Tag Archives: Supernatural

This Week 9/19 to 9/24

We’ve had a week of discovering just how much my life is ruined by not having internet access. (How much, you ask? SO MUCH.) Anyway. Ducks are in something resembling a row-like formation, approximately, so now here we are: a This Week post for the first time in MONTHS. It’s almost like I’m making a legitimate effort or something.

TONIGHT:
8pm – Eureka on Syfy (season finale!)
10pm – Castle on ABC (season premiere!)
10pm – Hawaii Five-0 on CBS (season premiere!)
10pm – The Playboy Club on NBC (series pilot!)

Really, Monday nights at 10? Really? Of course I’m going to be watching Castle, no question there. But it’s the principle of the thing. Also going on tonight: Ashton Kutcher’s Two and a Half Men debut. (Am I the only one who thinks the title should be changed to One and Two Half Men?) AND, two hours later, Comedy Central Roast of Charlie Sheen. Somewhere out there is a marketing genius.

TUESDAY:
8pm – NCIS on CBS (season premiere!)
8pm – Glee on FOX (season premiere!)
9pm – NCIS: LA on CBS (season premiere!)
9pm – New Girl on FOX (series pilot!)
9pm – Ringer on the CW

So I haven’t watched the pilot of Ringer yet…or the finale of Glee. Probably going to watch NCIS prime and then New Girl (just to finally put my morbid curiosity to rest).

WEDNESDAY:

Apparently I’m going to spend Wednesday catching up from Tuesday and Monday. Or maybe I’ll give in to the temptation to watch the pilot of Revenge at 10pm on ABC.

THURSDAY:
8pm – Charlie’s Angels on ABC (series pilot!)
9pm – Person of Interest on CBS (series pilot!)
10pm – Prime Suspect on NBC (series pilot!)

What is Prime Suspect doing on Comedy Thursday? Can anyone explain this?

FRIDAY:
8pm – A Gifted Man on CBS (series pilot!)
9pm – CSI: NY on CBS (season premiere!)
9pm – Fringe on FOX (season premiere!)
9pm – Supernatural on the CW (season premiere!)

I don’t know what CSI: NY is doing on my schedule – I pretty much stopped watching. I don’t know what Fringe is doing on my schedule – I’m now two and a half seasons behind or some damn thing. I do know what Supernatural is doing on my schedule – just finished S4, so as soon as I slam down S5 (so to speak), I’m working it in because that show is freaking awesome.

SATURDAY:

Saturday is not even a day on TV.

And now I have to go do my last Fall is Fun post REALLY REALLY QUICKLY before I end up staying at this Starbucks for an awkwardly long time. Enjoy your week! Premieres, guys! Funandnews!

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My Favorite Guest Actors – Issue 2

I’m pulling this feature out of the deep recesses of early Melted Brain because, well, writing reviews takes thinking and that’s hard so I don’t want to but I do want to post something so this is the best I could come up with. These men (yes, all men this time – I don’t know why, but I have a hard time remembering or getting really attached to female guest actors) are some of my very very favorite guest actors. They’ve all appeared on several of my favorite shows and, I’ll be honest, they all have that capacity to be excellently creepy. I am nothing if not consistent in my tastes. Here we go!

Arnold Vosloo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He tends to be cast as “The Middle Eastern Guy” and it is in that capacity that he has appeared on several of my favorite shows. Most notably, he played the slipperiest, trickiest, most difficult-to-find-nevermind-kill main 24 villain, Habib Marwan, on Day 4. He has also appeared on Chuck and NCIS and, most recently, on Bones (and that role is being reprised soon as the touted “sniper arc” moves forward). Generally, it is versatility that impresses me in an actor. But that isn’t really what gives Arnold Vosloo his appeal. Instead, what most impresses me about his various performances is the consistent steadiness in his carriage. No matter what he is doing or saying, there is always a certain element of…class, I guess you could call it. Nervousness and wavering are just not in his vocabulary and, really, it’s that steadiness that makes him so appealing and intimidating as a villain. And there is nothing better than an effortlessly intimidating villain. Except for maybe an effortlessly intimidating might-not-actually-be-a-villain, which is also an archetype he plays.

