Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Roundup: 'Closer' Chemistry Magic; 'Bar' Tackles the Dark Corners of the Web

By LillyKat
PTR Senior Staff Writer

'The Closer's' Fifth Season Airs Mondays on TNTFritz is Still Da' Man

The good folks over at The Closer must've read my mind. That, or by episode three of this fifth season, they, too, were thinking perhaps it was NOT a good idea to make Jon Tenney's Special Agent Fritz Howard a wallflower.

One of the highlights of this show (for me, anyways) has always been the Brenda and Fritz relationship dynamic, and how well the show continues to pay attention to developing the personal whilst maintaining its obligations to being a crime drama. I don't think another show on the air at the moment does it any better, or manages to keep it all so well-balanced (though In Plain Sight is now a close runner-up). And with last night's ep, we were reminded once again how well the show succeeds along these lines as Fritz cleverly outsmarts Brenda to get her help on a case involving a major drug distribution ring (can we call it that?), thus breaking their keep-work-separate-from-personal rule.

I believe Fritz IS the only one who can truly go toe to toe with Brenda to get what he wants. He never lets her get too far out in front without knowing how and when to reel her in. True, he gives her a lot of ... let's call it grazing room to be her usual domineering, controlling, my-way-or-the-highway self. But somehow Fritz has managed to figure out a way to keep her in HIS line.

Not to mention watching Kyra Sedgwick and Jon Tenney work their chemistry magic is a true pleasure. I know first hand how hard the actors work to create that true sense of realness - good and bad - to their relationship. And they never seem to skip a beat.

In other news ... so Lieutenant Provenza is dating some hottie menswear buyer for a fancy department store chain who is half his age? Go Provenza.

The sense of humor in this ep was spot on - complete with Kitty's ashes being carted around in a pseudo-Tupperwear jar until BJ could figure out how to cope with ... uh, the lost was classic (though I do confess I'm glad she settled on an urn over the fireplace in the end, complete with candle memorial and private viewing of an animal-mating-ritual-something-or-other DVD).

When this show can give me Brenda and Fritzy at their best alongside humorous writing at its best, I'm reminded why I'm still watching this show five seasons in.

And enjoying it so much.

New episodes of The Closer air Mondays at 9 p.m. on TNT. For the scoop on the series, head on over to the show's official site.

The Dark Corners of the Internet

I couldn't help but think of the Staples Office Store commercial tag line, "That Was Easy," when watching last night's ep of Raising the Bar ... and wanting to add an 'nt to it.

Yowza. Did the ep make you want to run out and close down your Facebook page?

Maybe not.

'Raising the Bar' Airs Monday's on TNTSuffice it to say this ep was quite powerful, and it could be a candidate for next year's PTR Best Episode countdown as it explored the dangers of what happens when people's personal information - posted to their own Web site - ends up in the wrong hands through no fault of their own.

As in, there is no such thing as "personal" or "private" on the Web. Anyone, anywhere, anytime can get your stuff. And that includes pictures of children - taken by parents, with the most innocent of intentions to share via whatever personal family URL or social networking site, only to then have them end up in unscrupulous hands.

Like on a child pornography site, as was the case last night.

Living and breathing the Web on a daily basis, this doesn't shock me. But there are still so many people out there - even members of my own family - who just don't understand how dark the corners are of this thing called the Internet. Our stuff IS accessible to the people and sites who make a living in those dark corners - whether we want it to be or not; whether the methods with which they acquire our info are legal or not.

That, to me, is the worst drawback of the advent of the Internet. As much as its done to unite and inform, it's also given way to an infinite supply of unregulated, untraceable, unrecognizable rings of ... well, let's just say not-so-good people who do not-so-good stuff. Seriously. You can look up how to build a bomb and blow up buildings. Murder people. Torture someone. Rape someone. You can join any given group, chat or networking what 'cha ma call it to participate in whatever twisted thing one can imagine. The anonymity of it all is what makes it so difficult to police, track or hold said not-so-good people accountable - especially when they are in some other country.

Even innocent people get caught in the middle.

As the case last night highlighted.

The show should be commended for taking a long, hard look at just how gray of an area "policing" the Internet actually is - even in the United States. A father's life can be turned upside down because he took a picture of his kid getting out of the bath tub (like the umpteen pictures my mom took of me, taking a bath in a bucket when I was one-year old - and could FIT in a bucket); his own personal Web habits then used against him to paint an unflattering picture of his parenting skills so as to suggest he deliberately turned over the picture of his son to a child porn site as opposed to having it unlawfully stolen.

And did we mention the jury could NOT decide if he was innocent or guilty?


The moral of this story: protect your personal info, folks - especially as it pertains to your kids. It's a good rule of thumb to think that most anything you post on the Web can be seen by everyone and their brother - whether you want them to or not. It's a bummer, but that is the reality. If our own government's systems can be hacked, pulling pics down from your supposedly "personal" or "private" site isn't a big stretch - no matter what Facebook/Twitter/MySpace/WhomeverSpace's security and privacy policy says.

Okay, deep breath.

In other (and far more lighter) news ... rock on Roz! Thank you for putting somewhat of an end to Bobbi's maniacal ex-husband, who was about to take her for everything she owns (including the apartment she purchased with her grandmother's inheritance and of which is the only thing she has left of her grandmother). Seriously, that guy needed to get taken down a peg or two. Who'd have thought it'd be Roz? I love those quiet, silent, uber-powerful characters who show us their strong side when we least expect it.

New episodes of Raising the Bar air Mondays at 10 p.m. on TNT. For the scoop on the series, head on over to the show's official site

In Not So 'Plain Sight'

I wasn't sure where the "witness of the week" story line was going with the "missing child" and the ex-wife on the run, but I gladly went along for the ride. I certainly didn't foresee it leading to the desert and then the side of a Chicago highway. There was something very tragic about Ed and his quest to find his imaginary son, Miles. I so wanted Miles to be real even though the evidence suggested otherwise. And then the entire thing was made even more tragic by the discovery that the real Miles and his mother were dead -- victims of a human smuggling ring that Ed tried to save. Their faces haunted him so badly that he invented Miles as a coping mechanism. As much as I LOVE the funny lines and scenes on this show, there's something special about Mary's poignant moments near the end with her witnesses. They show her more vulnerable side and how much she cares for those she's charged with protecting. Her final scene with Ed on the porch with the telescope brought some nice closure and gave Mary something to think about ("It's amazing what you can see when you just open you eyes").

On another front, I can't say I'm disappointed that Marshall and the shrink didn't work out. Although, I did enjoy the irony of a shrink unable to see the self deprecating pattern that she found herself in and then back in at the end. She just wasn't Marshall's type. Not that I know exactly what his type is, but I feel pretty sure that she isn't it. Maybe it's just Marshall's awkwardness, but I've always thought that he had a little thing for Mary. Completely one-sided, of course.

I'm feeling a little dense after watching the Brandi story line. Don't get me wrong, I liked it -- A LOT. She needs to walk a mile in someone else's shoes so she can find out that the world does not revolve round her. But, I'm confused as to the story's purpose in the greater arc of Brandi: Mary's troubled little sis. I guess this is one of those "story lines in progress," and as such, we won't fully understand its ripples until future episodes. I have to say, I was impressed with her for putting herself aside and stopping to not only see if the man was OK, but to then pursue it until she knew he was going survive. Perhaps the gravity of the situation didn't hit her until she learned that the man had a clot and she saved his life and he's going to be fine. Whatever it was, Brandi seemed overcome at the end in a way that we haven't seen from her. I've been impressed with her progression this season and this was just the latest example.

In Plain Sight airs Sunday nights on USA Network. If you missed this week's episode, check it out for free at Hulu.com

Monday, June 29, 2009

'Ice Road' Hazards

I thought of Ice Road Truckers often on Friday night as I made my way to see my family in the blinding rain and pitch black along the highway. As the rain came down in sheets and the lightening struck all around me casting its bright light right into my dark-adjusted eyes further blinding me, I thought about Jack and Lisa and Hugh and Alex and how they manage to do much worse in a big rig hauling tens of thousands of pounds over ICE, and I kept telling myself that by comparison, my trek was easy. Unfortunately, my neck and leg muscles didn't get the message! So suffice it to say, I have an even deeper appreciation for the work they and many other truck drivers on The Dalton do for those treacherous three months. This week, stick shifts, brakes, and moose proved to be the biggest obstacles. Anyone who has learned to drive a stick shift knows that once you're stopped, shifting correctly to get going again is one of the hardest techniques to master. Now, imagine trying to complete this task while climbing a mountain with only a small guard rail separating you from hundreds of feet down steep ledges. Oh yeah, also add a little ice and you get Alex's shifting miscue. Thankfully, he was able to get his stopped truck moving again without sliding down the incline and soaring over the edge to sudden death (this would be overly dramatic if it weren't true).

Meanwhile, Lisa made a dangerous newbie mistake. This is only her second season on The Dalton and this week's episode marked her first drive through fresh, thick snow. When an oversized load (heading northbound to her southbound) came barreling toward her, she was supposed to yield right-of-way by pulling off the road. Two problems: the fresh snow made finding the closest pull off impossible and she suddenly had no brakes. She pumped and pumped, but the truck wasn't stopping. Finally, the truck came to a stop just short of the oversized rig. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't seriously worried and sitting on the edge of my couch. Apparently, she should have been pumping her brakes from time to time while driving in order to melt the snow that accumulates around the brakes. Tough time to learn that lesson!

