Now I'm the one feeling like I don't know where I am. Wow. Now that is how you finale a beloved television show about to come upon its 50th anniversary. Steven Moffat, I knew you'd pull through with the finale of Doctor Who, but that ending? I am positively walloped. And could not possibly be more annoyed that November 23, 2013 is so far away.
At long last, season seven's finale episode "The Name of the Doctor" answered some of the major questions fans faced this season. And yet, so many more were raised. But rather than being frustrating (as certain fans across the Interwebs have felt this year), the whole thing was truly (to steal a phrase from Nine) fantastic. "The Name of the Doctor" is far and away the standout episode of season seven. You went and saved the best for last, didn't you, Doctor?
First of all: I told you! I told you, I told you, I told you: always have faith in Steven Moffat, you guys. Always. This man has been planning this storyline since — very likely — the beginning of his tenure on Who. Naysayers worried about classic Who are welcome to shut the s**t up from now on.
And then, of course, there's our Impossible Girl. Turns out Clara was born to save the Doctor (which makes sense, considering how often she's saved the day in her episodes) in his every iteration. A theory so simple, it was perfect and ensured the human aspect of the Doctor's travels remained intact. The episode opened with a bang: Clara, falling through the Doctor's timeline, splintering off into an infinite number of pieces to ensure any life-ending decisions were avoided. We are zoomed through Clara's many lives: from Gallifrey (how cool was that, by the by?), to the earth, the TARDIS, and beyond: she may have never known him and he may have never known her, but she always did her duty. She blew into our world on a leaf (the leaf is back!). But: where did that leaf come from? Wasn't it destroyed by Grandfather in "The Rings of Ahkaten"? What makes this leaf so special? As is often the case on this show, by merely answering one question you create several others. But since we know Clara's back for the 50th anniversary special, we're hopeful that those others will get their explanation in due time.
The other important woman in the Doctor's life — River Song (played by the delightful Alex Kingston) — has finally made her return. But this is not just any River Song: Professor Song is coming to us straight from The Library! (And those of you who have been reading along since I began recapping Who know that I'm a total nutter for "The Library"). And in this instance of River, we saw a return to form — less snarky, super cheeky, holding secrets, but still full of the vim and verve we expect from the Doctor's wife (well, the one that isn't the TARDIS, natch).
The episode really began when River and Clara were summoned by Vastra and Jenny, (alongside Strax — love anytime the Paternoster Gang gets together) to a dream-state conference call. The Doctor is in trouble, and the Whisper Men have arrived. Vastra assumed that River Song and Clara had not yet met, but (at least to me) it seemed fairly obvious that River has 100% met Clara before (spoilers, sweetie!), especially considering her statement at the end that their mental link was still alive and well. That, naturally, didn't stop her "goodbye" from being one of the most heartfelt and lovely of the series, even if I still don't understand how the Doctor could see her but no one else could. Many a Whovian had some rain on their face at that point.
Let's talk about those creepy Whisper Men, though, eh? Our merry, motely crew were stolen up by the truly unsettling new baddies and brought to Trenzalore: the burial place of the Doctor. Moffat has done gangbusters to create what I'm considering to be an extension of the Great Intelligence — or at least the henchmen that do its bidding. And what made them so unsettling? The fact that they were nothing at all: merely hollow, whitewashed shells in a humanoid shape, with some seriously killer dagger teeth. While they didn't do much outside of get manipulated into the image of Dr. Walter Simeon when needed, something tells us their power is quite impressive. There's still much to learn about these creepy, creepy dudes.
And then the time came: the name of the Doctor, the key to opening his grave. Some of the more cynical fans out there were worried that the lore and magic of the series would end the moment the Doctor's name was revealed, but in a stroke of ingenuity, it turns out to be Echo River that says it. And all without us hearing a peep! Good.
Returning to our Impossible Clara, her journey through time encapsulated thousands of lifetimes. River Song's echo tried to convince her otherwise — telling her she would die, claiming that it wouldn't be her saving the Doctor, just copies of her — but Clara knows that a copy is enough — after all, "The soufflé isn't the soufflé: the soufflé is the recipe." Clara is a recipe crafted to be perfect. The Doctor's perfect companion: a soufflé made just for him.
And those last four minutes (a.k.a. the reason your almighty recapper didn't have her review finished until after the episode aired, as they were removed from press screeners)? Wow. Doctors dashing to and fro, a confused Clara caught in their midsts, that damn leaf, and: John Hurt... the Doctor?! S**t, you guys. You guys! Here I thought this show had gone as dark and devious as it could, but now we have two Doctors at once — and this dude seems hardly the good cop to Eleven's bad cop. Cue the ominous and vague: Hurt's Doctor "what he did without choice" in the name of "peace and sanity," but not in the name of the Doctor. So he is, but he isn't? TWIST, y'all.
50th Theories (a.k.a. My Favorite Part)
So, we know that John Hurt is the Doctor in another iteration. As I've thought for a few episodes now, I still believe him to be the Valeyard. Why? Well, because he was mentioned in this episode (by Dr. Gideon) when he mentioned the three iterations of the Doctor — The Storm, The Beast, and The Valeyard — and there have been allusions to him all season: including talk of a "mad man" who created the laws of physics during "The Rings of Ahkaten," (The Valeyard would've, essentially by existing, created his own alternate timeline and universe — often known as the Dark Matrix), and Madame Vastra's talk of killing Jack the Ripper — an alias assumed by the Valeyard — in "A Good Man Goes to War."
