A daily newsletter guide to what is happening on your screens - TV, streaming, movies, games, VR, AR
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.
Popular Tom wins Popular Gold Logie! PLUS: Stranger Things is back! And Tommy Wiseau
Always Be Watching is curated by Dan Barrett
Last night the Logies were held. I’m told this because of Twitter and reading an article this morning. I was instead watching old episodes of the not-all-that funny Canadian comedy Corner Gas. Everyone makes their own choices.
The very popular Tom Gleeson, who won the Gold Logie for being popular, has upset a lot of people over the past two years by using his popularity to make fun of the Logies voting process. Because he is popular, it gave him the power to control the voting for this popularity contest. This upset a lot of people who are seemingly less popular. Including the guy the popular Gleeson helped win last years popularity contest.
“The aim of my campaign was just to have fun with the whole thing. Because it all doesn’t really matter. It really doesn’t matter. We can have fun and just be entertaining. People get concerned about people campaigning for the award. Is that legitimate? Maybe. Maybe not. I don’t know. But it is social media. It is just media. I’m just trying to be entertaining through the media. Do you know what would have been weirder? If I campaigned for this award sincerely. That would have been worse. Imagine me just sincerely saying I was humbled by the award. I wouldn’t be able to live with myself. It would make me want to vomit.
“I’m taking it as a win for comedy because comedy to me is really important.”
Stranger Things season 3 drops on Netflix later this week, timed for July 4 in the US. I find it interesting how little desire I’ve had to go back and rewatch seasons 1-2 in time for this - I somehow suspect I’m better off not getting that immersed into the show before the new season.
Reviews are now trickling in. Aja Romano at Vox says:
All of this is a reminder that writing has always been Stranger Things’ biggest weakness: When it’s not closely following pre-established tropes, the show frequently feels like it doesn’t know what to do next. And while it’s committed to its characters, it still doesn’t quite know how to write meaningful character interaction and meaningful plot action; it’s often one or the other.
There are rumours of a new Blackadder show in development. Supposedly, it will be set in the modern day with Atkinson as a university professor. I wouldn’t get your hopes up on this one, but The Sun reports “Rowan Atkinson, Tony Robinson, Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie agreed on a return, after meeting together at the Soho House members club in London.”
Kathryn Hahn has a new HBO show Mrs Fletcher. It’s based on a book by Tom Perrotta about a newly empty-nested mother who develops an addiction to pornography.
The new Marvel TV shows on Disney+ will actually be built into the storylines in the feature films, meaning if you want to fully appreciate everything happening in the films, you’re going to need to watch a lot more Marvel hours every year.
Meanwhile, I can’t help but wonder if this is not only going to create over-saturation of Marvel screen product, but also diminish the specialness of the big screen Marvel outings. Frankly, the big-screen spectacle of those films are the least interesting aspects - the production on its spectacle is often, well, not very good.
“(The shows will) do things shockingly and unexpectedly that change those characters in big ways, so the next appearance on the big screen will be informed by what they’ve gone through in Disney+ series.”
New NBC pilot Prism wasn’t picked up to series. It was felt that the pilot belonged on an SVOD and not on broadcast TV. So, now Netflix is kicking the tires on it.
But, this is interesting: If Netflix pick it up, they plan on reshooting the pilot again and just let the entire casts contracts expire. In essence, it allows Netflix to examine what the show could look and feel like and completely rebuild it from the ground up. NBC have just paid a whole bunch of money this year for Netflix to have what amounts to a free, but very lavish set of storyboards.