The TV MegaSite's Blog Post #155

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The TV MegaSite's Blog Post #155

Friday 1/2/15

I've been watching the "Broadchurch" DVD. I had put off watching it because I was watching "Gracepoint" (the American version) and didn't want to get influenced or confused. I've enjoyed both, but I think they would have been better off if they'd either a) made "Gracepoint"'s plot much more different, or b) waited a while before making the US version. People nowadays have access to UK shows on the net and on BBC America, so those who already watched the UK version are going to naturally prefer that version (even if "Gracepoint" were better---I think most people like the one they saw first better). Many critics, too, saw "Broadchurch" and panned "Gracepoint," (unfairly, I think) which probably told some viewers not to bother watching. Trying to watch one when you just watched the other is too difficult. It's like if you watched the same play with two different casts, and in one version, they changed the dialogue quite a lot as well. I don't even like to read a book and then watch the movie or series, unless it's been so long that I've kind of forgotten what happened in the book. Otherwise, your mind keeps trying to make comparisons, whether you want it to or not. But there weren't enough changes, so you can't just watch it like it's a different show... that's why I had to give up reading the "True Blood" books for a while, too.

I'm not sure it would have mattered, though, because I think that both shows are too slow-moving for most American viewers, particularly FOX viewers. It might have done okay on a cable channel, where viewers tend to be more patient.  FOX does a lot of fast-paced, high-action shows, so this one really doesn't fit that mold. Not only that, but "Gracepoint" was actually longer than "Broadchurch" by 2 episodes. They threw in a lot of unnecessary plot and character stuff - more red herrings. "Broadchurch" is much tighter. Still, I did like the ending of "Gracepoint" way better, so it might have worked if we hadn't had ""Broadchurch to compare it to. Also, I don't think those boys in "Broadchurch" look 11.... more like 13 or 14. In the "Gracepoint" version, they definitely look more their ages. Especially Danny.

I think that American TV dramas nowadays have very complex plots (overly-complex, a lot of times), with 2 or 3 subplots at least, and so that's why they felt they had to add a lot more to the American version, as well as stretching it out to 10 episodes. They had to add in more romances, and make the plot twist more.

There are a lot of American TV shows that were based on UK shows, and many of them have been successful, but unfortunately, there are other factors besides just the quality of the writing and acting that affect the show. It's too bad because I really liked "Gracepoint," and seeing twice as much David Tennant is always better! Also, I particularly liked Anna Gunn's character and the way she played this part, and the relationship between Ellie and Emmett was intriguing. Lastly, the way they ended the show was a fascinating cliff-hanger that I would have liked to have seen resolved.  Disappointing!

"Broadchurch"'s second season starts in the UK in a few days, but it doesn't air here until March on BBC America. I should be finished with season 1 tonight, so I'll be ready!

Actually, I just thought of one thing that I didn't like about either version. When Ellie asks Susan how she could not have known that her husband was having sex with her daughters... Ellie's a cop, as well as a mother, so she should know that this happens all the time. Pedophiles are very sneaky and take advantage of every possible opportunity. They also threaten their victims and prey on ones they know are vulnerable. She should know all this stuff. I know it, and I'm not either a cop or a mom.  Susan's not half as smart as Ellie, so it would be pretty easy to fool her, too. It's an important plot point as Ellie later finds out just how wrong she was, but to me it seems a bit contrived and not very realistic. Other than that, I love the show. Both versions!

I frequently write letters to both Soap Opera Digest and Entertainment Weekly, and sometimes they publish them. My latest letter is in the 12/29 issue of SOD. You can see it here or check it out in the issue on page 94. They'd had an article about how, despite the fact that soaps repeat some of the same stories and dialogue over and over, they try to keep it fresh. I object to that whole premise, anyway, that they should be so repetitive, but also, in the article, both the writer and the quotes from actors made it sound like they HAD to repeat and it was part of what made it a soap. So that's why I wrote this letter, as you can see...

Soaps have always been repetitive, but they're much more so now. I guess they feel that everyone who watches is either old or doesn't watch too often, so they want to make sure we know what's happening. Viewers are just not that stupid. Or at least, they don't have to be. If they wrote the shows better and didn't treat their viewers like idiots, they'd get more viewers. Word would get out! There would be many articles about how the soaps are no longer just stupid and repetitive, and full of clichés. People would seek them out. Obvi.

