Sunday, November 30, 2008

Week 10 (Thanksgiving Week) Numbers; How the Sitcoms Did

Week 10 numbers (first two nights final averages, Mon-Tues):
(Wednesday & Thursday final numbers were not released by Nielsen due to the Thanksgiving holiday, so we don't have final Wednesday & Thursday network averages or final program numbers in time for today's story...sorry.)

Households: ABC: 10.0/15.6; CBS: 8.4/13.0; Fox: 4.7/7.1; NBC: 4.1/6.4; The CW: 1.0/1.5; MNT: 0.9/1.4.
Total Viewers: ABC: 16.33 million; CBS: 13.56 million; Fox: 7.77 million; NBC: 6.7 million; The CW: 1.38 million; MNT: 1.38 million.
Adults 18-49: ABC: 4.1/10.5; CBS: 3.7/9.5; Fox: 3.2/8.1; NBC: 2.7/6.9; The CW: 0.6/1.6; MNT: 0.5/1.3.

Analysis: Week 10 so far has seen November sweeps end on Wednesday then the Thanksgiving holiday weekend started and ratings went south. Nielsen didn't release final ratings for Wednesday and Thursday yet (obviously because of Thanksgiving), so I cannot give you those averages and program ratings...but see above for final first two night averages (Mon-Tues), as those two nights were not affected by Thanksgiving. Wednesday was the last night of sweeps, but that was also Thanksgiving Eve, so a lot of shows were preempted or in low ratings mode. If you count the prelim Wednesday & Thursday averages, through the first four days, ABC and CBS are neck and neck in all categories, with Fox probably 3rd across the board, while NBC is likely fourth across the board.
Last week, CBS won week 9 in HH and viewers, while ABC won the week in 18-49. ABC was second in all HH/viewers, while CBS was in 18-49 for the week. Fox was third across the board and NBC was fourth across the board as well.
Monday ABC was on top thanks to of course the final performance show of Dancing with the Stars. The 92-minute finale did a night best 21.1 million...up from previous week by nearly two million. The sitcom Samantha Who followed and did 10.72 million, up from the previous week. A new Boston Legal followed with 8.16 million, up a bit from the previous week. The series finale in coming up on Dec. 8, so it will likely go up these last two weeks. Next up was CBS, with new episodes of its comedies and a new CSI: Miami. The Big Bang Theory did great again, and reached another series high doing 10.03 million, up from previous week. A new How I Met Your Mother followed 9.96 million, off just a bit from previous week, but still great! #1 sitcom Two and a Half Men followed with 14.95 million, off a bit week-to-week as well, while Worst Week did 10.15 million, also off just a bit week-to-week. At 10pm a new CSI: Miami did 14.33 million, down a million or so from previous week's milestone episode. NBC was next and as its regular line-up continues to falter. Chuck did 6.53 million, down some from previous week, followed by Heroes at once again another series low 7.51 million, down from previous week's series low. It has reached series low the last three weeks. What has happened? Recently canceled My Worst Own Enemy was next at just 3.75 million, another series low. Fox was next with the very weak Sarah Connor at just 4.57 million, I believe a series low (I'm afraid how bad this will do on Fridays in February), and on its last legs Prison Break at 5.25 million, down a bit week-to-week. The CW had Gossip Girl preempted but two One Tree Hill episodes, a repeat did just 1.4 million followed by an all-new episode at just 2.22 million, a season low again.
Tuesday it was ABC with the victory as a champion was crowned on Dancing with the Stars. ABC started it off with the holiday classic A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving / This is America Charlie Brown: Mayflower Voyagers at a solid 11.08 million, followed by Dancing with the Stars: The Results grand finale at 20.65 million, up nearly three million week-to-week but the grand finales do higher usually. CBS's quiet hit NCIS started the night off with 18.12 million...up a bit from previous week. New drama The Mentalist followed with 15.92 million, up a tad from previous week. A new Without a Trace would did 10.42 million, down week-to-week, as it was affected by Dancing. Fox was next with a 67 minute House at 12.88 million down week-to-week, followed by lead-in dependent Fringe with just 7.77 million and lots of bleeding in the second half-hour. I don't understand how it will draw new viewers out of Idol in January when the storyline is very serialized on this show. NBC was next with another two-hour The Biggest Loser at a below normal 6.87 million, down nearly a million from previous week and Law & Order: SVU followed at just 8.59 million, down from previous week. Who would have thought SVU could go that low? The CW aired a movie called How to Deal and it certainly did not deal right for The CW doing just 950,000 viewers, ouch.
Wednesday saw CBS win the night on this Thanksgiving Eve. Final ratings were not available due to the Thanksgiving holiday, but we have prelim ratings for you. CBS started with a Thanksgiving episode of Old Christine at a prelim 7.6 million, down a bit from previous week. Thanksgiving episode of Gary Unmarried followed with a prelim 7.72 million, slightly off from previous week and built from the lead-in again for now. Next was Criminal Minds at 9pm and it did a solid prelim 14.0 million, down two million previous week but this was Thanksgiving Eve and at 10pm CSI: NY did a prelim 12.16 million, also down two million from previous week. ABC was next but it started off slow with Pushing Daisies only managing a prelim 4.45 million, a series low, but not off that much from previous week in viewers despite airing on Thanksgiving Eve. Private Practice was next and also had a series low of prelim 6.22 million on this Thanksgiving Eve, down a million from previous week. Dirty Sexy Money was preempted, but ABC aired a Barbara Walters Special with an interview with President-elect Barack Obama and Michelle Obama doing a solid prelim 11.65 million! Final numbers are not in, but ABC won November sweeps in 18-49 while CBS took viewers. Fox was next with a new Bones at a solid prelim 9.76 million, down a million or so from previous week on this Thanksgiving Eve. A House repeat, yes another, followed with a prelim 5.1 million...down from previous week. NBC opened the night with the variety special Rosie Live doing just a prelim 5.04 million, and just a a prelim 1.2 18-49 rating. No more specials looks like. Next up was a special Deal or No Deal instead of Life doing a prelim 6.29 million, better than what Life does, and a new Law & Order did just a 6.26 million, another series low for the veteran series, but you can blame Thanksgiving Eve for doing that low. The CW had a repeat of Stylista doing just under a million in prelim numbers, followed by an all-new Stylista with even less at just 799,000 prelim viewers, no Top Model lead-in, no good ratings.
Thursday as we mentioned final numbers are not in yet due to Thanksgiving...but we will give prelim numbers. CBS won the slow night. CBS opened with Survivor: Gabon clip show at a prelim 8.47 million, of course down from previous week. A repeat of CSI followed with a prelim 10.63 million, not bad for a repeat on Thanksgiving. A repeat of Eleventh Hour followed and did a prelim 7.46 million. ABC was next with another airing of A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving/Mayflower Voyagers instead of Ugly Betty doing a prelim 6.31 million, not bad for just airing two days earlier. Grey's Anatomy two-hour encore of the season premiere followed with a prelim 5.49 million, it did grow in the 10pm hour. Fox was actually next with the movie Click instead of of Kitchen Nightmares at a prelim 5.83 million, but it was boosted by the 4pm NFL game as a lead-in, as the movie went down each half-hour. NBC was next with the movie The Incredibles and an encore of The Office at 10:30 instead of the usual My Name is Earl, Kath & Kim, The Office, 30 Rock and ER as the movie did just about 5 million in prelim numbers followed by The Office encore at just a prelim 3.41 million. Smallville repeat on The CW did a prelim 1.82 million followed by a Supernatural repeat at a prelim 1.69 million.
Now, as usual final numbers for Friday and Saturday are not available, but ABC won this unusual with the combo of the holiday movie The Polar Express and 20/20 as CBS's dramas were in repeats. NBC for some reason aired the same movie as the previous night and did worse naturally.
Saturday numbers saw ABC win in the preliminaries overall and in 18-49 thanks to Saturday Night College Football between Oklahoma and Oklahoma State.
Tonight again NFL will be key. CBS will have an overrun this week, so they will be at above normal levels. ABC's regular Sunday line-up of AFV, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Desperate Housewives, and Brothers & Sisters, returns tonight, so they should be in the game. NBC will be solid with the SNF game, but not as high as usual with the Vikings/Bears. Fox will have its animated comedies as well.
As for the week, I believe ABC will win the week in HH, viewers and 18-49, but it depends on how CBS does tonight with the NFL overrun, if it is high enough CBS could take the week. If not, CBS will be second across the board. Fox will be third, with NBC in fourth across the board, followed by CW and MNT. What to watch for this week? It's a relatively quiet week, but still we have new stuff and lots of holiday specials! Time to start thinking about Christmas!

Last Sunday Sitcoms (counts for week of Nov. 17-23)

  • The Simpsons (Fox) - preempted for 24 movie.
  • King of the Hill (Fox) - preempted for 24 movie.
  • Family Guy (Fox) - preempted for 24 movie.
  • American Dad (Fox) - preempted for 24 movie.

Monday Sitcoms

  • The Big Bang Theory (CBS) - 10.03 million...another series high. How can you say anything bad about this show? Continues to do very well. CBS sitcoms are all repeats tomorrow though.
  • How I Met Your Mother (CBS) - 9.96 million slightly off previous week's season high of 9.99 million...but not complaining.
  • Two and a Half Men (CBS) - 14.95 million, down a bit from previous week and #1 sitcom as always.
  • Worst Week (CBS) - 10.15 million...down slightly from previous week. I wonder how a repeat will do tomorrow though? Scared to look.
  • Samantha Who? (ABC) - 10.72 million...up from previous week, solid. Holiday specials will lead-into two new episodes tomorrow...so it will be down but maybe not as much as you would think.

Tuesday Sitcoms

  • None.
Wednesday Sitcoms
  • Old Christine (CBS) - Prelim 7.6 million...down from previous week a bit, but this was Thanksgiving Eve, so not bad..
  • Gary Unmarried (CBS) - Prelim 7.72 million this week, down a tad from previous week but built from the lead-in again.

Thursday Sitcoms

  • My Name is Earl (NBC) - preempted.
  • Kath & Kim (NBC) - preempted.
  • The Office (NBC) - Special 10:30pm encore only mustered a prelim 3.41 million.
  • 30 Rock (NBC) - preempted.

Friday Sitcoms

  • Everybody Hates Chris (The CW) 2 episodes - Final numbers are not in yet...but the prelim numbers show 2.1 million for a new episode at 8pm. Up actually week to week so far. A repeat at 9pm did a prelim 1.62 million.
  • The Game (The CW) 2 episodes - Prelim numbers show 2.03 million for a new episode...and a repeat at 9:30pm did a prelim 1.54 million.
  • The Office (NBC) - Special Friday 10:30pm repeat was barely on the map with just a prelim 2.21 million.

Saturday Sitcoms

  • None.

Airing tonight (Sunday) are Fox's animated comedies from 8-10 (7-8pm repeats).

Summing it up. Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Samantha Who, Worst Week were impressive for the week. Everything else was OK (such as Gary Unmarried, Old Christine) or just plain old terrible (such as The Office repeats).

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Saturday, November 29, 2008

Blog DVD Review: Perry Mason - The Third Season, Volume 2 (12/2)

It is Saturday, so that must mean it is time for the blog DVD review! Today we take a look at CBS DVD's Perry Mason: The Third Season, Volume 2. Perry Mason of course is the very popular law series. The series stars the great Raymond Burr. See skees53's blog DVD review of Perry Mason: The Third Season, Volume 2:

Perry Mason: The Third Season, Volume 2 (CBS DVD, $49.99) presents the final 14 episodes of the third season of the classic courtroom drama on a four-disc DVD set. Mason is the attorney that everybody defendant calls upon when they are innocent, but find that proving their innocence will be virtually impossible. But nothing is too difficult for Mason, and he can take on (and win) even the toughest cases, particularly those accused of murder and theft. Can he win them all? When you know the law like Perry Mason does, you most certainly can!
Virtually all of the episodes (all but one) in this set are about murder cases, as this was a common crime that was frequently part of the series. In "The Case of the Prudent Prosecutor," Hamilton Burger's friend is accused of murder, so who will take the case? Mason, of course! In "The Case of the Gallant Grafter," a man is accused of embezzling money from his company, but that isn't his only problem when his accountant turns up dead. A novelist may have been a murderer in "The Case of the Mythical Monkeys," but her assistant is the one that is on trial. A cigarette girl is threatened by gamblers in "The Case of the Singing Skirt," but where will she go when she is accused of murdering the wife of one of the gamblers that she loves? In "The Case of the Madcap Modiste," a dress designer makes a fool of her husband on national TV, but when she is suddenly poisoned, who will defend the fool that is accused of poisoning her? In "The Case of the Ominous Outcast," a man shows up in a small town and looks exactly like a bank robber--and goes down for his appearance Who will defend him?
The packaging is the standard CBS DVD packaging that we have all become accustomed to by now, with a standard DVD case. Inside the case, you'll find the four discs, each of which has no artwork other than the series logo on a gray background. Episode titles, descriptions, and airdates can be found inside the case. The menus on the set are very basic, with the main menu presenting just a list of all of the episodes and a Play All option.
As has been the case with all of these Perry Mason sets, the video and audio quality seem to be impressive, particularly considering the age of the series. There are minor issues here and there, but generally speaking, we have a crystal clear picture and loud and clear audio. It is always great to see that this is done right. Closed-captioning can be found on all of the episodes for those that need it. Also, just as in Season 3, Volume 1, some of the sponsorship logos are left intact on the closing credits, which is very nice to see. These can be found on roughly half of the episodes. There is one MINOR area of concern about this set, though. This set has finally succumbed to having the standard CBS DVD disclaimer about episodes potentially being edited and having changed music. The good news, though, is that I couldn't find any obvious edits or changes, but the bad news is that saying that doesn't necessarily mean much, as I have no clue what every single line of dialog should be or what music should be in each episode. I would imagine that edits, if any, could not be too severe, as these older series very rarely made use of copyrighted materials. On the bright side, each episode comes in at either 51:20 or 52:40 (usually 52:40 for the ones that contain the sponsorship logos in the closing credits).
Unfortunately, special features are once again not to be found on this set. For a series this popular, you would think that they would load the set with special features, but that wasn't meant to be. Of course, fans can always turn to the 50th Anniversary collection for some nice bonus features.
All in all, it can be said that this is a great set of episodes, although if CBS DVD insists on continuing to do half seasons of the series, they really need to beef up on special features! These sets carry a hefty price tag, and at MSRP, it would cost fans at least $900 to own every single release of the series, assuming each one is released as a half season. The worst part is that a lot of this money is probably padding the pockets of the DVD producers, as I would imagine that there aren't quite as many people making money off of this series as there are many other series. Fans of Perry Mason, or even fans of any courtroom drama, are certain to love and appreciate these episodes. They'll definitely want to add this DVD to their collection.
-- Reviewed by skees53
(4/5 stars)

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Friday, November 28, 2008

Nick at Nite December 2008 Highlights; Blog DVD Review: Futurama - Bender's Game

We have one news item and a special edition of the blog DVD review today for you on this Black Friday. We have finally for you the Nick at Nite December 2008 highlights. And once again Nick at Nite is not making any changes to its strong regular schedule. And why not? Shows such as George Lopez and Family Matters continue to be strong for them in the ratings. Nick at Nite will celebrate Christmas with a night-long holiday party and 10-days of various Christmas episodes!
The night-long holiday party will be called "Nick at Nite Holiday House Party" on Sunday, December 14 from 9pm-12am ET/PT. Deck the halls, the kitchen, the living room and everything in-between! Nick at Nite is throwing a holiday house party with a holiday themed marathon of Christmas episodes of Home Improvement, George Lopez and Family Matters!
Then from December 15 to December 25 (Christmas night itself), Nick at Nite is keeping the spirit alive with nightly holiday-themed episodes of its sitcoms such as Home Improvement, George Lopez, Family Matters and Fresh Prince...you'll see all the Christmas episodes of each!
To view the holiday schedule, view our Nick at Nite December 2008 highlights.

Welcome to a special edition of the blog DVD reviews! Today we take a look at 20th Century Fox's Futurama - Bender's Game. Futurama - Bender's Game is the third movie featuring the hit animated series...and we have reviewed them all. See skees53's blog DVD review of Futurama - Bender's Game:

Futurama - Beast With a Billion Backs (20th Century Fox, $29.98) is the third installment (of four) in the Futurama movie franchise, the direct-to-DVD franchise that revives the former Fox animated sitcom. The movie is a largely a spoof of the role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons. In fact, the events of the movie are essentially played out by a game of Dungeons & Dragons, played by the characters in the movie.
The plot of this installment begins with a major fuel shortage crisis--or what at least seems to be one. Dark matter is a form of fuel that was discovered by Farnsworth, and was stolen by Mom, who has a monopoly over the entire dark matter industry. When it is discovered that there actually isn't a shortage of dark matter (it is actually fecal matter from the Nibblonians) and that Mom is actually "creating" the shortage, it is up to Farnsworth and the crew to bring down the industry. The whole industry can be brought down by using an "anti-crystal" that is being used as a 12-sided die in the game Dungeons & Dragons. Will Mom go down? And if so, how will fuel needs be met?
The movie runs at 87 minutes and has excellent video and audio quality. After all, there is nothing to really compare this to--this is the first place that this has been presented. The video is presented in widescreen with vibrant colors (although I had some pixilation, probably due to the screener disc that I received) and a loud and clear Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound audio track. English, Spanish, and French subtitles can also be found on the disc.
The disc is loaded with special features, beginning with an audio commentary track. We have input from Matt Groening, David X. Cohen, Billy West, John DiMaggio, Tress MacNeille, Michael Rowe, Claudia Katz, and Dwayne Carey Hill. For those that love animatics, we have an entire storyboard animatic for the first part of the movie (that is the first 22 minutes, as it will be presented when aired on Comedy Central as a four part episode). The next feature that we have is actually a pretty cool feature, called "Futurama Genetics Lab." Here, we can crossbreed our characters and create hybrids--in case you ever wanted to know what a Bender crossed with a Fry would look like! "Dungeons & Dragons & Futurama" (7:02) is a behind-the-scenes look where the whole concept of the movie is discussed, including connections with Dungeons & Dragons. "How to Draw Futurama in 83 Easy Steps" (7:52) is not quite as complicated as it sounds, but gives a behind-the-scenes look at what it is like to draw the characters with the rough draft crew. "3D Models With Animation" (5:02) shows us some of the 3D models from the series, along with commentary from the animators. Apparently, there is only one deleted scene on the movie, and it can also be found in the special features. It runs at a little over one minute. "Blooperama 2" (1:50) shows us some of the audio outtakes from the movie. "Bender's Anti-Piracy Warning" (1:11) is a warning from Bender that warns us all against piracy of the DVD. Finally, "Futurama: Into the Wild Green Yonder" (1:12) is a sneak peak into the fourth (and final?) installment in the Futurama movie series.
The critics take on this installment is that it is much better than the previous installments, and is more true to the original series than the other ones have been. However, I have to slightly disagree with that. I feel like the movie has a plot that is far too complicated for an animated series and tends to just drag on. I feel as though these feature films that they've been making have been disappointing, and that they probably should have just stuck with making additional episodes of standard episode length. This series doesn't exactly make for great movies, and it is even worse for those that can't get in to the whole Dungeons & Dragons theme that this movie presents. Still, I think a lot of the biggest fans of Futurama are certain to appreciate this movie, as it gives life to their favorite series once again (and there are certain to be many fans of Futurama that can appreciate Dungeons & Dragons).
-- Reviewed by skees53
(4.5/5 stars)

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Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving; Marathons on TV This Holiday Weekend

Happy Thanksgiving to you all! We thank you for visiting us on this special day and every other day. We also are very thankful that you all continue to visit every single day and making this blog a huge success. We get thousands of visitors every day (even on weekends). So, we thank you for the growth each year! It is simply amazing.

