Category:Royals

The Queen Sent Her First Tweet Today

If you haven’t embraced the world of social media yet, it’s probably time to reevaluate your resistance to exploring life online, because even the Queen of England's trying out that whole Twitter thing now.

Yes, really. The Queen has officially tweeted.

(Think about that for a second, people who make a big deal about not being on Twitter. Even the Queen’s done it now!)

Don’t get too excited, though, there isn’t an official @ElizabethRegina Twitter account out there and active in the world or anything (Yet!). The British Monarchy has actually maintained an active Twitter presence – @BritishMonarchy – since joining the service back in 2009, which practically makes them an early adopter. But it’s been obvious from the start that the official monarchy account is being run by various people in Her Majesty’s office and that she isn’t sending any of the actual tweets herself nor are any of her royal children and grandchildren (though Prince Harry *did* tweet once from the @InvictusLondon account.).  

But now, it would appear that she has – at least just this once. 

Category:Comedy

A US Remake of ‘The IT Crowd’ in the Works For Some Reason

For some reason that I will never understand, American television networks seem to regularly go through this weird phase where they think ratings success is waiting for them just around the corner….if only they can find the perfect British TV show to remake for their primetime schedule.

Yes, this keeps happening, year in and year out – FOX’s new Thursday drama for this season is called Gracepoint and is a remake of the British hit Broadchurch – and it doesn’t matter seem to matter how many of these US spins on British series don’t do well in the ratings (US versions of Coupling and Skins), or never even make it out of the pilot stage, come to that (looking at you, recent US attempts at Gavin and Stacey and Only Fools and Horses). The networks are going to keep swinging anyway – chasing the elusive magic that makes particular British series popular among American audiences.

Next in line for the remake treatment? Popular Channel 4 comedy series The IT Crowd. Yes, sadly, according to Deadline, someone at NBC seems to think that creating American versions of Moss, Roy and Jen is a great idea, so much so that they’ve given this new series a put pilot commitment, meaning that the revival will air, at least in some limited capacity. 

Category:Drama

Watch: New ‘Downton Abbey’ Trailer to Help Americans Make It Through to January

PBS has provided American fans of megahit costume drama Downton Abbey with another fun little tidbit to help us all along on the long, long road to January and the US premiere of Season 5.

A new trailer has been released, which certainly seems to set the new season up as something that’s both incredibly dramatic, and incredibly emotional.

Set to a rather intense technopop backing track, we’re treated to shots of almost all the major characters, though Anna is merely heard instead of seen. There’s also no sign of Daisy, Tom or Isobel Crawley that I can tell, and it’s left for viewers to assume that Mrs. Hughes must be talking to Carson, offscreen in that bit of the scene you can’t see (I do, if only because in my world, Mrs. Hughes is almost always talking to Carson!) It’s likely that this because they featured those three characters fairly prominently in the first US Series 5 trailer but that’s just a guess. 

Benedict Cumberbatch Wax Figure Revealed at Madame Tussauds

It’s official: Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch has his very own wax replica at the world famous Madame Tussauds waxwork gallery in London. Given the fact that the basically everyone is obsessed with Cumberbatch at the moment, it may surprise you to realize that he did not actually have one up to this point, but that cruel oversight has thankfully now been rectified.

The official Cumberbatch waxwork was announced during the summer, with Tussauds’ General Manager Ben Sweet referring to the subject as “one of the most in-demand actors” of the moment. Apparently interest in what has been dubbed the “Cumberwax” has been so high that on the day of its announcement the gallery’s official site crashed under the weight of all the interested, eager fans.

And now, at last, the real thing has arrived. 

Category:Royals

It’s Official: Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Announce the Second Royal Baby Due in April

All you Anglophiles who, like me, may be just a little overly emotionally invested in the lives of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge – better known as Prince William and Catherine Middleton – will be over the moon to know that, yes, it’s official at last – Prince George, the tiny toddler who is currently third-in-line to the British throne currently being held by his great grandmother, is officially going to get a little baby brother or sister next year.

Let the Second Royal Baby Frenzy commence!

An official announcement on the Prince of Wales’s website has confirmed this happy news – and can we just take a second to admire rather elegant yet completely stark aesthetic that His Royal Highness’s official site has going on – in what may be the world’s shortest press release. 

Category:Drama

Recapping ‘The Paradise’: Series 2, Episode 4

Previously, on The Paradise: Interviews begin to find the new Miss Audrey and Clara and Denise make the final round along with two randoms we’ve never met. Denise and Moray have had multiple fights over her desire to have this position, and it basically boils down to Moray not understanding Denise’s dreams and Denise believing that he thinks her incapable of doing the job in question. Once Denise helps Weston throw a super successful musical revue for the staff, it’s obvious she’s got the gig though. In other news, Weston remains the creepiest, because in one episode he: threatens his wife with apparent bodily harm, calls his daughter an idiot, threatens to send said daughter to boarding school because of said alleged idiocy, disparages all The Paradise employees and lights his daughter’s doll on fire. What a catch!