Later in the hour, we learned that even the most experienced drivers are no match for one Dalton hazard: Moose! Jack owes the fact that he didn't hit the moose that darted out in front of him to his pilot car driver who radioed to let him know that a moose was standing just off to the side of the road. I've had this fear of hitting a moose ever since I was a child. I have family in Vermont, and they would always tell me tales about moose that come out of nowhere and stretch across the entire road making it virtually impossible to miss with your car and often times leading to death for both the moose and the driver. I don't live with moose, but whenever I go to Vermont, I'm on extra alert. So now, we can add moose to the growing list of things on The Dalton that can kill you. And speaking of that, the driver that wrecked his rig this week was lucky to walk away from that crash. A sobering reminder of how much is at stake on The Dalton.

Ice Road Truckers airs Sunday nights on History Channel. To catch up on this season, click on over to HistoryChannel.com where you'll also get more information, trucker bios, and an IRT app for your iPhone.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

'Pitchmen' Billy Mays Found Dead

Some sad news today (and even sadder, this is the latest in a string of high-profile tragic deaths this week including Ed McMahon, Farrah Fawcett, and Michael Jackson). From Discovery Communications:
It is with incredible sadness that we have to report that
Billy Mays died in his sleep last night. Everyone that knows him was aware of his larger -than- life personality, generosity and warmth. Billy was a pioneer in his field and helped many people fulfill their dreams. He will be greatly missed as a loyal and compassionate friend. Our deepest sympathies go out to his family at
this time of incredible loss.

According to Fox News, Mays' wife found him unresponsive this morning in their Tampa, Florida home. There was no sign of forced entry and foul play is not suspected according to the Tampa police department. Billy Mays was 50 years old.

While I hadn't been writing about it here at PTR, I have been watching Billy and Anthony "Sully" Sullivan on their Discovery Channel reality show Pitchmen, so the news of his death is extra sad for me. I felt like I'd come to know both Billy and Sully through the show and I was so impressed by Billy's dedication and determination to the products he pitched and the people he pitched them for. I will miss his crazy pitches, blue shirt, back and forth with Sully and the excitement that he brought to inventors who risked everything they had for an idea. The pitching world will not be the same without Billy.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Remote Rewind: Let's Start at the Beginning

This summer, PTR is taking a look back at a show that we adored before this site came into existence. We figured that just because it isn't airing new episodes anymore doesn't mean that we can't talk about it! And after all, PTR wasn't here when it originally aired, therefore, our coverage here will be (to borrow a phrase from NBC) "new to you." The show: Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman. The entire Dr. Quinn series is now available as one gigantic DVD box set, so if you're feeling nostalgic after reading PTR's thoughts, you can cuddle up in front of your TV and watch the eps all over again. Today, I'm starting at the beginning -- all the way back to where it started with a talented young doctor from Boston boarding a train bound for Colorado and a whole new, very different life.

I'm be lying if I said that the "Pilot" episode of DQ was what got me hooked. I was hooked from the first promo, but the premiere made me a fan. I was only 12 years old when the show hit the CBS airwaves in January of 1993. I had always loved westerns and strong female characters. I tuned in to the 2-hour pilot, and I knew I wouldn't be tuning out until this show aired its last episode. From the get-go, I was invested in Michaela's journey. She lost her father (the only person who believed in her and encouraged her to become a doctor at a time when women weren't doctors) and she left her comfortable life in Boston and headed almost across the country to the Colorado frontier and the small town of Colorado Springs. It wasn't an easy transition. To say that she was a "fish out of water" would be an understatement. She was overdressed, under-prepared and found it very difficult to make friends. To make matters worse, no one in town (except the very kind Charlotte Cooper) wanted a woman doctor. But Michaela Quinn wasn't one to cut her losses and head back to Boston -- she was a survivor, and a stubborn one at that.

Things quickly went from bad to worse. First she lost a "patient," which furthered the belief for her harshest critics that she was utterly incompetent. While trying to save local general store owner Loren Bray's wife from a pre-existing heart condition, she didn't have the proper medication to save her. Medication, it seemed, wasn't right at her fingertips as it had been in Boston. Next, Charlotte Cooper (the one person who had welcomed her) was bitten by a Rattlesnake. Dr. Mike stood by helpless as Charlotte slipped away in front of her three young children. She upheld Charlotte's deathbed plea and took the children in and began raising them as her own. Like the unpaved dirt roads in Colorado Springs, this too was a bumpy ride. But with a little time, the kids and Dr. Mike learned to rely on each other and by the end of the episode, they were beginning to feel like a family.

The single best moment of the entire 2-hour opener was one of Michaela's most embarrassing. In her fancy Boston attire, she fell and face-planted right into the mud in front of a group soldiers and a mountain man named Byron Sully. It was that fateful moment that gave birth to the heart and soul of DQ and one of TV's best romances. Sully was smitten and before he knew it, he was offering her his homestead and then joining Michaela's new family for dinner and even spending Christmas Eve with them. But, Sully had a tragic past (losing both his wife and child in childbirth) and he wasn't in a hurry to fall in love again. And Michaela was concerned with building a practice, taking care of her new family and learning the ropes of frontier living, so she too wasn't looking to fall in love. But you can't stop a speeding train as they were both about to learn. It took a trip back to Boston, a look at "the road not taken," and a lot of time and effort for the lesson to sink in. But, we'll cover that in future "Remote Rewind" installments.

Screencap courtesy Official DQMW Web site.

Week's Roundup: The Closer; Raising the Bar; Deadliest Catch; Saving Grace; Royal Pains

By LillyKat
PTR Senior Staff Writer

Since I've been completely bowled over by real life this week, I'm dreadfully behind on recapping. Sooo, in the interest of time, space and the final frontier, I'm going to wrap it all up in this post ... and borrow a page from Editor-in-Chief TVFan's "The Good" / "The Bad" Bones write-ups.


'The Closer's' Fifth Season Airs Mondays on TNTThe Closer

The Good: Brenda Leigh Johnson has a history of protecting Sergeant David Gabriel. She also has a history of not taking lightly to other departments butting into her business - whether they have the right to or not. In this week's episode we got both. When Gabriel found himself in an odd mess of wrong place, wrong time, thought-I-saw-a-one-armed-man scenario, she clicked into her protective mode once again. And when Mary McDonnell's Capt. Sharon Raydor, head of the Force Investigation Division (FID), begins investigating Gabriel ... well, that went over like a lead balloon making for some FANTASTIC antagonistic chemistry between the two in-charge female characters. That said, I've always felt BJ's relationship dynamic with Gabriel was one of the show's strongest - there were a couple of eps las season ("Ruby") where Gabriel lost it, and it was only BJ who could really square him away. His botched relationship with Detective Daniels was also something BJ warned against, tried to steer him in the right direction. And yet, that leads us to ...

The Not-So-Good: ... not liking "repeat" kind of storylines whereby it feels as if I've seen it before. Unfortunately, this whole thing with BJ protecting Gabriel has a been there, done that kind of vibe to it. Now, using it as a way to introduce the Mary McDonnell character WAS good; I'm definitely looking forward to how that plays out given the talent contained therein. However, I didn't feel wowed. And ... can I just ask why Jon Tenney's Fritz Howard seems to have been reduced to being a house husband and cat babysitter? I guess that is going to change with next week's ep, but I find myself being a little less-than-impressed with his reduced screen time. Then again, that's just MHO.

New episodes of The Closer air Mondays at 9 p.m. on TNT. For the scoop on the series, head on over to the show's official site.


'Raising the Bar' Airs Monday's on TNTRaising the Bar

The Good: The case, which involved determining whether an attack by a group of African Americans on a gay man constituted a hate crime - even when said gay man had somewhat of a history provoking people into confrontation. I have to say I really wasn't sure how this was going to go; and, the fact that one African American man from the group WAS convicted even though he was not the one who actually assaulted the gay man had me thinking about our legal system in a way I normally don't. Then again, this show makes me do that quite a bit - which is a good thing. And ... can I just say Judge Farnsworth rocks? He's so neurotically brilliant that I forget there even is a Judge Trudy Kessler. I have to say his interactions with Jerry are far more interesting to watch - almost like a chess match vs. a bullying contest (which seems to be Kessler's MO). Button anyone?

The Not-So-Good: None.

New episodes of Raising the Bar air Mondays at 10 p.m. on TNT. For the scoop on the series, head on over to the show's official site


Deadliest Catch

Discovery Channel's 'Deadliest Catch'

Good Juju: The Wizard's Captain Keith finally caught a break this week, stumbling upon some serious crab and getting back to doing what he does best: fishing. Given the last two weeks of PTSD, it seemed he was due for some good juju. How long it will last will be anyone's guess. However, note to Keith: don't ever do that tarp nonsense again.

Bad Juju: Last week, I wondered what the odds were for the Cornelia Marie to actually make it into St. Paul before being frozen in place by the fast approaching ice pack. Turns out they DID make it, but not before Captain Phil blows an engine ramming the ship THROUGH the ice pack TO make it so as not to spoil his entire load of crab. After five days of being frozen into the docks AND $67,000 in repairs, that circulation pipe leak from last week seems like child's play now, eh? I'm not sure this is the Cornelia Marie's year, and I kinda agree with Phil that it seems the ship is being held together by band aids and crazy glue. Just me?

Did You See My Gear?: The Northwestern's Captain Sig finally lost his gamble fishing so close to the ice pack. As in, it moved in quicker than expected and almost swallowed his gear. I don't even know how they managed to salvage the pots - when the buoys are barely visible, dragged three miles from position. Not to mention having to make sure the hook line doesn't snag on the ice when they DO retrieve the pots. Seriously, these guys pull off what seem to be the most miraculous things to us, the average viewer, but of which for them is just a normal day at the office.

