FTW vs. WTF: The TV Week in Review (July 1)

Holy moly, we have a crap-ton of WTF and FTW moments for you this weekend! And it's a good thing, too, because who doesn't want to spend their weekends reflecting on the best and worst of TV moments of the week?


FTW



Louie's colorblind casting


Screw continuity! The FX comedy isn't concerned with keeping characters straight (Louie has had sisters and/or brothers and kids living with him and kids not living with him), just with keeping it real. The new ex-wife character in Season 3 is the mother to his lily-white kids, and she's black. Louis C.K.'s reasoning behind the casting is admirable: She was just a good actress.



NBC's T-shirt design contest for Parks and Recreation


We kind of love that the network is doing this. There are some pretty awesome designs so far!



Modern Family's Ariel Winter as Dora the Ass-Kicking Explorer


If Jerry Bruckheimer got a hold of the kids' icon, it might look a little something like this.



Mia Michaels' return to So You Think You Can Dance


For those of us hardcore SYTYCD nerds, the return of this show's grand dame of choreography was a real highlight. Not only is it nice to have Michaels back from her backstage-drama-tinged exile to SYTYCD: Canada, her group number was an incredible, bizarre, cool triumph. As Nigel said, "Welcome home, Mama. You've been missed." One question though: Is she in the Witness Protection Program now?



A Harlem Globetrotter tears up the American Ninja Warrior course


An incredibly tall and good-natured Harlem Globetrotter named Bull Bullard proved that reality show ninjas don't HAVE to be tiny sprites in order to do well on this show. Watch him ace the course while ALSO playing to the crowd.



The guy who lost a tooth on The Price Is Right


And 85-year-old contestant named Henry stumbled during his trip up to the stage and lost one of his chompers in the process; you'll surely find yourself chuckling over his newly gap-toothed grin when you see how giddy he was over just being on the show.



Stephen Colbert's commentary on the gay pride Oreo drama


Regardless of personal politics, Colbert's bit on the cookie controversy made some excellent points about consumer politics, got some jabs in on the more extreme responses to Oreo "coming out of the pantry" and was just plain funny.



Margo Martindale's guest appearance on Suits


The always compelling Martindale from A Gifted Man and Justified went head-to-head with Harvey and Mike as a nurses' union negotiator.



WTF



Sorkin's skewering, shamefulness, and supercuts


After The Newsroom creator's grandstanding dialogue was smacked down by most critics (and adored by most fans), his condescending remark ("Listen here, Internet girl") to a female journalist who worked for a newspaper showed his true colors, and this supercut by a superfan inadvertently showed off his surprising limited range. Everyone jump on board the Sorkin backlash wagon! Lena Dunham must be pretty happy right now.



CNN and Fox News getting Thursday's healthcare verdict wrong


Dummies! Being first is awesome but holy crap get your facts straight before you put them on our TV screens, will ya?



Russell Brand's rambling


We're all for letting guys riff on the spot if they can riff on the spot, but Brand just blabbers. On Brand X with Russell Brand, Mr. Former Katy Perry opens his mouth and words just spill out, jokes thud to the ground, and dogs everywhere cover their ears from the screeching.



Anger Management lifts nearly every setting from Two and a Half Men


Granted Two and a Half Men didn't invent the soundstage, but Anger Management is (understandably?) playing it way too safe with the: 1.) big open living room, 2.) kitchen discussions at the table with coffee mugs, 3.) bar with a restaurant, and 4.) therapist's office. It's all made to feel like Charlie never left, but the set-up feels stale and he's sorely missing Jon Cryer as his foil.



Alec Baldwin strikes again


No fists were involved this time around, but an enraged Alec Baldwin was caught on video verbally assaulting a paparazzi photographer. There was some manhandling, too, but seriously we think Baldwin needs some anger management before he does something really stupid.



Zooey Deschanel on So You Think You Can Dance


While we admit that Zooey behaved in the same way WE would've (slack-jawed amazement, mostly), it's usually better for guest judges to be able to actually DISCUSS dancing, wouldn't you think?



Kimora Lee Simmons' Rush card commercials.


The card itself is a way to scam poor people and the ads run all the way through our DVR'd block of Bad Girls Club with promo codes like "Beauty" and "Sassy."



The lesser subplots on True Blood


This show has always been wildly uneven (it's a trademark at this point), but a full half of this season's subplots have bordered on insufferable. Does anybody actually care about Sam's romance with Luna? Or Arlene and Terry's ghost issues? And don't even get us started on Andy Bellefleur. It's nothing new to care about Pam and Eric and Jason more than anybody else, but last week's disparities were downright sigh-inducing. Don't make us use the fast-forward button, True Blood.


