February 2012

Category:Drama

The Wait for Downton Abbey Series 3 Begins: New Casting Details and Our First Look at Shirley MacLaine

Production on Downton Abbey Series 3 is officially under way and filming started last week. This process will, of course, take quite some time, but it’s at least providing us with a few drips and drabs of new information to help get us through the long wait for new episodes.

Click through for a first look at guest star Shirley MacLaine on the Downton set, as well as some casting updates about several new additions we’ll be seeing next season.

Category:Online

Amazing Internet Things: A Truly Epic Sherlock/Doctor Who Crossover Video

Confession time: I think I have a problem. Specifically, a “Wholock” problem. And it’s sort of getting out of hand. Quite frankly, I blame the Best Rumor Ever from yesterday for keeping my brain on the Sherlock + Doctor Who = amazing track over the past twenty four hours. As a result, we end up with posts featuring epic “Wholock” crossover videos. 

The “Wholock” phenomenon has been mentioned here before –it’s basically the brainchild of fervent fans who would like nothing better than to see some sort of crossover between Steven Moffat’s two series, Doctor Who and Sherlock.

Since these two shows do seem to share a great deal of the same fans, it was probably only a matter of time until something like this video was created. One particularly talented individual made a “Wholock” movie trailer that mashes up the storylines from both series’ recent seasons. And, seriously, it’s awesome.

HUGE WARNING THOUGH: While this video is, indeed, an incredibly amazing internet thing, it is also chock full of SERIOUSLY MASSIVE Sherlock Series 2 spoilers. Please tread with caution and just bookmark this page for later on if you’re avoiding such things until after the episodes air. For those who still want to see it, or have already spoiled themselves silly via other avenues, feel free to click right on through.

Rumor Has It: Sherlock’s Benedict Cumberbatch to Play The Master for Doctor Who’s 50th Anniversary?

This is just a rumor. It is clearly the Best Rumor Ever but it is still only a rumor, so take everything that follows with a mountain of salt. The Express reported this weekend that Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch is being lined up to play Doctor Who arch-villain The Master for the iconic series’ 50th anniversary next year.

[Insert pause here for everyone to get the initial freakout out of their systems. I’ll wait.] Better? Okay. Breathe, and click through for more details.

Category:Online

Amazing Internet Things: Stuff The Dowager Countess Says

Since it’s our first Sunday without Downton Abbey, we could probably all use a little internet pick me up to help us get through the day. By now, most of you have probably seen some variation of the Stuff [Some Group or Person] Says video phenomenon. It’s been everywhere the past month or so and has given us some gems sending up seemingly every gender, city and occupation. Some of you might have even been getting a little tired of this meme – maybe you even started thinking that it wasn’t funny anymore – but I am here to present you with a bit of awesomeness that might change your mind.

I suppose it’s a sign that Downton Abbey has truly, officially “arrived” in mainstream American popular culture that someone actually decided to do a “Stuff The Dowager Countess Says” video.  And, as you’d expect, it’s pretty fantastic. Click through to see for yourself!

Category:Comedy

The Great Doc Martin (Re)Watch Continues – “On the Edge”

The great Doc Martin viewing marathon continues with the two-part Christmas special “On the Edge.” I’m never sure whether holiday episodes like this count as part of the season that they follow or the one they precede and I’ve seen some conflicting reports as to how fans of the show tend to categorize it.  But, since I believe it’s the only Christmas special the series ever did, I trust everyone knows which episode I’m talking about, whichever season you think it belongs in!

Anyway, whatever you call it, click through and come chat with me! Leave your thoughts, favorite moments, funny lines, etc. in the comments.

Category:General

The Friday News Roundup: Last Roundup of February Edition

Hurrah, it’s Friday! It’s a rainy, somewhat dreary Friday in the DC area, but I suppose that does make me feel a bit more authentically British somehow. (Don’t judge.) This means, obviously, that it’s time for the best part of the week – the News Roundup!

Click on through for all the important bits from the world of British entertainment this week, including news on Downton Abbey, Eternal Law, Titanic, Doctor Who, Top Gear, Call the Midwife, Richard Hammond’s Crash Course, that new American remake of Only Fools and Horses, and more!

