The Reverend Shawn Amos Debuts Second Single From ‘The Reverend Shawn Amos Breaks It Down’

Courtesy: Missing Piece Group

The Reverend Shawn Amos is giving audiences another taste of his next new album.

Amos debuted this week the song ‘2017,’ which is included in his forthcoming full-length studio recording The Reverend Shawn Amos Breaks It Down. the album is currently scheduled to be released Feb. `16, 2018. Amos said of the song, which was recorded with the surviving members of Al Green’s famed 1970 rhythm section at Memphis’ Royal Studios, in a recent interview that the song is focuses on getting people to stop and think.

‘2017’ is just the latest single to be released from The Reverend Shawn Amos Breaks It Down. ‘Ain’t Gonna Name Names’

was released this past spring.

More information on ‘2017’ is available online along with Amos’ new album and more at:

Website: http://www.shawnamos.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/therevamos

Twitter: http://twitter.com/therevamos

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

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All Hail The Yeti Offers New Album Update

Photo Credit: Smitty @ Night Cap Studios

All Hail The Yeti is hard at work in the studio on its next album.

The band recently announced this week that it is working with Grammy Award-winning producer Warren Riker (Down, Kill Devil Hill, Crowbar) on its third full-length studio recording at Water Music Studios in Hoboken, NJ. The band has been posting updates on its work on its Facebook page, too, keeping fans updated on its work.

Band front man Connorr Garritty said in a recent interview that he thought the album was progressing well, adding having Riker manning the boards has played directly into that positive progress.

“This process has been absolutely amazing,” Garritty said. “Warren dove right into the songs and has quickly become a fifth member of the band. His positivity and creativeness were exactly what we needed to make this record! the whole process felt so natural and unforced. to be able to work with someone who has such a diverse musical background really helped take this record to the next level. He has a great ear for every type of music, not just heavy metal, and I think that is what has made this so special. We could not be happier. Hopefully the world is ready for this chapter of All Hail the Yeti.

More updates on the album’s progress will be posted including tour news. Fans can keep up with it all online at:

Website: http://www.allhailtheyeti.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/officialallhailtheyeti

Twitter: http://twitter.com/allhailtheyeti

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MLB, Shout! Factory Announce Word Series Sets Release Dates, Specs

Courtesy: Major League Baseball/Shout! Factory

Courtesy: Major League Baseball/Shout! Factory

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The bats and balls have been put away for another season as the World Series has come to a historic end once again. While the start of the 2018 season is some six months away or so, Major League Baseball and Shout! Factory are giving audiences the chance to re-live the World Series on DVD and Blu-ray while they wait for the 2018 season in the form of the new World Series documentary and complete World Series set.

Major League Baseball and Shout! Factory will release The 2017 World Series documentary film and 2017 World Series Collector’s Edition: Houston Astros Tuesday, Dec. 5 on DVD and Blu-ray. the documentary presentation is presented on DVD/Blu-ray/Digital combo pack and follows the Astros’ unlikely post season run to baseball’s top prize, only months after Houston was decimated by mother nature. the story is told through the words of the Astros’ players and footage culled from the regular and post season including the team’s championship parade.

The eight-disc 2017 World Series Collector’s Edition: Houston Astros presents the seven-game World Series between the Astros and Dodgers as well as the team’s pennant-clenching win in the American League Central Series Game 7 at Minute Maid Park. As with MLB’s previous World Series collector’s sets, this set also includes a complete guide that includes the full stats and more for each of the series’ games, right down to the gametime weather and more. The games are also featured once again from the Astros’ radio network, the Dodgers’ radio network and in SPanish-language broadcast.

The 2017 World Series documentary runs 90-minutes and will retail for MSRP of $24.99 (DVD)/$34.93 (Blu-ray). 2017 World Series Collector’s Edition: Houston Astros runs 20 hours across its eight discs and will retail for MSRP of $59.99 (DVD)/$$79.97 (Blu-ray).
More information on this and other titles from Shout! Factory is available online now at:

Website: http://www.shoutfactory.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/shoutfactoryofficial

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ShoutFactory

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Universal Pictures’ Thompson “Bio” Is One Of Murray’s Finest Comedic Performances

Courtesy: Shout! Factory

Early this past June, Shout! Factory released to audiences what can only be described as one of the single most outrageous movies that the home entertainment company has ever put out when it made available Where The Buffalo Roam. This semi-biopic focuses on the career of the infamous journalist Hunter S. Thompson. It follows Thompson (played here by comic legend Bill Murray) over the course of the 1960s and 70s, culminating with Thompson following Richard Nixon’s campaign for the presidency. That story is among the movie’s most important elements. Murray’s portrayal of Thompson is just as important to note in examining the movie’s presentation as the story itself. The bonus interview with Thompson’s friend, screenwriter John Kaye, rounds out the movie’s most important elements. Each of the elements noted here is important in its own right to the movie’s presentation. All things considered, they make Where The Buffalo Roam one of the most intriguing cinematic offerings that Shout! Factory has ever released.