So that would mean we still have The Beast and The Storm to deal with. We have heard mention of the Doctor being known as "The Oncoming Storm" (and Alfie Owens fancied himself Stormageddon as you might recall from "Closing Time" — P.S. I'm convinced these two are coming back thanks to James Corden a.k.a. Craig Owens — mayhaps he be someone to help the Doctor in the 50th?), and we know that David Tennant is coming back (though as 10 or 10.5 we can't be sure) — but that could make him The Beast.
There's a big gash that we saw in "Nightmare in Silver," between Ten and Eleven is probably exactly where John Hurt's character is situated. True, in the history of Who, they explain that he is created "sometime between the twelfth and thirteenth iterations" — but, if he happened between Ten and Eleven, that would make him eleven, Matt Smith is then bumped up to Twelve, and in turn still hold up the idea that the Valeyard was created after the twelfth regeneration. But then it would be HIS fall, (the Valeyard/John Hurt/whatever his name is) that ends the Silence and the myth.
Another interesting coincidence is from the episode of "The Crimson Horror" we saw two weeks ago. There, we encountered Mr. Sweet, a creepy-crawly parasitic entity that was never named (but Vastra knew well) and had some mind control over Ms. Gillyflower. What if Mr. Sweet was actually an Es'Cartrss of the Tactires (a cranial parasite from Callufrax Minor)? Interesting to note is that the Es'Cartrss actually called itself the Valeyard and in a comic called "The Forgotten," he battled Ten. Chances are slight, obviously, but it certainly is interesting.
Either way, there is so much good coming our way. I just wish I had a TARDIS that could take me to November 23 right now.
For those of us dying for even a taste of what's to come will be happy to see two fan favorite Doctors together at last in this special behind-the-scenes video from the 50th of Ten and Eleven (a.k.a David Tennant and Matt Smith) talking shop:
Other Stuff:- OBSESSED WITH: The visible seething River Song attempted to hide when Clara said she never "realized Professor Song was a woman."- If this is the end of River Song (or at least, her end in her time — but not necessarily the last time the Doctor sees her?), that kiss and goodbye were lovely, but I still don't understand how he was able to see her if Vastra/Strax/Jenny couldn't!- Loved when Clara said to the first Doctor as to which TARDIS to steal: "The navigation's knackered, but you'll have much more fun." Ooh, has every journey in the Doctor's life been pre-destined thanks to Clara, to bring him to the point in the 50th?- What's up with the Doctor's seemingly special interest in Jenny? First the kiss in "The Crimson Horror," and then when he only said hello to her in tonight's episode: what's the deal there?- Also: does anyone else think that maybe River Song has something to do with Clara's actual creation? I mean, I have a feeling it also has something to do with UNIT (she was wearing the UNIT necklace during earlier episodes), but I can't help but feel like there's a possibility that the remnants of River's echo iteration is what ends up on that leaf.- The crack in the TARDIS window: looks a heck of a lot like the crack in Amy's bedroom wall and the general crack in time, eh? - I'm glad that it was River who said the Doctor's name. But no one really thought we'd find out his name, right? - On the discovery that the dead Doctor is merely a tunnel of time travel scar tissue, states: "What were you expecting, a body? Bodies are boring, I've had loads of them."- At one point, we hear the Whisper Men say "the trap will be set" when his friends travel to "where the Doctor ends." Was this all just a trap?? [Time] Lord, sometimes I wish he didn't lie so much.- "He's the one who broke the promise." Ooh girl, what's that promise? - Do you think that the Doctor saw the Valeyard in his room in the hotel of "The God Complex"? Because I'm betting so!
Follow Alicia on Twitter @alicialutesFollow Hollywood.com on Twitter @hollywood_com
More:'Doctor Who' Recap: Nightmare in Silver'Doctor Who' Recap: The Crimson Horror'Doctor Who' Recap: Journey to the Center of the TARDIS
From Our Partners:Zoe Saldana Strips Down For Magazine (Celebuzz)33 Child Stars: Where Are They Now? (Celebuzz)
Iron Man 3 opened this weekend to massive results in 42 international territories with a mind-blowing $195.3 million and in the process does the unthinkable and beats The Avengers 39-territory rollout a year ago of $185.1 million. IMAX results were equally impressive with record openings in key territories.
As we all know, The Avengers went on to a still record-holding $207.4 million North American debut. This raises the question, could Iron Man 3 come anywhere close to those kind of numbers? Projections have ranged from $125 to $150 million, but who knows....before The Avengers' international debut, most pegged its North American opening weekend at $150 to $175 million. How big do you think Iron Man 3 will be?
