Tag Archives: Toni Collette

CBS Upfronts: FWBL and The Crazy Ones Cancelled

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Cancelled: Friends with better lives

Having not been attracted to watching Two and Half Men, The Big Bang Theory, Mom, How I Met Your Mother or any other filmed-in-front-of-a-live-audience comedy (nothing since Friends and Will & Grace has taken my fancy), I was somewhat cautious about checking out Friends With Better Lives (or FWBL).

Funnily enough, the show, starring James Van Der Beek (fresh of a stellar turn in Don’t Trust The Bitch in Apartment 23) was funny, entertaining and highly engaging.  Sure the humor was somewhat crude – but not to the level of 2 Broke Girls, but overall, I thoroughly enjoyed the first three episodes I watched and naturally assumed if people are watching the horribly unfunny Mom (sadly starring the talented Anna Faris) then people were watching FWBL.

Guess I was wrong, so needless to say, when CBS threw out their list of cancellations, I was shocked to see FWBL sitting on that list.

Another notable entry on their cancelled shows list was the Robin Williams and Sarah Michelle Geller comedy The Crazy Ones.  Now, this show was the highest rated comedy debut of the 2012/2013 season in the US (15+ million viewers) but upon airing it’s season finale, only 5 million viewers were tuning in.

Also cancelled: Toni Collette drama Hostages, Kristin Davis comedy Bad Teacher (only after 4 episodes!) and the awful Intelligence starring LOST expat Josh Holloway and CSI Maven Marg Helgenberger.

The much hyped How I Met Your Mother spin-off How I Met Your Dad was also a no show on the list of pick-ups.

So what did CBS pick-up to series order?  Battle Creek by Vince Gilligan (Breaking Bad) and starring Josh Duhamel, The Tea’ Leoni led drama Madam Secretary plus another new CSI spin-off, CSI: New Orleans starring Scott Bakula.

In the way of comedy, Matthew Perry will be given another shot at a new series with The Odd Couple with Lindsay Sloane while New Kids on the Block singer Joe McIntyre plus ex Roseanne star Laurie Metcalf are headlining The McCarthys.

And finally, The Mentalist fans will be happy to hear the drama was given a last minute series renewal, though i’d expect this one to be it’s last.

What are your thoughts on the axings, cancellations and pick-ups?

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Top OMG TV Moments of 2013

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There’s no denying that there has been some shocking and incredible “OMG” moments this year on television.  From Game of Thrones to The Walking Dead and Pretty Little Liars, these moments immediatley incur bouts of crying, laughing, anger, yelling and everything in between.  Check out my list of my top OMG moments from 2013!

RICK SENDS CAROL PACKING: The Walking Dead

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After admitting to Rick (Andrew Lincoln) that she was the one who killed Karen and Dave, Rick takes it upon himself to tell Carol (Melissa McBride), while out on a supply run, that she is no longer welcome to stay with the survivors within the camp grounds.   We’ve seen Carol, who has been a member of the group from the beginning, emerge as a strong player this season and Rick’s decision and her subsequent absence split fans right down the line.

TRAVIS AND LAURIE KISS: Cougar Town

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Travis (Dan Byrd) and Laurie (Busy Phillips) have always had a fun and flirty kind of relationship, but it’s always been that one where the guy likes the girl more than vice versa but when Laurie decides to explore her growing feelings for the teenage son of her best friend, it results in a rather awkward feeling kiss between the two.  We’d all been hanging for Travis to finally get his, but now it’s happened, most of us were wishing it didn’t.

THE BIG TWIST: Homeland

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Well were we all not played for fools!  Here we all are bitching and moaning about how bad Homeland had become.  We couldn’t figure out why or where such a great show had gone wrong.  Brody (Damien Lewis) was MIA and Saul (Mandy Patinkin) had Carrie (Claire Danes) committed to an asylum and we were getting too much focus on Dana only to have it all turn around and be revealed that Saul and Carrie were in fact working together all along in a bid to draw out a foe that could become an ally.

ASHLEY MARIN HITS DETECTIVE WILDEN WITH HER CAR: Pretty Little Liars

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Poor Ashley Marin (Laura Leighton) found herself on the receiving end of some unwanted harassment from an overly inquisitive Detective Wilden (Bryce Johnson) who demands that her daughter Hannah (Ashley Benson) keeps quiet about an indiscretion she witnessed involving him and a young lady.  never one to listen to demands, Ashley finds herself in a screaming match with Wilden before suddenly putting her foot to the pedal and throwing him over the bonnet of her car before speeding off!