Category:Drama

Confirmed: Foyle’s War to Return for a New Series!

Good news for British mystery fans today – Acorn Media, ITV and Eleventh Hour Films have confirmed that detective drama Foyle’s War is set to return in 2013 with three new two-hour episodes.

Michael Kitchen will return as Christopher Foyle and writer Anthony Horowitz is also back on board. Also expected to return to the series is co-star Honeysuckle Weeks, who plays Samantha Stewart.

Click through for some early details on the plot of the new Foyle’s War episodes, which will take Foyle and his story into the post-World War II era. 

Category:Sci-Fi

Filming Officially Begins On Doctor Who Series 7!

Earlier this week, filming for Doctor Who Series 7 officially kicked off in Cardiff, Wales. This series will see the last days of the Ponds in the TARDIS, as Karen Gillan and Arthur Darvill return for their final season alongside Matt Smith’s Eleventh Doctor.

Click through for a first look at stars Smith, Gillan and Darvill in costume on the set, as well as an update on some confirmed upcoming guest stars many of you will probably be excited about – particularly if you’re Sherlock or Harry Potter fans.

Category:Drama

Downton Discussion: What You Need to Know About the Series 2 Finale

Downton Abbey Season 2 officially concluded this weekend in wonderful fashion and I hope everyone is officially ready to wail and gnash their teeth with the rest of the world while we wait for word on Season 3. (As far as I’m aware it’s set to start filming any day now, which is some comfort, I suppose.)

This week’s finale brought us a little bit of everything – and I’m assuming that quite a few of you were possibly screaming over very pleased with the episode’s ending.  So click through and let’s talk about it – the good, the bad, and the somewhat odd. And then we’ll figure out what we’re going to do while we wait for Series 3.

Category:Online

You Took the Test, Now See How Everyone Else Did: A Look at the Downton Abbey Personality Quiz Results

A whole lot of you have taken the Downton Abbey Personality Quiz over the last few weeks and, hopefully, most of you were happy with your results (or cheated just kept taking it until you got the character you really wanted, like I did!)

We got curious about how the quiz results broke down, though, so we thought we’d take a look at how everything shook out, including total results, most popular result, etc. There were some interesting trends, so click through and for a look at our fun pie chart that breaks out everyone’s answers by character, based on some snazzy behind-the-scenes analytics.

 

Category:Drama

Get a Sneak Preview of the Downton Abbey Series 2 Finale!

Series 2 of Downton Abbey concludes tonight with loads of drama, romance, and Christmas cheer. Yes, America, we’re wrapping up the season with the Downton Christmas special, and I can promise many exciting things are going to happen – including, unless I’m completely mistaken – a rather lot of cheering by the end.

We aren’t so much into Christmas television here in America – for us, our main TV season tends to take a bit of a rest between Thanksgiving and the New Year. But in the UK, Christmas telly is a beloved tradition and many of the country’s most popular programs put together special episodes for the holidays. (It is certainly a tradition I wouldn’t mind us adopting from the Brits, that’s for sure!)

Click through for a look at tonight’s finale, featuring gift exchanges and holiday traditions from both upstairs and downstairs.

Category:Comedy

The Great Doc Martin (Re)Watch Continues – Series 2, Episodes 7 and 8!

The great Doc Martin viewing marathon rolls right along this week as we polish off Series 2 officially, with "Out of the Woods" and "Erotomania." I know that this season had a Christmas special, so I guess technically we’ve got a bit of Series 2 left to go next week, but that statement made me feel very accomplished so I’m going with it anyway. Two good episodes this week, so lots to talk about!

Click through and come chat with me! Leave your thoughts, favorite moments, funny lines, etc. in the comments.

Category:General

The Friday News Roundup: Downton Abbey Finale Weekend Edition

Happy Friday Telly Visions readers! And happy long weekend, for those that don't have to trot in to the office on Monday. This weekend also brings the Series 2 finale of Downton Abbey on Sunday, which I imagine most of us are viewing with a mix of excitement (Christmassy things! Drama! Romance!) and dread (but then after Sunday, we'll have to wait for more!).

