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News Around the Net

So Seinfeld premiered twenty-five years ago last week?  Holy cow.  Here’s a great look back at the beginning of the show.  This is an interesting assessment of the show’s influence by noting, counter-intuitively, Seinfeld’s lack of imitators.  This is also worth your time: The New York Post’s list of Seinfeld’s 25 greatest contributions to the English language.

Somehow Community has once again escaped cancellation and is now so close to the attainment of the “Six Seasons and a Movie” dream.  Nice to see this much-loved (though I guess little-watched) show dodge death once again.

Devin Faraci’s reviews of the Transformers film series are absolutely hilarious.  His review of the latest debacle, Age of Extinction, is here.  After reading that, I encourage you to travel back in time through the terrible-ness, and enjoy his review of the third film, Dark of the Moon, as well as the second film, Revenge of the Fallen, which Mr. Faraci correctly identifies as one of the worst films ever made.  These are very funny pieces as well as astute dissections of why these films have been such disappointments.

Alan Sepinwall has another great “TV Rewind” column, this one looking back at “Thanksgiving Orphans,” a classic season 5 episode of Cheers.  (It’s the one that ends with the huge food-fight.)  Now I need to go back and re-watch that episode immediately.

Great article about a great movie: a look back at The Beatles’ A Hard Days Night.  The movie is a minor miracle, something which should have been dreck but instead was gold.  I really love this film.

I still love listening to Kevin Smith spin yarns, but it’s been a bit of a stretch since I was last excited for one of his films.  (I still haven’t seen his last flick, Red State.  I’m curious to watch it one of these days, but it’s been a low priority for me.)  I don’t have any clue what to make of his latest film, Tusk, a horror film inspired by one of his podcasts.  Like the new poster, though.

The apocalypse is un-cancelled!  Pacific Rim 2 is actually happening?  I have mixed feelings.  I love Guillermo del Toro and if he has another story to tell in this universe then I’m game.  Still, while the first film was a visual feast and the action was amazing, I felt the story fell way short.  I hope the sequel, if it really gets made, has more interesting characters anchoring the story.

This is a fantastic interview with phenomenal actor Alan Tudyk, in which he discusses several of his roles in-depth, as well as his commitment to never … [continued]

Browse Josh's Portfolio and the Comic, Reviews or Blog archive.

“Sorry, we’re closed” — Josh’s Favorite TV Series Finales!

As I prepare for this weekend’s series finale of Battlestar Galactica (and contemplate life without that brilliant show, one of the greatest of the last two decades), I’ve been thinking about some of the great series finales of the recent past.  Here are some of my favorites, counting down from ten!

10.  Cheers — “One For the Road” — Diane Chambers (Shelly Long) returns in an attempt to re-kindle her romance with Sam (Ted Danson) in this extra-long finale.  To be honest, it’s been years since I’ve seen this one, but my recollection is of really enjoying it.  Bringing back Shelly Long, who was pretty much the star of the show (along with Danson) for the first half of its run, was a brilliant idea.  And the final scene is perfect — Sam waving away a customer while saying “sorry, we’re closed.”  Sniff!

9.  Star Trek: Deep Space Nine — “What You Leave Behind” — I am giving props here to the entire 10-hour, 9-episode “final chapter” of this, the greatest of the Star Trek series.  The show finally becomes what it has always flirted with: a true serial, as seven seasons worth of storylines come to fruition over the course of this magnificent final epic run of episodes.  The Dominion War escalates, a secret section of Starfleet’s complicity in attempted genocide is revealed, and Captain Benjamin Sisko must finally fulfill his destiny as Emissary of the Prophets (a story thread begun in the series’ pilot episode). The show was notable for its enormous cast of recurring characters, and everyone gets his/her due here (with quite a number of popular characters meeting their demise!).  The show gets bumped down a bit on my list because the actual final two-hour episode isn’t quite as great as the episodes leading up to it (it looks like they used up their special effects budget, as one of the major battle sequences is composed almost entirely of recycled footage, something that eagle-eyed fans like me noticed).  Still, the melancholy tone (so unusual for a Trek series) and the sad, final shot of Jake Sisko looking out the window for his lost father as the camera pulls back and the station slowly fades away into the blackness of space is just perfection.

8.  Justice League Unlimited — “Destroyer” — Classic DC Comics villain Darkseid launches a full-scale invasion of Earth, and even the combined might of practically every character (hero & villain) who ever appeared on this amazing animated show are powerless to stop him.  In an epic battle atop the ruins of the Daily Planet building, Superman ultimately falls before the might of Darkseid.  (That sequence, by the way, is a showcase for the … [continued]