Fall Launch: Docs, Movies and More this Fall
There’s a few things to be excited about this fall when it comes to new television shows; returning television shows, sports, movies and documentaries. As a tv junkie, the Fall Launch Season is like an early Christmas. Will the Steve Austin 6 Million Dollar Man action figure be under the tree or will it be a pile of underwear and socks? Here’s what I’m looking forward to this fall;
The Selection: Special Operations Experiment
The Selection: Special Operations Experiment premiers Thurs. Dec. 8 on the History Channel following the 2 hour premier of Alone: Season III. I’m going to give it a chance. From the trailer, it looks like it could have legs. I’ll let you know my thoughts on FB following the premier and I invite you to do the same on my FB page if your up for it. You add this to your Trakt.tv account. You can watch the History channel live using the following add-ons; GoodFellas:->Free TV Channels->USA-UK-Canadian Ch.->Canadian Channels->Canada:History, VidTime: VT TV->History Channel, cCloud: All Channels->History Channel.
Alone: Season III
If you follow me on Instagram or FB, you know I have a couple reality show guilty pleasures and Alone is certainly one of them. I absolutely love this show! This season competitors will have to survive in the wilds of Patagonia. New predators and unpredictable weather should make this season very challenging for all involved. I doubt any of them will make it look as effortless or as good doing it as Season II’s Nicole Apelian. Show premiers Thurs. Dec. 8 on the History Channel. I recommend you add this to your Trakt.tv account. You can watch the History channel live using the following add-ons; GoodFellas:->Free TV Channels->USA-UK-Canadian Ch.->Canadian Channels->Canada:History, VidTime: VT TV->History Channel, cCloud: All Channels->History Channel.
National Geographic: Mars
National Geographic: Mars is part documentary, part drama. This six part series details the planned man mission to put a colony on Mars by the year 2033. It features interviews with Elon Musk, Neil DeGrasse Tyson and Andy Weir to name but a few of the brilliant minds who help to explain how this event will be achieved and some of the hurdles that will need to be overcome in order to get there. The drama aspect of the series, takes place in 2033 and projects what a potential crew would be made up of and the challenges they face getting to and setting up a on Mars. I’m 3 episodes in and absolutely riveted. If you’re a science fiction fan, this show is for you. It’s from National Geographic after all so it’s safe to watch with the kids. In fact, perhaps a great program to share with them. You can find this series on, Specto, Velocity, Exodus and Zen
Letterkenny Season II
Letterkenny Season II will be available as of Christmas day 2016. If you’re not yet familiar with this low budget, very Canadian comedy revolving around the lives of two friends Wayne & Daryl (played by Jared Keeso and Jacob Tierney) who happen to live in a small fictitious town of Letterkenny Ontario. Wayne is the town tough guy who’s sister (the town bike played by Michelle Mylett), is often the source of his constant altercations due to her loose reputation. Daryl, Wayne’s best friend is a little more reserved and perhaps a little simple. Nothing in this series is high brow, just a lot of hockey/hick humour. Indeed, the language is a little salty so, use discretion if you have little ones around. Add this to your Trakt.tv account.
Tutankhamun is a four part mini series brought to you by iTV and stars Sam Neill of Jurassic Park fame, along with Amy Wren and Max Irons as Howard Carter, the famed archaeologist who discovered Tutankhamun’s tomb. The four part series follows Howard Carter from outcast archaeologist to his chance encounter with Lord Carnarvon, who is so taken by Carters expertise and drive, funds Carters expedition to uncover the tomb of a king in the Valley of Kings. At the time (turn of the century to early 1920’s), all of the tombs within the Valley of the Kings were thought to have been found and robbed of all their priceless possessions. The discovery was so remarkable, it was covered by news media around the globe and inspired new interest in The Valley of the Kings. The series is short, well acted and well told. You can find it on Specto, DandyMedia, Exodus and Zen
Fleabag, is a dark comedy of the dry British variety brought to you by Amazon. It features Phoebe Waller-Bridge as writer and lead character and derives itself from her one woman stand up, for which she won a Fringe Award. The story takes place in London and follows Phoebe aka. Fleabag, through her personal relationships with her sister, boyfriend(s), friends and just about everyone else she meets. As a viewer, we’re starting to see more and more women get this type of dark comedy role and I think Phoebe is great in this! It’s only six episodes and it’s hilarious! You can find it on Specto, DandyMedia, Exodus and Zen
Miss Sharon Jones
Miss Sharon Jones is a documentary following the late soul singer’s life and success, which didn’t arrive until she was in her 40’s. Miss Jones was a corrections officer at Rikers Island and a security officer for an armored truck, all the while tearing it up with her band The Dap Kings by night, who by the way were the backing band for Amy Winehouse’s Back To Black album. Miss Jones earned fans around the globe as a soul/R&B powerhouse. The documentary follows her career and her diagnosis with pancreatic cancer in 2013. The documentary is not yet available on Kodi. Add this to your Trakt.tv account.
