Saturday, September 16, 2006

CBS Sitcom Pilot Review: The Class - Premieres September 17th; My Name Is Earl Soundtrack Review; Bob Newhart's Book Review

The Class

The Class - Mondays at 8:00PM ET/PT on CBS
Premieres September 18th at 8:00PM ET/PT

THE CLASS is a comedy about the lives of a group of 20-somethings inextricably bound together by sharing the same third grade class. Ethan Haas (Jason Ritter) is head-over-heels in love with his fiancé, for whom he has planned the ultimate surprise party -- a reunion with their third grade classmates to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the day they met. The classmates include Lina Warbler (Heather Goldenhersh), who wears her heart on her sleeve and remains optimistic about love although she was recently dumped; her cynical twin sister, Kat Warbler (Lizzy Kaplan), whose sarcastic tongue hides her kind heart; Duncan Carmello (Jon Bernthal), the well-liked boy in school who is in a band and still lives with his mother Tina (Julie Halston) with whom he constantly bickers; Kyle Lendo (Sean Maguire), who every girl had a crush on and is now happily in love with his live-in boyfriend; Richie Velch (Jesse Tyler Ferguson), a happy kid whose life has gone downhill since third grade until the reunion invitation sparked his curiosity; Holly Ellenbogen (Lucy Punch), whose heart was broken when Kyle cheated on her at the high school prom and can't wait to show him what a successful news anchor she's become and how happily married she is now to Perry (Sam Harris); and pretty, popular Nicole Allen (Andrea Anders), who was once in love with Duncan (Jon Bernthal) and is now the unfulfilled trophy wife of legendary football star/BBQ-grill spokesman Yonk Allen (David Keith). Two decades later, a group of grade-schoolers' lives intersect once again, giving them the uncommon opportunity to learn how everyone turned out and to rebuild old friendships.

PRODUCED BY: craneklarik productions, in association with Warner Bros. Television

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: David Crane, Jeffrey Klarik and James Burrows

Cast: Jason Ritter as Ethan Haas, Lizzy Caplan as Kat Warbler, Heather Goldenhersh as Lina Warbler, Jesse Tyler Ferguson as Richie Velch, Jon Bernthal as Duncan Carmello, Sean Maguire as Kyle Lendo, Lucy Punch as Holly Ellenbogen, Andrea Anders as Nicole Allen

Read our review of the pilot and second episode here.

Discuss the show after you watch it on Monday on our message board.

Related Links:

  • CBS.com Official Site
  • TV.com
  • epguides.com
  • Internet Movie Database
  • Wikipedia
  • The Class Photo Gallery

    Related Stories:

  • Jason Ritter goes to head of 'Class'
  • STAGE TO SCREENS: Chats with "Class" Actors Halston, Ferguson, Goldenhersh and Harris
  • Sara Gilbert Takes The Class
  • The Class at Classmates.com


    My Name Is Earl - The Album

    My Name Is Earl - The Album (Shout! Factory, MSRP: $18.98)

    The soundtrack to the #1 NBC comedy features brand-new, never-before-released tracks from Matthew Sweet, Uncle Kracker, John Hiatt and rock newcomers Van Nuys, recorded exclusively for the soundtrack. In addition, the album includes some of Earl’s favorite songs used in episodes which aired during the premiere ’05-’06 season. The soundtrack also contains key sound bytes from the show, and an unheard vocal version of the “My Name Is Earl” theme song.

    Here is the track listing:

    1. I'm The Bandit (TV Dialogue) (:13)
    2. Jerry Reed - East Bound and Down (From the Movie "Smokey and the Bandit") (From "Stole Beer From a Golfer" Episode) (2:46)
    3. Uncle Kracker - The Weight (New Recording) (Original Version by The Band is in "Monkeys in Space" Episode) (4:58)
    4. Los Lobos - One Time One Night (From "Didn't Pay Taxes" Episode) (4:50)
    5. Young M.C. - Bust a Move (From "Ruined Joy's Wedding" Episode) (4:23)
    6. Matthew Sweet - Livin' Thing (New Recording) (Original Version by ELO is in "Quit Smoking" Episode) (3:39)
    7. Rob Base & D.J. E-Z Rock - It Takes two (From the series "Pilot" and "Bounty Hunter" Episodes) (5:00)
    8. Sammy Davis, Jr. - Smoke! Smoke! Smoke! (That Cigarette) (From "Quit Smoking" Episode) (3:03)
    9. Lynyrd Skynyrd - Gimme Three Steps (From "Ruined Joy's Wedding" Episode) (4:40)
    10. Harry Nilsson - Joy (From "Something To Live For" Episode) (3:43)
    11. Jerry Reed - Amos Moses (From "Teacher Earl" Episode) (2:26)
    12. John Hiatt - Instant Karma (New Recording) (Original Version by John Lennon - not used in any episode)
    13. Nescobar-a-lop-lop and the Camden County Band - What Goes Around Comes Around (My Name Is Earl theme song - vocal version) (3:09)
    14. Van Nuys - 99 Red Balloons (Original Version by Nena is in the "Pilot" Episode) (3:37)

