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Chris Harrison blogs 'The Bachelorette: The Men Tell All'

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You know the longer I do this show you’d think the less things would surprise me. Not so much. This Men Tell All was easily one of the strangest I’ve ever hosted, but in a really entertaining way. It all started with Ashley and JP, two people I love very much. It wasn’t enough just to catch up with them and find out what’s going on with the pregnancy and their new life together, oh no, we had to raise the bar and do a live ultrasound. When I heard we were going to attempt to pull this off I was a little skeptical, but I loved this moment. As soon as we heard that heartbeat you could really see JP and Ashley’s emotions and feel their love. It was a beautiful thing and I couldn’t be happier that they’re having a boy. I love being able to keep up with our former couples, but to have a moment like this was really fun. Seeing JP get tears in his eyes as he talked about having a son was priceless.

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'The Bachelorette: The Men Tell All': 'I had no idea you guys were kissing her so fast!'

Awww, Marquel—don’t feel bad, little buddy! You may have found yourself in the “Friend Zone” with Andi, but the “ladies” in the audience were truly digging your chocolate-chip cookie lapel pin tonight. (If you haven’t seen it, you’re in for a treat—pun intended.) As for the rest of tonight’s Men Tell All? Well, other than that disturbingly TMI segment with Ashley and JP, the “shocking” “revelations” were “few” and “far between.” Stay tuned for my full recap later tonight (UPDATE: Click over for Kristen’s full Bachelorette: The Men Tell All recap), but here are a few of my (spoiler-free) highlights: Everyone attacking Andrew for his (alleged) remarks about Marquel and Ron; Andrew attacking JJ; Chris the farmer joining Andrew in his attack on JJ; a weird Canadian woman interrupting Harrison’s hot-seat interview with Chris; and the brilliant opening gag with the scarves. As for the Bachelor in Paradise teaser? I think it may have given me eye herpes. (That is to say, August 4 can’t get here fast enough.)

Are ya ready, kids? Krusty Krab-lookalike restaurant to open in Ramallah

The Krusty Krab, a mainstay of Bikini Bottom and the workplace of Spongebob Squarepants, seems to be building a second franchise above-ground—and it appears to have chosen the Palestinian city of Ramallah as its new site.

A Facebook page is posting photos of the restaurant in construction, inspired by The Krusty Krab from the Nickelodeon series Spongebob Sqaurepants. In the photos, everything from the wall paneling to Squidward’s cashier counter looks like it does in the Krusty Krab from the show.

If the restaurant serves seafood, though, it might be hard to get customers from the area: While the Krabby Patty recipe may be halal, many types of seafood—like lobsters and oysters—are not.

Check out all the photos on the restaurant’s Facebook page.

I'm Still Not Over... the happy ending of the 'Justice League Unlimited' cartoon

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July 23rd is Batman Day, and I can think of no better way to celebrate 75 years of Batman stories than by looking at Justice League Unlimited‘s second season finale “Epilogue”—a Batman-centric episode that honors the character’s legacy, and one that I’m still not over.

Cartoon Network had yet to renew Justice League Unlimited for a third season when “Epilogue” was written, suggesting it was intended to bring the entire DC Animated Universe—which began in 1992 with the premiere of Batman: The Animated Series—to a close. The writers decided to end the DCAU where it all started. “Epilogue” finds a way to give the Batman character an ending that feels earned, and it reminds us of what made Batman so formidable and focuses on a side of him that often goes unnoticed.

Set 65 years in the future in the Gotham City of Batman Beyond, “Epilogue” drops a huge story bombshell: Terry McGinnis (Will Friedle)—the Batman of the future now that Bruce Wayne (Kevin Conroy) has retired—discovers he is Bruce Wayne’s biological son, the result of a genetic experiment that involved overwriting his father’s DNA with Bruce’s DNA. The sole purpose of this experiment: to create a new Batman. When Terry finds out, he assumes that Bruce has masterminded the plan out of his arrogant belief that the world couldn’t go on without him. Having witnessed Bruce’s life in his old age, Terry becomes afraid at the the new revelation; he fears being as alone, cold, and miserable as Bruce is.  READ FULL STORY

'Rush' might be USA's darkest -- and most interesting -- show

At first glance, USA’s new show Rush looks like it takes Royal Pains‘ “doctor-for-hire” theme, adds Tom Ellis to the mix, and throws on a bad-boy label just for fun. But after last night’s premiere, it turns out that what you think you see with Rush is not at all what you get.

In the series’ pilot, viewers meet Dr. Will Rush in a less-than-flattering scenario. In other words, he’s doing cocaine with a young woman when she has a heart attack and he’s forced to shock her back to life and then take her to the nearest “club,” which looks a lot like an emergency room. Still high himself, Rush drops the woman off with his best friend, an ER doc, and then heads back to his life of doctoring on the run. Basically, Rush makes house calls for a living. He’s one of the best doctors around, but his skill isn’t his only draw. Rather, it’s his ability to be discreet that puts him in such high demand.

Rush is the guy you want to call if you’re a famous athlete and your girlfriend needs stitches after you’ve physically abused her, for instance. Or he’s the guy you want to call if you’re a famous movie producer who just broke his penis and you don’t want the paparazzi to catch you on the way to the hospital. Rush makes up his own fees on the spot—and they’re high—and asks for cash payments upfront.

But between Rush’s own drug addiction and some of the situations his “discreet” job gets him in, Rush is a much more sinister character than the charming bad boy the show originally portrayed him as. In the pilot alone, he agrees to help his drug dealer, which results in him having to operate on a gunshot victim in a warehouse with a gun to his own head. And as for Rush’s personal life, the woman he loves refuses to get back together with him because his work and his addiction make him someone she can’t count on. Rush might be successful, but the way he lives his life causes him to struggle with right and wrong on a daily basis. By the end of the pilot, he has to make a house call to once again help out one of his best clients, a famous athlete, after said athlete nearly beats his girlfriend to death. In that moment, Rush reaches a breaking point and takes a bat to the athlete, breaking his legs, hand, and more.

So do Rush’s actions make this show darker than typical USA programming? Not necessarily. USA is no stranger to violence (Graceland) or the rebel-type (Burn Notice). However, the darker side of USA shows tends to be just that—one side. For example, Royal Pains‘ Hank once had a problem with pill addiction, but it was a storyline that didn’t stick. Or there’s USA’s Suits, where the definition of “dark” typically involves Harvey and Mike playing dirty by getting personal in the work world. What sets Rush apart from other USA shows is that it is fundamentally dark—and that darkness is not simply one element of the show but intertwined into every element of the show.

For example, going into the rest of the season, Rush is without the woman he loves, he’s still dealing with his addictions, and he’s fallen into an accidental relationship with a group of gangsters. Although he might not look it on the posters, he’s an incredibly troubled character, not just a charming guy with a dark side. Sure, he still has a lighter side and a sense of humor that makes him fun to watch. But at his core, Rush is profoundly unhappy—a fact that makes him 10 times more fascinating than the guy viewers got a glimpse of in the trailer.

All in all, Rush’s chaotic and morally ambiguous lifestyle makes USA a more interesting place to be. Although Rush can’t quite be called an antihero, this show could be seen as USA’s attempt to join into the Walter White bandwagon. Rush is certainly not that extreme, but as the golden age of TV has shown us, people enjoy a complex (if not downright evil) protagonist, and if there’s one thing Rush is not, it’s a perfect hero.

I'm Still Not Over... Pete's death on 'Private Practice'

There are several ways a character can exit ShondaLand: They might simply pick a new path in life. They might move to Switzerland. Or more than likely, they’ll die. But when it comes to how they’ll die, the options are limitless. Rhimes has killed characters in plane crashes and hospital bombings. She’s shot people point blank between the eyes. She’s drawn out a character’s death to give them ample time to say goodbye. She’s shocked viewers by killing others in the blink of an eye (and with a bus, no less). So years ago, when word got out that Tim Daly was leaving Private Practice after the show’s fifth season, fans instantly started to gossip.

The first question: Will Pete be killed? It actually felt unlikely, considering that Pete ended season five having been arrested for murder after illegally unplugging a patient at the request of the patient’s partner. All signs more or less pointed to Pete either going to jail or going on the run indefinitely. And one of those theories wasn’t all that far off. READ FULL STORY

'Breaking Bad' spin-off starring Val Kilmer and Slash hits Kickstarter

With each season of Breaking Bad, the show’s fan base grew, right up until showrunner Vince Gilligan decided that Walter White’s story had come to end after five seasons. But not everyone agreed with Gilligan’s choice. And as far as industry newcomer Larry Shepherd is concerned—spoiler!—Walt’s presumed death is not the final chapter of the story. And that’s exactly why he has launched a Kickstarter campaign for his own Breaking Bad spin-off titled Anastasia.

On the Anastasia Kickstarter page, Shepherd describes his series as picking up directly after Walter White’s collapse in the Breaking Bad finale, when a mystery person appears and drags Walt out of the meth lab by his ankles. Anastasia will focus on two U.S. Marshals—played by obvious choices Val Kilmer and Slash—who try to answer three very important questions: Is Walter White alive? Where is he? And who dragged him away? READ FULL STORY

Gymnast becomes first woman to finish 'American Ninja Warrior' finals course

Anything you can do, Kacy Catanzaro can do better.

On this week’s episode of American Ninja Warrior, the show that pits some of the world’s best athletes against insane obstacle courses, gymnast Kacy Catanzaro became the first woman to complete the qualifying course. But she didn’t stop there. Catanzaro then became the first woman to complete the finals course, and she made it look easy.

The nearly 10-minute finals course included balancing obstacles, the salmon ladder—which Arrow fans knew a woman could complete—and the much-dreaded spider climb. But Catanzaro used her 5-foot frame to her advantage and landed herself a ticket to Las Vegas.

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Chris Harrison blogs 'The Bachelorette' episode 9

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And then there were two. This season the final two weeks of our travels took us to the Dominican Republic. This week, the overnight dates were spent in and around the beautiful Paradisus hotel. I had visited the Dominican Republic many years ago and was looking forward to getting back to see how much had changed over the years. Andi came into this week with a clear head and incredibly happy with the three men she has narrowed it down to. Letting go of Marcus last week was difficult, but these three relationships are definitely different than the rest. As I told Andi after hometowns, it’s really an embarrassment of riches. I felt like she had done a terrific job of narrowing it down to a bunch of great guys. After hometowns her job wasn’t as much to find out if these guys were sincere but more so trying to decide which lifestyle fit best. Which man could she really see forever with?

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'The Bachelorette' episode 9: 'I loved when you just hopped on my lap and went to town'

Okay, sure, the man who made the above statement to Andi was not—I repeat, not—talking about something that went down in the Fantasy Suite… but I needed a catchy headline. After all, this week’s “exotic” dates were pretty darn tame, even though Andi made the most shocking decision… EVER by sending one of the men home before even handing him the coveted date card. Stay tuned for my full recap later tonight, but if you’ve seen tonight’s episode and have thoughts (and I know you do) let me hear ‘em. Do you want the booted little-b bachelor to become the next capital-B Bachelor? Was the homemade, illustrated fairy tale book cute or creepy? And is eating dinner on the beach really all that romantic? If you ask me, sand and fine cuisine don’t mix. (Not that the folks on this show ever eat, but…)

 

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