But, for now, it's only Friday, which means it's officially News Roundup time, where I attempt to link you all to all things fun and noteworthy from the world of British entertainment news this week. Click through lots of Downton Abbey goodiesas well as tidbits from Upstairs Downstairs, Doctor Who, the BAFTAs, Parade's End, Being Human, EastEnders, My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding and lots more.

Category:Drama

First Clip From Upstairs Downstairs Series 2 Features Alex Kingston!

The BBC has released the first official clip from Upstairs Downstairs Series 2! The thing most people will be excited about – I certainly am – is that this scene gives us our first look at Doctor Who’s Alex Kingston in action.

The clip features a few very mild spoilers – but nothing that feels too major. In this scene, Lady Agnes (Keeley Hawes) returns to 165 Eaton Place with her new baby and is greeted by Sir Hallam's Aunt, Dr. Blanche Mottershead (Kingston). Click through and take a peek for yourselves!

Category:Documentary

The BBC's Frozen Planet Premieres March 18 on Discovery

Everyone remembers incredible BBC documentaries Planet Earth and Life, yes? Full of so much beautiful footage and so many amazing animals that even people who don’t like nature documentaries (cough cough yours truly cough) loved them?

If so, then you’ll probably be equally excited for the premiere of Frozen Planet, the next massive and presumably amazing documentary from the creators of Planet Earth that focuses on our planet’s polar regions. This seven part series aired on BBC One last year and we Americans can finally see what all the fuss is about  for ourselves when it premieres on the Discovery Channel starting March 18.

Click through to watch the Discovery trailer– it will give you chills (I mean, the baby polar bear, just…my heart)!

Category:Drama

Downton Discussion: What You Need to Know About Episode 6

We officially finished the technical Series 2 of Downton Abbey last night – though, don’t worry, we’ve still got the Christmas special to come next Sunday – and I don’t know about you guys, but I am just having emotions all over the place about everything.

So all over the place that I feel the need to caveat going in to this installment of Downton Discussion – that despite some (major) problems with some (multiple) things that went down in this episode, it was all around supremely enjoyable television. I was glued to the screen for two hours and sorry when it ended and I just shamelessly loved watching it, even when I didn’t love everything (a lot of things) that happened. I imagine a lot of folks may have felt that way too.

There’s a lot to talk about, of the positive, negative and “Wow, did that really just happen?” variety, so just click right on through and we’ll get started on that. (I think I should probably apologize in advance for the length of this. It’s…not brief.)

Category:Other

Happy Valentine's Day From Us (And the Dowager Countess)!

 Happy Valentine's Day, Telly Visions readers! We'd spend our weekends with you guys. Hope everyone has a wonderful day!

     If you want to see more Downton Abbey Valentines - and send some yourself - go visit weta.org.

 

Category:Sci-Fi

First American Trailer for Being Human Series 4!

Having just kicked off its fourth season in the UK, Being Human returns to televisions here in the United States beginning Saturday, February 25.

BBC America has just released the first promo for Series 4 and the way that they’ve chosen to frame up the new season is quite interesting, given the rather extensive behind-the-scenes changes happening to the show this year. Surprisingly, this approach actually sort of works for me, precisely because the tone is a bit unexpected.  So, click through and have a look for yourself!

Category:Drama

Watch A Scene From Tonight’s New (Two-Hour!) Downton Abbey!

Downton Abbey Series 2 continues tonight at 9pm on Masterpiece Classic. And remember – it’s a special two-hour episode this week!

Click through for a sneak peek clip from Episode 6 that features some fun pre-dinner conversation among the Crawleys about new post-war fashions, a couple great lines from the Dowager Countess, an awkward moment between Richard and Mary, and a surprising development surrounding Vera Bates’ death.

Category:Comedy

The Great Doc Martin (Re)Watch Continues – Series 2, Episodes 5 and 6!

The great Doc Martin viewing marathon rolls right along this week as we continue on with Series 2, with "Always on My Mind" and "The Family Way." I seem to be on a particular pattern week to week with this show – one episode really impresses me and one falls on the more “mediocre” end of the spectrum.  This week, it’s “The Family Way” that I really enjoyed (despite the fact that a significant portion of the episode was just difficult to watch).