Mark Pellegrino

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This actor has a peculiar talent for portraying both innocuous benevolence and brute violence…often in the same character. The two best examples of this disparity are Jacob of Lost and Paul of Dexter. He is totally believable as a loving father/guardian type, as well as an abusive power-hungry sonofoabitch, and somehow he even carries off the transition between those two elements. It is thoroughly amazing. But, it is a little sad that he is being more and more typecast in that sort of role – other recent examples include appearances on Supernatural and Being Human. Though losing the opportunity to seem him anywhere at anytime would be sad, I would love to see Mark Pellegrino get his own show – preferably something that gives him a chance to show off a bit more versatility.

Titus Welliver

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Moving right along to Mark Pellegrino’s opposite number from Lost, The Man In Black. Fittingly enough, he is somewhat the opposite as an actor. Titus Welliver shares the talent for straddling two seemingly incompatible personality traits within the same character. For him, the combination seems to be enigmatic menace and almost sissyish emotionality. My favorite role of his is Kyle Hollis from Life, a murderer-for-hire turned evangelist. It was the brief clip of that character’s preaching hellfire and damnation that really sold me on this man’s talent. That talent is yet another point chalked up on the board for “Reasons Why I Should Start Watching The Good Wife.” Also, he gets major bonus points in my affections for having one of the coolest names ever.

Tony Todd

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tony Todd is a bamf, straight up. The man is basically built to play menacing characters. He’s also got one of those excellent, excellent voices. He has played characters on both sides of the moral spectrum, but I definitely prefer his villains. He played General Juma on Day 7 of 24 and was pretty much solely responsible for what I consider to be the best (and by “best” I mean “most terrifying and exhilarating and adrenaline-rushy”) fifteen minutes of the season, possibly of the series. I’ll be totally honest and admit that he’s not my favorite because of his range, or even because of his talent. It’s pretty much just because he plays awesome villains and/or intimidating authority figures and any appearance he makes is sure to be good times.

Callum Keith Rennie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

While I’m being totally honest, I should probably start off this paragraph by being straightforward and admitting that, yes, part of the reason I enjoy Callum Keith Rennie so much is because he is attractive. But seriously, mostly I love him because he plays excellent creepers. My favorite role of his so far is probably Leoben of Battlestar Galactica because, thanks to the chance to bounce of the sheer brilliance of Katee Sackhoff as Starbuck, he got to dig his heels way deep in and explore that delicious moral gray area. His character from 24 (yes, 24 again), Vladimir Laitanan is a close second, but that’s probably because not only do I love charming-but-terrifying, I really love Russians. I was going to say “He’s another who I’d love to see have his own show.” But then I went to imdb and found out that he DOES – he plays the lead role, a detective with multiple personality disorder, in a Canadian show called Shattered. Guess what just jumped to the top five in my Need To Watch list.

New Year, New Shows

I’m at least few hours early in most timezones, but Happy 2011!

Instead of New Year’s resolutions, which I don’t make and certainly wouldn’t keep if I did, I’ve made a somewhat prioritized list of new/old series I’m going to attempt to at least introduce myself to over the coming year. God knows how many of these I’ll actually get to, given that I don’t have a particularly great amount of spare time and new shows are popping up all over the place. BUT. These are shows that I am really interested in seeing, so hopefully I’ll make some headway in the coming months.

NEW SHOWS
(As in, new to me…some of these are actually rather dated.)

1. Sherlock

People keep insisting that I need to see this. And given my adoration of anything Sherlock Holmes related, they are correct.

2. Terriers

Somehow I still haven’t seen any of this even though I have been dying to. Catching up in time for new episodes (which, hopefully, there will be) is a priority.

3. The Walking Dead

Another show that is actually new and that I just haven’t quite found the time to start watching yet. But I will. Because, well, zombies!

4. Dexter

I watched the first two episodes of Dexter way back when this whole Melted Brain thing started. But I didn’t get any further, even though it seems like Dexter would be my kind of show. Due to prodding by people and my realization that trying to start Dexter and Six Feet Under in the same weekend might have been a terrible plan, I am going to try again.