New episodes of Deadliest Catch air Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on Discovery Channel. Visit the official Deadliest Catch Web site for the latest on the captains and crews of the Northwestern, Cornelia Marie, Time Bandit, Wizard, Early Dawn and North American and the new boat, the Incentive. You can also catch up with Deadliest Catch folks on Twitter: fvnw_erin / CaptPhilHarris / northwesternpat / NorthwesternPR / captjohnathan / northwesternsig / DeadliestCatch (which is actually the Cornelia Marie) / DiscoveryChPR.


Saving Grace

Season 3 of 'Saving Grace' Airs on TNT

The Good: Grace seemed to pull a Brenda Leigh Johnson this week in that she kind of went pseudo-undercover in an alcoholics anonymous group (irony?) to find the killer of one of the group members seeing as no members talk about each other or what is discussed in group OUTSIDE of group. Soooo, she befriends one gal, a former sponsor, does a pretty good impression of being a fall down drunk (not a stretch for Grace), and manages to fool said woman into confessing who did what. She also seemed to have no qualms about letting the woman GET DRUNK to tell her this. Hmmmm. I kind of thought it was genius, but probably bordering on unethical. Like, something BJ would do. And ... how about Rhetta? Awww. So bummed she's got to sell her farm. Still one of the best relationship dynamics on the show is Grace and Rhetta, not to mention the ever blossoming partnership between Earl and Grace.

The Not-So-Good: Ham's obsession - make that addiction - to Grace, which thankfully is only being spoken about and NOT acted upon of late given Grace has got other things on her mind. Seriously. Get a life, Ham. Sitting, staring at your phone, hoping she's going to call makes you look like a goob. And this is Grace Hanadarko - she isn't going to be settling down with you any time soon. I've really come to kind of loathe this relationship (gee, you couldn't tell, right?), especially as Grace seems to have turned such a big corner in accepting her role alongside Earl. Ham seems like yesterday's news, and I'm afraid Kenny Johnson is playing it too much on one note for me. Half the time I think the character is drunk, when in fact, he's just slurring his speech around as if he WERE drunk. And the smothering/stalking thing has got.to.go. They need to write in another girlfriend for him or something.

New episodes of Saving Grace air Tuesdays at 10 p.m. on TNT. You can watch full episodes of the show anytime over on the show’s official Web site. You can also visit EmbraceYourGrace.com to share your stories of how you embrace your inner-Grace.


Royal Pains

'Royal Pains' Airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. on USA Network

The Good: Let's just call it everything. Again. I am consistently enjoying nearly every aspect of this show. And can I just get another Amen to the aerials?!?!?!?! The shots are just spectacular. Anyhoooo, it was good to get to see Divya get out on her own (as it were) and handle some things without Hank's supervision. Seriously, she is the BEST thing to happen to him. And she can tell Evan to stick it where the sun don't shine (thank.God.). So can Boris (let's get an Amen for Campbell Scott who is just so quietly powerful in his role). The main patient this week was interesting, having what I'll call and almost-stroke where she lost her memory and had to be administered to in a short period of time to avoid permanent damage. Again, Hank to the rescue, which for me, doesn't play overly cheesy. I even liked the throw back to the fact that he was having to deal with the fact his now defunct wedding date arrived. He confessed to Jill - who seems to have had her own failed engagement.

The Not-So-Good: Evan. Seriously, shut.the.frak.up. This is no disrespect to Paulo Costanzo, but I'm starting to have Trust Me flashbacks whereby Tom Cavnagh's Conner would just ramble on ridiculously - bordering on mumbling - to the point of overkill. We get Evan is supposed to be annoying, pushy, press Hank's buttons, possibly get everyone in trouble by his cockiness. But every other scene? It's starting to detract from the other characters, who for me, have become far more interesting. Evan seems almost like a cartoon at times. My advice would be to dial it down.

New episodes of Royal Pains air Thursdays at 10 p.m. on USA Network. You can join other fans on Facebook; follow Royal Pains on Twitter, or visit the official Royal Pains Web site for the scoop on the series!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Famous 'Mental' Patient

I always get a kick out of episodes about actors and Hollywood (the kick being, of course, that a Hollywood-produced show cast with actors is basically eating its own). Almost the entire hour is one big "wink, wink." This week's episode of Mental continued this tradition with a famous patient who suffered a very public breakdown while promoting his new film on a late-night talk show. Of course, his spin doctors sold the story as a publicity stunt and research for his next role (which had him playing a psych patient). The press bought it and then packed their best paparazzi lens and flashbulbs as they camped out at the hospital, stalked the doctors with relentless phone calls and savored every leak they could print (courtesy of the publicity-seeking Dr. Belle). Sure, there were plenty of "wink, wink" moments including negative comments about actors, the business and the ridiculous army of people that make up Team (insert your fave celeb's name here). Every time I see Hollywood make fun of, well, Hollywood, I'm reminded why I love my anonymous life. In fact, I'm pretty convinced that a spotlight as large as Liam McBride's could drive the most sane person into insanity. Add in his disturbing and scarring past and you have an unsettling recipe for emotional and mental disaster. Oh, and I kinda loved the fact that Jack didn't really hypnotize Liam. That was pretty awesome.

The show's best episode thus far was about the young girl whose deranged husband had convinced her that she was pregnant because the episode, a) had a patient of the week who was engaging and her story was fascinating and surprising, and b) it mixed in a compelling and startling personal story for Veronica (my fave character, which should come as no surprise since I adored Jacqueline McKenzie on The 4400). I was feeling like the show had sorta dropped the latter story line until this week. Veronica came clean to Nora. Even more interesting, though, she said, "Because I'm having an affair," not "I had an affair." When last we dropped this story line, Veronica was telling the young doc that they couldn't continue. At the end of the episode, she seemed pretty resolved to the end of the affair as she sat in the car with her cutey patootey husband and they talked about their future. Now, I want to know what happened between then and now, but we've been left in the dark. Personally, I'd like to see the show flesh out these characters a bit more. I want to feel invested in them, but right now, I don't. The patient with mental case of the week is always well developed. All we need now is to know more about the docs treating them.

Mental moves to its new night next Friday, July 3rd on Fox. If you missed this week's episode, watch it for free at Fox.com.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

TVGuide Reports: Familiar Face Back on 'Case'

Score one for those of us who like our loose ends tidy-ed up. TVGuide.com is reporting:
Cupid's unfortunate misfire has turned into a big hit for Cold Case.

Bobby Cannavale, the star of ABC's short-lived romantic-comedy reboot, is now on his way back to the CBS procedural, sources tell TVGuide.com exclusively.

Cannavale will reprise his role of Det. Eddie Saccardo for at least three episodes, starting with the third episode of the upcoming Season 7.

The set-up for Eddie's encore? Det. Lilly Rush turns to her former lover in a time of need — this despite the fact that Saccardo is still undercover and close to cracking his big narcotics case.

Does this mean that Lil's finally going to settle down? I wouldn't place any bets, but it is nice to see the show continuing with the story line now that Cannavale is free again. Cold Case returns this fall at a new, later time: 10 p.m. Sunday nights on CBS.

Monday, June 22, 2009

PTR Gets 'Truck' in'

NOTE: PTR is very excited to be adding History Channel's Ice Road Truckers to the line-up!

There is only one word to describe this week's episode of Ice Road Truckers (a.k.a. IRT): INTENSE!! From Jack's white-out trek in the pitch black to Lisa's first oversized haul in daytime white-out conditions and then later in the dark and without a pilot car -- forget the drivers, I was living on the edge! If you've never had the privilege of driving in a white-out (thankfully, I have not), I imagine it would be like driving through an intense, heavy rain like we would get around 4 o'clock every day in the summer when I lived in Atlanta or like the dense fog that keeps your fingers gripped so tightly to the wheel that they actually ache after and your eyes so glued to the road that you actually forget to blink. Now, just add lots of ice and dangerous cliffs on either side of you and you pretty much get the experience on The Dalton this week. Yikes! I'm getting tense just imagining it, and yet these guys and girls live it every day for three months a year when the roads and the Arctic Ocean are frozen over and the temps routinely dip to the minus 20s and 30s. It's all in an effort to keep the folks at the oil derricks in Prudhoe Bay (part of Alaska's famed oil-rich North Slope) well supplied to ensure that the Trans-Alaska Pipeline keeps flowing the liquid gold that fuels our society.

I've watched episodes from previous seasons of IRT, but something about this season has me gripped (as in, season-passed-on-my-DVR- because-I-can't-miss-a-minute invested). Maybe it's the ridiculously dangerous nature of the 414-mile Dalton Highway ("The Rollercoaster???" WTH? That stretch of highway makes my stomach drop just watching it on TV and then there's frickin' Atigun Pass!) and all of the truckers who either wreck their trucks (if they're lucky) or lose their lives along it every season. Or, maybe it's the crazy weather (always a favorite of mine on sister show Deadliest Catch) and how it can come on out of nowhere and make a driver completely blind out there on the edge of mountains (the aforementioned Atigun Pass -- 4800 feet in elevation!). Maybe it's Lisa, the show's first female driver, and her tomboy , go-get 'um attitude. Or maybe, it's a combination of all three that has me hooked. Whatever it is, there's a reason IRT is History Channel's most-watched series. I'm just glad I finally caught on.

Ice Road Truckers airs Sunday nights on History Channel. To catch up on this season, click on over to HistoryChannel.com where you'll also get more information, trucker bios, and an IRT app for your iPhone.

