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The Starling City Times: News and Media about Arrow

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The Next Level Showcast podcast interview with EK on Dec. 30, 2016...

S03E43 - "Echo Kellum" 
http://www.nextlevelradioonline.com/the-showcast.html

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In this, the final edition of The Showcast Spotlight for the 2016 year, Adam and Ben go out on a high note by welcoming guest Echo Kellum (aka Curtis Holt/Mr. Terrific) from the CW show Arrow.  Echo talks his love for sneakers, how he feels about portraying a gay, black superhero, and ambitions outside of the DC universe.  That and much more.  Be sure to follow Echo on Twitter @EchoK

Podcast: http://www.nextlevelradioonline.com/Podcast/Showcast/S03/ep43.mp3

-- When EK auditioned for Curtis, he was familiar with the DC character of Mr. Terrific but he hadn't read the comics.

-- They joked about how fast he must cornrow his braids. EK said that the Mr. Terrific mask is a prosthetic that they glue to his face.

-- EK said that his height makes it more difficult for him to get into the "rhythm" of the salmon ladder and said that he can do "two rungs."

-- EK said that he loves going to comic cons because he grew up "immersed in nerd culture" and he's a nerdy guy. In addition to the Heroes & Villains cons, he's trying to expand into doing other comic cons.

-- EK also does a voice for Elena of Avalor.

-- EK and his friends wrote something called Assassins Anonymous (about decommissioned CIA assassins) and shot some footage, which EK directed. They're trying to get a pilot for it. EK said that he really wants to "segue" into directing.

-- As for what's coming up in the second half of Arrow S5, EK said:

 

(1) his Mr. Terrific suit will get an upgrade in the second half of this season; (2) we'll get "a lot of answers" (raised by the mid-season finale) in the first episode back (510); and (3) they'll "really dig into the team aspect" and "will take on" Prometheus.

Edited by tv echo

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Time and time again, we are seeing strong, dynamic women dominate our TV screens — and no, we will never stop asking for more.

In the past few years we’ve been introduced to some of the baddest of badass ladies we’ve ever seen on television. These gals are fiery, smart and courageous — all while feeling relatable and connecting to their audiences.

A new year means a lot of new things, and that means new excitement and drama that comes with our new shows and their kick ass leading ladies.. Whether their surgeons, students, witches or princesses, judging by their journeys so far it looks like 2017 is going to be one to watch for these gals.

As we begin a new year, we’re keeping our eyes on these 14 leading ladies to make sure we don’t miss a moment of their badass ways.

These are the boss ladies of TV we’re rallying behind in 2017.

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Felicity Smoak

TV Show: Arrow

Characters like Felicity are the reason why shows like Arrow are as great as they are. Not only is she a wiz at computer technology, she’s also relatably quirky and awkward. We’ve all felt like Felicity in one way or another at a time in our life. With each season we see her character grow and strengthen, never apologiizing for the being the brilliant badass she is. #TeamFelicity!

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Oliver and Felicity in Fangirlish' '17 TV Couples That Have INSANE Chemistry' list:

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Sometimes you can’t really predict when fate might intervene and bring together two actors that, when together, bring the kind of chemistry and heart to two characters that Stephen Amell and Emily Bett Rickards have done with Arrow’s Oliver and Felicity. And in the process alter the course of a show – for the better – forever. The greatest thing about this story is that this was never intended. Oliver and Felicity were never meant to be a couple. They were never meant to even be two characters than interacted on a regular basis. But luckily the greatest accident ever happened. The chemistry between Oliver and Felicity is the kind you don’t see too often. It’s magical. They can say a million words with a single look or a single motion. They’re so in sync with each other that they often mirror each other’s body language. It’s the stuff of magic. No, it’s the stuff of fate.

A little late, but I wanted to wish everyone a happy new year!

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This is from last year from Just About Write but it's even more relevant this season:

Dear TV Writers: Your Fear of 'The Moonlight Curse' is Killing Your Show.

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But what I've noticed in my time watching and writing about television for years critically is that fear permeates a lot of writers' rooms, and never leaves — especially when it comes to writing romances between lead characters. It's this fear that ends up sinking shows in the end, in ways that Nielsen ratings never could. Over the years, television writers have fallen into this trap, lured there by a lie: if will-they-won't-they couples have their tension resolved and don't have to endure trope after trope of relationship drama, audiences will become bored and the show will sink faster than you can say "Titanic." Writers and producers have isolated this problem and shoved it into a grenade, placed it in the corner of a room, and moved as far away as possible from it.

The problem here is that they've failed to isolate the real danger. While writers and producers have shoved "resolved romance" into that grenade, fearing the day it blows up in their faces, they've not noticed the poisonous fruit they've picked up in its place [snip]

When writers make the bold decision to put their "will-they-won't-they" tension-filled couples together, I believe that on some level (either conscious or subconscious), they begin to frantically worry that the couple being together won't be enough for the audience. On one hand, I can understand their dilemma — sometimes, the very thing we champion for and yell that we want becomes a lot less interesting once we have it in our hands. But this way of thinking, while understandable on some level, is not a reason to interject unnecessary drama just for the sake of having drama. Television audiences are intelligent. We follow character arcs and journeys for a reason. This is the stuff that speaks to us and moves us. We are not petulant children, begging for dessert before dinner — we don't ask for couples to get together because we want to see a repeat of what they went through to become established. THAT is the fun of the "will-they-won't-they," after all.

We don't want writers to repeat that same drama-filled path that led us to our favorite couple getting together. We want the kind of drama that develops organically from the now-established pairing that we didn't get before.
So how does this apply to Arrow, you ask? Well, the writers decided that this season — instead of organically developing something that would happen and would be in-character for both Oliver and Felicity — they would introduce a "secret child" storyline. It's a trope as old as time itself, and — for all of that time it has been around — is generally loathed by audiences. We roll our eyes, because this is not the kind of drama we care about. This is soapy drama for the sake of drama. Moreover, it's EASY drama. It's low-hanging fruit. It's so overwrought and overdone that we have stopped responding to it with anything other than knee-jerk abhorrence. The problem though isn't inherently tied to the trope (though it is problematic), but in the way that this "drama" regressed Oliver. Oliver, a character who had immense flaws and problems last year and was just becoming a more well-rounded, progressed character this season.

I have a lot of hatred for this storyline not because it drives a completely absurd and frankly stupid wedge between a pairing that would have been way more interesting had their drama developed organically. No, I hate it because the problem with the fear of the Moonlighting Curse is that it causes writers to do really, really dumb things that only end up hurting their shows in the long-run. And these things? The writers then attribute the show's problems or lack of critical acclaim to the last bold move it made. And that is — you've guessed it! — the choice to put a couple together.

 

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13 hours ago, statsgirl said:

This is from last year from Just About Write but it's even more relevant this season:

Dear TV Writers: Your Fear of 'The Moonlight Curse' is Killing Your Show.

The thing that drives me crazy (besides the fact that the "curse" is dumb), is that what happened on Moonlight is a myth. TV writers think they got together and their chemistry immediately suffered. What actually happened was they got together and then Cybil Shepard took time off due to pregnancy and Bruce Willis took time off to do Die Hard. Their schedules were so off that in a 14-ep season, they went 8 eps before sharing a scene again. By then, the audience was tired of being jerked around. It had nothing to do with putting the characters together. http://www.npr.org/sections/monkeysee/2009/09/what_really_happened_to_moonli_1.html

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What We're Buying: Arrow Star Echo Kellum's Insanely Cool Sneakers
BY ALEX APATOFF JANUARY 4, 2017 AT 1:43PM EST
http://people.com/style/what-were-buying-arrow-star-echo-kellums-insanely-cool-sneakers/?xid=socialflow_twitter_peoplemag

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Have you bought anything you loved lately? In the PeopleStyle offices, the answer to that question is usually “Yes.” (Just check out our weekly What We’re Loving Right Now gallery for proof!) This week, we’re featuring actor Echo Kellum (who you love on Arrow)  and his favorite-ever pair of sneakers.

Echo Kellum, actor and star of the CW’s Arrow: “I am a huge Nike and Jordan shoe collector and there is nothing I hold dearer to my heart than my Jordan 12 Wings. There were only 12,000 made and I was fortunate enough to snag a pair. They are so fresh, I may never wear them! Which is truly a shame – but also a sneaker head’s dream!”

unknown-1.jpeg?w=2320

Edited by tv echo

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I do not understand anyone collecting shoes.  Obsessed with buying shoes and wearing them, sure, but just to have them on a shelf, no.  

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His poor wife. Those are some really unflattering photos. Maybe the sun was in her eyes? Because this is her facial expression.

gru-despicable-me-2-35.1.jpg

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5 hours ago, bijoux said:

You can read this entire issue online here - EK's article is on pages 52-59 (to get to those pages quickly, click on the "Pages Overview" icon* on the left side, then scroll down thumbnails in left margin until you see EK's pics and interview)...
https://www.joomag.com/magazine/urban-magazine-january-2017/0988163001483632161?short

(* Looks like a box made up of 9 smaller boxes)

-- On what it was about Curtis that motivated him to take on the role, EK: "I just felt like Curtis has a lot of depth. He is really silly and funny but also extremely intelligent and that's something that I was very excited to play with. He is very similar to me in a lot of ways. Whether it be his undying loyalty to the people who are close to him or his tech prowess, it drove me to the character. I just thought he had a lot of different levels and he would be fun to play."

-- On whether he had to do any special training, EK: "I have always been in pretty all-right shape. I was skinny a couple of years ago because I had been running a lot. I have always been very fit and active in my life, but I did have to take it up a notch for this role. They got s trainers and I started doing Krav Maga, boxing and little bit of Wing Chun - Definitely mixing it up and having a lot of fun. Doing all that cool stuff, it's been really invigorating time."

-- On Curtis seeming to have the ability to keep the other characters grounded and in touch with their humanity outside of Team Arrow and whether Curtis was always supposed to become a vigilante, EK: "First of all, I think the writers are phenomenal. They really go where they feel like the story is telling them to go. They really follow the chemistry on the screen and how the audience react. The[sic] create some unique perspectives from that point. Early on in the show, I didn't know that I would become a part of Team Arrow. I know they had hopes to one day make this character Mr. Terrific. I'm happy with the way things have gone. I know I've been having a blast playing off all of the new members of Team Arrow. We just have so much playing off each other and dynamics of the new team. I feel like we are willing[sic] hitting our stride with the show. I feel this is our best season ever. The writers have done a kick-ass job and I applaud them."

-- On whether Mr. Terrific is based on the comic book character, EK: "He is definitely based off the comic book character. He has a lot of similarities, but he is his own version of that character. I am glad that they gave me the role to formulate him how I see fit."

-- On whether he has any input on his costume, EK: "I didn't have any input on it, but obviously our costume designer Maya Mani is one of the best in the industry. She has a pulse on it, she does Flash, Legends of Tomorrow, and Arrow.

 

I can[sic] wait for people to see the final costume. That's going to happen this season. I think it's really bad ass and really true to the comics. I think that she just gets it and that's why I'm okay not to have any input. She is someone that we trust fully with her vision."

Edited by tv echo
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On 1/6/2017 at 5:08 AM, bijoux said:

His poor wife. Those are some really unflattering photos. Maybe the sun was in her eyes? Because this is her facial expression.

 

I think I recall seeing a tweet from her that she'll never forget her sunglasses again, because she saw the pics and didn't like her RBF. It sucks when you don't have your glasses in the bright sun. I do feel for her and then to have it blasted all over social media.

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On Katie Cassidy’s unique return to the “Arrowverse” after Laurel Lance was killed off:

We made a deal at the end of that season to bring her back for a bunch of episodes. Katie is a part of the fabric of the show. Because the show, like a comic book, can move in different ways, and characters go and come, everybody that’s ever been a part of the key and core ensemble has always had a place at the table for our show.

There’s the capacity for her to be [in all four shows]. At this moment, she’s in three of them.

http://www.cbr.com/berlanti-on-adapting-archie-into-riverdale-laurels-arrowverse-return/?utm_source=CBR-TW&utm_medium=Social-Distribution&utm_campaign=CBR-TW&view=list

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59 minutes ago, Primal Slayer said:

Because the show, like a comic book, can move in different ways,

I assume Guggenheim has different ideas?

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2 hours ago, Primal Slayer said:
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On Katie Cassidy’s unique return to the “Arrowverse” after Laurel Lance was killed off:

We made a deal at the end of that season to bring her back for a bunch of episodes. Katie is a part of the fabric of the show. Because the show, like a comic book, can move in different ways, and characters go and come, everybody that’s ever been a part of the key and core ensemble has always had a place at the table for our show.

There’s the capacity for her to be [in all four shows]. At this moment, she’s in three of them.

http://www.cbr.com/berlanti-on-adapting-archie-into-riverdale-laurels-arrowverse-return/?utm_source=CBR-TW&utm_medium=Social-Distribution&utm_campaign=CBR-TW&view=list

I swear every time I hear him talk about her, there feels like an undertone of dislike. I feel like that really came through in the writing for her.

I have said previously that while at times I rooted for her, or got angry on her behalf, I could never really like Laurel, I feel like KC was a massive miscast, but the writing never did her any favours.

Add to the writing, that some of her acting choices and personal head canons didn't gel with what was going on in the rest of the show. I always wondered why no one took her aside and clued her in on stuff like the resting bitch face and arms crossed, the whole 'Laurel and Ollie 4eva' stuff at the onset of the BC stuff, because she lost a window there, she should have been 'Oliver Queen? Who? I am the BC bitches' and rode on a wave of female empowerment, but she kept hawking the LI angle that made no sense given the Olicity at the time. She did switch talking up BC, but lost that window. Why wasn't she advised the best way to spin it?

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Possibilities:

- She was probably advised but she didn't care.

- Was advised but felt like she could bust out her lawyers if they tried anything with her.

- They finally started writing her off because her contract was ending therefore they could get rid of her (as a real regular cast member.)

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7 hours ago, MaisyDaisy said:

'Laurel and Ollie 4eva' stuff at the onset of the BC stuff, because she lost a window there, she should have been 'Oliver Queen? Who? I am the BC bitches' and rode on a wave of female empowerment, but she kept hawking the LI angle

In a sense I can't blame her for this. It's clear with the history of the show, being a love interest to the lead means that the character would get more screentime. It happened with Sara and it happened with Felicity. So even though it wasn't good for her character, I doubt KC cared, she probably was just in it for the exposure.

... Which is ironic because I feel her being at odds with the writers with her headcanons is one of the reasons why she got fired. 

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All I will say is Eff off Screen Rant who can't understand basic television and watch Arrow like a 4 year old watches Seaseme Street. 

Click on the link to article posted about Oliver and Felicitys changing relationship and their spin on Felicity going dark spoilers. The author writes that Felicity enabled Olivers morally questionable behaviour re:killing and that she was never a moral compass for the Green Arrow ergo she should go full villian.

Maybe if you got your head out of Black Canarys ass before you suffocate in it Screen Rant you'd see how wrong you are losers. End rant.

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I think it's weird that the back half of the article focuses on the "possibility" of Laurel coming on the shows following a quote from GB that she actually IS going to be on three of them? 

I guess that's what you get on a pay per post site. 

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If Laurel is going to be cropping up in the entire slate of CW superhero shows it begs the question: Why bother killing her in the first place? There is a feeling of taking a step backward in order to soften the blow of her death from last season. It’s the same question that arises every time a character is brought back from the dead on one of the television shows or the comic books that inspire them. However, it remains unknown whether or not Katie Cassidy will be playing Laurel Lance, Black Siren, or even someone else across the CW slate of shows. Perhaps she will be the first character that we will see four different versions of across four different television shows.

LOOL well Screen Rant,  that's because they wanted her gone and wanted that contract terminated. Bringing her back as a one off character doesn't cost them the same money as having her as the second billed on the show when her character is basically useless.

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The fact that they can't comprehend basic quotes (or television plots and characters) is why they don't get nice things. 

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4 hours ago, LeighAn said:

All I will say is Eff off Screen Rant who can't understand basic television and watch Arrow like a 4 year old watches Seaseme Street. 

Click on the link to article posted about Oliver and Felicitys changing relationship and their spin on Felicity going dark spoilers. The author writes that Felicity enabled Olivers morally questionable behaviour re:killing and that she was never a moral compass for the Green Arrow ergo she should go full villian.

Maybe if you got your head out of Black Canarys ass before you suffocate in it Screen Rant you'd see how wrong you are losers. End rant.

Oh I tried to write a comment on the site and it said it was spam and blocked. I guess that site only wants ass kissing replies for Laurel.

Edited by EmilyBettFan

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31 minutes ago, EmilyBettFan said:

Oh I tried to write a comment on the site and it said it was spam and blocked. I guess that site only wants ass kissing replies for Laurel.

I wrote a comment about them missing the trailer there. Also, that site has no traction, it seems.

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6 hours ago, LeighAn said:

The fact that they can't comprehend basic quotes (or television plots and characters) is why they don't get nice things. 

Yesterday I saw an article interpreting MG quotes on dark!Felicity as 'hmm this sounds like she's the new BC! let us know in the comments what you think' LOL 

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1 minute ago, pizza pizza said:

Yesterday I saw an article interpreting MG quotes on dark!Felicity as 'hmm this sounds like she's the new BC! let us know in the comments what you think' LOL 

Those articles are everywhere and they're all click/hate-bait. They want people to start raging against the idea, no matter how many times everyone says that won't happen. A press release could be issued stating "Felicity will 100% never become the Black Canary" and people will still say they think it's going to happen. 

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7 hours ago, Willowtree said:
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Katie Cassidy’s character Laurel Lance was the second character to don the mask of Black Canary in The CW’s superhero show Arrow. At the end of season 4, Laurel Lance died heroically, setting an impossible example for every Canary that comes after her and breaking Oliver Queen’s (Stephen Amell) heart at the same time. The effects of Laurel’s death can be felt in the current season of Arrow in the way that Oliver is treating his latest batch of recruits, as well as in the changes to his relationship with Felicity

What the hell?  What show are they watching?

Edited by BkWurm1
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4 minutes ago, BkWurm1 said:

What the hell?  What show are they watching?

Yeah, that's my reaction as well. Sometimes I wonder if there are two versions of Arrow - the one that I'm watching and the one that others are. 

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24 minutes ago, BkWurm1 said:

So GATV just posted its annual Midseason Roundtable discussion.  If you click on the link, you'll figure out pretty fast why I thought to mention it, lol. 

http://www.greenarrowtv.com/team-gatv-midseason-roundtable-arrow-season-5-so-far/

First GATV anything I read in quite a while and was pretty glad to read it. Nice answers, @BkWurm1

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Good job @BkWurm1 ! 

Im picturing Craig's eye twitching every time you mentioned Oliver and Felicity haha.

Also love that they included an Olicity question just so they could complain about Olicity shippers. 

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He had to know what he was going to get, lol.  I haven't been shy in the past about making my opinions known.  Or being that brief while doing so.  I was worried about how long some of my answers were, but to his credit even when I offered to try to tighten some of my answers up he was adamant about not asking for any edits.

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Well that's good. I'd like to give him the benefit of the doubt that in Earth 2 where he's doppelgänger is not so thin skinned he and Olicity shippers could peacefully coexist :p

I must admit once you got past the digs about pitchforks and "ooh controversy" comments both Craig and Matts answers about Olicity were fairly diplomatic.

Edited by LeighAn
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7 minutes ago, lemotomato said:

Is this the first time he's allowed an opposing viewpoint? I wonder it's a bid to get more pagehits.

It really bothers him that the newsy side to his site has a biased rep, so yeah, my inclusion was an attempt to pull in another viewpoint, but given that I'm described as a frequent poster in the forums over on GATV (that also come with a biased rep), not sure anyone would guess ahead of time I'd be pro Olicity, lol.  

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17 minutes ago, LeighAn said:

Well that's good. I'd like to give him the benefit of the doubt that in Earth 2 where he's doppelgänger is not so thin skinned he and Olicity shippers could peacefully coexist :p

I must admit once you got past the digs about pitchforks and "ooh controversy" comments both Craig and Matts answers about Olicity were fairly diplomatic.

I only got to read the other parts of the round table today.  I was half expecting a three against one set up, but it wasn't so cut and dried as that, which was a relief.  

Edited by BkWurm1
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Thanks!  All of you guys were on my mind when I was answering. This is the place to be for reasonable and intelligent IMO.  :D

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Yay, I once sent him feedback about how unwelcome I felt on that site. That the level of bias was stopping the site from being a creditable source of information.

GATV was the second site I visited as an excited Arrow fan, ready to discuss with other fans. The first site had a conversation in the comment section about how Felicity needed to be killed by Oliver for being a conceited needy bitch (not even kidding here) and how EBR could then go to GoT so they could see her tits and watch as Tyrion fucks then strangles her. There were mods actively on that site who just didn't consider that as out of line.

GATV was more disappointing then an raging to me, because it felt really unprofessional for a site called GATV. The entitlement of some of those comic fanboys upfront telling woman who commented that their points/opinions carried more weight because they had read the comics was gross.

so, I would say this is a step in the right direction. 

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4 hours ago, BkWurm1 said:

It really bothers him that the newsy side to his site has a biased rep, so yeah, my inclusion was an attempt to pull in another viewpoint, but given that I'm described as a frequent poster in the forums over on GATV (that also come with a biased rep), not sure anyone would guess ahead of time I'd be pro Olicity, lol.  

If he knew your posting history and asked you to join the roundtable anyway, I'll give him credit for that. But I'm amused that he's bothered by the accusations of bias, because depending on his mood, he's either flat out denying that he's biased, or saying "I'm a fan, so of course I have favorites. If you don't like it, gtfo my website."

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2 hours ago, lemotomato said:

If he knew your posting history and asked you to join the roundtable anyway, I'll give him credit for that. But I'm amused that he's bothered by the accusations of bias, because depending on his mood, he's either flat out denying that he's biased, or saying "I'm a fan, so of course I have favorites. If you don't like it, gtfo my website."

I think the interviews he does are about 98.5% unbiased with just a little bit coming out unintentionally in how questions get chosen or framed, but I don't think he ever tries to pull a gotcha or push his preferences like some interviewers do and he's always respectful to the actors.  

Anything though that requires interpretation or opinion makes it impossible of course to be objective even if the intent behind something might be to be fair minded.  And some people are also better at recognizing their biases than others.  Adding more voices with decidedly different viewpoints seems like the best solution to being more inclusive.  He deserves credit for wanting that I think.    

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