Happy Birthday Dennis (2016)

September 25, 2016

Happy birthday Dennis – my best friend/ex (bex?), flatmate, non-partner partner who’s traveling this time period alongside me. It’s been a rocky few years, but we’ve weathered worse and we’re still here damnit! I look forward to many sunny days ahead. A toast with your favorite – ice cream and lemon cake and brownies. You’ve inspired me over the past 25 years. We both still have a lot of life to live. Here’s to the next great chapters – together and on our own. And here’s to two of your favorite films – Contact and The Shawshank Redemption.

  • Ellis Boy “Red” Redding: Get busy living, or get busy dying. …
  • Ellie Arroway: I’m okay to go! I’m okay to go! I’m okay to go…


Mr. Churchill’s Secret

September 23, 2016

churchills-secretCaught the new PBS Masterpiece British produced television film, Mr. Churchill’s Secret last evening. The production boasts an incredible cast including Michael Gambon in the title role, Lindsey Duncan as Clemmie, Romola Garai, Matthew McFadden, James Wilby and Tara Fitzgerald. This is a quiet, personal film about the summer in 1953 when Winston has a stroke and his family and close allies try to keep it from the public. Beautiful sets and costumes make Mr. Churchill’s Secret a safe bet for lovers of British drama and history. 3 out of 5.

‘Consider yourself hooked’: Netflix data reveals what episodes got viewers hooked on various shows (Mashable)

September 22, 2016

More Sci-Fi future tech now antics from Mashable,

Netflix knows you’re hooked and exactly when you got hooked to its shows.

The Los Gatos-based streaming service on Wednesday released the latest data unveiling “hooked episodes,” a.k.a. the “specific episodes that take watchers from indecision to infatuation” for a handful of shows available to stream from the

When 70 percent of viewers who watched that episode went on to complete season one of the same series, it is considered a hooked episode. The data was compiled on a global scale, with Netflix researchers examining viewership habits of members from six continents.


Read the full article.

Silicon Valley: Season 1, Episode 1

September 21, 2016

silicon-valley-s1I get that Silicon Valley (HBO’s series based on a young start-up firm in the mouth of giants) speaks to people who know the industry. The series is smart, sarcastic, and spot-on. The problem is it’s so realistic,I couldn’t stomach watching more than one episode. Most everyone but the lead character are despicable. It’s like watching Mary Tyler Moore navigating a horror film. Wait, that actually kind of sounds funny in a bad way. Silicon Valley is authentic and exhausting. If you work in the industry or just want to laugh at the insanity of the new kings of our country, check out the first and second seasons of this hit HBO show. I’m more than happy to move on to something else. 3 out of 5.

Election 2016

September 20, 2016

Reel Charlie will not be turning into a political forum for the remainder of the U.S. election cycle. But I couldn’t allow one more minute to pass without reminding every one of the importance of this election and what’s at stake. There’s been so much negativity. So much unease. So much avoidance. So much depression. So much apathy.

And then tonight I read an article on Shakesville – a progressive feminist blog about politics, culture, social justice, cute things, and all that is in between. Melissa McEwan’s She’s Got This says everything I want to say right now. It’s a must-read reminder to each of us what’s at stake and why it’s important to enthusiastically support Hillary Clinton for President.

Read the full article on Shakesville.

Reel Charlie unequivocally supports Hillary Clinton to be our next President. Let’s make history together.



Where to Stream All The Best Drama Emmy Winners (Decider)

September 20, 2016

From Decider,

…we here at Decider are paying tribute to TV’s illustrious history as we take a look back at every Outstanding Drama Emmy Award-winner in history.

From the ’50s and the days of Gunsmoke to the modern-day juggernauts like The West Wing and Mad Men, this video takes you on a tour of TV’s most prestigious shows through the years… you can find out where to stream all the Best Drama Emmy Award-winners of the past below!

See the full list at Decider.

