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Tag: Masters of Sex (1-6 of 6)

One set, two actors, all dialogue: TV's best 'bottle' episodes

Sunday night’s episode of Masters of Sex, titled “Fight,” was one of the series’ best. It stuck the show’s two main characters, Dr. William Masters (Michael Sheen) and his assistant/lover Virginia Johnson (Lizzy Caplan), in a single hotel room and then let them batter out their anxieties and anger through flirtation, role play, and sex, all while an actual boxing match rages on TV.

In TV parlance, episodes like “Fight,” where characters are restricted to a few sets, are often called “bottle episodes”—they’re cheaper to make (you don’t have to build new sets or cast guest stars) but they succeed or fail depending on the quality of the writing and the actors’ performances. In other terms, “Fight” was also nearly a “two-hander,” a term borrowed from stage performance that refers to a play in which only two actors appear. READ FULL STORY

PopWatch Planner: 'Housewives,' 'Hotwives,' Jack Bauer, and more

The summer’s starting to heat up, which means its time to retreat inside to air conditioning and some good TV. Luckily, there’s a lot to consume, with Jack Bauer facing a finale on 24, a new season of Real Housewives, and the arrival of a parody version, The Hotwives of Orlando. But if you want a little more adventure, venture out to theaters for some laughs with Sex Tape or some meditation on Wish I Was Here.

Here’s this week’s pop culture schedule:

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This Week's Cover: 'Masters of Sex' sizzles in our Summer TV Preview

One of the summer’s smartest and sudsiest shows also happens to have the steamiest title. Showtime’s Masters of Sex makes a red-hot return to your TV this July with its scandalous second season, and Entertainment Weekly has the scoop on who’s in (Sarah Silverman!), who’s out (Allison Janney!), and what’s to come in Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan’s sophomore year as sexologists Bill Masters and Virginia Johnson.

“One of the things that’s exciting about our show — daunting but exciting — is that every year is going to look pretty different,” teases showrunner Michelle Ashford. “Bill and Virginia’s careers changed and they went from total obscurity to the front of Time magazine. The sexual revolution was exploding, and Masters and Johnson were a huge part of that.” Season 2 picks up immediately after a newly unemployed Bill showed up on Virginia’s doorstop with a desperate declaration of love, and viewers will get a taste of our favorite sex researchers taking their academic relationship out of the lab and into the bedroom. READ FULL STORY

'Masters of Sex' season finale: How does it compare to real life?

If you haven’t watched the season finale of Masters of Sex yet, go ahead and catch up before this post spoils everything and you’re forced to console yourself with help from Ulysses.

If, however, you saw Dr. Bill Masters (Michael Sheen) profess his love for Virginia Johnson (Lizzy Caplan) in the pouring rain, you’re either dying to know what’s going to happen next, or you suddenly have an inexplicable craving to watch a Nicholas Sparks movie.

Me? I wanted to see how much of Masters and Johnson’s real story had been fictionalized in the service of a good cliffhanger. So I went straight to the book that inspired the series, Thomas Maier’s Masters of Sex: The Life and Times of William Masters and Virginia Johnson, the Couple Who Taught America How to Love. Okay, so I also used Google. Here’s what I found.

Was Virginia ever conflicted about accepting Bill’s “indecent proposal” in the first place?
Not so much. According to Maier, Bill hired Virginia specifically to be his sexual partner, and Virginia was fully aware of this when she signed on in 1957. “I was not comfortable with it, particularly,” she told Maier in an interview. “I didn’t want him at all, and had no interest in him.” They had sex almost nightly for more than a decade, with Bill instructing Virginia to “remain as professional as possible” so that their encounters would not “venture beyond the scope of scientific inquiry.” Decades later, Virginia claimed that she’d agreed to this simply because, as a single mother, she needed a job.

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PopWatch Planner: A 'South Park' redo, the TLC biopic, and 'Masters of Sex'

What’s worthy of PopWatching this week? Let’s start off with some nostalgia, with a Queer Eye reunion and a film about hip-hop power trio TLC. Then come back to the supernatural present with the debut of Ravenswood, followed by the episode that made the South Park creators miss their cartoon curfew. On Sunday, tune in for a “Master” class in “Sex” — for the sake of science!

All times listed are Eastern.
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'Masters of Sex' series premiere react: 'Watch out for the dildo'

In 1956, a national renowned fertility specialist met a former nightclub singer. Ten years later, they published a scientific study, which revolutionized our understanding of human sexuality.

And so Masters of Sex starts off innocently enough — with title cards and an awards dinner. But soon after there’s a doctor hiding in a closet as he watches a man have sex with a woman prostitute. Ah, that’s why this is on Showtime. Based on the real Masters and Johnson scientific study on human sexuality, Masters of Sex follows Dr. William “Bill” Masters (Michael Sheen) as he builds his study on the questions that have plagued him over the years, such as “Why would a woman fake an orgasm?” He may not have needed a study to find out that question, but it’s a start. READ FULL STORY

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