WBEZ | NBC http://www.wbez.org/tags/nbc Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Chicago Latina Comedy Duo ‘Dominizuelan’ Hits the Big Time http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-11-20/chicago-latina-comedy-duo-%E2%80%98dominizuelan%E2%80%99-hits-big-time-113870 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/dominizuelan%20flickr%20Guy%20F.%20Wicke.jpg" style="height: 415px; width: 620px;" title="Wendy Mateo and Lorena Diaz make up the comedy duo Dominizuelan. (Flickr/Guy F. Wicke)" /></div><p>It was a big week for the Chicago-based comedy duo <a href="https://twitter.com/Dominizuelan?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor">Dominizuelan</a>.</p><p>On Tuesday night, Lorena Diaz kicked off a recurring role on NBC&rsquo;s prime-time drama <em>Chicago Med</em>.</p><p>And on Wednesday, Wendy Mateo appeared on a sister series, <em>Chicago PD,</em> as a crime-scene investigator.</p><p>The roles are a bit of a departure for two comediennes known for their hilarious improv and skits like &ldquo;<a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B6V9AsxBsLQ">Ms. Latina Stereotype Explains Hollywood.</a>&rdquo; The two members of Dominizuelan share their visions for expanded diversity on television.</p></p> Fri, 20 Nov 2015 11:51:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-11-20/chicago-latina-comedy-duo-%E2%80%98dominizuelan%E2%80%99-hits-big-time-113870 The Next 'Law & Order?' 'Chicago' Series Take Over TV With New Franchise http://www.wbez.org/news/next-law-order-chicago-series-take-over-tv-new-franchise-113848 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/14914010415_f435470734_z.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>NBC&#39;s&nbsp;Chicago&nbsp;franchise grew this week with the premiere of&nbsp;<em>Chicago Med</em>. NPR explores whether it can be the next&nbsp;<em>ER&nbsp;</em>and whether executive producer Dick Wolf, who built the&nbsp;<em>Law &amp; Order</em>&nbsp;empire, can do it again with the Chicago shows.</p></p> Wed, 18 Nov 2015 17:30:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/next-law-order-chicago-series-take-over-tv-new-franchise-113848 Garcia, Emanuel battle in heated first debate of runoff http://www.wbez.org/news/garcia-emanuel-battle-heated-first-debate-runoff-111708 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/rahmchuydebate.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><em>UPDATED: 1:32 PM 3/17/2015</em></p><p>Chicago&rsquo;s two mayoral hopefuls turned up the heat for their first one-on-one debate Monday night.</p><p>In the first of three live, televised events before the April 7 runoff election, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Commissioner Jesus &ldquo;Chuy&rdquo; Garcia hit each other in the same spots as usual during the NBC and Telemundo debate: Emanuel criticized Garcia for not giving specifics, and Garcia called out Emanuel for paying too much attention to downtown, rather than the neighborhoods.</p><p>The two went back and forth on a number of topics that are familiar to the campaign trail, like public safety, schools, city finances and red light cameras. On finances, Emanuel said a property tax hike was not on the table, despite comments to the contrary from a top ally last week, as well as a warning from Emanuel himself last Friday that property tax bills would &ldquo;explode&rdquo; if Springfield didn&rsquo;t help reform pensions. Campaign staff later said that property taxes are the &ldquo;very last resort&rdquo; and any increase would &ldquo;protect middle-class homeowners and seniors.&rdquo; The city of Chicago faces a looming $550 million dollar state-mandated payment toward police and fire retirement funds.</p><p>&ldquo;Every effort going forward on police and fire is to avoid a property tax. I&rsquo;ve laid out a specific plan before the election. You&rsquo;ve laid out a commission,&rdquo; Emanuel said to Garcia.</p><p>The mayor says he&rsquo;d ask employees &ldquo;to help us a little&rdquo; to stabilize pensions, and that he&rsquo;d lobby Springfield for reforms to the sales tax and a Chicago-run casino that would be &ldquo;fully dedicated&rdquo; to pensions.</p><p>Meanwhile, Garcia sought to further define himself as the &ldquo;neighborhood guy,&rdquo; taking many opportunities to try and convince viewers not only that his experience in the community will drive his decisions, but that Emanuel focuses too much on the &ldquo;rich and wealthy&rdquo; or on downtown interests.</p><p>&ldquo;The mayor doesn&rsquo;t mind taxing low-income people and working people,&rdquo; Garcia said, referring to the city&rsquo;s red light camera program. &ldquo;That&rsquo;s why on day one I will get rid of all those cameras.