It's not every day we get to review a TV episode that a former Squadder is guest-starring on, so I'm eagerly awaiting his Big Bang Theory appearance. As Wheaton is a self-proclaimed geek, he's obviously going to fit in great with Leonard, Sheldon, and the rest of the crew. The big question, of course, is what about Penny?
Will he be another rival for her affection? We left off last season with oceans and continents separating Leonard and Penny, and I doubt that they'll just run into each others' arms in the season premiere. So could Wil Wheaton be one of the things that continues to keep them apart? If so, is that such a bad thing?
The actress handled Kelley's sharp dialogue like a pro, and I'm guessing she'll bring the same confidence to her role as a "smart-ass, street-wise con woman" on the second season of Leverage. Ryan has signed on for a recurring role on the TNT heist drama. Her character will be a friend of Sophie's (Gina Bellman), Leverage's sexy grifter with a bag full of tricks and foreign accents.
Was that the first time a network show actually endorsed atheism?
I mean, I've seen Bill Maher throw his anti-religion grenades, but that's HBO and that's Bill Maher. To my knowledge no network -- even a network like Fox, which once had a line-up made up entirely of World's Scariest Alien Autoposies -- had ever come down this hard on the beliefs of its viewers...
Don't get me wrong. I enjoyed some parts of the episode. The "shut up Wil" line by Patrick Stewart had me in stitches, as well as the sudden death of Denise Crosby (obviously, the writers are ST:TNG fans). Hell, Patrick Stewart is a recurring guest on Seth McFarlane's other series American Dad.
It just seemed to me that after the brilliant Star Wars parody from last year, they would do something more with such a line-up of talent than simply "Stewie gets to hang out and go bowling with the cast." It was even relegated to the "B" plot, with the "A" plot being Meg's sudden faith in God as a result of watching Kirk Cameron on TV.
I was hoping for something more akin to an episode of The Next Generation done Family Guy-style. Or would that have been redundant of the Star Wars episode? What do you think? Was the episode decent or could it have used improvement?
The entire cast of Star Trek: The Next Generation lend their voices to the episode, which features Stewie going to a Trekkie (er, sorry, Trekker I guess they like to be called) convention and not being able to ask the group a question. So he does a very Stewie-like thing and kidnaps the entire cast.
Now here's another reason to watch: Former Squadder and Enterprise ensign turned Interweb Superman Wil Wheaton will guest star in the next episode, "Fall of the Blue Beetle," which airs this Friday, Jan 23. Wheaton plays Ted Kord aka the Silver Age Blue Beetle.
Click through for a great clip from the ep, featuring Blue Beetle (who seems to be quite the tech geek) and Batman talking shop and knocking out bad guys.
Yep, I got a Twitter. It's part of my plan to plaster the Internet with links to my must-read blog posts about '90s indie rock and that handsome bastard Neil Patrick Harris (don't ask). Fortunately for you, some clever TV stars also use Twitter for fun and shameless self-promotion.
Here are ten fan-friendly TV celebs worth stalking on Twitter. Unlike that fake Stephen Colbert, these guys are all one-hundred percent, real-life paparazzo magnets.
I'll admit, they got me. When I read about the plans for more live coverage, and how they were going to make use of all the other NBC/Universal properties, I thought this would be the year, the Olympic nirvana that always could have been. It's really not panning out that way. More than anything else, the word that keeps coming to mind for the NBC coverage is annoying. After the jump, some notes for NBC.
Original Air Date: October 12, 1987
Written by: Katharyn Powers and Michael Baron
Directed by: Russ Mayberry
Synopsis: The inhabitants of the Federation planet Styris IV had the fish for dinner, leading to an outbreak of deadly Anchilles fever. With Styris IV's fate in the hands of Acting President Ted Striker and his intern Elaine, the Enterprise pays a visit to the only planet in the entire galaxy that can provide a vaccine, Ligon II.
Picard meets with the Ligonian leader Lutan and his little buddy Hagon when they beam up into the ship's cargo bay. On the way to meet them, Troi and Riker tell Picard that the Ligonians are a proud people with a very structured society. Picard thanks them for waiting until they're in the turbolift, going to the meeting to tell him this important information, instead of bogging down the pre-meeting briefing with it. When they get to the cargo bay, we discover that the Ligonians are also descended directly from a 1940s pulp novel set in deepest, darkest Africa, and that they are amused to discover that the Enterprise's security chief is a woman.
Oh good! We're going to be racist and sexist in this one!
