Well, maybe Benedict Cumberbatch really is just in Comic-Con for "The Penguins of Madagascar" and "The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies." Though the "Star Trek Into Darkness" star had been strongly rumored for the role of Doctor Strange in Marvel's upcoming film (which will be directed by Scott Derrickson), The Wrap is reporting that Oscar nominee Joaquin Phoenix is in talks to take the part.
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“The Walking Dead” Season 5 gets premiere date, trailer
AMC’z zombie series returns Oct. 12.
Thursday was a big first day for live-blogging at San Diego Comic-Con.
Friday (July 25) started with "Big Bang Theory," which I'll write up later, but didn't live-blog.
Now it's time for chaos, with live-blogs for "The Walking Dead," "Game of Thrones" and "Arrow," plus possibly "The Originals," depending on timing.
Up first? The Hall H panel for "The Walking Dead," which is likely to be as big as any panel at Comic-Con, featuring stars Andrew Lincoln, Norman Reedus, Steven Yeun, Lauren Cohan, Danai Gurira, Melissa McBride, Chad Coleman and Michael Cudlitz, showrunner Scott Gimple, franchise creator Robert Kirkman, long-running EPs Gale Anne Hurd and Dave Alpert, producer-director-makeup genius Greg Nicotero and moderator Chris Hardwick, who might as well be on the panel himself.
Let's see what goes down!
The stakes were high for the Beastie Boys on their second album, “Paul’s Boutique.” The trio’s first set, 1986’s “Licensed To Ill,” had catapulted Adam “Ad-Rock” Horovitz, Adam “MCA” Yauch, and Michael “Mike D” Diamond into rap’s forefront with tunes like the bratty anthem, “Fight For Your Right (To Party)”showed three white New Yorkers could steal the rap spotlight.
But the bigger question was if they were making novelty music for frat parties or were here to stay. “Paul’s Boutique” authoritatively proved it was the latter.
When it came time for “Boutique,” which came out 25 years ago today, on July 25, 1989, the Beasties had split with producer Rick Rubin and turned to the Dust Brothers. The album came with a more serious, dedicated attitude and a quarter century after its release, it is considered the Beastie Boys’ masterpiece.
So how was it received when it first came out? Here’s a look at some of the initial reviews in 1989 for “Paul’s Boutique.”
Rolling Stone gave it four our of five stars with David Handelman declaring, Yet with the dense, crafty Paul's Boutique (produced by the Dust Brothers, including Tone-Loc helmsman Matt Dike), the Beasties reinvent the turntable and prove they're here to stay. Gone is Rubin's wailing guitar (and with it, probably, the chance of a crossover hit single), but in its place is a nearly seamless set of provocative samples and rhymes — a rap opera, if you will, complete with an Abbey Road-like multisnippet medley called "B-boy Bouillabaisse." If the misogyny, hedonism and violence of the first album bothered you, the sequel shows little remorse — merely replacing beer with cheeba — but it's a much more intricate, less bludgeoning effort.”
Robert Christgau, reviewing for Playboy, noticed the sea change: “If Paul's Boutique (Capitol) doesn't jump you the way great rap usually does, it also announces that these guys aren't about to burn out on their vaunted vices--not cheeba, not pussy, certainly not fame. With Rick Rubin producing hard rock full-time, Paul's Boutique doesn't pick up on the expansive pop-metal hooks that made them rich and famous. It's not as thick and threatening as Public Enemy or as waggish as De La Soul. But the Beasties and Tone-Loc's Dust Brothers have worked out a sound that sneaks up on you with its stark beats and literal-minded samples, sometimes in a disturbing way, and while I don't hear a "Fight for Your Right," I also wasn't smart enough to handicap "Wild Thing" as the biggest rap single in history. Bearing down on the cleverest rhymes in the biz…the Beasties concentrate on tall tales rather than boasting or dissing.”
“Paul’s Boutique” peaked at No. 14 on the Billboard 200, but time has given the album a certain revered, elder statesman status among rap titles. Spin ranked it No. 12 among its 100 Greatest Albums released between 1985 and 2005; Pitchfork listed it at No. 3 on the Top 100 Albums of the 1980s, and Time Magazine named it among its “100 Greatest Albums of All TIME.”
“Hey Ladies” was the only hit from “Paul’s Boutique,” reaching No. 36, but the entire album’s influence only continues to grow.
What’s your favorite track from “Paul’s Boutique?”
After premiering at the Sundance Film Festival in January, Anton Corbijn's "A Most Wanted Man" — featuring the last leading man performance from the late Philip Seymour Hoffman — makes its way to theaters today.
Dawes will star on Sunday’s (27) episode of Guitar Center Sessions on DIRECTV’s Audience Network, but you don’t have to wait until then to get a sneak peek at the Southern California’s folk rockers’ appearance.
After revealing the film as part of its official lineup of premieres on Tuesday, the Toronto Film Festival has waited until today to announce that "The Judge," starring Robert Downey Jr. and Robert Duvall, will serve as the event's opening night presentation on Sept. 4.
Comic-Con attendees forbidden from asking “Big Bang Theory” writers about cast negotiations
When a Deadline reporter at this morning’s “Big Bang” panel tried to ask about the negotiations, a Comic-Con monitor exclaimed, “We can’t let you ask about that — it’s a legal question.” Still, the writers seemed to be conveying the message that everything is proceeding as normal.
