Tag Archives: Nina Dobrev

2009 Fall TV Season Report Card

Seeing as the Fall TV season has been up and running for a couple of weeks now, thought we’d finally weigh in on the crop of new shows. The good news is that, so far, most of the shows we’ve watched have been good. Seriously, I can’t remember the last time we added this many new shows to our Tivo Season Pass!

"The Beautiful Life: TBL" on The CW

"The Vampire Diaries" on The CW

"Melrose Place" on The CW

And though some of the most heavily-promoted new shows kinda sucked (I’m talking to you, “Cougar Town”) some of them are actually totally deserving of the hype (“The Vampire Diaries”, “The Good Wife”, “Modern Family”, etc.). But rather than bore you with long, detailed descriptions of the shows in question, we felt an annotated report card would be much more to the point.

So, without further ado, I give you our first annual Fall TV Season report card…enjoy!

Letter Grade: A+

“The Vampire Diaries” (The CW) – Long-lost loves, family secrets, dark, brooding vampires in high school…what’s not to love here? “Twilight” be damned, this show is the best of the crop so far…and the fact that it stars mi “The American Mall” amiga, Nina Dobrev, certainly doesn’t hurt. If you haven’t already, you must Tivo this show!

“Modern Family” (ABC) – This show has only aired twice and we laughed our asses off and cried during both episodes. A really sweet, heartfelt and hilarious look at one crazy extended family. Awesome!

“Glee” (FOX) – Best new show that started airing last season. It’s like co-creator Ryan Murphy threw his old WB show “Popular” in a giant pot, boiled away the fat and cheese and created something truly magical. “Glee” is a pleasure to watch from start to finish.

“The Good Wife” (CBS) – This show looked like such a snooze when it was announced, but it is so much more than meets the eye. The cast is superb, particularly Julianna Margulies’ mouthy sidekick, Archie Panjabi, who truly electrifies every scene she’s in. I’m not kidding, these gals have onscreen chemistry to burn. And seeing Josh Charles, Chris Noth and Christine Baranski back on a weekly series is never a bad thing either.

Letter Grade: A

“Melrose Place” (The CW) – Already a hundred times better than the original series, and a million times better than the hideously-lame “90210″ remake that debuted last year, this “Melrose” is juicy, campy, sexy and best of all, crazy fun to watch. And unlike the new “90210″, the classic characters actually have a story and a reason to be there when they show up. Ooo, and speaking of, Heather Locklear is checking back in soon…so, bring on the awesomeness!

“Mercy” (NBC) – Didn’t expect this show to be good at all, but caught a few minutes of it in passing and am now totally hooked. Quirky characters that don’t annoy, zippy writing and a first-rate cast in a medical show about nurses? Wow, almost makes me forget that “ER” was canceled…

Letter Grade: B

“Accidentally On Purpose” (CBS) – I normally loathe Jenna Elfman, but it seems that I’ll watch anything to do with babies and pregnancy these days, so, I Tivoed the show. And, you know what? It’s not nearly as bad as it looks. I won’t Tivo it again, but you could find much worse ways to pass a half hour.

“The City” (MTV) – I know this show — a spin-off of the far-more-popular ‘The Hills” — is technically in it’s second season, but, wow, with two new alpha bitches on board, this is a brand new show in my book and it rocks!

Letter Grade: D

“Cougar Town” (ABC) – I am not easily offended, but the onslaught of crass, unfunny, gross-out jokes on this show made me wanna stop watching before the first commercial break. Yuck…just, yuck.

“Eastwick” (ABC) – Three charming female leads does not a series make. I don’t need a crystal ball to see that this mediocre reworking of an already mediocre movie is headed nowhere fast. Yikes…

“Trauma” (NBC) – The show opens with a kick-ass head-on collision between two helicopters in San Francisco, but it’s all downhill from there. Yawn…

Letter Grade: F

“The Beautiful Life: TBL” (The CW) – Models, runways, drugs, and a skeletal, strung-out Mischa Barton badly playing herself? What’s not to love? Well, amigos…everything. I don’t know what’s funnier…the fact that someone at the CW actually thought this show would be popular enough to warrant a cheesy nickname (“TBL”??) or the fact that it was deservedly canceled after two episodes. Urgh, what a train wreck…

Oh, yeah, and just for the record, these grades are for the episodes that have aired so far. So, if a cool show starts blowing chunks and getting all “Alias” or “Heroes” on us midseason, we reserve the right to change our grades. I mean, hello, it is only October…

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“The American Mall” airs tonight!