Shout! Factory’s release this past June of Universal Pictures’ Where The Buffalo Roam is one of the most significant of the home entertainment company’s releases so far this year. That is because it marked the first time that this take on Thompson’s life and career had been released up to that point. Given, it is not the first Thompson “bio” to be released — Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998) presents another Thompson story — but is still quite the interesting story. the story opens with Thompson writing about his adventures with then lawyer Oscar Acosta during the 1960s and 70s. The pair’s drug and alcohol-fueled adventures play out like a Cheech & Chong movie, only more out there. From getting a hotel staff involved in his own out there football game as he tries to cover the Super Bowl to basically kidnapping a young hitchhiker, leaving the young man think he’s going to be killed, to addressing a group of college students about journalism as he drinks and smokes to so much more, the adventures featured in this story are so uncomfortable and unsettling that one can’t help but watch to see just how outrageous they can become. It is one of those stories that is so rare that it absolutely must be seen to be understood and appreciated. Keeping that in mind, it proves to be a story that is unforgettable and will be talked about for years to come, proving without a doubt its importance to this movie. It is of course, only one of the movie’s most important elements. Bill Murray’s take on Thompson is just as important to discuss in examining this movie as the movie’s story.

Murray’s take on Thompson is just as outrageous to experience as the story at the center of this movie. The lack of balance in Thompson’s personality throughout the movie is at times just as unnerving as the movie’s story, but that is meant in a positive manner. Viewers never know from one moment to the next which side of Thompson is going to come out, right up to the story’s final act. Viewers are left asking at the end if Thompson had finally gotten himself in order as he joins the Nixon campaign as a reporter or was it just one more part of a bigger story. His instability as he checks into his hotel ahead of the Super Bowl and as he trades a set of media passes for a man’s hat is just as entertaining in those moments as so many others. Murray really makes Thompson such an intriguing figure from one moment to the next. On a side note, it is interesting to note that Where The Buffalo Roam made its theatrical debut only months ahead of Caddyshack, another Bill Murray hit flick. Comparing Murray’s character in each movie, one can’t help but notice the similarities in the two men. It leaves one wondering if they played into one another at least to some point. Regardless, Murray’s portrayal of Thompson in Where The Buffalo Roam is still so wildly entertaining that it alone makes the movie worth the watch. Of course it is just one more reason for audiences to take in the movie. The bonus commentary from Thompson’s friend — and the movie’s writer — John Kaye adds its own interest to the movie.

Over the course of his interview, Kaye discusses his friendship with Thompson, noting its up-and-down nature. He notes how apparently there was some trepidation from certain parties about even releasing this movie. It is obvious at some points that Kaye has some upset feelings toward Thompson while at others there is a certain amount of fondness and respect for him. He even begins to tear up in the end of his interview as he discusses Thompson’s suicide in 2005, showing even more that despite the ups and downs of his relationship with Thompson, there was obviously some love for Thompson even as outrageous as he might have been in his life. Between that and so much more discussed during his roughly 15 – 20 minute interview, Kaye offers plenty of insight into who Hunter S. Thompson was and what makes this movie about him stand out.
Keeping in mind, the value of Kaye’s interview to the whole of Where The Buffalo Roam, Murray’s on-screen work and the story at the movie’s center, the whole of those elements gives audiences plenty to appreciate about Where The Buffalo Roam, making it a must see at least one time. More information on this and other titles from Shout! Factory is available online now at:

Website: http://www.shoutfactory.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/shoutfactoryofficial

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ShoutFactory

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

MPI Media Group’s New Gerry Anderson Collection Is Imperfect But Entertaining

Courtesy: mpi media group/MPI Home Video

MPI Home Video this week unearthed a special new collection of material from Gerry Anderson, one of the legendary names from television’s early eras when it released the new two-disc collection The Lost Worlds of Gerry Anderson.  The collection presents to audiences what was essentially the evolution of Anderson’s work from supermarionation to live action.  The presentation of that evolution is the set’s most critical element.  As important as that collection proves to be, the set in whole sadly is not perfect.  It lacks any physical content guide in its packaging, leaving audiences to essentially have to memorize the material included in each disc.  That is a con that cannot be ignored here. Getting back to the set’s overall material, while a pro, it is both a pro and a con (but more pro than con).  That will be discussed later.  Each element is key in its own way to this collection’s whole.  All things considered, The Lost Worlds of Gerry Anderson proves to be a collection that while enjoyable, comes up just short in its first outing.

