Or come out a 'Young and the Restless' and 'B&B' weekend in Los Angeles
CBS daytime fans are taking Los Angeles by storm this weekend for "The Bold and the Beautiful" and "The Young and the Restless" fan club gatherings. If you're in the area, tickets are still available, but, if not, you can catch the "B&B" action streaming online.
The stars of "The Young and the Restless" and "The Bold and the Beautiful" are coming out to the Universal Sheraton Hotel to meet, greet, answer questions, sign autographs and strike a pose or two with fans this weekend. "The Young and the Restless” Fan Club Dinner will be held tonight, Friday, Aug. 26, while "The Bold and the Beautiful" fan gathering is Saturday morning, Aug. 27.
MSN TV doesn't usually post fan events, but "The Bold and the Beautiful" has made it possible for all of us to attend, with the help of the web. All or part of tomorrow's Fan Gathering will be streaming on "The Bold and the Beautiful" fan website. The party starts at at around 11:00a.m., so don't miss it!
"The Young and the Restless" and "The Bold and the Beautiful" air weekdays on CBS.
A special hour-long episode reaches new heights of emotion
The bulk of the episode was drawn directly from Louie's experiences with the USO in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2008; indeed, his fellow performers (country singer Keni Thomas and Miami Dolphins cheerleader Lilly Robbins) played themselves quite charmingly. There was some tension throughout, both high stakes (the reality of being exposed to dangerous combat) and low (Louie's lame attempts to flirt with young Lilly) but mostly there were long observational stretches that just spent time establishing the verisimilitude at a leisurely pace, with the USO folks shuttling between camps, flying on helicopters, eating in the mess hall and interacting with the young men and women in the armed forces.
But wait – there was also a duckling! An adorable, fuzzy, yellow, cheeping little duckling that Louie's daughter smuggled into this bag "to keep (him) safe". Lo and behold, it did just that, in a final scene that was just incredible (not to mention tear-inducing). There is a unique sort of bravery on display for this extraordinary season of "Louie"; a willingness to go all the way with honest emotion, leaving irony and cheap laughs behind and trusting the audience to go along to uncomfortable places. And although in most cases that lack of comfort is the result of darkness and pain, sometimes it comes from the simple poignancy of an impromptu soccer match in the shadow of a remote military base, or the sight of a clumsy, pasty man tripping over himself to catch a duck.
- "OK, I've got a green head! I don't know what that means."
- The young actress who plays Jane may be the most accomplished whiner in the history of television.
- Once again, Louis C.K. amply shares the spotlight with his guest actors, allowing Keni Thomas to perform an heartfelt song and Lilly Robbins to be sweetly funny ("Why can't you say Christian things and be funny?")
- "OK, I'm sitting tight."
- Dedicated to the memory of Tim Hetherington. Now, I'm really crying.
The plot thickens as a political crisis speeds up the newsroom's growing pains
Is fun an underrated quality for a television show? There a lot of shows are deep and dark and complicated ("The Sopranos", "The Shield") and many are the purely mindless ("Burn Notice", almost every network sitcom), but only a very few that manage to be entertaining without insulting viewers' intelligence. Based just on two episodes, "The Hour" seems to have that rare combination of staying light on its feet while still showcasing real human emotion (not to mention a good old-fashioned spy story).
Part of that appeal is that all of the main characters – Bel, Freddie and Hector – are recognizably human and likeable people. Bel is whip-smart and passionate about her job as producer, observant enough to lecture young Sissy about being careful how she is perceived around the office and cool-headed in a crisis. But she is still able to be easily upset around her nightmare divorcee mother (the embodiment of "mutton dressed as lamb") and she is clearly quaking as she stands up to the unctuous government press secretary, even though she acquits herself admirably. Her pal Freddie continues to be a maddening combination of petty childishness and brainy tenacity, doggedly pursuing the mystery behind Ruth Elms (alleged) suicide, while visibly pining after Bel. His disgruntled attitude is constantly threatening to veer into unattractive self-pity, but when push comes to shove, Freddie does right by his rival Hector, and helps prep him for the important interview with the Egyptian official. Although he says he's doing it for Bel, it is clear he also believes in the necessity – and importance - of putting on the best news show possible.
Surprisingly, so does Hector Madden. It is refreshing how soon Abi Morgan and the rest of the writers allowed Hector's vulnerability to peek through the surface of his cocky charm. He is still wisecracking and flippant, particularly to Freddie, but he is just as hardworking and intelligent as anyone else in "The Hour"; he is just less experienced and (surprisingly) less confident on camera. As predictable as it might have been, it was still satisfying to see him take in all the lessons, advice and flat-out haranguing he had been subjected to by this staff, and knock that interview out of the park. No wonder Bel's eyes light up as she watches him; it is only going to increase the likelihood of some sort of romantic entanglement down the line.
