Tag Archives: Showtime

Status update #6 on your favorite new and returning shows

It’s time for the sixth status update in regards to the fate of your favorite new and returning series of the 2015-16 TV season. It’s renewals all around, that is, if you’re not including the swift removal of a low-rated CBS sitcom and the formal announcement of the end of a long-running CBS drama. More, below.

After airing only five episodes, CBS pulled the Jane Lynch (Glee) and Maggie Lawson (Back in the Game) sitcom Angel from Hell from its primetime schedule. Replacing the single-cam comedy on Thursday nights at 9:30pm is multi-cam comedy 2 Broke Girls which is currently airing its fifth season. Elsewhere, in addition to letting go of veteran sitcom Mike & Molly, the Eye is also saying goodbye to its critically acclaimed drama The Good Wife. During the Super Bowl, CBS aired a commercial formally announcing that the Julianna Margulies political drama’s current seventh season will be its last.

NBC is staying in business with Dick Wolf, the creator of the Law & Order and Chicago franchises. Law & Order: SVU and Chicago Med have been renewed for 18th and 2nd seasons, respectively. Previously, the Peacock had upped SVU‘s current season episode count from 22 to 23 and gave ChiMed a five-episode back orderChicago Fire and Chicago P.D. have already been renewed for fifth and fourth seasons, respectively. Elsewhere, Jennifer Lopez crime drama Shades of Blue will return for a second season.

Showtime was quick to renew its sizzling Wall Street drama Billions; the season 2 announcement was made after only two episodes had aired. Starring Damian Lewis and Paul Giamatti, Billions is off to a creatively strong start with slick dramatic turns and smartly utilized humor.

Last let’s turn to the streaming services. House of Cards will continue on to see a fifth season set to bow in 2017 on Netflix without its creator and showrunner, Beau Willimon. He’s amicably parting ways with the show, and Netflix hasn’t announced who’ll take over his position yet. HoC‘s fourth season debuts next month. Netflix has also renewed Orange is the New Black for three more seasons. Season 4 streams this summer, with seasons 5, 6, and 7 in the wings to be spearheaded by series creator and showrunner Jenji Kohan. Over on Amazon, Golden Globe winner Mozart in the Jungle (whose second season hasn’t even aired yet) has been renewed for a third run.

Return to ‘Twin Peaks’ in this scenic, mysterious first look

Twin Peaks, the cult mystery drama from David Lynch and Mark Frost, is primed to make its comeback 25 years after it aired his season 2 finale in June 1991. Just like Laura Palmer promised. Well, 26 years later to be exact now that Lynch and Showtime are confirming a 2017 premiere window. Still, that’s pretty eerie if you ask me and that’s just how Lynch likes it. The official logline for the new season doesn’t spill much of anything, but it’ll remind you about what’s come before.

Widely considered one of the most groundbreaking and influential broadcast series of all time, TWIN PEAKS followed the inhabitants of a quaint northwestern town who were stunned after their homecoming queen Laura Palmer was shockingly murdered. The town’s sheriff welcomed the help of FBI agent Dale Cooper, who came to town to investigate the case. As Cooper conducted his search for Laura’s killer, the town’s secrets were gradually exposed. The mystery that ensued set off an eerie chain of events that plunged the inhabitants of Twin Peaks into a darker examination of their very existence. Twenty-five years later, the story continues…

Much of the original cast is expected to return, though it’s only Kyle MacLachlan’s FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper who’s officially confirmed to reprise. Well, MacLachlan and now Michael Horse who played Deputy Tommy “Hawk” Hill during the series’ original incarnation. Horse, who still looks pretty much the same minus a few grey hairs, is featured in this first look at the long-anticipated return to Twin Peaks.

“Location sometimes becomes a character,” Horse says in the scenic clip first shared by Lynch via Twitter. “There are a lot of holy places up here, a lot of sacred places. Can’t put my finger on how I would describe it. It just touches something in the psyche. It’s almost like being in a moving painting.”