MPI Home Video’s brand new release of The Lost Worlds of Gerry Anderson is a relatively enjoyable first outing for this collection of Anderson rarities, but one that leaves room for improvement should it ever get another release.  The set’s main positive is its primary content.  Audiences get to see in the set’s main body, another attempt at a supermarionation series in the form of The Investigator alongside the live action series The Day After Tomorrow and Space Police.  There is also an attempt at an adult-oriented claymation presentation in the form of Dick Spanner, P.I.  There is even a very old almost Howdy Doody type presentation in Kandy, which is basically a show about a foolish koala.  Though some of the set’s presented material makes clearly obvious why it did not survive, other material such as Space Police leaves one wondering why it didn’t last.  The juxtaposition of the live action and animatronic material presented in the series’ pilot episode is exactly the kind of presentation that would go on to be used for decades by Japan’s Super Sentai series.  It would also end up being used in the Americanized version of that franchise, the famed Power Rangers franchise.  Keeping that in mind, such a show – even in just one episode – shows how far ahead of its time it was.  Simply put, it shows how ground breaking and innovative Anderson was even as he moved away from puppets to live action.

As if the live action and other material is not enough for audiences, there is even a documentary style presentation in the form of Blue Skies Ahead.  This short presentation takes audiences on a jaunt across Europe, showing its key locations while also advertising for Blue Cars bus lines.  It is very much in the same vein as the old color newsreels that audiences might see today on Turner Classic Movies, showing Anderson’s ability to make legitimate nonfiction programming just as much as his abilities in the fiction realm.  Considering this along with the discussion on the featured fiction material included in the set, it becomes clear why the set’s material is so critical to the set’s overall presentation.  It is not the set’s only critical element, though.  The lack of a physical content guide is a negative that cannot and should not be ignored.

Opening up the set’s standard-sized case audiences will note that there is no sign of a content guide anywhere inside or outside the case.  On the surface, this might not seem overly important.  On a deeper level though, it is very important.  There might be those out there who are at least somewhat familiar with the material, but maybe haven’t seen it in decades.  They would be nearly on the same level as those who have not yet seen these presentations.  Keeping that in mind, having a content guide would have made for a solid introduction (or re-introduction) for audiences to that material before they play either of the set’s discs.  Not having that introduction makes for a somewhat uneasy introduction, and in turn detracts from the set’s presentation to a point.  Thankfully, it is the set’s only truly impacting negative.  The Space Police test footage, while perhaps a bit too extensive, presents its own positive to the set’s presentation.

The Space Police test footage included in The Lost Worlds of Gerry Anderson is for all intents and purposes little more than bonus material.  It takes audiences behind the scenes of the featured episode “Star Laws.”  Throughout the course of the footage, audiences see that the scenario presented in the final product was not the only considered scenario.  Nor were the actors in that final product the only actors who had test screenings.  The comparison of the two scenarios and the actors is key because it adds to the appreciation for the final product.  The scenarios presented in the test footage show that that material was just too campy even despite some impressive animatronic and prosthetics work with the aliens.  Even the lead actors presented in the test footage were a bit over the top cheesy in their presentation.  Keeping that in mind, the presentation used in the final product proves to be much more fitting for the show, even being a cop drama.

At the same time that the show’s test footage proves integral to this set’s presentation, it also is somewhat disappointing in just how much test footage is shown.  So much of the material takes place in an alleyway scene, and shows time and again the actors handling the same scenario.  There is also a bevy of in-car test footage with the lead actors that honestly gets boring after a while.  All of this material honestly could have (in this critic’s eye) been cut back, and should have for that matter.  Considering this, the intrinsic value of the test footage shows the importance of Space Police to Anderson’s career, and its place within its genre.  However, it is too much of a good thing even in its use of comparing scenarios and actors.  With this in mind, the test footage included in this set is both a positive and a negative.  When it is set alongside the set’s primary material, the whole of that material becomes a presentation that is enjoyable, but honestly leaves something to be desired in the end.  That is not to say that it is a total loss, but there is room to grow if this set is ever re-issued or if it is ever included in another Anderson collection.

