Saturday, October 31, 2009

Blog DVD Review: Battlestar Galactica - The Plan

Happy Halloween from all of us here at SitcomsOnline! Today's blog of course is "all-boo"!

Welcome to our weekly Blog DVD Review. Today we take a look at Universal Home Video's Battlestar Galactica: The Plan. Battlestar Galactica is a current remake of the '70s sci-fi series. See Seth's Blog DVD Review of Battlestar Galactica: The Plan :

Battlestar Galactica: The Plan (Universal, $26.98)) is a direct-to-DVD follow-up of the acclaimed Sci-Fi Channel original series, whose run concluded this year. The movie follows the action of the Cylons - robots (both mechanical and human-appearing) bent on the genocide of humanity - through the course of events of the first two seasons. If you're not already a fan of the show, you can stop reading right here: This one's strictly for the existing fans.

Warning: All remaining parts of the review will assume at least a passing familiarity with the plot of the show through its four seasons. I'll try to avoid excessive spoilers of both the feature and the TV run, but if you have no clue what I'm even writing about you're going to be doubly confused watching this feature.

Really, this feature - directed by show star Edward James Olmos - isn't even a follow-up so much as a clean-up. The show left several plot issues not entirely explained or even in a position to be left to the imagination, and so this feature goes back to fill in the gaps. The timeline of The Plan spans the events of the miniseries and first two seasons of the show. There's nothing from New Caprica or beyond, but as I happen to dislike the events after that arc was resolved anyway, it's perfectly fine by me to exclude that part.

In the process you get a major amount of new material for two characters, Anders (Michael Trucco) and Cavil (the amazing Dean Stockwell). You also get a flushing out and rehabilitation for one of the least-discussed models, Simon (Rick Worthy) plus some explanation for the conflicting nature of the Cylon model Eight known as Boomer. (Grace Park). Really, the entire thing is a two hour back-story info-dump. Really, that's the problem. There's no cohesive narrative. If you're not a BSG fan there's absolutely zero appeal to watch the movie, and nothing to hold you riveted if you choose to anyway. It's for fans only.
Though unrated, the DVD presentation is clearly for mature audiences only though the packaging doesn't state this. Aside from the near-genocide of the human species and militaristic violence, there's also a particularly disturbing act of violence by one of the two Cavils towards the end, plus some nudity and sexual situations. Without having to clean the show up for cable, things get slightly dirtier. The aforementioned adult situations are for the most part done fairly well contextually, but still, if just for the violence alone you'd have to be insane to let a small child watch this, and the packaging probably needed a better warning. Universal backed down from a plan to include an edited down "for-broadcast" version of the episode, leaving only the unrated full cut on the set. This was probably a mistake, in hindsight.

There's one disc in the set - the full feature being a movie running just short of two hours. The artwork is similar for the set as with the season releases, with lots of dark colors and silver tones, Because the film focuses so much on the Cylons, all characters depicted on the front cover are Cylons. The disc is blue, and in general fits in with the design scheme of the show's previous releases. Solid job by the artwork folks - it's appreciated. Video quality is an interesting issue: The movie features a combination of new footage interspersed with occasional old footage. The old footage looks just *slightly* out of place. More out of place is suddenly watching characters age forward or backwards five years in some scenes. Audio is a wonderful 5.1 surround track. The show has always made wonderful use of music, and it really shines on the multi-channel audio format. Obviously you can skip ahead via chapter stops - otherwise it'd be quite maddening to navigate a two hour feature.

The set also comes with loads of bonus features (otherwise it wouldn't be a Galactica set). Spanning the full length of the movie is a commentary by the feature's main writer Jane Espenson alongside the movie's director (and series star) Edward James Olmos. You get to hear their respective takes on why they did what they did in this movie's production. The episode is directed beautifully, though the writing does have one or two issues with scene flow. Overall it's quite a nice listen.
You also get a feature talking about Olmos' path from show star to show director, the social relevancy of the show (particularly in its first two-plus seasons), and interview with the cast. Also included are deleted scenes, plus features on creating the destruction of the Twelve Colonies, a lengthy one about the visual effects that went into the film, as well as one that talks about the Cylons and their portrayals. One of the main things to watch in this and the other features is the unrestrained praise for Dean Stockwell.

Dean (who I've been a huge fan of ever since the Quantum Leap days) slowly has all of the evil intents and purposes of the Cylons placed onto his shoulders, so that by the time we get to this feature he's easily the overwhelming source of the evil of the Cylon race. Add in to that having to portray a second, nicer, version of himself in this same movie, and you get a phenomenal performance by an exceptional actors. This one theme - that Dean Stockwell IS awesome - is hammered home more than just about any other single point it seemed to me, and I have to concur.

