by Rob Vaux Posted: November 13th, 2012 at 6:41 am
It’s hard to believe eight years have passed since Friends went off the air. Harder still to believe just how much television has changed in that time. Friends may have been the last of the network behemoths: old school dramas and comedies that everyone watched and chatted about over the water cooler the next morning. The environment in which it thrived no longer exists, replaced by the long tail and cable shows like Mad Men and Breaking Bad that now command our cultural attention. Which is why the new Blu-ray set covering the entire series feels more like a nostalgic throwback than a white-hot imperative. Hit the jump for my full review.
It’s become a meta joke on TV how young, struggling professionals always seem to manage to live in exceptionally large apartments in some of the most expensive cities. You could call it, in fact, a Fantasy Floorplan, which is exactly what Brandi Roberts does. The interior designer and artist blends a love of drawing, pop-culture and television — and she covers seven decades of TV homes, from I Love Lucy to Seinfeld and from Bedrock to Batman. The only thing better would be some fantasy financing (or an actual suggestion of what such a space my really cost … though that may be too close to reality). For some of the best of her offerings, hit the jump.
Though the term “sitcom” has become a dirty word nowadays with exceptional single-camera TV comedies dominating the airwaves, multi-cam comedies were the norm way, way back in the 1990s. A number of 90s sitcoms were successful enough to be deemed “appointment television,” but two shows invaded the zeitgeist like no other: Seinfeld and Friends. The latter is still one of the most successful television shows ever made, and its influence is ever-present as contemporary comedies are still trying to emulate its “formula.”
Friends is now—finally—coming to Blu-ray later this year with completely remastered versions of all 236 episodes in 1080p HD video, 16×9 widescreen format and 5.1 audio. Moreover, the complete series set will include over 3 hours of new bonus features. Hit the jump for more details.
Though the badassness of The Avengers is apparent from the numerous trailers and TV spots we’ve seen so far, the story is essentially about a ragtag group of strangers who team up to save the world. One could essentially take the film’s logline and create a buddy comedy, a kid’s movie, or even a sitcom. Enter: the internet. Someone has taken it upon themselves to reimagine The Avengers as characters in a sitcom reminiscent of Friends, and the resulting video is pretty funny. Footage of the actors from past films (both Marvel and non-Marvel) is cut together to the catchy popiness of The Rembrandts’ “I’ll Be There for You”, and we get all the classic “looks” from the actors so regularly used on sitcom intros. To be honest, The Avengers: The Sitcom would probably get some heavy rotation on my DVR. Though some may argue over who’s who in The Avengers/Friends connection, I think we can all agree that Tony Stark is a pretty solid Joey.
Hit the jump to watch the video.
Amazon’s Gold Box Deal of the Day is Friends: The Complete Series Collection for $94.49 (which is 60% off). Like all Gold Box deals, it’s only good for today. Remember, if you spend over $25 you get free shipping. Here’s what Amazon says about the set.
Have a latte with Ross, Rachel, Monica, Chandler, Joey, and Phoebe: Enjoy all 236 episodes of this breakout comedy on 40 discs, plus a 60-page commemorative book with original pilot pitch and behind-the-scenes photos with cast and crew. Bonus features involve gag reels, commentaries, behind-the-scenes featurettes and more.
Finally, if you don’t yet own The Lord of the Rings: The Motion Picture Trilogy Extended Edition on Blu-ray, Amazon has it for $69.99 (42% off). I’ve been watching it over the last week and it’s amazing.
Today, via press release, ABC announced a bit of a Friends reunion with Jennifer Aniston making a guest star appearance on Courteney Cox’s comedy series Cougar Town. If this situation seems familiar, it’s because these two Friends stars also appeared together in Cox’s other short lived FX series Dirt.
Though the press release didn’t include details on Aniston’s stint on the show, EW has come through with some information from executive producer Bill Lawrence. Lawrence says, “She’s going to play [Courteney Cox's character's] shrink named Bonnie. Kind of a get-too-involved-in-her-life-type of therapist. Those guys are so close in real life they kind of do that for each other anyway. Bonnie has the life Jules [Cox] wishes she has.” Apparently Cox wanted to make sure the show found its feet before asking Aniston to guest star on the show. The idea is for Aniston’s character to be a therapist that Cox’s character has been seeing for awhile, so there’s definitely an opportunity for more guest appearances down the road.
Last month I had the opportunity to attend the press conference for Josh Gordon and Will Speck’s The Switch, a movie that I liked much more than I ever expected. The film revolves around Wally (Jason Bateman) who “accidentally” hijacks his best friend’s (Jennifer Aniston) pregnancy by replacing her sperm donor’s “ingredient” for his own without telling her. It’s got much more drama then the ads lead you to believe and it’s ultimately a much better film then you’d expect. I was very surprised by how much I liked the movie.
Anyways, the press conference featured directors Josh Gordon and Will Speck (Blades of Glory) along with stars Bateman and Aniston. Topics for discussion included the notion of the modern woman, working with a child actor (Thomas Robinson plays Sebastian, the son of Aniston and Bateman’s characters), everyone’s original involvement with the film, and much more. Also, as to be expected, talk of Arrested Development and Friends movies was quickly deflected. To check out what Gordon, Speck, Bateman and Aniston had to say, continue reading. The Switch hits theaters August 20. Also make sure to look for my exclusive interview with the film’s directors later tonight or tomorrow.
While we post our “Geek Gifts” articles all the time, I’m starting a new type of article today: “Girlfriend Gifts.” After all, we’ve got a lot of male readers and at least some of you have significant others. So to help your relationship out, I’m letting you know about a great deal that is sure to win you some brownie points: the Friends: The Complete Series Collection for $99.99. The box set is part of Amazon’s Gold Deal of the Day and it ends tonight at midnight. So if you’d like to get the box set for 58% off, click the link. The box set includes all 10 seasons from the groundbreaking series, in a limited-edition collector’s box.
Jennifer Aniston will cameo in Wes Craven’s Scream 4. Star Magazine heard it straight from Aniston, who says she is doing the role after being asked by former Friends co-star Courtney Cox. Cox appeared in the first three Scream films and will return for Scream 4. Cox’s husband, David Arquette, and Neve Campbell will also reprise their roles from the first three films. The film also is set to star series newcomers Emma Roberts, Hayden Panettiere, and Rory Culkin. Hit the jump for a spoiler in regards to Aniston’s role. Scream 4 is currently scheduled for to open on April 15, 2011.
[UPDATE: Bloody-Disgusting says news of Aniston appearing in Scream 4 is completely untrue. We trust BD more than we do Star Magazine.]