The Light from the TV Shows: 10 new series which *MIGHT* end up on Bullz-Eye’s next TV Power Rankings

If you’re a regular reader of Bullz-Eye, then you’re well familiar with a recurring feature that we like to call our TV Power Rankings. Back in the day, we used to offer up a list of our top 25 TV series every six months, but those who caught our most recent Rankings – we posted it back in February – know that we’re only doing it once a year now. As this is the first fall season to come around since we’ve scaled back, however, we thought it might be a good idea to take a look at the new programs that are slowly but surely making their debuts on the broadcast networks and give your our thoughts on which ones seem to have the potential to make their way onto the next Power Rankings…but with that said, you will please note the way we’ve made a point of clarifying above that this is in no way a formal declaration that they will end up on there. As we all know, shows can start strong, turn on a dime, and become craptacular within the span of only a few episodes. In short, it’s all very wait-and-see at this stage of the game, but if a show is on this list, that means that we at least think that it’s worthy of giving it a shot

Revolution (NBC)

At first glance, “Revolution” may seem to be a little bit like “Terra Nova” without the dinosaurs, given that it’s more or less about humanity trying to recover from a nasty situation (in this case, a sudden and seemingly total absence of electricity), but the pilot – directed by Jon Favreau – sets up the premise nicely, establishes the new power-free world, and gives stars Billy Burke and Giancarlo Esposito a chance to shine as the good guy and bad guy, respectively. The truth of the matter is that I’ll give anything with J.J. Abrams’ name on it a shot, but after the debacle that was “Undercovers,” I’m still going to enter with hesitation until “Revolution” proves itself.

Nashville (ABC)

As I’ve said elsewhere on Bullz-Eye, I didn’t even know I had a three-strike rule until I tried and failed on three separate occasions to get a decent interview out of Hayden Panitierre, so it’s a testament to how much I enjoyed the pilot for the country-music drama “Nashville” that I included it in this list. (Admittedly, it doesn’t hurt that she’s playing a complete bitch in the series.) There’s a very real possibility that the show could leave music-industry reality behind so quickly that I bail out well before mid-season, but with Connie Britton and Powers Boothe in the cast, it’s going to have to get pretty ridiculous for me to give up the ghost.

Vegas (CBS)

I’m a sucker for a good-looking period piece, so “Vegas” has already got me in its clutches by premise alone, focusing as it does on the growth of Las Vegas in the early 1960s, but it certainly doesn’t hurt that the show is headlined by Dennis Quaid and Michael Chiklis, then rounded out by Carrie Ann Moss and Jason O’Mara. I’m as excited about the possibilities of this series as I am just about anything premiering this fall…so don’t let me down, CBS!


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Nicole Scherzinger celebrates her birthday in Vegas at Tao

The pool scene in Vegas is always a great spot for beautiful women, particularly celebrities.

Singer and reality TV hottie Nicole Scherzinger continued her birthday celebration on Saturday at LAVO and TAO Beach in Las Vegas, spicing up the weekend pool scene. The current “X Factor UK” judge hung out with friends overlooking the entire pool scene as they took over TAO Beach’s Grand Cabana. “Thank you for coming out to celebrate my birthday with me,” Nicole stated. “This is my dedication to you.” Throughout the day, Nicole was spotted playing with dangling mustache glasses, taking photos with fans and later jumping on the mic once again to surprise the crowd with a performance of “Don’t Cha” and a medley of her other hits. All eyes were on Nicole as she let loose and grooved to the sounds of DJ Lema, who dropped the world premier of Nicole’s newest record “One More Shot.”

  

The Light from the TV Shows: Taking a Gander at the 2012-2013 Season

Sure, the kick-off of the 2011-2012 TV season is still about four months away, give or take, but it’s never too soon to start getting excited about the new shows that will be gracing the broadcast networks come the fall…or to start placing bets on which ones will be the first to be cancelled. I’m keeping my mouth shut on both topics for the time being, but I have no doubt that most folks who check out these network-provided plot synopses and trailers won’t hesitate for a moment to offer up their opinions, so I look forward to reading what ya’ll have to say about what’s coming up…

