Category: television

Now Let’s Take A Deep Dive Into Thunder in Paradise, Brother

Millenials are probably more familiar with Hulk Hogan as the man who cuckolded a shock jock and destroyer of Gawker Media than the sports entertainment icon who ruled the entertainment industry for the better part of two decadesAfter several attempts at Hollywood stardom and an acrimonious break from the WWF in 1993, the Hulkster ended up in Florida where he was considering his options both in and out of the ring. 

Later that year Hogan was approached by the producers of Baywatch for a starring vehicle that can be best described as Knight Rider in a boat.  That show became Thunder in Paradise, a series that followed the adventures of two ex-Navy Seals, RJ “Hurricane” Spencer (Hogan) and his best friend Martin Brubaker (Chris Lemmon), who are mercenaries for hire with a privately financed stealth boat in the distant tropical paradise known as South Florida.

Where as there was a modicum of secrecy in Knight Rider, pretty much everyone is aware that Spencer and Brubaker are mercs with a talking boat that was ostensibly smarter than both of them combined.

The pilot is a mess and is thankfully on YouTube in its entirety for you to endure.  There’s a subplot involving a wealthy hotel heiress that Spencer has to marry.  At the same time Spencer owes the bank $90K or they will repossess his illegal stealth boat. They get fake married to stave off a bid by the evil uncle to seize the hotel and she will pay off his debts. Carol Alt’s character has a terrible New York accent that is completely out of place. For me, the best part of the pilot is that Sam Jones (Flash Gordon) shows up as the bad guy.

Now, one of the weirder things going on in the pilot is that Hogan is wearing an eye patch for half of it.  According to a write up in IMPACT – The Action Movie Magazine, stems from an injury from the end of his WWF run.

“a quick script rewrite was undertaken to explain that Spence had been suckerpunched just before the episode began. This explains the use of an eyepatch, sunglasses and the angling of Terry’s face so the left eye is less prominent”

After the pilot was completed and a syndication order was made production moved to Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Nearly all of the 24 episodes were filmed on the back lot there along with other Disney properties used as shooting locations.  Anyone who has spent time at Walt Disney World will be able to pick out that places like Epcot, Seven Seas Lagoon and the Grand Floridian Resorts as they standout rather prominently.

By the time the series went to order, Spencer’s stepdaughter was recast, his wife was killed of screen and Carol Alt ditched the terrible accent.  Chris Lemmon’s constant mugging however, remained.

Every episode has at least three of the following elements:

  • ALL of the action sequences take place in the daytime.  You have a stealth boat, that is invisible to radar, but people can still see it with their eyes, in daylight.
  • Hulk Hogan performs an uncanny feat of strength under water
  • Hulk Hogan wears a speedo
  • Chris Lemmon awkwardly flirts with Carol Alt.
  • Hulk Hogan & Chris Lemmon say “brother” to each other at least 14 times
  • “Thunder” fires a missile at a boat, but the bad guys jump out before it explodes
  • Hulk Hogan lifts a female over his shoulder
  • Wrestler cameo as villain of the week and/or bar patron

The most enduring aspect ofThunder in Paradise is that it may be directly responsible for Hulk Hogan going to wrestle for the WCW.  At the time that the series was in production, WCW was also using Disney Hollywood Studios to tape some of their syndicated programming.

As legend would have it Ric Flair arranged a meeting between WCW management and Hulk Hogan on the set of Thunder in Paradise.  Once the terms of the contract and the large amount of money that that WCW was offering, Hogan signed on rather quickly.  A second season was planned, but Hogan was tired of the shooting schedule and production problems and pulled the plug.

 

 

We’re Getting A New Voltron Series? WE’RE GETTING A NEW VOLTRON SERIES!!!

Did you know that we were getting a new Voltron cartoon in 2016?  No, well I didn’t either until about three hours ago when I came across the teaser for Voltron: Legendary Defender which is set to debut on Netflix in June.  The new series is a full on reboot/re-imagining of the original series which ran for 52 episodes from 1984-85. Despite the fact that the Voltron forming process was incredibly over complicated and time consuming, it was easily one of the most entertaining cartoons to find itself plucked from Japan and reconstituted for the American public.voltron_legendarydefender

Voltron: Legendary Defender will tell the story of five Earth teenagers who find themselves the to be the protectors of the planet Arus which is under threat by the evil King Zarkon.  The showrunners have assured that they will be loyal to the franchise, while allowing for more serialized storytelling.