AMC orders Afghanistan-set “White City” pilot
AMC calls “White City” “a gripping geopolitical drama focused on Western diplomats and journalists living in Afghanistan.”
Cartoon Network renews 5 shows, including “Adventure Time”
“Uncle Grandpa,” “Clarence,” “Regular Show” and “Steven Universe” also got picked up for another season.
“Bates Motel’s” Olivia Cooke shaves her head at Comic-Con
Norman Bates’ pal Emma is bald for a new movie role.
Blame Jack Bauer for the rise of “Bonkers TV”
Bonkers TV is when a show goes from one gasp-inducing plot point to the next, from “Scandal” to “Salem,” according to Tara Ariano. Bonkers TV, says Ariano, "operates on the outskirts of our television renaissance. This is programming designed to stun its audience at any cost (even coherence and plausibility) in an effort to restore some kind of order to a chaotic media landscape.”
Brooks Wheelan: I never expected to be on “SNL"
"I had a good time on it,” he says. "Looking back, it was a cool year. I never expected to be on Saturday Night Live, so the fact that I got to do it for a year is like, What?! It’s an added bonus.” PLUS: 1982-85 vet Gary Kroeger on being fired from “SNL."
Watch Jordan Peele play Stan Lee on “Key & Peele”
Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele revealed the upcoming sketch at Comic-Con.
“Airline Repo” gets a Season 2 premiere date, adds a female pilot
The Discovery Channel reality show returns Aug. 22.
Fast National ratings for Thursday, July 24, 2014.
FOX's "Hell's Kitchen" failed to get a big finale bump and also failed to help the network upset the normal Thursday order. "Big Brother" was still the night's top show in the key demographic, while a "Big Bang Theory" repeat still led the TV night overall.
The night also saw very small audience bumps for all of NBC's originals, though "Hollywood Game Night," "Welcome to Sweden," "Working the Engels" and "Last Comic Standing." Also flat? FOX's impressively steady, if not impressively strong, "Gang Related."
ABC's two-hour season [series?] finale for "Black Box" was up a little as it ended its run.
On to the numbers...
“Days of Our Lives” vet is set to join “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills”
Eileen Davidson, who also appeared on “The Young and the Restless,” is expected to join Lisa Rinna on the Bravo reality show.
Lifetime drops “Good Grief” mortuary reality show after co-owners were charged with corpse abuse
The Johnson Family Mortuary in Fort Worth, Texas, was to have starred in the reality show, but authorities found there to be eight decaying bodies at its facility.
Cinemax picks up “Outcast” pilot from “Walking Dead’s” Robert Kirkman
"Demons are the new zombies,” Kirkman says of the adaptation of his exorcism comic book.
Stephen Colbert slams “True Blood” for its “transparent Hollywood attack on Republicans”
Colbert agrees with Ted Cruz’s criticism of the HBO series.
“Firefly” cast will lend their voices to the “Firefly Online” game
All the actors will be back, including Nathan Fillion.
Check out “Game of Thrones” fan-made Emojis
This concept art isn’t available for texting. PLUS: Pedro Pascal feels like a rock star at Comic-Con, and George R.R. Martin puts his head on Daenerys’ body.
Mick Jagger visited the set of his HBO rock n roll drama he’s making with Martin Scorsese
The Rolling Stones frontman tweeted a photo from the set of the pilot in Sands Point, Long Island.
Jimmy Fallon gets Morgan Freeman to do his interview with a helium voice
"I do love your voice and everyone loves your voice,” Fallon said, "but I was wondering what your voice would sound like on helium. I'll do the same interview, I'll just do it on helium.” PLUS: ESPN’s Frank Caliendo reads LeBron James’ essay as Morgan Freeman.
Stevie Nicks will mine her past on new album, “24 Karat Gold: Songs From The Vault,” out Oct. 7 on Warner Bros.
The album, recorded in Nashville and Los Angeles and produced by Eurythmics’ Dave Stewart, famed session/touring guitarist/producer Waddy Wachtel and Nicks, features music written by the Fleetwood Mac enchantress between 1969 and 1995, Nicks tells Billboard. “Each song is a lifetime. Each song has a soul. Each song has a purpose. Each song is a love story,” she said. “They represent my life behind the scenes, the secrest, the broken hearts, the broken hearted and the survivors. These songs are the memories—the 24-karat gold rings in the blue box.”
The album will in various editions. The standard packaging includes photos taken by Nicks over the last several decades. A deluxe CD set will include two bonus tracks and a 48-page photo booklet. A limited edition double vinyl set will be released a week prior, on Sept. 29.
Nicks will begin previewing snippets of songs from the album Aug. 5 via her Instagram account, stevienicksofficial.
She returns to the road with Fleetwood Mac on Sept. 30. The tour includes the long-awaited return of singer/keyboardist Christine McVie to the band.
I can't offer extended "review" thoughts on Tate Taylor's "Get On Up" for another week yet, but I'm pretty sure I can comment on Chadwick Boseman's performance as The Godfather of Soul, James Brown. So let's do that…