Since word began floating about of the CW networks plans to bring 80’s cult favorite soap Dynasty back to our screens, one of the biggest questions being asked was who will be playing the role of iconic character Alexis Carrington (played by Joan Collins in the original 80’s outing)
While the character was visibly absent from the reboot as it began, it had been confirmed that Alexis will be appearing towards the end of the series first season (which ties in with the original) with names including Heather Locklear, Laura Leighton, Elizabeth Hurley and Melinda Clarke all being thrown around as possible candidates to play Alexis.
Now, the CW network have found their Alexis Carrington and have let us all in on who nabbed the role which has gone to former Desperate Housewives star Nicollette Sherridan.
Alexis is the first wife of Blake Carrington and mother to Fallon and Steven. She will return unexpectedly to their world, challenging Blake’s marriage to Cristal, seeking to reunite with her children, and fighting to claim what is hers.
A modern re-imagining of the iconic prime-time soap, the series centers on the powerful Carrington family as they defend their throne against the Colbys, new rivals and threats, and even each other.
It stars Grant Show, Elizabeth Gillies, Nathalie Kelley, James Mackay, Sam Adegoke, Robert Christopher Riley, and Rafael de la Fuente, and Alan Dale.
Dynasty is available to Australian viewers on Netflix Australia.
When it comes to comedian Amy Schumer and her stand-up comedy shows, we pretty much know what we’re going to get. Themes of self depreciation, sex, fat jokes and offering her own take on the vagina monologues are constant in Schumers work, so much so, when bursting onto the scene, she was applauded for delving into those ‘no-go’ topics.
Now a best selling author and big screen actress (Trainwreck and the upcoming Snatched with Goldie Hawn), the jokes and topics that found Amy stardom continue to pull her along the dark and vulgar path she’s traveled down many a time before. In her most recent outing for Netflix titled Amy Schumer: The Leather Special, jokes about her feminine hygiene, copious amounts of alcohol and oral sex are once again present and feel somewhat ‘old-school’ Amy Schumer and by old-school, I mean the Amy we first met back in 2014 when Inside Amy Schumer began to gain traction for being a very on point and wickedly blunt comedic sketch show.
Schumer, as witnessed in The Leather Special, rarely strays away from topics that seem to hit with audiences and while topics such as double standard within Hollywood, female sexuality and empowerment and body insecurities are tackled, there’s an uneasy feeling of ‘heard this once before’ as these topics feel rehashed but with added vagina.
But all is not lost for Amy as among all the smut and vomit jokes, she manages to set aside her vagina for a moment and approach the hot topic of gun control, a subject close to Schumer after a gunman (in 2015) opened fire in a cinema showing her film Trainwreck in which two people were killed and nine other injured.
It’s a sidestep into the real world that will undoubtedly get people talking and divide audiences (the special briefly cuts to a small number of audience members walking out when gun control is mocked) but also one that she should visit a bit more often as sadly, this ‘raunch comedy’ that has become so synonymous with Schumer has me fearing that she may never get out of this sexual gag cycle.
Amy Schumer: The Leather Special is currently streaming on Netflix.
There’s a sort of “you-know-what-you’re-getting” vibe when it comes to the world of Archie via the wildly popular classic comic strip with Archie and best friend Jughead continuously getting into mischief while Betty and Veronica bicker over the affections of the larrikin red head. When it comes to the world of Archie Andrews in the new drama series Riverdale, what we get is the complete opposite of what we would expect.
The quiet and quaint town of Riverdale goes into a complete meltdown after the mysterious disappearance of local high school student Jason Blossom which forces the dark hidden hands of the townsfolk to slowly emerge.
The best way to think of Riverdale is Archie meets Dawson’s Creek meets Pretty Little Liars and it is this mix of shows that gives viewers a lot to take in within Riverdale’s opening episode.
