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End of the Line: A Soundless Echo on The Killing

"You said she didn't suffer." Rule Number One among homicide detectives: don't make promises you can't keep. Sarah Linden knows this, which is why she doesn't offer the Larsens the false hope that they'll catch whoever slayed their beloved teenage daughter Rosie. (In fact, it's Holder who makes that promise.) But Linden's seemingly innocuous white lie--telling Mitch and Stan that Rosie didn't suffer--was itself intended to assuage the consciences of the grieving parents. When they come face to face with proof to the opposite, it's as much a shock to the system, a jolt of brutal realization, as the news that their daughter was dead. In this week's episode of The Killing ("A Soundless Echo"), written by Soo Hugh and directed by Jennifer Getzinger, Mitch and Stan grapple with funeral arrangements for Rosie--the minutiae of grief and loss--as the investigators make some shocking new discoveries about Rosie's secret life an

Of Lions and Lambs: Thoughts on the Season Premiere of Friday Night Lights

"I'm going to miss this." - Eric Taylor Those words, spoken by Kyle Chandler's Eric Taylor in the season premiere of Friday Night Lights ("Expectations"), written by David Hudgins and directed by Michael Waxman, are said as he looks over at the minor squabble developing between wife Tami (Connie Britton) and daughter Julie (Aimee Teegarden). But that simple sentence, offered in a sweet and rather sad tone, might as well encapsulate the overall feeling of the audience: we're going to miss this too. Even though the "this" in question might be yet flare-up of adolescence angst from Julie Taylor. But it's the fact that the Taylors are together, engaged in the regular rigors of daily life, that the entire declarative statement takes on bigger meaning. Change is coming for the Taylors, with Julie heading off the school. Their family is once again being split up and those breakfasts, those arguments, those stolen moments are soon to be a thing

Fairy Tale Beginnings: Considering Couples and Consequences on Parks and Recreation

Kudos to the writers of Parks and Recreation for pulling off what will go down as one of the all-time best episodes of the NBC comedy series, one that threw off the audience's preconceptions of comedy narratives and shattered our expectations about how romantic comedy couples are meant to be handled. In this week's hilarious and emotionally resonant episode ("Fancy Party"), written by Katie Dippold and directed by Michael Trim, newly dating couple April and Andy got married. It wasn't a Very Special Episode. It wasn't preceded by NBC hitting us over the head with promos for a wedding site for April and Andy or forcing us to watch them shop for rings or make wedding plans, the writing team instead pulled the rug out from underneath the audience, transforming an episode about the unlikely couple hosting a dinner party into an impromptu wedding episode. It was unexpected and magical, not least because the wool was pulled over the characters' eyes as well a

Tune-in Reminder: Game of Thrones Starts on Sunday!

Looking for all of our coverage of HBO's Game of Thrones in one place? Look no further. At The Daily Beast's Newsmaker page for Game of Thrones , you find all of our collected coverage of Game of Thrones , including: Game of Thrones for Dummies, my in-depth glossary and character gallery for the uninitiated; George R.R. Martin's two Curator features, in which he picks Top 10 Fantasy Films and Top 10 Science Fiction Films; my initial preview feature; my behind the scenes feature, 10 Secrets From HBO's Game of Thrones , and much more. Finally, my advance review of the first six episodes of Game of Thrones can be found here . Game of Thrones begins Sunday at 9 pm ET/PT on HBO.

The Last Waltz: An Advance Review of Season Five of Friday Night Lights

Well, this is it: the beginning of the end. After four seasons of emotionally resonant drama, a nuanced exploration of life in small town Texas, and one of the most realistic portrayals of marriage ever, television masterpiece Friday Night Lights is heading towards the its final days, beginning with this week's thrilling and evocative season premiere ("Expectations"), written by David Hudgins and directed by Michael Waxman. It's not surprising that "Expectations" had me getting choked up no less than four times over the course of 40-odd minutes, as characters made their farewells and prepared to leave Dillon behind. While their goodbyes might be temporary, it was a canny way of signaling to the audience that the final parting is still to come, that with just a dozen or so episodes left, there would be no going back to Dillon. The first two episodes of the fifth and final season--"Expectations" and next week's installment ("On the Outsi

The Daily Beast: "Game of Thrones for Dummies"

Attention, Game of Thrones uninitiated: you've come to the right place. HBO's new fantasy series Game of Thrones creates a massive world with its own jargon and a ton of characters. Over at The Daily Beast, check out my latest feature, " Game of Thrones for Dummies," (I didn't pick the hed!) in which I break down the objects, people, places, and curiosities of Westeros and beyond in a Game of Thrones glossary for those who don't know who the hell the Kingslayer is, what in God's name a wilding is, or why they keep saying "Winter is coming." Plus, there's also an embedded character gallery accessible here , which breaks down 20 of the major characters of Game of Thrones into easily digestible profiles, with character descriptions, likes/dislikes, weapons, family relations and more... including quotes from Emilia Clarke (Daenerys), Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister), and Kit Harington (Jon Snow). And don't worry, those of you

The Daily Beast: "William & Kate on Lifetime: 8 Crazy Scenes"

Lifetime’s rush-job TV movie, William & Kate , depicts the romance between Prince William and Kate Middleton with unintentional hilarity. Over at The Daily Beast, you can read my latest feature, " William & Kate on Lifetime: 8 Crazy Scenes," in which I pick out the 8 craziest/cheesiest scenes in a made-for-TV movie overstuffed with them. William & Kate airs Monday evening on Lifetime.