It felt like yesterday that we were sitting down to find out if Joey and Dawson would ever go all the way or learning about the crazy life of strangers on True Life. Fifteen years ago I was definitely too young to understand what Sex and the City was actually about or appreciate the impact of TRL (then Total Request Live). The same year brought us Felicity, who won the heart of America and later lost it when she cut her hair. It was TV’s first introduction to Aaron Sorkin who launched his small screen writing career with Sports Night. It was also the year that introduced us to Ryan Reynolds and Ryan Gosling. It was 1998. And it feels like forever ago.
Thank you, National Enquirer, for calling our attention to an issue we as a pop-culture society should come together to solve: The health and well-being of our national treasures, aged former sitcom stars. We first became aware of this issue last year, when it was discovered that Happy Days star Erin Moran was homeless and bouncing from motel to motel. Today, we learned that another beloved face from the ’70s and ’80s, Eight Is Enough’s Susan Richardson is suffering from a number of health problems and scraping by in a broken down trailer. The diabetic 60-year-old, who played one of Dick Van Patten’s eight children on the ABC show that ran from 1977-81, has had strokes and also an incurable digestive tract condition that made her lose her teeth, the Enquirer reports (via Radar Online). In addition to a pension, she’s earning a living by turning fallen branches into walking canes for vets — which sounds both really sad and rather resourceful.
Sorry if you haven’t watched this week’s New Girl yet, but Fox has been promoting this thing all week long, so get out of your cave already! Just halfway into season two of the Fox comedy, Zooey Deschanel’s Jess and Jake Johnson’s Nick shared a super-steamy lip lock at the end of the episode, deceptively called “Cooler.” At first, I screamed, “Noooooo!” — worried that it meant an early resolution to the will-they-or-won’t they tension between the roommates, which can sometimes be the kiss of death for a show. But after reading executive producer Liz Meriweather’s interview with the Hollywood Reporter, my fears are mostly allayed. She felt like a drawn-out tease wouldn’t work in this situation. “I just think it doesn’t correspond to real-life relationships, especially for people the ages of the characters on New Girl, because they are so complicated these days,” she explained. “And I don’t think a kiss means a relationship is going to happen. I don’t think bringing two characters together takes away story possibility; I think it adds a lot of story possibility. Keeping them apart, at this point, felt more fake then bringing them together for me.”
We’ve been worried for years now that all the hype over The Hunger Games and Divergent would completely derail any adaptations of one of our other favorite dystopian young adult series, Lauren Oliver’s Delirium. So we were jumping up and down (as much as our not-yet-caffeinated brains would allow) at the news from TVLine.com that Fox has ordered a pilot based on the novels, to be penned by Prison Break’s Karyn Usher.
If you haven’t read the novels (#3, Requiem, comes out in March), don’t go assuming it’s like all the others. This one follows the story of Lena, a girl who’s very excited about the upcoming procedure all 18-year-olds receive, which protects them from the disease of love. Oliver likes to joke that it’s only “dystopia” if you think love is a good thing. Well, we kind of love the idea of expanding this dark world into a TV series. We’ll give you more info on it as soon as we learn more!
In real life, Lena Dunham is way more responsible than most people — she’s 26 and runs her own show and makes her own movies! — but something about the way she talks about her new dog Lamby, whom she adopted on Wednesday, reminds us a whole lot of her Girls character, Hannah Horvath.
“I adopted him at Brooklyn Animal Rescue Coalition,” she told VH1 News at the season two premiere of Girls. “I wanted a dog for so long.”
Rejoice, American Downton Abbey fans, the soapiest costume drama in the land returns to TV on Sunday and hopefully you haven’t been so much Internet searching on the goings on of the Crawley family and their employees that you haven’t had the entire season spoiled for you yet. (Seriously, stop searching, because those spoilers will catch up with you!) One of the best things about the show’s return to PBS’ Masterpiece — especially now that it’s at the height of popularity — is seeing the cast in their modern street clothes, laughing and joking like their fictional counterparts never would. We’ve seen Hugh Bonneville (Robert Crawley) tweet from the subway, Robert James-Collier (Thomas) talk sexual politics in Out and those two joined by Jim Carter (Mr. Carson) in a silly Downton/Breaking Bad mash-up on The Colbert Report. Guest star Shirley MacLaine trotted out her paranormal expertise to talk about the ghosts haunting Highclere, the estate where the show is shot. Dan Stevens (Matthew Crawley) has been gracing the New York stage with Jessica Chastain in The Heiress all season, while Joanne Froggatt and Sophie McShera showed that when they put on makeup and get out of those dreadful maids’ uniforms, they’re total knockouts.
Sure, it must be fun to traipse around a fancy English estate for a living, but we get the feeling the cast revels in the chance to show the world what they’re like in real life. See for yourself in the gallery below:
[Photos: Comedy Central, Getty Images, Twitter]
The two-headed monster of reality TV, Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt, are back in the biz — but their (many) haters on this side of the Atlantic can breathe a sigh of relief for now, since they’re making their return in the U.K.’s Celebrity Big Brother. For a few days now, we were all wondering whether the Hills couple was pulling some kind of stunt, since their tour through London was suspiciously well-documented by the paps. Then they made their big plans official as they entered the BB house last night. “It’s going to be hard because I really don’t like other people,” Pratt said in a taped interview, per Us Weekly. “I’m ready to get in there. I’m ready to do battle. It’s on.”