What made your list of TV loves and hates this week?

Comments (49)
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Okay FTW, you people need to get on this new show Continuum - it's great. If you love good sci-fi it's as good as anything I've seen in years and may end up being almost as good as Fringe. And the fact it's Canadian is irrelevant, so give it a go and you won't be disapponted.

What channel is it on? Can't say for sure so look it up and watch it - trust me, its good...
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while i don't think the newsroom is groundbreaking, and i do feel it's kind of cheap to use real life news, i do like the show and though the pilot's opening "it's not" dialogue was true and needed to be said again and again and again in whatever format. and i do like the show. i like the characters i'm meant to like and find the humor truly intelligent versus the crap 'you, the site writers' claim veep offers.



i'm not familiar with any of the other stuff involving sorkin or the the show's drama that's been stirred up, perhaps i'll investigate. and onto the others:



i like the shirts, thanks for sharing.



man it's much easier knowing how young ariel winter is when her hair's straight, parted down the middle, wears glasses and acts like the stereotypical grade-school smart girl than ...virtually any other time she appears on the interweb. and monkeys are still awesome.



i've gotta watch that harlem globetrotter video. and then youtube harlem globetrotter videos.



losing a tooth has gotta suck, very sad. colbert's always been great with his nonsensical stuff. gotta watch that video i guess.



i loved raising hope's jab @ 24 hour news channels.



russel brand on (conan?) was one of the most brilliantly funny interviews ever, pretty much all thanks to him, and so it bothered me any time someone would same he wasn't funny. but brand x was a huge disappointment to be sure. i hope he hasn't compromised his sobriety. if he has i wouldn't be surprised if his shows bombing could be attributed to such.



i though anger management's opening was surprisingly funny and well done. of course the rest of the opening scene was pretty much just crude for the sake of being crude. didn't watch the whole pilot. at least charlie looks to be of sound mind again. and two and a half men with kutcher just ruined an already mediocre-at-best show.



someone funny on the internet pointed out that the little dude looks kinda like matthew brodderick. and good for baldwin kicking photog ass. why not?



zooey playing zooey on a dance show isn't really any different than zooey playing zooey anywhere else? cleavage.



photo with two cute asian women. i'll take the one on the left. don't have tv / commercials.



virtually all of true blood has been hard to stomach so far this season. i certainly don't care about the relationships any more. okay i do but only the ones the ones that haven't been on/off. laffayett(sp?) turning into demon dude while existentially tinkering with sookies car has pretty much been the highlight of the season so far imo. quickly followed by a kinda poorly done action scene in which sookies car is out of control. to dude leaving the show after this season: not the best final season so far man.
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Oh, I definitely have a WIN: Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson's Wednesday episode, which went on even though the lights in the studio had blown out. That episode was some of the most amazingly entertaining, clever, and hilarious material any talk show has ever done. They saw the problem as a challenge to overcome and rose to the occasion, they could have easily just aired a rerun but instead the show went on and it was one of the best they've ever done.
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Craig's the best there is...
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I thought Brand X was ok, he's speaking from an outsider perspective and being funny while learning and making points. The intros with the guitar riff and graphics were the only part I found grating.



I finally watched part of Anger Management last night on the DVR, holy crap you are dead-on right that they lifted the entire look from 2.5 Men. The living room set has the stairs on the left, the big windows in the back, the couch on the right, the front door in the same place, the kitchen in the same place, it was embarrassing. Bedroom was the same too, it was shocking how lazy that was. The only thing lazier was the tepid writing, aside from the sex it could have played on any network or even ABC Family, it was lame.
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I just found out The West Wing is Sorkin so I got them all and I'm going to enjoy them even though I passed first time around, so yeah...
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As with any response that calls people out for being "terrible, terrible writers", you may want to edit your post for grammar and spelling before hitting submit because you only undermine the validity of your arguments.



For instance:

- Sorkin is always capitalized as a proper noun. If you revere the guy, at least spell his name correctly.

- "you" only has one "y" in it, and "because" does not end with an "r".

- A jab is directed "at" or "towards" something.

- "too", meaning also, has two "o"s in it.

- "I myself" is redundant. We understand it is you speaking about yourself.

- "as is" should read "as it is".

- "wether" has two "h"s: whether

- people write "well enough", not "good enough". Regardless, writing competence has little to do with one's ass-wiping ability.

