Holy crap! What an episode! On a Saturday night that saw ITV (poor track record in Sci-Fi drama) going up against the BBC's Doctor Who and Robin Hood, my guess would have been that the Beeb would have creamed ITV. But wow, the third episode of Primeval pushed all the right buttons and came out better than the Time Lord and medieval do-gooder.
In a nutshell
- A mini-invasion of Diictodons in a hospital sees Cutter and his team having to round up the creatures and deliver a baby. All in a day's work!
- Helen Cutter's nefarious scheme is revealed - she's creating voice controlled suicide-bomber clones, and tells Cutter that creatures from The Arc will eventually end all life on the planet and that she has witnessed this.
- Helen takes over the Arc and her clone of Cutter blows the place up. The team escape to safety, but Cutter goes back inside to rescue Helen, but she shoots him thinking that this will prevent the future incident she thinks he will cause. Before he dies, Cutter passes on the artefact that Helen left behind. He gives it to Connor and tells him to work out what it does.
Let's not beat about the bush, Planet Of The Dead was a bit of a damp squib. Considering that we're in the countdown to David Tennant's departure from Doctor Who, I think most fans had high hopes for an exciting lead-in to this Doctor's death.
Instead, what we got was a tired episode that seemed to be willfully ripping off movies left, right and center: the opening scene was clearly lifted from Mission: Impossible. Lady Christina de Souza - hmm, a black-clad, busty aristocratic treasure hunter - Lara Croft, anybody?
Lorraine clearly caught unawares by the camera crew, because you wouldn’t, would you? Just wandering around like that? And the cameras poking their lens through the bedroom doors to catch them all in their undies? I s’pose it is past the watershed. This week, Ben is the star - for all the wrong reasons. He reckons everyone else’s bum will be twitching like rabbits' noses. Sure it’s because they’re nervous and not just smelling the BS, Ben?
They’re tasked with inventing and selling a piece of portable home fitness equipment - remember the word portable, it’ll be important later. The teams are mixed up - Philip and Noorul to Ignite, Debra is PM; Kim and Kate to Empire - led by James. Let’s hope he doesn’t pull a muscle or catch a finger in anything because we don’t want tears before bedtime, do we.
In a climate where television shows hang under the threat of cancellation and some promising shows like Heroes turn to mush before our eyes, it's nice to have a show that you can rely on to entertain on just about every level.
And just in case the title and prominent cast photo didn't give it away, that show is NBC's Chuck.
To get you up to speed - Chuck is a regular underachiever working in a tech support job at a large retailer. An old college friend emails him a computer programme called the Intersect, a massive database of national security secrets, which gets embedded in Chuck's brain. The CIA and NSA have to work together to protect Chuck, who is the only link to this valuable information. They assign the sexy Agent Walker and gruff Major John Casey to protect him. In the meantime, Chuck has to live his life without letting his family and friends know about his double life as a spy.
So those of you with children may have heard of Yo Gabba Gabba!, and those of you who like Charlie Brooker (not that I'm suggesting the two are mutually exclusive) may remember a clip of it in an episode of ScreenWipe which disected children's TV. For those of you not familiar, here's a clip to get you up to speed:
In short, it's a "fun, interactive, live-action show for young children aged one and up", which follows DJ Lance Rock and four toy monsters and occassionally cameos someone like Elijah Wood and Jack Black.
And soon Yo Gabba Gabba! will be coming to a terrestrial TV near you because Channel4 think that they can show it on T4 and market it towards a student audience. Worryingly, I think it could fully work in terms of becoming cult favourite with students and stoners everywhere.
Now, I received my copy at the same time as they got their review copy. Up until this point, I’d maintained a stoic silence after being Eoghan’s harshest critic throughout the X Factor. At that time, I said that Simon Cowell stood to make more money from phone votes for Eoghan Quigg that he ever would in record sales.
Anyway, PopJustice released their review of the album yesterday, and it has perhaps the most perfect analysis of the song selection and production values:
Anyway, apparently the video for Lovegame is causing palpitations among the guardians of public decency that are the censorship bodies. Well, GaGa has stepped things up a notch – she’s gone from ‘I’ll get him hard, show him what I’ve got’ in Poker Face to essentially wanting to ride his disco stick. Well, it’d be a shame to waste it, wouldn’t it?
In fairness, sometimes I think Lady GaGa boils down to essentially blonde hair and prominent lycra gusset. Which is what Madonna was a few years ago. I’m not sure the look works for either – GaGa has a shop mannequin look that’s sometimes hard to find sexy.
The article reports that the show’s low ratings and high production costs coupled with the forthcoming Terminator Salvation movie are contributing factors for the show being cancelled:
Once "Salvation" premieres, it seems Warner Bros. will have little use to keep "Sarah Connor" on the air, and likely will not continue to provide a licensing fee discount for a third season. That almost assuredly will allow Fox to make the move it normally would've done before New Year's, and that's cancel the show.
As I’ve watched the second series, I’ve found myself wondering what the hell the producers and scriptwriters were thinking. They had some interesting storylines to play with - Catherine Weaver’s experiments with the rebadged Cromartie were thought provoking, making us wonder if Cromartie’s connection to the Internet and his rapid learning rate would make him the prototype for SkyNet.
Okay, well they looked liked LOLCATs and people on the twitterfest kept making lolcat jokes so I can only assume I wasn't the only one to see it.
I think overall it was a lot better than last week's episode by being action-y and adding in relationship bits (a.k.a. Abby and Jenny have girl talk, Abby kisses Connor on the cheek after he tries to rescue her again).
The story of having a 'haunted' house was quite novel though we never really found out what the lolcats really were. The dialogue was great as well - it had it's fair share of humour.
There was the sexiest anomoly special effect we've seen to date which was shot quite close to the anomoly and then a 360 pan. Really lovely.
It did seem, however, they'd split the cast so that they could film two episodes at the same time and as a result we only really saw Abby, Connor, Jenny and new guy Danny Quinn. We did see the others (bar Rex) albeit briefly.
We saw Becker (i.e. Not!Arthur) and he was quite quiet because he's rubbish and clearly only there as a totty replacement for Steven when actually the other new guy (Danny Quinn played by Jason Flemyng) is a lot sexier and seems to have some UST building up with Jenny (and we haven't even seen him with Cutter yet!).
The Sheriff and Robin both get themselves in league with Irish terrorists this week, Robin gets sexy Maid Kate's brother killed, and in a bit of spare time, Mr Hood invents the hang-glider. Phew, they packed plenty into tonight's episode, I think you'll agree.
The basic gist of this episode was that some common or garden Irish warlords seeking to seize power in their own lands came over to Nottingham and decided to buy all the males of Locksley village to fight in their new resistance. So the Sheriff of Nottingham has them packaged up and prepared for transport to their new home. But of course Robin has other ideas.
I was waiting for some brief masked comment on Irish politics in the midst of all this, but the only thing I could relate was one brother selling his other brother out for political advantage. Did you spot anything else, politically motivated Shout readers?