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Pretty Little Liars come Full Circle with a Crisis of Continuum? TV must-sees for the week of March 16

- March 14th, 2014

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Bill Harris’ TV must-sees for the week of March 16

1 Continuum
Third-season debut: Kiera (Rachel Nichols) jeopardizes everything to stop Alec (Erik Knudsen) from altering history in his mission to save Emily (Magda Apanowicz). But can Kiera’s new allies be trusted? Experience suggests no.
When: Sunday on Showcase

2 Crisis
Debut: The children of Washington’s elite are on a school trip when their bus is ambushed on a secluded road. Who are the kidnappers and what do they want? With Gillian Anderson, Dermot Mulroney and Rachael Taylor.
When: Sunday on NBC

3 Pretty Little Liars
Fourth-season finale: After years of questions surrounding the night Alison (Sasha Pieterse) disappeared, her four best friends – played by Shay Mitchell, Lucy Hale, Ashley Benson and Troian Bellisario – finally learn what happened.
When: Tuesday on M3

4 The 100
Debut: The only human survivors of nuclear destruction were in orbit, on space stations. Now, a century and three generations later, 100 juvenile prisoners secretly have been sent back to Earth, to see if it’s inhabitable.
When: Wednesday on CW

5 Glee
This is the 100th episode. In some ways doesn’t it feel as if this show has been around longer than that? Anyway, past and current members of New Directions gather to reminisce and reinvent their favourite performances.
When: Tuesday on Fox, City

6 Doll & Em
Debut with back-to-back episodes: Real-life best friends Emily Mortimer (The Newsroom) and Dolly West portray fictionalized versions of themselves in this semi-improvised comedy about an actress who hires her pal as a personal assistant.
When: Wednesday on HBO Canada

7 Love Under Cuban Skies
Documentary debut: Apparently there’s a steady stream of Canadian women partaking in sex tourism in Cuba. Many merely are looking for a little excitement. But some wind up bringing their new lovers back up north.
When: Thursday on CBC

8 Resurrection
Bellamy (Omar Epps) gets some help from Maggie (Devin Kelley) as he pushes hard for permission to exhume the tomb of Jacob (Landon Gimenez). Meanwhile, Pastor Tom (Mark Hildreth) reaches out to his childhood friend.
When: Sunday on ABC, City

9 Full Circle
Canadian debut: From DirecTV in the U.S., each episode has two characters talking in a restaurant. The next episode has one of those characters back, alongside a new character, and so on. Minka Kelly and Tom Felton get it started.
When: Thursday on Super Channel

10 Colin and Justin’s Cabin Pressure
Debut: The latest of many TV series from well-known Scottish interior designers Colin McAllister and Justin Ryan. In this one, they’re searching for a Canadian cottage in Muskoka on which to put their own stamp. Look out, loons!
When: Tuesday on Cottage Life

bill.harris@sunmedia.ca

@billharris_tv

The Newsroom has given me a new disease

- July 9th, 2012

emily mortimer

I am experiencing a condition I just invented called “viewership schizophrenia” when it comes to The Newsroom.

The symptoms: I’m fully aware that it’s fairly terrible, and yet I’m still kind of enjoying it.

Two characters are bothering me the most right now, following Sunday night’s third episode on HBO (and HBO Canada, for those of us north of the border):

1) MacKenzie McHale, played by Emily Mortimer (pictured above). The overly awkward schoolgirl bit just doesn’t fly whenever her former boyfriend Will McAvoy (played by Jeff Daniels) is seen with another woman.

2) Charlie Skinner, played by Sam Waterston. What the hell is up with this bizarre over-the-top performance? Obviously he’s just doing what the directors want, but my God.

I didn’t have a great reaction to The Newsroom when I first watched it (my initial review for Sun Media/QMI Agency can be seen here). There has been a lot of debate among critics about the merits of this latest effort from Aaron Sorkin.

But there I was on Sunday night, watching episode three. I didn’t even know I was going to watch it until I found myself doing so.

Maybe I’m just automatically drawn to the subject matter on The Newsroom. And yet, the news/political stuff is notably wide-eyed, and when the series shifts into the personal lives of its characters it becomes a completely different show and smart people all instantly become disastrously dumb.

So what to make of my “viewership schizophrenia”? Is anyone else suffering with this affliction? Suggestions for treatment?

bill.harris@sunmedia.ca

@billharris_tv