The makers of the seventh Star Wars movie just announced this week that they've given it a title: The Force Awakens. And Twitter struck back with a ton of snark about comas, snooze alarms and of course, erections. (Here, here and here, for the top articles about the best tweets.) My personal favorite was "You underestimate the power of Dark Roast".
Note the absence of the words "Episode VII". Probably a good idea because the number thing in the titles has been so incredibly awkward, what with the retroactive title of "Episode IV" and all. Star Trek dropped the numbers when they transitioned from the Original Series to Next Generation casts, plus the numbers were getting embarrassingly high. The upcoming third rebooted Star Trek movie would technically be Star Trek Thirteen, and we can't have that.
Renewals and cancellations, plus the TV Line scorecard
-- Downton Abbey was renewed for a sixth season. Is anyone surprised?
-- Witches of East End has been canceled after a problematic second season. I really enjoyed the first season, but had trouble getting through the second. One thing I'd enjoyed about the show (other than the fact that it had four strong female leads) was that it brought the crazy in a big way, but that doesn't always work if you overdo it. Did it just get too nuts?
-- Selfie was canceled. I hadn't even tried it yet. John Cho, please return to Sleepy Hollow immediately!
So TVLine's renewal/cancellation scorecard went up this week. Here's their predictions (in italics) on the shows we review and some we don't, plus reactions by, of course, me.
The 100: Too early to tell. Another show that I wanted to like but couldn't stick with. It was a bit too teenager for me. If you're watching, let me know -- is it getting good?
Arrow: A sure thing. And yay.
Big Bang Theory: Renewed for seasons nine and ten. Was there any doubt? This is one of the only two sitcoms I watch.
Castle: A safe bet. But is Nathan Fillion willing to continue? I got the feeling last season that he'd had enough. And there's no Castle without him.
Constantine: Too early to tell. Although it's already getting those dire "likely to be canceled" headlines on TV By the Numbers. Does anyone else stack up episodes of certain shows on the DVR while waiting to see if it catches on or gets canceled before committing to watching it? I do. I'm doing it with Constantine.
The Flash: A sure thing. And yay again.
Forever: A long shot. Even though it just got a full season pick-up. Forever is frustrating me. It has a great cast with Ioan Gruffudd, Alana de la Garza and Judd Hirsch, and it has potential. That is, if it could get out of its Castle-like procedural straitjacket and dive deeply into some arc. Couldn't they take a look at what works when you have a story about immortals? Why are they doing a case of the week? Highlander spent a couple of seasons trying to find itself, but it finally took off when it started focusing on the lifestyles, personalities and backstories of the immortal characters. They're just not doing enough of that on Forever. Not yet, anyway.
Gotham: Too early to tell. Even though it just got a full season pick-up.
Marvel's Agents of SHIELD: Too early to tell. But I get the feeling it'll be fine. It Has Tie-In.
The Mentalist: Has been canceled. The final season begins November 30. I enjoy this show and I'll be watching the final season, but it's time for it to end; it has definitely run its course.
New Girl: A sure thing. This is the only other sitcom I watch, mostly because I like Zooey Deschanel and the totally off the wall quirkiness works for me.
Once Upon a Time: A sure thing. I guess the turn to Frozen hasn't hurt the ratings?
The Originals: Too early to tell. And "too early to tell" is bothersome. But The CW has several other shows that are doing worse, so The Originals might be okay. Isn't it time for The Vampire Diaries to end? If it did, couldn't they move Caroline and Alaric over?
Person of Interest: A safe bet. Thankfully. This series has just gotten better every season, especially after adding two women and a dog to the cast (Sarah Shahi, Amy Acker, Bear).
Scandal: A sure thing. To no one's surprise.
Scorpion: A safe bet. I already got tired of this one. Is anyone still watching?
Sleepy Hollow: A sure thing. Yay for Ichabbie and John Noble!
Supernatural: A sure thing. But are J & J up for an eleventh season? Ten is a lot, and even though they've done an admirable job holding on to the quality and I still love the show and don't yet find reviewing it a chore, it's time for my beloved Supernatural to wind it up.
The Vampire Diaries: A sure thing. See my note above on The Originals. Although I'll add that I'm watching The Vampire Diaries until it ends because I love it. No matter how long it runs.
More entertainment news from around the interwebs
-- Syfy will be adapting Arthur C. Clarke's 3001: The Final Odyssey as a miniseries. Sounds like it has a good pedigree (the mention of Ridley Scott is always encouraging) and it seems that Syfy has decided they want to get away from their reputation for movies like Sharknado.
-- Even though they recovered beautifully after the Avengers: Age of Ultron trailer was leaked (by blaming it on HYDRA), Marvel was not amused. They're sending SHIELD after whoever did it. Break out the subpoenas.
-- A few weeks ago, HBO announced that it was finally joining the 21st century with plans to stream. Showtime just announced the same thing.
This week in casts
-- Yet more casting news for Agent Carter, which will be premiering January 6. Costa Ronin from The Americans has been cast as what sounds like a bad guy. And here's a first look trailer:
-- Cinemax is doing a pilot called Outcast, an exorcism show from Walking Dead's creator Robert Kirkman. Patrick Fugit will be starring. But what caught my attention was this sentence about the cast including, and I quote, "Philip Glenister (Life on Mars) as Rev. Anderson, a hard drinking, hard gambling West Virginian evangelical preacher who believes he’s a soldier in God’s holy war against evil". Philip Glenister was amazing in Life on Mars. It makes me want to give it a try, even though I don't have Cinemax.
This week in cats
Mad Men's Jon Hamm appeared in a @midnight segment and expounded on his love of cats. He's even wearing a cat sweatshirt. I can't tell whether or not Hamm actually does love cats, but he was very cute and the segment features three adorable cat photos. And Chris Hardwick.
Billie Doux is the founder of Doux Reviews and has been reviewing her favorite shows for a ridiculously long time. More Billie Doux.