HAPPY BIRTHDAY TIMOTHY OLYPHANT

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We haven’t talked about Justified all that much on this blog, but that isn’t because of a lack of love…it’s mainly due to a lack of time.  I, LJ, actually hadn’t ever seen any of Justified until this past January, when I managed to watch 4 seasons in roughly a 3 week span–so I could get caught up before season 5.  And, you know what I discovered? Justified is one of the best shows ever to be on television and potentially my second favorite show of all time (Breaking Bad is, obviously, my first).

In case you know nothing about Justified, let me first tell you that is it is an amazing show about a Deputy U.S. Marshal in Kentucky.  The second thing you need to know is that Timothy Olyphant, and his character Raylan, might potentially be the coolest man to walk planet earth.  The third thing you need to know is that Raylan’s bff/enemy Boyd Crowder, played by the talented Walton Groggins, might be the only man who can compete with Raylan in terms of pure awesomeness.  So for those of you who haven’t seen Justified, you need to check it out.  For those of you who have seen it, please enjoy the videos below, as we here at YBTV attempt to wish Mr. Olyphant a very happy 46th birthday.

-LJ

PS.  And, as a special treat, here is a vintage Timothy Olyphant pic from his days on Sex & The City–when my crush on him first officially began.  You’ve come a long way Raylan.

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VEEP 307: SPECIAL RELATIONSHIP – BEST ZINGERS (and other great lines)

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Veep was in London this week.  Selina sure is making the rounds.  In London, she managed to chug a beer, wear a huge hat, and, of course, get brutally mocked by the British press.  The most exciting turn of events, however, occurred when Dan had a nervous breakdown and got himself fired as the Veep’s campaign manager.  Well played Amy.  Here are my favorite lines from this week.

*As you should recognize by now, there will be colorful language below.

8.  “Her neck is like stretched cheese.” – Gary

7.  “I would like to shoot him, but there are no f*cking guns in this country.” – Amy

6.  “We are running some reverse My Fair Lady sh*t here.  We are showing she is a regular gal.” – Dan

5.  “Ray’s talking. . . . It’s like watching a goat trying to use an ATM.” – Ben

4.  “Wasn’t it Oscar Wilde who said, Dan is a f*cking terrible campaign manager?” – Mike

3.  “Jonah Bond.  Double-o f*ck off.” – Amy

2.  “The emu has landed.  Jonah’s in London.” – Kent

1.  “I need to be driven to the airport at Diana speed.  Just more carefully though please.” – Veep

-LJ

PS.  Here is your deleted scene from this week.

GAME OF THRONES 406: THE LAWS OF GODS AND MEN

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As I type this post I can feel the clock ticking.  The next episode of Game of Thrones will air in less an hour from right now.  Therefore, I will be typing fast and probably not very much.  But, in case you want to take some time to briefly reflect on what happened last week, let’s get to talking…

1.  Everyone is entitled to their day in court – Well sort of suppose this is true in the Game of Thrones world too.  Although before Tryrion’s trial even started, we (the audience) knew he was climbing an uphill battle.  I just don’t think we realized how low the Lannisters would get by the end of it all (see Shae).  I am fairly convinced that Tywin doesn’t actually believe his son killed his grandson, but we know that Tywin has never been Tryion’s biggest fan so I am not surprised that he is a willing participant in this debacle that is called a “trial.”  Further, Tywin doesn’t seem to mind that Jaime is called the “King Slayer” so I doubt his pride would be very much hurt if another one of his sons ended up being known as a killer of kings as well.  What I really can’t figure out is whether Cersei actually believes that Tryion is responsible for Joffrey’s death.  Because if she does, then she is clearly an idiot.  And, while Cersei may be many things–a power-hungry, adulterous, b*tch (to name a few)–I hadn’t yet took her for being completely stupid.

2.  Poor Jaime – I like Jaime, I really do.  And, I don’t know if he has just been clueless about depth of his father’s and sister’s vengefulness or what, but his face was priceless as the camera cut to him during Tryion’s trial. It was like he hadn’t really appreciated the mockery the trial would become (despite Tyrion’s warnings) until he was present at it and was getting smacked in the face by it.  I think Jaime’s best quality is his loyalty and he demonstrates it so well in this episode where he willing gives up his “life” (at least as he knows it) so that Tryion’s life can be saved.  This was truly a selfless act–something you don’t see much of these days.  Question though – How does Tyrion’s request for trial by combat going to affect Jaime’s deal with Tywin.

