Cast Catch-Up: ‘Friday Night Lights’

FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS (Image Credit: NBCUniversal)

FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS (Image Credit: NBCUniversal)

Friday Night Lights had arguably one of the most fantastic ensemble casts of all time. In addition, the FNL cast was HUGE. It would take forever and a half to actually catch up with all of the actors that ever had an impact on the show because there were just so many of them. So I’ve broken it down to a handful of my favorites, but don’t think I’ve forgotten about the rest! Maybe there’s an FNL Cast Catch-Up 2.0 in your future!

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Our Top 5 Things to See at SDCC ’16

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Cara Delevingne at San Diego Comic-Con on July 21, 2016. (Image Credit: Blair Raughley)

Brace yourself, it’s July. You probably already knew that since hello, we’re halfway through July. Let me rephrase. Brace yourself, it’s July, AKA San Diego Comic-Con International is here. Can you believe it’s already that time of the year? Best believe So Fetch Daily will be on the floor reporting you all the latest news. Well, as much as we can, anyways. There’s always so much going on!

And with that said, here are five (Five! I know, it was hard to choose) things that we’re looking forward to seeing during this year’s Comic-Con!

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4 Reasons ‘BrainDead’ is Summer Must-See TV

BrainDead (Image Credit: CBS)

BrainDead (Image Credit: CBS)

Last summer, UnREAL and Mr. Robot proved that summer TV could be just as good as the real thing, and this summer’s new shows picked up right where those left off. But the number one show you need to be watching right now is CBS’s BrainDead.

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The Twelve Steps in My Bravoholics Anonymous Recovery

WATCH WHAT HAPPENS LIVE (Image Credit: BravoTv)

WATCH WHAT HAPPENS LIVE (Image Credit: BravoTv)

1.) I admit that I am powerless over Bravo–that my TV watching life has become unmanageable.

Every night after a long day at work, I plop onto the couch, grab the remote from where I last left it, and hit power on. Before my mind even realizes what my fingers are doing, I am in a trance, typing in the channel numbers to tune me into Bravo. It’s as natural of an act as turning on a light switch. It does not matter what day of the week or what time it is. I’m not even looking for a specific show to be on. I am paralyzed by the channel, tuned in with a half-conscious stupor, as the voices of The Real Housewives and Below Deck casts become white noise. My DVR is set to record each series, including “first looks” of new episodes, making watching any other channel or show impossible. I don’t make after work plans with friends if there is a new episode of Top Chef on and I would miss its live airing. Bravo consumes me, and I am powerless against it.

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‘Game of Thrones’ Deaths Ranked from Most Upsetting to Most Satisfying

(Image Credit: HBO)

(Image Credit: HBO)

Game of Thrones loves nothing more than killing off its characters. There have been literally too many slaughters to count. However, no matter how numb you might have become to a bloody battle scene, there are always some characters’ deaths that really hit you hard. Here is our rating of Game of Thrones deaths from most upsetting to most celebration-worthy.

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‘Pretty Little Liars’ Ships That Have Sailed

PRETTY LITTLE LIARS (Image Credit: Freeform)

PRETTY LITTLE LIARS (Image Credit: Freeform)

The new season (or half-season; who can keep track?) of Pretty Little Liars premiered recently, and while watching the first episode I couldn’t help but notice how egregiously the story catered to fan-favorite ships, almost to the point of silliness. Avert your eyes if you don’t want to see spoilers for the summer premiere episode, or if you are staunchly #TeamEzria.

So let’s start with the most blatant example: Hanna and Caleb. As of the summer premiere episode, Caleb is in a relationship with Spencer. There have not been any established issues with that relationship. Sure, there were some flashbacks in the preceding handful of episodes indicating that perhaps Hanna and Caleb’s relationship may have ended prematurely and moments showing they still have feelings for each other. I’ll buy that. It’s what comes next that is problematic.