The Lost Worlds of Gerry Anderson is an interesting new collection of rarities from the famed figure’s career.  It shows a part of his career that has rarely if ever been seen thanks to the primary material presented in its lead disc.  The lack of a content guide of any sort is a detractor for this collection, though.  It takes away from the overall presentation and viewing experience, but does not make the presentation a total loss.  The bonus Space Police test footage adds back what is taken away by the lack of a content guide thanks to the insight that it adds to that one episode.  At the same time, there is such an abundance of that test footage that it really feels like overkill and should have been shaved back.  Each element noted here is important in its own right to this set’s whole.  All things considered, they make the set a collection that while not a total loss, one that leaves room for growth in the next Gerry Anderson collection.  It is available now in stores and online.  More information on this and other titles from mpi media group and MPI Home Video is available online now at:

 

 

 

Websitewww.mpimedia.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/mpimediagrp

Twitter: http://twitter.com/MPIMediaGroup

 

 

 

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Veteran Indie Band’s New EP Is A Telling Statement

Courtesy: TAG Publicity

For a little more than two decades, Kalamazoo, MI-based indie rock act Willamena has made quite a name for itself in the music industry, releasing five studio recordings in that time, doing it all on its own no less.  That diy approach, coupled with songs that are just as marketable as those from more well-known acts to whom its works can be compared, has helped the band’s fan base continue to grow.  The release this past June of the band’s sixth studio recording, its aptly titled six-song EP Strong Enough to Last has undoubtedly served to build the band’s fan base and reputation even more.  The songs featured in this 24-minute record will appeal to a wide range of fans, including fans of Goo Goo Dolls, Matchbox 20, Counting Crows and other similar acts.  This applies both musically and lyrically.  All things considered, this latest effort from what is – in this critic’s ears – one of the music industry’s best kept secrets is more proof that the indie music industry has just as much to offer audiences if not more.

Veteran indie rock outfit Willamena’s new EP Strong Enough to Last is an aptly titled record that clearly proves the underground music community has just as much to offer audiences today if not more.  That statement is supported right from the record’s outset in the form of ‘As Long As I Can.’  Musically speaking, the song bears a clear Goo Goo Dolls influence.  Intentional or not, that similarity is undeniable, and is not necessarily a good thing considering Goo Goo Dolls’ status in the mainstream.  Lyrically speaking, it offers just as much to like.  Guitarist and principal songwriter Chad Hendrickson writes in this song, “I grew up running/Away from the shadows//Darkness was always close to me/I saw tomorrow as the reason I was trying/I’d rather run to the day/Than hide from the night/Everyone gets tired/And I know that I’m no Superman/And I’m gonna run/As long as I can/As long as I can.”  He goes on to write in the song’s second verse, “Maybe I’m desperate/Maybe I’m just a fool/My happiness never seems real to me/But I could always dream/And that’s enough, you see/Cause I’d rather reach for my dreams/Than feel empty inside/And I know that I’m no Superman/And I’m gonna run/As long as I can.”  These two verses make up the song’s main lyrical body, and also make up quite a positive message in the process.  In the simplest terms possible, Hendrickson is writing about having a certain drive and determination no matter what.  It goes without saying that such a message is wholly welcome and needed nowadays for so many people.  When it is coupled with the song’s equally upbeat musical arrangement, the end result becomes a solid first impression for the band on this EP and even more proof of why this record in whole is another solid effort from Willamena.  It is not the only song to support those statements, either.  ‘Darkest Before The Dawn,’ which comes later in the EP’s run, supports those statements just as much as the record’s opener.