3.  Shae – Girl, the Lannisters had better have threatened your life or something because I cannot forgive you for humiliating and emotionally destroying Tryion the way you did.  I get that you are mad at him, but lady, you have taken the whole scorned-lover thing to a new level.  And, I certainly, don’t appreciate it.  Plus, not only have you backstabbed Tryion but you have betrayed Sansa (a girl that has done nothing to you).  And, that my dear, is low.

4.  Trial by combat – So, do we think Bronn steps in for Tyrion again or is Tyrion really going to have to fight his own battle this time?  I am not sure of the rules.

5.  Stannis is still boring as ever – I wish this guy would just go away.  I can’t find his storyline to be remotely compelling.  And, I can’t imagine that even the new financing Stannis has managed to acquire (by the help of Ser Davos) is going to make Stannis any more of a threat or any more interesting to me either.  Stannis along with Ramsey need to go to part of the Game of Thrones world where I never have to see or hear from them again anytime soon.

6.  It’s tough to be Queen – While I certainly think Dany has the abilities and the confidence to serve as queen of Slaver’s Bay and hopefully the Iron Throne (one day), she is definitely learning that ruling effectively takes a lot of different qualities and that it certainly isn’t an easy job.  It’s tough to be the one in charge and it’s tough to do the right thing, especially when there isn’t a clear right answer.  At least Dany seems to be taking her job seriously though and that is better than many of the previous men/boys that have sat on the Iron Throne.  Varys, you keep your spies out of Dany’s camp though.  I am watching you.

Alright, that is all I have time for this week.  What did y’all think?

-LJ

 

VEEP 306: DETROIT – BEST ZINGERS (and other great lines)

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In this week’s episode, I think that it became pretty clear that as bad as Selina is at being Vice President, she is even worse at running for president.  Add that horrible ex-Prime Minister from Finland and I think it’s not hard to see how much of a disaster Selina’s life has become.  Enough about the plot, let’s get to the best lines of the week.  (Obviously, I had a hard time picking).

*Again, colorful language will likely appear below.  Actually, it will most certainly appear below.

9.  “Where do you get your news from a guy on a horse?” – Amy

8.  “I wrote an entire sound bite and had the entire crowd in tears, even the police horses.” – Ben

7.  “In your country, people f*ck snow and I hope you understand that I say that with the utmost respect.” – Veep

6.  “I want Selina’s job announcement on every network. I want to hear the discovery channel say we interrupt these sharks.” – Dan

5.  “Yes you are going to a f*cking gun show, even if I have to put a gun to your f*cking head.” – Veep (great parenting Selina)

4.  “Mike, why would you send me this sh*t? You might as well have just sat on the f*cking keyboard and sent me that.” – Dan (slightly stressed at being campaign manager, I think).

3.  “The entourage is getting way too big.  We are only days away from an omelette chef and a piano tuner.” – Amy

2.  “This is really nice, working together as a family. I actually enjoyed the gun show.  Once I got used to all the regular people and how fat they were I really enjoyed it.” – Catherine

1.  “Jonah, come here. You know, sometimes I feel like there’s a nine-year-old boy inside you operating the levers.” – Mike

And, finally, let’s pause and reflect upon how awesome this shirt is.  Where do I get one?  You go Catherine.

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-LJ

PS.  I am going to try and start adding the deleted scenes from each episode, assuming HBO continues to make them available.  If you go back and look at previous Veep posts, the deleted scenes should now be added to those as well.

 

GAME OF THRONES 405: FIRST OF HIS NAME

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I know, I am super late in getting a review of last week’s Game of Thrones episode posted.  But, it was a busy week outside of the blogosphere.  My best friend got married this past weekend and I received a promotion at work.  That meant less time for blogging.  Since I am cutting it so close this week, again, it’s likely this post won’t be very long.  Let’s get to talking.

1.  So the big reveal – In a surprise for us television watchers, we learned this week that it wasn’t the Lannisters who poisoned Jon Arryn, but instead his crazy wife Lysa Tully at the request of Littlefinger.  We have always been warned that Littlefinger would do just about anything to get himself more power.  As Varys adequately put it:  “He’d see the realm burn if he could be king of the ashes.”  Now, we know for sure, that Varys is probably right.  After all, it was Arryn’s death that caused Robert to ask Ned to become the King’s hand.  This ultimately led to the death of Ned.  And, thus the entire war.  We also know that Littlefinger orchestrated the death of Joffrey and the “capture” of the Stark’s oldest daughter.  I don’t know what Littlefinger’s ultimate plan is, but he is clearly 10 steps ahead of everyone else.  Maybe his new crazy wife might be the end of him though.  Fingers crossed.

2.  Mother’s Day – Today is Mother’s Day, so let’s talk briefly about the mothers in Game of Thrones.  Dany, the mother of dragons, I think deserves the mother of the year award,  given that she has freed all these people (even if she does learn that the liberated cities of Slaver’s Bay have already fallen back into the hands of the Masters or other despots without Dany there to oversee their cities).  What is commendable about Dany though is that, unlike everyone else that seeks the Iron Throne, she appears to recognize that she has much to learn before she ultimately assumes that title and she has decided to try and restore order in the cities that have fallen apart since her liberation.  I can respect that.  Cersei will never win mother of the year, but she certainly is the best at using motherhood as a manipulation technique.  It will be interesting to see if she has swayed Oberyn to her side after expressing her love for her daughter that was sent far far away from her.  Finally, Lysa Arryn gets creepiest mother ever award.  Not only is she crazy, but her son Robin certainly is taking after his nutty mother.  And, is Sansa really going to have to marry that kid?  It’s time for Sansa to catch a break.

3.  The great adventures of Arya and the Hound – I am ready for something to happen with these two, aren’t you?  I really wish the Hound would start teaching her how to fight.  I am ready for Arya’s revenge crusade to start.

4.  Close but no cigar – North of the wall Jon Snow along with Locke descend upon Craster’s house and kill everyone (other than the women) in sight.  Let’s take a minute and pause to remember Bran overtaking Hodor during this scene and crushing Locke’s neck.  Because that was awesome!  Also, here’s a thought for you, if Bran can pretty much jump into the mind of anyone, is he going to be able to possess Dany’s dragons one day (assuming he doesn’t die first)?  I am a little bummed that Bran and Jon didn’t get to reunite, and I honestly don’t understand the whole point of Bran’s quest, but if Game of Thrones doesn’t want these two to be together, I guess I will have to live with that.

5.  Reunited (and it feels so good) – At least Jon got reunited with Ghost.  Thank goodness.

6.  The Iron Bank – I assume that all this talk of debt and the Iron Bank is going to become very very important at some point.  I just don’t get it’s significance right now.  Hopefully, all will be revealed, in due time.

What did y’all think?

-LJ

VEEP 305: FISHING – BEST ZINGERS (and other great lines)

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I am cutting it close this week with a posting about last Sunday’s Veep episode.  Apologies to “Put You Hangs Together” (if you listen to Doug Benson’s podcast then you will get the reference, if you don’t, then reevaluate some things).  Anyways, without further ado, here are last week’s best quotes (as expertly rated by myself).  Not surprisingly, Jonah wins again!

*Insert warning about colorful language below.

6.  “Passoword…mother_f*cker.” – Dan

5.  “How much would I love to speak my mind on this campaign?  Can you imagine if I did that?  Mississippi is chock-full of assholes.  I don’t trust the Chinese.  I gotta tell you something…I’m not gonna be able to pass a single piece of legislation that’s really gonna make any f*ck of difference in your life.” – Veep

4.  “People like Maddox always have guns on the walls next to the animal heads.  It’s like a flowchart for people who don’t know what firearms do.”  – Veep

3.  “Watching you try to be nice is like watching a baby smoke a cigarette.  It’s kind of cool, but also very disturbing.” – Mike

2.  “I’d rather be shot in the f*cking face than serve as vice president again.” – Veep

1.  “People like me, people hire me, people date me, and people f*ck me because I’m triple-A f*ckin’ awesome.” – Jonah

-LJ

PS.  Here is the deleted scene from this episode.  It is pretty great.

