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December 20, 2014

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Nightmares and Dreamscapes: The Fifth Quarter

by Adam Finley, posted Jul 26th 2006 10:05PM

fifth quarter(S01E06) I've never been a big fan of gritty crime drama, which is why "The Fifth Quarter" has never been my favorite short story of Stephen King's. It's a very bare bones tale of a man whose friend is killed over a buried stash of millions of dollars and his subsequent quest to retrieve four pieces of a map, each belonging to a different "bad guy." It's not really typically "King" and even he acknowledgers in the Notes of Nightmares and Dreamscapes that the story is more like something that would have come from Richard Bachman (his occasional nom de plume) or even Richard Stark, the malevolent writer from his novel The Dark Half.

Of course, I can't really blame King for wanting to try something a little different once in awhile, but in a lot of ways the story works much better in a visual medium. The problem is, one hour isn't enough for a story that is this involved. Screenwriter Alan Sharp fleshes the story out by giving the protagonist (Jeremy Sisto) a wife and kid, and everyone in this episode plays their parts well, trying to convey a lot of backstory in a short time so we can get to the blood and guns. If anything, the episode suffers from trying to cram way too much drama into a short amount of time. I think this would have worked much better as a feature film, following Wilie (Sisto) as he hunts down the men who killed his friend and begins to piece together the map that will lead he and his family to a better life. That could still happen, I suppose, it's not like they haven't done multiple adaptations of King's work before.

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Richard Hatch is now in federal prison

by Anna Johns, posted Jul 24th 2006 6:16PM
richard hatchMaybe 'Naked Guy' doesn't fly in prison. Season one Survivor winner, Richard Hatch, has been moved to a federal prison in Oklahoma. He's serving a 51-month sentence for not paying taxes on his $1 million prize and other income. The judge was especially harsh because he believed Hatch repeatedly lied on the stand.

Hatch was doing time at the Plymouth County Correctional Institution in Massachusetts and he was inexplicably moved to the federal transfer center in Oklahoma and it's not clear whether he'll serve the remainder of his sentence there or be moved elsewhere. When he was sentenced, he requested to serve his time either in Rhode Island or Florida, to be near his family.

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Tom Goes to the Mayor: Spray a Carpet or Rug

by Adam Finley, posted Jul 17th 2006 12:35AM

tom goes to the mayor(S02E07) This episode begins with Tom sitting in a jail cell with another prisoner (Judd Hirsch) who's in jail because he locked his fifteen year old nephew in the cellar over the weekend for pooping and peeing all over his house. Tom, on the other hand, is in jail for killing about four thousand people. His cell mate reacts to this news with, "people are too sensitive these days."

Tom's tale of woe begins when he becomes a salesman for a new device called "Spray a Carpet or Rug," a gigantic machine that emits a foam that turns into carpet instantaneously. The Mayor loves the device because he can carpet all of Jefferton and not have to pay the "lawn mower man" who takes care of the grass and has been pestering the Mayor about a raise. The city council allows Tom to do a test run on Memorial Park, so Tom dons his chemical suit (the foam causes him seizures) and carpets the whole park.

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Morgon Spurlock talks to B&C

by Adam Finley, posted Jul 10th 2006 4:04PM
morgan spurlockThe magazine Broadcasting and Cable has an interview with Morgan Spurlock of Super Size Me and 30 Days fame, but if you don't read that particular mag you can always check out a few extra questions from the interview on the B&C Beat blog. Spurlock talks a little bit about his stint in prison, which he taped for the first episode of the show, as well as the possibility of working on network television in the future. I was somewhat surprised to find out he still eats fast food, but apparently the chili cheese fries at Tommy Burgers in East LA are quite delicious. The new season of 30 Days starts July 26 on FX.

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Prison Break coming to DVD

by Adam Finley, posted Jun 7th 2006 11:25AM
prison breakYou know, I'm starting to think maybe I didn't give Prison Break the chance it deserved. I watched only part of the first episode but found myself turned off by the cavalcade of prison movie cliches being thrown at me. On the other hand, it's usually not a great idea to judge a show on the pilot alone, or only part of the pilot for that matter. At any rate, if you're a fan of the show, and I know a lot of you are, you'll be pleased to know that the first season is coming out on DVD on August 8. And heck, the casually curious like myself can check it out, too, getting ourselves caught up for season two. Or even better, watch the episodes in reverse order so it looks seems he's breaking into the prison. That could be even better.

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Final season of Oz coming to DVD

by Adam Finley, posted Jun 5th 2006 4:02PM
Oz DVDThe sixth and final season of HBO's prison melodrama Oz will be out on DVD on September 5, and all I can say is, "it's about damn time." The series aired during my college and post college years when my access to HBO was intermittent at best. Nevertheless, I was able to catch most of the episodes. One very important episode I never saw, however, was the final one. In other words, I've been waiting all this time to find out how the series ended. Attempts to get my hands on that episode proved fruitless, so I finally gave up, assuming they'd eventually have to release it on DVD. I figure I've waited this long to find out what happens, what's another three months? While the show wasn't flawless, I think it was one of the best original series to air on HBO. Or maybe I just like naked guys stabbing each other with screwdrivers. My first step is learning to love that part of myself.

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Prison Break: The Key

by Keith McDuffee, posted Apr 24th 2006 11:07PM
prison break(S01E19) Like I'd mentioned in one of the recent APB podcasts, I already saw this episode a couple of weeks ago. Luckily the version I saw was the same as this one and ended just as shockingly. It's hard to believe that there's only one three more episodes left, and then that long wait for the next season ... if there is a next season, for sure.