Black Mirror is the latest series I’ve marathoned. At only six episodes for it’s latest season (III for those in the know), it was easy enough to do. Heralded as “the Twilight Zone” for the digital age, the analogy is spot on. The themes of each episode often centre around new technology, or technology that is in the not too distant future and projects the consequences of it’s impact on our society. The first episode of Season III was written by Rashida Jones and is a brilliant story entitled “Nosedive” about a dystopian society where our success and happiness is predicated on our social media ranking. Episode III titled “Shut Up and Dance,” and written by series creator Chralie Brooker follows a kid who is blackmailed by unknown internet voices who capture video of him masturbating through his webcam. The out come of this story is will catch you off guard! The series originally aired on Channel 4 in the UK and now picked up for 12 episodes by Netflix, is well worth your valuable TV time. You can find Black Mirror on Specto, DandyMedia and Meta.
Okay, I’m three episodes into this series completely hooked! If I’m being honest, I was sold from the trailer. Quarry follows Mac Conway, aka “Quarry,” a US vet returning from Viet Nam in 72 after 2 tours. We quickly learn Mac saw his fare share of the shit over there in Nam. Coupled with problems at home, lack of acceptance from society for his military service and the inability to find a job leads Mac into the path of a bad guy by the name of “The Broker.” Corruption and murder send Mac down an even darker path as he struggles to get his life together as a civilian. He’s your classic anti-hero. You want to root for him but each turn he takes you cringe at the inevitable direction. The story takes place in Mississippi, the year is 1972 (the creators seem to have look and feel down) and all the actors you will vaguely recognize from other shows such as Jamie Hector from Bosch, Peter Mullan and Dewey Crowe himself Damon Herriman from Justified, (he’s really good in this). The show is from Cinemax and you can find it on Specto, Exodus and Lucky TV.
If you like your comedies clever, dry and British, then look no further than Detectorists. The show follows Andy and Lance, self proclaimed “Detectorists” (metal detectors), as they scour the nearby fields of Essex looking for buried treasure. I gotta thank my buddy Finn for this find. It was not on my radar…get it? You can find this comedy on Exodus and Lucky TV.
Frontier starring Jason Momoa is a Netflix/Discovery Channel collaboration that follows the Hudsons Bay Fur trade in the early 1800’s. Dubbed a historical drama, both Netflix and Discovery have been rather secretive of this show with nary a trailer to be found online. That said, both Netflix and Discover are so excited about this drama and so convinced it will be a hit they have already renewed it for a second 12 episode season. I think it’s going to be EPIC! It premiers Sunday Nov. 6 on Discovery. Add it to your Trakt.tv account.
Gimme Danger is the first full length documentary to articulate the rise and fall of Iggy Pop and the Stooges. Boasting photo’s, footage and unprecedented access to all band members (both Ron and Scott Asheton died in 2009 and 2014 respectively), director Jim Jarmusch promises to deliver on what he describes as “the greatest rock band ever!”. That’s a bold statement. Even if you’re not a fan of The Stooges or terribly familiar with their catalog, provided you haven’t lived on Mars for the past 40 years you must be at least remotely familiar with their contribution to Rock, and/or familiar with the tales of their exploits. In my younger days, I read Danny Sugarman’s, Wonderland Avenue where he documents how The Doors considered carrying on after the passing of Jim Morrison with Iggy Pop as their front man. If a fraction of the stories told in that book and within the hallows of Rock lore regarding Iggy Pop are true, this documentary promises to be nothing less than a plane ride cursing @ 25 000 ft… with the cockpit missing…and it’s on fire. Add this to your Trakt.tv account.
