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December 20, 2014

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After a String of Gems, AMC's First Truly Terrible Drama Is...

by Maureen Ryan, posted Nov 4th 2011 11:30AM
It was bound to happen sooner or later: AMC has a dud on its hands.

The network's track record thus far has been enviable, but 'Hell on Wheels' (10PM Sunday, AMC) is disappointing on any number of levels. I certainly wasn't a fan of how 'The Killing' ended its debut season, but at least that show started out strong, and the rest of the network's programs offer compelling characters, distinctive aesthetics or solid takes on conventional premises. In some cases, AMC's dramas excel in all of those arenas and many more.

'Hell on Wheels' does one thing well: It's good at being tedious.

There is a truly compelling performance in the early going, but that doesn't come from star Anson Mount, who is glumly competent at best.

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Anson Mount to Star in 'Hell on Wheels'

by Ryan McKee, posted Jul 28th 2010 12:50PM
AMC has done so well with its period drama 'Mad Men' that the network has decided to go back even further in history. According to Deadline Hollywood, AMC has chosen the two leads for its drama pilot 'Hell on Wheels,' a Western set during the building of the Transcontinental Railroad. Anson Mount will star opposite female lead Dominique McElligott.

Cullen is described as a fearless character with a dark past. But his baggage is much darker, and his cold stare is sure to make Don Draper look like he's wearing a pink, frilly dress.

A former slave owner and a Confederate soldier, Cullen is on a mission to kill the Union soldiers who raped and murdered his wife. Will this be the next feel-good hit of the year? Only if you're David Simon.

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John Stamos on board for Lifetime original movie

by Erin Martell, posted Jun 7th 2008 9:40AM
John StamosER cast member John Stamos is taking on the role of murdered millionaire Andrew Kissel in Killing Mr. Kissel, a Lifetime movie. The actor will also produce the movie, which, like all good Lifetime originals, is based on a true story. Killing Mr. Kissel focuses on two wealthy brothers, played by Stamos and Anson Mount (as Rob Kissel), who are killed within a few years of one another.

Prison Break's Robin Tunney is playing Rob Kissel's wife, Nancy. The real Nancy Kissel was convicted of her husband's murder in Hong Kong. Two men were charged with Andrew Kissel's murder in April. The family's story is certainly tragic enough to be a movie; Lifetime describes it as "the American dream that spiraled out of control."

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Conviction: Indescretion

by Anna Johns, posted May 13th 2006 8:46PM
anson mount; conviction(S01E11) Didn't Stephanie March have shorter hair last week?

This week we have another instance of Nick Potter (Jordan Bridges) wrestling with his demons. He's trying to save a reformed gang member from jail and he goes over ADA Jessica Rossi's (Milena Govich) head to Bureau Chief Alexandra Cabot (March), who recommends a lesser sentence. I thought we got over Nick's psychological problems with his mugging last week, but this episode may be out of order. On a side note, we get to see very little of Rossi this week. Her only storyline is to establish that she's not a high-class gal because she doesn't know what 'Cocktail Attire' means or what Foie Gras is.

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Conviction: Deliverance

by Anna Johns, posted May 6th 2006 6:07PM
reiko aylesworth; conviction(S01E10)  I really wanted to like this show, but I just don't. I'm going to finish out the season (please, God make it end soon) and then it's being deleted from my TiVo Season Pass. I don't like it because of the multiple storylines in each episode. It goes from story to story so quickly that I still don't feel invested in any of the characters. Plus, it's hard to follow the stories when they're so fragmented and there are so many of them.

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Conviction: The Wall

by Anna Johns, posted Apr 29th 2006 7:07PM
anson mount; conviction(S01E09)  I totally hated the judge on ADA Steele's case. He made my blood boil as he kept ruling against Steele and pushing for a lesser charge against a high school kid who killed a classmate. I know I wouldn't have kept my cool the way Steele did. But, was he right to continue with the murder charges? The judge's original offer for a lesser charge was for 1-3 years in jail. Steele refused to reduce the charge, got his conviction (no thanks to the judge), and then the judge reduced the charge anyway and put the kid on probation. Steele had to know that the judge had the ability to do this. He had to see it coming, right? Or is he just so stubborn and self-absorbed that he can't see past his own nose? He didn't seem to be fighting for the victim, rather for himself.

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Conviction: True Love

by Anna Johns, posted Apr 12th 2006 9:28AM
jordan bridges; conviction(S01E07) Surpise! Did everybody's TiVos or DVRs catch Conviction last night? Mine didn't! Luckily, I was flipping through the channels and I saw that it was on. TiVo is currently in a time out.

So, NBC put Conviction on a Tuesday night where Law & Order: SVU usually airs. This is obviously a ploy to get the SVU crowd interested in Dick Wolf's new ADA lovefest (seriously, the guy is in love with prosecuting attorneys). The problem is, it's very different than the procedural drama that we know as Law & Order. Could you imagine tuning in last night for the first time and wondering who on earth all these people are? Sheesh.

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Conviction: Madness

by Anna Johns, posted Apr 8th 2006 8:43AM
eric balfour; conviction(S01E06) First of all... yum. Eric Balfour dancing with that woman in the opening scene? That, my friends, is how you open a show. Too bad J. August Richards totally ruined the mood.

Is it me or was everyone talking really fast during this episode? That opening sequence was all smooth and slow and then we just dove right the heck into fast-talking office-speak and, I tell you what, I spent the rest of the episode playing catch-up.

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Conviction: Savasana

by Anna Johns, posted Apr 1st 2006 3:37PM
j august richards; convictionOnce again, lots of things happen. Christina (Julianne Nicholson) is heartbroken over an emotional case involving a dead baby, Billy (J. August Richards) is trying to keep his perfect record in the courtroom, Cabot (Stephanie March) and Steele (Anson Mount) get it on, Potter (Jordan Bridges) grows some balls, and Peluso (Eric Balfour) hounds the beautiful but icey girl in the office. By the way, did anybody catch why the title of this episode is 'Savasana'? I don't get it.

Well, Billy is a jerk. In his personal life and his work life. He sleeps with a girl who turns out to be a clerk and then totally shrugs her off when he sees her in the courthouse. But, even worse than that was his attempt to get a woman to drop her 1974 rape case because it wasn't a slam dunk for him. He tells the rape victim, "I don't want to put you through any unnecessary pain." Grrrr.

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Conviction: Breakup

by Anna Johns, posted Mar 18th 2006 5:11PM
eric balfour conviction breakupI thought this week's episode of Conviction was much, much better than last week's episode. I still think that there are too many storylines in each episode, making it hard to care too much for any particular character. But, the multiple storyline thing seems to be the M.O. for this show. So be it.

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Conviction: Denial

by Anna Johns, posted Mar 11th 2006 12:38PM
conviction denialIs anybody else wondering where this show is going? It's trying to balance a procedural drama, which is Dick Wolf's cup of tea, with a bunch of personal storylines, which are usually not included in Dick Wolf shows. It seems clumsy, fragmented, and packed with too much information. I still don't know any of the characters' names and I feel like I'm not getting any time to get to know them because the show jumps from character to character so quickly.

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