5. Twin Peaks

Yes Laura. I need to watch this show and I promise I am going to.

6. True Blood

I don’t actually have a huge amount of interest in True Blood, but I am going to watch it because I am hardly in a position to write an extended treatise on contemporary vampire fiction if I don’t. And I really want to write that.

7. The Closer

Now that this show is entering its final season, I guess it is as good a time as any to start watching. I love Kyra Sedgwick and, after enjoying all the promos so much, my watching and enjoying seems only inevitable.

8. Moonlighting

I reference this show all the time. So I should probably back that up by actually knowing what I’m talking about.

9. Deadwood

Timothy Olyphant. Ian McShane. Brad Dourif. Paula Malcolmson. Late 1880s. Outlaws. Why haven’t I seen this yet?

10. Star Trek: The Next Generation

Watching this series will probably be an on-going effort, and it is not much of a priority. But I know I have seen a few episodes that I have really loved, so there must be more. And, well, it’s Star Trek. That’s pretty much reason enough.

11. Damages

I do not like legal shows as a general rule. But there are a couple exceptions, and I’m guessing the phenomenal acting this series is reputed for will make this one of those exceptions.

12. Jericho

This is just one of those low-priority, minimal-investment sci-fi series from the past decade that I feel like I should watch, just to be able to say I have.

CATCH-UP SHOWS
(As in, shows I say that I watch but that I am actually reeeeeally far behind on.)

1. Chuck

I WILL CATCH UP ON CHUCK. IT WILL HAPPEN. GODDAMMIT!

2. Fringe

I watched the pilot of this show when it aired, but for some reason I have never kept up with it. And now I am so far behind it is depressing. But everything I hear says that the show has only gotten more and more awesome, so it is time to make an effort to get with it.

3. Justified

…I actually only watched the pilot and half of the next episode. So yeah. Should probably rectify that, stat.

4. The Vampire Diaries

See: my reasons for starting True Blood. Also, I want to see if all the plotlines I was expecting after S1 are actually coming to be. (I’m pretty sure they are.)

5. Lie to Me

I’ve been told that, after a rather lackluster first season and a half, this show has gotten quite good. I want to see if that’s true.

6. Supernatural

Catching up on this show is actually not a huge priority. I have seen S1, S2, and most of S3. Most likely I will wait until the series ends and consecutive reruns start on TNT.

…wow. That is a lot more shows than I thought it was. I guess we’ll see how this all goes. My brain may actually melt. Yikes.

Oh THAT Guy! Issue: 2

Alrighty, welcome to the new format and official debut of Oh THAT Guy (slightly new title!) as an on-going project. Here are five more guest actor types for you all to get to know and start being able to recognize as not just “Oh them” but as actual people. Yes!

(Remember: pictures link to imdb…even though it is sort of gross now…)

Henri Lubatti

Selected Appearances:
The Good Guys “Vacation” as Nikolai (2010)
Chuck “Chuck vs. The Mask” as Vassilis (2010)
Bones “The Devil in the Details” as Phillip Womack (2010)
NCIS: Los Angeles “Breach” as Safar Jaddalah (2010)
Dark Blue “Purity” as Reuben Pike (2009)
Life “Not For Nothing” as Professor Halliday (2008)
The O.C. [multiple episodes] as Henri-Michel de Momourant (2007)
24 [multiple episodes] as Jovan Myovic (2002)
Felicity [multiple episodes] as David Sherman (1999)
The X-Files “Mind’s Eye” as Dr. Wilkenson (1998)

Hey, apparently this guy’s from Seattle! Win! …more importantly, he is an incredibly unappreciated actor. The number of foreign nationalities he’s portrayed alone is impressive. To be clearly identifiable as “The Russian Guy” and “The French Guy” and “The Middle Eastern Guy” and godknowswhatelse takes a good amount of flexibility. To do that and also somehow find the time to do some acting? Wacky crazy awesome stuff.

