Hellcats and Nikita Premieres

8 09 2010

Tune into The CW at 9pm eastern tonight to see the premiere of Hellcats, starring one-time Beverly Hills 90210 guest-star Ashley Tisdale, Robbie Jones (Quentin, One Tree Hill), and Matt Barr (Ian “Psycho Derek” Banks, One Tree Hill), and featuring Jeff Hephner (Matt, The O.C.).

For more on Hellcats, check out my review of the pilot presentation.

Then tune into The CW at 9pm eastern tomorrow night to see the premiere of Nikita, starring Melinda Clarke (Julie, The O.C.).

For more on Nikita, check out my review of the pilot and read my interview with Clarke from May.





News Roundup: Gossip Girl, One Tree Hill, 90210 and More

12 08 2010
  • Kristin tweeted that Gossip Girl’s Chuck and Blair are not the subject of her wedding spoiler.
  • Josh Schwartz (executive producer, The O.C.) had tweeted this morning that there is “no truth” to the rumor that Blake Lively (Serena, Gossip Girl) has asked to have her character killed so she could leave the show BUT several hours later I saw that the tweet was deleted. When I checked with The CW earlier this week about this rumor, they issued a “no comment.” Interpret as you wish.
  • Penn Badgley (Dan, Gossip Girl) will present at the MTV Video Music Awards next month.
  • Badgley did a feature for the launch issue of Bullet magazine, but I don’t believe it’s out yet. There’s a behind-the-scenes video where he talks about the photo shoot and shows off some of his pian0-playing and singing skills.
  • Luke Kleintank (Elliott, Gossip Girl) has been cast on The Young And The Restless.
  • Star News came up with an interesting list of 5 crossover ideas for One Tree Hill.
  • JustJared claims Sophia Bush (Brooke, One Tree Hill) and Austin Nichols (Julian, One Tree Hill) will present the Breakthrough in Green Innovation award to Global Green at the Breakthrough of the Year Awards this weekend. He apparently previously reported that Jessica Szohr (Vanessa, Gossip Girl) will get the Breakthrough Actress in Film award while AnnaLynne McCord (Naomi, 90210) will get the Breakthrough Standout Performance award.
  • Trevor Donovan (Teddy, 90210) tweeted that he will be part of the city of Beverly Hills’ 9.02.10 Day celebrations, and he’s hosting a contest related to it.
  • SoapNet will have a Beverly Hills 90210 “Labor Of Love” marathon on Labor Day with Kelly-Dylan season 3 episodes. I could not be any happier. (Well, I’d be happier it if it was a super-long marathon about their whole relationship over the 10 seasons but…this…is…awesome!)
  • EW.com has a “first look” at Brian Austin Green (David, Beverly Hills 90210) on Desperate Housewives.
  • The Associated Press has an article about Vanessa Marcil (Gina, Beverly Hills 90210) returning to General Hospital.
  • According to TVGuide.com, Shailene Woodley (Kaitlin, The O.C.) makes $40,000 per an episode for The Secret Life Of The American Teenager, while one-time Beverly Hills 90210 guest star Ashley Tisdale will be making $30,000 an episode for The CW’s Hellcats.
  • Benjamin McKenzie (Ryan, The O.C.) will be performing in The Glass Menagerie in California from September 1 to October 17.
  • Gossip Cop and I busted a false National Enquirer story claiming Katie Holmes (Joey, Dawson’s Creek) and husband Tom Cruise are feuding over a smoking addiction.




Hellcats

7 06 2010

Thanks to The CW, I was able to watch a screener of their new series Hellcats.

The series stars Ashley Tisdale (who once guest-starred on Beverly Hills 90210), Aly Michalka and, from the teen drama world, Matt Barr (Ian “Psycho Derek” Banks, One Tree Hill; Keith van der Woodsen, Gossip Girl; Wes, The O.C.) and Robbie Jones (Quentin, One Tree Hill).

The show revolves around Aly’s character, Marti, who loses her college scholarship and decides to try out for the Hellcats, the competitive cheerleading team at Lancer University, since all members receive scholarships.

The screener was only approximately 35 minutes long, so I’m not sure if additional scenes will be added for the premiere or if it will have more commercial breaks than normal. I would guess the former is more likely, as this was probably more of a pilot presentation than a pilot. Still, it was significantly longer than what was shown at The CW Upfront.

Among the things that I liked:

It was refreshing to see a show set in the college world from the start. While the actors aren’t quite college age in real life (though Barr doesn’t look like he’s aged a day since One Tree Hill), it felt like a nice change of pace. How much it’ll actually differ from a high school-focused show, I don’t know. But all the cheerleaders have to live together, which provides a convenience that high school-based shows don’t have.

The soundtrack was fun–I really enjoyed the use of Train’s Hey Soul Sister and Lady Antebellum’s Need You Now–though I’m sure the songs are subject to change. In addition to the typical background songs that all shows have in several scenes, the cheerleading sequences provide another opportunity to play music, but of a diegetic nature. Music aside, at first I felt like these scenes were a waste of time, overkill, fluff and filler. But then I remembered how often One Tree Hill had basketball sequences during several of its seasons and how much I came to enjoy them. Perhaps I would feel the same way here in time.

