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Potts Picks: The Weekend’s Best TV – June 11-12, 2011


65th Annual Tony Awards
– Three things to know about tonight’s Tonys: The always fabulous Neil Patrick Harris is hosting; there are going to be lots of jokes about controversial musical Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark; and it’s likely that South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone are going to snag some awards, since their musical The Book of Mormon leads all nominees with 14 Tony nods.

Marathon – In honor of the late James Arness, the network is airing 24 hours of classic Gunsmoke episodes.

Doctor Who
– In case you haven’t seen the spoilers, I’ll just say that River Song has a biiiig surprise for The Doctor.

Ice Road Terror
Ice Road Truckers + prehistoric creatures = tonight’s Syfy Saturday night movie.

McEnroe/Borg: Fire & Ice
– The sports doc examines the rivalry between hot-tempered tennis star John McEnroe and fellow champ Bjorn Borg throughout the ’70s and ’80s, as well as a look at what they’ve been up to post-tennis.

Army Wives
– Joan has trouble bonding with David, Dennis tries to help Tanya deal with life  without Jeremy and Claudia Joy doesn’t like the way she and Michael are being treated.

– And they’re back! First up in season 8, one bully of a bride threatens to withhold payment from her church, and another gets into a fight at her bachelorette party after drinking too much. Before the season premiere: Bridezillas: Where Are They Now? 2.0 (8PM, WE), an update of some of the more outrageous bridezillas of recent seasons.

The Glee Project
– The new talent search series will reward one person with a guest-starring role on Glee.

Real Housewives of Orange County
Reunion Andy Cohen tries to keep the women from killing each other in the first part of the season 6 reunion, as the O.C. ladies revisit their most tension-filled moments, including an apparently intensified feud between former friends Alexis and Peggy. Also, Vicki‘s long-suffering soon-to-be ex-hubby Donn chats about their split.

The Protector
Ally Walker stars as Gloria Sheppard, a divorced murder detective who has to juggle her stressful job with her stressful home life as a single mom.

Real Housewives of New Jersey
– The Joisey girls move to Sunday nights, and on their first night in the new timeslot, Teresa sees her brother for the first time since the christening blowout, Melissa pursues her pop star ambitions and Caroline shares her mama-ing advice on the radio.

Worth flipping to during commercials:
– Adventure-lovin’ Shane Reynolds travels the globe on the hunt for unusual species  and experiences on the new series Shane Untamed (Sat., 9PM, Nat Geo Wild);
– Detroit citizens are extra unhappy about their cars being booted on the coldest day of the year on Parking Wars (Sat., 10PM, A&E);
– A couple’s passion for cars has led them to Gail on a new Til Debt Do Us Part (Sat., 10PM, CNBC);
Food Network Challenge (Sun., 8PM, Food Network) finds chef making cakes inspired by romance novels;
Filly holds a fitness boot camp for the Gatsby girls on Jerseylicious (Sun., 8PM, Style);
– Karen’s having writer’s block and Carla’s getting ready for her ex’s release from prison on Mob Wives (Sun., 8PM, VH1);
– On the new reality series Finding Sarah (Sun., 9PM, OWN), former Royal Sarah Ferguson tries to get her life in order with help from Oprah minions Dr. Phil and Suze Orman;
– On Ice Road Truckers (Sun., 9PM, History), someone takes a wrong turn and ends up 100 miles away from where he needs to be … yes, of course it’s Rick;
– The new reality series Amsale Girls (Sun., 10PM, WE) follows the employees of a fancy schmancy bridal salon in New York City;
– Callie wigs when Jim’s former partner (an attractive female) arrives from Chicago and needs his help to catch a serial killer on The Glades (Sun., 10PM, A&E);
– On In Plain Sight (Sun., 10PM, USA), Mary protects an Amish witness who’s trying to deal with culture shock and the fact that there are people who want to do her harm;
– On The Killing (Sun., 10PM, AMC), Mitch learns some secrets about her murdered daughter;
– Sofia falls in with the wrong crowd on Treme (Sun., 10PM, HBO);
– You’ve seen the photos, now see Ice-T and his wife Coco in action, so to speak, on their new reality series Ice Loves Coco! (Sun., 10:30PM, E!).





Potts Picks: The Weekend’s Best TV – April 23-24, 2011


Cinema Verite
James Gandolfini plays filmmaker Craig Gilbert, the man behind the groundbreaking 1973 documentary An American Family, considered to be the first reality show. The PBS series followed the Loud family, led by dad Bill (Tim Robbins) and mom Pat (Diane Lane), a suburban duo was whose marriage disintegrated on camera. Pat Loud was widely criticized for making the decision to divorce Bill, and for her support of openly gay son Lance (Thomas Dekker), one of the first gay “characters” seen on TV. Verite is a compelling story itself – no one, least of all the Loud family – knew exactly how this new TV format would be received, and putting it into the context of the early ’70s, it still seems a bit shocking that the Louds laid their family life so open for the TV cameras. PS: NYC’s PBS station is airing the original American Family series this weekend, and if you’ve never seen it, it’s also must-see TV; the station’s Website has preview clips of each episode.

Doctor Who
– In part one of the season opener, “The Impossible Astronaut,” The Doctor (Matt Smith), Amy, Rory and River Song travel to Utah and the Oval Office, 1969-era, after receiving some TARDIS-colored envelopes with directions. Coolest part: It’s the first time Doctor Who‘s cast has ever shot principal photography in the United States.

10PM, SAT | A&E
Parking Wars
– Back-to-back new episodes find a mother and son stirring up a ruckus in Philly, while another driver tries to take off with a boot on his car.

The Amazing Race
– The teams hit Switzerland, where they face a double u-turn.

8PM, SUN | VH1
Mob Wives
– Is there a guiltier pleasure on TV right now? Nope. So just go ahead and watch, as Karen and Renee continue their meltdown at Carla‘s birthday party, prompting some of the other women to jump in.

The Apprentice
– Now that drama magnet Gary Busey‘s gone, methinks this is the week when we finally find out how Star Jones and NeNe Leakes became such bitter enemies, as the two butt heads while working on an ad campaign for a hotel chain.

Beyond the Blackboard
– It’s a fact-based story, and yes, you’re going to need a tissue for the inspiring tale, about a teacher who’s challenged to make a school in the basement of a homeless shelter, with few resources. Everwood stars Emily VanCamp and Treat Williams are reunited in the movie, based on the experiences of a woman named Stacey Bess in Salt Lake City.

Game of Thrones
– Ned, accompanied by his daughters, heads off to take his place in King Robert’s court, but Catelynn stays behind with Bran.

10PM, SUN | A&E
Breakout Kings
– The team has to track two inmates who got the bright idea to escape by poisoning another inmate and sneaking out in the dude’s coffin.

The Real Housewives of Orange County
– Former castmate Lynne returns and drops a supposedly “shocking” secret, while Slade and Gretchen celebrate her birthday with takeout food and a major gift.

– The new season opens on Nov. 1, 2006, with the city still reeling from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, especially the police department, which is overwhelmed with the increase in crime.

Worth flipping to during commercials:
– During back-to-back new Til Debt Do Us Part episodes (Sat., 10PM, CNBC), Gail helps a couple who may have to file bankruptcy for a third time;
– The final four head to Las Vegas, where they have to prove their eatery ideas work with a clientele outside Los Angeles on America’s Next Great Restaurant (Sun., 8PM, NBC);
Challenge: Sugar and Candy Fashion (Sun., 8PM, Food Network) finds chefs whipping up wearable works of sugar art;
– A woman who raised more than 35 foster kids, two biological kids and adopted six more gets a new home on Extreme Makeover: Home Edition (Sun., 8PM, ABC);
– Carlos forbids Gaby to be friends with Bree after the revelation about Andrew, but Gaby, of course, goes against him on Desperate Housewives (Sun., 9PM, ABC);
– On The Borgias (Sun., 10PM, Showtime), Lucrezia’s solution to her unhappy marriage? A hot young stable boy;
– Sarah and Holder get new evidence from one of Rosie’s teachers on The Killing (Sun., 10PM, AMC);
– Pies, and where to find the yummiest ones, are the subject of the series premiere of Unique Sweets (Sun., 10:30PM, Cooking Channel).

Potts Picks: Today’s Best TV


– It’s a TV rule: If Gary Cole appears in a show, it automatically makes that show worth watching. So tune in for tonight’s Chuck, in which the Office Space star returns as Sarah’s dad, a master grifter who helps his daughter and future son-in-law get their wedding money back after another swindler snags it from them.

Gossip Girl
– Thank goodness for that Blair/Dan smooch, because this season seriously needed something to move it along.

– Thirteen rejoins the team, just as Masters (Amber Tamblyn) considers leaving it to focus on a surgical career.

How I Met Your Mother
– The Barnacle wants to bond with his newly-found daddy, but worries that his life will sound boring relative to his pals’, so he asks them to lie.

Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations
– Tony heads off to Boston, where he delves into the city’s mob history and steps into a boxing ring (and hopefully those two things aren’t related).

The Chicago Code
– When five people are shot in Lincoln Park, the mayor blames Teresa and tells her the city’s rising crime rate is her responsibility.

William & Kate
– Is this made-for-TV dramatization of the royal romance cheesy? Deliciously so.

9:30PM | ABC
Cougar Town
– A special Monday night Cougar Town calls for a special plot: Bobby and Laurie introduce Penny Can to a new audience.

Bethenny Ever After
– As Bethenny and Jason head to Los Angeles for her first appearance on Skating With the Stars, she takes the opportunity to show her hubs her old stomping grounds and maybe look for a new L.A. home.

Nurse Jackie
– Jackie gets clever while coming up with a new place to stash her pills, and Kevin invites Eddie to a family BBQ.

