Tag Archives: alan tudyk

TV Review: Powerless S1E4 Emily Dates a Henchman

powerlessbigWhen Emily sets her sights on the dating world she unknowingly falls for one of the Riddler’s henchmen; Teddy and Ron find a Batman artifact and discover Van’s superhero fantasy.

Powerless continues it’s slow climb in improvement as it adds a little personal dating experiences to the workplace comedy. While it’s still focused on the office, the various stories in this episode gets characters out of work for what feels like more than usual.

This series is absolutely the most improved of the comic batch. After a rough debut, each episode has improved on the last delivering cute chuckles though not quite the comedic slamdunk that we’ve seen in previous NBC Thursday night comedies.

This episode focuses on two stories, the first being Emily meeting a guy at a bar… and he turns out to be a henchman. The second involves Teddy and Ron finding a batarang and attempting to lure Batman in to meet him.

Each have their good and bad and the series as a whole is doing a much better job of working in the comic aspects of the world its set in, more so than just a name check here and there. The henchman? He works for the Riddler in a getup that has a bit of a throwback to Batman ’66 in its simple style. Robert Buckley guests as the henchmen and for those who watch The CW’s iZombie, you’ll recognize him as Major. Buckley brings a similar swagger to this role as he does that one. He has solid comedic timing in a dry sort of way and it’s fun to see yet another “comic” actor cross over into another property. It’s the details of this plot that really stand out like a ring’s imprint left on Buckley’s face that he chalks up to a rock.

The batarang plot is a bit mixed. The concept is good, but the execution doesn’t quite work. Van comes into it and his inclusion complicates what could easily have been a funny plot of the two trying to meet Batman and using the weapon to do so. Alan Tudyk‘s Van distracts a bit making what is two kids excited to meet their hero into something that’s a bit odder.

The show seems strongest when it keeps things simple with subtle hints and jokes. It’s not the outright name drop that makes the series work, it’s when a ring’s imprint is the ring of a superhero. The series seems to be recognizing that and going in that direction. Four episodes in, it’s getting its footing and showing some impressive improvement. I almost gave up after an episode, but happy I’ve stuck around and excited to see where the series is by the end of its first season. While it’s not quite breaking new ground, it’s getting its formula down and so far that’s working for it.

Overall Rating: 6.95

TV Review: Powerless S1E3 Sinking Day

powerlessbigAfter the ream loses a client due to Van’s incompetence, Emily tries to clinch a deal with Atlantis; Van’s father gives him a chance to redeem himself; Teddy and Ron are convinced that new employee Alex is a superhero.

The third episode of Powerless continues to show improvement as the series finds its footing and this third episode brings the funny with a twisted humor mostly at display in the beginning.

I panned the first episode of Powerless. I hated it, really really hated it. That was to a point I almost didn’t watch the second episode. But, like the second episode this third one continues to improve and it’s clear the writers are getting a better sense of their characters and vision for the show.

The core entertainment of the show isn’t Vanessa Hudgens’ Emily Locke, it’s the trio of Danny Pudi, Christina Kirk, and Ron Funches as Teddy, Jackie, and Ron. The trio are nailing it when it comes to the comedy of the show and the writers are giving them solid material to work with. This episode displays a bite with running jokes about race and nationality and does so in a way that’s actually funny. Hudgens does show improvement too as her enthusiasm is dialed back making her character fit in a bit more with the rest of the ensemble.

The episode itself is goofy workplace comedy that mixes the company’s need to get a big client after losing Ace Chemicals (yes the company that created the Joker, with clown joke included), with the new employee who might be a superhero, and jokes about Atlantis. It all comes together and works in a non-groundbreaking but still entertaining way. The show is generally safe, though shows it might not always play it as such in the future.

The third episode improves on the second which was a massive improvement on the first. I’m hoping we see more of this as the show mixes a workplace comedy with nerd cred. While it looks like the writers are getting that down they’re also allowing its actors to begin to shine and doing that by delivering entertainment material to work with.

Overall Rating: 6.95

TV Review: Powerless S1E2 Wayne Dream Team

powerlessbigThe second episode of Powerless sees a superhero power up in a good way. When Emily tries to get the members of her team excited about a new product idea, she can’t get them to break their obsession with a Fantasy Super Hero League; Van makes plans to be included in the Wayne dream-team photo.

I panned the first episode of Powerless. I hated it, really really hated it. That was to a point I almost didn’t watch the second episode. But, I’m glad I did as the second episode is a vast improvement, quickly being the most improved show I’ve watched of the season.

