This Week in TV:
We get a peek at Community season 4 with some new clips, Game of Thrones gives us another behind-the-scenes look at season 3, Cinemax renews Banshee for season 2, Syfy reveals some images of its robot warriors from Robot Combat League, The Swan returns for a celebrity special and Jeffrey Tambor is set to star in a new pilot.
With the season 4 premiere of Community airing this Thursday, we're getting a sample of the hilarity that is on tap from our favorite Greendale crew with some new clips. Check them out below:
In the first clip, we see Britta attempting to help an anxious Abed prepare for the first day of his senior school year; the second features Annie and Shirley discussing their uncertain futures as they take some frustration out on Dean Pelton's car.
As the characters enter their senior years at Greendale, the series seems to be winding down, despite the fact that the network hasn't made the official announcement that season 4 will be the end. However, considering Chevy Chase's departure and creator Dan Harmon getting replaced by new showrunners David Guarascio and Moses Port, things seem to be headed in that direction. If this is, in fact, the last season of Community, Guarascio and Port are certainly making sure its a memorable finish, as you can tell from the newly released season 4 trailer.
The show's survival will likely depend on the ratings of season 4, so be sure to tune in to the premiere on Thursday, February 7th and watch Community every Thursday at 8pm thereafter to give NBC a reason to renew it for a fifth season.
Since getting our first look at the Game of Thrones vlog a couple of weeks back, the show has continued to release fantastic content on its YouTube channel chronicling the making of season 3. The latest video diary - number three in the series - discusses the challenges of shooting on location in Iceland.
With the season 3 premiere less than two months away, fans of the HBO hit series are certainly getting revved up and these vlogs are a great way to sustain their cravings in the meantime. The latest vlog details the search for authenticity, as the crew heads to Iceland - a setting that provides a treacherous, yet beautiful backdrop for the show that simply could not be re-created on a sound stage (or with effects).
Fans will be interested to see their favorite stars and showrunners discuss what goes into an episode and at only two minutes in length, the vlogs won't take up too much of their time.
Tune in to HBO on March 31st when Game of Thrones returns for season 3.
Source: Games of Thrones YouTube Channel
We first learned that the Syfy network would be turning the Hugh Jackman movie Real Steel into a reality when they introduced the concept for their new show Robot Combat League, which involves - you guessed it - fighting robots. The show is premiering soon, but we're already getting a first look at the robots with these recently released images and descriptions, courtesy of the show's website.
CLICK IMAGES FOR FULL SIZE
A.X.E.'s head is shaped like an axe, with two holes on either side of the blade through which a camera can be mounted to capture the action during combat. The head gives A.X.E. an additional functioning weapon during combat.
Steel and leather are the materials of choice for Brimstone. The all-important brain/computer is housed inside a triple-thick hammer-finish dome that is three times tougher and heavier than the armor of any other robot. The gleaming gloves and thug boots are made of the same heavy steel alloy. For speed and agility, his arms and legs are protected by tough leather armor.
From battlefield black-ops to the fighting arena, Commander is the mechanized infantry of the future. This heavy armored trooper is rigged for combat, featuring tank tread feet for extra traction on floors slick with the oil-blood of its opponents. The head pans and tilts on a servo-actuated neck mechanism, and includes a helmet-cam similar to those used by the U.S. military.
Crash’s shock-mounted roll cage can absorb high-impact attacks; its armor is lighter, but still offers good protection. Light and fast, this robot is ready for rough action.
Based on bleeding-edge military hardware, Drone Strike features stainless steel armor laminated with ballistic nylon in a digital camo pattern. The midsection includes shock suspended armor bands that completely encircle the critical valve and hose assemblies. The large multifunction head/turret pans and tilts, and the barrel weapons are devastating to opponents.
The skin for Game Over is built using steel that has been "stitch"-welded together. In addition, Game Over features a 24" video monitor embedded in the upper torso. The screen is protected by a clear Lexan panel, and the roll bars are steel.
Medieval is made from steel, with chain mail and metal crests. The steel is finished with a distressed, battle-tested look.
Robo Hammer is made from welded steel and reclaimed parts. Unlike that of many of the other machines, Robo Hammer's skin includes hoses and other visual mechanical structures that add depth to its frame.
