Monday, August 20, 2012

Ride The Wave: The Surf Report is Back!

surf report

Good news, TV fans: Our pal Diane Gordon has relaunched The Surf Report, her daily look at all things good in TV. Go to TheSurfReport.biz to read there, or sign up for Di's newsletter. Some highlights from the week:

BREAKING BAD: Hank has completely become his criminal alter-ego (for lack of a better term) Heisenberg. It’s not a split personality thing but it might as well be, because the old Walt White is not going to return. His marriage to Skyler – poor Skyler! – will never be what it was and after she told him she’s his hostage, not his wife, well, does anyone think it can end well for her? I’m thinking straitjacket or a shallow grave for her. For now, I’m just hoping the kids stay with Hank and Marie so they’ll make it out alive.

POLITICAL ANIMALS: I think there was some confusion when the series premiered about whether it was Greg Berlanti's attempt to do a WEST WING-type show. In reality, the show is a well-crafted melodrama that takes place in D.C. politics and media. The entire cast is very strong, led by Sigourney Weaver as Secretary of State Elaine Barrish, Carla Gugino as reporter Susan Berg, James Wolk as Barrish's ambitious, eldest son Douglas and Sebastian Stan (calling all KINGS fans!) as T.J., the family's troubled, drug-addicted son who came out publicly when he was a teenager living in the White House when his father was president. Ellen Burstyn gets to be feisty and say "you little s--t" to a lot of people as Elaine's mother Margaret. Finally, there's Ciaran Hinds as Elaine's ex-husband, former President Bud Barrish (think Bill Clinton). Hinds is a great actor but his southern accent left much to be desired. Happily, he tones it down in the season closer and the character is far more effective without the exaggerated southern drawl. What I love about this show and why I hope USA orders more episodes: the Bud / Elaine relationship is adult, contradictory, often contentious and combative yet I understand why they were attracted to each other and why their political ambitions complement each other, even after they've divorced. If you haven't caught all six episodes, click over to Hulu.com and catch up.
Diane talks about everything -- "Suits," "White Collar," "Louie," "Awkward," "The Newsroom," and so much more. Check her out on Twitter via @thesurfreport.

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