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This week's TV | The crisis in the making starts with the title

Crisis, Killer Karaoke, Sleepy Hollow, Monday Mornings, Black Box, Almost Human, Intelligence, Dallas, Marple, Hell's Kitchen, America's Next Top Model, The Normal Heart, WBA Interim Fight, Summer X Games, French Open, Rise of the Footsoldier, Jeff, Who Lives at home, Shutter Island

Why so serious, guys? Rachael Taylor (centre-left) has got the right idea

May 30, 2014

by Lawrence Shanahan

Making a TV series is a lot of work. You have to find the money, spend countless hours filming, then edit and distribute it.

If you’re going to go to this much trouble, you would think you could come up with a proper title to reel in the audience.

Yet a good title remains elusive for many.

Ron Howard’s gem of a title, The Dilemma, for example. Every movie has a dilemma – that’s what makes a story. And now, coming in a close second for the most generic title of all time, Rand Ravich brings you Crisis.

In Washington DC, a bus full of spoilt brats, including the president’s daughter and a girl who doesn’t realise her FBI agent auntie is actually her mother, are  hijacked while on a school field trip.

It turns out that their new chaperone is actually a bitter ex-CIA analyst – what are the odds; well he could have probably told us.

Who’s going to save these kids? A new agent somehow finds himself in the middle of the action on his first day on the job with the secret service – isn’t that always the way?

Crisis received solid reviews thus far, earning 7.4 on IMDB and 63 on Metacritic.  

Crisis, TV3, Mon 20:00

Also new: 

Zulu, Fri 20:00 Killer Karaoke – Season 2 

If pressed to name an ill of modern society, equal numbers would opt for X Factor and Jackass, so it was only a matter of time before a show like Killer Karaoke (Zulu, Fri 20:00) subjected singers to Jackass set-plays.

They made a Jackass film, so nobody was surprised when they based a film on a short story, but stretching it into a TV series, Sleepy Hollow (TV3, Wed 22:00), was surely biting off too much, although the critics (64 on Metacritic) and public (7.8 on IMDB) seem to like it.

Unlike medical drama Monday Mornings (TV3 Puls, Tue 20:00). With Alfred Molina and Ving Rhames onboard, it promised much, but divided the critics.

And there’s nothing Vanessa Redgrave can do to save Black Box (TV3 Puls, Tue 21:00) in which a shrink finds out she is bi-polar. 

That sounds like the subplot of Homeland and android cop drama Almost Human (K5, Mon 21:55) sounds recycled too, while Intelligence (K5, Mon 20:00) recalls the 2011 film Limitless.

Elsewhere, Dallas (K4, Sat 22:10) and Marple (DR1, Sat 23:00) are back with their 2013 seasons as are reality contests Hell’s Kitchen (TV3 Puls, Mon 18:00) and America’s Next Top Model (TV3 Puls, Mon 18:00). (BH)

Coming Soon: The Normal Heart

Dallas Buyers Club wasn’t enough?

Director Ryan Murphy’s (Nip/Tuck) TV movie The Normal Heart – based on a 1985 play of the same name – continues the AIDS theme, this time taking it back to the deadly disease’s very early stages in New York in the early ‘80s.

Starring Mark Ruffalo (Shutter Island) as Ned Weeks, an AIDS activist, and Julia Roberts as Dr Emma Brookner, the film has had great reviews following its US release (85 on Metacritic). (LS)

Sport of the week: 

3+, Sun 20:30 WBA Interim fight: Patrick Nielsen vs Dmitry Chudinov (photo: Scab)

Boxing – with all its weights, bodies and interim belts – can get a bit confusing. Should Patrick Nielsen win the WBA middleweight interim crown on Sunday, he’ll become a world champ, sort of. But he’ll still be five short of being the best. Elsewhere, the Summer X Games kick off as the French Open tennis continues. (BH)

DR3, Thu 01:30 Summer X Games (photo: Wikipedia)

K6, Fri 20:55 England vs Peru (photo: Scanpix)

Film of the week:

Zulu, Sat 20:50 Shutter Island

TV3, Sun 21:00 Jeff, Who Lives at Home

K6, Tue 22:00 The Rise of the Footsoldier

British thug drama Rise of the Footsoldier could very easily be two films, or even three: rise of the hooligan, bouncer, drugs overlord. Jeff, Who Lives at Home likewise is a film of several parts and the final act is worth persevering for. As is the case with Martin Scorsese’s Shutter Island. Not his best, but so much better than the rest. (BH)


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