Fan Expo 2013 – The Time I Met Oliver Queen, Anna Espinosa, Annie Walker + Sandy Cohen!

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So these happened at Fan Expo…

Last month, I fulfilled my dream of going to San Diego Comic Con for the first time ever. I know the true comic book fans are upset at the Hollywood-ization of SDCC, but it’s kinda one of the big reasons why I wanted to go. In comparison, Toronto’s Fan Expo, the third largest Con in North America, is much more comic-oriented but still has lots of room for the TV shows and celebrities.

I actually went to Fan Expo last year, not really knowing what to expect. This year, having survived the crazy awesomeness of SDCC, I decided that I would once again go to Fan Expo, though just for one day. I picked Sunday as my day to attend. Now, one of the biggest changes for Fan Expo this year was the inclusion of a Sports Fan Expo, which meant that the entire Metro Toronto Convention Centre was being used, not just the South building. I can’t tell you how great a decision that was. It might have been that I went on Sunday, so maybe it was less crowded than Saturday, but there was actually room to walk around the exhibit hall. There was no feeling like people were invading your personal space like at SDCC! Plus, the lines aren’t nearly as crazy as SDCC. I heard some people complaining about how long some of the lines were, and I thought to myself “This is nothing compared to Hall H & Ballroom 20!”

I’m not sure if this happens at other Cons that aren’t SDCC, but one of the cool things about Fan Expo is that because they have a limited number (but still a fair amount) of celebrities attending, the celebs have an area where they sign autographs while they are at the Expo. Between these autographs and photo-ops, it gives the fans a good opportunity to meet the stars they want to see. The downside to this is that, whereas at SDCC the stars are sponsored/brought in by the studios and networks, at Fan Expo the stars are essentially paid to take time out of their schedules and show up, so you have to pay for the autographs and photo-ops (which are taken by professionals).

Now I got to the Convention Centre pretty much as they opened, so after getting my wristband and heading in, I figured I’d check out the autograph area to see what times certain celebs were gonna be there signing. When I got there, Stephen Amell was already at his table! Awesome! I’m terrible at small talk, being the awkward introvert that I am, so I said a few quick words when it was my turn to see Stephen, got my autograph and was on my way. Of note, I paid $40 for his autograph, and for an extra $20 I could’ve gotten my picture taken with him, but I didn’t, and I kind of regretted it later (See, sometimes, the real Asian in me can cause me to be really cheap and not spend money. Idiot.) I figured since I’m there, let’s get in line to see Gina Torres! Gina does not usually do Cons so I HAD to make sure I went to see her. And sure, Gina is in town because Suits films in Toronto, but between me not actually living in Toronto, the bad luck I have at meeting celebs on set, and my general awkwardness, this was my only chance. What’s funny is that meeting Stephen, I was my usual awkward self, though he was really nice. With Gina, I was actually shaking a little bit, on top of being my awkward self. I might not have seen Firefly (a little blasphemous, I know) but I’ve admired this woman from her days on Alias (I will always remember her as Anna Espinosa), and of course now Suits. With getting these autographs, we can get the celebs to personalize them, and I’m already paying for it so why not? My name may be short but since kindergarten, everybody has had a hard time guessing how to pronounce my name until I tell them (it’s pronounced like the letter T). So I get very impressed by anyone who does it on the first try, which is what Gina Torres did. And man, did it feel nice to just get her acknowledgment like that. Yup, it’s the little things that can turn me into a dork.

Stephen Amell signing autographs

Stephen Amell signing autographs

We technically weren't supposed to take picture of Gina or Nathan Fillion (who was signing autographs beside her), but I sneaked one in

We technically weren’t supposed to take picture of Gina Torres or Nathan Fillion (who was signing autographs beside her), but I managed to sneak one in

I had intended on going to see Shawn and Aaron Ashmore’s panel, after getting my autographs, but in a case of not thinking straight, I had made my way to the South Building, instead of staying on the North side where the panel was. Needless to say, I missed it so I went roaming around the exhibit hall instead. I’m not one to buy a lot of things at Cons, unless something catches my eye, and honestly, I’m really all about the free swag. There actually wasn’t that much in swag but I ended up picking a couple posters from E1 and some Orphan Black (my newest obsession) buttons from the Space booth. Again, I know it’s terrible to go to these Cons and say I’m not really into comics, but I’m not. I made an exception though, picking up the early Fringe comic/graphic novel and one issue of Beyond the Fringe, the one that Joshua Jackson co-wrote.