In the summer premiere, Hanna is being held hostage and AD is threatening to kill her if the Liars don’t turn in Charlotte’s true murderer. Caleb immediately acquires the most one-track mind I have ever encountered and begins obsessing over saving Hanna. Which, okay, Hanna is great and I’m not going to sweat anyone who wants to save her. If Hanna got killed off this show, poor Spencer would be the only Liar with more than half a brain left.

But instead of finding a remotely subtle or intelligent way to show Caleb drifting away from Spencer and back to Hanna (because that would require planning), the writers basically turn Caleb into a huge jerk, which is quite uncharacteristic. Just for this one episode, he suddenly cannot be bothered to even try to act civil to Spencer. I legitimately cracked up when he straight hung up on Spencer when she peacefully called to offer to bring him some food. He might as well have said, “You’re annoying because you’re not Hanna; you matter 0% to me.”

Caleb is basically the only decent human male on Pretty Little Liars, so I took some offense to him suddenly being turned into a massive jerk. And what’s particularly terrifying is that he was turned into a massive jerk because people who ship Haleb are expected to find his behavior romantic. We’re not supposed to care how awful he’s being because he’s doing it as part of his quest to save Hanna. Sigh, how romantic. Not. I’m all for reuniting Caleb and Hanna, but can we at least try to make it a thoughtful story arc and not just lazy fan service?

Next up we have Aria, who I believe  is still technically in a relationship with the elusive Liam despite having cheated on him with Ezra and apparently not feeling all that worried about it? Fact check me here; because all the Ezria drama has started to blend together in my brain. In the summer premiere, Aria and Ezra briefly mention how they need to talk about their situation, but then Aria’s like, “whatever, I just NEED YOU TONIGHT” or some garbage.

Regardless of whether I’m remembering correctly about Aria and Liam still being together, we can agree that Ezra is a manipulative liar, right? Yes, I am right. Even if you ignore the fact that he was using Aria to write his true crime book to the point of putting her in major danger (and really, how do you ignore that?), he continues to emotionally manipulate her even though they are no longer officially “together.” It’s creepy and gross and I simply can’t understand how anyone could want any of the Liars, even one as pointless as Aria, to end up with a dude as emotionally abusive as Ezra. But somehow #Ezria persists and fans are completely obsessed and committed to this relationship.(This probably says something depressing about patriarchy but that’s a story for another day.)

So we’ve got Haleb and Ezria covered, what about good ol’ Spoby? Well, we got a taste of that in the premiere too. While Caleb is busy chasing Hanna, Spencer and Toby pair up to do some field research. It’s not like they share a ton of meaningful looks or anything, but they are portrayed essentially as they were back in happier times – helping each other out, impressing each other, generally being  a fantastic team, and getting along splendidly. Of all the ship fan service in this episode, the Spoby situation bothered me the least. There was no actual cheating (or suggestion of it) and no major character shifts, just some genuinely nice scenes with a couple of characters who clearly relate well to each other.

Which leads us to Emily. Emily is supposed to be the bleeding heart of the group, and she’s on a quest to gently convince Ali, who’s locked up in the looney bin, to admit to killing Charlotte. She kind of succeeds at this task (although I don’t know what kind of moron takes Ali’s deranged, clearly non-lucid proclamation of “Please forgive me” or whatever vague thing she said as an admission of murder, but whatever). But in the meantime, Emily’s having flashbacks of a pretty intense makeout sesh with Ali.

Of all the ships on PLL, the Emison situation is the one that makes the least sense to me. Ezria is awful, but at least there’s history there. The Emily & Ali relationship basically came out of nowhere. There was no established chemistry or connection between them. The writers tried to make it feel like there was but nope, sorry. Revisionist history, kids. So I admittedly am not on board the Emison ship, causing me to probably find the makeout flashback more annoying and gratuitous than I might otherwise. Regardless, it didn’t need to be in the episode for the story to make sense, and it just felt like fan service to hardcore Emison shippers. A lifeline to the dedicated followers of a pointless, sinking ship that was created only for plot drama without any true authenticity.