THE ONE WHEN “I STARTED TO FEEL OLD”: 10TH ANNIVERSARY OF FRIENDS FINALE

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May 6, 2014 marked the ten year anniversary of the finale of NBC’s Friends. And seriously, does that not make you feel old? Because it sure does make me feel old. There are plenty of places on the internet this week that are talking about the historical significance of Friends (go to HitFix and read Sepinwall’s piece, it’s excellent), and I in no way want to leave the implication that I don’t believe it has major historical significance. Because I do. I really, really do. But that’s not what we do here at YBTV. Here, we talk about how TV impacts us on a personal level, so that’s what I will do here in this post.

When Friends started in 1994, I didn’t watch. I was 10 years old, and honestly, the only TV I regularly watched at that point was: (1) Houston Astros baseball games; (2) Hill Street Blues reruns with my dad; and (3) Beverly Hills, 90210 with my older siblings. By the time I was 14 or 15 though, I had become aware of this little show on NBC and had watched every episode on VHS tape (I really hope the people who read this blog know what VHS tapes are). We had recorded the episodes off reruns (another thing kids today don’t know much about), and I watched them with my friends, out of order of course, at least 5 times each.

By the time I was a junior in high school, Thursday nights were “the night” at my house. You, young people, may not remember this, but back in my day, people used to gather in large groups to watch TV other than the Super Bowl. Every Thursday night for my junior and senior years of high school, somewhere between 12-20 people would get together in my parents’ game room (where the big TV was, obviously), and we would all watch Friends together, as a communal experience.

When I went off to college in the fall of 2001, the show had started to show some growing pains. It’s not easy to do 234 episodes of sitcom television. And, that eighth season of Friends suffered as so many shows do when they’ve been on that long. Finding new, interesting stories became harder, these characters we came to know and love became cartoon-like, and all in all, the show became less funny. We had long story arcs of Joey being in love with Rachel and Chandler living in Tulsa, among other misfires. Even though the show slipped though, it always remained watchable and you never regretted spending time with your six closest TV Friends.

Friends was never a perfect show, but it did change the world. Just look at what happened after Friends premiered. Every year since that 1994 television season, each network has tried to duplicate what Friends had. But, the thing is, you can’t catch lightning in a bottle twice. To find 6 people that good looking, with that great of chemistry, and that impeccable of comic timing…How could you do it again? Though a couple shows have come close (Happy Endings being one of them), there will never be another Friends.

Along those lines, consider that the finale of Friends was watched by 53 million people! Just this year, another long running, well loved comedy, How I Met Your Mother, had it’s finale. You know how many people watched that episode? 12.9 million. And here’s the kicker: That is considered a massive, massive success. Friends was really the last of the shows that were appointment television for tens of millions of people each week.

As alluded to above, Friends is even more important to me on a personal level than for the television landscape as a whole. Friends is the show that started me down the path to television dork that I have landed on today (just as Snatch and Fight Club helped guide in my love for film). The connection I felt with Chandler Bing is likely still reflected in my personality as a grown man. The joy I saw that group of people getting out of television in my parents’ game room taught me that television has the power to do more than just entertain. Television can bring people together, and it can sometimes even teach us life lessons and make us think.

Friends episodes, each of the 234 (save the pilot) started with the trademark TOW (meaning either The One Where, The One With, or The One When) and were written as well as any comedy that came before it, and influenced so many comedies that would come after it. Everyone has a favorite Friends episode, although, choosing only one could be tricky. Maybe you love TOW Chandler in a Box? TOW The Blackout? TOW No One’s Ready? Or, are you a classic Friends fan, who says the only answer to this question is, TOW All the Embryos?

Regardless of which episode is your favorite, it’s likely that there are many moments from Friends that stick out in your mind as if it were just yesterday. That’s the mark of great television. Friends may be gone. But, it is certainly not forgotten. Friends made an immediate impact on the television landscape, and it’s fingerprints can still be seen all over the place today. Friends, like Seinfeld, Cheers, and The Cosby Show (to name just a few) is timeless, and it is among the first shows I plan on showing to my children one day.

My love of television can be directly traced back to two shows. The Sopranos, and the six hilarious people sitting on those couches at Central Perk every Thursday on NBC for 10 years, our Friends. Thank you David Crane and Marta Kauffman. Thank you for the memories, and thank you for showing me what television would come to mean to me throughout the rest of my life.

-CJ

*Editor’s note – CJ may feel old, but he is really only 30. 🙂