‘Darkest Before The Dawn,’ musically will appeal to Matchbox 20 fans thanks to its gentle, flowing, instantly radio ready pop rock arrangement, which is highlighted by the pairing of its guitars and vocalist Lukas Ross’ delivery.  That moving arrangement,  is only one part of what makes this song stand out.  Its lyrical content is just as important to note.  Ross presents another positive message here as he sings, “I hope what I heard is true/It’s darkest before the dawn/Cause I don’t know how much longer I can just sit back/And hold on/Well I’ve been down before/But never quite like this/Life seems to have just slipped away/And this midnight feels endless/It’s tough out here/It’s cold when you’re alone/It’s tough out here/I know it’s darkest before the dawn/It’s darkest/Darkest before the dawn/Here comes the sun and the rain’s moving on/It’s darkest before the dawn.”  That verse alone supports the interpretation of the song’s positive message, especially in its final lines in which Ross sings “Here comes the sun and the rain’s moving in.”  That is another way – seemingly – of saying life will not always be negative.  The song’s second verse hints at that positive message just as much, as Ross sings, “If the early bird gets the worm/Then I’d have been full by now/I keep trying despite the odds that have been holding me down/But I’m gonna climb that wall/I ain’t gonna stop/I’m gonna feel the light on my face when I make it to the top/It’s tough out here/It’s cold when you’re alone/It’s tough out here/I know it’s darkest before the dawn/It’s darkest/Darkest before the dawn/Here comes the sun and the pain’s moving on/It’s darkest before the dawn/I remember when I dreamed of the sun as it shined on a perfect day/Now there’s a darkness to the edge of the night that takes my breath away/Now I pray for the light/I pray for the light/I pray for the light/To shine on me.”  There is no doubt that this is a message of hope and determination.  Again, any time a band, act, etc. can present such a positive, uplifting message to its listeners, it is a good thing.  When that positive message is coupled with an equally radio friendly musical arrangement, the whole of the song proves why the song is such an important addition to its record.  It shows even more, along with the record’s opener, why the EP is so enjoyable, and is still not the last of the songs that prove the EPs strength.  ‘Close Your Eyes,’ the EP’s second (and third – the EP actually includes two takes of the song) work is one more example of what makes Strong Enough to Last such a strong new effort from Willamena.

‘Close Your Eyes’ stands out musically thanks to a guitar line in its verses that bears a striking similarity to that of U2’s classic hit ‘Where The Streets Have No Name’ and a chorus that is more akin to so many radio friendly 90s mainstream rock hits.  The choruses are infectious and will stick easily in listeners’ minds long after the song ends.  Lyrically, it is just as interesting thanks to yet another positive message presented in its verses.  Ross sings in the song’s lead verse, “Night/Follows the setting sun/And the stars come out/When the day is done/Dreams/Only come when your eyes are closed/When you can shut out the world/Shut out that cold/I’m drowning from the weight of my dreams/Spent too much time running away from too many things/Cause I dream/As much as I can/When you close your eyes/You can see everything/You can close your eyes/Close your eyes and dream/When you close your eyes/You can do anything/When you close your eyes/Close your eyes and dream/Cause you can dream about anything/When you close your eyes.”  Ross goes on to sing in the song’s second verse, “The wind/blows through her hair/But to me/She was already there/The day/Chases the stars/Now when I walk around I know/They’re not very far away/I’m drowning from the weight of my dreams/Spent too much time running away from too many things/Cause I dream/As much as I can.” These two verses come across seemingly about the power of actual dreams during sleep to be motivators for metaphorical dreams; those desires that one wants in real life.  That is inferred as Ross sings, “You can dream about anything when you close your eyes.”  The suggestion that the song’s subject “spent too much time running away from everything” would seem to hint at that inference about the power of dreams both literal and metaphorical, and their importance.  Whether that is truly the message or not, it goes without saying that the song is meant to be positive.  That positive message, coupled with the song’s catchy musical arrangement makes this song stand out just as much as its counterparts and in turn show once more what makes Willamena’s new EP so strong.  When it is set alongside the record’s other noted songs, and the two Tom Petty-esque pieces that round out the EP (its fifth and sixth songs), the whole of the record’s songs shows without doubt just how strong this record is.  They show collectively why Willamena, despite being just under that mainstream radar for more than 20 years, is itself in fact strong enough to last.

Willamena’s latest studio recording is not the band’s first effort.  The band’s sixth studio recording, it is another offering that proves why this band is still strong enough to last in itself.  That is due to six separate radio ready musical arrangements that are certain to entertain audiences.  The songs’ lyrical content is just as certain to entertain and engage audiences.  All things considered, Strong Enough to Last proves that even after a little more than 20 years Willamena is itself still strong enough to last and that the record itself is easily one of this year’s top new EPs.  It is available now.  More information on Strong Enough to Last is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.willamena.net

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Willamenaband

Twitter: http://twitter.com/willamenaband

 

 