Clea DuVall

Selected Appearances:
Bones “The Bones On A Blue Line” as McKenna Grant (2010)
Lie to Me “Blinded” as Michelle Russell (2009)
Grey’s Anatomy [multiple episodes] as Jennifer Robinson (2008)
Heroes [multiple episodes] as FBI Agent Audrey Hanson (2006-2007)
Carnivale [regular cast] as Sofie (2003-2005)
Buffy the Vampire Slayer “Out of Mind, Out of Sight” as Marcie Ross (1997)

Recently, she’s been taking on the role of Tough Girl, but she actually has an enormous amount of flexibility. Her characters, ass-kicking or otherwise, and regardless of the number of episodes they have to develop, have a consistent quality of honest human vulnerability. DuVall (whose name appears in most credits without the semi-inane capitalization) has actually done more movie work than TV, but she frequents both mediums on a regular basis.

Kathleen Munroe

Selected Appearances:
NCIS: Los Angeles “Killshot” as Aimee Su (2009)
CSI: NY [multiple episodes] as Samantha Flack (2008)
Moonlight “Fleur de Lis” as Tina Haggans (2007)
Supernatural “The Kids are Alright” as Katie’s Mom (2007)
Beautiful People [series cast] as Annabelle Banks (2005-2006)

Just compare the top two roles on this list and you can see exactly what kind of range this lady has. I’ve been a bit of a fan ever since she played basically the only not-totally-obnoxious character on Beautiful People, but its really the variety of guest work that shows what a solid talent she is. She looks like a few other actresses, so sometimes I think I see her when I don’t, but she’s worth keeping an eye on in years to come.

Fredric Lehne

Selected Appearances:
Supernatural [multiple episodes] as Azazel (the Yellow-Eyed Demon) (2006-2010)
Lost [multiple episodes] as Marshal Edward Mars (2004-2010)
Lie to Me “Life is Priceless” as Company Owner Kevin Warren (2009)
CSI “Burked” (2001) and “Turn, Turn, Turn” (2009) [different characters]
The Closer “Til Death Do Us Part, Parts I & II” as Eugene “Topper” Barnes (2007)
Bones “The Man with the Bone” as Giles Hardewicke (2006)
CSI: NY “Tanglewood” as Ross Lee (2005)
JAG “Odd Man Out” (2002) and “There Goes the Neighborhood” (2004) [different characters]
NCIS “Dead Man Talking” as Captain Graves (2004)
Firefly “Heart of Gold” as Ranse Burgess (2003)
The X-Files [multiple episodes] as Young Arthur Dale (1998-1999)
Wiseguy [multiple episodes] as Winston Chambers III (1990)
Mancuso, FBI [series cast] as Eddie McMasters (1989-1990)

At least in all the roles I’ve seen him in, this guy usually plays some sort of sumbitch or other. Really really well. He’s got an air of authority that is immediately recognizeable, and a gravelly vocality that lends itself well to drawling and to general assholery. His resume is a healthy mix of the standard guest work (my favorite discovery is that he played three different roles on three different episodes of JAG and its spin-off NCIS) and semi-regular, recognizeable roles on cult favorites like the first two items on the list. FYI: He is usually credited as Fredric Lane, which’ll tell you how to pronounce his last name properly.

Tom Virtue

Selected Appearances:
The Secret Life of the American Teenager [multiple episodes] as…multiple roles?* (2008-2010)
CSI “Random Acts of Violence” (2003) and “Working Stiffs” (2009) [different characters]
Bones “The Intern in the Incinerator” as Dr. Ted Reardon (2007)
Life “Let Her Go” as Fire Chief (2007)
Arrested Development “Queen for a Day” as Car Salesman (2005)
Even Stevens [series cast] as Steve Stevens (1999-2003)
JAG “All Ye Faithful” as Warrant Officer Scoggins (2002)
Firefly “Ariel” as Pompous Doctor (2002)
Star Trek Voyager [multiple episodes] as Lieutenant Walter Baxter (1995) and “Workforce Parts I & II” as Supervisor (2001)
Freaks and Geeks [multiple episodes] as Mr. Sampson/Mr. Simpson** (2000)

For me, Tom Virtue will always be the dad from Even Stevens before anything else. But the truth is, he has been in pretty much everything ever. Seriously. It is somewhat disturbing how many of his roles are called “doctor” or “voice on the phone” or whathaveyou as opposed to actual names. But let it not be said that he doesn’t stay busy. Generally, his characters tend toward the professional, the irate, the impatient, and occasionally the incompetent. He is almost always some form of comic relief.
*I do not watch this show so I am very confused by his being credited as “Reverend Stone” and “Minister” and “Jack’s Step Dad” all in multiple different episodes, intermixed
**Also have not seen F&G so I can’t say for sure whether or not this is an imdb flub or not

I Love Michael Ausiello

Why?

