Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Trailer Tuesdays: X-Men: First Class

You may be surprised to hear that, despite my insatiable desire to see as many romantic comedies as humanly possible (latest on the list: finally saw No Strings Attached this past weekend), I am unbelievably excited to see a comic book movie.

I grew up under the fine tutelage of a comic book-loving dad who saw to it that my brother and I came to love superheroes, and the X-Men were always my favorite. And though I've loved and hated the various X-Men movies that have graced the silver screen, there's nothing better than a great origin story. Enter X-Men: First Class.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Family Jules: Ew. It's Merlot.

This week marked the end of the 2010-2011 television season, which meant saying goodbye to our beloved Modern Family and Cougar Town.

Modern Family felt less like a finale and more like a regular (hilarious) episode, with the exception of Alex's home video footage that gave us a "behind the scenes" look at some of the season's highlights: Mitchell practicing for the flash mob, Cam putting on Fizbo makeup, Gloria squawking like a parrot, etc. Cougar Town, on the other hand, went all out and had a mega Hawaiian vacation to finish up its fantastic second season. Two different approaches, two great endings.

Before I invent a Knock Language, let's look at the best moments from the Season 2 finales (and then a little bit of housekeeping about Season 3)...

Thursday, May 26, 2011

So You Think You Can Dance, Season 8: Season Premiere Tonight!

I have been dancing around my desk all day today. And it's not because Scotty McCreery won American Idol last night. No, no—it's because tonight, after months and months of waiting, So You Think You Can Dance Season 8 finally preimeres!!!

It's felt like a particularly long time since we last joined Cat, Nigel and the gang, especially considering that Season 5, 6 and 7 all occurred within an incredibly short amount of time. But the wait will certainly be worth it, as it always is with SYTYCD.

But before it's a "yes to choreography," here are some details you should know about the upcoming season...

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Glee, Season 2: Spring Superlatives

Last night ended a rather rocky sophomore season for Glee. The writers consistently ignored, well, good writing and instead opted for a lot of stunts and silly subplots that were soon quickly forgotten (Emma's marriage, Artie's new robot legs and the character of Tina just to name a few).

I've spent much of the day discussing the downfalls of Season 2, and I promise that before Season 3 begins I will have a lengthy writeup about the show's journey thus far, but for now I'd like to remember the best of the best. Because at the end of the day, I will forget about how stupid it was that none of the parents showed up for the Night of Neglect fundraiser, but I won't forget the power of the "I Feel Pretty / Unpretty" mash-up or the quiet brilliance of Kurt's rendition of "Blackbird."

One of my favorite traditions here on Please Welcome Your Judges is the awarding of Glee Superlatives. Last year, I awarded Season 1 Fall Superlatives and Spring Superlatives, and the Season 1 Thunderclap Awards, and last fall continued with the Season 2 Fall Superlatives. Let's keep this thing going with the best of the Season 2 spring, shall we?

American Idol, Season 10: Who Will Win?

Tonight is the night, is the night of love. Well, maybe not, but it is the night when either Lauren Alaina or Scotty McCreery will be showered in endless confetti after being crowned the Season 10 champion of American Idol.

I didn't really hide the fact that I was pushing for Haley to make the finale and ultimately win (and, yes, I'm aware that it was all a huge departure from my feelings before the Top 24 when I loathed Ms. Reinhart), but the dark horse still made a great showing, ending her run in third place. Not only did this mean my fantasy finale remained just that, but it also meant that last night's performance finale was one of the most dull and predictable in Idol history. Two country teens who haven't done much in way of "taking a risk" this season pretty much kept that trend going, singing nice yet unmemorable songs in their wheelhouse.

But ultimately, one of these youngsters needs to join the ranks of Kelly, Ruben, Fantasia, Carrie, Taylor (ugh), Jordin, David, Kris and Lee (ugh). So who do I think it will be....?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Trailer Tuesdays: Green with Envy

Muppet lovers everywhere: rejoice! After months of anticipation, the first trailer for the upcoming reboot The Muppets has been released.

Well, sort of.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Magical Monday Moments: Pop Culture Graduations

Memorial Day is almost upon us, which means the time has come for schools to start letting go of their big fish. Yes, graduations are here!

One of the best (or worst) parts of any graduation is the commencement address. Last week, we watched Alex on Modern Family almost mock her entire class in her middle school valedictorian speech, only to have a change of heart and use catchy song titles to inspire the crowd. This made me think of all the graduation scenes we've seen throughout the years in TV and film. There's the scene in She's All That when Freddie Prinze Jr. drops trou to impress Rachael Leigh Cook. There are the graduation speeches by Rodney Dangerfield in Back to School, Adam Sandler in Billy Madison and Jessie/Screech/Zack on Saved by the Bell.

