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Senses Working Overtime: This Week in Television (1/06/08)

Written by Musgo Del Jefe

No. 33 – The Wild Bunch (MAX) (TUE)  

There was absolutely no doubt that this film would be in the top 50, it was just a matter of where it fit.  I'm a huge fan of Sam Peckinpah's films.   But it all came together here – acting (William Holden, Warren Oates, Ernest Borgnine), music (Jerry Fielding doing some of his best work) and wonderful cinematography.  Brilliantly bookended with two violent sequences – the theme of an era ending is disproved as we see that the era is just changing, there will always be violence and greed.  Watch it just for camerawork and editing – Kurosawa would be proud.

Ratings around this movie…

5 – The Godfather
10 – Lord Of The Rings: Fellowship Of The Ring
44 – Aliens
45 – Dazed & Confused

The Wire (HBO)  30 Rock only qualifies as the best comedy that I'm not watching.  I'm sure this is the best show I'm not watching.  And yet, very few people I know actually watch it.

The Simpsons (FOX)  Election humor includes Jon Stewart – since his own show isn't providing much election coverage now.

Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations (TRAVEL) I fell in love with this series after Season Two. It's gong to be a "Strikebuster" this Winter. Tony's back in Singapore – tonight eating some shark's head and bone soup.

Dance War: Bruno Vs. Carrie Ann (ABC) I don't have time for another Dance show in my life, and I doubt the success of this beyond the start of American Idol. But after seeing the promos – I do want to see some more Carrie Ann Inaba on TV, so I hope for some success.

Parking Wars (A&E) Seriously? Meter maids get their own show before college bookstore managers? Do shows like this help you justify paying for cable/satellite every month?

The 34th Annual People's Choice Awards (CBS) Is this a preview of where we're heading with the Golden Globes and Oscars? Queen Latifah hosts but it's not live and the speeches are pre-taped. I'm guessing that this wasn't the "people's choice" for how they wanted their awards presented.

Project Runway (BRAVO) The return of American Idol, the return of Survivor and the early edition of Big Brother means that I'm spared from watching this show for at least another six months. But some day in the future I'm sure I'll be saying, how did I miss this? Which is what I did for four seasons of The Amazing Race.

The Real World: Sydney (MTV) The 19th Season comes to an end. That's right – 19 seasons of this crap and they just keep coming.

Tales From The Darkside (SCI-FI) Is Sci-Fi even running out of shows during the strike? There's a marathon of this hit-and-miss series today.

My Name Is Earl (NBC) Earl gets out of jail and only gets one more episode before the end of the season? It looks like good-list Earl may be considering becoming bad Earl again after his experiences in prison.

Friday Night Lights (NBC) But the season's not over in Dillon, Texas. There's new students from another school thanks to a tornado and Riggins keeps crashing at Coach's house.

Miss America: Reality Check (TLC) This probably looks better on paper than in "reality." All 52 contestants in the Miss America pageant live together leading up to the contest. Even if it sucks, you're only required to sit through 4 episodes this season. And Friday nights can be pretty slow on the Tivo.

Transformers Animated (TOON) I saw the movie that leads into this series and I can't even recommend it to the most serious of Transformer fans. It plays out more like a Transformers Jr. series.

Jamie At Home (FOOD) Jamie Oliver was wonderful as the "Naked Chef" and now he's back doing his relaxed, English thing again.

TV-ON-DVD TO OWN (to be released January 8)
1. Family Feud – All-Star Family Feud. Four discs of Richard Dawson and other TV stars from the late '70s! Lots of Dick Van Patten is guaranteed.

2. All New Super Friends Hour (Season 1, Volume 1). Spotlight bonus on Hawkman, Hawkgirl, The Atom, and Green Lantern.

3. MI-5 (Volume 5) More BBC fun that isn't well known enough yet here in the States.

4. Two & A Half Men (Complete 2nd Season) Because it's a slow week and because I didn't totally hate that 1st Season.

5. Gunsmoke (Season 2, Volume 1) Twenty-seven episodes from 1956-57 – this great series is really giving the middle finger to it's fans with these half-season releases. The dang show ran for 20 seasons – is it really necessary to release 40 volumes for the whole collection? A great show, not getting the respect it deserves.

The good news that the HD DVD release of Star Trek (Season One) will reach 100,000 units led to rumors of a March release of Season 2. Those rumors changed to sometime in the summer after the Warner Bros. announcement regarding Blu-Ray. No release date yet, but there was official confirmation this week that Duckman will finally be hitting DVD in 2008!

TOP 5 ADDS TO YOUR NETFLIX QUEUE (released January 1)
5. Shoot 'Em Up. Because Clive Owen is so damn cool – love his bit on the last episode of Extras.

4. Indie Sex. Great doc. series about sex in movies that aired on the Independent Film Channel. Not hard to get John Waters to talk about sex, I know. But there's some great info here – especially in the "Censored" episode.

3. War. It's a really slow week for new releases, so you're going to have to pick up this Jason Statham and Jet Li pic. Be sure to grab a six-pack of brew, too.

2. Resident Evil: Extinction. I can't give you a good reason to watch this. I haven't seen any of the series myself. But I did sit through the presentation for this film at Comic Con and Milla Jovovich has a wonderful smile.

1. The Tudors: Season 1. Another quality Showtime series. Jonathan Rhys-Meyers plays a frisky King Henry VIII. This looks like a lot of fun.

About Gordon S. Miller

Gordon S. Miller is the artist formerly known as El Bicho, the nom de plume he used when he first began reviewing movies online for The Masked Movie Snobs in 2003. Before the year was out, he became that site's publisher. Over the years, he has also contributed to a number of other sites as a writer and editor, such as FilmRadar, Film School Rejects, High Def Digest, and Blogcritics. He is the Founder and Publisher of Cinema Sentries. Some of his random thoughts can be found at

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