'In Plain' Trouble

Photo: USA Network

About 50 minutes into this week's episode of In Plain Sight, I started to think, "Hmm... this must be a 2-parter because there's no way they're wrapping all of this up in 10 minutes." But, it turns out, I was very wrong. Not 2 minutes later, Mary was waltzing into the "private meeting" and turning the FBI's case completely upside down. In a flash Brandi, was walking out of jail and sleeping next to her mom back in her warm, safe bed. I have to say, it was all a bit rushed and too tidy for my liking. I was completely enthralled with the story and caught up in the stress and pressure that was weighing down on Mary, so I think I was expecting a less convenient and not quite as easy conclusion. Otherwise, I loved this episode. From the moment the FBI knocked down the door and hauled Brandi off in her PJs to Mary and co. finding that bug and Mary insisting that Lauren was not her half sister but an undercover FBI agent to the very end when Brandi almost signed that crap deal and Mary burst in just in time had me on the edge of my seat. Definitely, a stellar story this week.

Last week, I was going on and on about how much I love the dynamic between Mary and Eleanor and how they make me LOL constantly. This week -- not so much. Mary was so awful to her and Eleanor just seemed so hurt. I was so bummed. I really hope they can go back to being frienemies soon. I know that Mary was distraught over her sister and the possibility that Lauren really is her half-sister (and not an undercover FBI agent), but she was downright nasty to Eleanor and it was making me cringe. It seems that Marshall's talk got through to her because she calmed down after it. At the end, we saw Mary meeting with her father's old partner-in-crime and he revealed that her father had been caught, but a couple of suits came by his jail cell and he walked out with them. Could Mary's father be in WITSEC? Under her nose this entire time? Is this why he hasn't been able to write? The plot thickens.

In Plain Sight airs Sunday nights on USA Network. If you missed this week's episode, check it out for free at Hulu.com

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

(My) 'Grace' Has Arrived

Season 3 of 'Saving Grace' Airs on TNTBy LillyKat
PTR Senior Staff Writer

You could say I've waited three seasons for this.

Hoped for it.

Wished for it.

The evolution of Grace Hanadarko: maturing, growing up, acting her age, seeming worthy - and accepting - of the fact she's got an angel looking over her shoulder.

We might have finally arrived.

Er, I hope we have.

The third season premiere of Saving Grace continued the very promising premise that ended season two: Grace has gotten to the point where a) it's not all about her; and, b) she's ready to work WITH Earl as opposed to against him.


Does that mean we've seen the last of her wild ways? Her smothering codependent nonsense of a relationship with Ham?

Probably not, though that IS my own personal wish.

Nonetheless, this premiere has left me with a lot of promise for the third season. And the continuing evolution in the relationship between Earl and Grace seems to suggest Grace did indeed turn a corner with the passing of Leon Cooley, and that she might finally embrace her own grace and accept her role alongside Earl to help him do whatever work he's got in store for her.

Like tending to lost souls.

As was the case in the episode, where Grace tried - consistently - to reach out to an abused young woman but of whom doesn't seem to want anything to do with her.

Or Earl.

We've definitely heard that one before.

So it makes the the irony that Grace is now tasked to help explain (or would that be justify?) Earl's existence to the young woman even more clever.

Oh, how the tables have turned.

In other news: Butch is getting married to ... a TV anchor? What? When did that happen?

And YET, I love how this is played against the fact that Grace and Ham seemed to be ... well, let's just say on two different wavelengths as it pertains to their relationship. Grace seems preoccupied with her new found angel helper role while Ham seems to think that now that he's divorced, Grace is going to now settle down and have his children.

Seriously, Ham?

As if to add to the confusion as to where they might stand with each other on a personal level, Grace told Ham about Earl. I didn't expect him to take it seriously. But, what I also didn't expect was it to cause friction between the two. As in, he already thought she was lying to him with regards to the pseudo-sleuth operation to get in touch with the abused girl; now, with the angel mention, he really is wondering what is up with her.

And Grace isn't apologetic.

So maybe we can hope for an end to the Ham/Grace maddness?

That's too much wishful thinking.

New episodes of Saving Grace air Tuesdays at 10 p.m. on TNT. You can watch full episodes of the show anytime over on the show’s official Web site. You can also visit EmbraceYourGrace.com to share your stories of how you embrace your inner-Grace.

'Catch'-ing with the Ice Pack

Discovery Channel's 'Deadliest Catch'By LillyKat
PTR Senior Staff Writer

Since I've been talking about the moving of cheese this week - a joking reference to the book Who Moved My Cheese?, which was "required" reading at my former job to tell all us cubicle-ites how to deal with change - I'd like to say that our Deadliest Catch team saw their cheese moved this week, too.

Or, I should say, they actually decided to move their own cheese given one big mother of an ice pack decided to jump onto the express lane and close in on the fishing grounds ASAP.

Got to love winter on the Bering Sea, eh?

Don't Make Me Get All Captain on Your Arse: Did you see it? Sorta? Kinda? Almost? I think it was there. I do believe I finally saw Time Bandit Captain Andy Hillstrand get irked. Shocker! Okay ... not really. One of the reasons I like the Hillstrand Brothers is because they are so even-tempered by comparison to ... uh, others. But Andy's brief - and I do mean brief - rant was deserving (can we even call it a rant? it was more like a talking to). His crew DID drop the ball in forgetting to assign someone to monitor the offload weighing, which promptly resulted in the loss of about 5,000 pounds of crab (approx. $8,000). Read: missing. Ooops.

PTSD: I'm wondering how the Wizard's Captain Keith can be back out fishing so soon after his tarp debacle that almost saw three of his guys killed. I'm all for getting back up on the horse after falling off, but he is a bit of nervous wreck, eh? And that energy isn't helping the crew much. Cripes, if it were me, I think I would've crawled into a hole for the winter. Then again, he's got a quota to meet and money to make. Nothing like desperation as a motivating factor to get over your s**t.

Just By The Hair on Your Chinny Chin Chin: So, what are the odds the Cornelia Marie will actually make it into St. Paul before being frozen in place by the fast approaching ice pack? Captain Phil scores HUGE numbers of crab, races to pull up his pots and head for shelter FROM the ice pack cometh only to run smack dab IN to the ice pack cometh. Argh. And with the Murray Replacement Greenhorn (MPG) barely patching the circulation pipe leak back together, the CM needs to not find itself surrounded.

Would the Real Sig Hansen Please Stand Up: So, this is the second week in a row the Northwestern's Captain Sig is happy. Content. On the crab. Just minding his own beeswax. I'm sorry, who are you and what have you done with the real Sig Hansen? (Love ya', Sig, but I've never seen you THIS content).

New episodes of Deadliest Catch air Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on Discovery Channel. Visit the official Deadliest Catch Web site for the latest on the captains and crews of the Northwestern, Cornelia Marie, Time Bandit, Wizard, Early Dawn and North American and the new boat, the Incentive. You can also catch up with Deadliest Catch folks on Twitter: fvnw_erin / CaptPhilHarris / northwesternpat / NorthwesternPR / captjohnathan / northwesternsig / DeadliestCatch (which is actually the Cornelia Marie) / DiscoveryChPR.

'Mental' Games

Back in my Mario days, I would dream about that crazy Italian plumber trying to get away from the meanie mushroom people, fire-breathing-pipe-dwelling flowers and of course, that princess-kidnapping lizard Bowser. And even though I would wake up sweaty and sure I had finally figured out how to beat that damn game, thankfully, I never allowed the game to plague my awake time. In fact, it was the Mario-infiltrated dreams that convinced me that I needed to put down the controller and forget about Princess Peach (who, instead of demanding someone save her all the time, should have been demanding a new name -- I'm jus' sayin'). Poor Connor didn't have this option since his video game was a figment of his imagination, and it completely took over his conscious. Add in some over-protective parents who refused to allow Jack and his staff to treat their son and a secret family history of mental illness and you have a recipe for a very confused, upset and ill young boy. But Jack isn't one to give up, so he eventually convinced (forced?) the parents to do the right thing for Connor. Unfortunately, the mother wasn't as onboard as the father (saying that she'd call right before she walked out of the office), so I'm not sure if she's going to be there for her son. Thankfully, his father will be.

Just when I was starting to get bored with the "breathing calls," Jack gets one that leads him to a local Presbyterian church. Will he finally find his mentally ill sister? Meanwhile, Nora made a disturbing discovery about her teenage daughter. In a very timely story line, she learned that Aynsley had her own web site and was using it to post lingerie-clad photos of herself. The whole "sexting" phenomenon has become a dangerous epidemic with young people across this country, so I was expecting a bit more to this than we got. They gave us a forced scene between mother and daughter where Nora confronted her and Aynsley gave some excuse about her mother keeping her cancer recovery from her and presto! -- they were all good. I know this because at the end they were headed off to dinner together talking about that hottie Jack Gallagher. Maybe we'll get more on it in future episodes, but this was a way too tidy resolution to a very complicated and prevalent issue.

Mental airs Tuesday nights on Fox. If you missed this week's episode, watch it for free at Fox.com.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Roundup: 'The Closer' Seems Different; 'Bar' Tries to Wow

By LillyKat
PTR Senior Staff Writer

I am going to continue with the combo roundup format that I started last week for The Closer and Raising the Bar.

'The Closer's' Fifth Season Airs Mondays on TNTWait, is this Harper's Island?

Look to the sky!

It's a kidnapping!

It's a murder!

It's a kidnapping and a murder!

Isn't it ...?

I confess last night's episode of The Closer felt ... different.

Almost as if they experimented with their storytelling format. I can't quite put my finger on it, but something about how they raced against the clock (which they've done before, but not quite in this pay-the-ransom-or-victim-dies manner). Or maybe it was BJ not really being able to interrogate people as she normally would (given it seemed likely the kidnapped victim would be killed if the kidnapper knew the police were involved). Or perhaps it was this whole bringing in of a new detective (which has me a bit weary given we all know how successful THAT was over on Cold Case). And with the lack of the usual whiz bang pop interaction of the squad (aside from some longing glances at the new detective, and Lieutenant Provenza seeming to have taken a serious dose of Viagra), dare I say it all felt like ... a procedural.

Did I just say that? About my favorite show?

I want to believe this is only a one-time thing. The whole reason I watch BJ and Co. is because it's NOT the 4,898th incarnation of CSI.

Aside from BJ carting the kidneys-are-failing Kitty around, and Lieutenant Provenza's the-hills-are-alive-with-the-sound-of-music goofball demeanor, I felt like something was missing. Worse, I didn't care all that much for the case. It was essentially a mini-Enron, with a swindling CEO stealing money from his own people, screwing them out of life and limb only to have an outraged employee seek revenge.

Arthur Frobisher, anyone?

Seriously, I can't really blame the employee. And I didn't care whether they found the kidnapped CEO or not.

Now, there were some highlights: the ending sequence, where the squad ambushed the employee in ... well, let's just call it an intentional car accident. W.O.W. And BJ is clearly NOT herself with Kitty being so sick. The fact she doesn't want to leave her (him) at the vet and chooses to cart her (him) around, administering her (his) two shot injection twice a day ... awww.

But on the whole, nada mucho entertained me in this ep. And that, I'm afraid, is an all too rare occurrence when it comes to The Closer

Better luck next week as Sergeant Gabriel gets in some serious trouble. And when things get heated between BJ and Gabriel, it.gets.good.

New episodes of The Closer air Mondays at 9 p.m. on TNT. For the scoop on the series, head on over to the show's official site.

What Episode is This?

TNT moved the cheese.

Which they are more than entitled to do.

But I confess it does mess me up a bit.

The good folks at TNT sent me screeners for what were originally the first two episodes of this season's Raising the Bar - "Hair Apparent" (premiere episode, aired last week); and, "The Curious Case of Kellerman's Button" (which was supposed to air LAST night, but suddenly went missing and looks to air NEXT week).

Seeing as I have taken to the task to DVR seasons 5-9 of Touched By An Angel (hello? Paramount? CBS? Can you release them officially on DVD, please?), whereby production numbers do NOT match up with air date numbers, this swapping of episodes really shouldn't surprise me.

'Raising the Bar' Airs Monday's on TNTMaybe it has something to do with the fact the premiere ep of RTB didn't do too well. Compared to last year's premiere, which drew 7.7 million viewers and was a record for basic cable, this year's second season opener delivered just 3.6 million - a 53% decline (source: Los Angeles Times Showtracker).


And just when I decided to bring it on over to PTR, too. Maybe I jinxed it?

My guess - and it IS just that, a guess - is last night's ep was bumped up to try and scoop up more of an audience. And yet, I'm puzzled where in the world the RTB audience went in the first place - especially with The Closer as the lead in this year. Then again, ratings are bizarre. And there is no rhyme or reason as to why perfectly good shows suddenly lose their audience.

In any event, given a good portion of last night's ep focused on a Rich Woolsley case, hey, it was good by me. The more Teddy Sears, the better. And was that not a Catskills Comics routine or what? The two old guys getting caught for cashing the check of their now deceased roommate. Seriously, can you blame them - at 80-something-years-old? Totally something Sophia would've thought to do on Golden Girls. Besides, all they needed was the rent check, and it's not as if the government is doing them any favors.

Now the whole case with Jerry and Michelle ... this, again, is why Michelle Ernhardt unnerves the daylights out of me - but also why it makes her so effective as a character. You love to hate her, y'know? She'll do whatever she can to get what she wants - including, as it would seem, bang a cop who is essentially trying to stick it to one of Jerry's clients (no pun intended).

In short LK Legalease: Cop is deliberately misidentifying Jerry's client, a guy who isn't responsible for the crime. However, if busted, it will send a message to the really bad group of people that said client hangs with and of whom the cop has it out for.

You'd think Michelle would notice she was ... uh, being used in this case BY the cop. Like, duh. The cop just happens to put the moves on Michelle conveniently before he's got to take the stand to try and nail the guy, using the "I've seen you around the courthouse" line. And you went to law school, Michelle?

I have to say, I'm liking more mature, crafty Jerry. He's not so soap boxy, but hasn't lost his persistence or dedication.

And is Judge Farnsworth not the best? John Michael Higgins is pitch-perfect as even more of a stickler than Judge Kessler, who suddenly looks a bit vanilla (though not entirely because, hey, it IS Jane Kaczmarek). If you think the Wild Bill Hickok routine was good, wait until he takes issue with Jerry's missing shirt button in next week's ep.

That is, of course, unless TNT moves the cheese, again.

New episodes of Raising the Bar air Mondays at 10 p.m. on TNT. For the scoop on the series, head on over to the show's official site

Monday, June 15, 2009

Family 'In Plain Sight'

Photo: USA Network

I was on vacation last week, thus, I watched both last week's episode of In Plain Sight and this week's yesterday. So, please forgive me if I run the two together or get them confused throughout this post. Moving on...

I like Mary. I like the new administrative assistant, Eleanor. But I LOVE the two of them together! They're hilarious. There was so much back and forth banter between these two and then you had Marshall overhearing the private conversation between Eleanor and Stan and Mary not believing him... it was just too awesome! The woman is a perfect "Ying" to Mary's "Yang" and I'm loving their scenes together. When we last discussed IPS, I was shocked to learn that Stan and Eleanor were putting in some overtime together outside the office (wink, wink). This week, we learned that it was just a one-night thing. Makes sense, I guess, given Eleanor's pain over losing her beloved husband in the line of duty. I think that Stan would like to take things further (yes, he is the poster child for "ill-advised" (TM Vera/Cold Case)), but Eleanor is still hurting and it seems that entering into anything more than what already happened is just too much for her right now. In fact, I'm pretty sure that she's conflicted about the night they spent together. I know one thing -- Eleanor better get her groove back because I can't take any more lack of enthusiasm for bantering with Mary!

The case this week was sorta blah. And the wife as the knife-wielder was anti-climatic. But no fear because things took an interesting turn back at Mary's house (unbeknownst to her, of course). Since daddy took off (thanks to a pesky bank robbery thing), he has been busy with a new wife (too bad he's still married to the old one) and a new family (too bad he abandoned the old one). His new daughter showed up on Mary's front stoop, but Jinx and Brandi decided that it would be best to keep Mary in the dark for now just in case her knowing would lead to FBI involvement and jail time for dear old dad. Somebody's still holding a torch! Problem is, Mary has met the half-sister, but she thought that she was her mom's cousin's friend's daughter. Oh boy. It's only a matter of time before she figures out the truth and I'm pretty sure Jinx is going to be wishing she were still in rehab when that happens!

In Plain Sight airs Sunday nights on USA Network. If you missed this week's episode, check it out for free at Hulu.com

Holly Hunter's Sense of 'Grace'

By LillyKat
PTR Senior Staff Writer

I never get tired of listening to Holly Hunter talk about Saving Grace.

Uh, hello ... It's.Holly.Hunter.

Actress Holly Hunter of TNT's 'Saving Grace'Why wouldn't we want to hear what she has to say about the ever complex goings-on of Detective Grace Hanadarko? I actually need to send her a thank you note (or two) given her insights into the character have gotten me through some of my more critical phases in following the show.

All of which would explain why we've now been on the phone with her three separate times - each time trying to come up with a question or two she hasn't already answered for us. The series premieres its third season, Tuesday, June 16th at 10 p.m. on TNT.

So, what am I looking forward to this season?

Some more quality bonding time between Grace and Angel Earl.

Their relationship seems poised to become more of a partnership than an adversarial relationship, especially given Grace is at the point where she's ready to start talking about what she may - or may not - believe.


Turns out Holly is looking forward to seeing this develop as well.

"Yes, me, too," says Holly. "I think it’s interesting you say that because the relationships in the show are really very rich for me personally. I mean, the adventure the two characters of Grace and Ham are on is really fascinating to me and very complicated. And the decade-long history that I have with Rhetta - as two best friends, who have maintained this incredibly intimate relationship - [is also] fascinating to me. And the conflicts - the knowing and the not knowing that we have of one another. But, this relationship between me and Earl is pivotal. It’s really the fulcrum by which the rest of the show operates, and I think that this season, I'm ready to ask him questions. I'm ready to challenge him about belief and he’s ready [to hear it]. He challenges me as well. But I think that there are larger questions that can be asked and that the show can ask, and they can ask these questions through Grace, and Grace can be challenged by questions through Earl."

And with the start of the third season, where does she continue to draw her inspirations for portraying Grace?

"I draw them through endless and ongoing conversations that I have with Nancy Miller, the creator of the show," says Holly. "Nancy and I debate, we agree, we discuss, we challenge each other. We have an ongoing dialect with the other writers, where we talk about what we want to talk about and what the show will talk about. My conversations with the other cast [and] crew have been incredibly stimulating for me. And we do have things we want to discuss as people - as actors - and that is always provocative for me.

"And then there are people who have endlessly inspired me," continues Holly, "from Jack Kerouac to the writer of Henry and June, Anaïs Nin. She is a journalist extraordinaire, who has been a real inspiration for me in her revealing – her willingness to reveal her own desires and Henry Miller's desires; he has been an influence as well. People who live big, sloppy, romantic lives fascinate me."

And Holly continues to fascinate us.

Our thanks once again to Holly Hunter for taking the time to chat with us about all-things Grace Hanadarko. We also want to thank our friends at Turner publicity. The third season premiere of Saving Grace airs Tuesday, June 16th at 10 p.m. on TNT. Be sure to check out the show’s official Web site to catch up.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

PTR Exclusive: Mark Burnett Throws a Good 'Wedding'

Producer Mark BurnettBy LillyKat
PTR Senior Staff Writer

I confess I debated whether to tell Mark Burnett I tend to be a bit hard on the reality television genre.

Especially considering: a) he practically invented the genre for American television audiences; b) is an awfully nice guy; c) has great enthusiasm for what he does; and, d) is married to everyone's beloved television angel (Roma Downey).

Still, I just.don't.do reality television.

So, I'm as surprised as anyone that two of Mark's new series - the previously mentioned Expedition Africa on History Channel - and Wedding Day, which enjoys its series premiere Tuesday, June 16th, at 8 p.m. on TNT, have ... uh, totally got me hooked.

Yes, hooked.

Go figure.

It is because, as I like to say, both these series are meeting one or both of my reality television show viewing requirements: 1) that I must learn something in a field, area of expertise or genre that I am not currently aware of; and/or 2) that I must watch the best of people.

Wedding Day definitely falls into the latter category. Deserving couples are given the opportunity to have a dream wedding after circumstances beyond their control - some near tragic - have prevented them from actually being able to find the time - and resources - to get married themselves.

Seriously, I can get behind that concept.

So when I recently had a chance to catch up with Mark to discuss the series on the whole, I was interested to find out what made him want to get involved and what continues to inspire him about the unscripted genre.

How did the project first come to you and what made you to want to get involved?

'Wedding Day' on TNTDreamworks and TNT both said to me, “Hey, what do you think about a wedding show?” And my first reaction was, “A wedding show?!? I don’t know if I understand how to make that.” But once I started looking at the stories that could be told, I got more inspired than ever. And, I realized there could be an Extreme Makeover vibe to the show - where you find people who are really deserving. You know, people have done stuff for others their entire life – beit on the job, like they’re a cop, a firefighter, a lifeguard, charity workers or they’re in the military. But when it comes down to falling in love and getting married, they’ve spent so much time doing for others they can’t even afford a beautiful wedding. It seems ironic that the people who give the most get the least. So, I wanted to make this show along those themes. The first act is always about what’s the story of this couple, and why are they so deserving. Once you’ve bought into Why Them, now we’re going to get their families involved. Those families roll up their sleeves and participate - and not just in the sense that they come, drink wine and eat food at the wedding. They’re actually going to do the work. So when [the couple is] there celebrating – [the family] built that. So, I love it. It’s an uplifting show. It’s in the raise you up category. I don’t want to be making shows that have anything to do with tearing people down.

Along those lines, the show seems to take a much more positive look at the whole aspect of couples getting married and does not - as some other unscripted shows seem to do - focus on the insanity of planning a wedding or the materialistic aspect being so focused on the "things" that make up the wedding, not the people. It seems this show really is about two people being in love, wanting to be together but are unable to do so given circumstances beyond their control. Is that an accurate assessment?

You’re right. And, you know, I don’t have the right to sit in judgment of anybody else’s work. But I, personally, am not going to do shows that fall into the tear down category. And I just think – certainly at this time – there’s a lot of people having a tough time right now. There’s enough tearing down in their real lives. The media could be used – and television – to raise people up, and that’s what I want to do. And, on a commercial level, clearly sponsors are going to be more apt to want to associate with a show that raises people up. It’s logical. So, this is a definite raise up show. I’m happy to make it. I’m really happy being with TNT and Michael Wright. This is what we set off to do - and we did it.

What went into the casting of the couples? It seems that the ones who made it to the show were really wonderful. Was it difficult to narrow down? You must have had a lot coming in that wanted to participate.

'Wedding Day' on TNTYeah, well, it was very hard because the show’s not been on the air. You can use my name, which gives credibility, but it wasn’t easy. It took a lot of months to find the couples. There’s a number of factors. First, who are these people and why are they deserving? Are their families going to participate in building the environment? Because without that, you don’t have that whole middle act. And then, lastly, when do they want to get married and does that fit into the shooting schedule? There’s a lot to think about. Remember, all these people … they’re really interested in their love, their life and their marriage. We’re an extra. So, to make it all work together wasn’t easy, but it was really valuable. I think, if we’re fortunate enough that this show gets celebrated and we get a second season, it’ll be a lot easier because of being on television and the notoriety that comes with it. More people would know about it and be nominating people they knew … like, hey, I have a friend who has done so much for others – is so deserving – they deserve a great wedding. I think that’s what you’re going to start getting.

So, in your mind, for people who know nothing about the show, what would you say to them and/or what do you hope people will get from watching the series? What sets it apart?

I think the reason to watch this show is the warm, uplifting stories. And, I think that in the tough times that we’re having - people are either working their butts off at work all day long or maybe have lost their job - [they want to] have an uplifting show with positive stories [to watch]. This is a show where you better be ready to have lump in your throat and a tear on your cheek. That’s what this show really stands for.

Producer Mark BurnettYou’ve done so much, what is it that still inspires you about this genre of television – where is it you pull your inspirations from?

It really comes down to storytelling. It doesn’t matter, necessarily, as long as it meets my family criteria of raising people up and being uplifting. Beyond that, it could be any kind of stories. I just have to feel that I actually care about the characters – that’s what’s really the through line for me – I’ve got to care about the characters. And for whatever reason, from the beginning of my career, I’ve been focused on unscripted [series]. I’ve just gotten used to the art form of unscripted dramas, and that’s been where my career has ended up.

Doesn’t Roma always say don’t do anything that you wouldn’t want your family to watch - is that still true?

That’s exactly true. My wife loves this Wedding Day series. Roma, as you know, is a very raise-you-up person. She gets out, and her first words of the day are thanking God for how fortunate we are. Her through line is “To those who much is given, much is expected.” And she always says what is NOT expected is that we will do anything as a family to tear people down and make people feel worse. We need to raise people up through our family work, our charity and who we are. That is a through line of this family, and this show fits it perfectly.

So what’s been the most rewarding process for you in bringing a show like Wedding Day to us, the television viewer?

It's a funny thing … when my wife watches rough cuts and says to me, "I would watch this. This is really good." - that’s a really good feeling because Roma’s been in business a long time and really knows good work. So that’s really rewarding for me because she is such a moral compass in the family, and it makes me feel good about it. For Wedding Day, it really is the fact that I thought it was so warm, and that deserving people were taken care of.

We at PTR sincerely thank Mark for taking time out of his insanely busy schedule to chat with us. I, for one, hope to see this series picked up for a second season - especially seeing as it gets Roma's stamp of approval (seriously, if the angel says yes, who are we to say no, eh?). We also want to thank our friends at Turner Publicity. The series premiere of Wedding Day starts Tuesday, June 16 at 8 p.m. on TNT. For the scoop on the series, head on over to the show's official Web site.

Friday, June 12, 2009

'Pains' Takes it To the Good People

'Royal Pains' Airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. on USA NetworkBy LillyKat
PTR Senior Staff Writer

So, I am just wondering if I can trade places with Dr. Hank Lawson for ... oh, I don't know. A day? A week? Forever?


I know I should be watching Royal Pains with some sort of semi-critical eye. But, seeing as I just can't get past all the frak-tastic cinematography of all-things Hamptons, I find myself doing my own WALL-E impression - staring at the TV screen, wanting to press my little record button so I can play back the sweeping aerials and beachfront views when I'm all by myself.

This week's second episode picked up brilliantly from the series premiere. More importantly, it further cemented what Mark Feuerstein told us in that Dr. Hank isn't just catering to rich folk.

He's actually trying to be a pretty darn good doctor to those who really need it, but can't afford it (yes, Virginia, they are some folks out Hampton way who don't have all the money in the world). I'm digging the fact Hank actually cares about his patients and recognizes the rather cushy position in which he finds himself allows him to do a whole lot more good for those who DON'T have oodles of Benjamins lying around. And it's not done in a soap-boxy, preachy, doesn't-the-medical-system-suck-and-I'm-going-to-single-handedly-change-it kind of way. It's more like a lightbulb going on in his head, and he's quietly taking to it one at a time.

I also dig the wonderful budding frimance (sorry, did I just make that up? Friendship and romance as one word? Whatever) that is blossoming between Hank and Jill. Jill's position as hospital administrator allows her to essentially aid Hank in his Robin Hood of Medicine routine - which may seem too convenient for some, but not for me. Forgive me if I like it when sometimes you just know the right people at the right time and space, and through the creative license of television, good things get to happen to good people.

And the dialogue ... w.o.w. Fast. Funny. Sharp. And just spot on.

I'm trying to figure out how I can start planning a trip east.

New episodes of Royal Pains air Thursdays at 10 p.m. on USA Network. You can join other fans on Facebook; follow Royal Pains on Twitter, or visit the official Royal Pains Web site for the scoop on the series!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Roundup: 'Closer' on Edge; Buying Into the 'Bar'

By LillyKat
PTR Senior Staff Writer

I interrupt my normally scheduled posting of individual show recaps to do a combo roundup this week for The Closer and Raising the Bar. Hey, whatever works, right? LOL!

'The Closer's' Fifth Season Airs Mondays on TNTMidol, Anyone?

I normally like to start out with a BJ-is-Back type comment when The Closer returns to our screens in the summer. After all, it just doesn't quite feel like summer without Deputy Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson and her Major Crimes Division of the LAPD. Yet this year, I'm tempted to say not only is BJ back, but everyone around her is awfully grouchy.

At least that was the vibe of the fifth season premiere ("Products of Discovery").

Seriously, I kept going, "Why is everyone so grouchy? On edge? Bitchy? Irritable?"

It was as if a bad case of PMS had taken over Major Crimes. Now, I don't know exactly how that factors into Creator James Duff's theme of change for this year, but I can honestly say the previous four seasons worth of premieres didn't find me wanting to give the entire squad a bottle of Midol.

That said, the case might've put everyone in a bad mood considering a whole family was murdered by the pregnant girlfriend of a suspected drug trafficker - and that included a 9-year-old and a 16-year-old. BJ usually gets her dander up when children are victims (as Kyra Sedgwick recently told us). And seeing as said girlfriend (named Dina) wasn't the sharpest knife in the drawer and went to the wrong house, thus, killing the WRONG people ... well, it seemed even worse than usual.

But can I get a W-O-W for the closing confrontation between BJ and Dina? Another CCC: Classic Closer Crescendo of an interrogation, which I have to say, this show does incredibly well. Five seasons in and I still cannot predict all of Brenda's tendencies. And like I said, when kids are victims, she seems especially fired up.

And potent in nailing her suspect.

And poor Kitty ... things are not looking too good, are they?

New episodes of The Closer air Mondays at 9 p.m. on TNT. For the scoop on the series, head on over to the show's official site.

Hey, Did You Cut Your Hair?

This year, we welcome Raising the Bar to PTR's summer line-up.

True, we included it last year as part of a TNT summer promo tour, but I stopped short of recapping each week because ... well, as Mark-Paul Gosselaar says, I wasn't sure where it was all going to end up. I kind of wanted to test drive the show.

'Raising the Bar' Airs Monday's on TNTThis year, I'm buying.

And since I did watch season one in its entirety, I pick it up knowing exactly where things left off.

Jerry Kellerman is getting cleaned up a bit.

Starting with a haircut.

Mark-Paul already told us this was going to happen, but seeing it in the context of the second season premiere really does show how the character has matured between the first and second seasons. He may be the best public defender (PD) in NYC, but if nobody can take him seriously because of his locks, then I guess he might want to wise up and play the game.

But Jerry doesn't like to always play by the rules, so we'll see if he really does get better at it this season. You know what they say: you get more with honey than you do with vinegar (does Jerry know this?).

Teddy Sears stars in TNT's 'Raising the Bar'Let me state right now that my fave character is Rich Woolsley. (and based on my interview with Teddy Sears, you couldn't tell that, right?) His interaction with Roz Whitman is just so wonderfully understated. Now, I'm alluding to some nice confessions of affection between the two characters that rounded out last season, and I'm hopeful we get to see more of that this season. In the meantime, Roz steps back into the courtroom as an actual PD as opposed to just running the Office of PDs. We didn't see any of that last year, and given what we saw in the premiere, it's easy to understand why she is so well-liked on both sides of the aisle.

All that said, it should come as no real surprise I tend to be firmly in the PD camp for far more entertaining characterizations; not to mention there is something about how Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Natalia Cigliuti, Teddy Sears and Gloria Reuben all gel together.

Wish list for season two: Bobbi (Natalia), goes through with the divorce of her drug-induced-doctor of a husband; Jerry (Mark-Paul) gets together with Bobbi (can we say chemistry?); Rich (Teddy) and Roz (Gloria) become a pair because ... aww, that just needs to happen.

On the flip side, the District Attorneys (DAs) finish second on my list.

Michelle Ernhardt annoys me. But that is, after all, how her character rolls (and hey, more power to her). Marcus McGrath I like for passion, but he gets a little too aggro sometimes. Nick Balco makes me feel like I need to take a shower every time he interacts with a woman.

And Judge Trudy Kessler reminds of that most feared school teacher who, no matter how good you were, would mange to find a way to put you in the dunce corner.

The fact that all these actors - Melissa Sagemiller, J. August Richards, Currie Graham and Jane Kaczmarek - can evoke this kind of reaction in me is a good thing.

Oh, and did we mention this is a Steven Bochco show?

'nuff said.

New episodes of Raising the Bar air Mondays at 10 p.m. on TNT. For the scoop on the series, head on over to the show's official site

Yet Another Deadly Round of 'Catch'

Discovery Channel's 'Deadliest Catch'By LillyKat
PTR Senior Staff Writer


The opening sequence of this week's episode of Deadliest Catch left me somewhat speechless.

Like, loss of F/V Katmai speechless.

One deckhand, on top of a wall of pots, trying to hold down a free flying tarp as a 35-foot wave rears up in the background and comes crashing down on top of the bow.


Is it any wonder viewership for this episode was one of the highest ev-er for the series?

WTF, Keith? Redux: So, it really WAS as bad as last week's previews indicated, when the Wizard's Captain Keith makes arguably one of the worst decisions ever by sending three of his crewmen out to try and put up a tarp over his wall of pots to help prevent freezing spray build up only to have a 35-foot wave come crashing OVER the bow of the boat, nearly wiping out his crew for good. Seriously, Keith. What were you thinking? The first fifteen minutes of the episode, I wasn't sure anyone was going to recover. The guys in shock, the 1000 lbs. pots completely smashed in by the sheer FORCE of the wave. It's amazing the three crew members - including bro' Mouse - were not killed. And while I do feel for Keith, and he was obviously shaken up by the whole mishap, I am still not following the tarp-stops-freezing-spray logic. It's a tarp, not Superman's cape. Yowza.

Crab much?: Just when you think the Time Bandit boys have run out of good juju, they manage to figure out exactly where to set their pots so as to pull almost a 600 average. I don't know how these guys do it. AND ... they are always in good spirits. Never flustered. Amazing.

Yay Phil!: There was a small amount of sentimental pride in seeing the Cornelia Marie's skipper set his first round of pots AND find crab on his first try. I was pulling for him given he's been out of action for almost a year AND is still trying to get back in rhythm. Plus, I'm not sure I could've gone through another round of the CM pulling up half-empty to empty pots as they did on Murray's watch for King Crab season. Speaking of Murray, the deck is missing his steady hand and leadership, but are managing. But if the Harris boys get in one more fight, I think I'm switching allegiances to the Time Bandit. Seriously, boys, just.stop.it.

Digging Ditches: So the Northwestern got the unlucky privilege of having to pull pots in the "ditch" - which means the tide is essentially washing over the side of the boat, making the pulling up of the pots and interesting challenge. But hey, it's crabbing, right? And Captain Sig is ... happy and content with what they've raked in thus far. Is that possible?

New episodes of Deadliest Catch air Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on Discovery Channel. Visit the official Deadliest Catch Web site for the latest on the captains and crews of the Northwestern, Cornelia Marie, Time Bandit, Wizard, Early Dawn and North American and the new boat, the Incentive. You can also catch up with Deadliest Catch folks on Twitter: fvnw_erin / CaptPhilHarris / northwesternpat / NorthwesternPR / captjohnathan / northwesternsig / DeadliestCatch (which is actually the Cornelia Marie) / DiscoveryChPR.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

PTR Exclusive: Teddy Sears Sets the 'Bar' for Good Guys

Teddy Sears stars in TNT's 'Raising the Bar'By LillyKat
PTR Senior Staff Writer

We here at PTR like the good guys.

The upstanding guys.

The decent guys.

The honorable, handsome, smart, funny, charming, easy-going and loving guys.

We pride ourselves on consistently proving they do still exist and are not just figments of our imagination or fictional characters in enchanted worlds of make believe.

Welcome to the list Teddy Sears, who not only is quite the gem himself but also plays one on TV - the truly upstanding Public Defender Richard Patrick Woolsley IV (or Rich, as everyone calls him for short) on TNT's hit legal series, Raising the Bar, which begins its second season Monday, June 8th at 10 p.m.

And in our ongoing pursuit of the good guys of the world, I recently caught up with Teddy on one of his days off to discuss all-things Rich. He is wonderfully charming to speak with, and his energy for the job that he does radiates right through the phone. I'm pretty sure I could've talked to him for three hours - especially considering he had just come in from a late morning surf session to which I was, I confess, insanely jealous seeing as a) I surf; and b) wish I could do so within walking distance of my house.

What can I say, it's a surfer thing.

"That’s why I live out here [in Southern California]. It keeps me so happy and actually allows me to continue to have an athletic outlet. I have to be careful now that I'm on the show, so I’m obviously safe in my surfing. Can’t show up with a black eye or something because the board came back and dinged me," Teddy says with a laugh. "So, I back off just a little bit and do a lot of other stuff. But, I have to be by that water."

Believe you-me, I can relate.

And relating to Rich's good guy demeanor is one of the things that appealed most to Teddy about taking on the role.

"You know what I really liked about Rich is that he’s a good guy," says Teddy. "A lot of the guest stars I’ve played, I end up being Mr. Perfect who turns out to be a total douche bag, or just a total [jerk]. And this is not who this character is. He’s really selfless, and he’s really a good, honest decent guy. I just haven’t been able to live in that as a job, and that’s what makes [this] fun – because it's close to my heart, too."

I'm not sure how TNT lucked out in having both Jon Tenney's Special Agent Fritz Howard and Teddy's Rich Woolsley on their network, but I'm thinking they might want to add a new tag line.

TNT: We know good guys.

And it would seem viewers appreciate it.

Teddy Sears stars in TNT's 'Raising the Bar'They also appreciate the show's fresh look at courtroom drama from both sides of the aisle. That is, from the public defender's (PDs) point of view as well as the district attorney (DAs) - which, let's face it, is predominantly how we've all grown up understanding the television version of the legal system. There are the cops and the DAs, and there are the bad guys repped by the PDs.

But it isn't always so cut and dry on Raising the Bar. The show likes to operate in a certain gray area of what might be right or wrong, and it takes a much more personal look at what the lawyers - on both sides - must do to represent their respective clients to try and win a fair legal judgment.

"I think the great thing about the show is that it brings up real issues that are occurring in real time that are very gray and worthy of being debated," says Teddy. "I think that’s what makes it worth tuning into. If you knew the outcome going into every episode, I think it would lose its luster. And because none of the lawyers [are there to witness any of the crimes], we just have to piece it together as best we can and try to paint this picture of what actually happened. I think that exposes, in a microcosm, exactly how lawyers have to operate. They simply have to try and go on what they see to be the most relevant pieces of information whether it’s fact or not; it's all they have. And, even when I'm reading the script, up until the last minute I don’t know if the guy’s guilty or not – I have no idea which way the jury’s going to come back. Ultimately, I think that's worth tuning into."

Also worth tuning in for is Teddy's portrayal of Rich - a genuine article of decency and good spirit, who forgoes his well-to-do upbringing and sure-thing career as a high-powered attorney at a high-powered law firm to serve the needs of those less fortunate as a public defender. When he auditioned for the role, Teddy's own upbringing allowed him to have certain family familiarity with the character.

Teddy Sears stars in TNT's 'Raising the Bar'Says Teddy: "I grew up in Chevy Chase, Maryland. I went to an all boys school for 10 years. My parents were members of a country club. So, growing up in that environment, I soaked up things along the way that I think made it easier for me to want to play a character like this. I remember getting the audition, and I thought, 'Oh, I know this guy – I went to school with these guys.' Even though [Rich's backstory wasn't exactly the same as] my upbringing, there were elements to it that I was around, and [the role] innately felt right. I read twice with [creator and executive producer] Steven Bochco and his wife Dayna, and Jesse Bochco. It was a family affair. I remember walking in and feeling instantly at ease. I’m one of four kids - my dad’s got three siblings, my mom’s got four siblings - and I just sort of felt that family energy – for lack of a better term. It sort of went from there. Steven gave me the nod, and very luckily, here we are a couple years later."

Make that almost exactly two years later as the series begins its second go around. And for Teddy, this season feels like another chance to make an already good impression.

"I feel like with first seasons, you just don’t know how it’s going to be received," he says. "You're really performing in a vacuum. So, knowing that [we were] on the right track in the first season lends a real relaxedness to doing the second season. It gives us a great breadth of confidence. And, I think we have all the elements of a nice strong run – the writing, the acting, the stories and the support of TNT; they've given us a big promotional push and have a lot of faith in us."

In listening to Teddy, it's hard to believe this is a guy who self admits he stumbled into acting.

Ass backwards.

"Truth be told, I fell ass backwards into acting in New York City," he says with a laugh. "I had not taken an acting class. I wasn’t harboring any conscious, secret desire to get into it. But, I was raised on Caddyshack and Animal House and Ghostbusters and Saturday Night Live. So, that sort of silly, funny, performance aspect of things is something that I always enjoyed but didn’t know I wanted to do."

"Really?" I ask, not entirely convinced given he talks with such genuine enthusiasm for the profession, and someone well-seasoned beyond his 32 years.

Teddy Sears stars in TNT's 'Raising the Bar'"In fact," he continues, "I was priming for a Wall Street existence. I went to the University of Virginia, and I got into this really select two-year undergraduate business program - sort of that Type A businessman route. But, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do after college, and [somewhere inside] I knew I didn’t want to go work for a big company. I was just restless. I thought I wanted something by the water, something very quiet. So, I lived in Hawaii for about six months after graduation - worked on a snorkeling boat on the Big Island, lived in Kona. But, it just wasn’t working for me. So, I moved back East, and I went to New York City to visit some friends and thought ‘THIS is where I have to be!’ It was the total opposite of Hawaii, but the pace, the excitement and the energy of New York City really matched what was going on in my head. It was apparent that’s where I needed to be. So, I moved.

"I auditioned for the role of a bartender on the One Life to Live soap opera in 2000," Teddy continues. "I went because I thought when I have grandkids, it would be a funny story I could tell them - that I once auditioned for a soap opera. I had no acting training, I had no headshot, [but the role] just made sense to me. The kind of acting I hate is the kind of acting that looks ‘acted.’ So, I just thought I’d go there, I would pretend that I was actually in the situation, and I would be normal. Well, it was enough to get hired. And what was supposed to be a few days turned into two years. So, I really fell ass backwards into acting. I remember showing up the first day of work terrified, scared, just had no idea what I was doing. But, it just seemed like so much fun. And, once I started to get the words out of my mouth, it just began to feel really good."

Still, Teddy didn't commit to the idea of being an actor for while thereafter. It didn't quite seem like a real job, and nearly everyone in his sphere of influence were all business oriented individuals.

"It took me years to commit to it for a number of reasons," says Teddy. "No one from my town is an actor. I don’t know anyone’s father who does anything except business. So, [it was a question of] can I make this work? Can I face these people who - when I come home - keep asking me when I’m going to get a real job? But once I did, and I followed the courage of my convictions, I really think that’s when things began to take off."

So what does he consider the most important element when considering a project? It's a recurring theme we hear quite often here at PTR from our interviewees: the writing.

Teddy Sears stars in TNT's 'Raising the Bar'"For me, it starts with the writing," says Teddy. "It’s the story. It’s the world that’s created by these scripts - the little world I can occupy within the story. I know it when I’m reading it; I just get excited. I start to itch to do it. It captivates and grabs me in a way, and it’s something that when I put it down, I keep thinking about. But, it would be disingenuous to say that the people involved have nothing to do with it. It matters hugely who’s directing it, who’s interested, who’s putting together, what they’ve done in the past. I think, for me, I’d like to continue to be in league with great writers, great directors, great actors. If the story is there, then it’ll attract all the right elements."

When I ask Teddy whether he has a knack for wanting to portray characters in which he shares similarities, or he prefers to take on roles that are completely opposite from his own persona, he confesses he does - at least at this point in his career - lean toward the former for one important reason: he can relate to the character on an emotional level.

"I’m a young actor. And I mean that in I haven’t been doing this for even 10 years, yet. I think, as I get older, I’ll know which one I prefer more. But, I do like having similarities and things in common with [my characters] - like Richard. It helps make my job easier because I can relate to it emotionally. It’s not just a concept in my head that I’m trying to absorb. And I mean that specifically in that Richard is a good man, cares greatly about other people, he works tirelessly on their behalf - all of which I can relate to. Now, I can’t relate to being so rich that all of my shirts are custom made as well as my suits," says Teddy with a laugh. "But, I can relate to wanting to blaze my own trail, and taking the best of my upbringing and applying it to life. Like Richard, I've taken the lessons that my dad taught me - the manners, the morals, the family ties - and ultimately blazed my own trail. That is something I share with Richard."

Custom suits and shirts aside, one could say this role was tailor made for Teddy. And not surprisingly, it has been quite a rewarding one - both personally and professionally.

Says Teddy: "Professionally, this is the best writing I’ve ever had the pleasure of being assigned. And I think in the world of acting, consistency is the greatest gift one can receive. So, simply being on a show of this caliber with these actors, it’s a thrill for me to be in the ring with these guys and have the opportunity to grow and to learn. That comes down to repetition and consistency. Personally, it’s a thrill to be in league with these people, and professionally I can only get better because of it."

You might say Teddy is well on his way to giving us his best yet. We here at PTR will most definitely be watching.

After all, we like the good guys.


Teddy’s PTR Quicktakes …

I’m most comfortable when I’m … on the beach.

The best part of my day is when … the sun comes up.

If I wasn't an actor I'd be … on the ocean.

Last book I read was … Falconer by John Cheever

The oldest thing in my closet is … and I keep it because … a Harris Tweed blazer because I secretly want to be a college professor.

The best piece of advice ever given to me was … and he or she said … my father said never doubt yourself.

The last time I laughed so hard I cried was when … it was the first five minute of Tropic Thunder. I had no idea what was coming, and I was doubled-over.

I’m most inspired when I’m … I was thinking I’m most inspired when I stop thinking and let creativity take over. But the first thing that came to mind is I’m most inspired when I’m on my surfboard - the real moment to moment thing that happens when you surf. That’s real inspiration because that’s what I want to take with me onto my life on land.

If I could travel to one place in the world that I haven’t been to as yet it would be … because … San Sebastian, Spain, for the food and the ocean.


I want to extend a Pipeline size wave of thanks to Teddy for taking time out to chat with me on his day off - and for being one heck of an awesomely cool guy. He's got an open invitation to join me at my local surf spot any time he feels like trying out his new custom shaped Channel Islands board. Also want to thank our friends at Turner Publicity and Rogers & Cowan. Raising the Bar returns for its second season Monday, June 8th at 10 p.m. on TNT. For the scoop on the series, visit the show's official Web site. You can also look for Teddy in the upcoming feature film A Single Man, which will co-star the ever-amazing Julianne Moore and Colin Firth. (We also wouldn't mind if he showed up again on Dollhouse next season, either. Hint, hint.)