One particular speech always comes to mind around this time of year, especially this year with Please Welcome Your Judges intern Chris' recent law school graduation. Of course, that is Elle Woods' commencement address for the Harvard Law School Class of 2004 in Legally Blonde. Click here to view the video and read the transcript below:

Friday, May 20, 2011

Family Jules: Get This Party Started

I got in a bit of hot water last week when I suggested that perhaps Modern Family was heading toward a weak ending of its second season. While my feelings of the last two episodes haven't changed, I am happy to report that this week's episode, "See You Next Fall," reminded me why I adore this show. With the perfect blend of laughter and sentiment, this episode had me dreading this time a week from now when we will be on Modern Family summer break.

It's also worth noting how much I am especially enjoying the end of Cougar Town's second season. The emotional decline of Travis has had a big effect on the way I view Jules and Bobby (as well as their relationship with each other and with their son). Creators Bill Lawrence and Kevin Biegel have managed to keep the hilarity of the show in tact while telling a heartbreaking story about one of the characters. Bravo!

But before I get attacked by Chalk Children, let's take a look at this week's best moments...

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

American Idol, Season 10: Top 3 Song Suggestions

Here we are, seven days away from the crowning of the Season 10 champion of American Idol, and the stakes have never been higher for Scotty, Lauren and Haley. One little misstep could mean the difference between being in the same league as Top 2 finishers David Archuleta and Crystal Bowersox or being in the same league as Top 3 finishers Casey James and Jasmine Trias (yikes).

With James' elimination last week, we are closer and closer to the possibility of an all-female finale, which has only happened once in the show's 10 seasons (Fantasia vs. Diana in Season 3). Of course, Scotty McCreery isn't likely to be defeated, or at least defeated without a fight, so the girls are going to have to work especially hard tonight to secure America's votes.

So what should the Top 3 sing on this incredibly important night? Well, keep on reading and find out...

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Trailer Tuesdays: NBC, FOX and ABC Upfronts

All week long, the major networks are putting on major dog-and-pony shows for advertising executives and members of the press to preview their shows for the 2011-2012 season. This parade of optimism and "This has been the best development season ever!"-ness is known as Upfronts Week.

The best part of Upfronts Week, of course, is getting a sneak peek at all of the new shows. I am admittedly picky when it comes to picking up new shows, so I love watching all of the trailers to get a sense of what will and will not be making the DVR cut next fall.

So far, upfronts have been held by NBC, FOX and ABC, with CBS and the CW coming in the next two days. Take a look at the shows I'm looking forward to so far...

Monday, May 16, 2011

Magical Monday Moments: The Baldwin-Krasinski Battle Rages On

Five weeks ago, Alec Baldwin and John Krasinski began an epic battle of good versus evil, right versus wrong.

Well, actually, it was really just the launch of New Era's "New Era Rivalry" campaign, pitting New York Yankees fan Baldwin against Boston Red Sox fan Krasinski against each other.

And lucky for us, there's another video. And things get physical...

Friday, May 13, 2011

ABC Renews Happy Endings

Upfronts Week, when studios announce their fall schedules and thus reveal which shows are being canceled to make room for the pilots being picked up, starts Monday, but studios have been making the upcoming presentations fairly anticlimactic by announcing cancellations and renewals all week.

Some of the best news of the week? Deadline.com just reported that ABC has renewed newcomer comedy Happy Endings for a second season! This sitcom has quickly become one of my favorites, and I can't wait to see the trouble Dave, Alex, Jane, Brad, Max and (especially) Penny get themselves into in Season 2.

Here's a clip from a recent episode in which Penny tried dating a hipster. It should get you sufficiently hooked.

Seriously. Start watching this show. It's totally a-MAH-zing.

[Image Credit: ABC]

Family Jules: A Baby Calf on Wheels


I have a confession. I am finding myself underwhelmed with Modern Family as of late. I love this show, and there have been episodes this season that have been unbelievably hilarious ("Manny Get Your Gun," "Slow Down Your Neighbors," "Someone to Watch Over Lily"); however, there have been several episodes that just haven't worked. And despite several great zingers (more on those later) and one adorable little puppy, I now find myself looking forward more to next week's Happy Endings than next week's Modern Family. Is this feeling just the result of two less-than-stellar episodes in a row, or is this a trend many of you are also noticing?

