Web This Site

Friday, November 30, 2007

Men in Trees giving away a Jeep

If you saw the last episode of Men in Trees, you know that Ben gave his beloved a new Jeep, as a way to say he loved her.

Now, you have the chance to give that special someone in your life a new Jeep, too.

The folks at Men in Trees are sponsoring an essay contest in which you can explain how much a friend, spouse or loved one means to you, in 150 words or less. The winner will receive a new 2008 Jeep Liberty and the winning essay writer will receive a $500 gift certificate to an outdoor retailer.

For complete details, click here.

OK, pencils up, folks. Get writing, Tubers. And if anyone feels compelled to write ABC about how much Tube Talk Girl means to them due to her hours of dedication to bring you the latest TV news and scoop, well, I wouldn’t be offended. (Hint, hint, Mr. Tube Talk.) I’d look good in a new Jeep!

Strike update: No deal!

After three days of talks, the Hollywood writers have rejected a deal from production companies saying, “it dealt only with streaming and made-for-Internet jurisdiction, and it amounts to a massive rollback.”

The WGA called the proposal a “bad deal.”

Talks are set to resume again on Tuesday.

Here is the official press release from the WGA.

Here is the official press release from the AMPTP.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Commentary with a Co-ed

by Ashley Gouveia

‘Tis the season for repeats and with the writers’ strike in full swing our favorite shows are coming quickly to an end. So, in light of us all being in hiatus mode, I figured I give my take on the latest new episodes of Heroes and Smallville.

There’s one more episode left before season two ends. It’s so disappointing how I’m really getting sucked back in, only to have it end next week. The day that Peter finally got his memory back was a great one for this viewer. But I’m confused; does he have his entire memory or just bits and pieces? I can’t believe that we have gone through an entire season and there’ve been no Peter and Claire scenes. Not even a mention about him from Claire. I miss their interaction. I admit, I did get giddy when Hiro and Peter met again since the explosion. Finally, a scene with two characters I care about!

Sylar killed Alejandro and he didn’t even have any of his abilities. I’m not complaining, but if we have to be stuck with one of the twins, couldn’t it be him instead of his weeping sister? Ok, I’m complaining. I thought twins have a really close connection with one another. I guess Maya was too busy drooling over a wet Sylar in a towel to notice her dead brother on the floor. I can’t really blame her.

Clark got to meet his super mama, played by Helen Slater. Since the episode was called “Blue” I thought that the new kryptonite was going to play a bigger role like in season two’s “Red.” It was only introduced half way through the episode. Clark really needs to stay away from the rings.

I loved the Zor-El scene with Lionel. Jor-El’s vessel got thrown around a little bit by Clark’s psycho uncle. I was glad to see that the ‘Lionel being Jor-El’s emissary’ storyline was mentioned. I’m hoping that we get to learn more about that in the final episodes. I still find it hard to believe that Lionel Luthor is just a stand up guy now. There has to be something that he’s hiding.

Speaking of things I can’t believe, Grant Gabriel is Julian Luthor! What? OK, I can honestly say I didn’t see that one coming. Maybe because it’s impossible. Lex’s baby brother was killed as an infant by the hands of his mother. We saw it happen in the episode “Memoria.” Unless this is another one of Lex’s crazy clone experiments, I don’t know how they could explain that one.

For next week, I’m looking for some new shows to get into over this holiday hiatus. Tell me what shows you would like to see me cover. How about Samantha Who? Or Moonlight? ‘Til next week.

Commentary with a Co-Ed is a weekly column at Tube Talk new every Thursday.

Strike update: Edie Falco gives strike solution

You know it’s serious when the Sopranos get involved.

There hasn’t been much to report of late about the TV writers’ strike. Talks are “still friendly, but unproductive” according to Deadline Hollywood Daily. But, actress Edie Falco is offering a solution.

Check out this hilarious video to see Mrs. Soprano’s advice.

Dancing winner Helio and fiancée call it quits

Dancing With the Stars champion Helio Castroneves confirmed to People magazine that he and fiancée Aliette Vazquez have called off their engagement.

Castroneves asked for privacy about the break up.

It’s not clear when the couple split, but it appears it was well before the dancing finale.

Before speculation starts, let me just say that he and partner Julianne are simply friends.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

House picks his team

In trademark House fashion, he used lies and manipulation to choose his team. In the end, it was 13, Taub and Kutner who made the cut. (Sorry “Cuthroat Bitch.”)

Apparently the new three-team will join Foreman as House’s new diagnostic cadre, according to a press release from FOX.

Here is the official announcement:

Fellowship candidates Chris Taub (Peter Jacobson), Lawrence Kutner (Kal Penn) and Thirteen (Olivia Wilde) weathered a competition that included an intense litany of unorthodox exercises, random eliminations and medical mysteries that tested their abilities and training, while House intruded into their personal lives to uncover more information than they were prepared to reveal. They will join Dr. Eric Foreman (Omar Epps) as part of House’s Diagnostic Medicine team at Princeton- Plainsboro Hospital.

My only concern is that Cameron and Chase haven’t had much screen time. As much as I’ve enjoyed all the newbies, especially 13, I’m jonesing for a little Chase and Cameron time.

How about you? Do you miss the old team?

House returns with all new episodes January 28, 2008 at 9 p.m. ET.

Marie Osmond’s fainting faked?

Remember a few weeks ago on Dancing With the Stars when Marie Osmond collapsed on live television? Well, TMZ is reporting that the fainting incident was faked. TMZ cited sources from the set, who said that Osmond had writers feeding her lines after the incident.

Osmond’s camp has denied the allegation.

I was watching when Marie hit the dirt, and if that was fake, then Marie is a much better actress than I thought. Her eyes rolled to the back of her head before she collapsed.

For the full story click here.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Helio Castroneves is dance champion

Ay caramba!

Racecar driver Helio Castroneves and his partner Julianne Hough claimed the checkered flag - so to speak - to bring home the mirror-ball trophy Tuesday night.

Castroneves, aka Mr. Charisma, whose smile never seemed to leave his face during the competition, won over America to edge out Spice Girl Mel B and her partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy.

Did America get it right? I say you did.

No, Helio wasn’t the best dancer. That honor went to Mel B. But, the facts are these. Helio is a racecar driver who had never danced before. And by end of this journey, he looked like a pro. Every time he stepped on the floor, he and Julianne lit up the audience. If you watched the audience during any one of their routines, it was wall-to-wall smiles. The bottom line: They were the most entertaining couple, consistently, in part due to Julianne’s inspired unique choreography and in part due to Helio’s loveable personality and sense of humor. During Monday’s finale, both of their routines energized the audience so much that they got two well-deserved standing ovations, despite a harsh criticism from the judges on their first routine.

That said, I am sad for the M&M team. This was the first finale in the history of the show, where I was truly torn on who I thought deserved to win. I would have been equally as pleased if Mel and Maks had won. But, Mel did have prior dance and performing experience. And frankly, their performance in the finale Monday was disappointing. I had high hopes for their freestyle that it would wow us, but frankly, that hip-hop routine wasn’t worthy of them.

Did Maks drop the ball with the choreography? Did they not have enough practice time due to her Spice Girls schedule? Did Maks’ back injury interfere? I’m not sure. Yes, their freestyle had death-defying lifts, but I agree with Len that it was too disjointed. It had some great moments, but as a whole, it was just OK.

In contrast, Julianne and Helio’s freestyle was everything a freestyle should be. Playing on the racing theme, in the beginning they dressed as race car drivers and by the end, they were both seated at the wheel. Julianne’s choreography was beyond creative. It was at another level. I think they should give a choreographer award each year, and this year it would belong to her.