ABC

666 Park Avenue (Sun., 10–11PM): At the ominous address of 666 Park Avenue, anything you desire can be yours. Everyone has needs, desires and ambition. For the residents of The Drake, these will all be met, courtesy of the building’s mysterious owner, Gavin Doran (Terry O’Quinn). But every Faustian contract comes with a price. When Jane Van Veen (Rachael Taylor) and Henry Martin (Dave Annable), an idealistic young couple from the Midwest, are offered the opportunity to manage the historic building, they not only fall prey to the machinations of Doran and his mysterious wife, Olivia (Vanessa Williams), but unwittingly begin to experience the shadowy, supernatural forces within the building that imprison and endanger the lives of the residents inside. Sexy, seductive and inviting, The Drake maintains a dark hold over all of its residents, tempting them through their ambitions and desires, in this chilling new drama that’s home to an epic struggle of good versus evil.

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Have a blast at Machine Guns Vegas

I’ve had some memorable times in Las Vegas over the years, as Sin City has always been about creating over-the-top experiences with all the gambling and wild nightlife. But on this last trip I tried something new and exhilarating that I’ll remember for years!

I was invited to check out the all-new Machine Guns Vegas (MGV), a unique attraction that will soon be on most to-do lists for guys visiting Vegas. MGV combines a VIP ultra lounge setting with the ultimate firearms experience. The selection of guns you can shoot will blow your mind, so it’s perfect for gun enthusiasts along with first-timers who want to feel the thrill of firing these powerful weapons.

I’m the latter. I’d never shot a gun before even though I’d always wanted to try it. Now I’d get my chance, but it wouldn’t be with a simple handgun. I was going to shoot three badass, fully-automatic machine guns, and I couldn’t wait to try it.

As soon as you arrive at MGV you enter into a spacious and comfortable lounge area where you can relax and get ready. The staff is very professional and you can pick all sorts of packages for your experience. Guests are matched with a shooting host who uses interactive multimedia displays on an iPad to showcase each of the shooting experiences offered. Long lines are not an issue here as you can relax in the lounge while you pick your experience and wait your turn. My experience would consist of three machine guns – the M4 5.56 (US), the MK-47 (Russian) and the HK MP5 9MM (German).

After talking to my instructor, we decided to go with the biggest gun first, the M4 5.56 carbine fully automatic machine gun. The M4 is a shorter and lighter variant of the M16A2 assault rifle, sharing 80% of the parts, but it’s still a beast. It’s used by the U.S. military and is slated to replace the M16 for many combat units in the army. The instructor explained the proper way to shoot the gun. The stance is critical, as you don’t want this thing to knock you back when you fire. Balance and leverage is important as you keep your right foot back and prepare yourself to lean forward as you press the trigger. The instructor then sent out the target and I was ready to go.

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Ultimate weekend at Aria in Las Vegas

I’ve been going to Las Vegas for over 25 years, so I’ve stayed in every type of casino Sin City has to offer, from the high end resorts to the $25 per night temporary motel rooms behind the old Stardust when they were renovating it years ago. No matter where you’re staying, Vegas has so much to offer that you’ll always have a blast. But my recent weekend in Vegas staying at the amazing Aria Resort & Casino was a very pleasant reminder that a first class weekend in a luxurious hotel makes all the debauchery Vegas has to offer that much more enjoyable. It’s also so much easier to nurse a hangover in a comfortable bed in a beautiful room where you can shut the curtains and get total darkness with the press of a button from your bed!

Bullz-Eye was invited by Aria to cover the Michael Jordan Celebrity Invitational that was being held at Shadow Creek. Naturally I jumped at the opportunity to cover MJ and his celebrity pals while experiencing a weekend at Aria with everything it had to offer. I was lucky to have a fun and beautiful companion with me so everything was teed up for a great weekend.

The first thing I noticed about Aria was the amazing architecture and design. Everything about this place has been meticulously designed with a modern and original look. Of course Vegas has always featured upscale resorts and hotels, but they always had that gaudy Vegas feel. Instead of going with a themed hotel, the style of Aria is much more like a trendy, luxury hotel. The amount and different types of glass used at Aria is just stunning. The Jean Philippe Pâtisserie is just one of many things that stand out, with the artistically packages chocolates and gourmet pastries in an ultra modern corner of the casino. If you’re with a date the visual stimulation alone will set the mood for a memorable trip.