The Grand Tour
If you’re a fan of Top Gear then like me, you probably know all about the events that led up to Jeremy Clarkson getting canned from the show, taking with him his two co hosts James May and Richard Hammond. Enter Amazon, who seem to know dollar signs when they see it and The Grand Tour was born. Launching November 18, 2016, The Grand Tour promises fans of Top Gear all the bells and whistles they’ve grown to love about the show ie. racing the most expensive super cars available today in exotic locations while Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May make fun of the cars and one another. Can’t wait! Add this to your Trakt.tv account.
High Maintenance has been around for a bit. It started out as an indie web series and was officially picked up by HBO for the latest season. I love this show! I’m four ep. in and completely addicted. The series follows a weed dealer as he couriers his pot deliveries to his various clients (who come in all shapes, sizes, and backgrounds), around New York city. But it’s not just about that. It’s about the people and the lives they all seem to intersect with. It’s funny, it’s sentimental, it’s great storytelling and I encourage you to give it a chance and check it out. Add it to your Trakt.tv account. It’s currently streaming on Exodus, Velocity and The Royal We.
Morris from America
Morris from America stars Craig Robinson and is about a single father who relocates to Germany with his 13yr old son, played by Markees Christmas. Morris is your typical adolescent just trying to fit into his new school and surroundings. Things get complicated when Morris falls for a pretty girl, 2 yrs his senior. Morris’s dad is just trying to make ends meet and be the best dad he can be to his 13yr old son. It’s funny and the kind of movie that makes you glad you watched it. It’s currently streaming on Exodus, Specto, Velocity and The Royal We.
The Beatles: Eight Days a Week – The Touring Years
I’m a rabid Beatles fan and for me, you can never say enough about the band that changed popular music forever. This film by award winning director Ron Howard and still Richie Cunningham in my books, covers The Beatles from 1962 up until they stopped touring in 1966. There’s plenty of behind the scenes footage of the Fab Four preparing for shows as well as live stuff that showcases what a finely tuned live performance band these guys really were. There’s interviews with authors, musicians and celebrities describing what it was like to see The Beatles at that time and what the band meant to them. There’s also current interviews from the two remaining Beatles (Paul and Ringo), both beginning to look the statesmen in their 70’s after all. There’s also interviews unearthed from the archives with Gorge and John. If you didn’t know, this Documentary is available now via Phoenix->One242415->New Releases. It’s well worth your time, check it out
Eat That Question: Frank Zappa In His Own Words
How can a guy be so anti pop and yet churn out some of the greatest pop songs you probably never heard!? Such is the genius of Frank Zappa’s music. Eat That Question: Frank Zappa In His Own words, delves into the mind and music of the late composer. Frank Zappa’s music combined elements of Rock, Jazz, Fusion, even classical. His lyrics are derived from the mind of a brilliant cynic. At times absurd, hilarious and of course, thought provoking. He’s not for everyone however, everyone should see this documentary. You can find this doc on 1 Channel, The Royal We, iStream and Alluc
In A Valley of Violence
The Magnificent Seven is weak! This is the Western I want to see! Starring Ethan Hawk and John Travolta, this is the story of a town that picks a fight with the wrong drifter. It’s all fun and games until you shoot a mans dog, then may god have mercy on your soul. Does the plot sound a little familiar? Well it should cause this is a classic western tale and I can’t wait to see it!
**UPDATE: Nov. 6** I watched A Valley of Violence last night using Exodus and I really enjoyed it! If you like your westerns smothered in spaghetti, then this is right up your alley. From the Theme song and the graphics, all the way down to the plot, this movie pays homage to the classics that paved the way for the genre. Ethan Hawk is great as the drifter and John Travolta plays a salty plainsman caught between a rock and a hard place. Much like country and western music, there’s nothing in the plot that will surprise you. It’s obvious to a fault, which plays to its charm. I even got misty when the dog died. I hope you give it a chance.