I do feel bad for poor Maks. This is the second time he’s gotten close to claiming the mirror-ball trophy, but failed to make it all the way. It’s a good thing he’s got a healthy ego and a pretty face to help him get through the disappointment.

I’d like to take a moment to thank you, America, for not giving Marie Osmond the dancing title. I knew you’d come around. We all know this is a popularity contest; that was evident when Emmitt Smith took the title over Mario Lopez, but thankfully, it isn’t just about popularity.

Marie’s wind-up baby doll themed freestyle was so bizarre that judge Bruno sat stupefied, saying it wasn’t a dance. “It defies criticism,” he told Marie and Jonathan. “It’s like Baby Jane and the bride of Chucky.” I agree. That routine was fun, but it wasn’t ballroom dancing. The routine earned two sevens and an eight, the lowest score ever in a finale.

Then, Marie got sassy with the judges. My pet peeve with Marie was that she constantly talked back to the judges. And my rant against the judges is that they always told her she was a great entertainer, even when her footwork was faulty, but they didn’t extend that same compliment to Helio, when he had the crowd on its feet at almost every dance.

In short, Monday’s finale was an overall disappointment. With the exception of Helio’s freestyle, it was simply not up to the past season’s finale in terms of entertainment and talent. I was longing for the days of “Save A Horse Ride A Cowboy.”

Here’s a rundown of some other musings from this season and Tuesday’s show:

--Sabrina and Mark were the most missed couple. When they danced the cha-cha Tuesday, the crowd erupted in to such ovation that host Tom Bergeron gave up and said, “The hell with it, let them cheer!” Even judge Bruno held up his “10” paddle.
--Best line ever from Dancing With the Stars: When Mel yelled “God” in frustration during a rehearsal and her cocky partner jokingly quipped, “Just call me Maks.” Priceless.
--Maks may have lost the trophy, but he wins the award for hottest dancer. That push-up move on top of Mel in their final dance when he kissed her, inspired female fantasies all across the nation.
--I always thought Albert Reed went home too soon, and it was so good to see him and his gyrating hips back in action for his reprieve dance. A “little less conversation and a little more action” indeed.
--Cameron Mathison kept his promise that if he made it to the finale, he’d shed his shirt. After his final reprieve dance, he ripped it off to reveal a perfect six-pack. (Eat your heart out Maks.) This then prompted Bruno and guest Drew Lachey to reach for their belts and start their strip teases. If you ever doubted it, skin is in on Dancing With the Stars.
--Note to ABC, the constant plugging of Bruno and Carrie Ann’s new dance show was annoying after about the third time. By the end of the two-hour finale, it was positively unbearable. Not even the show’s host, the always-entertaining Drew Lachey, could get me to watch.
--Speaking of hosts, I’m so disappointed that Lachey can’t be Tom Bergeron’s co-host. I mean no disrespect to Samantha Harris, but the hosting thing just doesn’t seem like a good fit for her. Sorry. She cuts off the dancers constantly in the interviews, and she rattles on incessantly about the voting. We’ve been watching this show for years, Samantha, we understand that we have to vote. Geesh. And she doesn’t have Lachey’s humor or easy-going chemistry with Bergeron. In Tuesday’s show, Harris cut off Helio three times and turned the mic back to the other contestants, after she asked Helio a question. Clearly frustrated, Helio pleaded, “Can I please talk now?” She returned the mic to him just in time to pull it away again and throw it back to Tom. Thankfully, the cameraman stayed on Helio, as he threw down his hat and walked away, smiling of course, as everyone, including him, erupted in laughter.
--I don’t think it’s a coincidence that Florence Henderson has been in the audience constantly. I’m guessing she’ll be a contestant next year.
--Does Celine Dion have some kind of deal with ABC? She’s been all over the tube this week, from Oprah, to All My Children to the Dancing With the Stars finale.
--Now that Julianne is a two-time champion, like Cheryl Burke, expect her to get saddled with a Master P or a Kenny Mayne next season.

So, what did you think of the finale? Are you happy? Do you think the best dancer should always win or the hardest working, most improved?

Discuss among yourselves.

House is forced to choose his team

On tonight’s House, Cuddy orders House to finally choose his team. Will it be “13” or “cutthroat bitch?”

Here’s the official description:

When Cuddy puts the pressure on House to choose the final members of his team, House deliberately assigns the candidates to a particularly challenging case – an uncooperative, over-the-hill former punk rock star with a history of drug abuse and civil disobedience. House informs the candidates their potential future depends on correctly diagnosing the patient. As the candidates race to find out if the patient is ailing due to drug abuse, an underlying disease or an unknown condition, House keeps a running tally of their efforts, making a few arbitrary point deductions along the way. Meanwhile, Wilson informs a former patient whom he had previously diagnosed with terminal cancer that he is going to live, and the news throws a wrench in the man's carpe-diem lifestyle.

House airs at 9 p.m. on FOX.

Monday, November 26, 2007

A Bones kiss

Bones fans, the moment you all have been waiting for is here. It’s an early Christmas present.

Booth and Brennan are going to get all smoochy under the mistletoe in tonight’s episode of Bones. It’s not clear yet whether eggnog is involved.

This Christmas-themed episode looks fun. The gang investigates the death of a Santa impersonator named Kristopher Kringle. The fun starts at 8 p.m. on FOX.

To see what David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel thought of the kiss, click here.

Chuck and Life get full season orders

Two of NBC’s freshman dramas, Chuck and Life, have received full season orders, according to E!Online.

I’m not surprised that the fun, spy drama Chuck got this vote of confidence from NBC, but Life, now that’s another story. I didn’t like the pilot and the ratings haven’t been Earth shattering, so I assumed it wouldn’t make it to the end of the season. So much for my predictions.

The one NBC show you don’t see renewed yet is Bionic Woman. It’s struggling week to week. (Well, that one I did predict.)

No word yet on Journeyman. I'll let you know as soon as I know.

Strike update: An end in sight?

Monday was the first of three days of resumed scheduled talks between Hollywood writers and producers. Neither side issued a press statement about Monday’s negotiations, but according to one well-respected Hollywood insider, a deal is in place, and the strike could be settled before Christmas.

That was the news on Nikki Finke’s Deadline Hollywood blog Monday.

"I was told not to expect an agreement this week, but my source thought it was possible that the strike could be settled before Christmas," Finke said. "I don't want to raise false hope, but this source has been very accurate in the past."

Sorry, Nikki. My hopes are raised. I’m praying this is true. If not, then this “well-respected” insider is about to lose a lot of credibility, and I’ll be popping Zoloft to get me through the TV drought.

Strike update: How many episodes of your favorite shows are left?

The fine folks at TV Guide just updated their list of shows with how many episodes of each are left to air, before the shows go dark due to the writers’ strike.

Here are the shows that I cover and the ones I know that many of you are interested in.

For the complete list, check out the post at TV Guide.

This is the list as of November 26.

30 Rock:
Ten episodes will be produced. Six episodes have aired, so there are FOUR left.

Aliens in America: Seventeen episodes will be produced. Eight episodes have aired, so there are 9 left.

Back to You: Nine episodes will be produced. Seven episodes have aired, so there are TWO left.

Bones: Twelve episodes will be produced. Eight episodes have aired, so there are FOUR left. (E!Online's Kristin is reporting that only ONE episode of Bones is left to air, so I have no idea which is correct.)

