The Shield

The Shield

There might be just one movie in the history of American pop culture that was based on a TV show, featured the original cast, got a theatrical release, and was any good. That movie is Serenity, based on Joss Whedon’s 14-episode sci-fi series Firefly, and it essentially crammed into two hours what the other eight episodes in the rest of the season should have done: finished telling Mal and his crew’s stories. Otherwise, that TV-to-Movie sub-genre is a creative wasteland, full of good intentions and greater profit motives: Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me, The Simpsons Movie, the Sex and the City sequels, Tim and Eric’s Billion Dollar Movie. With the difficulty of introducing the characters to new viewers while not boring fans; the challenge of stretching out a 22- or 44-minute storyline to feature length; the disruption in routine for cast and crew alike; and the greater imperative to make a film visually interesting (that old chestnut about film being a director’s medium and TV a writer’s one applies here), it’s not difficult to see why big screen adaptations of TV shows fail. It’s a different case for reboots of older shows with new casts. They may be no better — looking your way, Bewitched! — but they come with different expectations and priorities. So when an oral history of The Shield made news yesterday for suggesting the possibility of a post-series movie, I was disappointed that one of my all-time favorite shows might one day be linked to such a disreputable sub-genre. To be fair, creator Shawn Ryan‘s pitch for the film […]

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Editor’s Note: After more than a year, Merrill Barr will be leaving the Reject Family and moving on to bigger and better things. We wish him all the best. And now the series finale of Channel Guide… Finale. A dangerous word in the world of television. Dangerous because it comes with a hefty amount of baggage for those working on a show that ‘s coming to an end. Everything a series has been working towards, whether serialized or episodic, has to be fulfilled in the finale. And somehow, the writers have the terrible job of making everyone feel like the journey was worth it. When broken down, there’s really only two things necessary in order to deliver on a good series finale, stability and closure. Stability refers to where the characters end up. Whether its happily ever after, in the grave, in the after life or on the run, the audience needs to know that however we leave the characters is how they will remain for the remainder of their fictional days. This isn’t to say that the audience needs to know every single detail, but a general idea needs to be available (or at least the tools necessary to draw a conclusion).

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Recently, Netflix struck major deals with some television networks to bring more programming to the instant streaming service. And while that’s all good and all, it’s not enough. While all the movies are great, the instant streaming service of Netflix was (intentional or not) built for television shows. Nothing beats being able to legally run through old episodes of a classic series at one’s pleasure. And with that I give you five shows that need to get on Netflix already.

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Before the days of LOST, 24, Battlestar Galactica, It’s Always Sunny and Mad Men, there was one thing everyone could agree on. The cop was king. Dragnet, JAG, Magnum, P.I., Miami Vice. These are shows that defined their generations and set the bar of quality programming. Maybe it was the fact that the characters were witty jerks who just can’t get enough out of pissing each other off. Maybe it was the fact that characters in the genre were always in search of that one defining moment in their lives. Maybe it was just the eternal battle between good versus evil. Whatever it was, cop shows held a special place in many people’s hearts. With the exception of a select few, the genre as a whole went down hill in the last two decades, but after seeing what the last two years had to offer, I think that the once beloved genre is getting ready for a second coming.

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Blood, sweat and tears were poured into this week’s Fall TV Preview by the FSR staff, and what better way could there be to bring it all to an end than to compile our favorite upcoming shows into one of our world famous top ten lists?

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The Shield Season 7 Giveaway

Our crazy “Free Friday” continues with another TV-related giveaway. And you can expect them to increase over the next few weeks, as the fall television season is just about to get up and running.

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