The TV landscape is filled with what seems like a never-ending stream of fresh programming. But whereas few shows are popular enough to be celebrated by critics, most float around for several seasons in obscurity maintaining a small but devoted following. Here's our pick of five shows – some popular, most not – you need to be watching this week.
The Biggest LoserTens of thousands of pounds have already been lost on NBC's long-running weight loss reality show, yet for 15 seasons (and counting) contestants on The Biggest Loser continue to shed insane amounts of weight. Okay, maybe some of them do gain it all back, point is it's inspiring TV. Episode three follows the contestants as they explore their creative side, when they're asked to work out using equipment won at auctions. Hmm...I wonder how much a Tony Little Gazelle (circa 2002) is going for these days? The Biggest Loser airs this Tuesday, October 29, at 8 PM ET on NBC.
Impractical JokersThe problem with every hidden-camera show of the last 10 years is that most of them starred Ashton Kutcher (zing!). Well, I'm happy to say that Impractical Jokers, truTV's hilarious prank show featuring four Staten Island-bred funnymen doing what they do best, not only takes over the mantle from Candid Camera, it flat-out bulldozes anything even remotely similar (i.e. Punk'd). Now if only one of these dudes even slightly resembled Steve Jobs, the Kutcher-starring biopic would have been worlds funnier. Oh wait – that was supposed to be a drama wasn't it? Double zing! Impractical Jokers airs Sunday nights on truTV.
Cutthroat KitchenEver find yourself skimming the tube some weekday afternoons and thinking to yourself, "Boy, there sure could be more cooking shows"? Well, thankfully, Cutthroat Kitchen is one of the few food-oriented reality programs that actually has a unique premise (the other 90 seem to always have some version of Gordon Ramsay verbally berating contestants). Basically, four chefs are given $25,000 in cold, hard American coin, which can be used to destroy each other in the kitchen. And if you thought only athletes like Mike Tyson became depraved when big money was on the line, wait until you see a couple of cooks go at it! Cutthroat Kitchen airs Sundays at 10 PM ET on the Food Network.
Alaskan Women Looking for LoveTired of the Fake Housewives of New Beverly County? Then catch up with some real woman who just happen to be in need of a man. And get this, they all just happen to reside in Alaska. That's right, that ice-covered oasis to the north (formerly known as Palinville) is littered with enough attractive young women for TLC to base a show on. That said, looks like there just might be hope for the hard-working young ladies of North Dakota! A man can dream...Alaskan Women Looking for Love airs Sundays at 7 PM ET on TLC.
Making MonstersEver wonder how all your favorite haunted house "scareacters" are made? Then you'll want to check out this week's Halloween-themed episode of Making Monsters on the Travel Channel. Put it this way, one of the creatures they construct from start to finish is described as a human eating zombie from hell. And no, his name is not Ted Cruz. Making Monsters airs this Sunday at 6 PM ET on the Travel Channel.
You’re invited! Tonight we’re throwing a huge New Years Eve bash and all of your favorite TV characters will be there. The alcohol is flowing, the playlist is perfect, and as the clock ticks closer to midnight, ten cross-network couples begin to form. Due to our vivid imaginations and an insane passion for TV, we at Hollywood.com have your sneak peek into what would happen if Ted Mosby, Sookie Stackhouse, Tom Haverford, Dana Brody and many more were all together to welcome 2013 with their 12 o’clock smooches. Check out our fantasy TV pairings below to see who would find their soul mate and would have their first one night stand of the new year!
Schmidt and Max Black (New Girl/2 Broke Girls): Max would thoroughly enjoy calling Schmidt out on his obnoxious behavior in front of the entire party and then secretly pass the money from the Douchebag Jar over to Caroline. Schmidt, enamored by Max’s blunt personality and sexually charged jokes, would be determined to kiss her by midnight. At Midnight: Max slaps Schimdt and the two later disappear into the coat closet with a bottle of champagne.