Needless to say, I was not terribly pleased with the summer premiere’s commitment to fan-favorite ships above good storytelling. And that’s the key – it’s one thing to build up these ships if it’s done well. If we could see true character development in a character like Ezra, for example, I might start to get on board. If the Haleb situation was more nuanced, and played out over a few episodes instead of abruptly in one, maybe I would believe it more. At best, it’s lazy writing. At worst, it’s writers intentionally dumbing things down for their audience – a problematic choice when your core demographic is teenage girls and young women.

No matter how much I whine about it, though, I’m still watching Pretty Little Liars. I don’t know if it’s out of a false sense of optimism that things will get better, or if it’s loyalty to a time when the story in the show was still strong, but I can assure you it’s not because I want to see happy endings for Ezria, Spoby or Emison.

Although I might crack a smile for Haleb.

A Q&A with Up and Coming It-Girl Sol Rodriguez

(Image Credit: Bobby Quillard)

(Image Credit: Bobby Quillard)

Sol Rodriguez is the newest star on Lifetime’s Devious Maids. We caught up with her to talk about her jump start in the entertainment world and what she’s learned along the way.

You Play Daniela Mercado in Devious Maids, can you tell us about the character?

Sol Rodriguez: Dani is a young girl that dreams of being a Hollywood Star. She comes to LA to pursue that dream and crashes with who she thinks is her cousin Carmen, who is also pursuing her dreams of being a singer and dancer. A lot of drama develops throughout the entire season, mainly when Dani discovers Carmen is actually her birth mother.

How did the role come about?

SR: I auditioned like the rest of the girls and I was blessed enough to get the role.

Can you tell us what it’s been like filming such a fun, addicting show?

SR: You said it yourself, it’s fun and addicting indeed. It was a great experience; everyone welcomed me since day one with open arms. I shot most of my scenes with Roselyn Sanchez and she was very kind to me. But as the season went on I shot with almost all the cast and every single experience was so much fun. They’re all amazing to work with, in front of the camera and behind the scenes.

You made a couple big moves in your life thus far, what has it been like to pick up and start over somewhere new?

SR: It was scary. I basically left something “secure” for something that I had no idea if it was going to work out; something unpredictable. I was working a lot in Miami, jumping from one soap to the next. But I really wanted to crossover and work in American television and film. And it has been the best decision of my life. I’m very happy.

You got your start in acting on Nickelodeon’s Grachi, what was that experience like?

SR: Best experience of my life. I got cast on that show and thrown in from of the camera basically. I learned about acting and anything related on the set of Grachi. We did 205 one hour episodes in two years. We were translated into many languages and the show aired in Latin America and Europe. We also did a musical show and toured Mexico and Argentina. Very proud of my show. It taught me a lot.

Coming from a family also in the entertainment world, how did they react when you shared the news on booking your first show?

SR: My parents cried. My dad is a musician singer/songwriter. So he knows how hard you have to work and how many sacrifices you have to make in this industry. My parents and my brother are very proud of me, and that’s all that matters to me.

You were also a part of many popular telenovelas, what was that experience like?

SR: I loved the soaps. They’re fun to shoot; a little stressful because they’re a lot of work. You would shoot 20-30 scenes in one day, driving from one location to another, crying in one scene at a funeral and then shooting a dance routine with your friends and then maybe having a hot scene with your love interest. All in only one day; it’s fun stuff!

You originally wanted to pursue a different path before acting, what was it about that first audition that changed your mind?

SR: I was studying tourism in college. I wasn’t very sure about it though. When I did my first audition, which was Grachi for Nickelodeon, I just had so much fun. To me, it wasn’t work being on set, and I felt so blessed to call that my “work.”  I lost a lot of friends because you have no time for anything or anyone, I missed a lot of stuff, but I had never felt happier in my life, and that’s when I knew I wanted to do this forever.

Where can we see you next?

SR: We’re all crossing fingers for Devious Maids Season 5!

When you’re not busy with your career, what do you like to do?

SR: I like to be home a lot, I watch a lot of Netflix and Hulu and lots of movies. I like hanging out with my friends.

We like to finish all of our interviews with a quick fire round of quirky questions:

Favorite Ice Cream Flavor: I don’t like ice cream

Current Beauty Obsession: Highlighting

Current Binge Watching Show: Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Favorite Snack Food: Cheese and crackers

If you could live anywhere in the world: Guatemala

If you weren’t an actor you’d be: Working at a bed and breakfast in some island

We’d be surprised to know that you: I can touch my nose with my tongue

Currently listening to on repeat: Kiss and say Goodbye by The Manhattans

Childhood Celebrity Crush: Nick Carter

Latest read: Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

You’ve always wanted to try/do/learn: So many things: play soccer, dance flamenco, play the harmonic, learn how to cook, learn Portuguese, have my own charity, Scuba, learn piano

 

Catch Devious Maids on Lifetime, Mondays at 9pm ET. For More on Sol Rodriguez, follow her on Twitter @_solrodriguez.

The 5 Stages of a Netflix Binge

The 5 Stages of a Netflix Binge

We’ve all found ourselves lost in the downwards spiral of a Netflix binge. It’s an inescapable cycle that, regardless of how strongly you feel you need to get out, you continue to get sucked in by the characters you’ve suddenly grown to know so well. But, where does this addiction begin? Continue reading

5 Reasons ‘Parks and Recreation’ Ruined My Life…

PARKS AND RECREATION (Image Credit: NBC)

PARKS AND RECREATION (Image Credit: NBC)

There are many reasons why Parks and Recreation has affected my life. I can no longer stand shows with laugh tracks… I make faces at a nonexistent camera when someone around me does something questionable… I’ve taken up asking people for all the bacon and eggs they have… but all of that is beside the point. Parks and Recreation has ruined my life and here are the five reasons why:

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Favorite Show Canceled? Try These New Fall Shows!

THE GOOD PLACE / THIS IS US (Image Credit: NBC)

THE GOOD PLACE / THIS IS US (Image Credit: NBC)

We all know that soul-crushing feeling when a show you love gets canceled. But perhaps 30 Rock’s Dr. Spaceman can steer you in the right direction. So, your TV show ended… now what? Continue reading

5 Things to love about ‘Grace and Frankie’ Season 2

GRACE AND FRANKIE (Image Credit: Netflix)

GRACE AND FRANKIE (Image Credit: Netflix)

If you haven’t watched the latest season of Grace and Frankie yet, stop reading this and go do that now. If you have, continue reading for some of my favorite things from season two! Just like the first season, this one did not disappoint and delivered some hilarious and heartbreaking moments for anyone watching! I’m starting to think that these two women might just be my new girl-crushes! Continue reading

Why ‘Dance Moms’ is Horrific…and I Love It

I don’t know if I’ll ever forgive Mallory Walker for getting me hooked on Dance Moms. I started watching the first season on Amazon Prime one day after she mentioned the show to me and now, many seasons in, I still keep tuning in to the perfectly choreographed trainwreck. At first I watched out of a morbid curiosity, having been a dancer myself and wondering how much more outrageous this Abby Lee Miller character could be than my own instructor who liked to call me “left feet” (as in having two of them) and would scream to high heaven if I missed a step (which I did frequently). Over time, I somehow became invested in the ALDC circus despite the many reasons I should find the show appalling: both the scripted and unscripted feuds, grown women going utterly water-throwing and purse-swinging bonkers over competitions, and small children being pitted against each other in what might as well be dances to the death given how serious they all take this stuff. Yet, I’m embarrassed to say those are the very same things that keep me watching.

