Oh, blah. I don’t know about you, but I was expecting more out of Sunday's finale of Downton Abbey Season Four. The entire season, in general, seems to have lost its touch. Moments that used to flow together now seem forced with excessive violin string plucks. And have I mentioned I’m still grieving for Matthew? I think the reason why I am left so unsatisfied with this season is the fact that the characters have been, well, happy. (By English standards).
does this leave the cast of Downton?
Mary, who seems to be stuck between her two men, has a decision to make regarding her future. She continues to refer to her son without any affection and turn her nose down at Rose’s bad decisions.
Paul Giamatti’s cameo as Cora’s brother was the only surprising thing to happen during the 92-minute finale. I became bored with his American “bad-boy” act rather quickly. His relationship with Rose’s friend was dull because there was no character background to support the story. Come on, Fellowes! Make me connect and bond with the characters before you make them fall in love with Paul Giamatti.
Edith still remains the strongest, most progressive character on the show. With her boyfriend missing, she went abroad and had a damn baby in Switzerland. Toward the end of the episode, Edith makes a deal with the local pig farmer to secretly raise her baby. Will Michael Gregson appear again next season? Is he secretly involved in some Nazi business?
can’t get enough of Lady Edith, Laura Carmichael hosted an “Ask Me
Anything” on Reddit’s r/television thread Monday. She talks about taking Downton
personality quizzes online says about her fictional baby daddy’s disappearance:
“It’s a mystery. It’s always a mystery to us, the cast, when they do these
storylines. We’re constantly trying to figure out where a character is going to
go next. We read the script, Charlie (Gregson) and I, and were as in the dark
as everyone else!” Read more here.
I suppose this season needed to be one of healing, since most of our characters have endured extreme trauma (Anna). I expect Season Five, which is filming now, to bring the heat. I need death, I need scandal. Because as much as I hate to admit it, the constant agony these characters are put through makes for some damn good television.
Until next season.
Miley Cyrus kicked off her Bangerz tour in expected fashion: with a mini-Britney, a gigantic phallic hot dog, the return of the infamous foam finger and Miley entering the stage via a giant Miley head, sliding down a giant Miley tongue. Here’s a look at this recent performance of “Party in the USA,” basically a children’s patriotic school play, if said children drank a bathtub full of molly-laced Kool-Aid first.
Side note: This is what U.S. History class will look like in 2064.
We’re more than halfway through the Olympics and the U.S. is currently in third place for medal standings with 23 medals —the most decorated country at this point.
There have been some ups and downs: Superstars Shaun White and Shani Davis failed to attain medals and other U.S. favorites scored much lower than expected. But history was made with Charlie White and Meryl Davis winning the first U.S. gold in Olympic ice dancing; bobsledder Steven Holcomb again broke a 62-year losing streak for the States (he and Steve Langton won bronze in the two-man race, medaling for the first time since 1952; Holcomb in 2010 also led his four-man sled team to the country’s first medal in that event in 62 years); and the U.S. commanded the podium for men’s ski slopestyle as Americans
The best spectacle came on the ice rink, though. Is that any surprise? With music, dancing and sparkly costumes, the other sports just don’t compete when it comes to entertainment. Retired ice princess Johnny Weir hasn’t missed a step with his flawless looks while providing figure skating commentary for NBC — Gawker has been on Weir Watch, documenting his sassiest ensembles and accessories.
Is anyone else kicking themselves for having just discovered Russian skating god Evgeni Plushenko? The highly decorated figure skater embarked on his fourth Olympics in Sochi this year after undergoing surgery on his spine in early 2013. Plush won Russia’s first gold at the games, competing in two team events before kicking off the figure skating short program. Sadly — and right after NBC aired an amazing reel on Plush and his very interesting history — the skater injured himself during practice, just before he was about to compete. Plush withdrew from the event, retiring from his sport effective immediately.
So this kind of thing happens all the time with athletes who push their bodies to the limit. But Plushenko is more than just a talented skater. He was a presence — with “top three in Russian woman” wife — as this now-viral showcase (aka not a competition) performance proves.
And finally we have The Faces of Figure Skating, which pretty much speaks for itself.
This dude is a dead-ringer for David Wain seeing a pair of boobs for the first time.
You know that Crystal Head vodka that comes in a cool glass skull? Well, fun fact, Dan Aykroyd founded the company, and some scientists created a face based on the “skull’s” dimension. Here’s what it would look like if the Crystal Head was a real guy:
Jimmy Fallon took over The Tonight Show hosting duties Monday and it’s already clear fans of his Late Night jokes, skits and recurring bits can expect just about the same from his new show and time slot. A cavalcade of celebrities welcomed Fallon on Monday, with Lindsay Lohan, Rudy Giuliani, Lady Gaga and other famous New Yorkers paying up as if they lost a bet that he’d never take over Tonight. Fallon’s first guest was Will Smith who, along with Jimmy, schooled us on the Evolution of Hip-Hop Dancing. I also finally discovered that The Roots, when introducing Fallon, aren’t just yelling random numbers (I thought they were area code shout outs?), which became clear when ?uestlove enthusiastically shouted, “One!” at the start of the first show.
Fallon’s gonna kill it. So it’s definitely appropriate that his original Saturday Night Live audition tape is making its rounds. Spoiler Alert: Jimmy is a baby and auditioning for SNL appears to be the most terrifying experience ever.
Upstairs is busy with rigidity and drama this week, and it’s about what it’s always about: bribery and corruption.
The big pig debacle is teaching all of the upstairs cast about life and hard work. Mr. Blake and Mr. Gillingham are in the same room with Mary, and things get heated. Mr. Blake finally exits, but not without leaving a trail of sexual tension behind him.
Nobody knows how Robert is “getting on” in America because he is slowly becoming an insignificant character on the show and in the family.
Mr. Blake handles Mary’s child (what’s his name/he’s never around) and Mary is obviously super turned on by that, as told by the widening of her eyes.
Edith and Mary have been rather nice to each other lately, but oh how I miss the rotten cattiness.
Isobel Crawley is encouraging Branson to find socialism again, but he finds Sarah Bunting instead. Bunting, the political teacher with a pretty smile, seems to be a fitting replacement for Sybil. Maybe. As always, I am still grieving over Sybil and Matthew, and it might still be too soon for me. Too. Soon.
Aunt Rosamund, who is usually an ice cold bitch, is keeping Edith’s secret baby a secret. Which is really, really hard for her. Still no word from Michael Gregson, and the Dowager Countess finds out about the secret baby because that woman doesn’t miss a beat. Rosamund reassures Edith with, “You are not happy, but at least free”.
Cousin Rose is caught with Jack Ross in public again, and Branson’s feathers seem ruffled. Remember when Matthew used to swoop in and rescue Rose (and the entire family) from insufferable embarrassment? This time, however, Rose is not just partying and making a fool of herself. She seems to truly enjoy Ross’s company (or at least the thrill of it). When Ross seems weary of the situation, she comforts him by saying, “Isn’t it time people knew there are bigger and better values than the mean spirited ones they live by?” Later, when she finally reveals she is ENGAGED, it seems she only wants to get married to a black guy to piss her mother off.
Is anyone else getting sick of how bitter Daisy has been over Alfred? Now Alfred wants to marry Ivy, and Mrs. Patmore is tweakin’ about handling this much drama. Ivy is in the exact same situation as Daisy was with William in seasons one & two. Minus World War I and awkward family guilt trips. Mrs. Patmore has become somewhat of a guidance counselor and authority figure for the younger staff, and it’s an enjoyable dynamic. She may pretend to hate it, but on the inside she loves being that maternal figure in Daisy and Ivy’s life. After Daisy says goodbye to Alfred, Mrs. Patmore expresses her pride: “If you were my own daughter, I couldn’t be prouder than I am now.”
Anna finally confesses to Mary that Lord Gillingham’s valet Mr. Green, was her rapist. Lord Mary’s realization gave me chills, mainly because I’m not used to seeing that much of a reaction from her. After some sleuthing, Mr. Bates totally knows Mr. Green was the one who raped his wife, and he plans to do something about it. Mary Convinced Mr. Gillingham to relieve Mr. Green from his duties, but HE’S DEAD AND BATES PROBABLY KILLED HIM.
Molesley and Miss Baxter share a tender moment about feeling “fragile” and
their loyalties to Thomas, the mischievous under butler.
Until next week,
“Life kicks the stuffing outta ya sometimes, doesn’t it?" – Molesley
Dumb Starbucks, we hardly knew you!
The “parody” coffee shop, which mimicked the real Starbucks' name, logo, menu (Dumb Frappuccino, Dumb Espresso, served in Dumb Tall, Dumb Grande or Dumb Venti), everything — even font — opened in L.A. Friday only to be shut down by the Los Angeles Health Department Monday. Forbes posted Dumb Starbucks’ “frequently asked questions,” which explains that by adding the word “dumb,” it’s protected by parody law. Therefore the “coffee shop” was actually recognized as an art gallery and the coffee, art. Guests, who lined up out the door and around the strip mall where Dumb Starbucks set up shop, were treated to friendly service and free coffee and pastries (there were even CDs for sale at checkout, including a “Dumb” Norah Jones album). The real Starbucks acknowledged the parody shop, explaining the two had no connection and they were pursuing legal action.
Word about the stunt (which it obviously was, dummies) spread across the Internet via various comedians’ Twitters, so some it was no surprise that a comic was at the helm. Nathan Fielder, deadpan genius with the Comedy Central show in which he “helps” struggling business by offering ridiculous ideas (among other meta satirical “pranks”), revealed himself as the owner with this video:
Now I really can’t wait for the next season of Nathan For You.
Some big changes are happening to NBC’s long-running late-night shows, and you can read all about them in this week’s TV column. After some sad goodbyes (Jay Leno’s final episode of Tonight, Jimmy Fallon’s last time hosting Late Night and Seth Meyer’s final Weekend Update segment), there’s a lot to look forward to. Fallon brings house band The Roots and announcer/sidekick Steve Higgins with him — hopefully the same goes for all the celebrity drinking games and generally bizarre bits and skits. Like this gem:
As for Late Night, Seth Meyers starts his run Monday, Feb. 17 and in a total surprise announcement, Meyer’s old SNL buddy and modern comedic god Fred Armisen will be the show’s band leader.
The Olympics have taken over NBC (miss you, Parks and Rec) and oh, what a hot mess they’ve been! Plumbing problems and strange bathroom setups in the Sochi hotels, the Olympic rings mega-fail during the opening ceremony, the fact that it’s actually too warm for any of these damn outdoor winter sports — the list goes on. C’mon, Russia, you can’t even get winter right? At least we’ll always have this:
I'm not ashamed to admit VH1's Couples Therapy is one of my favorite shows on right now. With The Real L Word disappearing without a trace, I am finally able to get my Whitney-Sada fix (the couple is featured on Therapy), plus Jon Gosselin is apparently dating another mega-bitch and "Teen Mom" Farrah Abraham is equally intriguing and frustrating and alienesque. But the true star of the show is Ghostface Killah's girl, Kelsey Nykole...'s hair.
Remember Celebrity Death Match? The MTV claymation classic pitted musicians, actors and other famous people in pop culture or the news against each other in an over-the-top gruesome fight to the death. Showdowns included Marilyn Manson v. Charles Manson, Mariah Carey v. Jim Carrey (featuring Drew Carey) and Lil’ Kim v. Little Richard. Well, a few years after its 1998 debut, Fox presented a toned-down real-life version with Celebrity Boxing, which went down as one of TV Guide’s worst shows of all time. Has-beens like Danny Bonaduce and Barry Williams (of The Partridge Family and The Brady Bunch, respectively) took to the ring in what usually just a really sad battle. Only two episodes aired. So how do you take a bad idea like Celebrity Boxing to another level of shame? Add in the man at the center of one of the most controversial murder trials in recent years!
George Zimmerman was set to box rapper DMX in a televised match, but
both DMX and boxing promoter Damon Feldman have backed out, presumably after
thinking about it for three seconds. The fight is still on for now and will be
broadcast from a secret location this March, Zimmerman just needs an opponent.
In completely unrelated news, Brooklyn Nine-Nine co-stars Andy Samberg and Chelsea Peretti used to be childhood friends.
EDITH IS PREGNANT AND SHE’S KEEPING THE BABY, PEOPLE. But her significant other, Michael Gregson, is still mysteriously missing. If he ends up dead, the Grantham spawn will officially be cursed with forever losing their loved ones in freak accidents.
Robert “went to America” (aka filming The Monuments Men) while Rose sat
in a canoe with Jack Ross, the only reoccurring black male character. This
plot-line feels very forced to me. Instead of focusing on the romance of her
whirlwind relationship, the show focuses more on the scandal of it all.
The Dowager Countess fell ill with
bronchitis, and her frenemy/nemesis Isobel Crawley nursed her back to health.
While Violet ran a fever and cursed at her caretaker, Isobel smirked at the
fact that she will be able to say she saved Violet’s life. By the end of this
week’s show, they were playing cards like old friends.
Lady Mary — who has never let a speck of dirt touch her porcelain skin — had a mud fight with Charles Blake. Since every man she interacts with is a potential suitor, this was an interesting scene. Because Blake is actively trying to dismember her estate farm by farm, he is not exactly her friend. Although, this could create some perfectly awkward sexual tension. They share a special moment — and by which I mean they looked at each other five seconds longer than normal — until they were interrupted by Ivy.
Not too much is happening downstairs this week, but the servants take part in their usual hijinks.
While Daisy and Ivy bickered over Alfred’s return visit, Mrs. Hughes and Carson tried to keep the hormones at bay. Which never works.
Anna’s rapist, Mr. Green, ominously returned to Downton just as pompous as ever. His comments to Mrs. Hughes blaming Anna for the assault were eerie and uncomfortable. Mr. Bates has confirmed his suspicions about who attacked and raped his wife after he sees Anna reaction to Mr. Green’s presence.
We are all scared as to what he will do next.
“I’m married, I know everything.” – Lady Mary
After the Seahawks crushed the first half, viewers experienced an incredible half-time show.
My bad, that's actually from Puppy Bowl X. Bruno Mars and Red Hot Chili Peppers actually performed, which is funny because you just know execs originally wanted to shoot for the young crowd and then realized 15-year-old girls don’t buy Toyotas or Budweiser, so they just added RHCP last-minute.
Halftime show pros:
Bruno Mars opened with an epic drum solo
Bruno's gold suit
His James Brown moves
Sweet back-up band
Cool Bruno segue into “Give It Away”
Anthony Kiedis is just as fine as ever
That’s the only song RHCP played
Their music — along with Bruno Mars’ band — was pre-recorded (but it wasn’t their choice. People made a big fuss about RHCP’s instruments not being plugged in, but pre-recording is generally the rule for a live performance like this. Bruno’s singing and drumming were life, as was Anthony’s singing, while the rest of the music was mimed).
The Pepper guys weren’t wearing only tube socks
After a “messages from our troops” sequence, Bruno Mars sang that awful song from the Us Weekly commercials that totally does not work after a “messages from our troops” sequence”
The realization that I actually just can’t like Bruno Mars
All in all, there were some good
performances, just nothing shocking or spectacular. However, being the 10th
anniversary of Nipplegate, maybe that was the point.
Now, on to the commercials!
The Church of Scientology tried to trick us into thinking we were watching some low-budget Apple ad with this surprising commercial (and the only religious ad of the night):
Goldie Blox borrowed another Rock song for
the toy company’s latest ad — hopefully they got permission this time.
We finally got to see what that Seinfeld
reunion rumor was all about: A promotion for Jerry Seinfeld’s web series,
Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.
Overall, two themes were prevalent in this year’s ads…
and Animals (grab the tissues):
Also announced during Super Bowl commercials was the return of the hit drama 24 coming this May as well as Noah, the biblical epic starring Russell Crowe, Emma Watson and Jennifer Connelly in theaters March 8.
On last week’s episode of Workaholics, the guys hire an escort to bang theirv boss so she'll be in a good mood and allow them to host a fish fry in honor of Blake's dead koi fish. All completely acceptable work behavior. Anywho, Blake, Adam and Ders interviewed candidates and guess who appeared in the scene?