Streaming giant Netflix has given us all an early Easter present with the announcement of new seasons for some of our most binge worthy non-scripted shows!
Dope, Drug Lords, vintage toy docuseries The Toys That Made Us, hilarious baking show Nailed it! and the Queer Eye reboot have all been given an additional series order by the service.
“These series are indicative of what we’re trying to accomplish for Netflix unscripted: working with world-class producers to create the best unscripted shows on television,” Bela Bajaria, vice president of content at Netflix, said. “These series elevate the genre with innovative takes on familiar formats. They deliver immersive and nuanced stories. They elicit so many emotions from viewers, from tears of laughter to tears of joy – and that’s just ‘Queer Eye.’”
No news as yet when we can expect the new episodes however The Toys That Made Us’ will have four more episodes from season one to drop shortly!
Earlier this year, I said goodbye to a group of old friends. They lived in a cul-de-sac, drank lots of wine and made me laugh for 6 seasons, that show, of course was Cougar Town. It was (and still is) my go-to show when I needed a pick-me-up or just felt like checking in with the gang. Looking forward, in need of a new connection, and something else to treasure and join my ‘go-to’ club, I recently re-ignited my love with USA’s original comedy, Playing House. It started last week with a weekend long re-binge of season one and ended today after a week long binge with the finale of season two – and me screaming “you did not just end it there!” (and wanting to be besties with Maggie and Emma and/or Lennon and Jessica.)
The heart warming (seriously, this show makes my heart smile) laugh out loud comedy about two best friends coming together to support each other, showcases the perfect comedic talents of it’s leads in Lennon Parham and Jessica St. Clair and also offers probably the most realistic look at everyday life between two life-long best friends.
I want in on that friendship!
Now, that season two cliffhanger between former-lovers-about-to-possibly-reunite – Emma (St. Clair) and Mark (Keegan-Michael Key) is just begging to be explored and us, the fans, are begging USA to let this tale be told! We’re in the danger zone (Kenny Loggins reference required) and we’re all giddy-up with the possibility of Mark and Emma reuniting – even if it means Mark’s ex-wife Bird Bones (Lindsay Sloane) is permanently taken away from us to which I will accept that fate even though I LOVE BIRD BONES!
So, if a third season was to happen, here’s some notes about what I would like. Please take this as my personal recommendations that are obviously shared by the entire PH fanbase….
*MORE THAN 8 EPISODES! Seriously, in this case, eight is not enough! 8 weeks out of 52 per year is not enough of Maggie and Emma…especially when you binge watch and discover you’ve pretty much just spent a long weekend with them and as PH is joining my ‘go-to’ club, I want to be able to finish gorging my box of Oreos before the season is done with in one sitting!
*The most virile man to ever roam Pinebrook – Bosephus – MUST make another comeback! The fact that Kenny Loggin’s roadies were smitten should be enough fodder to bring Bose back plus we all know Maggie stashed that kicker trucker cap somewhere safe!
*More Zach Woods! We didn’t get enough of Zach this past season and we’re only just beginning to crack the surface of this odd egg Emma calls her brother.
*Bring back Jeanine Willcall or bring back Stephnie Weir! First off, Jeanine Willcall is like the best name ever (right up there with Hotwives of Orlando’s Veronica Von Vandervon) and Stephnie Weir is just plain old funny as fuck. WE LOVE STEPHNIE!
*Give Maggie some more lovin’! Those body rolls and jealous making dance moves need more time off the dance floor and more time in the bedroom!
It was almost six months from Playing House’s season one finale before we were blessed with the announcement of a second season – here’s hoping that (a) the show is renewed (a must) and (b) it’s not 6 months before we get this news!
After getting quite deep into the problems that surrounded Looking’s first season (here and here) I wanted to give the second season a full run before sitting down and sharing my thoughts. Did it step up from season one? Did it become more enjoyable and less painful to watch?
Well, I can say that Looking, for it’s second season, took a massive-gigantic-much wanted step forward into becoming a show that focused more on multiple episode story arcs and about creating conflict and drama and less about the slow-moody snails pace it aimed for in it’s first outing.
Story lines of death, HIV, cheating, drugs, downward spirals, the demise of relationships, professional uncertainty…these elements all gave the show and each character a much needed breath of life and sense of purpose that was visibly lacking in the first season.
The central story line of Patrick (Jonathan Groff) and his on again-off again relationship with Kevin (Russell Tovey) was played out with much more intention and realness. We were torn watching Kevin cheat on his boyfriend but felt like he and Patrick were a perfect fit but also thought Patrick deserved the punishment of not receiving Kevin’s full attention for how he treated the lovable Richie (Raul Catillo). The relationship that moved from secret hook-ups to full blown romance made for an intense and well constructed finale that, i’m pretty sure, saw us all side with Patrick after discovering Kevin was still active on gay hookup app Grindr.
