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July 29, 2014

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Are These The Top 10 Shows of 2011? AFI Says So

by Chris Harnick, posted Dec 12th 2011 12:45PM
AFI Top 10 TV Shows 2011'Parks and Recreation' stands very tall next to 'Boardwalk Empire' on the American Film Institute's list of Top 10 TV shows of 2011. Can you imagine a meeting between Leslie Knope and Nucky Thompson?

A who's who of veteran shows and critical darlings filled out the rest of the list, some for the first time. 'The Good Wife,' 'Parks,' 'Louie,' and 'Justified' are all brand new entries to AFI's year-end list.

Showtime's 'Homeland' and HBO's 'Game of Thrones' were the only new 2011 shows to make the list.

Take a peek at the full list below.

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Ask Mo Returns! Answering Your Questions on 'Terra Nova,' 'Revenge,' 'Breaking Bad,' 'Ringer' and Much More

by Maureen Ryan, posted Oct 12th 2011 11:30AM
Thanks for all the great questions you sent in for this round of Ask Mo. I picked a bumper crop to take on this time. Let's get right to it, shall we?

Jamilbhatti0782: Do you think 'Terra Nova' will be picked up for a full season?

Mo says: Production wrapped last week on the first season of the dino drama, which was always envisioned as a 13-hour saga (according to a Fox representative, the show's 2-hour season finale airs Dec. 19). Any episodes beyond that would be part of a hypothetical second season, but the network hasn't yet decided whether to order a season 2. Given the show's high cost and relatively modest ratings, the jury is still out on whether we'll get a second season of dinosaur drama.

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'Breaking Bad' Creator Vince Gilligan on What Walt Did and the Future of the Drama

by Maureen Ryan, posted Oct 9th 2011 11:35PM
As a storyteller, Vince Gilligan can't be accused of playing it safe.

The season 4 finale of 'Breaking Bad' contained several shocking developments bound to keep fans talking all week.

The creator of the AMC show addresses those events in depth below, and he also talks about the upcoming final season of the drama and whether it will air over one year or two. (By the way, my interview with 'Breaking Bad' actor Giancarlo Esposito -- a.k.a. Gus Fring -- is here, and my review of the finale is here.)

Spoilers ahead for 'Face Off,' the season 4 finale of 'Breaking Bad.'

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Gus Fring Speaks: Giancarlo Esposito on 'Breaking Bad's' Most Memorable Villain

by Maureen Ryan, posted Oct 9th 2011 11:30PM
Since he arrived on 'Breaking Bad,' Gustavo Fring has been a memorable foil for Walter White.

Walter White is often reactive and scrambling to keep up with events, but Gus Fring is cool, collected and composed. The yin and yang between the two men -- one chafing at authority, one effortlessly exuding an air of command -- has provided the AMC drama with some of its finest moments.

In the interview below, actor Giancarlo Esposito talks about playing one of television's most charismatic characters, and about the events of 'Breaking Bad's' season finale.

Don't read on unless you've seen 'Face Off,' the final episode of 'Breaking Bad's' stellar fourth season. And be sure to check out my review of the finale and my post-finale interview with 'Breaking Bad' creator Vince Gilligan.

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'Breaking Bad' Season 4 Finale Recap

by Maureen Ryan, posted Oct 9th 2011 11:20PM
['Breaking Bad' - 'Face Off']

Before I get into my review of the fourth-season finale of 'Breaking Bad,' I'd like to point you to some additional coverage of the AMC drama.

Click here for an interview with the show's creator, Vince Gilligan, and go here for an interview with Giancarlo Esposito, a.k.a. Gus Fring.

Ryan McGee and I have also recorded a special 'Breaking Bad' podcast with Time TV critic James Poniewozik; you can find that right now here or on iTunes.

As for the finale itself, well, it gave us a few things to talk about, didn't it?

Spoilers ahead for 'Face Off.' Don't read on unless you've seen the final episode of 'Breaking Bad's' fourth season.

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Bryan Cranston On What He's Learned From Playing Walter White on 'Breaking Bad' (VIDEO)

by Alex Moaba, posted Oct 6th 2011 1:00PM
As 'Breaking Bad' nears its intense and climactic Season 4 finale, Bryan Cranston went on 'Today' (weekdays, 9AM ET on NBC) to talk about his character Walter White's descent into meth-dealing gangsterism.

White's de-evolution from a cancer-stricken high school chemistry teacher to a ruthless meth-dealer is rapidly accelerating, and Cranston spoke about what he's learned from playing such a morally ambiguous character. "It really isn't about glorifying drug use or drug making ... it's about a man's poor decision-making. What I've learned from this experience is that anyone, even the meekest person among us, could become a horrible, dangerous person," he told Matt Lauer.

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Talking TV Podcast Scrutinizes 'Doctor Who,' 'American Horror Story' and 'Breaking Bad'

by Maureen Ryan, posted Oct 5th 2011 3:00PM
This week's podcast focuses on a new show, a program that just had its season finale, and a drama that's heading toward the end of its season.

In the first part of the podcast, Ryan McGee and I talked about FX's 'American Horror Story,' which debuts Wednesday (I reviewed it here). In the second part of the podcast, we talked about the season finale of 'Doctor Who,' which I wrote about here.

Finally, we wrapped up with a chat about the penultimate episode of 'Breaking Bad's' gripping fourth season. Just a heads up: After it airs, we'll have extensive coverage of the 'Breaking Bad' season finale, including an interview with creator Vince Gilligan and a 'Bad' Talking TV podcast featuring a special guest.

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'End Times' Arrive in an Intense Episode of 'Breaking Bad' (VIDEO)

by Maureen Ryan, posted Oct 2nd 2011 11:00PM
'Breaking Bad' has done a spectacular job of making Walter White's journey from high school chemistry teacher to underworld player believable. Walt has done so very many bad things (though of course, in his mind, he's always had his reasons).

Redeeming or making up for the bad choices he's made isn't an option at this point, and hasn't been for a long time. But once in a while, Walt draws a line that makes you think he may not be truly evil. In doing his utmost to protect his family from the wrath of Gus Fring, Walt did the right thing.

Of course, it was really his only play, but when Walt said, "I alone should suffer the consequences of those choices," what could our reaction be but "Damn right you should!"

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Gus Threatens Walt's Family on 'Breaking Bad' (VIDEO)

by Catherine Lawson, posted Sep 26th 2011 8:30AM
'Breaking Bad' S04/E11High school chemistry teacher Walt got into the drugs business in the first place because he wanted to take care of his wife and kids. Last night on 'Breaking Bad' (Sun., 10PM ET on AMC), however, his illegal activities put their lives in danger.

Gus has finally had enough of Walt and his brother in law Hank. He drags Walt out into the desert with a bag over his head and fires him. He also says he'll take care of the errant Hank: "You have failed. Now it's left to me to deal with him."

When Walt protests, Gus delivers this chilling threat: "If you try to interfere, this becomes a much simpler matter. I will kill your wife. I will kill your son. I will kill your infant daughter."

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Talking TV Podcast Takes on 'HIMYM,' 'Breaking Bad,' 'Doctor Who' and More

by Maureen Ryan, posted Sep 21st 2011 2:45PM
On this week's Talking TV podcast, Ryan McGee and I delve into the return of 'How I Met Your Mother,' the great season 'Breaking Bad' is having and reader questions touching on 'The Killing' and 'Doctor Who.'

A couple of side notes: Ryan and I will be talking about 'Breaking Bad' every week from now until the show has its season 4 finale in October.

Also, we are dropping a special 'Fringe' podcast Friday night or early Saturday. We thought it would be best to talk about that show after everyone had seen the season 4 premiere, so look for that podcast then. I won't do a separate post on the 'Fringe' podcast, just check the Talking TV site or iTunes for it.

Running times are below.

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Gus Meets With the Cartel to Avoid War on 'Breaking Bad' (VIDEO)

by Jason Hughes, posted Sep 19th 2011 4:45AM
'Breaking Bad'With the cartel breathing down his neck and interfering with his operation, Gus coordinated a meet and greet with them so he can try and reach an amicable peace on 'Breaking Bad' (Sun., 10PM ET on AMC), bringing Jesse and Mike along.

After some hesitation and posturing, the cartel warmed up to Gus and even agreed to share in a drink with him. Appropriately cautious, though, they waited until he drank first before partaking themselves.

But when Gus disappeared to purge the contents of his stomach, the various members of the cartel started dropping like flies. It may not have been a peaceful settlement of differences in the traditional sense, but it was certainly one way to address the impasse.

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The Cartel Sends a Strong Message to Gus on 'Breaking Bad' (VIDEO)

by Jason Hughes, posted Sep 12th 2011 6:22AM
'Breaking Bad' - 'Bug'Last week, it was curious that the writers were suddenly peeling back some of the layers to Gus' character on 'Breaking Bad' (Sun., 10PM ET on AMC). An extended flashback scene showed what happened when he tried to get into business with the drug cartel in Mexico.

This week, it became clear as that background information made the current situation not only more clear, but more intense for us as well. Gus is still a very gutsy and bold player, as evidenced by his walking out into a storm of gunfire when the cartel tried to send a message to his distribution center by shooting one of his men.

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With Hank Closing In, 'Breaking Bad' Reveals a Bit of Gus' Past (VIDEO)

by Jason Hughes, posted Sep 6th 2011 4:46AM
'Breaking Bad' - 'Hermanos'Gustavo Fring is one of the most enigmatic and fascinating characters on television. Now that he's on Hank's radar on 'Breaking Bad' (Sun., 10PM ET on AMC), the writers have begun to slowly peel back the onion, revealing a few of the layers of his complex and stoic personality.

Hank's investigations into Gus' past take him clearly to Mexico and then back to Chile, but there he hits a roadblock, as there are no records of Gus in Chile. Neither do we get any knowledge of who he was in Chile, but we do get a hint that it was something notorious based on a flashback to Mexico.

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Jesse Promises Walt He'll Kill Gus on 'Breaking Bad' (VIDEO)

by Nick Zaino, posted Aug 29th 2011 3:30PM
Jesse promises to kill Gus on 'Breaking Bad'Walt and Gus have always had a contentious relationship. That happens sometimes in the crystal meth business, especially when people start dying. On Sunday's episode of 'Breaking Bad' (Sundays, 10PM on AMC), the relationship got even worse when Walt's partner, Jesse, promised to kill Gus, the man responsible for distributing the meth Walt makes.

Walt pushed Jesse not to trust Gus, reminding him of all of the horrific things that have happened under Gus's watch. But to kill Gus, Jesse would have to get close to him, which would require forgetting all of those horrific things. "What about this girlfriend of yours?" said Walt. "And her little brother? The man looked you straight in the eye and told you no more children, but that very night, that little boy, he winds up -- Gus can't possibly think you'd forget that."

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Talking TV Podcast Takes on 'Breaking Bad,' 'Doctor Who' and Listener Questions

by Maureen Ryan, posted Aug 25th 2011 1:00PM
The Talking TV with Ryan and Ryan podcast is back -- tanned, rested and ready to dive into the small-screen fray.

In this week's edition, Ryan McGee and I talk about 'Breaking Bad' and 'Doctor Who' from a couple of different perspectives -- we chat about how splitting seasons into half-seasons (or shortening TV seasons) affects shows creatively, and we also share our responses to each show at this point in their very different lives.

We also talk about some grim statistics that came out recently regarding women in Hollywood, we take on reader questions and we gab about our favorite pilots for fall. Speaking of that last topic, don't miss the fall preview roundtables that AolTV's Maggie Furlong and myself did with Hitfix's Alan Sepinwall, IMDbTV.com's Melanie McFarland and TV Guide Magazine's Damian Holbrook. I really think you'll enjoy this series of video chats (check back here Friday for the final installment).

The running times for the podcast are below.

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