As much as I loved the first two-and-change years of the show, as much as I happen to love the acting of Dean Stockwell, and as much as I'm happy to see some depth added to the second-tier Cylons (Simon in particular), there's something about this movie that just doesn't feel right. Really, it's not a stand-alone feature at all so much as a companion piece to the first two seasons. If anything, the idea order for watching the series would be to watch the miniseries and seasons 1 and 2 plus Razor. When you get to the point where they want to airlock the dual Cavils, stop and watch this DVD. Once done, finish the series. That's really the idea viewing order, and the one that makes the most sense chronologically, thanks in part to the way the opening and closing scenes frame the film.

But as a stand-alone feature, based solely on its merits and without the cushioning of the TV show itself? It's incoherent, and there's too much going on with too little exposition. This, more than just about any other film release of a TV show I've ever seen, really is just for the fans. If you're a fan (with no inhibitions towards violence or moderate sexual content, pick this up NOW. If you're not a fan, or those two content issues are deal-breakers? Avoid it like the plague; you'll only get a headache. I personally liked it, but only because I already knew what was going on. If you're a fan? It is 4/5 Stars. If you're not? It is 2/5 stars. Hence, my final score below...

-- Reviewed by Seth Thrasher
(3/5 stars)

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Related links:
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Friday, October 30, 2009

Nick at Nite November 2009 Highlights - George Lopez Thanksgiving Week; American Dad Renewed Through 2011

Nick at Nite this November will celebrate Thanksgiving with George...George Lopez, of course! But first the regular schedule remains pretty consistent with October, with Malcolm in the Middle and Everybody Hates Chris having the 8-10pm block Sun-Thurs, followed by George Lopez in the 10pm hour Sun-Fri, The Nanny from 11pm-1am every night, more George Lopez in the 1am hour Mon-Fri, Roseanne from 2-6am every night, and The Nanny in the 6am half-hour every weekday. Variations include Glenn Martin, DDS on Mondays at 8pm & Saturdays at 10:30pm, Malcolm in the Middle weekends in the 1am hour, Everybody Hates Chris gets the Nickelodeon hour on Fridays at 9, while George Lopez gets it Saturdays at 9, and finally Everybody Hates Chris airs in the 10pm half-hour on Saturdays.
As for specials and stunts, we have an encore of Mr. Troop Mom starring George Lopez airing this Sunday (Nov. 1) from 9-11pm. And during Thanksgiving Week (Nov. 23-29), it's nothing but George Lopez, as Nick at Nite celebrates the holiday with their favorite family! So spend time with your family watching the Lopez family all-week long from 9pm-6am (Mon-Thurs), 10pm-6am (Fri, Sun), and 9:30pm-6am (Sat).
View the full November 2009 schedule and highlights!
Meanwhile on Nickelodeon, on Thanksgiving Day (Thursday, November 26) we get Nick Jr. specials from 6:30am-11:30am which includes Barbie: 3 Musketeers, followed by iCarly, True Jackson, SpongeBob, and Mr. Troop Mom movies. SpongeBob and The Penguins of Madagascar get a marathon, including premieres at 8:00pm on Friday, November 27. On Saturday, November 28, all-new Nicktoons episodes from 9:00am-12:00pm & iCarly premiere from 8:00pm-9:30pm. And finally on Sunday, November 29, it's the all-new Merry Christmas Drake & Josh movie from 8:00pm-10:00pm.

Fox has ordered a sixth season of American Dad!, the animated series featuring security-obsessed CIA agent and devoted family man Stan Smith (Seth MacFarlane). Recently honored with an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Animated Program, American Dad! airs Sundays (9:30PM ET/PT) on Fox. The series ranks in the Top 10 programs of the season among Teens, Male Teens, Men 18-34, Persons 12-34, Adults 18-34 and Men 18-49.
The renewal means that all three series from Seth MacFarlane -- Family Guy, The Cleveland Show, and now American Dad! -- have pickups through next season (2010-2011).
Currently American Dad! is in its fifth season on TV, but is still airing episodes produced for season four.

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Thursday, October 29, 2009

New Scrubs and Better off Ted Return to ABC in December; NBC Cancels Trauma, More Chuck; Roseanne's Wicked Halloween Bash on TV Land

Scrubs will return with an all-new season starting Tuesday, December 1 (as I expected), as the action will shift from Sacred Hearts hospital to the classroom and make med-school professors of John C. McGinley's Dr. Cox and Donald Faison's Dr. Turk, however their students will still make rounds at Sacred Heart. Eliza Coupe as intern Denise "Jo from Facts of Life" Mahoney will remain on the show. Joining the cast are Michael Mosley, Kerry Bishe and Dave Franco. Scrubs will air back-to-back episodes for its season premiere on Dec. 1 at 9:00pm & 9:30pm (airing after A Charlie Brown Christmas and the new special Disney Prep & Landing), before airing every Tuesday in the 9:00pm half hour. Most of the original cast will make appearances throughout the season, including Zach Braff as J.D., but this series will now focus on a new cast with McGinley and Faison now the stars. 18 episodes have been ordered for season nine, of which at least 4 or 5 will air in December before the holidays.
The new Scrubs will lead into the second season of the hilarious comedy Better off Ted. That will launch its second season on Tuesday, Dec. 8 at 9:30pm. Unofficially 13 episodes have been ordered, but there is no confirmation of that. The first season had 13 episodes, with 7 airing in the spring and 6 in the summer. If you missed any of those 13 episodes, get the DVD coming out Dec. 1 or watch the last 5 episodes from season one on Hulu.

