The Office: Season Two review

Office_Season_2As lackluster, short, and — let’s face it — nearly irrelevant as season one of The Office was, the decision to pick it up for a 22-episode second season was as surprising as it was fortuitous.  Maybe it was Steve Carrell’s charisma that convinced the network to do so, but good decision, boys!

I consider the first episode of the second season to be the “real” start to The Office.  A lot of work went into rethinking characters and getting into a comfortable groove, and the employees of Dunder Mifflin that we know and love today emerged as a true ensemble force here.  And looking over the episode list, I’m amazed at the sheer quality of hilarious stories that are packed into this season, which is why it propelled The Office into a “must watch” type of show.

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The Office: Season One review

os11There’s a sort of hipster shibboleth that you’re supposed to claim that the two-season British original of The Office was, hands-down, the best.  Say that, and you’re in with all of the cool critics.  While it was sort of funny, I never warmed to it the way that I have since latched on to the American version, which I now consider one of my most favorite TV series of all time.

I guess I won’t be invited to their snooty parties.  That’s fine with me; I’d rather be hanging out with Jim, Dwight, Michael, Pam, and the rest anyway.

I’ve seen the entire nine-season run of The Office several times through now, as it’s one of my constant “comfort foods” in my TV time.  Sometimes I even listen to episodes in the car, because by now my brain can fill in the visuals.  The delightful mix of insanely awkward moments, sincere emotion, and hilarious corporate antics have always made me feel that I’d gladly get a job at Dunder Mifflin if it was with people like these.

So let’s go through the seasons, one at a time, and see the evolution of the characters, the company, and the show.

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Deneb does The Flash

UnknownThe history of live-action superhero adaptations has been largely dominated by movies – and small wonder; the accurate portrayal of such spectacular adventures can prove expensive stuff. Ever since George Reeves first made his appearance as Superman, however, it’s been a rare period when some such super-show isn’t knocking around the small screen. From recognized classics like Batman and Wonder Woman to farcical flops like Captain Nice, the genre has a long and varied history, and has been showing new life lately with shows like Smallville and the currently-running Arrow.

Inevitably though, some such shows do fall through the cracks, and that is where we come in, boys and girls. The spectrum ranges from duds with few defenders to genuine lost gems, ones that probably should be better known, but somehow aren’t. Ah, the sweet, sweet smell of cult.

One such show was The Flash, a victim of shuffling time-slots that lasted a single season, from 1990 to 1991. It’s since become one of those shows where either you’ve heard of it or you haven’t – and if you haven’t, you really haven’t. It’s pretty well-regarded amongst the former, though, and obscurity, my friends, is our bread and butter. And since there’s another Flash show that debuted not too long ago – well, what better reason to check out this older version first? Continue reading

Army-of-DarknessAgainst many odds, age among them, the classic Evil Dead franchise is returning — but this time, on TV!  Bruce Campbell and Sam Raimi are confirmed to bring Ash to the Starz network next year:

The Evil Dead movie franchise has officially crossed over to television with a 10-episode straight-to-series order from Starz for a 2015 premiere.

Titled Ash Vs. Evil Dead, the followup to the classic film franchise reteams the original filmmakers, director Sam Raimi, longtime producing partner Rob Tapert and star Bruce Campbell who will serve as executive producers.

Campbell will be reprising his role as Ash, the stock boy, aging lothario and chainsaw-handed monster hunter who has spent the last 30 years avoiding responsibility, maturity and the terrors of the Evil Dead. When a Deadite plague threatens to destroy all of mankind, Ash is finally forced to face his demons – personal and literal. Destiny, it turns out, has no plans to release the unlikely hero from its “Evil” grip.