Scorpio is built from fiberglass (his body shells) and aluminum (his knuckles and body/limb spikes). The spikes are firmly fixed to the robot's skeleton. Much like the many actual insects that have spike-like hairs growing from their exoskeleton to protect them from their environment, Scorpio's spikes are designed to deflect its enemies' blows.
Steam Punk, despite his 19th century inspirations, is very much ready for the modern era of mechanized fighting. Although more crudely constructed than its current-era counterparts, Steam Punk's over-sized shells will help it withstand attacks to any part of its body.
Steel Cyclone is sleek and deadly. The shell is 18-gauge steel with a high-quality automotive finish. The circular head houses a camera and high intensity light that scans side to side. The low profile head makes Steel Cyclone the shortest of the fighting robots at just over seven feet tall.
Thunder Skull has a clear resin dome that covers his 'skull,' which moves around with a life of its own.
The show will be hosted by former WWE star Chris Jericho and will feature 12 teams - one for each bot - that will consist of techs, engineers and a fighter, who will control the robot. Each fight lasts three rounds and the winner advances in a tournament-style bracket where the overall champion receives $100,000. It should be a fun show, so make sure to check it out on Syfy when it premieres on February 26.
Despite only being halfway through its first season on the air, Banshee has already been renewed for a season 2 by Cinemax.
The show, which centers on an ex-con posing as a small-town sheriff (Anthony Starr), hasn't brought in a ton of viewers (about half a million per episode) and reaction has been mixed so far (read out review of the premiere), but the network has liked what it has seen from the series - which has only been four episodes.
The series was created by Jonathan Tropper and David Schickler - who also serve as the head writers - but it has been marketed as being presented by Alan Ball (True Blood) and Greg Yaitanes (House), who are executive producing. Unlike Showtime and HBO, Cinemax doesn't have a wide selection of original programming, so maybe the network is hoping Banshee will pick up steam and become its flagship program.
If you're curious, check out Banshee on Cinemax on Friday nights @10pm. Season 2 is expected to air sometime in 2014.
Source: TV Line
We see TV dramas and older films get rebooted and remade every year, but are we now in the era where reality reboots are, well, a reality? Apparently, because FOX has just announced that they are bringing the 2004 pageant makeover show The Swan back to prime time TV. However, this time, it will feature celebrities and be aired as a two-hour special.
The show was popular among reality fans nearly a decade ago, but came under fire from some viewers and most critics for glamorizing outer beauty and contributing to female insecurity and body consciousness. However, this version may be more widely accepted, considering celebrities are known for going under the knife to improve their looks.
Here's the official logline for the show:
“Celebrity Swan will feature female celebrities and will offer these popular women the incredible opportunity to undergo physical, psychological and career changes as cameras follow them through the transformative process. This opportunity will allow these women to come back better than ever, have a second chance at personal and career redemption and re-introduce themselves to their supportive fans in a whole new way.”
Although there is no start date for the show yet, casting is getting underway soon and there's no doubt FOX will get plenty of applicants. If you offer free plastic surgery and a chance to be on prime time TV to a bunch of has-been celebrities, the line will probably wrap around the block and then some.
Source: Entertainment Weekly
It looks like Jeffrey Tambor is about to have a very busy schedule in 2013. We'll see him in The Hangover 3 later this year and as George Bluth Sr. again when Arrested Development returns for season 4 on Netflix. Now he has another potential series in the works as he's recently been cast in a pilot titled The Onion Presents: The News.
Tambor will be playing a cutthroat veteran newsman battling a young and ambitious newcomer in a project from The Onion and The Onion News Network creators Will Graham and Dan Mirk. The show, sort of a spin-off to The Onion News Network, will function as a scripted comedy that takes place behind the scenes of the faux news show.
The project is one of six original comedy pilots from Amazon Studios and will directed by Todd Strauss-Schulson (A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas), so there is definitely some potential for laughs to be had. Of course, Tambor's role in the pilot brings to mind his part as Hank Kingsley on the Larry Sanders Show, a series that also worked as a scripted comedy depicting the behind the scenes of a television program. We'll have to wait and see if this pilot is one of the few to make the cut.