Fifteen years ago, Firefly premiered.
And slightly under fifteen years ago, it ended.
Fifteen years ago, Firefly premiered.
And slightly under fifteen years ago, it ended.
It’s that time of year again. The time when rich people gather into a big ballroom and repeatedly pat themselves on the back. The time when awards are handed out to people based on quality and also how much money they spent on campaigning. The time when a host makes some modestly humorous jokes and then disappears after the first twenty minutes. (Okay, I don’t expect much “modesty” from Stephen Colbert these days. But hey, twenty minutes.)
In June 1998, Time Magazine published an issue with a most unusual cover. The image displayed the pictured heads of four women: Susan B. Anthony, Betty Friedan, Gloria Steinem, and… Ally McBeal. The first three heads were printed in black-and-white, the fourth in full color. Beneath the picture of McBeal were printed three boldened words: “Is Feminism Dead?”
As a kid, I was afraid of everything.
That might sound like an exaggeration, but only because you didn’t know me as a kid. So let me clarify: As a kid, I was afraid of everything.
By the time she was first approached to run the all-new CW Network, Dawn Ostroff had thirty years of media experience behind her – twenty in radio news (where she had started work as a teenager), and another ten in television. In 1996, she had joined Lifetime, a network with programming aimed at women, and presided over successful shows like Any Day Now and The Division. In 2002, she left her post to become President of UPN. And when the struggling UPN was merged with the WB into a shiny new network, CBS President Les Moonves chose her to lead the way.
When he was first introduced back in 1986, the Tick was designed as a superhero parody – a deconstruction of the familiar tropes and clichés typically associated with the comic book brand. It was a tone that continued in the popular 1990s animated series, and in the early 2000s with the short-lived live-action series (which I wrote about earlier this week). Now, Ben Edlund and Amazon have brought us a new Tick – only this time (dramatic pause) it’s different.
“Gravity. It’s a harsh mistress.” – The Tick (after falling down an elevator shaft)
Superheroes are everywhere these days, aren’t they? The summer movie season is flooded with capes-and-tights blockbusters. A heroic new TV series seems to debut every few weeks. They appear on all sorts of merchandise, ranging from backpacks and T-shirts to pencils and toothbrushes. And hey, sometimes they even appear in comic books.
“Y’know,” a friend once told me, “there really aren’t that many days of summer vacation.”
You like good TV, don’t you? I mean, you obviously do, or else you wouldn’t be on this site. We at Critically Touched write a lot about good TV, and great TV, and all the TV in between. Rarely, however, do we take the time to write about bad TV.
I make fun of the Emmy Awards a lot, and with good reason. They constantly pick the same shows over and over. They fail to recognize many of television’s greatest and most laudable shows. They constantly change their own voting rules, to the point that it all currently amounts to little more than a popularity contest. And when all is said and done, they’re just another awards ceremony in which Hollywood congratulates Hollywood for being Hollywood.
Continue reading “The 2017 Emmy Nominees Are Surprising… But Not Shocking”
People sometimes ask me: “How do you know so much about television?” (Well, technically, they ask “Why do you know so much about television?”) Truth be told, I was not born with a silver remote in my mouth. I accumulated this knowledge through reading. Lots of reading.
Continue reading “8 Books for the TV Addict”
“I used to be passionate, inspired, alive. Now, I’m mostly just hungry. And… a zombie. So there’s that.” – Liv
Full disclosure: I’ve never been a fan of zombie fiction. The horror genre has delivered a seemingly never-ending string of vampires, mummies, and werewolves, and while plenty of ghoul-centric books, films, and TV shows have been spookily entertaining, zombie-centric stories, with their moaning, groaning, brain-chewing antagonists, have always struck me as repulsive. Continue reading “Get Onboard: iZombie”
Pop quiz: When was the last time you watched an episode of I Love Lucy?
How about an episode of Perry Mason? Or Maude? Or Magnum, P.I.?
Continue reading “Classic TV is Dying Out. Can It Be Saved?”
Great pilots can be a mixed blessing.
It’s certainly important for a TV series to establish itself in its very first episode, the better to hook viewers in for the long haul. And given the many moving parts involved in crafting a new series – from characters to plot to tone to production – it’s always something of a wonder when a show hits the ground running in its very first episode. Continue reading “15 Years Later, the “Kim Possible” Pilot is Still Fantastic”
Hi! My name’s Jeremy. You may know me as one of your 93 million subscribers.
