Herc’s Popular Pricing Pantry
The two-season complete series set for the CW’s excellent “Life UneXpected” (starring “Under The Dome” player Britt Robertson), $46.99 in 2011 and $36.36 last month, just plummeted to its lowest price ever: $16.49!! (73% Off!! $8.25/Season!!)
From David Goyer, writer of “Batman Begins,” “Man Of Steel” and the upcoming Superman/Batman movie!! The complete series set for “Blade: The Series,” $37.49 in 2011 and $31.93 in March, just plummeted to $12.49!! (69% Off!!)
New This Week
Though it indulged some missteps, season three of “The Walking Dead” was for my money easily the best yet. It was the one that introduced the prison, Woodbury, The Governor and Tyrese, whittled down Hershel, and indulged the second coming of racist amputee Merle Dixon. The season finale spotlighting Andrea and Milton was a corker.
Which 25 shorts comprise the new DC Comics Collection, you ask?
- 1941 Fleischer short:
- Superman (A.K.A. The Mad Scientist)
- Super Friends: The Legendary Super Powers Show
- The Bride of Darkseid, Part 1
- The Bride of Darkseid, Part 2
- The Super Powers Team: Galactic Guardians
- The Death of Superman
- The Seeds of Doom
- The New Batman Adventures
- Mad Love
- Legends of the Dark Knight
- Superman: The Animated Series
- Heavy Metal
- Little Big Head
- Batman Beyond
- Out of the Past
- Justice League/Justice League Unlimited
- For the Man Who Has Everything
- The Doomsday Sanction
- Chaos at the Earth's Core
- Epilogue (Batman Beyond tie-in)
- Teen Titans
- Krypto the Superdog
- The Streaky Story
- Legion of Super Heroes
- Man of Tomorrow
- Batman: The Brave and the Bold
- The Golden Age of Justice!
- Revenge of the Reach!
- Clash of the Metal Men!
- Young Justice
- Independence Day
- Green Lantern: The Animated Series
A better-than-most CBS procedural inspired by Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson characters, CBS’ “Elementary” stars Jonny Lee Miller (“Trainspotting,” “Eli Stone”) as Holmes and Lucy Lui (“Kill Bill,” “Southland”) as sidekick Dr. Joan Watson. In this CBS version, both characters are recovering substance abusers and based in New York.
“Elementary,” from American writer-producer Robert Doherty (“Star Trek: Voyager,” “Dark Angel,” “Medium”), is not to be confused with the excellent series of BBC/PBS telefilms that star Benedict Cumberbatch, but it’s still a lot better than expected.
The Starbucking (or Asian-Americanizing) of the Watson character isn’t more shocking than Holmes consulting with the NYPD in the year of Our Lord 2012. What struck me harder is that Lui is interested in working full-time in TV again. If she’s willing to tube it, why didn’t she and Drew Barrymore just reunite for last year’s “Charlie’s Angels” series -- maybe with Jamie Pressly as a Cameron Diaz surrogate?
Watson is a type-defying role for Liu; Joan Watson – hired to get Holmes through his newfound sobriety – is a quiet, reactive force, nothing at all like the fierce man-eaters the actress brought life to in “Ally McBeal,” “Charlie’s Angels” and “Kill Bill.” She projects here a lovely vulnerability I recall her demonstrated before only once, in McBeal episode that showed us a different side of snarling Boston attorney Ling Woo. She remains also, for the record, mesmerizingly beautiful. Though producers insist otherwise, it seems inevitable that Holmes and Watson will journey in this series where other Holmeses and Watsons have not journeyed before. The pair have tremendous chemistry.
(I note than more than one TV critic refers to her as “Jane Watson.” Perhaps in homage to Spider-Man’s girlfriend?)
Miller hangs onto his Brit accent (CBS’ Holmes used to consult for London’s Scotland Yard before he relocated to the states), but his performance strays closer to Robert Downey Jr.’s onscreen mania than to Cumberbatch’s chilly energy.
It should be pointed out that the BBC did not invent the idea of relocating Holmes from his native era (Conan Doyle’s stories were set roughly 1880-1914). Universal’s hugely popular Basil Rathbone series of the 1940s had the Victorian sleuth matching wits with Nazis during World War II. Still, see if you can find an “Elementary” review that does not mention the Cumberbatch franchise:
... it may be safer for viewers to treat this as an unrelated character who just happens to share a name and some abilities with Doyle's hero. And if you look at "Elementary" that way, it works just fine. Miller and Liu have excellent (platonic) chemistry, and Miller is far more charming and alive than when he was battling an American accent on ABC's "Eli Stone." I'm not a huge fan of procedurals, but I watched a lot of "Criminal Intent" over the years because I enjoyed watching Vincent D'Onofrio work, and I can see myself checking in on "Elementary" from time to time just for the two leads. …
... To shove this venerable duo into CBS' procedural format, the show's producers have managed the unlikely feat of removing almost everything interesting about them. …
… Mr. Miller and Ms. Liu are good in the pilot, and their rapport is reason enough to check out “Elementary” … Mr. Doherty, whose primary credit is a long stint on the voluptuously melodramatic “Medium,” is good on atmosphere and character but not so strong on plot mechanics, and that’s a problem with a Holmes story. Some of Holmes’s deductions in the first murder case seem arbitrary even by TV procedural standards, and regular viewers of crime dramas will have the kind of nagging questions that drive them crazy. (Shouldn’t the coroner have been able to tell whether the deliveryman died yesterday or three days ago?) …
... Although inarguably going for House-lite, Miller is certainly competent and even compelling as this round of newly imagined Sherlock Holmes, but it's Watson who's brand new. Not just because he's a she, but because she seems to be operating, for the first time, in her own parallel narrative. Liu gives her Watson the perfect blend of wariness and admiration — she is clearly brilliant in her own right and while she may be his keeper, she is not his chronicler. And her journey may turn out to be just as interesting as his. …
... more entertaining than your typical CBS procedural. …
... will probably infuriate Sherlock Holmes purists, but other viewers are likely to find it gripping and well cast …
... exhibits enough stylish wit in its mood and look to quickly distinguish itself from the latest British “Sherlock” series … as Watson, Liu seems to know exactly what’s she’s doing. …
... entertains intermittently, particularly in exchanges between Holmes and Watson, but its draw will be strongest among viewers who can't get enough crime dramas in their TV diet.…
... Miller ("Trainspotting") is riveting as the brilliant oddball, whether putting his nose to work in carpet fibers or deducing outcomes that are evident only to his dazzling brain. …
… “Elementary” turns the myth into CBS’ answer to “Castle,” with a shade more intelligence.