Original Air Date: January 25, 1988
Written by: Patrick Barry
Directed by: Michael Rhodes
Synopsis: The Enterprise comes across the long-lost freighter Odin, which has been missing since Captain Hazelwood crashed the ship into an asteroid seven years ago. Three escape pods are missing and assumed to be on their way to Tatooine, but since the planet Angel One is closer, Picard decides to look there, first. Besides, it's supposedly run by hot babes who like to snu-snu, so Picard can finally dump that load of hats he's been hauling around since "Justice." And -- Science Fiction Cliche alert! -- it's "similar to mid-twentieth century Earth."
After a chilly initial audio-only contact with Angel One's leader, Mistress Beata, during which no one at all asks why the leader has a dom-sub porn name, Picard sends Riker, Troi, Tasha and Data down to the planet to get permission to look for any survivors. On their way to the transporter room, they run into Wesley and Nameless Extra Kid, who are wrapped up in Jiffy Pop suits and on their way to skiing lessons. On the holodeck's version of the Denubian alps. Now, for all the failings in this episode, here are two things it does right: the holodeck doesn't malfunction, and we don't have to watch Wesley and his friend doing their best Suzie Chapstick impression on the icy slopes of Mount Needaplotpoint (part of the majestic Isthisthebestyoucoulddo range).
Picard tells the away team that Angel One could one day be of strategic importance to the Federation, so they'd better be on their best behavior. Riker says, "Dude, is there any planet in the galaxy that isn't going to be of strategic importance to the Federation one day?" Picard responds, "If you keep asking questions like that, Number One, it's going to be fifteen years before you get your own command. Beam them away, Nameless Transporter Chief."
Original Air Date: January 18, 1988
Teleplay by: Robert Lewin and Gene Roddenberry
Story by: Robert Lewin and Maurice Hurley
Directed by: Rob Bowman
Synopsis: After dropping off a bunch of Human Horn for Lurr in the Omicron Persei system, the Enterprise cruises into the nearby Omicron Theta system, to pay a visit to Data's home planet.
Omicon Theta was once a farming colony, but all the colonists -- and everything they once grew -- were all gone when Data was found. Oh! A mystery! Riker leads an away team to the planet's surface in an effort to solve it. (In a scene that was cut from the final episode, the USS Mystery Machine showed up, and captain Fred said, "Dang." before it flew away to the Scary Old Amusement Park galaxy.)
They make their way to the exact spot where Data was discovered: it's sort of a hollowed out area beneath a bunch of rocks, where Data tells them he was found wearing nothing more than a layer of dust. Before anyone can make a saucy reference about 'The Naked Now' to Tasha, Geordi's Visor reveals that the rocks aren't naturally hollow, and the "wall" opens up, revealing a twisty maze of passages, all alike.
(S04E09) "If you're good enough to fake a comic, you're good enough to be drawing your own." - Seth Marlowe
Numb3rs finally returned to form tonight with an episode that didn't quite make sense to me. When I think of the FBI tracking down a counterfeiting ring, currency comes to mind before comic books. Regardless, this was a great episode layered with an enjoyable and overly nerdy case, some mathematical explanation from Charlie (for once!), and some great sub-plots. It got even better though. Not only did Christopher "flux capacitor" Lloyd guest star, but the episode also saw a great turn from TV Squad's very own Wil Wheaton.
It's becoming clear that if you plan on buying every season of a TV show, at least the more popular ones, you might want to wait a couple of years (if you can wait, that is). They're coming out with more and more "complete sets" and if you buy the sets individually you're probably paying more (and missing out on some extras, though that's not always the case).
Here's another one. CBS/Paramount will release a complete set for Star Trek: The Next Generation on October 2, to celebrate the show's 20th anniversary.
Original Air Date: January 11, 1988
Written By: Tracy Torme
Directed by: Joseph L. Scanlan
The Enterprise is on a diplomatic mission to Alderaan, and the imperial senate will not stand for -- oh. Wait. Sorry. Wrong Star. Let's start over, shall we?
The Enterprise is on a diplomatic mission to meet the Jarada, an alien species with a peculiar affinity for protocol: if Picard doesn't speak a particular greeting in exactly the right way at exactly the right time, the Jaradan won't join the Federation, and they'll take all their mythical Jaradan weed with them.
Picard and Counselor Troi have been practicing his speech for hours, because it is just about the most important thing Picard has done since convincing Q that humanity isn't a bunch of asscocks. Because he is so aware of the significance of the meeting, he naturally closes up his books and heads down to the holodeck to goof off. (If my son Ryan, who is about to enter college, is reading this, please don't follow his example if you intend to graduate in four years. Keep studying. Your grades and my money thank you.)
Picard tells us in his personal log that he's looking forward to trying out something new called a holodeck program: rather than simply recreating a time or a place (or both) it recreates an entire fictional universe inside the Enterprise (infinite recursion alert! Infinite recursion alert!) with characters and a story, sort of like LARPing, if LARPing wasn't totally lame.
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