I'm still annoyed that "Selfie" has been canceled by ABC, and I'm not the only one! There's a Save Selfie campaign going on. You can see the tweets about it or sign the petition and see how else you can help!

Back in the spring, I got the idea for this new site  It'll be basically a list site for celebrities (lists about celebrities).  Then I got really busy and put it off. One of our site's volunteers, Thane, is working on it with me. I got a design from a professional designer, so as soon as Thane does the technical stuff, and then I do my part with the lists of famous celebrities (based on this algorithm) then we can start it up and at least do the beta. This will be a separate site from The TV MegaSite, but of course we'll make them work together in tandem. It's very exciting to start a new site!

Saturday 1/3/15

I've been trying to catch up on my DVD's - the ones I review for the site! I finished putting up the "Smallville" transcripts that Suzan D. sent me. It took me a little while! She's still helping us out with others.

There's a great movie on Hallmark Channel tonight "Surprised by Love", with Tim Conway. I definitely need to watch that one. He's awesome! I grew up watching him on TV, especially "The Carol Burnett Show" Saturday nights.

If you're a big William Shatner fan like me, you might want to know two things. First of all, he did this great show in the 70's called "Barbary Coast" where he played a master of disguise in San Francisco in the 1800's, and it's finally out on DVD! I just bought a copy. I hope it holds up to the test of time.  The second thing is that if you get a Priceline credit card (on their site), it has a photo of William Shatner on it! I had to get one :) Yes, I'm a big geek and a lifelong Shatner fan. I even watched T.J. Hooker, which is probably the worst show he ever did. He did much better shows later on, like "Boston Legal" and "Shit My Dad Says", and the reality show "Invasion of Iowa" (one of the few reality shows I ever watched).

Honestly, I hate reality shows, so there has to be someone I really like on it, in order for me to watch, or a bunch of someone's. Or some really great comedy on it. I also liked "Dirty Soap" on E! a few years back because it had a lot of soap stars, and I've watched them all for years.

Lisa Rinna and Eileen Davidson are on "Real Housewives of Beverly Hills", but I don't watch that one. I do like those ladies, but it would have to be all stars I like, in order to watch it.  Maybe if it had Cady McClain or Finola Hughes...

Sunday 1/4/15

I'm glad that it's a new year and all of my favorite shows are coming back! It was great to have "The Good Wife" back tonight. I'm so glad Cary got out. Great episode as always. I also ordered Season 1 because I only saw last season and this one so far.

I miss "The Mentalist", though. Looks like they've moved it to Wednesdays! I hope that means it'll get better ratings there.

I watched "Miracle on 34th Street" this weekend. It's my favorite Christmas movie, but I haven't seen it for a while. It's still really good.

I was reading about "The Goldbergs" on ABC, a show that I tried and didn't like. It takes place in the 80's. I remember last year, they had an episode about "Return of the Jedi". This week, I read that they discovered their sister's "New Kids on the Block" memorabilia (from when she was younger).  I was shocked because they didn't come along until around 1989, so how is this show now in the 90's? Well, someone told me that the guy who runs the show doesn't write them in any particular order and that they all just are about "sometime in the 80's". That's awful. Just another reason I wouldn't watch that show. I remember that time, so it would really bother me to see them jump around like that. Well, maybe if the show was really really funny, it wouldn't bother me...but it's not.

I've been spending the rest of my time working on our news and schedule pages. Next week's is at this page. I usually work on them on the weekend so check back!

Monday 1/5/15

I've been still trying to catch up on the DVD's that the TV networks send me, so I can review them, and also new shows on my DVR. I don't know how I always get so far behind!

I came down with a cold, so when I'm not sleeping, I'm just watching TV.

This morning I got to interview "Archer" executive producer Matt Thompson. I just watched 6 episodes they sent me! The show comes back this Wednesday. It was great to chat with him. He's very funny!

There's a new "General Hospital" web show, hosted by Nancy Lee Grahn (Alexis), called GH Now, starting soon!

As usual, I watched "Major Crimes", which is always great. I was very glad to have "Gotham" back, too! Woo hoo!

In my bedroom DVR, I recorded "Revenge" last night. I'm way behind on that one!

