Saturday, June 08, 2013

My Choices for the 12th Doctor

By: Heather Seebach

So Matt Smith is stepping down, and evidently BBC will soon announced his replacement. Chances are, they will go with another young, unknown British actor, but I figured I'd share my choices (realistic or not) for the 12th Doctor. Be sure to tell me your thoughts (and your own suggestions)!

Richard Coyle

Richard became well-known to Brits as Jeff on Coupling, where he proved his funny bone was as strong as his acting chops. Coyle also has an "in" here because that show was created by none other than current Doctor Who showrunner, Steven Moffat! I think Richard has a great range, from silly to dead serious (check out his lead performance in the Pusher remake).

Tom Hiddleston

Ok, this one has a snowball's chance in Hell of happening, but a gal can dream, can't she? Tom has recently exploded thanks to his villainous portrayal of Loki in the Marvel films, but as his fans know, he's a complete goofball in real life. And while he rocks the ginger look quite well, maybe Tom could keep his natural Gene Wilder-esque blonde hair ala the Sixth Doctor? :P

Rafe Spall

Rafe is one of those actors we keep seeing everywhere and he keeps changing how he looks! Thin, heavy, beardy, shaven, curly, straight - whatever, he rocks every look and this dude needs a lead role to call his own! Americans may recognize him from Prometheus (the scientist who likes touching alien-snakes) or as one of the Andy's in Hot Fuzz!

Chiewtal Ejiofor

Maybe you can't spell his name, but if you're a sci-fi geek, you already know his face! How awesome was he as the Operative in Serenity? Obviously we've never had anything but a caucasian Doctor but that could always change. If they're gonna go black, I think Ejiofor, with his charm, humor, and knack for eccentricity, is the obvious choice.

Richard Madden

Best known to Americans as Game of Thrones' Robb Stark (but much more adorable on Sirens), this Scotsman would finally give us the ginger Doctor we've always wanted! Funny enough, Madden is dating the new companion, Jenna-Louise Coleman in real life! Puts a little extra adorable on top, doesn't it?

Matthew Macfadyen

Okay, I know how unfair it would be to have Mr. Darcy also be the Doctor (ovarian explosions everywhere!), and I know Matthew is busy with another BBC show right now (Ripper Street), but I'd still kill to see him as the Doctor! He plays serious as well as he does goofy, and the man looks good in every type of clothing.

Michael Sheen

The more I think about this, the more perfect I think Sheen is for the Doctor. He's adorably bubbly, and I've seen him change from sexy to seriously goofy-looking and back. He's also an incredibly talented actor. Of all the men on this list, I think he might be my #1 choice because he is SO well suited to this role. Just forget the fact that he was the voice of House, the evil planetoid in "The Doctor's Wife" haha.

James Nesbitt

Here is another Moffat alumnus - he starred on the series, Jekyll. I think Nesbitt is intense enough he could totally give us another Eccleston-esque brooding Doctor (which I'd love to see again), or he's very bubbly and eccentric when he wants to be.

Friday, March 02, 2012

15 Funniest TV Lawyers

15. Alan Shore and Denny Crane, Boston Legal

James Spader and William Shatner played these two quirky lawyers and womanizing best friends on Boston Legal. Alan was the brilliant but funny left-winger with a fear of clowns and a love of the ladies. Denny was the narcissistic Conservative who loved guns and saying his own name. Their head-butting was often great, especially when guns came into play:

14. Harvey Birdman, Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law

This titular character was often the straight man in a circus of hilarious supporting characters but Harvey could be seriously funny in a very dry, random way. Gary Cole voiced this superhero-turned-attorney who defended an array of Hannah Barbera cartoon characters. In this clip, he represents Shaggy and Scooby Doo:

13. Bob Loblaw, Arrested Development

The very existence of Bob Loblaw is a perfect example of the humor of Arrested Development. Bob first appears in season 3 as the Bluth family lawyer. The first great thing about Loblaw is the fact that he's played by Scott Baio - who replaced Henry Winkler, a fact that is hilariously alluded to. And of course there's the tongue-twisting name that frequently results in a great line like, "You don't need double talk. You need Bob Loblaw." It only gets more complicated when he starts that law blog...