Stephen Amell's panel

Stephen Amell’s panel

The first of two panels I ended up seeing was Stephen Amell’s panel. I know I saw him as part of the Arrow panel at SDCC and that I got to meet him earlier that day, but I couldn’t miss the chance to see him again and just hear him talk about stuff. Besides being ridiculously handsome, if you’ve seen him do interviews, he comes off as a genuinely nice and cool guy, and it’s probably partially due to the fact that he’s Canadian. During his panel, there was obviously talk about season 2 of Arrow, which for the most part I had heard already at SDCC, but he added in some on-set/off-screen stories, which I as a TV fan always appreciate, as well as personal anecdotes. One of the highlights of the panel was when Stephen was asked about Ben Affleck’s casting as Batman, the possibility of a Justice League movie, and if the TV and film worlds of the DC universe would intertwine like how Marvel now has S.H.I.E.L.D on TV. I’ll tell you this, I was a little taken aback by how honest and candid he was with his answers. With regards to Affleck as Batman, he just stated that DC (or even Marvel for that matter) and producers don’t just hand out iconic roles like that, so we simply just have to have faith in Affleck’s portrayal of the caped crusader. With regards to possibly taking his Green Arrow/Oliver Queen to the big screen if a JLA movie does happen, he says he wants to just take things as they come but revealed that casting decisions (once again) don’t just get handed out and have to go through many levels of approval by DC and goes up so far as Christopher Nolan. It was that tidbit of information that surprised me. I knew Nolan was one of the producers of the latest Superman film, Man of Steel, but I didn’t realize the clout that Nolan has on the DC/Warner Brothers superhero universe, in essence making him the equivalent to Joss Whedon’s role in the Marvel film universe.  The hour panel with Stephen went by quickly, and before we knew it, the moderators were saying that we needed to wrap it up and let Stephen go back to signing autographs. For proof of just how great a guy Stephen is, when asked if there was any final words he wanted to say to us fans, he said he wanted to answer 3 more questions and then he ended up answering 4. Like I said, cool guy.

Unlike at SDCC where you can camp out in a room all day, at Fan Expo they clear out after each panel. They also leave some time between panels so that if you happen to want to check out back-to-back panels in the same room, you can still get yourself in line for the next one. That’s exactly what ended up happening for me because after Stephen Amell was the Covert Affairs panel. Now funny story while I was waiting in line for Covert Affairs – Stephen Amell walked passed all of us in line. The girls in front of me who were talking and gushing about him, barely even noticed that he was walking past, and then there’s me who saw him and said “Hi” to him like it was no big deal. (I tell you, my awkwardness can act in a very weird ways.) Another thing that’s cool about Fan Expo is that for the shows that do get brought in from the networks (like Covert Affairs, in this case, being brought in by Showcase), there’s a lottery/raffle to get into the line for the free autograph session as you head into the panel. They put 2 different coloured raffle tickets into a bag, you pick one as you go inside, before the panel starts they tell you which colour gets the autograph. Simple, and no need to wait in an extra line.

Covert Affairs panel with Piper Perabo, Kari Matchett, and Peter Gallagher. Christopher Gorham & Hill Harper were unable to make it due to filming.

Covert Affairs panel with Piper Perabo, Kari Matchett, and Peter Gallagher. Christopher Gorham & Hill Harper were unable to make it due to filming.

