Television Archives (48 posts)

Movin’ On Up

Lissa Fraser Kerr

My better half, Lissa, started a new job this week with Big Coat Productions in Toronto. She is their new head of production and development. The announcement was made in Realscreen, Playback and C21 Media.

Posted in News and Television at 9:07 AM

Only 15 Stinkers

I’m waiting for the second last episode of Lost to air and just read a great interview with Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse in the NY Times - The Men Who Made ABC’s ‘Lost’ Last. I love that Lindelof is so candid about some of the weaker episodes:

So the mistakes had to happen, but we actually like talking about the worst episodes of the show because at the end of the day we made 121 hours or something like that of “Lost,” and I would say that probably only like 15 of them were subpar/stinkers. That’s not bad. If you’re going to have 15 stinkers, that means that 15 of them are actually going to be awesome. You cannot have awesome episodes without stinkers.

I was surprised to find out that the writers spend 85% on the characters and only 15% of the time on the show mythology. The strong characters and storytelling have led to the show’s success but I have to disagree with Cuse when he says:

I think that a lot of people care much more about what’s going to happen to Kate. Is she going to end up with Jack, is she going to end up with Sawyer?

I don’t care who Kate ends up with. I want answers about the mythology of the show. Explain the light in the cave, the time travel, the smoke monster, the whispers, the zombies…

Posted in Television at 8:19 PM

House Season Finale Filmed Entirely with Canon 5D Mark II

I am blown away by the fact that a show as popular as House was filmed using a digital SLR. This is amazing!

Canon 5D Mark II

The Canon 5D Mark II can record up to 22 minutes of HD footage using an 18 GB memory card. The 5D retails for $2,449 on Amazon.

I have the previous version of the 5D and would love to upgrade and find some video projects to work on.

For another incredible demo of how good the video can look with this camera watch The Last Three Minutes - a short film by cinematographer Shane Hurlbut, the cinematographer of Terminator Salvation.

Posted in Photography and Television at 11:44 PM

Television Show About Steve Jobs Called “iCon”

Fake Steve Jobs could be getting his own TV show in the very new future and it will be called iCon. Director, Larry Charles (Borat and Religulous) is overseeing the project.

In a recent statement, Charles said “we are attempting to do nothing less than a modern ‘Citizen Kane.’ A scabrous satire of Silicon Valley and its most famous citizen.” Newsweek contributor, Dan Lyons, who is also the author of the Fake Steve Jobs blog is slated to write the series. If it is anything like his blog, this could be quite a funny show but don’t expect it to be airing on NBC next fall. If it gets produced it will be shown on Epix.

Posted in Apple and Television at 9:20 PM

The Pacific

If you don’t have HBO then you’ll want to make sure that you add it to your cable/satellite package before the weekend. On Sunday at 9 PM, The Pacific premieres. The long awaited miniseries from Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg tracks the real-life of three US marines during World War II.

If you enjoyed Band Of Brothers then you won’t want to miss The Pacific.

Posted in Television at 3:40 PM’s Massive Recap Of ‘Lost’

Fake John Locke

Jeff Jensen at has a massive recap of last night’s Lost season premiere - ‘Lost’ recap: What’s Your Worldview?. Before you read that article, you’ll want to start with Confused by the ‘Lost’ premiere? Never fear! Damon and Carlton explain a few things about the start of Season 6, in which the producers of the show give us a few clues.

Jensen’s column for is one of the best I’ve read at explaining the most popular show on the planet. Each episode of Lost is rich with obscure references, from Salman Rushdie’s Haroun and the Sea of Stories to philosopher Soren Kierkegaard’s Fear and Trembling. Jensen makes sense of these references and offers some valuable insight to the mysteries of the show.

If you’re one of those people that has an endless appetite for Lost then I suggest you alos check out Totally ‘Lost’.

Posted in Television at 8:38 PM

Best Line From Season 2 Of Dollhouse

The best line from season 2 of Dollhouse came from Fran Kranz’s character, Topher Brink:

I’m obsolete. This must be what old people feel like. And Blockbuster.