Cougar Town, on the other hand, is still going strong. The end of Season 2 is obviously focusing on Travis' post-Kirsten depression, which doesn't immediately lend itself to slapstick comedy, but even when there aren't huge laugh-out-loud moments, I am always satisfied after a half hour of hanging out with the Cul-De-Sac Crew.

So before I start pontificating on the possibility of mole people, let's look at the best moments from this week's episodes...

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

American Idol, Season 10: Top 4 Song Suggestions

Can we first just note in the above photo that Lauren is still crying about being in the Bottom Two? Poor thing.

There they are—the Fantastic Final Four. After all of the rapid-fire female eliminations early in the season, it's amazing that two of them have made it this far. Can one of go all the way and be the first female winner since Jordin Sparks?? I'm getting ahead of myself. First, they need to get through the Top 4.

We went from 21st Century (yay!) to Carole King (snooze) to a mixture of current and '60s music (yay!). And now, keeping this delightful trend going...

WAIT! Stop reading now if you want the theme of the week to be a surprise!

Google Celebrates Martha Graham

As a lover of dance, I was excited (and, yes, incredibly surprised and perplexed) to see Martha Graham trending on Twitter this morning. Turns out, today would've been Ms. Graham's 117th birthday! And while Google is famous for its themed logos, they took it a step further with a Graham-themed animation highlighting some of her famous technique.

You can view the animation today at Google.com, or watch the video below (with soundtrack!)...

Monday, May 9, 2011

Magical Monday Moments: Kelly Clarkson Rocks Out with Coca-Cola

How's your Monday going, dear readers? Missing the sunshine and relaxation of the weekend? Well, never fear. This week's Magical Monday Moment is here, brought to you by the ultimate American Idol diva herself.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Family Jules: We Don't Love Pink

It's never a sure thing that we will have new episodes of both Modern Family and Cougar Town each week, but this week we got lucky!

To be honest, I was slightly underwhelmed by Modern Family this week, most likely due to the pure awesomeness that was the most recent new episode, "Someone to Watch Over Lily." Of course, as we barrel toward the Season 2 finales for both shows, I have no doubt the episodes will get stronger and stronger.

So before anyone gets Counciled, let's take a look at the best moments from this week's episodes...

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Spring 2011 Season Finale Schedule

Could it possibly be time for season finales already?! Well, judging by the future size of the Cinco de Mayo margarita I will be imbibing tonight, then answer is definitely yes.

We've already bid farewell to Season 2 of Archer and cheered a hearty "ConDRAGulations" for Raja's victory on RuPaul's Drag Race Season 3, but the goodbyes are about to start coming at us rapidfire, starting with tonight's Season 5 finale of 30 Rock and Part 1 of the Community paintball-themed Season 2 finale (guest starring Lost's Sawyer Josh Holloway!!).

So don't get caught off guard when your favorite show goes into summer hiatus. Here's the list of season finales I'll be tuning into...

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Project Runway: Season 9 and Spin-Off Details Announced

Earlier this week, I found myself with a major case of insomnia. Hooray! And what better way to keep myself busy at 4 in the morning than to rewatch old episodes of Project Runway Season 2, right? While I love me some Mondo, Anthony, Seth Aaron and Korto, the first few seasons of the show will always hold a special place in my heart. "Ah, well," I thought to my sleep-deprived and slightly hallucinating self. "Thank goodness they've already started casting Season 9."

So imagine my delight when Lifetime announced information not only on the premiere of Season 9, but also two new spin-off series that made my little heart patter.

American Idol, Season 10: Top 5 Song Suggestions

And then there were five: Lauren, James, Jacob, Scotty and Haley. Not even close to the Top 5 I would've predicted two months ago, but that's just the way this crazy American Idol journey works.

Last week, I was disappointed that the producers chose Carole King as the theme, since the last time she released a #1 record, none of the contestants were even close to being born (by at least 15 years). As if sensing my frustration (Uncle Nigel and I are just so in tune with each other, you know), the theme for tonight's show is... oh wait...

WARNING: Stop reading now if you want the theme of the week to be a surprise!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Trailer Tuesdays: Something Borrowed

It should come as no surprise to my more loyal followers that I am a huge fan of romantic comedies. As much as I adore independent films, dramas and the occasional action thriller, I just can't get enough of lighthearted boy-meets-girl-with-a-happy-ending rom coms.

Which, of course, leads me to this week's Trailer Tuesday film, Something Borrowed...

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