Ray Donovan is rarely cryptic with its episode titles, and “Viagra” was no exception. It was an hour devoted to sex, and about the complications of sex, for everyone. As Ray and Abby continue to struggle through their relationship, Terry and Bunchy take drastic steps to move forward with their respective ladies. Sex is used in a number of ways to help Ray try and ensnare Cochran, and even Mickey and his friend get a moment with a prostitute (sort of). Hit the jump for why Ray is determined to send someone to the Maldives.
If there was one thing Ray Donovan really needed to upgrade in its second season, it was humor. What keeps a dark and violent show from getting too dark are things like a well-placed look, or turn of phrase, or anything that lightens things just enough to make viewers want to keep exploring the world. In the past, it was Mickey who shouldered most of this burden, thanks to Jon Voight‘s wack-a-doodle portrayal (which has continued, and even been augmented, this year). But this season, it has run through each episode, and is better incorporated with the family drama. Hit the jump if it really bothers you to not be in control.
On the Showtime drama series Ray Donovan, Ray (Liev Schreiber) is the go-to guy who makes the problems of L.A.’s celebrities, superstar athletes and business moguls disappear. It’s the problems in his own life that he never seems to know how to handle, and one of those problems in Season 2 has been a nosy reporter named Kate McPherson (Vinessa Shaw), who just won’t take no for an answer, when it comes to the Donovan family.
During this exclusive phone interview with Collider, actress Vinessa Shaw talked about how she came to be a part of this show, just how addicting the story is, how it was both intimidating and exciting to walk onto the set for the first time, how she views her character, how much she’s enjoyed playing someone so focused and driven, how she views the relationship between Kate and Ray, getting into the right headspace to do the more intimate scenes, and what being a part of such a high quality, high caliber show taught her about herself, as an actress. Check out what she had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers.
No matter what happens on Ray Donovan, things always come back to family. The definition of family, and relationships among family members, have been driving forces on the show since the beginning. “S U C K” was also about drawing lines, even where loved ones are involved. But for Ray, and even for Abby, where those lines should be is unclear. Ray has an idea about himself, and who he wants to be, but his reality is very different. In “S U C K,” he was forced to come to terms with that in a number of ways. Hit the jump for why “You don’t need to worry about the natives, the natives need to worry about you.”
In “Gem & Loan,” Ray Donovan explored partnerships and alliances. It also created a partnership, for this hour at least, between two of its more disparate parts: the family drama and Ray as a fixer. Ray Donovan is at its best when Ray’s job intersects with his family or other storylines that viewers are already invested in. It also was a rare episode where everyone, by the end of it, was more or less content. Hit the jump for why “you’re a real pisser.”
Actor Johnathon Schaech is certainly on a roll in his career, with interesting and intriguing projects in a variety of genres. After a pivotal and integral role on Season 1 of the hit Showtime drama series Ray Donovan, and a memorable performance as the often villainous Castor on The CW’s Star-Crossed, he has since gone on to play Colonel Sidney Sherman in the History Channel mini-series Texas Rising, about the Texas Revolution against Mexico and starring Bill Paxton, Ray Liotta, Brendan Fraser and Jeffrey Dean Morgan, among others, which will premiere in 2015. On top of that, he recently finished the Bruce Willis sci-fi/action film Vice, about a resort that offers its wealthy clients a chance to live out their fantasies until it suffers a mishap that causes one of its staff members to seek out revenge.
During this exclusive phone interview with Collider, actor Johnathon Schaech talked about working on such a massive project as Texas Rising and collaborating with director Roland Joffé, his experience on Ray Donovan and wishing he didn’t have to leave the show, what he enjoyed about playing Castor on Star-Crossed, and doing a Bruce Willis action film. Check out what he had to say after the jump.
In “Uber Ray,” Ran Donovan has set up its major conflicts for the upcoming season, and so far, it’s looking good. The show is a slow burn, and one that didn’t get as much attention as its counterpart Masters of Sex, but deserved to. It’s at least a steadily engaging show, if not completely tonally consistent, and its character drama is always interesting to watch unfold. “Uber Ray” didn’t bother with a fixer plot this week, which was the right choice, focusing instead on Mickey’s return, and what that means for the Donovans. Hit the jump for why “that’s why you were born, Ray, to be my fucking judge. That’s always been your job.”
Last year, when Ray Donovan premiered, it was set up as a fast-paced action-oriented series about the life of a fixer, who helped his celebrity clients out of ridiculous situations of their own making. And for the first few episodes, it almost stuck to that (here and there, anyway). But what Ray Donovan turned into, much to the disappointment of some and the delight of others, was a slow and nuanced family drama. On top of that, it also ended up being a portrait of the long-term psychological effects of molestation (of all the unexpected things).
That made it break out of its “poor-man’s Sopranos” dismissals and become something different, though it never fully committed to either, leaving a muddled impression. “Yo Soy Capitan” also straddles the line between the show’s disparate parts, but unsurprisingly, it was the family drama that shined. Hit the jump for why I’m not a sailor, I’m a captain.
The Showtime drama series Ray Donovan returns for Season 2 on July 13th (Season 1 is currently available on Blu-ray/DVD). Set in the land of the rich and famous, Ray Donovan (Liev Schreiber) is L.A.’s best professional fixer for any combustible situation. When his father, Mickey (Jon Voight), was unexpectedly released from prison, it set off a chain of events that shook every Donovan family member to its core.
During this recent exclusive phone interview with Collider, actor Eddie Marsan (who plays former boxer Terry Donovan) talked about playing a broken tough guy, how much he knew about the Donovan family’s checkered past when he signed on, why this story weighed on him more than he thought it would, what he’s most proud of with Season 1, what it’s been like to work with this talented group of people, and how things will further develop in Season 2, now that everything has been shattered and changed for the Donovan family. Check out what he had to say after the jump.
The first trailer for season two of Showtime’s crime drama Ray Donovan is now online. Liev Schreiber returns as the LA fixer for the rich and famous, and now must deal with the fallout of the first season’s final moments. Along for the ride in season two are Ray’s father (Jon Voight) and the FBI’s LA Bureau Chief (guest star Hank Azaria). Paula Malcomson, Eddie Marsan, Dash Mihok, Steven Bauer, Katherine Moennig, Pooch Hall, Kerris Dorsey and Devon Bagby also star, with Elliot Gould among an impressive cast of season two guest stars.
Ray Donovan returns Sunday, July 13th at 9pm ET/PT on Showtime. Hit the jump to watch the Ray Donovan season two trailer.
This week’s new Blu-ray releases include a trio of very television offerings, a pair of new Criterion releases, and more. Briefly:
- True Detective [Blu-ray] – $39.96 (50% off)
- Non-Stop (Blu-ray + DVD + DIGITAL HD with UltraViolet) – $19.99 (43% off)
- Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD) – $12.99 (68% off)
- Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey [Blu-ray] – $29.99 (50% off)
- Ray Donovan: Season 1 [Blu-ray] – $34.99 (55% off)
- Alan Partridge [Blu-ray] – $14.96 (50% off)
- Devil’s Knot (DVD/BD Combo) [Blu-ray] – $16.49 (53% off)
- Tim’s Vermeer [Blu-ray] – $29.96 (27% off)
- L’eclisse (Blu-ray + DVD) – $33.96 (15% off)
- All That Heaven Allows (Blu-ray + DVD) – $33.96 (15% off)
Casting continues on Fox’s highly anticipated Batman prequel series Gotham. After setting Ben McKenzie (Southland) in the lead role of James Gordon, the network recently filled roles for The Penguin, Gordon’s boss, and Gordon’s fiancée, and they also set Donal Logue (Sons of Anarchy) in the role of Detective Harvey Bullock. Now Fox has set another villainous role for the series, as Jada Pinkett Smith has landed the series regular role of Fish Mooney. The character is described as an imposing and hotheaded sadistic gangster boss and nightclub owner who has “the street smarts and almost extra-sensory abilities to read people like an open book.” It’s certainly nice to see a female land a major role for once, and I’m interested to see what the actress will bring to the role. Smith recently starred in the leading role of the TNT series Hawthorne for three seasons, before the show was canceled in 2011.
Gotham was scripted by Bruno Heller (The Mentalist), who will also serve as showrunner. Fox has already ordered the show to series. Hit the jump for casting news concerning a The Wire alum joining the second season of Ray Donovan.
Ray Donovan had an interesting inaugural season. After a lot of unevenness and missteps in what it seemed to want to be: a show about a fixer, but not every week, or a show about a family, but with a lot of ancillary and unimportant characters to start? Ultimately, Ray Donovan‘s world and focus became very narrow indeed — in the end, not even Lee or Ezra mattered, or had any bearing on the thrust of the story. Van, the FBI, Marvin Gaye Washington … none of them really mattered. What Ray Donovan ended up being was drawn-out and nuanced portrayal of systemic sexual abuse, an incredibly surprising fact given where the show started. Hit the jump for more.
Ray Donovan has had shades of many other successful series — Boardwalk Empire, Six Feet Under — but “Bucky Fuckin’ Dent” shared some things with Breaking Bad. Particularly, that show’s bottle episode, “Fly.” “Bucky Fuckin’ Dent” wasn’t nearly so artistic or suffocatingly insular as that offering, but it did trap the brothers Donovan together with one horrible cretin from their past, and marked an important moment in Ray’s personal history. Ray Donovan has always married past and present together in a way that elevates it beyond just a gangster show. Ray having to deal with his past at the same time as everything in his present falls apart made for a difficult but great hour. Hit the jump for more.
As Ron Burgandy might say, Ray Donovan this week “escalated quickly.” After weeks of slow build up regarding a number of things, they all came crashing to earth in “Fite Nite.” The tables were turned on Ray, and we got an answer to the question about Mickey’s future. Ray bringing in Sully was always going to be a mistake, but how exactly that would happen remained to be seen, until tonight. “Fite Nite” narrowed its focus to just the Donovan family, and what might be their last night all together. Hit the jump for more.