There was also a lot of furtive detective work going on, what with cryptic crosswords, tapped phones, and the mysterious Mr. Kish turning up as a translator for Lix (as well as making a cameo in Ruth's home movies). Who knows where all that will go? Time to read up on the Suez Canal crisis.
What if Jason Quatermaine had never gotten into that life-altering car crash all those years ago?
With a wedding to plan and Sonny spiraling out of control, a car accident has put Jason under the knife on "General Hospital." It's an all too familiar scene for fans and Port Charles locals alike, especially as last time he was there, the young Quartermaine emerged a different man. Faced with the same possibility, the ladies in Jason life can't help but wonder on Friday, Aug. 26, and Monday, Aug. 29: What if Jason Quartermaine had never gotten into that first car accident, all those years ago?
"It's four women's ideas of who they want me to be, Carly (Laura Wright), Elizabeth (Becky Herbst), Monica (Leslie Charleson) and Sam (Kelly Monaco)," Steve Burton told MSN TV. "The way it's shot is pretty cool. It took a long time and it was a lot of work, but it was worth it. It was fun to play a bit of different characters and get out of the black t-shirt for a minute. I got to wear a suit. I was excited about that, but once got it on, I'm like, 'Give me my t-shirt and jeans back, now!'"
Burton didn't likely have to don a suit in Sam's Hawaiian fantasy, but suiting up makes sense for the other scenarios. "Elizabeth wants me to be an architect," Burton previewed. "Carly's dream is that we run the mob together, which is ridiculous, but was fun to do. In that scenario, Sonny takes off for some reason."
Then there's Monica's alternate reality, which brings Stuart Damon (Alan) back into the fray for two days. "With Monica, I'm a doctor -- the family business," Burton sets up. "It's how, in her mind, I might have ended up if I'd never worked for Sonny.
"It was amazing to have everyone back as a family, with Stuart Damon (Alan), Jane Elliott (Tracy) and Leslie Charleson. We're just missing Anna Lee (Lila), Stephen Kay (Reginald) and the dog," he said. "It really was a family. I miss working with them. It brought back a lot of memories, because we did this in the Quartermaine den. One of my first scenes was in that foyer and den, 20 years ago."
Hopefully, Jason will get back to the manse more often. "Garin Wolf (head writer) is probably going to start tying the Quartermaines back into Jason's life and him into their lives," Burton teased. "The first olive branch was Michael working for ELQ. I think they're going to open that road again."
That's assuming Jason comes out of surgery unscathed, of course. In the "real" world of Port Charles, he takes a turn for the worse on Patrick's table, which might send some of the fantasies into their own tail spins.
"People don't always turn out how you want them to be," Burton warned. "You can't change anybody, so it doesn't play out how everybody wanted."
Don't miss Wolf's nod to the past, set to air Friday, Aug. 26, and Monday, Aug. 29.
"General Hospital" airs weekdays on ABC.
Here's what you need to know to get by at the water cooler
- Hanna thought she and her meanie step-sister-to-be had buried the hatchet -- but Kate planned to actually stab Hanna in the back with it. At the rehearsal dinner, where the girls were supposed to give the toast together, Kate got Hanna good and wasted, and watched with glee as the couture-oriented blonde threw up all over bride-to-be Isabel's glittery silver wedding dress. Meanwhile, Hanna's bulldozer of a grandmother made plans to stop the wedding herself, but it didn't seem likely to happen.
- Emily, still smarting from that whole fiasco with Samara, rekindled her relationship with an old flame: Maya, who was apparently back in town for good. But Emily was still feeling oppressed by "Gossip Girl" from the grave A's antics -- and she decided it was time for the girls to tell psychiatrist Dr. Sullivan about the bullying.
- The good Doctor then spoke out about cyber-bullying at the girls school -- but the talk just got the doc into hot water with A, who bugged Sullivan's office and recorded parts of her conversation with the girls. Eeeps. Officer Garrett was on the case, of course, but he said the cops couldn't do anything about it unless Sullivan spilled on the victims' identities. And she was all about doctor-patient confidentiality.
- Spencer and Toby were busy making out in his car when they realized someone was spying on them from Jason DiLaurentis's bedroom window. Make that two someones -- and one of them was Spencer's dad! Turns out he'd been helping Jason deal with legal matters that would have made him look very guilty of Alison's murder, since his grandmother changed her will, bequeathing everything to Ali a week before her death. But Papa Hastings wouldn't confess why he'd gotten involved in the situation. Still, Spencer knew it meant that Jason and his clan had something on him.
