TIME Television

You Can Stream Transparent for Free on Saturday

(L-R) Actors Jeffrey Tambor, Jay Duplass, Amy Landecker and Gaby Hoffmann from 'Transparent' pose for a portrait during 2014 Television Critics Association Summer Tour on July 12, 2014 in Beverly Hills, Calif.
(L-R) Actors Jeffrey Tambor, Jay Duplass, Amy Landecker and Gaby Hoffmann from 'Transparent' pose for a portrait during 2014 Television Critics Association Summer Tour on July 12, 2014 in Beverly Hills, Calif. Maarten de Boer—Getty Images

Amazon announced today that it will stream the show in honor of its Golden Globes success

There will be no more excuses for not having seen Transparent come this weekend.

In honor of the show’s success at the Golden Globes, Amazon announced today that it will stream for free this coming Saturday via the Amazon Instant Video app or Amazon.com/Transparent.

The Golden Globes exposure has brought viewers to Jill Soloway’s show about Maura (Jeffrey Tambor), who comes out as trans, and her family. The average number of Amazon customers watching the show has grown 250 percent since it won Best TV Comedy and Tambor won Best Actor in a TV Comedy, according to Amazon Studios.

This article originally appeared on EW.com.

TIME Television

Watch the New Trailer for Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

The new trailer for Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is here, and it looks like the show will be worth the wait.

Tina Fey and Robert Carlock’s new comedy stars Ellie Kempner as a girl who has just escaped from a cult after 15 years and begins her life anew in New York City. The show will begin streaming on Netflix beginning on March 6 and has already been renewed for a second season, E! Online reports.

“We found the inspiration for this series in Ellie Kemper’s shining all-American face,” Fey and Carlock said in a joint statement.

Watch Kempner’s shining face above, and start counting down the days until March 6.

 

TIME Television

Knope and Change: The Politics of Parks and Recreation

Parks and Recreation - Season 7
Colleen Hayes/NBC

How the sitcom has cheerfully made the case for a "liberal" idea that didn't used to be considered so liberal.

Reviewing “Leslie and Ron” earlier this week, I wrote that part of the appeal of Parks and Recreation, specifically Leslie and Ron’s friendship, is that it’s a model–or fantasy–of how people of opposite politics can still work together and care about each other. It’s a sitcom about politics that works, in part, because of how its characters put friendship over politics–or at least aside from politics.

But what about the show’s politics itself? I wrote about that in my farewell column to Parks in the print TIME this week (subscription required). Even though Parks has never been assertively political (it’s foremost a workplace sitcom, set in a world as richly developed as The Simpsons‘ Springfield), and it’s generally avoided real-world, hot-button issues, the show does have politics in its way.

Parks‘ politics, like Leslie’s, are liberal. But “liberal” only in the sense that the definition of liberal has been shifted rightward, along with the general conversation about government and what it’s for, over the past few decades:

There’s a big idea in Parks’ small-scale vision. In the frame of today’s politics, it might be a liberal notion, but it’s one that for much of the 20th century was centrist, and even championed by Republicans like park lover Teddy Roosevelt: that we need government to do things the private sector can’t or won’t, like preserving public spaces.

Shockingly, Parks has dared to suggest that while some civil servants might be bumbling–sorry, Jerry!–they can also be well-intentioned and competent. (This too wasn’t considered a liberal notion before the era when Ronald Reagan joked that “the nine most terrifying words in the English language are ‘I’m from the government and I’m here to help.’”)

One reason, I think, that Parks‘ politics don’t play especially “political” is that they grow out of a worldview that goes way beyond politics: about the importance of community, the idea that people need each other, that when you help someone, you’re also helping to make yourself better. That community goes well beyond government–it’s friends, neighbors, businesses–but Parks doesn’t hesitate to say that government, however imperfect and ludicrous, is another aspect of community, not an outside force imposed on legitimate community. (At the same time, though, it’s been respectful of the opposition view, if only by putting it in the mouth of Ron Swanson, the most awesome man on the planet.)

I’ve written this before, but this is one of the biggest things Parks has in common with American stories from It’s a Wonderful Life to Friday Night Lights, a touchstone that Parks has referenced repeatedly. People in FNL were liberal or conservative or neither; community meant everything from teams to churches to school systems. But the constant was that nobody does anything alone.

So it is on Parks: it’s only by pulling together that you turn a pit into the Pawnee Commons. In its own little way, that central story has made the case for what didn’t used to be such a divisive idea: that there is such a thing as the public common, and that it’s a good thing. Congratulations, Leslie and Parks: You built that.

 

TIME China

Agent Carter, Empire Gone From Chinese Streaming Sites

Atwell as Peggy Carter in Agent Carter. Kelsey McNeal/ABC

A crackdown on foreign media appears to have taken its toll

More U.S. television shows were removed from Chinese streaming services in what appears to be the latest consequences of the state censor’s crackdown on foreign series.

Shows like Agent Carter, Empire, and Shameless disappeared from multiple streaming portals this week, the L.A. Times reports.

Amid a campaign by the government of President Xi Jinping to sanitize the Internet in China, the country’s state censor, the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television, said last year that foreign shows — which have soared in popularity in China — would require government approval for the entire series before episodes aired online. Foreign series, the regulator also said, could only account for one third of programming on the online streaming sites, according to the Times.

Since then, shows like The Big Bang Theory have been pulled from streaming sites, typically without explanation.

Despite the rancor on social media after the latest purge, it remained unclear why the specific shows were removed, according to the Times.

