Welcome to our new feature, TV Squad readers. How well do you know what you think you know about television? Play our little trivia game, Fact or Fiction. We'll state the premise, then tell you the reality, i.e. the fact or the fiction. By the way, if you have ideas for Fact or Fiction, or questions you'd like us to figure out, share with us in the comments.
Fact or Fiction: When Chuck Lorre originally created The Big Bang Theory, the boys were dominated by a nasty neighbor named Katie.
Fact! Chuck Lorre told Watch magazine's Jim Colluci that a year before The Big Bang Theory was picked up by CBS, the first pilot had a female character named Katie. She manipulated the guys. "It was like shooting fish in a barrel. It didn't work," Johnny Galecki told Colluci. The problem was that Sheldon, Leonard, Raj and Howard were and are essentially innocents and without maliciousness. The idea of a woman taking advantage of their innocence was not only mean, it wasn't funny. The writers went back to the drawing board -- so to speak -- and, thus, the character of sweet, gentle Penny was born.
While other shows sweat out the word of renewal or cancellation, Mr. Lorre seems to be CBS's prime time player they count on the most. Okay, second-most. Jerry Bruckheimer is numero uno with the CSI franchises, Without A Trace, Cold Case, Eleventh Hour and The Amazing Race.
Actress Rena Sofer has been cast on Two and a Half Men as someone who played a significant role in Charlie's life and she comes back into it on September 22, the season opener. She brings along a child when she returns, a little boy -- her son -- who may have some connection to Charlie.
Now, the connection hasn't been spelled out, but if he has an affinity for booze, plays the piano, wears bowling shirts and chases little girls, you can bet he's Charlie's child. Of course, the writers will probably be more subtle, but this would be an interesting wrinkle in the show if that's the direction in which they're going.
"I was a musician for 17 years before I got into television," said Lorre. "I was just a working musician, and I was trying to get a break as a songwriter. And back in the '80s I got a shot to write the music for this six episode trial run of this weird little animated thing, based on a garage comic. You know, a black-and-white little comic book. And we said 'Absolutely! We'd love to! We'll take any shot.' "
Day two at Comic-Con began with a panel featuring the stars of the CBS comedy The Big Bang Theory. A logical choice for a comic book and science fiction convention since the show focuses on a group of, um, nerds. Not that there is anything wrong with that, of course!
Actually, according to creator Chuck Lorre, he never intended to make a show about nerds and geeks. His main intention was to air a show about remarkable people. So he said during the very entertaining panel featuring Lorre, co-creator Bill Prady, and the entire cast of the show. A summary of what went down can be seen after the jump.
But first there was Two and a Half Men. In an episode called "Fish in a Drawer" (and if somebody could explain what that title means, I'd be most appreciative), the story picked up after Evelyn married Teddy. In the teleplay by CSI regular writers Evan Dunsky and Sarah Goldfinger, Charlie and Courtney check out of the reception for a little romp in his room upstairs only to find Teddy's dead bod on the bed. Talk about spoiling the mood. Teddy wasn't only a corpse, he was a corpse with his pants pulled down around his ankles and lipstick stains on his hoo-ha. The cops were called in, a detective who was a dead ringer for Marg Helgenberger -- played by redhead Jamie Rose -- had the vaguely Bondian name of Jagov, Sloane Jagov. Naturally, Charlie had to make a move on her. He couldn't keep his eyes off her cleavage.
In an age where Josh Schwartz, Joss Whedon, J.J. Abrams, and Judd Apatow are writing true-to-life examples of what being a nerd or a geek is like, you'd think that the whiny, sniveling, tape-on-the-glasses, Urkel version of geekdom would be out of favor in TV land.
Big Bang Theory, which premieres Monday at 8:30 PM ET on CBS, proves otherwise. And, while it's not a complete disaster, it's too weighed down by its geek stereotypes to work on a weekly basis.
We told you a while back about the plan to have the writing staffs of CSI and Two and a Half Men swap places for one episode. Looks like that plan is going forward. Two and a Half Men creator Chuck Lorre even has the plot for the CSI episode: he's going to kill Roseanne Barr or Cybill Shepherd.
OK, they won't be on the show, but Lorre's plot revolves around the killing of a "sitcom diva." Lorre worked for several years on both Roseanne and Cybill (he created the latter), and both shows were notorious for behind the scenes friction and firings and chaos. And who does Lorre want to have play the sitcom diva? Shepherd's costar Christine Baranski, who didn't exactly get along with the star of the show (or vice versa).
Now the only question is: who will the killer be? (Second question: what plot will the CSI writers come up with for Two and a Half Men?)
In other comedy news at the Tiffany Network, they have ordered a pilot for a show called Fugly. Written by My Name Is Earl creator Greg Garcia, the show tells the story of three not so attractive sisters who pool their money to get one of them an extreme makeover. The plan is for the three of them to then take advantage of the sister's good looks. It's an interesting premise, and I think Garcia could do a lot with it, but I suspect a name change is coming if the show actually makes it to air. I can't see the management mucky mucks at CBS actually putting a show called Fugly on their schedule.
[ via cynopsis ]
Way back in March I told y'all that Chuck Lorre, creator of Two and a Half Men, was creating a series for CBS called The Big Bang Theory, about a woman who shows two physicists that just because they know a lot about science, it doesn't mean they understand everything. The "woman" in this case will be played by Kaley Cuoco of Eight Simple Rules, who replaced Andrea Walsh who appeared in the unaired pilot episode. I think a beautiful woman showing two stuffy men a new perspective on life is a rather tired concept, but I'll save judgment until the show comes out, and then I'll say the exact same thing.
Actress Lena Headey will star as Sarah Conner in The Sarah Conner Chronicles, which continues the story of the character from the Terminator movies after the events of Terminator 2: Judgment Day. The series will begin filming next year and air on FOX. David Nutter, who has directed episodes of The Sopranos, West Wing and The X-Files, is set to direct this project.
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