- "populist, ass-cheap easy" simply makes no sense. Besides, the term is "cheap-ass", as in "I just bought some cheap-ass shoes at the thrift store."

- "fgucking"? After two previous perfectly spelled f-bombs, now you fuck up?

- Capitalize the first word of each new sentence. ie. You suck!!



Here endeth the lesson.
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That too...
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People are still paying attention to Russell Brand? Christ, I accidentally watched ten minutes of his abominable "Arthur" remake the other night and could hardly believe anybody ever has paid their hard earned money to see somebody so unfunny.
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I agree. He kind of reminds me of Dane Cook in that he may have said something funny once and execs started throwing movies at him but then realized it was a horrible idea because it'd be funnier to watch someone drown a bag of kittens... which is to say, not funny in the slightest.
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Not really much FTW or WTF for me this week.



The role playing on Common Law could be kind of FTW for me.



As much as I love Margo Martindale (particularly for Justified and Dexter), I didn't find much to love about her role in Suits. It's not really of any fault of hers, there just really wasn't much she could do with it.
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Before I remark on the Sorkin Supercut, I want to be clear that I am in no way affiliated with the Republican Party (I'm Canadian), nor my own country's Conservative Party (I vote NDP), so my opinion is not shaded by political motivations. I agree with almost everything his witty, well-spoken, well-intentioned characters say, in particular McAvoy's lament on the media.



I don't hate the guy, but this supercut clearly validates a significant criticism of his writing style: his characters largely lack individual distinction because they all speak with Sorkin's voice using the same phrasings repeatedly over every series and movie. Someone in an earlier post called this "self-referencing", but this cannot be construed as such. Self-referencing is Tarantino including Red Apple cigarettes in all his movies. And it annoys me to the same degree when Tarantino's characters sound more like him than themselves, though he has improved this with each movie.



I cannot use the word "hack" to describe this behaviour. Clearly Sorkin has an ear for what he likes, and once he has created a turn of phrase he loves, he uses it repeatedly for the emotional beat it creates when his characters deliver it. This is more narcissistic than hackery, though, since he cannot remove himself from his fictional characterizations.



I enjoy watching his work, mostly because his characters' soapbox speeches are what I wish our own politicians/reporters would say in public, rather than communicating through soundbites and bullet points. Thus the popularity of Jon Stewart's Daily Show calling everone out on their b.s.



However, that doesn't mean that I shouldn't expect better from a writer (Sorkin) that has received as many accolades and as much praise as he has.
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Yeah, I always said that about him in The West Wing. It's like that chef that puts Oregano in every single thing. The pasta's great, but don't eat the doughnuts.
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LOL...
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Well said! I wasn't initially that deep and reflective about it. I just thought it was funny as hell that he regurgitates so much dialog over his body of works. :)
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I'm trying to get what Louis did with his kid's mom on the show, though I'll support the decision. It's just a show, and anyone *should* be able to play anyone if they're all just acting (I mean, Halle Berry *could've* sold Catwoman), but we're a visual people. I don't know if we'll ever get to the point of actually not seeing race...although some of us have more experience in pretending.



That said, I like her. It might be because I utterly despise the quivering, gelatinous lump of shit that his character is, but as soon as she starting smacktalking about him and his idiocy over the phone, I was immediately on her side. She immediately sold it as a woman who's put up with his shit for too long. If anything, her character loses a few points with me by marrying him and having two kids with him in the first place. As I say, 'Homer says just as much about Marge as he does about himself.'



'Homosnackuals'...heh heh, that Colbert...
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This is the first time I noticed this place has a filter.



(Testing: homogenized milk, raccoon city, fagor cookware, Dieter Von Cunth..)
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FTW: Gina Torres and her wardrobe on Suits. She's got the acting chops to make her character fan-freakin-tastic, but accompanied by the outfits she's been modelling lately, she don't have to say nuthin.
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wonder why amc vs all satellite companies isn't on wtf??? as for screwing everybody over -as it's everyone fault
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I think it should be legal for actors to beat up paparazzi. They're all bottom of the barrel scum.
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Don't get me wrong, I love True Blood, but last week's episode was a snoozer.
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I'm not impressed with Louis C.K.'s casting. Bryan Fuller had already done something like that back in 2008 in Pushing Daisies, where he cast a white, blue-eyed mother for Emerson Cod (Chi McBride).
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I agree. It was great to see Mia back on the show. I've never been a fan of any of the celeb judges on SYTYCD. I cringe every time they have one on. I love Zooey, but she didn't belong there.
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Don't watch Louis C.K., but that's awesome.