NBC has canceled freshman medical drama Trauma, which is airing Mondays at 9pm. The series has failed to draw any interest and will remain airing until it finishes its 13 episode order, as of now at least, but production has stopped for anything more than 13 episodes. If NBC sticks with the show on the schedule, the finale will be airing on Dec. 21.
Meanwhile, it looks like Chuck will return earlier than planned, as NBC has ordered 6 more episodes of the one-hour comedy. Originally 13 episodes were ordered, so now we have a total of 19. It is expected to return to Mondays starting in January now, instead of March. Stay with us for an official confirmation!

TV Land has stirred up a magical brew of Halloween-themed episodes of Roseanne to celebrate All Hallow's Eve on Saturday, October 31 from 10:00PM-2:00AM (ET/PT). Tune in to "Roseanne's Wicked Halloween Bash" for a haunting night of episodes, including when the Conners have a spooky night of fun with a Ouija board, a hilarious parody of the horror flick Rosemary's Baby, their annual Halloween party at the lodge and finally, a night filled with antics that leads to the arrival of a new family member -- Jerry Garcia Conner.
Episodes airing are: "BOO!," "Trick or Treat," "Trick Me Up, Trick Me Down," "Halloween IV," "Halloween V," "Skeleton in the Closet," "Halloween: the Final Chapter," and "Satan, Darling."

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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Grounded for Life Returns to ABC Family; Comedy Central Acquires The Goode Family

Grounded for Life is returning to ABC Family in November. They made a last minute change and will return Grounded for Life on Monday, Nov. 2 airing weekdays in the 4pm hour, replacing What I Like About You, which will be leaving the line-up for now. The Donal Logue sitcom was airing on weekends (Saturdays 10-11am and Sundays 11am-12pm) until the end of September, when it was replaced by 8 Simple Rules in October, so now the sitcom returns...in a much better slot and more airings! Now all they need to do is add 8 Simple Rules back to weekdays, and I'll be happy!
View our previous blog post on ABC Family November 2009, which we highlighted the Countdown to 25 Days of Christmas (Nov. 10-30).

Comedy Central has acquired the animated sitcom The Goode Family for play starting in January. The series aired for 13 episodes this past summer on ABC and didn't deliver in the ratings on Wednesday nights before quickly being burned off to Friday nights. The Goode Family is from Mike Judge, John Altschuler and Dave Krinsky, and there is also a slight chance Comedy Central can pick up the show for a second season and produce new episodes!
The series revolves around a family attempting to live an ultra-politically correct lifestyle and stars the voices of Mike Judge, Nancy Carell, Linda Cardellini, Dave Herman and Brian Doyle-Murray. It was pretty good, I thought.
Comedy Central is also in talks to pick-up Sit Down, Shut Up, the Fox animated sitcom that also was short-lived, Variety reports. Stay tuned if they do!

Speaking of animated comedies, look for the classic Halloween special It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown tonight at 8pm on ABC leading into ABC Comedy Wednesday comedies The Middle, Modern Family, and Cougar Town from 8:30-10pm. Good stuff!

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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Cougar Town Special Marathon on SOAPnet, ION Television November 2009; TV Land Makes Changes to Yesterday's Changes

SOAPnet announced that it will air a four-episode marathon of ABC's hit comedy Cougar Town on Saturday, November 14 from 5:00PM to 7:00PM. The critically acclaimed series airs Wednesdays at 9:30PM ET/PT on ABC. They are doing this to attract even more new viewers to the program. The show has done very well in the ratings, especially in the 18-49 demo. The Cougar Town marathon will include four previous episodes ("Pilot," "Into the Great Wide Open," "Don't Do Me Like That," and "I Won't Back Down") previously broadcast on ABC earlier this season.
Courteney Cox stars as Jules, a recently divorced single mother exploring the honest truths about dating and aging in our beauty and youth obsessed culture. While most women in their twenties go through life experiencing the challenges and often humorous pitfalls of meeting men, Jules took on the responsibilities of marriage and raising a son. Now in her forties, she embarks on a journey to self-discovery whilst surrounded by fellow divorcees and singletons eager to live or re-live a time gone by.
Along for the journey are her friends and family: Laurie (Busy Philipps), the younger, feisty co-worker who encourages her to get out there and have some fun; Ellie (Christa Miller), the sarcastic, unapologetic confidante content with her life and marriage to her average, but loveable husband, Andy (Ian Gomez); ex-husband Bobby (Brian Van Holt), a classic under-achiever who'll test her patience as they attempt to raise their teenage son, Travis (Dan Byrd); and newly divorced neighbor Grayson (Josh Hopkins), who proves to be a catalyst of sorts for Jules.