The writers have been delivering some zingers as the show winds down. In the latest episode, one of the character’s asks what year it is. The star and executive producer of the show, Eliza Dushku looks a little confused and says “the year is 2010, if we’re still on the air.”

Fox will be airing the final 3 episodes of Dollhouse in January, 2010.

Posted in Television at 9:13 AM

Michael C. Hall Talks About Season Finale of Dexter

Hollywood Insider talks to the star of the television show Dexter, Michael C. Hall about season 4’s killer finale. I have to admit, I didn’t see the ending coming which made it that much more enjoyable.

Posted in Television at 11:00 PM

Joss Whedon talks about the end of Dollhouse

Maureen Ryan has a great article and interview with Joss Whedon - Sex, secrets and ‘Dollhouse’: Joss Whedon talks about the end of his Fox show. He doesn’t have a lot of good things to say about Fox but he’s careful not to burn any bridges either.

I just watched the first of two doubleheader episodes and if you’re a fan of the show you won’t be disappointed. It’s too bad that Dollhouse
wasn’t on HBO or AMC where it could be so much more. Fox never seems to know what they want in a new show and like the rest of network television these days, they are floundering.

Posted in Television at 10:10 PM

Bell TV To Add AMC After Mad Men Season Finale

The programming geniuses at Bell TV announced that they are finally going to pick up AMC which produces what is arguably the best show on television, Mad Men. Finally! But wait! Season 3 of Mad Men is over next week!

Rogers customers have been watching Mad Men all season in HD while Bell TV customers have been downloading it from bit torrent sites on Monday mornings. The Mad Men season finale is November 8 and Bell won’t be broadcasting AMC until November 15. Brilliant! Just brilliant!

Bell TV. The most HD crap in Canada.

If you’re one of those unfortunate Bell TV customers (I am) then you can take consolation in knowing that Bell still has the most HD TV channels in Canada (most of them show the same programming). Oh, and you can always watch Mad Men season 4 in 2010 or watch The Prisoner until then.

If you’re unhappy about the timing of the AMC announcement, turn the other cheek. Bell TV will be raising their prices to presumably help pay for the “free channels” you get in their HD packages:

Effective January 1, 2010, monthly rates for HD Extra will increase by $4.

I’m ready to pull the plug on all of the premium HD content I order from Bell TV. I bet it would be cheaper if I bought everything on iTunes - Mad Men, Californication, Dexter and Curb Your Enthusiasm.

One more thing, CBC recently relaunched CBC Newsworld as CBC NN in HD. Bell TV doesn’t carry CBC NN in HD but Rogers does. How does the CRTC let Bell TV get away with picking up AMC and not CBC NN in HD? Lame.

Related links:

Canada’s Bell TV is ‘Mad’ about AMC
AMC coming to Bell TV on November 11th

Posted in Television at 9:19 AM

Sister Gertrude Morgan

True Blood is one of those television shows that does an outstanding job of finding incredible music for each episode.

At the end of episode 10 (season 2) the music selection is New World In My View by Sister Gertrude Morgan & King Britt and it is a fabulous track. As soon as the show was over I was on iTunes, downloading a copy.

Like Moby, King Britt sampled old gospel tracks and mixed it with his own music to create a sound that I really like. Precious Lord Lead Me On is another great track that you’ll want to hear if you like this type of music.

For more information on the music used in True Blood take a look at

Posted in Music and Television at 1:42 AM

Top Downloaded TV Show

I just read a story on Yahoo about the most popular illegal downloads and it claims that NBC’s Heroes is the top downloaded show (55 million downloads this year). Just behind it is Lost with approximately 51 million downloads.

I can understand Lost having a high number of downloads but Heroes? I didn’t think anyone was still watching the show which has been getting progressively worse since its break-out season one. I guess I was wrong.

Thanks to Rob at SUPERHERO TV for the link to the Yahoo story.

Posted in Television at 10:08 AM

You’re Going To Love My Nuts

The Slap Chop commercial with Vince is the best infomercial I’ve ever watched. This guy has his delivery down cold, the editing is tight and the cheesy special effects are classic.

