January 10, 2017
Veteran screenwriter Leslie Bohem tackles the seedy underworld of Los Angeles psychics in this Hulu Original series. Shut Eye follows Charlie and Linda Haverford as they attempt to rise up from their underling position in the Romani world in which they inhabit. This drama is an interesting peek behind the curtain into a world often passed by, and until now overlooked. What goes on in these psychic parlors? Who really owns them? What mysteries lay behind the neon signs?
Strong performances from Jeffrey Donovan as Charlie, and KaDee Strickland as his tough and ambitious co-conspirator/wife Linda. Australian actor Angus Sampson plays Fonso, the "leader" of the Romani family. He sees to be channeling an over-the-top Tony Soprano with a gruff Batman voice and seems cartoonish in many scenes. His work (alongside Jeffrey Donovan) in Fargo Season 2 is worth noting as incredible, so anything he does in Shut Eye is forgivable. And if you did not think the cast could get any better it has David Zayas (Dexter), Emmanuelle Chriqui (Entourage) and Isabella Rossallini as Rita Marks (the true head of the Romani empire.)
Shut Eye is a pinch of shows you know, a touch of a world you don't, mixed in with a really great cast. If the cards are right for this Hulu series, we see good things for this show in its future.
December 20, 2016
We are rebroadcasting Script Vs Screen's Season 3 Episode 5 Always Sunny in Philadelphia.
Jason and Alex have had a great time this year with season 4 and looking forward to 2017. We are very excited to bring you new episodes, hoping to bring some requested shows into the Script Vs Screen family. Until then, merry christmas, happy hanukkah, and have a safe and happy new year everyone!
December 6, 2016
Based on the novel by Kem Nunn "Chance" follows neuropsychiatrist Dr. Eldon Chance through a noir-ish drama involving an abused patient and her monstrous husband. While the acting is fairly decent in the pilot episode, having an incredible cast in Hugh Laurie as the titular character, Gretchen Mol as the dame in distress, and Ethan Suplee as the engaging but odd side kick D, the material falls a bit flat in the pilot. The script is richer with more characters, both annoying and odd, including a usually silent garage attendant and artist Jean-Baptiste and Chance's workplace partner Dr. Haig. The screen pares down the unnecessary for the pilot, mainly focusing on Chance, his strange friendship with D, his patient and obvious love interest Jacklyn Blackstone, and Chance's family - his ex-wife and daughter.
Chance is trying hard to be Amazon's Bosch with AMC's Breaking Bad. Hugh Laurie is a remarkable actor who brought his past character House to life with so much angst, edge and sorrow it would seem unlikely that could be repeated. We are willing to give Chance a chance (sorry we had to), but without much needed humor, and too much bizarre drama this does not seem like a show worth investing in.
November 22, 2016
We returned to the CW in this episode because we felt we did not truly understand certain CW shows. In this episode we looked into the pilot episode of Frequency, a time travel-esque show based on the movie Frequency (2000) starring Dennis Quaid and Jim Caviezel. The premise of the show follows female detective Raimy Sullivan (Peyton List) discovering her father's HAM radio in 2016 can contact her father 20 years into the past.
While we enjoyed this pilot episode, just after we reviewed it for this podcast Deadline released that both No Tomorrow and Frequency will not be getting more episodes ordered. Both shows will have season one on Netflix and the CW has not made any decisions just yet on whether or not it will cancel the shows.
Frequency is worth checking out if you like movies that play with time, and we all have this fascination with what we could do with that kind of super-power. It would be really cool to see how Raimy helps her father, Frank (Riley Smith) solve crime with a 20 year gap between them.
November 8, 2016
The CW's No Tomorrow is a show about a 30-something attractive, risk-adverse, single woman who falls hard for a very handsome free spirit who happens to believe the world is going to end in less than a year. Together they embark on living life to the fullest, and knocking things off their Bucket List, or as Josh's Xavier has it, his "Apoca-list."
