Pop Culture Week in Review: March 21-27, 2015
Pip, pip, cheerio! Our first three pop culture stories this week deal with British celebrities and programs. Er, sorry, that’s programmes (with the emphasis on the second syllable, of course). So this is PorchDrinking Britain, where we spell colour with a “u” and drive on the left side of the road and have a very dry sense of humor and for some reason use vinegar as a condiment.
Some of these stories are American, though, so stay tuned, Yanks!
Jeremy Clarkson: Fired
You may know Jeremy Clarkson as one of 3 hosts (sorry… “presenters”) of “Top Gear” in the UK. Earlier this month, Clarkson was involved in an incident with one of the show’s producers during which a disagreement turned violent. Clarkson allegedly verbally and physically assaulted the producer, and the BBC put a hold on episodes it was scheduled to air. Amid fear that Clarkson could be fired (and hence the fate of the immensely popular show would be in jeopardy), there was a petition online to keep him around – it reached 1,000,000 signatures in 10 days.
This week, however, the BBC officially announced that it will not be renewing Jeremy Clarkson’s contract. He has been let go. Details about what Clarkson’s co-hosts will do – or what the network may do to re-tool the show in his absence – are unclear.
James Corden: Starting
Comedian James Corden premiered his version of the “Late Late Show” on CBS this week, in a time slot formerly occupied by Craig Ferguson. Reviews have been pretty positive so far. Corden is both funny and charming. Band-leader Reggie Watts is unique. And the show has managed to put out some viral bits, including a marathon re-creation of Tom Hanks’ filmography and car-based karaoke with Mariah Carey. And while initial ratings should be taken with a grain of salt, it’s at least good that Corden is beating NBC’s “Late Night” in the time slot.
Downton Abbey: Ending
“Downton Abbey” premiered in 2010, and since then, every old person and Anglophile I know has talked about how great it is, even if it is just a rich-British-person period piece soap opera.
But Downton’s upcoming 6th season will be the last. This is pretty much your parents’ version of Zayn leaving One Direction – WHICH, by the way, I am NOT giving its own bullet point. That’s enough British news, anyway. Time to go back to the colonies.
Jon Hamm: Sober
It was revealed this week that Jon Hamm has not only sought, but FINISHED help with treating alcohol abuse. Unbeknownst to much of the public, Hamm went through a 30-day rehab program to deal with alcohol-related issues,
Kudos to him. It’s great to see anyone seek help for substance abuse before it causes irreparable harm or hurts someone.
Fox announced this week that “The X-Files,” which ran from 1993-2002, will be returning to the network. Filming begins this summer, and both David Duchovney and Gillian Anderson will be returning to their roles.
Also, NBC announced this week that “Coach,” which ran from 1989-1997 (on ABC), will be returning to the network. Craig T. Nelson will be returning for his role, which picks up 18 years after the original series left off.
That’s not a joke, but if you had asked me 24 hours ago to pick a random obscure sitcom to jokingly declare back from the dead, “Coach” would have been the perfectly out-of-left-field show.
TV Gods: “Here’s a new Twin Peaks!”
TV Gods: “Plus Evil Dead and X-Files!”
TV Gods: “And Coach!”
— Matt Fowler (@TheMattFowler) March 27, 2015
Game of Thrones: Spoilery
Sorry, book nerds. This week the co-creators of the “Game of Thrones” series on HBO announced that, due to the length of time it’s likely to take George R.R. Martin to write and publish the final books in his epic series, they’re going to go ahead and finish their show expeditiously, using the (for the most part) same ending that Martin is going to give his books.
So if you read those books AND watch the show, you’re going to know how it ends before the final book is released. If you read the books but DON’T watch the show, wellllll, now you’re going to know what it was like your friends to have the Red Wedding spoiled for them a whole season early.
Super Troopers 2: Funded
The guys who made “Super Troopers” and “Club Dread” – the Broken Lizard dudes – want to make a second “Super Troopers” film. The first was a cult hit. So why not hit up those fans and see if they could crowd-fund a sequel?
The IndieGoGo page for Super Troopers 2 exploded this week. The $2,000,000 goal was met in 24 hours. As I type this now, they’ve raised $2,807,065 dollars. In 3 days. From 28,776 different people.
Soooo look forward to that sequel. But for right meow, if you don’t get why I just said “meow,” watch the first one.