Forty-five years ago, The Bob Newhart Show introduced us to Dr. Bob Hartley, the awkward but occasionally effective psychologist, his wife Emily (Suzanne Pleshette), his receptionist/office manager Carol (Marcia Wallace), best friend and dentist Dr. Jerry Robinson (Peter Bonerz) and a handful of his regular patients (Bill Dailey, Jack Riley, John Fiedler, and more).
To celebrate the 45th Anniversary of The Bob Newhart Show, Decades TV will marathon 84 episodes of the show over the weekend of September 16 and 17 – beginning at 1:00pm ET on Saturday, September 16, and ending at 7:00am ET on Monday, September 18.
TNT has resurrected The Library and Librarian Flynn Carsen. Thankfully, the two-hour series premiere – The Librarians and The Crown of King Arthur/The Librarians and The Sword in the Stone –hew closer to the delightfully odd first TNT movie, The Librarian: Quest for the Spear than its sequels in terms of quality. If the first two episodes are a fair sampling, then The Librarians (TNT, Sundays, 8/7C) is deliciously sly and deliriously fun.
Few television programs and boast of increased ratings over several seasons. NCIS [CBS, Tuesdays, 8/7C] recently hit a series high – in its eighth season! This week’s episode, Recruited, displays the balance of procedural and character that has enabled the series to flourish for so long.
Every so often, you need a little low-budget, B-movie fun. The Librarian: Curse of the Judas Chalice [TNT, Sunday, 8/7C] provides exactly that. This time, Flynn Carson’s [Noah Wyle] New Orleans vacation is interrupted in unique style as it comes to light that the Judas Chalice – the chalice made from the silver of the thirty coins paid to Judas Iscariot for Christ’s betrayal – has come to light. Obviously, The Library would like to add it to their private collection.
Curse of the Judas Chalice continues to mine the Indiana Jones format to good effect. The movie opens with Carson bidding on a vase from the early Ming Dynasty [circa 1411] and having to destroy it to obtain the real treasure inside. There follows swordplay – and a throw pillow is involved – all of which leads to Carson’s girlfriend breaking up with him.
From there, a serious meltdown and a strange dream lead our hero to take a vacation in New Orleans – where he encounters a statue and a woman that were in said dream. Mix in a former KGB agent and Russian government official named Kubicek [Dirkan Tulaine], who has a lead on the chalice; a decrepit history professor named Professor Lazlo [Bruce Davison], and a legend that suggests that the Judas Chalice can resurrect vampires and you’ve got a potent mix for adventure. Once Carson encounters the woman from his dream, Simone [Stana Katic], singing in a club, the action comes fast and furious.
Curse of the Judas Chalice is a bit of a comeback for the franchise. As with the Indiana Jones films, the second chapter wasn’t quite right [and Gabrielle Anwar was no Sonja Walger – whom we see in the opening credits here for some reason]. Where the second Librarian movie was too silly, Curse is just silly enough. The idea of resurrecting vampires combines well with revelations that make sense of Judson’s [Bob Newhart] appearance in New Orleans to give the series an extra layer of the epic.
Jonathan Frakes keeps things light and breezy and Marco Schnabel’s script is witty and slightly deranged. Add in genial performances and solid effects and the result is an entertaining bit of froth that will provide a cheery couple of hours – which is exactly what it sets out to do.