Marcus Welby (1969- 1976)

Marcus Welby (1969- 1976)

Pride of Australia, Ben Mendelsohn beats out GoT actors to win an Emmy (Mashable)

September 19, 2016
Actor and Aussie legend Ben Mendelsohn took home an Emmy for his role in Bloodline. Image: WireImage Vera Anderson/WireImage

Actor and Aussie legend Ben Mendelsohn took home an Emmy for his role in Bloodline.
Image: WireImage Vera Anderson/WireImage

If  you’re a big fan of Game of Thrones, Better Call Saul (which I also love!), House of Cards, or Ray Donovan you might be pissed off a bit at last night’s Emmy Awards. But if you’re a fan of Bloodline like I am, you’re probably thrilled that actor Ben Mendelsohn took home Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series for his role as Danny Rayburn on the Netflix series Bloodline.

Congrats Ben and thanks for giving us two seasons of goose bump shivering performance as the evil and vengeful Danny Rayburn. Bloodline’s third and final season streams on Netflix in 2017.

Read the full article on Mashable.

Reel Charlie’s reviews of Bloodline: Season 1 and Season 2.

Jill Soloway’s Emmy Award Acceptance Speech 2016

September 19, 2016

Congratulations Jill! We’ve loved you since Six Feet Under. We love you even more with Transparent. Topple the Patriarchy!

Click to the YouTube clip.

And congrats to all my favorites who won last evening:

Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series
Transparent”: “Man on the Land,” (Jill Soloway) – WINNER

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
Jeffrey Tambor, “Transparent” – WINNER

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or a Movie
Sarah Paulson, “The People v O.J.: American Crime Story” – WINNER (haven’t seen it but I love Paulson)

Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Maggie Smith, “Downton Abbey” – WINNER

Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Ben Mendelsohn, “Bloodline” – WINNER

and earlier in the week, my “one degree of separation” RuPaul won Outstanding Host of a Variety, Nonfiction Or Reality Program.

See the full list over at Towleroad.

Hinterland: Season 1, Episodes 1 & 2

September 18, 2016

hinterland-s1Sometimes I wonder if my mood effects whether I click with a television series. I’ve been meaning to watch Hinterland for some time now. It’s been in my Netflix queue since they added it. Hinterland is a murder mystery police procedural which takes place in Aberystwyth, Wales and is billed as a Celtic noir police drama. I wanted to love it. It was recommended by my good friends Nina and Joe. I hesitated even blogging about it because I didn’t want to disappoint them. But after two episodes, I found Hinterland to be ordinary and predictable. The young characters were never fully developed. And one wonders why the lead detective is such a loner. I realize I may not have given it enough time for these answers to reveal themselves. Everything fit fine and I watched the episodes all the way through. Hinterland just didn’t grab me like I wanted it to. 2.5 out of 5.

Production note (from IMDb): Speaking scenes were filmed twice, in English and then in Welsh; the show was broadcast in both languages. (The English version was filmed first as not all the crew spoke Welsh.)

One Mississippi: Season 1

September 17, 2016

one-mississippi-season-1Tig Notaro’s Amazon Prime television show One Mississippi is mandatory viewing. She and co-creator Diablo Cody take wickedly dismal subject matter and tune it to humor – Tig had a double mastectomy from breast cancer, got diagnosed with C. diff soon after her surgery and then her mother died suddenly. All that really happened to her. She’s now created a show based on those experiences in what critics are calling a grief comedy. The fictional Tig travels from her home in Los Angeles where she is eking out a living as a NPResque radio show host to Mississippi to take her mother off life support. That’s about all you need to know and all I want to tell you. Her mother’s death is not a surprise. It happens in the first few minutes of the opening. The writing is phenomenal, the nuanced performances pitch perfect. Particularly Tig, Noah Harpster who plays her brother Remy and John Rothman who plays her step-father Bill. When you think someone may veer off into stereotypical land suddenly a truth bursts through. One Mississippi is provocative, thoughtful, mature, human and in parts deeply funny. Tig’s life is our life. The honesty and purity of the writing and performances happen so effortlessly that one episode moves to another and suddenly you’ve binged through all six. Incredible what can happen in 25 minutes. A welcome addition to our generation of new Golden Age television. A must-see. 5 out of 5.

My favorite moment from the first season happens when the camera pans Tig’s step-father Bill’s pantry. It’s a masterpiece of organization. I want to marry that man.

Read Reel Charlie’s review of the One Mississippi pilot.

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