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

‘The Talk’ Will Have Audiences Of All Races Talking

Courtesy: PBS/Public Media Distribution

Race and traffic stops.  The two matters have been prominent in the public eye in recent years thanks to stories of interactions between police and the public going very wrong.  What led those interactions to go bad is still being discussed nationwide to this day both in the media and in other arenas.  Because the issue has remained such a hot button topic, Public Media Distribution and PBS tackled the topic this past April with the powerful new documentary The Talk: Race in America on DVD.  The roughly two-hour program focuses on the clear rift that continues to divide America’s law enforcement community and the people who said community is supposed to protect and service.  It does this by presenting a series of segments that examine what has formed that rift.  Those segments form the foundation for this presentation and will be discussed shortly.  The discussions raised in each of the segments strengthen that foundation and will be discussed later.  The program’s pacing rounds out its most important elements.  Each noted element is important in its own right to the program’s presentation.  All things considered, they make The Talk: Race in America a program that is certain to have everyone talking for a very long time.

The Talk: Race in America is one of the most powerful programs that PBS and Public Media Distribution have presented to audiences in a very long time.  This roughly two-hour program — which addresses the clear rift between the police and the people that they are charged with protecting and serving — offers plenty to talk about, including its overall presentation.  Over the course of its two-hour run time, the program tackles the topic through a handful of segments addressing some headline-making incidents between police and the public.  The incidents include the case of Tamir Rice, who was fatally shot in 2014 in Cleveland, Ohio; the fatal shooting of Michael Brown the same year; the fatal police shooting of Oscar Ramirez in Los Angeles, CA in 2015 and other high-profile cases.  Those stories make up only one side of the story addressed in the program’s segments.  The segments that make up the program’s second hour allow law enforcement their time to show why law enforcement officers act (and react) the way that they do, even admitting that there are issues that need to be addressed with those actions and reactions.  From there, the program addresses training efforts being undertaken by law enforcement agencies nationwide to reduce those instances including in-house video training scenarios that discourage a shoot now – ask questions later mentality among officers.  Simply put, the segments presented here show, in a fully unbiased fashion just how very serious the issue of race relations still is today between the police and the public.  They show that this is an issue that must be publicly addressed and not brushed under the carpet.  They also show that the issue of rogue law enforcement officers must be addressed just as aggressively.  Keeping all of this in mind, the segments that make up the body of this program form a solid foundation for the documentary.  They are collectively not the program’s only key element.  The discussions raised in each segment are just as important to its overall presentation as the stories told throughout the segments.

The discussions presented throughout the course of The Talk: Race in America are critical to the program’s presentation because they show that efforts are being made on both sides of the badge nationwide to address the rift addressed through the program’s segments.  Viewers hear from law enforcement officials, community activists, and even celebrities to show that for all of the black and white (literal and metaphorical) that exists in that rift, there are also shades of grey.  There are those people on both sides who do in fact want that rift to be mended and who are working to close that gap.  Law enforcement officials discuss during their time the efforts that (as already noted) are being taken to train their own to de-escalate situations.  They also discuss the uncertainty of interactions that leads many officers to be so tense.  On the other side, there are those noted activists who organize public discussions with law enforcement officials that allow both sides to talk.  The program also includes a discussion by a minority couple who is teaching their son about the two sides so that he won’t become the next statistic one day, showing that maybe, just maybe, there is hope for the future.  At the same time, the couple also proves once more in its discussion that the tensions between police and minorities must continue to be addressed if that hope is to grow.  These discussions and so many others build on the foundation formed by the program’s segments and in turn show not only their own importance, but the importance of the program in whole that much more.  Even with their importance clearly displayed here, it can’t be said that the discussions are the last of the program’s most important elements.  The program’s pacing rounds out its most important elements.

The pacing of The Talk: Race in America is a critical part of the program’s whole because of its direct connection to the program’s segments and discussions (I.E. its overall content).  Considering that this program covers so much ground over the course of two hours, its pacing could have easily led audiences to fast forward through parts, ultimately making it a matter of what could have been.  Luckily though, that was not the case here.  From beginning to end, the segments and related material were balanced expertly both in terms of time and energy including even the segments’ transitions.  The attention to even the most minute details such as the transitions — and even the topics’ connections — ensures audiences’ engagement from beginning to end.  That ensured engagement will in turn lead viewers to see for themselves the importance of the program’s unbiased approach and the discussions connected to each segment.  That, in turn, will lead those viewers to agree to the importance of The Talk in whole to America and will most certainly leave viewers talking among themselves long after it ends.  The Talk: Race in America is available now.  It can be ordered online direct via PBS’ online store.  More information on this and other titles from PBS is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.pbs.org

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pbs

Twitter: http://twitter.com/PBS

 

 

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.