Always Be Watching - 08 November 2018

ABW is written by Dan Barrett who ate too much American candy yesterday. And would do it again.

There’s a Breaking Bad movie coming soon.

It’s true. Stop rubbing your eyes in disbelief.

Series creator Vince Gilligan is working on it, but few details are known just yet. It’s interesting that this is coming out at the same time that AMC are actively talking about producing three Walking Dead movies. Movies based on AMC series are a good, splashy way to get attention in a crowded market. A great way to get eyeballs from both viewers and larger companies who may be interested in acquiring AMC.

/FILM reports that the film will be a sequel following Jesse after the events of the TV series. Let’s see how that shakes out.


Adam Price, who created Borgen and the criminally under-seen Ride Upon The Storm has a new 6-part series coming to Netflix:

Ragnarok is a new Norwegian original series from Netflix, the world's leading entertainment service. The six part Norwegian language series unfold in the small fictional town of Edda in the middle of the vast and enthralling Norwegian countryside and is a modern day coming of age drama rooted in Norse mythology, set in a high school arena.


One of my favourite shows is the CBS All Access drama The Good Fight. I’m often impressed with the guests that feature on the show, but the announcement that Michael Sheen is joining the cast for its third season really got my attention. Sheen is going to be a perfect fit on the series. This is very exciting.

Expect the show back in early 2019.


There’s talk of a revival of The 4400 - a show that I am not entirely sure I ever watched, but I’m sure it had its fans.


There was a lot of talk about Netflix investing so heavily into romcoms, particularly with a teen focus. Something didn’t quite feel right about their efforts, but Netflix have put in a fix - they’re finally addressing their lack of investment in ‘two people who look the same swapping identities’ comedies with The Princess Switch.

It’ll be streaming from this weekend.

Now they just need a body-swap comedy.


Midterms

I spent a good portion of yesterday watching US midterms coverage. I’m always struck by election coverage in how similar it is conceptually, but how wildly different the execution can be. The right mix of on-air talent really is what makes or breaks coverage.

While I’m a left-minded, progressive sort of person, I do regularly check in with what’s happening on Fox News just to get some perspective on what conversations are being had there. But Brett Baier hosting yesterday’s coverage made it almost unbearable.

MSNBC’s broadcast was easily the winner. Like CNN’s coverage, it would have merely have been fine, perhaps even rote, but it’s real strength was having the enthusiastic and knowledgeable election analyst Steve Kornacki on the coverage. Kornacki was a presence on stage from the start of the broadcast and past 2am when the coverage switched out its hosts from Brian Williams/Rachel Maddow to a Willie Geist-led panel chat. Kornacki then re-appeared looking relatively fresh-faced from 6:30am for the breakfast Morning Joe show.

Proving how an election coverage could go wrong was ABC who had a very elaborate set and some quality gimmickry throughout its broadcast, but the largesse of the set just overwhelmed any interest I had in watching it. Keeping things simple is often for the best.

CBS’ broadcast was terminally dull from what I saw of it, though I appreciated watching it switch out to a live Late Show with Stephen Colbert. The show was good, particularly when it introduced political reporters Alex Wagner and John Heillman, from The Circus. Heillman managed to show just how live it was by dropping an F-bomb on air. If it was a quieter night, I’d have expected that to have started a few conversations this morning.


Speaking of F-bombs, there were a number of TV networks who broadcast Beto O’Rourke’s concession speech live who found themselves apologising after he told the crowd how f***ing proud he was of them.

Some networks, like KXAN, immediately cut from the speech.


After the release of the unfinished Orson Welles film The Other Side of The Wind on Netflix last weekend, there are now questions as to whether one of the big streaming giants might be interested in a lost Kubrick script that is now coming to market.

Entitled Burning Secret, the script is an adaptation of the 1913 novella by the acclaimed and often-adapted Austrian writer Stefan Zweig. In Kubrick’s adaptation of the story, a suave insurance salesman befriends a 10-year-old boy at a spa resort so he is able seduce the child’s married mother. In Zweig’s original, the story is set in Austria but Kubrick’s script transfers the story to America of the 1950s with American characters.


And finally…

One of my great loves in life is the Japanese Spider-Man TV show from the 70s. This week the character, Takuya Yamashiro, made an appearance in a Marvel comic book. This thrills me to bits.

Takuya Yamashiro was the Spider-Man of a action-packed television series that emerged from a three-year licensing agreement between the Toei Company and Marvel that allowed both to use each other’s characters in whatever way they wished. For Toei, that meant turning Spider-Man into a 22-year-old motorcross racer who, after witnessing a UFO crash, attracts the attention of an alien group bent on taking over the universe. It’s up to Yamashiro to save the world with his spider powers and spider-themed tech.

Yes, this is just an opportunity for me to post this:


Catch you tomorrow!