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July 24, 2014

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Review: Michael Emerson's 'Person of Interest' Is a Mixed Bag But Worth a Look

by Maureen Ryan, posted Sep 21st 2011 12:30PM
'Person of Interest' (9PM ET Thursday, CBS) has a few solidly good things going for it.

A big part of the premise is the idea that video surveillance and online tracking programs pervade almost every aspect of our lives. The show isn't designed to peer into the scarier crevices of paranoia, but 'Person of Interest' asks, not without cause, is it actually paranoia if someone really is watching us?

The other big thing it has going for it is Michael Emerson, who, after his terrific performance as the charismatic and ambiguous Ben Linus on 'Lost,' is more than capable of commanding the center of this drama as an enigmatic technology titan named Finch.

The pilot is well-paced and looks great, but then we always expect excellent production values from things that J.J. Abrams (one of the show's executive producers) sprinkles his pixie dust on. And, despite the fact that someone's dusting for fingerprints within the first five minutes of the pilot, there are glimmerings that this may not be just another CBS procedural.

Then again, 'Person of Interest' might be just another CBS procedural, dressed up in fancier clothing. We'll have to see.

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ABC Re-Airing 'Lost' Pilot Before Series Finale

by Kim Potts, posted Apr 23rd 2010 8:45AM
It remains one of -- if not the -- best TV drama pilots ever, and in celebration of the May 23 'Lost' series finale, ABC has decided to replay the show's incredible, $10 million, two-hour series premiere on May 22.

As reported by The Wrap, the pilot repeat adds to an already 'Lost'-packed week at ABC between May 17-23. The penultimate episode of the show premieres on May 18, the pilot re-airs on May 22, and on May 23, the finale night kicks off with a two-hour recap of the entire series, followed by the two-hour finale and then a special 'Jimmy Kimmel Live: Aloha to 'Lost'' show that will feature 'Lost' cast members and showrunners Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse.

The pilot episode, directed by series creator J.J. Abrams, debuted on ABC on September 22 and 29, 2004, and hasn't been aired on the network since 2006.

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'Fringe' Adds 'Brothers & Sisters' Duo

by Scott Harris, posted Apr 1st 2010 12:00PM
According to the multiverse theories explored by the Fox sci-fi hit 'Fringe' every week, every possible action, no matter how unlikely, is guaranteed to occur in one reality or another. Proof of this assertion? The folks responsible for the weepy family drama 'Brothers & Sisters' are about to join 'Fringe' itself.

No, it's not a hoax, not a dream and not an imaginary story: According to The Hollywood Reporter, this surprise scenario is occurring right here in our own reality, as Monica Breen and Alison Schapker have left ABC's 'Brothers & Sisters' to assist J. J. Abrams and the mind-benders over on Fox.

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Spring TV: Which Pilots Will Crash and Burn?

by Stephanie Earp, posted Mar 23rd 2010 5:32PM


There are two groups of people who get really excited about pilot season: L.A. actors hoping for a break and television writers. Being a member of the latter category, I admit to a tingly feeling creeping over me as word of the shows in development at all the big networks are starting to leak out. While most people are attributing feelings of renewal to the change in the weather, I'm happily anticipating what J.J. Abrams has in store for us this fall.

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'Fringe' Renewed for Third Season

by Scott Harris, posted Mar 8th 2010 11:15AM
At this rate, Fox's cult hit 'Fringe' may need to consider changing its name to 'Mainstream,' because the show's loyal fan base is about to be rewarded with another season.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Fox has picked up the J. J. Abrams mind-bender for a third batch of episodes. The series, which follows the adventures of a group of government agents investigating the supernatural side of science, has seen some ratings erosion since moving to the highly competitive 9PM Thursday time slot. But while the numbers are down for 'Fringe,' they still represent a gain for the network, which previously has struggled to gain traction against more established shows such as 'CSI' and 'Grey's Anatomy.'

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TV Casting: Gugu Mbatha-Raw Goes Undercover; Dana Delany Books 'Castle'

by Andrew Scott, posted Jan 13th 2010 11:23AM
Gugu Mbatha-RawJ.J. Abrams has discovered his next "It" girl: British actress Gugu Mbatha-Raw will make her American television debut in the upcoming NBC spy series 'Undercovers,' about a husband (Boris Kodjoe) and wife (Mbatha-Raw) who come out of retirement from the CIA. Across the pond, Mbatha-Raw has appeared in 'Doctor Who,' 'Spooks' and the stage production of 'Hamlet,' which also just ended its Broadway run in December. In the meantime, NBC announced this week that 'Undercovers' has officially been picked up, with Abrams on board to direct the pilot (more on that here). [Hollywood Reporter]

More casting news after the jump.

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Star Trek reaches new unexplored universe of merchandising with waffles

by Danny Gallagher, posted Jan 5th 2010 8:00AM
No Star Trek fans, you aren't seeing an accidental divine image of the holy ones in that breakfast carb cake.

Star Trek's never ending cavalcade of memorabilia already knows no limits, but this truly has gone where no ad man has gone before. Eggo released a line of official "limited edition" Star Trek waffles to coincide with the J.J. Abrams' Star Trek movie.

They feature images of the new cast, the Star Trek insignia and even the ol' Enterprise herself in all of its buttery glory. I wonder if they released any of the waffles with any special filling. Biting into a raspberry waffle as a "red shirt" falls to his or her doom would make for a mentally unbalanced breakfast.