It’s not that surprising that Speidi are returning to the reality-TV game, especially after they told Access Hollywood last year that they’d squandered $1 million and were living in a place owned by Spencer’s family to save money.
In case you have selective amnesia, here are some other highlights from the illustrious career of Speidi:
- After launching her career as Lauren Conrad’s roommate on The Hills, Heidi stole the show once she hooked up with Spencer, who quickly became LC’s enemy.
- While on the show, the couple eloped in a stunt designed for the tabloids. That actually turned out not to be a legal union, so they got married in a huge ceremony on The Hills.
- Spencer helped finance Heidi’s “singing” career, which peaked when she sang her single, “Body Language,” at the Miss Universe pageant in 2009.
…And we’re back! Our favorite show, American Horror Story: Asylum went on hiatus over the holidays, leaving us twiddling our thumbs on Wednesday nights without Evan Peters on our screens. We had so many unanswered questions about Briarcliff, Bloodyface and Grace’s baby. Rest assured, our beloved horror show returned last night and progressed the plot line in multiple ways. Sister Jude undergoes electroshock therapy after being diagnosed with manic depression, Grace has Kit Walker’s baby, the Monsignor Timothy O’Hara kills Sister Mary Eunice and Dr. Arden commits suicide to reunite with Sister Mary. Some critics have referred to Ryan Murphy’s AHS as the evil twin of his other show, Glee, and we never felt that way more than after watching last night’s episode. From the dance number to the virginity-losing, Briarcliff was less like an asylum and more like the halls of McKinley High. Here are our favorite Glee-like moments from “The Name Game.”
1.The Name Game – This comparison is by far the most obvious. In the middle of the episode, Lana Winters asks Sister Jude if she knows her own name after receiving electroshock therapy. Without answering Winters, a delirious Sister Jude trudges to the new jukebox in the asylum and selects Shirley Ellis’ classic to play, “The Name Game.” When she plays the song, Sister Jude immediately transforms into a glamorous early ’60s songstress and the bleak patients of Briarcliff get their groove on. Where is Kurt to bust out a showstopper when we need him? While we know this is a dream state and American Horror Story has its absurd moments, we couldn’t help but imagine Ryan Murphy in the writer’s room suddenly deciding to insert a dance number into the episode. Even for AHS, this felt out of place.
American Horror Story: Asylum has portrayed it all — from murders to amputations, Ryan Murphy leaves nothing to the imagination. Still, we are used to many of these graphic scenes just from visiting our local movie theater during Halloween season. As gruesome as it is, we are accustomed to the blood spewing, the white-tiled basement filled with murderous tools, and the exorcisms. We love Murphy’s wink to the horror genre and his dramatic flair, but this week’s episode seemed more disturbing than the usual stabbing. Lana Winters finds out she’s pregnant with Dr. Thredson’s baby and is determined to have an abortion — hence the title of the episode “The Coat Hanger.” The titular scene was probably one of the most disturbing things I’ve seen on this show so far. Now that they’ve depicted such a thing, what else can really be portrayed? Have we overcome the shock factor? Where do we go from here? Here is my list of questions from this week’s episode and what’s next for the rest of the season. Let me know if you have any answers, readers. We’re looking at you too, Ryan!
1. Did Dr. Arden take Kit Walker’s tape of Thredson admitting his crimes? Can Kit trust him now that they have this new alliance?
2. Is Grace having Kit Walker’s baby? Do you think she’s even carrying a baby?
3. Is Grace still alive or just a figment of Dr. Arden’s imagination? Did the aliens bring her back to life? What should we make of her?
Former TV teens we love: Keri Russell, Kristen Bell, Katie Holmes, Alexis Bledel, Linda Cardellini and Neve Campbell
Now that we’ve seen how much potential Keri Russell’s upcoming FX series, The Americans, has — thanks to a trailer posted last week and an eerie scene up on Buzzfeed this morning — we are crossing our fingers that she is part of a trend. With former My So Called Life star Claire Danes busting terrorists on Homeland, and Felicity alum Russell working as a Soviet spy living deeply undercover on this new show, the way has been paved for other former TV teens to make huge comebacks in dramas of their own.
Kristen Bell’s been making a career of quirky romantic comedies, but now that she’s expecting her first child, we can imagine her going back to her Veronica Mars roots and settling down into another sassy detective role. (It doesn’t have to be the long-promised grown-up version of VM, but pretty please, TV gods, can it be?) We got all excited for Alexis Bledel’s small guest stint on Mad Men — could the Gilmore Girl have been testing waters for a bigger part on the small screen? Seeing that Vanity Fair Freaks and Geeks reunion made us eager to see more of Linda Cardellini. And though Neve Campbell and Katie Holmes probably got their fill of soapy angst on Party of Five and Dawson’s Creek, we think they could thrive in good procedural mysteries or the like.
What kinds of TV shows would you pick for these ladies? Flip through photos of them in their memorable roles and today, and then share your ideas in the comments below!
[Photos: Getty Images]