REVIEW: PHOENIX (1995)


CAST

Brad Dourif (Curse of Chucky)
Billy Drago (Children of The Corn: Genesis)
Stephen Nichols (Witchboard)
Denice Duff (Song of The Vampire)
Peter Murnik (Armageddon)
William Sanderson (Blade Runner)
Robert Gossett (Batman Returns)
Betsy Soo (October 22)
Jeremy Roberts (The Mask)
Leland Orser (Taken)

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On the mining planet of Titus 4, the control station is attacked by rebellious androids under the control of their leader Miro. The head of the Rydell Mining Corporation sends for his top agent Tyler McClain, currently in gaol with his team for disobeying orders. Despite his protests McClain is put under the control of Reiger (Brad Dourif), the man he rebelled against, and the team fly out to Titus 4 where McClain is captured by the androids who explain to him that they are not the enemy and that the mysterious minerals on the planet are causing their semi-organic brains to shed their programming and become fully sentient.

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Phoenix is one of that great myriad of low budget, unassuming sci-fi films that crop up on suspiciously cheap DVDs or late night on obscure movie channels – the sort you only find after scrolling past all of the normal movie channels. These films can be split into two categories, the always entertaining exploitation films and the far more hit and miss variety that try and convey a serious storyline.

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Unfortunately Phoenix is firmly located in the latter category and is certainly more miss than hit, but does have a few interesting ideas. The plot is well thought through and provides an interesting explaination to the usual ‘androids gone rogue’ theme that does deserved to be explored more deeply, a few interesting twists keep things moving and the film boasts a decent if not particularly surprising ending. Unfortunately the rest of the storyline follows the determinedly cliché ‘rebellious military group released from gaol for a deadly mission’ pattern and certainly in its middle chapters the pacing seems completely non-existent, lifted only by a gratuitous sex scene.

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Production is clearly where the project’s low budget has struck and while solid if uninspired camerawork and editing keep the film a step above a student movie project, the sets all look distinctly impoverished while the scenes on the mining planet are filmed entirely in a boiler room the CGI looks like a very dated video game, although fortunately it is used only very sparingly.

7TYUTYUT

A few good ideas and some surprisingly good acting talent are dragged down by the lackluster pacing and a low budget that clearly shows on-screen. Worth a watch if you stumble across it, but not worth tracking down.

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REVIEW: ROCKETEER

CAST
Billy Campbell (Bram Stoker’s Dracula)
Jennifer Connelly (Hulk)
Alan Arkin (Argo)
Timothy Dalton (Flash Gordon)
Paul Sorvino (Goodfellas)
Terry O’Quinn (Lost)
Ed Lauter (The Artist)
James Handy (Alias)
Jon Polito (Miller’s Crossing)
William Sanderson (Blade Runner)
Margo Martindale (Orphan)
 
In 1938 Los Angeles two gangsters in Eddie Valentine’s (Paul Sorvino) gang steal a rocket pack from Howard Hughes (Terry O’Quinn). During their escape, they find themselves on an airfield, where they hide the rocket, ending up in an auto-airplane accident while escaping, the police in hot pursuit. Stunt pilot Cliff Secord (Billy Campbell), whose Gee Bee racer was totaled during the accident, and airplane mechanic Peevy (Alan Arkin) later find the rocket pack hidden in a bi-plane cockpit. Meanwhile, famous actor Neville Sinclair (Timothy Dalton), who hired Valentine’s gang to steal the rocket, sends his monstrous henchman Lothar (Tiny Ron) to question the injured getaway driver, who tells him him the rocket is at the airfield.
Cliff’s aspiring actress girlfriend Jenny Blake (Jennifer Connelly) has a bit part in the latest Neville Sinclair film. On set, Sinclair overhears Cliff attempting to tell Jenny about the rocket pack, so he invites her to dinner. Afterward, at a local air show, Cliff uses the rocket pack (and Peevy’s newly designed face-hiding finned helmet) to rescue his friend Malcolm (Eddie Jones), who is drunkenly piloting a bi-plane. Having been seen by the newsreel press in the airshow audience (and Valentine’s gangsters), “The Rocketeer” becomes a media sensation.
Sinclair sends Lothar to Cliff and Peevy’s home to find the rocket pack. The FBI arrives, but Cliff and Peevy escape, while Lothar steals its detailed schematics drawn up by Peevy. Later at the airfield diner, Cliff and Peevy, trapped by several Valentine mobsters, learn that Jenny had a date with Sinclair and of the actor’s involvement in the hunt for the rocket pack. The diner patrons overpower the gangsters, while a bullet ricochet punctures the rocket’s fuel tank, which Peevy temporarily patches with Cliff’s chewing gum.[Note 1]
At Sinclair’s home, Jenny discovers that he is a Nazi secret agent and Jenny knocks him cold. She is later detained and forced to leave a message for Cliff to bring the rocket to the Griffith Observatory in exchange for her life. Just before he is arrested by the FBI and taken to Howard Hughes, Cliff hides the rocket pack. Hughes reveals his rocket is a prototype, similar to one that Nazi scientists have been so far unsuccessful in developing. Secord asks what the interest is the rocket pack, and Hughes shows a horrifying propaganda film depicting flying soldiers invading the United States and hoisting a Nazi flag over the White House. When Hughes demands the return of the rocket, Cliff explains that he needs it to rescue Jenny; he escapes, inadvertently leaving behind a clue to where he is headed.
Cliff flies to the rendezvous where Sinclair demands the rocket. He divulges to the mobsters that the actor is a Nazi spy; Valentine turns his weapon on Sinclair and Lothar. Sinclair summons 60 heavily armed Nazi S.A. commandos hidden at the observatory. The Nazi rigid airship Luxembourg appears overhead to evacuate Sinclair. FBI agents suddenly announce their presence, having secretly surrounded the area; they and the mobsters join forces to battle the Nazis. Sinclair and Lothar escape, dragging Jenny with them aboard the airship.
Cliff flies to and boards the airship, but during the ensuing showdown, Jenny accidentally sets the bridge on fire using a flare gun. Sinclair takes the rocket pack to save himself, saying “I’ll miss Hollywood”. This proves an ironic statement, as Cliff removed the makeshift chewing gum patch from the tank which is now leaking, causing Sinclair to plummet to his death near the “HOLLYWOODLAND” sign, and the resulting explosion destroys the LAND part. Lothar is engulfed in flames as the airship explodes, but Cliff and Jenny are rescued at the last moment by Hughes and Peevy flying an autogyro. Hughes later presents Cliff with a brand-new Gee Bee air racer and a fresh pack of chewing gum. As Hughes leaves, Jenny returns to Peevy his rocket blueprints that she found in Sinclair’s home; Peevy decides that, with some modifications, he can build an even better one.

A smashing piece of escapism, no pretensions or ideas above its station. The willingness to tap into the basic premise of a comic book actioner and entertain in grand Hollywood terms, A must see.

REVIEW: BLACK MOON RISING

CAST
Tommy Lee Jones (Men In Black)
Linda Hamilton (Chuck)
Robert Vaughn (Superman 3)
Richard Jaeckel (The Dirty Dozen)
Lee Ving (Flashdance)
Bubba Smith (Police Academy)
William Sanderson (Blade Runner)
Don Keith Opper (Critters)
Sam Quint (Tommy Lee Jones) is a former thief hired by the FBI to steal a computer disk which contains incriminating evidence against The Lucky Dollar Corporation of Las Vegas. After stealing the disk, Quint is pursued by Marvin Ringer (Lee Ving), another former thief and acquaintance who works for the company. At the same time, a prototype vehicle called the Black Moon, which can reach speeds of 325 MPH and runs on tap water, is being tested in the desert by Earl Windom (Richard Jaeckel). Quint and Windom later cross paths at a gas station, where Quint hides the disk in the back bumper of the Black Moon. Windom is hauling the Black Moon to Los Angeles, and Quint, still being pursued by Ringer and his men, follows Windom and his team there.
Now in LA, Quint meets with FBI agent Johnson (Bubba Smith), and he demands double pay and a clean passport because he is now dealing with Ringer. Afterward, Quint tracks down Windom and the Black Moon at a posh restaurant, where Windom is negotiating a deal to sell the prototype to a car manufacturer. Before Quint can get to the disk, a group of auto thieves, led by Nina (Linda Hamilton), steals all of the cars in the parking lot, including the Black Moon off of its trailer. Quint gives chase, and tracks the cars to an office tower, but loses them in the parking garage. Inside the garage, Quint is seen on the security cameras, but nobody recognizes him. Back at the restaurant, Quint meets Johnson again. Johnson says he needs the disk in three days or the government’s case against The Lucky Dollar will be thrown out of court. He also tells Quint that if he fails to deliver the disk, he won’t get paid. Quint then goes to Windom and his team and asks for their help in getting the car back, but they refuse, insisting that they go to the police first.
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After getting the blueprints for the towers from city hall, Quint begins staking them out. The Nyland Towers are a pair of office buildings built by Ed Nyland (Robert Vaughn), who is also the head of the stolen car syndicate. The basement of the towers is a large chop shop, and Nyland keeps the best cars for himself and sells the rest. He scolds Nina for stealing a car he can’t possibly resell nor does he want it, but he also won’t allow Nina to keep it for herself. After seeing Nina leave the towers, Quint follows her to a nightclub. At the club, they meet and go to her apartment. They have sex, then he tells her that he wants the funny looking car back and he wants her to help. She doesn’t say no, but doesn’t say yes either. Later, Windom and his team go to the towers to look for evidence to give to the police. Nyland’s goons kill one of the team members, so they go back to Quint and offer their assistance. Meanwhile, Ringer has tracked down Quint, and he and his men attack him, demanding the return of the disk. Quint is able to kill two of the henchmen, but Ringer gets away.
The next day, Nina is summoned by Nyland. He shows her the tape of Quint outside of the garage, and she says she doesn’t know him. He then shows her a tape of them having sex. He calls her a traitor and has her locked in a closet, to be dealt with later. Meanwhile, Quint and Windom determine that since the chop shop entrance is impenetrable from the garage, the best way to get in is through the unfinished, unsecured second tower. While Windom knocks out the security cameras, Quint goes up the empty tower, crosses over to the other one, and heads down. While descending down a ventilation shaft, he discovers Nina in the locked closet and gets her out. She then agrees to help Quint steal the Black Moon. After knocking out a guard and stealing his uniform, Quint and Nina enter the chop shop and take the Black Moon. Nyland has since learned that Nina is no longer locked up and sees her in the garage. Windom is on the other side of the garage door and blows a hole in it with C-4, but emergency bars drop down to cover the hole in the door before Quint and Nina can escape and are trapped.
Quint drives the Black Moon into the freight elevator, which takes them to Nyland’s office. During the chase on that floor, Nina activates the turbo boost that makes the car go 325 MPH. The car then shoots towards a window, hitting and killing Nyland instantly. The car then goes through the window and flies into the unoccupied building. Just as they think they are safe and Quint gets the disk out from the bumper, Ringer shows up and takes the disk. He and Quint start fighting just as Agent Johnson shows up. After a brutal fistfight, Quint knocks out Ringer and takes back the disk and gives it to Johnson. Quint then takes his money from him and says he is officially retired from working with the FBI. Windom then shows up and is grateful his car is still in one piece, but wonders how they will get it down. The movie ends back at Nina’s apartment, where Quint asks her if she is happy she stole the Black Moon. After she says yes, he says that he is too.
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It’s pretty much “action-thriller by numbers” stuff with fist fights, car chases, the obligatory romance and death defying near misses but it’s good fun all the while. Tommy Lee Jones’ character, while a bit arrogant as you expect with the genre, is likeable enough, and the main villain in his impenetrable fortress is straight out of a comic book. Yes, the effects are a bit dated by todays standards, especially the prototype car and high wire scene, but if you can look past this there is a hidden gem in here.