It feels good to be home, you know, “five miles south of the Canadian border, and twelve miles west of the state line,” in the bizarre wilderness that is the fictional town of Twin Peaks. The iconic waterfall and surrounding lush forest look absolutely stunning filmed in HD. Curious to see that the same number of residents reside in the town, even 25 years later; the sign counter remains stuck at 51,201. Also remaining in tact is composer Angelo Badalamenti’s memorable theme and the same credit font, now even shinier than before. The teaser ends just as it should, strange and mysterious. An unfocused man with white hair holding his arms up shakes the camera and the music goes haywire before fading out. Who could it be? Some might say it’s the return of Leland Palmer, but my bet’s on Lynch. This could be the series co-creator having fun with fans, and let’s not forget that he played FBI Agent Gordon Cole so this could hint at another character reprisal.

Stick it here for the latest Twin Peaks scoops; you can be sure I’ll be all over it like Agent Cooper would a good cherry pie and a damn fine coffee.

Status update #4 on your favorite new and returning shows

Before we close out the year, let’s take one more look at the survival status of your favorite shows.

CBS is a fan of the high-flying Supergirl so much so that it’s granted the Greg Berlanti-produced superhero series a full season order. The DC Comics-based drama will run for 20 episodes in its debut season.

NBC can’t get enough of Raymond Reddington. The network has renewed the James Spader vehicle The Blacklist for a fourth season ensuring its comeback next fall. The high-octane drama took a daring turn into more serialized storytelling this year and it’s reaping the rewards in the creative department. Also on the Peacock’s nice list is Dick Wolf’s latest spinoff Chicago Med; the medical procedural has been given a five-episode back order bringing its first season tally to 18 hours. Remember, ChiMed debuted late in November, so this can be considered a full season order. On its naughty list is Neil Patrick Harris’ primetime variety show Best Time Ever; it won’t be coming back for more.

Fox‘s summer breakout Wayward Pines will in fact return for a 10-episode second season. The M. Night Shyamalan-produced mystery drama based on author Blake Crouch’s novels hooked viewers with its jaw-dropping twists, fun action sequences, and most of all, its homages to The Twilight Zone and Twin Peaks. Shyamalan will return to EP, but showrunner Chad Hodge is handing off the reigns to Mark Friedman (Believe).

For more, jump after the break. READ MORE Status update #4 on your favorite new and returning shows

9 premieres to look out for in October: ‘Homeland,’ ‘The Leftovers,’ ‘AHS: Hotel,’ ‘The Walking Dead’ & more

We’ve made it through premiere week, and now as we enter October there’s more than a handful of cable offerings you cannot miss. Popular series like Homeland and The Walking Dead make their highly anticipated returns this month. On Halloween, Ash vs. Evil Dead raises hell (literally) as the iconic Sam Raimi creation comes to the small screen. And there’s so much more debuting in-between. Check out my picks after the break. READ MORE 9 premieres to look out for in October: ‘Homeland,’ ‘The Leftovers,’ ‘AHS: Hotel,’ ‘The Walking Dead’ & more

‘Homeland’ season 5 teaser reunites Carrie & Saul in Europe

Carrie Mathison (Claire Danes) gets kidnapped in the first teaser trailer promoting Homeland‘s fifth season. Also, Saul “The Bear” Berenson (Mandy Patinkin) calls Carrie “naive and stupid” to which Carrie replies, “I’m not atoning. I’m just trying to do good work.” And don’t fret–Peter Quinn (Rupert Friend) will find himself in the crossfire this go-around, too. A brief synopsis of events follows:

Premiering this fall, Homeland will pick up two years after Carrie Mathison’s ill-fated tenure as Islamabad station chief. Struggling to reconcile her guilt and disillusionment with years of working on the front lines in the “war on terror,” Carrie finds herself in a self-imposed exile in Berlin, estranged from the CIA and working as the head of security for a German philanthropist.

Homeland returns to Showtime in September.

TV reminder: 5 series to look out for in July

Summer is here and the hits keep on comin’. Masters and Virginia unveil their sex study to the public; Denis Leary reenters the spotlight as a former rock’n’roll legend looking for a way back in; the Bowmans are ready for a second round of give-and-take; everyone’s favorite anthropomorphic horse is back for more introspection; and the misfits of Camp Firewood go back in time to experience another wet, hot, american summer.