    My Review: There is a ton of music used in every My Name Is Earl episode. Most episodes used 3-6 songs. By my own unofficial count going by various online music lists (hey NBC, please update your site - it only goes up to episode 9!), there were around 100 songs used in season 1. Breaking down the 14 tracks on the soundtrack: there are 8 songs that were originally in the episodes, 3 covers of songs that were in the episodes, 2 songs not featured in any episode, and 1 quote.
    I love My Name Earl and the music they select for the episodes, but this soundtrack was a bit of a letdown and could have been so much better. There is a little over 50 minutes worth of music here. I think they could have added a few additional songs. Some great classics would have been awesome on here: George Thorogood & The Destroyers - "Who Do You Love?" and "Bad to the Bone"; Ram Jam - "Black Betty"; The Chamber Brothers - "Time Has Come Today," Blue Oyster Cult - "Don't Fear the Reaper," Wilson Pickett - "Mustang Sally," and Bachman-Turner Overdrive - "Takin' Care of Business" and "Roll on Down the Highway." If they could include 2 Jerry Reed songs, why not Harry Nilsson's "Everybody's Talkin'"? I guess it all comes down to music licensing rights and what they are able to get. I would have loved to hear a few of the memorable score tracks by composers Danny Lux and Mark Leggett. My favorite songs on this compilation were the 2 Jerry Reed songs, Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Gimme Three Steps," and Harry Nilsson's "Joy." The cover songs and new recordings were ok. My favorite of the bunch was Uncle Kracker's "The Weight." The vocal version of the theme wasn't my taste. I'm glad they just use a simple instrumental theme for the opening credits. The quotes that they tacked on the end of most of the songs were funny and memorable, but I would have preferred them as separate tracks. The booklet includes some notes from Earl to his brother Randy and a number of photos of the cast. Recommended for die-hard Earl fans and for people who like the artists that have new recordings on this soundtrack.

    -- Reviewed by Todd
    (3/5 stars)

    To purchase the CD, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
    Amazon.com

    Don't forget My Name Is Earl - Season One will be available on DVD on September 19th. It has all 24 season episode episodes and is jam-packed with extras. Look for our detailed review in the next day or so on our main page, DVD Reviews archive page, or via our RSS feed.

    Related Links:

  • My Name Is Earl Official Site at NBC.com
  • My Name Is Earl Fan Site
  • TV.com
  • epguides.com
  • Internet Movie Database
  • Wikipedia
  • My Name Is Earl Message Board
  • My Name Is Earl Photo Gallery


    Bob Newhart "I Shouldn't Even Be Doing This! (And Other Things That Strike Me as Funny)(Hyperion, $23.95) brings the TV legend as an author! We reviewed his stand-up concert last week and now we will take a look at his book! On September 19, when you purchase The Bob Newhart Show Season 4 on DVD (see our main reviews page for a review), take a look around for his newly released book, I Shouldn't Even Be Doing This! (And Other Things That Strike Me as Funny). Bob Newhart brings his classic brand of wry humor to this 239 page book. Some would call it an autobiography, but I would say it's simply Newhart's way of making America laugh at what has occurred to him through the years.
    Bob Newhart's television shows include the hits The Bob Newhart Show and Newhart. He's guest-hosted for The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson 87 times and he's starred in numerous major motion pictures throughout the years and recently has made several guest apperances on some hit shows, such as Desperate Housewives and ER for which he even earned an Emmy nomination!
    In this book, Newhart gives his brilliant views on many topics, ranging from flying, family holidays, golf, his life as an accountant to his years as TV show star. He also tosses in some very funny stories fromm his life and career.
    Such is the life of Bob Newhart, America's favorite comedian, so make September 19 'Bob Newhart Day' and pick up his book, his television show and his newly released concert "Bob Newhart Button Down Concert."
    -- Reviewed by Shawn Eaton
    (5/5 stars)

    To purchase the book, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
    Amazon.com

    Related links:
    Bob's official website

  • Sitcoms Airing Tonight

    Thursday, October 19

    Superstore - "Workplace Bullying" (NBC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
    Tensions arise among the employees after an attempted robbery, pitting Dina (Lauren Ash) against Jonah (Ben Feldman). Meanwhile, Glenn (Mark McKinney) has a tough time firing the store security guard, and Amy (America Ferrera) discovers that her coworkers have been hanging out without her.