REVIEW: BLADE RUNNER

CAST
Harrison ford (Star Wars)
Rutger Hauer (Batman Begins)
Sean Young (Ace Ventura)
Edward James Olmos (Battlestar Galactica)
M. Emmet Walsh (The Flash 90s)
Daryl Hannah (Kill Bill)
William Sanderson (Mike & Molly)
Brion James (The Fifth Element)
Joanna Cassidy (Bones)
James Hong (R.I.P.D.)
In Los Angeles in November 2019, ex-police officer Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) is detained by officer Gaff (Edward James Olmos) and brought to his former supervisor, Bryant (M. Emmet Walsh). Deckard, whose job as a “Blade Runner” was to track down bioengineered beings known as replicants and “retire” (a euphemism for killing) them, is informed that four have come to Earth illegally. As Tyrell Corporation Nexus-6 models, they have only a four-year lifespan and may have come to Earth to try to extend their lives.
Deckard watches a video of a Blade Runner named Holden administering the “Voight-Kampff” test designed to distinguish replicants from humans based on their emotional response to questions. The test subject, Leon (Brion James), shoots Holden after Holden asks about Leon’s mother. Bryant wants Deckard to retire Leon and the other three replicants: Roy Batty (Rutger Hauer), Zhora (Joanna Cassidy), and Pris (Daryl Hannah). Deckard initially refuses, but after Bryant ambiguously threatens him, he reluctantly agrees.
Deckard begins his investigation at the Tyrell Corporation to ensure that the test works on Nexus-6 models. While there, he discovers that Dr. Eldon Tyrell’s (Joe Turkel) assistant Rachael (Sean Young) is an experimental replicant who believes herself to be human. Rachael has been given false memories to provide an “emotional cushion”. As a result, a more extensive test is required to determine whether she is a replicant.
Events are then set into motion that pit Deckard’s search for the replicants against their search for Tyrell to force him to extend their lives. Roy and Leon investigate a replicant eye-manufacturing laboratory and learn of J.F. Sebastian (William Sanderson), a gifted genetic designer who works closely with Tyrell. Rachael visits Deckard at his apartment to prove her humanity by showing him a family photo, but after Deckard reveals that her memories are implants from Tyrell’s niece, she leaves his apartment in tears. Meanwhile, Pris locates Sebastian and manipulates him to gain his trust.
While searching Leon’s hotel room, Deckard finds a photo of Zhora and a synthetic snake scale that leads him to a strip club where Zhora works. Deckard kills Zhora and shortly after is told by Bryant to also retire Rachael, who has disappeared from the Tyrell Corporation. After Deckard spots Rachael in a crowd, he is attacked by Leon, but Rachael kills Leon using Deckard’s dropped pistol. The two return to Deckard’s apartment, and during an intimate discussion, he promises not to hunt her; as she abruptly tries to leave, Deckard physically restrains her, forcing her to kiss him.
Arriving at Sebastian’s apartment, Roy tells Pris the others are dead. Sympathetic to their plight, Sebastian reveals that because of “Methuselah Syndrome”, a genetic premature aging disorder, his life will also be cut short. Sebastian and Roy gain entrance into Tyrell’s secure penthouse, where Roy demands more life from his maker. Tyrell tells him that it is impossible. Roy confesses that he has done “questionable things” which Tyrell dismisses, praising Roy’s advanced design and accomplishments in his short life. Roy kisses Tyrell, then kills him. Sebastian runs for the elevator followed by Roy, who then rides the elevator down alone. Though not shown, it is implied by Bryant via police radio that Roy also kills Sebastian.
Upon entering Sebastian’s apartment, Deckard is ambushed by Pris, but he manages to kill her just as Roy returns. As Roy’s body begins to shut down, he chases Deckard through the building, ending up on the roof. Deckard tries to jump to an adjacent roof, but misses and is left hanging precariously between buildings. Roy makes the jump with ease, and as Deckard’s grip loosens, Roy hoists him onto the roof, saving him. As Roy’s life runs out, he delivers a monologue about how his memories “will be lost like tears in rain”; Roy dies in front of Deckard, who watches silently. Gaff arrives and shouts across to Deckard, “It’s too bad she won’t live, but then again, who does?” Deckard returns to his apartment and finds the door ajar, but Rachael is safe, asleep in his bed. As they leave, Deckard notices a small tin-foil origami unicorn on the floor, a familiar calling card that brings back to him Gaff’s final words. Deckard and Rachael quickly leave the apartment block.
This isn’t a film that everyone will adore; without question it has its flaws like any other film, but regardless, remains a visually impressive and endlessly beguiling science-fiction, mystery noir (and more so than ever on this re-mastered, special edition DVD). Others have already explored the wider aspects of the package itself, pointing out how the five-disk box-set is very much for the die-hard obsessive’s, while the two-disk set would appeal more to the casual fan who loves the film and wants the version closest to Ridley Scott’s original vision. Without question, Blade Runner is a significant work of science-fiction cinema that manages to overcome any such flaws in character or narrative to take us on a trip into a world far beyond anything we’ve ever seen before.

 

REVIEW: BONES – SEASON 1-10

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MAIN CAST

Emily Deschanel (Boogeyman)
David Boreanaz (Angel)
Michaela Conlin (Enchanted)
T.J. Thyne (Ghost World)
Eric Millegan (The Phobic)
Jonathan Adams (Castle)
Tamara Taylor (Serenity)
John Francis Daley (Waiting…)
John Boyd (Argo)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST STARS