Like many of the large resorts in Vegas, Aria has practically everything you could need from an entertainment point of view. The pool is amazing and the attached shopping mall offers the best shopping in Vegas. The spa also offers a perfect getaway for couples, with the “Ganbanyoku” heated-stone bed and “Shio” salt room, outdoor therapy pool, Las Vegas’ only co-ed balcony with a stunning view of our beautiful pools. Your wife or girlfriend will love it!

The casino is also laid out nicely and I like the vibe on the casino floor. The beautiful venue definitely attracts the beautiful crowd! Having a nightclub like Haze at Aria also helps as gorgeous women in tight skirts and heels invade the casino around the midnight hour. Of course we also ventured out and indulged in the debauchery that Sin City has to offer, from a strip club to a cheesy after-hours lounge for late night food and more alcohol. But we always came back to this fantastic casino and resort where we could party some more or relax in the luxury rooms.

With all the amenities at the Aria, the restaurants stood out as some of the most impressive spots. We had the opportunity to try out many of them throughout the weekend as we indulged in a wide variety of incredible dishes. We started out the first night at Sirio Ristorante for some Tuscan-style Italian food created by chef Sirio Maccioni. We were tempted to go with one of the incredible veal or beef dishes on the menu, but we knew we had a big weekend ahead and we didn’t want to start off with serious food coma. So we ordered some delicious appetizers of jumbo prawns and seasonal oysters along with seafood entrees, including a pan-fried breaded Maine lobster that was incredible. If you’re a wine lover you’ll appreciate the selection of Italian vintages.

Sirio gave us the perfect start to the weekend and we were ready for our first night of heavy drinking. By lunch the next day we were ready for our first recovery meal, and lunch at Lemongrass was the perfect remedy. This modern Thai restaurant was incredibly comfortable and offered a variety of dishes. After some great appetizers including delicious pot stickers, we stuck with our seafood strategy and order several lobster dishes, including a special prepared by the chef. I can never get enough lobster so I was more than happy with this light lunch, and the specialty cocktails helped get us back in fighting form.

On Saturday night, after shooting machine guns (more on that in a later post) and getting a much-needed nap, we had dinner at American Fish by Micheal Mina as we geared up for Viva ELVIS and another night on the town. Our seafood diet was treating us well, and now wasn’t the time to change things given the name of the restaurant. We started out with succulent Tuna Tartare and I went with the Daily Shellfish entrée. Throw in some fun sides like Truffled Mac & Cheese and specialty cocktails and the entire meal was perfect.

We were full and buzzed and ready for our Elvis experience. Cirque du Soleil has had a string of hits in Vegas, and Viva ELVIS is their latest show. If you’re into Elvis’s music then I highly recommend it, as they covered his entire career from his early years, to his military service, to the movie years to the later years with the jumpsuits and the lamb chop sideburns. The show was visually impressive as we’ve come to expect from Cirque du Soleil with incredible acrobatics, and it’s in its final season so Elvis fans should be planning their trip! After the show we stopped for a cocktail and 80s music at The GOLD Lounge as we geared up for another late night. The lounge features a concept and décor that pays homage to the celebrated life of Elvis Presley. You can’t miss it with all the gold monkey imagery (Elvis was a fan) and it’s just another of the visually stunning venues in the Aria.

By our last night in Vegas we were completely spent, but we rallied to make it to dinner at Sage, which was one of our favorite places from the weekend. I knew I was probably going to pass out soon after dinner, so I went with the Snake River Farms New York Strip as switched from seafood. We also ordered the Wagyu Beef Tartare as one of our appetizers, which may have been my favorite dish of the trip! You’ll love the New American menu of Chef Shawn McClain’s first Las Vegas restaurant, which spotlights seasonal ingredients from neighboring California, just-picked produce, artisanal meats and sustainable seafood. The décor in Sage is also stunning and it’s located near the entrance of the resort.

You should check out the Aria whether you want a high-end place to party with your friends or a weekend that your wife or girlfriend will never forget. Located in the heart of the Strip, everything you could want is either in the resort or close by. You’ll definitely be able to party in style!

  

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