Anyway. We’re halfway through Season 2 now, though whether that makes you sad or relieved is largely up to you. Nowhere to go but up, yeah? Onward. 

Category:Sci-Fi

‘Merlin’s’ Colin Morgan, ‘Doc Martin’s’ Katherine Parkinson to Star in New AMC Series ‘Humans’

Well, this is certainly interesting.  AMC – the US cable network home to critical darlings like Mad Men and Breaking Bad, as well as smash hit zombie drama The Walking Dead – is joining forces with England’s Channel 4 to create a remake of Swedish sci-fi series Real Humans, starring quite a few notable British actors.

Merlin star Colin Morgan is set to star, alongside Doc Martin’s Katherine Parkinson, Mr. Selfridge’s Tom Goodman-Hill, Damages William Hurt, The Thick of It’s Rebecca Front, Game of Thrones Will Tudor, Bedlam’s Gemma Chan and more.

The drama is set in a near-future world in which robots – called “Synths” – that are made to look like real people are commonly used as domestic workers and personal servants. In a twist that will surprise no one that’s watched any sort of science-fiction ever, some of the synths seem to develop some form of consciousness and start engaging in various sorts of more “human” behaviors. 

Category:Drama

First Look: 'Death Comes to Pemberley' (and PBS)

Do you ever love a book and its characters so much that you continue the story in your mind? What happens after the happily ever after? Imagine it is 1803, six years after Fitzwilliam Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet have married and started their family together at their lavish Derbyshire estate. The happy couple is busy planning their annual Lady Anne Ball when Lizzie’s spoiled flibbertigibbet of a sister, Lydia, bursts in the night before the festivities to announce her husband George Wickham might have been murdered in Pemberley Wood. An investigation ensues which spells mayhem and the potential undoing of the entire Darcy family.

This may not be the fan fiction in your head, but it is the premise of famed crime writer P.D. James’ sequel (of sorts) to Jane Austen’s classic Pride and Prejudice. Released in 2011 and entitled Death Comes to Pemberley, the book received good reviews though most I read lamented the toning down of Lizzy’s much admired outspokenness and complained that the Darcys’ love had been cooled by boring domestic routine.

I’ve not read the aforementioned novel, so I can’t reliably comment on those claims. However, as one might expect in an industry eager to provide viewers with remakes and sequels featuring cherished characters that feel like family, Death Comes to Pemberley was adapted for the small screen and broadcast in the UK last Christmas. Masterpiece Mystery has picked up the series and will be airing it in two parts – Sunday, October 26th and November 2nd from 9:00 – 10:30 pm ET. Check your local listings for exact times and details.

Want an early look at this upcoming drama? Read on. 

Category:Theater

Helen Mirren Will Bring the Queen to Broadway in 2015 with ‘The Audience’

Theater lovers of America, it’s okay if you’re sometimes secretly sad that we so infrequently get the chance to see the many great British productions that go up in the West End. Sure, sometimes you get lucky and are on a UK vacation right when something grand is on, but given the sheer volume of long-running shows and ever-changing limited engagement options in London, well, we all know we’re missing out on something incredible pretty much nearly all the time. 

Thanks to the heroic efforts of outfits such as the National Theatre Live program or various Fathom Event promotions, we do occasionally get the opportunity to see simulcasts of particularly popular British theatrical productions on a significant scale in America – both Helen McCrory’s Medea and Gillian Anderson’s A Streetcar Named Desire were recently screened nationwide, and Danny Boyle’s brilliant production of Frankenstein is about to get another round of encore runs in honor of Halloween (and the fact that the Benedict Cumberbatch-led production consistently sells out houses all over the country). But, as much as we love it, it’s just not the same.

However, sometimes, a particularly popular or acclaimed British production will be picked up and recreated on Broadway, giving American fans with the ability and desire to go to New York the chance to see the show in person for themselves. Most recently, Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe reprised his leading role in The Cripple of Inishmaan last winter, but come 2015, the Great White Way is going to get a little bit more regal. 

Category:Drama

Crime Drama ‘DCI Banks’ Will Return for a Fourth Season

It’s official: ITV has renewed gritty contemporary crime drama DCI Banks for a fourth season.

The series, based on Peter Robinson’s novels, stars Stephen Tompkinson as DCI Alan Banks alongside Andrea Lowe as DS Annie Cabot and Doc Martin’s Caroline Catz as DI Helen Morton. Series 4 will be comprised of six new episodes, which will explore three separate mysteries.    

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