Saturday, August 30, 2008

Comic Strip For Better or For Worse Ends Its Nearly 30 Year Run Today

For Better or For Worse - The Patterson Family
While The Blot doesn’t usually blog on the weekends, I wanted to acknowledge the ending and rebirth of one of my favorite daily comic strips that ran in newspapers across North America for nearly thirty years, For Better or For Worse. I knew this day was coming for quite a while, but I had no idea it was officially ending today until yesterday when I read this letter from FBoFW creator Lynn Johnston thanking all of her readers for their continued support over the years.

Lynn Johnston Concludes Popular Canadian Comic Strip For Better or For Worse After Nearly 30 Years
For Better or For Worse - The Patterson FamilyIt’s weird knowing the long running Canadian comic strip, which began in 1979, has come to an end. For as long as I’ve been alive, For Better or For Worse has been appearing in my local newspaper or online. There were definitely gaps in my readership, like when I went off to college and didn’t look at a newspaper for the entire four years. But like trusty dog Farley, FBoFW was always there waiting patiently for your return. What I always liked best about For Better or For Worse was that unlike most daily comic strips, the characters actually aged in real time. So, as I grew up so too did all of the comic’s huge cast of characters.

For Better or For Worse - The Final Comic Strip From August 30th, 2008
There is a silver lining for all of the For Better or For Worse fans out there and for those of you who missed out on reading the strip in its original run. It starts over from the very beginning on September 1st, 2008. But don’t worry, this isn’t just a reprint of the original strips. According to cartoonist Johnston, FBoFW will still occasionally have all new material, including new art and new storylines. It’s just starting again from the very beginning. So, it really is the best of all worlds. Plus, readers new and old can be introduced to the Pattersons, Elly, John, Michael, Elizabeth and April, all over again for the very first time. See you in the funnies!

For Better or For Worse - The Final Sunday Comic Strip - August 31, 2008
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Friday, August 29, 2008

NBC To Pick Up 9 Additional Episodes Of Chuck

In other NBC news…as what can only be seen as a huge vote of confidence, NBC has decided to “pick up nine additional episodes of its sophomore drama Chuck” before the show’s second season has even begun to air. (link)

Chuck Television Poster
As you may remember, while Chuck had a solid freshman season it was cut short due to the writers strike. (link) According to The Hollywood Reporter, “it’s understood that NBC executives have been impressed with what they’ve seen from the first six episodes of the show’s second-season order and decided to hand out an early full-season pickup.” (link)

Chuck - Cast Photo
Chuck - Yvonne Strahovski, Zachary Levi & Adam BaldwinI believe NBC initially ordered a shortened season to try and gage whether or not Chuck’s creators could maintain the high quality of storytelling and on screen chemistry they established in the show’s first season. It appears that NBC’s primary fears have already been quashed when Teri Weinberg, Executive Vice President NBC Entertainment, announced yesterday, “We couldn’t be more excited with the creative direction Josh (Schwartz) and his team are executing on Chuck. This show has really hit its stride and deserves a full-season commitment to carry out the producers’ vision for this unique series.” (link)

Honestly, that is like music to my ears. I loved the first season of Chuck and believe the show has the incredible potential to build upon last season and become an even better all-around show. With a great ensemble cast and just the right mix of action, comedy and mystery, Chuck might be the early breakout hit of the 2008-2009 season.

Chuck on NBC Mondays at 8/7c
Chuck, starring Zachary Levi, Yvonne Strahovski, Adam Baldwin and Joshua Gomez, premieres its new season on Monday, September 29th, at 9/8c on NBC.
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Michael Phelps To Host Season Premier of Saturday Night Live

Saturday Night Live logo
14 time gold medal winning United States Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps has been tabbed as the host of the season premiere of Saturday Night Live’s 34th season. (link) Phelps, who recently won eight gold medals at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, is the latest in a long line of the world’s greatest athletes to host NBC’s legendary sketch comedy show. Previous athletes to have hosted SNL include Michael Jordan, Wayne Gretzky, LeBron James, Tom Brady, Lance Armstrong and best of all, Peyton Manning.