It was such powerful moments as that fight/discussion between the two that shows how much more the show was bringing this season and this wasn’t just restricted to the Kevin/Patrick/Richie triangle.
The budding (and somewhat unlikely) relationship between the emotionally/professionally damaged Agustin (Frankie J Alvarez) and HIV positive Eddie (Daniel Franzese) and the distancing of best friends Dom (Murray Bartlett) and Doris (Lauren Weedman) trying to identify where they are in their lives together created equal amounts of compelling stories.
Looking back at Looking, season two offered up more memorable episodes and moments than the first. Patrick and Dom joining Doris at her fathers funeral, Dom and Agustin rescuing a heavily intoxicated Patrick from making the worlds worst jealousy fueled Halloween party speech, Kevin showing up at Patrick’s door step and telling him he’s left John….it’s situations like this I’m actually saddened to hear that HBO have pulled the plug on a third season.
Looking (while low rating) has a dedicated fan-base that for season one hated or viciously defended and for season two, joined together to equally love and while there is some comfort in knowing HBO plan on giving fans a special Looking finale, the fact that I can sit here and say “you know what, Looking is pretty fucking amazing” after roasting it so badly can only show that cancelling the show is a move not widely supported.
Can Patrick trust Kevin? Will Dom’s chicken window be a success? Will Agustin and Eddie’s new relationship survive? Will Doris and Dom be able to sustain their newly defined life-long friendship? Will Richie be happy? There’s too much left hanging that I fear a final special won’t be able to cover and so in closing I feel like all I can say is – – –
You know its been almost 6 months since season one of USA’s Playing House ended it’s first season run and until now, there had been no news, yes NO news, on whether or not our sassy and brassy friends and housemates Emma Crawford (Jessica St. Clair) and Maggie Caruso (Lennon Parham) were going to be gracing our screens again.
In a Christmas miracle, USA network announced Playing House will in fact be returning for an 8 episode run season 2 in 2015!
And we all cheered and clapped and drank wine and smiled!
The well received, but low rated comedy is only one of three scripted comedies to remain on the network after it ‘cleaned house’ of original scripted comedies. The news of the show’s renewal comes on the back of the networks new approach to television in 2015 which will see USA focus on VOD (Video on demand) platforms first then air it on television, a move which, it seems, saved Playing House. The show is being used a guinea pig to test how VOD views affect live to air ratings.
VOD, Guinea pigs, cleaning house….I don’t care as it means we get our girls back for another 8 episodes of crazy! And if Lennon and Jessica were to ever read this…..please bring back Bird Bones!
Playing House Season 2 is set for a mid 2105 return!
While I haven’t been the biggest champion of HBO’s gay drama Looking (see posts here and here) the season one finale seemed to up the ante and bring the drama that I and quite a few viewers were looking for. Now, HBO has released the full length trailer for the show’s second season, and by the looks of it, we could be in for more of what was given to us in that final episode of season one.
Jonathan Groff, Frankie J Alvarez and Murray Bartlett are all back along with Russell Tovey (Kevin), Raul Castillo (Richie) and Lauren Weedman (Doris) all bumped to series regulars for the second season.
“All of them have been in flux since the end of the last season, and they’ve all been doing their own thing a little bit,” explains executive producer Andrew Haigh to Entertainment Weekly. “This first episode is them being determined to spend more time together and go away to Russian River, which is, like, two hours outside San Francisco. It’s this really beautiful, tranquil place along the redwoods.” But there’s no guarantee of smooth sailing. According to Haigh, “they get outdoors. They go canoeing. Things happen.” We’re guessing they run into at least one or two bears.
Picking up shortly after where season one ended, Patrick (Groff) is dealing with his breakup with Richie (Castillo) and a secret romance with his attached boss Kevin, Dom (Bartlett) is having issues keeping work and romance seperate as he embarks on a relationship with his business partner Lynn (Scott Bakula) while Augustin, who pretty much suffered a personal and artistic meltdown might have found new purpose in the form of Eddie (Mean Girls’ Daniel Franzese)
Here’s hoping Looking has finally found it’s feet and continues on the more interesting path it reached by the end of season one.
The Blacklist returns for season 2 on Monday (Sept 29th) at 8:45pm on channel 7 and things heat up as people from Reds past arrive including the elusive Berlin and Red’s ex-wife and shock horror – Megan Boone looses the awful wig by the end of the episode! Keep an eye out for guest stars Mary-Louise Parker (Weeds) and Krysten Ritter (Breaking Bad)
The conclusion to this fantastic second season of Aussie prison drama Wentworth hits our screens on Tuesday night. Check out the season 2 finale preview below:
Will Bea find her target in Brayden Holt? Will the Governor be able to keep her cool knowing her self-made prison top dog is now on the loose? Will Frankie try and reclaim her head honcho status with Bea gone?