I’m sure I don’t have to remind you guys — after promoting the crap out of it for months now! — but my movie, “The American Mall”, finally airs tonight on MTV at 9:00PM. So, check it out!

And if for some reason you forget to Tivo it, no worries, because tomorrow, August 12th, “The American Mall” soundtrack and DVD go on sale online and in stores nationwide. I’m buying my copy at Sears of course, but I did scope out the Sunday supplements and Circuit City has the best price of the bunch. They are selling the DVD and the soundtrack as a combo for $20. Not bad!

Anyway, I gotta go “get my rock on” right now. Hope you dig the movie!

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“The American Mall” billboards

OK, I know I probably sound like the world’s most self-involved goober right now, but after doing some business in Hollywood yesterday, I actually drove around looking for “American Mall” billboards.

I had heard from my brother Ryan and my friend Patty that there were several buses driving around greater Los Angeles with “American Mall” posters on them — Ryan said he even had the oddly surreal thrill of seeing my name scroll into view outside the window of the El Pollo Loco where he was eating breakfast! Ha! — but until yesterday I had not seen any of these posters for myself.

So, like all first-time screenwriters, I cruised Sunset Blvd. stalking buses and looking for billboards for my new movie. And to my amazement, I actually found three gigantic billboards within a few blocks of one another in the heart of downtown Hollywood.

The easiest one to spot was towering over a shockingly-clean Mobil gas station on the corner of Sunset and LaBrea. This was also the easiest billboard to take pictures of as they had a parking lot…yeah!

Next up was a billboard perched way up high on an office tower near Sunset and Las Palmas. This one was harder to shoot as I had to hurriedly park in a red zone, ignore the glaring Cholo gangbangers at the bus stop nearby and snap away. Yikes…don’t try this at home.

And finally, the last billboard I found on my adventure was placed right on top of a really lovely little “rooms-by-the-hour” motel about half a block from Las Palmas. Kind of a seedy locale for a squeaky-clean poster like ours, but hey, at least they had a parking lot!

So, as the mumbling homeless couple on the corner stared at me like I was crazy, I just smiled and thought to myself…hey, if you squint real hard, you can almost see my name! Yeah!

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“The American Mall” premiere party @ The Cabana Club!

Located just around the corner from the Cinerama Dome, the Cabana Club on Ivar has a really cool “old Hollywood” vibe that I kinda love. There’s a little swimming pool-like water running through the place, bridges to the bar, and crazy cool cabanas everywhere you look. I swear to God, this joint is so retro, you half expect to see Louis B. Mayer boozing it up Errol Flynn in the corner.

"The American Mall" neon sign over the bar

"American Mall" after party @ the Cabana Club

Christine and I had been here once before, for the WGA’s post-strike “Contract Celebration Party” in March, but obviously, this party was a lot more fun. And unlike the WGA bash where the bar was only halfway “open”, on Monday night, the free drinks were flowing freely, amigos!

And though most of the food was delicious, I’d have to say the highlights were the “American Mall” cookies and the Ben & Jerry’s booth — there is a Ben & Jerry’s ice cream cart prominently featured in the movie — that came stocked with five yummy flavors of ice cream.

There was also a hugely popular Sears Arrive Lounge photo booth near the dance floor (we took two sets of pics) and an area where people could spread out and play MTV’s hit video game “Rock Band” — which is also featured kinda prominently in my movie. I know, I know…product placement much? But, hello, this movie is set in a mall…so, what better place to, um, place some products?

Ooo, speaking of branding. I know they probably do this at all the Hollywood premieres, but another thing I totally loved was the fact that they slapped “The American Mall” logo on EVERYTHING. Napkins, the food trays, cookies, a super cool neon sign over the bar, hell, even the wait staff and bartenders wore “American Mall” t-shirts. It was awesome!

But the highlight of the evening was really just chilling with the cast and crew from the movie. I had met all of the core cast members when I visited the set in Utah back in February, but Christine was meeting them all for the first time and had a blast. Everyone — and I mean everyone — both in front of and behind the camera was crazy nice! Seriously, it was like old home week…

I’m sure you’ll recognize some of the more famous guests at the party — Jai Rodriguez from “Queer Eye For The Straight Guy” told me he loved the movie as did the super cool African-American chick from “High School Musical”, Monique Coleman — but, mark my words, the rest of the “Mall” cast is gonna be huge. And they deserve it, because, in my totally unbiased opinion, they really rocked that mall hard, baby.

So with Christine’s feet ready to fall off — those heels were high, yo! — we stumbled back to our car just before midnight and hurried home to open our gift bags! Sadly, no “Rock Band”, but we did get some cool guitar string bracelets like the one the Ally character wears in the movie, “American Mall” t-shirts, stickers, a CD of the soundtrack and loads of Clean and Clear products…so, hey, not a bad way to end the night.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to rinse off my new deep-cleansing acne mask and go to bed. Que viva la Mall!

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“American Mall” desktop wallpapers @ the Arrive Lounge!

Hoorah! Remember that Sears Arrive Lounge I told you about a couple posts back? Well, it is fully operational and though you can’t order clothes there yet, you can explore the newest clothing collections by LL Cool J and “High School Musical” star Vanessa Hudgens! Wow…who knew they had clothing lines?

And even though “The American Mall” clothes don’t seem to be shown yet, you can download desktop wallpapers featuring four of the characters from the movie. You don’t have to use them as wallpapers on every computer in your house — like we did! — but they are still pretty fun, so, check them out on the Arrive Lounge downloads page.

Our favorites are the two Joey downloads, but I also really dig Penny and Ally’s as well. And of course, you gotta love nerdy old Ben kicking it old-school in that striped polo. In the movie Ben is mostly stuck wearing his bright yellow Weinerland food court uniform, so, I’m sure the change was a welcome one!

Anyway, even if back-to-school shopping is a thing from your distant…and I mean distant…past, the Arrive Lounge is still pretty cool. So, check it out!

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Back-to-school shopping @ “The American Mall”

With a nifty new Clean & Clear “The American Mall” premiere party sweepstakes already in the works on the movie’s official website, MTV announced plans this week for a massive promotional tie-in with Sears. Yep, you heard me…Sears!

Being a long-time Sears shopper — when we were kids, it was the only place my Dad had a credit card at, so we wore a lot of Sears brand finery in our day — I was kinda thrilled to learn that Sears stores nationwide would be pushing “Mall” hard in the next few months. I mean, hey, what better place to promote my mall movie than the place where I learned to shop. Cool, huh?

Timed to coincide with the crazy-profitable back-to-school shopping season, Reuters is describing the Sears partnership as: ”A multi-layered integrated marketing campaign built around the movie target[ing] the core MTV audience on-air, online and in stores — in time for the back-to-school shopping season.” Wow…you said it Reuters!

And let me tell ya, Sears isn’t missing a beat with this one. The Associated Press is reporting — yes, clearly I’ve been kind of over-googling lately — that Sears even has a new tagline for the back-to-school push: ‘Don’t just go back. Arrive”.

And even though they also announced a special website for the promo called the “Sears Arrive Lounge”, I was not able to load it this afternoon, so…not sure if it’s up and running yet.

And the Sears “Mall” mania doesn’t end there, folks. The venerable retail institution will also be featuring “Mall” cast members in their TV, radio, and print ads, distribute special VIP access cards to teens nationwide and even incorporate something called “Sears in-store experience zones”, which will feature “Mall” character looks as created through consultation with the movie’s costume designer, Cynthia Summers. Rock on, Cynthia!

But perhaps the coolest element of the Sears tie-in is that they’ll be releasing scads of officially-licensed “The American Mall” merchandise and a special edition of the DVD (available only at Sears!) with an entire bonus disc of exclusive material. Whew…good thing I didn’t pre-order my DVD at Amazon yet!

Anyway, I know it’s totally lame to be geeking out about all this, but, I gotta admit that I am a little excited at the prospect of shopping for clothing inspired by my characters at my local Sears. I guess the biggest thing I have to worry about now is whether or not Joey’s super cool “janitor coveralls” come in a XXL…

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