Just wanted to give a quick update on my findings!
Well it took a bit of tweaking and a bit of cussing and swearing, but everything is working fantastic now. I am now in A/V nirvana with movies and live TV.
-HD Homerun prime
-Windows Media Center w/ a custom theme to get rid of the hideous blue
-Removed Junk menus like "sports"
-Added MediaBrowser with MPC-HC as external player (with all the madvr goodness)
-MCE Buddy to send files around on my network (monitors my upstairs loft HTPC and pipes down recorded shows nightly)
-A program that watches the MCE Buddy folder and Handbrakes the .WTV file to .MKV (MCE Buddy does this too, but there were issues)
-MetaBrowser pulling metadata (it's just ok. all these metadata programs seem like garbage TBH - the scrapers in XBMC were more headache free for me)
-Harmony remote to control everything and have all movies/tv/music under "One" interface is just great
Thanks for everyone's help!