If you’ve yet to check out an episode of Dance Moms (disclaimer: I feel like I should tell you not to watch given how addictive it can be), let me elaborate a bit more about what makes the show so insane and at the same time so fabulous.  

Let’s start by discussing Abby Lee Miller. Abby is the owner of Abby Lee Dance Company and the “choreographer” for the competition teams. Quotes on choreographer because depending on the episode/dance she sometimes has little to do with choreography beyond the creative vision of the number. But none of that is what’s interesting about her. No, what makes Abby interesting to watch is her complete lack of filter and unflinching ability to stare down a crying child. To say her teaching method is “tough love” is like saying the Kardashians have had a little work done.  

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At the same time, Abby really does want the kids to do well and win, if not for their own sake then for her reputation’s. The titular dance moms love to accuse her of sabotaging their kids so they don’t win, and there are times it seems like she doesn’t put as much effort into one kid’s dance as another’s, but I think Abby Lee cares way too much about her brand to ever set up a kid to lose on purpose. Abby wants all the kids to come in first all the time because as she says, if you’re second place…

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Speaking of the dance moms, their craziness doesn’t end with theories of dance sabotage. Oh no, their flamboyance makes up some of the most entertaining moments of the show, especially in the early seasons when much of the drama surrounded the idea that Abby favors Maddie Ziegler above the other girls (spoiler alert: she did and does).

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Every week Abbie set Maddie up with the best choreography and an opportunity to use the “Maddie Face” to win over the judges and, early on, every week the dance moms fought about it. Seeing adults get so irate and at times jealous over a child is hilarious, even if you do occasionally feel bad for them, knowing they only want their kids to win like Maddie.

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Problem is, most of the other kids are lacking one of the many facets that make Maddie a showstopper (no offense kids) and no amount of extra secret private lessons or gifts to Abby would make a difference when it comes to that. But of course they don’t see it that way and instead fight about it all the time, kids be damned.

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It’s sad when the kids overhear it, and it can even be uncomfortable to watch. But when they’re fighting on their own it can be laugh out loud funny. Their spats can range from calling each other every name in the book, often with bleeping required and finger pointing like this:

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To passive aggressive moments of awesomeness like this:
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And when they’re not fighting with each other, they’re fighting with Abby…

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…who isn’t much better about setting a good example for the kids.

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It’s not just the fighting that makes the dance moms such eyeball bait. Their scripted get-togethers and non-dance related convos often create great “what am I watching” moments that really leave you asking yourself, “Do they not know this is going to televised?”

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In case you’re wondering, there is in fact dancing on Dance Moms, and if you love dance or ever suffered through a class with a teacher like Abby, they really are the best parts of the show.

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The kids are talented and their camaraderie is adorable.  

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Even if some of them aren’t really as into as others…

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And some are a little too intense.

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The whole show is a big bunch of crazy, with a sprinkle of dancing and a lot of drama.
Yes, in many ways Dance Moms is horrific and I absolutely love it.

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The 5 Best Graduation Scenes of All Time

Freddie Prinze Jr. as Zack Siler in SHE'S ALL THAT (Image Credit: Miramax)

Freddie Prinze Jr. as Zack Siler in SHE’S ALL THAT (Image Credit: Miramax)

Uncomfortable robes, less-than-stable hats and tassels that appear to want to be consumed by the way they swing into the mouths of almost alumni are common during the months of May and June. Hundreds of pictures will be taken, thousands of envelopes will be thoroughly destroyed and many a distant relative will groan at the sight of another party invitation.

That’s right, ladies and gentlemen. Graduation season is among us, and no one has managed to capture the essence of such a milestone in life quite like that of the entertainment industry. We all want our graduations to be like the movies, with grand proclamations of love and inspiring speeches to motivate us into high-end careers while still capturing the innocence that is youth.

Boy Meets World

Topanga proposes to Corey instead of following her dreams to Yale! Shaun delivers an amazing “Ode to Feeny” speech! The excitement of the Boy Meets World graduation still captures the attention of many, even 15 years after its original air date. There’s just something about the Corey/Topanga love that will always get to an audience, but where they were the golden couple that every class seems to have, Shaun was the outsider that every high school student feels like at some point.

(Image Credit: Disney)

(Image Credit: Disney)

Which is why his speech gained the scene, and episode, so much respect. He spoke to everyone, especially with lines like “I was thinking about how much this place has been my home, and how many times I screwed up while I was here. I was thinking about how I could have done better. I could have done better.” Well, Shaun, we think you did pretty great.

 

Buffy the Vampire Slayer

(Image Credit: Warner Bros.)

(Image Credit: Warner Bros.)

A mayor-tunred-giant worm demon and his trust hoard of vampires attacks the unsuspecting group of Sunnydale High graduates during an eclipse, naturally, and you can’t help but think, “Oh no. It’s snack time.” Then, BAM! Those graduates throw off their crimson robes to reveal stockpiles of weaponry, ammunition and enough time for the Buffy to lure the mayor away from the graduates and into the booby trapped high school library. This graduation came complete with action, explosions and military battle tactics, enough to make any fan of a little adventure jealous.

She’s All That

(Image Credit: Miramax)

(Image Credit: Miramax)

We all wanted to be Rachel Leigh Cook in this 1999 classic about the nerdy-art girl who manages to snag the misunderstood Prom King Zach, played by the ever-adorable Freddie Prinze Jr. But one of the most memorable scenes from this movie, besides the after-prom pool scene (swoon) was graduation, where Zach strips down to nothing but a soccer ball and marches towards the stage, tossing the piece of sporting equipment back to his now girlfriend, Laney (Cook). Forget the inspirational speeches. This is the childish way of viewing the world that every graduate wants to experience in his or her last high school moment.

High School Musical 3: Senior Year

(Image Credit: Disney)

(Image Credit: Disney)

It’s cheesy and laughable, but you know you loved it. This graduation scene was filled with references to previous movie themes, like breaking the status quo and being who you want to be. And Troy Bolton being his typical wonder boy self. But let’s be honest. The real reason we wanted to be in the class of East High 2009 was because we wanted to sing and dance our way through the ceremony.

It sure beats listening to another motivational speaker, right?

And for the college graduates out there…

Legally Blonde

(Image Credit: MGM)

(Image Credit: MGM)

Elle Woods gets the law degree, the guy and the vindication in the final moments of this hit comedy. We love Elle, and this graduation, because Elle achieves her dreams and still manages to remain uncomfortably upbeat and perfect. She even looked amazing under that horribly unflattering cap and gown. This graduation goes into the record books because Elle is how we all imagine ourselves looking and acting on our graduation days.

Warning to all recent college graduates, do not watch this scene if unemployed and in debt. It’ll make you feel like four years of undergrad was all for naught.

Originally posted May 28, 2013.

5 Television characters I wish I was friends with…

Amy Poehler as Leslie Knope in PARKS AND RECREATION (Image Credit: Colleen Hayes/NBC)

Amy Poehler as Leslie Knope in PARKS AND RECREATION (Image Credit: Colleen Hayes/NBC)

I love my television friends. Wait, what? Am I really calling those fictional characters friends? Yes I am, and I’m not even ashamed of it. Think about it: why do we love television series? We like them because we recognize ourselves and our own lives in them, we like them because they’re great entertainment, we like them because they make us laugh and cry, we like them because they’re a way of escapism. But we LOVE them because we feel a strong bond with the characters. The characters become our friends. That’s why we are devastated when one of our favorite TV shows has come to an end: our friends are taken away from us. Luckily, we are able to watch series again and again which gives us the opportunity to fan the fire of our fictional friendships.

Below you can find my list of “TV characters I wish I were friends with” and why this is the case…

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