We’re pretty excited here at New TV Shows and it’s not because of the Jubilee. There’s one simple reason: The Best TV Show Around Right Now™ will return to US screens on July 15.
The eight-episode run of AMC’s Breaking Bad will make up the first half of its fifth and final season, with the remaining eight episodes expected to air in the Summer of 2013.
The show, which charts the descent of main character Walter White from straight laced Chemistry teacher to moral-free drug lord following his lung cancer diagnosis, is remarkable for too many reasons to list here — but see the short video below for just a tiny example of what makes it so special.
Inventive camera work is one of the things that Breaking Bad carries off so successfully; which other show would strap a Canon 7D to the end of a shovel to pull off the following shot?
As if the return of Louis CK as lovable cop Dave in this week’s episode of Parks and Recreation isn’t enough to get excited about, news of another forthcoming guest star has us staring impatiently at the all-too-static calendar like a spoilt kid in the run up to Christmas.
The West Wing might just be New TV Shows‘ favourite programme of all time (the Sorkin years, at least) so the prospect of Bradley Whitford turning up in Pawnee in an episode that features several nods to NBC’s political drama has us giddy with excitement. Whitford, who delighted as Josh Lyman in The West Wing, will show up as the outgoing city councilman that Leslie Knope is hoping to succeed.
The episode title, Live Ammo, is a West Wing reference in itself, playing on a line uttered to Ainsley Hayes by one Sam Seaborn — who was played by Parks and Rec‘s Rob Lowe. How very meta. The only downer is the fact that Whitford and Lowe reportedly don’t share a scene in the episode. While we understand that if done badly it could have been a duff note, the Parks writing staff have proved over the past few years that they know what they’re doing. We’re pretty sure they could have pulled it off.
Nevertheless, we’re looking forward to the day when Parks and Rec meetsThe West Wing and our head explodes. What a way to go.
Grab your big red pen and open up your diary to March 1, for that’s the date that Kyle Killen’s double life drama Awake will premiere on NBC in the US. Our faith in Killen, whose credits include the excellent but shoddily-treated Lone Star, is so strong that if the show turns out to be a turkey we’ll run down the nearest high street naked shouting “It is your duty to mock us; we’ve misled literally tens of people”.
Awake sees Jason Isaacs play a police detective who, following a car accident involving his family, switches between two tragic realities every time he wakes up. In one his son survives and his wife dies, in the other vice versa. As well as having a different loved one to grieve in each, to try and work through the pain he also has different crimes to tackle with different partners — as well as different therapists to talk things over with. But despite being largely opposed both existences share some striking parallels which may be the key to cracking the mystery of what really happened.
Trust us, it’s going to be great. Although we reserve the right to renege on that naked high street thing if it turns out that his wife and kid are both alive and it’s him that’s been dead all along. Because that would be rubbish.
If you’ve never seen Breaking Bad then you’ve got two problems. Firstly, you’re missing out on the best TV show for years and years and years. Seriously. Sort it out.
Secondly, you won’t understand what’s going on in the superb video below that features an interpretation of the AMC drama as a 16-bit role playing game you might have found on the SNES or Mega Drive back in the day.
SPOILER ALERT: Even if you’re familiar with the show, don’t watch the video unless you’ve seen until the end of Season 4. You have been warned.
Kudos to those crazy kids at College Humor, who posted a similarly spoiler-filled RPG video based on the first season of Game of Thrones last year.
Which show would you like to see them tackle next? It might not be as topical but we’d love to see The Shield get the 16-bit treatment, so long as they include a Shenmue-style QTE section for when Dutch strangles that cat.
The original article featured below describes a free Netflix workaround that no longer works. As far as we can tell there are no longer any free ways to get around Netflix region locking. There is, however, an option that’s cheap as chips and gives you the opportunity not only to access UK and US Netflix content but also switch between Netflix offerings for Canada, Ireland, Mexico, Brazil, Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Finland in a matter of seconds.
Sound good? Head over to unblock-us.com, sign up for a free seven-day trial and follow their simple instructions for setting Netflix region switching on the device of your choice, whether it be your desktop PC, laptop, iPhone, iPad, Android tablet – or your games console including the Xbox 360, PS3, PS Vita, Wii and WiiU.
Once your free trial is over, it’ll cost you $4.99 (around £3) per month to continue using the service. And considering the mountain of classic TV shows and films on the US and Canadian versions of Netflix that aren’t currently available on the UK store, it’s a small price to pay.
It’s been a long time coming but digital steaming service Netflix finally launched in the UK earlier this month. This is both a good thing and a bad thing and here’s why: although Netflix offers a veritable goldmine of content for US-based TV lovers a large amount of the good stuff isn’t available to UK subscribers.
Or at least that’s the intention. Thankfully there are some pleasingly simple workarounds out there that’ll have you accessing the US content in no time. Snappily named YouTube user dan24591 has uploaded a nice and simple guide to accessing the US content via a UK-based PlayStation 3 here, for example:
To confuse matters slightly there’s some worthwhile stuff on the UK service that isn’t available in the US — so to get the most out of Netflix you’re ideally going to want to be able to access both. So long as you’ve got a couple of Netflix-capable devices to hand, though, this is surprisingly easy to set up. Honestly. The New TV Shows office has access to both (UK content via Xbox 360, US stuff via PS3) and believe us when we say if we can manage it, you most certainly can too. We once answered the question “Which browser do you use?” with “Microsoft Google” is all I’m saying.
