Saturday, October 24, 2009

Say it ain't so, Hulu

Before I get into any of that, there's some much better news out there for people who like their TV to make them laugh, which I certainly do.

First up is that NBC has given full-season orders to two shows I tune in for every week, "Community" and "Parks and Recreation." The former is already very funny and seems to get a little better with each episode, and the latter has a sweetness that masks just how sly it can often be.

And, in even better news, it seems that both Jane Lynch and Kristen Bell will be returning for the second season of Starz's "Party Down," set to begin in April, if only for limited runs. Lynch was, as usual, extremely funny as a regular on season one before she got a better gig on "Glee," which, yes, I watch. And Bell showed up at the end, most likely as a favor to "Veronica Mars" and "Party Down" creator Rob Thomas, as a rival caterer with a mean streak but a wounded heart. Lynch will return for the second season finale, while Bell will apparently show up for a few episodes mid-season to stir up some trouble.

If you've never seen this often wickedly funny show about a group of wannabe actors who work at a catering company, you can catch up on all of season one with that watch instantly thing at Netflix. I'd highly recommend it.

And now on to the bad news. Since I don't own a cell phone and never will, and the only computer I own sits permanently on the desk in my front room, I'd say is just about the best technological innovation of the last five years or so, and easily one of the most addictive.

For anyone who's never used it, the site essentially compiles TV episodes and some movies (including, somehow, Whit Stillman's "Metropolitan," which I've watched at the site), which you can watch in their entirety with limited commercial interruption. It's a great way to catch a recent episode you might have missed (if you somehow don't have any kind of DVR device), but even better, it's a great place to rediscover shows long gone. For example, you can watch the entire first season of "Arrested Development" there now for free, and since it rotates, I'd imagine seasons two and three will appear soon, as they have in the past.

The key word there, however, and what may change very soon, is "free." Though is hasn't yet said what form any coming fees might come in, News Corp., which owns the site with NBC Universal, the Walt Disney Co. and Providence Equity Partners, announced Thursday that a subscription fee of some sort could come as early as next year as the site struggles to remain viable.

Oh well. I guess something this cool couldn't last forever, but I don't think I'll be paying for the service, since I already have the Netflix and more than enough digital cable.

OK, enough of the bad news. All I've got otherwise today is two clips that will hopefully pick up everyone's spirits at least a bit. First up comes the first eight minutes or so of ABC's upcoming remake of "V." The network apparently plans to release four episodes of it in November to see how it does, and then bring it back as a midseason replacement. That just sounds goofy as hell, but I'll tune in for at least the first four to see what they have going on, because my TV is sorely in need of some good sci-fi right now. Enjoy.

And finally today comes the second (I think) trailer for "Men Who Stare at Goats," which will hopefully play everywhere when it drops Nov. 6. It just makes me smile every time I see George Clooney stare down a poor goat, and it looks like this one is just gonna be insanely funny. Enjoy, and have a great rest of the weekend. If you'll excuse me, I'm off to get a gyro at the Central Georgia Greek Festival and then go see Chris Rock's "Good Hair." Peace out.


J. Marquis said...

Hey, speaking of watching stuff after it's aired, do you know where I can catch "Modern Family"?My wife and I loved the first episode but haven't seen it since due to schedule conflicts.

Reel Fanatic said...

Let me see what I can find out about that, Mr. Marquis .. Since it's so popular, ABC probably doesn't see the need to air it online, but there may be a way

Reel Fanatic said...

Actually, the answer is HULU! ... The first five episodes, which I think is all of them, are up there now, so act quickly before they disappear

J. Marquis said...

Thanks! I assumed HULU was mostly NBC stuff. I'll check it out.