David Simon, creator of The Wire, is shifting his lens from the mean streets of Baltimore to post-Katrina New Orleans with Treme. The HBO series is set in a Crescent City neighborhood rich in Créole and African American history. Unlike The Wire, Treme will tighten its scope to focus on the musicians and working class people living among the city's ongoing reconstruction efforts.
The Wire was a dense and sprawling tale, unearthing corruption and secrets everywhere from grimy back alleys to city hall. Treme's reportedly smaller scope recalls Simon's first series, Homicide: Life on the Street. The pioneering NBC drama centered on the tough and streetwise detectives sweating away at a Baltimore police precinct. Simply put, the show was a masterpiece that offered a rich, compelling and sometimes avant-garde micro-study of overworked cops.
More of our best of the decade coverage, which started on Tuesday. You can read the other posts at the link above. We finish up the series by talking about some of the news events that defined the decade, and how TV covered them.
It seems odd to call the news events of the 00's a "best" list. As we started the 21st century, America seemed to have a different tragedy happening at every twist and turn. There was the Year 2000 bug followed by 9/11 followed by the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan followed by Hurricane Katrina followed by the worst recession since the Great Depression. We've also had various celebrity deaths recently including the iconic and controversial Michael Jackson.
The tragedies of the decade were accompanied by revolutionary change. America elected its first African-American President. New forms of media such as social networking arose like a phoenix from the ashes of the old media.
The decade was filled with many ups and downs, possibly more downs. The full repercussions of the events won't likely be acknowledged or analyzed for years or decades to come. Wherever we end up, it will have been one hell of a ride.
How many reality shows featuring beautiful people going to parties and arguing do we need? How many does Bravo need? I really hate the direction that the cable channel has gone in the past several years. An endless supply of Real Housewives shows, NYC Prep, America's Next Top Model, The Fashion Show, Flipping Out, Make Me A Supermodel, Millionaire Matchmaker, Tabatha's Salon Takeover ... make it stop!
Having said that, did you watch Miami Social? And if so ... why?
Director Johnatan Demme obtained over 200 hours of footage of the Katrina aftermath, and the resulting documentary, Right to Return: New Home Movies from the Lower 9th Ward will air for five consecutive nights on Tavis Smiley's PBS show beginning this evening. You can check for times in your area by clicking here. The series concludes on June 1.
Tickets for the event cost $275 per person. The $1000 "Dinner Package" includes two VIP concert tickets, seating, and VIP Sponsor Celebrity Reception. A list of participating artists can be found here.
If I wasn't 3000 miles away (and if had a butt-load of extra cash lying around), I'd probably check out this event, because A) I do love animals, and B) I really would like to see Paula Abdul live and in person. I'm just as curious as a cat to see how Paula behaves in public, away from the swirling confusion brought on by the taunts of her co-judges, and other "technical difficulties."
Other New Orleans-themed shows include two more cop shows based in the city that ABC passed on, and one called NoLa that NBC passed on even with the possibility that Spike Lee would direct the pilot. It's surprising, really, that K-Ville made the cut because the crisis in New Orleans continues. If nothing else, maybe it will renew the public's interest in that very damaged city.
[Via TV Tattle]
- At 7, USA has U.S. Open coverage, with Andre Agassi playing. USA has coverage for the next two weeks, from 11am to 5pm, then a dinner break, then 7:30pm to late night.
- At 8pm, FOX has a new Prison Break, followed by a new Vanished.
- NBC has a new special at 8, Katrina: The Long Road Back.
- There's a new Kyle XY at 8 on ABC Family.
- At 9, TNT has a new episode of The Closer, followed by a new episode of Saved.
- Lifetime has a new mystery movie at 9, Circle of Friends.
- If you missed the Emmys last night, Bravo reruns it at 9.
- BBC America has a new Life On Mars at 10.
By the way, if you're wondering when the new season starts for all the shows, check out Rich's list here.
Ida Siconolfi, who won the Bravo online tournament to get a seat in last night's show, played a fantastic game to beat Fred Savage, Jennifer Tilly, Doug E. Doug, and Brett Butler, and will now go on to the championship match later this season.
When I heard that Bravo was going to pick a regular viewer to get a seat on Celebrity Poker Showdown, I thought it would be some online gaming geek or some really obnoxious person who would try to outdo the celebs when it came to over the top humor. Not so. Ida proved to be classy, quiet, and one of the top players that has ever been on the show.
I might even have to root for her in the championship game.
The University of Georgia gives out the awards for "distinguished acheivement and meritorious service". Also winning Peabodys were The Shield, Boston Legal, and NBC News for its Hurricane Katrina coverage (Brian Williams personally accepted).
Did you enjoy the American Idol auditions last night, from Austin, Texas? Here's some odd news for you:
That's right. Seacrest did his intros, etc from Austin, but actual audtions took place in San Francisco, because Hurricane Katrina/Rita evacuees were in Austin at the time. So they flew the contestants to San Francisco and had them audition for the judges there.
Now, this isn't a big deal, but why not say it during the telecast?
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