[LA Times]

TIME Television

1,200 Ticket Refunds Requested for Bill Cosby’s Denver Shows

Comedian Bill Cosby performs at The Temple Buell Theatre in Denver, Colo. on Jan. 17, 2015.
Comedian Bill Cosby performs at The Temple Buell Theatre in Denver, Colo. on Jan. 17, 2015. Barry Gutierrez—Reuters

Returnees amount to 40% of the tickets sold

A total of 1,200 ticket-holders requested refunds for two Bill Cosby comedy shows held in Denver, Colo., last week.

Around 3,100 tickets were originally sold to the event, meaning nearly 40% of those purchased were returned, according to the Denver Post.

Cosby, 77, was not heckled or harassed despite dozens of protesters outside his Jan. 17 gig, chanting phrases like, “rape is not a joke.”

The comedian has been embroiled in controversy since November after more than 15 women claimed he drugged and sexually abused them on various occasions spanning the last 40 years. Cosby has denied all accusations and has not been charged with a crime.

[Denver Post]

TIME Television

Watch Lauren Graham Explain How She Found Out Gilmore Girls Was Cancelled

Eight years later, the actress reflects on the upsetting and abrupt news

On Jan. 29, Parenthood will come to a close after six heartfelt seasons. Lauren Graham, who stars as single mom Sarah Braverman, is of course emotional about the show’s ending — but she’s at least had a chance to say a proper goodbye, because the cast and crew knew in advance the sixth season would be the last.

And as Graham explained to Seth Meyers on Monday’s episode of Late Night, she wasn’t so lucky with her previous show, Gilmore Girls.

“It’s really difficult but also really nice to be able to say goodbye,” Graham said about shooting the final scenes of Parenthood. “I’ve mainly been on shows where they just yank it and you find out later.”

Watch above as she reflects on the exact moment when she learned the beloved Gilmore Girls was no more.

TIME Television

Watch Keri Russell Crush Jimmy Fallon at Flip Cup While Wearing Giant Inflatable Suits

The talk show host does not mess around when it comes to games

Jimmy Fallon never takes it easy on the celebrities that stop by The Tonight Show. Whatever game he has put together — be it arm-wrestling with Liam Neeson, playing Catch Phrase with Jennifer Lopez, waging a Water War against Chris Hemsworth or squaring off against Emma Stone in a Lip Sync Battle— Fallon is in it to win it.

It was no different last night when Keri Russell stopped by to talk about The Americans, her FX show that begins its new season Jan. 28 . Fallon challenged the actress to a round of frat house favorite game flip cup, but there was a twist. The two faced off over a row of beer-filled party props while wearing inflatable suits, leaving nothing but tears and a trail of flipped cups in their wake.

Russell was determined, but Fallon has a competitive streak.

TIME Television

Parks and Recreation Watch: We Didn’t Start the Fire

Parks and Recreation - Season 7
Ben Cohen/NBC

The sweet, pitch-perfect "Leslie and Ron" was the perfect antidote to State of the Union night.

Tuesday night, you could have watched the State of the Union address. You could have sat through the statements and zingers and counterstatements and counterzingers, all wrapped up with hours of punditry analyzing each party’s positioning and long game before concluding that, in the end, not a whole lot was likely to happen.

Or you could have watched two episodes of Parks and Recreation, on which two ideological opposites got locked in a room until they admitted that they cared about each other.

“Leslie and Ron,” sweet as a Pawnee waffle without being syrupy, showcased an advantage of the accelerated final season; we got the conclusion to this two-parter immediately after the more slight “William Henry Harrison.” (An episode whose chief appeal was working in the story of America’s briefest presidency, a true story that actually sounds like someone would have made it up for Parks and Recreation.) In the process, just as the season sped forward to 2017 (when Game of Thrones‘ Khaleesi –spoiler alert!–is marrying Jack Sparrow), it sped the resolution to, and explanation of, Leslie and Ron’s falling out.

In the process, it was a stellar example of how a final-season episode of a show like Parks does double duty: it took us backward on a nostalgia trip of callbacks to the early days of the series (including the pit, which is now officially Pawnee Common) and its characters’ relationships, while also advancing those relationships forward. As productive as the political differences between Leslie and Ron have been for comedy, so have their personality differences: Leslie’s effusiveness and paramilitary-level gift-giving rubs up against taciturn Ron, who winces through gestures of affection as if he were getting a root canal covered by Obamacare. That they’re able to connect despite all that’s gone between them, and despite their differences in style, is at least as important as their looking past their differences in politics.

Speaking of which, it’s significant here that “Leslie and Ron” didn’t choose to wrap up the two friends’ conflict over the Newport land at the same time as they cleared the air over Morningstar and April. Parks is a genial enough sitcom that I suspect it will split the difference on that eventually. But first it re-made its biggest point: that deeply held beliefs don’t have to get in the way of decency. And damn, did Nick Offerman and Amy Poehler sell that argument, wringing all the heart-tugging comedy out of the episode’s tightly written bottle-episode format. It was one of politics’ oldest conflicts (private vs. public) meets one of sitcoms’ oldest premises (the locked-in-a-room episode).

Eventually, before the season is over, Leslie will win or Ron will win or they’ll figure out some sort of win-win. But not before this half-hour, one of the series’ finest, made the corny but well-earned argument that those differences shouldn’t get in the way of important things, like human connection, or waffles and bacon. Why don’t more folks realize that? On a night of partisan theater, Parks and Recreation echoed a quote from its second season in answer: “People are idiots.”

TIME celebrities

Jennifer Lopez Says George Clooney Is Just an ‘OK’ Kisser

Wonder what Amal has to say about that

Jennifer Lopez stopped by The Daily Show on Tuesday to promote her new movie The Boy Next Door, and host Jon Stewart got her to dish about which of her famous on-screen co-stars have been good or bad kissers.

J. Lo wasn’t particularly forthcoming about naming names, but she did give a lukewarm-at-best evaluation of George Clooney, with whom she starred in 1998’s Out of Sight.

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