Worth flipping to during commercials:
– It’s week five of competition on Dancing With the Stars (8PM, ABC);
– Ricky tries to talk Ben out of getting married on The Secret Life of the American Teenager (8PM, ABC Family);
– On The Event (9PM, NBC), Sen. Lewis spills the results of her blood tests of the White House staff;
– Comedy Central has three encore episodes of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (9PM);
– Darby plans a meet against a club the team should be able to handily beat on Make It or Break It (9PM, ABC Family);
– When Samuel gets fired and loses his apartment, he moves in with Mike on Mike & Molly (9:30PM, CBS);
– On 20/20 (10PM, ABC), Babs Walters previews the royal wedding;
– Troubles at home lead RJ’s grades to slip, which leads him to see a tutor who definitely doesn’t have schoolwork on her mind on The Hard Times of RJ Berger (10PM, MTV);
Sean Combs guest stars as an NYPD cop looking for revenge against a crime lord on Hawaii Five-O (10PM, CBS);
– A high-speed chase leads to the mysterious death of a city bookkeeper on Law & Order: Los Angeles (10PM, NBC);
– Back-to-back new episodes of Pawn $tars on History (10PM).

And the late-night line-up:
Conan (11PM, TBS): Emma Roberts;
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (11PM, Comedy Central): Jamie Oliver (REPEAT);
The Colbert Report (11:30PM, Comedy Central): James Franco (REPEAT);
The Late Show with David Letterman (11:35PM, CBS): Chris Rock and Ellen Page (REPEAT);
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (11:35PM, NBC): Betty White, Matt Damon and Cake (REPEAT);
Lopez Tonight (Midnight, TBS): Judy Greer, Tracy Morgan and REO Speedwagon;
Jimmy Kimmel Live (12:05AM, ABC): Courtney Cox;
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (12:35AM, NBC): Colin Quinn and Rachel Maddow (REPEAT);
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (12:37AM, CBS): Tina Fey;
Last Call with Carson Daly (1:35AM, NBC): Mark Hoppus (REPEAT).

HBO’s ‘Mildred Pierce’ Makeover: The Trailer Debuts

Here it is, the trailer for HBO’s 2011 miniseries remake of Mildred Pierce, the movie for which Joan Crawford won her only Oscar.

In the remake, another Oscar winner, Kate Winslet, plays Mildred, the divorced mom who works as a waitress, then opens her own restaurants, to give her spoiled, ungrateful daughter Veda (Evan Rachel Wood) everything she wants, only to have Veda eventually hook up with Mildred’s second husband, Monte (Guy Pearce in the remake), and … well, no spoiling the end if you haven’t seen it, but I highly recommend watching it before the HBO miniseries airs next spring.

More big names attached to the remake, by the way: Far and Away director Todd Haynes is directing the miniseries (which is a remake of the movie that was an adaptation of a 1941 novel by James M. Cain), and Emmy winners John Wells (ER) and Ilene Landress (The Sopranos) are producers.

WIN THIS! Official ‘Scott Pilgrim vs. the World’ T-Shirt and Hat

HOORAY! We have our winner:

Jason R.! Congrats, Jason, and thanks for entering. Your awesome prizes will be on their way to your mailbox shortly. Enjoy, and thanks again for checking us out at TV!

And everyone, stay tuned to … we’ve got lots more TV goodies coming your way!

It’s almost here, it’s almost here! The movie all the cool kids have been waiting for this summer, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, the Edgar Wright-directed adaptation of Bryan Lee O’Malley‘s Scott Pilgrim comic books, opens in theaters on Friday the 13th, and to celebrate, our very generous friends at Universal have given an official Scott Pilgrim t-shirt and hat to give away to one very lucky reader.

As if you don’t know already, the deets: Scott Pilgrim (Arrested Development star Michael Cera) is a lovesick 22-year-old (and the bass player for Sex Bomb-omb) who meets the girl of his dreams, Ramona Flowers (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), but finds out that he has to do battle with Ramona’s seven evil exes (The League of Evil Exes), before he can win Ramona’s heart.

And The League: They’re already coming to get Scott, in the form of Satya Bhabha as Matthew Patel, the first evil ex; Chris Evans as Lucas Lee, the skateboarder-turned-movie star; Brandon Routh as Todd Ingram, a bass player for The Clash at Demonhead; Mae Whitman as Roxie Richter, Ramon’s ex-girlfriend and college roommate; Shota and Keita Saito as Kyle and Ken Katayanagi, twins who often finish each other’s sentences; and Jason Schwartzman as Gideon Gordon Graves, the leader of the League of Evil Exes.

Also starring: Oscar nominee Anna Kendrick as Scott’s sister Stacey, Ellen Wong as Knives, Scott’s ex, who’s still obsessed with him, and scene stealer Kieran Culkin as Scott’s BFF.

And all you have to do to have a shot at winning the Scott Pilgrim goodies: leave a comment on this post, with the name of the summer 2010 movie you’ve enjoyed most (so far) and an e-mail address where you can be reached, and you may be a winner.

– Leave a comment on this post, with the name of the summer 2010 movie you’ve enjoyed most (so far)
– Deadline to enter is August 20 at 8PM ET (according to recorded comment time)
– The winner will be chosen by random, using’s Random Number Generator
– The winner will be announced on the evening of August 20, as an update to this post
– For this giveaway, U.S. citizens only please

Good luck, Pilgrim fans!

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