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Modern Family gets Cook’d in a Labyrinth; TV must-sees for the week of May 18

- May 16th, 2014

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Bill Harris’ TV must-sees for the week of May 18

1 Rookie Blue
Fifth-season debut: Andy (Missy Peregrym) and Dov (Greg Smith) try to pull themselves together at a diner, but let’s just say some Pulp Fiction-style complications ensue.
When: Monday on Global

2 Labyrinth
Debut: A four-hour historical Holy Grail-themed mini-series airing over two nights, starring Jessica Brown-Findlay, who played the ill-fated Lady Sybil Crawley on Downton Abbey.
When: Thursday and Friday on CW

3 Modern Family
Fifth-season finale: Wedding-day chaos threatens everything, but an unexpected turn of events gives Mitchell (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) and Cam (Eric Stonestreet) the ceremony they’ve dreamed about.
When: Wednesday on ABC, City

4 Last Comic Standing
Eighth-season debut: The new judges are Russell Peters, Roseanne Barr and Keenen Ivory Wayans. The new host is J.B. Smoove. But it’s the competitors who’ll have to be funny.
When: Thursday on NBC

5 Cook’d
Debut: Kids can be the pickiest eaters in the world, so why not make a TV show about it? Each week celebrity chefs prepare meals in the hopes of impressing a panel of jaded juvenile judges.
When: Tuesday on YTV

6 Gang Related
Debut: An action drama centring on Detective Ryan Lopez (Ramon Rodriguez), a rising star on L.A.’s gang task force whose gang connections might be a little too good, if you know what I mean.
When: Thursday on Fox

7 Buy It Fix It Sell It
Debut with back-to-back episodes: More “junk TV,” so to speak. Pro “fixers” battle over auction items that need just a little love before hopefully becoming money-making masterpieces.
When: Friday on HGTV

8 Shannon and Sophie
Debut with back-to-back episodes: This essentially is a delayed spinoff of Gene Simmons Family Jewels, starring Gene’s wife, model/actress Shannon Tweed, and their daughter Sophie.
When: Tuesday on W

9 The Middle
One-hour fifth-season finale: After Sue (Eden Sher) wins a family trip, the Hecks must overcome a series of setbacks if they want to enjoy their time at Walt Disney World.
When: Wednesday on ABC

10 The Maya Rudolph Show
Debut: Yet another attempt to revive the so-called variety-show format that basically has been co-opted by all the late-night dudes. Rudolph is joined by Andy Samberg, Kristen Bell and more.
When: Monday on NBC

bill.harris@sunmedia.ca

@billharris_tv

Dracula in The Middle of Ravenswood? Top 10 TV must-sees for the week

- October 20th, 2013

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Bill Harris TV must-sees for the week of Oct. 20:

1 Dracula
Series debut: The mysterious title character, played by Jonathan Rhys Meyers from The Tudors, arrives in Victorian England, posing as an American entrepreneur keen on modern science.
When: Friday on NBC, Global

2 CSI
Marg Helgenberger returns as Catherine Willows for the 300th episode of this venerable series. Fittingly, the team works on a cold case that dates back to 2000.
When: Wednesday on CBS, CTV

3 Grimm
Third-season debut: Now that Juliette (Bitsie Tulloch) knows about Nick (David Giuntoli), he can bring her into the fold as his powers – and the danger – have increased exponentially.
When: Friday on NBC, CTV

4 Canada’s Worst Driver Ever
The ninth season of Canada’s Worst Driver has added an extra word – ever – as nine notorious road terrors from past seasons return. Hosted by Andrew Younghusband.
When: Monday on Discovery

5 Witches of East End
Ingrid (Rachel Boston) struggles with the consequences of a spell, while Joanna (Julia Ormond) tries to uncover just who is framing her.
When: Sunday on Lifetime

6 The Illegal Eater
Series debut: Steven Page, formerly of Barenaked Ladies, investigates the kinds of underground restaurants where you go if you don’t have a million dollars.
When: Tuesday on Travel & Escape