Netflix is currently offering a one-month free trial to all potential UK customers and you really should take advantage. We’ll be trawling both the UK and US content this week to bring you a selection of must-see Netflix-based TV, so you just stay right there on the edge of your seat while we’re gone.
Criminally* underrated cop show Southland will return to US screens in January, giving New TV Shows cause for celebration. We like to see the underdog win every now and again, especially when it means a show as accomplished as Southland gets given a second chance to find its audience.
The show, which previously saw its 13-episode second season slashed to six before ultimately being given the axe by NBC, was picked up by current network TNT in 2009. Following the airing of a relatively well-received third season, the network confirmed back in March that Southland, which follows the lives of a selection of LAPD officers, would be back for a fourth.
The specifics of the show’s return were finally revealed this week, so if you’re one of the few with excellent taste in TV then mark off January 17, 2012 on your calendar — that’s when the first of 10 new episodes will premiere.
The network also announced that the new season will see series regulars Regina King, Shawn Hatosy, Michael Cudlitz and Ben McKenzie joined by recurring guest star Lucy Liu, who will play a previously unseen member of the LAPD.
Other TNT shows returning during the Autumn/Winter schedule include The Closer, Rizzoli & Isles and Leverage — all of which will resume their current seasons at the end of November.
*Ha! Get it? Cop show/criminally underrated! We really are very funny.
The fate of Breaking In, the Fox sitcom set in a digital security firm, seemed certain. Despite the pilot episode being well received, the network initially passed on the show, only to later change its mind and order a seven-episode batch to be used as a midseason replacement.
Back in May, the final nail in the coffin seemed to have been driven home as Fox declared that Breaking In would not be renewed for a second season. But, as Deadline.com reports, Fox executives have finally scrabbled around for a claw hammer, ripped the nails from the casket and delivered the kiss of life to the ailing comedy.
The show, which stars Christian Slater, Bret Harrison and Odette Annable — who will return despite signing on as a regular on the new season of House — looks likely to return later this year with a 13-episode midseason run.
When New TV Shows first heard that the creative forces behind Nip/Tuck and Glee were developing a new show in the horror genre, our indifference was palpable. Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuck may have come up with a cultural phenomenon with their spiritual successor to the High School Musical films, but neither that or Nip/Tuck before it have ever bothered the top of our must-watch list.
All that said, the newly released teaser trailer for American Horror Story has upped our interest considerably — purely because it looks less like a TV show and more like an FMV-heavy PC adventure game from the 1990s. Seriously. Look:
See what we mean? If someone sent us a link to that video and declared that it was a sequel to The 7th Guest or Phantasmagoria then we’d be totally on board, so it’s only fair that we give AHS a chance. As far as we can see, it’s got three things going for it right now:
As mentioned, the promotional material makes it look like a modern-day follow up to Mega CD perv-em-up Night Trap, meaning it could well turn out to be simultaneously both the best and worst TV show ever
It stars the fabulous Connie Britton, who’s coming off the back of great work on Friday Night Lights
It’s going to be on FX, which tends to have a better hit to miss ratio than many of its competitors
Judge for yourself on October 5th, when American Horror Story makes its debut.
Breathe easy, drama fans. Following an uncertain couple of weeks, the destiny of the best show currently on TV has been secured, with AMC renewing Breaking Bad for a final order of 16 episodes.
Tense negotiations over the future of the show over the past few weeks had seen producer Sony Pictures TV publically moot the possibility of the moving Breaking Bad away from AMC and agreeing a deal with a rival network. An agreement has now been reached, however, with both sides deciding that the story of Walter White and Jesse Pinkman would indeed conclude on AMC where it all started.
Breaking Bad’s creator and executive producer Vince Gilligan says that knowing exactly how many episodes his team has to bring the show to a natural conclusion will be a huge advantage: “It’s a funny irony — I’d hate to know the date of my own last day on earth, but I’m delighted to know what Walter White’s will be (episodically speaking). This is a great gift to me and to my wonderful writers. It’s knowledge which will allow us to properly build our story to a satisfying conclusion. Now, if we don’t manage to pull that off, we’ve got no one to blame but ourselves.”
Now all that remains is to tie Gilligan himself down; his contract only currently sees him committed to the show until the end of Season Four. It would be hard to imagine Gilligan walking away from a show that has always been very much his baby but let’s hope things get sorted out sooner rather than later all the same.
All 16 remaining episodes will be filmed together but it’s not yet clear if that means the show will bow out with an extended final season (none of the previous seasons have had more than 13 episodes) or if we’ll get two smaller chunks spread across a longer time period. Scheduling details are yet to emerge; we’ll keep you posted as soon as we hear.
This Autumn will see the return of hit BBC spy romp Spooks — but production company Kudos has announced that the show’s tenth season will also be its last. But why on Earth has the BBC axed one of its hottest primetime properties? There’s a simple answer answer for that — it hasn’t.
The decision actually came from Kudos itself, as chief executive Jane Featherstone told The Guardian: “It was a very difficult decision to make. But we didn’t want to get to the point where the BBC said we don’t really want another one, we wanted to kill it off in its prime.” It’s a commendable decison from a creative team that seems to value integrity and innovation over the easy route of flogging a once-popular show until it’s long outstayed its welcome.
Spooks, which airs under the name MI-5 in the US, has a history of bumping off main characters in gruesome fashion so it’s fair to assume that the show may look to bow out with a bang. The final, six-episode season will air on the BBC from September.
If you’re new to the show, you can catch up on DVD — Seasons 1-9 are available from Amazon.co.uk