White Rabbit Project

white rabbit project
Netflix released a trailer for their new show White Rabbit Project today. If you were a fan of Mythbusters, you’ll probably want to check it out. It stars the former Mythbusters build team, Kari Byron, Tory Belleci, and Grant Imahara as they go down the “rabbit hole to investigate weird and wonderful events from pop culture, science, and history.”

I was a huge fan of Mythbusters and was sad when they decided to part ways with the build team in the final season. I’m happy to see the gang back together. You can stream all episodes starting December 9th. Check out the trailer below.

Cutting the Cord (Sort of)

A couple of months ago I decided to do something I never thought I would do. I cut the cord. Sort of. 

In December I decided to cancel my cable. The bill was getting too high and I have been watching less and less traditional TV. Many of the shows I watch over the past few years have ended or I lost interest in them (looking at you The Walking Dead). Many of the shows I continued to watch I found I could watch the next day on Hulu, of which I was a subscriber. I also found many new shows that rivaled the quality of network and cable shows, even premium cable shows, on Hulu and Netflix. So, I made the decision to cut the cord.

Currently, I subscribe to Netflix, Hulu, Amazon (a bonus of my Prime shipping subscription) and HBO Now. The only show that I currently watch but cannot get on these services is AMC’s Better Call Saul. Well, that was the case until this week. Charter, the cable company in my area, is offering their version of the Sling TV service called Charter Spectrum Stream. For $20 a month you get some popular cable channels (TBS, FX, ESPN, and AMC among others) plus either HBO or Showtime. So for $5 more a month I can get HBO plus some other cable channels including AMC for Better Call Saul. I can then cancel HBO Now. One of the other upsides to the service is that you get the local channels (even the alternate HD local channels that no one ever watches). This was great for me since, even with an antenna, I couldn’t get any local channels over the air (not entirely true. If I touched a co-ax cable to the window frame and grounding the signal, I could get 3-4 local channels. Trust me, it works). 

This is almost TV as I want it to be. I am paying for the channels I watch the most and can watch my shows whenever I want without the added cost of a DVR. It will be interesting to see how this continues to evolve over the next few years as more and more people cut the cord and opt to watch TV in non-traditional ways. The only thing I have yet to figure out is how to watch Cardinals baseball this summer (without using MLB at Bat and a DNS routing service). I think sports will be the last hope that traditional cable and satellite subscriptions have. Once the various leagues wake up to the potential of offering sports without a cable subscription, I will be set. But I’m not holding my breath. 

SNL’s Serial Spoof is Absolutely Brilliant

This past weekend SNL took on the popular podcast Serial with a brilliant digital short. Cecily Strong does a great impression of host Sarah Koenig. The spoof investigates the story of Kris Kringle, an elf who allegedly leaves presents in people’s homes. Watch it below.

An Oral History of Sports Night

sports night

Speaking of great Aaron Sorkin TV shows, Entertainment Weekly has a great article about Sorkin’s first show, a 30 minute short-live comedy entitled Sports Night.

Set in the high-stakes world of a live sports news program, the Aaron Sorkin-scribed dramedy followed the behind-the-scenes exploits of fictional “Sports Night” coanchors Casey (Peter Krause) and Dan (Josh Charles), their brilliant producer Dana (Felicity Huffman), harried associate producer Natalie (Sabrina Lloyd), gruff executive Isaac (Robert Guillaume), and whip-smart researcher Jeremy (Josh Malina).

The series was less about sports and more about the interactions of the characters who hosted and ran the fictional Sports Center-like show. It featured Sorkin’s trademark quick and witty dialogue, with a ton of Capra-esque optimism about the world. While it only lasted two seasons (one with a horrible laugh track), it is, in my opinion, one of the best comedies ever made. I watch both seasons at least once a year. Read the entire article. It’s great.

The Definitive History of The West Wing

history of the west wing

The West Wing is one of my all time favorite shows. Every 1-2 years, usually between Thanksgiving and New Years, I will re-watch the entire series. With the exception of a few episodes (OK, maybe an entire season) it is one of the most consistently good dramas in recent history. Empire Magazine put together a complete history of the show, from creation (cleverly entitled The Campaign) it its end (Leaving Office). If you are a fan of The West Wing, you really need to check it out.