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.
Stumptown cancelled by COVID
ALSO: We have a She-Hulk! AND: The Mary Tyler Moore Show turns 50.
Disappointing news with the cancellation of Stumptown announced by the US ABC network. This was a show with a great cast, based on a smart and exciting comic book, with a pilot that showed great potential, and a season that was… well… it had some positives. Okay, let’s be frank: the first season completely failed to live up to the shows potential.
The second season had a new creative team in place and had a great deal of promise. Everything was moving forward. Except, when COVID hit, production had to be delayed. Delays with the scripts and new production measures meant that the show wouldn’t be able to deliver new episodes until April next year. That didn’t suit ABC’s needs and so the show has been cancelled.
Studio ABC Signature is expected to shop the series around. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the show picked up.
In a win for diversity of green faces on TV, Disney+ has its She-Hulk. Tatiana Maslany. Best known for Orphan Black, but seen on screen in the recent Perry Mason HBO show, Maslany will play the lawyer turned big green superhero in the upcoming series.
Note: It is slowly rolling out to all apps. I’m still waiting for it to appear on Google Podcasts. It has been submitted there. It just hasn’t appeared… yet.
Also: Some people have questioned why I would have a media podcast with a logo featuring the ibis - unquestionably the ugliest, grossest bird which spends its days pulling stuff out of garbage bins. Well… you’ve answered your own question, haven’t you?
Turning the world on with a smile for 50 years
Saturday marks 50 years since The Mary Tyler Moore Show debuted on television. While the pacing is a little slow by today’s standards, so much of that show still holds up pretty well. In Australia the show hasn’t been on TV for at least a good 30 years (outside of a brief period it ran on the short-lived Nick At Nite channel in the 90s). So, I’d understand it if most people reading this newsletter may have never actually seen the show.
The iconic Betty White (also a beloved recurring guest star on the aforementioned The Mary Tyler Moore Show) is featured in an email interview on Variety today. Basically, it’s nice that Betty White is still in our lives.
Man, TV coverage of the upcoming US elections continues to get more wild and unexpected. CNN has a town hall interview with former Parks & Recreation guest star Joe Biden this week. Instead of hosting it in a near-vacant theatre, the town hall will be held outdoors in a drive-in. The audience will be invited to listen to the proceedings on stage through their car radios, or to sit beside their cars outside.
Because this is a drive-in experience, standard rules apply which is to be polite and not look inside the windows of any Democrats car that might be fogging up.
This sketch from The Late Show with Stephen Colbert yesterday was deeply disturbing. It was a Robert Smigel-produced short with his puppet Triumph The Comic Insult Dog hosting a focus group of Trump supporters. It’s funny, cringe-comedy. What’s disturbing is how many talking points you can hear being echoed back by a focus group who clearly watch quite a bit of cable news television.
TV Crossover event of the year?
A move to on-demand TV viewing means saying goodbye to a TV schedule. There’s obviously benefits to that. But then there’s also what we lose. Maybe the greatest loss is the disappearance of the TV crossover.
Thankfully broadcast TV keeps on chugging along because it means the ol’ gal still has some TV crossover gas in the tank.
On November 12 there will be a Greys Anatomy / Station 19 crossover event. Your favourite TV characters interacting on screen. What fun!
Warner Bros would like you to know that J.K. Rowling did not write the story for its upcoming Hogwarts video game. Hmm… wonder why… Source: Polygon
Raised By Wolves has been greenlit for a second season. Source: The AV Club
The Walking Dead Universe channel is coming to Twitch. Source: TV Insider
Facebook are focused on producing only stand-alone VR headsets going forward (ie headsets that don’t need to be connected to a PC to run). Its new Quest 2 headset offers near-4k resolution. Source: Road To VR
The Amazon Prime Video adaptation of the UK drama Utopia debuts September 25. Just quietly, I’ve seen a few episodes of this and had a great time watching it.
BBC’s Industry debuts on November 9.
Your Honor is a new limited series from writer/showrunner Peter Moffat (The Night Of) and produced by Robert & Michelle King. It debuts in December.
Song Exploder, a Netflix series based on Hrishikesh Hirway’s popular podcast, will debut Oct 2.
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