Archie Andrews (KJ Apa) is struggling to find even ground for his promising football career and his wishful music career while trying to keep his woeful father Fred Andrews (Luke Perry) happy and his feelings for his music teacher Miss Grundy (Sarah Habel), with whom he had a summer fling with, hidden. His best friend Betty Cooper (Lili Reinhart) has romance in her eyes for her read headed best friend but her uppity mother Alice Cooper (Mädchen Amick) is trying to stop Betty from venturing out at any cost. Jughead Jones (Cole Sprouse) is a moody, brooding writer, taking notes about the mysterious disappearance that happened over the past summer while new girl in town Veronica Lodge (Camila Mendes) makes an impact right from her first meeting with the Riverdale gang before she locks lips with both Betty and Archie.
Splattered into this modern world of Archie, additional characters from the comic series including the flashy and gay Kevin Keller (Casey Cott), bitchy and privileged Cheryl Blossom (Madelaine Petsch) and lead singer of high school band Josie and the Pussycats Josie McCoy (Ashleigh Murray) all appear to shake things up in the once peaceful town.
This fresh take on Archie, made for the modern era teen, is a rather swell surprise that will fit easily into the viewing habits of those watching PLL or fans of Gossip Girl and even the failed Melrose Place remake. Secrets, lies, murder, scandals….it’s all going down in Riverdale.
Riverdale is currently streaming on Netflix Australia.
Coming off an eight episode binge watch of Netflix’s comedy/drama Haters Back Off, I quickly came to the realization that what works in one format may not actually work in another and it’s a point I have made before about a character very similar to that of Haters lead Miranda Sings.
The premise of the Netflix original series takes insanely popular YouTube star Miranda Sings (Colleen Ballinger) and documents her slow and grinding rise to her current internet stardom with the help of her eerily inappropriate Uncle Jim (Steve Little), her hypochondriac mother Bethany (Angela Kinsey) and her love-sick neighbor Patrick (Erik Stocklin) which is all to the detest of her introverted younger sister Emily (Francesca Reale).
As the eight episodes move along, Miranda, in her quest for undeserved fame using Uncle Jim’s five step plan, showcases a natural talent for narcissistic egotism and not much else as she drags down those around her while trying to claw herself to the top. Even when the tables turn on her and a situation goes awry, Miranda, so wrapped up in the beliefs of her own talent, refuses to see when she’s being kicked to the ground and assumes those against her are jealous of her performing ability.
In the second to last episode, Miranda’s younger sister Emily takes the chance to leave the chaos of home and apply to go to art school. Their mother Bethany, who is struggling with an actual health issue, at first fights it but then allows Emily to take that interview. Armed with her portfolio, Emily attends said art school interview only to discover her works have been ‘Mirandafied’ with pasta and glitter therefore destroying her chance at acceptance.
It’s the ensuing scene (which kicks off the seasons final episode) between a devastated and angry Emily and a cocky Miranda that brings the series one of its most conflicting moments for the viewers – Miranda is convinced she ‘fixed those paintings’ to help Emily get into art school but is shocked when Emily literally tells her that she ruined her work and that Miranda is dumb for thinking she was actually helping. It’s a brutal scene between the chalk and cheese sisters, but one where you feel empowered that Emily is finally taking a stand yet saddened for Miranda who is copping that verbal beating from her sister even when she thought she was doing good.
Once it is over, you step back and begin to question why are we even feeling sad for Miranda and should we be feeling empathy for a character that showed not a single shroud of human decency to another person? Which of course, harks back to my original point on what works in one format may not actually work in another.
Miranda Sings in YouTube format is hilarious and simply put – genius. The short 5-8 minute clips allow us to pop in and out as Miranda tries international snacks, dances, offers make-up tips, visits other YouTube stars, displays DYI fashion and accessory tips and badly croons her way through hundreds and hundreds of videos that have racked up billions of views. It works because the videos are entertaining, Miranda is an utter odd-ball, we don’t have to become too invested in her at that moment and the time frame of the videos is short enough to avoid us from discovering that Miranda is actually a rather unpleasant character.
