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"The Originals"

 "The Originals"

Credit: The CW

'The Originals': Was all the Klaus-Marcel battle build-up worth it?

The two rivals face off, but the result is nasty, brutal and very short

I was looking forward to the much-anticipated face-off between Marcel and Klaus on "The Originals" (Tues. at 8:00 p.m. on the CW) last night. While the two vampires and former friends brought different assets to the table, that didn't necessarily mean it wasn't a fair fight. Klaus is an Original (so he can't be killed) and a hybrid (so he's even more powerful than a vampire). Marcel is just a regular vampire, but he has an army of fellow vampires, plus a pocket witch (Davina) on his side. This was going to be a long, drawn-out battle to the death, right? 

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'Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.' is bouncing back


After many weeks of declining numbers, ratings have actually gone up the past two weeks. PLUS: "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" was last night's highest-rated program.

The TV chef's ex-husband accused her of abusing cocaine every day for a decade. Yet ABC says the accusations won't have an impact on Season 2 of the ABC reality competition because it's already been filmed.

Producers are dubbing the promotion the "Glee 100th Gleeks Choice: You Vote. We Remix."
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Listen: Firewall & Iceberg Podcast No. 212 - All 'Breaking Bad' Edition

Dan and Alan discuss 'Breaking Bad,' welcoming a special guest


Happy Wednesday, Boys & Girls. As promised, it's time for our All "Breaking Bad" Edition of The Firewall & Iceberg Podcast.
And, as promised, even though we posted our first Firewall & Iceberg Video Show yesterday, we're keeping the podcast alive.
If we're being honest, this week's Firewall & Iceberg is a bit of a technical nightmare, particularly in the segment with our Very Special Guest, which was supposed to be longer, but ended up being truncated because Skype kept crashing and at a certain point, we decided it was better to reach a closing point, rather than wasting his time any further. 
Apologies for the technical problems and for what may be a slightly shorter podcast than we wanted. We've got lots more "Breaking Bad" questions from you and maybe we'll sprinkle them into future ordinary podcasts, randomly. 
Today's breakdown:
"Breaking Bad" (00:00:00 - 00:54:00)

As always, you can subscribe to The Firewall & Iceberg Podcast over at the iTunes Store, where you can also rate us and comment on us. [Or you can always follow our RSS Feed.] 

And as always, feel free to e-mail us questions for the podcast.


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<p>&quot;The Best Man Holiday&quot; will be one of the films included at the BFCA's Celebration of Black Cinema.</p>

"The Best Man Holiday" will be one of the films included at the BFCA's Celebration of Black Cinema.

Credit: Universal Pictures

From 'Best Man Holiday' to 'The Butler,' BFCA hails a banner year for black film

Their 'Celebration of Black Cinema' evening is set for January 7

The Broadcast Film Critics' Association is hardly the first group or individual to note that this has been remarkable year for black filmmakers and black-themed films. Ever since "Lee Daniels' The Butler" emerged as a surprise box-office sleeper in the summer, followed shortly afterward by the triumphant festival debut of "12 Years a Slave" -- both films consolidating the Sundance success of Ryan Coogler's "Fruitvale Station" in January -- the shorthand narrative of 2013 as "the year of black cinema" has been cemented in the media, and inevitably bled into the awards race.

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Firewall & Iceberg Podcast, episode 212: 'Breaking Bad'

Dan, Alan and a very special guest discuss odds and ends from the life of the AMC drama


Yesterday saw the premiere of the first Firewall & Iceberg video show. As promised, though, the podcast isn't going away. And, as promised, this week's is the long-awaited all-"Breaking Bad" show. It ran a little shorter than planned, due to massive technical difficulties during the segment with our special guest, but it's nearly an hour of your questions and our answers, plus discussion of the overall greatness of the series and where it might fit into the Pantheon now that it's done. 

And as mentioned on the video show yesterday, we have a new email address for questions for both versions: So fire away, folks, as I suspect we'll need a bunch of good questions next week, as we shift into the dog days at the end of the calendar year.

The very simple rundown:

"Breaking Bad" (00:00:00 - 00:54:00)

As always, you can subscribe to The Firewall & Iceberg Podcast over at the iTunes Store, where you can also rate us and comment on us. Or you can always follow our RSS Feed, download the MP3 file or stream it on Dan's blog.

There's also now a complete archive of all the podcasts to date.

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<p>&quot;Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer&quot;</p>

"Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer"

Credit: CBS

TV Ratings: 'Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,' rising 'S.H.I.E.L.D.' lead Tuesday

'The Originals' ties a series high, 'New Girl' and 'Mindy' are up
Fast National ratings for Tuesday, November 26, 2013.
While some people suggested that pre-Thanksgiving was too early for "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer," viewers disagreed and made CBS' special the night's top show among young viewers. ABC, meanwhile, won Tuesday night overall with "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." and the "Dancing with the Stars" finale.
I'm still waiting on a clear explanation for why "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." was up by 35 percent week-to-week in total viewers, but it was provisionally the drama's biggest audience since its premiere. It's hard to believe that the preemption of "NCIS" freed up that many viewers, but who knows?
The absence of "NCIS" hurt "NCIS: Los Angeles" and "Person of Interest" a little overall, but the CBS dramas held up well among young viewers.
Meanwhile, FOX's "New Girl" and "The Mindy Project" were up week-to-week among young viewers and, other than "Dads," FOX's comedies were all up overall.
Finally, over on The CW, "Supernatural" moved back ahead of "The Originals" overall, while "The Originals" maintained a slim advantage among young viewers.
On to the numbers...
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'Glee' cast congratulates Amber Riley for winning 'Dancing with the Stars'


Lea Michele, Chris Colfer and other cast members made a video congratulating Riley for her mirrorball trophy. PLUS: "Dancing" hits a finale low.

That was the BBC drama's take after three days in the cinema.

Paul Scheer's '90s Arsenio alter ego last night met the real Arsenio.

Bob Harper revealed that he was gay in order to encourage a contestant.

Ben Flajnik and Jenner have denied it, but Us Weekly says there really is a "fling" going on.

"The Voice" criticized for replacing "Lord" from a popular church song with "oh"

Mark Burnett explains the show had to use a public domain version of the song "Will the Circle Be Unbroken?" so the show could sell it on iTunes.

Sutter took to Twitter to address last week's death -- and what happened on "Family Guy."

Izzard will star in "Castles In The Sky."

Adult Swim has posted the pilot of "Rick and Morty."

Kimmel brought in elementary school students to act out what first Thanksgiving/Hanukkah was like. PLUS: Gary Oldman has a Thanksgiving message.

Michael Chiklis spent yesterday with "Shane" and "Lem."

Their divorce is final as of yesterday.
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<p>Scarlett Johansson at the Rome Film Festival premiere of &quot;Her.&quot;</p>

Scarlett Johansson at the Rome Film Festival premiere of "Her."

Credit: AP Photo/Domenico Stinellis

Roundup: Golden Globes won't be seduced by Johansson's voice in 'Her'

Also: The unmade 'Mary Poppins' sequel, and a diverse Thanksgiving playlist

There's been a lot of speculation about the possibility of Scarlett Johansson scoring an acting Oscar nod for her acclaimed voice work in "Her." It'd be a first, but the buzz is growing in volume. Still, if she pulls it off, it'll be without any help from the Golden Globes -- the HFPA has ruled her ineligible in their Best Supporting Actress category. It's not exactly surprising, given that they've previously disqualified motion-capture performances by the likes of Andy Serkis. (The Globes are littered with arcane restrictions: animated and foreign-language films can't compete for Best Picture, for example.) Warner Bros. appealed against the ruling, but to no avail; the good news is that she's still eligible for Oscar and SAG consideration. [Variety]

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<p>Uzo Aduba of &quot;Orange Is The New Black&quot;</p>

Uzo Aduba of "Orange Is The New Black"

