This is an example of the kind of Parenthood episode that I love. The kind that seamlessly weaves together multiple storylines, that remembers significant parts of characters’ backstories and uses that to help fix a flailing story, that actually gets the wheels moving forward in the plot rather than having them turn and turn but go nowhere, and that balances the dark cloud that’s been hanging over the Bravermans all season with a little joy. There was still plenty of darkness — that will never go away on Parenthood — but this was more enjoyable than many of the previous episodes, and I’m sure it’s no coincidence that it was written by Jason Katims. … Read More
The television world moves so fast that by the time you learn of a show’s premiere, it could already be canceled. It’s hard to keep track of the constant stream of television news, so Flavorwire is here to provide a weekly roundup of the most exciting — and baffling — casting and development updates. This week, Morgan Spurlock gets a new docu-series, Undateable gets a premiere date, and Enlisted gets the shaft. … Read More
For a show that’s all about murder, Hannibal ponders the concept of a dignified, self-inflicted death exceptionally well. As is the nature of procedural crime shows, the M.O. of this week’s killer dovetails a little too nicely with the personal struggles of Jack Crawford. But the case of the beehive killer sheds light on more than Jack’s internal debate over whether he should accept his wife’s desire to die with dignity. It also gives us, by way of contrast, more insight into Hannibal, for whom the idea of killing for mercy is so alien he decides whether to let a cancer patient die via coin toss. … Read More
This week’s episode is all about the boys of Parenthood. Once again, the show has chosen to devote time to Joel and Julia’s separation but this episode smartly focuses less on the adults and more on how this is affecting the children. Even smarter, it focuses mostly on Victor, their adopted son. Also at the forefront of “The Offer” is Drew, poorly handling the Natalie situation and becoming an amateur stoner wallowing in his older sister’s apartment, and Max who goes on a field trip without his parents and has a complete breakdown due to his classmates. It’s a “we’re going to make you cry” episode of Parenthood but it’s effective, gut-wrenching, and it’s going to stick with me for a while.
It’s do-or-die time for Will Graham, literally: our hero’s haunting dream of flipping the switch on his own electric chair shows he understands the stakes of his trial full well. So does Hannibal, leading to the conflict of interests I’m hoping will continue to define this season. Dr. Lecter doesn’t want to get caught; it’s why he set Will up in the first place. But in his own way, he seriously considers Will a friend, and that concern might well be what lands this series’ namesake cannibal behind bars. Hannibal can’t tear himself away from Will, even when it endangers his own freedom. … Read More
These Parenthood titles sure do get to the point, huh? The theme this week — because there is almost always a loose theme running the Bravermans are all dealing with in any given episode, though this has very mixed results —is very much about how these characters are in limbo. The most overt plot is Joel and Julia’s marital problems that are yes, still are the foreground of most episodes this season. Their relationship is in limbo, especially due to Joel’s stubbornness, and it’s really starting to take its toll on the children. Everyone is in a total state of uncertainty, like how Drew can’t figure out his deal with Natalie or Amber doesn’t know if she should call her ex-fiance. And then there is the religious limbo that Renee is so concerned about: the centerpiece of the episode is Aida’s baptism that is being rushed to ensure this baby doesn’t go to hell — thankfully, Crosby points out how silly this is. “Limbo” is a bit uneven, but has some moments that I truly love. … Read More
The television world moves so fast that by the time you learn of a show’s premiere, it could already be canceled. It’s hard to keep track of the constant stream of television news, so Flavorwire is here to provide a weekly roundup of the most exciting — and baffling — casting and development updates. This week, a Boy Meets World fan favorite is cast, CBS renews everything it can think of, and ABC Family goes True Detective.
… Read More
Have we seen the last of Bedelia du Maurier? “Sakizuke” gave us the most insight we’ve gotten yet (which is to say, not much) into just how much Gillian Anderson’s character knows about her patient. It’s still not clear just what happened during her attack or what Hannibal had to do with it. But just as Hannibal breaks into her home sporting a full-on murder suit, she wises up and skips town—or, as she would put it, “withdraws from social ties.” Which robs Will Graham of a potentially formidable ally. … Read More
As the very first scene of its second season tells us, Hannibal is a somewhat unusual show in that the audience knows exactly how it ends. Over at Slate, Mark Peters made a similar observation, arguing that because Bryan Fuller’s beautiful, engrossing show doesn’t need to ratchet up suspense about where the plot is headed, we have breathing room along the way to soak in Hannibal and Will and their relationship’s unraveling. It’s like True Detective in that way: a character study wrapped in a loosely structured police procedural. … Read More
Parenthood has such a large cast that it can be hard to know what to do with them all. For the most part, the show achieves a nice balance of switching up who they focus on from week-to-week while letting others hang out in the background in smaller stories. It’s admirable that each of these characters are so well-developed that often these runners are still interesting television and sometimes are subtly morphing into something bigger. It can still be hit or miss — and whether or not I love an episode depends on which characters are at the front and center. “Just Like At Home” was fine, but it wasn’t my favorite. … Read More