August 22, 2016 |
No one pays me to watch Scandinavian TV. With more than 400 scripted shows a year to watch in the U.S., I'm goofing off every time I click on a series with subtitles and Nordic accents. But I can't help myself. It's not just fear of missing out, although I hated waiting for the U.S. remake of Forbrydelsen , which here became AMC's The Killing , only to be told the Danish original was better. What we don't get in a remake are the differences in the way societies view everything from marriage to murder.
August 7, 2016
Masterpiece Mystery!: Inspector Lewis. It's not all Olympics. Kevin Whately and Laurence Fox return for a final, three-episode season as Oxford police inspectors Lewis and Hathaway. 9 p.m. Sunday, WHYY12. Guns on Campus: Tamron Hall Investigates. Fifty years ago this month, a student at the University of Texas at Austin shot 49 people, killing 16. Now Hall - NBC/MSNBC correspondent and anchor and a Temple grad - looks at the challenges college officials in Texas face with a new state law that allows students to carry concealed weapons on campus.
June 3, 2016 |
In a Northeast Philadelphia apartment nearly 40 years ago, Irv Slifkin and his movie-mad pals pioneered an American pastime: binge watching. "We had a continuous film festival," recalls Slifkin, 59, describing how a trunk-size, top-loading VCR, a console color TV, and a stack of newfangled videotapes kept people couch-bound for a long weekend. These days, Slifkin lives in Delran, writes and lectures about movies - "I've seen thousands, too many to count" - and does screenings at Philadelphia-area venues such as the Moorestown Library.
May 27, 2016 |
The final hours for Kiersten Rickenbach Cerveny, a former America's Junior Miss scholarship winner from South Jersey, began when she left a New York City bar in the wee hours last Oct. 4 with HBO producer Marc Johnson, who had offered her cocaine, authorities said. A cab brought them to a building on West 16th Street in Manhattan's Chelsea neighborhood, where Johnson's longtime friend - and alleged drug dealer - James Holder lived in a third-floor unit, federal authorities said. It was in this building that emergency responders later found Cerveny, a 38-year-old dermatologist and married mother of three young children, unconscious in the first-floor doorway.
March 26, 2016
A weird thing happened on television Monday. On a single night, three series - the CW's Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and Jane the Virgin and Syfy's The Magicians - all mentioned the Bechdel test. Named for cartoonist Alison Bechdel, who shares credit with her friend Liz Wallace, the test rates works of fiction: If a piece includes two women, preferably with names, who talk about something other than a man, it passes. It's tougher than it sounds - I'm not sure all the shows that referenced it could pass it most weeks.
March 22, 2016
Question. Although I've never had any problem with classical addictions such as alcohol or narcotics, I've struggled with procrastination, tardiness, perfectionism, and being overweight. I've often felt a vague affinity with the term "addictive personality," as that is how I feel when immersed in a good book, TV series (Netflix is a binge-enabler), interesting website, or meal. The enjoyment of the moment turns into 10 or 20 or more because the next is so tantalizingly available.
February 19, 2016 |
Mary Ciammetti teared up in her Conshohocken living room as she showed the video of her youngest son. It's been a little more than a year since he died of alcohol poisoning, despite his Temple University roommates' frantic attempts to save him with CPR. There was Christian Ciammetti having a bath in the kitchen sink at 16 months, then wearing a suit at First Communion. In his high school football uniform, with his girlfriend, at graduation, on skis, posing with a big fish he'd reeled in. Then the music - Avicii's "Wake Me Up" - stopped, and the images played silently: A refrigerator with empty liquor bottles and a red Solo cup. An unmade bed. A hospital room, with Christian tethered to a mesh of tubes and IVs. And finally, Christian lying in a casket in a red flannel shirt, dead at 20. He had been a junior, a young man with dyslexia who shined through his major, landscape architecture.
January 25, 2016
* THE X-FILES. 10 p.m. Sunday, Fox 29. Moves to 8 p.m. Mondays beginning the following night. The show's six-episode reboot gets a post-football launch as a cable TV conspiracy theorist (Joel McHale) brings together Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) to look into something. It's not a great episode, but it sets up the somewhat better one that's airing Monday. * BEOWULF. 10 p.m. Saturday, Esquire. Esquire imports another British drama, this one based on the Old English epic poem.
December 14, 2015 |
Since America's response to its grotesque gun violence is more guns, it's hardly surprising that in the face of a campus binge-drinking epidemic, more colleges have decided to sell alcohol at sporting events. Having already ceded authority over their athletic programs to boosters, shoe companies, and TV networks, university presidents have more recently been busy surrendering to powerful brewers. "One of the main issues confronting universities is alcohol abuse," West Virginia University president Gordon Gee said earlier this year.
October 9, 2015 |
* RED OAKS. Friday, Amazon. * UNDATEABLE. 8 p.m. Friday, NBC10. 'Undateable' live The business model at NBC still works best when people watch shows when they're on, which is one reason the home of "Saturday Night Live" is so interested in live anything lately, from musicals to the possibly mistitled "Best Time Ever with Neil Patrick Harris. " As "Undateable" returns for a third season tomorrow with a one-hour premiere, it's expanding last season's live-episode experiment to the whole season.