12. Rodney Ruxin, The League

I only placed Ruxin this low on the list because his profession rarely plays into the humor of the character but make no mistake, this guy is hilarious. He is a giant asshole and we love him for it. His crushing insults and frequent exclamations of "Forever uncleeeean!" are classic.

11. Keyrock, Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer, SNL

It is easy for 20-year old Saturday Night Live sketches to disappear in the recesses of my brain, but this one never left me. Created by Jack Handey and performed by Phil Hartman, Keyrock was a neanderthal that was preserved in ice, then unfrozen and went to law school. Despite being wealthy and well-educated, he repeatedly claims to be primitive and confused in order to sway juries (see clip):

10. Jackie Chiles, Seinfeld

Phil Morris portrayed this Johnnie Cochran parody with grandiose vocabulary and rhyming adjectives. Jackie represented Kramer in many-a silly situation, including a coffee spilling case (see clip) and a cigarette smoke disfigurement suit.

9. Hyper-Chicken, Futurama

He did not appear often, but the hyper-chicken (or simply, "chicken lawyer" as many call him) made a hilarious impression whenever he did. Oh, the irony of his Colonel Sanders outfit and Southern drawl.

8. John Cage, Ally McBeal

Peter MacNicol won an Emmy for his portrayal of John Cage, half of the Cage & Fish law firm on Ally McBeal. Also known affectionately as "The Biscuit", John was full of eccentricities (Porky Pig stutter, nose whistle) and quirky habits (humming in court, screaming like a girl). 

7. Dan Fielding, Night Court

John Larroquette played Dan Fielding, the sex-crazy narcissistic prosecutor. He would try anything to get a woman to sleep with him, especially public defender, Christine Sullivan. Dan was always a great source for snide one-liners and insults. Fielding was also great at reaction shots (see clip):

6. Ted Buckland, Scrubs

Sam Lloyd plays Sacred Heart's resident sad sack and attorney, Ted. Respected by no one and constantly demeaned by Dr. Kelso, Ted is depressive and suicidal. That may not sound hilarious but it so is. Here he is competing with a dog for approval:

5. Lionel Hutz, The Simpsons

This shyster lawyer, voiced by Phil Hartman, frequently shows up on The Simpsons whenever there is money to be made. His law firm, located in a shopping mall, is called "I Can't Believe It's a Law Firm!" and his business card turns into a sponge when you put it in water.

4. Phil Ken Sebben, Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law

Whether or not Phil is actually a lawyer is suspect, but he does run a law firm so let's say yeah. The one-eyed boss with a fondness for innuendo is voiced to perfection by Stephen Colbert. His brazen behavior and classic "HA-HA-HA!"s never fail to inspire a good laugh.

3. Saul Goodman, Breaking Bad

This may be the only non-comedy show on this list, but much of the humor on Breaking Bad comes from this guy. That should come as no surprise considering he is portrayed by Bob Odenkirk (Mr. Show). Saul Goodman, who actually made up a fake name to sound Jewish, is your classic self-interested shyster lawyer. As Jesse would say, Saul is not just a criminal lawyer, but a And there is no pickle he can't get you out of, so if you're a scumbag too, better call Saul!

2. Jack Kelly, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

Here is another guy whose legal credentials may be hard to find, but if Uncle Jack says he's a lawyer, then okay! The interest in law obviously runs in the family, what with Charlie's knowledge of "bird law." Jack, however, is more interested in hand size and the whereabouts of little boys he can "wrestle" with.

1. Barry Zuckerkorn, Arrested Development

Of all the brilliant recurring roles on Arrested Development, Barry may be the greatest. Henry Winkler is absolutely hilarious as the inept attorney who frequents transsexual prostitutes and knows exactly what balls look like up close.

Honorable Mention:

Mitchell Pritchett, Modern Family

He may not be the funniest character on Modern Family (or even top 3) but Mitchell definitely has his moments. Jesse Tyler Ferguson's uptight gay lawyer shines when he's running from pigeons or trying to convince everyone how tough he is like this:

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

15 Most Romantic Moments on Doctor Who

Happy Valentine's Day, Whovians! Enjoy this list of the sweetest, most romantic, tearjerkiest moments from the last 6 seasons. And feel free to share your favorites!

15. Craig and Sophie Kiss, The Lodger

Few shows can make you care about one-shot characters like Doctor Who does. Craig and Sophie are proof that the Doctor not only meddles in time and space but in human lives - usually for the better. He helps to bring these two lovelorn friends together and saves the world in the process - all in a day's work for our favorite Time Lord.

14. Kazran and Abigail reunite, A Christmas Carol

It's hard to pinpoint just one moment as this entire Christmas special was just so romantic. But the ending culminates with Kazran realizing he must face losing his beloved Abigail in order to save others. He must finally spend his final day with her - a day he had been dreading and postponing for decades. The scene is accompanied by Katherine Jenkins' beautiful rendition of "Abigail's Song." I dare you not to get goosebumps.

13. The Doctor comes back for Reinette, The Girl in the Fireplace

If you noticed these choices are getting more depressing, you are correct. This one is less "aww" and more "sniff." In this episode, Reinette (aka, the Madame de Pomapadour) falls in love with the Doctor who she has known since she was a child (though he has only known her a day - thanks, time travel!). In this scene, he comes back to take her with him on the TARDIS, but more time has passed than he realized....

12. "Rose, I'm Coming To Get You", Bad Wolf

This is not your classic example of a romantic scene but it was for me. The Ninth Doctor vows to rescue Rose from a fleet of Daleks - widely considered the most dangerous aliens in the Universe and the race responsible for wiping out the Time Lords. Still, the Doctor shows no fear - only love for the woman he had feared dead until this moment. Nine rarely wore his heart on his sleeve, so for Doctor/Rose shippers like me, it was a very romantic scene.

11. Nine saves/kisses Rose, Parting of the Ways

Rose, wanting only to save her Doctor, looks into the heart of the TARDIS and absorbs the time vortex. Knowing that it will kill her, Nine kisses her and absorbs the energy (which ultimately forces his regeneration).

Rose: "My's killing me."
Nine: "Come here. I think you need a Doctor."


10. River Saves the Doctor, Let's Kill Hitler

As the Doctor lays dying, River - who is not yet herself - struggles to understand who she is and what she means to this man. Once she sees who River is, she sacrifices all her regenerations to save the Doctor. Their kiss was a moment many fans were eagerly awaiting.

9. Rose and the Doctor reunite, The Stolen Earth

This was just an epic moment for Rose-Doctor shippers like myself. After many episodes of the two just narrowly avoiding each other, we FINALLY got to see them reunite. My heart was skipping beats just watching these two run toward each other. That is, of course, until they are rudely interrupted by a Dalek.

8. The Doctor's message to Rose, The Satan Pit

Faced with almost certain death, the Doctor's last words are a message to Rose. "If you talk to Rose, just tell her.....tell her....oh, she knows" as he plummets into the abyss. Classic Ten - never able to say what he feels but we all know. This is only one of two moments where he ever even came close to telling Rose his true feelings - something the Doctor can never, ever do.

7.The TARDIS says 'Hello', The Doctor's Wife

In this stunningly beautiful episode penned by Neil Gaiman, the TARDIS becomes personified as a woman. For the first time ever, the Doctor is actually able to meet his oldest and most loyal companion of all. It may seem like a stretch to call it a love story but there is no doubt that the Doctor loves his TARDIS. Seeing them say goodbye in this scene is just heartbreaking.

6. Amy sees the story of the Lone Centurion, Big Bang

When Amy's only chance of survival lies inside the Pandorica, Rory the Roman stands by the box for 2,000 years. When Amy finally emerges, she watches the history of Rory's exploits on a museum television and the scene will bring you to tears. For centuries, he had stood alone by her side, and protected her at all costs. Love stories just don't get much more romantic than this.

5. River sacrifices herself, Forest of the Dead

Words cannot even summarize the levels of emotional intensity within this one scene. It's a tearjerker no matter how you look at it but what makes it so devastatingly romantic and tragic is River and the Doctor's love story - which, for him, has not even begun yet! She is looking at man she has loved for years and he doesn't even know who she is yet. It is heartbreaking! Here she knows this is the end of her timeline but she knows the best has yet to come for him. While this two-parter was our introduction to River, it is ultimately the end of her timeline. *sniff sniff*

4. "Don't let me in", The Girl Who Waited

I must be a masochist. This scene is DEVASTATING. Here, Rory is forced to leave behind an alternate version of the woman he loves in order to prevent a paradox. The scene really becomes emotional when old Amy stops begging to come in and instead asks Rory to leave her behind. She says, "Tell Amy - your Amy - I'm giving her the days with you - days to come - days I can't have." BRUTAL! But beautiful.

3. River tells Rory there is a worse day coming, The Impossible Astronaut

Here we revisit that beautifully tragic love story between River and the Doctor. Their timelines are moving against each other, so everytime they meet, she knows him more, and he knows her less. I find this piece of monologue to be a perfect summary of their star-crossed love story, and this fanvideo below KILLS.

2. John Smith and Joan Redfern, Human Nature/Family of Blood

When the Doctor is forced to go incognito as a human professor, John Smith, he falls in love with a nurse, Joan. But when the world is under alien attack and needs the Doctor,  John refuses to give up his life and his love. This two-parter imagines a universe where the Doctor finds the love he could never have. The scenes where John begs to keep his regular life with Joan are heartbreaking (kudos, Tennant!). "Falling in love never even occurred to him? What kinda of man is that? And now you expect me to die?" *sniff*

1. The Doctor and Rose say good-bye, Doomsday

Between the separation scene and the beach good-bye, this episode destroys me.

Rose: "Can't you come through properly?"
Doctor: "The whole thing would fracture. Two universes would collapse."
Rose: "So?"

Then there's that mysterious line he never gets to say. *sigh* Absolutely wrecked me.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

I started a new website!

Hey followers! I have started my own genre film/TV website dedicated to news, reviews, trailers, lists, editorials, and more. I'll rarely update this blog anymore, but if you want to continue to read my stuff (and please do!), come check out the site and follow it on Facebook. Thanks!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Top 10 Non-Pixar CG Animated Films

When it comes to computer-animated films, Pixar Animation Studios has dominated for over 15 years. Few others can match the quality of films like Toy Story and Up. But with 20th Century Fox’s Rio currently ruling the box office, and the Weinstein's Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil on the way, Pixar has not cornered the CG animation market completely. Here is a run-down of some of the best non-Pixar movies that have stood out amidst the hundreds of wannabes over the last the last decade.

10. Bolt (2008)

When it comes to kids’ flicks, you cannot go wrong with cute dogs. In this Disney feature, Bolt the dog is a television star who does not realize he is part of a fictional tv show. Believing he truly has super powers, he sets out to rescue his human friend Penny, who he thinks has been kidnapped. As the humans search for a runaway Bolt, the little dog faces the real world for the first time and soon comes to realize he is not as strong as he thought. It is a familiar story (especially when you recall Buzz Lightyear’s revelation in Toy Story) but the film is still sweet, funny, and laced with exciting action sequences.

9. Kung Fu Panda (2008)

Dreamworks Animation's Kung Fu Panda delivers a classic story of believing in yourself and overcoming the odds to become a hero. Kids love the fat panda, but I love the quirky animation and the kung-fu-inspired look of the film. The visual style was inspired by Chinese films such as Hero and House of Flying Daggers. The voice cast is great (Jack Black, Dustin Hoffman, Seth Rogen, Jackie Chan, David Cross etc.) though I would have liked to see more of the Furious Five – the gang of kung-fu animals who aid the titular panda. Here’s hoping they feature more in this summer’s sequel.

8. Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (2009)

Sony Pictures Animation's Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs lacks the great animation of some other films on this list, but it excels in humor. Based on the children’s book by Judi Barrett, Cloudy is about a wannabe inventor who finds fame when he builds a machine that makes it rain food. Naturally, the fame goes to his head and his success backfires on him. The animators seemed to be going for a more old-fashioned style, which goes hand-in-hand with the film’s quirky sense of humor. Bill Hader, Anna Faris, and Bruce Campbell provide voices, so you know it’s funny. A word of warning, though – this film will make you very hungry.

7. Meet the Robinsons (2007)

Ever since Walt Disney Animation Studios started making CG-animated films without Pixar, very few have been worthwhile. Meet the Robinsons was a surprising exception. It is about a young boy who invents a time machine and travels to the future, where he lives with an eccentric family. It has some fantastic sci-fi elements, touching on the consequences of time travel and alternate realities. There are some good laughs – especially from the villain simply known as “Bowler Hat Guy” – but the film also captures the heartwarming nature of a classic Disney film. It urges the importance of family, believing in yourself, and basically everything Walt Disney stood for.

6. How to Train Your Dragon (2010)

Some of the greatest family films involve a child and an unorthodox friend. Whether it be a dog or an alien or a robot, those stories are guaranteed heart-warmers. Dreamworks' How to Train Your Dragon is about a young Viking boy who yearns to be strong like his dragon-slaying father. Then one day he encounters a wounded dragon and is surprised at the creature’s gentle nature. They soon become friends and the boy has to protect the dragon from the hateful dragon slayers in his village. While Dragon does have the occasional laugh, the strong points of this movie are the sweet story and the gorgeous animation. Forget Avatar - the scenes of the boy and his dragon soaring through the skies are more breath-taking than any Na’vi.

5. Rango (2011)

The most recent addition to the list is also a very different kind of animated movie. Nickelodeon Movies' Rango follows a pet chameleon who gets lost in the desert and ultimately becomes sheriff of a small animal town. The plot is very reminiscent of Three Amigos, A Bug’s Life, etc. but it does not feel stale or too derivative. It actually has more in common with westerns than it does with your average animated film. Rango should please kids with its cute animals and goofy protagonist, but the film is definitely geared more toward adults, with references to Clint Eastwood and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. As the voice of the titular reptile, Johnny Depp is great, and here he re-teams with director Gore Verbinski (Pirates of the Caribbean) for a fun, visually striking movie.

4. Surf’s Up (2007)

Forget Happy Feet – this is the animated penguin movie to see! Unlike any animated kids’ flick preceding it, Sony Pictures Animation's Surf’s Up was shot mockumentary-style. It follows a young penguin competing in a surfing competition. The animation - particularly the surfing shots - is gorgeous, and the characters and jokes are very funny. Voice talent includes Shia LaBeouf, Jeff Bridges, Diedrich Bader and Zooey Deschanel. And unlike most animated films, the voice actors here recorded their lines together, so the chemistry feels real and natural.

3. Monster House (2006)

This one is a great Halloween movie because it combines the whimsy of a children’s film with the spookiness of a Tim Burton film. Monster House, produced by Amblin Entertainment and ImageMovers, is about a killer house that eats intruders. Three kids investigate and try to stop the house, uncovering some dark history along the way. This film captures the same sense of childhood adventure that The Goonies did, and so is guaranteed to please kids and adults alike.

2. Shrek 2 (2004)

Despite following a great first film, Dreamworks' Shrek 2 still managed to surprise everyone because rarely is a sequel anywhere near as good as its predecessor. This was one exception. The sequel has a fantastic voice cast, plenty of laughs, and - unlike the first film – Puss in Boots! The soundtrack was also great, with artists such as Frou Frou, Eels, Pete Yorn, Nick Cave, and Tom Waits. With all that, Shrek 2 is a very close second to the original film. Having said that, it should come as no surprise what #1 is….

1. Shrek (2001)

Dreamworks’ tale of a grumpy ogre is the absolute closest thing to Pixar-quality animation and storytelling. The original introduced us to lovable characters, an imaginative story, impressive animation, and a great soundtrack. Best of all, it had humor for the kiddies as well as adults. Some of the jokes in Shrek were even a bit risqué for a family movie. Remember those dancing Duloc figurines? “Please keep off of the grass, shine your shoes, wipe your…face!” Shrek has earned its place in cinematic history alongside the Pixar films as a genuine animated classic.