Stats courtesy of Disney: Marvel’s Iron Man 3 began its record-breaking rollout in 42 international territories representing 79% of the international marketplace. The film has taken in an estimated $195.3M, surpassing the $185.1M international opening weekend take of Marvel's The Avengers. The film opens in the U.S. on May 3rd. Note: Significant territories not opening this weekend are: Russia, China and Germany. International Highlights• Biggest opening weekend ever in: Argentina, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Vietnam, Taiwan, Philippines, Malaysia and Singapore• Biggest opening day ever in: Taiwan, Philippines, Singapore, Vietnam and Malaysia• Biggest Marvel opening weekend in: Australia, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Netherlands, Finland, Hungary, Romania, New Zealand, Argentina, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Vietnam, Taiwan, Philippines and Malaysia• #1 film in every market and is the biggest opening weekend of all time in Asia Pacific and Latin AmericaPerformance to date – key territories UK $21.5M Korea $19.2M Australia $18.4M Mexico $16.1M France $14.7M Brazil $12.3M Italy $11.2M Taiwan $8.4M Philippines $7.4M Japan $5.4M India $5.2M Spain $5.0M HK $4.9M Malaysia $4.6M Indonesia $4.5M Other $36.5M Total $195.3M Additional details by key territory:Australia Biggest Disney and Marvel opening of all timeBrazil 2nd biggest opening weekend of all timeMexico 3rd biggest opening weekend of all timeFrance 2nd biggest Marvel opening behind (Spider Man 3)Italy Biggest April opening in industry history UK 2nd biggest Marvel opening of all time behind The AvengersIndia 2nd biggest all time opening, 44% above The AvengersJapan 3rd biggest Marvel opening day
Additional Iron Man 3 stats courtesy of IMAX: IRON MAN 3's IMAX international results produced numerous records, generating approximately $7.2 mil as of Sunday evening on 113 IMAX screens for a massive per screen average of $64k.
RELATED: Iron Man 3 Trailer: 9 Revealing Shots
Specifically, record openings were delivered in key territories (Brazil, Taiwan, Philippines and Netherlands) and a slew of 2nd best openings. Additionally, many individual theater highest-opening Friday and Saturday records were set (including locations in Mexico, UK, India and Hong Kong).
Further, IMAX's IM3 International weekend total and per screen average establish new highs for any previous IMAX release of a Marvel title, including the fantastic results of last year’s Avengers. China launches the picture on midnight of April 30th (technically May 1) with expectations running high. Advance tickets are selling like gangbusters in our theaters and the domestic launch this coming week is primed for a stellar opening.
From Our Partners:Beyonce Flaunts Bikini Bod for H&M (Celebuzz)33 Child Stars: Where Are They Now? (Celebuzz)
It's Friday night, and you've got options: there's a Jessie Ware concert in town, Jurassic Park 3D is playing at the theater up the block, your friend Brian just made a boatload of salsa. But forget all and any of that. You know where your true loyalties lie: with that Chicago sextet famous for its '80s references and insult pile-ons. You're staying in to watch two new episodes of Happy Endings.
Sure, it might sound a bit more glamorous to hit the town with your non-fictional acquaintances, but trust us: at hoem watching Happy Endings is where you want to be. After all, when you go out with your pals, you're inevitably going to wind up dealing with a conflict of sorts. In a group of friends, two people are bound to get into a fight once in a while. Such is the case for Jane and Alex this week, whose secret catty insults about one another are brought to the forefront when Max begins using their hair stylist and reveals all of the nasty things they've been saying for years. But instead of dealing with the problem in a boring way, like your friends might, Jane and Alex explode in a mass of rage, attacking one another with broken broomsticks in public places. And while your ordinary chums might resolve this issue in a boring, mature way, it is only through the Sister Dance (courtesy of Serbia's own Nana Kerkovich) that Jane and Alex reconcile.
RELATED: 'Happy Endings' Double Recap: In the Heat of the Noche & The Straight Dope
Friends are always asking to borrow things. You'll want to avoid this at all costs, because it's bound to erupt into some cataclysmic array of wacky high jinks, resulting in 30 minutes of pure comedy. Oh, wait, no. That's not real life. In real life, people just borrow things and then return them responsibly. But on Happy Endings, Penny borrows Dave's steak truck to move her armoir, only to have it stolen by a master chef who turns the mobile food emporium into a gangbusters business. Dave, more impressed than anything else, wants to learn from this ingenious artiste... until realizing that he's a sexual deviant who has been defiling the meat of the sandwiches he sells. I bet none of that's gonna happen when your pal Chuck borrows your Chevy.
But that's not all. It's only about half, in fact. There are plenty of other reasons to avoid human contact on Fridays. For instance: your friends' love lives. Sure, one of your nearest and dearest is bound to date someone you don't like. But it's usually just going to be a minor irritation to bear with... hardly worthy of starting a massive food fight over. When Max takes up with the son of Dave's food truck archrival, the Brazilian, Dave feels betrayed. And when Max promises to stay loyal to Dave and end things with the Brazilian, Jr., only to buckle under pressure and reveal Dave's plans to launch his own truck to greatness, Dave feels betrayed-er. But Max makes it up to Dave on the fields of battle, when the Happy Endings crew faces off against the Brazilians in a heated war of projectile vegetables. That is how you deal with your friend dating someone you're not too fond of.
RELATED: 6 Reasons to Watch 'Happy Endings' on Friday Nights
And how about your friends' families? It's always awkward chatting with the father of one of your buddies, isn't it? How about when he shows up after abandoning her as a child, trying to overcompensate for lost time by insisting on paying for her entire wedding? Yeah, never had to deal with that, did you? Well, Jane and Alex did when Penny's deadbeat dad Roy (Andy Richter) comes to town, eager to reconnect with his daughter. It backfires, as things are wont to do in this cracker jack universe, but not without a few strides made between father and daughter.
So that's what you're missing, people with lives. So don't make this mistake again on Week 3. Stay in every Friday!
Also, Brad was there.
Follow Michael Arbeiter on Twitter @MichaelArbeiter
[Photo Credit: ABC]
From Our PartnersHayden Panetierre Bikinis in Miami (Celebuzz)Every Jurassic Park Dinosaur Ranked From Best to Worst (Vulture)
It may not be obvious, but Korean film is more popular than ever.
Spike Lee and Josh Brolin are currently shooting a remake of Park Chan-wook's Oldboy. Charlize Theron is getting in on the action with her own remake, Sympathy for Lady Vengeance. Even Sandra Bullock and and Keanu Reeves tapped the Asian country for inspiration when they remade Il Mare into The Lake House.
While world politics may warp our perception, some of the best dramas of the year continue to be imported from Korea. The latest comes from writer/director Park Hoon Jeong (screenwriter behind the incredible I Saw the Devil), whose latest film New World arrives to the U.S. after doing gangbusters in South Korea.
RELATED: Nicold Kidman Is Insane in Park Chan-wook's Hollywood Debut
Don't believe it? Check out the exclusive poster for the movie below. Even the one-sheets have atmosphere!
New World continues to explore a common theme in Korean film, the ripple effect of acts of crime, all from the perspective of recognizable human characters. Here's what's in store:
The head of the Goldmoon crime syndicate is dead, leaving his top two lieutenants. Seizing the opportunity, the police launch an operation called "New World," with the perfect weapon. The boss' right hand man, Ja-sung (LEE Jung-jae, The Theives), has been a deep-cover operative for 8 years, closely watched by handler Police chief Kang (CHOI Min-sik, Oldboy). With a baby on the way, and living in mortal fear of being exposed as a mole, Ja-sung is torn between his duty and honor as a cop, and the fiercely loyal gang members who will follow him to hell and back.
Using inside information from Ja-sung to damage the relationship between the two feuding contenders, suspicions grow that a traitor lives in their ranks. Ruthless Jung (HWANG Jun-min, Blades of Blood) escalates the game by hiring hackers to search the police database. As Operation New World closes in, and with the stakes climbing higher and a gangland bloodbath guaranteed among those that remain, Ja-sung makes a final, shocking decision no one could have predicted.
New World lands stateside March 22. Check out the other two posters in the triptych at Film School Rejects and Twitch.
Follow Matt Patches on Twitter @misterpatches
[Photo Credit: Next Entertainment World]
You Might Also Like:15 Oscar-Winning Nude ScenesYoung Jack Black Is Totally Unrecognizable
It certainly feels like a weird week to watch a television show that finds a hero in a serial killer in a time like this. It hardly feels like a thing of good taste, but here we are, at the critical finale point for the seventh season of Dexter. The preamble to the series' upcoming eighth and finale season. Needless to say, if you skipped this show this week, no one would've really blamed you. So if you need to bookmark this and come back in a few days, go ahead! I give you permission (I know you were totally looking for it).
Perhaps—given the recent events—we're feeling a bit more cynical about bloodshed, but if you're going to try to convince us that your murdering of folks (which is a very bad thing) is worthwhile, important to the storyline, necessary, and entertaining, you better make it really engaging. And mostly by that we mean true to character. Tonight, it seems like everyone took turns at blurring the lines of character believability, but not all of them felt genuine. And after the gangbusters episode last week, this one felt like a bit of a letdown. But, a letdown chockablock with foundational elements for a seemingly chaotic and memorable last season.
Change is inevitable. Change happens—growth, they call it. But on tonight's Dexter, the wheels of change that have slowly been in motion went into overdrive on very borrowed time.
Doakes always knew that Dexter was a killer. He caught a glimpse of the real person, and he's back. Sort of! Doakes features very heavily into this episode via a series of flashbacks. How the table was set to lead people to believe Doakes and LaGuerta were lovers (they weren't!), how Dexter exposed himself to Doakes in subtle ways, and how this was all put into motion a long, long time ago. At several points throughout the episode, the oh-so-convenient flashback was put into overdrive, reminding the audience of all those seasons ago, and the suspicion that mounted.
But what tonight was really all about what bond of human relationships can do to a person. Love: the bond that binds us—or blinds us? Deb and Dexter. Dexter and Hannah. LaGuerta and Doakes. Bonds of love (sexual or otherwise) make you take big risks. Sometimes they're right, and other times they're wrong. But you know what those risks were? Big ones. And they all ended in disaster (or at least undoubtedly will, when the time comes).
"Would you prefer my normal conflict resolution?"
Tonight's Dexter saw the transformation of Dexter from serial killer with a moral code, to the crazy, creepy motherf**ker he is once the wheels have come off. And yes, we can all thank Hannah McKay for that one. From the first second she entered his life, Hannah McKay has been the cause of many of Dexter's problems. And then, it was decided that Dexter, the sociopath who couldn't even muster up real love feelings for the mother of his child—the angelic spirit (albeit also sort of annoying) Rita— has found himself enraptured by a blonde whose only redeeming quality seems to be that she's A-OK with him being a serial killer. But now Hannah has gone and done what she does best, so she's in jail. Things are icy between these former lovebirds, eh? So weird! Maybe it's because Hannah admitted to trying to kill Debra. "Because she was trying to keep us apart!" she says! "You were supposed to choose me!" Oh, right, of course. She's insane: this is why her husband died. She wants kids and a family so bad she'll murder people who try to get in the way of it. So it looks like you've really struck gold with this one, Dexter. Right down to that creepy, bloody love bite.
So Hannah plans and executes an escape from jail thanks to her two friends: poison and Arlene. After inducing a seizure via some sort of medication, Hannah is brought to the hospital only to run away in a free moment. She had things to do, you see! A to-do list that she really needed to cross everything off on. Last thing on her list? A black orchid on Dexter's doorstep under the cloak of midnight on New Years Eve. Nice touch, fellow creeperton. We have not seen the last of that Hannah McKay after all.
"She's my sister!" Ha! In more ways than one, it seems. The unbeknownst-to-her-black-widow-type that is Debra Morgan is now a murderer herself. In tonight's shocking twist, a moment where we oh-so-hoped that Deb would do the right thing and shoot her brother, we see her instead shoot Maria LaGuerta. But let's backtrack a bit.
Dexter Morgan, you are under arrest for the murder of Hector Estrada. LaGuerta walks him right through the mother**king precinct for everyone to see. Only, Dexter didn't kill Hector Estrada (yet) so LaGuerta is actually wrong. Oh, what a technicality to be wrong on. Dexter faces LaGuerta, and seems to pose the eternal question surrounding this season: "But if you couldn't see what was right in front of your eyes, what does that say about you?" Undeterred this LaGuerta is, though, guys: "I'm going to nail you to the wall for this, Dexter. To the wall!" And she tries. She tries so hard to prove that Dexter set her up (knowing that LaGuerta would be after him), but falls right into his trap, in the end.
How do you solve a problem like Maria? Why not fix a set-up with another set-up? Have it all look like LaGuerta is just desperate to prove that Doakes wasn't the Bay Harbor Butcher. And then fix that set-up's set-up with another set-up for her death: shoot Estrada in his puncture wound and shoot Estrada's gun to shoot LaGuerta: a double-murder! Naturally! All about the set-up, this one is. Right down to the plastic sheets.
Only what always happens messes things up: the human element. In this case, Debra Morgan. His own sister. She stumbles in on Dexter setting up LaGuerta's murder, only to have her wake up (she had a half-dose of the M99) and try to convince Debra to kill Dexter. LaGuerta pleads with Deb: "you're a good cop, you're a good person. You're not like him. Put him down!" Dexter, in his true, manipulative fashion, pulls a Hail Mary pass (look! sports terms! My brother will be so impressed): "It's true, everything she said. You're a good person. It's OK. Do what you've gotta do." Ah, a line straight out of the Hannah McKay playbook (she really ruins everything, doesn't she?).
So Deb does what she has to do: kill Captain Maria LaGuerta. She was an animal, backed up against the wall. And an animal will always attack when they're up against a wall. Deb this season has been a protector of her brother, her own job, and her own sanity. And LaGuerta's knowledge of Debra's ties to the Travis Marshall crime scene (thanks to Mike Anderson's wife's magical mailing of surveillance video that Deb had actually asked Mike to request last season) tipped the scales of Deb from good person to bad. Is she totally bad? My money's on no (if they go—if anyone! Dexter and Deb OR Dexter and Hannah—go all Bonnie and Clyde on us, I'll be pissed), but she's made a big, bad decision. It was a bold move that will wind up with possibly both the Morgan children going to jail.
"Never jump the fence if you're not willing to face what's on the other side."
Who am I? The eternal question. So loaded, so layered, so meaningful. It's the thing we all quest to find out, and certainly seems like the biggest question at the end of season seven. "We all make rules for ourselves. … So when we break those rules we risk losing ourselves. Who is Deb now? Who am I? Is this the beginning, or the beginning of the end?" Fireworks. (No, literally, not figuratively.)
According to the show's creative minds, season eight is all about discovering parts of Dexter's origin that we did not know existed (say what?), and that will hopefully (?) bring about the downfall of our murderous hero. And for that, we have to admit that the deck has been stacked against him. Hannah McKay is out there again: either mad at Dexter for turning her in, or psychotically in love with him (willing to do whatever it takes to get him back). Deb has Dexter back to herself and the binds of a shared terror to unite them. But Deb might break—cave to the goodness that is at her core. LaGuerta is dead, but the evidence of the Bay Harbor Butcher is still out there, linking Dexter and Deb both. Fact: season eight is going to see some stuff go down.
Some other story lines of note:
1.) Quinn shows up 47 minutes into the episode only to flirt with Angel's sister/Dexter's nanny, Jamie. So that's a thing that's totally happening.
2.) With LaGuerta gone, something tells us that Angel won't be retired for long, if at all. Will our Angel be the Angel of this show, saving Miami from the Bay Harbor Butcher?
What do you think about this week's season finale of Dexter? Sound off in the comments!
[Photo Credit: Showtime]
Follow Alicia on Twitter @alicialutes
'Dexter' Recap: Whatever It Takes
'Dexter' Recap: The Dark Passenger Revealed
'Dexter' Recap: Out of Control
From Our Partners:
’The Hobbit’ Cast: A Who’s Who New Character Guide (Moviefone)
Movie Mistakes: Biggest Flubs in Sports Films (Moviefone)
For a show about secret plots against the US and CIA operatives, Homeland sure is bringing a lot of attention to itself! Showtime's Emmy Award-sweeping drama has secured itself a third season of Carrie vs. Brody (with the occasional hint of "but what about Saul?!" thrown in for good measure) and the plot to take down Abu Nasir before he blows America up.
The political drama has done gangbusters in the ratings, averaging 5.2 million viewers week to week across all platforms—an average on-pace with the network's tentpole show, Dexter. Showtime announced the news via Twitter earlier today.
According to the official press release, Homeland received a full, 12-episode order for the season after a 25 percent increase in viewership from season one. "The writers, cast and crew of Homeland continue to create a remarkably entertaining and suspenseful roller coaster ride, growing audiences week after week. We can't wait for our viewers to experience what unfolds through the rest of season two ... and we are thrilled to begin the planning for HOMELAND's third season," explained David Nevins, President of Entertainment at Showtime Networks.
So for those unsure about the show's future (but how could you be after last night's fourth episode?!), rest assured that this quest for American domestic security is far from over.
Great news: #HOMELAND has been picked up for a third season! The series has delivered 5.2 million weekly viewers.— SHO_PR (@SHO_PR) October 22, 2012
Are you excited about the renewal of Homeland? Do you scratch your head about Saul like us? Let us know in the comments!
[Photo Credit: Showtime]
Follow Alicia on Twitter @alicialutes
'Homeland' Recap: Blade Runner
'Homeland' Recap: Leaving Lebanon
'Homeland' Recap: A Few Good Men
From Our Partners:
Pippa Middleton Acknowledges Her Famous Bottom in New Book: ‘It’s a Bit Startling to Achieve Global Recognition’
LeAnn Rimes Sits Down With Katie Couric For First TV Interview Since Treatment For Cyber Bullying
Having a tremendous year at the workplace — with The Dark Knight Rises doing gangbusters and Les Misérables garnering early Oscar buzz for the actress — Anne Hathaway decided to keep the amazing year going by adding another milestone to her 2012 belt: marriage.
According to Huffington Post, after a one year engagement to actor Adam Shulman, Hathaway tied the knot this weekend at a private residence in Big Sur, California. With 180 guests in tow, Hathaway walked down the aisle sporting a stunning dress from Valentino Garavani, one of the actress' close friends.
Following suit with her contemporary Natalie Portman, who married her longtime fiancee Benjamin Millepied last August, Hathaway employed the expert talents of wedding planner Yifat Oren to pull off the elegant affair.
Hathaway has played her fair share of glamorous roles: from a young ingenue in The Princess Diaries to the fair queen of Alice in Wonderland. But it's fitting that on her big day, she trumps them all with a style all her own. Is there anything she can't do?
[Photo Credit: WENN; FameFlynet]
Follow Matt Patches on Twitter @misterpatches
Hathaway and Jackman Redefine 'Les Misérables' with On-Set Singing — VIDEO
'The Dark Knight Rises': Why Anne Hathaway's Catwoman Is the Best One Yet
Stars and Their Stunt Doubles: Perfect Matches? — PICS
From Our Partners:
Bill Rancic Tweets Adorable Photo of Baby Edward (PHOTO)
Real Housewives of NJ Reunion: 5 Hottest Moments
Someone should tell Nick Jonas that being overly excited about something in public does not put you in a good bargaining position. But he's young and (clearly) very excited about the possibility of being a judge of American Idol this season, that it sort of comes across as endearing. Like a kid who wants to make the varsity basketball team even though he's mostly just solid JV material.
But Jonas isn't the only one with his hat in the ring: so perhaps that's why he's playing out the results in public--trying to strengthen is hand by the mob of teen girls that will totally lose their s**t if their princely little Jonas doesn't get the gig. But he's certainly got competition, as the other names bandied about for the position include Pharrell Williams, Fergie from the Black Eyed Peas (oh, please NO), former Idol contestant Adam Lambert, as well as a bevy of country singers to help the flailing Idol compete against newer singing competition shows like The Voice. Bigger names listed include Miranda Lambert (ooh, showdown with the hubby, eh?), Brad Paisley, Kenny Chesney, Willie Nelson, and Keith Urban.
Does Jonas have what it takes? Well, it truly depends on what the show wants this season: as we all know, Idols haven't really had the biggest, um, pull for audiences to turn into record-buyers, arguably since Carrie Underwood. Most winners seem like flashes in the pan without much staying power. The addition of a powerhouse as big as Mariah Carey certainly seems to point in a direction of wanting to be more serious about finding longstanding talent.
However, what will make or break the table will ultimately be who sits up there with Mariah. The other two (rumors are that Randy Jackson will be stepping down this season as well to take on a mentor-type role on the show) judges' career merits will be under intense scrutiny. So a perfect trifecta is important if the show wants to hang out to whatever starmaking-credibility it has left.
When it comes down to it, they need to find someone that young audiences will recognize, but the older folks will respect. Personally, we think a season of Mariah Carey, Willie Nelson, and Pharrell Williams would be totally gangbusters, but that's just us. Do you think any of the contenders for the judges' seat make the grade? Let us know in the comments!
The rumors are true... I am being considered to be a judge on American Idol, and it would be a dream come true if it happens. #nickonidol— Nick Jonas(@nickjonas) August 4, 2012
[Photo Credit: DailyCeleb]
Follow Alicia on Twitter @alicialutes
Mariah Carey Joins 'American Idol'
Official: Steven Tyler Exits 'American Idol'
Meet 'The Next' Mentors! A Jonas, a Lunatic, and a Lucky Girl
A surprising truth: Batman Begins, 2005's $150 million comic book reboot of the famed Caped Crusader, only grossed $205 million at the domestic box office. That's a meager amount in terms of Hollywood blockbusters — for comparison, the movie was eventually outgrossed by the likes of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Wedding Crashers. But director Christopher Nolan's visionary approach to the comic book property wowed the audiences who took it in, and the film earned more and more respect over time. Eventually, every franchise wanted to get the Batman Begins treatment.
And they did. Famous franchises got passed through the "realistic" filter in hopes of similar success. Casino Royale pulled it off with the greatest of gravitas. Terminator Salvation can barely be recalled. Warner Bros., so impressed by Nolan's three-picture work, put him in the producer's chair for their Superman reboot. His style is all over the recent Man of Steel trailer. Audiences and studios alike love them some Nolan Batman. So after the release of the director's final installment, The Dark Knight Rises, where can Batman go now?
In the '90s, audiences embraced (and eventually stomached) the stylistic approach to The Dark Knight, ripped from the imaginations of directors Tim Burton and Joel Schumacher. The colorful, kooky adventures echoed various stages of the comic book character's history, but by Batman & Robin, the camp had reached dangerous levels. Following in those footsteps, Nolan's stripped-down approach reinvigorated both Batman and the Hollywood blockbuster. Suddenly, "bigger" didn't go hand-in-hand with "ridiculous." Every summer action movie was its own cinematic experience rather than an extended toy commercial. Movies tasted fresh again.
Feeling new and modern is what reboot culture is all about. The Spider-Man franchise tried its hand at the same magic earlier this year, brushing off three films' worth of material in favor of taking on a "new spin" with The Amazing Spider-Man (another film heavily inspired by Nolan's Batman). The experiment was a modest success, but most reviews agreed it wasn't charting new ground. Fearing the wackiness ridiculed in the past, films of the previous decade have kept things grounded, even in their rebooted incarnations. The 2005 and 2007 Fantastic Four movies and 2011's Green Lantern took a stab at mixing things up. Marvel's superheroic family took a tongue-in-cheek approach to the adventure movie, while DC's intergalactic cadet flick filled the screen with otherworldly aliens and CG-heavy fight scenes. The attempts didn't work, so it was back to the Batman method.
That means the Batman franchise itself is in a pickle. When everyone wants to mimic the Bat-model, the Caped Crusader has already punched, kicked, and headbutted his way through three of them. When asked by Hollywood.com for his thoughts on Batman's future incarnations, The Dark Knight Rises producer Michael Uslan turned to the foundation of the comic books that have kept the character alive since the early 20th century. "All I can do is point you back to everything I say about, not about the franchise, but about the character, about the comic books. The comic books have been from one extreme to another — many, many interpretations of Batman and the villains, many different tones, many different artistic takes on it. Whenever there was a new editor or new writers brought in, or new artists, things changed. And somehow, the writers, editors, artists, publishers, at DC, have brought people back every Wednesday since May 1939 to see what’s going to happen next to this character."
The malleability of fandom isn't as tested as playing it safe (see: Amazing Spider-Man's box office). In Uslan's mind, there's no event horizon to establishing a character in pop culture. Batman has not become "too real." Warner Bros., the studio behind the mega-successful Batman pictures, just has to forcefully push the character in a new direction and sell it like gangbusters. If the core of the character is preserved, audiences will flock to a new style.
The perfect example of a reboot done risky and right is Fox's 2011 hit, X-Men: First Class. Incorporating elements from the early days of the comics into the established world built in the first X-Men trilogy, First Class recast the ensemble and took the action back in time. Sixties retro is in (thanks, Mad Men!) and the creative team behind First Class knew it; director Matthew Vaughn's reverse-engineered an origin story took everything we love about the band of mutant heroes and slathered on the kitschy fun. "Realism" was never a question because audiences were having a ball.
Batman has done his fair share of time-jumping. Batman: Gotham Noir saw the character return to his roots as a pulpy detective lurking in the shadows. The '30s are kind to the fantastical elements of Batman — Burton dabbled in them to create his gothic Gotham from the 1989 film — and with steampunk all the rage, Batman's appearance and gadgetry could fit right in. The idea of steering away from the classic Batman take has even been seriously attempted before. In 2000, Warner Bros. commissioned a script from Boaz Yakin (Prince of Persia) and cyberpunk novelist Neal Stephenson (Cryptonomicon) for a live-action version of Batman Beyond, the successful cartoon property that followed a Batman from the year 2019 (mentored by an elderly Bruce Wayne). With nostalgia for '90s cartoons at an all time high, a comic book series that continues to sell, and a design that stands apart from anything in the Batman movie franchise, eventually bringing Batman Beyond to life is a no-brainer.
The live-action adaptations could also take a page out of DC's Animation playbook. To whet the palettes of diehard Batman fans between big-screen endeavors, DC Animation has steadily crafted adaptations of classic arcs that don't waste time explaining backstory and building setup. Anyone with base Batman knowledge can be immediately thrust into a specific, exciting story. A reboot could take the same approach: sticking with the gritty realism of Nolan's world, WB could adapt Batman: Year One, an even more mature take on the origins of Batman. Or throw everything out the window and just tell a great Batman adventure. The character is known for his detective abilities — he's often portrayed as a Sherlock Holmes-type with a cape — and a simple mystery story starring the Caped Crusader could open up the world to new possibilities.
Nolan played with grand themes and action, but a rebooted Batman could scale things down into an intense, intimate tale. The recent run of DC Comics, dubbed "The Night of the Owls," follows Bruce Wayne as he tracks clues and interrogates goons to discover a secret Illuminati organization that has pulled strings in Gotham since the beginning of its establishment. The "Court of Owls" recruit a band of faceless, seemingly immortal assassins to take down Batman as he uncovers the mystery — it's edge-of-your-seat material from beginning to end. Like so many great Batman stories, what "The Night of the Owls" doesn't have is a recognizable villain. If that's a big push for Warner Bros., the continual resurfacing of familiar faces could quickly turn the Bat-franchise stale.
One move Warner Bros. is definitely taking to keep Batman in the public eye is his inclusion in the proposed Justice League film. There have been failed attempts: Mad Max director George Miller was all set to film Justice League: Mortal in 2008 (with Armie Hammer as The Dark Knight) before the powers that be canned it last minute. But the ultimate DC team-up is once again in motion — the revival following the coattails of The Avengers' massive success — with screenwriter Will Beall (Gangster Squad) taking the latest stab at penning the script. Establishing a new Batman in Justice League is a cautious, logical way to revive the character. Reimagine the hero with a new look and vibe courtesy of a new director and the ensemble-first thinking, then spin him off into his own adventures. The caveat is if DC's vision for Justice League is born from director Zack Snyder's Man of Steel… which looks a lot like Nolan's Batman. If the goal is to segue Henry Cavill's Superman into the cast of Justice League, the end result may be more akin to a Nolan-style Batman.
A Batman reboot isn't an "if," it's a "when." With the opening of The Dark Knight Rises touting one of the biggest weekends of all time, The Dark Knight isn't a character anyone is going to let slip away into the darkness forever. He may disappear away for a few years, but in true Batman spirit… he will return.
Follow Matt Patches on Twitter @misterpatches
'Dark Knight Rises' Producer Michael Uslan and the Epic History of Batman on Film
See a Batman Director Begin: Early Nolan on Netflix
'Batman & Robin': How It Paved the Way for Christopher Nolan's Trilogy
[Photo Credit: Warner Bros.]
This morning I was sitting around thinking, "Oh, I forgot to watch Hatfields & McCoys. Oh well. I'm probably not the only one. Who debuts a show on Memorial Day anyway? Someone with a death wish!" Well, who's looking like the biggest idiot this side of Hurricane Holler? Me. That's who. Those smart programmers over at History know something I don't because 13.9 million people watched the premiere.
According to Deadline that is the largest non-sports telecast in ad supported cable television history. Sure, that's kind of like when my mother says, "You're my favorite child named Brian who makes fun of TV shows on the internet," but still 14 million people on History watching a mini-series about fighting Civil War families is historically huge. (The New York Times says that High School Musical 2 got higher ratings than Hatfields &McCoys but apparently the letters H & M are key to success. Look for the retailer to have a show next fall right after the cable movie Hillary and Martin in Haunted Manhattan.) Between the "encore presentation" later in the night 17 million people watched what I forgot to. That's 7 million more people than watched America's Got Talent (and those are 7 million very intelligent, discerning viewers).
And you probably don't know any of them. Well, you might, if you're the kind of person who watched Two and a Half Men and is mourning the passing of Dog the Bounty Hunter or if you're the kind of person who has a Pawn Stars T-shirt and really likes documentaries about World War II. Basically all the world's dads watched this show. Well, that's not entirely true, since about 4.8 million were between the ages of 18 and 49, and I hope not all of those are dads because that means Teen Mom is doing something crazy to high schoolers.
The other amazing thing is that this is History's first scripted show and it went gangbusters, with two more nights of Kevin Costner and Bill Paxton yelling at varmints before the series is over. Welcome to the big leagues, History. I guess now is the time to pitch that show about Al Capone I've been working on. Did you know he had a vault?
Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan
Costner & Paxton to lead The Hatfields & The McCoys Epic
Bill Paxton Studied Old Civil War Letters for New Miniseries Role
Kevin Costner Defends Historical Mini-Series
Dramatizations based on the apprehension of major criminals by the police. The series, based on the files of local, state, and federal law enforcement authorities, is adapted from the radio program of the same title. Syndicated as "Captured."