The superhero battles are minimized instead focusing on workplace situations we can relate to and actual jokes! The first few minutes of the show display the weird humor I was expecting and the first episode lacked.

Danny Puddi’s Teddy and Ron Funches’ Ron are allowed to connect with wonder twin superpowers and a sly twisted humor. A dialed down Vanessa Hudgens as Emily plays the straight man to their comedy chops.

After seeing the first episode, to me it feels like it was worked over and over creating a muddled mess. This second episode is much more straightforward in its humor, writing, and situation.

This is a workplace comedy now that just so happens to have superheroes, as opposed to a comedy that’s trying to show its superhero chops. There’s a difference and a big one.

With such an improvement I’m hoping we see more over the coming episodes. We see glimpses of a potentially really funny show with some awesome nerd cred. The key is whether those behind the scenes recognize that as well.

Overall Rating: 6.85

TV Review: Powerless S1E1 Wayne or Lose

powerlessbigIn the first episode of Powerless Emily begins her first day, and quickly learns that her expectations far exceed those of her new boss, Van Wayne, and her co-workers.

The concept of Powerless was something that had me excited when I first heard it announced. The concept of regular folks having to deal with the destruction of superhero battles sounded fun, plus it being a comedy had me intrigued. The cast of Vanessa Hudgens, Alan Tudyk, Danny Pudi, and Ron Funches had me really excited. And then I watched its debut episode.

The concept of the series has changed a bit since it was first announced. The new concept involves creating products for people to deal with the superhero world around them, which is fine, but writing that thinks that just dropping a superhero name is a passable script and acting that feels more at home on stage than the screen is a combination for a first episode that longs for the villain highlighted to snuff everyone out.

Lets start with the writing. You know this is a comic related show… because everyone name drops a character every segment there is. Superman, the Joker, whomever, it gets annoying to the point it feels like someone is attempting to remind you of it over and over. Unlike a comedy set in the world of DC Comics, this feels like DC Comics was first and the comedy is second. We even get a wink at the end that maybe they’ll get the meet someone comic fans will know! Seriously, there’s a wink.

The next issue is, it’s a comedy that’s just not funny. I laughed once during the half hour. The humor amounts to a villain warning the city to feel his balls… of fire. It’s top notch humor. Award winning stuff. Really breakthrough.

The acting is a massive issue. Hudgens is the lead and her style feels like it belongs on the stage. Everything is over the top for emoting and made for a view from the distance, not a small screen. Everyone else isn’t quite as over the top, but with her being the center it’s just not good. Everyone doesn’t feel natural but exaggerated. The choice is bizarre.

I don’t even want to get into the special fx…

After watching this first episode, I now know why NBC didn’t respond to my requests for a review copy to check out ahead of time. I thought I saw one of the worst comic tv adaptations in Marvel’s Powers, but Powerless tops it and then some in dreadful writing, special fx, and acting. This might be one of the worst television shows I’ve watched in years.

Overall Rating: 3.5

Big Hero 6 Disney XD Series Gets it Voice Cast

Disney XD’s upcoming animated series Big Hero 6, based on Walt Disney Animation Studios’ Academy Award-winning feature film inspired by the Marvel comics of the same name, will reunite much of the original cast for its 2017 debut. Reprising their roles are: Maya Rudolph as Aunt Cass; Jamie Chung as no-nonsense, speed genius Go Go; Scott Adsit as huggable robot Baymax; Alan Tudyk as tech guru Alistair Krei; Ryan Potter as tech genius Hiro; Genesis Rodriguez as quirky scientist Honey Lemon; David Shaughnessy as the butler Heathcliff; and Marvel Comics legend Stan Lee as Fred’s dad.

Also joining the main voice cast are Khary Payton as control freak Wasabi and Brooks Wheelan as fanboy Fred.

The film, from Walt Disney Animation Studios, was inspired by the Marvel comic created by Man of Action.

The series picks up immediately following the events of the feature film and continues the adventures and friendship of 14-year-old tech genius Hiro and his compassionate, cutting-edge robot Baymax. Along with their friends Wasabi, Honey Lemon, Go Go and Fred, they form the legendary superhero team Big Hero 6 and embark on high-tech adventures as they protect their city from an array of scientifically enhanced villains. In his normal day-to-day life, Hiro faces daunting academic challenges and social trials as the new prodigy at San Fransokyo Institute of Technology.

