Top Picks: 'Shaun the Sheep,' spectacular desserts, 'Foyle's War,' and more recommendations
New 'Shaun the Sheep' DVD from the creators of 'Wallace & Gromit,' cookbook guru Deborah Madison's new book 'Seasonal Fruit Desserts,' British mystery 'Foyle's War' on DVD, and more top picks.
Far from sheepish
"Wallace & Gromit" creators are back with another collection of barnyard stories in the six-episode DVD collection, "Shaun the Sheep: One Giant Leap for Lambkind" (Lionsgate). The stop-motion animated shorts, originally created for the BBC, are classic silent comedy skits where Shaun – one of the more intelligent sheep – solves the latest predicament, including naughty pigs, paranormal sightings, and a serious case of hiccups.
HGTV's "Design Star" does for aspiring interior designers what "Project Runway" did for fashion designers – offers exposure (not all positive) and a chance to host their own TV design show. The 12 finalists – a mix of stylists, architects, artists, and interior designers – stretch their creativity with projects that squeeze them on time, money, and materials. Judges include Candice Olsen of "Divine Design," Vern Yip, and Genevieve Gorder. The show's fifth season starts June 13 at 10 p.m.
Food and cookbook guru Deborah Madison has written a bit of a love letter to fruit with her latest cookbook "Seasonal Fruit Desserts" (Broadway Books, $32.50). Fruit grown in excessive quantities and picked before it's ripe, in order to withstand shipping, has led to rows of beautiful, tasteless fruit in supermarkets. Madison wants us to rediscover the fleeting joys of locally grown, seasonal fruit. Whether it is figs and raspberries elegantly presented unadorned or a recipe for a compote, "Seasonal Fruit Desserts" advises even as it tempts with musings from Madison illustrated with delicious photographs.
Hotel hot spots
Even as 3G access expands, for many people free hotel Wi-Fi can make or break a booking decision. To find the best (and worst) hotels in which to hook up to the Internet, take a look at HotelChatter.com's Annual Hotel Wifi Report.
Burma behind the scenes
Academy Award-nominee "Burma VJ: Reporting From a Closed Country" is the harrowing account of the 2007 uprising against the military regime. Filmed by a group of underground journalist-citizens who risked their lives, the film shows the brutal repression wrought by the ruling generals. First shown on HBO, the 90-minute documentary will be out on DVD June 15.
One man's war
Sophisticated mystery with a touch of British understatement, "Foyle's War" is back with a new DVD set (Set 6, Acorn Media, $49.99). Set in Hastings immediately after World War II, the award-winning series follows police investigator Christopher Foyle (Michael Kitchen) – a dry, reticent character with a deep streak of decency – as he tackles cases of military racism, international intrigue, and a war traitor too willing to be hanged. Not to be missed.