Larry Poindexter (Blade: The Series)
Tyrees Allen (Robocop)
Bonita Friedericy (Chuck)
Chris Conner (Walk of Shame)
Anne Dudek (White Chicks)
Heavy D (The Cider House Rules)
Toby Hemingway (The Finder)
Alex Carter (Out of Time)
Bokeem Woodbine (Spider-Man: Homecoming)
Morris Chestnut (Kick-Ass 2)
Rachelle Lefevre (Twilight)
Michael Mantell (Angel)
Jeffrey Nordling (Arrow)
David Starzyk (Veronica Mars)
Heath Freeman (Nancy Drew)
John M. Jackson (JAG)
Josh Hopkins (Cold Case)
Leonard Roberts (Agent Carter)
Rachel Miner (The Butterfly Effect 3)
Alicia Coppola (Bull)
Jim Ortlieb (Roswell)
Billy Gibbons (Two and a Half Men)
Ty Panitz (Because I Said So)
Harry Groener (Buffy)
Michael B. Silver (I Am Sam)
Penny Marshall (The Simpsons)
Suzanne Cryer (Two Guys and a Girl)
Lawrence Pressman (Dark Angel)
Jaime Ray Newman (Bates Motel)
Zeljko Ivanek (Heroes)
Judith Hoag (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
Ivar Brogger (Andromeda)
Josh Keaton (Transformers Prime)
Adriana DeMeo (Killer Movie)
Robert LaSardo (Nip/Tuck)
Jose Pablo Cantillo (Standoff)
Emilio Rivera (Renegade)
Michael Bowen (Lost)
Adam Baldwin (Firefly)
David Denman (Power Rangers)
Brian Gross (2 Broke Girls)
James Parks (Kill Bill)
Robert Foxworth (Evil Beneath Loch Ness)
Rodney Rowland (Veronica Mars)
Cullen Douglas (Agents of Shield)
Michelle Hurd (Jessica Jones)
Patricia Belcher (Mike & Molly)
Giancarlo Esposito (Son of Batman)
Alexandra Krosney (Lost)
Loren Dean (Apollo 13)
Ray Wise (Robocop)
Sam Witwer (Smallville)
Shane Johnson (Birds of Prey)
Jessica Capshaw (Valetnine)
Chris Conrad (Young Hercules)
Leah Pipes (The Originals)
Christie Lynn Smith (Swamp Thing: The Series)
Keri Lynn Pratt (Cruel Intentions 2)
Carlos Lacamara (Heroes Reborn)
Cerina Vincent (Cabin Fever)
Kali Rocha (Buffy)
Kyle Gallner (Smallville)
Lisa Thornhill (Veronica Mars)
Ariel Winter (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang)
Nelson Lee (Blade: The Series)
Benito Martinez (Million Dollar Baby)
Julie Ann Emery (Hitch)
Charles Mesure (V)
Sali Richardson-Whitfield (I Am Legend)
Joshua Leonard (The Blair Witch Project)
Michael Trevino (The Vampire Diaries)
Eddie McClintock (Agents of SHIELD)
Alex Winter (Waynes World)
French Stewart (Mom)
Stephen Fry (The Hobbit 2 & 3)
Ernie Hudson (Ghostbusters)
James Hong (The Big Bang Theory)
Deborah Theaker (Best In Show)
Eric Stonestreet (Modern Family)
George Coe (The Entity)
Johnny Lewis (Felon)
Ryan O’Neal (Love Story)
Brian Hallisay (Bottoms Up)
Roxanne Hart (Highlander)
Cleo King (Mike & Molly)
Eugene Byrd (Arrow)
Cynthia Preston (Prom Night III)
Scout Taylor-Compton (Halloween)
Ron Canada (Ted 2)
Michael Cudlitz (The Walking Dead)
Christina Cox (Earth: Final Conflict)
Erin Chambers (Stargate: Atlantis)
Beth Grant (Wonderfalls)
Scoot McNairy (Batman V Superman)
Denise Crosby (Star TreK: TNG)
Rider Strong (Cabin Fever)
Azura Skye (28 Days)
Lyndsey Bartilson (Grounded for Life)
Sam Jones III (Smallville)
Xander Berkeley (Kick-Ass)
Patrick Fabian (Veronica MArs)
Patrick Fischler (Birds of Prey)
Bess Wohl (Flightplan)
David Deluise (Vampires Suck)
Reginald VelJohnson (Die Hard)
Alessandra Torressani (Caprica)
Chris William Martin (Dollhouse)
James Black (Anger Management)
Jamil Walker Smith (Stargate Universe)
Dasniel Roebuck (Lost)
Whitney Anderson (Zombie Strippers)
Taylor Kinney (Zero Dark Thirty)
Mekia Cox (Undercovers)
Austin O’Brien (The Lawnmower Man)
George Wyner (American Pie 2)
Ethan Phillips (Bad Santa)
Ian Reed Kesler (2 broke Girls)
Sean Blakemore (Star Trek Into Darkness)
Indira Varma (Game of Thrones)
Carla Gallo (Superbad)
Elizabeth Lackey (Heroes)
Jill wagner (Blade: The Series)
Richard Grant (Rocky V)
Dean Norris (Breaking Bad)
Devon Gaye (Dexter)
Adam Rose(Veronica Mars)
Michael Grant Terry (Cold Case)
Joel David Moore (Julia X)
David Gallagher (7th Heaven)
Bruce Thomas (Legally Blonde)
Blake Shields (Heroes)
Jonathan LaPaglia (Seven Days)
Nichole Hiltz (Smallville)
Eric Lange (Lost)
Brendan Fehr (Roswell)
Gina Torres (Firefly)
Ryan Cartwright (Alphas)
Mageina Tovah (Spider-Man 2 & 3)
Andy Ritcher (Arrested Development)
Stephen Lee (The Negotiator)
Bianca Lawson (Buffy)
Nathan West (The SKulls 2)
Marisa Coughlan (Super Troopers)
Noel Fisher (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2014)
Deirdre Lovejoy (American Gothic)
Tara Buck (True Blood)
Zachary Knighton (Flashforward)
Christine Lakin (Family Guy)
Kayla Ewell (The Vampire Diaries)
Pej Vahdat (Lie To Me)
Spencer Breslin (Wonderfalls)
Dana Davis (Heroes)
Audrey Wasilewski (Pushing Daisies)
John Pyper-Ferguson (Caprica)
Linda Hart (The Insider)
Mayim Bialik (The Big Bang Theory)
Tania Raymonde (Texas Chainsaw)
Brian Tee (Jurassic World)
Bumper Robinson (Sabrina: TTW)
Jaimie Alexander (Thor)]
Rick Peters (Veronica Mars)
Edwin Hodge (The Purge)
Ryan Pinkston (Bad Santa)
Scottie Thompson (Skyline)
Seth MacFarlane (Ted)
Cyndi Lauper (Girls Just Want To Have Fun)
Michael Arden (Anger Management)
Christopher B. Duncan (Veronica Mars)
Riki Lindhome (Million Dollar Baby)
Tiffany Hines (Lie To Me)
Billy Gardell (Mike & Molly)
Josie Davis (Sonny)
Amy Gumenick (Arrow)
Diedrich Bader (Vampires Suck)
Andy Umberger (Angel)
Tracy Middendorf (Scream: The Series)
Dan Castellaneta (The Simpsons)
Debbie Lee Carrington (Total Recall)
Wynn Everett (Agent Carter)
Martin Klebba (The Cape)
Lindsay Hollister (Blubberella)
Ralph Waite (The Waltons)
Nakia Burrise (Power Rangers Turbo)
Mickey Jones (V)
Dorian Missick (The Cape)
Zooey Deschanel (New Girl)
Dale Dickey (My Name Is Earl)
Penny Johnson Jerald (Star Trek DS9)
Richard T. Jones (Terminator: TSCC)
Rusty Schwimmer (Highlander 2)
Henri Lubatti (Angel)
Joshua Malina (The Big Bang Theory)
Clea DuVall (The Faculty)
Ben Falcone (New Girl)
Robert Englund (A Nightmare on Elm Street)
Victor Webster (Mutant X)
Ravil Isyanov (Alias)
Rena Sofer (Heroes)
Michael Des Barres (Ghoulies)
Jillian Bach (Two Guys and a Girl)
Kate Vernon (Battlestar Galactica)
Wade Williams (Buffy)
Dylan Bruno (The Rage: Carrie 2)
Danielle Bisutti (Curse of Chucky)
Justina Machado (Final Destination 2)
Bobby Hosea (Xena)
Karina Logue (Bates Motel)
Katheryn Winnick (Vikings)
B.J. Britt (Agents of SHIELD)
Antonio Sabato Jr (Lois & CLark)
David Alan Grier (Jumanji)
Thomas Kopache (Catch Me If You Can)
Greg Cipes (Anger Management)
Kelly Stables (Two and a Half Men)
Wayne Knight (3rd Rock The Sun)
Enrico Colantoni (Veronica Mars)
Francis Capra (Heroes)
Arnold Vosloo (The Mummy)
Matthew John Armstrong (Heroes)
Laura Regan (Minority Report TV)
Leslie-Anne Huff (The Vampire Diaries)
Marisa Ramirez (Spartacus: Gods of The Arena)
Michael Welch (All The Boys Lvoe Mandy Lane)
Sarah Baker (Mike & Molly)
Saffron Burrows (Agents of SHIELD)
Danny Trejo (Machete)
Michael Clarke Duncan (Sin City)
Mini Anden (Chuck)
Suzie Plakson (Red Eye)
Geoff Stults (Wedding Crashers)
Carlo Rota (Stargate Universe)
Sean O’Bryan (Roswell)
McKenzie Applegate (Torchwood)
Luke Kleintank (The Man In The High Castle)
John Ross Bowie (The Big Bang Theory)
Morgan Fairchild (Chuck)
Tina Majorino (Veronica Mars)
Chrlie Weber (Buffy)
Andrew Leeds (Cult)
Jessica Tuck (Super 8)
Pruitt Taylor Vince (Heroes Reborn)
Neil Hopkins (Lost)
Jennifer O’Dell (The Lost World)
William Sanderson (Blade Runner)
J.p. Manoux (Birds of Prey)
John Ducey (Sabrina: TTW)
Rosalind Chao (Star TRek: DS9)
Scott Lowell (Queer as Folk)
Reed Diamond (Dollhouse)
Alexandra Holden (The Hot Chick)
Drew Powell (Gotham)
Lori Alan (Family Guy)
Danielle Panabaker (The Flash)
Abraham Benrubi (Buffy)
Charlayne Woodard (Unbreakable)
Brad William Henke (Fury)
Henry Simmons (Agents of SHIELD)
Vik Sahay (Chuck)
Larry Poindexter (Blade: The Series)
Tamlyn Tomita (Highlander: The Series)
Brooke Langton (The Net: The Series)
Brian Klugman (Cloverfield)
Danny Woodburn (Watchmen)
Ntare Guma Mbaho Mwine (Queen of Katwe)
J.D. Walsh (Two and a Half Men)
Nishi Munshi (The Originals)
Curtis Armstrong (New Girl)
Dave Thomas (Rat Race)
Allison Scagliotti (Warehouse 13)
Danielle Harris (urban Legend)
Joanna Cassidy (Blade Runner)
Kenneth Mitchell (Odyssey 5)
Alimi Ballard (Sabrina: TTW)
Sarah Stouffer (Chastity Bites)
Mather Zickel (The Cape)
Kathleen York (Crash)
Alastair Duncan (The Batman)
Freddie Prinze Jr (Scooby-Doo)
John Ratzenberger (Cheers)
Millicent Martin (Alfie)
Rebecca McFarland (Two and a Half Men)
Angela Alvarado (Freedom Writers)
Joaquim de Almeida (Desperado)
Loren Lester (Batman: TAS)
Nora Dunn (New Girl)
Margo Harshman (The Big Bang Theory)
Ben Lawson (No Strings Attached)
Bonnie Root (Coming Soon)
Kelly Rutherford (Gossip Girl)
Chad Donnella (Smallville)
Robert Picardo (Stargate: Atlantis)
Chris Browning (Supergirl)
Nazneen Contractor (Heroes Reborn)
Ignacio Serricchio (The Wedding Ringer)
Elizabeth Ann Bennett (The Passing)
Courntey Gains (Children of The Corn)
Sam Anderson (Lost)
Rance Howard (Angel)
JD Cullum (Glory)
Laura Spencer (The Big Bang Theory)
Francois Chau (Lost)
Gil Bellows (Flashforward)
Sean Marquette (All My Children)
Chastity Dotson (Veronica Mars)
Steven Williams (Jason Goes to Hell)
Nathaniel Buzolic (The Originals)
Jason Gray-Stanford (Monk)
Jeremy Ratchford (Cold Case)
Vito D’Ambrosio (The Flash 90s)
Kurt Fuller (Midnight In Paris)
Taylor Spreitler (Melissa & Joey)

Bones very quickly garnered rave reviews and amassed a loyal following. Bones is loosely inspired by real life forensic anthropologist and author Kathy Reichs. This funny, clever, sometimes gross, and totally addictive crime drama centers around forensic anthropologist Dr. Temperence Brennan (Emily Deschanel), who toils out of the Jeffersonian Institution and, on the side, writes mysteries starring her fictional heroine (and here’s the twist) Kathy Reichs. Because Brennan has an almost supernatural ability to generate accurate assumptions based on her examination of the corpse’s bones, she is often consulted by the FBI on difficult, seemingly unsolvable cases. She is frequently partnered by brash wiseacre FBI Special Agent Seely Booth (David Boreanaz), who seems to hold a bias against science and those who practice in that field. It’s Booth who breezily saddles Brennan with the nickname “Bones.” Naturally intuitive and freewheeling, Booth immediately is at odds with the clinically analytical Brennan. But, despite their personality clashes, and with the aid of Brennan’s gifted and quirky colleagues, the cases do get solved.

It’s no great secret that the palpable chemistry between Deschanel and Boreanaz is what actually propels the show and is what separates it from the other, more formulaic, dispassionate crime dramas. Every week, fans tune in for the leads’ deliciously caustic banter more so than for the weekly dose of mystery. You see, the mystery jones can be fixed by viewing any other one of the gazillion forensic dramas so currently prevalent on the airwaves. So the mystery is basically the MacGuffin that drives the show forward. But the cantankerous chemistry – that palpable “something” between the two leads as they hilariously bicker and wrangle – is definitely unique to this show.
Emily Deschanel is a find. I haven’t seen her before but she’s awfully good and ingratiating enough with her acerbic character. She imbues Brennan with a cooly detached yet vulnerable and lonely quality that intrigues and endears her to the fans. Her social awkwardness and pop culture ignorance are also quite charming. It’s pretty funny that a mention made regarding a pop culture reference almost always elicits a response of “I don’t know what that means” from the clueless Bones. And, of course, her expertise in the martial arts doesn’t detract from her allure.

And David Boreanaz. Yeah, I found it difficult going, at first, watching him in a new role, seeing as how I’m a fan of Buffy and Angel. But it helps that Booth isn’t much like our vampire with a soul. This ex-Army Ranger Special Agent is breezy, personable, and outgoing, not brooding, tortured, and introspective like Angelus. So, the transition, while disconcerting for me, was ultimately smooth enough. Boreanaz brings such command, self-assurance and charm to his character that I bought into it soon enough.
My favorite episodes are the pilot episode, where we are introduced to the cast; “The Man in the Fallout Shelter” – the team is quarantied together in the Jeffersonian during Christmas and we learn personal stuff about the characters; “Two Bodies in the Lab” – character development galore in this episode as Brennan dates on-line and is targeted while she works on two cases; “The Superhero in the Alley” – a decomposed body is found wearing a superhero costume; and “The Woman in Limbo” – a gripping, emotional season finale as Brennan discovers shocking facts about her parents.

The start of the season sees a new boss, Cam, arrive at the Institute. Not only is she very hands on, she is a former love of Booth, and Tempe and Cam do not hit it off in the early episodes. The new character is well written and softens as the season progresses until it is hard to imagine the team without her input. Meantime Zac undergoes a make-over in order to secure a permanent place on the staff once he gains his doctorate, and Hodkins and Angela begin a tentative office romance.
Booth and Brennan continue to spar verbally with each other and some of their exchanges will have you laughing out loud. When a fellow agent, Sully, begins a relationship with Tempe, Booth’s feelings are confused – but as is observed, Tempe “is rubbish at being a girl” and her own complicated life does not bode well for a permanent relationship. Tempe continues to put her foot in it socially, particularly when a case involves Booth’s Catholic religion.

Among the classy episodes are ‘The Girl with the Curl’ about child beauty Queens, (with a wonderful scene of Tempe trying to talk to a group of 8 year olds at a dance class!), ‘Aliens in a Spaceship’ which has Tempe and Hodgkins buried alive by a serial killer, and ‘The Headless Witch in the Woods’ which has more than a nod to The Blair Witch Project. Guest stars this season include Stephen Fry as a laid back, insightful Psychiatrist whom Booth must see after he shoots an ice cream van, and Ryan O’Neal as Tempe’s estranged and mysterious father whose elusive character comes into his own when Booth is targetted by the Mob. And, once again, Angela’s instantly recognisable father – from ZZ Top – pops up!

BONES keeps on keeping on. Two excellent seasons under its belt, and a truncated Season 3 (damn you, writers’ strike!) finally all wrapped up, and predictably, these are good episodes, as well. But only fifteen of them! As Season 3’s first episode (“The Widow’s Son in the Windshield”) opens up, we learn that Bones has been reluctant to go in the field with Booth and she won’t say why. However, a head flung off a bridge forces her to reconnect with Booth. This episode also begins a new serial killer arc, this one being particularly even more gristly and diabolical than most, and of which resolution later down the season would have tragic consequences.