    The Good Place - "The Trolley Problem" (NBC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
    Chidi (William Jackson Harper) and Eleanor (Kristen Bell) tackle a famous ethical dilemma, leading to a conflict with Michael (Ted Danson). Meanwhile, Tahani (Jameela Jamil) harbors a secret and confides in Janet (D'Arcy Carden).

    Will & Grace - "Grandpa Jack" (NBC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
    Jack (Sean Hayes) is stunned to learn that his estranged son, Elliot (guest star Michael Angarano) has a son of his own, Skip (guest star Jet Jurgensmeyer). Moreover, Skip needs the kind of help only Will (Eric McCormack) and Jack can provide. Grace (Debra Messing) and Karen (Megan Mullally) behave badly with the hot new guy at work.

    Great News - "Award Show" (NBC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
    For the first time in years, "The Breakdown" has been nominated for an American Journalism Award. Katie (Briga Heelan) is looking forward to spending the night as a peer with the very reporters she has admired her whole life. Fearing her mother will ruin it, Katie tries to stop Carol (Andrea Martin) from attending but is unsuccessful when Carol secures a position as a seat-filler. Katie is stuck babysitting her mom all night but gets distracted by Jeremy (guest star Reid Scott), a handsome New York Times reporter who looks down on cable news. Chuck (John Michael Higgins) is excited to reunite with all of his old anchormen friends, especially Len Archer (guest star Christopher McDonald), an idol of Chuck's who is receiving a lifetime achievement award.

    Better Things - "Eulogy" (FX, 10:00PM ET/PT)
    Sam demands satisfaction.

    Complete TV Listings


    Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of October 16)

    Thursday, October 19

    • Tracy Morgan (30 Rock/The Tracy Morgan Show) - Catch Tracy on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
    • Paul Shaffer (A Year at the Top) - Paul sits in with Cleto and The Cletones on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
    • Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory) - Jim is a guest on a repeat of Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
    • Michael Keaton (Working Stiffs/All's Fair) - Michael appears on a repeat of The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
    • Amy Landecker (Transparent) - Amy is a guest on a repeat of Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
    • Carl Reinder (The Dick Van Dyke Show) - Carl appears on a repeat of Conan at 11pm on TBS.
    • Garcelle Beauvais (The Jamie Foxx Show) - Garcelle guest co-hosts The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
    • Cedric Yarbrough (Speechless/Reno 911!) - Cedric is a guest on Steve, so check your local listings.
    • Angela Kinsey (Haters Back Off/Your Family or Mine/The Office) - Angela talks about the new season of her Netflix show Haters Back Off on the People Now at 8:30am.
    • Jeff Garlin (The Goldbergs/Curb Your Enthusiasm) - Jeff appears on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.
    • Henry Winkler (Happy Days/Out of Practice) - Henry is a guest on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
    • Hayley Orrantia (The Goldbergs) - Hayley appears on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
    • Joanna Garcia Swisher (Reba/Better with You) - Joanna teams up with Michael Symon in the kitchen, giving the scoop on her new show and whipping up a tasty dish on ABC's The Chew at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT. She also talks about Kevin (Probably) Saves the World on the AOL Build Show at 11am.
    • Redman (Method & Red) - Redman appears on the AOL Build Show at 3pm.
    • Debra Messing and Eric McCormack (Will & Grace) - Debra and Eric are guests on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.


    New on DVD/Blu-ray (June/July/August)

    Father Knows Best - Season Six Diff'rent Strokes - The Complete Sixth Season Alice - The Complete Fifth Season Rhoda - Season Four Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Four

    06/13 - The Andy Griffith Show - Return to Mayberry
    06/13 - That's My Mama - The Complete Series
    06/20 - Workaholics - The Final (Seventh) Season
    06/20 - Workaholics - The Complete Series
    06/27 - The Jamie Foxx Show - The Complete Third Season
    07/04 - Superstore - Season Two
    07/18 - Father Knows Best - Season Six
    07/25 - Diff'ernt Strokes - The Complete Sixth Season
    07/25 - Girls - The Final (Sixth) Season (Blu-ray)
    08/01 - Alice - The Complete Fifth Season (WBShop.com)
    08/01 - Crashing - The Complete First Season (Blu-ray)
    08/15 - Rhoda - Season Four
    08/22 - Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Four
    08/29 - Will & Grace - Season One (Universal)
    More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest