Watch chilling new ‘Homeland’ trailer

By NT

Have the past nine months of your life been devoid of a bipolar spy/POW turncoat/Islamic militant love triangles? Are the unresolved images of a sweaty, faulty-explosive garbed ginger and manic, unmedicated Golden Globe winner haunting your dreams? Well you’re in luck: The second season of Homeland returns next month, and to get us ready for the much anticipated sophomore season Showtime released the following trailer packed with dynamic new footage. Beyond the foreboding images, the most striking aspect of this trailer is Scala & Kolacny Brothers’ version of “Every Breath You Take,” the same chilling voices behind the Radiohead “Creep” cover featured in 2010’s The Social Network trailer. Now go get your Brody-lovin’ fix.

Homeland Season 2 premieres Sun., Sept. 30 at 10 p.m. ET on Showtime.

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‘The Newsroom’s’ Charlie Skinner is the man

When he’s not threatening to take out Reese Lansing’s teeth, “one punch at a time,” Charlie Skinner can be found drinking, wearing bow-ties, or making the best facial expressions man has ever seen. And in the season finale, The Greater Fool, Charlie said this:

I mean honestly, do I really need to say anything else?

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Breaking Bad Power Rankings: Buyout

By TNW Staff

Welcome to the latest edition of TNW’s Breaking Bad Power Rankings. “Power” might seem like a cut-and-dry metric in the meth realm, but it’s anything but in the blogosphere. Here, we’re weighing likeability and compelling plot threads as much as actual street clout, so look for movement on a weekly basis. Be sure to brush up on last week’s rankings before continuing.

Spoiler Warning: This post contains details through “Buyout” (Season 5, Episode 6).

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Taste of Thrones: Arya the cat meows intro music

In case the news that Ciaran Hinds, aka Rome’s Julius Caesar, has been cast as King Beyond the Wall Mance Rayder wasn’t exciting enough, we bring you another bit of essential offseason Game of Thrones news: A Thrones fan has posted a video of his cat, the aptly named Arya, meowing the show’s theme song. Quality.

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Breaking Bad Power Rankings: Dead Freight

By TNW Staff

Welcome to the latest edition of TNW’s Breaking Bad Power Rankings. “Power” might seem like a cut-and-dry metric in the meth realm, but it’s anything but in the blogosphere. Here, we’re weighing likeability and compelling plot threads as much as actual street clout, so look for movement on a weekly basis. In fact, we’ve got a new No. 1 for the fourth week in a row. Be sure to brush up on last week’s rankings before continuing.

Spoiler Warning: This post contains details through “Dead Freight” (Season 5, Episode 5).

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‘The Newsroom’ is Late for Dinner, but right on time with ‘Tragedy Porn’

By AY

Charlie, Mack and Will had to stare the ratings reality in the face in ‘Blackout Part I: Tragedy Porn.’

Spoiler Warning: This post contains information through the most recent episode of The Newsroom, “Blackout Part I: Tragedy Porn″ (Season 1, Episode 8).

“Blackout Part 1: Tragedy Porn” wasn’t what I expected in the slightest. The promos strongly hinted that this would be a Casey Anthony, Anthony Weiner-centric episode, and therefore full of lots of drama. But what I thought was going to be an episode in the vein of “5/1” ended up charting new territory for The Newsroom. I think one of the show’s biggest strengths is its ability to constantly reinvent its approach to storytelling. Sure, there have been more than a few missteps this season, but I think Aaron Sorkin’s drama benefits significantly from creative, often nonlinear efforts to move the plot forward and reveal more about the characters we have grown to love and loathe this season. Sunday’s episode was a prime example of this, as we were thrown into the middle of a NewsNightdebate over whether the show should be forced to cover the Casey Anthony trial due to sagging ratings. In one corner we have Mackenzie, the pillar of journalistic integrity and high mighty professionalism (constant emotional outbursts and personal screw-ups aside) railing against having to capitalize on the death of a child for ratings; in the other we have Charlie and … Will! Yes, we see Will “Mission to Civilize” McAvoy succumb to the ratings beast and to the threats of Leona Lansing. Do they like it? Absolutely not, but they know it’s for a greater purpose.