Credit: ABC

Interview: 'Orange Is The New Black' star Uzo Aduba talks Crazy Eyes and Suzanne

Scenestealer discusses Shakespeare, Season 2 possibilities and marathoning
Crazy Eyes was introduced on "Orange Is The New Black" as the somewhat scary, seemingly unhinged inmate who takes a fancy to Taylor Schilling's Piper when she first arrives at the Litchfield Prison. Soon, though, we heard her poems and her "Swirl" song and Crazy Eyes became a source of comedy, as well as fear. 
As with so many of the characters on the acclaimed Netflix original, Crazy Eyes didn't stay just one thing for very long. By the middle of the first season, as we learned to call her "Suzanne" and as we began getting hints at her internal struggles, the character took a permanent place as an audience favorite, delivering one priceless and revelatory moment after another: Meeting her surprising parents. Witnessing her unexpected Christmas Pageant talent. Watching her uncomfortably raunchy dance routine with Big Boo. Exposing her vulnerabilities to Piper. And, best of all, mining a deep cut from "Coriolanus" as a way of intimidating kids in a Scared Straight program. 
Now, everybody loves Crazy Eyes.
I got on the phone last week with star Uzo Aduba, who has gotten caught up in the snowballing appreciation for a series that Netflix is calling a drama for the purposes of awards. [SAG Awards voters should seriously examine their sanity if they pretend they can find five drama ensembles better than the one on "OITNB."] The stage actress, a veteran of "Godspell" on Broadway, discusses the Suzanne/Crazy Eyes dichotomy, hints at more great moments in Season 2 and picks her own favorites from amongst the Litchfield inmates.
Click through for the full interview.
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<p>Quentin Tarantino, seen here in Miike's 'Sukiyaki Western Django,' may be saddling up again for a return to the Old West since it sounds like he's almost done writing his new script.</p>

Quentin Tarantino, seen here in Miike's 'Sukiyaki Western Django,' may be saddling up again for a return to the Old West since it sounds like he's almost done writing his new script.

Credit: First Look International

Quentin Tarantino says his new script is a Western and it's almost finished

But which Western, and when will he shoot it?

One thing was very clear when watching "Django Unchained" last year: Quentin Tarantino was delighted to finally be making a Western.

I don't blame him. The conditions when making a film in the genre can be difficult. I know that John Carpenter has told me several times that the whole reason he's never made a real Western is because of how much he hates horses. You're outside, you're typically on a location, and it's not easy work. Tarantino took to it, though, so much so that it looks like he might be giving it another try.

Tonight, Tarantino was a guest on "The Tonight Show With Jay Leno," and a friend of mine went to the taping to see what happened. He Tweeted from NBC's studios about a comment that Tarantino made, and it's news even if it's still somewhat vague news. He said the director was sipping moonshine during the interview and that he revealed that he is almost done writing his next film. He also revealed that it's a Western.

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<p>The ladies of 'Spring Breakers' know full well that you're going to want to rent their film, but if you watch it with your family expecting a wacky comedy, you're in for a pretty big surprise.</p>

The ladies of 'Spring Breakers' know full well that you're going to want to rent their film, but if you watch it with your family expecting a wacky comedy, you're in for a pretty big surprise.

Credit: A23/Anapurna

13 recent movies you should never ever watch with your family

We warn you of some potential family gathering minefields in theaters and on home video

The holidays are almost here, and for many people, that means happy family gatherings with warm conversation and time well-spent together. For an equal number of people, that means finding something to watch so no one has to really talk to each other, and the best way to deflect things via movies is to find something everyone enjoys.

The worst way to do it is to throw on "Irreversible" and belly laugh all the way through.

I'm not saying you'd do that. Not you. You're a decent person, not Max Cady from "Cape Fear," and you would never intentionally make everyone in the family uncomfortable. You would never pick a film that would freak out your parents or your siblings or your kids or your spouse. You would never put something on that would stop conversation cold, replacing it with dense walls of silent judgment directed at you, just because you thought it was funny to freak everyone out.


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"Dancing with the Stars"

 "Dancing with the Stars"

Credit: ABC

'Dancing with the Stars' recap: The winner is revealed

Ylvis performs - in fox costumes, of course

Really nice continuous shot to open the show and remind us of who's been given the boot. And hey, is Bill Nye double-jointed? Because I don't think arms are supposed to spin like that. While I'm excited to find out who takes home the mirror ball tonight, I'm not quite sure why we need two hours to allow three people to compete, eliminated dancers to dance, and announce rankings. An hour, absolutely. Two? Seems a bit much. But maybe it will be fun. Oh, and Ylvis is performing "The Fox (What Does the Fox Say?)"!

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