Why movie stars make the transition to TV

I was recently asked to weigh in on why I felt movie stars were making their way to the small screen. After all, there are several instances when TV pokes fun of the divide between the two.

My short answer (although this is a topic that could be debated in novel form), is that right now, TV is better than movies. Long form television shows are pulling in large audiences, captivating viewers with intricate plot lines and in-depth characters.

When people become invested in a TV show, the three hours of entertainment they’d gain from sitting in a movie theater becomes 12-22 hours of time invested in one season of a series. With so many choices–both drama and comedy–TV is slowly making its shift into a new Golden Age. Not to mention the tremendous influence of Netflix.

So, who wouldn’t want to be a part of it? Although some stars transitions are easier than others, making the switch from the big screen to TV seems, for the most part, like a safe career choice.

Note: This is not to say movies aren’t good. There are some really great movies  I would absolutely recommend you spend time watching. My love for the film industry indeed runs deep. If only this blog focused on all screens…

New AMC series gets first trailer

AMC is a great network. It hosts two of my favorites–Mad Men and Breaking Bad, and constantly shatters ratings with its most popular show, The Walking Dead (which I have mixed emotions about).

Earlier in the year it was announced AMC had picked up two new series for Spring 2014. One, titled Halt & Catch Fire,  is a drama set in the 1980s during the computer technology boom. The second series is titled Turn.

Turn focuses on America’s first spy ring, and looks action packed–almost resembling a miniseries. Check out the first trailer, and let me know what you think!

House of Cards Season 2 will be available in February

You guys, this is big! I can’t think of a better way to spend Valentine’s Day than curled up, binging season 2 of House of Cards on Netflix. Today, the Netflix Original Series’ second season was finally given a premiere date. This simple trailer reveals little, other than Claire Underwood’s ability to make smoking cigarettes look cool. Who else is ready? 

Breaking Down the Breaking Bad Barrel

The Breaking Bad: Complete Series blu-rays were released last week, and arrived on my doorstep in a barrel. Seriously. As a hardcore fan, I spent the rest of the week watching the extended cuts, special features and alternate endings. It’s incredible. Without giving too much away, I’ve provided some photos of my favorite parts of the barrel.

Breaking Bad Documentary

1.) The Breaking Bad Documentary

This is the 2-hour documentary, which provides a detailed look inside the series. The GPS coordinates of course, represent one of the most important locations of the series. It was worth buying the entire series, and if you’re a softie–it’s sure to leave  you misty eyed as you watch each cast member shoot their final scene.

 

 

 

 

Breaking Bad Barrel Side View

2.) The Blu-ray Presentation

This is a photo of how the blu-rays are presented within the barrel. Each case has a symbolic graphic etched into it. My favorite displays the pink bear, which had a recurring appearance throughout the series.

 

 

 

 

 

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3.) The Breaking Bad Challenge Coin

The absolute best part of this box set (besides the actual show in blu-ray format) is the challenge coin. It can be found in the top of the barrel, resting over a paper-illusion of Walter’s riches. The challenge coin, according to Vince Gilligan, is a military tradition. This coin is heavy, features the infamous cartoon Heisenberg, and reads “Yo soy el peligro.” (I am the danger.)

Overall, I’d say this is the ultimate gift for a huge Breaking Bad fan. If you’re interested in purchasing one yourself, they’re available now on Amazon.

A brief rewind: Looking into Mad Men’s JFK episode

With the 50th anniversary of the JFK assassination approaching tomorrow, several networks will be premiering documentaries, specials and discussions on the untimely death of our 35th President.

This poignant topic is a difficult one to capture in a fictional setting, but one show was able to do it in an incredibly appropriate and moving way. In the third season of AMC’s Mad Men, the writers wove the JFK assassination into the storyline so beautifully, and demonstrated how the tragedy affected each character.

In this video, Matt Weiner, creator of Mad Men, discusses his thoughts while creating this perfectly crafted episode, an excellent piece of historical fiction.

Chris Hardwick’s heartfelt message on Talking Dead

Sad things are sad, right? This thing is especially sad.

Chris Hardwick is having a great year career-wise. He hosts a wonderfully nerdy podcast, two post-show programs on AMC and his recent gig on Comedy Central was just picked up for a second season after its overwhelming success with viewers.

Cue the sad: On Sunday’s episode of Talking Dead, Hardwick pulled at our heartstrings during the final moments when he revealed his father, Billy Hardwick, had passed away suddenly just one day before. Yes, I cried. 

Hardwick left viewers with a touching message, which I’ll allow you to see for yourself. My thoughts are with him.

Join Amazon Preview to test original pilots early

If you’re exceedingly passionate about television like me, not only are you watching what’s on the air, but you’re probably also constantly looking for the next “it” show.

For us special kind of TV nerds, Amazon Preview was born. This secretive focus group-esque society grants fans and critics early access to Amazon original pilots, provided the viewers give substantive, critical feedback on the shows they watch.

Early invites for Amazon Preview were sent to a select group of frequent customers recently, but if you’re interested in participating, you can join the waiting list. As someone who picks apart television for fun, you know I’m already in line.