Jump after the break to explore the series you can’t miss this month. READ MORE TV reminder: 5 series to look out for in July

Showtime joins the stand-alone streaming fray with… SHOWTIME

Following in the footsteps of the Home Broadcasting Company, premium cable rival Showtime is getting in on the standalone-streaming service cord-cutting craze. HBO NOW‘s direct competition will be called SHOWTIME when it launches in July. A specific release date is still being kept under wraps, but Showtime confirms it will arrive prior to the July 12 season premieres of Ray Donovan and Masters of Sex. SHOWTIME subscribers will have unlimited on-demand access to every season of the network’s original series, as well as hundreds of hours of movies, documentary and sports programming. Additionally, subscribers will have access to the live broadcast of the east and west coast feeds of Showtime–this is something HBO’s stand-alone streaming service does not offer…yet. SHOWTIME requires a monthly fee of $10.99; for comparison’s sake, NOW subscribers have to cough up $14.99 for access to HBO’s content library. Also like HBO, Showtime has signed a deal with Apple that allows customers to sign up for a free 30-day pass for the service, as long as you nab it on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Apple TV. SHOWTIME will be accessible via the network’s app or in-browser at showtime.com.

“Going over-the-top means Showtime will be much more accessible to tens of millions of potential new subscribers,” said CBS head Les Moonves in a statement. “Across CBS, we are constantly finding new ways to monetize our programming by capitalizing on opportunities presented by technology.  This works best when you have outstanding premium content – like we do at Showtime – and when you have a terrific partner like Apple – which continues to innovate and build upon its loyal customer base.”

Though the 30-day free pass will be made available exclusively on Apple devices, SHOWTIME at $10.99/month will be offered on other platforms at launch including Roku and Sony’s PlayStation Vue.

‘Twin Peaks’ revival back from the dead with series creator David Lynch at the helm

Hope you didn’t leave your cup of damn fine coffee out in the cold for too long–Showtime’s Twin Peaks revival is back on! Following fallout with the premium cable network over contractual concerns, series creators David Lynch and Mark Frost are once again confirmed to return fans of the cult serialized drama back to the mysterious, surreal place that is and forever will be Twin Peaks.

As originally reported, Lynch is directing the new episodes based on scripts written by Lynch and Frost. Plot details remain under wraps; what we do know is that the limited series is not a reboot but in fact a continuation of the story to take place 25 years after the events that unfolded in the original series’ run. Actor Kyle MacLachlan, who is red-hot coming off his memorable guest stint on ABC’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., is reprising his role as FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper; in a series of tweets he made official (again) his return to the show.

What’s changed following the recent round of negotiations? The original plan was to bring Twin Peaks back as a limited series to run nine episodes. In a statement caught by Deadline, Showtime president David Nevins expands on the length of the upcoming series:

“This damn fine cup of coffee from Mark (Frost) and David tastes more delicious than ever,” said Nevins. “Totally worth the extra brewing time and the cup is even bigger than we expected. David will direct the whole thing which will total more than the originally announced nine hours. Preproduction starts now!!”

It proved to be a storied journey to get to this point. Showtime announced Twin Peaks‘ return to the airwaves in October of last year, and it was only five months later when you could start to see things falling apart. In April, Lynch publicly announced the unfortunate news of the revival’s demise: “After 1 year and 4 months of [total] negotiations, I left because not enough money was offered to do the script the way I felt it needed to be done,” he tweeted. Thankfully, Showtime continued to hold out hope. With the help of the #SaveTwinPeaks campaign headed up by original members of the cast begging for Lynch’s return, all was made right and the show is most definitely coming back.

With the original creators at the helm, the supernatural series that paved the way for modern, long-running classics such as The X-Files and Lost is coming back 25 years later, just like Laura Palmer promised in that season 2 cliffhanger. Twin Peaks fans wouldn’t have it any other way.

TV reminder: 10 premieres to look out for in April

Spring is here! Though we may be nearing the month where most of your favorite TV series wrap up for summer (I’m looking at you, May!), that doesn’t mean this is the end. In fact, there are a whopping 10 series premiering this month, four of which are brand new and demand your attention. Jump after the break for what you need to know. READ MORE TV reminder: 10 premieres to look out for in April

Networks renew seven series for the new year including ‘House of Cards’ & ‘New Girl’ [Update: ‘Last Man on Earth’ is coming back]

Quick update on series renewals. The following shows will return for a new season!

Netflix has renewed House of Cards and freshman Bloodline for fourth and second seasons, respectively. Showtime’s House of Lies and Shameless are coming back for fifth and sixth seasons. The Cold War will continue on FX’s The Americans in a fourth season. And Fox sitcom New Girl isn’t going anywhere anytime soon with a fifth season pickup.

Showtime exec Gary Levine on the House of Lies pickup: “When you have a gifted acting ensemble led by Don Cheadle and smart, acerbic writing led by showrunner Matthew Carnahan, you expect something special, and House of Lies delivers for us each season.”

FX exec Nick Grad on The Americans: “Remarkably, this season of The Americans has achieved even greater acclaim than that of its first two seasons. The series has cemented it status with critics as television’s best current drama and arguably the best show on TV, and we couldn’t agree more… We look forward to the final four episodes of season three, and beyond, in Philip and Elizabeth Jennings’ riveting journey.”

Fox exec David Madden on New Girl: “Four seasons in, New Girl continues to be one of the smartest and most relatable comedies on television. The writing is razor-sharp, the ensemble is consistently hilarious, and we couldn’t be more proud of… the entire New Girl team. We absolutely love this show and we’re so excited to bring it back for Season Five.”

In related New Girl news, Jon Cho (SelfieSleepy Hollow) will guest star in season 5, as will Anna George (Royal Pains) who is confirmed to play CeCe’s mother. Damon Wayans, Jr., sadly, is departing as a series regular at the end of the current season.

Update (4/8): Phil Miller, The Last Man on Earth, will return in a second season! Though it’s still in its infancy, the high concept comedy has already proven to be all kinds of fun and funny. Series creator Will Forte shines as star alongside an ever-growing cast that also includes the perfectly cast Kristen Schaal, infectious nice-guy Mel Rodriguez, and the stunningly beautiful January Jones. The adventures in Tucson will continue, and I couldn’t be happier.

“We knew we had something special with The Last Man on Earth,” says Fox’s David Madden. “It’s one of those rare shows that continues to add depth and dimension to its unique premise, week after week. We are so thrilled that this incredibly bold, original and inventive series has been embraced by both fans and critics, and we cannot wait to see where the creative genius and inspired vision of Will, Phil [Lord] and Chris [Miller] take us in Season Two.”

Showtime renews ‘Homeland’ & ‘The Affair’, TBS wants more ‘American Dad’

Showtime and the creative team behind Homeland have done a spectacular job rebooting the series. In seasons past, Damian Lewis’ Nicholas Brody played a major role opposite Carrie Mathison (Claire Danes). Intertwining plots would shift between Carrie’s work at the CIA and Brody’s involvement with terrorists. Brody’s emotional demise at the end of last season also meant the phasing out of his family since they, ultimately, served to support his character. Now the show focuses solely on Carrie and the relationships she has formed over the past three seasons with Saul (Mandy Patinkin), Quinn (Rupert Friend), and Fara (Nazanin Boniadi). That small anti-terrorism group is expanding this year with more input from Senator Lockhart (Tracy Letts) and newcomer Laila Robins (she plays US ambassador Martha Boyd). Homeland has managed to let go of its typically trotting plotlines (read: Dana Brody) and refocus squarely on Carrie. The show is as intense as ever, and every episode thus far has kept me on the very edge of my seat. #SaveSaul

The premium cable network is celebrating Homeland‘s recent creative successes by renewing it for a 12-episode fifth season. Additionally, Showtime has granted a second season to freshman The Affair. The subtle drama about an intermarital affair swiftly proved to be an addictive character piece with unique storytelling and scenic direction. Though I’m not sure what another season would explore, I have faith in creators Sarah Treem and Hagai Levi to continue this uniquely captivating love affair.

“In its fourth season, Homeland has brilliantly reinvented itself. It continues to capture the attention of a devoted fan base, and has provided an enviable platform for the successful launch of The Affair,” said Showtime head David Nevins. “With thought-provoking, relevant and addictive storylines, both series have been embraced, dissected and much debated week after week. We’re excited to see more from these complex shows in 2015.”

Elsewhere, TBS has proven to be a fine home for Seth MacFarlane animated series American Dad since it left Fox for the cable network; it’s been renewed for a 22-episode 12th season. Also of note, CBS cancelled Will Arnett/Margo Martindale sitcom The Millers.

TV reminder: 4 premieres to look out for in October

Now that the big four networks have open the flood gates to the new fall season, it’s prime time for cable to release its heavy hitters. Jump after the break to learn when Showtime’s Homeland, FX’s American Horror Story, and AMC’s The Walking Dead return to the schedule. READ MORE TV reminder: 4 premieres to look out for in October