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Louie’s past is everywhere in ‘Ikea/Piano Lesson’

By Edward Appleby

Louie faces the past — and present — on a somber evening.

SPOILER WARNING: This post contains information from the latest episode of Louie, “Ikea/Piano Lesson” (Season 3, Episode 7).

The stand-up cutaway bits in Louie serve a valuable purpose beyond laughs: While the scripted segments are clearly filmed through Louie’s eyes, the stand-up bits hammer home their messages and themes, as the man is conveying them directly to us. There are none of the typical stand-up bits in “Ikea/Piano Lesson,” but we do see Louie (and others) on stage doing their thing, and it kind of serves the same purpose: To remind us you can’t escape your past, no matter how embarrassing or unbearable it might be.

Louie is watching TV after a long day (more on that later) when he comes across an old stand-up special featuring a much younger, skinnier, full-hair-of-head’d version of himself. To better assess the downward slide of his physical appearance, he pulls up a webcam image of his modern day self and is glum at the comparatively virile — and seemingly much happier — man he used to be. Retro performances from Sarah Silverman and Marc Maron lead him to remember to touch base with an old friend and bury an old beef, respectively.

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Breaking Bad Power Rankings: Fifty-One

By TNW Staff

Welcome to the latest edition of TNW’s Breaking Bad Power Rankings. “Power” might seem like a cut-and-dry metric in the meth realm, but it’s anything but in the blogosphere. Here, we’re weighing likeability and compelling plot threads as much as actual street clout, so look for movement on a weekly basis. And be sure to brush up on last week’s rankings before continuing.

Spoiler Warning: This post contains details through “Fifty-One” (Season 5, Episode 4).

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Hiccups remain, but ‘The Newsroom’ scores another win with ‘5/1’

By AY

Neal, Lisa, Lonny and the rest of the team watch Will break the Bin Laden news to the world.

Spoiler Warning: This post contains information through the most recent episode of The Newsroom, “5/1” (Season 1, Episode 7).

Given how incredible last week’s “Bullies” episode was, I knew this would probably be a come-down week for The Newsroom. I also knew that because we were spared the usual Don-Maggie-Jim pain in the last episode, we’d probably have more than our fill this week. But I have to say: Whether due to the subject matter or the ensemble feel, “5/1” nabbed a spot in the win column for me despite several notable flaws.

The episode kicks off at a party in Will’s apartment to celebrate the one year (and one week) anniversary of NewsNight 2.0. While the party opening failed miserably in “I’ll Try To Fix You,” Aaron Sorkin definitely handled it better this time around, though Jim and Maggie debating Jim’s future with Lisa was definitely a low point. And blind Guitar Hero?! Don’t even get me started on that one. We do get a tolerable fix of fun, non-newsy character moments (umm, who doesn’t love Neal’s girlfriend Kaylee?), including Will getting high as a kite, and a lot of play for Newsroom standout Charlie.

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‘Louie’ picks up the comedic pace in ‘Barney/Never’

By Edward Appleby

In ‘Barney/Never’ Louie is joined by a guest star Robin.

SPOILER WARNING: This post contains information from the latest episode of Louie, “Barney/Never” (Season 3, Episode 6).

Louie has already been through its share of emotions and tones so far this season, but “Barney/Never” marked the first time this year that the show was funny in a direct, tangible way. There have been humorous moments born from awkwardness (“Something Is Wrong,” “Miami”), there’s been comedy from shock value (“Telling Jokes/Set Up”), but this episode more clearly fit into the “comedy” category than any since “Come On, God,” the eighth episode of Season 2.

After the “epic” (by Louie standards) two-episode narrative of “Daddy’s Girlfriend,” “Barney/Never” is a bit of a breather, fitting two vignettes with no stand-up bits — another first this season. But the episode’s two halves are together for a reason; they’re focused on two characters who have a lot in common despite being on opposite ends of the life spectrum. In Barney, the deceased scheming stand-up promoter, and Never, the delightfully pudgy weirdo who goes to the same school as Louie’s daughter Lily and who is forced into Louie’s care for an afternoon, we see patently unlikable people who long for human connection anyway.

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