U.S. Olympic Swimmer Michael Phelps at the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics
Hip-Hop Superstar Lil' WayneJoining Phelps on Saturday Night Live’s season premier as the show’s musical guest will be hip-hop superstar Lil’ Wayne. (link) This will be the rapper’s first appearance on Saturday Night Live and it could not have come at a better time. This year has seen Lil’ Wayne finally achieve the type of mainstream success many hip-hop fans knew he was destined for. It is nice to see Weezy finally be recognized as one of, if not the, best hip-hop artists of his generation. His latest album, 2008’s Tha Carter III, “sold over 1 million copies in its first week of release, a feat not achieved since 2005.” (link)

Be sure to tune in to see both Phelps and Lil’ Wayne on the 2008 season premiere of Saturday Night Live on September 13, 2008 at 11:30/10:30c, and as always, only on NBC.
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Happy 50th Birthday to the King of Pop

I cannot believe Michael Jackson is 50! Ok, strike that. I can’t believe Michael Jackson is only 50. It feels like the original MJ has been around forever, doesn’t it? While he may be creepy now, he had the type of talent we may never see again. And, while he may not be a hit maker anymore, from the early 90’s all the way back to the late 60’s with the Jackson 5, every song he touched was pure gold.

Michael Jackson
The Jackson 5iveHis personal life may have been in shamble from day one, but the guy could flat out perform day in and day out. For the longest time I was obsessed with everything the King of Pop produced, but now it’s become harder to separate the performer from the train wreck. Regardless, his mark on music and pop culture is undeniable and for that The Blot salutes him on his 50th birthday.
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Thursday, August 28, 2008

OBEY Giant x KIKS TYO T-Shirts

You may remember the Japanese clothing company KIKS TYO from when The Blot blogged about their line of Disney themed t-shirts a while back (you can read that post here). Well KIKS TYO is at it again with a sweet new collaboration with Shepard Fairey and OBEY Giant. Right now at the KIKS TYO international web shop you can pre-order two very cool limited edition OBEY Giant x KIKS TYO t-shirts.

OBEY Giant x KIKS TYO - KIKS TYOBEY GIANT Black, Red and White T-Shirts
OBEY Giant x KIKS TYO - KIKS TYOBEY SKULL LogoAbove is the OBEY Giant x KIKS TYO – KIKS TYOBEY GIANT t-shirt. This shirt and the KIKS TYOBEY SKULL t-shirt below features Fairey’s iconic and stylized Andre the Giant artwork meshed with KIKS TYO’s sneaker based imagery. (link) These OBEY KIKS propaganda shirts are a must get for any fan of the KIKS TYO brand or Fairey’s OBEY Giant street art campaign.

OBEY Giant x KIKS TYO - KIKS TYOBEY SKULL Black, Red and White T-Shirts
Both styles of the OBEY KIKS propaganda shirts are $55.73 each and come in three colors (black, white and red) and sizes XS-XXL. The pre-order for these great KIKS TYO x OBEY t-shirts ends on August 31, 2008 (or while supplies last), so act now before it’s too late! KIKS TYO expects the shirts to ship sometime in late September.
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Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe - Character Updates and Screenshots

Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe - BatmanWhile we still don’t know the final playable Mortal Kombat character, the complete DC Universe roster has finally been revealed for the upcoming Midway game Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe. The last, but certainly not least, playable DC hero was of course, Wonder Woman. This completes a pretty solid roster of DC super heroes and villains, and includes all of the typical heavy hitters like Superman, Batman, The Flash, The Joker and Catwoman, as well as two surprises, Green Lantern Hal Jordan and Shazam (a.k.a. DC’s Captain Marvel). I’m glad to see Shazam be included because he and the other Fawcett heroes are so often considered the ugly step-child of the DC Universe.

Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe - Wonder Woman and Kitana
Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe - Green Lantern and Jax
While we still don’t know the 8th Mortal Kombat fighter to be included in MK vs. DCU, I was pleasantly surprised to find Kitana and Jax included in the roster. I think Midway did an excellent job of picking the MK roster, and I’m holding out hope that The Blot’s favorite Mortal Kombat character, Raiden, will be included in the fighting series’ latest installment. So far the Mortal Kombat playable roster includes Liu Kang, Sub-Zero, Scorpion, Sonya Blade, ShangTsung, Kitana and Jax.

Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe - Scorpion and Catwoman
Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe Screenshots - Green Lantern vs. Liu Kang
I’ve included the newest renderings of the characters in the Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe video game and some newly released action screenshots taken directly from the game. I can’t tell you how excited I am for MK vs. DCU. The screenshots look really cool and I love the way Midway has incorporated the abilities of Green Lantern’s power ring into the Kombat style of fighting. I think GL Hal Jordan is going to prove to be a very formidable opponent in the realm of Mortal Kombat. Who knows, this game might actually push me over the edge into finally buying a Playstation 3.

Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe Screenshots - Superman vs. Kitana
Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe Screenshots - The Joker vs. Scorpion
Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe Screenshots - Green Lantern vs. Shang Tsung
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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations - Egypt

I received a few emails yesterday asking what happened to this week’s Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations update. Unfortunately, I didn’t get this week’s promo video until about an hour before showtime. What’s even worse is when I went to watch the episode on my DVR last night it was no where to be seen! Therefore, so as far as The Blot’s concerned No Reservations’ Egypt episode never happened.

Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations on the Travel Channel
Instead, Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations - Egypt will be debuting (or re-airing, take your pick) this Monday, September 1st, on the Travel Channel at 7/6c. You can see a promo video of Tony visiting “with Egyptian locals to get a taste for what it means to be Egyptian” below. (link)

And make sure to check back with The Blot Says… on Monday for a preview of No Reservations’ special Labor Day episode: “So Long Summer.”

Also, the Wichita Falls Times Record NewsThe Dirt has a cool new interview with Anthony Bourdain, which you can check out here.
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Star Wars Mighty Muggs Wave 7

We now have some official pictures of the previously announced Star Wars Mighty Muggs Wave 7. Like yesterday’s Indiana Jones Mighty Muggs Wave 4, this latest Star Wars release is a mini-wave. The two new figures in Wave 7 are a Darth Maul Version 2 Mighty Mugg and a Darth Revan Mighty Mugg.

Star Wars Mighty Muggs Wave 7 - Shirtless Darth Maul (Version 2) Mighty Mugg
I know Darth Maul is a popular character, but I had no idea he was so popular as to warrant a second figure so early in the creation of the Mighty Muggs line. I guess there are more people clamoring for a shirtless Darth Maul than I realized! These two new figures will be released with the Darth Vader (Version 2) Mighty Mugg and the Han Solo in Hoth Gear Mighty Mugg.

Star Wars Mighty Muggs Wave 7 - Darth Revan Mighty Mugg
Star Wars Mighty Muggs Wave 7 will be arriving in stores in November 2008.
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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

My Morning Jacket Live in Dallas, TX at The Palladium on 08/23/08

The other highlight of The Blot’s trip to Dallas last weekend was when Aly and I headed down to The Palladium Ballroom to see America’s best live band, My Morning Jacket. We had been debating for about a week whether or not we should go to the concert when we were really in town to visit family and friends. But after my buddy Greene told me I had to go because MMJ “is the redneck Radiohead,” we kind of figured we had no choice in the matter.

My Morning Jacket
Thank god we did because it was an amazing show. We had only seen the band live once before and that was at Lollapalooza 2007, so I was looking forward to seeing them perform somewhere other than at a festival to get a better feel for their live shows. The Palladium was the perfect place to do this. I had actually been expecting a lot smaller of a venue, but the size of The Palladium's Ballroom turned out to be just the right size to see My Morning Jacket. We picked out our general admission spot in the crowd and hunkered in for what was an almost three hour spectacle of music and lights.