I also watched 3 episodes of "Justified", which returns soon. I love that show SO much!! Raylan is really bad-ass this year. It's just an awesome show.

Later on, I watched "Empire", a new soap on FOX. It's very good and starts this Wednesday. It's a really intense soap opera set in a music company.

Speaking of soaps... we have a lot of great volunteers who work on our site every day writing Daytime Recaps (short recaps) and Daytime Updates, so please check them out! They also choose the funniest lines from each day's episode in our Best Lines for "Bold & Beautiful," "Days of Our Lives," "General Hospital," and "The Young and The Restless." We have a lot of great volunteers!

Tuesday 1/6/15

Today was a miserable day of being sick and sleeping along. After I got up, I still watched a lot of TV.... I don't have much energy for anything else! Good thing I have tons of stuff to watch.

Well, I did update my blogs and put up the soap transcripts, and a few other things. But nothing like usual.

I enjoyed watching "Forever" again this week. So glad to have that show back. It's always good. One of the Baldwin brothers was on it as a guest-star, and he did a good job. Of course he turned out to be the murderer. Too many shows do this. There's a famous guest-star -- of course he's the murderer!

Wednesday 1/7/15

I was still sick today and spent most of the day in bed... I watched this new upcoming FOX show "Backstrom". It's pretty good. It's about a police detective who's very self-destructive and unlikable (kind of like "House" but with a gun). I watched 3 1/2 episodes on FOX's press site, but then it stopped and I couldn't get it to re-start. I may try it again later. Perhaps their website was just getting too much traffic or something! It premieres January 22.

I also watched "The Mentalist", and it was a very good episode. The ending was a bit weird, though. I wonder if they'll carry the stuff from this episode over to the next. Jane seemed very confident that Abbott's former boss Bill would back off, but it seemed ominous that they left it at his confident assurance. Also, it was kind of weird that he gave that note to Theresa about her birthday present and it just said, "I have no idea." That's not like him at all.

I also watched some older episodes of "The Daily Show" from a few weeks ago. Paul McCartney sure is looking and sounding old now. His voice is all husky. I guess that happens when you get older, from a lifetime of singing rock and pop music (not to mention smoking!).

Then I went to OnDemand and watched "Marvel's Agent Carter" and "Galavant". I love both!! Great, fun entertainment. I'm a sucker for anything scifi or fantasy-related, anyway.

Someone emailed me about our "Days of Our Lives" Updates page this week... apparently she's not used to the internet, so when she saw an ad on our page that asks for you to click on it to make a donation to Amazon, she thought you had to donate to see the updates! I wish I could make everyone do that...LOL! We'd have a much better site because I could then hire people to actually work for a salary. Anyway, I went to the page to see what she was talking about at first, and the page was messed up for some reason. It still had the old "Merry Christmas" sign from last weekend, which I'd taken down. The coding somehow got messed up. Irritating because then I had to fix it. Just one more thing to do. I did explain that it was an ad and told her to keep scrolling down to find the updates...

But anyway, none of us get a salary - we're all volunteers. The little bit of ad money we get goes towards hosting costs.  Because our site (and some associated sites) is so huge, it costs money for me to host it, and for the domain names, and a few other expenses like postage. Also, every year I give our volunteers Amazon gift certificates for the holidays. Some of it comes out of my pocket, though, because the ad money we get doesn't quite cover all of that.  In fact, up until recently, I was paying off a huge credit card debt that I'd run up for the site years ago, when I thought we were going to be making more money, but I just decided to pay it off ourselves, so we would no longer have that hanging over us.

So every little bit helps - if you enjoy this site and buy anything from Amazon, please buy it through our site, or help us out with the donation thingy or clicking on other stuff. I don't plan to ever charge people to read updates or anything else... we want to keep everything free.

The ads support this site. Google ad rules prevent me from asking you to you-know-what on them. Honestly! Isn't that a really stupid rule? But they mean it. They've shut down my ads before when they thought I violated their dumb rules...

Thursday 1/8/15

Don't forget to check out our What's New Page. We add things to the site every single day!

I was supposed to interview Aaron Stanford & Amanda Schull of Syfy's new show "12 Monkeys" this morning, but I was just too sick and went back to sleep instead.