Before we let you all go back to your families, we want to let you know the marathons on TV you and your family might want to watch during the day and after Thanksgiving dinner.
We have told you about many of the sitcom related marathons already. We were the first ones to tell you about them, too. WGN America has a Newhart marathon on Thanksgiving Day from 2pm-3am. TV Land has its annual Overstuffed Weekend with I Love Lucy and The Cosby Show on Thanksgiving Day and Night, with many other sitcoms from Friday-Sunday. TBS has a marathon of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air from 9am-3pm today, while tomorrow (Friday) Sci Fi offers up an all-day event of the classic Robin Williams sitcom Mork & Mindy from 8am-6am! BET has a holiday weekend filled with marathons of One on One, The Parkers and Steve Harvey Show starting on Friday. So yeah we told you about all these already many moons ago. But there are of course more!
Other sitcom related marathons include The N's all Drake & Josh weekend starting at 3pm, you can eat bananas while watching G4's Arrested Development marathon starting at 9am, FX will give us a marathon of the late Bernie Mac on his sitcom Bernie Mac on Friday, and Disney Channel will have marathon blocks of their sitcoms all this weekend of The Suite Life, Hannah Montana and Wizards of Waverly Place.
Non-sitcom wise, of course you will have CSI marathons all over the place. CSI: NY gets the full day treatment on Thanksgiving Day on Spike TV, A&E will have a CSI: Miami marathon on Friday, while Spike TV offers up a CSI vs. CSI: NY marathon. What no James Bond movie marathons on Spike this year? Not to fret, Sci Fi Channel will have some today, before they air Mork & Mindy on Friday. Other notable marathons on Thanksgiving Day include Goof Troop on Toon Disney, The Closer on TNT, House on USA Network and Rocky movies on Versus. Friday's notables include Beverly Hills 90210 on SOAPnet, The Starter Wife on USA Network, and Monty Python's Flying Circus on BBC America. And it seems like Fox Reality is airing Hell's Kitchen all weekend and the same goes true for Fox Movie Channel with Planet of the Apes movies. Sorry no Law & Order series, except for Criminal Intent on Sunday.
And don't forget my pick of the night, tonight at 8pm on ABC the holiday classic A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. I watched it Tuesday and will watch it again tonight. Can't get enough of old Chuck! If you haven't see it already, view our 2008 Network TV Holiday Specials and Movies Guide, so you don't miss anything on network TV. Also our ABC Family 25 Days of Christmas schedule, because that is the place to be this holiday season with classics like Mickey's Christmas Carol, A Garfield Christmas and Winnie the Pooh & Christmas Too!
And for more marathons this weekend we did not list, head on over to the Interesting Pile blog.

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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

TV Land January 2009 Highlights; NBC Revises January 2009 Schedule

TV Land has announced their January 2009 schedule and highlights, and as expected, I Love Lucy is not on it, as its contract has expired. Also, Paid Programming is continuing, but it will move from 5-7am to 6-9am starting Monday, December 29. So, the 7-9am show will be knocked off, as M*A*S*H's morning slot and Night Court's slots are removed...which means Night Court is off the line-up for now. Late nights will be affected a bit too, as Three's Company will now air four in a row from 2-4am, as the modern sitcom block moves from 3-5am to 4-6am, with Designing Women, Mad About You, Murphy Brown and Just Shoot Me, since Paid Programming will move to 6-9am. Replacing I Love Lucy on weekday afternoons is essentially two Beverly Hillbillies episodes, so Hillbillies is back on weekdays. I Love Lucy aired a lot on weekends, and replacing it will be Green Acres and Brady Bunch on Saturdays, as both of those shows return. And on Sundays more Beverly Hillbillies will replace Lucy in the mornings, while Leave it to Beaver will replace it in the late night block. Also, Star Trek is back once a week on Sundays at 6am, though it sort of is airing in December, on some Thursdays at 7am.
As for stunts, New Year's Day is "Jan" 1st. Jan, Jan, Jan. It's a new year and this year it's all about Jan from The Brady Bunch. On January 1, beginning at 12pm through 6pm, TV Land celebrates everybody's favorite middle-child with a 6-hour marathon of Brady episodes featuring none other than the positively groovy Jan Brady! Marcia, Marcia, Marcia, indeed!
High School Reunion is coming back for an unforgettable second season in mid-February. But first...counting down to that big February 18 second season premiere, TV Land PRIME will bring you all of the action from season one every Wednesday at 10pm starting on January 7. A marathon of the entire first season will also air in a President's Day event on Monday, February 16.
He was handsome. He was dangerous. He was rock n' roll. He was 'The King.' He was Elvis! TV Land PRIME celebrates the life of a true American original on January 8, when Elvis would have celebrated his 74th birthday. Explore the enduring legacy of rumor and innuendo that still surrounds the epic entertainer with a special episode of TV Land's Myths & Legends, and take an intimate look at the life and times of Elvis as told by his family, during a special presentation of Elvis by the Presleys. Also, prior to the PRIME event, TV Land will host a PRIME preview presentation of the marathon on Saturday, January 3 from 2-6pm, featuring both the Myths & Legends episode and the Elvis by the Presleys program, as well as a special presentation of the iconic concert, Elvis's '68 Comeback Special!
This January, viewers will laugh out loud all month long on TV Land and TVLand.com during TVLand.Comedy Month. Each Saturday in January starting January 10, TV Land will feature marathons of popular comedies like 3rd Rock from the Sun, Sanford & Son, Beverly Hillbillies, Leave it to Beaver, The Jeffersons and The Andy Griffith Show, serving as a promotional platform for these titles and more online. In January, TVLand.com will stream more full episode content than ever before! This includes the launch of new series to TVLand.com, including The Jeffersons, Leave it to Beaver and Sanford and Son. And there's more! For all of their current online series favorites, all episodes available will be streaming for the first time on TVLand.com. And don't miss the limited one-month offering of full episodes of Just Shoot Me.
Finally, the TV Land PRIME Movies for January are all 80s classics such as Cocktail, Jewel of the Night, and The Color of Money. Tom Cruise is among the stars you'll see.
View the COMPLETE TV Land January 2009 schedule and highlights.

NBC has announced its January 2009 schedule and it will have the series premieres of Superstars of Dance (debuting January 4) and Howie Do It (January 9), the returns of The Biggest Loser: Couples (January 6) and Friday Night Lights (January 16). NBC will broadcast the original movie event The Last Templar Sunday and Monday, January 25-26, 9-11 p.m. ET both nights. Specials include Saturday Night Live Sports Extra on Sunday, January 4 (7-9 p.m. ET) and Saturday Night Live Film Festival on Sunday, January 18 (9-11 p.m. ET). Dateline NBC also will broadcast a Presidential Inauguration Day Special on Tuesday, January 20 (10-11 p.m. ET). Here is a look at how NBC will look in January (pre-Super Bowl):

NBC January 2009

MONDAYS (beginning January 5)
8-10 p.m. - Superstars of Dance (premieres Sunday, January 4 from 9-11 p.m. and the season finale airs Monday, January 26 from 8-9 p.m.)
10-11 p.m. - Momma's Boys
(Chuck and Heroes return in February, after the Super Bowl)

TUESDAYS (beginning January 6)
8-10 p.m. - The Biggest Loser: Couples
10-11 p.m. - Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
(Special on Jan. 20: Dateline NBC: Presidential Inauguration Special from 10-11 p.m. ET)

WEDNESDAYS (beginning January 7)
8-9 p.m. - Knight Rider
9-10 p.m. - Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Encores (Life returns in February after the Super Bowl)
10-11 p.m. - Law & Order

THURSDAYS (beginning January 8)
(No changes)
8-8:30 p.m. - My Name Is Earl
8:30-9 p.m. - Kath & Kim
9:00-9:31 p.m. - The Office
9:31-10 p.m. - 30 Rock
10-11 p.m. - ER

FRIDAYS
8-9 p.m. - Howdie Do It (series premiere January 9)
9-10 p.m. - Friday Night Lights (beginning January 16) (Lipstick Jungle has its finale on January 9)
10-11 p.m. - Dateline NBC (beginning December 5)

SATURDAYS (beginning January 10)
8-11 p.m. - Law & Order and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit encores

SUNDAYS
January 4:
7-9 p.m. - Saturday Night Live Sports Extra
9-11 p.m. - Superstars of Dance (series premiere, special night)

Sunday -- January Event Specials
January 11: 7-8pm TBD and 8-11 p.m. - The Golden Globe Awards
January 18: 7-9pm TBD and 9-11 p.m. - Saturday Night Live Film Festival
January 25: 7-9pm TBD and 9-11 p.m. - Mini-Series: The Last Templar (also on Monday, January 26)
February 1: approx. 6:15-10 p.m. - Super Bowl XLIII and 10-11pm TBD (post-Super Bowl show)

NBC will announce their full midseason series and revised schedule at a later date. Many series will be premiering after the Super Bowl in February, such as the return of Medium, new series Kings, and the winter premiere of Heroes. NBC will also officially announce their post-Super Bowl timeslot series soon.

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Tuesday, November 25, 2008

What I Like About You Joins The N in January 2009; More RTN Affiliates Added

The N has released their January schedule and it will have a new sitcom added. Starring Amanda Bynes, What I Like About You joins The N with a 24-hour premiere marathon that begins on Thursday, January 1, 2009 at 12:00pm ET/PT (First 49 episodes, except #9 will air in the marathon). When her widowed father moves to Japan, Holly (Amanda Bynes) is forced to move in with her straight-laced older sister Valerie (Jennie Garth), who's a promising public relations upstart living in Manhattan. It's not long before Holly's antics turn Valerie's regimented life upside down!
And that's not all! The excitement continues all week long with a week of primetime marathons of What I Like About You every night from 8pm-12am ET/PT from Friday, January 2 through Sunday, January 11.
Then the show will join the regular line-up after the 11 days worth of marathons. Beginning Monday, January 12, What I Like About You will air regularly on The N every night at 10pm-12am ET/PT. Among the other changes on The N are now four episodes in a row blocks of your favorite sitcoms from 6pm-6am: The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Zoey 101, What I Like About You, That '70s Show, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and Moesha...with a mix of Degrassi on weekends.
View the full schedule and highlights for The N January 2009.

Coming tomorrow we will take a look at TV Land January 2009. Will paid programming continue? What will replace I Love Lucy? All that and more will be answered!

Retro Television Network is coming to more affiliates! RTN's coming to Eureka, Odessa-Midland, Huntsville and Albuquerque.
RTN has signed KIEM-DT, Eureka, CA as its newest RTN affiliate. KIEM is the second Pollack Broadcasting station that RTN has signed as an affiliate. The first, KWCE‐TV, Alexandria, LA was one of the first RTN affiliates to sign on the air in 2006.
RTN has also announced that it has signed KWWT-DT, Odessa-Midland, TX as an affiliate. KWWT-DT is owned by Camino Real Communications.
RTN is also coming to Alabama on WHNT-DT in the Huntsville-Decatur-Florence, AL market, as they will be signing on as an RTN affiliate. WHNT is owned by Local TV LLC.
Finally, RTN has signed Ramar Communication's KTLL-DT/KFAC-LP, Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM as RTN affiliates.
This is great news, and you can view the full press releases for these four new RTN markets. RTN can be found on the web at www.rtnville.com.

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Monday, November 24, 2008

2008 Network TV Holiday Specials; TV Land Schedule Changes Includes Paid Programming?; NBC Kills Crusoe to Saturdays

Can you believe the holiday season is nearing? Thanksgiving is this week, which means Christmas is right around the corner! And then it will be 2009 a week after that. Time flies! Anyway as I mentioned, I have put together our annual network television (ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, CW, MyNetwork TV) holiday specials list that we all like to watch every year like Frosty the Snowman and A Charlie Brown Christmas, new classics like Shrek the Halls and we even get some new specials this year like A Muppets Christmas: Letters to Santa. Sure the network holiday line-ups are not as detailed as some cable networks like ABC Family, but the main holiday specials are still on network television! These are just actual holiday related specials and movies, not movies or specials airing during the holiday season on broadcast network television:

ABC
Tuesday, Nov. 25, 8-9pm: A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving/This is America Charlie Brown: The Mayflower Voyagers
Thursday, Nov. 27, 8-9pm: A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving/This is America Charlie Brown: The Mayflower Voyagers ENCORE
Friday, Nov. 28, 8-10pm: ABC Friday Movie of the Week: The Polar Express
Monday, Dec. 1, 8-9pm: Shrek the Halls and Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas (animated)
Tuesday, Dec. 2, 8-9pm: Santa Claus is Comin' to Town
Friday, Dec. 5, 8-10pm: ABC Friday Movie of the Week: Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas (live-action)
Monday, Dec. 8, 8-9pm: A Charlie Brown Christmas
Tuesday, Dec. 9, 8-9pm: America's Funniest Home Videos Christmas Special
Saturday, Dec. 13, 8-9pm: America's Funniest Home Videos Christmas Special ENCORE
Saturday, Dec. 13, 9-11pm: ABC Saturday Movie of the Week: Surviving Christmas
Sunday, Dec. 14, 8-10pm: ABC Sunday Movie of the Week: The Santa Clause 2
Monday, Dec. 15, 8-9pm: I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown
Tuesday, Dec. 16, 8-9pm: A Charlie Brown Christmas ENCORE
Saturday, Dec. 20, 8-9pm: I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown ENCORE
Saturday, Dec. 20, 9-11pm: ABC Saturday Movie of the Week: Dr. Seuss' The Cat in the Hat
Monday, Dec. 22, 8-8:30pm: Shrek the Halls ENCORE
Tuesday, Dec. 23, 8-9pm: Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas (animated, expanded edition)
Tuesday, Dec. 30, 8-9:30pm: Happy New Year, Charlie Brown and Rudolph's Shiny New Year
For other non-holiday related movies and specials airing during the holiday season on ABC, view our schedule.

CBS:
Wednesday, Dec. 3, 8-9pm: Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Friday, Dec. 12, 8-9pm: Frosty the Snowman and Frosty Returns
Friday, Dec. 12, 9-10pm: The Flight Before Christmas (NEW!)
Saturday, Dec. 20, 8-10pm: CBS Saturday Movie: Elf
Tuesday, Dec. 23, 8-9pm: 10th Annual Home for the Holidays with Faith Hill
For other non-holiday related movies and specials airing during the holiday season on CBS, view our schedule.

NBC:
Wednesday, Dec. 3, 8-9pm: Christmas in Rockefeller Center
Friday, Dec. 5, 8-9pm: Greatest Holiday Moments: TV & Film Countdown
Wednesday, Dec. 10, 8-9pm: Little Spirit: A New York Christmas
Friday, Dec. 12, 8-9pm: Greatest Holiday Moments: Songs of the Season Countdown
Saturday, Dec. 13, 8-11pm: NBC Movie of the Week: It's a Wonderful Life
Wednesday, Dec. 17, 8-9pm: A Muppets Christmas: Letters to Santa (NEW!)
Friday, Dec. 19, 8-10pm: Greatest Holiday Moments: TV & Film Countdown and Greatest Holiday Moments: Songs of the Season Countdown
Monday, Dec. 22, 8-9pm: Greatest Holiday Moments: Hilarious Home Video Countdown
Tuesday, Dec. 24, 8-11pm: NBC Movie of the Week: It's a Wonderful Life
Wednesday, Dec. 25, 10-11pm: Greatest Holiday Moments: Hilarious Home Video Countdown
For other non-holiday related movies and specials airing during the holiday season on NBC, view our schedule.

Fox:
None
For other non-holiday related movies and specials airing during the holiday season on Fox, view our schedule.

The CW:
Friday, Dec. 5, 8-9pm: Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer
Friday, Dec. 5, 9-10pm: The Story of Santa Claus
For other non-holiday related movies and specials airing during the holiday season on The CW, view our schedule.

MyNetwork TV:
Saturday, Dec. 6, 8-10pm: MySaturday Night Movie: Miracle on 34th Street
Monday, Dec. 8, 8-10pm: MyMonday Night Movie: Blizzard
Tuesday, Dec. 9, 8-10pm: Olive the Other Reindeer and Santa's Funniest Moments
Wednesday, Dec. 10, 8-10pm: MyWednesday Night Movie: Home Alone
Tuesday, Dec. 16, 8-10pm: Soul of Christmas
Wednesday, Dec. 17, 8-10pm: Christmas is Here Again and Santa's Funniest Moments
Thursday, Dec. 18, 8-9pm: Wrestlemania Holiday Special
Monday, Dec. 22, 8-10pm: The Spirit of Christmas
Tuesday, Dec. 23, 8-10pm: MyTuesday Night Movie: Babes in Toyland
For other non-holiday related movies and specials airing during the holiday season on MyNetwork TV, view our schedule.


TV Land has edited their line-up a bit effective immediately. I announced the changes on Saturday on our message board, but in case you didn't see that...they are adding Paid Programming from 5am-7am on weekday mornings. It started today. No reason was given and it will last at least until the end of December. So, this means Star Trek is off the regular schedule, but it will air sometimes on Thursdays at 7am. M*A*S*H will air every other weekday in the 7am hour, followed now by a full-hour of Night Court at 8am. Back-to-back sitcom episodes will last until 1pm with Sanford & Son, The Jeffersons, Good Times and I Love Lucy from 9am-1pm. Extreme Makeover: Home Edition will be indeed staying at 1pm on weekday afternoons. The other changes are in primetime. After The Cosby Show block from 8-10pm, we now will get Scrubs from 10-11pm as 3rd Rock from the Sun moves to 11pm-1am, with a four episode block now. M*A*S*H will assume the 1am hour now while Three's Company moves up an hour to 2-3am. The 4-6am block of Designing Women, Mad About You, Murphy Brown and Just Shoot Me will all move up an hour to 3-5am, as mentioned Paid Programming will assume the 5-7am hours now.
Weekends will not see many changes, but I advise you to view our one-time-only schedule dates for November and December. You can see the full list of changes starting Nov. 24 in the November highlights, too.
The Beverly Hillbillies only airs on weekends now, primarily on Sundays from 12-4am...view our highlights for details. And yes, there is NO paid programming on Saturdays and Sundays. Paid Programming is just weekdays. If you notice on the December highlights, the last three days of December, the paid programming will be 6-9am instead of 5-7am. Not sure if that will continue into January or not, but we'll let you know soon.
In the November schedule highlights, you'll notice the Thanksgiving marathon has been edited a bit, with CSI now included in the marathon this Saturday and Sunday night in primetime. CSI was originally supposed to air this week in the 11pm-1am hours, as it did last week, but TV Land has decided to air them in holiday weekend marathon block instead. After that, CSI will not be scheduled on TV Land in the near future, unless another schedule change happens.

Effective Saturday, December 6, struggling Friday drama Crusoe will move to Saturdays at 8:00pm ET/PT. It aired its last Friday airing this past Friday at 9pm and it continued to bomb for NBC. Six episodes still remain, so NBC will have to deal with more bad ratings until then, unless they pull it. It'll of course do worse on Saturdays, but NBC was airing low-rated Knight Rider repeats in the Saturday slot anyway, so expectations are lower.
Because of the change, Fridays will see newsmagazine Dateline added, but not in Crusoe's slot. Dateline will air Fridays at 10pm against ABC's 20/20, while current 10pm slot holder Lipstick Jungle moves to Fridays at 9pm. Don't understand that move. Dateline would be better at 9pm, as Lipstick Jungle is also doing terrible and is on its last four episodes, so that series will air its last episode on Jan. 9. NBC has not announced what will happen to Fridays after that. In fact, NBC will likely see many changes in January and the rest of midseason, and we'll let you know as soon as we do. The schedule NBC announced last April for this winter is of course going to change, so I don't understand why NBC announced it last April in the first place.

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Sunday, November 23, 2008

Week 9 Numbers; How the Sitcoms Did

Week 9 numbers (first three nights, Mon-Wed):
(Thursday final numbers were not released by Nielsen, so we don't have final Thursday network averages or final program numbers in time for today's story...sorry.)

Households: CBS: 8.6/13.4; ABC: 7.0/11.0; Fox: 5.1/7.7; NBC: 4.4/6.8; The CW: 1.9/3.0; MNT: 0.9/1.4.
Total Viewers: CBS: 13.56 million; ABC: 10.74 million; Fox: 8.3 million; NBC: 6.94 million; The CW: 2.85 million; MNT: 1.45 million.
Adults 18-49: CBS: 3.6/9.4; Fox: 3.2/8.1; ABC: 2.7/6.9; NBC: 2.6/6.8; The CW: 1.4/3.5; MNT: 0.5/1.3.

Analysis: Week 9 has seen CBS in contro through the first three nights (and four counting prelim numbers for Thursday). Nielsen didn't release final ratings for Thursday, so I cannot give you those averages and program ratings...but see above for final first three night averages. If you count the prelim Thursday averages, through the first four days, CBS is in the lead in all categories, while ABC should be second throughout (though Fox might have a say in 18-49, but ABC seems to have edged Fox through the first four days). Fox is 3rd across the board, while NBC is likely fourth across the board.
Last week, CBS won week 8 in all categories (HH, viewers, 18-49), while ABC was second in all categories. NBC was third across the board. Fox was fourth across the board as well.
Monday ABC was on top thanks to of course Dancing with the Stars. The 92-minute episode did a night best 19.63 million...up week-to-week. The sitcom Samantha Who followed and did 10.23 million, slightly off from the previous week. A new Boston Legal followed with 8.08 million, down some from the previous week. Next up was CBS, with new episodes of its comedies and a new CSI: Miami. The Big Bang Theory did great again, but down a bit from the previous week's series high of 10.01 million to 9.76 million this week...still not bad! A new How I Met Your Mother followed with a season high 9.99 million, built on the lead-in for the first time in weeks! #1 sitcom Two and a Half Men followed with 15.18 million, up week-to-week as well, while Worst Week did 10.24 million, its best showing in weeks...good sign. At 10pm a new CSI: Miami did 15.46 million, up nearly two million from previous week as the show celebrated a milestone episode. NBC was next and as its regular line-up continues to falter. Chuck did 6.89 million, up form previous week, followed by Heroes at once again another series low 7.65 million, down from previous week's series low. Recently canceled My Worst Own Enemy was next at just 3.91 million, a series low...NBC needs to remove this ASAP rather than wait it out. Fox was next with the weak Sarah Connor at just 5.09 million, slightly down from previous week, and on its last legs Prison Break at 5.52 million, though up a bit week-to-week once again. The CW had its teen girls line-up of Gossip Girl doing 2.89 million, on par really from previous week, followed by One Tree Hill at a season low 2.72 million. What is happening to The CW Monday? It used to do well over 3 million.
Tuesday it was CBS and ABC battling for first while Fox won in 18-49. CBS's quiet hit NCIS started it off with 17.99 million...down from the previous week's series high. New drama The Mentalist followed with 15.84 million, down from previous week. A new Without a Trace would did 11.85 million, also down week-to-week, but not as much as the other two. ABC was next with a special episode of Dancing with the Stars at 11.6 million up from previous week's special recap, followed by Dancing with the Stars: The Results at 17.59 million, up a million week-to-week as now we are down to the final three, and Eli Stone only did 6.36 million, a season low. Fox was next with House at 13.26 million and a 5.6 18-49 rating both up slightly week-to-week, followed by lead-in dependent Fringe with 9.18 million and a 4.1 18-49 rating, up from previous week. NBC was next with another two-hour The Biggest Loser at 7.77 million, down a bit from previous week and Law & Order: SVU followed at 10.11 million, up from previous week. The CW aired a new episode of 90210 doing 2.92 million, up a bit from previous week and a new episode of Privileged did only 1.55 million, down week-to-week.
Wednesday saw CBS take back the night, as ABC took the previous week with a big win for the CMA Awards, but usual winner CBS was back in business tonight. CBS started with Old Christine at 7.85 million, up a million from previous week. Recently picked-up for a full season Gary Unmarried followed with 7.88 million, up over a million from previous week and built from the lead-in. Next was Criminal Minds at 9pm and it did a solid 16.33 million, up big from previous week and at 10pm CSI: NY did 14.12 million, up big from previous week, as this series it a milestone episode as well. Fox was next with a new Bones at a solid 10.82 million, down a tad from previous week but on par really. A House repeat, yes another, followed with 5.68 million...down from previous week. ABC's Pushing Daisies only managed 4.87 million and a 1.7 18-49 rating for a series low, as it seems the series will be done after its 13 episodes. Private Practice was next and also had a series low of 7.22 million, and will be heavily helped in January when it moves to Thursday. Dirty Sexy Money also did a series low with 5.58 million...it is too bad because this show is worth watching. Watch it! NBC opened the night with the falling Knight Rider doing just 5.2 million, down from previous week and a terrible 1.4 18-49 rating, and why was this picked-up for a full year? Next up was Life doing just 5.43 million, down week-to-week and a new Law & Order did 7.62 million, a series low for the veteran series. The CW had the finale of Top Model doing 4.84 million, its best numbers in a year but Stylista followed with only 2.16 million, and did not benefit, though it was up from previous week.
Thursday as we mentioned final numbers are not in yet...but we will give prelim numbers. CBS won the night overall and just edged ABC in 18-49. CBS opened with Survivor: Gabon at a prelim 12.62 million, putting it down a bit from previous week. A new CSI followed with a prelim 18.43 million, down from previous week. The new Eleventh Hour followed and did a prelim 10.67 million, also down from previous week. ABC was with Ugly Betty doing a prelim 8.29 million, up a bit from previous week. Grey's Anatomy followed with a prelim 15.74 million and a prelim 6.1 18-49 rating, up from previous week. At 10pm a new Life on Mars did a prelm 7.97 million, on par with the previous week. NBC was next with a new My Name is Earl doing a prelim 6.75 million, down from previous week, new sitcom Kath & Kim followed with only a prelim 5.47 million, but up from the previous week. The Office followed with a prelim 8.4 million, slightly up from previous week. 30 Rock did a prelim 7.29 million, down once again from previous week, as the show has gone down each airing this season after a fast start. ER was next with a prelim 9.15 million, down from previous week. Fox was off the map with two episodes of Kitchen Nightmares at just a prelim 4.46 million, down from previous week. Smallville on The CW did a prelim 4.77 million, but some of that is NFL action in Pittsburgh on their CW, followed by Supernatural at 4.03 million, and once again some of that is NFL action...so expect CW to go down a bit and same for NBC as there was NFL action on NBC in Cincy.
Now, as usual final numbers for Friday and Saturday are not available, but CBS won Friday with their dramas, as Ghost Whisperer did a season high, repeat of The Mentalist at 9pm did the best of the night, while NUMB3RS also won its hour. ABC saw decent numbers for 20/20 at 10pm. NBC's disappointing Crusoe continues to do bad, as does Lipstick Jungle at 10pm.
Saturday numbers saw ABC win in the preliminaries overall and in 18-49 thanks to Saturday Night College Football between two top 5 teams.
Tonight again NFL will be key. CBS will not have an over-run this week, so they will be at normal levels. ABC's regular Sunday line-up of AFV, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Desperate Housewives, and Brothers & Sisters, are preempted for the American Music Awards, so they will not be as high but will do solid still and great in 18-49. NBC will be solid with the SNF game. Fox will be the wildcard...it's 24 prequel movie could do decent or bomb..but the NFL overrun will help it at the start at least.
As for the week, I believe CBS will win the week in HH, viewers and 18-49, but it depends on how Fox does tonight in 18-49, but it won't be enough likely for even 2nd in 18-49. ABC will be second across the board likely, but 18-49 will be close. Fox will be third, with NBC in fourth across the board though in 18-49 they could compete, followed by CW and MNT. What to watch for this week? Sweeps ends on Wednesday and it seems CBS will win it overall with ABC in 18-49. But still three days to go...Dancing with the Stars two-night finale is the pick for the rest of sweep.

Last Sunday Sitcoms (counts for week of Nov. 10-16)

  • The Simpsons (Fox) 2 episodes - A new showing did 8.48 million, up week-to-week. A repeat at 7:30pm leading into to the new episode did 5.64 million, also up.
  • King of the Hill (Fox) - 7.08 million for a new episode, up from previous week. A repeat at 7pm only mustered 3.62 million, but better than previous week.
  • Family Guy (Fox) - 8.57 million for a new episode, but a bit week-to-week.
  • American Dad (Fox) - 6.76 million for worst of the night, but up from previous week.

Monday Sitcoms

  • The Big Bang Theory (CBS) - 9.76 million...down from the series high the previous week, but still very good!
  • How I Met Your Mother (CBS) - 9.09 million up from previous week again and a season high, and it build on the lead-in...the biggest winner for CBS this week.
  • Two and a Half Men (CBS) - 15.18 million, up from previous week and #1 sitcom as always.
  • Worst Week (CBS) - 10.24 million...better than usual and beat CBS 8-9pm finally for the first time in weeks. Good sign.
  • Samantha Who? (ABC) - 10.23 million...down slightly from previous week, solid but needs to do a bit better.

Tuesday Sitcoms

  • None.
Wednesday Sitcoms
  • Old Christine (CBS) - 7.85 million...up a million from previous week. Good news.
  • Gary Unmarried (CBS) - 7.88 million this week, up well over a million from previous week and built from the lead-in! Great news.

Thursday Sitcoms

  • My Name is Earl (NBC) - Final Thursday numbers were not released yet, but prelim 6.75 million for a new episode, down from previous week.
  • Kath & Kim (NBC) - Prelim 5.47 million, not good, but from previous week a bit.
  • The Office (NBC) - Prelim 8.4 million for a new episode...up slightly week-to-week...for now, since the prelim numbers count the Cincy ratings for the NFL game.
  • 30 Rock (NBC) - Prelim 7.29 million tuned in this week, down again from previous week...and once again these numbers include the NFL game in Cincy, so likely it will go down a bit more.

Friday Sitcoms

  • Everybody Hates Chris (The CW) - Final numbers are not in yet...but the prelim numbers show 1.77 million. Bad yes, and down a bit week to week so far.
  • The Game (The CW) - Prelim numbers show just 1.62 million...same as above.

Saturday Sitcoms

  • None.

Airing tonight (Sunday) are no comedies, as Fox's animated comedies are preempted.

Summing it up. Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, The Office, Worst Week were impressive for the week. Everything else was OK (such as My Name is Earl, 30 Rock) or just plain old terrible (such as The Game, Kath & Kim).

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Saturday, November 22, 2008

Blog DVD Review: Dynasty - Season 3, Volume 2

Welcome to another edition of Blog DVD Reviews. This week we take a look at CBS DVD's Dynasty - The Third Season, Volume Two. Dynasty is of course the primetime soap that was a bit hit for many years and it was so addictive! The tale of the Carrington family is so rich and interesting. See my blog DVD review of Dynasty - The Third Season, Volume Two:

Dynasty - The Third Season, Volume Two (CBS DVD, $35.98) brings us the final 12 episodes of the third season of the mega-hit ABC '80s series Dynasty on a 3-disc set! John Forsythe, Linda Evans and Joan Collins continue to heat up the show as the season ends with a truly sizzling season-ending cliffhanger! This is the season where it moved from the top 20 to the top 5 in the ratings. Seasons 3-6 all were in the time of the height of the popularity. The series lasted 9 seasons on ABC, from 1981-89. We get the second half of the third season on this volume two set of the third season. Again, I don't understand why they are doing this. The show only had 24 episodes for season three...it's not like it was over 30 or 35. I think they should split up a season if it is over like 34 or 35 episodes. Shame on you CBS DVD for making fans wait to finish a season! The second season was a nice 6-disc set for 22 episodes, so why did they split up season three into two volumes just because this season has two extra episodes? Seasons 4-7 have a lot of episodes though: 27, 29, 31, 28...I guess that is the reason they started this? But why not wait until season 4 or 5? The last two seasons have 22 each. Even if seasons 4-7 have between 27-31, that is enough to put on six discs...CBS DVD is being very cheap. They did season 2 on six discs and at a higher price, so what is the problem?
Each episode on this set is between 47-48 minutes (no higher or lower). Nearly every CBS DVD has a disclaimer on the back of the box saying, "Some episodes maybe be edited from their original network versions." So there is a chance something could be edited, but I didn't see anything, as the runtimes were fairly consistent. There are 6 chapter stops each for every episode, counting the opening and closing credits stops. The video is on par with the previous season and it looks great. Just some debris here and there on the opening credits, like flashing black dots, but it is still good quality. The audio is decent, a nice sounding mono...that is crisp and clear.
Packaging is a snap case holding three discs inside, sort of similar to the volume one, third season DVD. No, again the discs don't overlap each other. Each disc has its own little holder. The cover art of the case has a nice shot of Blake, Alexis, and Krystle. The back of the case has synopsis of the show, the set, and technical information. A nice shot of the supporting cast and some screen shots are also present. Back inside, there is a disc by disc breakdown on the left and right panel. We get episode title, original airdate, and a long synopsis of each episode. Don't be reading it before watching the episode! Artwork on the discs is not that good. It is plain silver for each one. Dynasty logo and whatever disc number it is, is on the disc, similar to the previous season 2 and season 3, volume one sets again. Each disc holds four episodes. All very consistent from the past.
CBS DVD is terrible in menus, as you all know. Each menu has different artwork but it is so plain. The episodes are listed right on the main menu once again, as with the second season and season three, volume one DVDs. Set Up option is also available. In Set Up, we can have English or Espanol languages and subtitles. Main menu artwork has three shots of the same image. Disc 1 has three shots of Blake, disc two has three shots of Krystle, and disc three has three shots of Alexis. No theme music or anything in the background.
We get no special features at all, just like the volume one DVD for season three! Even the second season had a little family tree thing. Nothing here. First season was done by 20th Century Fox, and they did a decent job with some featurettes and commentaries. CBS DVD is doing nothing...which is typical. How about promos like they do with Family Ties?
Despite the splitting of the third season and no extras, I still highly do recommend any fan of the show to pick-up this set, because the episodes are so good and addictive. If you like shows like Desperate Housewives and Dirty Sexy Money, then you will love this mother of all primetime soaps! If you have the first two seasons and the first half of season three, then you have to get this to continue your collection. If you haven't gotten those yet, what are you waiting for? It won't make sense buying this set for your first buy of this series, as the episodes are heavily serialized. One thing CBS DVD does well is that they work pretty fast with most of their releases, so you better hurry before season four comes out...and I bet that will be split into half again. It is even worse that this show is very serialized so it makes people not want to wait to just finish a season. I've made it obvious already I don't like the change in splitting up the seasons into volumes, but CBS DVD seems to do that with a lot of their hour shows like The Love Boat, Perry Mason and so on. It is too bad, because it should only really be done if it is like over 35 episodes. I think they are just trying to get more money, come on $35.98 for 12 episodes and NO extras? They did make it $4 less than before, though. They could charge 59.99 for 24 episodes and still make a profit, but they are being very cheap and stealing fans for their money here. Still, I urge fans to buy it so we keep getting more sets. But complain to CBS DVD for the lack of extras and splitting the seasons in half. Anyway, surprise revelations and a shocking end in the season finale are some of the things you'll see in this second half of season three! Watch out for that cabin fire...whoops, forget I said that! Think of the Desperate Housewives nightclub fire instead!
-- Reviewed by Pavan
(4/5 stars)

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Related links:
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Friday, November 21, 2008

ABC January 2009 Midseason Plans; The CW Cancels MRC Sundays, Tyra Banks Show Heads to CW Daytime Next Fall

ABC has announced its January 2009 plans. ABC made it official yesterday with the swapping of Private Practice and Life on Mars. Private Practice will move to Thursdays at 10PM following Grey's Anatomy, where Life on Mars was airing, while Life on Mars will move to Wednesdays at 10PM, where currently Dirty Sexy Money was airing. As mentioned already, Lost will take over Wednesdays at 9PM starting January 21, replacing Private Practice. Yes, Life on Mars will indeed follow Lost. Lost's season premiere is two-hours, so Life on Mars will debut on the night on January 28. 7 episodes have aired thus far, with six still remaining in the original order...but now ABC has ordered four more episodes, so a total of 17 will air this season at least. As for Private Practice, it will launch with new episodes on Thursdays on January 8, with repeats of the series in the slot on Dec. 11, 18 and 25 so fans are used to the change by the time is launches with new episodes on Jan. 8. The show will continue to air Wednesdays at 9 through and including Dec. 17. It is still not known what will air on Wednesdays in January prior to Lost coming (Jan. 21). It seems Private Practice will NOT air Wednesday at 9 on Jan. 7 and 14...could they double pump Pushing Daisies or Dirty Sexy Money? We'll let you know, when we know.
The news is not good for Pushing Daisies, Dirty Sexy Money and Eli Stone, as ABC has announced they will not order more episodes than the 13 episodes from the original order. The word cancelation is not used, but all of them will likely not return next season, but...as of now, all 13 episodes of each will air.
Elsewhere, ABC has announced Scrubs will have its eighth season premiere on Tuesday, January 6 with two back-to-back episodes from at 9:00pm & 9:30pm ET/PT, replacing According to Jim. Jim will slide down into the 8:00pm & 8:30pm ET/PT slots, after airing in the 9pm hour starting in December. Scrubs will also air for the full-hour on Tuesday, January 13, opposite the same night of American Idol's two-hour season premiere. Then starting January 20, Scrubs will be followed by the new midseason animated comedy The Goode Family more than likely. ABC has not yet announced plans for Tuesdays at 10 following the comedies and Wednesdays at 8 leading into Lost. One option for either slot is Border Security USA, the new docudrama 11 episode series. My guess is Wednesdays at 8.
Keep checking back right here because the day is not over and we could have more announcements! Busy busy day!

The CW has canceled the MRC (Media Rights Capital group) programming block completely and will take over programming of the night effective Sunday, Nov. 30 due to very low ratings. So this coming Sunday (Nov. 23) is the last of MRC on The CW. MRC was programming The CW's Sunday night programming from 5-10pm, with an hour of 4Real at 5pm, Valentine encores at 6pm, In Harm's Way at 7pm, Valentine at 8pm, and Easy Money at 9pm.
Effective Sunday, Nov. 30, The CW will air encores of Everybody Hates Chris and The Game in the 5pm hour. Then in the 6pm hour they will go into the vaults of Warner Bros. and air back-to-back episodes of '90s sitcom The Drew Carey Show. At 7pm The CW will use its CBS Paramount library and air the short-lived drama Jericho, which aired on CBS for two seasons. And finally at 8pm, they will air Movies from MGM. So it looks like The CW is putting good use of their CBS-Warner libraries, hence the name The CW. Will this do any better than the MRC block? It remains to be seen, but if it does...expect more library programming on the night, as The CW plans to air this for the rest of the season before coming up with a new strategy next season.
So what will happen to the shows that were slated to come to the MRC block in midseason? One of them was the Bob Saget multicamera sitcom Surviving Suburbia. That sitcom has taped many episodes and still is scheduled to tape episodes in December and January. They last taped an episode last night before taking next week off for the Thanksgiving holiday. I am not sure what will happen to this sitcom. MRC could shop the sitcom for another network or perhaps The CW would pick it up for another night, possibly Fridays with the other comedies?

Meanwhile, first-run syndicated talk show The Tyra Banks Show from Warner Bros. Television is moving to The CW next fall (Sept. 2009) for its fifth season. How? Well, it will air daily on The CW Daytime back-to-back at 3PM (classic episode) and 4PM (all-new episode)! Which means the talk show will leave syndication and air exclusively on The CW! So this means both Tyra Banks' shows The Tyra Banks Show and America's Next Top Model will air on the same network starting in the fall...one in the daytime and one in primetime.
Currently airing on The CW Daytime is rookie Warner Bros. court show Judge Jeanine Pirro from 3-4pm, now that show will leave CW Daytime next fall and will be moving to first-run syndication! Let the bidding begin. From 4-5pm currently are sitcoms The Wayans Bros. and The Jamie Foxx Show, and they will be off the line-up, obviously. Who knows if the new CW Sunday is successful, maybe these will move to Sundays next fall somewhere between 5-7pm.

I know I promised the network holiday specials dates today, but because of this unusually busy Friday, I will give them to you on Monday...no matter what happens. So stay tuned for that!