THAT TAMPON SANDWICH: Orange Is The New Black

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New inmate Piper learnt the tough way not to piss off the lady who rules the prison kitchen!  When word get’s back to prison chef Red (Kate Mulgrew) that Piper (Taylor Schilling) has been less than impressed with the food on offer, Red takes it upon herself to ensure that Piper will never make comments like that again by serving her up a bloody tampon sandwich!  The scene itself was highly unsettling and intentionally confronting.

DEBRA MORGAN DIES: Dexter

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In the series finale, we knew someone was going to die.  Most of us expected it to be Dexter, or even Hannah, perhaps Quinn…it was never meant to be Dexter’s sister Deb.  After being involved in a shoot out with Oliver Saxon, Deb is wounded and is rushed to hospital.  The doctors all seems to think all should be ok but complications following the surgery lead Deb to have suffer a massive stroke leaving her in a permanent vegetative state.  It’s here Dexter lands the final blow, removing Deb off her life support effectively killing her.

RAYMOND DENIES BEING LIZ’S FATHER: The Blacklist

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It’s the theory that everyone seems to have – Raymond Reddington (James Spader) is actually Elizabeth Keen’s (Megan Boone’s) birth father.  It’s been hinted at right from the get go…his selecting her to be the only one he deals with, his wanting to know more about her life, his knowing certain things about her husband, but in the closing scenes of the final episode of the first series, Liz flat out asks Red over the phone “Are you my father?” to which Red replies “No.”

THE BOMB: Home and Away

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Known for it’s annual end of year shake-up, Home and Away offered up one heck of an explosion involving fan favourites and unexpected faces and leaving us not knowing who has survived.  After continuously butting heads with her boss Bianca (Lisa Gormley) and Bianca’s husband Heath (Dan Ewing) Jade (Tasma Walton) decides to get her revenge in the form of a bomb placed inside Bianca’s laptop bag.  We then spent the whole episode wondering when the bomb will go off as the bag changes hands numerous times before going off inside the hospital in which pregnant Ricky (Bonnie Sveen) is being treated.  Irene (Lynne Mcgranger), Bianca, Heath and Doctor Nate Cooper (Kyle Pryor) are also there when the bomb goes off.

HELENA CUTS OFF OLIVER’S TAIL: Orphan Black

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Things got a bit weird when it was revealed Neolution club owner and believer in self-directed evolution Oliver (David Richmond-Peck) was actually sporting a real life tail.  After coming to Sarah’s (Tatiana Maslany) aid while in a fight with Oliver, psychotic clone Helena wins the upper hand and swiftly chops Oliver’s tail off…then makes her way back to the dancefloor to partake in a rather ghastly dance with said tail still in her hands.

TULLY CHEATS ON HER GIRLFRIEND: Big Brother

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Fun and funky social media expert and lesbian Tully quickly turned into a sullen and sobbing mess after entering the Big Brother house.  She missed her girlfriend Tahlia but thankfully she had housemate Drew to lean on and talk to.  Quickly though that talking turned into sleeping in the same bed and sharing sneaky kisses when suddenly the two swapped secret “I love you” bombs leading to Tahlia to make a very public break-up via twitter.

MATT AND KIM’S FIRST ROOM REVEAL: The Block

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Not ones to be left hidden among the pack, West Australian couple Matt and Kim had planned to something controversial when it came to styling their first room – the guest bedroom.  Their inspiration?  Artist Jackson Pollock, he of the abstract expressionist movement (or paint splash era).  While the final result was clearly shocking, it was more ‘kids gone wild’ than Pollock admiration.

THE RED WEDDING: Game Of Thrones

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I don’t watch Game of Thrones, but even I found myself on YouTube watching the events that led to THAT video going viral showing fans reactions to the wedding as it aired.  While I may have no idea who was who or why everyone was being killed, but the red wedding sure stuck to it’s name after half the people in the room celebrating were slaughtered, including a very heavily pregnant woman!  “May the rivers run red with the blood of the non-believers.”

Hostages Creates A Tangled Web

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Ellen (Toni Collette) deals with a visit from her sister.

Wednesday night’s up-coming double hitter of Hostages proves why this show is one of the best drama shows currently on television.  Let’s just say that by the end of the second episode (episode 7), you will not believe just how intertwined the lives of Ellen Sanders and her family are with those around her.

The first of the two episodes, titled ‘Sisters Keeper‘ follows on from last weeks episode closer in which we saw the Sanders children brought back home after trying escape.  ‘Sisters Keeper’ see’s the Sanders having to deal with the fallout from their failed escape attempt and Ellen receive an unplanned visit from her sister Lauren (Nina Arianda) and Duncan puts a plan in effect to have Ellen remove her immediately at any cost.