Do you have certain shows you like to watch? If so, make sure you let the networks know. They're all on Twitter and Facebook, you know, as well as having websites. They all have contact info on their websites so you can contact them. They do keep track of the emails people send, and tweets and posts, and what they say in them.  I usually go on their websites once or twice a year to ask them not to cancel my favorite shows and to tell them which of their shows I like best. I did it this week on Twitter and Facebook as well.

I watch more CW shows than any other network, followed by ABC, then FOX, then CBS...and only one on NBC. It's hard to keep up, though.  On The CW I watch "The Flash," "Supernatural," "Beauty & The Beast," "Reign," "Arrow," "Vampire Diaries," " The Originals" & "The 100". however, I'm only caught up on the first three. On ABC, I watch "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.," "Revenge," "Once Upon a Time," "Agent Carter," "Galavant," "Forever," "Selfie," "How to Get Away with Murder," & "Castle." I'm caught up on all of them except for the first two (and they canceled "Selfie"). On FOX, I watch "Sleepy Hollow," "Bones," "Gotham," "Empire," "Gracepoint," and "Family Guy." I'm caught up on all of them except for the first one (and they canceled "Gracepoint"). On CBS, I watch "Person of Interest," "Big Bang Theory," "Good Wife," "The Mentalist," and "Elementary," and I'm caught up on all except for the first one. On NBC, I only watch "Constantine." I like "Grimm," but I'd have to go back and watch all of the past seasons still.

If not for cable TV, I'd probably be caught up on all of the shows! There are lots of great shows on cable as well.

I saw on the net that on yesterday's "General Hospital," Luke thinks that "Fluke" is really Bill Eckert. He makes an allusion to his older sister Patricia and jokes that he and Luke are cousins (he could be lying, of course). Now, I guessed months ago that it might be Bill because he seemed to only recognize places and people from the 90's. However, it still makes no sense, and this is why I dismissed it....Bill was a good guy. He was not a mobster or into hurting people, and he wasn't a lecherous creep. He didn't know Sonny and he had nothing against Luke. So all of this makes no sense. I hate when they try to re-write history. It would have made MUCH more sense to be Damian Smith, who was already a villain and had reasons to hate them both. Whatever lame excuse they come up with to explain why Bill Eckert is now a completely psycho, I'm guessing it's not going to make any sense to me or other long-time fans. We probably won't buy it. I've pretty much stopped watching the show regularly, so it doesn't matter, I guess. They've already lost me, and people like me, who expect better stories.

We really miss our nightly fix of Stephen Colbert. Jon Stewart is ok but not nearly as funny.

It's great to have my favorite sitcoms back: ""Hot in Cleveland," "The Big Bang Theory" and "Two and a Half Men."

Friday 1/9/15

My TV was being taken up by Daytime Transcripts (trying to catch up on those since I've been sick all week and way behind!) so I decided to try out "The Fall" on Netflix. So many people said it's great. Yeah, it's a good drama, and very intense, but for me it was too slow. Also, just so violent and full of sex, and mixing of the two in a kind of gross way. I'm no prude, but I've just seen so many of those shows, like "Criminal Minds," "Law & Order: SVU," "The Following" et al. so it was just too much. I love the actors in it, but I just couldn't bring myself to watch a second episode.

I decided to check out the show "Outlander" that I've heard so much about. It's on Starz, which we don't get, and I couldn't find it anywhere else except iTunes. Turns out, it's a really great show, especially if you like romantic historic fiction and don't mind time travel as well. I used to read romance novels, and of course watch soaps, so that aspect of it is great. I love time travel stories, too. It's so well done and right up my alley. Make sure you watch it with the closed-captioning on, though...they sure have some thick accents! In case you don't know, it's about a British nurse right after World War II who goes on vacation in Scotland with her husband and ends up traveling back to 1743! I'm only on the second episode now but enjoying it.

It's wonderful to have "Real Time with Bill Maher" back tonight on HBO! We were very relieved that he didn't use any of the same jokes that he did when we saw him on New Year's Eve in concert.

From what I've seen now, I guess that Fluke on  "General Hospital" didn't actually say he was Bill Eckert -- Luke just assumed. So that's good. I hope he's someone more plausible, like Damian Smith.

Have a great weekend!

You can find my older blog posts at

Chronicles - My personal blog, which is not about TV.

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