Monthly Archives: August 2016

Dexter’s 10th Anniversary TV Marathon


One of Showtime’s most popular series within the past decade was Dexter.  Michael C. Hall starred as Dexter Morgan, a forensic technician who leads a secret life as a vigilante serial killer in Miami.  Based on the code that was passed down from his father Harry, Dexter targets murderers who have slipped from the cracks of the justice system.  The show first aired on October, 1st 2006 and ended its run on September 22,2013 with 96 episodes released on Showtime.  Fans have longed for a 9th season of the show after the shocking cliffhanger, but Showtime announced that the series would end after its 8th season.

Although Dexter won’t be returning with a new season anytime soon, Showtime announced another surprise to its fans.  To celebrate the 10th anniversary of the series, Showtime is organizing a TV marathon highlighting the best episodes of Dexter.  The top 10 episodes will be handpicked by the audience before October 1st, where Showtime will air the selected episodes for the 10th anniversary.  From season 1 to season 8, fans will pick their favorite episodes that should make the slot in October.

This marathon shouldn’t be unexpected news coming from Showtime, for the network has been talking about Dexter returning to Showtime years after the series finale.  Dexter star Michael C. Hall has been in talks with Showtime about reprising his role for the series, but so far nothing has been set in stone for the audience.  As far as we know, Dexter will have its own marathon on TV on October.

Showtime’s marketing strategy may be the next best thing for Dexter fans that are hungry for more content.  While the audience isn’t totally satisfied with the news, you have to give Showtime credit for talking to the audience after the shocking finale hit the airwaves in 2013.  Fans of the series will have to think hard about what should be the number one episode of Dexter.

I loved watching Dexter when I binge-watched it on Netflix and was just as shocked with the cliff-hanger ending for the last season.  Even with all of the rumors squashed about a new season coming in soon, I still believe that season 9 will happen with enough support.  It is everything that the audience wants from Dexter and Showtime should give them something to look forward to.  For now, we will have to vote on the top 10 Dexter episodes for October.  So to all of the Dexter fans reading this: start doing your homework and vote for the top 10 best episodes!

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Super Mario Brothers: Rio Olympics


  The Rio Olympics came to a close a few days ago and it has been an incredible ride.  United States competitors took home more gold medals, Usain Bolt proved himself once again to be the fastest runner in the world, and Michael Phelps gave the ultimate glare that broke the internet in just 24 hours.  With all of this excitement this summer, the Rio Olympics came to an end with the traditional closing ceremony.

After all of the Olympics event, the hosting country puts on their closing ceremony show for their audience.  All of the competitors are tired out from their performance, so a good show is in order to celebrate their hard work!  Rio put on a colorful display of dancers, performers, and singers that was accompanied by music and lighting effects.  Once Rio completed their ceremony, they passed the torch over to Tokyo for hosting the summer Olympics in 2020.  Tokyo put on a dazzling show with anime characters appearing around the city, but the real star that stole the show was Mario.

Mario, the superstar of the Super Mario Brothers series, appeared at the closing ceremony!  The beloved mascot of Nintendo jumped into a warp pipe from Tokyo to enter another pipe leading into the Olympics in Rio.  A man climbed up the pipe dressed as Mario, only to reveal that he was Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.  Prime Minister Shinzo Abe as Mario…no words could describe how EPIC that performance was!

This colorful reference spread through social media like wildfire, with viewers freaking out about Japan’s Prime Minister dressing up as Mario.  Rio put on a colorful theatrical performance, but Shinzo Abe stole the show when he appeared from the pipe.  Audiences can definitely look forward to more animated theatrics when Tokyo hosts the Olympics in 2020.  In the meantime, Olympic athletes will take this time to train harder for the next summer games.

Mario has become the quintessential brand for Tokyo.  Mario was one of many Nintendo characters created by Shigeru Miyamoto, releasing him for the home consoles with Super Mario Brothers for the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1985.  It sold millions of copies worldwide and aided in resurrecting the American video game market when it crashed during the 80s.  Both in reality and in the virtual world, Mario is considered a hero for gamers worldwide.  While he is busy saving Princess Peach from the castle, Mario is saving millions of people suffering from boredom on a daily basis!