At about the 54 second mark he says says “you’re going to love my nuts” before he takes a handful of almonds and tosses them into the Slap Chop. I laughed my head off. Of course my 10-year-old was in the room and thinks that it’s okay to say “you’re going to love my nuts”.

Posted in Humour and Television at 1:46 PM

Free HDTV in Toronto

The antenna is making a comeback in Toronto. People are buying a antenna’s to pick up free HDTV signals from Toronto, Hamilton and Buffalo. In some cases you may need to buy some coaxial cable and an HDTV tuner but that’s nothing compared to what it costs to watch HDTV on cable and satellite these days. To

I use Bell ExpressVu to get my HDTV programming. Last month my bill jumped from $85 to $90 per month. No explanation given. I guess Bell’s profits are down.

The satellite bill is a business write-off for me but I can’t believe that I pay that much to watch television. When I was a kid we watched TV for free. We had an antenna on our roof that was hooked up to a dial on the top of the TV set. The dial was hooked up to a small motor that could rotate the antenna and improve your reception.

I download the shows that I miss (don’t have a PVR) and hardly watch any of the movie channels I pay for. I bet that I could buy all of the TV shows I actually watch, from iTunes, and I would be paying far less thatn $90 a month. Television is going to change a lot in the next couple of years. No wonder the cable and satellite companies are looking for handouts from the CRTC.

The only thing keeping me tied to satellite TV are some of the specialty channels that my wife likes to watch. It’s the only way she can watch the shows that she directs and produces. The consolation is that we can use the satellite bill as a business expense. Still, I hate paying ridiculous amounts of money to an oligopoly like Bell Canada.

See How to get free HDTV at for more information.

Posted in Home Theatre and Technology and Television at 12:03 PM

Whew, Dollhouse Not Cancelled


All weekend there were rumours and speculation that Joss Whedon’s Dollhouse was going to be cancelled by Fox. Several sites have reported that the show is not cancelled. To make things a little more confusing, the show will not air next week but it will be back on April 24.

Anyway, the show is great and I hope that the ratings pick up so that it gets renewed. If you haven’t seen the show you can catch season one on Blu-ray when it gets released on July 28, 2009. It is going to include the original pilot that Fox didn’t air and it will include audio commentaries and other goodies.

Posted in Television at 9:08 AM

On One Take Baby

I’m still blown away by the Lebron James interview on 60 Minutes tonight. Halfway through the interview, James underhands the ball across more than half the court to sink a shot.

Steve Kroft asks him how many times in a row he can make shot like that and James says, “on one take baby, on one take.” It was a lucky shot but it made the interview.

Posted in Television at 11:28 PM

The Lost Theory of Time Travel

John Locke

My wife and I spend way too much time reading about and discussing the television show Lost. The production company she works at has Thursday morning meetings to discuss the episode from the previous night.

You can spend hours on Lostpedia trying to figure out what is really happening on the show but I think that’s a waste of time. The best explanation or theory about what is really happening on the island is the Theory of Time Travel.

Is this time loop theory correct? Only the writers and producers of the show know for sure. The rest of us will have to speculate and keep watching.

Posted in Television at 10:00 AM

Life On Mars

For weeks I’ve been watching season 5 of ABC’s Lost. During the commercial breaks I would watch the promos for Life on Mars and say, “that looks like an interesting show with a great cast.” How can you go wrong with Harvey Keitel, Michael Imperioli, Gretchen Mol and guest stars from The Sopranos or The Wire showing up every week?

No. I told myself that I can’t start watching yet another TV show when I have a stack of movies to go through. Then it happened. I found myself drawn in by the 70s soundtrack and the weird premise of the show. I was hooked.

As I’ve done with Californication, Mad Men and The Wire, I started downloading previous episodes of Life on Mars to catch up. Some of the episodes are weak but for the most part this is a strong show with solid acting and one large hook — how did Sam Tyler (Jason O’Mara) end up in 1973 from 2008?

I was telling a friend about the show yesterday and he told me that ABC just cancelled the show a couple of days ago. Ugh!

Apparently ABC is going to complete 17 episodes and wrap things up with a series finale. The British version of Life On Mars ran for two season, 16 episodes in total. I just hope that ABC allows the writers to tie up all of the loose ends and explain how Sam ended up in 1973.

Posted in Television at 9:10 AM

Top Gear’s The Stig is no longer a secret

The Stig

The secret identity of Top Gear’s famous test driver has been revealed, sort of. Apparently he’s a married man in his 30s and he drives a “reasonably priced car”.

Nobody has publicly revealed the name of The Stig but the Telegraph is reporting that The News of the World has discovered the true identity of The Stig. Apparently somebody at the BBC couldn’t keep their mouth shut and leaked the story.

Posted in Television at 1:28 AM

Top 14 Top Gear Moments

The Top 14 Top Gear Moments should take a bite out of your productivity today. If you’re a fan of the show then you’ll probably find a few clips from episodes you missed over the years. The Ariel Atom and Darts with Cars had me laughing out loud. (Link via Dave King.)

Posted in Television at 12:35 PM

IT Crowd returns

IT Crowd

The third season of IT Crowd began last night in the UK. I just watched the first episode and found myself laughing out loud several times.

Posted in Television at 2:14 PM

Canada on 30 Rock

I got a chuckle out of Steve Martin’s lines on 30 Rock last night:

Cheap cholesterol medicine from Canada. A Paris Hilton film released only in Canada. Come with me to Canada… Toronto is just like New York but without all the stuff.

By the way, as a resident of Toronto, I can attest to the fact that Toronto really is like New York without all the stuff.

Posted in Television at 2:01 PM

The Wire — Season One

I’m watching season one of The Wire. Why? Several blogs (, 43 Folders) that I read have raved about The Wire being the best television series ever made.

Merlin Mann on The Wire:

I’m one of the many people who consider The Wire to be the best series that’s ever appeared on television; my wife and I have watched the first (and, in my opinion, best) four seasons at least three times.

I’m on episode 7 of season one and it’s starting to get good. The show requires a lot of patience and if you don’t pay attention, you’ll lose your way pretty quickly. One of the best television shows ever? I’m not completely sold. Yet.

Posted in Television at 10:19 PM

Gearing up for Mad Men - Season 2

If you ever wondered what a Madison Avenue advertising agency might have been like in the 1960s, then start watching Mad Men. It won the Golden Globe for best new television drama last year and now I know why.

The show transports you back to the early 1960s and has an authenticity to it that is charming and shocking. I love the music, the style and the look of the show. The writing is clever and quite often funny.

I was shocked by how much drinking and smoking takes place on the show and how normal that would have been 40 years ago. You’ll shake your head when a doctor lights up during a patient examination or cringe at the way women were treated by sexist advertising executives but that is part of the allure of the show.

I’m fascinated by the attitudes and beliefs of the characters in the show. We’ve come a long way and it makes me wonder how ridiculous 2008 will seem in 2048.

Unfortunately the show isn’t available in Canada but you can find it online or on DVD. If you’re a creative professional or if you’ve ever worked at an ad agency then you’ll be drawn to this show in a second.

Posted in Television at 4:33 PM


Dexter is one of the shows that I’ve heard about through magazines and newspaper articles, knew was a good show but couldn’t be bothered to watch. It wasn’t until I looked at my brother’s Facebook page, and noticed that Dexter was one of his favourite shows, that I decided to give it a look.

I’m hooked. I watched all of season one last week until I was bleary-eyed. Michael C. Hall is fabulously creepy as the main character, Dexter. Erik King plays potty-mouth Sergeant James Doakes who can’t stand Dexter and suspects that he’s hiding something.

My other favourite character from the show is C.S. Lee as Vince Masuka. Lee steals just about every scene that he is in and provides plenty of comic relief to a dark, gruesome show.

Posted in Television at 8:26 PM

Tim Kring admits that season 2 of Heroes has been weak

If you’re a fan of the television show Heroes then you know that the second season has been terrible. Series creator Tim Kring admitted this earlier in the week and has vowed to put the show back on track.

The Dec. 3 episode will has been reworked to act as a season finale. This will give Kring and his writers a chance to start fresh and put the show back on track for the second half of the season two.

Say goodbye to some of the worst television romance in recent history — no more cherry trees and Hiro kissing a Japanese princess. Say goodbye to Claire and her ‘fly’ boyfriend. In an interview, Kring says, “I don’t think romance is a natural fit for us.”

The pacing has been way too slow and the introduction of some new heroes has been terrible. What happened to the cliff hangers from last year? The show needs to be a little less Love Story and a little more Bourne Ultimatum to win back viewers. Episode 6 was a step in the right direction.

Posted in Television at 10:54 PM

The IT Crowd may not air on NBC

Writer/director Graham Linehan has a blog in which he recently discussed his television show The IT Crowd. In the US, NBC has been working on an American version of this hit TV show from the UK, but according to Linehan it may never air.

News reached me a while back that there may not be a US version of The IT Crowd. Apparently, there’s been a change of management at NBC and they’ve gone off the idea. I found this out on the Internet, which is how I find out all my information on the US IT Crowd.

It doesn’t sound like NBC is communicating at all with Linehan which I find odd. Stranger still, is that the US pilot is an exact copy of the British pilot.

Zap2it reported back in September that NBC May Unplug ‘IT Crowd’. The site also mentioned that the female lead, Jessica St. Clair was no longer part of the show. The show still isn’t in production and with only a pilot in the can, things don’t look very good.

If you’re a fan of the show then you’ll want to read Notes on the U.S. IT Crowd on Linehan’s blog.

Posted in Television at 9:44 PM

The IT Crowd on NBC

IT Crowd

The other night I watched the season finale of the hilarious British television comedy, The IT Crowd. I’m not sure if the UK’s Channel 4 has plans to do a third season but NBC in the US has “Americanized” the show and will be releasing it midseason!

NBC did this with The Office and has had a lot of success. For their version of The IT Crowd, NBC recruited Richard Ayoade who plays the character of Moss in the original version of The IT Crowd.

I don’t know. I love the British version of the show and think it will be difficult to enjoy and American update. I’ll probably watch just to see more of Richard Ayoade.

Visit NBC for video and images of the new version of The IT Crowd.

Posted in Television at 9:46 AM

The IT Crowd

The IT Crowd

Some of my favourite television shows are across the pond in the UK. The IT Crowd is the funniest show I’ve watched this year. The first season consisted of only six episodes. Watch the first episode and you’ll be hooked. Our family has watched season one a few times.

When you can laugh at show after multiple viewings and never tire of the characters you have a hit show. Season Two of the IT Crowd is coming soon (in the UK) which means you’ll be able to find a torrent or two for the new shows.

Thanks to my buddy Dave for making me watch the entire season at his house. Dave, I disagree with you. I do not look like the character of Moss (above right). And thanks to Neal for introducing the show to Dave.

Posted in Television at 4:41 PM

Don’t Stop Believin’

iTunes will be selling a lot of tracks for Journey’s Don’t Stop Believin’ this morning. I can’t get the song out of my head after watching The Sopranos series finale last night.

When the show ended with Perry singing “don’t stop believen’” and the screen cutting abruptly to black, I thought my satellite feed went dead. When the credits rolled without any music and I realized David Chase pulled a fast one on us.

Without giving any more away, I thought the ending to one of the series on television was innovative and refreshing. It also leaves the show open to movie possibilities.

Posted in Television at 11:32 AM

Bloody Chickentown

If you watched The Sopranos on Sunday night then you might be wondering who performed the song that played over the last scene and the credits. Evidently Chickentown is the name of the song and it was performed by punk-poet John Cooper Clarke.

Evidently Chickentown is from Clarke’s 1980 album Snap, Crackle & Bop. Clarke raps over some drums to create a dark, haunting song that was ahead of its time. The music works perfectly with the tone of the latest Sopranos episode.

I’m always amazed how David Chase and the show’s producers manage to come up with some obscure piece of music that blends perfectly with a particular scene. Reuters says that the show “will be remembered as the series that had the best music in the history of TV”.

More info on John Cooper Clarke:

Posted in Music and Television at 10:29 AM

24 hours of graphic violence

Has anyone noticed how brutally graphic the television show 24 has become?

In last night’s episode Morris (Carlo Rota) was beaten to a pulp. That wasn’t enough gore for Fox though. A Muslim terrorist named Fayed took a power drill and pushed it into Morris’ back so that he’d arm a nuclear bomb. Just in case you didn’t believe Morris’ screams of pain, blood was spattered on the faces of people as the drill went into Morris’ back.

At this point in the show I felt sick. Sick as in, how I felt when I watched Michael Madsen’s character cut off a policeman’s ear in the Tarantino film, Resrevoir Dogs.

Does anyone in the US or Canada see a problem with showing this kind of violence on television? Is seeing a nipple on the half-time show of the Super Bowl worse than this kind of violence?

Fox seems more concerned with stories like, Controversy Sprouts Over Prince’s Super Bowl Halftime Show than the graphic violence in their shows. I mean come on, are people really that bent out of shape about seeing Prince’s shadow?

I don’t want to sound like a prude or a hypocrite but I was more than a little surprised by last night’s episode and I’m starting to lose interest in the show. Maybe I’m just getting too old for this stuff.

Posted in Television at 4:17 PM

VisualHub for Mac OS X


Now and again I come across a really great piece of software for Mac OS X. VisualHub has become one of my favourite tools for dealing with video on the Mac.

For $23.32 USD you can easily convert DivX video into a DVD. If I miss an episode of 24 or House I do the following:

  1. head over to btjunkie and do a search for the latest show episode
  2. download the show using Xtorrent
  3. try to catch up on client work while the show downloads (losing battle)
  4. check the downloaded show in VLC
  5. open the file up in VisualHub and click on the DVD tab
  6. catch up on client work while the video is being converted
  7. burn my show to disc

I could save a lot of time and just burn the .AVI file to DVD and watch the show on my Philips DivX player. The problem is that this DVD player isn’t hooked up to my home theatre with HD projector. I could also get a PVR but this is more fun.

I’ve also used VisualHub to convert video from YouTube (.FLV format) to DV format which can then be used in Final Cut Pro. I couldn’t produce without VisualHub.

One of the things that makes this program so amazing is the simplicity behind it. Take a look at the user interface.

VisualHub screenshot

Reminds me of SuperDuper — another great piece of software that I use for backups.

I’m just discovering that VisualHub does a better job at creating iPod video than Quicktime Pro. You have more control over the compression settings allowing you to reduce the size of the video files.

Okay. Enough geeky rambling. If you need to convert video to different formats then look no further than VisualHub.

Posted in OS X Software and Television at 5:05 PM

Kramer At The Laugh Factory

There is a very funny video on YouTube called Seinfeld Lost Episode - Kramer At The Laugh Factory that has some clever editing. It matches footage from Seinfeld with Michael Richards’ racist outburst a couple of weeks ago at the Laugh Factory. Poor Kosmo Kramer.

Posted in Television at 4:57 PM

Heroes Recap: Six Months Ago

There is a good summary of last night’s episode of Heroes at Fangasm. If you’re a fan of the show or you missed last night’s episode then you’ll want to read the recap.

Posted in Television at 4:19 PM

Ed Bradley, Veteran CBS Newsman, Dies

Wow, I had no idea that Ed Bradley was ill. Just two weeks ago he had a segment air on 60 Minutes. He was only 65.

I grew up watching 60 Minutes and still count it as one of my favourite shows. It won’t be the same without Ed Bradley. He’ll be missed.

Posted in News and Television at 3:06 AM

More Gigs

Lately my Macintosh (Dual 1.8 GHz PowerPC G5) has been feeling a little sluggish. Photoshop CS2 occasionally takes a coffee break, Safari seems a little slow at loading pages and I’m always low on hard disk storage.


I doubled my RAM to 2 GB and things seem to be zipping along again. Because I’m using Photoshop and often working with 16-bit images I would probably benefit from even more memory.


My internal 150 GB hard disk has only 6 GB of space left. Who would have thought that applications would every be 400 - 500 GB in size? It doesn’t help that I have 12 GB of RAW photos to archive.

I have an external 120 GB LaCie drive and it is almost full as well. Solution? Call up and order a 500 MB Seagate internal drive (7200/16MB/SATA). That should last for a couple of years (or until I dump another 186,500 photos on there).

Does anyone have any tips on how to speed up an old G5?

Posted in Apple and Television at 4:50 PM

Shows I’m watching

For the last couple of years I haven’t watched a lot of TV. I’ve spent a lot of my time watching films instead.

Last year I started watching House and was completely hooked. The Sopranos is another show I love and am looking forward to when it resumes.

I took a look at Desperate Housewives and felt like I was watching recycled Melrose Place episodes. I also watched an episode of Standoff on Fox. Groan.

Two shows have caught my eye and I’m tuning in every week. The first show is Heroes on NBC. Awesome! It has a great blend of mystery, interconnected plot lines (think Syrianna, Traffic, Babel) and some supernatural elements that give it an X-Files feel.

The second show that impressed me was The Nine on ABC. It features an ensemble — nine strangers come together during a bank robbery that turns into a messy, 52-hour hostage situation. The series looks at how this experience has changed the people involved. There is also a lot of uncertainty as to what happened during the hostage crisis. A little bit is revealed each episode.

What are your must-watch shows this season?

Posted in Television at 11:23 AM

Jesus Camp

Back in August, James mentioned a new documentary film called Jesus Camp that looked pretty interesting if not disturbing. A few days ago a clip called Bill Maher Discussion about Jesus Camp showed up on YouTube that is excellent.

The discussion allows for several different viewpoints that I found fascinating. I think that I’ll have to fire up Xtorrent and get the September 22 broadcast of Real Time with Bill Maher.

Posted in Movies and Television at 10:55 AM

Top Gear, Heroes and Xtorrent

Somehow I missed all the buzz surrounding the new show, Heroes on NBC. A couple of people (Neal/Dave) told me to check it out. So I’m downloading a copy of last night’s episode now using Xtorrent.

Up until now, I’ve been using Azureus to download my torrent files. Why switch? Xtorrent is a much slicker app—simpler and more Mac-like in terms of interface. Thanks to Ryan for suggesting I check it out.

Another story I missed concerns Top Gear. Apparently one of the shows stars, Richard ‘Hamster’ Hammond crashed a jet-powered dragster at 280 mph. The accident almost killed Hammond and now the show is postponed indefinitely.

The Daily Mail is reporting that Hammond wants the BBC to show the crash. He’s also willing to film from his hospital bed as he recovers from a serious brain injury.

Jeremy Clarkson, one of the show’s hosts said, “Swarms of bureaucratic bluebottles are nibbling away at the crash site on York airfield desperately trying to find some reason why Top Gear should be banished from our screens.” Hopefully the show will continue. It’s one of my favourites from the UK.

Posted in OS X Software and Television at 12:56 PM

Last week I mentioned the television show Top Gear on BBC Two. Unfortunately I don’t have a PVR and I don’t live in the UK. Fortunately I do have a couple of DSL modems and a complete listing of Top Gear torrent files over at is a Top Gear fan site that you’ll want to bookmark if you like the show. I’ve watched all of season 8 so far and part of season 7. Seasons 3-8 are available online. Long live BitTorent — the poor man’s global PVR.

Posted in Television at 11:58 AM

Top Gear

I’ve become addicted to Top Gear on BBC Two. James told me about the show and I’ve watched the first 4 episodes of the 8th season on DivX. Brilliant! As they like to say on the show.

I’m not really into ‘car shows’ but Top Gear isn’t just any car show. The production value is incredible. They test drive a lot of high-end cars like the Ferrari F60 Enzo or Lotus Exige S. The hosts quite often slam GM for problems with the latest Cadillac or tell you how ugly they think a Porsche SUV is. You’d never see this on a North American show where automobile ads appear every commercial break.

Top Gear is also incredibly funny and the 3 hosts do some crazy things to vehicles each week — making a convertible out of a minivan and taking it through a car wash.

Each episode also features a celebrity driver like chef Gordon Ramsay or actor Ewan McGregor who compete for the fastest lap times around a race track. Forget about Pimp My Ride and the other car shows out there. This is the best one on TV. Period.

Posted in Television at 4:28 PM

The Sopranos and House

I recently watched the season premiere of The Sopranos in HD and all I can say is “wow!”

It’s been a long wait for season 6 and the first episode was worth the wait. The writing and the acting on this show is so finely tuned now that each episode is like watching a four star movie. And to think I resisted watching for the first four seasons. What was I thinking?

The HBO microsite for the The Sopranos has a great feature called Sopranos Maps. It uses Google Maps to show you key locations from Season 5. Each location has a video clip and episode synopsis. Brilliant!

Another show that I can’t get enough of these days is House on Fox. This is another show I resisted and had no interest in whatsoever. A friend of mine in Vancouver forced me to watch an episode and now I’m hooked. I downloaded the first 10 episodes of Season 2 (via BitTorents) and can’t get enough of this show.

The writing is clever and quite funny. Hugh Laurie is perfect in the role of Dr. Gregory House. The special effects are pretty amazing in some episodes. Should I continue or are you going to tune on March 28 for the next episode?

Posted in Television at 5:55 PM

Cinema Reel

If you can’t wait for Hot Docs next year then tune into CBC for Cinema Reel — a documentary film festival airing on CBC. CBC Newsworld will air a documentary every night between Dec 1 - Dec 6.

If that doesn’t excite you then you may be interested in the online contest to WIN A CINEMA REAL WEEKEND IN WHISTLER. Thanks to James for this info.

Posted in Television at 10:34 AM

Hello, we have HDTV.

The step-daughter is watching The O.C. on FOX. It’s one of the few television shows that is broadcast in HDTV and she’s watching the regular broadcast. I’m in shock and ask her why she’d want to watch the “crappy” version of the show—the version that isn’t in widescreen with Dolby Digital sound.

I received a simple shrug and a brief explanation that it’s too much work to go all the way up to channel 800 (where the HDTV programming is). Hmm, is it just me or is anyone else suprised that some people don’t use the number buttons on television remotes?

Posted in Television at 8:46 PM

Super Bowl Commercials

When I had the guys over for the Super Bowl on the weekend, the Ameriquest commercials received the biggest laughs. My favourite is the guy making a dinner for his wife when things go horribly wrong.

If you missed any of the Ameriquest commercials then you can watch them here.

Posted in Humour and Television at 10:46 PM

A Boy’s Dream

Somehow I missed this. Guy Ritchie directed a 60 second ad for GM that features a kid driving around in the new Corvette. Okay, so maybe this kid was driving a little too fast and performing a few too many Dukes of Hazzard jumps, but come on, he’s just day-dreaming.

Back in August, seven auto safety groups thought the ad looked too real, too unsafe, and asked that GM pull the ad. They did. Wimps.

If you missed it, you can still view the ad here. QuickTime required. Thanks to Graham for the link.

Posted in Television at 7:42 PM

Television Appearance

On Wednesday night at 8:00 PM, Lissa and I will be on a Canadian television show called The Right Fit—a health and fitness magazine program that airs on the W NETWORK (Channel 27 on Rogers Cable Toronto). We both went on a diets, changed our eating habits and one of us lost 11 pounds. Tune in to find out who.

The show repeats throughout the week and can be seen at the following times:

NOVEMBER 5, 2002—4:30 PM (Pacific Time)
NOVEMBER 6, 2002—8:00 PM (Eastern Time)
NOVEMBER 9, 2002—8:00 AM (Eastern Time)
NOVEMBER 9, 2002—6:30 PM (Eastern Time)

I am going to try and put the show segment online. Stay tuned.

Posted in Television at 12:09 AM