Most of that discovery though falls down to the introduction of Miranda’s family, the people she stumbles across in life and how her actions and the way she conducts herself are presented to those people…which had to happen when bringing the character into scripted television.
It’s the same issue I had with a similar character to Miranda Sings, in the form of comedian Chris Lilley’s alter-ego Ja’mie King from Summer Heights High. When offered in smaller doses and accompanied by other unsettling characters to bounce to and from, selfish and delusional Ja’mie was an utter gem but when given her own platform and fleshed out surroundings in the series Ja’mie: Private School Girl, she became an unpleasant and highly unlikable brat that had me wanting her to never have a platform to appear on ever again.
Now this is not to say that Haters is a complete miss. There are some shining moments within the havoc of these eight episodes, most of which come from Miranda’s neighbor and (not so) secret admirer Patrick.
Erik Stocklin’s grossly awkward yet heartwarmingly adorable Patrick manages to step front and center to give Haters a character for us to root for – oddly more so than poor Emily. Even though Miranda comes out of this incredibly unlikable, we get all mushy when Patrick finally gets that special moment with his long time crush because Patrick, while almost as delusional as Miranda, is genuine and connectable for the viewers and thats a huge kudos to Stocklin.
Haters Back Off is currently streaming on Netflix.
The duo, who have released printable coloring books based on The Golden Girls, Beverly Hills 90210, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air and most recently 90’s sitcom Roseanne, have designed a 19 page coloring book (including cover) based on the 80’s themed sci-fi/mystery drama.
Pages to color include series heroine Eleven, judgmental Barb, Dustin “toothless” Henderson and mama bear Joyce Henderson, among others, all beautifully drawn with seriously clean line art.
Check out the full list of characters to color below:
If you’re like me, your’e dreading the impending barrage of Rio Olympics television coverage and what it will do to the other free-to-air networks. Seven have already announced all of their FTA and digital channels will be non stop Olympics, Channel nine will probably opt for Big Bang Theory repeats and Network Ten…well they’ll do want they want and continue with their standard schedule.
So then we find ourselves aimlessly channel surfing trying to find something to watch in between episodes of The Bachelor Australia hoping to find a gem we’ve not yet seen. This is where the following list of recommended shows to binge during the Rio Olympics will hopefully come in handy.
Schitt’s Creek / Seasons 1 and 2 / Comedy / 2015 –
Now currently on hiatus after two seasons (season three is currently filming) Schitt’s Creek has a familiar premise of the fish out of water scenario where the fish is the ultra wealthy Rose family and the water being an unscrupulous business manager that left them with nothing but a small middle of nowhere town (and the Roses new home) named Schitts Creek that Rose patriarch Johnny (Eugene Levy) purchased as a gag gift for his son David (Daniel Levy). Forced to forgo all their luxuries, the Rose’s must endure life as they never knew it until Johnny is able to sell the town to nab back some much needed dollars.
Why you should binge: Comedy legends Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara back on screen together for starters! Plus it’s funny, heart warming and very ship-worthy, you’ll fall in love with “is he or isn’t he” David and his spoiled sister Alexis (Annie Murphy) will either make you uber jealous or scratch your head in wonderment.
The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst / Season 1 / Documentary / 2015
With the popularity of Making a Murder being so overwhelming, many people might be looking for something just as absurd and something just as intriguing. The Jinx delves into the mystery surrounding the 1982 disappearance of Durst’s first wife Kathy along with the murder of his best friend Susan Berman and neighbor Morris Black. The six part documentary series is told from Durst’s point of view and you’ll be left gobsmacked when things start to unravel and truth’s start to come out.
Why you should binge: It’s like the opposite of Making a Murderer where we all (for the most part) assume Steven Avery’s innocence but are left fuming at the US justice system but here, Dursts’ guilt is obvious right from the go but the police can’t seem to nab him. it’s an incredibly powerful look into how power, money and influence can keep things hidden.
Fuller House / Season 1 / Comedy / 2016 –
Sure there’s some nostalgia that surrounds this updated version of 80’s sitcom Full House that those not yet to watch may think be corny, but in fact, Fuller House is such an easy show to watch, you’ll make your way through all 13 episodes in a breeze. DJ Tanner (Candice Cameron) is back along with younger sister Stephanie (Jodie Sweetin) and best friend Kimmy Gibbler (Andrea Barber) who all join together to live in the house they grew up in. If Carly Rae Jepsen’s updated theme song doesn’t get you, then seeing the return of the old Tanner family (minus the Olsen twins as Michelle) will.
Why you should binge: It’s a very easy show to settle into, doesn’t take itself serious and throws uber shade at the missing Olsen twins plus who didn’t love Full House?! It was staple viewing growing up in the 80’s!
Looking / Seasons 1 and 2 + finale movie / Drama / 2015-2016
I’ll be very blunt, the first season of gay themed drama Looking killed me. It frustrated me with its slowness and un-eventfulness but Looking’s slow paced look at the lives of three gay men living in San Francisco is worthy of a binge session. Patrick (Jonathan Groff) has a stable work life but can’t get his romantic life on track, Dom (Murray Bartlett) is trying to clasp onto his youth with younger men and casual work while Augustin (Frankie J Alvarez) is a struggling artist with a drug addiction that’s spiraling out of control.
Why you should binge: It’s probably one of the more honest looks at the daily lives of gay men than we’ve ever seen to date and the acting by the leads – especially Groff – is understated and genuine. Once you move onto season two, the pace picks up nicely from season one and finishes off with the recent Looking: The Movie.
Playing House / Seasons 1 and 2 / Comedy / 2014 –
Maggie (Lennon Parham) is heavily pregnant, had just thrown her husband out for cheating and best friend Emma (Jessica St. Clair) ditches her job in Hong Kong to move in and support her. This hilarious look at what best friends will and can do for each other is honest and real and funny. As best friends off screen, Parham and St. Clair bounce off one another with such ease one could be forgiven for forgetting this was a scripted comedy.
Why you should binge: Filled with laughter and outrageous moments, Playing House is just fun to watch. Pure and simple, plus Maggie and Emma’s friendship offers up some major feels that will keep you moving onto the next episode.
The Staircase / Season 1 / Documentary / 2004
Another true crime documentary that falls into the Making a Murderer and the above mentioned The Jinx category where you can’t stop at just one episode. Offering up two main themes – The investigation into a very complicated murder and the defense and prosecution teams who are trying to construct winning cases, The Staircase is told from the viewpoint of worried widow/cold blooded killer Michael Peterson, and details the case around his late wife who was found at the bottom of their family home staircase in a pool of blood.
Why you should binge: While this 8 part series ends rather abruptly, this case of a woman dead at the bottom of a staircase isn’t as clear cut as it first seems. The family secrets and compelling connections that are revealed as time goes on will only leave you questioning your own mind on Peterson’s guilt or innocence.
Broad City / Seasons 1 to 3 / Comedy / 2014 –
Abbi Abrams (Abbi Jacobson) and Ilana Wexler (Ilana Glazer) are best friends in their 20’s living the high life in NYC. Abbi works in a gym as a cleaner but has hopes of making her way up to personal trainer, Ilana works….well we never really find out what she does but it involves lots of sleeping in the toilet and spinning on her chair. With meaningless jobs, a very short supply of cash and virtually no shame, their day to day experiences lead them down some bizarre and unexpected paths.
Why you should binge: It’s like Girls but funnier, and you don’t want to cause physical harm to any of the characters. Broad City is wildly outrageous, crude and shocking in it’s approach to 20-something life in New York and the friendship between Abbi and Ilana will make you wish you had something similar, but with a more stable love life, professional life and cash flow.