I have to admit it was a little weird sitting in the panel hearing Piper Perabo, Kari Matchett, and Peter Gallagher talk about season 4 in a non-spoilery way because the new season hadn’t premiered in Canada yet, but I’ve been watching online so I know what’s been going on unless it’s later on in the season. As always, the real gems of all these panels are the behind-the-scenes stories. Hints/spoilers on what’s coming up are cool, anecdotes and random tangents are cooler (and funnier). Take for instance Piper recounting the time they were in Venice and they’re filming a scene where she’s in a foot chase because some guy stole from her. Now when they film on the street in Toronto, the area gets blocked off with security stopping people from entering a scene. When they’re filming abroad though, that doesn’t happen, so it’s sort of a free-for-all. So Piper’s filming this scene and these local guys don’t know/realize that there’s filming going on, so they would go after Piper and try to help her catch this thief; the crew kept on having to stop filming to let these locals know that it’s all fake and go back to whatever they were doing. Another fun moment was getting Peter Gallagher to sing, which for the record, didn’t take much work to convince him.

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About that autograph lottery earlier, I was not one of the lucky people to get the “winning” raffle ticket. I will tell you this though, sometimes (and by that I mean VERY RARELY) it pays to be a fan of a less popular show. Not enough people drew the winning colour so Showcase still had spots for the autograph signing. After the panel, I quickly made my way to the Showcase booth and tried to see if I could get one of those spots and all I had to do when I got there was answer the question they posted on Twitter. Needless to say, I got into the autograph signing! Surprisingly, when I came up to Peter, I managed to say that I was a big fan of Center Stage and The O.C., which is infinitely more than I was able to say to either Stephen or Gina earlier, and he mentioned how he just had dinner a couple weeks ago with Melinda Clarke (who’s obviously been in town filming Nikita). My day was made.

Covert Affairs autograph signing

Covert Affairs autograph signing

After the autograph signing, I made another run through of the exhibit hall and then called it a day. I had a lot more fun at Fan Expo this year than last, that’s for sure. I know I keep comparing FE & SDCC, but they are two different beasts. The general feeling at both events are similar but very different at the same time. Obviously in terms of meeting celebs, I was way more successful in my one day at FE than I was the entire 4 days at SDCC, but I was afforded a lot more opportunity to make those meets happen. Will I be back to FE next year? As long as they continue to bring celebs/shows that I’m a fan of, most definitely.

Pop Cultured Summer 2013 – July

Summer is usually a time reserved for sunshine, beaches, and vacations. For pop culture fans like me, it may mean the end of my regularly scheduled TV programming but the start of a batch of other summertime shows. It also means the air-conditioned movie theaters are filled with the latest blockbusters, and live music abounds at stadiums/arenas/amphitheaters everywhere. So as we continue on with what summer brings us, here’s what I’m looking forward to this month. (Also, Happy Canada Day!)

JULY

I can’t wait for what’s in store in July!! And funny thing is a lot of the things I’m looking forward to all happen within the same week. On July 16th, two of my favourite summer shows are back for their new seasons – Suits and Covert Affairs. Both shows are coming back from their respective game-changing finales that involved revelations and new relationships being made. July 14th marks the return of The Newsroom, the Aaron Sorkin drama that divided critics and audiences alike. Personally, I enjoyed the show last season and though there were some flaws, I found it nice to have some intelligent drama. We also get to enjoy the series premieres of two other shows – The Bridge, starring Diane Kruger and Demian Bachir as two police detectives working together to solve a series of murders plaguing the Texas/Mexico border; and Camp, which stars Rachel Griffiths as the head of a summer camp and the antics that abound (both premiere on July 10th).

Also on July 16th, Sara Bareilles releases her third album, The Blessed Unrest, while Matt Nathanson releases his latest, Last of the Great Pretenders. One of my favourite artists coming out of The Voice is season 2’s Tony Lucca, who having been signed to his coach Adam Levine’s 222 Records is finally releasing an EP (I know ‘finally’ gives off the sense that it’s been a really long time, though in reality it’s only been a year since season 2 aired – not going to lie I’m already starting to feel a little bit of Voice fatigue from this 2 seasons a year thing). On the concert front, I know I’ve mentioned it before but it needs to be said again – the Justin Timberlake and Jay-Z, Legends of the Summer tour kicks off in Toronto on July 17th!!! I changed/modified my travel plans for this concert, because simply put, it’s going to be AWESOME!