Ted Mosby and Karen Cartwright (HIMYM/Smash): She is totally Ted’s type (driven, smart, kind, brunette, etc.) and after Karen’s most recent catastrophic breakup, she needs a good guy like Teddy Westside right now. Plus, we all know that Ted would go above and beyond to make sure that Karen had everything should could ever need while “in tech” At Midnight: A sweet 5-minute makeout complete with nose nuzzling and forehead kisses.
Nick Miller and Shoshanna Shapiro (Girls/New Girl): These two are amazing, so naturally they would find each other at our fictional party. Shoshanna would admire Nick’s laidback personality and Nick would see that Shoshanna’s upbeat personality is strong enough to stop him from making that ugly turtle face we all know so well. They would become good friends who commiserate that their dates bailed at the last minute. At Midnight: An awkward brother/sister type kiss followed by a marathon of Baggage on the Game Show Network.
Sam Evans and Haley Dunphy (Glee/Modern Family): Talk about cross-network soul mates! Sam and Haley have never been the brightest bulbs in the box, but they’re both extremely attractive and easily persuaded. Throw any topic at them and these two would think that the other is a gorgeous genius. At Midnight: Sam pulls out (yet another) ring and proposes to Hayley at 1 in the morning because they still have yet to change their watches from Daylight Saving Time. She accepts because she thinks Dylan has dyed his hair blonde.
Tom Haverford and BJ (Parks and Rec/Ben and Kate): Tom has always tried to lure the ladies with his swagger but often failed. Luckily for him at this party BJ would be on the prowl tonight looking for a fella with some smooth lines and extra bottles of Ciroc.Their eyes meet while Tom is singing Justin Bieber's "Baby" on Wii karaoke. At Midnight: BJ pins Tom to a wall and the entire party looks away as they have a sloppy makeout for about two hours complete with loud moans.
Joffrey Baratheon and Dana Brody (Game of Thrones/Homeland): Ugh, these two. Neither of them could find someone to go with, so they would be here on a blind date. Everyone hates them both and they've both killed people, so they deserve each other. Dana’s incessant whining is enough to drive anyone crazy, but Joffrey is particularly annoyed. At Midnight: A quick peck for tradition before Joffrey sentences her to the great beyond. Good riddance.
Stefan Salvatore and Sookie Stackhouse (The Vampire Diaries/True Blood): Stefan and Sookie are both single now and after commiserating about their drawn-out love triangles, sparks would begin to fly. Stefan would like the fact that Sookie doesn’t whine all the time and Sookie would instantly see that Stefan has is redicuoulsy attractive and has fangs. He's totally her type. At Midnight: A super sexy makeout sesh that lasts about 30 seconds until Stefan needs to leave because his inner Ripper is dying to drain her of every ounce of her fairy blood.
Raj Koothrappali and Mindy Lahiri (The Big Bang Theory/The Mindy Project): There’s always champagne flowing on New Years Eve, so Raj would have the perfect excuse to use his alcohol enhanced voice to woo Mindy with his knowledge of the stars in the galaxy. Mindy—totally wasted in her super sequin dress—would think that Raj is the perfect guy that her parents will finally approve of. At Midnight: The two are overly excited for their kiss and they smack their heads together. Raj now has a concussion.
Chris Traeger and Marnie Michaels (Parks and Rec/Girls): Marnie and Chris would meet each other while reaching for the last fat-free hors d'oeuvre. Chris would instantly fall in love with Marnie’s smile, trim figure and perfect hair, and Marnie would be enjoy his blue eyes and positive outlook on life. Marnie, drunk and depressed, could care less if they ever see each other again, she just doesn’t want to be alone at 12. At Midnight: Their kiss leads to the nearest bedroom and the two have a wild night. New Years Day: Marnie must now change her number because Chris keeps calling her every seven minutes and sending her countless emoji-filled texts.
What did you think of our New Years Eve couples? Who do you think would be great together at midnight? Shout out your suggestions in the comments below!