&rdquo;</p><p>The two candidates also sought to blame the other for the city&rsquo;s financial crisis. Emanuel took a new swipe at his opponent where he maintained that Garcia, as a state senator, voted in 1997 to create a holiday for Chicago Public Schools teacher pension payments. Garcia continued to accuse Emanuel of not following through on his campaign promise to put the city&rsquo;s financial house in order.</p><p>On public safety, Emanuel contended the city was &ldquo;safer than it was before, but not safe enough where people from all parts of the city can enjoy it.&rdquo; Garcia repeated his push for more police officers, and said he&rsquo;d start hiring them with half of what the city spends now on police overtime.</p><p><em>Lauren Chooljian is a WBEZ political reporter. Follow her <a href="https://twitter.com/laurenchooljian">@laurenchooljian</a></em></p></p> Tue, 17 Mar 2015 08:01:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/garcia-emanuel-battle-heated-first-debate-runoff-111708 Did NBC's Brian Williams ambush the Emanuel brothers? http://www.wbez.org/blogs/charlie-meyerson/2013-03/did-nbcs-brian-williams-ambush-emanuel-brothers-106257 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/Screen shot 2013-03-25 at 7.23.55 AM.png" alt="" /><p><p><span style="font-family:georgia,serif;"><object align="right" classid="clsid:D27CDB6E-AE6D-11cf-96B8-444553540000" codebase="http://download.macromedia.com/pub/shockwave/cabs/flash/swflash.cab#version=10,0,0,0" height="245" id="msnbc906184" width="420"><param name="loop" value="false" /><param name="play" value="false" /><param name="quality" value="high" /><param name="movie" value="http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/32545640" /><param name="FlashVars" value="launch=51298904&amp;width=420&amp;height=245" /><param name="allowScriptAccess" value="always" /><param name="wmode" value="transparent" /><embed allowscriptaccess="always" flashvars="launch=51298904&amp;width=420&amp;height=245" height="245" loop="false" name="msnbc906184" play="false" pluginspage="http://www.adobe.com/shockwave/download/download.cgi?P1_Prod_Version=ShockwaveFlash" quality="high" src="http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/32545640" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="420" wmode="transparent"></embed></object><strong>WATCH THIS VIDEO ... </strong>of NBC&#39;s <a href="http://www.nbcnews.com/id/21134540/vp/51298904#51298904" target="_blank">Brian Williams interviewing the three Emanuel brothers</a>:&nbsp;Mayor Rahm, bioethicist Ezekiel and Hollywood &quot;super-agent&quot; Ari, recorded&nbsp;<a href="http://blogs.suntimes.com/sweet/2013/03/rahm_zeke_ari_on_nbcs_rock_cen.html" target="_blank">March 8 in New York City</a>.</span></p><p><span style="font-family:georgia,serif;">Note the (evidently simulated) slide show of old family photos, the reference to the family as &quot;<a href="http://chickaboomer.com/2013/03/americas-jewish-kennedys-anger-over-brian-williams-rock-center-interview-this-is-not-what-we-agreed-to.html" target="_blank">America&#39;s Jewish Kennedys</a>.&quot;</span></p><p><span style="font-family:georgia,serif;">What do you think of it?</span></p><p><span style="font-family:georgia,serif;">Love-fest? Puff piece? Affectionate portrayal?</span></p><p><span style="font-family:georgia,serif;">Or hatchet job?</span></p><p><span style="font-family:georgia,serif;">Ari Emanuel reportedly puts it in the latter category. The&nbsp;<em>New York Post</em>&nbsp;quotes sources as saying that he sent a &quot;<a href="http://www.nypost.com/p/pagesix/ari_rips_nbc_for_rock_chat_Artqfqo1zvGAQEi1UZL9YI" target="_blank">a fiery legal letter to NBC</a>,&quot; complaining the interview, which aired Friday, was so aggressive as to catch the brothers off-guard.</span></p><p><span style="font-family:georgia,serif;"><strong>&#39;I THINK WE&#39;RE GOING TO WIN.&#39; </strong>That&#39;s the optimistic <a href="http://presspass.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/03/24/17440713-post-show-thoughts-the-debates-over-gun-control-and-gay-marriage" target="_blank">prediction of David Boies</a>, one of the lawyers set to argue Tuesday before the Supreme Court that California&#39;s Proposition 8 ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.<br />* Among those to be seated as a guest of Chief Justice John Roberts: <a href="http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-prop.8-chief-justices-cousin-a-lesbian-will-attend-prop-8-hearing-20130324,0,834185.story" target="_blank">His lesbian cousin, who wants to marry her gay partner</a>.<br />* Court expert Jeffrey Toobin: 10 years ago, <a href="http://www.newyorker.com/talk/comment/2013/04/01/130401taco_talk_toobin" target="_blank">Justice Scalia was right about the future of gay marriage</a>.<br />* Chart outlines <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2013/03/24/us/how-the-court-could-rule-on-same-sex-marriage.html?