On the movie side of things, there aren’t a lot of “big movies” that I’m excited about. There’s Despicable Me 2 (I’ll be honest, I can’t say Despicable Me without saying “IT’S SO FLUFFY!!!”); R.I.P.D, which stars Ryan Reynolds and Jeff Bridges as two cops protecting the living from the dead, seems interesting; and surprisingly, I’m only a little bit excited for The Wolverine, the latest movie starring Hugh Jackman’s X-Men character. The movies that I’m really interested in this month are the smaller movies. The Way, Way Back is a coming-of-age story brought to us by the Oscar-winning screenwriters of The Descendants, Nat Faxon (aka Ben Fox of the late FOX TV series, Ben and Kate) and Jim Rash (aka Dean Pelton of Community). I heard great things about Fruitvale Station, after it premiered at the Sundance Film Festival; it’s the true story of Oscar Grant, and follows his last day before he was tragically shot at the Fruitvale subway stop in the Bay Area. The other movie I’m interested in is The To Do List, which is simply due to the cast involved – Aubrey Plaza, Rachel Bilson, Scott Porter, Donald Glover, Bill Hader, Andy Samberg, Connie Britton, and Clark Gregg.

The pinnacle of July, and what ultimately got affected by JT & Jay-Z announcing their show on July 17th, is my first-time at San Diego Comic-Con! As a pop culture fan, I have spent so many years reading all the news coming out of SDCC, whether it be movie announcements or just some cool stuff having to do with my favourite TV shows, and wishing I was there taking it all in. Well this year, it’s happening! I will be getting my nerd on (no cosplay, I’m not THAT much of a nerd), hopefully getting to see some of my favourite actors/actresses, and experiencing all the craziness that is SDCC. Will I camp out for the infamous Hall H or Ballroom 20? TBD. News has been slowly trickling out as to what shows and movies will be having panels at the Con, prior to the official schedule release on July 4th, but there are some confirmations that have got me excited: new shows Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D (yeah, me and everybody else is excited for this), Sleepy Hollow, and Almost Human; How I Met Your Mother (random, I know, but I still love this show damn it!), Grimm, Arrow and Nikita. The announcement of the Nikita panel is obviously bittersweet – I’m so excited to see pretty much the entire cast (Lyndie Greenwood, who plays Sonya, was the only one not listed in the press release) but it’s a reminder that it’s for the final season. [On another note, how sad is it going to be that I would have to fly out to San Diego to meet the cast, who film the show in Toronto?!] And as part of the SDCC celebrations, I’m so excited for NERDHQ, the nerd gathering run by Zac Levi and The Nerd Machine! Because it is my first time at SDCC, my objective is obviously to have lots of fun and trying to do everything I REALLY want to do/see, but I will try to make note of my experiences and blog about it here.

Making the Best of Summer TV

In the doldrums of summer, people are expected to be out and about, having fun, going on vacation, etc., not sitting around watching TV like they do the rest of the year. Then there are people like me where summer doesn’t mean much, except that all my television shows are on hiatus, meaning when I come home from work, there’s not much for me to watch. Over the years, I’ve managed to use my summers as a time to catch up on shows I didn’t get a chance to watch during the regular season or marathon the hell out of old shows (i.e. Friends, Alias). But that’s not to say that the summer doesn’t provide some quality shows – you just have to have premium cable/satellite or a very good internet connection for the majority of them. So here are some of the shows I’ve been watching that help make the summer a little more bearable.