This November on ION Television, we don't have any schedules changes, as of now, but we have a lot of movie premieres. ION airs movies Fridays in primetime and all-day on Saturday & Sundays (3pm-11pm). Movie premieres for the month are On Deadly Ground, Breach, Heist, Miami Vice, Out for Justice, Waterworld, Demolition Man, and The Rookie. Encore airings include Hunt for Red October, The Outlaw Josey Wales, The Last Boy Scout, Batman Forever, Sphere, Pale Rider, Magnum Force, and The Enforcer.
So the regular weekday schedule will remain the same as it is now, with Reba at 4, Family Feud from 5-7p, Ghost Whisperer at 7, and in primetime Ghost Whisperer at 8, followed by various nights and times of NCIS, Criminal Minds, and Durham County.
See the full ION Television November 2009 schedule.

Yesterday we announced some TV Land schedule changes that starts today...and now they have made changes to those changes. Bonanza will still replace Gunsmoke at 3pm, leaving Gunsmoke only at 2pm on weekdays, but now Bonanza will remain in its 4pm and 5pm hours. That means All in the Family (originally scheduled to air 4pm) will now air back-to-back in the 6pm hour replacing Little House on the Prairie, which leaves the weekday schedule now. It will remain Sunday nights (early Monday mornings) from 4-6am. Sanford & Son (originally scheduled to air 5pm) will now get the 7pm hour, replacing Andy Griffith, Hogan's Heroes and Brady Bunch hours. Andy Griffith Show will still be replacing series from 8-10pm weekdays (Fridays it is 8-9pm), as we announced yesterday. However, Cosby Show will replace Andy's Monday block from 10pm-12am. Other little changes include two-hour episodes of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition on weekends from 8-10am, Gunsmoke & Bonanza on Sundays are now 10am-3pm, and Andy Griffith is now 3pm-9pm on Sundays. M*A*S*H follows on Sundays from 9pm-11pm, as Roseanne gets an additional hour now on Sundays airing 11pm-2am. Also a personal bummer for me, the Three's Company marathon slated for this Saturday (Oct. 31) from 12:30pm-8pm, will be replaced by Sanford & Son and it gets two more hours, too, airing from 12:30pm-10pm.
See the full changes and the full TV Land schedule now.

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Monday, October 26, 2009

TV Land Orders Sitcom Pilots, Schedule Changes This Week; NBC Orders Full Seasons of 3 Shows; Remembering Soupy Sales and More

TV Land has given cast-contingent pilot orders to the comedy series Hot in Cleveland and Retired at 35. This is TV Land's first foray into scripted comedy series and is being developed for TV Land PRIME, the network's primetime programming block designed to appeal to the attitudes, life stage and interests of people in their 40s.
Hot in Cleveland is written by Emmy Award-winning Suzanne Martin (Frasier, Ellen) and produced by Emmy Award-winner Sean Hayes' (Will & Grace) Hazy Mills Production.
Chris Case (Reba, Spin City) is the writer for Retired at 35 and Michael Hanel and Mindy Schultheis (Rita Rocks, Reba, Titus) are executive producers.
Hot in Cleveland revolves around three fabulous, eccentric, LA women of a certain age, and best friends whose lives are changed forever when their plane unexpectedly lands in Cleveland and they soon rediscover themselves in this new "promised land." Retired at 35 follows a successful businessman who decides to leave the rat race of New York City behind and move into his parents’ Florida retirement home to reconnect with them, reevaluate his life and live the dream of retirement that so many are working towards.
These are just pilot orders, it doesn't mean they will air and have been picked-up. It all depends on the cast and if the pilots came out good. So stay with us and you'll find out if they actually make it on air!

Also at TV Land, some changes are happening this week...and they are pretty good if you like classic TV! Starting tomorrow (Tuesday, Oct. 27), weekdays in the 4pm hour will now be more All in the Family, replacing an episode of Bonanza. All in the Family will also still remain in the 12 noon half-hour as well! In the 5pm hour, we now have an hour of Sanford & Son, replacing Bonanza. And Sanford & Son will remain in the 11am hour as well. Bonanza is now airing 6pm om Tuesdays (Little House remains on the other weekdays), Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7pm, and weekdays at 3pm now replacing an episode of Gunsmoke, which remains at 2pm. The other weekday changes in the 7pm hour is now The Andy Griffith Show, as Hogan's Heroes and Brady Bunch are not airing anymore on weekdays. Andy will also air from 8-10pm each weeknight (except Fridays it is 7-9pm). This means the primetime marathons from 9pm-12am are now cut to 10pm-12am, with Andy on Mondays, 3rd Rock on Tuesdays, M*A*S*H on Wednesdays, and Roseanne on Thursdays. Everything else is the same as it was before.