Season 3 doles out several other subplots. As per the startling news learned at the altar from Season 2’s finale, Angela is already married. An ongoing story arc becomes Hodgins and Angela’s search for her long-time but vaguely remembered husband. “The Secret of the Soil” introduces Dr. Sweets, a 22 year old psychotherapist assigned to counsel Bones and Booth, this stemming from the FBI’s concern due to Booth having arrested Bones’ father. These sessions are generally funny stuff as, mostly, Booth can’t help but treat Sweets like a kid. Plus, these scenes tend to open things up even more between Bones and Booth.

I’ve a couple of Season 3 favorites. “The Widow’s Son in the Windshield” introduces the cannibalistic Gormogon killer, which would become a key ongoing story arc of the season. “Mummy in the Maze” is a very neat Halloween show, wherein Booth’s shameful phobia is unveiled and Bones’s costume is…simply awesome. “The Knight on the Grid” is a taut thriller as the Gormagon killer returns, this time with a personal vendetta against Bones and Booth. And “The Santa in the Slush” is a standout sentimental episode and provides one of the best moments in the series as Bones cuts a deal to have Christmas brought to her incarcerated father and brother. Cool ending, too. “The Baby in the Bough” has Bones forced to babysit an infant involved with a case (you see the potential, right?). Meanwhile, “The Wannabe in the Weeds” (in which Zach and Bones both sing) and “The Pain in the Heart” are striking for their ability to stun the audience, even if the latter episode definitely had a rushed feeling to it. I feel that the after-effects of “The Wannabe in the Weeds” should’ve been developed further in “The Pain in the Heart.” In fact, “The Pain in the Heart” – which wraps up the Gormogon killer storyline and, by the way, will upset busloads of fans.
The cases are still bizarre and the corpses borderline grotesque. But the draw remains Emily Deschanel and David Boreanaz, and that electric “thing” between them. These two still get aces in chemistry, and are still the smokingest hot couple on television. Emily Deschanel continues to nail her role of Temperance “Bones” Brennan. And while her character might’ve loosened up a little bit (not too much), there’s still that endearing naivette and vulnerability which peek out occasionally. And, of course, her refreshing bluntness (some call it social awkwardness) has never left. Boreanaz, he’s just a great leading man. Confident and charming, bristling with machismo, yet with a sensitive side. His unveiling of his Christmas present to Bones in “The Santa in the Slush” is one of the best, most touching scenes of the season.

World-renowned forensic anthropologist Temperance “Bones” Brennan is as brusque and tactless as ever, as confounded by the subtleties of social decorum as ever (or as Sweets exclaims: “She is wicked literal!”). Bones is still very much that intimidating icy intellect, still a wounded soul, and still solving murders. FBI Special Agent Seeley Booth is still the one with the people skills and that well-developed bump of intuition. More onions are peeled in this season as we learn even more about the underpinnings of our core characters. The absolute big draw of this show is that sizzle between David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel, their fabulous interplay tantalizing and frustrating the viewers. Could this be the season that they get together? Well, kind of, sort of. Taking what the show is giving, I wallow in their ever evolving relationship.

Staying on the personal, Hodgins and Angela are trying to move past their break-up. “The Skull in the Sculpture” demonstrates that Angela is more ready to move on than Hodgins, and if you thought Angela was a free spirit before, well, now… This episode also has Sweets demonstrating the best way ever to fire someone. Young FBI psychologist Lance Sweets, by the way, becomes a regular cast member in this season, and I like him more and more as each episode progresses, even if Booth and Bones continually treat him like a pesky little brother. Even Dr. Saroyan’s past is delved into.

Zack Addy, apprentice to the Gormagon Killer, has been institutionalized, which doesn’t keep him from strolling out to help the squints on a baffling case. Still, this gives rise to a running theme, that of the rotating roster of interns as Saroyan and Bones attempt to fill Zack’s spot, and the fun thing is that each of these interns comes with baggage. There’s the morbid one, the excessively chirpy one, the one constantly dispensing trivia, etc. The most martyred one may well be that repressed intern who insists on keeping things professional at all times – except that, the squints being a tight bunch, he keeps getting exposed to a deluge of innuendo and gossip in the workplace.

There isn’t really a running mystery arc to tie these episodes together – no one like the Gormagon Killer running around, for example. But that doesn’t mean that the cases aren’t gripping; some of them are really interesting. The season opens with “Yanks in the U.K.”  which plants Brennan and Booth in jolly old England, investigating a murder and running into a British version of themselves. In “The Passenger in the Oven” Bones and Booth are on a flight bound to China and have only four hours to solve a murder before the plane lands and Booth loses jurisdiction. “Double Trouble in the Panhandle” has Booth and Bones infiltrating the Big Top as “Buck & Wanda and their Knives of Death,” and their circus act is actually fraught with more suspense than in just about any other scene in this season.

Some other favorites? In “The Double Death of the Dearly Departed,” Bones and Booth steal a corpse due for cremation from a funeral home, Bones believing that the body had been “translated,” which is Booth’s made-up code for murder. “Mayhem on a Cross” unveils some dark stuff about Sweets’ past, this episode also featuring the return of the awesome Stephen Fry as FBI shrink Gordon Gordon Wyatt. It also had me cracking up whenever Bones insisted on correctly pronouncing “skalle” (the Norwegian word for “skull”). “The Hero in the Hold” features the return of the Grave Digger serial killer. “The Princess and the Pear” plonks Bones and Booth’s temp replacement in the world of comic book conventions, and Bones finally gets another chance to flash her martial arts mojo.
Image result for bones the critic in the cabernetIn “The Critic in the Cabernet” Bones drops a bomb on Booth and Booth gets advice from a cartoon character, a frivolous conceit which goes on to have a terrifying payoff. Finally Season 4 closes with a quirky fantasy episode featuring a re-shuffling of roles. In this reality, Dr. Saroyan and Booth’s brother are homicide detectives and Booth and Bones are a married couple who run a nightclub and who end up as suspects in a murder case. It’s neat that just about everyone is in this one.

At the beginning of the fifth season of the wildly popular forensic drama “Bones,” many viewers tuned in trepidatiously after the spectacularly strange fourth season finale. Thankfully, all fears were allayed and relieved when the fifth season kicked into high gear in the very first episode and maintained that pace throughout the season; “Bones”‘ fifth season is perhaps its greatest yet.
The one thing that has always set “Bones” apart from the countless other procedurals on the airwaves right now is the focus on the characters solving the crimes rather than the crimes themselves, and the strength of this approach shines through brilliantly in every episode of this season.
David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel return to the roles of Booth and Bones and deliver their strongest performances yet as each character is shaken to their core. As Booth struggles to regain his sense of self, he has to confront the knowledge of his feelings for his partner, while Bones herself goes through a whirlwind of emotion as the emotional barriers she has erected around her heart begin to crumble down, leaving her questioning not only herself but her relationship with Booth as well as her work at the Jeffersonian itself. The tension between the two has never been more delicious or more addictive, and both lead actors knock their roles absolutely out of the park.
But while the relationship between Booth and Brennan becomes increasingly more complex, the wonderful supporting cast of engaging characters at the Jeffersonian keep the show moving along briskly and lightly. Cam (Tamara Taylor) must run the lab while dealing with the challenge of being a good mother, guiding the team effectively toward each conclusion; Sweets (John Francis Daley) continues to provide invaluable insight into the minds of the team; Angela (Michaela Conlin) remains the emotional heart and soul of the team as she opens her heart to love’s possibilities; and Hodgins (TJ Thyne) struggles with his feelings for Angela as he returns to his abrasive, loveable self.

The cases themselves have regained a fascinating light as the mysteries the team confronts become more complex, and the special effects department has outdone themselves in the gore and goop department this year as Booth and Bones investigate some of the most gruesome crime scenes in history, all moved along by the brisk black humor the show excels at; the team investigates a possible secret agent locked in a truck for days, a would-be rocker torn to pieces by an industrial washer/dryer, a gamer literally melted in a vat of fast-food grease, and a dozen more cheerfully disgusting cases where the outcomes of the mysteries hold the power to shock and surprise the audience; the writers have once again caught the perfect balance between the whodunnit and the drama to craft a truly unique show. But it’s not merely the cases that hold the viewers’ attention this season; season five is full of true powerhouse episodes: heartbreaking cases like “The Plain in the Prodigy”; darkly comical shows like “The Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”; truly shocking mysteries like “The Proof in the Pudding,”; and even a historically fascinating case written by the author of the original Temperance Brennan novels Kathy Reichs herself (“The Witch in the Wardrobe”) — however, all of these merely lead up to the three knockout moments of the season:
In the fifth season, “Bones” reaches its 100th episode, “The Parts in the Sum of the Whole.” Likely the most beloved and most contested episode in the show’s history, the 100th episode completely redefined Booth and Brennan’s relationship as it showed the viewers the pair’s first meeting, something never before revealed, and circles around to one of the most hearbreaking and yet most powerfully hopeful moments of the series. “Parts” was also directed by David Boreanaz, one of the series’ leads, and the sheer emotion wrung out of Boreanaz and Deschanel by the end speaks volumes to the talent of the show’s leads.
As the series continues, however, the characters were shocked to their cores as they were forced to come face-to-face with their most terrifying adversary yet: the cunningly frightening sociopath dubbed The Gravedigger, in “The Boy with the Answer,” a nail-bitingly tense hour of television that had viewers’ hearts pounding as Heather Taffet, the Gravedigger, proved that her true arena was the courtroom, tearing apart her victims and throwing the entire future of Brennan’s life into question.
This only segues into the season’s amazingly dramatic finale, “The Beginning in the End.” As the team investigates the home of a hoarder, Bones questions what she truly wants to do with her life, Booth’s past comes calling, and Angela’s father blows back into town, all leading to a truly shocking season ender, a masterful finale that not only redefined the very foundations of the show and the characters but also continued to set the show on a rising point, ensuring that every faithful viewer of “Bones” will be frantically waiting for the sixth season to premiere in the fall.

To resuscitate a dead team out of their scattered disappearance is not an easy task. Luckily the DA in Washington DC is a powerful woman, stubborn and resolute, and she generally gets what she wants. So she brought Agent Booth back from Afghanistan, and Temperance Brennan, aka Bones, from the exotic place where she was trying to get some archaeologically interesting bones with Daisy, Dr Sweet’s girl friend, and Dr Sweet from his hideout somewhere in Paris where he was having a showbiz career as a cabaret singer. They all come back, change clothes and back in the business in a jiffy. Angela and Dr Hodgins are also back though from not so far away and Angela is pregnant.
As usual one case per episode, clean and neat, always dealing with a lot of bones, gross and dirty, soaked in a lot of decomposed muck with a tremendous number of maggots, worms and other corpse parasites. A series not to watch while eating anything more delicate than dry cookies.
Angela and Dr Hodgins have a full plate with the pregnancy and the delivery of the baby. For them that’s enough and that will require some help from a friendly psychiatrist because it is hard for the father not to become overprotective and it is hard for the mother to accept the physical handicap this pregnancy may represent. Yet they decided that working with the people they are used to work and live with was the best thing for the pregnancy, the mother and the child. Angela was not alone at any moment of her days or nights.
Agent Booth brought a journalist back from Afghanistan, a sort of love substitute for Temperance. But will that not cause some problems, like conflicting interests between the two professions? And Booth with his own son is already very busy in life. Will that new woman in the picture be able to cope with a child, what’s more the child of another woman? And the question of marriage will come up sooner or later and how are the two going to react to that eventuality? Probably not very well, maybe not too bad. A decision that is always difficult to take for someone who is constantly in the field of police investigation and for a journalist just back from a war zone.

You have the interns still rotating, the four of them. They are the surprise of each episode because they are so different and they can be so funny, though at times they are just funny for us because they are mismatched with what is happening around them, but that’s what interns are all about. Unluckily one will end up very badly. That’s not the first case, but so far none had ended up that badly. But a song will carry him through: lime and coconut, sung in a chorus all together, mellow and heart stirring.
There will be a case that will run over the whole season, the case of a sniper who had been a colleague and friend of Booth in Afghanistan and who came back slightly berserk and decided that what he did over there was good enough for the USA too and he started killing those who were rotten, and those who were in his way for his type of justice and these were only collateral victims for him, hence justified by the end. It will take the whole team to stop him and it will bring a lot of suffering and even mourning to that team.