Follow Leanne on Twitter @LeanneAguilera
[Photo Credit: ABC, CBS, FOX, HBO, The CW]
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The 2013 nominees for the Writers Guild of America awards have been announced. Writers, you say? Yes, writers! The people that make words dance on pages to create the worlds in which our favorite shows flourish. Some people, when confronted with a brilliant episode of television automatically assume the credit for its general goodness should go to the actors. But what about the writers? They are often just as (if not more so) likely to be the reason you laughed, cried, gasped, guffawed, or squirmed in your seat during last week's episode of your favorite show.
These makers of televised scripts carry a good chunk of a show's success (and failure) on their shoulders, and leading the pack of successful witty wordsmiths? Lena Dunham and her HBO darling Girls. Overall, it seems as though cable dramas fared better than broadcast (which, duh), but on the flip-side, broadcast comedies outdid their cable brethren. Breaking Bad cleaned up in the episodic drama category, and comedy lady hero Amy Poehler got herself a nod for the episode of Parks and Recreation she penned, "The Debate."
Check out the full list of nominees below!
Boardwalk Empire written by Dave Flebotte, Diane Frolov, Chris Haddock, Rolin Jones, Howard Korder, Steve Kornacki, Andrew Schneider, David Stenn, Terence Winter; HBO
Breaking Bad written by Sam Catlin, Vince Gilligan, Peter Gould, Gennifer Hutchison, George Mastras, Thomas Schnauz, Moira Walley-Beckett; AMC
Game of Thrones written by David Benioff, Bryan Cogman, George R. R. Martin, Vanessa Taylor, D.B. Weiss; HBO
Homeland written by Henry Bromell, Alexander Cary, Alex Gansa, Howard Gordon, Chip Johannessen, Meredith Stiehm; Showtime
Mad Men written by Lisa Albert, Semi Chellas, Jason Grote, Jonathan Igla, Andre Jacquemetton, Maria Jacquemetton, Brett Johnson, Janet Leahy, Victor Levin, Erin Levy, Frank Pierson, Michael Saltzman, Tom Smuts, Matthew Weiner; AMC
30 Rock written by Jack Burditt, Kay Cannon, Robert Carlock, Tom Ceraulo, Vali Chandrasekaran, Luke Del Tredici, Tina Fey, Lauren Gurganous, Matt Hubbard, Colleen McGuinness, Sam Means, Dylan Morgan, Nina Pedrad, John Riggi, Josh Siegel, Ron Weiner, Tracey Wigfield; NBC
Girls written by Judd Apatow, Lesley Arfin, Lena Dunham, Sarah Heyward, Bruce Eric Kaplan, Jenni Konner, Deborah Schoeneman, Dan Sterling; HBO
Louie written by Pamela Adlon, Vernon Chatman, Louis C.K.; FX
Modern Family written by Cindy Chupack, Paul Corrigan, Abraham Higginbotham, Ben Karlin, Elaine Ko, Steven Levitan, Christopher Lloyd, Dan O’Shannon, Jeffrey Richman, Audra Sielaff, Brad Walsh, Bill Wrubel, Danny Zuker; ABC
Parks and Recreation written by Megan Amram, Greg Daniels, Nate Dimeo, Katie Dippold, Daniel J. Goor, Norm Hiscock, Dave King, Greg Levine, Joe Mande, Aisha Muharrar, Nick Offerman, Chelsea Peretti, Amy Poehler, Alexandra Rushfield, Michael Schur, Mike Scully, Harris Wittels, Alan Yang; NBC
Girls written by Judd Apatow, Lesley Arfin, Lena Dunham, Sarah Heyward, Bruce Eric Kaplan, Jenni Konner, Deborah Schoeneman, Dan Sterling; HBO
The Mindy Project written by Ike Barinholtz, Jeremy Bronson, Linwood Boomer, Adam Countee, Harper Dill, Mindy Kaling, Chris McKenna, B.J. Novak, David Stassen, Matt Warburton; Fox
Nashville written by Wendy Calhoun, Jason George, David Gould, David Marshall Grant, Dee Johnson, Todd Ellis Kessler, Callie Khouri, Meredith Lavender, Nancy Miller, James Parriott, Liz Tigelaar, Marcie Ulin; ABC
The Newsroom written by Brendan Fehily, David Handelman, Cinque Henderson, Paul Redford, Ian Reichbach, Amy Rice, Aaron Sorkin, Gideon Yago; HBO
Veep written by Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Roger Drew, Sean Gray, Armando Iannucci, Ian Martin, Tony Roche, Will Smith; HBO
“Buyout” (Breaking Bad), written by Gennifer Hutchison; AMC
"Dead Freight” (Breaking Bad), written by George Mastras; AMC
“Fifty-One” (Breaking Bad), written by Sam Catlin; AMC
“New Car Smell” (Homeland), written by Meredith Stiehm; Showtime
“The Other Woman” (Mad Men), written by Semi Chellas and Matthew Weiner; AMC
“Say My Name” (Breaking Bad), written by Thomas Schnauz; AMC
“The Debate” (Parks and Recreation), written by Amy Poehler; NBC
“Episode 9” (Episodes), written by David Crane & Jeffrey Klarik; Showtime
“Leap Day” (30 Rock), written by Luke Del Tredici; NBC
“Little Bo Bleep” (Modern Family), written by Cindy Chupack; ABC
“Mistery Date” (Modern Family), written by Jeffrey Richman; ABC
“Virgin Territory” (Modern Family), written by Elaine Ko; ABC
LONG FORM – ORIGINAL
Hatfields and McCoys, Nights 2 and 3, teleplay by Ted Mann and Ronald Parker, Story by Bill Kerby and Ted Mann; History Channel
Hemingway & Gelhorn written by Jerry Stahl and Barbara Turner; HBO
Pilot (Political Animals), written by Greg Berlanti; USA
LONG FORM – ADAPTED
Coma, Nights 1 and 2, teleplay by John McLaughlin, based on the book by Robin Cook; A&E
Game Change written by Danny Strong, based on the book by Mark Halperin and John Heilemann; HBO
“A Farewell to Arms” (Futurama), written by Josh Weinstein; Comedy Central
“Forget-Me-Not” (Family Guy), written by David A. Goodman; Fox
“Holidays of Future Passed” (The Simpsons), written by J. Stewart Burns; Fox
“Ned and Edna’s Blend Agenda” (The Simpsons), written by Jeff Westbrook; Fox
“Treehouse of Horror XXIII” (The Simpsons), written by David Mandel & Brian Kelley; Fox
COMEDY / VARIETY (INCLUDING TALK) – SERIES
The Colbert Report writers: Michael Brumm, Stephen Colbert, Rich Dahm, Paul Dinello, Eric Drysdale, Rob Dubbin, Glenn Eichler, Dan Guterman, Peter Gwinn, Barry Julien, Jay Katsir, Frank Lesser, Opus Moreschi, Tom Purcell, Meredith Scardino, Scott Sherman, Max Werner; Comedy Central
Conan writers: Jose Arroyo, Andres du Bouchet, Deon Cole, Josh Comers, Dan Cronin, Michael Gordon, Brian Kiley, Laurie Kilmartin, Rob Kutner, Todd Levin, Brian McCann, Conan O'Brien, Matt O'Brien, Jesse Popp, Andy Richter, Brian Stack, Mike Sweeney; TBS
The Daily Show With Jon Stewart writers: Rory Albanese, Kevin Bleyer, Richard Blomquist, Steve Bodow, Tim Carvell, Hallie Haglund, J.R. Havlan, Elliott Kalan, Dan McCoy, Jo Miller, John Oliver, Zhubin Parang, Daniel Radosh, Jason Ross, Jon Stewart; Comedy Central
Jimmy Kimmel Live writers: Tony Barbieri, Jonathan Bines, Joelle Boucai, Sal Iacono, Eric Immerman, Gary Greenberg, Josh Halloway, Bess Kalb, Jimmy Kimmel, Jeff Loveness, Molly McNearney, Bryan Paulk, Danny Ricker, Rick Rosner; ABC
Key & Peele writers: Jay Martel, Ian Roberts, Keegan Michael Key, Jordan Peele, Sean Conroy, Colton Dunn, Charlie Sanders, Alex Rubens, Rebecca Drysdale; Comedy Central
Portlandia writers: Fred R. Armisen, Carrie Brownstein, Karey Dornetto, Jonathan Krisel, Bill Oakley; IFC
Real Time With Bill Maher writers: Scott Carter, Adam Felber, Matt Gunn, Brian Jacobsmeyer, Jay Jaroch, Chris Kelly, Mike Larsen, Bill Maher, Billy Martin; HBO
Saturday Night Live Head writer: Seth Meyers. Writers: James Anderson, Alex Baze, Neil Casey, Jessica Conrad, James Downey, Shelly Gossman, Steve Higgins, Colin Jost, Zach Kanin, Chris Kelly, Joe Kelly, Erik Kenward, Rob Klein, Lorne Michaels, John Mulaney, Christine Nangle, Mike O’Brien, Josh Patten, Paula Pell, Marika Sawyer, Sarah Schneider, Pete Schultz, John Solomon, Kent Sublette, Bryan Tucker, Additional Sketch By Emily Spivey, Jorma Taccone, Additional Material By Frank Sebastiano; NBC Universal
COMEDY / VARIETY – MUSIC, AWARDS, TRIBUTES – SPECIALS
66th Annual Tony Awards written by Dave Boone; special material by Paul Greenberg; opening and closing songs by David Javerbaum, Adam Schlesinger; CBS
2012 Film Independent Spirit Awards written by Billy Kimball, Wayne Federman; IFC
After the Academy Awards Head writers Gary Greenberg, Molly McNearney. Writers Tony Barbieri, Jonathan Bines, Sal Iacono, Eric Immerman, Jimmy Kimmel, Jeffrey Loveness, Bryan Paulk, Danny Ricker, Richard G. Rosner; ABC
National Memorial Day Concert written by Joan Meyerson; PBS
Days of Our Lives written by Lorraine Broderick, Carolyn Culliton, Richard Culliton, Rick Draughon, Christopher Dunn, Lacey Dyer, Janet Iacobuzio, David A. Levinson, Ryan Quan, Dave Ryan, Melissa Salmons, Roger Schroeder, Elizabeth Snyder, Christopher J. Whitesell, Nancy Williams Watt; NBC
One Life to Live written by Lorraine Broderick, Ron Carlivati, Anna Theresa Cascio, Daniel J. O’Connor, Elizabeth Page, Jean Passanante, Melissa Salmons, Katherine Schock, Scott Sickles, Courtney Simon, Chris Van Etten; ABC
The Young and the Restless written by Amanda Beall, Jeff Beldner, Brent Boyd, Susan Dansby, Janice Ferri Esser, Jay Gibson, Scott Hamner, Maria Kanelos, Natalie Minardi Slater, Beth Milstein, Michael Montgomery, Anne Schoettle, Linda Schreiber, Lisa Seidman, Sarah K. Smith, Christopher J. Whitesell, Teresa Zimmerman; CBS
CHILDREN'S – EPISODIC & SPECIALS
“The Good Sport” (Sesame Street), written by Christine Ferraro; PBS
CHILDREN’S – LONG FORM OR SPECIAL
Girl vs. Monster story by Annie De Young; teleplay by Annie De Young and Ron McGee; Disney Channel
Winners will be announced on February 17th at events in New York and Los Angeles. What do you think of this year's nominees? Let us know in the comments!
[Photo Credit: Jojo Whilden/HBO]
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The SNL creator and executive producer is to receive the Directorate Award at the 38th annual event in New York on 22 November (10).
The late night variety show has featured celebrity hosts including Tom Hanks, Betty White and Steve Martin during its 35 years on air.
International Academy president & CEO Bruce Paisner says: "With Saturday Night Live, Lorne Michaels opened the door to a new kind of comedy on television and since then nearly everyone has walked through it. He has changed our entertainment, affected our politics and shaped the way we view the world."
In addition to his work in television, Michaels has also produced films including Baby Mama, Mean Girls and Wayne's World.
Previous winners of the Directorate Award include media mogul Ted Turner and the BBC's John Birt.