NBC has picked up the comedies Community (Thursdays, 8:00 p.m. ET) and Parks and Recreation (Thursdays, 8:30 p.m. ET) -- as well as the new drama Mercy (Wednesdays, 8-9 p.m. ET) -- for the rest of the season by adding nine additional episodes to each.
All three are doing so-so in the ratings, but NBC has picked them up anyway for full seasons. Parks and Recreation is in its first full season after launching mid-season last spring, while the other two are actually rookies. So far this season, Mercy has averaged a 2.1 rating, 5 share in adults 18-49 and 7.8 million viewers overall. Community has averaged a 2.6 rating, 5 share in adults 18-49 and 5.7 million viewers overall so far this season, that includes a stint at 9:30 p.m. after The Office. And Parks and Recreation has averaged a 2.1 rating, 5 share in adults 18-49 and 4.8 million viewers overall this season.
The jury is still out for NBC's Trauma, which has not heard its fate yet.

Finally, we leave you today with a recap of many stars that have passed away in the past week or so.
Soupy Sales, the rubber-faced comedian whose anything-for-a-chuckle career was built on 20,000 pies to the face and 5,000 live TV appearances across a half-century of laughs, has died. Sales died at Thursday (Oct. 22, 2009) night at Calvary Hospice in the Bronx, New York, said his former manager and longtime friend, Dave Usher. Sales had many health problems and entered the hospice last week, Usher said. The comic's pie-throwing schtick became his trademark, and celebrities lined up to take one on the chin alongside Sales. During the early 1960s, stars such as Frank Sinatra, Tony Curtis and Shirley MacLaine received their just desserts side-by-side with the comedian on his television show. His greatest success came in New York with The Soupy Sales Show in 1976 -- an ostensible children's show that had little to do with Captain Kangaroo and other kiddie fare. Sales' manic, improvisational style also attracted an older audience that responded to his envelope-pushing antics. His sitcom credits included Hennessey, The Beverly Hillbillies, Love American Style, Love Boat, Wings and Boy Meets World. He appeared on many game shows as well such as What's My Line, I've Got a Secret, The Match Game, Hollywood Squares, Body Language, and more. Mr. Sales will certainly be missed. Let's throw a pie in someone's face or at least eat a pie in honor of him. Mr. Sales was 83.
Vic Mizzy, who composed the indelible theme music for The Addams Family and Green Acres died Saturday, October 17 in Los Angeles. For the The Addams Family theme, which became a long-remembered part of '60s pop culture, Mizzy played the harpsichord and sang the vocal parts (overdubbing his own voice three times) and coached the actors during the main-title sequence (including on-camera finger-snapping by the actors). The equally iconic Green Acres theme was performed by stars Eddie Albert and Eva Gabor. Mizzy also wrote all the underscore for both series. His theme for Addams was reprised in the 1990s feature films. Mizzy also had many other 1960s and '70s sitcom themes that also included The Pruitts of Southampton, The Double Life of Henry Phyfe, Captain Nice, The Don Rickles Show and Temperature's Rising. He also wrote underscores for TV's Richard Boone Show and Quincy along with several TV movies including Terror on the 40th Floor. His film scores included the William Castle films The Night Walker and The Busy Body; five Don Knotts films: The Ghost and Mr. Chicken, The Shakiest Gun in the West, The Reluctant Astronaut, The Love God? and How to Frame a Figg; and other films including The Caper of the Golden Bulls, Don't Make Waves and Did You Hear the One About the Traveling Saleslady? His TV and film scores will certainly remain on TV/film, but he will certainly be missed. Mr. Mizzy was 93.
TV director Linda Day passed away on Friday, October 23, 2009. Linda was the first woman to receive steady employment as a TV director. To her credit are more than 50 different series and 350 episodes including Married... with Children (for which she did the pilot and continued for more than two years), Archie Bunker's Place, Dallas, Kate & Allie, Alice, WKRP, Benson, Newhart, Too Close for Comfort, Facts of Life, Diff'rent Strokes, It's Your Move, Double Trouble, Small Wonder, Gimme a Break, Throb, Women in Prison, Major Dad, Top of the Heap, Teacher's Only, Mad About You, Who's the Boss?, Baby Talk, Almost Home, Thea, The Nanny, Unhappily Ever After, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and Clueless. And that's just some of the shows! During the 1980's and part of the 1990's, Linda was one of the top 5 television directors currently then working. She will be certainly be missed and was a pioneer for women TV directors. Ms. Day was 71.

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Sunday, October 25, 2009

Week 5 TV Ratings and Analysis; How the Sitcoms Did

Week 5 numbers (first four nights, Mon-Wed):
(Network averages for Thursday were not available once again, thus here are final network averages for Mon-Wed. Final Thursday program numbers are available in the analysis, though.)

Households: #1. CBS 8.4/13.4; #2. ABC 6.6/10.5; #3. Fox 6.0/9.6; #4. NBC 4.4/7.0; #5. The CW 1.4/2.2
Total Viewers: #1. CBS 13.34 million; #2. ABC 10.09 million; #3. Fox 9.73 million; #4. NBC 6.96 million; #5. The CW 1.98 million.
Adults 18-49: #1. CBS 3.6/9.7; #2. Fox 3.5/9.5; #3. ABC 2.6/6.9; #4. NBC 2.4/6.4; #5. The CW 1.0/2.5.