Additional guest cast includes: Jenifer Lewis as strict Professor Granville; Andrew Scott as villain Obake; comedian Andy Richter as Globby; Diedrich Bader as Bluff Dunder; Susan Sullivan as Fred’s mother; Sean Giambrone as Richardson Mole; John Ross Bowie as Mel; and Haley Tju as classmate Karmi.

Emmy Award winners Mark McCorkle, Bob Schooley and Nick Filippi, the team behind the global hit Disney Channel series “Kim Possible,” serve as executive producers. Filippi also serves as supervising director. Big Hero 6 is a production of Disney Television Animation.

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Review: Con Man’s Spectrum #1

spectrum #1 coverThe survivors of a brutal alien invasion converge on the last military base on Earth. Ambushed and outgunned, pilot Cash Wayne and Captain James Raaker have to figure out how to escape in a spaceship no one has ever flown! Firefly stars Alan Tudyk and Nathan Fillion explore the world of “Spectrum,” the cancelled-too-soon show-within-a-show from their hit web series, Con Man!

Ok, let me start with saying I’ve yet to watch Con Man, so the whole concept of this comic series is unknown to me. I know it’s a “Firefly” like series, but the specifics aren’t one I have. Whether that’s good or bad I can’t say, but what I can say is… I really enjoyed this first issue.

I’m not a fan of Firefly (feel free to beat me up in the comments), so going into reading Con Man’s Spectrum #1 I was a bit hesitant as to what I was going to find. The first issue is entertaining. It throws you quickly into the action and this world and as the main characters learn what’s going on, we the readers do as well. Things aren’t laid out easily for the reader forcing us to pay attention to get the details. It’s clear writers PJ Haarsma and Alan Tudyk have things down, though. The comic is well-paced, entertaining, and most importantly fun.

The art by Sarah Stone and Jason Johnson is awesome. I’ve liked Stone’s style for a while and it continues here with a look that I can only describe as “Western manga influenced.” If you like the series cover, the interior is just as good, this isn’t a bait and switch that can happen too often. The only knock I’ll say is that some of the panels are dark and with the coloring, it’s hard to tell exactly what’s going on, but that adds to the atmosphere of the chaos going on. So maybe it was done on purpose?

Can a comic get me to check out a television show? It looks like it because I want to now see what Con Man is all about. This comic was fun and entertaining and I’m definitely coming back for more.

Story: PJ Haarsma, Alan Tudyk Art: Jason Johnson, Sarah Stone
Story: 8.1 Art: 8.3 Overall: 8.1 Recommendation: Buy

NBC is Powerless Against DC’s Newest TV Show

Powerless - Season PilotThe life of a superhero is serious business… most of the time.

It’s been announced that NBC has given a series order to DC Comic‘s newest television series, Powerless.

The single-camera comedy stars Vanessa Hudgens, along with Danny Pudi, Alan Tudyk and Christina Kirk. The show offers a “working man’s view of superheroes.” It’s the first comedy series set within the DC Universe.

The official description has been released:

Vanessa Hudgens plays Emily, a spunky young insurance adjuster specializing in regular-people coverage against damage caused by the crime-fighting superheroes. It’s when she stands up to one of these larger-than-life figures (after an epic battle messes with her commute) that she accidentally becomes a cult “hero” in her own right … even if it’s just to her group of lovably quirky co-workers. Now, while she navigates her normal, everyday life against an explosive backdrop, Emily might just discover that being a hero doesn’t always require superpowers.

The pilot episode was written by Ben Queen who will also serve as Executive Producer along with the pilot’s director, Michael Patrick Jann.

The show is the second DC property to air on NBC in recent years. Constantine lasted one season on the channel. Currently The Flash, Arrow, and DC’s Legends of Tomorrow airs on The CW; Gotham and Lucifer air on Fox; Preacher will air on AMC; Krypton has a pilot order from Syfy; and Supergirl‘s fate is unknown over at CBS.

Con Man is Coming to Comic-Con HQ!

Lionsgate has announced that the record-breaking web series Con Man, executive produced by the science fiction dream team of Alan Tudyk, Nathan Fillion and author PJ Haarsma, will call Comic-Con HQ home. Comic-Con HQ is the new subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) destination that will extend the experience of San Diego Comic-Con into a year-round event.

Season one of Con Man will be exclusively available for streaming on Comic-Con HQ when the platform launches this summer.  Comic-Con HQ will also produce a second season of the series which will debut on the service later this year.

Created by Tudyk and produced with Haarsma and Fillion, Con Man has been fan-driven from inception. The series was funded via Indiegogo, resulting in a record-breaking $3.2 million. With the support of over 46,000 fans from around the world, Con Man now stands as one of the highest funded film campaigns on any crowdfunding platform ever.

The first season drew appearances by Tricia Helfer, Amy Acker, Gina Torres, Sean Maher, Felicia Day, Seth Green, Mindy Sterling, Jewel Staite, Summer Glau, Sean Astin and filmmakers James Gunn and Joss Whedon.

Loosely based on Tudyk’s and Fillion’s experiences starring in Firefly, Con Man centers on the post-show life of Wray Nerely (Tudyk), the co-star of “Spectrum,” a sci-fi TV series canceled before its time that later became a cult classic beloved by fans. Wray’s best friend, Jack Moore (Fillion) starred as the series’ Captain and has gone on to become a major celebrity, while Wray continues to struggle to find his big break. While Jack enjoys the life of an A-lister, Wray is the begrudging guest of sci-fi conventions, comic book store appearances and different pop culture events. The series explores these events and all the crazy and real things that happen behind the scenes in the world of fandom.

The second season of Con Man, premiering in late 2016, focuses on Wray’s attempt to propel himself from B-movie sci-fi actor to esteemed mainstream leading man, while maintaining the respect of his Spectrum fans, former co-stars and Jack in the process. Tudyk and Fillion reprise their roles as Wray and Jack, with several other familiar faces to be announced.

Season 1 will be available via Comic-Con HQ next month, following the platform’s beta launch on May 7th, Free Comic Book Day. Fans who join Comic-Con HQ during the first two weeks of beta launch will be entered to win an all-expenses paid trip to San Diego Comic-Con 2016.

Preview: Spectrum #0

SPECTRUM #0

by PJ Haarsma & Alan Tudyk, illo. by Sarah Stone
Pages: 32
Format: Comic Book
SRP: FREE
Publisher: Automatic Publishing
Distributor: Diamond Comic Distributors
Issue #0
Pub Date: May 7, 2016
Item Code: JAN160018

Alan Tudyk and Nathan Fillion present Spectrum, a page-turning sci-fi adventure from the record-breaking web series, Con Man!

After a vicious attack from an alien invading force devastates the globe, the survivors converge on the last military base on Earth. Ambushed and outgunned, pilot Cash Wayne and Captain James Raaker have to figure out how to escape in the Spectrum, a spaceship no one has ever flown! And escape is just the start of the trouble, at least according to Raaker’s prophetic dreams. His ship of beleaguered refugees might be the last hope for a mysterious presence known as The Scion who’s fighting a war that Earth has already lost.

Spectrum_00-Cover

Alan Tudyk and Nathan Fillion Launch Spectrum Comic Book

Spectrum_01-CoverWhen Alan Tudyk and Nathan Fillion crowd-funded their hit web series Con Man last April, the sci-fi fan-favorite actors struck a chord: a 735%-funded campaign at $3.2M that quickly became the largest crowd-funded web series in history. Now, the record-breaking duo are lending this magic to a comic book series. Spectrum, based on the show-within-a-show featured in Con Man, debuts on Free Comic Book Day next May at comic book stores nationwide.

Con Man, which starred Fillion and Tudyk as actors from a canceled cult sci-fi show, was a comedic look at the wild world of fandom and conventions. Spectrum will tell the story that launched their careers. In the comic, a vicious attack from an alien invading force devastates the globe, but the prophetic dreams of Captain James Raaker warn that the suffering has just started. Humanity’s last hope is escape in an untested spaceship built by a madman.

The four-issue series from Automatic Publishing will be written by Tudyk and novelist/producer PJ Haarsma with artwork by Sarah Stone and overseen by Shel Dorf Award-winning editor Shannon Eric Denton. The Free Comic Book Day offering is not a sampler or a preview, but the actual first issue of the series.

The first season of Con Man is now available on Vimeo, and centers on Wray Nerely (Tudyk), who has struggled to find his big break following the untimely cancellation of Spectrum, while his friend Jack Moore (Fillion) has become a major celebrity. Jack enjoys the life of an A-lister while Wray tours the sci-fi circuit as a guest of conventions, comic book stores, and pop culture events. The show explores the crazy (and real) behind-the-scenes antics in the world of fandom.

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