_r=0" target="_blank">ways the court could rule</a>.<br />* New poll finds <a href="http://www.npr.org/2013/03/24/175201923/millennials-and-same-sex-marriage-a-waning-divide" target="_blank">young Americans&#39; growing support for same-sex marriage</a> &quot;one of the biggest shifts we&#39;ve seen.&quot;<br />* Same-sex marriage convert Sen. Rob Portman&#39;s son writes in the Yale Daily News: &quot;In many ways, <a href="http://yaledailynews.com/blog/2013/03/25/portman-coming-out/" target="_blank">it&rsquo;s been a privilege to come out so publicly</a>.&quot;<br />* Politico: <a href="http://www.politico.com/story/2013/03/republicans-gay-marriage-89265.html" target="_blank">Republicans see cash in shift toward gay marriage</a>.<br />* Mediaite: <a href="http://www.mediaite.com/online/r-i-p-is-conservatism-dead-3/" target="_blank">Is conservatism dead?</a><br />* Video:&nbsp;<a href="http://gawker.com/5992162" target="_blank">Starbucks CEO tells shareholder to sell if he can&#39;t support marriage equality</a>.</span></p><p><span style="font-family:georgia,serif;"><strong>&#39;WE LIVE IN A GOOGLE AND WIKIPEDIA SOCIETY, AND IF KIDS NEED TO KNOW SOMETHING, THEY CAN LOOK IT UP.&#39;</strong> And so, the&nbsp;president of the Illinois Science Teachers Association tells the <em>Tribune&nbsp;</em>Illinois is ready for&nbsp;<a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/education/ct-met-science-standards-20130325,0,2404339,full.story" target="_blank">dramatic changes in science courses, textbooks and testing</a>, maybe as soon as this fall.<br />* Illinois bill would <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/ct-met-rocky-clark-bill-20130325,0,5165928.story" target="_blank">improve medical insurance for high school athletes</a> with catastrophic injuries.<br />* Chicago Public Schools has yet to deliver on <a href="http://www.suntimes.com/18260588-761/worthless-words-cps-yet-to-dole-out-scholarships-decade-after-e2-disaster.html" target="_blank">college scholarships for kids whose parents&nbsp;died in 2003 E2 nightclub stampede</a>.</span></p><p><span style="font-family:georgia,serif;"><strong>GOOGLE ALERTS: WINDING DOWN? </strong>If you&#39;re among those who&#39;ve come to rely on Google&#39;s service to advise you of new Web content on a specific topic, be warned:&nbsp;<a href="http://mashable.com/2013/03/23/google-alerts/">Mashable.com says Alerts may be on the way out</a>, but it notes an alternative.<br />* Wish you had a Wikipedia page of your own?&nbsp;Now&nbsp;<a href="http://thenextweb.com/socialmedia/2013/03/24/this-site-lets-you-pretend-you-have-your-own-wikipedia-page/" style="font-family: georgia, serif;" target="_blank">you can pretend</a>.</span></p><hr /><p><span style="font-family:georgia,serif;"><em><strong>ANNOUNCEMENTS.</strong></em><br /><em>* Suggestions for this blog?&nbsp;<a href="mailto:cmeyerson@wbez.org?subject=Things%20and%20stuff">Email anytime</a>.<br />* Get this blog by email, free. <a href="http://feedburner.google.com/fb/a/mailverify?uri=feedburner/AELk&amp;amp;loc=en_US" target="_blank">Sign up here</a>.</em><br /><em>* Follow us on Twitter:&nbsp;<a href="https://twitter.com/wbez" target="_blank">@WBEZ</a>&nbsp;and&nbsp;<a href="https://twitter.com/meyerson" target="_blank">@Meyerson</a>.<br />* Looking for the most recent WBEZ Meyerson News Quiz? <a href="http://www.wbez.org/tags/news-quiz" target="_blank">Here you go</a>.</em></span></p></p> Mon, 25 Mar 2013 05:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/charlie-meyerson/2013-03/did-nbcs-brian-williams-ambush-emanuel-brothers-106257 'Chicago Fire' simmers, doesn't explode, with feeling for the city http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-10/chicago-fire-simmers-doesnt-explode-feeling-city-103022 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/shirtless_0.png" style="height: 350px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><p><a href="http://www.nbc.com/chicago-fire/">NBC&#39;s<em> Chicago Fire</em></a> starts off with some firefighters going to a fire in Chicago. So in case you thought that the title was referring to the soccer team, or was a period piece about the original Chicago fire, or was a metaphor or something, rest assured: you will see plenty of firemen fighting fires. All those worries that this show had picked a name far too obvious for its topic were certainly validated.</p><p>What&#39;s difficult is that, despite the credentials of creator Dick Wolf (<em>Law &amp; Order</em>), firefighting has been done thoroughly and well on television, in FOX&#39;s&nbsp;<em>Rescue Me</em>, a show that ended in 2011 for seven seasons. Though that show ebbed and flowed in believability, it took strong character tropes and turned them on their head. The pilot episode of&nbsp;<em>Chicago Fire</em> doesn&#39;t demonstate that this show plans to do the same, or heaven forbid, some even more interesting than that.