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Thursday, November 20, 2008

Hallmark Channel January 2009 Highlights, I Love Lucy Joins; True Hollywood Story Gets Syndicated

As we have mentioned many times, I Love Lucy is coming to The Hallmark Channel in January, and now we have full details for The Hallmark Channel's January 2009 line-up! Everyone's favorite red-head is coming to The Hallmark Channel with an all-day marathon of I Love Lucy on Friday, January 2, 2009 from 8am-9pm ET/PT. Spend the day with Lucy as she finds herself in the most unlikely jams, scrapes, dilemmas and plain old hot water! But at the end of the day, Ricky is always there to forgive and forget. After all, who doesn't love Lucy? Cuban bandleader Ricky Ricardo does what he can to keep up with the zany schemes of his highly imaginative wife Lucy. The recurring storylines relate Lucy's continual efforts to become an entertainer, despite Ricky's endless attempts to discourage her, and their comically frantic life in the apartment building they share with landlords Fred and Ethel Mertz. This iconic sitcom set the standard for all that followed. I Love Lucy starred the legendary Lucille Ball, Desi Arnaz, Vivian Vance and William Frawley.
I Love Lucy then immediately joins the regular schedule after the launch marathon on Jan. 2...airing Saturday mornings from 6am-9am (replacing Little House), Saturday late nights from 1am-3am (replacing movie), Sunday mornings from 8:30am-10am (replacing M*A*S*H), weekday mornings 8-9am (replacing Waltons), and weekday afternoons from 4-5pm (replacing Little House). Yes, the weekday 4-5pm airings will be encores of weekdays 8-9am from earlier in the day. There will be no other changes to the Hallmark schedule. As you all know, TV Land will not be airing I Love Lucy anymore after Dec. 31, so Hallmark is the way to watch now.
Other highlights for the month include two world premiere original movies on Saturday, Jan. 3 and Saturday, Jan. 10. On Jan. 3 from 9-11pm, Vanessa Marcil, Dean Stockwell, Natalie Dreyfuss and Uriah Shelton star in the original movie Nanny Express. On Jan. 10 from 9-11pm, Jason Priestley, Teri Polo, Cheech Marin and Kevin Hernandez star in the original movie Expecting a Miracle. And on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, it will be all-day movie marathons starting at 9am. Proving you can never have too much of a good thing, Hallmark Channel continues the holiday fun with two day-long holiday movie marathons on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. And finally, the weekend of Jan. 24-25, will see a Rough 'N Ready Movie marathon. Tune into Hallmark Channel to see your favorite Western tough guys - John Wayne, Paul Newman, and Clint Eastwood - in three Hallmark Channel movie premieres during these two day-long movie marathons, such as the premieres of Unforgiven, Hombre, and Rio Bravo.

Debmar-Mercury has acquired the broadcast syndication rights to E! Entertainment Television's signature documentary series, True Hollywood Story, B&C reports.
For more than a decade, True Hollywood Story has followed the lives of Hollywood's hottest stars and, in 2009, the series will reach its 500th episode. Debmar-Mercury, a Lionsgate unit, will offer select library episodes of the show to TV.
Each episode features in-depth interviews, rare celebrity footage and behind-the-scenes scoops, giving viewers an exclusive look inside the lives of their favorite Hollywood stars. Ranging from JFK Jr., Dr. Phil and Lindsay Lohan to TV series such as The Sopranos, Bewitched, Brady Bunch, Three's Company, Diff'rent Strokes, Clueless and Friends, the series uncovers real-life celebrity tales of heartbreak, happiness and scandal from across the entertainment industry.
Among the series Debmar-Mercury syndicates include South Park, House of Payne, The Dead Zone, and first-run syndicated series such as Trivial Pursuit and Family Feud.
We will let you know more about the True Hollywood Story, such as the actual episodes in this package to be aired in syndication, as soon as we know!

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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Will & Grace Leaving Local Syndication?; Calling All Brady Bunch Fans

Will & Grace has been on local broadcast syndication since Fall 2002, but now could it be leaving? I have gotten word that in New York, WPIX(CW11) will lose the rights to the sitcom after December 14, 2008. I'm not sure if it is leaving all local channels completely then, though. If you know if your local channel is removing the show starting Dec. 15, please let us know!
WPIX will replace it starting Monday, Dec. 15, with an extra episode of Frasier at 1am. Will & Grace was airing weeknights at 12:30am, and now According to Jim will shift over from 1am to 12:30am, and Frasier was airing at 1:30am, will now get a full hour from 1-2am. The Saturday airings of Will & Grace will be replaced by an hour of George Lopez from 5-6pm, with Friends being shifted to 6-7pm.
Will & Grace might be leaving local syndication, but it will remain on cable on Lifetime, so all is not lost. We're just not 100% yet if Will & Grace is leaving every market locally, but we do know in New York it is gone (or will it be on the move to another station in NY?). We will follow this and do a follow-up as soon as we get some info.

We have gotten a special message calling out fans for The Brady Bunch: "Please sign this online petition for Rhino Video to release the complete nine episode series of The Brady Bunch Variety Hour in conjunction with the 40th anniversary of The Brady Bunch in September 2009 and as a companion to Susan Olsen's upcoming coffee table book.
Tell your friends - we need at least 1,000 signatures by November 30, 2008! Many of these episodes have not seen the light of day in over three decades and should be made available to fans.
Fans are also welcome to contact Rhino Video via email, telephone, and
USPS:
QUESTIONS ABOUT PRODUCTS: drrhino@rhino.com
WEBMASTER: webmaster@rhino.com
You can also leave a voice message at the following phone number. 1-800-
546-3670.
Company address for writing a letter:
Rhino Video
3400 W. Olive
Burbank, CA 91505
Thanks for your support"

Rhino did release two episodes years back, so they obviously have the rights to it. Rhino has basically stopped TV on DVD, so I'm not expecting anything out of them, but fans must make their voices heard and do this!

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Tuesday, November 18, 2008

BET Changes and Upcoming Sitcom Marathons; TBS Holiday Stunts

With the upcoming Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays coming up, BET will celebrate with sitcom marathons! But first they made some minor schedule changes. The weekday sitcom block has been shifted to 2-5pm effective this week, with Steve Harvey Show moving to 2-3pm, One on One from 3-4pm and Smart Guy from 4-5pm. Girlfriends will remain in the 3am hour, while the Saturday morning block is now 11am-4p, with two episodes of Smart Guy and four episodes each of The Parkers and Girlfriends. Steve Harvey and One on One are on Sundays from 11:30am-2pm.
As for holiday sitcom marathon, the first one will be the day after Thanksgiving, Friday, November 28 (Black Friday) from 9am-3:30pm. As of now, it has not been determined what will air. Hopefully something NOT airing regularly on BET? We'll let you know if that is indeed the case! Anyway, Thanksgiving weekend continues with more sitcom marathons on Saturday, November 29 from 9am-3am with the hit sitcom The Parkers. Thanksgiving sitcom marathon concludes with a marathon of The Steve Harvey Show from 11am-5pm on Sunday, November 30.
As for Christmas, more sitcom marathons will air! On Christmas Day itself, Thursday, December 25, we will get a marathon of Smart Guy from 9am-8pm. Then on the day after Christmas (Friday, December 26), which is Kwanza, celebrate the holiday with another marathon of One on One from 9am-8pm. Finally, on Saturday, December 27, it's all-day and all-night event of everyone's favorite girlfriends...Girlfriends from 9am-4am!

TBS will get into the holiday fever as well with a sitcom marathon! On Thanksgiving Day itself (Thursday, November 27), TBS will present a marathon of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air from 9am-3pm. What better way for you to 'will' your way on this day? For Christmas of course, TBS will present the annual 24-hour marathon of the holiday movie classic A Christmas Story starting Christmas Eve at 8pm and running through Christmas Day at 8pm. Get into the holiday spirit with this classic Christmas comedy featuring your favorite oddball kid Ralphie. From disgruntled Santas to badgering bullies, nothing will stop Ralphie from getting his dream toy on Christmas morning.
New episodes of the hit sitcom Tyler Perry's House of Payne will air Wednesdays at 10pm in December starting Dec. 3. The new episodes will air in the weekly Wednesday six-episode block starting at 8pm. And finally, the season finale of sketch comedy Frank TV, starring comedian Frank Caliendo, will air December 23 at 11pm ET/PT. He does a great Bill Walton, doesn't he?

Stay tuned on Friday for our annual look at the holiday specials airing on the broadcast networks this holiday season! But come on back for more news the next two days as well!

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Monday, November 17, 2008

ION Television December 2008 Highlights; CBS Picks-Up More Episodes for 'Gary', 'Worst', While NBC Adds More 'Medium'

ION Television has announced its December 2008 schedule and highlights, and there will be no regular changes to the line-up...but there will be plenty of holiday movies and holiday episodes! ION's holiday airings start on Friday, December 12 in the RHI block with the 2007 TV-Movie, A Grandpa for Christmas. Other RHI holiday movies in the weekend RHI block include Silent Night, Hogfather, Night They Saved Christmas, and more. ION will also have a holiday TV-movie week the week of December 22-25 from 4-6pm these four nights with more holiday fun such as the ION premieres of 2008 films My Santa My Dad and The Elf Who Didn't Believe. Four holiday episodes of Hangin' with Mr. Cooper will air Dec. 17-18 in its regular 6-7pm time slot and four M*A*S*H holiday episodes will air the weekend of Dec. 20-21 from 6-7pm. And during the week of December 22, you can catch two classic Boston Legal Christmas episodes, including "The Nutcracker." The Thursday Total Theatre Warner Bros. movies are not in yet, so we don't know what is airing there yet. We will update you on that and if any more things change on our message board as soon as we know. So view our ION Television December 2008 highlights.

CBS Wednesday comedy Gary Unmarried, starring Jay Mohr, will have an additional seven episodes at least this year, bringing the total from 13 to 20 episodes. Two additional scripts were also ordered, so if it does well, we could see up to 22 episodes this season. Meanwhile, CBS has ordered three more episodes of struggling Monday sitcom Worst Week from 13 episodes to 16 episodes. The untraditional sitcom is a critical darling but has not capitalized out of the #1 sitcom, Two and a Half Men. 4 scripts were ordered previously, so one more script has yet to turn into an episode order. CBS still has Rules of Engagement coming in midseason, so if Worst Week doesn't pick-up, you'll see Rules there by February or March. Remember February sweeps doesn't start until March 5 this year because of the transition to digital TV in mid-February.
NBC has ordered 6 additional episodes of Medium, its veteran supernatural drama starring Patricia Arquette. The order brings the total from 13 episodes to 19 episodes for its fifth season. NBC recently canceled Monday drama My Worst Own Enemy and Friday drama Lipstick Jungle, so both will be out of here in January, which is when Medium will more than likely launch. Originally the show was set to launch Sundays at 9PM after Sunday Night Football concludes, but now that will likely change. As soon as NBC announces its revised midseason schedule, we will let you know. I bet it will return to its original Monday at 10pm slot followed the sinking Heroes.

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Sunday, November 16, 2008

Week 8 Numbers (First Four Nights); How the Sitcoms Did

Week 8 numbers (first four nights, Mon-Thurs):

Households: ABC: 8.3/12.9; CBS: 8.3/12.9; NBC: 4.6/7.1; Fox: 4.5/6.8; The CW: 1.9/2.8; MNT: 0.8/1.2.
Total Viewers: CBS: 13.34 million; ABC: 12.95 million; Fox: 7.37 million; NBC: 7.26 million; The CW: 2.8 million; MNT: 1.17 million.
Adults 18-49: ABC: 3.6/9.2; CBS: 3.6/9.2; Fox: 3.0/7.5; NBC: 2.8/7.2; The CW: 1.3/3.4; MNT: 0.4/1.0.

Analysis: Week 8 has seen ABC and CBS battle for 1st and through Thursday it is very close, as ABC got a big assist from the 42nd Annual CMA Awards on Wednesday. Through the first four days, ABC and CBS are tied for 1st in households and 18-49 with ABC percentage points ahead, but CBS has slightly more viewers edging ABC. NBC is third in HH but fourth in viewers & 18-49, while Fox is 4th in HH but third in viewers & 18-49...though Fox and NBC are close but so behind ABC and CBS.
Last week, CBS won week 7 in HH/viewers edging ABC, while ABC won in 18-49 but NBC tied it thanks to the NFL game. NBC was third in HH/viewers, while CBS was third in 18-49. Fox was fourth across the board in a weak week without House.
Monday ABC was on top thanks to of course Dancing with the Stars. The 92-minute episode did a night best 18.69 million...nearly up two million week-to-week, as last week the SNL Election special hurt it a bit. The sitcom Samantha Who followed and did 10.4 million, also up nearly two million. A new Boston Legal followed with 8.7 million, yes up two million from the previous week. Next up was CBS, with new episodes of its comedies and a new CSI: Miami. The Big Bang Theory did a series best for the second straight week, this time at 10.01 million, this show continues to shine maybe because Kaley Cuoco's outfits are getting hotter and hotter and How I Met Your Mother followed with 9.79 million, also up week-to-week. #1 sitcom Two and a Half Men followed with 14.5 million, but up two million week-to-week, while Worst Week did 9.46 million, up week-to-week but again losing to the 8-9pm comedies despite the high lead-in. At 10pm a new CSI: Miami did 13.81 million, up a million from previous week. NBC was next and down big from previous week as its regular line-up returned. Chuck did 6.34 million, followed by Heroes at a series low 7.85 million and 3.6 18-49 rating...what has happened? It gains in DVR, but still it has lost viewers from the first two years. Recently canceled My Worst Own Enemy was next at just 4.27 million as the final episodes come to a close. Fox was next with the should have NOT been renewed Sarah Connor at just 5.15 million, on par really from previous week, and on its last legs Prison Break at 5.38 million, though up a bit week-to-week. The CW had its teen girls line-up of Gossip Girl doing 2.88 million, below 3 million for the first time this season, followed by One Tree Hill at an also season low 2.99 million. What happened?
Tuesday it was back to normal as the previous week saw ABC and NBC do big in Election coverage. CBS suffered the most the previous week, but it was back to business this week with a series high for NCIS at 18.75 million...how does this show do it? New drama The Mentalist followed with 16.52 million, just slightly behind ABC for the hour and a series high as well, I believe. It was #1 in 18-49 at a 4.0 for the hour holding all of its NCIS lead-in, wow! Who would have though Without a Trace would be the weak link for the night at 12.23 million but just a 2.8 18-49. ABC was next with a special recap episode of Dancing with the Stars at 10.32 million, followed by Dancing with the Stars: The Results at 16.52 million, but Eli Stone only did 7.01 million, though up from its last new episode two weeks prior to this week. Fox was next with House at 13.06 million and a 5.5 18-49 rating, followed by a time period low for Fringe with 8.61 million and a 3.8 18-49 rating, lowest since its premiere (when it didn't air out of House). NBC was next with an above average The Biggest Loser at 8.1million but more impressive 3.5 18-49 rating and Law & Order: SVU at a normal 9.42 million. The CW aired a new episode of 90210 doing 2.72 million, down a bit from previous week and a new episode of Privileged did 1.86 million, but up a bit week-to-week.
Wednesday saw ABC win the night thanks to the CMA Awards, beating usual winner CBS. ABC's Pushing Daisies, Private Practice, and Dirty Sexy Money will return this week, but the 42nd Annual CMA Awards won the night for ABC this week with a dominant 15.9 million and a 5.0 18-49 for its three-hour coverage. CBS started with Old Christine at a below normal 6.82 million, but up a bit from previous week. Recently picked-up for a full season Gary Unmarried followed with 6.61 million, also up a bit week-to-week. Next was Criminal Minds at 9pm and it did a solid 14.83 million, up slightly from previous week and at 10pm CSI: NY did 11.62 million, down a bit from previous week, as it seems Law & Order and CMA made this go down a lot. Earlier in the year 14-15 million was a given. Fox was next with a new Bones at a solid 10.87 million and a series best 3.5 18-49 rating. A House repeat, just what we need, did 6.22 million...which is not bad for a repeat, but down a bit from previous week. NBC opened the night with the falling Knight Rider doing just 5.34 million, but up week-to-week from previous week's series low, though this week it had a series low 1.5 18-49 rating. Next up was Life doing just 5.81 million, down a bit week-to-week and a new Law & Order did 7.93 million, on par really from its season premiere the previous week. The CW had a new Top Model doing 3.71 million, down a bit from previous week and Stylista followed with only 1.73 million, also down a bit week-to-week.
Thursday CBS won the night. CBS opened with Survivor: Gabon at 12.88 million, up from previous week. A new CSI followed with 19.05 million, up nearly a million from previous week. The new Eleventh Hour followed and did 11.63 million, also up from previous week. ABC was next but in Boston and surrounding areas the line-up was preempted for the New England-New York Jets NFL game, so the numbers are slightly down from usual. ABC opened the night with Ugly Betty doing 8.25 million, down a bit from previous week. Grey's Anatomy followed with 14.9 million, down nearly a million from previous but still #1 in 18-49 with a 5.7 rating despite not airing in the Boston area. At 10pm a new Life on Mars did 7.97 million, also down from previous week. What a hostage episode! NBC was next with a new My Name is Earl doing 7.04, up from previous week, new sitcom Kath & Kim followed with only 5.12 million, down from the previous week. The Office followed with 8.3 million, down a bit from previous week. 30 Rock did 7.6 million, down from previous week, as the show has gone down each airing this season after a fast start. Jennifer Aniston and the Night Court cast guest starred. Will Steve Martin help this coming week? ER did a season high 9.9 million, as some previous ER stars returned. Fox was off the map with two new episodes of Kitchen Nightmares at just 4.59 million, followed by its regular slot episode at just 4.91 million, but both up week-to-week. Smallville on The CW did 3.56 million, down nearly a million from previous week, but in NY The CW lineup was preempted for the New York Jets-New England NFL game, followed by Supernatural at 2.94 million...down from previous week as well, but it seems not airing in NY hurt it. This coming week it will be Pittsburgh and Cincinnati, as CW in Pitt and NBC in Cincy will show the game instead of regular line-up.
Now, final numbers for Friday and Saturday are not available, but CBS won Friday with their dramas, as Ghost Whisperer did a season high, but The Price is Right did nothing like repeat of NCIS at 9pm did as that hurt NUMB3RS a bit, as ABC saw decent numbers for 20/20 at 8pm but Supernanny/Super-manny didn't muster much. NBC's disappointing Crusoe continues to do bad, as does Lipstick Jungle at 10pm.
Saturday numbers saw Fox win in the preliminaries overall and in 18-49 thanks to its regular line-up, as the ABC Saturday College Football game was not on the map this week.
Tonight again NFL will be key. CBS will have a high NFL overrun at 7pm, followed by 60 Minutes with Obama. ABC of course has the Sunday line-up of AFV, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Desperate Housewives, and Brothers & Sisters, as a big episode of Housewives airs tonight, maybe a season high? NBC will be solid with the SNF game, but how will the struggling Cowboys do in Washington? Fox will do nicely in young adults, but probably down from normal.
As for the week, I believe CBS will win the week in HH, viewers and 18-49, but it depends on how NFL overrun does for CBS tonight. ABC could beat CBS in 18-49, but not likely because the College Football game on Saturday didn't do much this week. NBC will be third, with Fox in fourth across the board, followed by CW and MNT. What to watch for this week? We will have a normal week this coming week, but next Sunday ABC has the American Music Awards and Fox will have a special 24 two-hour prequel following the NFL. Regular line-up otherwise, with the Top Model finale this Wednesday on The CW.

Last Sunday Sitcoms (counts for week of Nov. 3-9)

  • The Simpsons (Fox) 2 episodes - Obviously the show dropped from the Halloween episode, but the show did 8.01 million, not bad, but should be better especially after over 12 million the previous week for Halloween. A repeat at 7:30pm leading into to the new episode did 5.36 million.
  • King of the Hill (Fox) - 6.79 million for a new episode, down from previous week...but that was after the high Simpsons Treehouse of Horror. A repeat at 7pm only mustered 2.87 million.
  • Family Guy (Fox) - 8.47 million and a 4.2 18-49...below normal but still pretty solid.
  • American Dad (Fox) - 6.54 million for worst of the night.

Monday Sitcoms

  • The Big Bang Theory (CBS) - 10.01 million is a series best for the second straight week! Simply amazing!
  • How I Met Your Mother (CBS) - 9.79 million up from previous week again, didn't build on the lead-in but it did in 18-49 from a 3.9 to 4.2, making this also a winner for the week.
  • Two and a Half Men (CBS) - 14.5 million, up nearly two million from previous week's below normal performance.
  • Worst Week (CBS) - 9.46 million up over a million from previous week...great show, but needs to be doing better.
  • Samantha Who? (ABC) - 10.4 million...up a lot from previous week's below normal performance.

Tuesday Sitcoms

  • None.
Wednesday Sitcoms
  • Old Christine (CBS) - 6.82 million, but better than previous week a bit.
  • Gary Unmarried (CBS) - Only 6.61 million but yes better than the previous week.

Thursday Sitcoms

  • My Name is Earl (NBC) - 7.04 million for a new episode, up from previous week again.
  • Kath & Kim (NBC) - 5.12 million, not good, down from previous week even.
  • The Office (NBC) - 8.3 million for a new episode...down again week-to-week though. Maybe Thursday NFL will hurt it until the NFL season ends?
  • 30 Rock (NBC) - 7.6 million tuned in this week, down again from previous week...but as of now it is still doing better than last season. Will it go back to last season levels in the coming weeks? I think the Palin-Fey effect will wear off soon.