I watched the closing ceremony for Rio and was amazed to see Mario making an appearance!  Japan is widely famous for their video games, so it was great to see a video game superstar like Mario pop up the warp pipe for the Olympics closing ceremony.  Choosing Mario as part of the ceremony was a brilliant strategy for marketing Nintendo.  While Nintendo won’t be sponsoring the 2020 games, it was a great move by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to appear as Mario.  Not only did the publicity stunt raise awareness of Mario, but it showed Abe’s comical side to the audience.  Kudos to Japan for their strategic business move to announce the Tokyo 2020 Olympic games.  With a colorful and animated display like that, we can only expect more exciting performances in the next Olympic opening ceremony!

 

2016 Fall TV’s Flop


Before fall starts creeping in with the cooler air and colored leaves, advertisements come on for new TV series that are hitting the networks soon.  Whether it is a new season of a current show or a new series just starting, audiences can look forward to a slew of fresh new stories to see on the silver screen.  A change in seasons means that we can look forward to original and fresh ideas to enjoy.

But recently most of these “fresh” ideas have become reboots that stem from classic TV shows/movies that have aired just decades ago.  Rebooted series have already been canceled after just one season and received numerous pans from the audience.  Where are the original series that we used to look forward to every fall?  With all of these TV flops happening, is cable TV even worth watching?

A trailer for a Lethal Weapon TV series was released on May 16th, just a mere month before summer started.  The cast of Lethal Weapon includes Damon Wayans, Clayne Crawford, Keesha Sharp, Jordana Brewster, and Kevin Rahm.  Lethal Weapon will premiere on the FOX Network on September 21st.

After releasing the trailer on YouTube, a wave of pans flooded the comments section.  If audiences are already turning off from the series before the shows has hit the airwaves, you know that this is only going to end up badly.  This is just a PR nightmare that is just waiting to happen.

Reboots have already been flopping during 2016’s TV season.  CBS’s Rush Hour series premiered on March 31st and announced its cancellation on May 16thRush Hour starred Justin Hires and Jon Foo in this police procedural comedy of the same name from the film.  The series aired 7 episodes and was cancelled less than two months after the first episode hit the airwaves.  Another failed reboot was Uncle Buck, a single-camera comedy series that aired on June 14th for the ABC network.  ABC announced its cancellation less than a month after the series aired, with only 8 episodes that made it on TV.

2016 has been a rough year so far for cable television.  These days “original” and “fresh” ideas usually consist of superhero series, a reboot from a classic title, or a sitcom starring that once famous comedian who comes back for his/her own series.  Where have all of the good series gone?  And with all of these shows quickly being cancelled this year, is cable TV even worth it?

Surprisingly, a majority of original series are flocking towards networks that would showcase the darker and edgier content towards their audience.  American Horror Story is flourishing on FX because their targeted demographic is males/females in the ages of 18-49.  It is rated TV-MA not just because of its violent and gruesome content, but because the show was INTENDED to be marketed towards the demographic who enjoy horror series with edgier content.  FX is one of the highest-rated networks because series like American Horror Story are original, pushing the boundaries with their edgy content and gruesome story-line that speaks to its audience.

With all of these “original” shows quickly being cancelled, could this become the beginning of the end for cable TV?  Premium channels like FX and Showtime have been dominating the Nielsen TV rating war with their controversial themes and original storylines for their audience.  Cable TV could be in even more hot waters with streaming services like Netflix and Hulu pushing out their own original series.

So what is the answer to salvaging networks like CBS in the all-out ratings war?  Or has Netflix and Amazon planted the seed in what would become the dominating networks in pushing out the best shows the audiences have ever seen?  We don’t know what the future holds for TV this fall, but we do know that audiences have been migrating from catching an episode of The Rockford Files on the old TV antennas to streaming Orange is the New Black on Netflix.  It is a dawn of a new era for creative content and streaming services have been planting the seed for better shows to binge-watch.