I don’t know about you guys but the crime investigation channel is probably the most watched on pay TV in this household. Everything from shows revolving around cold murder cases, rape, hostage survivor recount stories and killer wives are set to record as they air, feeding our desire for ‘true crime’ stories.
It’s “what’s hot” right now.
Netflix, seemingly picking up on this current viewer trend, recently offered up a 10 part, one hour episode documentary series titled ‘Making a Murderer’ that literally has hundreds of thousands of viewers enraged and intrigued all at the same time.
Put together over a space of a decade, this story is so crazy and farcical that one could mistake it for being the plot of a major Hollywood movie or scripted HBO drama that after one single episode, I knew the next 9 hours of my life would be spent binge-watching the insane tale of Steven Avery and his battle to prove his innocence.
So by now, for those who haven’t seen it, you’ve seen the #MakingAMurderer tag flood twitter (it’s what got my attention) and seen your friends talk about Steven Avery on their Facebook posts and wondered ‘should I watch?!’.
The simple answer is YES.
Kicking us off in 2003, we meet up with Wisconsin native Steven Avery who is being released from prison where he served 18 years for a sexual assault and attempted murder – that he did not commit. A mix of family squabbles, an aggravated (and corrupt) police department and a mayor not too keen on the less-than-perfect Avery family in his town saw Steven Avery classed as the only suspect and promptly found guilty.
But things start looking up for Avery. Determined to make a new life for himself Avery returns to the family auto yard business, he finds a girlfriend and becomes the poster child for judaical reform. He’s even opened up a $32 million dollar lawsuit against the county for his time served, this however being at the behest of his lawyers who inform Avery to be wary about lawsuits against law enforcement as there could be repercussions.
Either way, Steven Avery is taking the road to reclaiming his life.
Then in the middle of Avery’s lawsuit, a young photographer by the name of Teresa Halbach goes missing and Avery – and his family find themselves reliving a similar nightmare.
To be clear here, the above starting from 2003….is just episode one….of ten.
I won’t reveal anymore (and I recommend to go in blind and not spoiled by a google search) but what follows over the next nine hours is some of the most mind boggling, enraging, infuriating, confusing, fist clenching, hair pulling television that will have you yelling at your TV, cringing every time District Attorney Ken Kratz opens his mouth or feeling sad for Avery’s nephew Brendan Dassey who found himself drawn right into this horrible tale. You will form opinions, you’ll change them, you’ll suddenly become the worlds best investigator and suspect everyone and constantly question items of evidence that are seen once and never heard of again.
If anything, you’ll be simply amazed at how the justice system failed Avery and how easily it was molded by those in charge to get the results wanted.
By the end of the ten hours you should have a pretty clear cut idea on Avery and Dassey’s innocence or guilt and then do your reading. It might not make things as transparent as before.
Making a Murderer is available on Netflix Australia.
Recently announced via Wentworth’s facebook page, two new and quite familiar faces have been confirmed to join the cast for the Aussie prison drama’s eagerly aniticpated fourth season.
Coming to season four is Corrections Officer Jake Stewart who is played by Bernard Curry, whom we know as Caleb’s sketchy father Jamie Doyle in Pretty Little Liars and as Principal George Turner on MTV’s Faking It and Kate Jenkinson, better known as bitchy Kendall Quinn from Super Fun Night and as Kate Reid (Patrick’s sister) from Offspring. Jenkinson will be playing new inmate Allie Novak – there’s a typo in the official image above!
No word as yet on how each will be introduced or how they’ll play into the new season and we’re only speculating and secretly hopeful (thanks to this posts header image) that both Frankie Doyle (Nicole da Silva) and Bridget Westfall (Libby Tanner) will be returning after last being seen driving off into the sunset at the end of season three.
Wentworth returns to Australian screens in 2016 on SoHo.
I’ve said it the past two seasons and i’ll say it again – Wentworth is nothing short of incredible (Australian) television and Tuesday night’s season three finale only cemented that fact bringing a close to a multitude of story arcs and opening up some brand new ones.