Boston Legal: Fifteen episodes will be produced. Seven episodes have aired, so there are EIGHT left.

Brothers & Sisters: Twelve episodes will be produced. Eight episodes have aired, so there are FOUR left.

Chuck: Thirteen episodes will be produced. Nine episodes have aired, so there are FOUR left.

Desperate Housewives: Ten episodes will be produced. Eight episodes have aired, so there are TWO left.

Dirty Sexy Money: Eleven episodes will be produced. Eight episodes have aired, so there are THREE left.

Friday Night Lights: Fifteen episodes will be produced. Seven episodes have aired, so there are EIGHT left.

Gossip Girl: Thirteen episodes will be produced. Eight episodes have aired, so there are FIVE left.

Grey's Anatomy: Eleven episodes will be produced. Nine episodes have aired, so there are TWO left.

Heroes: Eleven episodes will be produced. Nine episodes have aired, so there are TWO left.

House: Twelve episodes will be produced. Eight episodes have aired, so there are FOUR left.

Las Vegas: Nineteen episodes will be produced. Nine have aired, so there are 10 left.

Life is Wild: Twelve episodes will be produced. Seven episodes have aired, so there are FIVE left.

Lost: Eight episodes will be produced. None have aired yet, so there are EIGHT episodes left.

Men in Trees: Nineteen episodes will be produced. Seven episodes have aired, so there are 12 left.

My Name is Earl: Thirteen episodes will be produced (that includes two one-hour eps, which count double). TEN episodes have aired, so there are THREE left.

The Office: Twelve half-hour episodes will be produced. Twelve half-hour episodes have aired, so there are ZERO half-hour episode left.

One Tree Hill: Twelve episodes will be produced. None have aired yet, so there are 12 episodes left.

Prison Break: Thirteen episodes will be produced. Eight episodes have aired, so there are FIVE left. (On hiatus 'til Jan. 14)

Private Practice: Ten episodes will be produced. Eight episodes have aired, so there are TWO left.

Pushing Daisies: Nine episodes will be produced. Seven episodes have aired, so there are TWO left.

Reaper: Ten to 12 episodes will be produced. Eight episodes have aired, so there are two to four left.

Samantha Who?: Twelve episodes will be produced. Six episodes have aired, so there are SIX left.

Scrubs: Eleven episodes will be produced. Four episodes have aired, so there are SEVEN left.

Smallville: Fifteen episodes will be produced. Eight episodes have aired, so there are SEVEN left.
Supernatural: Ten to 12 episodes will be produced. Seven episodes have aired, so there are THREE to FIVE left.

Ugly Betty: Thirteen episodes will be produced. Nine episodes have aired, so there are FOUR left.

Let’s talk TV: The week in review

Friday Night Lights
, your body is a wonderland. (And no that isn’t a dig at her cast mate Minka Kelly, who is dating John Mayer.) Tyra is hot. It’s no wonder poor Landry is in love with her. I don’t know how Tim Riggins has managed to resist her lately. Speaking of resisting, QB1, also known as Matt Saracen, has so many hot ladies throwing themselves at him; it’s sending his stuttering into overdrive. Julie realized that she shouldn’t have ended things with Matt and seems to be getting a little too cozy with her teacher lately. I don’t like where this is headed. Watch your back, teach, because if Eric finds you hitting on his daughter, you may find yourself being used as a tackling dummy during the next football practice. And how about the entertainment for the Pantherama rally? Having the football team strip was definitely thinking outside of the box. In my high school, everyone would have been expelled for that sexy stunt. But, this is Dillon, where football rules and apparently teachers and parents don’t mind the kids half naked and gyrating on the gym floor.

Dirty Sexy Money
I’m really enjoying the dysfunctional Darling family, especially serial bride Karen. The poor gal can’t seem to get over her first love Nick George and is set on winning him back. Mrs. George, you have been warned. The most surprising twist of this show for me is that I actually like former hard-ass Rev. Brian. The storyline with his son has softened him. OK, sure he made the kid pretend he was an orphan who didn’t speak English, so that Brian’s wife wouldn’t find out that he had an illegitimate son, but in the end, he came clean. He's even missing the little tyke. And so am I.

Private Practice
It’s been weeks since I invested in Private Practice. And much like the stock market, my sentiments about this show go up and down. This week, I hit an all-time low. Addison’s new dating companion had a strange fetish: he liked to insert objects in his rectum. Let’s just say I hope she never gets that shoe back. I don’t care if it is a Jimmy Choo. I’m trying to love Private Practice; I really am. But Addison is so… what’s the word? Silly. Yes, I never thought I’d describe my Addison as silly, but that’s what she’s become. And the rest of her co-workers are just as bad. The bright spot is that she and Pete have chemistry. Perhaps she’ll stop acting like a teen soon. The one character I am interested in, Dell, never seems to have much to do but fetch coffee. How about giving him a storyline? I think I may have to handle Private Practice the same way I handle broccoli. I partake from time to time, even though I don’t like it.

Ugly Betty
Just like the sun, Ugly Betty is the one show I can count on to be reliable. (Friday Night Lights is the other.) Betty never disappoints. It’s silly fun, and unlike Private Practice, the silly works. The show somehow balances comedy and drama perfectly. Eric Mabius has made me weepy several times. When Daniel Meade gets serious, look out. This week when he mourned his father, I was reaching for the Kleenex. His idea to black out the cover of Mode in honor of this father’s death was brilliant. In contrast, Amanda’s quest to find her father makes me laugh hard, every time she goes to the wall of photos of all her mother’s lovers. This week I caught Tom Selleck’s mug, Warren Beatty, Mick Jagger and Burt Reynolds. That Faye Summers sure got around, didn’t she?

Not even the addition of my own personal TV hero, Kristen Bell, to the Heroes cast has rekindled my love for this show. I’m sad, Tubers, as I used to love it. I’ve tried hanging on, but the show simply doesn’t interest me anymore. There are too many characters, story arcs, and too little time with the characters I do care about. It pains me more than you know to remove a show starring Kristen Bell from my DVR lineup, but when it feels like an obligation to watch it each week, then it’s time to go.

Las Vegas
There was no new episode this week, which was a good thing since we never talked about the last episode. Cooper fired Sam! I don’t think I’m alone here when I say, “What?!?!!” OK, so she shouldn’t have dumped that milkshake over the cowboy’s head, but in her defense, the guy was a tool. But this is Sam. She’s my favorite character on the show. I usually have to rewind her rapid-fire witty dialogue a couple times, so I can enjoy and appreciate her sarcastic barbs. There is no Las Vegas without her. The new boss man had better come to his senses soon because I want her back at the Montecito hanging with Mr. Cooper.

Samantha Who? at new time

Here’s a reminder for Samantha Who? fans. The show changes time slots tonight and moves to 9 p.m. ET on ABC.

Also, tonight’s special guest star is one of my favorite TV boyfriends, Eddie Cibrian. He’s playing a contractor, who Sam’s mother sets her up with for a date. Hmmm…. I wonder if he’ll have a tool belt?

Sorry. Where was I? Oh, tonight’s episode…right. Rumor has it that Sam has to pretend to be an avid hockey fan and Todd could help her, if he didn’t have a new girlfriend. Ouch!

Maks tells the truth about his dancing competition

Maksim Chmerkovskiy didn’t mince words when asked by Extra if voters made the correct choice for the final three contestants on Dancing With the Stars.

He doesn’t believe Marie Osmond should be in the finale.

"I think Jennie [Garth] was better than Marie [Osmond]," who is still in the competition. "Frankly, I think there are a lot of other people better than Marie.”

You’re not alone, Maks.

Marie’s popularity carries her through show after show and is definitely a factor, Maks said.

"History shows either a cute man or somebody with a huge fan base (wins) and I think Marie has both Helio and Mel's fan base combined times five," Maks said.

As for the best dancer, Maks said his partner Melanie Brown should be the champ. "She’s hands down the best dancer left... [the] most capable, most natural."

The finale airs tonight on ABC.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

You Just Got Slapped Video

By popular demand, here is Marshall Eriksen’s musical number about the infamous Slap Bet.

For those of you who e-mailed me confused about the “Slapsgiving” reference in my Thanksgiving Day post, this should help clear things up for you. In short, it’s about a bet between Barney and Marshall, on How I Met Your Mother, that Marshall won. Barney’s reward is that he gets to slap Marshall five times in his lifetime. Marshall had announced that Thanksgiving would be the day he issued one of his slaps.

You really need to watch the previous season of How I Met Your Mother to fully appreciate the humor here.

For HIMY fans, enjoy the talented Jason Segel as he tickles the ivories, and me, in this cute musical number by hitting play below or clicking here.

Strike update

Talks are scheduled to resume Monday between television writers and producers. I think I speak for all of us when I say, “Good luck.”

As TV fans, we want this to end, so that our programming won’t be interrupted further. As supporters of the writers, we want them to be treated fairly, considering it’s their material that is the backbone of our favorite shows. Here’s a reminder why the writers want a cut of downloads and digital media.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Love blossoms on the Scrubs set

Doctor, doctor, give me the news. I got a bad taste of loving you.

Setting: The Scrubs set
Cast: Zach Braff and John C. McGinley
Scene: Dr. Dorian and Dr. Cox discuss a man’s symptoms of a racing heart and blissful happiness in a fake scene, as they set up a crewmember’s surprise engagement.

It’s reasons like this that I’ve been preaching the Scrubs love for years here at Tube Talk. Check out this video clip of a surprise proposal on the Scrubs set. Accomplices Zach Braff and John C. McGinley even had me fooled that they were filming a real scene, and I am a TV expert. I have no idea who this adorable couple is, but congratulations, nonetheless.

Thanks to Tim for the tip.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Tube Talk Girl gives thanks

by Jennifer Squires Biller

Happy Thanksgiving! (Or as Marshall from How I Met Your Mother would say, “Happy Slapsgiving.")

As you sit down today with your turkey, stuffing and dysfunctional family members, don’t forget to take a moment to give thanks for all the blessings in your life. As your TV maven, I’m counting my TV blessings. Here’s a quick rundown of what I’m thankful for.

Whether you’ve got a TiVo or a FauxVo, let’s take time to be thankful for this technological wizard. The ability to pause, rewind and fast forward live television is the best invention to hit the television world in the last decade. Don’t believe me? You try watching the Dancing With the Stars results show without the fast forward button.

TV writers
As much as I nitpick show plot points and am sometimes too quick to criticize scripted shows, the reality is, TV writing is still top notch. Try watching an episode of The Bachelor or any other reality show, and you’ll be sending a thank you card to the Writers Guild of America, too.

TV romances
I love a good romance, and TV has plenty of them. From Pam and Jim, to Derek and Meredith, to Betty and Henry, I’m thankful that the TV landscape still gives us a little love. (Or in Meredith’s case, a lot of love. She can’t seem to stay out of the on-call room for her booty calls.)

The mere fact that I no longer have to record my favorite TV shows on ancient VHS tapes is reason enough for TV on DVD to be on this list. Add in the fact that most TV DVD collections provide episode commentary from the actors, deleted scenes, and blooper reels, and it’s no wonder my VHS tape collection has gone the way of the dodo bird. Really, you haven’t lived until you’ve seen bloopers such as Smallville’s Lex Luthor passing gas in a pivotal scene.

Original programming
Copycat shows are all over the TV dial. It’s sometimes difficult to distinguish between any of the myriad procedural crime dramas or medical dramas. So, we must rejoice when networks take chances on original shows that aren’t copycats of what we’ve seen before. Pushing Daisies is this year’s best example. (A pie maker who can bring dead things back to life definitely qualifies as original.) So does Scrubs, a medical show with a fantasy element. Only Scrubs could pull off a musical number called “Everything Comes Down to Poo.”

Tube Talk Readers – I’ve been writing this column now for three years. Some of you found me through the newspaper, while others found me on the Web. Readers all over the world stop by the site on a daily basis, and I’m thankful for each and every one of you who share my love of the television genre. I especially love those of you who leave comments, even when it’s “Tube Talk Girl, you’re an idiot."

Happy Thanksgiving, Tubers! Go easy on the turkey.

Commentary with a Co-ed: Favorite Thanksgiving episodes

by Ashley Gouveia

If you’re like me and can’t bear to sit through The Annual Dog Show this Thanksgiving then I have something for you.

I have put together a list of my top favorite Thanksgiving episodes of TV shows, past and present. So before, during or after you all have eaten some turkey with cranberry, check out these episodes.

Friends, Season Eight. “The One with the Rumor”: Or as I like to call it, “The One with Brad Pitt.” I have lost count on how many times I’ve watched this episode. It never gets old to me. It’s still as funny as the first time I watched it. Ah, before Brangelina. It seems like a lifetime ago. Between Rachel’s “teeny-weenie” and Joey’s Thanksgiving pants, there are plenty of laugh-out-loud moments to burn off that extra piece of cheesecake.

The O.C, Season One. “The Homecoming”: Season one, The Golden Age of the series. This was the episode that showcased the hilarity of Seth Cohen at its best. His constant prevention of having his mother cook to his secret rendezvous sessions with both Summer and Anna are just some of the highlights. Then when the girls caught on to what was really going on…holy awkward! The Cohen house was definitely eventful that Thanksgiving. This one is not to be missed.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Season Four. “Pangs”: Angel returned, Xander had syphilis, Spike was tied to a chair, and did I mention Angel returned? This was part of the greatly missed Buffy/Angel crossover events that The WB always liked to do. Oh, the good ol’ days. All Buffy wanted was a nice Thanksgiving dinner and she ended up having to battle a Chumash tribe all before their first slice of turkey. How hysterical was it when Xander, Anya and Willow had to come peddling to her rescue on bicycles? Season four wasn’t my favorite but this episode stood out among the pack.

Ugly Betty, Season One. “Four Thanksgivings and a Funeral”: How can anyone forget Marc and Amanda dressing up in designer duds and putting on a musical number in Wilhelmina’s office? Hysterical! Plus, we got to see how much Betty would do for Daniel. Let’s not forgot she crossed the parade route and almost got run over by the Queer Eye guys riding a giant turkey. That girl needs to ask for a raise. We got to see more of Santos in the Casa de Suarez, which was always a good thing. This was an episode that I couldn’t leave off the list.

I hope you all check out these Thanksgiving-themed episodes of some of my favorite shows. I’ve got my DVD sets ready! Also, do you have a favorite moment from the episodes above? If you have some other favorite Thanksgiving episodes let me know. Have some extra stuffing and enjoy! Happy Turkey Day!

Commentary with a Co-Ed is a weekly column at Tube Talk new every Thursday.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Strike update

If you haven’t heard, talks are set to resume between the TV writers and producers on Monday, November 26.

Both sides are set to return to the negotiating table and hopefully end this strike.

TV writers and many actors have been picketing since the strike began on Nov. 5. The writers are asking for more compensation from DVD sales and new media such as online episodes and those downloaded to iPods and cell phones.

For those of you wanting to get involved in the strike, please check out this Web site from the striking writers and their Pencils 2 Media Moguls campaign.

Let’s hope that talks go well on Monday. If not, it’s going to be a long, cold winter.

Scott Baio is a daddy

Perpetual bachelor Scott Baio became a father on Friday, according to Life & Style.

Baio and his fiancée Renee Sloan weren’t expecting their new arrival until December, but their baby daughter came early. The little girl weighed 5 lbs., 10 oz.

No name for the newborn was released.

Baio returned to television this year in his own reality show, Scott Baio is 45…and Single to examine his commitment-phobe behavior and player ways.

Does anyone else see the karma in the fact that Baio had a daughter and not a son? Yeah, me too.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Jennie Garth dances her last dance

Jennie Garth and partner Derek Hough failed to get the votes required to make it another week on Dancing With the Stars, despite having a “breakthrough” performance that finally earned them 10s.

The final three contestants remaining are Marie Osmond, Mel B, and Helio Castroneves.

Take a moment to digest.

OK. I’m going to be frank here. It’s time for some tough love, folks. Why are you voting for Marie Osmond?

I know she’s beautiful. That smile could power the universe for a week. And yes, she’s entertaining and fun and a bit kooky at times. And I’m sure she’s a nice lady. But she IS NOT as good a dancer as Helio, Mel B or Jennie. (Or even Cameron and Sabrina before her.)

I get that this show has turned into a popularity contest, so I’m going to appeal to those of you who are actually taking the time to vote. Marie has a huge fan base and probably scores thousands of other votes from her enormous family and friend base. So, if you want the best dancers in the finale, Helio and Mel B, then get on the phone next week, people. Because I promise you a gaggle of Osmonds will be dialing for Marie.

Mel B and Maks were so good on Monday’s show that they scored perfect 10s for both dances, and deservedly so. They have such chemistry and powerful moves, that I can’t stop watching them. Maks’ choreography was riveting. Mel’s series of walking splits was one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen on the show. (Julianne’s flying flip turn last week also scores a mention.)

Julianne and Helio also wowed the crowd Monday, as usual. Once again, Helio proved that even with no dance experience or history of performing, he knows how to win over a crowd. These two are so much fun to watch that I look forward to them each week.

My final bit of tough love is for the judges. I know they’re trying to encourage all the contestants by rewarding them with high scores, but it’s time the judges gave the 9 and 10 paddles a rest. If they truly want the best dancers to end up in the finale, then they need to separate the pack. In other words, sevens and eights for “very good” dancing and nines and 10s for “excellent” dancing.

It was good to see Sabrina and Mark dancing again. But, the camera man seemed to be much more interested in close-ups of Avril Lavigne singing than the incredible dancing display occurring on the floor. Lavigne’s song “Complicated” was an appropriate choice for Sabrina and Mark to dance to, because their routine was indeed that. There were so many lifts and complicated tricks, it seemed almost like a gymnastics routine instead of a ballroom dance. Still, it was incredible.

See ya next week!

NBC auctioning props

NBC is selling some of the props used by your favorite actors on NBC shows.

The first online auction began yesterday and runs through December 3. More items are being added every few weeks, as the auction continues.

The first auction has some fun items. As of 2 p.m. Michael Scott’s watch from The Office, worn by Steve Carell, was up to $205. Tim Riggins’ football jersey from Friday Night Lights, worn by Taylor Kitsch, was up to $170 (sweat may be included,) and a football autographed by several FNL cast members was up to $105.

Some items weren’t doing so well, though. Poor Sam (Vanessa Marcil) from Las Vegas. Her doggie carrier for Reggie hadn’t earned one bid yet. But Danny’s letterman jacket, worn and autographed by cutie Josh Duhamel, was up to $90.

Heroes seemed to be generating the most interest. The original painting of the cheerleader, Claire Bennet, was up to a whopping $2,500.

Now, before you go firing off the angry e-mails at me about helping a greedy network hawk its merchandise, you should know that a portion of the proceeds are going to the United Way and its organizations.

The 50 Greatest TV icons airs tonight

If you missed it the first time around (like I did,) then you’ve still got time to check out the TV Land special The 50 Greatest TV Icons.

The show will rerun tonight at 5 p.m. and several other times this week. (Check out the schedule at the end of this post.)

The list is interesting. It includes the biggies, Oprah, Carol Burnett, Jerry Seinfeld and, of course, Johnny Carson as number one. There are some fun names on the list as well: Lassie, Homer Simpson, Kermit and George Clooney.

A couple names, though, made me scratch my head in shock. Jennifer Aniston? It must have been the haircut that earned her that spot.

Here’s the schedule for upcoming airings:

11/20 5 p.m.
11/21 12 p.m.
11/21 10 p.m.
11/24 12:30 a.m.
11/24 10 a.m.

Lost webisodes

Lost fans that can’t wait for the show’s return, you can get a small fix from the new Webisodes running at ABC.

ABC is showing 13 never-before-seen small stories. So far, there are two up and running.

The first one is the adventure of Hurley and Frogurt and precedes Hurley’s date with Libby. The second one features Jack and his father, a moment before Jack was set to marry.

I know many of you have sworn off watching Webisodes, due to the writer’s strike. But as your TV information maven, I’m compelled to pass on any and all news, especially when it involves Hurley and Jack.

Sabrina Bryan and Mark Ballas return tonight to Dancing With the Stars

They have admitted that they're a couple. Tonight, Sabrina Bryan and Mark Ballas will take that sizzling chemistry back to the dance floor.

For the first time in the history of Dancing With the Stars, a couple that was voted off has been asked back to do a complete feature dance in the same season. A little birdie told me the routine even has lifts. (Cover your eyes Carrie Ann!)

Apparently, even the show producers believe that Sabrina should have been in the semi-finals and are giving her a chance to dance in the semi-finale episode. While it won’t be for a shot at the mirror-ball trophy, it will be for the pleasure of the audience.

Sabrina was the best dancer. I always loved watching her and Mark. Now that we know there’s a little something-something going on with them, we may see a whole new kind of heat. Get your fans, folks, it’s about to get hot up in here!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Tube Talk Girl returns from vacation

Bonjour, Tubers!

You may have noticed that this blog has been dark since last Thursday. Well, it wasn’t due to a writer’s strike. It was due to a much-needed vacation. (Hey, even Tube Talk Girl needs a break from time to time.)

I’m back from the great white north, also known as Montreal, Quebec.

I’ve returned with a new appreciation for DVRs, bi-lingual people, and French bread. (You try living a week without the ability to pause, rewind or fast-forward live television. Then, try asking directions from someone who speaks only French. Then, take a bite of the delicious croissants and French bread served daily in Montreal, and you’ll want to throw out your regular 35-calorie-per-slice of Heiners bread, too.)

My plan was to blog on a daily basis during vacation, so I wouldn’t let down my regular readers. But after seeing the Internet rates at the Montreal Sheraton, I changed my mind. Don’t hold it against me. If it makes you feel better, it was a slow news weekend.

I’m back on the job, as of right now. I’ll be catching you up on all the TV news we’ve missed and talking about some of my favorite shows. (Cooper fired Sam on Las Vegas?!!! What?)

For those of you who missed me, like the Desperate Housewives miss drama, tune in to Magic 106.5 tomorrow morning between 7-8 a.m., and I’ll be giving you, and my pal Jack Logar, the Tube Talk report.

Until then, bonsoir!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Commentary with a Co-ed: Smallville's Lana Fu

by Ashley Gouveia

She’s faster than a locomotive and can shoot fire from her eyes. It’s not Kara I’m talking about; it’s Super Lana. Yeah, that’s not a typo. Last week, Lana got struck by lightning and was given Clark’s abilities. I told myself that if Lana’s feet ever left the ground, I was shutting it off. However, I stuck with it, and was pleasantly surprised at how much I didn’t hate it.

Don’t get me wrong. There were plenty of moments where I almost threw up my dinner. Sex quake, anyone? Did they really have to go there? But the saving grace for me was everyone’s reaction to Lana’s wrath. Clark and Chloe were clearly disturbed by how Lana was spying on Lex and almost killed him. Add that to the other felonies she’s committed, and I would say that would freak out anyone.

Clark, open your eyes. The girl’s crazy!

I think Lionel said it best when he asked Clark if he ever really took a good look at Lana. Of course, that was followed by denial and a change in conversation. I was cheering Clark on in the final scene when he called Lana out on her actions. He started off strong and made it clear to her that what she did was inexcusable. But, it all ended with Clark, once again, blaming himself for everything. As hard as it may be to believe, Lana does have a mind of her own and is responsible for her actions.

My favorite scene of the episode was the Chloe and Lana confrontation. This has been a long time coming. I am one of the fans that never bought these two as ever being close friends. So when I saw Chloe warn Lana that she would not allow her to hurt Clark, I literally stood up and cheered. Chloe has thrown down the gauntlet. The look on Lana’s face was priceless when she realized what side Chloe was on. Kristin Kreuk and Allison Mack did an amazing job in that scene.

Lex wasn’t the only person who felt Lana’s fury. Lois got herself thrown through a glass door when she tried to prevent Lana from pummeling Grant -‘I’m way too young for this job’-Gabriel. I knew there was something off with McEditor as soon as he hired Lois at the Daily Planet. Who is he working for? My money is on Lionel. Also, that black ooze spilling out of the container looked oddly familiar. Hmm, what could it be?

This wasn’t one of my favorite episodes, but it did have some good elements with Clark perhaps opening his eyes a little bit and Chloe stepping up to protect Clark. Tonight, Helen Slater is back as Clark’s biological mom. The episodes that are more Kryptonian based are always interesting to me so I’m excited for it. ‘Til next week.

Commentary with a Co-Ed is a weekly column at Tube Talk new every Thursday.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Joshua Jackson’s Grey’s Anatomy role on hold

This writers’ strike is claiming more casualties every day. Add Joshua Jackson to the list.

Jackson was scheduled to join Grey’s Anatomy as a guest star for several episodes, (as reported here a few weeks ago.) Now, his appearance is on hold “indefinitely” according to TV Guide.

Sad news indeed. I was so looking forward to Jackson roaming the halls of Seattle Grace, wearing his lab coat and showcasing his charming, um…sarcasm. Yeah, sarcasm.

The real shocker in this story isn’t that Jackson’ s appearance is on hold; it’s who he was going to be romantically paired with. You’d better sit down for this.

Cristina Yang was about to become one lucky gal. Burke who? Jackson was going to be involved with Sandra Oh's character, according to TV Guide’s Michael Ausiello.

It just seems wrong, doesn’t it? I can’t see him with Cristina. If it were Meredith, I could understand. She gets drunk and does stupid things,(and sometimes her co-workers.) I could also see him paired with Izzie. She’s slowly working her way through the male doctors on staff, so why not the new guy? If I had to choose his female companion though, I’d say pair him with Callie. She’s newly single and deserves to show George that she can score a hottie, too.

But all this speculation may be futile. If this strike doesn’t end soon, who knows if we’ll ever get to see Jackson in Seattle Grace, let alone showing of his medical “skills” with Cristina.

Big Shots isn’t canceled

Despite a report at Deadline Hollywood and several other Web sites that Big Shots was finished, TV Guide’s Michael Ausiello said that isn’t the case.

In his Wednesday chat, Ausiello clarified the rumors:

“Despite widespread reports, ABC has not canceled Big Shots. Not yet anyway.”

That’s good news for all you Dylan McDermott, Michael Vartan, Nia Long, Joshua Malina fans, right?

Big Shots is off the air for the next couple weeks but returns with a new episode on November 29 on ABC.

Cameron Mathison eliminated from Dancing With the Stars

It wasn’t kryptonite that did in “Superman” Cameron Mathison on Dancing With the Stars. Apparently it was Marie Osmond’s soaring popularity that kept this week’s lowest scorer from elimination and resulted in Mathison’s exit.

I fully expected Mathison to be in the semi-finals. He had improved each week, and he had just finished an appearance at Super Soap Weekend at Disney World that I thought would have generated him thousands of fan votes.

I didn’t love Cameron’s dances this week; they seemed too choppy and had too many of the same poses he and Edyta have done before. That said, Cam’s hips in the cha-cha-cha were “hip-notizing.” His moves were smooth, but in between cha-chas, he just seemed to stop dancing and go into a hold pose. However, I think he and Edyta would have pulled it together in the end to finally get the 10s he wanted so badly.

I can’t help but take slight issue with some of Cameron’s choreography. (Sorry Edyta!) I’m going to sound a little like Len here, but they always seemed to start their routine ”flitting about” without getting down to the dancing.

Plenty of you are fighting mad that Cam got the boot, if my overflowing e-mail box is any indication. I feel your pain, Tubers. I think it’s time we all come to terms with the fact that despite the judges’ continued pronouncements that this is a dance competition, I disagree. I think it’s become a popularity contest. And if the judges don’t start judging those who don’t dance as well more harshly - I’m talking about scoring them sevens instead of eights - then I don’t see how the best dancers are ever going to win this thing.

If Marie wins it will be a real travesty. Yes, she’s adorable and a fantastic entertainer, but she’s not the best dancer. In fact, she’s the weakest dancer of the group, yet her popularity keeps her in the competition. I sympathize with her, too. She fainted on national TV and lost her father last week. But, honestly, the sympathy vote should not keep her in this competition.

I was rooting for Mathison, so now I’m not sure who to give my Tube Talk endorsement to, perhaps Mel and Maks or Helio and Julianne. Mel and Maks are so hot when they step on the floor that I can’t take my eyes off of them, but Helio and Julianne are the couple I look most forward to watching. They’re so much fun that I usually can’t stop smiling when they dance, and Julianne’s choreography seems to be at a different level than the other pros.

I’m so surprised that Jennie Garth has never been in the bottom two. She’s a good dancer, but seems so nervous that she doesn’t seem to have much fun out there, except on results nights when she seems so relaxed. Her jive was “limp” this week, and even Len said he didn’t think she deserved to be in the semi-finals. I was sure she or Marie would get the boot this week and not my Cam. But, I was wrong. Never underestimate the power of Beverly Hills 90210 fans.

Next week, voters, I’m begging, send Marie home. It’s already a joke that two of the best dancers won’t be in the finals, (Sabrina and Cameron.) Stop the madness!

Monday, November 12, 2007

TV Blogs Go Dark in Solidarity with the Writers Guild of America

On November 13th, this blog and the blogs listed below will be on strike for the day in solidarity with the Writers Guild of America. As fellow writers and as TV fans, we are coming together to express our strong support for the writers and their goals. We believe that when a writer's work makes money for a company, that writer deserves to be paid.

Many writers depend on residuals for a stable income, and that income shouldn't be based on an outdated formula which ignores the existence of new media and all but a tiny percentage of DVD sales. The talented writers responsible for so much of what we love about television should and must be paid fairly and equitably, and we will stand with them until they reach that goal. For everyone's sake, and for the sake of television, we hope both sides can come to an agreement quickly.

To further that goal, we are calling on our readers to sign this petition and to contact the following television networks, voicing support for the writers and for a return to the negotiating table:

ABC500 South Buena Vista StreetBurbank, CA 91521(818) 460-7777

FOX10201 W. Pico Blvd.Los Angeles, CA 90035(310) 369-1000

CBS7800 Beverly BoulevardLos Angeles, CA 90036(323) 575-2345

NBC / Universal100 Universal City PlazaUniversal City, CA 91608(818) 777-1000

After the blackout, we intend to continue our campaign to support the WGA until the dispute has been resolved fairly. Since we will not be posting any new content on the 13th, we encourage our readers to visit United Hollywood instead for frequent updates about the strike.

In solidarity-

Daemons TV
Ducky Does TV
Gabby Babble
Give Me My Remote
Glowy Box
I am a TV Junkie
Mikey Likes TV
Pass the Remote
The Pie Maker
Ramblings of a TV Whore
Seriously? OMG! WTF?
Silly Pipe Dreams
The TV Addict
Tube Talk
Watch with Intelligence

View host names her baby boy

Elisabeth Hasselbeck revealed the name of her new baby boy on The View Monday, via telephone.

Taylor Thomas Hasselbeck was born Friday in Arizona and weighed 7 pounds, 15 ounces.

Hasselbeck is currently on maternity leave and living in Arizona with her husband, Tim, who is a backup quarterback for the Arizona Cardinals.

Former Buffy star poses for Maxim

Photo: Courtesy of Maxim

Sarah Michelle Gellar is Maxim’s newest cover girl.

The former Buffy the Vampire Slayer star is steaming up the pages of the November 20 issue of Maxim in various states of undress.

We haven’t seen much news on Gellar lately, and in the Maxim interview she explains why. She’s currently promoting three new films, in which she plays a pop star, a lawyer and a porn star. From the look of the Maxim cover, I’d say she nailed the latter role.

Check out Gellar’s sexy photos and interview here.

Let’s talk TV: The week in review

Brothers and Sisters
I’m about to make a bold statement. Brothers and Sisters is the best drama on television right now. Last night’s intervention episode showed just how compelling television can be when all the pieces fall in place. And by all the pieces I mean tight, top-notch writing and superb acting. Dave Annable and Sally Field made me cry. And that’s hard to do during the weekend! The beauty of Brothers and Sisters is the creative balance of humor and drama. Even in the midst of a heart-wrenching drug intervention, the Walkers can still make me smile with a one-liner or a sarcastic barb. If you’re not watching this show, do yourself a favor and tune in. If nothing else, it will make your family holiday dinners seem much less dysfunctional.

Grey’s Anatomy

Can we please stop with all the George and Izzie booty calls? I think I speak for most of us when I say, “Ewwww!” And what was the deal with the fantasy and the tub? On second thought, I don’t want to know. My jaw hit the floor when Izzie called George the best sex she’d ever had. Huh? Did she forget about all those smoking hot encounters with Alex? I’m begging here, Grey’s honchos, please stop this madness. As for Meredith, I didn’t think it was possible to dislike her character more than I already did, but well done, writers; mission accomplished. Meredith’s constant verbal abuse of Lexie is working my last nerve. I was cheering when Lexie finally broke and screamed, “Screw you!” You go, Lexie. And can we all do a happy dance for Bailey, that she finally got the job she deserved all along. Although, that strange crying outburst with the chief, after he told her, seemed a little out of character for tough-as-nails Bailey. Finally, Mr. Man Tart, Mark Sloan, is adorable. But, I think his attempts to flirt with Hahn are futile. I’m pretty sure she doesn’t play for his team.

Back to You
I love it when TV shows pay tribute to other TV shows, and Back to You tipped its hat to Buffy the Vampire Slayer this week. Former Buffy star Charisma Carpenter guest starred on this week’s episode of Back to You, and her son was named - wait for it - Zander. Hysterical!

The Office
Jim Halpert
, my heart aches for you. (Not the way you’re thinking, Tubers!) On Thursday, it appeared that Jim was facing the sad realization that he could easily become Michael, if he stayed at Scranton for the foreseeable future. The camera caught his look of utter devastation, and it was heartbreaking. Don’t worry, Jim. There is no way you could ever become as silly as Michael. His over-the-top antics are getting more and more ridiculous. A nature retreat man vs. wild? Come on.

Men in Trees
What is it about women on ABC shows waxing their own eyebrows before their weddings? It never ends well. It was a disaster for Grey’s Anatomy Cristina and the same thing happened to poor Annie on Men in Trees. Ladies, it’s like $15-$20 to have a professional cosmetologist wax your eyebrows. I’m just saying. This episode was laugh-out-loud funny, as wedding preparations got underway. And in true Elmo fashion, chaos ensued. The minister quit, the reception hall closed down, the mothers were feuding, the cat lost the rings, and the location was a bust. If that weren’t enough, scary wild wolves descended on the town and cornered poor Marin in a to-die-for cliffhanger. I don’t know about anyone else, but that scene gave me a flashback to my youth when I watched a similar episode of Little House on the Prairie featuring an angry wild pack of wolves that scarred me for life.

I know I’m in the minority here, but I love Booth and Cam. Their pretense of a relationship to fool her family had me in stitches. Bones didn’t seem quite so happy about it, though, did she? Oh well, maybe she and Booth can talk about it at couples therapy. Also, I can’t wait to see Angela’s husband. I haven’t seen so much build up for an off-screen character since the days of Cheers’ Norm and his often-mentioned wife. And did you guys recognize Sam Jones, formerly Pete on Smallville, as the gay scientist? Little Pete is all grown up now.

Ugly Betty
Matron of honor Posh Spice was campy, and in perfect Ugly Betty fashion, so was the wedding of Willie and Bradford. Amanda entertained the packed church of uptight society folks with her version of “My milkshake brings all the boys to the yard.” Yes, it was as funny as it sounds. Marc’s shaggy boyfriend finally embraced his inner metrosexual and got a shave, a haircut and wardrobe to die for. But, that wasn’t the biggest shock of the night. That honor went to Bradford, collapsing with a heart attack during the ceremony, after Daniel told him that his Wilhemena was cheating. In an episode so packed with humor, drama and camp, it seemed there was room for little else but wedding details, but wrong. Daniel found out Betty had known about Willie’s boy toy all along, and fired Betty for not telling. Yes, it got ugly. With so many surprises in this episode, I can’t imagine what’s left for next week. But knowing the Ugly Betty folks, I’m sure I won’t be disappointed.

OK, I’m just going to say it. The opening scenes of newly super-empowered Lana and Clark having such “super” sex that it literally shattered the Earth and caused seismic tremors all over Smallville was groan-worthy. On the plus side, Clark finally got some, which apparently has been a problem in the past due to his super strength and Lana’s mere mortal abilities. Yeah, I didn’t want to think about it either, so thanks Smallville writers for going there. I always enjoy badass Lana, when she morphs into Lana Fu and kicks butt. But I really enjoy the Lana and Lex interaction. Those two are hot. Their kiss had more chemistry going on than one of Lex’s secret laboratories. What a shame Smallville has wasted all these years with Lana and Clark, when she and Lex are downright combustible. I find Lana bearable when she’s sparring with Lex or about to electrocute him. As for Chloe, it’s clear that Jimmy is moving on with Kara. I say good riddance. Chloe needs to find a man worthy of her, someone who isn’t a geek or a meteor freak. Oliver is headed back to town and now that Lois is macking on her new boss, I think Chloe could use a little comforting from the Emerald Archer. And one more thing, Smallville hair people, please stop cutting Chloe’s hair!

Christian Troy, you’ve been a bad, bad boy. Jealousy doesn’t suit Christian. His hilarious attempt to garner some attention was one of the funniest scenes on the tube this week, as he posed nude for a girly magazine and his body suffered a little, how should I put this? stage fright? Thank goodness his publicist was off camera and willing to do her part to “inflate” his… ego. In a surprising twist, Julia came to visit and dropped the news that she is now a lesbian. At least the boys can finally stop fighting over her, since she no longer plays for their team. But poor Sean, this is going to eat away at his confidence as a man. First, Julia cheated on him with a midget and now she’s sleeping with a woman. Ouch.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Strike update: How many episodes of your favorite shows are left?

You’re panicked, TV lovers, and I feel your pain.

From my overflowing e-mail box, it’s clear that the reality of no new episodes of your favorite TV shows is finally hitting you. It’s also clear that you’re anticipating a winter of discontent, locked in your basements watching your TV on DVD collections of Buffy, The Office, Seinfeld and Friends.

The most common question I’m getting is, “When will (insert show name here) stop airing?” Well, a few days ago I posted a link to that handy chart from the L.A. Times telling us how many episodes of each show had been shot and, in some cases, dates were listed. But now, TV Guide’s Michael Ausiello has compiled a new chart that tells us exactly how many episodes each show has left to air.

Just how many episodes of your shows are left to air? As of Sunday, November 11, here’s the tally. I’ve included some of my favorites here for quick reference, but for a complete list, see Ausiello’s novel.

Boston Legal, nine left
Bones, six left
Brothers & Sisters, after tonight five left
Chuck, six left
Desperate Housewives, after tonight three left
Friday Night Lights, nine left
Grey’s Anatomy, four left
Heroes, four left
Lost, eight left
Men in Trees, 14 left
One Tree Hill, 12 left
Private Practice, four or five left
Pushing Daisies, four left
Reaper, three to five left
Samantha Who, eight left
Scrubs, nine left
Smallville, eight left
Ugly Betty, five or six left

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Is Big Shots finished?

The new ABC show Big Shots, starring Dylan McDermott, has wrapped production due to the strike, but a trade blog is reporting that the show won’t be returning after the strike.

Deadline Hollywood reported earlier this week that those associated with the show were told they would not be coming back after the strike.

If this is true - and I say “if” until I see something officially confirmed - then what are your thoughts? Would you be glad to see it go? Was Big Shots a big letdown, or do you love the show?

I was one of the few TV critics who actually liked it. McDermott, Michael Vartan, Nia Long and Peyton List are enormously entertaining and the writing was getting better each week.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Strike update day 4: Only one more episode of The Office left

Photo: Actresses Marcia Cross, and Eva Longoria Parker and writer Marc Cherry of Desperate Housewives show their support for the writers' strike.

The TV landscape just gets more depressing day by day, as the TV writers’ strike marches onward. As I reported earlier, The Office has shut down production. The sadder news is that show runner Greg Daniels told E!Online that only one more new episode is left to air.

Office star Jenna Fischer said that the funniest Office episode ever written wouldn’t be shot until the strike ends. It involved Pam and Jim going to dinner at Michael and Jan’s house. Sigh. This is killing me, people. Killing me.

I don’t blame the writers, though. Daniels went on to say in the E! interview that there were 7 million downloads of The Office on iTunes last year, of which the writers aren’t seeing a nickel. It’s wrong, Tubers, and as frustrated as you are by this whole mess affecting your TV viewing, you should be equally as frustrated for the folks who are basically writing for free.

As day four of the strike is underway, here’s a look at some strike news from around the Web.

Ellen DeGeneres defends her decision to cross the picket line. (TV Guide)

In an exclusive interview with Kristin Dos Santos, Greg Daniels of The Office explains why there is only one more episode left to air. (E!Online)

Joss Whedon, one of my favorite TV writers of all time (Buffy, Angel) wrote an open letter about the strike. He mentions David Boreanaz and the How I Met Your Mother folks. (Variety)

A great site for strike news, United Hollywood, has some great video blogs showing the Grey’s Anatomy cast, Garry Marshall and plenty of other actors and writers marching the picket lines. (United Hollywood)

No new talks are scheduled. (Variety)

TV Guide’s Matt Roush answers questions about the strike. (TV Guide)

A rally is going on at the FOX studio today. (The Hollywood Reporter)

Thursday, November 08, 2007

“Ed” visits Scrubs

Thomas Cavanagh, who I’ll always remember as the dearly departed Ed Stevens, is guest starring on Scrubs tonight.

Cavanagh is reprising his role as J.D.’ brother, Dan Dorian. Dan returns to town and tells J.D. that it’s time to “grow up.”

Longtime Scrubs viewers know that Dan wasn’t exactly the pillar of maturity an older brother should be, so this should be good. Hello, pot; meet kettle.

Cavanagh and Zach Braff look alike and have an easy chemistry that I always find compelling. Thank you, Scrubs show runner Bill Lawrence for bringing back one of my TV favorites, even if his name is no longer Ed Stevens.

Catch Scrubs tonight at 9:30 p.m. ET on NBC.

Commentary with a Co-ed: An Ugly Betty Wedding

by Ashley Gouveia

Tonight, we’re all invited to the wedding of the year. Bradford Meade and Wilhelmina Slater are tying the knot on Ugly Betty.

I think it’s safe to say that these nuptials won’t be going off without a hitch. There’s the always-impending threat of Claire Meade showing up, with Yoga, to finish Willy off. Last we heard, they were off to Italy and never coming back. Judith Light was so fantastic as Mommy Meade that it would be a shame to not bring her back.

One concern that many people have about going to weddings is if they have a date. Maybe Betty can bring Henry, now that they’re ousted as a couple. Is Betty even going to the wedding? I’m thinking probably not, since Wilhelmina basically threatened to send her father back to Mexico faster than she can say “Guadalajara.” Oh Betty, you‘re in way over your head. This whole Henry thing is way too complicated. Let’s just dump him for the cute sandwich guy and be done with it.

The secret Henry/Betty love affair plot last week was a little too over-the-top. Although, it was great to see Daniel taking care of Betty, instead of the other way around. I’m not sure if he was the best person to be giving out relationship advice, but it was nice to see that he cares enough to tell her that she’s making a mistake.

I’m sure Marc will be front and center on Willy’s big day. But like he told Amanda, he doesn’t like “going stag, hag!” Will Cliff make an appearance? That would be nice to see. However, could you imagine the Amanda/Marc antics that could happen before, during, and after the “I do’s”? It would be too hysterical to pass up. That scene in the women’s bathroom last week was priceless. Marc’s face when Willy walked out of the stall was hilarious. Michael Urie always has the best reactions.

Since the bride’s offspring couldn’t make it due to a “monkey bite,” who better to fill in as maid of honor than Posh herself. It should be interesting to see how Mrs. Beckham handles Willy’s bridezilla moments. She’s hard to handle, normally; I can’t imagine how she’ll be before she walks down the aisle. Quick, everyone hide behind the Jimmy Choo’s!

Commentary with a Co-Ed is a weekly column at Tube Talk new every Thursday.

Copyright 2007 Tube Talk