 

American Horror Story: Spooky Maze


A few weeks ago, the new teasers for the latest installment of American Horror Story were released on FXThese vague clips gave us very few information about the next season of the horror series.  As baffling as the teaser trailers were, watching these clips made me realize that fall was just around the corner.  But these teasers are not the only surprise for this year’s Halloween celebration.

Other than the new season being released in September, American Horror Story will be featured as the main attraction for Universal Studios Halloween Horror Nights!  Fans of the acclaimed horror series can visit the Universal Studios in Hollywood or Orlando to enter the American Story Horror maze.  The maze will pull in stories from season 1, season 4, and season 5 of the show.  Fan-favorite monsters such as Rubber Man, Twisty the Clown, and even the Addiction Demon will make their appearance to spook guests who enter this daring maze.

All three monsters are what made American Horror Story such an incredibly twisted horror series to watch.  The Rubber Man made his appearance in episode 1 of American Horror Story: Murder House.  His most notorious scene was when he took advantage of Vivien in her bedroom, setting the stage for what would be the most disturbing tale ever seen.

Twisty the Clown gathered his bag of death-defying tricks for season 4 on American Horror Story: Freak Show.  He scared millions of audiences when he appeared on episode one, making Pennywise look like child’s play compared to what Twisty has done to his victims.

But it’s the latest monster, the addiction demon, that will be sure to scare everyone who enters the Hotel Cortez.  It was the first episode of American Horror Story: Hotel where the addiction demon took its first victim Gabriel, who was played by Max Greenfield.  Gabriel was the first to check into Hotel Cortez, setting up what would be the most disturbing event ever played out on the episode.

It’s really exciting to see American Horror Story being used for other marketing strategies!  The popular anthropology series took off after the first season and became a hit for the fall season.  Each season had a monster and disturbing tale to tell to its audience.  Whether it is a haunted house or a freak show, creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk really know how to put true fear into a story.

This would be an amazing exhibit to enter for this year’s Halloween celebration in October.  Universal Studios is famous for switching around various exhibits for their park attendances, but this will attraction will definitely be popular for the crowd.  Both American Horror Story and Universal Studios will gain major publicity points for shelling out this attraction for the fall.  September and October are going to be amazing months for American Horror Story this year.

 

All About That #VanLife


Millennials like me are a unique generation of people to hear about.  We strive for individual expression, push for more equal rights among everyone, binge-watch shows on Netflix, use ride-sharing apps like Lyft to get home, and most of our news we get comes from Buzzfeed.  Many people are perplexed by our behavior, scratching their heads on the dramatic technological changes we’ve created for this new world we live in.  Some ideas have broken ground on a solving a complex problem while others have just created a new fad for people dive into.  One unique fad that has taken storm lately is the van life movement.

Van Life, known as #VanLife on social media, is a movement where young adults are redesigning their vans to create their new homes.  More young adults are transforming their vans into a mobile home rather than saving up for a larger house.  The main objective is to create their mobile home they can travel around with to save money on expenses like mortgages, bills, repairs, and other unfortunate costs.  Once their mobile home is complete, the only expenses they deal with are food and gas for the car.

It’s like something out of On the Road where young adults have been cruising around in their new home for a year or so now.  People showcase their vans through Instagram or Twitter with other fans of this movement.  Cross-country trips are nothing new, but the #vanlife movement has taken the adventure to new heights.  Now you won’t have to go back home after your adventures because you already live in it!

This is a fascinating concept that I have heard about a few times.  I read On the Road by Jack Kerouac a month ago and the novel inspired me to take a cross-country trip of my own.  Just the thought of getting into a car and driving all across the country would be the most amazing experience ever.  While I don’t have a van around, I have had thoughts of just taking my things into my Toyota Camry and starting my own adventure.

Millennials didn’t conjure up this idea of cross-country traveling, but they certainly elevated the idea in the digital world.  We utilized social media to revolutionize how we watch TV or how to purchase products online and at the store.  Van life is just another example of millennials transforming the On the Road experience into a greater cause.  With the summer still in full swing, now is a great time to hop into a vehicle for a cross-country adventure with your friends or family.