Couch Potato

When he's supposed to be doing other things, chances are you'll find Mike Kilpatrick watching television instead. He styles himself on comedy hero Jim Royle, loves a laugh, enjoys a cry and if it's on the box he will share his opinion on it too. Whether you want it or not

Supergirl and the case of the leaked pilot

11:00am 28 May 2015

Just a few days after I wrote about the trailer for CBS's upcoming show Supergirl the full pilot was leaked online.

This raises an ethical dilemma that has become more common as the internet has reached ubiquitousness - do you watch something that may have been obtained unethically, or even illegally?

And does that change if there's a suspicion, like in this case, that the leak may have come from those involved in making the show?

Even though we are unlikely to ever know for certain, there are a number of reasons why Warner Bros (the studio producing the show) or CBS (which will air it) may have been aware, or even authorised, the leak.

The first clue was the quality - a full high definition copy was available. When the first four episodes of Game of Thrones leaked a couple of months ago only DVD rips in relatively low definition hit the web.

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In-flight entertainment fails to deliver

08:00am 25 May 2015

Once upon a time the idea of being cooped up in an airplane with nothing to do but watch television for 12 hours would have filled me with joy.

The first time I travelled to New Zealand I was stuck with a big screen up front, a restricted view and a choice of films that even Adam Sandler fans would have struggled to stomach.

The prospect of being able to pick multiple episodes of a show and binge watch was delicious. It made the constant being bashed into, the snoring neighbour and the terrible food almost worthwhile.

Unfortunately those days are long gone. Or at least long gone on the Air Malaysia flight I happened to book myself on for my first return to Scotland in a number of years.

To say the choice was eclectic would be unfair to... well, eclectics.

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Wayward Pines - genius or madness?

07:01pm 20 May 2015

There's a fine line between madness and genius - and some television programmes seem to be able to walk that line pretty well. Others straddle it with pride.

The latest show to hit our screens, courtesy of Sky TV's The Zone, is Wayward Pines - a  show that seems to borrow heavily from one of the very best at being both at the same time.

Of course I'm referring to Twin Peaks, David Lynch's masterpiece. Just this week he announced, once again, the show which confused so many people back in the day is destined to return to our television screens shortly.

Wayward Pines owes much to Agent Cooper et al. Strange town, even weirder people, a murder. Okay, Pines has a secret service agent instead of an FBI agent and no-one (so far) is carrying a psychic log - but otherwise it's probably best described as an homage. Probably so they don't get sued for copyright infringement.

Matt Dillon (Crash, There's Something About Mary) plays agent Ethan Burke who stumbles into the eponymous town after a car crash. He's in the area looking for some missing colleagues but collapses due to his injuries and wakes up in hospital.

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Supergirl flies to the front of the pack

11:00am 15 May 2015

Trailers have long been a part of the integral hype for movies - even back to the days of dial-up when I would spend hours waiting for them to download.

The response to the Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens preview is a prime example. Even old cynics like me, who believed this was merely a money-grabbing ruse and an attempt to wipe our memories of those three bad prequels, cried tears of joy when Han Solo appeared back on screen with Chewie.

But I can never recall when a trailer for a television show got the response that the first look at Supergirl received in my social circle. It seemed almost universally loved and people were genuinely excited.

Of course, I may be biased. And all my friends may have questionable tastes. But I always loved the idea of Supergirl forging her own path and I even have a bit of a soft spot for the bad 1984 movie starring Helen Slater (Peter Cook's over-the-top Nigel? Delicious!).

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Grace and Frankie another huge success for Netflix

11:00am 13 May 2015

It seems almost ironic that mere days after I reviewed the terrible new Matthew Perry comedy The Odd Couple a show with a similar premise would knock my socks off - but that’s exactly what new Netflix comedy Grace and Frankie has done.

So I withdraw my previously stated whines about lack of originality - because there’s nothing terribly original in Grace and Frankie either - it’s just executed wonderfully.

The story revolves around how the eponymous characters deal with the news that their husbands, who have been business partners for many years, have been having an affair for two decades and are going to get married.

This sends the pair of them into a period of self-rediscovery as they come to terms with the shock, all while dealing with the fact that they don’t like each other but are going to need the support.

Of course, you see where this is going. They hate each other, they help each other, they adapt, they come to like each other... but it’s the journey that’s the important thing for the viewer, not the familiar tropes that are present.

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