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Game of Thrones is just trolling book readers now, The Good Wife ends, and more Philip K. Dick adaptations.

Tuesday May 10th 2016

The Watercooler

“What’s in the tower?”
“That’s enough for one day.”

If you don’t want to know, don’t click! but if you want to know why book readers, and people who've Googled fan theories, kind of freaked out at that Tower of Joy flashback on this week's episode of Game of Thrones, Vulture has you covered.

After waiting forever to get that flashback, of course the show and The Three-Eyed Raven decided we can wait at last another week to get to the good stuff. People online were not pleased.

“In Westeros you can’t count on the climate, history, science, family, marriage, or the government most days anymore. Miracles are getting more frequent. And look at the narrative entropy: two houses at war, then five, then scattered bands of people, now all kinds of political confusion and rulers who can barely maintain their capitals, the rest of their territory be damned. The violation of guest rites used to be a shock. Now we have multiple examples of people killing their own family, by blood or law: Lysa, Tyrion, Stannis, Ramsay, Ellaria, Euron, and the new Lord Umber in his fantasies.”  The A.V. Club “newbies” recap has some good stuff on the new generation of lords, and some complaints about pacing. The “experts" recap is here, and is also good this week.

Here’s this week’s 10 most important moments.

Vox has the winners and losers.

The A.V. Club has the guide to everyone who died this week.

“The Old Man In The Tree informs Bran that he is going to have to stay inside said tree until he “learns everything.” Watching Game of Thrones, we are all Bran: crippled, powerless, forced to watch people we don’t recognize or care about slice each other’s throats open with regularity, wrenched from scenes before we can even comprehend what’s happening, privy only to an old white man’s version of events and imprisoned inside an old tree.” I appreciate a snarky recap, and MTV wins the award for this week. I laughed at this line, “Really excited to finally watch white men stab each other on Game of Thrones.” True.

Vulture has some (possible giant spoilers, if true) thoughts on Ramsay Bolton’s newest houseguests, and how much we should be worried about them.

Cersei Lannister motivational posters.

Even SNL made fun of how long the Jon Snow reveal was taking.

“Honestly, the guy in the best mood in the series right now may be disgraced maester-medieval mad scientist-now-master of whispers Qyburn, who taking over Varys’ spy network of children by giving them candy. I said this earlier this week, but seeing Qyburn give a bunch of dirty peasant children candy is easily one of the most frightening things I have ever seen on Game of Thrones.”  So true. I worry about those kids.


Three separate people at my gym told me yesterday morning that they hated The Good Wife series finale. The A.V. Club didn’t go that far, but they did give it a C+.

“One of the great things about the finale is that it ends smack in the middle of everything, as was pointed out to me on Twitter, essentially in media res. Life doesn't stop because the TV show does. But I did not find all the loose ends frustrating, because though there is plot left up in the air, Alicia’s character is a certainty.” Maybe people hated it because it’s so similar to The Sopranos finale? Fans really don't like it when everything isn’t tied up in a nice bow, and the characters's story just keeps going on without us.

TVLine talked to showrunners Robert and Michelle King, and they “they erred on the side of ambiguity and discomfort” on purpose.

Vulture has some ideas for spin-offs. I would watch several of these.


People Talking About TV

“What has replaced these middle-class shows is a bevy of implicitly richer ones, which sit as part of an overall culture that has in recent years welcomed, if not downright embraced, a normative depiction of parenthood as difficult, exhausting, and begrudgingly worthwhile—even (or especially, in some cases) for people whom, at first glance, one would assume should have a more enjoyable life.” Togetherness and Catastrophe get singled out as two shows that are kind of freaking out people who want kids someday.

“She also rejects the most explicitly feminized part of Watson’s character by refusing to be a cheerleader. She admires and appreciates Sherlock, but doesn’t look up to him; after all, she was introduced to him as an addict, not as a brilliant detective. She acknowledges and accepts Holmes’s failings in a way other Watsons do not. By empowering Watson, Elementary undermines the fantasy of Sherlock Holmes: He’s no longer the infallible god of logic, but just an exceptionally intelligent human being.” Elementary used to be my go-to show to watch while only half paying attention, so I appreciate this argument that Joan Watson is the best version of Watson on TV or on film. I’m sure this article has started many arguments.

