-- Ever wonder how theme songs for shows like 'All in the Family' and 'The Golden Girls' came about? Now's your chance to find out [Neat-o-Rama]
-- Heidi Montag may think she's a feminist, but she definitely doesn't play one on TV. See 20 of TV's least feminist characters [Lemondrop]
-Speaking of Speidi, you may also want to read this list of dysfunctional TV couples [Your Tango]
(more fun finds after the jump)
But in TV land, the sisters were doin' it for themselves and finally getting respect as cops, war nurses and working moms; iconic shows like 'Hill Street Blues,' 'St. Elsewhere' and 'L.A. Law' would forever change (for the better) cop, medical and legal dramas; and no idea was too high concept to fill a primetime spot (time-travelling physicist? check; housewife-turned-CIA op? check; New York City beauty in love with a subterranean monster? check).
The bottom line: They all add up to 10 years of fine channel surfing -- and our awesome list of the 40 best series of the 1980s.
Everyone loves lists, and everyone has an opinion, so it's not always nice or productive to point out that another person's list might be lacking in some way. Having said that, let's talk about how this list is lacking in some way.
It's a list of the 10 best series finales of all-time. I'll get right to the point: Newhart should be on this list.
Some of them, however, try to explain too much or cover too much ground and end up becoming the kind of dreams that keeps our Paxil dosage high and GlaxoSmithKline's stock price higher.
These are those mindfreaks.
On Sunday at 8 PM ET, he co-stars in The Librarian: Curse of the Judas Chalice, the third in the Librarian series that has become a nice little franchise for TNT. He plays Judson, who acts as a guide and mentor to Noah Wyle's character of Flynn Carsen, a librarian who acts more like Indiana Jones than the person who stamps the insides of new books.
I spoke to Newhart by phone last week; we discussed the movie, shooting in New Orleans, his recent penchant for memorable supporting roles, and if he thinks the multi-camera sitcom has a future.
You can vote for them at the ABC site and your answers will be revealed on the 60th Primetime Emmy Awards, which will be broadcast on Sunday, September 21. There are two categories, comedy and drama (sorry fans of game shows and reality shows). No, you can't write in your own vote, you have to pick from the finalists that they've already chosen for you, so right off the bat you know there's going to be a lot of "but what about..." and "why did they include..." talk.
Here are the new TV DVDs, in stores tomorrow.
- Are You Afraid of the Dark? - Season 5
- B.L. Stryker - Season 1
- Comanche Moon - Complete Mini-Series
- Dark Shadows - The Beginning: Vol. 3
- Extras - Extra Special Series Finale
- Family Affair - Season 5
- The Fugitive - Season 1, Vol. 2
- Ghost Hunters - Season 3, Part 2
- Highlander: The Source (movie)
- Hotel Babylon - Season 1
- The Invisible Man - The Complete Collection
- The Jackie Gleason Show - The Honeymooners: Collection 2 (color)
- The Justice League - The New Frontier and New Frontier Special Editions
- Newhart - Season 1
- Punky Brewster - Season 4
- The Red Green Show - 1999: Collector's Edition
- The Smurfs - Season 1, Vol. 1
- State of Play - Complete Mini-Series
I was just at the supermarket and saw the headline in one of the gossip mags that Suzanne Pleshette was on her death bed, and now I hear that Pleshette has died of cancer at the age of 70.
TV fans will remember Pleshette from her role as Emily Hartley, wife of psychologist Bob Hartley on CBS' The Bob Newhart in the 70s. She reprised the role in the classic final episode of Newhart. Pleshette appeared in several other TV shows as well, including a role as Mark Feuerstein's mom on Good Morning Miami and James Garner's love interest on 8 Simple Rules, as well as guest spots on Columbo, Will & Grace, The Name of the Game, Gunsmoke, Marcus Welby, M.D., The Invaders, It Takes A Thief, The Fugitive, Wild, Wild West, and several others.
On the big screen, she appeared in The Birds, The Shaggy D.A., The Lion King II, The Power, Support Your Local Gunfighter, and many films.
Of course, the subtitle of my title should probably be "Do you avoid spoilers?", because a lot of TV fans actually like them.
There was a time when there were no spoilers for TV shows. None at all. In the 60s and 70s and 80s and early 90s, there was no internet to speak of, and the gossip magazines and gossip TV shows really didn't go to any great lengths to find out what was going to happen on a season finale or a particular episode. Of course, it's a chicken or egg thing now. The shows are doing cliffhangers all the time (even sitcoms) and actually like to cultivate spoilers to hype the show (there was a time when a TV show's season just ended with a regular episode, nothing shocking or cliffhanger-ish). Cliffhangers really took off with the famous "Who Shot J.R." episode of Dallas.*
This past Saturday, the 59th Annual Creative Emmy Awards were given out and aside from a few exceptions, the winners were no surprise.
The biggest event of the night came when American Idol won its first Emmy ever for "Outstanding Technical Direction." The spectacular "Idol Gives Back" episode was responsible for the Emmy, specifically the duet between Celine Dion and the late Elvis Presley. The honor is of particular interest because it gives AI a break in the second biggest losing streak in Emmy history, 22 losses. The record of 25 nominations without a win is still held by Newhart.
A roundup of TV people from in front of the camera and behind the scenes who have passed away.
- Dabbs Greer: Name a TV show, and Greer made an appearance on it. He was the ultimate character actor, having appeared on several shows over the years, including The Dick Van Dyke Show, I Spy, Diagnosis: Murder, Ally McBeal, Spin City, L.A. Law, Empty Nest, The Andy Griffith Show, The Twilight Zone, The Brady Bunch, The Rifleman, Lizzie McGuire and so many others. One of those character actors who played a half dozen different roles on various shows. He was a regular on Picket Fences, Maybe It's Me, and Little House on the Prairie. He died in Pasadena at age 90.
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