So, click through and come chat with me! Leave your thoughts, favorite moments, funny lines, etc. in the comments.

Category:General

The Friday News Roundup: Happy Diamond Jubilee Queen Elizabeth Edition

Happy Friday, Telly Visions readers! Sixty years ago this week, Queen Elizabeth II ascended the British throne and her Diamond Jubilee celebration has officially kicked off across the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth nations. Her reign is the second longest of any English monarch - she currently trails Queen Victoria by a little more than three and a half years.

Anyway, since it's Friday, that means it's News Roundup Time! Click through for tidbits from around the British entertainment industry this week, including Doctor Who, Downton Abbey, Absolutely Fabulous, several new American takes on British series, and more!

Category:Drama

Upstairs Downstairs Update: New Cast Members and Series 2 Cast Photo!

Hurrah, we’re finally starting to get more concrete information about Series 2 of Upstairs Downstairs!

Stars Emilia Fox and Sarah Lancashire have both signed on to appear in the new season. Details about their characters are slim, though executive producer Faith Penhale has confirmed that Fox will play a character called Portia who “makes a connection with” Alex Kingston’s Blanche, and that Lancashire’s character, named Violet, will be involved with butler Mr. Pritchard (played by Adrian Scarborough).

Fox is best known for her work on crime drama Silent Witness and, most recently, as evil sorceress Morgause in Merlin. And most of you will probably recognize Lancashire from her role on Lark Rise to Candleford. These ladies join several other new Series 2 cast members, including Doctor Who’s Kingston, Hotel Babylon’s Michael Landes and Made in Dagenham’s Kenneth Cranham

In more good news, according to the Guardian, writer Heidi Thomas said that the second series will also feature Jean Marsh’s beloved Rose Buck, even though the actress’ ill health in the Fall looked like it would keep her out of the show.

And if that’s not enough, the BBC has released an official group shot for Series 2, gives us our second official look at Kingston’s Blanche, along with a couple of simply stunning dresses. Click through to take a look for yourselves!

Category:Drama

Watch the First Masterpiece Preview for Great Expectations!

The great author Charles Dickens turned 200 yesterday, and to celebrate this momentous anniversary Masterpiece Classic released the first American promotional trailer for the upcoming Great Expectations adaptation, featuring former The X-Files star Gillian Anderson.

Click through and take a look for yourself!

Category:Drama

Downton Discussion: What You Need to Know About Episode 5

The second series of Downton Abbey rolled along through its fifth episode this week, bringing with it some good and some bad – but nevertheless all very major - plot twists. As we reach the end of the war, there are adjustments and consequences for all our favorite characters – and it will be incredibly interesting to see how these events shake out over the last few episodes.

Click through for a look at some of the big moments from Downton Episode 5 and a rundown of all my (occasionally run-on) thoughts on the night’s major developments. Chime in with your opinions in the comments – on some of these bigger plot twists, I would dearly love to hear how other people reacted!

Category:Movies

Take a Look at David Tennant’s New Movie “The Decoy Bride”

Former Doctor Who star David Tennant has a new movie coming out! Well, after a somewhat complicated and strange process, he does. But still! The Tenth Doctor in a movie! Who wouldn’t be excited about this? (Personally, I’m still tremendously fond of Tennant, even if he isn’t “my” Doctor.)

The film is called The Decoy Bride and stars Tennant alongside Boardwalk Empire’s Kelly Macdonald. It’s a romantic comedy in which Tennant’s character, a writer, is about to marry a famous movie star (played by Alice Eve) in some small Scottish village. So, to throw off the paparazzi they hire a local girl to serve as a “decoy bride.”  And, naturally, romantic hijinks ensue. 

Click through for a look at the trailer and an explanation of how you can see the film for yourselves, should you be so inclined.

Category:Online

Amazing Internet Things: Choose Downton

It’s Super Bowl Sunday. It’s also Downton Abbey Day. You’ve got an important decision to make tonight folks. Choose wisely. Choose Downton.

(So much love for this awesome video from fellow local station WHYY. They’re right - this game is a rerun!)


Category:Comedy

The Great Doc Martin (Re) Watch Continues – Series 2, Episodes 3 and 4

The great Doc Martin viewing marathon rolls right along this week as we continue on with Series 2, with "Blood is Thicker" and "Aromatherapy." It’s interesting to me that for the first few episodes of this season, the show seems to really have taken on a much more ensemble feel – not that it wasn’t full of strong characters before, but I am especially impressed by how we can now have storylines going on that are independent of Martin and may not have anything at all to do with what the “main character” is doing.

Also, I now have favorite episode. I just loved “Blood is Thicker” to bits!

So, click through and come chat with me! Leave your thoughts, favorite moments, funny lines, etc. in the comments.

Category:Drama

Preview a Scene From Tomorrow’s All New Downton Abbey!

Downton Abbey Series 2 continues tomorrow night at 9pm on Masterpiece Classic. After last week’s emotional tearjerker, what might we be in store for this week? Who knows, but it’s probably wise to basically prepare yourself for anything.

So, click through to take a sneak peek at a scene from tomorrow’s all new episode. This preview clip involving Mary and Matthew being, well, Matthew and Mary, and is heartbreaking and moving and frustrating and a little bit…ominous at the very end. What do you all think? Any predictions to share?

 

Category:General

The Friday News Roundup: Balmy February Edition

Happy first Friday of February everyone! And apologies to any of you who might be reading from areas of the country that are buried under snow right now, but we've had a positively balmy week here in the DC area and I think it may be scrambling my brain. So, additional apologies for the fact that this week's roundup may actually be even more scatttershot than normal.

Anyway, click through for all the news that's fit to print (er... type?) from the world of British entertainment, including Upstairs Downstairs, Downton Abbey, Doctor Who, Call the Midwife, Absolutely Fabulous, The Only Way is Essex and a whole lot more.

Category:Online

Amazing Internet Things: Every Doctor Who Story From 1963 to Now

Doctor Who is turning 50 next year, so it’s probably pretty safe to say that even the series’ most vociferous and dedicated fans might have a few gaps in their knowledge of the show and its history (Heck, I certainly do – rather large ones, actually - and I’m the biggest Whovian I know).  In what is basically the coolest video to appear on the internet in ages, Youtube channel BabelColour has put together something that is both amazing and educational for fans both new and old.

This video takes 48 years of Who history – including the main series, all the spin-offs, the comedy special bits, trailers, really everything – and arranges everything in chronological order for a ten-minute romp through every episode and extra of the entire franchise. It’s fantastic (to steal the Ninth Doctor’s catchphrase), covering 784 episodes, 226 stories, and 11 Doctors - every adventure from William Hartnell’s The Unearthly Child to Matt Smith’s 2011 Christmas special The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe. It will make you want to watch every episode available, while simultaneously cursing the fact that there are 106 episodes that are still missing from the BBC archives. So, yes, you should click through and watch it right now. Really.

Shirley MacLaine Joins the Downton Abbey Cast for Series 3

If you follow our Friday News Roundup posts at all, then you've probably seen the persistent rumors that mention virtually everyone in the entertainment industry as possibly taking part in the upcoming third series of mega-popular period drama Downton Abbey, from Judi Dench to Joan Collins to Harrison Ford. Well, finally some confirmed casting news has emerged about Downton Series 3, which is slated to go into production next month.

You may have heard a bit about this already, but yes, it’s true and official: Oscar-winner Shirley MacLaine has signed up to enter a cage match with Maggie Smith’s Dowager Countess join the Downton cast in the new season. MacLaine, who has starred in many great films such as Terms of Endearment, Postcards from the Edge, Guarding Tess, The Apartment and (my personal fave) Steel Magnolias, will play Martha Levinson, the mother of Lady Grantham. 

"Shirley MacLaine is a great actress and she's as American as the day is long," says MASTERPIECE executive producer Rebecca Eaton. "I can't wait to see her go toe-to-toe with Maggie Smith's Lady Violet."

It’s been a personal wish of mine for a while to learn more about the Crawley family background and how Lord and Lady Grantham’s marriage came about, so the introduction of American family for Cora is extra exciting, if you ask me.

Plus, I can only imagine the vitriolic sniping that’s sure to ensure when Martha and Violet face off. Get the popcorn ready.

Source: PBS

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