I wonder how many reviews of Josh Thomas’ Please Like Me will use the phrase “yes Josh, we really do like you”? In fairness, after watching the first two episodes from season two that were available for preview, the saying is more than warranted.
Unlike Please Like Me‘s first outing, which saw too much crammed into the meager six episodes offered up, we’re brought back into Josh’s hectic and awkward world but this time, the feeling is much more paced and easy with familiar faces including Tom (Thomas Ward), Claire (Caitlin Stacey) Niamh (Nikita Leigh-Pritchard) and mum Rose (Debra Lawrence) already fleshed out enough for us to willingly allow new characters like new housemate Patrick (Charles Cottier) and potential love interest for Tom, Jenny (Charlotte Nicado) to enter this frenetic world we’ve been waiting to come back to.
This frenetic world that Josh has created is filled with house parties, unrequited love, adventures in baby sitting, self depreciation, mental illness, awkward conversations with parents, discussions of penis size, unexpected visitors and probably the most uncomfortable “saddest recount of losing your virginity” competition that has ever existed – and this is just in the first two episodes.
Thomas, just as he did in season one, manages to mix his quirky awkwardness with that of a young man we’ve come to root for with an effortless flair and is now taking the foot off the “i’m not good enough” pedal just enough that the feeling of self sorrow that surrounded Josh in season one is lessened in this second outing.
Josh isn’t the only character to have undergone some personal development between seasons. Best friend Tom has a new-found confidence with women, probably his way of dealing with the departure of girlfriend Claire to Germany, that see’s Tom more confident in his approach and confident of achieving his goal. Even Niamh has undergone a change – gone are her nagging and manipulating ways now replaced with a girl who’s less assured and assertive.
The standout so far, without a doubt, is Debra Lawrence as mum Rose. The erratic and unstable episodes caused by her bipolar disorder are spot-on and as Rose struggles to deal with doing what she’s told and doing what she wants is a battle that will affect those closest to her. The first time we see Rose this season is a scene that lets us all in on just how far downhill she has gone since the death of Aunt Peg.
In it’s first season, Please Like Me found itself being compared to Lena Dunham’s self penned series Girls – a comparison that was likely and to a point correct, but now, Please Like Me feels a bit more real and accessible than Girls ever was. A scene that see’s both of Josh’s housemates preoccupied with hookups while Josh is stuck babysitting in the lounge room is a scenario that many currently in or have lived in shared accommodation can identify with.
It’s been a long awaited and very much welcome return for Please Like Me and Josh Thomas to our screens, and yes Josh, we do like you! Anyone that can bring Denise Drysdale back to our screens and uttering obscenities is someone I will always like!
Please Like Me – Season Two begins Friday August 8th on Pivot and Tuesday August 12th on ABC2.
With the August 12th Australian premiere date looming ever so close, a new sneak peek look at the second season of Josh Thomas’ comedy Please Like Me has been released (finally!)
With the slew of behind the scenes photos being published via the shows official Facebook page, it’s nice to actually see a look at what to expect when the show returns next month.
Check it out below:
Tom (Thomas Ward) and Claire (Caitlin Stasey) are back along with Josh’s ex boyfriend Geoffrey (Wade Briggs) and a new housemate-slash-possible love interest in the form of Patrick (Charles Cottier – ex Dexter from Home and Away) is along for the ride!
Josh also used the Facebook Page to announce that not only will Please Like Me be starting on August 12th but that the show has already received a green light for a third season! Not bad for a show that was delegated to ABC2’s digital channel and virtually left for dead after it’s first season.
The third season, consisting of a further ten episodes will begin production in 2015.
Please Like Me Season 2 begins August 8th on Pivot and August 12th on ABC2
So what can we expect from Josh in season two? Well the story-line has been pushed forward a few years (not known how many exactly) and see’s Josh (Josh Thomas) living with his best friend Tom (Thomas Ward) and new potential love interest Patrick (Charles Cottier – who Aussie fans will recognize as Dexter from Home and Away)
The time lapse will also see a new addition to Josh’s extended family with Josh’s dad and wife Mae having a baby while Josh’s mum (Deborah Lawrence) is now living in a psychiatric hospital and yes, Josh’s ex Geoffrey (Wade Briggs) even makes an appearance!
Caitlin Stacey (who is currently filming TV series Reign) is back as Josh’s ex girlfriend Claire who finds herself going through a rough patch with boyfriend Tom.
Please Like Me Season 2 has also been extended from 6 episodes to 10 episodes!
Season 2 is scheduled to begin on August 8th on ABC2 in Australia and on Pivot in America.