Daily Archives: January 14, 2009

A Word From Our Sponsors… Cinzano Bianco with Leonard Rossiter and Joan Collins’ cleavage


Wednesday is the day when The Cathode Ray Choob pauses for a commercial break.

This week, a series of classic ads from the late 70s and early 80s. Leonard Rossiter. Joan Collins. A bottle of slightly suspect booze. Ice cubes down Joan’s cleavage. Enjoy!

First a compilation of four ads:

And three more:

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TV Newsround


Fox’s new animated comedy Sit Down, Shut Up – produced by Arrested Development creator Mitchell Hurwitz  and with voices provided by that show’s Jason Bateman, Will Arnett and Henry Winkler, along with Pushing DaisiesKristin Chenoweth – with debut on Sunday, April 19, according to Variety.
The Futon Critic further reveals that the show focuses on the dysfunctional faculty and staff at a high school in a small Florida fishing town as they strive to do anything but teach. It’s based on a popular live-action Australian series and, we are told, “lampoons modern society while exposing the dreams, flaws and struggling humanity of our first and most formative authority figures: teachers.” Um… okay, glad we cleared that up.

The Variety article also notes that an official announcement of the eagerly-awaited Arrested Development movie is “imminent”.

Damages star Glenn Close gets the 2,378th star on Hollywood’s Walk Of Fame.

Former Sopranos star James Gandolfini is returning to Broadway for the first time in 14 years. He’s signed up for a role alongside Marcia Gay Harden and Jeff Daniels in God Of Carnage, acomedy about two married couples who meet after their kids get into a playground brawl. The play enjoyed an acclaimed run in London last year, with Ralph Fiennes starring. The Broadway production opens on March 22, with previews starting on February 28.

Tom Cruise will be a guest on Jonathan Ross’s first BBC1 chatshow since serving his three-month suspension for leaving obscene messages on Fawlty Towers actor Andrew Sachs‘ answerphone during a broadcast on BBC Radio 2. Friday Night With Jonathan Ross returns on January 23.

Just a few days after picking up The Line, a police drama produced by action movie maestro Jerry Bruckheimer and starring Dylan McDermott and Time Heals, a medical drama produced by and starring Jada Pinkett Smith, TNT has given a 10-episode order to Men of a Certain Age, starring and produced by Everybody Loves Raymond’s Ray Romano. The show, about three college friends in their 40s dealing with their midlife issues, co-stars Scott Bakula and Andre Braugher. It’s due to air in  January 2010.

It’s been reported that one of writer/producer’s Bryan Fuller‘s first acts after returning to work on Heroes was to write a role especially for Swoosie Kurtz, star of his cancelled show Pushing Daisies. Kurtz will play Millie, an old society friend of Angela Petrelli (Cristine Rose) in an episode due to air in April.

BBC1 drama Mistresses will make it’s US debut on BBC America on Friday February 20, the Futon Critic reports. A second season is due to air early this year in the UK.

 Melissa George, who plays intern Sadie Harris on Grey’s Anatomy, is leaving the show after just eight episodes, according to E! Online.

Eliza Dushku talks to SciFi Wire about Dollhouse.

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David & Maddie – Twice In A Blue Moon?


Rumours have resurfaced of a Moonlighting reunion for Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis.

It’s a little depressing and disturbing for the Choob to realise, now and again,  just how long ago it was that some of his favourite shows aired – even though he still thinks of them as being quite recent.

It’s so traumatic, it sometimes causes him to repeatedly refer to himself in the third person…

Ahem. Anyway, Moonlighting is one of my all-time favourites. The entire series was released recently on DVD and I have been rewatching it over the past few months. It’s the first time I have seen it since the original 1980s BBC broadcasts in the UK.

And it was quite a shock to be confronted the fact that it has been 24 years (think about it – nearly quarter of a century!) since Maddie Hayes and David Addison, possibly TV’s greatest fictional couple (yes, even better than Sam and Diane), lit up our screens with their first sexual tension-fuelled argument.

The show debuted in 1984 and ran for five seasons. In truth, the show went out with more of a whimper than a bang – after three brilliant seasons that genuinely broke new ground in TV comedy-drama, seasons four and five suffered due to, among other things, a Hollywood writers’ strike and Cybill Shepherd’s difficult pregnancy, which forced the writers to keep her and Bruce Willis apart for most of the fourth season, stifling the pair’s electric on-screen chemistry, which was undoubtedly the show’s greatest strength.

In any case, 2009 marks the 20th anniversary of the show’s final episode and, lo and behold, “sources” are whispering about a possible TV movie reunion.

Normally, such rumours should be taken with a very large pinch of salt but, while I certainly won’t be holding my breath on this one, there are several mitigating factors that could point to this being more than just a hopeless dream.

The show’s creator Glenn Gordon Caron is still active and popular in the TV schedules – quirky supernatural drama Medium being his current hit show.

More importantly, there appears to be genuine affection for Caron and, indeed Moonlighting, on the part of both leads. And, despite all the well-publicised stories of friction on the set between Shepherd and Willis 20 years ago , they both seem to have buried any hatchets they may have had trained on each other back in the day.

In fact, for the season three DVD release a couple of years ago, Caron got both his stars back in a studio together for the first time since the show ended, for an interview included as a DVD extra plus a commentary track on the renowned Atomic Shakespeare episode (a spoof of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew).

Around that time, while promoting the DVD release, there were murmurings that the pair’s get-together had gone so well, there was talk of a Moonlighting reunion project. That was back in early 2006, however, and it’s been quiet since.

Now, though, if Variety is to be believed, not only is Caron pushing the project but Willis – who, let’s face it, needs neither the work nor the money – is up for it. His affection for the show that made his name – and his pride in the quality of the early seasons – is clear to anyone who heard him talk in the DVD extras, so it’s plausible he’d be happy to return to the character.

As for Shepherd, she too has talked – on the DVDs and in other interviews – about how although at the time she struggled to control her temper and admits could be hard to work with (in part due to the gruelling schedule of what was a very tough show to make), in hindsight, she realises how special it was to be part of such a wonderful show and she has stated she wishes she had taken a step back and enjoyed it more.

Of course, even IF Willis and Shepherd are both interested, there are all sorts of logistical reasons why a Moonlighting reunion might never get off the ground… but, you know what, I’d keep my eye on this one because maybe, just maybe, it’s got a better chance than you might think.

If so, keep an eye out for the Choob’s blog entry (I’ll probably be beamed straight into your brain in full 3D Smellyvision by then – I’ll have a shower first, don’t worry) 24 years later moaning about how another quarter of a century has passed since the Moonlighting reunion, despite me thinking of it as such a recent event…

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No Escape For Prison Break This Time…


As predicted by the Choob in this post right here (and, to be fair, most TV pundits), Michael Scofield and Lincoln Burrows won’t be on the run for much longer.

Digital Spy reports that it has been confirmed by network chiefs at Fox that the current, fourth, season of Prison Break will be the last.

It’s no great surprise, since viewing figures in the US had slumped from the season one average of 12.1million to an average of just 6.1million this season.

Individual episodes were pulling in as few as 5million viewers.

Sixteen episodes of season four have already aired in the US – the remaining six (not four as the Digital Spy article states) will air in the US from April 17, with the show moving from its prime Monday-night slot to Friday night, regarded in the US as the “death slot” – particularly for Fox shows – due to the low ratings shows broadcast on that night usually attract.

As the Choob’s previous Prison Break post mentioned, the cast have reportedly been asked to make themselves available for two additional episodes, which could be used to wrap up the plot’s loose ends. Fox bosses have yet to confirm this, saying only that they are “contemplating” this.

To be fair, the show was so high concept that after the brilliantly bonkers first season, it was always going to struggle to keep the story going in an audience-friendly way.

Successive seasons made a good fist of trying to keep things moving but, sadly, the plots got weaker year by year and the show has been gradually going from being stupid but fun to just plain stupid. So the Choob reckons giving the show a good send off with a proper conclusion is the best option, while we can still remember how good the show was at its best.

RIP PB.

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