Category Archives: Crime

Limitless: Previewing The Latest CBS Drama

Guest Post by Adrian Crawford

In 2011, Neil Burger’s pseudo-sci-fi suspense drama Limitless was released to a surprisingly favorable response. The film starred Bradley Cooper as Eddie Mora, a down-on-his luck writer who stumbles upon a drug that enables him to tap into the full potential of the human brain (specifically, of course, his own). Mora’s experience with the drug, which is called NZT, takes him to new heights both professionally and socially. However, its negative effects, both in the form of withdrawal and the envy it inspires in others, quickly threaten to outweigh the positives.

Really, the concept was a little bit cheesy, and the decision to place Cooper in the main role was bolder than it might seem in retrospect. In 2011, Cooper was not quite the serious actor we regard him as today, but rather still “the guy from The Hangover” trying to make his way in film beyond comedy. As it turned out, however, Cooper was fantastic. Also, a supporting cast headlined by Abbie Cornish and Robert De Niro helped to spin a cheesy subject into a genuinely compelling film. Rotten Tomatoes lists Limitless with a 70% favorability rating among critics, with 74% of viewers having rated it positively.

Fast-forward four years, and here we are looking not at a sequel for the cinema, but a CBS adaptation that will turn the Limitless concept into a television drama. The show will premiere on Sept. 22, and in the meantime here’s our preview of some of the most interesting factors at play.

Undoubtedly the factor most people will have their eyes on is the transition of Bradley Cooper to television. While the protagonist of the series will be a character named Brian Finch (played by Jake McDorman), Cooper will be reprising his role as Eddie Mora, making him the latest major film actor to dabble in television. According to Deadline, Cooper “intends to appear as much as his schedule permits,” indicating he’s truly interested in seeing this project through. Evidently, the show will pick up where the film left off, with Mora having used his improved mental capacity to chase political ambition, and Sinclair likely following in his footsteps.

The appearance of Cooper on a CBS drama comes on the heels of TV roles for cinematic superstars like Jeff Daniels (in The Newsroom), Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey (in True Detective’s first season), and Colin Farrell, Vince Vaughn, and Rachel McAdams (in True Detective’s second season). While it’s unknown yet just how often he’ll be on screen, it’s a certainty that he’ll command audience attentions whenever he’s around.

As to what sort of drama will actually unfold in the TV continuation of Limitless, a CBS synopsis reveals that the primary focus will be on Finch’s work with the FBI. Working closely with FBI officials while also becoming a sort of protege for Mora (who will indeed be a senator en route to a presidential run), Finch will apparently become an indispensable asset for the bureau, thanks entirely to his usage of the NZT drug and resulting boost in cognitive ability.

Until the premiere actually arrives, that’s about all we’ve got on the content and structure of the show. Although, there’s one other interesting development that’s already occurred, and it’s that Limitless has a game. It’s a sort of cognitive test built on a combination of reading speed and show trivia, meant to see just how “limitless” players are. It’s a simple concept for now, but it’s actually pretty unique if you think about it.

Typically, video games do not accompany cable dramas, but rather mainstream films. And yet, a lot of the movie-based video games that do exist out there are built around the exact type of concepts—namely, casino experiences and card games—that a character on NZT might seek to manipulate. On the Betfair site, where so many movie-based casino games have found a home over the years, users can enjoy experiences based on Marvel superheroes, literary icons like Sherlock Holmes, and others, all with the accompanying promotional bonuses and real money gaming integration. These games are ultimately standard casino entertainment, but they make use of popular characters in their own unique ways.

With so much popular fiction tied in with this particular style of gaming coupled with the fact that a cognitive Limitless game already exists, it makes one wonder if the new show could be a rare exception: a TV drama with real potential in gaming and elsewhere in entertainment. The Limitless test could easily branch out to include other quizzes and puzzles, as well as card games, arcade experiences and the like, all of which are already, to varying degrees, testing our brains.

Currently, that’s just speculation. More than likely, the Limitless game is merely a fun tool CBS is using to help promote the show. But the nature of the subject matter, should the show become popular, is very conducive to a style of entertainment that already has close ties to popular fiction.

Either way, I can’t wait to see the new Limitless. I’m beyond excited to see Bradley Cooper on TV, and I’ll be trying to max out my score on the Limitless test pretty much from now until the premiere!

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Elementary – Pilot

“You have two alarm clocks. No one with two alarm clocks loves their job. Two alarm clocks mean it’s a chore for you to get up in the morning.”

Elementary has an uphill battle to fight. TV snobs complain that it’s just another CBS procedural drama. Sherlock devotees whine that it’s a blatant and inferior rip-off of their beloved show. Clueless TV dabblers assume it’s set at a school for young children. But what is the show actually like?

It’s fast-paced, witty, and shows many flashes of brilliance. And the same could be said for its lead, Jonny Lee Miller. He owns the role of the role of the legendary detective, and plays it a bit more jaded than Cumberbatch’s, and a bit less than Downey’s. I was overjoyed when I found out Miller was keeping his British accent, though the breathless clip with which he delivers his lines had some viewers searching for closed captioning buttons on their remotes. I didn’t have any trouble understanding him, though.

I didn’t think Miller would have much trouble pulling off a great Holmes, but I was a bit more wary about Watson. I’m not familiar with Lucy Liu’s acting, and I worried that it might become just another will they/won’t they couple teaming up to solve crime (not that I don’t love many shows with that format, it just doesn’t seem very Sherlock Holmes). Since the producers have assured many times that they don’t intend the Holmes/Watson dynamic to turn romantic, I then focused on what Liu would bring to the table as Watson.

Liu’s Watson is far less awed by Holmes’ brilliance (perhaps partly due to a false deduction he made to spare her feelings) than a typical rendering of the character, has a painful past, and has some skill of her own at noticing clues. She plays the calm one to Holmes’ manic tendencies, but also shows a more playful side occasionally (as in the ending scene). Her enjoyment of both opera and baseball hints at a layered personality.

The initial crime to solve had a decent amount of twists, though it isn’t earth-shattering. Thankfully, the previews didn’t give much away. I was surprised by how willing Captain Gregson was to let Sherlock into the case, but him working with Holmes before in England made it more plausible.

One of my favorite parts was Holmes crashing Watson’s car into a suspect’s vehicle. Like Watson, I assumed he did it because it would help them get evidence to arrest the murderer. But no, he just did it because he was mad. Spoiled rich kid.

Elementary isn’t basing its cases on the classic Doyle stories, though I suspect Moriarty will show up soon enough. And after Watson deduced that Sherlock’s spiral downward was caused by a woman (yes, Holmes isn’t the only one with deducing skills), my first thought was that could be Irene Adler.

In all, while this pilot didn’t blow me away, I enjoyed every minute of it, and my high expectations were fully met. I love the character of Sherlock Holmes, and a movie every two years and three episodes every 18 months leaves plenty of room for another version of Holmes. Also, Holmes-inspired shows like Monk and House have now ended, leaving room for more anti-heroes with excellent deductive reasoning. I definitely plan to continue watching.

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Elementary Promo Photo

I couldn’t resist sharing this awesome promo pic for CBS’s upcoming drama Elementary. Now that BBC’s Sherlock, Benedict Cumberbatch has wished the show well and showrunner Rob Doherty has taken will they/won’t they melodrama off the table, the future looks even brighter for this modern take on Holmes. Adding the fact that the only scripted broadcast competition the show will get in its Thursdays at 10 timeslot is the lukewarmly-received Scandal, and I think its nearly certain CBS has a hit on its hands.

Full promo photo slideshow here.

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March Madness: Winner – Psych!

After an arduous month-long war, USA Network’s Psych has emerged as the victor of the first annual TV Breakroom March Madness!

The head-to-head final against Castle was the most difficult battle of the tournament. Each show garnered more than 300 votes, but in the end, Psych won by a mere eight votes! (There were some instances of double voting on both sides – I hope the perpetrators were simply casting votes for family members and not stuffing the ballot box.)

Psych’s odds were helped by some noteworthy accounts tweeting about the match-up. The official Psych twitter, Dulé Hill (who plays Gus on the show), and Maggie Lawson (who plays Juliet), among others, helped spread the news. Some Castle twitter accounts got in on the buzz as well, including fan site Castle TV and Molly Quinn (who plays Alexis Castle).

To celebrate Psych’s win, I’ve updated the background of this site with some Shawn and Gus awesomeness.

The winner of the $15 Amazon gift card will be announced tomorrow. You still have time to leave comments anywhere on the site (one per post) to get entries for the drawing. Giveaway will close at 11:59 PM EDT tonight.

Because of the wonderful reception you all gave to this March Madness tournament, I’m planning to bring in other head-to-head match-ups throughout the year. Check back on April 2 for the debut of Monday Madness!

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Castle’s Browncoats – Nathan Fillion and Adam Baldwin on the Set of ABC’s Castle

Adam Baldwin tweeted this photo early Saturday from the set of Castle, as he reunites with his Firefly captain, Nathan Fillion.

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What TV Shows Are Like NCIS?

Of course it’s easy to say, there are no shows quite like NCIS – that’s why it’s so popular! (NCIS is currently the most-watched drama on TV in the US.) But that’s not helpful to you at all. What you really want to know is: If I like NCIS, what other shows will I like?

At its core, NCIS is a procedural drama with a strongly characterized team who solve interesting crimes. The same could be said for most of the shows listed under “Crime Drama” in the top navigation. Shows that come close to matching NCIS’s particular blend of humor, teamwork, and under-the-surface romance would be Castle and Bones. I consider these three shows to be my favorite crime dramas.

Looking for a little more than just TV’s best crime shows? Then answer me this: Who is your favorite character on NCIS?

If it’s Tony DiNozzo (Michael Weatherly), try Warehouse 13. Secret Service Agent Pete Lattimer (Eddie McClintock) could be Tony’s long-lost brother. Instead of solving murders, you’ll be recovering artifacts with supernatural capabilities, but don’t worry, there’ll be a few corpses and plenty of humor along the way.

If it’s Ziva David (Cote de Pablo), try Nikita. Maggie Q as Nikita may be even more deadly an assassin than Ziva. She’s trying to make up for her past wrongs, even if she has to take out some bad guys and cut some past ties to do it.

If it’s Timothy McGee (Sean Murray), try Chuck. McGee might not have government secrets and skills locked in his brain like Chuck Bartowski (Zachary Levi) does, but both are amazing with computers, not always super-smooth with the ladies, and share a love of geekdom.

If it’s Leroy Jethro Gibbs (Mark Harmon), try Blue Bloods. Police Commissioner Frank Reagan (Tom Selleck) hates the political games as much as Gibbs, and always knows just the right thing to say to his daughter. His son, Danny (Donnie Wahlberg) is stubborn to a fault and follows his gut.

If it’s Abby Sciuto (Pauley Perrette), try Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It’s the only show I can think of that has as many facets as she does, plus her love of everything goth fits in perfectly. It’s hilarious with a dark edge, and full of unique characters. Abby has Buffy’s (Sarah Michelle Gellar) father-daughter relationship, Willow’s (Alyson Hannigan) mad skills, and Anya’s (Emma Caulfield) cheerful and quirky mindset.

If it’s Donald “Ducky” Mallard (David McCallum), try Merlin. Not only does this British show match Ducky’s heritage, but Gaius (Richard Wilson) shares many characteristics with him: medical background, longwindedness, and a fierce loyalty. They both also become a mentor to the young men they teach.

If it’s Jimmy Palmer (Brian Dietzen), try The Big Bang Theory. Leonard Hofstadter (Johnny Galecki) has the same awkward, self-depreciating manner as Palmer, yet still manages to win over (at least eventually) the ladies. Though the science tends to be more theoretical than you’d find in autopsy, this week’s episode did include brain dissection.

If it’s Leon Vance (Rocky Carroll), try Covert Affairs. The agents doing field work hint at Vance’s past, while the political maneuverings touch on his present office. Like Arthur (Peter Gallagher) and Joan (Kari Matchett) Campbell, he’s an expert at negotiating and dealing with foreign agencies.

Who’s your favorite character? Do you agree with my choices of shows? Which shows would you match up with the cast of NCIS?

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Bones – Giveaway!

This giveaway is over – check out my latest giveaway here!

This month, I’m giving away a season of Bones! Winner will receive his or her choice of either a season DVD set of the show (any season from 1 to 6) or a $15 Amazon gift card! See rules below for how to enter by leaving comments, sharing on Facebook, linking on Twitter, and more!

I discovered Bones less than 7 months ago, but it quickly grew to be one of my favorite shows. I caught up on the first 6 seasons perhaps a little too quickly (watching every episode between April 19 and July 19, 2011), so I joined the other fans in waiting months for the season 7 premiere. But now the long wait is over, since Bones returns tomorrow!

Bones is what happens when an FBI agent (David Boreanaz from Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel) who relies on his gut teams up with a forensic anthropologist (Emily Deschanel) who prefers science and rational thinking. Agent Seeley Booth dubs Dr. Temperance Brennan “Bones,” partly because of her ability to glean clues from a victim’s skeleton. Assisting Brennan are Dr. Jack Hodgins (T. J. Thyne), Angela Montenegro (Michaela Conlin), Dr. Camille Saroyan (Tamara Taylor), Dr. Lance Sweets (John Francis Daley), and a variety of interns.

Bones season 7 premieres November 3rd, 2011 at 9PM EST/10 Central on Fox.

 

The winner of last month’s Psych giveaway was Esther Kim! She chose the Psych Season 2 DVD set as her prize.

 

To enter this month’s giveaway:

Leave a comment on any blog post on this website. Your comment should add to the discussion (at least several sentences is good), and be relevant to the post’s subject. For example, you can comment on this post about what you love about Bones, what sort of giveaways you’d enjoy in the future, or what you think will happen in the season premiere. Any posts flagged as spam will not qualify (though I plan to scan through them to make sure all real comments get through). Every post you leave a comment on will count as one entry. If you leave relevant comments on 50 posts, you will get 50 entries.

Tweeting about the contest with a link back to this page will give you 5 extra entries the first time you tweet, and 1 extra entry per day for any tweets after that.

Linking to this contest on your blog, Facebook, or Google+ will give you 10 extra entries the first time, and 1 extra entry per day after that.

If you have other ideas for promoting this giveaway, feel free to use them, and I’ll award entries accordingly. The more creative/effecting the promotion, the more entries, you’ll receive!

To receive your additional entries for promoting this contest, email me at katie at tvbreakroom dot com to let me know what promotion you did.

 

The Rules:

Contest begins November 1, 2011 at 12:01AM EDT and ends November 30, 2011, at 11:59PM EDT. All entries received outside that time period are invalid.

Winner will be chosen at random (using Random.org) from all eligible entries received.

Open to everyone 16 or older with a valid email and mailing address. A winner residing outside the US may have to pay an additional fee for shipping. (Feel free to select an e-gift card instead!)

Winner must provide a way to contact (email or website with some means of contact) and respond to winning notification within 3 days or prize may be awarded to someone else.

What counts as a relevant comment will be at my sole discretion. Comments should be made in English. You may leave as many comments per day as you wish, but only one comment per blog post will be counted as an entry for the contest.

These rules may change at my discretion.

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Psych – Giveaway!

This giveaway is over – check out my latest giveaway here!

May the best commenter win.

But first things first. The winner of my September giveaway was Ruth Anderson! She receives her choice of a Castle Season One DVD set or an Amazon gift card.

For October, I’m giving away (in case you haven’t already guessed) a season of Psych on DVD!

Psych is a humorous crime show about Shawn Spencer (James Roday), who uses his hyper-observant skills to pretend he’s psychic. Teaming up with his best friend since childhood, Gus (Dulé Hill), the two help solve crimes for the Santa Barbara police department, working with (or hindering) Detectives Carlton Lassiter (Timothy Omundson) and Juliet O’Hara (Maggie Lawson). Chief Vick (Kirsten Nelson) oversees the department. Shawn’s dad, Henry (Corbin Bernsen), is a former cop who trained Shawn to be observant, and often gets pulled into Shawn’s shenanigans.

Which season of Psych is up for grabs? Any of them! This giveaway is WINNER’S CHOICE! Want to start from the beginning with season one? Snag the newest season five? Fill in the season three you never got around to buying? You pick! And if for some reason (like already owning all five seasons) you’d rather have something else, you can select a $15 Amazon gift card instead.

Season six of Psych begins October 12th on USA Network!

 

To enter the giveaway:

Leave a comment on any blog post on this website. Your comment should add to the discussion (at least several sentences is good), and be relevant to the post’s subject. For example, you can comment on this post about what you love about Psych, what sort of giveaways you’d enjoy in the future, or what you think will happen in the season premiere. Any posts flagged as spam will not qualify (though I plan to scan through them to make sure all real comments get through). Every post you leave a comment on will count as one entry. If you leave relevant comments on 50 posts, you will get 50 entries.

Tweeting about the contest with a link back to this page will give you 5 extra entries the first time you tweet, and 1 extra entry per day for any tweets after that.

Linking to this contest on your blog, Facebook, or Google+ will give you 10 extra entries the first time, and 1 extra entry per day after that.

If you have other ideas for promoting this giveaway, feel free to use them, and I’ll award entries accordingly. The more creative/effecting the promotion, the more entries, you’ll receive!

To receive your additional entries for promoting this contest, email me at katie at tvbreakroom dot com to let me know what promotion you did.

 

The Rules:

Contest begins October 1, 2011 at 12:01AM EDT and ends October 31, 2011, at 11:59PM EDT. All entries received outside that time period are invalid.

Winner will be chosen at random from all eligible entries received.

Open to everyone 16 or older with a valid email and mailing address. A winner residing outside the US may have to pay an additional fee for shipping. (Feel free to select an e-gift card instead!)

Winner must provide a way to contact (email or website with some means of contact) and respond to winning notification within 3 days or prize may be awarded to someone else.

What counts as a relevant comment will be at my sole discretion. Comments should be made in English. You may leave as many comments per day as you wish, but only one comment per blog post will be counted as an entry for the contest.

These rules may change at my discretion.

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NCIS – Nature of the Beast

While NCIS didn’t end on much of a cliffhanger last year, it’s one of my favorite shows and I was really looking forward to spending time with the team again. Much like the season 7 opener, season 9 premieres with a Tony DiNozzo-centered episode in which he narrates what has happened over the intervening months.

Castle ended its first episode of the season with Beckett saying, “I remember everything.” NCIS starts off this episode with Tony saying, “I can’t remember any of it.”

Spoilers below!

Tony was knocked unconscious with a bullet to the vest. His weapon had been discharged twice, and there was blood at the scene, but no body. What was left behind was a bloody NCIS badge that wasn’t Tony’s.

Dr. Rachel Cranston (Kate Todd’s sister) urges him to go back to the beginning and try to put the pieces together, starting with his top-secret assignment from the new Secretary of the Navy. Tony wanted to bring the rest of the team in on the case, but Jarvis refused. Gibbs and the others gradually found out about the assignment, and Gibbs started bothering Jarvis about it and the microchips cut out of the arms of both Levin and Captain Wright. Tony’s assignment also leads him directly to E.J.

In present day, an FBI agent comes to the hospital and tries to talk to Tony. Agent Stratton is played by Scott Wolf, who played Chad Decker on V.

This was one of my favorite lines of the episode:

Tony DiNozzo: Who doesn’t like hot girls who carry guns?

I also loved Gibbs imitating Mike Franks’ voice. It’s nice to know he won’t be forgotten by the team. And Tony quoting three of Gibbs’ rules at Secretary Jarvis was amazing!

While the episode itself was a bit slow, the final twist sets things up nicely for a longer case that should occupy the next half season or more. Looking forward to a “real” episode next week, though!

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Castle – Rise

Castle is back! This was definitely one of my top five, if not my most, anticipated season premieres this fall. (Though the Castle makeover my site got may have clued you in, and don’t forget the giveaway! Ten days left.) And I was not disappointed.

Spoilers, as usual, abound in this episode review, so come back later if you haven’t yet seen “Rise”!

Of course we knew Beckett wasn’t dead. The episode opened (after a quick “previously on”) just minutes after the shooting, with Lanie trying to keep Kate alive. In an interesting twist, Josh is the one who has to start operating on her until another doctor gets there. It’s kind of nice that we got a little bit of closure on him before Beckett breaks up with him somewhere in the three-month hiatus.

Yes, after Castle visits Kate in the hospital for two minutes, in which she tells him that she doesn’t remember what happened (including his profession of love) and that she needs space, they don’t talk for three entire months. And while I hate how terrible that was for Castle, I think it was a great move for the episode and this season. It helps the two get back to their camaraderie without negating what Castle told her – it instead tempers it with time and silence. It clues the viewers in that it’s still going to be a while until these characters get together.

The three months gave Ryan and Esposito time to figure out Gates, the new captain, while still making her new to Beckett. I love how they’re sneaking around Gates’ back, and I like the twist that they have to be extra careful that Gates doesn’t investigate Montgomery.

While Beckett recovered, Castle kept himself busy, finishing his book (though less than three months from finishing first draft to published novel is a bit of a fantasy) and helping Ryan and Esposito hunt the killer. I absolutely love how Beckett approaches him at the book signing.

The case in this episode is understandably non-twisty, given that there are far weightier matters to take up screen time. It simply gave us the opportunity to see that Castle’s out-of-the-box thinking is still a valuable asset to the team, and Beckett’s emotional scars are going to take a little longer to heal.

I assumed that Montgomery sent the files to Castle, but instead they went to someone else, as insurance to protect Beckett and the others (too bad they hadn’t arrived before the shooting at the funeral). And now Castle has to keep Beckett from pursuing the case. I love that Castle confided in his mom about it, and how concerned Alexis was for her father, not only with him being in danger physically, but emotionally as well. They were the two who had to pick up his pieces during those three months of silence.

And the final twist of the episode, where Kate admits the truth to her psychiatrist, I definitely saw coming. It was obvious in the way she reacted in the hospital that she remembered Castle’s “I love you.” Now the big question is, when will she tell Castle the truth?

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Castle – September Giveaway

This giveaway is over – check out my latest giveaway here!

I’ve only blogged specifically about Castle once before, which is sad considering that it’s one of my favorite shows. I plan to do better with season four, which starts this month. And in honor of the new season, and to celebrate the new Castle-themed look for my sidebar, I’m giving away a Castle season one DVD set!

Already have it? No worries. If the winner prefers, they can receive a $10 Amazon gift card instead. Last month’s winner was Abbi!

Castle is what happens when a charming novelist teams up with a passionate cop to solve crimes in New York City. The writing and acting on this show is top-notch, and it mixes humor, drama, and simmering-just-under-the-surface romance perfectly.

 

To enter the giveaway:

Leave a comment on any blog post on this website. Your comment should add to the discussion (at least several sentences is good), and be relevant to the post’s subject. For example, you can comment on this post about what you love about Castle, what sort of giveaways you’d enjoy in the future, or what you think will happen in the season premiere. Any posts flagged as spam will not qualify (though I plan to scan through them to make sure all real comments get through). Every post you leave a comment on will count as one entry. If you leave relevant comments on 50 posts, you will get 50 entries.

Tweeting about the contest with a link back to this page will give you 5 extra entries the first time you tweet, and 1 extra entry per day for any tweets after that.

Linking to this contest on your blog, Facebook, or Google+ will give you 10 extra entries the first time, and 1 extra entry per day after that.

The Rules:

Contest begins September 1, 2011 at 12:01AM EDT and ends September 30, 2011, at 11:59PM EDT. All entries received outside that time period are invalid.

Winner will be chosen at random from all eligible entries received.

Open to everyone 16 or older with a valid email and mailing address. A winner residing outside the US may have to pay an additional fee for shipping. (Feel free to select an e-gift card instead!)

Winner must provide a way to contact (email, website, Facebook, etc.) and respond to winning notification within 3 days or prize may be awarded to someone else.

To receive your additional entries for promoting this contest, email me at katie at tvbreakroom dot com to let me know what promotion you did.

What counts as a relevant comment will be at my sole discretion. Comments should be made in English. You may leave as many comments per day as you wish, but only one comment per blog post will be counted as an entry for the contest.

These rules may change at my discretion.

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White Collar – Cruel Cliffhangers

The summer finale of White Collar was last night, and once again, the writers left us with a mean cliffhanger. I wonder if they get paid on a sliding scale based on how much they torment viewers.

And with USA Network’s split schedule, they get to have cliffhanger moments twice as often. In the 2 1/2 years the show’s been running, there have been five cliffhangers. And I clearly remember every one.

Suffice it to say, there are going to be plenty of spoilers below. So beware!

I sort of envy people who came to the show late, like my parents and siblings. They avoided months of restless wondering.

The first mid-season finale (halfway through season 1) ended with Peter confronting Kate, in a way that made it seem like he was the one who’d been controlling her moves. And for weeks we wondered – could Peter be the bad guy? Was he betraying Neal? And if not, what was he doing there, wearing that ring?

The season one finale ended with a plane exploding. Who wanted Neal and Kate dead? How would Neal get over losing her?

The second summer finale (halfway through season 2) ended with Mozzie being shot. The outcry I read over and over online was, “Not Mozzie!” He was just enough of a secondary character that he could really have died, but such a favorite that no one wanted to imagine the show without him.

The season two finale ended with Peter accusing Neal of faking a fire to steal the Nazi treasure, and Neal hotly denying it, only to later find out that someone close to him had done exactly that. Out of all the cliffhangers, this was the one I minded least, but the complications that arose were far-reaching.

The third summer finale ended with Keller telling Peter he’d seen the treasure, and kidnapping Elizabeth to get it.

While the mid-season finales seem to be more intense in terms of “what if?” emotional turmoil, it’s the season finales that drive the action for the following seasons. We find out Mozzie’s not dead and Peter’s not the bad guy quite quickly once the season resumes. So I’m hopeful they’ll find El in the next episode – but that one episode will be amazing.

If anything could postpone Mozzie’s island getaway, finding out that Mrs. Suit is in danger will. Mozzie is closer to her than to anyone else on the right side of the law (and perhaps even on the wrong side, too), and it’s his stealing of the treasure that got her kidnapped. His putting the bounty on Keller that gave him the opportunity to escape the FBI.

Not that Neal’s going to be feeling any less guilt. Keller is his enemy. Neal’s lies to Peter led to this.

But my guess is that the treasure’s only going to be a side issue during the next episode. The focus will be on getting El back.

I just hope that, when this is all hashed out, that Peter realizes that Neal was having to choose between Peter with all the confines of the anklet, and Mozzie with all the treasure he could imagine. And that in the end, Neal chose Peter.

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Rizzoli & Isles – High Heels and Handcuffs

I watch too much crime drama, so last summer I was reluctant to jump into Rizzoli & Isles. But since there were few shows airing new episodes during the summer, and since Sasha Alexander (Kate from the early seasons of NCIS) was one of the co-stars, I decided to give it a try.

The 10-episode first season was great. Pairing two very different characters together to solve crimes has been done way too many times, but when it’s done well, it works. Rizzoli & Isles has the unique twist of having the duo be two females, instead the usual man and woman (Bones, Castle, etc.) or two guys (Psych, White Collar). Boston was also a fresh setting, for me at least.

The first season had a great mix of conflicts – Rizzoli dealing with both her past and present with the murderous Hoyt, crazy fun Italian family issues, and breaking in a new partner while still working with her old one; Isles with uncovering secrets about her past and naivety about certain situations. The show had some great guest stars too – in fact, Donnie Wahlberg’s character in a few episodes directly influenced me trying out Blue Bloods that fall.

But so far, the second season has bored me. The drama has felt overwrought, and none of the episodes that have aired so far has gripped me. It must be still doing well as far as viewers go, since TNT just ordered a 13-episode third season, but I’m not sure I’ll keep watching. I’ll probably finish out this season at least, especially since late August and early September will be a bit empty as far as new episodes go. I’m still hoping the show will pick back up, since it has a good cast and did so well in season one.

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Life – Giveaway!

This giveaway is over – check out my latest giveaway here!

Throughout the month of August, enter to win a brand new Season One DVD set of the TV series Life!

Life is a quirky crime drama starring Damian Lewis as a cop wrongfully convicted of a brutal murder. After 12 years in prison, he’s exonerated, given a multi-million dollar settlement, and promoted to detective. Now, armed with a new zest for fruit, a philosophical outlook on life, and a clueless approach to technology, he and his partner (played by Fairly Legal’s Sarah Shahi) solve homicides in unusual ways.

To enter the giveaway:

Leave a comment on any blog post on this website. Your comment should be at least several sentences, and relevant to the post’s subject. Any posts flagged as spam will not qualify (though I plan to scan to make sure all real comments get through). Every post you leave a comment on will count as one entry. If you leave relevant comments on 50 posts, you will get 50 entries.

Tweeting about the contest with a link back to this page will give you 5 extra entries the first time you tweet, and 1 extra entry per day for any tweets after that.

Linking to this contest on your blog, Facebook, or Google+ will give you 10 extra entries the first time, and 1 extra entry per day after that.

The Rules:

Contest ends August 31, 2011, at 11:59PM EDT. All entries received after that are invalid.

Winner will be chosen at random from all eligible entries received.

Open to everyone 18 or older with a valid email and mailing address. A winner residing outside the US may have to pay an additional fee for shipping.

Winner must provide a way to contact (email, website, Facebook, etc.) and respond to winning notification within 3 days or prize may be awarded to someone else.

To receive your additional entries for promoting this contest, email me at katie at tvbreakroom dot com to let me know what promotion you did.

What counts as a relevant comment will be at my sole discretion. Comments should be made in English. You may leave as many comments per day as you wish, but only one comment per blog post will be counted as an entry for the contest.

Have fun!

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Psych – Humor and Hijinks

Psych is one of the few shows I began watching during my pre-internet-video days. My siblings found the first season at Target and I’ve been a fan ever since.

The show is chock full of funny moments that range from witty to physical comedy. Gus admirably plays the straight man to Shawn’s outlandish hijinks, and their friendship feels real, which only heightens the hilarity.

I must admit, most of the 80s references go over my head. Though I’m a child of the 80s, I left the decade behind before turning 7, and a sheltered homeschool life hampered my pop culture knowledge further.

It’s been a while since I’ve seen an episode, but that’s simply because of the long wait between seasons (I hope to write about the show more in-depth once it comes back on). Season 6 doesn’t even begin until October, but I recently read a fun article about what viewers can expect.

A Clue episode. I took a while to warm-up to the movie, but I think I’ll love Psych’s version of it, especially if they do bring back Tim Curry (my absolute favorite actor that plays I’m-evil-just-because-it’s-fun villains).

A vampire episode. I really hope they do amazing stuff with this episode. They mentioned a bit of Buffy the Vampire Slayer homage, but since they’re bringing in Kristy Swanson, it’s to the movie, not the incredibly superior show. I hope they can at least bring in one or two characters from the show (James Marsters? Pretty please?), and I’m curious which iconic vampires Shawn and Gus will be dressing up as. (Please, no Twilight. Unless you really make fun of it.)

And there’s an Indiana Jones episode. A musical episode. A baseball episode. A looney bin episode. A superhero episode. A cult episode (with Diedrich Bader – will be fun seeing him again since Outsourced isn’t coming back). A new Despereaux episode.

I can’t wait for October!

I was really at a loss for what category to put this show under. I ended up with crime drama, with all the murder and much of the show being set at a police station, but it could have just as easily fit under comedy. What do you think? If enough people think it should be under comedy, I’ll move it!

Bonus: links to two new Psych promos and a music video!

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