1.) SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE

For 8 years, SYTYCD has been my summer staple (except for, obviously, the ill-conceived fall season of the show). I know no matter what, SYTYCD will always be there, despite the results show being cut this season for some ridiculous dating shows. The talent gets better and better every year, and the show is always entertaining. Also, Cat Deeley FTW! 🙂

2.) SUITS

I have always been one to scoff at the idea of another cop/law/medical drama – I mean how many shows can there be with the same procedural element. This is, of course, before I discovered what the USA Network had to offer. The first of many USA Network shows to appear on this list is Suits. Currently in its second season, Suits stars Gabriel Macht as big-time lawyer Harvey Specter, who hires a talented young associate with a photographic memory named Mike Ross, played by Patrick J. Adams. The catch? Mike isn’t actually a lawyer; in fact, he’s not even a college graduate. The dynamic between the two leads is fantastically fun and though the show does have a little of a case-of-the-week style, the show keeps everything light and interesting. Bonus: Harvey and Mike are often making movie references and spewing quotes like it is every day talk (and if you know me, you know I love me some pop culture references). The show also stars Gina Torres, Meghan Markle, Sarah Rafferty, and Rick Hoffman.

3.) WHITE COLLAR

Another wonderful dynamic leads this show about a former con artist, who in order to avoid spending jail time, is forced to work for the FBI. The ever charming Matt Bomer plays Neal Caffrey, the former con man, while Tim DeKay plays his FBI handler Peter Burke. Now in its 4th season, White Collar sets up the weekly cases, while also playing up the season (or half-season) arcs, which keeps it from turning into a typical procedural. It also helps that there’s a healthy dose of wit and humour amongst the cast to keep things light and not so serious. Also starring Tiffani Thiessen, Willie Garson, Marsha Thomason, and Sharif Atkins.

4.) COVERT AFFAIRS

Consider this my summer solution to filling the Nikita void (though technically, Affairs debuted a couple months before Nikita in 2010). Covert Affairs follows a young CIA agent, Annie Walker (played by Piper Perabo) as she navigates the spy world. Action, humour, romance, intrigue – what more could you want? Covert Affairs also stars Christopher Gorham, Peter Gallagher, Kari Matchett, and Anne Dudek.

5.) TRUE BLOOD

While the regular season has The Vampire Diaries, summer is all about the vampires, faeries, werewolves, shape-shifters, witches, and for good measure, regular humans of Bon Temps. True Blood takes TVD and turns it up 10 times crazy notches. Just good fun.

6.) THE NEWSROOM

Only in its first season, The Newsroom is Aaron Sorkin’s solution to the problem of mindless summer reality TV. Some people love the show, some people hate it. Personally, I think the show works better when it really focuses in on the aspects of making a news broadcast. When they start delving into the typical TV drama stuff (i.e. romantic relationships), it suddenly sheds a not so flattering light on its characters, namely its female ones. But when it’s good, it’s really good. The Newsroom stars Jeff Daniels as Will McAvoy, TV anchor of the fictional News Night. He co-stars alongside Emily Mortimer, John Gallagher Jr., Alison Pill, Dev Patel, Thomas Sadoski, Olivia Munn, and Sam Waterston.

7.) BIG BROTHER

Yes, I just followed up The Newsroom with a mindless reality TV show. To be fair, it’s the biggest guilty pleasure there is in the summertime (except for the ill-advised season that aired during the Writers’ Strike of 2007-2008). Watching a group of strangers live together for 3 months, going stir crazy, and do ridiculous things – it is bad, but oh-so-good TV all at once. And we’re lucky when we get really great characters come into the house and make things interesting, which in turn makes them the most memorable – and yes, I’m talking Chilltown, Dr. Will & Mike Boogie, two of the best players ever.

7 shows + various other shows/movies that I have backlogged, means I’ve got more than enough things to fill my summertime hours as I await the return of my regular shows. What’s everybody’s go-to shows for the summer? Let me know in the comments!

Knowing TV/Movie Shooting Locations: Hindering the Watching Experience?

For the past few years, I’ve become intrigued by finding out where TV shows and movies get filmed. In the past I just thought it was cool when I heard a movie was shooting somewhere in Ontario, didn’t really give it much thought beyond that. I’m guessing it’s safe to say that my interest piqued when I went to Los Angeles 2 years ago. It was my first time back to L.A. in about 5 years, so it was a different feeling being there at 21 than 16. Anyways, when I went I started doing research as to where some things were filmed. I really just ended up looking at where The O.C. used to be filmed.

Now I really started getting interested in where things were being filmed, especially in the Toronto area. Things really went to another level once I found out last year that Nikita was being filmed (mostly) in Toronto. I went into uber-fan mode: “OMG! They are filming in Toronto! I have to go there more often than I do! I could meet Maggie Q or Shane West!” I just thought it was the coolest thing EVER (kind of still is).

I went back to L.A. last December and decided to be my pop culture geek self and went on a tour of the Warner Brothers lot. Best $45 I spent. Being able to see the sets of these shows I love, it was a little unreal. I got to see Central Perk. I stood on the set of Chuck. It was so cool seeing the stages and even just the “regular town” sets.

There is a point in prefacing my blog with these stories, as I so often do. In the past year of watching television, it occurred to me that while it was cool finding out/knowing where some things were filmed, it took me out of watching the show. My suspension of disbelief was temporarily lifted when I knew exactly where something was filmed.

I remember when Nikita filmed for a day in my hometown of Cambridge. They posted in the local newspaper that the bridge in the downtown area was going to be shut down for the day for filming, and when I read it, I freaked knowing that I literally could go see Maggie Q. I made my attempts at trying to find and meet her, but luck was not on my side that day. When the episode (1×18, “Into the Dark”) aired, I got excited watching it but quickly realized I shouldn’t have been. The scenes that were filmed in Cambridge were meant to be a substitute for London, England, so as soon as they said they were in London, I’m like thinking “They’re in Cambridge!” Took me right out of it. Not to mention, as the scenes played out, I’d go “That’s City Hall! There’s the bridge! And the church near the bridge, etc.”

Back in October, after a concert, my friend and I had to go pick up her brother and drive him back with us. As we pulled onto the street where he lived, we saw all these crew trucks and I’m thinking “Are they filming something here? What are they filming? Is it Nikita?!” Short answer: Yes, it was ‘Nikita’ and apparently they’ve been there all week according to my friend’s brother (he didn’t even have the decency to tell us ahead of time.) I managed to catch a glimpse of Maggie Q when we passed by but couldn’t actually meet her. Again, the episode (2×08, “London Calling”) airs, and I’m like “Hey! I know where they filmed that!”, followed by “Damn it! I’m not supposed to know!” Didn’t help matters that in one of the scenes you can still see an Ontario license plate on one of the cars, when they’re supposedly in London (and there I go being one of those annoying people noticing goofs).

Most recently, I saw promo pictures for the upcoming episode (2×11, “Pale Fire”) and soon realized that they had come back to Cambridge to film part of the episode. Unfortunately, I was away on vacation at the time, or else you bet I would’ve known about it and went to find a way to meet Shane West and Devon Sawa. This is how bad it’s getting: I can tell from a picture where they’re filming, and the background was blurry because the focus of the pic was Shane and Devon.

Obviously my interest in knowing where ‘Nikita’ is being filmed is starting to hinder my TV watching experience. And it’s not just ‘Nikita’ that this happens. I’ve watched episodes of ‘Covert Affairs’ and ‘Suits’ where some shots, I’m like “That’s [insert street/place] in Toronto!” because I know those shows are shot in Toronto. Watching the second episode of ‘Hart of Dixie’, they introduced the Rammer Jammer, the local bar/hangout. The Rammer Jammer is also known as Merlotte’s from ‘True Blood’. How do I know that (besides from watching True Blood)? The tour guide pointed it out when I went on the WB Studio tour. From that point on, I’ve been watching ‘Hart of Dixie’ calling the Rammer Jammer, Merlotte’s, and wondering where on the WB lot they’re filming.

But the funny thing is I watch ‘Chuck’ and I don’t even think about the fact that I stood on the set. Same thing with watching ‘Friends’ re-runs – I don’t think about the fact that I saw Central Perk and sat on the couch.