- Aria decided to finally confront Mike about his troubled ways and getting help after he got violent with their mom Ella. But she had other drama to worry about too -- like whether Emily, her hand forced by A, might share a photo of Aria and Ezra Fitz kissing with Ella. Luckily, Emily was a true friend till the end, and ignored A's orders.
- Doc Sullivan wasn't as lucky herself -- and perhaps became the next victim of A's antics. She went through her files and realized that A was very likely one of her own patients, but when she called the girls to tell them who it was, all they found was an empty office. And a text from A, saying "The Doctor is Out." Tun, tun, tun!
Katie Couric's talk show gets a name, set to debut fall 2012
Katie Couric has decided on the name for her upcoming syndicated talk show. A sneak peek of her show's poster art reveals "Katie" will hit daytime TV on Sept. 6, 2012, but that date isn't set in stone.
Bing: More about Katie Couric
TVNewser broke the story after the site got its hands on the new "Katie" poster (above). While the newswoman isn't exactly associated with sugar and spice and everything nice, the pastel art seems to indicate Couric will bring a soft, feminine approach to the daytime scene.
That may seem a strange move, considering the ladies of "The View" and "The Talk" are already ruling daytime, but a year is a long time. With guys like Anderson Cooper, Dr. Drew, "Survivor" host Jeff Probst and Steve Harvey getting into the talk show scene, "Katie" may be onto something.
The poster's tagline, "The Opportunity Begins September 6th," seems to indicate the show also has a launch date, but that's not the case. The date could be a temporary filler or even an indication that Couric will somehow start her adventure a year before the show launches on TV in 2012. Whatever the case, it's not the "Katie" launch date.
"We don't know the exact premiere date, other than fall 2012," a show rep told MSN TV.
The name "Katie," however, has been confirmed and may even have been decided upon already when executive producer and former NBC Universal CEO Jeff Zucker spoke at the Promax/BDA conference in June.
"I think Katie is a unique brand in television," Zucker said. "The mere fact that you can just say 'Katie' and know who we are talking about is evidence of that. [She] is big enough to have fun and be serious all in one show. That is really what her brand is."
Couric won't be the first talker to drop her surname. She's also not the only new addition doing so. Following in the footsteps of "Donahue" and "Ellen," Anderson Cooper will get the jump on "Katie" and drop his own surname when he comes to daytime this fall.
While Oprah Winfrey kept her whole name in the title of her talker, the daytime icon has become just "Oprah" to many. Zucker insisted Couric is not looking to take her place. "There will never be another Oprah, and no one should even pretend that there will be another Oprah," Zucker said. "She has got to be Katie."
And that she will be, when "Katie" premieres next fall.
Here are the major plot points you need to know to get by at the water cooler
- Vampire Bill to the rescue -- again! Last week, during the vampire-witch showdown, it surely seemed the witches were winning, and that Sookie Stackhouse was going to be the major casualty here. Instead, just as an impotent Alcide tries to drag the wounded clairvoyant away, Bill intervenes, saving her with a heady dose of her blood. Of course, this means that Sookie is now -- and forever -- attacked to Bill again. Cue the:
- Threesome alert! Okay, okay, so it's just a dream. But now that Sookie's had a taste of both Bill and Eric, she can't get either of them off her mind. So this leads to a sexy dream where she's about to hook up with an old school Eric and Bill. Instead of getting all racy, though, Sookie decides this is the appropriate time for a chat. She tells the pair that she loves them both -- and since this is an unconventional love story anyway, why not? Oh Sookie. You're really ruining it for us here. The should-have-been-steamy scene ends with Sookie getting bit -- by both her vampire amours.
- But alas, it was all just a dream, and reality is Debbie Pelt -- werewolf Alcide's lady love -- knocking at Sookie's door, asking the other woman to step off and help her regain her man. Sookie's had trouble with the lady wolf before, but always a softie, she says she'll help. But first, they have to rescue Eric!
- Vampire-turned-witch-puppet Eric is being held by Antonia and her coven -- who have actually tried to rebel against her, because things have gone too far, but are now being held hostage. Oops. Tara is trapped, once again, by freaking supernatural sources that give her great displeasure. She telepathically tells all this to Sookie when she and Debbie show up for their great rescue. Tara also informs Sookie that the coven plans to take Bill down at some Vampire Tolerance event. The pair pseudo-fight and Sookie escapes w/ get-a-way vehicle drive Deb.
- Lafayette, still possessed by the ghost of Mavis, shows up at Hoyt's house with baby Mikey and that freaky doll. Naturally, Hoyt (in a classic run-for-your-life-sans-pants scene) calls Jason for help, since Jason is so, you know, helpful. Jason, Andy Bellefleur, Terry and Arlene all show up, trying to talk a possessed-Lafayette down to no avail. So they call Jesus, who does his voodoo-hoodoo thing and gets the whole story out of Mavis-as-Lafayette. She just wanted to hold her murdered baby one more time, yo. And they dig up the bodies of Mavis and the baby, and she finally goes into the light, all thanks to Lafayette and Jesus.
- Jason's other shining moment here? He takes Hoyt's box of crap back to "monster" Jessica, and then, despite his best intentions, hooks up with his best friend's girl. Classic Jason Stackhouse.
- Meanwhile, Luna and Sam take this quiet moment as a chance to go camping with little Emma. And of course, they hook up again. She's really forgiving, this Luna. And perhaps she shouldn't be, given that whole Tommy situation and all. Tommy is trying to redeem himself, I guess, by showing up as Sam to the pack meeting where Luna's ex Marcus is still out for blood. He beats the crap out of Tommy-as-Sam. Does this really redeem anyone?
- At the Festival of Tolerance, all hell breaks loose again when Sookie disrupts themade-for-TV moment to warn Bill about the witches incoming -- just seconds before they show up and kill a bunch of guards. Looks like this witchy war has just begun.
An occasionally clunky episode marks the midpoint of the season
"I am not in danger, Skyler. I am the danger." – Walter White
Last week, Gus staged an armed robbery so that Jesse could play the hero by "saving" Mike (not to mention Gus) from getting ripped off. Tonight, the preternaturally intelligent Walt figures this out, and lines up the likely motive: to drive a wedge between himself and Jesse (in addition to, as Jesse points out, using Mike's "babysitting" to make sure Jesse isn't using). But, as keeps getting clearer all the time, Walt hardly needs an outside force to destroy any good feelings that may remain between himself and his former high-school student. He is perfectly capable of making Jesse hate his guts a little more each day.
And all it took was some respectful attention from Mike and a few words from Gus ("I like to think I see things in people"). Even back in his clownish "Cap'n Cook" days, Jesse was more complicated, more sensitive and more intelligent than he needed to be – a textbook example of "wasted potential." By no means a genius, he still proved a clever and inventive partner to Walter in the lab and on the street. It was somehow both sad and heartening to see him use his special junkie knowledge to wrap up Mike's surveillance post in record time, and it was apparent that, despite what it may have started out as, his role in the Pollos Hermanos hierarchy is moving from phony to useful in record time.
Speaking of fake "protection", Skyler finally gets a glimpse of "Heisenberg" in all his glory, and it's understandably terrifying to her. Skyler is the character that really embodies the episode title (perhaps too literally, as the rather clumsy scene at the Four Corners tried to spell out). Her misplaced compassion for Walter, whom she viewed as a semi-innocent pawn in the drug world, is permanently upended, thanks to Walt's sobering declaration. Her roles as a criminal accessory and, more depressingly, as "Bitch Mom" are becoming more entrenched all the time. Still, it is scary to think of how much Sklyer still does NOT know about Walt, stretching all the way back to Crazy 8 and Tuco. In the future, God only knows how much more cornered everybody will end up, both as a result of their own actions and others'.
- That opening sequence was truly diabolical, with each dreadful step of the double murder and robbery locking methodically and sickeningly into place. And it ended with the Mexican cartel soldiers stealing one (1) tub of battered up blue meth, specifically to send a message to Gus. Great stuff.
- Maybe it is the result of analyzing, discussing and dissecting "Breaking Bad" on a weekly basis, but some of the dialogue seemed a bit too on-the-nose, both in the opening scene between Skyler and Walter, and the one where Walt confronts Jesse in the parking lot outside the lab. While it isn't in doubt that Walt is something of a genius and Skyler is also a pretty smart cookie, most of their lines were parroting back to the audience things we had already figured out or knew about.
- Walter taking that dollar bill off the wall was incredibly petty, but Bogdan has been such a jerk for so long, it didn't really bother me.
- "It's all about me."
- OK, I really didn't buy that Walt would not see that dragging the three ladies into the lab to clean up was an incredibly risky and dumb thing to do. Although the sight of the three of them in hazmat suits chattering away was pretty funny.
- Mike's weekly moment of awesome: "I don't care for unpredictable."
- “Someone has to protect this family from the man who protects this family.”