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Thursday, March 5, 2015 |  Madison, WI: 11.0° F  Fair
The Daily


Battleground, Episode 7 recap: Political Machine

Battleground sheds a little more of its heretofore reticence on the Blue vs. Red identity of its characters now that it's time for the big show. While previous episodes have offered cultural markers and oblique references to the partisan identity of the campaign, it's now made clear that Samuels is the Democratic nominee for Senate. >More
 A brilliant new Great Expectations puts an orphan through his paces

Masterpiece's "Great Expectations" is the best adaptation I've seen of Charles Dickens' novel, surpassing David Lean's overrated 1946 version. You know you're in good hands from the first scene, as young orphan Pip (Douglas Booth) encounters an escaped convict (Ray Winstone) on the marshes near his house. >More
 Why I watch golf on TV

Me, a sports fan? The odds were against it. I'm a terrible athlete. I'm gay. I'm bookish. My earliest sports memories involve 1970s football games at the University of Tennessee, my parents' alma mater. In Knoxville, the spectacle that is college football is bigger even than the Madison variety, but amid 90,000 screaming fans, I was the little kid silently reading Beverly Cleary. >More
 Touch offers up pseudo-religious hokum

TV networks have always had a weakness for mysticism, from The Twilight Zone to The X-Files to Lost. The trick is to keep the audience from laughing at you -- a trick that the new Touch hasn't quite mastered. >More
 Battleground, Episode 6 recap: Polls Close at 6

The big day has arrived in Wisconsin's race for U.S. Senate: the primary election between state Sen. Samuels (Meighan Gerachis) and state Rep. Rudy. Our heroes at the Samuels campaign have pulled even with Rudy after starting with a 20-point deficit a mere two months ago. >More
 A former spy searches for her son in Missing

In Missing, Becca (Ashley Judd) is a normal middle-aged mom who sends teenage son Mike (Nick Eversman) off to school in Rome. We feel their strong bond as Becca talks to Mike long-distance from the flower shop where she works. Then, Mike uncharacteristically stops returning her calls. In a panic, Becca flies to Rome and stumbles on an armed intruder in Mike's apartment. To our shock, she disarms and strangles him in a jiffy. >More
 Battleground, Episode 5 recap: They'll Burn Your Eyes

Thanks to developments in Ohio, the Democrats now need to win in Wisconsin to hold the majority in the U.S. Senate. Tak explains this is why the champagne photo has become a "thing" and theirs has become "the race." Artfully disheveled as always, Tak (when will we find out why his nickname is Tak, by the way?) is confident, but slips in some foreshadowing about the race turning ugly. >More
 Sarah Palin tries to pass as a credible VP in Game Change

Game Change expertly dramatizes a crazy moment in American history: Sarah Palin's selection as John McCain's running mate in the 2008 presidential election. The sagging McCain (Ed Harris) needs a "game-changer" to compete with charismatic Barack Obama, and campaign strategist Steve Schmidt (Woody Harrelson) convinces himself that Palin (Julianne Moore) checks all the right boxes. >More
 Battleground, Episode 4 recap: The Comment

Political pros hate it when people go off-message. Issuing a vague death threat definitely counts as going off-message. That's what happens in episode four of Battleground, which means Tak (Jay Hayden) has yet another fire to put out. >More
 It's only a dream… Or maybe not in the mind-bending Awake

The new drama Awake rivals The Twilight Zone with its reality-bending premise. Detective Michael Britten (Jason Isaacs) wakes up from a family car crash to find that his wife (Laura Allen) has survived and his son (Dylan Minnette) has died. When he goes to sleep, though, he finds himself in an alternate reality in which his wife has died and his son has survived. >More
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