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Boris Kodjoe Joins 'Undercovers'

by Scott Harris, posted Dec 18th 2009 11:00AM
Turkey, cranberry sauce and candy canes are the traditional elements of a holiday meal, but this season J. J. Abrams has decided to add a man-sized helping of 'Soul Food' to his plate.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Boris Kodjoe, who is best known for playing Damon Carter on Showtime's popular drama 'Soul Food,' has been tapped to play the lead role in 'Undercovers,' the latest project from 'Lost' and 'Fringe' mastermind Abrams.

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We Spy Details on J.J. Abrams' 'Undercovers'

by Bryan Enk, posted Dec 9th 2009 1:50PM
With 'Lost' set to begin its sixth and final season on February 2, details have emerged on J.J. Abrams' next television project, 'Undercovers.'

First of all, NY Magazine seems to confirm that Abrams is indeed directing the pilot. However, the earlier description of the show, which suggested it was to be 'Mr. & Mrs. Smith' meets 'The Bourne Identity,' seems to have been somewhat inaccurate...

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J.J. Abrams to Produce 'Undercovers' -- and May Direct the Pilot Episode

by Bryan Enk, posted Nov 6th 2009 1:50PM
J.J. Abrams may be one of Hollywood's current golden boys, credited with this summer's highly successful reboot of 'Star Trek,' but he'll always have television in his blood. He's an ace TV producer, embracing high concepts and turning them into highly addictive pop culture delights such as 'Alias,' 'Fringe' and, of course, 'Lost.'

While Abrams is preparing the next 'Star Trek' and a fourth installment in the 'Mission: Impossible' franchise, he's also got one eye on the tube. The Hollywood Reporter reports his next TV endeavor will be 'Undercovers,' described as a cross between 'Mr. and Mrs. Smith' and 'The Bourne Identity.' Abrams will executive produce the series and is in talks to direct the pilot episode.

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Fringe: Dream Logic

by Jane Boursaw, posted Oct 16th 2009 3:52AM
Fringe - Dream Logic
(S02E05) "Whether you admit it or not, your life is something of a nightmare." - Bowling Alley Guy to Olivia


For a minute there, I thought maybe we were in a True Blood crossover with the horned guy in the first few minutes of this episode. But no, it was the usual twisty-turny Fringe-isms involving mind control, computer chips and dream states.

And it appears that something many of us assumed had happened to Peter actually did happen -- though with this show, you can never be sure until it all plays out. It wouldn't surprise me if it's something completely different from what I'm assuming it is. All this, and Mysterious Bowling Alley Guy after the jump ...

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Fringe: Momentum Deferred

by Jane Boursaw, posted Oct 9th 2009 3:38AM
Fringe: Momentum Deferred with Leonard Nimoy(S02E04) "Momentum can be deferred, but it must always be paid back in full. As I always said to Walter, physics is a bitch." - William Bell to Olivia, on the dangers of jumping universes

Cryonics, frozen heads, worm juice, mercury blood, shapeshifters, and Leonard Nimoy were all featured in this episode, and I loved it all.

Let's start with the worm juice. Olivia must have been seriously craving her William Bell memories to drink that awful stuff. And what a trooper that she was able to keep it down, too. I guess it must have worked. She got some of her memories back, along with some help from the bell -- both the bell they chimed during Rebecca's psychedelic adventure and William Bell. Or Willem, as Olivia used to call him.

Is she right not to trust him? Could he have started the war? It's certainly possible, given his mysteriousness. He said for reasons she might understand later, he couldn't come back to this universe right now, possibly never. Why? What's he doing over there? Is he the one building the army? Is he being forced to? Will he and Walter face off eventually?

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Fringe: Fractured

by Jane Boursaw, posted Oct 2nd 2009 4:27AM
Fringe: Fractured
(S02E03) "Get my portable chemistry set ... this means bodies!" - Walter to Astrid

This episode of Fringe sort of went along without too many shocker moments -- until the last few minutes, that is. I wasn't all that surprised about the serum that turned people into human explosives, or even that it might be part of a top-secret military experiment. But I was wondering when our friend The Observer would turn up again in a big way and dump something spicy all over his plate of food.

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NBC Eyes J.J. Abrams Spy Drama

by Andrew Scott, posted Oct 1st 2009 12:00PM
JJ AbramsJ.J. Abrams is back with a new spy drama that has ABC, CBS and NBC playing spy games of their own.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, the hour-long project, about a married couple working together as spies, has been the subject of an intense bidding war by all three major networks, with NBC now emerging as the most likely victor. The script, from Abrams and Josh Reims ('Brothers & Sisters'; 'Felicity') was sent out to studios last week.

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Fringe: Night of Desirable Objects

by Jane Boursaw, posted Sep 25th 2009 4:50AM
Fringe: Night of Desirable Objects
(S02E02) "We're all victims of our own gene pool. Someone must have peed in yours." - Walter to Sheriff Golightly


Creature feature? Or relevant to the alternate universe storyline? Those were the questions running through my head as I watched this episode of Fringe.

What I believe -- at the moment -- is that all of the creature features we had during season one are somehow relevant to the overall storyline. Since things are slightly different in the alternate universe, perhaps there are creatures there who've evolved or avoided extinction that have somehow made their way back to this universe. Of course, it appears that this episode's creature was created right here.

Read my Fringe theories, and follow me after the jump for commentary on tonight's episode.

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