This refreshingly different season of Bones is gearing up to be one of the series’ best! It is just the reinvigoration the show needed! Life has changed at the Jeffersonian since we last saw our favorite crime-solvers. After last season’s pregnancy bombshell of an ender, we pick up with forensic anthropologist Dr. Temperance Brennan entering her third trimester, hormones all over the place as she bumbles in that adorable way that only Brennan can into the frightening role of motherhood. As always, her partner FBI Agent Seeley Booth is there by her side, more loving and more happy than we’ve ever seen him.

I think David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel slipped into this new relationship quite easily. What’s great is that not a lot has changed, and yet, everythinghas. They live together, they’re planning on buying a house, they kiss and cuddle on the couch and Booth croons to Brennan’s belly in the cutest baby voice you will ever hear… and yet, they’re still “Booth and Bones”. They still solve murders. They still bicker good-naturedly over everything under the sun.

They banter. They get overprotective. They make mistakes- and own up to them after. They’re like any new couple expecting a child. But are they normal? Far from it, because at its core, Bones is still the same show: a journey of love between two very different people… one a woman who views the world through utmost rationalism and who is still learning how to open her heart; the other a man who relies on instincts and gut feeling to do his job, and who lets faith and emotion drive his personal life. Both coming from traumatic pasts and both craving a new beginning.That, and the other characters are still as charming and as “comedic gold” as ever. Hodgins and Angela’s baby situation juxtaposes nicely with Booth and Brennan’s, Cam struggles with keeping the workplace professional, there’s a new intern, a new recurring villain, and other familiar faces return.

The end of the seventh season of “Bones” left Bones on the run with her infant child after being framed for murder by the highly skilled serial killer Christopher Pelant. The opening of the eighth season finds Booth and her colleagues at the Jeffersonian Institute trying to clear her name. Fortunately for the series, they succeed, although Pelant eludes justice to pose a future threat. This eighth season continues to feature crime-of-the-week murders for Bones, Booth, and the Jeffersonian lab rats to solve through clever forensics and Booth’s old-fashioned police work. One of the most interesting episodes is told through the eyes of the murder victim, with the assistance of a psychic (a well-cast Cindy Lauper). Another standout episode involves a group effort to resolve a cold case whose victim turns out to be a forgotten hero of the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon.

Outside the lab, Bones has an uncomfortable but touching period of readjustment to living with Booth, after her time on the run. Her changed perspective will lead to some of the most interesting conversations as she and Booth commute to crime scenes. Just to complicate things, staff psychiatrist Dr. Sweets will temporarily move in with the couple right after he breaks up with girlfriend Daisy, a technician in the lab. Series regulars Angela and Hodgins will have their own challenges as working parents. The continuing parade of interns through the Jeffersonian crime lab will feature in several episodes, and one of them will become a surprising emotional complication for Dr. Saroyan. Christopher Pelant will return to menace the team in a gut-wrenching season finale.

“Bones” returns for a welcome ninth season with its core cast, clever plots, and sense of humor intact. Forensic anthropologist Dr. Temperance “Bones” Brennan and her crack team of specialists at the Jeffersonian Institute continue to work with their FBI liaison, Special Agent Seeley Booth, on new and challenging criminal cases. First, however, the team will have to resolve their long-running, lethal battle with cyber-genius serial killer Christopher Pelant, who has stayed one step ahead of them while inflicting pain on each member of the cast.
When we last saw the team, they had barely survived their most recent encounter with Pelant. In a final twist of spite, Pelant blackmailed Booth into withdrawing his marriage proposal to Bones, while forbidding him to reveal the reason why. Booth’s promise puts a strain on his relationship with Bones. He will reach out to old Army buddies, including a CIA agent and a former priest turned bartender, for advice. Pelant has his own plan for separating Bones from Bones from Booth, permanently. The entire team will have to be on its mettle to head off Pelant’s insidious plot.
The ninth season continues to feature crime of the week murders for Bones, Booth, and the Jeffersonian lab rats to solve. One episode will have Booth and Bones resurrecting their undercover “Tony” and “Roxie” identities for a hilarious marriage retreat in which they talk all too frankly about their relationship. Psychologist Dr. Sweets will take a leave of absence to work in an outreach center, only to find himself drawn back into a gut-wrenching case involving a gang feud. As in past seasons, other members of the team, including Lab boss Dr. Saroyan, Dr. Hodgins, Angela, and the interns will have their moments in the spotlight.
The biggest highlight is the Woman in White, featuring the  wedding of the two leads after nine years they final tie the knot.

In the 10th season of Bones, suspense is at an all-time high as Seeley Booth (David Boreanaz) is framed and jailed for the murder of three FBI agents while Temperance Brennan (Emily Deschanel) considers committing blackmail to get him out of prison.


The new season brings some changes. The team will lose a key player at a dramatic moment early in the season, and have to work in a replacement after an emotional farewell. Another primary character will develop a emotional bond with one of the rotational lab interns, one that threatens their official relationship. Still another will strike it rich, a couple of season after having been cleaned out by a particularly nasty serial killer. Yet another character will revisit a gambling habit that threatens a job and a relationship. And, one key character will become pregnant. And those events are just character development. There is a fresh lot of challenging cases that will need solving.

Those week to week cases continue to be innovative and interesting, challenging the team and the viewer to keep up. At the same time, the series hasn’t lost its sense of humor, or its willingness to experiment. As an example, you just have to see this season’s throwback Hitchcock episode. “Bones” is still good fun and recommended to its loyal fans in its tenth season.

REVIEW: BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES – VOLUME 1-4

Image result for batman the animated series logoMAIN CAST (VOICES)

Kevin Conroy (Batman: The Killing Joke)
Loren Lester (Flashforward)
Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. (Hot Shots)
Bob Hastings (General Hospital)
Robert Costanzo (Dick Tracy)
Melissa Gilbert (Zoya)
Tara Strong (Sabrina Goes To Rome)
Mathew Valencia (Lawnmower Man 2)Image result for batman the animatedRECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Adrienne Barbeau (Swamp Thing)
Kate Mulgrew (Star Trek: Voyager)
Neil Ross (Centurions)
Frank Welker (The Simpsons)
Richard Moll (Scary Movie 2)
Lloyd Bochner (Point Blank)
Marc Singer (V)
Rene Auberjonois (Star Trek:DS9)
Meredith MacRae (Petticoat Junction)
Michael Ansara (The Message)
Mark Hamill (Star Wars)
Mari Devon (Howl’s Moving Castle)
Brock Peters (To Kill A Mockingbird)
Ed Begley Jr. (Veronica Mars)
Ron Perlman (Hellboy)
Edward Asner (Up)
Josh Keaton (Green Lantern: TAS)
Arleen Sorkin (Days of Our Lives)
Diane Pershing (Centourions)
Ingrid Oliu (Real Women Have Curves)
Henry Polic II (Webster)
Tim Curry (IT)
Diana Muldaur (Star Trek: TNG)
Alan Rachins (LA Law)
Linda Gary (He-Man)
John Vernon (Dirty Harry)
Lindsay Crouse (Buffy)
Paul Williams (Adventure Time)
Aron Kincaid (Freakazoid!)
Heather Locklear (Return of Swamp Thing)
Roddy McDowall (Planet of The Apes)
John Rhys-Davies (Lord of The Rings)
Adam West (Batman 60s)
Treat Williams (The Phantom)
Seth Green (Family Guy)
Brian George (The Big Bang Theory)
Harry Hamlin Clash of The Titans)
Peter Scolari (Gotham)
William Sanderson (Blade Runner)
Leslie Easterbrook (The Devil’s Rejects)
John Glover (Smallville)
Ernie Hudson (Ghostbusters)
David Warner (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
Helen Slater (Supergirl)
Michael York (Logans Run)
George Dzunda (Crimson Tide)
John De Lancie (Star Trek: TNG)
Matt Frewer (Watchmen)
Robert Picardo (Stargate: Atlantis)
Maurice LaMarche (Futurama)
Julie Brown (Earth Girls Are Easy)
Vincent Schiavelli (Batman Returns)
Michael Gross (Familt Ties)
Elisabeth Moss (Mad men)
Jean Smart (Designing Women)
Earl Boen (The Terminator)
Vernee Watson (The Big Bang Theory)
Marica Wallace (The Simpsons)
Marilu henner (Two and A Half Men)
LeVar Burton (Star Trek: TNG)
Nichelle Nichols (Star Trek)
Stephanie Zimbalist (The Story Lady)
Dick Miller (Gremlins)
Henry Silva (Ocean’s Eleven)
Jason Marsden (Full House)
Tress MacNeille (Futurama)
Andrea Martin (Anastasia)
Grant Shaud (Murphy Brown)
Bruce Weitz (Hill Street Blues)
Hector Elizondo (The Princess Diaries)
Jeffrey Jones (Howard The Duck)
Roy Dotrice (Beauty and The Beast)
Corey Burton (Critters)
Cree Summer (Batman Beyond)
Lauren Tom (Futurama)
Jeffrey Combs (Gotham)
Billy Barty (Masters of The Universe)
Tippi Hedren (The Birds)
Bumper Robinson (Sabrina: TTW)
Billy Zane (Zoolander)
Mark Rolstan (Alias)
Michael Ironside (Total Recall)
Michael McKean (Smallville)
Nicholle Tom (Gotham)
Lori Petty (Tank Girl)
Linda Hamilton (Chuck)
Billy West (Futurama)

Debuting on Fox in 1992, Batman: The Animated Series was immensely successful, garnering immense critical praise, taking home an Emmy for Outstanding Animated Program, and continuing in various forms for several years and well over a hundred episodes.First, the series is written and produced by people with a fundamental understanding of what makes the comics work, particularly during its peak in the ’70s under Dennis O’Neal and Neal Adams. As a long-time comics fanatic, it’s always welcome to see names like Gerry Conway and Marv Wolfman flash across the screen, and in the intervening years, Paul Dini and Bruce Timm have made their own impact on the four-color world. The tone is dark but not hopelessly grim, and the scripts don’t inundate viewers with patently obvious exposition or villainous cackling. It’s intelligently written and, while appropriate for a wide range of ages, doesn’t pander to a younger audience. I started watching Batman when it first debuted on Fox in 1992, and I appreciate it every bit as much now as a 34-year-old adult. The writers don’t shackle themselves to comic continuity, and their revisions are frequently more compelling than any other form in which we’ve seen Batman’s rogue’s gallery. Third-stringers like the Clock King and Clayface are given heavily revised origins and almost unrecognizable characterizations that are far more interesting than any other take on them.Batman boasts visuals that are as strong as the writing behind them. It’s incredibly dark; despite its Saturday morning/weekday afternoon origins, this is a series that greatly benefits from being watched at night with the lights off. The character designs are angular and exaggerated, in contrast to the rounded, ’40s-inspired props and backgrounds that further establish the distinctive, timeless look of the show. The detail and fluidity of the animation vary from episode to episode, but the better installments are almost jaw-dropping.

Following the visuals of the series, the next obvious subject to tackle is how it sounds. For me, Batman’s tone is one of the elements that really sets it apart from most every other animated series, and contributing greatly to that is the orchestral score in each episode. The series also has a phenomenal roster of talent contributing its voices. The main group — Kevin Conroy as the definitive Batman, Efrem Zimbalist Jr. as Alfred, Bob Hastings as Commissioner Gordon — just nail their parts with complete perfection. Very recognizable names also contribute to villains and assorted supporting characters. A complete list would be prohibitively long, but some of the more notable actors and actresses from these episodes are Michael Ansara, Ed Asner, Adrienne Barbeau, Ed Begley Jr., Mark Hamill, David L. Lander, Heather Locklear, Kevin McCarthy, Roddy McDowall, Richard Moll, Kate Mulgrew, Ron Perlman, Alan Rachins, Marc Singer, Jeffrey Tambor, John Vernon, Adam West, and Paul Williams. The campy live action series from the ’60s also drew heavily from established Hollywood talent, but the difference here is that the actors don’t draw attention to themselves as stars.