Continuing with that western theme sprinkled with a lot of sci-fi for good measure, Westworld is perhaps, the most anticipated series from HBO coming this fall (premiers Oct. 2). This series is a re adaptation from the 1973 movie starring Yul Brynner. The series adaption comes from the mind of both Jonathan Nolan (Person of Interest) and J.J Abrams (Star Wars: The Force Awakens) and stars Anthony Hopkins, Ed Harris and James Marsden. Set in the not too distant future, the series depicts an era where AI exists and people can play out their fantasies in a futuristic theme park called Westworld. But you know this already because you like me, have been waiting to see this series since the announcement from HBO last fall.
Shameless US: Season 7
Who doesn’t love a good train wreck?! The Gallagher family are an epic train wreck. No matter how shitty a day you might have, it will never rival a day in the life of any one Gallagher, Frank (played by William H Macy) in particular. Season Seven picks up after a disastrous wedding day for Fiona (Season 6 finale), where Frank played the catalyst to all shit storms. This show is one of my guilty pleasures and like all train wrecks, it’s hard to look away. Each episode will leave you feeling like you need a shower and glad that life’s not yours. At least I hope it’s not! Premiers Oct. 2
Chance starring Hugh Laurie of House fame, returns to television drama with this series set in San Francisco. It follows a forensic neuropsychiatrist as he uncovers a murder, gets wrapped up in mistake identity and has a bit of a mental breakdown tossed in for good measure. Laurie was great in House, great in the last two seasons of Veep and should be great in this. For the record, the series has been already picked up for second season with 20 episodes! Hulu has high hopes for this series and according to critics, it delivers.Premiers Oct. 19 on Hulu
My god am I in need of a good comedy this fall and Easy from Netflix looks to be it. Most definitely, not the show you want to stream if you have little ones around, but definitely a show you can watch with your significant other. You’ll laugh, you’ll talk about a few things and if you play your cards right, you might even get laid! Series premiers September 22 on Netflix.
Atlanta follows two cousins who get swept up in Atlanta’s rap scene. Alfred “Paper Boi” Miles is about to break it big with his cousin and manager Earn at his side when a shooting occurs. Earn is played by Donald Glover, who is also the writer and creator of this series. I watched the first episode and liked it a lot. FX has already renewed it for a second season. You can stream it via via 1 Channel, Exodus, Velocity and iStream
Dark Net is a documentary series that takes a deep look at the internet. The many ways it pushes the envelop, aiding in the progress of civilization, as well as the dark reaches of cyber space. Brought to you by Showtime and available for streaming via 1 Channel, Exodus, Velocity and iStream
Mr. D is a comedy series from the CBC and back for it’s fifth season. Some may remember Jerry D from Last Comic Standing Season 5. He’s hilarious, his show’s hilarious and glad the CBC are continuing with the tradition of strong Canadian Comedies they have become known for. Mr. D Season 5 get’s underway Oct. 11. You can stream it live night of via the Made In Canada add-on or after the fact via Exodus, Velocity, and LuckyTV
Amanda Knox premiered on Netflix Friday and I watched it on Exodus last night. Forget what your think you know about this individual and the jury of public opinion that has forever changed her life. This documentary explores the facts of this case and how the media and growing social media (this took place in 2007 when facebook and MySpace were just getting started) distorted the facts to complete a narrative that was sexier than the truth. Well worth the 90 mins. You can stream this on Exodus, Velocity, and The Royal We
Command and Control
Command and Control is another great documentary I’m looking forward to. In 1980, two 21 year old air force officers were working on a Titan II rocket (which was 3 times more powerful than that of the nuclear bombs used in WWII) when one of the officers accidently dropped a socket wrench which bounced off the floor and punctured the rocket, spewing rocket fuel into the silo. What follows is a nightmare cover up that came very close to erasing 10 million people from the face of this earth. The documentary explores that cover up and similar instances where the US came uncomfortably close to an accidental nuclear nightmare. This doc is not yet available, I highly recommend you add it to your Trakt.tv must watch list.