Warning – if you have not seen the season finale – do not continue! Spoilers beyond!
Season finale of #Wentworth – just superb television.
The season three finale included the death (booooo) of inmate and she-of-the-eepy-creepy-eyes Jess Warner (Georgia Chara) who finally revealed her true freak and why she found herself in Wentworth, who met an untimely end at the hands of Ferguson (Pamela Rabe), who, herself had a mighty fall from grace as her past indiscretions came to a head and the release of Frankie Doyle (Nicole da Silva) into the waiting arms of former prison counselor Bridget Westfall (Libby Tanner).
So now the big questions remain for season four – that sneak peak at the end of the credits featuring a heavily disheveled Ferguson sporting a rather snug straight jacket while sitting in a padded cell – surely that means her story line will continue into season four. Will Karen Proctor’s (Tammy MacIntosh) entrance into Wentworth prove trouble for Bea (Danielle Cormack) considering Ferguson set Bea up as the informer who tipped the police off to Karen’s involvement with the Red Right Hand vigilante group? Will Vera (Kate Atkinson) step up as the new governor? And the biggest of them all – Surely Frankie and Bridget can’t be really gone right?
I’m probably going to cop some backlash for what i’m about to say but I feel somewhat lost and need to express. I’m four episodes down in Netflix’s brand new series Sense8 and I have no bloody idea what it is i’m actually watching…and i’m at breaking point to not continue on.
I don’t actually even know where to begin to describe what Sense8 is actually about. The premise is so jumbled and overflowing with a mass introduction of characters that after the first hour, I couldn’t remember what I had just watched or picked out any specific event that took place with the exception of the opening scene where Daryl Hannah (I assume) gives birth (to something) then shoots herself in the head.
I had to go searching just to find a reasonable explanation of what I had just witnessed and the best I could find was “But the core premise of Sense8 is pretty easy to explain — it’s kind of like X-Men. The show’s central “sensates” (there are eight of them, hence the title) are the next step in human evolution. They live all over the globe, are of all genders and sexualities and races, and only find themselves “activated” after a woman named Angelica (Daryl Hannah) kills herself in the opening moments of the first episode.” – Vox.com
The story-telling in these four hours that I have just watched is so slow and sedated that I feel disoriented and stupid for not understanding something that perhaps is right in front of my face. Yes, these eight strangers have become mysteriously telepathically connected thanks to Daryl Hannah but at what purpose? Even when Naveen Andrew’s shady character was explaining to Cop Will Gorski (Brian J. Smith) about what was happening, the body transference that was taking place from car to car was so extreme that I left the scene even more confused than before.
The problem I’m seeming to come across with Sense8 is it’s over-reaching want to be flashy and artsy yet character driven but it’s at the sacrifice of moving the story along at a relatively respectable pace. Why is it, that a quarter of the way though the series i’m sitting here asking myself “what the bloody hell is going on?”
Even when I asked my twitter followers about whether or not I should indulge in Sense8, the replies weren’t at all revealing…
@AnthoBuzzTV its strangely riverting. Nothing to do with the sex scenes of course!!
I will applaud the incredible diversity in characters and casting for Sense8. The trans-lesbian, the South Korean banker-slash-martial arts queen, the closeted Mexican actor, the African Van Damme bus driver, the Icelandic drugged out DJ…there’s not a cast like it on television, but the downside to such a big roster is trying to knit these eight personal dramas into one wearable jumper and sadly, to me, it feels like a jumper made for an octopus (see what I did there?!).
Part of me is hopeful that if I continue into hour five of Sense8, suddenly everything becomes crystal clear, but, there’s that dreaded feeling of knowing that after giving four hours of my life, there’s still no revelation or light at the end of the tunnel.
Are you struggling like me? Am I missing something major and just an idiot for not seeing it? Sound off in the comments below!