... Jonny Lee Miller does a fine job in his iteration. One series being brilliant does not preclude the next from being enjoyable. …
... appreciate the flair and poignancy Elementary brings to the crowded procedural field, and the energy, wit and sex appeal Miller brings to his role. Original, maybe not. But welcome? You don't have to be Sherlock to know the answer is "yes."
... The main question -- whether this slickly made, shrewdly conceived series can sustain "Person of Interest's" lead-in among CBS viewers -- might best be answered with another: Will many of those previously watching "The Mentalist" in this timeslot even notice the difference? … As for those who would accuse CBS of simply milking the same proven formula over and over, hey, no shit, Sherlock.
... A worrisome idea became a wonderful idea after CBS sent out the pilot of Elementary, one of the most promising dramas this fall season. … Miller is superb and compelling …
Being Human 5.x
Being Human 5.x (Blu-ray)
Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventures: Best Of
Boardwalk Empire 3.x
Boardwalk Empire 3.x (Blu-ray)
Donkey Kong Country
Ghost Hunters International 3.x
The Good Wife 4.x
Mike & Molly 3.x
NCIS Los Angeles 4.x
Star Trek: Enterprise 2.x (Blu-ray)
Blandings 1.x NEW!!
Cagney & Lacey Vol. 1 NEW!!
Cagney & Lacey Vol. 3 NEW!!
Criminal Minds 8.x
DaVinci's Demons 1.x
DaVinci's Demons 1.x (Blu-ray)
DeGrassi: The Next Generation 7.x-9.x
Ghost Hunters: Fan Favorites
The Haunting Hour Vol. 5
The Haunting Hour Vol. 6
The Vampire Diaries 4.x (Blu-ray)
In Search Of ... 5.x NEW!!
Mama's Family 1.x NEW!!
Star Trek: Into Darkness NEW!!
Grimm 2.x (Blu-ray)
Harbor Command: The Complete Series
The Hollow Crown: The Complete Miniseries
The Mentalist 5.x
Sofia the First: Ready to Be a Princess
Top Gear: Worst Car in the History of the World
Cagney & Lacey Vol. 4 NEW!!
Mod Squad 3.x NEW!!
Two and a Half Men 10.x
Cagney & Lacey Vol. 4 NEW!!
Diagnosis Murder 5.x NEW!!
Hell's Kitchen 10.x NEW!!
Silk Stalkings 6.x-8.x NEW!!
Snoopy's Holiday Collection NEW!!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Vol. 3
Tom & Jerry's Winter Wackiness
Aaahh!!! Real Monsters: The Complete Series
Adventure Time Vol. 3
American Horror Story 2.x
Totally Spies 1.x-3.x NEW!!
Transformers Prime: Predacons Rising
Transformers Prime: Predacons Rising (Blu-ray)
White Collar 4.x
Anger Management: Episodes 11-32
Anger Management: Episodes 11-32 (Blu-ray)
Bewitched: The Complete Series $38.99)
Defiance 1.x (Blu-ray)
DeGrassi The Next Generation 12.x
Gentle Ben 1.x
Gravity Falls: Six Strange Tales
Hart of Dixie 2.x
The Honeymooners: The Classic 39 Episodes (Blu-ray)
I Dream of Jeannie: The Complete Series ($31.99)
The IT Crowd: The Complete Series
It's A Spongebob Squarepants Christmas (Blu-ray)
Last of the Summer Wine: Vintage 2000
The New Three Stooges: Complete Cartoon Collection
The Partridge Family: The Complete Series ($31.99)
Rocko's Modern Life 4.x
Star Wars: The Clone Wars 5.x
Touched By An Angel 9.x NEW!!
Mystery Science Theater 3000 XXVIII: 25th Anniversary Edition
Hawaii Five-0: The Complete Series
Lilyhammer 1.x NEW!!
Lilyhammer 1.x (Blu-ray) NEW!!
The Following 1.x
The Following 1.x (Blu-ray)
Copper 2.x (Blu-ray)
Game Of Thrones 3.x