This set has the show at the absolute top of its form. There isn’t a lame show in the bunch, and many of the episodes in this set are destine to become classics. Prechance to Dream, the second show in the set, is a wonderful look at what might have happened if Bruce Wayne’s parents hadn’t been killed. After being knock out while chasing some crooks, Bruce wakes up at home, uncertain as to how he got there. He’s surprised to find that the entrance to the Batcave is blocked, but even more astonished to discover that his mother and father are still alive. Bruce must figure out what going on, but in doing so, he knows he’ll ruin the happiness that he’s discovered.AlmostGot ‘im, probably my favorite show of the series. This story takes place during a “villain’s night out” where Batman’s main enemies aren’t committing crimes. They are all sitting around a table in a bar playing poker, relaxing. While talking, the conversation turns to Batman of corse. Like a group of fisherman swapping stories, each crook takes a turn telling the time that they were closest to killing Batman. The little vignettes were all full of action, and the framing story was very funny. A great combination, with an excellent ending line.
The Batman’s background story takes is fleshed out in a couple of episodes too. His early training plays an important part in Night of the Ninja, and I Am the Night introduces Dr. Leslie Thompkins who is an important person from when Bruce was young. Viewers get to find out just where the Batmoblie came from in The Mechanic, a great show that explains some aspects of Batman’s world that usually gets glossed over. Robin’s origin is recounted in Robin’s Reckoning, a two part story which won an Emmy. This story examines the bond between Batman and Robin, and why the Dark Knight agreed to raise a young boy.
The writing on the show is top notch. The show doesn’t dumb itself down to appeal to a young audience, the creators thought that if you have well written intelligent stories, kids would be attracted. They were right but the show also appeals to adults for the same reason.

One of the things Batman: The Animated Series does particularly well is infuse its villains with personality. They’re not a rotation of thugs with a different gimmick and costume each week — the writers go to great lengths to humanize these characters, and although they’re still unambiguously the bad guys, they still manage to be sympathetic at times. “His Silicon Soul”, following up on the two-part “Heart of Steel” from the previous collection, features a robotic duplicate of Batman unable to come to grips with the realization that he’s a machine.

The title character of “Baby-Doll” was created especially for the series. Think Webster with the race and gender reversed; Mary Louise Dahl was in her twenties but looked like a three-year-old, and she cashed in on that rare disability with a successful and hopelessly bland sitcom. An ill-advised career move derailed her as an actress, and a decade later, she’s systematically kidnapped all of her former co-stars in an attempt to reclaim those happy years. Again, as outlandish as the premise might sound, it really does work. You might smirk at reading about a teary-eyed Baby Doll attempting to fire an already-emptied doll-shaped pistol into a funhouse mirror, but the immeasurably talented writers are gifted enough to eke more pathos than I ever would have thought possible out of that.

Redemption, whether seized or tossed aside, is also frequently touched upon. “Sideshow” opens with a grueling chase between Batman and an escaped Killer Croc, who manages to stumble upon a remote farm that’s home to a group of former sideshow acts. They offer Croc a chance at an honest life, but old habits die hard. Another example is “House and Garden”. When a poisonous plant-creature starts a reign of terror in Gotham, Batman naturally turns his sights towards the recently-released Poison Ivy. She insists that she’s rehabilitated, and by all accounts, Ivy is happily married and living the mundane suburban life. The investigation continues to point back to her, and the final revelation involves some of the creepiest imagery ever seen in the series.

Harley Quinn is also featured in a couple of episodes centered around her attempts to stick with the straight ‘n narrow. She’s a fan favorite for a reason, and these appearances are some of the most memorable episodes in this collection. “Harlequinade” is a chaotic team-up with Batman in an attempt to track down The Joker, who’s managed to get his hands on a bomb that’ll turn Gotham into a smoldering mushroom cloud. “Harley’s Holiday” documents her release from Arkham Asylum, and even though she’s determined to leave that life of crime behind her, an attempt to legitimately buy a pretty pink dress at a store spirals into a bad day…a really, really bad day, culminating in being chased by Batman.

It’s particularly great to see the villains interact with one another. That’s part of the fun of “Trial”, which has a reluctant prosecutor attempting to defend Batman in an insane trial when the inmates take over the asylum. The flipside of that coin is seen in “Lock-Up”, when a cruel jailer’s overzealousness gets him fired from Arkham and compels him to hunt down the left-leaning scum he blames for the state of the world. Another stand-out is “A Bullet for Bullock”, an episode in which the slovenly detective is rattled by death threats and reluctantly teams with Batman, and the ending is just one example of how clever the show’s writers can be. “Clever” is also the first word that instantly springs to mind for “Make ‘Em Laugh”, an episode where The Joker co-opts a fellow criminal’s technology to create a small army of fumbling costumed criminals with inane gimmicks.

These episodes introduce a couple of recurring villains ripped from the pages of the comics. Most notable among them is Ra’s al Ghul, who makes his first appearance in a two-parter penned by Len Wein and Denny O’Neil, familiar names to longtime readers of Batman’s four-color incarnation. The centuries-old Ra’s has virtually unlimited resources at his disposal, equally intrigued by Batman’s boundless skills as a detective as he is frustrated by his foe’s determination to disrupt his machinations. Ra’s often lends a Saturday morning serial flavor to the show, from the globe-trotting in his first few appearances to the flared pants of “Avatar”. The charismatic character has such a presence that he’s able to carry “Showdown” largely by himself in an episode that barely features Batman or Robin in any capacity. “Showdown” is set during the westward expansion of the mid-1800’s as Ra’s’ opposition to the sprawling railroads is pitted against scarred bounty hunter Jonah Hex (one of the few DC characters not connected with the Batman mythos to appear on the show). The other noteworthy recurring villain is The Ventriloquist, a fairly timid-looking middle-aged man who seems more likely to be a CPA than a ruthless crimelord. Taken by himself, that seems to be the right impression, but when he has his puppet Scarface on the end of his arm… The Ventriloquist’s first appearance, “Read My Lips”, is one of my favorites of the season, and he returns twice after that.
Several other characters from the comics briefly appear, including Maxie Zeus, the back-breaking, Venom-fueled Bane, and the fairly obscure masked criminals of The Terrible Trio. The majority of Batman’s rogue’s gallery is present and accounted for, with The Penguin, Killer Croc, Poison Ivy, The Mad Hatter, The Joker, Harley Quinn, The Clock King, Catwoman, The Riddler, The Scarecrow, Two-Face, and Mr. Freeze all wreaking havoc throughout Gotham City at some point or another. Even with the opening titles shifting on disc three from Batman: The Animated Series to The Adventures of Batman and Robin, there’s no discernable drop in quality.

After Batman: The Animated Series wrapped up its long, successful run on Fox, a revised version of the series — with most of the same talent in tow — popped up as part of the animation block on Kids’ WB. This half of The New Batman/Superman Adventures, Although the general look of Batman: The Animated Series is still in place, many of the character designs have been revamped, making them sharper, more angular, and somewhat stripped down. Sometimes the changes worked; The Scarecrow is a much more ominous, disturbing figure now, and I like the exaggerated, deranged look of The Mad Hatter. Others didn’t fare so well, especially the much blander looking Riddler, and I have mixed feelings about the older, frailer Jim Gordon and the beady-eyed look of the Joker. One of the more distinctive changes is that the yellow moon on Batman’s chest is gone, an alteration that makes it easy to distinguish one of these episodes from the previous animated incarnation.

One aspect of Batman: The Animated Series that has always impressed me is that even though it was a weekday afternoon cartoon based on a popular comic book character, it didn’t pander to a younger audience. Rewatching the box sets Warner has issued over the past year and a half, I find myself as engaged by them now in my mid-thirties as I was when I first saw them half a lifetime ago.

The New Batman Adventures is a odd mix because even though many of the stories seem geared towards a younger audience, the censors have lightened up, so the villains can use words like ‘murder’ and ‘kill’ more freely, its female characters (especially Harley Quinn) are less subtle with the sexual innuendo, and there’s even a little blood. Over the Edge, one of my favorite episodes of any of Batman’s animated incarnations, with batman hunted by  by Commissioner Gordon as his men spray gunfire throughout the Batcave in a frantic chase against Batman and Robin. It’s a dark, unflinchingly brutal story about loss and betrayal, showing the Dark Knight at his lowest point with his identity exposed and facing greater adversity than he ever has before.

It’s not all dark and dour, though. Another favorite is “Joker’s Millions”, which opens with the Joker struggling with his finances. Robots, hyena chow, Joker venom, and overly elaborate death traps aren’t cheap, but he gets an unexpected windfall when a dead mobster leaves the flat-broke Joker a quarter-billion dollars in his will. The Joker goes on a spastic spending spree, bribing everyone in sight into wiping his criminal record clean, but…whoops. There’s a catch, of course, and the Joker’s not the one who gets the last laugh.

the Joker also take center-stage in “Mad Love”, an episode penned by Paul Dini that was later spun off by DC into a graphic novel. “Mad Love” takes a look at how ambitious, straightlaced psychiatrist Harlene Quinzel could become infatuated with a psychotic madman like the Joker. The Joker’s far more interested in cobbling together some sort of complicated trap to knock off Batsy than fooling around with his eager-to-please henchwoman, so she tries to get her puddin’s attention by rehashing one of his unused schemes and getting rid of Batman once and for all. This is the sort of character-centric episode that I thought really defined Batman: The Animated Series, and “Mad Love” ranks with the best of the series.
“Legends of the Dark Knight” is another personal favorite, paying homage to some of Batman’s different incarnations over the decades. Dick Sprang gets the first nod in a segment with Batman duking it out with the Joker in a music museum with all of the puns, oversized props, and four-color action you’d expect from a Golden Age comic, followed up by a deeply impressive segment with Frank Miller’s hulking, fifty-something Batman squaring off against an army of mutants in the future. The side story with a few kids getting tangled up in an arson-for-hire gig with Firefly doesn’t stack up to the rest of the episode, but who cares?
There are a few other episodes worth pointing out. “Girls’ Night Out” is set with both Batman and Superman out of town, leaving Batgirl and Supergirl to square off against Harley, Poison Ivy, and electrifying Supes-villain Livewire.Dick Grayson, the original Robin, has struck out on his own as Nightwing, and he’s highlighted several times — first in “You Scratch My Back”, which teams him with Catwoman, much to Batman’s chagrin, and again in “Old Wounds”, where Grayson tells Batgirl why he could no longer fight alongside the Dark Knight. The episodes on this box set also introduce The Creeper, the demon Etrigan, and Firefly to the animated series,  Villains like Two Face, The Mad Hatter, Catwoman, Clayface, Mr. Freeze, The Scarecrow, The Ventriloquist, Bane, Killer Croc, Baby Doll, and, briefly, The Riddler also return to torment Gotham again.