The second episode, titled ‘Hail Mary‘ is where the payoff for viewers really starts to present itself.  We finally learn why Duncan sent Archer to prison – albeit, this feels like a rather late piece of information considering the reveals still to come in this episode.  Ellen will discover just how closely entwined her life and Duncan’s lives really are and someone rather unexpected becomes top spot suspect number one for possibly wanting the president dead!

Both episodes do contain some rather inane story-lines (social worker investigation of possible domestic abuse of Morgan Sanders and the personal lives of Sandrine and Duncan’s brother – his name escapes me now) but the kicker of it all is the closing scene in the second episode.  Just a hint – it involves a needle filled with the poison meant for the president!

Hostages airs Wednesday nights on Channel 9, 8:30pm

CBS via DirecTV

5 Reasons Why You Should Be Watching Hostages

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Toni Collette as Dr. Ellen Sanders in Hostages

Why is no one watching this show?  It’s a simple question that I can’t really find a simple answer to and now, it’s beginning to bug me.  Here we have a really good show (and by really good, I mean, REALLY GOOD) that is now finding itself on the dreaded ‘cancellation short list’ due to exceedingly terrible ratings.  Yes, this will be biased.  I love this show and don’t want to loose it!

So, here, I try to convince to watch and why you should watch!

1: It’s got Toni Collette in it.  We love our Toni Collette right?!  And she’s good in this.  It might not be as awesome as her performance in The United States of Tara (I’m still smarting over the loss of that show!) but as a mother who is finding herself having to make the ultimate decision – kill the president of the USA or let your family die, she really is shining.  Here she gets to show a ‘do anything to survive’ determination and her don’t-mess-with-me look to the camera at the close of the pilot episode left me hanging for more!  Also, Tate Donovan plays her husband.  I have fond memories of Tate when he popped up in Friends playing Rachel’s boyfriend Joshua (not Josh) and it’s great to see him on screen again!

2: Kill the president of the USA or your family dies.  This is the premise of the show and it has you on the edge of your seat screaming “Why don’t you just kill him!” but then of course, if she did, there’d be no show and we’d be watching Toni Collette and Dylan McDermott stand around doing nothing.  Let’s also add the fact that Duncan (who is holding the Sanders family hostage) is an FBI agent who finds himself working with the secret service while being a doting father and loving husband!

3: There’s a lot of lying in this show.  Like a lot.  Duncan’s assistants are lying to each other and the Sanders family, who seem like the perfect family unit, are actually heavily flawed and lying to each other.  Between Ellen’s husband Brian having an affair with the slutty secretary to knocked up teenage daughter Morgan to drug dealing son Jake, we are left thinking what is Ellen’s flaw and when will it show it’s ugly green head.

4: Hostages has been created in a short-season format.  Season one has been set to play out over only 15 episodes so there’s no messing around and stretching out of this plot-line.  This format was possibly done to counteract the immense popularity of cable shows using the same format (The Walking Dead, Nurse Jackie, Homeland etc) which has been highly successful.

5: It really is must-see TV.  There’s no stand alone episodes, making sure you stay invested in the show and series as a whole.  Will plans to escape go awry?  Why is Duncan wanting the president dead?  What part does his wife play in all of this?  Will Ellen kill the president of the USA?  There are so many questions needing answers that waiting for the next episode is killer.

That said, just watch it!

Hostages airs 8:30pm Wednesdays on Channel 9 with back episodes available online via Catchup on 9 and CBS via DirecTV

Coming Soon: Hostages

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Hostages stars Toni Collette and Dylan McDermott

Starring Toni Collette, Dylan McDermott and Tate Donovan, new drama show Hostages will be making it’s way soon to channel 9 and CBS on DirecTV.

In the 15-episode run season, Hostages will see Toni Collette (The United States of Tara) playing Dr. Ellie Sanders, a renowned surgeon hand-picked to perform the highly delicate task of operating on the president of the United States of America.

Prior to said operation, Ellie and her family are taken hostage by rogue FBI special agent Duncan Carlisle (Dylan McDermott – The Practice) and his team and Ellie is presented with one of the greatest ultimatums; Kill the president of the United States of America or her family dies.

Even though his character is seen as “The bad guy” McDermott is quick to point out that Duncan Carlisle is not all bad and has ulterior motives as to why he wants the president dead, that of which we will find out as the season progresses.

Expect a season full of twists and turns as Ellie struggles to deal with the precarious situation she and her family have found themselves in while battling a growing affection for her captors and to the reasons behind wanting the president dead.

Check out a preview of the first three minutes of Hostages below: