Daily Archives: February 7, 2009

FX Developing Superhero TV Show

Marvel Comics writer Brian Michael Bendis revealed at The New York Comic Con yesterday that cable channel FX is moving ahead with the development of a TV show, first announced last year, based on Powers, his creator owned comic co-created with artist Michael Avon Oeming.

Described as a police procedural set in a world where superpowers are common, the comic revolves around two detectives who investigate crimes involving “powers”. One of the cops used to be a superhero before losing his powers, and both of them have secrets.

Bendis said: “Powers is in active development as a pilot at FX. I just handed in a draft to the network and we’re getting our notes from the network as soon as this thing is over.

“So next week I’ll get the notes, and as long as they don’t involve sock puppets and some sort of orgy scene that I’m not interested in, then hopefully it will go in the right direction.

“But they’re a very smart network. It seems like the right place for it to be.”

Powers has been running as a comic series since 2000. It was optioned for a feature film in 2001 but a suitable script was never completed.

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Gabrielle Anwar’s Freaky Naked Torso

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The Choob has been enjoying the tongue-in-cheek spy adventure Burn Notice, which is midway through its second season on the USA network.

But since it started, one thing has been worrying me – how painfully thin Gabrielle Anwar (who plays hero Michael’s on-off girlfriend, Fiona) is. (Well, actually two things have been troubling me but for now we’ll leave aside the issue of why the writers think it is acceptable to have one of the heroes (Fiona) be an ex-IRA bomber).

Having followed Anwar’s career from her early days on British kids’ TV show Press Gang(written by soon-to-be Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat), through roles in movies such as Scent Of A Woman and Body Snatchers, I was surprised at how dangerously thin and unhealthy she looked.

And this week, it seems the makers of Burn Notice agreed. Let’s investigate The Case Of The Disappearing Belly Button.

These images are from the opening scene when Michael and Fiona arrived at a pool party:

She’s not got a belly button! But she does have a nice smooth stomach.

Now, these pics come from during the party:

Notice that he nice smooth stomach has gone, replaced by protruding ribs and pelvis. And – as if by magic, her belly button that has miraculously appeared.

Just in case there’s any doubt that the earlier images were airbrushed to make the actress look less skinny, here is the clincher. These pics are from the scene when Michael and Fiona are leaving the pool party:

She’s lost her belly button again and her ribs and pelvis aren’t sticking out either. To my untrained eye, the last two photos in particular seem not only to have been altered to get rid of sticky-out ribs and pelvis, but also to make the actress look more curvy and healthy than she actually is.

Bottom line, we are always reading news stories about size-zero models and how dangerous it is for women to be so thin – and here we have the makers of a TV show apparently trying to cover up how dangerously thin their leading lady is.

If they think she looks so unhealthy they need to digitally alter her for broadcast, then surely her bosses should be doing something to help, not hiding any problem that may exist?


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Pilot Watch: Politicians And Other Bloodsuckers

A couple more pilots orders have surfaced, this time from The CW (previous pilot news HERE).

With vampires and angsty young people flavour of the month both at the cinema (thanks to the Twilight movie based on the series of books by Stephenie Meyer, of whom Stephen King is still undecided about whether he is a fan) and on TV (thanks to HBO’s True Blood, based on the Southern Vampire series of books by Charlaine Harris), I’m sure that, like me, you were worried that we don’t have nearly enough variations on the theme just yet.

After all, we have around 327 crime dramas that are exactly the same except for the specific details of the hero’s troubled past and 293 medical dramas differentiated only by the characters’ dubious and strangely unconvincing psychological problems.

Well, we can rest easy because there’s another TV series in the works based on a series of books about vampires. And angsty young people.

The Vampire Diaries is based on a series of books by L.J. Smith which, The CW is keen to point out, were first published in the early 1990s and predate both Twilight and the Southern Vampire novels. And which were largely forgotten until Twilight became a huge hit. Now they have been reissued and have found a new audience and, after a gap of more than a decade, Smith is writing more books.

The novels tell the story of a young woman from a small town who is torn between two vampire brothers – one good, one evil – who are battling for control of her soul and the souls of her family and friends. The TV pilot will be co-written by Dawson’s Creek and Scream writer Kevin Williamson.

Also at the CW, The Body Politic is a drama about young people (no word on their angst levels yet) working for politicians in Washington DC.

The surge of interest in American political dramas may be an unexpected result of the Obama effect, with more people taking more of an interest in US politics.

As the Choob previously reported, CBS is piloting House Rules, a drama about a new Congressional representatives, while ABC is developing Inside The Box, about a Washington news bureau.

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