Screen Junkies » lights out http://www.screenjunkies.com Movie Reviews & TV Show Reviews Thu, 02 Oct 2014 19:08:37 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.3.1 5 Shows That Should Have Been Canceled Before ‘Lights Out’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-lists/5-shows-that-should-have-been-canceled-before-light-out/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-lists/5-shows-that-should-have-been-canceled-before-light-out/#comments Fri, 25 Mar 2011 00:22:41 +0000 Jame Gumb http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=203563 These five shows should not be on the air in a world where "Lights Out" gets canceled.

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Despite the plethora of crap to be found on TV, FX canceled the critically acclaimed boxing drama, “Lights Out,” due to low ratings. That pisses me off. I’m not saying the show was flawless. In fact, at points, it was pretty stupid. But even so, its writers looked like the reincarnation of William friggen Shakespeare when compared to their competition. How is it that a well scripted, well acted show like “Lights Out” has less of a following than a show about some stereotypical Italian asshole who bakes cakes? I have no idea. But what I do know is that these five shows should not be on the air in a world where “Lights Out” gets canceled.

Any Show With An Abbreviation For A Name

CSI!” “NCIS!” WTF? I’m not even going to argue that all these shows are bad (even though they are mindless trash). Wha I am going to argue is that maybe you don’t need twenty different versions. This goes for “Law and Order,” as well. Doing the exact same thing in a different location is the height of laziness (although “Cash Cab Chicago” gets a pass). New York, Miami, LA: who gives a shit? Murder is murder. Could you please just cancel one of these to make room for my boxing drama?

WWE

If you want to watch a show about two guys pretending to fight, why would you choose WWE over “Lights out?” It doesn’t make sense! “Lights Out” is better written, better acted, more believable, and a thousand times less homoerotic. Granted, if you’re looking for homoerotisim, I get it. But if you’re not, why watch that shit?

Hardcore Pawn”

Look, if you really want to watch a bunch of morons pawning shit, that’s fine. I get it. To be honest, I’ve wasted a lot of time watching it, myself. But do we really need two separate shows? “Pawn Stars” wasn’t enough for you animals? Jesus Christ!

Cake Boss

Oh no! They baked the wrong cake! What the hell are they going to do now? Oh, thank god! They managed to make a new cake just in time! I can see why this show is so popular! Oh wait, no I can’t. Italians should be ashamed of this asshole’s antics. Fugetaboutit!

“The Millionaire Matchmaker”

Watching Patti Stanger turn away girls because they aren’t attractive is like watching Chewbacca tell Bigfoot he needs to shave. Who the hell is she? More importantly, who the hell sits and watches that beast set up imbeciles on phony dates week after week? Well, my girlfriend does, but she’s only 13, so she doesn’t know any better. At any rate, the fact that this show survives while “Lights Out” dies is a travesty.

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http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-lists/5-shows-that-should-have-been-canceled-before-light-out/feed/ 13 lights_out_fx csi-logo wwe 4/28/2010 Detroit. MI TruTV “Hard Core Pawn” Photo: Mark Hill cake-boss Patti-pic-2
Why Aren’t You Animals Watching ‘Lights Out’? http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/why-arent-you-animals-watching-lights-out/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/why-arent-you-animals-watching-lights-out/#comments Fri, 25 Feb 2011 01:54:02 +0000 Jame Gumb http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=29741 How can a critically acclaimed show expect to grow an audience when 4 million viewers are busy watching some teenage skanks "raise" their bastard children on MTV’s “Teen Mom 2”? Jesus Christ, if I wanted to watch some fat high-school sophomore push her stupid kid around, I’d go hang out at the mall.

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God damn it, why aren’t you animals watching the FX boxing drama “Lights Out”? It’s one of the best new dramas on television. Granted, most of this season’s new dramas were garbage, but so what? That’s par for the course. Besides, from the looks of it, most people would rather watch garbage than quality television.

Catch up on back episodes of “Light’s Out” at Hulu.com! Do it, now!