Week 5 (Oct. 19-25) Analysis: For week 5 we have CBS on top through the first four days in HH/viewers, with Fox on top in 18-49. Fox will likely win the week in 18-49 thanks to MLB's ALCS with the Yankees and Angels. Through the first four days in week 5 I can project, CBS has the lead in HH/viewers but second in 18-49, with ABC second in HH/viewers but third in 18-49, as Fox is in third in HH/viewers, but first in 18-49 and NBC is back in fourth everywhere as usual with NFL coming to save the day tonight. Last week, week 4, CBS won the week in HH/viewers and 18-49, while ABC was second in HH/total viewers, but tied for third in 18-49 with NBC. NBC was fourth in HH/viewers, with Fox up ahead in third. Fox was second in 18-49, only .1 behind CBS for first.
On Monday ABC, Fox and CBS did well again. A two-hour Dancing with the Stars won the total viewer race with 16.82 million for ABC, up a tad from the previous week. An all-new Castle followed with a solid 9.69 million, and up again from the previous week in 18-49! Very consistent. Next up was CBS with its comedies and CSI: Miami. How I Met Your Mother started it off with 8.06 million, down from the previous week and Accidentally on Purpose followed doing 8.26 million and a 3.3 18-49 rating, both up from the previous week and built from the lead-in...interesting. Two and a Half Men followed with 14.07 million which was down just a tad from the previous week, and The Big Bang Theory followed and continues to impress and did a nice 13.47 million, up some from the previous week. The show also did a 5.3 18-49 rating, tying its highest ever. A new episode of CSI: Miami did 13.16 million, down a bit again from the previous week. Fox had a new episode of House and it did a below normal 11.65 million, because it didn't start until 8:43pm due to baseball... the show did a 4.5 A18-49 rating, a season low. A new episode of Lie to Me followed at 9:44pm and did 7.79 million. Could be better. NBC followed with Heroes doing 5.72 million, up a tad from the previous week. A new episode of Trauma followed and did only 5.46 million and only a 1.8 A18-49 rating, basically on par from the previous week though. The Jay Leno Show followed with only 4.74 million, down from previous week. The CW on Mondays has been a struggle so far, with One Tree Hill doing only 2.21 million and Gossip Girl at an even worse 1.98 million...both down week-to-week.
On Tuesday, CBS was in control as usual. CBS had the always reliable NCIS opening the night off with 21.25 million, up from the previous week. Another series high, no one knows how though. A new episode of NCIS: Los Angeles was next and did 16.48 million, finally went up for the first time from the previous week. And finally CBS aired The Good Wife and did 13.26 million, up some from the previous week. ABC was a distant second with the season finale of Shark Tank doing 5.92 million...up week-to-week again. It went up each week, but it belongs in summer. Then it was Dancing with the Stars: The Results doing 14.92 million, up a million week-to-week as we said goodbye to Natalie Coughlin surprisingly. Vitto or Irvin deserved to go instead. ABC followed with a new episode of the forgotten doing 7.3 million, down a bit week-to-week. NBC was next with The Biggest Loser 2-hour show doing 9.82 million, up from previous week, followed by the The Jay Leno Show at just 5.7746 million, which was down from previous week again. Fox aired Game 4 of the MLB ALCS and it did 10.7 million in primetime (10.3 million overall) and a solid 3.4 18-49 rating. So You Think You Can Dance returns this Tuesday. The CW aired 90210 with just 2.25 million, followed by dud Melrose Place at an even worse 1.5 million. The latter was up some from previous week, while the former was even.
Wednesday again it was CBS with the overall win. CBS started slow with Old Christine doing 6.58 million, which was down from the previous week, followed by Gary Unmarried at 6.76 million, also down from its previous week. Veteran drama Criminal Minds did 14.27 million which was up from the previous week, with CSI: NY doing 13.01 million, down some from previous week. ABC started the 8pm hour with Hank & The Middle and did OK. Hank did an OK 5.78 million but only a 1.5 18-49 rating, both series lows. Look for Charlie Brown this week. The Middle did a better 6.52 million and a 2.0 18-49 rating, nice builds from the lead-in in 18-49. New episodes of the hilarious sitcoms Modern Family and Cougar Town both did well again with 8.66 and 7.31 million, but down from previous week. The A18-49 ratings for both were more telling doing 3.4 and 3.1. At 10pm Eastwick did only 4.77 million, down from previous week, for a series low. People need to watch Lindsay Price, as she shines on this show. NBC opened the night with Mercy doing 7.19 million, down some from the previous week. Law & Order: SVU followed and did 9.15 million, up again some from previous week. Slowly going up, each week. At 10pm NBC aired The Jay Leno Show of course at just 5.14 million, down a million week-to-week. Fox was fourth, with So You Think You Can Dance at 6.91 million...down some from previous week, and then Glee followed to a decent 7.15 million and a 3.3 A18-49 rating, but both down from previous week. The CW had its usual showing of Top Model at 2.98 million, down a tad from previous week and a repeat of Melrose Place followed with just 950,000 viewers. This is a dud and I don't think Locklear can even save it!
Thursday it was ABC on top while the CBS 9-11pm hours were in repeats. ABC opened the night with FLASHFORWARD doing 9.87 million and a 3.1 18-49 rating, up from previous week in viewers and even in 18-49. Dominc Monaghan joins the cast officially this week, I was mistaken last week. A new Grey's Anatomy followed with 15.06 million and a great 5.3 A18-49 rating, both up from previous week. Great whodunnit type mystery! And a new episode of Private Practice did a solid 9.92 million and a first place at 10pm 3.7 A18-49 rating, both down some week-to-week. CBS opened with Survivor: Samoa at 12.9 million and a 4.0 A18-49 rating, both up from previous week by a lot. A repeat episode of CSI followed with 10.14 million, while The Mentalist was also a repeat and did a better 11.79 million. Fox started preempted Bones and Fringe with MLB ALCS Game 5 doing 11.85 million, which is excellent. Game 6 is tonight (Sunday) on Fox. NBC was next with Community at 8pm doing 5.04 million on par really from previous week, followed by sitcom dud Parks & Recreation at only 4.93 million, but up some week-to-week. At 9pm, The Office did 8.73 million and a solid 4.4 18-49 rating, both up week-to-week. A new episode of 30 Rock did 6.84 million, up from the season premiere the previous week. The Jay Leno Show closed the night with only 4.97 million, down again week-to-week. The CW's only consistent player so far is Vampire Diaries but it was a repeat and it did 2.27 million, still better than mostly everything on The CW, followed by a repeat of Supernatural at 1.83 million.
Now, final numbers for Friday and Saturday are not available, but CBS won Friday with their dramas as usual. While Brothers, 'Til Death & Dollhouse on Fox were lower than ever in prelim numbers.
Saturday numbers had CBS win overall and ABC in 18-49 thanks to Saturday Night Football. Fox had to settle with repeats because of the ALCS rainout.
Tonight the full ABC Sunday line-up is airing (AFV, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Desperate Housewives, and Brothers & Sisters), look for solid numbers as usual despite the sporting events tonight. NBC should have something to tout about with the NFL game, but could be down from previous week due to ALCS Game 6 on Fox, especially in NY. CBS has its usual players, but Three Rivers will be slaughtered again, as the cancelation click is ticking. Fox has NFL overrun leading into Game 6 of the MLB ALCS, so expect Fox to win the night in 18-49 and possibly viewers.
As for week three, CBS will win in HH, viewers and but Fox will win 18-49 thanks to NFL overrun/MLB ALCS games. Look for ABC in second in HH/viewers unless the game tonight on Fox does VERY big and that would have Fox overtake ABC for the week in HH/viewers. ABC will likely be third in 18-49. NBC will be fourth in all categories.

Week 5 How the Sitcoms Did

Last Sunday Sitcoms (counts for week 4-- October 12-18)

  • Brothers (Fox) - A special new episode at 7pm did only 2.27 million...not good.
  • The Simpsons (Fox) 2 episodes - 8.69 million and a 4.1 18-49 rating for the annual Treehouse of Horror episode. Up from previous week obviously. A repeat at 7:30pm lead in and did 4.55 million.
  • The Cleveland Show (Fox) - 7.62 million and a 3.8 18-49 rating. Both down a bit from the week prior, despite the lead-in going up.
  • Family Guy (Fox) - 8.13 million and a 4.2 18-49 rating for a REPEAT. Strange this was the only repeat of the block.
  • American Dad (Fox) - 6.25 million and a 3.1 18-49 rating...both down from previous week, but remember the lead-in was a repeat.

Monday Sitcoms

  • How I Met Your Mother (CBS) - New episode did 8.06 million, down from the previous week, and a 3.4 A18-49 rating also down from the previous week.
  • Accidentally on Purpose (CBS) - 8.26 million and a 3.3 18-49 rating, both up from the previous week and built from the lead-in for I think the first time. But what does that mean? Because CBS has repeats tomorrow for their comedies.
  • Two and a Half Men (CBS) - 14.07 million...down a tad from the previous week. Still the sitcom leader overall.
  • The Big Bang Theory (CBS) - 13.47 million...up from the previous week and still built from the lead-in's 18-49 rating from a 4.8 to a 5.3, even though the lead-in was even week-to-week, this show jumped .3 ratings points. Still sitcom leader in 18-49.


Tuesday Sitcoms

  • None.

