Friday, April 15, 2011

Pop Culture Winners of the Week (April 11-15)...

- Paul Reiser. As if it wasn't enough to come back to the network that made you a household name-- in your original time slot to boot!-- this week he also had a sandwich at Nate 'N Al's named for him. Very few people have experienced this honor, and I believe the only ones in Hollywood who have hit it are Larry King and now Reiser. I have to admit I thought it sounded kind of suspect at first: turkey and salami, sure, but coleslaw and Thousand Island dressing? Won't that make the rye bread soggy? But I am happy to report I sampled it this week, and it works extremely well! And I also pre-screened the majority of his short and sweet first season, and though it has a Curb Your Enthusiasm like sentimentality and style, it has much more heart.

- Ricky Gervais. This week Science (formerly The Science Channel but I guess they thought dropping the TV reference made them...more high-brow? I don't know) announced they were officially renewing his new series An Idiot Abroad, which mixes humor and adventure and was by far one of the stand-out TCA panels of early 2011, despite it coming to us via satellite. Every week the episode is fresh and hilarious, and Gervais is a genius that deserves to be on TV for a long, long time.

- The causes of diversity, education, health, and going green. NBC relaunched "The More You Know" campaign with a sleek new look that makes caring look cool! They utilized all of their hot young stars, like Zachary Levi, Matt Bomer, Mae Whitman, Seth Meyers, Alison Sweeney, Ellie Kemper, Jason Ritter, and ?uestlove to drive home the messages, too, and instead of just delivering dry text, asking everyone to just stand still, look serious, and read the teleprompter, they actually let the individuals' personalities to shine through. It's looser and more fun, making you want to keep clicking on all of the dozens of clips, even if they're still not quite "there" in terms of going viral.

- It’s been a great week to be a fan. Of pretty much anything and everything:
  • First NBC and Friday Night Lights announced a prop auction to coincide with the airing of the fifth and final season, and let’s face it, if the show made me want to move to a small town in Texas, of course I’m going to jump at the chance to own a little piece of the Panthers, the Lions, the Taylors, or the Riggins! And judging from my Twitter feed, I am not alone in that!
  • But then FOX stepped it up by offering Fringe fans a prop giveaway for those who check into the show between now and the third season finale in a month. I am not all caught up on Fringe right now (work gets in the way of watching TV for fun sometimes), but even I know that’s too good a deal to pass up!
  • In the case of Supernatural, hell-atus is finally over tonight, delivering a brand new, lighter fare episode. But if that wasn't enough, not only was #JIBCon a rousing success featuring so many more silly and candid moments between the actors than we ever get here in the states, but TV Guide's Fan Favorites issue hit stands, as well. For the second time in just a few weeks Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki made the cover, even if it was a much smaller picture this time. Neither of those guys seems to care much about awards, but let's face it, the fans do! And in addition to the show taking the top prize for "Favorite Sci-Fi Series," Ackles and co-star Misha Collins walked away with individual awards, as well. I have no idea how the fans do it (the fact that they span so many countries and timezones probably helps, though), but they manage to vote around the clock to get the boys any and every title, even if no real prize comes with it. Case in point? Ackles winning E! Online's "Alpha Male Madness" poll, as well.
  • And of course, Scream. Fans of the original Scream franchise may go into the new installment with trepidation. I know I certainly thought the old favorites would be bumped to the background to make way for the new, younger cast to carry on the tale, but thankfully Kevin Williamson is respectful and not only offered many a nod to the original trilogy sprinkled throughout this slight reboot, but he gave each of the original cast members something to actually do. He further developed their characters in away that most horror films never both to take the time, and perhaps most importantly, he finally allowed Sydney to grow the hell up and stop being on the verge of tears at every turn!

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