</p><p>&quot;So that&rsquo;s it, yeah? 14 years at this station and it all fits in a box,&quot; says the wife of a fallen firefighter to his coworker.&nbsp;It seems that one fire (there are several biggies in the pilot alone) changed the course of history for this firehouse, as one of their own died. Two of the hunky male leads -- Jesse Spencer and Taylor Kinney playing Matthew Casey and Kelly Severide, respectively -- are now at odds over their role in their buddy losing his life; dedspite not being romantic, their relationship has the most heat in this show.</p><p><em>Rescue Me</em> started off with a death too, and used some of the same character types: the hot blonde lesbian, the rookie who&#39;s <em>so </em>green, the older worker gone to seed with a secret, the dueling brother-types, the wise black chief in charge. And it also worked hard to represent a working class New York. This Chicago aspect of this show is well-represented;&nbsp;Mayor Emanuel is coming by Saturday, it&#39;s often mentioned, and he makes his less-than-a-minute cameo (set to music, no words spoken), with some facial expressions that will appear familiar to Chicagoans:</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/rahm%20exits_0.png" style="height: 347px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/rahm%20and%20chief_0.png" style="height: 302px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/rahm%20face_0.png" style="height: 254px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div></div></div></div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image ">The show doesn&#39;t worry about showing him too much respect though; &quot;I heard he stops to take a piss at every house in the city, as a sign of respect,&quot; says one fireman, when he&#39;s told to get excited the Mayor is coming for a visit.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div></div></div><p>Wolf seems intent upon convincing you of his show&#39;s Chicagoness by shoving shot after shot of the Sears Tower in the frame; he&#39;s even chosen the location of the firehouse clearly for it&#39;s view of it. But it&#39;s the plotlines that will hopefully take us further around the different neighborhoods that do this better justice.&nbsp;The quickly cancelled<em> <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-09/mob-doctor-mimics-chicagos-past-while-revolution-creates-new-future-102482">The Mob Doctor</a></em><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-09/mob-doctor-mimics-chicagos-past-while-revolution-creates-new-future-102482">&nbsp;tried to create a Chicago feel </a>by revealing the secret world of mob life in the city, but the pilot of <em>Chicago Fire</em> does a better job showing the real gang violence in Chicago; a scene at a drug-related shooting in a South Side apartment complex rang very true. More beautiful, if less convincing, was the car accident on the Columbus Bridge, the river glittering in the background.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/sears%20tower_0.png" style="height: 293px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><p>If anything, it&#39;s well cast with faces you&#39;ve seen before in smaller but impressive roles. David Eisenberg, memorable as Steve on <em>Sex and the City</em>, is now struggling with a house in foreclosure, and Monica Raymund, who impressed in a recurring role on <em>The Good Wife,</em> deals with not being a &quot;real&quot; doctor, just an paramedic. Her partner sums up their dilemma best:&nbsp;&quot;You really are new, aren&rsquo;t you?&quot; she says to the rookie. &quot;Listen, we get them to the doctor best we can and then we move on. That&rsquo;s the only way to make it here.&quot;&nbsp;<br /><br />Despite all these smaller plotlines, the overall tension in the house seems to be some sort of class warefare within the firehouse: we learn that &quot;There are two types of firefighters: those who are on squad, and those who wish they were on squad.&quot; The difference here seems to be between whether the firefighter actually gets in the building and saves people or merely assists -- at least, that&#39;s what the distinction appeared to be. Whether this is an accurate tension that exists in houses or just a plot device remains to be seen, but it&#39;s interesting to see the larger societal class issues effect this group, as the create their own internal distinctions.</p><p>On that note, the episode ends with a Bruce Springsteen song, the perfect working class man&#39;s hero. Which seems topical except, don&#39;t forget: he&#39;s from New Jersey.