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Dan Barrett is an industry commentator & TV critic. He does radio - 4BC & ABC GC and co-hosts the Screen Watching podcast. He's a former Mediaweek deputy editor and content creator for SBS.
Goodbye Jessica Walter
ALSO: You Can't Do That On Television streaming now. AND: The Winter Soldier's creator has mixed feelings about the show.
RIP Jessica Walter
TV legend Jessica Walter has died in her sleep, aged 80. Walter is best known these days for her iconic role as Lucille Bluth in Arrested Development, along with voice work as the mother & boss of the titular spy in animated series Archer.
She had a life-long career in television, working constantly through her career, largely with single-episode appearances and short arcs on series. In her EXTENSIVE filmography, you’ll find her doing guest spots on shows including: Naked City, Route 66, The Fugitive, Flipper, Mission: Impossible, Columbo, Ironside, The Love Boat, The FBI (making six appearances, each in different roles), Love American Style, Mannix, Barnaby Jones, Wonder Woman, Hawaii Five-0, Joannie Loves Chachi, Murder She Wrote, Coach, One Life To Live, 90210, and At Home with Amy Sedaris. Oh, and she was also the voice of matriarch Fran Sinclair in the animatronic series Dinosaurs. And that’s literally not even 1/20th of her work over the years. She was prolific.
Creator of The Winter Soldier hesitant to watch new series
Ed Brubaker may have created The Winter Soldier, but that doesn’t mean he’s entirely happy talking about the new Marvel TV show The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. He has even suggested he’ll be waiting a while to watch it.
While Marvel is touting the success of the show (it’s the most-watched debut episode of a show they have launched to date on the platform), Brubaker and artist Steve Epting who created The Winter Soldier for a run of comics 15 years ago haven’t been invited to share any of the wealth that has followed:
For the most part, all Steve Epting and I have gotten for creating the Winter Soldier and his storyline is a ‘thanks’ here or there, and over the years that’s become harder and harder to live with. I’ve even seen higher-ups on the publishing side try to take credit for my work a few times, which was pretty galling.
“Work-for-hire work is what it is, and I’m honestly thrilled to have co-created something that’s become such a big part of pop culture — or even pop subculture with all the Bucky-Steve slash fiction — and that run on Cap was one of the happiest times of my career, certainly while doing superhero comics,” Brubaker wrote. “But I also can’t deny feeling a bit sick to my stomach sometimes when my inbox fills up with people wanting comments on the show.”
If you’re interested in reading that original run of comics, there is a new collection of it released next month. You can also enquire at your local comics shop. Always Be Watching recommends Comics Etc in Brisbane, Kings Comics in Sydney, and All-Star Comics in Melbourne.
There’s also the Marvel comics app Marvel Unlimited, which is like a Netflix all-you-can-eat service for Marvel comics for a monthly subscription price. You’ll find a lot of Captain America/Falcon/Winter Soldier books there.
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In a bid to drive clicks from nostalgic 40-somethings, Paramount+ has added a whole library of old Nickelodeon shows from the 80s and 90s. Shows include:
Aaahh!!! Real Monsters
The Angry Beavers
Are You Afraid of the Dark?
Clarissa Explains It All
Gullah Gullah Island
Kenan & Kel
Legends of the Hidden Temple
Rocko’s Modern Life
Salute Your Shorts
You Can’t Do That on Television
It’s good to see classic shows being released from the vault like this, even if they have some very niche, marginal appeal. One assumes these shows will be part of the international roll-out of Paramount+ as that starts up over the coming months.