A notable and transformative shift has taken place at NBC. The network has chosen to bet its Thursday night on more serious dramas in hopes of aligning its programming with the viewing preferences of American audiences.
So I've got good news and bad news. The good news is that some of the movie industry's most powerful traditions are still being maintained. The bad news is that these are cowardice and the ability to attract every kind of idiocy.
In an exciting but not altogether unexpected development, the addition of How to Get Away with Murder to ABC's schedule now gives each of the Big Three networks a current drama series that challenges basic cable's status as the home of top-quality, unapologetically adult programming.
For seven years NBC tried to tell everyone that 30 Rock was a hit. It was not. Critics enjoyed it but no one was rabidly watching it like Modern Family. The Blacklist is the ONLY holdover for new shows from last season and that is only good because James Spader is truly "the man".
Ever since Homeland premiered, fans of Showtime's extraordinary gem have been dying to say it "Jumped The Shark."
This is historic, not just because she is a woman, not just because she is black, and not just because she is Shonda Rhimes; this is unprecedented for anyone and has never been done in television before on this scale.
Football is the greatest of all sports because it is made for people that crave structure. The Thursday Night Football games are the worst things to happen to people like us and when I say us, I guess the word "structure" was a polite way to say the word anal.
Question: What do science fiction, fantasy and horror have in common? Answer: they are the genres honored annually, for the past four decades, by the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films.
Connecting to emotional situations is what sets a new series apart from the pack. The key is creating character dynamics that drive the audience to return each week.
"Hostages" unfolds with the crisp efficiency of a humorless event planner checking tasks off a list; the similarly decent "Blacklist" at least features the hambone performance of James Spader.
Well, summer is over, folks, so now it's time to hang out with our real best friend: Television. I'm always interested in what could be the next big show, and even interested in a show that is not only big, but actually good.
Harry Lennix is an actor's actor, and 2013 is proving to be a banner year with a string of starring roles including NBC's highly anticipated new series The Blacklist alongside James Spader.
Sidney Lumet was a quintessential New Yorker -- street smart with a bleeding heart and a head full of immigrant, everyman voices.