Friday Sitcoms

  • Everybody Hates Chris (The CW) - Final numbers are not in yet...but the prelim numbers show 1.83 million. Bad yes, but up week to week so far.
  • The Game (The CW) - Prelim numbers show just 1.71 million...same as above.

Saturday Sitcoms

  • The Office (NBC) - Saturday repeat at 9pm only did 2.41 million in prelim numbers. Will go lower in finals like it has before.

Airing tonight (Sunday) is Fox's animated comedies from 7-10 (new from 8-10).

Summing it up. Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Samantha Who, The Office were impressive for the week. Everything else was OK (such as My Name is Earl, Old Christine) or just plain old terrible (such as The Office-Sat repeat, Kath & Kim).

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Saturday, November 15, 2008

Blog DVD Review: Popeye The Sailor: 1941-43, Volume 3

Welcome to another edition of the weekly Blog DVD Review. This week we take a look at Warner Home Video's Popeye The Sailor: 1941-43, Volume 3. Popeye is of course the classic TV sailor who eats his spinach and gets energy to save Olive Oyl from Bluto! See my Blog DVD Review of Popeye The Sailor: 1941-43, Volume 3:

Popeye The Sailor: 1941-43, Volume 3 (Warner, $34.98) brings 32 more classic unedited Popeye cartoons along with more bonus features to DVD on a classic 2-disc set! So far, we got the first 60 theatrical shorts (1933-38) on the volume one set on four-discs and then we got the next 31 Fleischer Popeye cartoons (1938-1940) on a two-disc set. We are now finished with the Fleischer Popeye cartoons after the episode "Baby Wants a Bottleship." We get that as the second episode on disc two. Then Popeye continued on with more cartoons from Famous Studios (1942-1957), so we have started those on this as well beginning with the infamous episode "You're a Sap, Mr. Jap." The War was going on in then and Popeye was going after the Japanese.
Each short on this set is in black & white and runs anywhere between 6-8 minutes. There are no chapter stops again, which is acceptable here because the episodes are very short. The video is remastered once again and it looks great! No editing of the episodes because of ethic reasons either...it is from the original masters. So you get to see Popeye battle those "Japs!" Well, blow me down! The audio is decent, nothing too bad about it.
Packaging has a nice light blue outer box this time with Popeye showing a big fist t Bruno and Bruno not backing down on the front cover...the back cover has information on the set and has some screen shots of the shorts along with a big photo of Popeye stepping on Bruno as he took him down. There is also a section detailing the special features, but it is more detailed inside the case. Inside the box is a digipak case, as we had on the last set. The front of the digipak has a full-body shot of Olive Oyl. Opening the case, we get a very nice disc-by-disc breakdown for disc one on the left side, which has lots of screen shots and artwork of Popeye's nephews below that. We also get the episode number, title, if it has commentary and by who, and the list of special features per disc. The two discs are on the right side, overlapping each other unfortunately, once again. The discs are all in that light blue color, matching the color scheme of the set. Disc one's artwork has Popeye with showing his muscles while holding a Spinach can and disc two has Bluto holding his hands together tightly. When we take out both discs, you can see more photos in the packaging itself. The back of the digipak case has the disc two breakdown (similar to disc one's), more screenshots, and artwork of Bruto holding Olive Oyl as Popeye creeps up from behind.
The menu screen has Play, Episodes, Special Features, and Languages. But before the main menu screen comes, we get auto trailers on both discs, disc one has the pirating is not good promo and disc two has trailers for other Warner Home Video products (Charlie Brown, Smurfs, Tiny Toons, Freakaoid!). The ethic message saying that these shorts were never intended to stereo-type, blah blah, are on this set like we saw on the volume one DVD. We didn't get that on the volume two DVD for some reason, though. The main menu has the theme playing in the background (and it loops), with the same color and artwork as the box cover. Languages section has us in English only and subtitles can be added for English or French as well. Special Features are on both discs, and are listed in a list form on the menu. Episodes is where we can choose the classic shorts. If it has commentary or a Popeye Popumentary, we can also select that from here, but we can also do that in the special features section. All very similar to the previous sets.
Moving on to those special features. As I mentioned, they are evenly placed on both discs. So, here we go, we have a lot once again: Disc one has three Popeye Popumentaries. The first is called "Directing the Sailor: The Art of Myron Waldman" (7:20), as we learn more about the art of the great Myron Waldman. Inteviewed are Mark Hayerson, Myron Waldman himself, wife Rosie Waldman, Steve Sanchfield, and Jery Beck. Then we have "Popeye: The Mighty Ensign" (7:47), as this feature they talk about the great Popeye. Interviewed are Glenn Mitchell, Frank Gladstone, Steve Sanchfield, Will Friedwald, Mark Kausler, Eric Goldberg, Myron Waldman, and Rosalie Waldman. The final Popumentary is about Popeye's nephews, "Pip-eye, Pup-eye, Poop-eye, and Peep-eye: Chips Off the Old Salt" (3:40), as we learn how they were developed. Originally they were Popeye's kids in a dream, but later were developed as his nephews. They look very much like Popeye, don't they? Interviewed here are Glen Mitchell, Bob Jaques, Frank Gladstone, Dan O'Shannon, Jorge Gutierrez, and Sandra Equihua. Then we have three classics from the Inkwell vaults. The first one is "The Clown's Little Brother" from 1920 running 4:50. Then we have "The Cartoon Factory" from 1924 running 7:20. And finally "Koko Needles the Boss" from 1927 running 6:21. None of these had sound, so some might find them boring. Finally we have three audio commentaries on this disc, they include commentaries from Historians: Jerry Beck and Steven Waldman and Director: Bob Jaques.
Moving on to disc two, it has a retrospective documentary titled "Forging the Frame: The Roots of Animation 1921-1930" (27:41). This is the best extra on this set and it details the animation in the '20s. So cool, but so old at the same time. There are a lot of interviews on this to list, but SOME include Donald Crafton, Michael Barrier, Leonard Maltin, Will Friedwald, Jim Healy, and many more. Then we have another classic from the vault from Western Electric titled "Finding His Voice" from 1929 that runs 10:46. Then finally, we have four more commentaries on this disc, they include commentaries from Historian: Jerry Beck; Cartoonist: Kali Fontecchio; Animator: Mark Kausler; and Directors: Bob Jaques, John Kricfalusi, and Eddie Fitzgerald.
I once again highly do recommend any fan of classic cartoons and Popeye to pick-up this set. If you have the first two volumes, then a no-brainer, you have to get this to continue the classic collection. If you haven't gotten those, get those first and then get this volume. It is well worth it! Let's hope we get a volume four very soon and it is packed with special features just like this set and the preceding sets. We are all done with the Fleischer cartoons and have started on the Famous Studios cartoons, those lasted 15 years, so we have a long way to go. I just hope we get four-disc sets again like volume one, as two-disc sets would take forever to get through. Anyway, watch Popeye go to war for America as he battles the "Japs." So all fans should be on deck to buy this set! So toot-toot your way in buying it!
-- Reviewed by Pavan
(5/5 stars)

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Friday, November 14, 2008

Early Show Celebrates 5 Decades; This TV Comes to Houston in December; Beaver's Tony Dow An Artist?

All this week CBS's Early Show has been looking at the past 5 decades in every way, including of course television. We didn't get word until about Wednesday, so it was too late to promote it...but we will recap it here today. On Monday, Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith took a walk down memory lane and had a chat with the former child stars of the 1950's, who made TV's golden age shimmer. Tony Dow (Wally Cleaver) of Leave it to Beaver, Jon Provost (Timmy) of Lassie, Paul Petersen (Jeff Stone) of The Donna Reed Show, Keith Thibodeaux (Little Ricky Ricardo) of I Love Lucy all joined The Early Show to reminisce of the good old days of TV. View the 50s segment.
On Tuesday, Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith sat down with four leading ladies of the 1960's, Barbara Eden (Jeannie) of I Dream of Jeannie, Dawn Wells (Mary Ann) of Gilligan's Island, Barbara Feldon (Agent 99) of Get Smart and Kathy Garver (Cissy) of Family Affair to chat about how their characters changed their lives. You can view this 60s segment.
On Wednesday, The Early Show celebrated the 1970's. There were no actual reunions or stars on, though, but they talked about the 70s and dressed in 70s clothing. Gloria Gaynor did perform her hits, though. View the 70s segment.
On Thursday it was time to celebrate the 1980's. Actress Joan Collins, who played Alexis Carrington, John Forsythe's vindictive ex-wife on Dynasty, helped to set the bar when it came to malicious scheming, cat-fighting and starting fashion trends. Today, Collins continues to challenge herself with writing books and columns, as well as roles on television and the big screen. The legendary 75-year-old actress sat down with Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith to chat about her iconic status during the '80s and dish on her secret to looking youthful. You can view that here.
Finally, today it was the '90s turn. Talk show host Maury Povich talked with Harry Smith and Julie Chen about Maury and other 90s talk shows. Tabloid talk shows in the '90s were loud and controversial and oftentimes over the top, but as crazy and uncensored as it may have been, it helped to define the decade. View this video.

We of course mentioned a few weeks ago that new digital station This TV has launched in a few markets on Halloween, now This TV will launch in Houston on December 1 as one of KPRC's (Channel 2) digital stations. This TV will replace the NBC WeatherPlus signal that currently airs on KPRC's digital signal 2.2 and at channel 320 on Comcast cable.
This TV is from MGM and Weigel Broadcasting and airs TV series such as Patty Duke Show, Mister Ed and The Outer Limits. The network mainly airs MGM movies, such as The Misfits, They Call Me Mister Tibbs, Diggstown, The Terminator, The Three Amigos and How to Stuff a Wild Bikini.

The actor most notably recognized as 'Wally' on the classic television sitcom, Leave it to Beaver is set to showcase his artistic talents in Paris, France. Tony Dow will display an abstract sculpture in Paris' historical Louvre museum this December. The showcase will run from December 11 to December 14.
Since the end of his run on Leave it to Beaver Dow has worked on several television shows as a director and producer, as well as acting here and there.
Dow, 63, now lives in Los Angeles and has expressed excitement about his upcoming debut stating, "Having something shown at the Louvre is about as good as you can get... I'm a little humbled by the whole thing but grateful nonetheless." Dow also stated, "Of course, I'm really proud of Leave It to Beaver and my directing career in television...but this is interesting because I don't think they know anything about that at the Louvre."

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Thursday, November 13, 2008

TV Land Orders Two More Originals; Married with Children Reunited?; Fox Ends MADtv

It was only yesterday when we announced TV Land has ordered an addition original series for 2009, now TV Land has ordered two more. TV Land has ordered two more nonscripted original series, placing series orders for How'd You Get So Rich?, produced by Mark Burnett and featuring Joan Rivers, and a British format adaptation of First Love, Second Chance.
TV Land has ordered six half-hour episodes of How'd You Get So Rich?, in which Rivers will visit big estates across the country and interview their well-heeled occupants. The series is executive produced by Mark Burnett and Zoo Productions.
Produced by Granada America, First Love, Second Chance reunites long-broken-up couples to see if any chemistry remains. TV Land has ordered six episodes of this 60-minute series. It is unclear when these series will actually launch, but it will be sometime in 2009.

In the '80's television sitcom Married With Children, David Faustino played girl crazy little bro Bud Bundy. Entertainment Tonight has the Bundys together again -- but has Bud been replaced by Seth Green? It's all a part of David's new Web comedy Star-ving coming to Sony's Crackle.com in January for 13 episodes. The funnyman plays a former child star, down on his luck in life and love but thinks everything's about to change when a Married With Children, big screen adaptation is announced. Ed Asner (Mary Tyler Moore Show) also will be in this series. For more info on this, tune into Entertainment Tonight...tonight. Check local listings for time and channel in your area.

Fox has announced the final season of Emmy Award-winning sketch comedy series MADtv. Now in its 14th year, MADtv will air its 326th and final original episode in May 2009. MADtv airs Saturdays (11:00 PM-Midnight) on Fox.
Since its debut in October 1995, MADtv has earned four Emmy Awards and 41 nominations, as well as many other awards. The politically incorrect, fast-paced late-night series is best known for its signature characters, celebrity impersonations and pop-culture parodies.
The current MADtv cast is Bobby Lee, Keegan-Michael Key, Nicole Parker, Crista Flanagan, Arden Myrin, Johnny Sanchez, Erica Ash, Matt Braunger, Eric Price and Lauren Pritchard. MADtv has also helped launch the careers of several well-known actors and comedians including Michael McDonald, Alex Borstein, Orlando Jones, Mo Collins, Debra Wilson, Frank Caliendo, Artie Lange, Nicole Sullivan, Will Sasso, Stephnie Weir, Aries Spears and others. The Saturday-night staple has featured wildly popular impersonations of Whitney Houston, Connie Chung, Kenny Rogers, Britney Spears, Ellen DeGeneres and Morgan Freeman.
Over the last 14 seasons, MADtv has featured guest appearances by numerous celebrities including Ryan Seacrest, Queen Latifah, Jessica Simpson, Susan Sarandon, Carlos Mencia, Regis Philbin, Neil Patrick Harris, Shakira, Carmen Electra, Nicole Richie, Mandy Moore, Pamela Anderson, LL Cool J, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, Tyra Banks, Jessica Alba, Serena Williams, Jay-Z, Halle Berry, Kathy Bates, Don Cheadle, Rebecca Romijn, Missy Elliott and Jeff Probst, among others.
Fox has not announced a replacement, if there will be any. The hour could go back to local stations for programming.

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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

TV Land Orders Make My Day, Originals Update; Night Court Reunion on 30 Rock; ABC Family New Season Dates for Kyle XY and Teenager

TV Land is about to make your day. Continuing its push into original non-scripted series, TV Land has ordered a hidden-camera series, Make My Day, from producer Michael Davies and Sony Pictures Television.
Make My Day revolves around people who are unwittingly put through a series of "weird and wonderful" surprises and coincidences set up by friends and family members. TV Land has ordered six episodes of the hour-long series. It's based on a successful format from British production company Monkey Kingdom that aired on the U.K.'s Channel 4 in 2001-03. To me this sounds like Nick at Nite's now defunct series Hi-Jinks. Make My Day will premiere on TV Land's primetime schedule next year, on the TV Land PRIME block, most likely on Wednesday nights.
Coming soon to TV Land PRIME, the countdown to the next exciting season of TV Land's highly rated original series High School Reunion is on! The second season of this successful TV Land original series brings together high school alumni from Chandler, Arizona 20 years after their graduation as they gather for two weeks in exotic Kauai, HI. The fun is slated to begin on Wednesday, February 18, 2009. Other originals include new series The Cougar launching April 15, 2009 and the new season of She's Got the Look on June 10, 2009. The 2009 TV Land Awards are slated for Sunday, June 14, 2009.

We are having sort of a Night Court reunion tomorrow night on NBC. Three of the cast members from the hit show will guest star on NBC's 30 Rock at 9:30pm tomorrow (November 13) as themselves. Series star Harry Anderson (Judge Harry Stone), Markie Post (Public Defender Christine Sullivan), and Charlie Robinson (Clerk Mac Robinson) will reunite. Also in the episode, Jennifer Aniston returns to primetime television as a free-spirited, "fatal Attraction"-like stalker named Claire Harper. She randomly shows up in New York to visit Liz (Tina Fey) and Jenna (Jane Krakowski). Claire zeroes in on Jack (Alec Baldwin) upon first sight and claims him for her own. She is dressed very well from the videos, I've seen. Very stunning.
Kenneth (Jack McBrayer), distressed and let down over the new page uniforms, turns to Tracy (Tracy Morgan) for some cheering up. To make Kenneth smile again, Tracy has a surprise involving the cast of Night Court.
The only thing that would have made this "reunion" better if they had Dan Fielding himself, I guess John Larroquette is busy on ABC's Boston Legal. Roz (Marsha Warfield) and Bull (Richard Moll) would have been nice to see as well. Oh well, three stars is better than nothing! Click click (as the Night Court theme goes)!

Following ABC Family's celebrated "25 Days of Christmas" programming event, ABC Family will start the new year strong by bringing back two of its hit original series this January. The break-out summer hit The Secret Life of the American Teenager returns on a new day (Monday) with twelve all-new one hour episodes beginning Monday, January 5 from 8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT. And season three of Kyle XY will premiere a week later with ten all-new one hour episodes beginning Monday, January 12 from 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT, on a new time.

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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Lifetime's Rita Rocks Ordered for Full Season; 35th Annual People's Choice Awards Nominees

Rita Rocks, Lifetime Television's first original sitcom in 10 years, has been picked up for a full season. Lifetime ordered seven additional episodes, bringing the first season order total to 20 episodes. The family comedy starring Nicole Sullivan premiered on October 20 and, in a unique programming strategy, stripped original episodes for a full week before moving into its regular timeslot (Tuesdays, 8:30 p.m. ET/PT).
In addition to Sullivan, the traditional sitcom Rita Rocks stars Richard Ruccolo as Rita's husband Jay and Tisha Campbell-Martin as her friend and band mate. Natalie Dreyfuss, Kelly Gould also star as Rita's daughters. Raviv Ullman plays her teenage daughter's ever-present boyfriend.
In Rita Rocks, Sullivan stars as Rita Clements, an overworked wife and mother trying to find time to find herself. Once the lead singer of a Bangles cover band, Rita traded in a life in rock clubs for carpools and the PTA. With the hope of getting a little bit of the old Rita back, she forms a garage band with postal carrier Patty (Tisha Campbell-Martin) and unemployed neighbor Owen (guest-star Ian Gomez).

The nominees were for The 35th Annual People's Choice Awards are now in. We will only mention the TV categories. Winners will be revealed during the live broadcast of The 35th Annual People's Choice Awards which will be hosted by Queen Latifah from the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles Wednesday, Jan. 7, 2009 (9:00-11:00 PM, ET/delayed PT) on CBS. The first awards show of 2009, The 35th Annual People's Choice Awards honors fan favorites in television, movies and music.
PEOPLE Magazine, in celebration of its own 35th birthday, will team up with People's Choice to present the first ever People's Choice Award for Favorite Star Under 35, in recognition of this dual milestone. Beginning today www.pcaVOTE.com and www.people.com will exclusively feature this unique poll, giving fans the opportunity to choose their favorite star, under the age of 35, by narrowing down from a group of Hollywood's biggest celebrities, chosen by PEOPLE's editors. The TV nominees are:

FAVORITE TV DRAMA
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (CBS)
Grey's Anatomy (ABC)
House (Fox)

FAVORITE TV COMEDY
Samantha Who? (ABC)
Two and a Half Men (CBS)
Ugly Betty (ABC)

FAVORITE ANIMATED COMEDY
Family Guy (Fox)
The Simpsons (Fox)
South Park (Comedy Central)

FAVORITE SCI-FI / FANTASY SHOW
Heroes (NBC)
Supernatural (The CW)
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles (Fox)

FAVORITE COMPETITION / REALITY SHOW
American Idol (Fox)
Dancing with the Stars (ABC)
Extreme Makeover: Home Edition (ABC)

FAVORITE GAME SHOW
Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader? (Fox)
Deal Or No Deal (NBC)
JEOPARDY! (Syndicated, CBS Television Distribution)

FAVORITE MALE TV STAR
Patrick Dempsey (Grey's Anatomy, ABC)
Hugh Laurie (House, Fox)
Charlie Sheen (Two and a Half Men, CBS)

FAVORITE FEMALE TV STAR
Christina Applegate (Samantha Who?, ABC)
Sally Field (Brothers & Sisters, ABC)
Mariska Hargitay (Law & Order: SVU, NBC)

FAVORITE TALK SHOW HOST
Ellen DeGeneres (Syndicated, Warner Bros.)
David Letterman (CBS)
Regis Philbin & Kelly Ripa (Syndicated, ABC Studios)

FAVORITE SCENE-STEALING GUEST STAR (NEW CATEGORY)
Luke Perry on Law & Order: SVU, NBC
Britney Spears on How I Met Your Mother, CBS
Robin Williams on Law & Order: SVU, NBC

FAVORITE TV DRAMA DIVA (NEW CATEGORY)
Holly Hunter as Grace Hanadarko on Saving Grace, TNT
Mary-Louise Parker as Nancy Botwin on Weeds, Showtime
Kyra Sedgwick as Deputy Chief Brenda Johnson on The Closer, TNT

FAVORITE NEW TV DRAMA (All new shows, vote on PCAVote.com)
90210, The CW
Crusoe, NBC
Easy Money, The CW
Eleventh Hour, CBS
Fringe, Fox
Knight Rider, NBC
Life on Mars, ABC
The Mentalist, CBS
My Own Worst Enemy, NBC
Privileged, The CW

FAVORITE NEW TV COMEDY (All new shows, vote on PCAVote.com)
Gary Unmarried, CBS
Kath & Kim, NBC
Valentine, The CW
Worst Week, CBS

View the full press release, including nominees for the movies and music categories.

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Monday, November 10, 2008

TV One December 2008, Acquires Jeffersons, Sanford & Son; ABC Schedules Season 5 Lost Premiere; More Network Notes

This December on TV One they are going all out in celebrating with holiday episodes of sitcoms and more, including the launch of Half & Half on Kwanza and classic sitcom The Jeffesons and Sanford & Son on New Year's Day. But first we have to talk about some schedule changes. The weekday 7-9am block has changed and will now be actual series programming rather than original repeats. Starting Monday, December 8 following Amen from 6-7am will be All About the Andersons at 7am, followed by back-to-back episodes of Comics Unleashed from 7:30-8:30am and the sitcom Good News at 8:30am. 9am-11am will continue to be originals, while 11am-4pm continues to be the daily marathons. Also on this date, TV One launches its HD channel TV One HD!
To the highlights we go, Saturday, December 13 is the beginning of the TV One "12 Days of Christmas" Promotion that features a mix of holiday series, movies, and specials to keep viewers filled with joy and Christmas spirit leading up to Christmas Day. First up is a Christmas Sitcom marathon on December 13 beginning at 7am through 10pm featuring Christmas-themed episodes of Amen, Martin, Roc, Wanda at Large, Living Single, Eve, The Hughleys, Good News, The PJs, All of Us, and Good Times.
On Sunday, December 14 from 3-6pm, you can catch a block of Amen Christmas episodes leading into the animated Christmas special Santa Baby at 6pm about a little girl who gets a wish for Christmas returns to TV One for the holidays and stars the voices of Patti LaBelle, Gregory Hines, and Eartha Kitt. This special has an encore broadcast on Sunday, December 21 at 7pm (and Saturday, Dec. 20 in the daytime at 12pm).
From Monday, December 15 through Friday, December 19, TV One devotes the 8pm-12am timeblock exclusively to "The 12 Days of Christmas" themed programming including sitcom episodes of Martin, Living Single, Good Times, Amen, Cedric the Entertainer Presents, All of Us and For Your Love from 8-11pm, original Christmas specials at 11pm, and the holiday film The Kid Who Loved Christmas starring Sammy Davis Jr. premiering Friday, December 19 at 10pm.
On Saturday, December 20 beginning at 6am, the holiday fun starts bright and early as TV One continues the "12 Days of Christmas" programming with a holiday marathon mix of sitcoms, holiday specials, movies that will give viewers the warm and fuzzy feel of holiday time at TV One. Sitcoms airs from 6am-12pm, 2pm-7pm, and late nights from 3-6am. Catch holiday episodes of Where I Live, Amen, All of Us, Eve, Cedric the Entertainer Presents, Good Times, The PJs, and Living Single on this day.
From Monday, December 22 through Wednesday, December 24, the TV One "12 Days of Christmas" themed programming begins each night at 5pm and continues all night with sitcoms, movies, and specials to keep viewers Christmas Cheer at a high level as we get closer to the biggest holiday of the year. Sitcom episodes airs from 5pm-1am these three days. Catch episodes of Good Times, Roc, The PJs, Cedric the Entertainer Presents, Wanda at Large, Parent'hood, Martin and Eve from 5-8pm, with blocks of All of Us (Mon), Good Times (Tues), and Martin (Wed) from 8-10pm. The fun continues from 10pm-1am with holiday showings of For Your Love, Cedric, Eve, Living Single, The Hughleys, Good Times, Roc, The PJs, and Martin.
On Thursday, December 25, TV One gives viewers 24 hours of Christmas on Christmas Day itself starting at 6am with themed movies, music, and specials keeping the holiday cheer at a high and then beginning at 5pm, the annual TV One sitcom Christmas Day Marathon closes out our "12 Days of Christmas" promotion with Christmas-themed episodes from sitcoms For Your Love, Roc, Martin, Good Times, Living Single, Parent'hood, Wanda At Large, Cedric, The PJs, All of Us, Eve, and The Hughleys.
TV One sure knows how to showcase sitcom Christmas episodes! I hope you all got that! One thing missing is Hangin' with Mr. Cooper, as it has left the line-up. It was airing Saturdays 7-8am but was replaced by Parent'hood on Dec. 6 and holiday specials/marathons for the rest of the month. No word on when it could return.
We're not done with TV One! Three shows will launch with big marathons! On Friday December 26 (Kwanza), beginning at 8pm, TV One introduces Half & Half to its sitcom lineup with a 24-hour Mega-thon that will keep viewers laughing all night long as they are introduced to the characters in the latest series added to the TV One sitcom landscape. Half & Half, starring Essence Atkins, Rachel True, Valarie Pettiford and Telma Hopkins, is a sitcom about two 20-something half-sisters who share the same father. They are completely unlike each other, but they live in the same apartment building, creating a situation of conflict and love especially with their often feuding mothers. Half & Half joins the TV One weeknight lineup on Monday, December 29 airing back to back episodes in the 7pm & 7:30pm timeslots Monday-Friday. It will replace an episode each of Martin and Eve. Half & Half will also air in the 4-5am hour replacing All of Us and Good Times in the hour.
As a sneak peak to January, TV One has acquired two classic '70s sitcoms: The Jeffersons and Sanford & Son! On New Year's Day, Thursday, January 1, beginning at 10am through 6am, the classic sitcom The Jeffersons makes its bow on TV One in a New Year's Day marathon taking viewers on a trip down memory lane with George & Weezie (Sherman Hemsley and Isabel Sanford) and the hilarious cast of characters that will keep viewers laughing and reflecting all day long. The Jeffersons joins the TV One weeknight lineup on Monday January 5. More on that in our January highlights next month.
Finally, on Friday, January 2 beginning at 9pm through 9pm on Saturday, January 3, TV One premieres another classic sitcom Sanford and Son to its sitcom landscape in a 24-hour Mega-thon that introduces viewers to cantankerous junk dealer Fred Sanford (played by the late Redd Foxx) and his son Lamont (played by Demond Wilson) who run a junk business in a Los Angeles Watts neighborhood. Sanford & Son also joins the TV One weeknight lineup on Monday January 5 (more on that next month).
Recently President-Elect Barack Obama mixed up these two sitcoms by saying "I'm coming Weezie," when discussing McCain's Health Care plan. So maybe now Obama will know the line is "I'm coming to join you Elizabeth."
Both The Jeffersons and Sanford & Son are NOT exclusive to TV One, so TV Land will continue to air both series as well, but TV One will give them better timeslots obviously. Discuss all of TV One's December programming in our TV One December 2008 Highlights.

We were among the first to report the Lost season 5 premiere date and time on our message boards on Friday, but if you haven't heard, Lost will launch its fifth season on Wednesday, January 21, 2009 with an "all-night event." The first hour will be a recap one-hour clip show from 8-9pm ET/PT, followed by the two-hour season premiere from 9-11pm ET/PT. So, the promos that aired on Election Night on ABC were correct about the two-hour premiere.
Lost will then air Wednesdays at 9pm ET/PT starting the following week, as the show returns to Wednesdays after moving to Thursdays last winter. ABC has not announced what it will do at 8pm and 10pm on Wednesdays yet, but adding Lost to anchor Wednesdays is a good move. I'm guessing Private Practice will follow Lost, with new docudrama Border Security USA could lead off the night. Dirty Sexy Money is possibly on the move to another night and the jury's still out on Pushing Daisies. ABC is expected to announce their midseason winter schedule this week. We will bring it to you first either here or on the message board...depending on the timing. So keep checking back!

In other network news, NBC has picked-up the back nine episodes of sophomore crime drama series Life, giving it a full 22 episodes, despite low ratings. Life joins Kath & Kim and Knight Rider in surprising NBC full season orders. Life moved back to Wednesdays last week, but this time at 9pm, after disappointing in its Friday at 10pm slot. Speaking of Knight Rider, NBC is looking to change the direction of the series and we will get the direction back to the style of the '80s series...making it a show about a man and his car going out and helping regular people. Finally! This new style was dumb and a disgrace to the franchise I thought, and it is no wonder the ratings are bad. NBC is expected to start the changes on episode ten, which will be part one of a two-part episode. Episode ten will air in January (possibly after an NFL game), with episode nine as the fall finale on Nov. 26 (good riddance to this new style). Due to this change, three major stars, Sydney Tamiia Poitier, Yancey Arias and Bruce Davison are leaving the show after 13 episodes. There are no immediate plans to add new regulars to the show, as now the show will focus on the five remaining characters: Mike (Justin Bruening), Sarah (Deanna Russo), Billy (Paul Campbell), Zoe (Smith Cho) and of course K.I.T.T. The producers also are looking to do stunt guest castings. Maybe more Hoff? Could this save this revival series?
Meanwhile, Fox has ordered a full season of the Family Guy spin-off series The Cleveland Show...and it hasn't even premiered yet. The show will now launch in Fall 2009 rather than this coming Spring. No reason was given for the delay in airing, but my guess is it would be better to launch in the fall. No word on what will happen to the other Fox animated series that was set to come, Sit Down, Shut Up. I would think that is still slated for this Spring. We'll let you know, as soon as we do.

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Sunday, November 09, 2008

Week 7 Numbers (First Four Nights); How the Sitcoms Did

Week 7 numbers (first four nights, Mon-Thurs):

Households: ABC: 7.6/11.6; CBS: 6.8/10.4; NBC: 5.8/8.9; Fox: 3.5/5.3; The CW: 2.0/3.0; MNT: 0.7/1.1.
Total Viewers: ABC: 11.79 million; CBS: 10.73 million; NBC: 9.38 million; Fox: 5.73 million; The CW: 3.04 million; MNT: 1.06 million.
Adults 18-49: ABC: 3.5/8.5; NBC: 3.4/8.4; CBS: 3.2/7.9; Fox: 2.3/5.5; The CW: 1.5/3.5; MNT: 0.4/0.9.

Analysis: Week 7 saw the first full week of November Sweeps and the Presidential Election changes our normal Tuesday numbers. Hurray we got the final first four nights network averages for the first time in weeks! Through the first four days, ABC has the lead in all categories, as the Election coverage helped but primarily because CBS's coverage did nothing, with CBS in second in HH/viewers but third in 18-49. NBC is third in HH/viewers and 2nd in 18-49 thanks to the SNL special and their Election coverage. So an atypical week.
Last week, CBS won week 6 in HH/viewers, while Fox won in 18-49 for the second straight week. ABC was second across the board in all categories. Fox was third in HH/viewers, while CBS and NBC were tied for 3rd in 18-49. NBC was fourth in HH/viewers for the week.
Monday ABC was on top thanks to of course Dancing with the Stars. The 92-minute episode did a below normal 17.09 million...the reason probably was NBC's SNL Election special. The sitcom Samantha Who followed and also did a below normal 8.72 million, down from previous week. A new Boston Legal followed with just 6.72 million, down nearly two million from the previous week, as SNL hurt it. NBC was next but its regular line-up of Chuck , Heroes and My Worst Own Enemy were preempted for a special Monday Deal or No Deal at just 7.18 million (this series is no longer a force), but the surprise of the night was the two-hour SNL Presidential Bash at a solid 14.44 million and an impressive 5.6 18-49 rating. Next up was CBS, the usual second place network on Monday, with new episodes of its comedies and a new CSI: Miami. The Big Bang Theory did a series best 9.67 million, this show continues to shine and How I Met Your Mother followed with 9.4 million. From there CBS went downhill as probably SNL hurt it, Two and a Half Men followed with 12.76 million, but seems lower than normal and a new Worst Week only mustered 8.28 million, losing to the 8-9pm comedies for the second time. At 10pm a new CSI: Miami did a below normal 12.74 million. Fox was next with the should have not been renewed Sarah Connor at just 5.17 million and on its last legs Prison Break at 5.23 million. The CW had its usual decent numbers with Gossip Girl doing a solid 3.16 million, up a bit from previous week and the resurgent One Tree Hill did 3.02 million, but down week-to-week for the second straight week.
Tuesday it was an atypical night. We got Presidential Election coverage for the night on all nets but The CW. Congrats to President-Elect Barack Obama! ABC lead the election coverage with its ABC News Vote 2008 doing 13.23 million in primetime. Dancing with the Stars: The Results aired Wednesday at 8 this week and Eli Stone was preempted. NBC was second actually with its election coverage, as NBC News Decision '08 did 12.1 million in primetime (for 3rd, CNN was 2nd). But it beats the regular line-up of The Biggest Loser and Law & Order: SVU, as both shows were preempted. CBS suffered the most on this night, as their usual big three guns NCIS, new drama The Mentalist and Without a Trace were preempted for CBS's Campaign 2008 coverage doing only 7.41 million in primetime. Fox also missed its regular line-up of House and to a lesser extent Fringe, as Fox You Decide 2008 did just 4.73 million in primetime. The CW aired a new episode of 90210 doing 2.95 million, down a bit from previous week and a new episode of Privileged did 1.84 million, down a tad week-to-week.
Wednesday saw CBS edge ABC. CBS started with Old Christine at a below normal 6.5 million, down from previous week. Gary Unmarried was back after a week off and did just 6.33 million, as both comedies were down because of Dancing with the Stars. CBS aired Criminal Minds at 9pm and it did a solid 14.3 million, up from previous week and at 10pm CSI: NY was down two million doing 11.8 million, as it seems the return of Law & Order on NBC hurt it a bit. ABC was next as Dancing with the Stars: The Results had to air on Wednesday this week due to the Election, as the show did 15.85 million, below normal but still #1 by miles at 8pm and much better than usual Pushing Daisies. Private Practice followed with a solid gain doing 9.17 million, up from previous week and Dirty Sexy Money did 6.15 million...up a bit from previous week. What a show! Fox was next with a new Bones at a solid 10.17 million, but second place at 8pm this week, though it seems Dancing didn't affect it. A House repeat, just what we need, did 6.65 million...which is good. NBC opened the night with a series low for Knight Rider doing just 5.12 million, down nearly two million from its previous episode two weeks ago. I find it hard to believe Dancing affected this male-driven show. Next up was the Wednesday premiere of Life doing doing nothing with 5.94 million and the season premiere of Law & Order did 7.94 million, but it wasn't big like last season. The CW had a new Top Model doing 3.82 million, down a bit from previous week and Stylista followed with only 1.82 million, up a bit week-to-week.
Thursday CBS won the night but saw declines. CBS opened with Survivor: Gabon at 12.01 million, down a million from previous week. A new CSI followed with 18.18 million, also down a million from previous week. The new Eleventh Hour followed and did 10.9 million, down week to week as well. ABC opened the night with Ugly Betty doing 8.92 million, up from previous week. Grey's Anatomy followed with 15.74 million, up week to week again and #1 in 18-49 with a 6.0 rating. At 10pm a new Life on Mars did 8.71 million, up from previous week for the second straight week. Looks like it is going up now. We should be hearing a back nine renewal soon. NBC was fourth with a new My Name is Earl doing 6.7, up from previous week, new sitcom Kath & Kim followed with only 5.63 million, but up from the previous week a bit for the second straight week. The Office followed with 8.54 million, down a million from previous week. The Oprah episode of 30 Rock did 8.07 million, down from previous week. Jennifer Aniston and the Night Court cast guest star this week, but can 30 Rock go up or down? ER did a third place 8.61 million, down from previous week. Fox was off the map with two new episodes of Kitchen Nightmares at just 4.42 million, followed by its regular slot episode at just 4.7 million, but up week-to-week. Smallville on The CW did 4.46 million, up from previous week as this is the #1 show on The CW it seems, followed by Supernatural at 3.24 million...down some from previous week.
Now, final numbers for Friday and Saturday are not available, but CBS won Friday with their dramas, as Ghost Whisperer did very solid as usual, and a repeat of NCIS at 9pm did over 11 million in prelim numbers again, giving NUMB3RS a season high at 10pm. NBC's disappointing Crusoe continues to do bad, as does Lipstick Jungle at 10pm.
Saturday numbers saw ABC win in the preliminaries overall and in 18-49 thanks to College Football.
Tonight should be a victory for either ABC, CBS or NBC. NFL football will come into play. ABC of course has the Sunday line-up of AFV, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Desperate Housewives, and Brothers & Sisters. CBS will be solid, and will have an NFL overrun to help them in the 7pm half-hour, and NBC will be solid with the SNF game, with the best game in weeks between the Giants and Eagles. Fox will be solid but not as good as last week with their animation.
As for the week, I believe ABC should hang on for the win in HH, viewers and 18-49 but it depends on how NFL overrun does for CBS tonight. NBC will beat CBS in 18-49 for the week I think because of the NFL game. NBC will be third overall though, with Fox in fourth across the board, followed by CW and MNT. What to watch for this week? We will have a normal week again, the only stunts are the CMA Awards this Wednesday on ABC and a Supernanny stunt on ABC Friday with a special episode at 8pm and the backdoor pilot Super-Manny at 9pm. Expect ABC to be in the lead for the first four nights again this time next week thanks to a strong CMA on Wednesday.


Last Sunday Sitcoms (counts for week of October 27-Nov. 2)

  • The Simpsons (Fox) - The annual Treehouse of Horror Halloween special did an impressive 12.4 million and an excellent 6.2 18-49 rating...too bad it cant do anything near this each week.
  • King of the Hill (Fox) - 8.5 million and a 4.2 18-49 rating was above average thanks to the great lead-in.
  • Family Guy (Fox) - 9.99 million and a 5.1 18-49 rating...this show does better than The Office but no one says a word.
  • American Dad (Fox) - 7.09 million, a bit better than usual but still a weak link on this night.

Monday Sitcoms

  • The Big Bang Theory (CBS) - 9.67 million is a series best! This show surprises everyone and is very solid in the ratings and quality.
  • How I Met Your Mother (CBS) - 9.4 million, didn't build on the lead-in but it did in 18-49 from a 3.7 to 4.1, making this also a winner for the week.
  • Two and a Half Men (CBS) - Even a below normal 12.76 million makes this the highest rated sitcom of the week.
  • Worst Week (CBS) - Only 8.28 million, as a repeat of Gary Unmarried did better than that the previous week.
  • Samantha Who? (ABC) - Below normal 8.72 million this week, down nearly two million week-to-week, as viewers flocked away from ABC and CBS this week from 9-11pm for NBC's SNL Presidential Bash.

Tuesday Sitcoms

  • None.
Wednesday Sitcoms
  • Old Christine (CBS) - 6.5 million only for a new showing, but it faced Dancing with the Stars: The Results at a special night and time. Can it go back to building each week again?
  • Gary Unmarried (CBS) - Only 6.33 million after being preempted on this night the previous week.

Thursday Sitcoms

  • My Name is Earl (NBC) - 6.7 million for a new episode, up from previous week's 6.27 million.
  • Kath & Kim (NBC) - 5.63 million for a new episode...up from the previous week and slowly going up a bit in viewers after the 4.99 million two weeks ago.
  • The Office (NBC) - 8.54 million for a new episode...down a million week-to-week though. Maybe Thursday NFL hurt it?
  • 30 Rock (NBC) - 8.07 million tuned in this week, down from the premiere's 8.66 million...but not bad still. Can it continue to stay solid?

Friday Sitcoms

  • Everybody Hates Chris (The CW) - Final numbers are not in yet...but the prelim numbers show 1.72 million. Bad yes, but up week to week so far.
  • The Game (The CW) - Prelim numbers show just 1.68 million...same as above.

Saturday Sitcoms

  • None.

Airing tonight (Sunday) is Fox's animated comedies from 7-10 (new from 8-10).

Summing it up. Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, The Office, 30 Rock were impressive for the week. Everything else was OK (such as Samantha Who?, Old Christine) or just plain old terrible (such as Worst Week, The Game).

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Saturday, November 08, 2008

Blog DVD Review: Route 66 - The Complete 2nd Season

It is Saturday, so that must mean it is time for the weekly Blog DVD Review! Today we take a look at Roxbury Entertainment's Route 66 - The Complete Second Season. Route 66 ran from 1960-1964 and starred Martin Milner, George Maharis (1960-1963) and Glenn Corbett (1963-1964). See skees53's Blog DVD Review of Route 66 -The Complete Second Season:

Route 66 - The Complete Second Season (Roxbury Entertainment, $49.98) -- takes you on a roadtrip through America, and allows you to see all of the drama and misfortune that two guys somehow manage to run into each and every week. For those unfamiliar with the series, Route 66 stars Martin Millner (as Tod) and George Maharis (as Buz) as two guys (from different backgrounds) that just happen to have come together to take a road trip (for several years, apparently) all throughout America. Every week, they end up somewhere different in America, going everywhere from California to Texas to Massachusetts. While they meet many different people along the way, they somehow manage to find themselves running into those that they'd rather not run into, including murders, racists, drug addicts, and other mentally unstable folks. Sometimes, while on the journey, they find themselves in trouble, and perhaps have their own life at risk. The series was perhaps one of the first dramas to take on serious situations that were relevant in the time, and many situations which are still very much relevant (if not more so) in the modern era. The Complete Second Season contains 32 original and unedited episodes on eight discs.
The season begins with "A Month of Sundays," where Buz finds love in a dying woman. In "Good Night, Sweet Blues," Ethel Waters plays a dying jazz singer that wants to get her old jazz band together one last time. In "Birdcage on My Foot," the guys have to deal with a heroin addict. It just so happens that there are people in a small Maryland town that look exactly like Buz (they happen to be played by Mahris' own relatives) in "The Mud Nest." In "A Bridge Across Five Days," Tod and Buz are working in a shipyard with a recent release from a mental hospital.
Tod is accidentally given a psychosis-inducing drug at a party that may cause suicidal tendencies in "The Thin White Line." In "To Walk with the Serpent," Tod and Buz face people that have plastic explosives. Slim Pickens guest stars in "A Long Piece of Mischief."
Julie Newmar guest stars in "How Much a Pound is Albatross," where she plays a woman cruising on her motorcycle (without any license tags). Ed Asner guest stars in "Shoulder the Sky My Lad," where the guys find that anti-Semitism is still alive and well. Buz is temporarily blinded in an accident in "Even Stones Have Eyes," and finds love at a school for the blind, but what will he do when he regains his sight and can no longer attend the school?
Cloris Leachman and Tuesday Weld guest star in "Love is a Skinny Kid." A school boy falls overboard on an excursion boat in "Two on the House," and claims he was pushed. The guys discover a woman with two identities at an amusement park in "Between Hello and Goodbye."
The set comes packaged just like the first season did, in a huge box containing two "volumes" of discs. Each disc within the set contains exactly four episodes and each case contains not only a listing of the episodes on each disc, but also an episode description, a list of guest stars, and filming locations. The only thing missing (and it isn't a huge deal) is original airdates!
The menus are very nicely designed, although there is a slight flaw, and that is in the fact that the episodes are listed in a circular fashion on some of the discs, which makes navigating the menus sometimes counter-intuitive. For example, you may sometimes have to use the "up" button on the remote to go down on the menu. I shouldn't complain, though, because they obviously put some time into creating these menus. While there are no scene selection menus, you will find chapters placed within each episode.
It is amazing to see how great the video and audio quality is on the episodes. The episodes aren't totally perfect, though, as there is some grain here and there, but the picture quality is generally clear and the audio sounds great. The episodes have all been remastered from the original copies this time, so you won't find anything unnatural in the episodes this time (like a 2000 era Sony logo or a 1980s Columbia Pictures logo). The only bad news is that the episodes do not contain subtitles or closed-captioning. Every episode on the set is (supposedly) unedited, with each running somewhere around 50 minutes or so.
The packaging says that the set contains original 1960s commercials, BUT I was unable to find these ANYWHERE on the set! I don't know if I merely overlooked them or if this was just a mistake on the packaging (the first season did contain such commercials). The other special feature that the set promises, however, can be found. That would be the cast biographies with video clips. This is a very nice feature for those that love guest stars. Basically, on each disc, you can go to a menu that lists every single guest star contained on the episodes on the disc that you are viewing. When you select a guest star, you get a filmography for that cast (usually not a complete one, just as much as they can fit on the screen), and you can watch a clip of that guest star in the episode. This is a very useful since the series is loaded with guest stars.
This is one of those series that I had never watched prior to seeing the series on DVD, but I am QUICKLY becoming a fan of the series! Generally, these older anthology dramas don't appeal to me, but this show is full of entertaining drama that contains plots that are actually relevant. The series is almost cinematic in quality and is very much enjoyable. Fans of true classics, as well as fans of good drama are certain to get their kicks on Route 66!

Reviewed by skees53
(4.5/5 stars)

To purchase this DVD, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
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Related links:
SitcomsOnline.com Full DVD Reviews Page
Route 66 TV.com Page

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Friday, November 07, 2008

Fox 2008-09 Midseason Schedule; ABC Episode Cuts for Midseason; Interviews with Leonard Stern and Lydia Cornell On The Web

Fox has announced the winter portion of its 2008-09 midseason schedule. The wait is almost over as Fox announces premiere dates of new and returning series as well as revisions to its 2008-2009 midseason schedule.
January starts with the not-to-be-missed blockbuster premieres of 24 and American Idol. We announced already 24 would launch with a two night premiere. American Idol returns for Season Eight with a two-night, four-hour premiere event as well, on Tuesday, Jan. 13 and Wednesday, Jan. 14 from 8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT.
All-new episodes of House, Bones, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, and Hole in the Wall will air on new nights in midseason. Get real on Mondays with all-new episodes of House leading into real-time drama 24, as Emmy-winning medical drama House moves to Mondays 8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT and has its time period premiere Jan. 19 followed by the time period premiere of 24 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT. It looks to me Fox is afraid how 24 would do with a rookie or a declining series like Sarah Connor as its lead-in, so Fox is moving House yet again to help (or save?) 24.
Fringe will air in its regular time period Tuesdays (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) after American Idol starting Jan. 20 to try and become a "real" hit.
Lie To Me, the compelling new drama from the producers of 24, debuts Wednesday, Jan. 21 from 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT after American Idol and stars Tim Roth as Dr. Cal Lightman, the world's leading deception expert who studies facial expressions and involuntary body language to discover not only if someone is lying, but why. Fox obviously believes in this show over its other new drama...and that drama was much highly touted at upfront, so something must have went wrong creatively.
Bones moves to Thursdays from 8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT beginning Jan. 15 followed by the final two all-new episodes of the season of Kitchen Nightmares in its 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT time period. On Thursday, Jan. 29 from 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT, Chef Gordon Ramsay steps into another kitchen to serve up a fifth course of Hell's Kitchen, the unscripted series that puts wannabe restaurateurs through a rigorous one-of-a-kind culinary boot camp. Fox is moving Bones once again...what has moved more--Bones or House?
On Friday, Feb. 13, Fox presents a thrilling new action-packed lineup featuring the return and time period premiere of Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles from 8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT and the highly anticipated series premiere of Joss Whedon's Dollhouse from 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT. Dollhouse reunites Whedon with Eliza Dushku, who stars as a member of a highly illegal underground group of individuals who have had their personalities wiped clean so they can be imprinted with any number of new personas. Current game shows Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader? and Don't Forget the Lyrics! will air on the night until Feb. 13.
Saturday remains the same, as does Sundays except Hole in the Wall will return and air Sundays 7:00 and 7:30 PM ET/PT beginning Jan. 18. Current batch of Animation Domination will remain the same this winter.
Fox has not announced when Prison Break and 'Til Death will return, but it is likely they will return sometime in Spring 2009. My bet is Prison Break will take over one of the Friday slots when returning for its final episodes. Also, Fox has yet to announce premiere dates for their two new animated series (Sit Down, Shut Up & The Cleveland Show), but that will also likely be in the Spring.
Check out the full Fox Winter portion of its 2008-09 mid-season schedule, it includes all dates for the BCS games.

Meanwhile at ABC, due to so many series coming this midseason on ABC, they have cut the episode orders for upcoming new procedual dramas Castle and The Unusuals from 13 episodes to 10 episodes. Nothing is wrong creatively wise, but ABC has a lot of stuff coming. Scripted series wise this winter, ABC has Lost as well as six new scripted series launching in midseason, the aforementioned Castle & The Unusuals, hourlong Cupid and comedies In The Motherhood, Better Off Ted and The Goode Family. Not to mention the return of long-running sitcoms Scrubs and According to Jim. They could be joined by the Bill Lawrence (Scrubs) produced comedy starring Courteney Cox (Friends), called Cougar Town, which was fast-tracked last week with a pilot order targeted for midseason. Unscripted wise look for The Bachelor to return and new reality series True Beauty and docudrama Border Security USA. ABC also could return Here Come the Newlyweds, or maybe they will save it for summer.
ABC has however canceled upcoming single-camera sitcom starring Alyssa Milano called Single with Parents and it won't launch this midseason due to creative reasons. ABC released the following statement: "Unfortunately, we could not agree on the creative direction for this show and have decided not to move forward with this project." That is too bad because I thought the cast was great and the clips they released were funny. They need to put Alyssa Milano on one of their current series, preferably a drama like Lost or Grey's Anatomy.

Two websites have announced new interviews. Legendary TV producer Leonard Stern talks about the classic TV series Get Smart and his participation in the DVD release of Get Smart: The Complete Series Gift Set, in an interview on the Internet radio show TV Time Machine (http://www.tvtimemachine.com/), hosted by TV historian Jim Benson. From 1965-1970, Leonard Stern served as executive producer and frequent writer and director on Get Smart, starring Don Adams as Maxwell Smart Secret Agent 86 and Barbara Feldon as Agent 99. Mr. Stern talks extensively about providing commentary for the current DVD release of Get Smart: The Complete Series Gift Set, his views on last summer's Get Smart movie starring Steve Carell and Anne Hathaway, and the amazing longevity of his classic TV spy spoof. So check out tvtimemachine.com for this interesting audio interview!
Last week if you all recall, we interviewed Lydia Cornell (Too Close for Comfort) on our Seven Questions feature, and now our buddy Chris Mann of Retroality.TV has also interviewed Lydia! The interview was posted in time for Election Day and covers lots of political questions for Lydia that we didn't go into. It is very interesting, and you can call it a "spin-off" of our interview! He also asks her lots of questions related to Too Close for Comfort. Chris does a great job, as usual! Go and check out his interview; it is the feature story on his website this month!

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Thursday, November 06, 2008

WGN America's Newhart Thanksgiving Marathon; Sci Fi Channel Picks Up Reruns of Invasion & Moonlight

WGN America will celebrate Thanksgiving with an all-day marathon of the '80s sitcom Newhart! Yes, on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 27 from 12pm to 3am ET (that's 9am-12am PT) you can enjoy classic episodes of Newhart, including both Thanksgiving episodes ("Don't Rain On My Parade" and "Thanksgiving for the Memories") in the 8pm ET hour. The classic 30-episode marathon concludes with one of the best series finales ever, "The Last Newhart." If you're a new fan thanks to WGN and have not seen it yet, then I won't spoil it.
Newhart starred Bob Newhart and actress Mary Frann as an author and his wife who owned and operated a historic inn located in a small Vermont rural town that was populated by eccentric characters. The show aired on the CBS from 1982 to 1990, and was Bob Newhart's second hit sitcom.
View the Newhart episodes airing in this Thanksgiving Day Marathon. Stay tuned in the coming weeks as we announce what WGN America will air on Christmas Eve/Day...it will be lots of classic holiday episodes. They also have a classic series marathon, similar to Newhart, planned on New Year's Eve/Day...so stay tuned for that info also in the coming weeks!
In other WGN America programming news, ALF will not be airing Monday nights 9-10pm ET anymore starting Nov. 24, it will however still remain on the very strong Sunday line-up.
Remember you can catch Newhart every Sunday night on WGN America's Outta Sight Retro Night in the 8pm ET (5pm PT) hour.

Sci Fi Channel has picked up rerun rights for two short-lived series from Warner Bros. Television. They have picked up ABC's one-year-wonder Invasion from 2005-06 TV season and CBS's one-year-wonder Moonlight from this past season, 2007-08.
Invasion was one of my favorite series in 2005-06 and it told the story of the aftermath of a hurricane in which water-based creatures infiltrate a small Florida town and begin to take over the bodies of the town's inhabitants through a cloning process (first by merging with and then unknowingly replacing them). Eddie Cibrian and William Fichtner starred.
Moonlight had a huge cult following yet CBS canceled it. The series follows private investigator Mick St. John who was turned into a vampire by his bride Coraline on the couple's wedding night fifty-five years earlier. In the present day, he struggles with his love for a mortal woman, his friendship with Josef Kostan, and his dealings with other vampires in Los Angeles.
Sci Fi Channel will air both series back-to-back on Friday nights starting Friday, January 23, 2009. Invasion will air Fridays at 8pm ET and Moonlight will air Fridays at 9pm ET...low and behold that was Moonlight's night and time on CBS! Fans will certainly be pleased...too bad new episodes can't be made.
Don't forget to tune in to the Mork & Mindy all-day, day after Thanksgiving marathon on Sci Fi Channel on Friday, November 28!

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Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Hallmark and TV Land Make Schedule Changes; ABC and Fox January News

Hallmark Channel has made a schedule change that will start this coming Monday (November 10). Cheers will leave the line-up from 4-5pm and be replaced with more Little House on the Prairie. So, this means Cheers only lasted two weeks in its weekday slot with a second Little House returning to the hour. As of now, Cheers is totally off the line-up, because if you all recall when Cheers started on weekdays, its weekend airings were removed.
We will keep you up to date if anything else comes out of this, but as of now, no more Cheers on Hallmark. If I were to guess, it could return in January when they launch I Love Lucy. This network has had trouble launching sitcoms besides M*A*S*H, which is a shame because they have two coming in 2009 (I Love Lucy, Golden Girls).

As for TV Land, we already told you about the late afternoon change that started this past Monday (Nov. 3) with Hogan's Heroes at 4pm and Leave it to Beaver at 5pm, now more changes are happening next week. Originally we stated, Scrubs was set to move Nov. 10 from 9-10pm to 10-11pm, but it seems that is not happening. Now on that week, we will get a week-long Cosby Show marathon! The Cosby Show Marathon airs Monday, November 10 through Thursday, November 13 form 8pm-2am and Friday, November 14 from 8pm-10pm and 12am-4am (it is preempted Wednesday, Nov. 12 from 10p-10:30p for Myths & Legends).
A few changes are also coming starting that week for at least the rest of November. In the 7am hour, back-to-back episodes of Scrubs will replace two episodes of M*A*S*H. So, Scrubs is out of primetime. In the weekdays at 1pm hour, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition will replace Beverly Hillbillies for the rest of the month at least. And in late nights, for the week of November 10 from 2-3am will be Sanford & Son replacing Extreme Makeover: Home Edition encore (weeks of Nov. 17 and 24 it will be more Cosby Show in the hour). Finally, Three's Company is back regularly starting Nov. 10, at least for the rest of November, airing weeknights from 3-4am ET/PT!
So what will happen to TV Land PRIME after Cosby Show's marathon week? Cosby Show will now air 8-10pm from Mon-Sat for at least through the end of November, with 3rd Rock from the Sun now staying in its 10-11pm Mon-Thurs slot. Replacing Extreme Makeover: Home Edition at 11pm will be ... CSI, from sister station Spike TV (which airs it at 3pm and 8pm weekdays)! CSI will also air at 12 midnight, replacing M*A*S*H. This is for at least the rest of November (weeks of Nov. 17 and 24), we do not know yet if CSI will still be airing in December. For the final two weeks in November at least, this is how TV Land PRIME looks: 9PM Cosby Show, 10PM 3rd Rock from the Sun, 11PM CSI. With more Cosby Show leading in at 8PM and more CSI leading out at 12AM, as Scrubs and Home Edition are relegated to daytime...again for at least the end of the month.
So it seems M*A*S*H is not airing AT ALL the final two weeks of November and Beverly Hillbillies has been reduced to weekend blocks and in the Thanksgiving marathon. I don't expect CSI to air beyond these two weeks, but we'll see. Will these changes be in effect in December? We shall soon find out!
For now, view the full updated TV Land November 2008 schedule, so you don't get confused.

ABC has released part of their January plans. They have released Mondays. Originally it was supposed to be True Beauty (new Ashton Kutcher/Tyra Banks produced reality show) from 8pm-9:30pm followed by The Bachelor from 9:30-11pm. Now it will be The Bachelor from 8-9:30pm, followed by sitcom Samantha Who? staying put at 9:30pm despite no Dancing and True Beauty in the 10pm hour. This new night will launch Monday, January 5. On that date The Bachelor will have a two-hour premiere leading into the premiere of True Beauty. So, Samantha Who? will air in between those two starting Jan. 12. No other ABC January details are in yet, but we could expect Lost, as last night we saw promos saying "two-hour premiere in January." If I were to guess, Lost will air on Wednesdays. Also, last night promos for unscripted docudrama series Border Security USA started playing, and we could expect that in January as well, perhaps with Lost. ABC premiere of Scrubs and animated comedy The Goode Family are among the other items that could launch in January on ABC, with on the bubble shows like Eli Stone and Pushing Daisies perhaps benched. I want to clarify, that Scrubs is not coming Dec. 2 as I mentioned earlier in the week, the original plan of According to Jim remains starting Dec. 2.
As for Fox, they have announced they will launch 24 with its usual two-night/four-hour event on Sunday, January 11 and Monday, January 12 from 8-10pm. Then starting January 19, it will air in its 9-10pm slot. No word on what will air at 8pm, it could be new series Dollhouse though. American Idol obviously will return in January as well, perhaps Tuesday, Jan. 20. We will keep you up to date.

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Tuesday, November 04, 2008

ABC Family's 25 Days of Christmas 2008, Special Election Day Blog DVD Review: Comedy Central Salutes George W. Bush

Last month we gave you the Countdown to 25 Days of Christmas schedule for 2008. The Countdown airs from Nov. 16-30, but now we have the actual 25 Days of Christmas schedule for 2008!
25 Days of Christmas starts off with a Dr. Suess night including the ABC Family premiere of the special Dr. Seuss' The Hoober-Bloob Highway. Also airing that night are double airings of the Jim Carrey holiday movie Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas and the holiday special Dr. Seuss on the Loose. Other movies airing the first week are The Polar Express, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Harry Potter movies, and the basic cable premiere of Cars. Things get rolling the first weekend with all-day events with sitcom Christmas episodes of Step by Step and Sabrina the Teenage Witch in the mornings, followed by movies such as Home Alone 3, Home Alone 4, Eloise at Christmastime, and Richie Rich's Christmas Wish.
Other new highlights for the month include lots of America's Funniest Home Videos & Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Christmas episodes, the TV premiere of the special Cranberry Christmas, the basic cable premiere of the classic animated special A Garfield Christmas, the ABC Family premieres of classics Mickey's Christmas Carol & Winnie the Pooh and Christmas Too, the basic cable premiere of the movie The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, the ABC Family original special A Miser Brothers' Christmas, the ABC Family Original Movie Snow 2 Brain Freeze starring Tom Cavanagh and Ashley Williams, and the ABC Family Original Movie Christmas in Wonderland starring Patrick Swayze and Carmen Electra.
We also get many items we have seen before such as Full House Christmas episodes, the holiday specials, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas, Dr. Seuss' The Cat in the Hat, Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town, Jack Frost, Rudolph's Shiny New Year, The Year Without a Santa Claus, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and the Island of Misfit Toys, Frosty's Winter Wonderland, The Little Drummer Boy, Rudolph & Frosty's Christmas in July, Pinocchio's Christmas, and more! Other movies include Santa Clause 2, Jingle All the Way, All I Want for Christmas, Holiday in Handcuffs, A Carol Christmas, White Christmas, and it wouldn't be Christmas without A Very Brady Christmas!
Check out the full night-by-night ABC Family 25 Days of Christmas schedule for 2008!

Well, today is Election Day and we urge you all to get out and vote. We also will celebrate Election Day with a blog DVD review that is very fitting, as we say goodbye to George W. Bush! We take a look at Comedy Central/Paramount's Comedy Central Salutes George W. Bush: Thanks for the Memories!. The DVD includes one episode each of Bush from South Park, That's My Bush, Lil' Bush and Lewis Black's Root of All Evil. See skees53's Blog DVD Review of Comedy Central Salutes George W. Bush: Thanks for the Memories!:

Comedy Central Salutes George W. Bush: Thanks for the Memories! (Comedy Central DVD, $14.98) gives George W. Bush a sendoff from the White House in a way that only America's favorite TV network devoted to comedy can do. The DVD compiles some memories of the past eight years into a single disc for your enjoyment. The DVD includes one episode each from South Park, That's My Bush, Lil' Bush and Lewis Black's Root of All Evil.
The DVD begins with the South Park episode "Mystery of the Urinal Deuce," where Cartman decides to "prove" that Kyle was responsible for the terrorist attacks of 9/11... but Kyle finds a group of conspiracy theorists that say that they can prove that Kyle was NOT responsible, and that in fact, George W. Bush was responsible for the attacks. Unfortunately, finding out this knowledge (even if it is wrong) lands Kyle and Stan in a position where they have to run from Dick Cheney trying to kill them with a careful shot.
In the That's My Bush episode "An Aborted Dinner Date," we find George trying to have a romantic evening with Laura, but he also has a commitment to meet with people on both sides of the abortion issue... a very butch feminist that is pro-choice and an aborted fetus that is (of course) pro-life. It isn't going to be a romantic evening, that is for sure!
In the Lil' Bush episode "Iraq/First Kiss," George has to find the perfect gift for his father for Father's Day, so he goes to the first place we'd all think of to look for it—Iraq. In the second part of the episode, the gang is trying to see who will be the first to kiss a girl.
Besides the three sitcom episodes included, there are other Comedy Central programs (or clips) included, such as a full episode of Lewis Black's Root of All Evil (featuring a trial between Dick Cheney and Paris Hilton), clips from Last Laugh '06, Last Laugh '07, Mind of Mencia, and standup comedy from Comedy Central.
The DVD is presented in a pretty standard case with a drawing of Bush standing in front of the White House collecting his memories and preparing to move out... complete with his copy of "My Pet Goat," the missing 2000 Florida ballots, a bowl of pretzels, a picture of Karl Rove (affectionately autographed "Turd Blossom"), and a "Mission Accomplished" banner hanging on the White House. Oddly enough, when you watch the DVD, you'll notice that the main menu is exactly the same as the cover art. And if you like that cover art and menu art, you'll be even more pleased to know that they included a poster with the exact same artwork inside the case.
The audio and video quality are about what we would come to expect for series as recent as these--pretty good. In fact, there really aren't any problems to note in this area. The only unfortunate thing about the DVD is that there are no special features at all, although in a sense, a compilation such as this one can stand on its own without special features.
This isn't a bad DVD to pick up if you can find it cheap somewhere, but really, if you are a fan of the series included on here, you'd probably be better served to just pick up season sets of those series. The episodes presented aren't exactly episodes that stand out, but rather seem to just be random episodes about Bush. Still, this DVD can provide a few hours of laughter while Bush is outside having his "Heckuva Moving Sale."
-- Reviewed by skees53
(4/5 stars)

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Related links:
SitcomsOnline.com Full DVD Reviews Page
That's My Bush TV.com Page
Lil' Bush TV.com Page
South Park TV.com Page
Lewis Black's Root of All Evil TV.com Page

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Monday, November 03, 2008

This TV Launches with Mr. Ed and Patty Duke; TV Land Changes; Samantha Who and Kath & Kim Renewed

Back in late July we told you new digital station "This TV" was launching in October, and as promised, they have launched! They launched on Halloween with a a marathon of scary movies like Amityville II & Amityville 3-D. This TV is owned by MGM and Weigel Broadcasting...Weigel also owns the popular Me-TV and Me-Too.
As of now, clearances are only in Chicago, Milwaukee, Los Angeles, Columbus, Albany, Richmond, and Dayton, OH. They are primarily airing MGM movies like 12 Angry Men, Something Wild, & Great Balls of Fire, but a few MGM TV series have been mixed in as well such as the original Outer Limits, The Patty Duke Show and Mister Ed. They all air between 4-7am ET on weekdays, 4-10am on Saturdays, and 6-9am on Sundays. This TV also airs children's programming such as Miss Mallard Mystery, Paddington Bear, Flight Squad, Robinson Sucroe, Animal Crackers, Spider Riders and Ripley's Believe It or Not! ...these air weekdays 7-10am and Sundays 8am-11am. Another block airs on Saturday mornings from 10am-1pm with children's series such as Country Mouse and the City Mouse Adventures, Busy World of Richard Scarry, and Wimzie's House.
If you get this in your area right now, call yourself lucky to see Patty Duke & Mister Ed!

TV Land has made a schedule change starting late this afternoon (November 3). Hogan's Heroes goes from weekdays 5-6pm to weekdays from 4-5pm, replacing Beverly Hillbillies, which will remain 1-2pm. Now airing 5-6pm on weekdays is more Leave it to Beaver! Also, it seems 3rd Rock from the Sun is doing well for TV Land, in addition to its TV Land PRIME marathon this week (Nov. 3-7, 9pm-12am), it will get weekend plays from 12-7pm this Saturday and Sunday (Nov. 8-9). TV Land has also added a marathon of Three's Company this Saturday night (November 8) in the overnight from 2am-6am. Tune in!
View the full TV Land November 2008 highlights that we gave previously.

ABC has picked-up a full season of sophomore sitcom Samantha Who? It is no surprise, as the sitcom is a solid player for the network. It also is critically acclaimed with Christina Applegate winning a Golden Globe and Jean Smart winning an Emmy for the show. ABC will air 20 episodes this season, with three already have aired (fourth one airs tonight at 9:30pm ET/PT). Usually non-freshman shows already have 22 episode orders, but due to the strike last season, most second year shows got only 13 episode orders. The sitcom joins fellow ABC sophomore series Private Practice in getting picked up for a full season. They will not air the normal 22 for Sam, because they have a lot coming this mid-season comedy wise like The Goode Family, Single with Parents, Better off Ted...and returning series According to Jim and Scrubs. Speaking of those latter two, both could launch in December now. Previously as we stated, According to Jim was set to launch Dec. 2, Tuesdays 9-10pm, but I now hear that will be Scrubs. It is not official yet, but as soon as it is, I'll let you all know. Jim would air Tuesdays 8-9pm I think leading into Scrubs starting the following week, Dec. 9. Both shows have 18 episode orders.

Meanwhile, NBC has a fast trigger...in a good way though. They have picked-up nine more episodes of freshman sitcom Kath & Kim, despite low ratings. The last two airings have only been 4.99 and 5.44 million in its Thursday slot, but I guess NBC believes in the show and liked the little jump to 5.44 million after the series low? I cannot believe they picked-it up for a full 22 episodes already, but good news for fans of Molly Shannon and Selma Blair. The show has been blasted by critics.

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Sunday, November 02, 2008

Week 6 Numbers; How the Sitcoms Did

Week 6 numbers (first three nights, Mon-Wed):
NOTE: Thursday is not in this week in our network averages once again (so sorry!), but we do have final program numbers for Thursday in the analysis below:

Households: CBS: 7.8/12.; Fox: 7.7/11.8; ABC: 6.9/10.6; NBC: 4.8/7.4; The CW: 2.0/2.9; MNT: 0.8/1.2.
Total Viewers: Fox: 12.56 million; CBS: 12.2 million; ABC: 10.92 million; NBC: 7.57 million; The CW: 2.83 million; MNT: 1.19 million.
Adults 18-49: Fox: 4.2/10.8; CBS: 3.2/8.0; ABC: 2.9/7.4; NBC: 2.8/7.1; The CW: 1.4/3.6; MNT: 0.5/1.2.

Analysis: Week 6 saw Fox way above normal for the three nights thanks to two nights of World Series and November Sweeps started Thursday! I apologize again we only have final averages for the first three days (thru Wednesday). It seems we won't get first four nights network averages in time for each week's blog. But I do again have Thursday final program numbers and network averages, just not four day averages. I don't have time to go through and recalculate so, I'll give you the final Thursday averages in HH: CBS 9.0/15, ABC 7.0/11, NBC 4.9/8, Fox 2.4/4, The CW 2.4/4, MNT 0.8/1, so you can determine yourself how things look after the first four days. So looking at those numbers and the first three days averages on the top, I am projecting for the first four days, CBS has the lead in HH/viewers, with Fox in first (for now?) in 18-49. Fox is also for now in 2nd in HH/viewers, but will probably be over taken by ABC at week's end. NBC will be in fourth in all categories.
Last week, CBS won week 5 in HH/viewers, while Fox won in 18-49 thanks to baseball. Fox was also second in HH/viewers thanks to baseball, with ABC third. ABC tied with CBS for 2nd in 18-49. NBC was fourth across the board and only mustered a 2.2 18-49 rating for week 5 without the Sunday Night Football game. Bad shape.
Monday ABC was on top thanks to of course Dancing with the Stars. The 92-minute episode did 18.88 million and a 4.2/10 in 18-49...up from previous week again. The sitcom Samantha Who followed and did 10.47 million, up nearly a million week-to-week. A new Boston Legal followed with 8.58 million, up from the previous week. Series finale is December 8...so the final episodes should be mustering up a bit. Fox was actually in second with Game 5 of the World Series (which they only got up to the 6th inning due to rain), as the game did 13.24 million and Fox averaged 12.1 million in primetime. Thank god they didn't air Sarah Connor and Prison Break. Next up was CBS, the usual second place network on Monday, with repeats of its comedies and a repeat of CSI: Miami. The Big Bang Theory did 7.93 million, not bad at all for a repeat and How I Met Your Mother followed with 7.26 million, yes, it was a repeat but needs to a little better. Two and a Half Men repeat and new a special Monday edition repeat of Gary Unmarried followed with 11.88 and 8.65 million. Yes, that is a better retention than Worst Week. At 10pm a repeat of CSI: Miami did 10.59 million. NBC followed with its drama line-up. Chuck started it off with 6.7 million, down a bit from previous week, Heroes followed with 8.19 million...down from previous week, a big disappointment for this season for NBC. New series My Worst Own Enemy at 10pm did only 5.29 million...down again from previous week. The CW had its usual decent numbers with Gossip Girl doing a solid 3.05 million, up a bit from previous week and the resurgent One Tree Hill did 3.21 million, but down week-to-week.
Tuesday it was CBS in viewers and Fox in 18-49. CBS had the always reliable NCIS opening the night off with 17.26 million, up a tad from previous week, new drama The Mentalist followed with a solid 16.07 million, up from previous week and Without a Trace did a decent 12.19 million, up from previous week. ABC was next in viewers with the holiday classic special It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (and You're Not Elected, Charlie Brown) doing a solid 10.38 million for the hour. Dancing with the Stars: The Results followed with 17.44 million...again up over a million from previous week, as finally Cloris Leachman is gone! Eli Stone followed and did only 6.92 million, down over a million from the previous week for its third outing. It was consistent for the first two airings, though, but down big this past week. Fox was next this week with House doing 13.5 million, up week to week, followed by a repeat for Fringe at just 5.66 million...bad time for a repeat, as this coming week it will already be preempted for the Election Results. NBC was fourth with a two-hour The Biggest Loser doing 8.14 million, up from previous week, followed by an all-new Law & Order: SVU at 9.33 million, down a tad from previous week. The CW aired a new episode of 90210 doing 3.16 million, not bad but not great and a new episode of Privileged did 1.92 million, up week-to-week.
Wednesday saw Fox win big with the conclusion of the fifth game of the World Series, as the Phillies won the championship, doing 1984 million, as Fox averaged 15.35 million in primetime, earlier in the night an Obama Paid Political Ad did 7.21 million. CBS was next, as they also aired the Obama Paid Political Ad doing 8.6 million, that was better than the sitcoms the previous week, Old Christine followed at a special time and did 7.61 million, down a bit from previous week. Gary Unmarried was preempted. CBS aired Criminal Minds at 9pm and it did a solid 13.97 million, but down over a million from previous week and CSI: NY was also down doing 13.75 million. ABC didn't air the Obama ad, and benefited as Pushing Daisies at 8pm did 6.69 million, up a million week to week and a season high in 18-49. Private Practice followed with a solid gain doing 7.93 million, on par with previous week and Dirty Sexy Money did 6.06 million...up from previous week. NBC opened the night with the Obama Paid Political Ad doing 9.91 million, better than what Knight Rider would have done, followed by a 90-minute Deal or No Deal doing 8.34 million and the Friday bound Lipstick Jungle at just 4.91 million. The CW had a new Top Model doing 3.9 million, down from previous week and Stylista followed with only 1.76 million, down from the premiere.
Thursday CBS won the first night of November Sweeps. CBS opened with Survivor: Gabon at 13.02 million, down a bit from previous week. A new CSI followed with 19.1 million, down a bit from previous week. The new Eleventh Hour followed and did 11.25 million, down a bit week to week. ABC opened the night with Ugly Betty with the final Lindsay Lohan episode possibly doing 8.55 million, down a tad from previous week. Grey's Anatomy followed with 15.32 million, up week to week and #1 in 18-49. At 10pm a new Life on Mars did 8.14 million, up from previous week. Looks like it is consistent. NBC was fourth with a new My Name is Earl doing 6.27, down a bit again from previous week, new sitcom Kath & Kim followed with only 5.44 million, up from the 4.99 million the previous week. The Office followed with 9.51 million, up a lot from previous week. The season premiere of 30 Rock did a series high of 8.66 million. But can it keep it up? ER did 9.19 million, up from previous week. Fox was off the map with a repeat of Kitchen Nightmares at just 3.58 million, followed by a new episode at 9pm at just 3.91 million. Smallville on The CW did 4.32 million, up from previous week, followed by Supernatural at a great 3.55 million...up from previous week.
Now, final numbers for Friday and Saturday are not available, but CBS won Friday with their dramas, as Ghost Whisperer did very solid as usual but the story of the night was the repeat of NCIS at 9pm doing over 11 million in prelim numbers for best numbers for the night. Wow! The Ex-List has been canned, and CBS more than doubled it with a repeat. NBC's disappointing Crusoe did bad, as did the new night for Lipstick Jungle...both coming in under 4 million and under a 1.0 demo. Yes, it was Halloween, but everyone but CBS was down big.
Saturday numbers saw ABC win in the preliminaries overall and in 18-49 thanks to a great College Football game between #1 Texas and #6 Texas Tech, as the #1 team got beaten with a game winning play. NBC had terrible numbers again as it barely registered a 1.0 18-49 rating.
Tonight should be a victory for either ABC or NBC. ABC of course has the Sunday line-up of AFV, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Desperate Housewives, and Brothers & Sisters. CBS will be solid, but no NFL lead-in tonight to help them, and NBC will be solid with the SNF game, though these two teams are no longer a force this year (Pats-Colts).
As for the week, CBS should hang on for the win in HH and viewers but Fox could hang on in 18-49, if not ABC will win it over CBS. ABC will pass Fox in HH/viewers for 2nd place. Fox will be third in HH/viewers, followed by NBC, CW and MNT. What to watch for this week? We will have a new president on Tuesday! ABC or NBC will the night with their coverage of the election. My guess is ABC overall for that night and NBC in 18-49. Go and vote!

Last Sunday Sitcoms (counts for week of October 20-26)

  • The Simpsons (Fox) - Preempted for World Series Game 4.
  • King of the Hill (Fox) - Preempted for World Series Game 4.
  • Family Guy (Fox) - Preempted for World Series Game 4.
  • American Dad (Fox) - Preempted for World Series Game 4.

Monday Sitcoms

  • The Big Bang Theory (CBS) - 7.93 million for a repeat is outstanding, just down over a million on what it would do in new episodes.
  • How I Met Your Mother (CBS) - 7.26 million for a repeat, not as good as the lead-in.
  • Two and a Half Men (CBS) - 11.88 million for a repeat...still besting any sitcom.
  • Gary Unmarried (CBS) - Special Monday repeat did 8.65 million...not bad, it would have been scary seeing how Worst Week would have repeated.
  • Samantha Who? (ABC) - 10.47 million for a new episode, up nearly a million from previous week. Nice.


Tuesday Sitcoms

  • None.

Wednesday Sitcoms


  • Old Christine (CBS) - 7.61 million for a new episode at special time of 8:30pm...down a bit from previous week.
  • Gary Unmarried (CBS) - preempted thanks to Obama.
  • Under One Roof (MNT) - Repeat airing did 960,000 viewers...up week to week, it aired after an all-new Tony Rock Project which did 1.07 million.

Thursday Sitcoms

  • My Name is Earl (NBC) - 6.27 million for a new episode, down from previous week.
  • Kath & Kim (NBC) - 5.44 million for a new episode...up from the previous week too...after this NBC picked it up for the full-season...um why?
  • The Office (NBC) - 9.51 million for a new episode...great, besting the previous week by nearly two million.
  • 30 Rock (NBC) - Season premiere did a series best with 8.66 million. But the question is, can it continue? Arrested Development also had a few high rated episodes and it never helped.

Friday Sitcoms

  • Everybody Hates Chris (The CW) - Final numbers are not in yet...but the prelim numbers show 1.26 million. Ouch...Halloween hurt it.
  • The Game (The CW) - Prelim numbers show just 1.24 million...not good to air it on Halloween night...especially a Friday.

Saturday Sitcoms

  • The Office (NBC) - For some reason NBC aired a repeat at 9-10pm and it only did a prelim 2.07 million.

Airing tonight (Sunday) is Fox's animated comedies from 8-10.

Summing it up. Two and a Half Men, Samantha Who?, The Big Bang Theory, The Office, 30 Rock were impressive for the week. Everything else was OK (such as How I Met Your Mother, Old Christine) or just plain old terrible (such as Everybody Hates Chris, The Game).

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Saturday, November 01, 2008

Blog DVD Review: JAG - The Complete 7th Season (Nov. 4)

It is Saturday, so that must mean it is time for our weekly Blog DVD Review! Today we take a look at CBS DVD's Seventh Season of JAG. JAG was a huge hit for CBS. If you are a fan of Navy NCIS, you know that NCIS is a spin-off of JAG. See Seth Thrasher's blog DVD review of JAG - The Complete Fifth Season:

JAG - The Complete Seventh Season (CBS, $55.98) ) is coming to DVD for the first time on November 4 - Election Day! This long running Donald Bellisario classic series continues onto its seventh season to be released onto DVD. I have to be honest, as I feel I'm failing you otherwise if I'm not – in the series original run I'd lost the majority of my interest in the series by this point, preferring other ways to spent my evenings. By 2001-02, the television season in which the seventh season aired, I was watching other programs on other networks. This isn't to say that the 7th season was poor in any way; I simply had moved on. The resolution to the season-ending cliffhanger leads off season seven, with a resolution that would have ramifications on down the line. The season follows a fairly straightforward pattern, and there are no real stinker episodes. To be perfectly honest, I'm much more enthusiastic about the hopeful release of the EIGHTH season, as it contains the two-part pilot for NCIS - one of my absolute favorite series on TV. The seventh season features a few guest stars – Ian Ziering, of the original Beverly Hills 90210, appears in the episode Ambush. Corbin Bernsen (LA Law) appears in the episode Tribunal. Country singer Trisha Yearwood appears in the episode "In Country."
Moving to the technical side, packaging is, still VERY thankfully, the traditional outer box and slim cases; they haven't gotten around to tinkering with this one yet. Many CBS DVD titles are moving to those horrible translucent plastic cases with the fragile disc holders. Luckily, the slimcases-in-box setup is the ideal arrangement for sets with, say, 5+ discs - so hour-long dramas such as JAG stand the best chance of continuing to use this preferred packaging type. Video is presented nice and clear in anamorphic widescreen. The video, being from this decade, was filmed in HD and has no defects that I can detect. Obviously there's a little loss in the transition from HD masters to the somewhat limited DVD standard, but it's so extremely difficult to notice that it's largely irrelevant. Audio is great - and may I just state once more for the record that I feel JAG has one of THE best theme songs – it's simple, but so very effective and really captures the style of the show. The CBS DVD boilerplate disclaimer about edits does appear on the back of the box, indicating possible edits, but if there are any I can’t find them. The episodes generally run in the ballpark of 43:30 to 44:30, but the first episode of the season, "Adrift (Part 2)" runs a mere 40:38 – something there is CLEARLY not kosher - that's three minutes shorter than neighboring episodes!
The shortness of the "Adrift" two-parter finale clearly troubles me, but I don't have an original broadcast copy for comparison. Still, I strongly urge you to purchase this TV series if only for my own selfish reason - I really want the eighth season on DVD and low sales numbers won't accomplish this. If edits are a deal-breaker for you, you may be in for a disappointment here, but if you're a fan of NCIS and want that pilot two-parter in a few months, you need to buy this.

-- Reviewed by Seth Thrasher
(3.5/5 stars)

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Related links:
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