Starring Tori Anderson as Evey Covington, a product or productivity manager at a big-box cyber retailer very similar to Amazon, and Joshua Sasse (pronounced Sass or Sassy - we don't know) a former science magazine copy editor turned unemployed, live-everyday-like-it-is-your-last free spirit. These two are the reason to watch the show. Their charisma and charm is off the charts, and casting knocked it out of the park with two really attractive, endearing actors in Sasse and Anderson. Their chemistry is unbelievable, and you want to root for these two lovebirds.
The pilot episode covers a lot of ground, and we do mean a lot. Aside from establishing the obvious - the main character, the wacky coworkers, the terrible boss, the love interest, the ex-boyfriend, the intrusive, but loving family, and a life threatening heart condition (what?!) you may ask yourself how one sitcom manages so much. There's the catch: The CW has this as a 1 hour drama. After all, what's so funny about the end of the world?
October 25, 2016
Fox's Lethal Weapon is a surprise hit for television. Many anticipated and reviewed that the show would and is a disappointment, however, it seems to be clocking in some impressive numbers right out of the gate with about 10 million viewers each episode. The show, starring Damon Wayans and Clayne Crawford, brings to the small screen the action comedy cop duo of Roger Murtaugh and Martin Riggs.
With Fox pouring a good dose of money into the production, and getting movie director McG to helm the first couple episodes the show offers a fast paced popcorn blockbuster cop show all from the comforts of your couch. It's familiar, but different - like Star Wars the Force Awakens.
One thing is for certain, with the recognizable star power of Damon Wayans, and the incredible and emotional acting from Clayne Crawford, as well as including Fast and Furious' Jordana Brewster, this show has a lot going for it. If Lethal Weapon's three movies are any indication, this television show is in for a long run.
October 11, 2016
Speechless on ABC breaks new ground as a show with one of its main characters being disabled and the format being a 30-minute comedy. That's right a comedy. And it is tasteful and touching, centering on a family trying to adjust to a big move to a new community who in turn is trying to do their politically correct best at welcoming them with open arms.
Families with disabled children have reacted positively to Speechless, as have the reviewers for the show, given them the levity they have craved. Speechless' main character JJ who has cerebral palsy and is restricted to a motorized wheelchair brings a character to life that has rarely been seen on television. Speechless' creator Scott Silveri channels his own life story of growing up with a sibling with disabilities to bring a realism and humor to the show. It stars Minnie Driver, John Ross Bowie, and Cedric Yarbrough.
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September 27, 2016
We return from the summer with a new batch of autumn pilots. Our first show is the explosive political thriller Designated Survivor, starring Kal Penn, Natascha McElhone, Maggie Q, LaMonica Garrett, and Kiefer Sutherland. It is hard to not look at Kiefer Sutherland as anything but Jack Bauer from 24, and this show is a mashup of 24 meets Homeland meets House of Cards. So much so you can hear the little familiar House of Card trills and horns in the Designated Survivor theme. The script and show have a great premise to work with, and definitely deliver an action packed hour of television. The show does an excellent job establishing the characters, the world, and what is at stake - which for a show centered on the annihilation of the United States government - is a heck of a lot.
Designated Survivor starts off really strong with an incredible premise and it will be interesting to see where it can go.
Check out Designated Survivor Wednesday's at 10pm on ABC.
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September 13, 2016
This minisode was a product of us getting really carried away in our discussion after Warrior. We wanted to share this, because we have learned that you can always take away something from every script you read. And what works and what doesn't work can only help with your own personal writing. Becoming a screenwriter in Hollywood can seem pretty elusive, but it is important to craft your own path, write the things you know and care about, and do not let minor set backs define you. Plus, it gives us another reason to sample the Stranger Things theme.
September 6, 2016
We were fortunate enough to get a script and first look at a pilot episode of Warrior - a mysterious martial arts crime drama that was potentially going to find a home on NBC. The script is really well written, with big ideas and great descriptions of the action and story. This show really illustrates that even with a great script, a strong cast, a skilled director and backed by a great production company, the final project could still miss the mark with editing, and not having the budget for better special effects, or more characters to give it a more fuller feel. It is as though it has all the right ingredients, but was not left in the oven long enough to rise.