As I noted in my upfront recap, it seems they are setting up a love triangle with Marti and Barr’s Dan (seriously, they couldn’t pick a different name for a CW character?) and Jones’ Louis. Dan is Marti’s close friend, who just may be harboring some feelings for her, but she and Louis, a member of the Hellcats, are starting to get their flirt on. I am intrigued by the interracial component but also because I’m just a sucker for love triangles.

The Bring It On comparisons are inevitable and the show knows that, smartly incorporating the film into the plot. When Marti needs to prepare for her try out, she breaks out the DVD and soon she’s dancing all around her living room.

Among the things that I didn’t like:

In just 35-ish minutes, they blew through a ton of plot. I understand the need to set up the show, but it felt like they set up the show and resolved so much of it within one episode. I didn’t expect Marti to come up with her game plan–trying out for the team–and make the squad all in one episode. I didn’t expect Marti and Tisdale’s Savannah to go from budding enemies to just buddies so quickly. And I didn’t expect qualifiers, or the first major competitive event, to begin at the end of the episode. It seemed like these things, these conflicts, could’ve been drawn out over a couple of episodes. But you run the risk, then, of taking too long to get going. Still, I don’t see a season’s worth–much less a series’ worth–of creative plotlines here.

Among the things I’m mixed on:

Savannah wasn’t quite what I expected. I anticipated a more obvious mean girl but the pilot seemed to suggest that she isn’t really the enemy or the foil to Marti’s character. Maybe that will change over time.

As many have noted based just on promotional photos, Marti bears some resemblance to Peyton (Hilarie Burton, One Tree Hill), circa seasons one and two. Still, differences abound: Marti’s mom is in her life whereas Peyton’s wasn’t. Marti is joining the cheerleading team when the series starts whereas Peyton was already a member. Marti is single and her closest friend is male whereas Peyton had a boyfriend and her closest friends was female. Marti, scholarship drama aside, doesn’t seem to be all that bummed out about life whereas Peyton’s personality fell largely under the category of “broody.” Marti is book-smart and intends to have a career in law, whereas Peyton was all about the arts. Bottom line: Marti may look like Peyton at first glance, but she is far from a carbon copy. Too early to tell whether that’s good or bad.

The show started and finished with narration from Marti. Not sure if that was just a plot device to get things off the ground or if it will be a regular feature, but I’m not sure if I’m feeling it.

“Not sure” is actually how I feel overall. I don’t really care to watch, don’t really care not to. I’m a firm believer that some worthy shows need some time to get going, but whether I’ll give this one a chance, I don’t know yet.

A premiere date for Hellcats hasn’t been announced yet but it will air Wednesdays in the fall after America’s Next Top Model.

I have to note, though, that Hellcats won’t be covered extensively on this site since it is not a teen drama. I will continue to include it as I have thus far: when there’s something relevant to Barr or Jones or when there’s some other teen drama connection.





The CW Upfront Videos

22 05 2010

Below are some videos I took outside and inside The CW upfront.

Truth be told, I don’t know if I was allowed to do this. I guess it was technically a private event, even though all the information given out was free to be printed by the media. There also wasn’t any announcement that no recording devices could be used and plenty of people had their digital cameras and cell phones out at varying points. Still, I won’t be surprised if YouTube pulls these down for copyright violations. And If The CW asks me to take them down, I will oblige.

Bottom line: watch while you can.

Come back Sunday for (extremely) brief, exclusive videos with Zuzanna Szadkowski (Dorota, Gossip Girl), Life Unexpected’s Kerr Smith (Jack, Dawson’s Creek) and Hellcats’ Matt Barr (Ian “Psycho Derek” Banks, One Tree Hill).

Special thanks to Gina for helping me through some technical difficulties!





News Roundup: One Tree Hill, Gossip Girl, 90210 and The O.C.

2 04 2010




News Roundup: Gossip Girl, The O.C., 90210 and One Tree Hill

18 03 2010




News Roundup: 90210, One Tree Hill, Gossip Girl and The O.C.

21 10 2009
  • 90210 ( 2.2 million viewers) stayed the same in the ratings last night, compared to last week.
  • AnnaLynne McCord (Naomi, 90210) is in a Fashion Face-off on E!Online.  Coincidentally, one of the competitors is Ashley Tisdale who guest-starred on Beverly Hills 90210.
  • Trevor Donovan (Teddy, 90210) is MTV’s Hump Day Hottie.
  • Star News has a great article on Robert Buckley (Clay, One Tree Hill).
  • Kate Voegele (Mia, One Tree Hill) did a video interview with Artisan News.
  • Penn Badgley (Dan, Gossip Girl) did a group interview via conference call with several universities (including the one I went to!).
  • Mischa Barton (Marissa, The O.C.) spoke with Access Hollywood about the failure of The Beautiful Life and where she’ll go from here.
  • PEOPLE.com has a short piece on Rachel Bilson (Summer, The O.C.).







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