The first surprise (for some of you, at least) was the return of Abruzzi. His back story was sadly missing a couple of episodes back, and it's too bad, since his story was likely one we'd have little remorse for, unlike all the other 'Breakers. Even Tweener has a sob story to tell, sitting in prison for a mere baseball card theft.

But is Abruzzi just playing everyone? Is he really reformed and forgiving of T-Bag? The fact he asked about Fibonachi again shure makes him out to be a player.

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Prison Break: Bluff

by Keith McDuffee, posted Apr 17th 2006 11:06PM
prison break(S01E18) First of all, let me start by saying that I fell victim to my spoiler whorey ways and was able to watch next week's episode last Friday night (I spill the beans on huge spoilers in the latest APB podcast -- the ending will shock you.) Since I hadn't seen tonight's episode yet, it was weird seeing things in reverse order, but seeing how things connect didn't disappoint.

It makes sense that these guys are taking more risks now, seeing as they've got nothing to lose at this point. There are way too many things for the guards to discover that will make sure they all stay at Fox River for a loooong time.

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Richard Hatch in jailhouse segregation

by Anna Johns, posted Apr 12th 2006 2:22PM
richard hatch; survivorThe notorious Survivor winner Richard Hatch is festering in jail these days... by himself. E! Online is reporting that Hatch is being kept in isolation at a jail in Plymouth, Massachusetts as he awaits sentencing for tax evasion. Although he was known for stripping all his clothes on the reality show, that's not why he's separated from the other inmates. A U.S. marshal says Hatch requested solitary confinement because he's worried that he won't be safe among the other prisoners because of his celebrity status.

In case you don't remember, Hatch lost his trial earlier this year when he claimed that Survivor producers promised they'd handle the taxes for his $1 million prize. He also was found guilty of spending money on himself that was earmarked for a charity.

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Prison Break: Brother's Keeper

by Keith McDuffee, posted Apr 3rd 2006 11:05PM
prison breakI know a lot of you disagreed with me with regards to the last two episodes, but  this time I think we're all in agreement. This was a great episode. Finally we learn what put our favorite (and not-so favorite) inmates into Fox River. Some stories were more shocking than others, and we get a better sense of who these people really are.

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New programs for March 5-11

by Anna Johns, posted Mar 5th 2006 4:51PM
haysbert the unitThings are really starting to heat up on the networks this week as seven new shows grace the schedule. Most notable, Dennis Haysbert returns to television in The Unit, which is produced by genius playwright David Mamet. ABC also launches its new part-scripted, part-improvised comedy, Brothers and Sisters, and the race-swapping reality show, Black.White, makes its debut on FX. Oh, and Lil' Kim gets her last 15 minutes of fame before going to the slammer.

  • Pros Vs. Joes, Mondays @ 10pm on Spike (premieres March 6)
    • Ordinary people face off against pro athletes like Karl Malone, Bo Jackson, Jerry Rice, Jennie Finch, etc. This is for sports fans with big mouths.
  • The Unit, Tuesdays @ 9 on CBS (premieres March 7)
    • Dennis Haysbert returns to action-packed television, this time as the leader of a special ops team that goes on risky missions across the globe. The show is about the missions, but also about how the families at home handle the stress of living in secret. Produced by David Mamet.

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Martha Stewart: still a convicted felon

by Anna Johns, posted Jan 7th 2006 7:35AM
Remember how, when Martha Stewart agreed to go to jail, she said she was innocent and her lawyers would continue to appeal? Well, their first attempt was an utter failure. On Friday, a federal appeals court upheld her conviction and the conviction of Peter Bacanovic, her broker, but agreed to revisit Bacanovic's sentence. Not sure why, or really what that means. Bacanovic already served his five months in prison and is now under federal court supervision. And so is Martha. The duo was convicted of conspiracy, making false statements, and obstruction of justice for lying about a stock trade. They were each sentenced to five months in prison and two years under court supervision. So far, Martha's lawyers haven't made a peep about whether they'll be taking their case to a higher court. Personally, I kinda like her as a convicted felon. It gives her a bad-ass edge, doesn't it?

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Judging Amy: Getting Out

by Bob Sassone, posted Apr 26th 2005 11:06PM
Judging AmyAre they trying to start up the Amy/Bruce thing again? Looks that way at the start. They're really focusing on their relationship. Meanwhile, Maxine is trying to help a mom with lots of foster kids, and one of Vincent's students at the prison is getting out in a few days, but has a plan to kill Vincent so he can be with his dad at another prison. Note to Vincent: if this episode doesn't convince you to get the hell out of that prison and get a job some place else and work on your book, well, I give up. And speaking of prison, Graciela might be getting out too because a witness changed her testimony. Trust me: this doesn't end well (Amy: "no...this isn't how this ends"). But back to Amy and Bruce: he lays into her about losing credibility and objectivity. Not only in a legal, courtroom sense, but with him. Amy tells him that he doesn't do anything with his life except tell her what the next case is. And then he quits! But she takes it back and tells him that she's his "conscience and friend," which sounds like the description of the Bruce character that must exist in the writers room at Judging Amy. But Bruce doesn't change his mind. He says goodbye to Amy and walks out the door. So in this episode we have Vincent attacked, Graciela killed in prison, and Bruce quitting. But just when you think it's over, there's one last shocker: Amy quits too!

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