Because he knows things.

More specifically, he knows up-to-the-minute cancellation/renewal details.

Even better, he keeps this handy-dandy scorecard on EW.com, which saves me from surfing around to three million different websites in search of information about the future.

NBC, ABC, CBS, and the CW have all made their big decisions. Not everything is written in stone quite yet (because networks are like that with the finagling and the changing their minds) BUT, here’s a list of the outcomes I care about:

NBC

Chuck: renewed!!
Heroes: cancelled
Trauma: cancelled

I’ve written a whole post about my feelings on the Heroes cancellation (tragic acceptance) and went into my fears/expectations for Chuck about a week ago. The only thing I have left to say is, Trauma: everyone saw that coming.

ABC

Castle: renewed!!
FlashForward: cancelled
The Forgotten: cancelled!
Lost: ending
Scrubs: (FINALLY) cancelled
V: renewed

Scrubs is blessedly giving up on any new episodes and it is about damn time. FlashForward‘s loss is no shocker, nor is Castle‘s survival. But V…weird. Maybe because I haven’t been watching, but this one def surprises me. It must be better than I thought…or at least more popular…or something. And, THE FORGOTTEN FINALLY GOT CANCELLED! I have been awaiting this day for months.

CBS

CSI: NY: no official word yet
NCIS: no official word yet
NCIS: Los Angeles: renewed!!

NCIS: Los Angeles is maybe my favorite new show this season besides Glee, so it’s fantastic that it’s been renewed. I’m not worried about the other two…I mean really. It’s NCIS and a CSI iteration. They’ll never die. Yet.

FOX

24: cancelled
Bones: renewed
Fringe: renewed
Glee: renewed
House: renewed
Human Target: renewed!!!
Lie to Me: renewed

It was time for 24 to go, so that’s just fine. The big news here is that Fringe will be sticking around! I worry about how it’ll do next year with another J.J. Abrams series on air to compete with, but it’s definitely deserving of renewal. And Human Target! So excited!

the CW

The Vampire Diaries: renewed

That’s really the only CW show I care about right now. But I will add, Supernatural and Smallville were both also renewed. I could have sworn this past season was supposed to be Supernatural‘s last…not complaining, though, aside from the fact that I’ll have even MORE to catch up with. But Smallville? It just needs to die. That show has been on air for too long and the actors are too old to be running around as their same characters anymore. Please die?

These are just the shows that I’m at all concerned about. If you’re looking for news of something I haven’t listed, I definitely suggest you head over to the Renewal Scorecard at the Ausiello Files (linked above).

My Favorite Guest Actors

Ladies and Gentlemen, boys and girls, patricians and plebeians, animals, minerals, and vegetables, I proudly present to you the first Actual New Feature on Melted Brain – a rundown of some of my very favorite guest/character actors working the small screen these days, complete with the reasons why I enjoy them so very much.

Since the realization of this segment was inspired by Garret Dillahunt’s appearance on tonight’s Lie to Me, and since I’ve been talking him up all week without really saying anything, I think it would only be right to start with him:

Garret Dillahunt

He’s been on my radar for the past two or three years, but his career extends much further back than that. Focusing in on just his television credits, he’s played such diverse roles as a Terminator, a Russian crime lord, and Jesus. What makes Garret Dillahunt so fascinating to me is an actor is not just his talent, but the flexibility of his talent. He really occupies all of his various roles. And he has that mysterious and wonderful ability to completely alter his aspect. The physical changes are minimal, but he has a way to mold his whole presence to a role, appearing smarter or dumber, handsomer or plainer, guileless or crueler depending on what is required. My favorite role I’ve seen him in so far was his turn as Roman Novikov in Life.