REVIEW: MIKE & MOLLY – SEASON 1-5

CAST

Billy Gardell (My Name Is Earl)
Melissa McCarthy (Spy)
Reno Wilson (R.S.V.P.)
Katy Mixon (Two and a Half Men)
Nyambi Nyambi (LAw & Order)
Louis Mustillo (One For The Money)
Rondi Reed (Seinfeld)
Cleo King (The Hangover)
David Anthony Higgins (Ellen)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Reginald Veljohnson (Die Hard)
David Mazouz (Gotham)
William Sanderson (Blade Runner)
Holly Robinson Peete (21 Jump Street)
Howard Hesseman (About Schmidt)
Cerina Vincent (Cabin Fever)
Larisa Oleynik (3rd rock From The Sun)
Francis Guinan (Hannibal)
Matt Battaglia (Thor)
Gerald McRaney (Focus)
Lamont Thompson (Evan Almighty)
Judith Shekoni (Heroes Reborn)
Jim Beaver (Supernatural)
Diane Delano (Jeepers Creepers II)
Zack Ward (Transformers)
Susan Sarandon (Tammy)
Mo Gaffney (That 70s Show)
John Michael Higgins (Still Waiting…)
Mather Zickel (Bones)
Kathy Bates (Misery)
Patricia Belcher (Bones)
Sarah Baker (The Campaign)
Steve Valentine (Anger Management)
Eric Allan Connor (The Incredible Hulk returns)
Margo Martindale (Orphan)

 

The series focuses on the title characters Mike Biggs (Billy Gardell) and Molly Flynn (Melissa McCarthy), a couple who meet at an Overeaters Anonymous meeting in Chicago, Illinois. After Molly, a primary-school teacher, invites police officer Mike to give a talk to her class, they begin dating. Molly lives at home with her mother Joyce (Swoosie Kurtz), and sister Victoria (Katy Mixon). Joyce is in an on-off relationship with widower Vince Moranto (Louis Mustillo), who is often seen at the house. Mike lives alone in an apartment but is regularly kept company by his best friend and partner in the police force Carl McMillan (Reno Wilson). Other prominent characters in the series include Carl’s grandmother Rosetta (Cleo King); Mike’s mother Peggy (Rondi Reed) and cafe worker Samuel (Nyambi Nyambi)

I bought this as I’m a fan of Melissa McCarthy having seen her in several very funny films. I was not disappointed. All the characters are very strong and I have found watching the series completely addictive, just wanting to know how the relationships progress. There are lots of one-liners that literally make me laugh out loud. There is nothing offensive even though sex drugs and alcohol are referred to and represented, it’s not at all smutty.
 
Season One Highlights include
 Pilot – Mike struggles with his new diet. At an Overeaters Anonymous meeting, Molly sympathizes with Mike and invites him to come speak to her fourth grade class. Later, he appears at her home after a robbery and asks her out on a date. She says yes.
First Date – Molly gets a head cold before her first date with Mike. Her mother and sister accidentally both give her medicine and Molly adds wine at dinner. The night ends up being a disaster. Meanwhile, Mike gets fashion advice from Carl and his cousin who own a “Big & Tall” store.
Mikes Not Ready – Molly misunderstands Mike’s reasoning for not wanting to come inside her house after a date and breaks-up with him. After getting drunk in a bar, Mike reveals that he’s ashamed of his own body, and that’s the reason why he had been taking things too slow with Molly. After leaving the bar, Mike, Carl, Samuel and the taxi driver, Undugu, go to Molly’s house where Mike decides to serenade Molly. When he reaches her window, he tells her why he wasn’t ready to take the next step, and that he wants the first time to be very special. However, he passes out while on the ladder and the gang is forced to spend the night at Molly’s house.
After The Lovin’ – After spending the weekend together, Mike and Molly are ecstatic. To avoid getting too clingy, Molly tries to slow down, but it doesn’t help when Mike visits her in the school with a Teddy Bear.
Mikes New Boots – Molly gets mad when a blonde woman flirts with Mike at their Overeaters Anonymous meeting, and Mike introduces Molly to her as his “friend”. After a long talk with Carl’s grandma, Mike realizes that he is in love with Molly. On the other hand, Molly gets drunk with Victoria and realizes that she is in love with Mike. Joyce starts dating Vince .
First Christmas – Mike has no idea what to get Molly for their first Christmas as a couple. He runs a lot of ideas through Joyce & Carl, but they reject it all. He is also unable to take the hints Molly gives him. Finally he ends up buying her expensive jewellery. Molly gets Mike a leather jacket, but has to exchange it for a video game when Mike ends up buying a jacket himself.
First Valentine’s Day – Mike orders a special cake for Valentine’s day and ends up meeting the baker, who turns out to be Molly’s ex-fiancé, Kyle (Robert Gant). He gets very upset because Molly never mentioned being engaged, but later discovers that Kyle is gay. Vince & Joyce go to a adult motel for their first Valentine’s Day.
Season one is very much about first’s, finding new love and the ups and downs of a relationship.

First comes love, then comes marriage… but there’s a whole lot in between, as this second season of the sitcom Mike & Molly gets the two plus-size lovebirds at the altar only after they run a gauntlet of issues between themselves and especially their meddling families. Schoolteacher Molly Flynn and Chicago cop Mike Biggs became engaged at the end of the show’s first season, and now they get down to the details, ranging from the liberated, educated Molly wondering if she should keep her own last name to finding a venue , writing their vows, their bachelor and bachelorette parties, the wedding rehearsal, and, of course, the big event, which happens at the end of the season. They have their disagreements, but these are two sweet, loving people who know how to work things out… which makes them the polar opposites of their families. Molly (and Mike, once they move into her family’s home) must deal with her potty-mouthed mother (Swoosie Kurtz), Mom’s Neanderthal fiancé (Louis Mustillo), and her goodhearted but startlingly dumb slut of a sister (Katy Mixon); Mike, meanwhile, continues to fight a mostly losing battle with his own mother (Rondi Reed), surely one of the most relentlessly poisonous characters ever portrayed on a screen.

Season 2 Highlights are

Gone’ Fishin – After their engagement, trouble arises when Molly wants to start planning their wedding and Mike is not too keen on setting a date. Vince offers to walk Molly down the aisle. Mike decides to go fishing with the guys. On the way to the lake, Molly wants Mike to check out a wedding location near the lake and Mike calls it nonsense, which makes Molly mad. The fishing trip is a disaster because the boat sinks. Joyce takes Molly to yoga and send the pictures of Molly Stretching with the handsome instructor to Vince. Mike rushes home with news that he checked the reception hall and promises to help plan the wedding.

Dennis’s Birthday – Molly is sick of everything that is wrong with Mike’s apartment and asks him to move in with her into her mother’s house. Mike talks it over with Carl who isn’t too happy with it. Peggy throws a birthday party for Dennis (William Sanderson), her boyfriend and Molly makes a cake. After the party Peggy decides to give him a “birthday gift” and confides in Molly. Peggy gets a surprise, when he drops dead in her bed. She drags him down, dresses him up and puts in front of Molly’s cake before calling Mike to help. Mike eventually finds the reason for Dennis’ death. Peggy spends the night at Molly’s, where she mourns his death. After seeing Dennis’ sad apartment, Mike decides to move in with Molly.

57 Chevy Bel Air –  Molly wants to save money for their wedding, but Mike is interested in buying Vince’s 1957 Chevy Bel Air. In spite of Molly’s objection, Mike buys it for $7800. Carl and Rosetta love the car. To convince Molly, he takes her for a ride, and she starts to like it. Mike finally tells her that he has already bought it. When the car starts to give trouble, Mike demands a refund, but Vince refuses. Finally, Joyce interferes and gets them $7250. Molly then reveals her bad financial status to Mike. Molly, Victoria and Joyce discuss wedding location.

Happy Halloween – Molly is interested in the Vice Principal position in her school and gets excited when she is invited to a Halloween party in her boss’s house. Mike is uninterested, but they go as Frankenstein and the Bride of Frankenstein. At the party, she is upset by the office politics, but Mike encourages her not to leave. Finally, her boss acknowledges that she would make a great Vice Principal. Vince has trouble with teenagers asking for candy without even dressing up. Carl and Samuel make a plan to get women by dressing up as Zorro and SpongeBob SquarePants.

Carl Meets a Lady – Carl is partying non-stop & Rosetta is worried. She asks Mike to fix him up with a nice girl. At the dinner, Carl and Mike meet Christina (Holly Robinson Pete), who is an optometrist. Carl tries to ask her out & ends up insulting her. He then apologizes and they start going out. Molly is busy with the her work and has no time for Mike & he misses her

Peggy Gets a Job – Mike makes dinner for the girls and Peggy drops by suddenly and guilt Molly, and she ends up inviting her for lunch in her school. Peggy shares her insecurities with Molly & then Mike goes to meet his mother. After a heart-to-heart with Mike, she becomes a lunch lady in Molly’s school. Though upset initially, Molly starts liking the situation when Peggy becomes source of gossip for her, especially about Rebecca, the other candidate for the Vice President’s job. Peggy convinces Molly to have a church wedding.

Mike Cheats – Harry talks about not having a Thanksgiving plan in his OA meeting and after that, he finds Mike eating candy bars. He volunteers to be Mike’s sponsor and gets himself invited to Molly’s house for Thanksgiving dinner. Mike tries to diet, so that he can have some stuffing and desert during Thanksgiving. His current clothes are getting tight, so he gets his bigger clothes from his mom’s place, where he ends up eating macaroni and cheese. Molly tries to make a healthy Thanksgiving Meal. Harry takes Mike to a gay OA to make sure that Molly does not find about his weight gain, but that does not help. Joyce & Victoria compares Mike’s behavior with their cat who used to eat outside and sneak home. Carl, Rosetta and Christina go to Molly’s place for Thanksgiving. Mike finally confesses to Molly & they go to a OA meeting.

Christmas Break – Molly starts planning Christmas. At school, Rebecca finally reveals that she got the Vice Principal’s job as she is sleeping with the Principal. Molly then gets drunk with Peggy and all the lunch ladies. Mike is looking forward to a nice Christmas with Molly’s family. He also dresses up as Santa & Carl as an elf for charity, but is doesn’t go very well. At home, Molly is depressed and watches TV with Vince, when an old student turns up to thanks her for helping him get accepted to a art school. She finally comes out of depression and realizes the true value of her job.

Valentine’s Piggyback – Carl plans a very romantic plans for Valentine’s Day with Christina. Molly asks Mike to keep it simple, so he makes no plans. When Carl points out that Molly didn’t really meant what she said, he tries to mooch off Carl’s plan. On the way to the date, Carl & Mike see a man about to jump and try to save him. In the process Carl falls & Mike saves him. The girls have a nice valentine without the guys & Molly finds out about Mike’s piggyback. Molly gets Mike a universal remote & asks Harry to set it up. He starts talking to Victoria & ends up becoming her Valentine.

Peggy Goes to Branson –  Peggy goes to Branson on a church picnic & leaves Jim with Mike & Molly. She tells them that it would be a practice for when having children. When Mike says, “if they have children,” Molly thinks that Mike is not interested in having children and it leads to a argument. Baby talk becomes the hot topic in the house. Jim swallows a tampon & needs surgery. Peggy gives a guilt trip about it & Molly starts doubting her parenting ability, Mike assures her that they will be fine parents.

The Dress – Molly goes for a wedding dress fitting and discovers that she needs to lose 6 more pounds to fit into her dress. She drives Mike & everyone else to the wall, when she tries to lose the extra weight. When she meets an old OA friend who is now thin, she runs out of the spinning class. She picks up a fight in the parking lot & gets arrested. Finally Mike tells her that she is perfect the way she is to calm her down.2437865

Bachelor/Bachelorette – Mike & Carl start planning the bachelor party & Mike’s Dad joins them. He tells them that his marriage is not doing well. He takes his father home. Molly asks him to take his dad to the bachelor party as his mom is coming to her bachelorette party at her place. When Peggy learns that her ex-husband is staying with Mike & Molly, she dresses up and arrives early to meet him, but Mike has already left with him. Peggy also gets Molly a stripper, which makes her very uncomfortable. Meanwhile, the guys ride around in a limo and everyone makes a toast. After Vince, Carl & Harry leave, Mike & his dad talk.

The Wedding – The wedding day has finally arrived. Mike is still in shock over his parents sleeping together. Carl comes up with a new plan (proposing marriage during best man toast) to get Christina to say, “I Love You” back. The Hair Salon messes up Molly’s hair and Victoria fixes her up. Molly gets dressed and is ready to go, but the limo that Victoria arranged is towed away. They take Victoria’s car, but it breaks down. While Mike is anxiously waiting for Molly, Carl ends up proposing and makes everything worse. Molly finally arrives and Mike is relieved. Mike & Molly finally get married.

The Wedding

Season is like a second chapter of a book, getting Mike and Molly to the alter brought with it a lot of fun and memorable moments and a great ending to see these two much loved characters start married life together.

The third season starts in Paris, where Mike and Molly are getting ready to leave their honeymoon and embark on their journey as a married couple. Adjusting to their new lives at home won’t be easy, since they will be living with Molly’s overindulgent sister, Victoria, and her smart-talking mother, Joyce. Sharing the already crowded house will prove challenging for the newlyweds, especially when they decide to start trying for a baby. Join Mike and Molly in their hilarious journey as they discover the ups and downs of this next chapter of their lives as newlyweds.

Season 3 was once a gain a great season, dealing with trying to have kids and the hilarious ways they try, obviously the original ending for season was Molly being pregnant (and it aired in canada with that ending) It was decided to edit the ending to make it so she wasn’t pregnant, this was done to showcase Molly more in season 4 and have her do more outrageous and fun stuff.

Season 3 Highlights are

The Honeymoon Is Over -After being initially against honeymooning in Paris, Mike has become so inspired by the city that he wants to change his life and travel the world. Meanwhile, Molly worries how the other members of her household fared while they were gone.

Mike Likes Cake – Christina tells Carl that she’s trying to reconcile with her ex-husband for the sake of their son, leaving Carl devastated. Molly is frustrated while putting together her wedding album, as Mike appears to have his eyes closed or is eating something in every photo. Molly asks Harry to edit their wedding video, but the first cut has way too many shots of Victoria’s cleavage

Molly In The Middle – Mike and Molly decide they want to start trying to have a child. Carl is upset to learn that Molly still wants to be friends with Christina. Molly is unsure how to handle the situation, until Christina has some very unkind words to say regarding Carl, causing Molly to end their friendship.

Mikes Boss – Mike’s boss, Captain Murphy (Gerald McRaney), offers him courtside basketball tickets, but only if Mike will set him up on a date with Peggy.Thanksgiving is Cancelled – With Mike sick, Molly is happy she doesn’t have to cook Thanksgiving dinner. But Vince insists on a home cooked meal when he learns his brother will be attending, and Joyce becomes furious with Vince for not discussing a wedding date after they have been engaged for more than a year. Meanwhile, Carl and Samuel attend a “singles” Thanksgiving meal at Carl’s church in hopes of meeting available women.

Karaoke Christmas – Dressed as Santa Claus and frustrated about Molly’s holiday spending, Mike cautions children about using credit cards to buy toys. Later, Molly’s family has their traditional Christmas at home, including fun with a karaoke machine, but Mike and Molly must spend Christmas Eve at church with his mother and boss.

Molly’s Birthday – Mike plans to spoil Molly for her birthday, but soon after, Victoria’s drug dealer Tom arrives to stay at the Flynn’s house for a few days. This causes a rift between the sisters, especially after Mike eats some “special” gelato that Tom prepared.

The Princess and The Troll – Molly wants to set up a Valentine’s Day date between Victoria and a lonely Harry. Mike is skeptical but goes along with the plan, and is surprised when Victoria agrees. Meanwhile Carl takes Samuel to a laundromat to pick up women.

St. Patrick’s Day – Mike and Molly continue pregnancy attempts and almost miss Carl and Samuel’s St Patrick’s Day party. Also, Victoria kisses Harry after he helps her with a college assignment, but the kiss prompts a major announcement from Harry.

Season three was a great season, we got to see how they adjust to married life and there adventures in trying for a baby, although the season finale was originally intended to have Molly Pregnant at the end (in some countries it still aired that way), it’s still a nice episode just without that cliffhanger on the end.

After three seasons of watching the loveable Chicago couple find each other, find love and find a comfortable life for themselves, the fourth season finds Mike and Molly further exploring their relationship, their family and friends, and the crazy world around them. In the season premiere episode, “Molly Unleashed,” Molly abruptly gives up her job teaching elementary school to follow her dreams of becoming a writer. With the ever-present support of her beat-cop husband Mike and her family, Molly sets out to become the woman she was always meant to be. The fourth season of Mike & Molly is filled with surprises. From Molly tagging along with Mike in the squad car for “research” to her adventures in a funeral home under the influence with her sister Victoria, this is the season in which Mike and the rest of the world are given the chance to see what Molly unleashed can really do!

Season 4 Highlights

The First and Last Ride-Along – Molly decides writing a crime novel will be her new career, so she goes on a ride-along with Mike and Carl to research a book she wants to pen.

Careful What You Dig For – Molly meets her literary idol, J.C. Small (Susan Sarandon), a cynic who advises her to write about things in her life that she wouldn’t want people to know. Meanwhile, Mike invites his mother to dinner for Thanksgiving in an effort to cheer her up.

Poker in the Front, Looker in the Back

Poker in the Front, Looker in the Back – Molly believes her suspicious next-door neighbor, Mr. O’Donnell (Christian Clemenson), is up to no good and recruits Joyce to help her spy on him. Meanwhile, the guys get together for a poker game and end up sharing their dreams and aspirations.

Shoeless Molly Flynn – Molly needs to adjust her spending habits if she wants to maintain harmony in her marriage. But she can’t resist buying a pair of shoes on credit and it leads to a fight with Mike, making her decide to look for a job.

They Shoot Asses, Don’t They? – Mike decides he needs to live every day like it’s his last after being shot while thwarting a robbery. As a result, he tells Carl it’s time for him to quit the police force.

Mike & Molly’s Excellent Adventure – Molly is determined to get Mike out of his routine and tells him to embrace doing anything they want in life.

Weekend at Peggy’s – Following a dramatic argument with Joyce over money, Mike and Molly move into Mike’s childhood room at Peggy’s.

Dips & Salsa – Molly wants to get Mike out of the house and suggests a salsa dance class. When Mike isn’t thrilled with the activity, he asks Carl to replace him as Molly’s dance partner, but gets jealous when he realizes they’re having way too much fun.

Three Girls and an Urn – Molly meets the best buddy of her dreams when Peggy’s childhood friend, Kay McKinnon (Kathy Bates), comes to town, but Peggy is not keen on sharing.

Who’s Afraid of J.C. Small? – Mike and Carl arrest Molly’s literary hero, J.C. Small, for a DUI. After Molly repeatedly prevents J.C.’s self-destruction, the writer offers to pay Molly to be her assistant and help her complete her latest novel.

Season 4 brought Molly more to the forefront of the show with Melissa McCarthy now a worldwide star, each character still had there moments to shine too. Another great season of the hit show. A good cliffhanger too wetting your appetite for season 5.

While attending the prestigious Iowa Writing Workshop, Molly sells her romance novel, but the excitement is short-lived as she now faces the pressures of meeting deadlines, taking notes from her opinionated publisher and dealing with her own insecurities as a writer. Aside from living under the same roof as his in-laws, Mike has to deal with his partner dating Molly’s sister, and supporting his wife while riding the roller coaster of being married to a published author.

This Season not only shows off Melissa McCarthy’s acting talent more but aslo Rondi reed (peggy) who gets to help Molly write the book. it’s again another brilliant season and the Cliffhanger keeps you hanging ready for Season 6.

Season 5 Highlights are

The Book of Molly – Molly returns from her writer’s workshop, much to Mike’s delight. Even better, a publisher liked Molly’s short story enough to give her a sizeable advance on her first book. Mike is relieved because the advance check will almost get him and Molly out of debt, but Molly ruins that when she buys a new car instead.

Tis the Season to Be Molly – Mike (as Santa Claus) and Carl (as an elf) hand out toys to needy children, then get locked in the back of a truck while loading it. At home, Molly has the whole family on edge as she insists on every holiday preparation being done to her exact specifications. When it is revealed that Molly does this to honor her late father, Vince worries that Molly will never accept him as a member of the family.

Gone Cheatin’ Mike, Carl, Samuel, Vince and Harry are preparing for their annual “guys weekend” fishing trip, when Carl irritates the group by announcing he has invited Victoria. This causes Mike to feel like he has to invite Molly, and Vince follows suit by inviting Joyce. As they get ready to leave, Victoria tells Molly she has cheated on Carl with an old boyfriend, leading to an awkward drive to the fishing site.

Molly’s Neverending Story – The family is exasperated after Molly proclaims her book is finished, only to decide she wants to tweak the characters again or make it raunchier (as suggested by Peggy’s surprisingly filthy church friends). Mike says she should be confident in her work, then quickly emails the file to Molly’s publisher. After Molly becomes furious, Mike hires Harry to hack into the publisher’s computer.

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The Last Temptation of Mike – A rookie female cop named Stacey (Sarah Baker) playfully flirts with Mike at work, but things escalate when she surprises him with a kiss after hours. A guilt-ridden Mike decides to tell Molly, who then goes on the attack.

Hack To The Future – Molly meets Xander (Steve Valentine), her publisher, for the first time. While he is praiseworthy, he feels the book could become a phenomenon if Molly works time travel into it. Expecting a big windfall upon hearing the news, Mike splurges on some new clothing. After several failed attempts at doing the publisher’s bidding, however, Molly ultimately tricks him into accepting her original draft.

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Checkpoint Joyce – While Mike and Carl are working a drunk driving checkpoint, Joyce pulls up. Mike intends to let her through after she answers a few questions, but she is belligerent and insulting so he hauls her into the station. After a few members of the household suggest to Joyce that she cut back on her drinking, she lashes out and insists that they all give up their various vices.

The World According to Peggy – Peggy announces that she is retiring, and Molly organizes a party for her. She goes to the school to invite some fellow lunch ladies, and learns that Peggy didn’t retire, she was fired. Mike insists they must have the party anyway and go along with Peggy’s lie, something he’s learned to do over the years.

What Ever Happened to Baby Peggy? – While interviewing Peggy to get a back story for the next book, Molly comes across a corn husk doll that Peggy’s own mother made for her. Peggy clams up and won’t speak about her past anymore, then later shows up drunk at the Flynn house. Mike insists his family doesn’t talk about their feelings, but Molly persists and eventually gets to the root of Peggy’s misgivings. When Mike finds out from Molly, he leaves to go hug his mom.

Mudlick or Bust – Needing to get a better feel for Peggy’s home town to write her story, Molly decides the two must take a road trip to Mudlick, Missouri. Molly secretly arranges a reunion between Peggy and her estranged sister Rosemary (Margo Martindale), which turns out badly when it is clear that Rosemary still harbors a 50-year old grudge. At home, Vince gets Mike involved in betting on the NCAA Basketball Tournament games.

No Kay Morale – Kay (Kathy Bates) returns, and Peggy and Molly fight for her attention as usual. Molly notices Kay has lost her joy and drive, and tries to help her find it again. Meanwhile, Mike and Carl deal with a protest downtown that Kay surprisingly becomes a part of.

The Bitter Man and The Sea – It’s Mike and Molly’s third anniversary, and Mike makes plans to take Molly and the family on a cruise of Lake Michigan. However, bad blood is still lingering between Carl and Victoria, so Mike has to uninvite Carl even though Carl gave him the idea for the cruise. While Molly is thrilled with the cruise, the situation puts Mike’s relationship with his partner and best friend in jeopardy.

Season 5 was a great season though the network could of aired it better, the show remains a classic sitcom, the cliffhanger is once again great and makes you want to know what will happen in the final season to see the resolution.