HOMELAND Season Four Finale: “Long Time Coming”

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Oh, HomelandHomeland, Homeland, Homeland.  This is why we can’t have nice things; because you go and do a thing like that.  Last week, at the end of “Krieg Nicht Lieb” I thought, “this would have been a dynamite finale.”  Imagine it: after all of that crazy build-up and all of the emotion after Aayan and the slaughter at the Embassy, and Quinn going rogue on Haqqani, and Carrie finally getting her shot at him, and Khan stopping her because of Dar Adal … it would have allowed this season to be a beautiful capsule, and tribute to Homeland‘s glorious resurrection, leaving us hungry for next season.  Instead, we got “Long Time Coming.”  Hit the jump because “I know how this goes.  It ends badly.”

THE AFFAIR Season One Finale Recap: “10″

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All season, The Affair has ridden a dark, moody, emotional wave, intertwining Noah and Alison’s stories of not just the carefree days of a summer fling, but of the harsh, cold reality of what it has meant for them and their families afterwards.  Its first season finale, “10,” felt like an odd coda given all that had come before; a lot of answers and teased moments were addressed quickly and boldly, but left in doubt where a second season might pick up.  Hit the jump for why being alone is all very glamourous — until you need a kidney.

THE MISSING Recap: “Concrete”

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With every new episode, The Missing proves itself to be an atypical crime series.  “Concrete” showed the grey areas in murkier ways than the show has ever dared before, with not just Tony but Julien being brought into a questionable light.  But Julien asks the right question about it all: “how is justice best served?”  Hit the jump for why the more things change, the more they stay the same.

TOP 5: Sony Cancels THE INTERVIEW, THE HOBBIT: THE BATTLE OF THE FIVE ARMIES, STAR TREK 3 Director Shortlist, KNIGHT OF CUPS, 10 Underrated Films of 2014

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Return readers will remember that I used each October installment to recommend a horror film that I thought you may have missed for one reason or another. I’ll do something similar this week with a Christmas movie that I think is worth your time if you find yourself looking for a new seasonal favorite. Since seeing it in theaters in 2007, writer/director Preston A. Whitmore II‘s This Christmas has become annual holiday viewing at my house. Starring Idris Elba, Mekhi Phifer, Delroy Lindo, and Loretta Devine, the film hits every beat you can ask for in a Christmas movie: siblings returning home from separate parts of the country to celebrate the holiday together, finding romance with a person from your past, helping an estranged member of your family out of a life-threatening jam, pre-loathsome Chris Brown absolutely slaying a Christmas number at open mic night when no one in his family even knew he could sing, etc. If all of the above sounds like cookie cutter dramedy material that’s because it is. Still yet, This Christmas does it so well that you can’t help but feel great while watching it. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll try and reconcile the fact that you actually like Chris Brown in it and, hopefully, you’ll thank me for the recommendation.

Moving on to the reason we’re here, this week’s Top 5 highlights Sony cancelling the theatrical release of The Interview, interviews for and Matt’s review of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, the Star Trek 3 director shortlist, the first trailer for Terrence Malick‘s Knight of Cups, and a look at 10 underrated films of 2014 that you may have missed. Keep reading for a brief recap and link to each of the above.

Rupert Wyatt Says He Hopes to Shoot ECHO CHAMBER Next Year or the Year After; 10-Part TV Series Will Have a Sci-Fi Context

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Director Rupert Wyatt’s been attached to Echo Chamber for quite a while now.  Back in 2012, it was reported that HBO was developing the miniseries, which would cover the true story of a British solider who infiltrates the Irish Republican Army in the 1980s.  As he rises through the ranks, he must deal with betrayal and life threatening situations.

At that time, the plan was to air the series as three 90-minute telecasts, but that doesn’t seem to be the case anymore.  On top of that, while talking to Wyatt for his upcoming release, The Gambler, he told me that Echo Chamber isn’t about the British solider/IRA scenario specifically and that his take has a sci-fi component to it.  Hit the jump for more.

Allison’s Other TV Bests of 2014

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In my intro to last year’s “Other TV Bests” category, I said, “if 2014 does even this half as well [as 2013], things should look pretty good.”  We have achieved it folks, and more than we could have asked for.  There just isn’t room for all of the noteworthy TV of 2014.  I’ve listed out more than my fair share of bests already, yet there are still more that deserve a mention (and yes, this one I limited to just 10).  Hit the jump for the rest of the best.

Michael Pitt Not Returning for HANNIBAL Season 3; Will Be Replaced by Joe Anderson

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A surprising casting change is underway for Hannibal Season 3.  Last year’s string of episodes for the most gorgeous show on television introduced the character of Mason Verger, with Michael Pitt wonderfully inhabiting the memorable role.  However, TV Line reports that Pitt has opted not to return for the show’s third season, forcing showrunner Bryan Fuller to recast the character.  The switch actually comes at a fairly opportune time, as last we saw Verger his face was in a rather…disheveled condition.  Joe Anderson (The Divide, The Grey) will be replacing Pitt and filling the role of Verger in the new season.  More after the jump.

New DAREDEVIL Netflix Show Images Reveal a Lawyer By Day, Superhero By Night

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A couple of new Daredevil Netflix show images have landed online, giving fans a new look at the upcoming limited series from Marvel and the streaming service.  Spartacus alum Steven S. DeKnight acts as showrunner on the upcoming series, though Marvel TV chief Jeph Loeb (who also oversees Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the upcoming Agent Carter) is still intimately involved in crafting Marvel’s first foray into Netflix territory.  In a new piece in EW, Loeb describes Daredevil as “a crime drama first, superhero show second”, and while DeKnight maintains that the series is certainly “grittier and edgier” than what Marvel has done before, the target audience remains all-encompassing so they’re “not looking to push it to extreme violence or gratuitous nudity.”

Check out the new Daredevil Netflix show images after the jump.  The series stars Charlie Cox, Vincent D’Onofrio, Deborah Ann Woll, Elden Henson, Toby Moore, Bob Gunton, Ayelet Zurer, and Vondie Curtis-HallDaredevil will premiere on Netflix sometime in 2015.

Watch the Star-Studded Musical Finale for THE COLBERT REPORT

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After nine years on the air, The Colbert Report came to an end last night as host Stephen Colbert prepares to take over Late Night from David Letterman next May.  It was a fitting finale in that Colbert provided a funny and outlandish sendoff for his Colbert Report alter ego, complete with a musical finale featuring the most random assembly of celebrities ever.  Seriously, name three random people and they were probably on The Colbert Report last night singing “We’ll Meet Again.”  George Lucas?  Check.  Kareem Abdul-Jabbar?  Check.  Tom Brokaw?  Yep.  Even Big Bird showed up.  Comedy Central has now made the musical Colbert Report finale available online, so if you missed it or just want to watch again (which is totally acceptable), you can now do so.

Watch the Colbert Report finale video after the jump, which also features James Franco, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Ariana Huffington, J.J. Abrams, Mike Huckabee, Alan Alda, Elijah Wood, Patrick Stewart, and of course Bryan Cranston.  Seriously, most random collection of people ever.

David Fincher’s HBO Series With James Ellroy Titled SHAKEDOWN; Will Also Direct LIVING ON NOISE for the Network

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Back in September we reported that David Fincher and James Ellroy were collaborating on a Los Angeles-set 1950s crime noir series for HBO and now that show has a title, Shakedown.  Remember when Fincher had those five fallow years between Panic Room and Zodiac?  Boy am I glad he’s not repeating that, he’s one of our master filmmakers so I’ll take pretty much whatever he’s serving up.

Fincher will also direct another pilot for HBO called Living On Noise.  That series will reportedly center around the director’s involvement in the 1980′s music video scene (you probably already know that he shot videos for Paula Abdul, Madonna, Nine Inch Nails, and Aerosmith back in the day).  Hit the jump for more on David Fincher’s involvement in Shakedown and Living On Noise.

FOLLOWING FREAK SHOW Video Podcast: Episode 10 – “Orphans”

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Welcome to episode 10 of Following Freak Show, a show that’s all about discussing the crazy things that go down on American Horror Story: Freak Show.  In “Orphans,” we flash back to Elsa’s (Jessica Lange) past and explore what Pepper (Naomi Grossman) truly means to her.  Meanwhile, Desiree (Angela Bassett) grows increasingly suspicious of Maggie (Emma Robert) while Stanley (Denis O’Hare) is busy cooking up another scheme to add an exhibit to his growing collection at the Morbidity Museum.

You can catch new episodes of Following Freak Show right here on Collider each week the day after a new episode of American Horror Story airs.  And if you’d like to follow the panelists in between new releases, here’s everybody’s Twitter handles: @PNemiroff, @AlexisSaarela, @djSheSay and @ActuallySasha.  Hit the jump to check out this week’s Following Freak Show video podcast.

New ORPHAN BLACK Season 3 Trailer Released; Premiere Date Set for April 18th on BBC America

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The addictive Orphan Black is returning in just a few months, and BBC America has unveiled a new teaser trailer to make the wait feel that much longer.  For those that have never seen the show, it’s a fun, twisty sci-fi series revolving around a group of clones (all played brilliantly by Tatiana Maslany) working to discover the secret and motive behind their origins.  Last season’s finale dropped a pretty massive bombshell, so fans that are caught up have been mighty curious to see what happens next.  This new trailer is a swell tease of what’s to come, and I think the line “This is war” is probably the most appropriate description of the series’ third season.

Watch the new Orphan Black Season 3 trailer after the jump.  The show also stars Jordan GavarisDylan Bruce, and Maria Doyle Kennedy and returns to BBC America on April 18, 2015.

AMERICAN HORROR STORY: FREAK SHOW Recap: “Orphans”

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I finally got what I wanted from American Horror Story: Freak Show, it just didn’t come at the right time.  Ever since episode 6, “Bullseye,” it’s been clear that the Freak Shows supporting cast deserves more than a scene here or there, and now Naomi Grossman further proves it.  Pepper’s always been a fine, likable member of the troupe, but “Orphans” takes the character well beyond just being the resident pinhead.  It’s easily one of the most moving episodes of the season, but it’s hard not to wonder, why now?  Perhaps it’s my own fault for having specific expectations for the final episode before the holiday break, but at the end of “Orphans,” I had more interest in revisiting American Horror Story: Asylum than seeing what’s to come on January 7th.

Watch Sarah Koenig Fret Over How SERIAL Will End in Funny or Die Video

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One of the best pieces of storytelling from any medium this year is happening on a podcast.  Many, many people (myself included) have become addicted to Serial, a podcast hosted by Sarah Koenig that follows her investigation into a decades-old murder and the questionable trial and imprisonment that followed.  The final episode of this season, which will wrap up this particular case, premieres tomorrow, and much like some memorable series finales in recent memory (notably Lost), everyone’s wondering how it’s going to end.  The folks at Funny or Die decided to take a humorous look at what Koenig may or may not be dealing with as audience members are hoping for a satisfying conclusion to a case that remains unsolved (remember folks, this is real life, not an episode of Law & Order).  Regardless, SNL alum Michaela Watkins does a swell job of playing Koenig, and yes, there are Mail Chimp jokes.

Check out the Serial Funny or Die video after the jump.  If you haven’t yet listened to the podcast, I cannot recommend it enough.

Trailer for the Final Season of PARKS AND RECREATION Travels to the Year 2017

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The final season of Parks and Recreation has no patience for our pitiful present.  For its final 13 episodes, the show will take place in the year 2017, a time with delivery drones, Johnny Karate has his own TV show, and Gary is now called Terry.  Last season’s finale was a big cliffhanger that raised plenty of questions, and a new teaser trailer only offers more.  While it’s nice that Parks and Recreation will have some mysteries to solve, I’m just happy to be spending time with these characters again before we have to say goodbye to Pawnee.

Hit the jump to check out the Parks and Recreation trailer for the final season.  The season premieres on January 13th at 8/7c.

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