My Morning Jacket
For a southern rock/jam band, MMJ puts on a hell of a show. With no opening band, MMJ started rocking from the very beginning, tearing into the first 4 songs of the night. I think Aly lost a little interest towards the back end of the two hour set when the songs slowed down and she didn’t recognize some of the newer material, but I thought it was a well put together set list by the Louisville, KY band.

Erykah Badu and Jim James - My Morning Jacket - 08/23/08 - The Palladium Ballroom - Dallas, TX
The highlight of the night had to be the amazing encore set, which kicked off with the band playing concert staple “Tyrone.” Out of nowhere Jim James and crew were joined by Dallas’ own Erykah Badu and the crowd erupted. “Tyrone” is a Badu original, which MMJ has been covering for almost 9 years and it was truly amazing to see Badu perform it live with the band. If you’re interested in seeing the performance check out the video clip of the song below:

My Morning Jacket then went on to play 6 more songs, ending the night with “Run Thru” and “One Big Holiday,” which had the entire crowd jumping and singing along. If you’ve never seen MMJ or don’t regularly attend concerts, I cannot recommend highly enough going to see this band on tour. There’s a reason people consider them the best live band touring today. It’s like my friend Danni said when trying to convince us to go to the show, “it’s not very often you can see a band perform live in the prime of their careers.” And you know what? He was absolutely right and the show was worth every penny.

My Morning Jacket
The 2008 Summer/Fall U.S. Evil Urges Tour
August 23, 2008 - Set List
Dallas, Texas - The Palladium
Evil Urges
Off the Record
Wonderful Man
The Way He Sings
Touch Me Pt. 1
I’m Amazed
Thank You Too
Sec Walkin
Two Halves
War Begun
Lay Low
Aluminum Park
Phone Went West
Bermuda Highway (Jim James solo)
Look At You
Smokin From Shootin
Touch Me Pt. 2
Tyrone with Erykah Badu
Wordless Chorus
Highly Suspicious
Run Thru
One Big Holiday
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Indiana Jones Mighty Muggs Wave 4

The newest wave of Indiana Jones Mighty Muggs was announced this week. Unfortunately it will include only two new figures, a Young Indiana Jones figure and a Satipo figure with spiders. I am really pleased to find out about the Young Indy vinyl figure because in my honest opinion there can never be enough tributes to the late, great River Phoenix. That guy could just flat out act and all of his films are classics in my book.

Indiana Jones Mighty Muggs Wave 4 - Young Indiana Jones Mighty Mugg
What I don’t get is why Hasbro has decided to start releasing mini waves for its line of Indiana Jones and Star Wars Mighty Muggs figures. At least in the case of Star Wars, it’s not like they will ever be running out of characters to make in Mighty Mugg form. Each of Hasbro's Mighty Muggs mini waves will still include four figures, but only two of the figures will be new. The two figures rounding out the wave will be previously released characters. For instance, in Indiana Jones Mighty Muggs Wave 4 we’ll be getting the aforementioned Young Indy and Satipo designer vinyl figures released alongside with the previously released Professor Jones figure and the White Tuxedo Indiana Jones figure.

Indiana Jones Mighty Muggs Wave 4 - Satipo with Spiders
Indiana Jones Mighty Muggs Wave 4 will be arriving in stores in November 2008.
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Monday, August 25, 2008

The Shield Season 7 - The Final Act

The Shield on FX - Final Season One Sheet Television PosterThe Blot is both excited and sad for the start of The Shield’s 7th and final season on FX. The Shield, created by Shawn Ryan and starring Michael Chiklis, really put FX on the map and led the way for the abundance of quality cable television we have today. It is also one of the few television shows that has actually gotten better each and every season. Since the series began in 2002 I have been riveted with the lives and stories of the inner city Los Angeles police officers stationed at the infamous Barn. Whether it be following the shenanigans of Vic Mackey’s strike force or the crazy cases of Detectives Holland “Dutch” Wagenbach and Claudette Wyms, there has never been a slow episode.

The Shield Season 7 - The Final Act Television Poster
While it’s unfortunate that FX’s erratic scheduling has left a longer than normal hiatus between The Shield’s sixth and seventh seasons, I know anyone who has ever watched a single episode of this gritty cop drama will be tuning in on Tuesday, September 2nd at 10/9c to see the beginning of the end of one of television’s greatest characters, Vic Mackey. The one question everyone wants answered will finally be revealed, how is it all going to end? Will Vic be killed? Will he go to jail? Or, will he walk away?
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Puma First Round Sketch Sneakers

Puma First Round Sketch Sneakers - Red and WhiteWhile The Blot was in Dallas this past weekend I made sure to find some time to do a little shopping. I was especially excited to see a really great selection, including a few new releases, at the Dallas NorthPark Puma store. The best of the new releases has to be Puma’s First Round Sketch sneakers, which just have a very clean look to them. To be honest I’m not sure the picture below does them justice.

Puma First Round Sketch Sneakers - Vaporous Gray and Maui Blue
The Puma First Round Sketch “offers a truly unique ‘hand painted’ look” and I love the Vaporous Gray/Maui Blue color scheme. (link) What can I say, I'm drawn to that pop art look they give off. Best of all, the store actually carried a pair in size 14. That’s something you don’t see every day. These sick skater shoes sell for $85.00 and for a limited time come with free shipping if you purchase them directly from Puma at their online store.

Puma First Round Sketch - Black & White and Blue & White
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Thursday, August 21, 2008

Kidrobot x The Simpsons Collectible Vinyl Mini Figure Series

The Blot’s heading out of town today but I wanted to direct everyone’s attention to a new product Kidrobot is releasing today, a line of 3 inch collectible The Simpsons mini figures. The figures have bodies similar to Kidrobot’s Dunny series but look like your favorite citizens of Springfield. There are 24 figures in all, including 3 secret chase figures.

Kidrobot x The Simpsons Vinyl Mini Figure Set
Kidrobot x The Simpsons Designer Vinyl Mini Figure SetThe Simpsons vinyl mini figures come as a blind assortment, meaning you won’t know which figure you’re buying until you open it and have a retail price of $7.95 each. If you head to the Kidrobot online store you can purchase a case of The Simpsons figures for a special reduced price. That’s 24 figures for $181.00. Interestingly enough, due to licensing restrictions Kidrobot can only ship these figures to certain locations. To see if your country made the list of allowable countries click here.

Kidrobot x The Simpsons Collectible Figures Go On Sale Today, Thursday, August 20th
Kidrobot x The Simpsons Designer Vinyl Mini Figures Check ListThere’s been a lot of discussion on the internet as to whether Kidrobot’s production of a line of The Simpsons figures (along with their line of Cartoon Network [adult swim] mini figures) signals the company’s “selling out.” I don’t really have an opinion on this one way or the other. There are some great things that can happen when a company like Kidrobot starts partnering with larger brands like The Simpsons and the Cartoon Network, then again there are also some drawbacks. This is especially true if Kidrobot ultimately decides to leave what has built them into such a successful company and becomes more corporate.

If you’re interested in finding out more about this topic I suggest you head over to Kidrobot founder and president Paul Budnitz’ blog and read his response to this very topic. You can find the post addressing this issue in its entirety here.
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Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Back to the Future Part 2 x Nike Air McFLY 2015 Sneakers

Back to the Future Part 2 x Nike Air McFLY 2015 sneakersAfter my post earlier this month about The Goonies x Puma Disc Blaze sneakers, I was contacted by Mickey Maloof, co-founder of The Official McFLY 2015 Project, to rebuff my comment that The Goonies sneakers were the best 80’s movie tie-in sneakers of 2008. You see The McFLY 2015 Project is a grassroots movement to get the futuristic-looking sneakers seen in the 1989 movie Back to the Future Part 2 made. Evidently they’re pretty persuasive because Nike finally caved in and created these awesome looking sneakers.

Unfortunately, most BttF fans had no shot at these ultra limited edition sneakers, which are already selling for big bucks on the secondary market. While The Official McFLY 2015 Project can’t help you in tracking down the futuristic looking blue hightop sneakers, they are currently holding a contest where 10 lucky winners can win official McFLY 2015 stickers. Just head over to their website at and find out what the moon at the top page is saying. Send in your answer to and you could be a winner!

The Official McFLY 2015 Project at
The contest is open to everyone worldwide as long as you have a valid postal mailing address. So head over to The Official McFLY 2015 Project and enter to win today! Also, check out their website often as McFLY 2015 t-shirts are in the works as well as a big announcement about something The McFLY 2015 Project has been working on with Nike.
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ToyQube Exclusive Ninja MAD*L

This is a little late, but I wanted to talk about it anyway. The 5 inch Ninja MAD*L was originally released as a San Diego Comic-Con 2008 exclusive, but with a few still remaining you can now purchase them at the ToyQube’s online store. This is some great news for MAD fans like The Blot who weren’t able to make it to SDCC, but were still hoping to get our hands on one of these awesome looking figures.

Toy Qube Exclusive Ninja MAD*L by MAD
Kidrobot - 8 Inch Ninja Dunny by MAD - White Blood Splattered, Black Chase, Red ChaseMAD released a similarly designed 8” Dunny at the end of last year with three colorways (white blood splattered, black and red), but the black ninja chase was definitely my favorite. So I’m really glad to see MAD adapt his ninja design to his MAD*L platform. Now if only I could get my hands on that limited edition 8” Black Ninja Dunny. The Ninja MAD*L is limited to 500 pieces and retails online for $35.00.

Also recently released was MAD*L Phase 3, the latest series of MAD’s unique line of designer vinyl figures. The Phase 3 set includes three figures, Armybot, Slam and Aidamon. Each Phase 3 MAD*L is 5 inches tall and can be purchased directly from MAD’s ebay store individually for $25.00 or as a set for $75.00. As an added bonus, if you purchase the figures directly from MAD he will sign each figure on the back.

MAD*L Phase 3 Designer Vinyl Figures - Armybot, Slam & Aidamon
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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

90210 Trailer And Television Posters

Old friends. New faces. Same ZIP.

90210 Television Poster Debuting on The CW this Fall
90210 Character Television Poster - Annie - New Drama. Same Zip Code.Ok, we all knew this 90210 sequel (remake? spin-off?) was coming to The CW, but I’ve been in some deep denial about it. What can I say? I was a Beverly Hills 90210 junkie back in the day. I guess it was all about being the right age at the right time. But now there is no denying the new 90210 series is legit with its debut set for Tuesday, September 2nd at 8/7c on The CW.

90210 Character Television Poster - Ethan and Naomi - New Drama. Same Zip Code.While I wasn’t happy to hear The CW was messing with my childhood, I did take some solace in knowing some popular old faces would be returning in the form of Kelly (Jennie Garth), Brenda (Shannen Doherty) and my favorite non-main cast member Nat (Joe E. Tata). Throw in a little Full House love with Lori Loughlin joining the cast of this new 90210 series and you have just enough to pique my interest.

While I’m sure everyone has heard about this new 90210 show, you may not have seen any of this new teen drama. So check out the show’s official television trailer and watch for the return of Kelly and Brenda to West Beverly High and the zip code they made so famous:

90210 Character Television Poster - Dixon - New Drama. Same Zip Code.On a side note, The CW has decided not to send out screeners of its new series to the media before its premiere on September 2nd. (link) This is a particularly bad sign for the freshman drama as typically networks only refuse to send early copies of their shows to critics when they feel a show is especially bad and would be given negative reviews. Of course The CW is spinning it the opposite way saying “we’re not hiding anything…simply keeping a lid on 90210 until 9.02, riding the curiosity and anticipation into premiere night, and letting all our constituents see it at the same time.” (link)

Not exactly a ringing endorsement for the new series, but also not a bad game plan. I can understand The CW not wanting their show to get bogged down by bad reviews for a teen drama, and they are probably hoping strong ratings for the series premiere will hide some of the show’s inadequacies. Regardless, with this news I don’t see a long life in store for the new 90210.
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