My Children")
Julie Pinson (Janet Ciconne, "As the World Turns")
Heather Tom (Katie Logan Spencer, "The Bold and the Beautiful")
Nancy Lee Grahn (Alexis Davis, "General Hospital")
Bree Williamson (Jessica Brennan, "One Life To Live")
Tricia Cast (Nina Webster, "The Young and the Restless")
Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Jonathan Jackson (Lucky Spencer, "General Hospital")
Jason Thompson (Patrick Drake, "General Hospital")
Brian Kerwin (Charlie Banks, "One Life To Live")
Doug Davidson (Paul Williams, "The Young and the Restless")
Billy Miller (Billy Abbott, "The Young and the Restless")
Younger Actress in a Drama Series
Brittany Allen ("All My Children")
Lexi Ainsworth ("General Hospital")
Emily O'Brien ("The Young and the Restless")
Younger Actor in a Drama Series
Scott Clifton ("The Bold and the Beautiful")
Chandler Massey (Will Horton, Days of Our Lives")
Chad Duell (General Hospital")
MSN TV's new weekly roundup of which stars are visiting which daytime talk shows!
Here's the lowdown on which shows to tune in to hang out with Michael Douglas, Angelina Jolie, Jack Black, Dustin Hoffman, Salma Hayek, Antonio Banderas, Will Ferrell, Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Keira Knightly, Chelsea Handler, Andy Samberg, Padma Lakshmi, Susan Lucci, Ellen Pompeo, Mark Harmon and Chaz Bono the week of May 9-13 – as well as where to catch performances from Donny & Marie Osmond, Dionne Warwick and Broadway's "Anything Goes" cast. Guests subject to change.
Monday, May 9
"The Oprah Winfrey Show:" Chaz Bono (author, "Transition: The Story of How I Became a Man")
"Today:" Beth Holloway. Kristen Wiig and Maya Rudolph ("Bridesmaids"); Keira Knightly; Chelsea Handler ("Lies That Chelsea Handler Told Me"); latest celebrity fired on "Celebrity Apprentice"; Marlo Thomas; David Goldman
"The Talk:" Guest host Padma Lakshmi; singer/songwriter Kara DioGuardi; Emmy Award-winning sports broadcaster Al Michaels
"The View:" Michael Douglas; musical guests Donny & Marie Osmond
Tuesday, May 10
"The Oprah Winfrey Show:" Oprah's Ultimate Weight Loss Finale
"Today:" Andy Samberg ("Saturday Night Live"); the latest eliminated "American Idol" contestant; the latest eliminated "The Biggest Loser" contestant; Chelsea Handler; Andy Samberg
"The Talk": Guest host Candace Cameron Bure ("Make it or Break It"); Jeff Probst ("Survivor")
"The View": Guest co-host Teri Hatcher ("Desperate Housewives"); Mark Harmon ("NCIS"); Albert Brooks ("Twenty Thirty").
Wednesday, May 11
"The Oprah Winfrey Show": Duchess of York Sarah Ferguson
"Today:" Salma Hayek and Antonio Banderas ("Puss and Boots"); Jillian Michaels; Billy Bush
"The Talk:" Alex Trebek; Health Magazine editor-in-chief Ellen Kunes discusses "The Carb Lover's Diet"
"The View:" Susan Lucci ("All My Children," author, "All My Life"); Mary Hart
Thursday, May 12
"The Oprah Winfrey Show:" Oprah's Last-Ever Makeover Extravaganza!
"Today:" Jack Black, Angelia Jolie and Dustin Hoffman ("Kung Fu Panda 2"); Will Ferrell ("The Office"); Trey Parker and Matt Stone ("The Book of Mormon"); Wendi McLendon and Ellie Kemper
"The Talk:" Ginnifer Goodwin; Dionne Warwick performs
"The View:" Ellen Pompeo ("Grey's Anatomy"); Chaz Bono; musical performance from Broadway's Tony®-nominated cast of "Anything Goes."
Friday, May 13
"The Oprah Winfrey Show:" American Icon Ralph Lauren and His Fascinating Family
"Today:" Cuba Gooding Jr.
"The Talk:" Guest host Jennifer Love Hewitt; Jillian Michaels; author Hilary Winston
"The View:" Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Rose Byrne and Melissa McCarthy
Check out next week's listings to find out what Oprah has in store for her penultimate week and where to catch Cee Lo Green, "The Real Housewives of New Jersey" and Martha Stewart.