What has me most excited about this new iteration is the fact that the two executive producers, Lauren Montgomery and Joaquim Dos Santos have done a lot of great work in the world of animation including Justice League Unlimited, Wonder Woman, Avatar: The Last Airbender and Green Lantern: First Flight.

Voltron is an iconic franchise that has seen two previous animated continuations in the form of the direct sequel Voltron: The Third Dimension (1998) and Voltron Force (2011). Along the way there have been several attempts to develop a feature film version of Voltron, all of which fell into the pits of Hollywood’s development hell.  Because let’s be honest …. any new Voltron is good Voltron. 

via @BrianTruitt for USA Today

The Punisher Hits Hell’s Kitchen Next Season on ‘Daredevil’

Marvel and Netflix certainly enjoyed near universal adulation for their new take on Daredevil.  Many like myself were worried that lightning couldn’t strike twice.  How would the showrunners up the ante on season two which is due next year?

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Well, with today’s announcement that Jon Berenthal (The Walking Dead, Fury) would be joining the cast as Frank Castle aka The Punisher, it looks as there won’t be anything to worry about.

In a statement, Jeph Loeb, Marvel’s Head of Television had nothing but excellent things to say about that actor:

Jon Bernthal brings an unmatched intensity to every role he takes on, with a potent blend of power, motivation and vulnerability that will connect with audiences. Castle’s appearance will bring dramatic changes to the world of Matt Murdock and nothing will be the same.

As much as I loved Thomas Jane in the role, I really do think that Berenthal is perfect casting.  I think that this is setting up a great conflict for season two, with the various factions of organized crime in New York City will be trying to get a foothold while The Kingpin is sitting behind bars.

via [/Film]

 

Has The Identity of Reverse Flash Been Confirmed?

Despite only being halfway through its debut season the rogues gallery on the The Flash is already quite prolific.  So far Barry Allen has gone up against Captain Cold, Plastique, Heatwave, Captain Boomerang and Reverse Flash.  Fans were left with the pressing question at the mid-season finale was if Dr. Wells was truly the Reverse Flash … or was that closing scene another bit of misdirection? reverseflashcwThis weekend during the Television Critics’ Association press tour, The Flash star Tom Cavanaugh went on to say that “He [Dr. Wells] is the man in the yellow suit.  Yes, I am Reverse Flash“.

Executive Producer Andrew Kreisberg went on to elaborate that there is “only one Reverse Flash” (dispelling several fan theories) and that before the season is out we why he murdered Barry Allen’s mother.

The Flash returns on January 20th, until then you can sate your appetite for the scarlet speedster with this quick preview.

via [Entertainment Weekly]

And Here’s Our First Good Look at “Thunderbirds Are Go!”

Back in July at San Diego Comic Con it was announced that WETA Workshop was working on a reboot of the classic 1960s series Thunderbirds.  Now we have our first look at Tracy Island and the (backs) of the Tracy brothers who make up International Rescue in the new series Thunderbirds Are Go!.

thunderbirds_newWith this new series, fans of supermarionation will be disappointed as WETA Workshop will be utilizing live-action sets and CGI characters this time around.  As a kid I watched a ridiculous amount of Thunderbirds, Captain Scarlett and Stingray thanks to the endless reruns during the early years of the SciFi Channel.

The briefest of teaser trailers was also released this past week giving fans a look at the new Thunderbird-5 space station.

Thunderbirds Are Go! is set for air in 2015 on ITV in the United Kingdom.  There is no word as to whether it will find a (legal) distributor in the United States; but rest assured I will be sure to pass that information along as soon

via [io9]

5 Questions That Need Answered on Season 2 of ‘Helix’

When I first saw advertisements for Helix I wrote the show off as cable network riff on John Carpenter’s classic horror film The Thing.  Despite the involvement of Ronald D. Moore, whose revitalization of Battlestar Galacatica had the SyFy channel riding high for quite a few years.  Earlier this week while engaging in the endlessly futile act of searching the Netflix catalog I found that the entire first season of Helix was available for streaming and I thought … “It’s only ten episodes, what the hell.”

Let me say that I definitely regret sleeping on Helix, as it was a genuinely pulse pounding thriller that fans of both horror and science fiction will surely love.  After binge watching the first season over the last three days I found that season two of Helix will be premiering in January 2015.

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The cliffhanger at the end of season one leaves so much up in the air but there are some questions that definitely need answered.  If you haven’t seen the first season there are definite SPOILERS ahead!

helix_walkerWhat Happened to Dr. Julia Walker?

In the closing minutes of season one we find that Dr. Julia Walker is walking into a meeting of the board of Illaria Corporation who all just happen to be immortals.  In the 235 days since the events at the Artic Biosystems facility, has she risen to power within that organization? Is she no longer with the CDC?

What is the Significance of “The 500”?

When Constance Sutton (Jeri Ryan) confronted Hatake about the evolution of Dr. Walker she made mention that it was a violation of the agreement of “The 500”.  Is there a “Highlander” type rule where there can only be a specific number of Immortals at a given time?

What’s With the Teeth Filing?

Sutton_Grinding_TeethWe can all agree that Constance Sutton was a cold-hearted bitch, but her bathroom routine involved filing her teeth down with a power tool.  Do the Immortals teeth grow into fangs?  Maybe they are implying that their existence has helped propagate the vampire myth? Who really knows but it was one of the more significant plot threads left dangling from season one.

Has Dr. Alan Farragut Gone Rogue?

The opening of the season one finale had Dr. Farragut torturing an Immortal in hopes of getting information about the whereabouts of his ex-wife, Dr. Julia Walker.  Later we find that he is in Paris, France and is one step closer in determining Dr. Walker’s location and finding out what the hell Illaria Corporation is actually up to. With all this time freelancing has he resigned from the CDC?

Who the Hell was Major Balleseros Actually Working For?

Major Sergio Balleseros was a member of the United States Army but actually was a fixer for Arctic Biosystems while maintaining a side deal with the immortal overlords at the Illaria Corporation.  For most of the season he was generally an asshole but eventually found redemption. Is he fighting a counter insurgency against Illaria? Will he pop up again next season? Did he find love in hopeless place?

So What Happens Next?

Season two of Helix will take the CDC field team to an entirely new location with a new disease that may or may not have ties to the Illaria Corporation.  Syfy released a promo in advance of the premiere next year and it does not do much in terms of answering those lingering questions.

 

 

The 5 Most Terrifying Paranormal Entities from The Real Ghostbusters

As far as cartoons go The Real Ghostbusters remains a revered piece of pop culture for many of my generation.  Running from 1986-1991 it allowed us to enjoy the further paranormal adventures of Venkman and Co. every Saturday morning.  For it’s time the show was very irreverent in that it drew on the events of both feature films.  Kenner was a tremendous promotional partner and had a fantastic toyline (how many of us had those role play Proton Packs?).

The one thing that The Real Ghostbusters did not do is shy away from terrifying its viewing audience.  Below you will find some of the most terrifying paranormal entities from The Real Ghostbusters.

5 – Werechicken from Poultrygeist

IT’S A GIANT FUCKING CHICKEN THAT WILL EAT YOU!!!!!!!!

4 – Hob Anagarak from Cold Cash and Hot Water

An ancient Inuit demon that controls fire, has superhuman strength, the ability to teleport, and can project telekinesis doesn’t seem that bad does he? Or maybe it is due to the the fact that he looks like a cross between a Predator and a Yeti.

3 – Necksa from The Devil in The Deep

This big four armed Gorgo looking sea monster wanted to destroy New York and the world for that matter due to the fact that the water was just so … polluted.  As one of the most powerful primal gods thousands of years old, he was awakened by unknowingly by some public utility workers. And one more thing … he was immune to the Ghostbusters’ standard proton throwers.

2 – The Thing from The Thing Is Mrs. Faversham’s Attic)

“What’s that noise in the attic?”

“Oh just a large purple ectoplasmic cloud mass that is fueled by hatred and revenge.  It can manifest itself in a variety of objects and propel bolts of psychokentic energy”

“Oh, okay.”

1 – Boogieman from The Boogieman Cometh & The Boogieman Is Back) 

As I’ve said here before the Boogeyman as depicted in The Real Ghostbusters is truly the stuff of nightmares.  Despite appearing in just two episodes, the Boogeyman could have cemented the top spot in this countdown with just his appearance alone.  We haven’t even begun to talk about how he warps through your closet door while your sleeping to capture your soul.

 

The Latest ‘Arrow’ Season 3 Trailer Teases A Date Night for “Olicity”

A brand new trailer for season three of The CW’s superhero smash hit Arrow has made its way online and provides a tantalizing look at what to expect when Oliver Queen and his partners start to take back Starling City.  And from the looks of things it appears that I will be able to make use of the “Olicity” tag I started using at the end of last season.

The third season of Arrow premieres October 8th at 8/7c on The CW

via [IGN]

Four Potential Premises For ‘The Walking Dead’ Spin-Off

Well it appears that AMC has officially announced a pilot order for the companion series to its ratings juggernaut ‘The Walking Dead’.  There is literally nothing known about the cast or the setting of this series; however some are lead to believe that it will be a prequel of sorts.  Additionally, creator Robert Kirkman has stated that it won’t be based in Georgia nor will it pull from the comic series.  No one has any idea what is going on but let’s run down a few possibilities that are fueled by nothing more than speculation and nerd rage.

the-walking-dead-billboard-650b

The Walking Dead: WWZ 2

At this point in the series we know nothing about the zombie outbreak, other than a few scattered descriptions during the series’ first season.  Is it possible that we will see something akin to World War Z with governmental agencies attempting to stop the apocalypse?  This is a safe play and I have a hard time believing that AMC would go this route as they are essentially in control of the gold standard of the zombie at this time.  Odds 100:1

The Walking Dead: Omaha

Even though The Walking Dead is a veritable cash cow for AMC, they would be silly to revisit the zombie apocalypse in another major metropolitan market and squander this opportunity. By taking the narrative to a rural setting in the Midwest they can tell a story that is more of a gradual apocalypse.  You’d have farmers and ranchers dealing with a sudden influx of refugees from an infection that has only been heard about on the television and radio. The midwest is hot right now just thing FX’s Fargo … but with zombies and less Billy Bob Thornton. Odds: 50:1

The Walking Dead: Hawaii UH-OH

In most zombie fiction islands tend to fare pretty well (with the exception of Dead Island of course).  What if we find our new protagonists in a society that has survived due to their geographic location and isolation from major population centers?  Would the have an obligation to help out the dwindling number of survivors left on the main land or would they just say ‘fuck it’ and gorge on pineapple and poi?  Odds 35:1

The Walking Dead: BRAAAAAAINS

An hour-long drama told exclusively from the perspective of the undead.  Imagine the horrifically kinetic scenes as the infected begin to turn and start craving the flesh of the living.  I am thinking they could shoot a lot of this from a “first player shooter” perspective with just nonstop corn-syrup blood spurting and screams of agony.  It’ll be relatively cheap, you could have mostly extras and stunt people in make up.  This show would just print money!  Odds 750:1

As outlandish as these premises may be, I’ll leave you with a quote from Robert Kirkman lifted right from the AMC press release:

“There are many corners of ‘The Walking Dead’ universe that remain unseen in the shadows. Being given the opportunity to shine a light into those corners and see what lurks out there is an absolute thrill.  

via [/Film]

Armchair SDCC ’14 — First Look at ‘Arrow’ Season Three

Well that was quick! Our first look at season three of Arrow doesn’t look to let up the pace that was set at the end of last season.  We get our first look at Brandon Routh as Ray Palmer, Oliver and Diggle at odds and a hint that “Olicity” may become Starling City’s new power couple.  We also get quick hits of Canary (who is back?) and Arsenal as well as a newly promoted Captain Lance.

The third season premiere of Arrow will air October 8th on The CW.  There’s a lot we still don’t know yet but I’m sure the panel later tonight will fill us in on the good parts.

[via /Film]

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