Which leads me to wonder, at what point does knowing a shooting location affect how you watch TV? Is it different knowing that something is a set that was built specifically for that TV show, as opposed to something that’s a part of the world? Because clearly my issues of disbelief arise seeing the streets of Toronto + Cambridge being used as the streets of New York, Washington, London, etc. Also, how do people in LA and NY deal with this? Although I guess, when something is meant to be LA and it is shot in LA, it shouldn’t be such a problem.

Lesson from all this? Maybe I should be less obsessive about ‘Nikita’ and just in general, watch less TV….That’s most likely not going to happen.

TV Hiatuses: Long Break or Many?

Hiatuses aren’t exactly a new concept in TV land. We notice them all the time: summer time for the major networks, after November and February sweeps. As a TV fan, it’s hard NOT to notice when your favourite shows are off the air for any period of time. Sometimes it can get downright infuriating, especially when shows give you a major cliffhanger that is supposed to tide you over until it comes back (I’m looking at you, Nikita!) With a lot of shows in the past few weeks, they’ve been on repeats (coming back next week) or they’ve actually been airing new episodes and will be on repeats soon. All this really got me thinking about the whole idea about hiatuses, or breaks (because hiatus just sounds like such a long period of time, which sometimes it really is): Is it better to have many breaks within a season (typically September to May) or have one extended break?

There are pros and cons to both. Watching the main networks (ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, CW), viewers have come accustomed to seeing a TV show’s season play out within the time frame of September to May. A typical TV season is 22 episodes, which is spread out over 9 months/36 weeks. Sure, it’s nice to be able to watch your favourite shows for 9 months but there’s a lot of breaks in between, varying from 1 week to 2 (sometimes even 3) months. Sometimes the breaks make sense, like after a Sweeps month, or if there’s some sort of event that essentially causes the show to be pre-empted. But actually, some of the most irritating breaks are when we get one episode after a break, and then the show goes on a break again (HIMYM, Big Bang Theory, I love you but please stop doing this). For one thing, it makes following when a new episode airs quite difficult, and it’s just annoying. If you’re gonna air new episodes, at least do so for a month before you decide to take 2-3 weeks off. Although in fairness, I know I’m blaming the shows when really it’s the network scheduling that sucks.

On the other hand, some of the networks choose to hold a show until mid-season (roughly January) and air all episodes straight through to May (a choice ABC made, I believe a few times for Lost). Let’s not also forget the shows on cable networks (HBO, Showtime, USA, etc.) which tend to have shorter seasons, in comparison to the majors (we’re looking at maybe 10-12 episodes a season). Obviously the good thing is that we get new episodes every week (barring any holidays or special events that might get in the way) for however many episodes there are in the season. But the obvious setback is that we’d then have to wait anywhere between 3-9 months before the next season. I mean, I look at a show like Covert Affairs, which premiered last summer on the USA network. I followed it online of course, because there was no channel in Canada airing it at the time. Jump to beginning of this year and Showcase finally started airing the show, and my brother gets all excited about a new episode, while I burst his bubble saying I’ve already watched and am waiting for the new season to start (you know, once they actually start shooting , which I believe was this week back in Toronto!) [Holy run on sentence lol]

Anyways, the point of the matter is, breaks suck. Shows and networks can never win in pleasing fans with this matter. We can get one show spread out over 9 months, or we get another show every week for 3 months. Actually, come to think of it, it’s kind of nice to have the major networks with their typical season and cable network with their atypical season, airing pretty much whenever they want to. I mean let’s be real, summer sucks for the broadcast networks (except for So You Think You Can Dance and Hell’s Kitchen, of course!) So it’s nice to have something to watch (albeit online for me because I live in Canada) over the summer months.

Now I’m pretty sure I lost my point of what I was trying to say. Let’s leave at this: March has been pretty dismal with all these reruns, which is forcing me to watch Idol, and I’m trying not to care about it this season (I’m failing miserably with that last part). I just want all my shows back on the air.