Thursday, April 28, 2011


Film: Bridesmaids (2011)
Dir: Paul Feig
Rating: **** out of 5

The raucous, vulgar comedies of late (Superbad, The Hangover, etc.) have been a male-dominated subgenre – until now. Paul Feig’s Bridesmaids transcends the common chick flick and proves that women can play down and dirty too when it comes to comedy. Rounding up some of the funniest ladies out there right now, the film provides side-splitting laughs. Additionally, it is a solid, well-paced film with touching moments – think Knocked Up, not Eat Pray Love – and a great story everyone can relate to.

SNL’s Kristen Wiig plays Annie, a single 30-something woman with a crappy job, creepy roommates, and a fuck-buddy who walks all over her. The best thing in her life is her BFF, Lillian (Maya Rudolph), who just got engaged to be married. Now Annie has the responsibility of being the maid of honor and planning the wedding - a task she is completely unprepared for. Making matters worse, bridesmaid Helen (Rose Byrne), a beautiful, pampered rich girl, is trying take over as Lillian’s #1 friend. Annie battles the inevitability of Murphy’s Law as she goes to any length necessary to give her best friend the perfect wedding.

In the lead, Wiig is funnier than ever, carrying the film with comedic ease. This woman really needs more starring roles (here’s hoping Bridesmaids fixes that). As Annie, she is the perfect everywoman. She can be sexy and feminine, but she is also never afraid to look stupid or ugly for a laugh. Rose Byrne plays her opposite – an uptight perfect princess. The Aussie actress – recently seen in Insidious – is not exactly known for her comedic parts (except Get Him to the Greek) but her squabbles with Annie for Lillian’s affections are pretty damn funny.

The rest of the bridal party is comprised of Ellie Kemper (The Office), Melissa McCarthy (Mike and Molly) and Wendi McLendon-Covey (Reno 911!). All three have proven their comedic chops on their respective television shows, and together they make a hilarious, dysfunctional bunch of bridesmaids. Kemper is the sweet and innocent newlywed; McCarthy the tactless, overweight butch; and McLendon-Covey the bitter, drunk housewife. Kemper – who has quickly become my new favorite character on The Office – is sadly underused here. Meanwhile, McCarthy provides the most laughs with her gross-out humor. She does for this movie what Zach Galifianakis did for The Hangover and Due Date.

Bridesmaids may be Paul Feig’s biggest directorial effort to date, but comedy fans should recognize the name. Not only did Feig create Freaks and Geeks, but he has directed some of the best episodes of The Office, Parks and Recreation, and Arrested Development. Like Apatow or McKay, Feig’s name has become synonymous with quality comedy, and this film proves he can translate that to the big screen, as well. It helps that Kristen Wiig and fellow Groundlings alum Annie Mumolo wrote the screenplay. These three very funny people have created a comedy that is not just some 80-minute gross-out quickie, but a well-paced, two-hour film with a rounded story, great characters, and a steady stream of hilarity.

The film may be by women, but it is definitely not just for women. Even though men don’t know the frustrations of being a single, stressed bridesmaid, the jokes are not gender-specific. At the screening of this movie, the loudest laughter in the audience was coming from men. But if you really need some testosterone on-screen, you get hilarious performances from Mad Men’s Jon Hamm as a womanizing sleaze, and The IT Crowd’s Chris O’Dowd, who proves not all men are dogs as a sweet and charming Irish cop. His character also proves that women are just as capable of hurting men, and so a lot of guys will relate to his character.

Bridesmaids is a sweet, hilarious comedy that stands toe-to-toe with modern comedic classics like The 40-Year-Old Virgin and Role Models, which also effectively combined a heartwarming story with pee-your-pants laughs. I hope this film sets a trend of female-oriented comedies that replace Kate Hudson and Julia Roberts vehicles in favor of genuinely funny women being just as ballsy and foul-mouthed as the boys.

Monday, April 18, 2011

15 Great Horror Masks

Check out my list of the 15 greatest masks in horror: