SideReel Takes One for the Team

March is an epic sports month. Baseball is back, March Madness is imminent (or in progress, depending on when you're reading this), regular season pro-basketball and hockey games start to have a desperate feel to them. (Also, it's lacrosse season, which probably means something to a select few!) SideReel doesn't cover sports, but we do cover sports-themed television, so we've put together a list of the most sportacular episodes of our favorite shows. Did your choice make the Elite Eight?   How I Met Your Mother  S3E14: The Bracket (The Final Four) Truthfully, this is only tangentially related to sports, but given that it was a nod to the, uh... growing field of bracketology (and not at all a shameless ploy to promote CBS 's ownership of the NCAA Basketball tournament), but it is a well-crafted episode that finally acknowledges that Barney is kind of (and by kind of I mean extremely) cruel to women. Turns out that in the aftermath of being Barn-stormed (did he ever use that? If not, he should have), they don't really hold him in high regard. Also, basketball is referenced.   Friday Night Lights  S7E42: State Season one of FNL was basically flawless. From its heartbreaking pilot to its joyful finale, it was a perfect and gorgeously paced paean to the long game. For my money, "State" has the most touching scene in the entire series: the victory parade set to Tony Lucca 's cover of Texas legend Daniel Johnston 's " Devil Town ". As the Greek chorus that is local sports radio says of Coach Eric Taylor at the end, "He healed this team, and he healed this town."     The Simpsons  S3E17: Homer at the Bat There are many strange and wonderful moments in the third season of The Simpsons , but this episode certainly serves as a time capsule of the era we chose to believe the best of our baseball players. The roster of stars in this episode also does double-duty as a list of "Yikes, that guy! Eeesh." True, there are some on there who survived the '90s with their reputations intact, but there were some other spectacular flameouts. Luckily, the best line in the episode is uttered by good guy Ken Griffey, Jr., and I'll tune in every time to hear him say, "There's a party in my mouth, and everyone's invited!" (a line he reportedly had great trouble recording).   Switched at Birth  S7E40: Game On Switched at Birth is a pioneering show that should get more respect among the wider population than it does. Newsflash, America: ABC Family is not just for teens! Aside from the fact that it's given wonderful exposure to the deaf community, its characters have real, multidimensional personalities. Bay Kennish is a talented modern artist, while Daphne Vasquez (the terrific Katie Leclerc) is a gifted basketball player. "Game On" puts her team (from Carlton School for the Deaf) into a regional basketball tournament—and they truly shine. Sure, the underdog victory is a frequently-used trope on TV, but SaB never makes it feel trite, just exciting, honest, and well-deserved.   Star Trek: Deep Space Nine  S7E4: Take Me Out to the Holosuite There's no crying in spaceball! I was always charmed by DS9 's references to baseball as an obscure and weird obsession of Captain Sisko's. It was one of those things that made the show actually feel like it was from the future, looking at something so omnipresent to us now the way we look at the harpsichord. Imagine trying to learn a sport that went out of fashion hundreds of years ago—and playing it against a species that's stronger, smarter, and (supposedly) unphased by pressure? Vulcans are practically naturally dosed with PEDs! It's a cheerful hour in an overwhelmingly dark final season, and all the more wonderful for that.   The Colbert Report  S6E11: Dick Ebersol Stephen Colbert takes on speedskating and the Winter Olympics in general in this 2010 episode featuring Shani Davis and then-head of NBC Sports, Dick Ebersol. Doing what he does best—skewering those who take themselves too seriously, something the Winter Olympics (and the Summer Olympics!) have long been guilty of—Colbert is untouchable. The guy probably deserves some kind of gold medal—in fact, I'm sure he'd be the first to agree.     It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia  S5E7: The Gang Wrestles for the Troops Pro-wrestling is a sport! Or, at the very least, it's a "sport"... probably... maybe. Its overt narcissism and "villainy" are the same qualities found in an average episode of It's Always Sunny , which make the two an ideal match. Plus, having donned their eagle (pigeon) costumes, the guys sing about being BIRDS OF WAR before taking on poor Rickety Cricket, shown here having the most demeaning moment of his life up to this point. Oh, Cricks, it doesn't get better. [Sadface.]   The League  S2E13: The Sacko Bowl SideReel kind of loves The League ! And by kind of, I mean WE LOVE THE LEAGUE ! None of us actually do fantasy sports, but it doesn't stop us from enjoying it vicariously through this show, what with its excellent cast and mean jokes (we, too, are excellent and mean). So it's appreciated that there's a competition for last place (the titular bowl) which leads to a year-long shaming of the "winner." We're not bad people, we just like watching them on TV.   Leah E. Friedman  is the editor of When she was 8, she asked a JCC basketball coach to take her out of the game due to perspiration. You can follow her musings on  Twitter .

How to Recover from Binge-Watching Any Show: A Friendly SideReel Guide

ol li { margin-bottom: 1em: } By now we've all done it. You go in with the intention of watching one or two hours of a show and the next thing you know, the weekend is over, you're surrounded by takeout boxes, and you can't remember the last time you took a breath of fresh air. You've powered through the last 40 episodes of Breaking Bad or Mad Men and run out of show. Or maybe you've stretched the consumption of a show like Orange is the New Black out over a couple of days, but realize there are only 13 episodes in the entire series (so far). Either way, the problem is the same.  Like any addict, when the product runs out, you're going to go through withdrawal. Here are some easy steps (no, there aren't 12 of them) to ease that pain:  Take a shower. If it was a weekend marathon, there's a good chance you haven't had one in a while — and even if it was a slightly longer haul, you'll still feel better. If the show has a theme song, go ahead and sing it to yourself. If it's the Cheers theme song, sing it REALLY LOUDLY. Head over to your computer. Google "[Name of show]" and then any or all of the following terms: theories, fan fiction, wiki, supercut, mashup, tumblr. A trove of riches awaits you here. If looking at a science fiction, fantasy, or supernatural show, you don't even have to pace yourself. Note: If you're looking for any Star Trek series , go directly to Memory Alpha . Devise a drinking game around the show! No, we're not telling you to trade one vice for another — we're telling you to combine them.* It may force you to rewatch (though no, it will never be as good as the first time), or at least delve pretty deeply into plotlines, characters, and (potentially) catchphrases. This will allow you to... …bother your friends into watching this totally cool show you just discovered that they've already watched on a weekly basis and probably have no desire to talk about it anymore. IMPORTANT: Tell them you're supplying the liquor. Movie spinoffs? MOVIE SPINOFFS!** Why quit your habit? There are millions of hours of television to catch up on. Just pick a show , and check out our recommendations . *We do. **The only exception here is  Stargate , where the movie actually preceded the show and is completely different in both casting and tone. Leah is SideReel's Web TV and Movie Editor. For further super exciting insight into watching reruns, follow her on Twitter .

Star Trek: DS9 played the most dangerously idiotic game in the galaxy

Star Trek: Deep Space 9 is beloved among Trek fans, and rightly so. That still doesn’t mean its didn’t have a few piles of crap amongst its many good episode, and there’s not a bigger crap-pile than the reviled first season episode “Move Along Home.” Roll the dice and discover the worst game in the entire universe. Read More...

Exclusive: Science Picks Up Star Trek Documentary From Gene Roddenberry's Son

Science Channel is boldly going where it hasn't before, partnering with Rod Roddenberry Jr., the son of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry, to produce and air the documentary Trek Nation . Timed to the 45 th anniversary of the original Star Trek , the feature-length special will follow Roddenberry Jr. as he goes on a journey to learn more about his father, while documenting the continued celebration of the show (and its many spinoffs) by fans...


If you're a Trekkie and live in or around Las Vegas, you're going to want to be at 66 Spectrum Blvd. tomorrow at 10am. That's because Propworx is selling a ton of items from Star Trek: The Experience in what's being billed as a warehouse sale. The only negative for people that don't live in Las Vegas is the items need to be removed from the location at 3pm. I think that be hard if you live in Chicago. Saying that, they've got: To Read More Click Here .