You may be wondering why I’ve taken Continue reading “5 Reasons Why Netflix Shouldn’t Renew “13 Reasons Why””
Welcome back to my brief and entirely unasked-for history of The CW. Part 1 can be read here. Go read that if you haven’t already. And then come back to this page for the Roman numeral-free Part 2…
While the WB was flying high on teen-targeting hits like Buffy and Charmed, rival network UPN wasn’t faring too well. Continue reading “A Brief Unauthorized History of The CW (Part 2)”
These days, I find myself losing track of more TV shows than ever. It’s the downside of having so much on the air – series that don’t click (or used to, but have now lost their luster) tend to pile on my DVR for a couple of months, before it finally becomes too much of a commitment to catch up. Too many other shows – both new and old – have my attention at any given moment to make room for all of them. Continue reading “A Brief Unauthorized History of The CW (Part I)”
This is the first installment in what will be a series of short, one-off reviews of some of my favorite episodes in the Star Trek universe. This series will include at minimum this review, a review of ‘The Menagerie’ from the original series, and a review of The Next Generation‘s ‘The Inner Continue reading “Star Trek Reviews: The Other The Wire”
There are few moments in the history of television as iconic as the one which caps off the intro to The Mary Tyler Moore Show.
In this moment, we watch Mary Richards, the character played by the titular actress, as she gazes in wonder at the bustling urban sights of Minneapolis. She twirls a Continue reading “Mary Tyler Moore: A Trailblazer Onscreen and Off”
How do you define “Peak TV”?
At the forefront, the term refers to the fact that there have never been as many shows on American television as there are right now. (Close to 500 shows aired – either on television or one of the Internet’s numerous streaming sites – at some point in the past year. Continue reading “The 20 Best TV Shows of 2016”
Television, as the current deluge of shows across broadcast, cable, and the Internet can attest, is quite the hungry beast, constantly in need of new ideas to freshen and sustain a year-round schedule. And with millions of dollars at stake each time a new series premieres, it’s understandable that Continue reading “How “Angel” Perfected the Art of the Spinoff”
Life feels pretty short, doesn’t it? There’s never enough time to go all the places we see, or meet all the people we want to meet, or watch all the TV shows we want to watch. That last fact is especially heartbreaking, but it’s true: there’s just too much great television, and not enough time to c Continue reading “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine – The Wormhole Version”
I like the fifth season of Justified.
I know plenty of people find it to be dull and disappointing. I know it’s considered by many to be the major sore spot in what is otherwise one of this decade’s most beloved dramas. But I like it.
Okay, let me clarify: When I say I like the fifth Continue reading “Was “Boomtown” a Great TV Drama?”
Late last November, Netflix released the entire first season of Jessica Jones, its newest Marvel Comics-based series, for public viewing. That same day, Amazon Prime unveiled the full premiere season of The Man in the High Castle to any and all of its subscribers. Ever the diligent vi Continue reading “Heading Downstream: The Cracks in the Binging Model”
“Computers aren’t the thing. They’re the thing that gets us to the thing.” – Joe
I don’t enjoy reducing my life to simple declarations. Many people I know have a motto, a line by which they live their life – but I’ve never been content with compressing the essence of my goals/views/emotions down to a single statement. (This may explain why I constantly find myself changing my Continue reading “Charmless Television: Disliking Everything”
There are many labels which people use to describe the current era of television. The Golden Age of TV. Too Much TV. Peak TV. Jeremy, Turn Off the Stupid TV. More attention is being paid to the genre than ever before, in part because there’s simply so much to pay attention to.
There certainly are a Continue reading “Top 25: The Best TV Shows of 2015”
Hey, guys. Jeremy here. As most of you are undoubtedly aware, I had planned to wrap up Bottle Month with an article about one of my all-time favorite episodes of television, that being Homicide: Life on the Street‘s acclaimed “Three Men and Adena”. Unfortunately, I’m rather bogged down wi Continue reading “Bottle Month: Homicide’s “Three Men and Adena””
Written by Matthew Weiner; Directed by Jennifer Getzinger
Original Airdate: September 5, 2010
No one could have anticipated it, but 2010 would turn out to be something of a “Bottle Year”. Within its twelve-month span, numerous shows would offer up episodes that experimented with the b Continue reading “Bottle Month: Mad Men’s “The Suitcase””
Written by Sam Catlin and Moira Walley-Beckett; Directed by Rian Johnson
Original Airdate: May 23, 2010
Welcome to another installment of Bottle Month, where I take a look at famous bottle episodes from some of television’s best shows. Last week, I covered Firefly’s “Objects in Spa Continue reading “Bottle Month: Breaking Bad’s “Fly””