For those of you who haven’t been watching (which is to say most of you), “Lights Out” tells the story of retired boxer Patrick ‘Lights’ Leary (Holt McCallany). Once the heavyweight champ, Leary walked away from the sport while still in his prime in order to be with his family. Five years later, he’s still haunted by the thought of what could have been. To make matters worse, he was recently diagnosed with a neurological disorder likely brought on by his years in the ring. However, when the bad economy and his brother’s mounting gambling debts wipe out his savings, Leary is forced to once again put on his gloves despite the symptoms.

Granted, the show isn’t perfect. First of all, the story is about a 40-year old white boxer who is coming out of retirement to make another run at the championship. There are so many things wrong with that scenario that I can’t even begin to make sense of it. Also, Leary’s daughter Ava is totally hot, and I really want to bang her. This isn’t a bad thing, except she’s still in high school, and I feel like a real creep. Granted, the actress who plays her (Meredith Hagner) is in her 20’s, but still, I feel like a perv. OK, that’s my problem, not the show’s.

But even with these minor flaws, “Light’s Out” is solid. It’s well written, well acted, and leaves you wanting more. Sure, some of it’s not realistic, but it’s still a hell of a lot more believable than CSI, NCSI, M4M, or any of the other crap that passes for drama on the big networks. Sure, maybe the idea of an old, white boxer is far fetched. But is it any worse than the idea of the Las Vegas Police Department using expensive super science to catch a guy who killed a hooker? I think not.

Throughout the show, the character development has been compelling and believable. Holt McCallany does a great job balancing his character’ drive to fight with his desire to do what’s best for his family. Catherine McCormack plays Leary’s wife Theresa. A lesser actress would have come across as a nagging harpy, but McCormack comes across as a stong yet genuinely concerned wife. Pablo Schreiber, who you might remember from season 2 of “The Wire,” plays Leary’s flawed, gambling addict brother Johnny, but still manages to give the character a genuine likability. Even when his antics put everyone at risk, it’s understood that Johnny still loves and cares for his family. Rounding out the cast is Stacy Keach as the family patriarch. Honestly, what else do I have to say? It’s Stacy f*cking Keach. He’s great.

While the show doesn’t shy away from the violence inherent in the sport, it manages to avoid going overboard. Aside from a rather unbelievable underground cage match, the fights thus far have been well choreographed and plausible. That goes for fights both in and out of the ring. When a desperate Leary agrees to act as muscle for a bookie, we don’t even know a fight transpired until well after the fact, and we are shown in a split second flashback. Considering the show is geared toward a young, male audience, the fact that the producers have shown restraint in this regard is somewhat remarkable.

But despite the quality of the writing and the strong characters, week after week, “Lights Out” continues to struggle. While there are some exceptions, comparing a basic cable show to a network program isn’t always fair. But even if you leave out the networks, the viewing public has a lot to answer for. Last Tuesday, “Cup Cake Wars” received 1.170 million viewers. “What Not to Wear” got 1.148 million. “Hardcore Pawn,” a goddamn knock off of “Pawn Stars,” received 1.849 million viewers.

What did “Lights Out” get? Only 0.742 million viewers, and that was an improvement of over 40,000 from the week before.

I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. After all, how can a critically acclaimed show expect to grow an audience when 4 million viewers are busy watching some teenage skanks “raise” their bastard children on MTV’s “Teen Mom 2”? Jesus Christ, if I wanted to watch some fat high school sophomore push her stupid kid around in a stroller, I’d go hang out at the mall. But I guess I’m out of touch, and knocked-up teens are what sell.

Writers for “Lights Out” take note: it’s time to get Ava pregnant. I volunteer.

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http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/why-arent-you-animals-watching-lights-out/feed/ 1 Lights-Out-550 Meredith Hagner Lights Out
Review: FX’s Lights Out http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/review-tv/review-fxs-lights-out/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/review-tv/review-fxs-lights-out/#comments Mon, 10 Jan 2011 17:58:28 +0000 Reza F. http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=14926 “Lights Out” moves with the cautious rhythm and deft assurance of a seasoned prize fighter. A quick jab here, a body shot there, and suddenly there’s nothing but calm.

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“Lights Out” is a story that moves with the cautious rhythm and deft assurance of a seasoned prize fighter. A quick jab here, a body shot there, and suddenly there’s nothing but calm as the man in red gloves steps back, surveys the scene, dances nimbly, and plots his next move. You can’t anticipate the blows, can’t know where they’ll land, but when they do they come fast and they land with power and fury and purpose. It’s not a rapid barrage — it’s a slow, steady assault. There’s no epic battle for glory here — just the gradual realization of how a man’s body breaks and where he’s left when it does.

A stern-faced Holt McCallany plays the titular Patrick “Lights” Leary. We enter the story at the moment of the hero’s demise: A grueling title fight that lays him out cold and strips him of his belt. Five years later and five years retired, he still contemplates why the fight went the way it did; why he lost when he clearly deserved the win. Through clouded flashbacks we slowly piece together the events of that night, but we never really see the complete picture. Maybe it’s still a haze to him, or maybe he can’t bear to look back in full. In any case, we know immediately that this is a man filled with regret. We see it in his eyes, in the way he moves dazedly through his forced domestic existence — cooking dinner, looking after the kids, making love to his wife. He’s happy but never quite content. He doesn’t belong here, not yet anyway, not without first taking back what he knows damn well belongs to him. There’s the motive; all he needs now is the chance to make it happen.

When he finds that chance, it’s an alarming departure from the work-hard-and-persevere mantra we’ve seen drilled into the underdog archetype over and over again. This is a comeback story, but don’t expect any Rocky montages or heart-swelling locker room pep talks. It’s all about grit here — down with the generic and up with the unexpected. In this story, redemption is a path controlled by the greedy and the corrupt. The hero is a man we admire but he’s still just a man — flawed like any other and not entirely immune to the damning vices that confront him at every turn. It makes for a tense watch. We root for the hero as he strides boldly through treacherous terrain, but we see him struggle to maintain his identity and we sense we could lose him at any minute.

Like a swift blow the head, “Lights Out” leaves us reeling under the harsh glow of those blinding overhead lights. It’s a brutal examination of the forces that make a man tick — honor, dignity, and the almighty dollar. Don’t come looking for instant gratification or dime-store inspiration; it’ll be a while before the hero sees anything resembling personal growth. Instead, roll with the punches, take one to the chin, and swing like hell when you see an opening. It’s a long trek back to the top and you’re bound to get your ass beat a couple times on the way there.

Lights Out” premieres January 11 at 10pm ET on FX.

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FX’s ‘Lights Out’ Teaser Comes Out Swinging http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/fxs-lights-out-teaser-comes-out-swinging/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/tv-news/fxs-lights-out-teaser-comes-out-swinging/#comments Wed, 30 Nov -0001 00:00:00 +0000 FX dropped a testosterone-fueled teaser for their new series "Lights Out." This footage already has me amped up and the show doesn't even premiere until January. How am I supposed to expend all my energy now? Huh?! No you tell me! The show stars Holt McCallany as Patrick Leary, a former heavyweight champ facing various difficulties in his life outside the ring. We've seen the whole broken down boxer thing before, but I have no doubt FX will deliver a fresh take on the premise. Or I'll fight them. Check out the teaser after the jump...

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FX dropped a testosterone-fueled teaser for their new series "Lights Out." This footage already has me amped up and the show doesn’t even premiere until January. How am I supposed to expend all my energy now? Huh?! No you tell me!

The show stars Holt McCallany as Patrick Leary, a former heavyweight champ facing various difficulties in his life outside the ring. We’ve seen the whole broken down boxer thing before, but I have no doubt FX will deliver a fresh take on the premise. Or I’ll fight them.

Check out the teaser after the jump…

 

(HitFix)

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