&nbsp;</p><p><em>NBC&#39;s </em>Chicago Fire<em> premieres Wednesday night at 9 pm central. Oh, and he</em><em>re&#39;s a gratuitous shot of a girl bringing over Chicago Bagel Authority for breakfast. Good idea.</em></p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/CBA_0.png" style="height: 310px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div></p> Wed, 10 Oct 2012 08:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-10/chicago-fire-simmers-doesnt-explode-feeling-city-103022 Watching NBC's new 'Chicago Fire' with real firefighters http://www.wbez.org/sections/culture/watching-nbcs-new-chicago-fire-real-firefighters-103008 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/RS3491_firehouse-scr.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="http://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F62917036&amp;show_artwork=true" width="100%"></iframe></p><p>Tim O&rsquo;Brien is a third generation firefighter.</p><p>He offered to gather some coworkers to watch the pilot episode of &ldquo;<a href="http://www.nbc.com/chicago-fire/" target="_blank">Chicago Fire</a>&rdquo; and give an insider perspective on how closely the show resembles the real thing.</p><p>The new NBC drama centers around the Chicago Fire Department. It premieres Wednesday at 9 p.m., but the first episode was available On Demand and online ahead of the air date.</p><p>So earlier this week O&rsquo;Brien served up some homemade beef vegetable soup. He relegated his two dogs - Shadow and Irish - into the backyard. He threw a log into the fireplace and everyone settled into his living room for the show.</p><p>Pat Duddleston, a 22-year Fire Department veteran, lives just down the street from O&rsquo;Brien. He&rsquo;s with Truck 17 on the South Side.</p><p>Rebecca Bolluyt is a paramedic from Uptown.</p><p>The real firefighters watched their fictional counterparts respond to car crashes, house fires and gunshot wounds.</p><p>O&#39;Brien said the biggest difference between real fires and the fires on television is the amount of smoke on a scene.</p><p>&nbsp;&ldquo;A lot more smoke (in real fires),&quot; he said. &quot;But...you can&rsquo;t watch the show if all you can see is smoke.&rdquo;</p><p>No matter how intense the action got on the screen, they always seemed to be able to top the scripted stories with real life experiences.</p><p>&quot;You ever have one who was shot in the head talking to you?&quot; O&#39;Brien asked the others. &quot;I had one once. Real small caliber bullet from far away. It broke the skin but didn&rsquo;t penetrate his skull. It was the weirdest thing in the world.&quot;</p><p>Some moments got big laughs - like when when the wide-eyed rookie character gets stuck with some grunt work.</p><p>&ldquo;That&rsquo;s true,&rdquo; O&rsquo;Brien said. &ldquo;That&rsquo;s exactly how it goes. That would happen.&rdquo;</p><p>Duddleston said the show does a good job of showing how the fire department is like a family.</p><p>&ldquo;A lot of people don&rsquo;t understand it cause everybody goes to a nine to five job and they&rsquo;re done,&quot; he said. &quot;Here we spend one third of our lives with these guys and girls. It&rsquo;s brothers and sisters.&rdquo;</p><p>Bolluyt said she likes that the show focuses on how the job bleeds into firefighters&rsquo; personal lives too.</p><p>&ldquo;I know other people have stressful jobs,&quot; she said &quot;But we&rsquo;re with each other in some of the most extreme, most stressful situations that you could ever be with someone in and it makes you become closer to other people.&rdquo;</p><p>The very unscientific focus group gave the show passing marks for its portrayal of life in the firehouse.</p><p>The NBC show, from creator Dick Wolf, has used real Chicago locations for much of its filming. Mayor Rahm Emanuel makes a cameo in the pilot too.</p><p>O&#39;Brien said even the set decorations were authentic - real calendars, posters and old photos hang on walls in the background.</p><p>But the real firefighters couldn&rsquo;t help laughing at some of the Hollywood touches - like when the first chiseled actor sauntered on screen without a shirt.</p><p>&quot;That&rsquo;s the way I looked when I came on the job,&quot; O&#39;Brien said. &quot;And I used to walk around with my shirt off. But now that I look like this, I leave it on.&quot;</p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Wed, 10 Oct 2012 05:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/sections/culture/watching-nbcs-new-chicago-fire-real-firefighters-103008 'The Mob Doctor' mimics Chicago's past, while 'Revolution' creates a new future http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-09/mob-doctor-mimics-chicagos-past-while-revolution-creates-new-future-102482 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/the%20mob%20doctor%20title%20card.png" style="height: 296px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><p><strong><em>The Mob Doctor</em>: Yup, you guessed it by the name alone&nbsp;</strong></p><p>&quot;This isn&rsquo;t legal&quot; one hunky doctor says to another. &quot;Well then it&#39;s a good thing we&rsquo;re not lawyers,&quot; the next replies.