7 Bones
After eight and a half seasons, you cordially are invited to the wedding of Seeley Booth (David Boreanaz) and Temperance “Bones” Brennan (Emily Deschanel).
When: Monday on Fox, Global

8 Ravenswood
This new spinoff series is set up in the Halloween episode of Pretty Little Liars, which airs immediately prior to the debut of the new show. Tyler Blackburn and Nicole Gale Anderson star.
When: Tuesday on M3

9 The Middle
In the 100th episode of this underrated series, Frankie (Patricia Heaton) and Mike (Neil Flynn) agree to drive a giant cow float in their town’s 100th anniversary parade.
When: Wednesday on ABC, Friday on City

10 The Carrie Diaries
Second-season debut: Through a series of surprising events, the young Carrie Bradshaw (AnnaSophia Robb) meets one of the greatest friends of her life. Heads up, Sex and the City fans.
When: Friday on CW

bill.harris@sunmedia.ca

The Moy the merrier on 2 Broke Girls

- November 28th, 2012

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Matthew Moy has an ability to laugh at himself and a good sense of self-esteem. He needs both those things for his role as diner owner Han Lee on 2 Broke Girls.

Han gets picked on a lot by the other characters, particularly Max, played by Kat Dennings. Han’s clothes, his height, his race, his culture, nothing is off-limits.

“At least on our show, we make a point of ragging on everybody,” said Moy (pictured above). “It’s kind of the way we show that we love each other.

“But you’re right, you need a high sense of self-esteem to take it. When you look like I do, you know, you take it.”

In one episode of 2 Broke Girls, which is in its second season and airs Mondays on CBS and Citytv, there were multiple references to Han being a 53-year-old man. “I’m 29!” an exasperated Han kept correcting.

“That’s so funny, right?” said Moy, who started his career in voice-over work for animation and videogames, and has guest-starred in series such as How I Met Your Mother, The Middle and iCarly. “It’s something I’ve encountered my whole life, I’m very used to being younger and older.

“I’m 28 in real life, but I’m used to people thinking I’m between 12 and 40.”

2 Broke Girls stars Dennings and Beth Behrs as, well, two broke girls. The difference being, Behrs’ character, Caroline, is not used to being broke, whereas Dennings’ Max has plenty of experience in that area.

Max and Caroline have a dream of starting their own cupcake business, but in the meantime they’re paying the bills by working at a greasy-spoon diner owned by Han.

“I’m so thankful for the people on my show, we have such great chemistry, Beth and Kat are like best friends in real life,” Moy said. “We’re super funny, we’re edgy, we get everybody in and out. It’s very fast.

“I’ll be honest, our episodes are written a little longer than what’s shown on TV. So you’re missing a lot of stuff that hopefully comes out on the DVDs. We pack it in, we get as many laughs as we can. That’s the advantage of a live studio audience, too, so we can get that feedback.”

The Han character is Korean, and occasionally Moy has to speak it. Which is interesting, because Moy is not Korean.

“I’m third- or fourth-generation Chinese-American,” said Moy, who, unlike his character, speaks English with no accent at all. A native of San Francisco, Moy also majored in Japanese in college.

“That is legit Korean that Han is speaking,” Moy added. “I spent about three days with a coach. Thankfully it works on the show.

“I’ve had a couple of Koreans talk to me and ask, ‘Do you really speak Korean? Because you don’t sound like you’re from Korea, but you sound like a second-generation Korean, someone who was born in America.’

“Hey, I’ll take that. I’ll take it as a newbie who spent three days learning it.”

2 Broke Girls clearly is benefiting from Matthew Moy’s full array of linguistic and comedic skills.

He can take a joke, too. Thank goodness.

bill.harris@sunmedia.ca

@billharris_tv

(EXTRA: For the column I wrote in September with Dennings (below left) talking about how important it is for women to know their “real bra size,” click here.)

Kat Dennings, Matthew Moy, Beth Behrs