Not content to let the world exist only with a show called Californication, Showtime has decided to completely drop all semblance of nuance and introduce a new show called Masters of Sex. In initially puzzling casting news, this show will star Hobbit-esque Michael Sheen, best known for being a fairly forthright, upstanding chap who starred as Tony Blair in The Queen, and also as a vampire in Twilight, but we won’t hold that against him. Continue reading
Somehow I managed to miss the fact that Anthony Bourdain has a new TV show. How could this be? He’s basically the patron saint of snarky food enthusiasts, so you can imagine how deeply I am emotionally invested here. Luckily I have friends (Dugan) who are also snarky food enthusiasts and were similarly shocked that I had not seen said new show. Before everyone panics, you should know that it has all been rectified and the world can continue on, at least until November because this is 2012 and it’ll all be over soon anyway. Continue reading
Portland, OR has recently been on the map due to the popularity of IFC’s comedy show “Portlandia” (spotlighted here, an earlier blog post you’ve most likely already read, since certainly you’ve “favorite-d” this site by now….)
But “Portlandia” is far from the only TV program that has featured the beautiful city of Portland, Oregon. Check out the following programs, each of which has featured Portland, OR in some way or another:
So there’s this really awesome show about fairy tales that airs on ABC Sunday nights. It’s a HUGE hit. Okay, well, this isn’t that show. But it is the other show about fairy tales that premiered this fall on NBC. “Grimm” tells the story of a police detective who is the latest in a long line of Grimms. Yes, as in Grimm’s Fairy Tales. Most importantly, the show is shot in Portland, OR, and uses the city’s rainy weather perfectly to set an eerie mood in this detective drama. Bonus points for not only filming but also setting the story in the city of Portland, unlike…
“Leverage” is shot in Portland, but has actually taken place in Boston, MA up through the latest season. Near the set, lucky onlookers can even see police cruisers marked up with Boston Police Department decals. “Leverage” has been a success for TNT, as the show just recently wrapped its fourth season. Rumor has it that the upcoming season’s story will actually take place in the city of Portland. More aerial shots, please!
Life Unexpected, The CW
A big R.I.P. for this show, which was hailed as the new “Everwood” and “Gilmore Girls” for The CW network upon its premiere, but never quite found enough of an audience to stay on the air beyond its short run. While “Life, Unexpected” wasn’t filmed in Portland, all those beautiful transition shots between scenes featuring Portland’s skyline would have made you think otherwise. Plus, the main characters worked at a radio station and a bar – that’s so Portland!
Little People, Big World, TLC
Technically filmed right outside the city of Portland, this TLC reality show featured the Roloff family, led by husband and wife Matt and Amy – both whom happened to be little people. The show documented the tribulations faced by such a family over its multi-season run, such as the difficulties in reaching for that really high cereal box in the grocery store, or what happens when you’re youngest son is nearly killed by your home-made pumpkin launcher. You know, the usual.
Next time you visit The History Channel, you’re sure to notice an intriguing new trend. The History Channel is delving into the lives of the blue collar America and allowing us a peek into the dangerous, gritty, hard labor jobs of those who lead a a do-or-die career outside the walls of a cubicle. Though many Americans are currently frustrated with the job market and feel upset by the lack of career opportunities that match our hopes and qualifications, we realize we do not have to risk our lives in the Louisiana swamp lands hunting gators to feed our families such as those on “Swamp People” who call the bayou home.
The characters featured on “Swamp People” work as hunters and trappers on Louisiana’s largest swamp and enjoy a historic Cajun culture. The show follows their endeavors during hunting season, but most of those involved on the show have off season jobs which are equally physically demanding such as repairing large boats and driving large 18-wheelers. Watching a man in overalls wrestle and rolling gator as he shouts obscenities through out the swamp couldn’t be more entertaining.
From the comfort of our living room we admire the brave women of “Ice Road Truckers” who skillfully maneuver trucks weighing tons through slippery terrain and winding roads. “Ice Road Truckers” shows how extreme weather conditions and heavy loads can endanger the lives of of each driver on nearly a daily basis. It’s nothing short of amazing to watch these women and men drive in conditions so dangerous and threatening.
The fishers on “Big Shrimpin’” nicknamed, “Bullfrog”, “Roundhead” and “Redbone” are boat captains who aim to make the most of shrimp season as they sail upon rough waters amongst tumultuous weather conditions to bring home large loads of shrimp to sell for a big price. Stakes are high with the pressure to reel in the pounds before the season ends.
The rise in popularity of such shows indicates an increased interest in lives and professions that most of us can’t relate to. Dealing with gators, stormy seas, and ice ridden roads for a living are not typical trails for the everyday American. The characters on the shows are colorful as well with accents and slang not heard on a typical day.
This Sunday marks the premiere of “Rachael vs. Guy: Celebrity Cook-Off” on Food Network. The new cooking competition features Rachael Ray and Guy Fieri coaching two teams of celebrities to see who the best coach is and which celebrity is the top chef. It’s essentially “Worst Cooks in America” with the regular folk replaced by D-List celebrities like Joey Fatone and Lou Diamond Phillips.
Although celebrity competitions and reality shows are commonplace on other cable networks like E! and VH1, it’s strange to see a specialty channel like Food Network getting into the game. If Food Network can pull it off, the response from fans might lead other specialty networks to create their own reality shows featuring celebrities. Here are just a few examples of celebrity reality shows we might see in the future.
Discovery Channel – Dirty Stars
If celebrities want to cash in on their last 15 minutes of fame, you might as well make them work for it. “Dirty Stars” would take a group of washed up celebrities and make them travel around the world doing the worst possible jobs. Who wouldn’t want to see Spencer Pratt slum in up at a water sewage plant or Lisa Rinna deliver a baby calf?