“GARNER | [Laughs] Victor had no handle on it. Sometimes I could piece together a bit of the Rambaldi plot. Sometimes I was pretty fluent in it, but definitely a lot of the time, it went over my head. GARBER | I had no idea what was going on, but I’m doing a show now [DC’s Legends of Tomorrow] that I have no idea what’s going on. [Laughs] I’m not very smart.” TVLine has a pretty extensive Alias oral history, in honor of the 10 year anniversary of the series finale. If you need confirmation that everyone got along, or where in L.A. you can purchase a latex dress, this is the article for you.


The Business

Bryan Cranston, Ronald D. Moore are working on a show that will adapt the works of Philip K. Dick, which is hugely exciting news for me. Cranston will star, and Moore (Battlestar Galactica and Outlander, in case you’ve forgotten) will produce. Electric Dreams: The World of Philip K. Dick will be a 10 part anthology series that will be broadcast first on the UK’s Channel 4. I am 100% on board with this.

Netflix is getting into unscripted TV, with a ten episode order for Ultimate Beastmaster, a reality competition produced by Sylvester Stallone featuring a very demanding obstacle course. It will be filmed locally in 6 countries, and the winners will face off in the finale.

Attention Simpsons fans, Beijing now has a store that just sells Simpsons gear.

Wolf Hall added some more awards to the pile at this weekend’s BAFTA Television Awards.

Casting: Matthew Broderick and Shirley MacLaine will star in Bettyville, a drama about a mother and a son in small town Missouri. Anne Heche and James Tupper will play the leads in Syfy’s post-apocalyptic thriller Aftermath. Dylan Walsh has been cast as the newest crime boss on Longmire.

CBS renewed Criminal Minds (a show I’ve never seen an episode of, somehow) for a 12th season.

Hulu has ordered a pilot for Dawn, a drama about a group of neanderthals who come into contact with a group of homo sapiens.

Syfy ordered a pilot for Krypton, the show about Superman’s grandfather.

A show based on the Locke & Key comic is in development again.

HBO is pretty confident that we will see some of the work Jon Stewart is doing for them by election day.

EW has a list of what the status is of all the network shows, so if you want to know which is safe, on the bubble or already cancelled this is the list for you.

The Hollywood Reporter has their list of 10 on the bubble shows, and if you’d told me a year ago that this is where The Muppets ended up I would not have believed you. How did they mess up such a sure thing?


What To Watch

It's actually kind of a slow week for new TV, so I am taking advantage of that to catch up on The Americans and Outlander. So many wigs!

First impressions, the Dana Carvey hosted show that is all about impressions, starts tonight on USA. He even brought The Church Lady out of storage to make fun of Trump and Ted Cruz.

They very funny, and extremely silly Angie Tribeca is now available on Hulu.

Decider has a list of the best costume dramas currently available on Netflix, and you all know I love a good costume drama. North and South, one of my favorites, made the list.

If you missed the earlier episodes of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, or you just haven’t started watching it at all, it’s currently a free download on iTunes.

In honor of Sir David Attenborough’s 90th birthday The Atlantic ranked all 70 episodes of the Life Collection, so if you only want to watch the best episodes of birds doing stuff, this is the list for you.


Odds and Ends

Full Frontal said goodbye to their Ted Cruz Thesaurus. Sad, they still had so many sick burns left.

The Late Late Show had Sharon Stone on as a guest the other night, and Sebastian Stan decided to just be honest about how big of a crush he has on her. It’s pretty amazing. Might as well go for it, right?

The Tonight Show got good sport Jodie Foster to play Egg Russian Roulette.

Ryan Gosling didn’t try his suit on before he came out on Jimmy Kimmel Live, and it’s definitely a couple sizes too small.

EW ranks the actors playing dual roles on TV right now, and Tobias Menzies should get some kind of award for the work he’s doing on Outlander.

Titus from Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt has great nicknames for Kimmy, which are all edited together here for your enjoyment.

Here’s all of the best Schmidt and Cece moments from New Girl.

Trailers: Things look really intense in the new trailer for Orange is the New Black. I literally rolled my eyes at how lame this trailer is for Outcast. Who knows if it’s any good with a trailer this generically bad. Wayward Pines returns on May25th, and here’s the latest trailer. The principal in HBO’s Vice Principals is played by Bill Murray, who we meet in this trailer.

If it’s not too early to pick a Halloween costume, might I suggest checking out io9’s ranking of all the monsters from the original Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers? The one that’s just a pile of eyeballs is pretty epic.


Thanks for reading! I will be back on Thursday with more.

-Alana Cloutier


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