</p><p>That&#39;s the kind of meaningless-yet-meaningful thing you&#39;ll hear a lot of tuning into FOX&#39;s&nbsp;<em>The Mob Doctor</em>, the first of several pilots slotted for the fall television season that were filmed here in Chicago. <em>Mob Doctor</em> premiered Monday night, and if episode one tells us anything about the coming season, the show plans to bring Chicagoans exactly what doesn&#39;t apply to their lives in any reasonable manner.</p><p>Dr. Grace Devlin is played by Jordana Spiro, who I&#39;d be remiss if I didn&#39;t point out seems to love the city, despite her New York upbringing; she previously starred in TBS&#39; sitcom <em>My Boys</em>, which was also set here. Right at the beginning, we get it; Devlin takes risks. There she is as a young girl, standing with a dead body on the ground in a field located in what we&#39;re told is Bridgeport, with the Willis Tower looming in the bacgkround.</p><p>What we&#39;re led to understand is that Devlin grew into a doctor at Roosevelt Medical Center (which looks something like Rush University Medical) but hasn&#39;t left her mob connected youth behind, which has led to some complicated saving of lives for low-lifes, and being pressured into accidentally-on-purpose losing the lives of others.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/hospital.png" style="height: 292px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><p>The stuff with the mob is interesting, if relatively unbelievable. For instance, this card, which was delivered at Devlin&#39;s place of business:</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/kill%20him%201.png" style="height: 323px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/kill%20him%202.png" style="height: 459px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><div class="image-insert-image ">Subtle, no?</div></div><p>And then the heavy-handed prove-we&#39;re-in-Chicago bits: a dog named Wrigley (which makes no sense for the name of an animal presumably owned by South Siders), a bad guy named Moretti (always the name for bad guys), and a former, now risen-again mob boss Constantine Alexander, who we learn was sent to prison in 1997:</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/TV%20constantine.png" style="height: 323px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/chicago%20record.png" style="width: 620px; height: 315px; " title="" /></div></div><p>And lines like,&quot;Grace, I realize that you&rsquo;re a plucky South Side girl who became a big city doctor. but you are no better than anyone else here&quot; delivered from an angry coworker.</p><p>Is <em>Mob Doctor</em> about crime and corruption in Chicago? Is it about the corruption of the medical community (a plot point about how a nurse is a mole in the hospital for the mob had me rolling my eyes)? Is it a new<em> Grey&#39;s Anatomy </em>(it&#39;s <a href="http://insidetv.ew.com/2010/08/08/zach-gilford-off-the-map/">got Shonda Rimes-approved man meat for it</a>&nbsp;and immaculate conceptions)? Is it the new <em>ER</em>/<em>Chicago Hope</em>? <em>The Good Wife</em>, with court cases mixed in (<a href="http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0139549/">Detective Anthony Burton</a> makes an appearance, this time on the wrong side of the law)?</p><p>Or is it about a Chicago that pop culture likes to think Chicago is but doesn&#39;t exist anymore, really -- a mob that runs the town in plain sight?</p><p>There&#39;s the little stuff that doesn&#39;t make sense: driving to a mansion in the suburbs takes no time, car chases quickly move from Lakeview to under the Green line El in the West Loop, &quot;getting out of Bridgeport&quot; is a thing. But the big stuff is this idea that the city&#39;s biggest problem is this unavoidable mob culture that you just can&#39;t escape, instead of our reality of&nbsp;a segregated city with huge economic disparities and a rampant gang culture.</p><p>At least the local TV news looks about right.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/tv%20crew.png" style="height: 322px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>A <em>Revolution </em>in the way you&#39;ll see the city</strong></div><p>Despite the fact that not a stitch was shot in Chicago, the pilot episode of NBC&#39;s&nbsp;<em>Revolution</em> does a better job with the city&#39;s legacy than <em>Mob Doctor</em>. I&#39;m no J.J. Abrams uber-fan (<em>LOST</em> was just tiring) but flashing forward to a future where electricity doesn&#39;t exist anymore and we&#39;re in some sort of <em>I Am Legend</em> post-apocalypse, but with some science fiction and Wild West influenced? A place where these postcards are considered gems?</p><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/postcard%201.png" style="height: 397px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/postcard%202.png" style="height: 349px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div></div></div><p>Count me in.&nbsp;This is a Chicago I can get behind: one that&#39;s entirely imagined, not slightly.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/airplanes.png" style="height: 211px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><div class="image-insert-image ">The remnants of O&#39;Hare.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/wrigley.png" style="height: 299px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/skyscraper.png" style="height: 298px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/chicago%20theater.png" style="height: 323px; width: 620px; " title="" /></div></div></div></div><p><a href="http://www.fox.com/the-mob-doctor/">&nbsp;<em>The Mob Doctor</em></a> airs Monday nights on FOX at 8 pm central; <a href="http://www.nbc.com/revolution/"><em>Revolution</em></a> is on NBC at 9 pm central.</p></p> Tue, 18 Sep 2012 08:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-09/mob-doctor-mimics-chicagos-past-while-revolution-creates-new-future-102482 Keeping up with the Keatons: 'Family Ties' in the New Depression http://www.wbez.org/blogs/onstagebackstage/2012-06/keeping-keatons-family-ties-new-depression-100255 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/family ties cast.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><em>Family Ties </em>wasn&#39;t necessarily a show that defined a generation; it wholly embodied one.&nbsp;The Museum of Broadcast Communications <a href="http://www.museum.tv/eotvsection.php?entrycode=familyties">describes </a>the NBC comedy, which aired from 1982 to 1989, as one that &quot;explored one of the intriguing cultural inversions characterizing the Reagan era: a conservative younger generation aspiring to wealth, business success, and traditional values, serves as inheritor to the politically liberal, presumably activist, culturally experimental generation of adults who had experienced the 1960s.&quot;</p><p>Writer Allen Makere argues that there&#39;s no better way to understand how modern families are doing than to make a few predictions about what kind of life the<em> Family Ties</em> kids would have ended up with &mdash; especially Alex, a Young Republican who often clashed with his progressive parents.</p><p>Makere&#39;s vision isn&#39;t sunny. Alex&#39;s sister Mallory would consider herself lower middle class. Sister Elyse would be even more blunt: &quot;No, we&#39;re poor.&quot; Read an excerpt below or listen above:</p><p><em><a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/12/business/economy/family-net-worth-drops-to-level-of-early-90s-fed-says.html">An article</a> appeared in the </em>New York Times<em> on June 11 by Binyamin Applebaum entitled &quot;Family Net Worth Drops to Level of Early &#39;90s.&quot; Kristina Peterson of the </em>Wall Street Journal<em> <a href="http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2012/06/11/family-net-worth-fell-almost-40-between-2007-2010/">wrote a blog item</a> on the same day, similarly titled, &quot;Family Net Worth Fell about 40 percent between 2007-2010.&quot;&nbsp;</em></p><p><em>Both Applebaum and Peterson are responding to the Federal Reserve survey of consumer finances released the same week. The data reflects the erosion of middle-class wealth. The right-wing is hyping these findings and placing the blame on the current administration, but I think we must go back nearly 40 years to gain the correct perspective on why our families are poorer and whose policies have made it so.</em></p><p><em>All our families are different and even the meaning of family has changed since the 1980s, so lets see how 40 years have affected a family we all know and love: the Keaton&#39;s of Columbus, Ohio.</em></p><p><em>Do you remember them?</em></p><p style="text-align: center; "><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/4WHIRFqWx8I" width="480"></iframe></p><p><a href="http://thepapermacheteshow.com/" target="_blank">The Paper Machete</a>&nbsp;<em>is a weekly live magazine at the Horseshoe in North Center. It&#39;s always at 3 p.m., it&#39;s always on Saturday, and it&#39;s always free. Get all your</em>&nbsp;The Paper Machete Radio Magazine&nbsp;<em>needs filled&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wbez.org/tags/paper-machete" target="_blank">here</a>, or download the podcast from iTunes&nbsp;<a href="http://itunes.apple.com/podcast/the-paper-machete-radio-magazine/id450280345" target="_blank">here</a>.</em></p></p> Wed, 20 Jun 2012 10:31:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/onstagebackstage/2012-06/keeping-keatons-family-ties-new-depression-100255 The Paper Machete Radio Magazine: Scott Smith on NBC's Chelsea Clinton appointment http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-11-25/paper-machete-radio-magazine-scott-smith-nbcs-chelsea-clinton-appoi <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//blog/photo/2011-November/2011-11-23/Scott Smith at Ricochets June 11 2011 Evan Hanover.jpeg" alt="" /><p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-November/2011-11-23/Scott Smith at Ricochets June 11 2011 Evan Hanover.jpeg" style="width: 500px; height: 332px;" title="Scott Smith as his last 'Machete' appearance (Photo by Evan Hanover)"></p><p>Scott Smith of <em>Chicago Magazine </em>talks about his lack of surprise, and growing frustration, with Former First Daughter Chelsea Clinton's appointment as a new correspondent for NBC. An excerpt is below. As usual, if you can hear us, this magazine is LIVE.</p><p><em>So this week, NBC Nightly News announced they'd hired Chelsea Clinton as a correspondant for "Making a Difference", its series of heartwarming feature stories. This was really good news because WOO the media's hiring! And also, someone is hiring! </em></p><p><em>Before I sat down to work on this piece, I thought, this is not a big deal. The real issue here is how NBC News and Entertainment Divisions are completely lacking in ideas that aren't brought to them by a bold-faced name. An idea, I promise you, I'll get back to in a moment.....</em></p><p><audio class="mejs mediaelement-formatter-identified-1332483829-1" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/sites/default/files/2011-11-19-papermachete-scott-smith.mp3">&nbsp;</audio></p><div><p>This Saturday at the Horseshoe, expect to see Phillip Dawkins, playwright responsible for&nbsp;The Homosexuals;&nbsp;Micah Philbrook of The Tim and Micah Project;&nbsp;Katie Rich of Second City; magic by Dennis Watkins of the House Theatre, with a special performance by Barrel of Monkeys. Music from the <em>Machete</em> house band Sleepy Lou.</p><p><em><a href="http://thepapermacheteshow.com/" target="_blank">The Paper Machete</a></em>&nbsp;is a weekly live magazine at the Horseshoe in North Center. It's always at 3 pm, it's always on Saturday, and it's always free. Get all your&nbsp;<em>The Paper Machete Radio Magazine</em>&nbsp;needs filled&nbsp;<a href="http://wbez.org/thepapermachete" target="_blank">here</a>, or download the podcast from iTunes&nbsp;<a href="http://itunes.apple.com/podcast/the-paper-machete-radio-magazine/id450280345" target="_blank">here</a>.</p></div></p> Fri, 25 Nov 2011 16:17:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-11-25/paper-machete-radio-magazine-scott-smith-nbcs-chelsea-clinton-appoi Brian d'Arcy James talks 'Shrek,' 'Smash,' sisters and other things not beginning with the letter s http://www.wbez.org/blog/mark-bazer/2011-11-08/brian-darcy-james-talks-shrek-smash-sisters-and-other-things-not-beginnin <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//blog/photo/2011-November/2011-11-09/brian darcy.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Few people know more about both the making of a Broadway musical and making it as an actor on Broadway than Brian d'Arcy James.</p><p>And now James, whose on and off Broadway credits include <em>Time Stands Still</em>, <em>Sweet Smell of Success</em>, <em>The Good Thief</em>, <em>Titanic</em> and <em>Shrek</em> (as Shrek!), is set to star in a TV show about those very subjects.</p><p><em>Smash</em>, which premieres Feb. 6 on NBC, tells the fictional story of the making of a musical about Marilyn Monroe and how it consumes not just the lives of the show's stars, producers, songwriters and director but each of their families as well.&nbsp;</p><p>James stopped by <em>The Interview Show</em> last month in Brooklyn, where we talked about his role as the husband of one of the musical's songwriters (played by Debra Messing), his career on Broadway and how he reacted when he was asked to audition to be Shrek. Plus, he high-fives his sister (Schadenfreude member Kate James) and performs one of his favorite songs.*</p><p>Hope you enjoy.</p><p style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/BgnxUrVTzW8" width="560" frameborder="0" height="315"></iframe></p><p>*<em>We sincerely apologize for part of the performance being cut off. If you call us, we will sing the beginning of the song to make up for it.</em></p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Tue, 08 Nov 2011 21:21:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blog/mark-bazer/2011-11-08/brian-darcy-james-talks-shrek-smash-sisters-and-other-things-not-beginnin