And imo the paparazzi deserve everything they get. They are nothing more than disgusting stalkers.
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I love the Parks and Rec fandom so much. I'm gravitating towards the Perd Hapley tee and the "I know more than you" shirt.
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I certainly don't care about Arlene and Terry's ghost issues. LOL what a snoozefest.



I laughed at the Sorkin video. LOL what was Tom Hank's Oscar speech doing there?



Colbert was awesome as always. :D
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The Dora the Explorer thing was cool, but did anyone else get distracted by the screenshot of Zooey Deschanel's boobs? Btw, everyone should know it took me at least three go's to do this sentence.
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no i can't say i did get distracted by her boobs in fact I had to scroll back just to see if you were telling the truth
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lol, same. I read this comment and then scrolled back up.
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I give props to Louis C.K. for casting who he wants, continuity be damned. I also was thoroughly impressed with the Globetrotter killing the obstacle course, I took an inhaler puff just watching it. But the best clip of the week was easily Stephen Colbert that segment on the gay Oreo is pure gold!



As for True Blood, Terry was awesome just being Terry but the plot with the fire ghost is painful to watch. I like it most when the character interact with each other but Sam, Terry and Andy all have their own stuff going on and none of it is interesting.
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That Dora trailer is all kinds of awesome!!! XD
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Andy and Terry are both awesome, the subplots on True Blood are more entertaining than the main plots half the time
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That Sorkin supercut just made me like him more. But then again, I'm seeing it as hidden self-references and not limited range. And I can't think of anything great/bad happening in TV-land this week.
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Speaking as a guy who doesn't like Obama because he's pretty much a Republican-before-they-went-apeshit, Sorkin's pretty much a one-trick. It's a damn good trick, but most people can figure out anything if given enough time and repetition with it.
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I'm with you. I don't understand the Sorkin hate. Part of it I feel is clearly partisanship, at least in my own personal experience people who hate Sorkin tend to be Republicans and bashing his work is a thinly veiled response to not agreeing with his political views, many of which often find their way into his shows.
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Maybe those who don't like his views are tapping into the meme that if you repeat the big lie often enough, people begin to believe it, and could it be any more obvious that Sorkin is always repeating himself?
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Paparazzi are scum suckers so I think Baldwin was in the right telling him to leave his neighbor alone. We don't know how much the guy was harassing his neighbor so I wouldn't say it's a WTF. Besides calling him a girl and swearing once he wasn't being terribly mean to the guy or abusive.
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Maybe they are and maybe this guy deserved it, but Alec has a really disturbing history of anger issues not just towards photographers but his own children. He needs some help or to at least relax a little
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Wowza!! Zooey looks so freakin' cute and sexy that I could care less about the WTF, haha. Mmm mmm pick her up, throw her in the hay and,,,, :P



That Price is Right thing is a repeat so really doesn't qualify.
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I don't know if this is FTW or WTF, but Kurt Sutter, SoA showrunner, isn't too happy about Tim's Anger Management article. Look at his twitter and you'll know what I mean.
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Hehe, the only thing I take away from that tweet is that Kurt Sutter made no attempt at defending Anger Management.
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If the world did everything to please Kurt Sutter, nothing would ever happen. That dude needs some anger management himself. Or possibly some medication. Make that definitely.
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I know right. Those who don't kiss Sutter's ass are cunts and fucks according to him.



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LOL the comment filter is obviously busted :O)
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I think Alec Baldwin is funny, so I don't think it's a big deal. The subplots you mentioned on this season of True Blood are no more insufferable than last season. So Pam, Eric, and Jason are the only characters people care about? Did you leave out Jessica?
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People still care about Jason?
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What a scary statement it is to say that because an actor is entertaining, it's alright when they go postal. Kinda like saying it's okay for a black lab to bite my daughter, but not a pit bull.



I will say, however, that I think the paparazzi as a group are more despicable than Alec has been, and if he's going to have an outburst of inappropriate anger, they should be the target.
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Yeah Jessica for the win, even Lafayette he has some fantastic one liners!
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WTF: CNN's confusion about the Supreme Court's health care ruling (on top of anticipating it for over a week); the French's French Onion ad where the mother and presumed housewife proclaims it's the only brand she uses on her onion chicken "because it's America's number one brand." Really, French's only selling point is "Buy it because it's the best-selling"? FTW: Rachel Maddow covering Mississippi's closing of the state's last abortion provider. Jon Stewart's skewering of CNN's misreporting of the Supreme Court verdict.
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