Upcoming appearances: Tonight’s Lie to Me and episode five of White Collar.

Mark Sheppard

I love Mark Sheppard. I love every single thing he has done that I have seen. The roles are arguably not incredibly diverse. But they are all done phenomenally. He has a charisma and a way with words that seeps into every role he takes. And an excellent, excellent voice. He has appeared in just about every single one of my favorite shows, and been a highlight in those episodes. This man has slimy down pat – and also gruff, cynical, narcissistic, and crafty. I don’t know that I could choose my favorite of his roles, although I did really enjoy his time on Battlestar Galactica as Romo Lampkin. I’d say give this man his own show already, but I really enjoy having him in everything.

Upcoming appearances: Some episodes of White Collar, and a (supposedly) pivotal role on Supernatural.

Zeljko Ivanek

He’s been in everything. Seriously. He’s been completely fantastic – and he has an Emmy for his work on Damages to show for it. A lot of the time he plays a creepy Eastern European. Because, you know, that’s what you do as a fairly peculiar looking Slovenian actor. But, he’s also played several creepy Americans, a few professionals, and, in a few cases, somewhat pathetic Americans. It takes real talent to be both pathetic and creepy – even more for creepy. I’m most familiar with his Heroes role, Emile Danko, but I’m very intrigued by his work on Damages as Ray Fiske and intend to get my hands on some episodes as soon as possible.

John Pyper-Ferguson

I don’t know what it is about this guy, but I’ve been keeping my eye out for him constantly ever since I first saw him in an episode of The X-Files way back when (he actually had two different roles on that show, it turns out). He’s maybe not the strongest actor of all time, but he’s great in character parts, switching from hardass Viper jockey to blind astrophysicist to cult leader/prophet with astounding ease. More than any of his one roles, it’s just fascinating to see where and how he’ll turn up next.

Upcoming appearances: Looks like he’s gonna be in some movies…

Gina Torres

To be completely honest, I liked Gina Torres best in her starring role in Firefly. But, she’s also been a guest staple in so many other shows, I can’t complain much. A lot of the time she’s “the wife” – like she is in FlashForward, these days. But she’s also played a genuinely terrifying Cuban KGB officer in Alias and, my favorite of her roles, Jasmine, the goddess/pestilence from the fourth season of Angel. She is incredibly talented. And also very, very attractive. My gay friend and I agree, we may not swing that way most of the time, but we would definitely sleep with Gina Torres.

Upcoming appearances: Presumably some more episodes of FlashForward, tonight’s Gossip Girl, and she’s the voice of Superwoman in an upcoming animated movie.

Jude Ciccolella

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0161980/

As with Gina Torres, I prefer this actor in one of his recurring roles – Mike Novick of 24. However, since he ended his run on that show he’s shown himself to be a very diverse character actor. He left the loyal-but-uptight politician persona behind and has made appearances in all sorts of different roles on Prison Break, NCIS, Life, and Everybody Hates Chris. Many different roles, all performed with equal actorly dexterity.

Stephen Tobolowsky

A well-recognized face on both the big and small screen, Stephen Tobolowsky is kind of like the king of character actors. He’s played lawyers, doctors, greedy fathers, victims of short term memory loss, and, most recently, Sandy Ryerson, Glee‘s answer to “What do choir boys have nightmares about?” It’s astonishing to me that a man who looks so completely innocuous can go to the extreme edges of hilarity, humanity, and terror with brilliance and ease – and then come back and do the whole thing over again.

Upcoming appearances: Sandy is gone from Glee, for better or for worse, and it looks like he’s putting his focus back on movies for awhile.

These are all actors I am always excited to see in anything. Because I fully trust that they will deliver and that I will thoroughly enjoy the end result. I think the only thing I have left to address is, Why are there not more women on this list? The answer is…I can’t really say. I’m not sure. I just don’t notice actresses as much, maybe. Or, when I do, they’re in recurring roles. This is perhaps something I should work on in the future.

PS – The pictures are links to their imdb profiles. I’m crafty like that.