Wednesday Sitcoms
  • Old Christine (CBS) - New episode did 6.58 million, down from previous week. 18-49 rating of a 2.0 was also down.
  • Gary Unmarried (CBS) - Like the lead-in, 6.76 million, down from previous week, but built from the lead-in a bit in 18-49 to a 2.2 rating.
  • Hank (ABC) - Down from previous week's 6.15 million to 5.78 million...not good. 18-49 rating was down a tick from previous week at 1.5. Not on this week, so let's see how Charlie Brown helps.
  • The Middle (ABC) - 6.52 million, down a bit from previous week and it built nicely from the lead-in in 18-49 from a 1.5 to a 2.0. This show is hysterical!
  • Modern Family (ABC) - A hilarious episode did 8.66 million and a nice 3.4 18-49 rating, both down though week-to-week.
  • Cougar Town (ABC) - A new episode did 7.31 million and a 3.1 18-49 rating, both also down some from previous week.

Thursday Sitcoms

  • Community (NBC) - New episode did 5.04 million and a 1.9 18-49 rating. Need to do better, but it was picked-up for a full season anyway.
  • Parks & Recreation (NBC) - This show did terrible doing only 4.93 million and just a 2.1 A18-49 rating, but up some from previous week.
  • The Office (NBC) - 8.73 million for a new episode, up from the previous week. In 18-49 it did a 4.4 rating I guess no new CSI helps this show?
  • 30 Rock (NBC) - A new episode did a bit better 6.84 million and a 3.3 18-49 rating. Still dropped over a point in 18-49 from the lead-in...not good, but both up week-to-week.

Friday Sitcoms

  • Brothers (Fox) - Only a prelim 2.35 million for a new episode. Moving to Sundays at 7 now.
  • 'Til Death (Fox) - An even worse prelim of 1.97 million for a new episode...not on the schedule anymore.

Saturday Sitcoms

  • None.

Airing tonight (Sunday) are no sitcoms, as Fox's animated comedies are preempted for NFL/MLB action

Summing it up. Two and a Half Men, Modern Family, The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, The Office, & Accidentally on Purpose were impressive for the week. Everything else was OK (such as The Middle, 30 Rock) or just plain old terrible (such as Hank, Parks & Recreation).

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Saturday, October 24, 2009

Blog DVD Review: Peanuts - 1970's Collection, Vol. 1

It is Saturday, so that must mean it is time for the weekly Blog DVD Reviews. Today week we take a look at Warner Home Video's Peanuts 1970's Collection, Vol. 1. We get the first six remastered TV specials from the '70s on DVD including a few for the first time ever! See my Blog DVD Review of Peanuts 1970's Collection, Vol. 1:

Peanuts - 1970's Collection, Vol. 1 (Warner, $29.98) brings us the first six 1970's TV specials on DVD digitally remastered...and it is really worth it! These are the first six TV specials from the '70s, as we still have another half dozen or so still left from the '70s. On this set we get Play it Again, Charlie Brown; You're Not Elected, Charlie Brown; There's No Time For Love, Charlie Brown; A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving; It's a Mystery, Charlie Brown; and It's the Easter Beagle, Charlie Brown. Play it Again and It's a Mystery specials are being released for the first time ever on DVD! There's No Time for Lovewasn't released digitally remastered previously, so it looks much better here.
Among the stories on these six specials are: Lucy trying to win Schroeder's affections by persuading him to perform; Charlie Brown runs for Student Body President; Peppermint Patty and Marcie admire Charlie Brown; the classic Thanksgiving feast; Snoopy turns into a detective to find Woodstock's missing next; and the Easter "Beagle" is coming to town.

Let's now move on to the packaging. Like all the previous Peanuts sets, we have a thin outer box that holds a very thin case, that is movie style. I never understood the reason for the thin box that holds a thin case...again what's the point? It doesn't need protection really. Also, both the back and front of each are exactly the same, except the box is shinier. The cover art is white in color, and has a shot of Charlie Brown and Lucy at a booth with the wording "the doctor is in." The title of the special is on the roof of the book, with a mention that the six specials are remastered on the top with a Snoopy Peanuts logo! To the back we go, we get a nice shot of Lucy holding a football as Charlie Brown misses the kick and the wording "Outta Sight Collection, Charlie Brown." The back also has a disc-by-disc breakdown on what specials to expect. When we open the case, we get nice artwork and details on each special on each side. The first disc is in a plastic holder, that we can flip back and forth like a page on a book. Disc two is actually on the right panel. Disc art has a white background, with artwork of Snoopy & Woodstock on disc one and Marcie and Peppermint Patty on disc two. Inside the case there is also an insert for two free songs from "Charlie Brown's Holiday Hits" soundtrack that you can redeem at iTunes.

The menu screen has options of Features, Trailers, Special Features, and Languages. We get that white background again, with the theme song playing in the background. We also have the same artwork as the cover art of Lucy and Charlie Brown on disc one, but disc two has Snoopy on the roof of his red dog house acting like he is a pilot. Anyway back to the menu, Trailers is just on disc one and we get some for the Miser Brothers Christmas and Scooby-Doo Mystery Begins DVD. We also get auto-trailers on each disc before the main menu for items like Peanuts '60s Collection, I Want a Dog for Christmas Charlie Brown, Charlie Brown Holiday Collection, and Saturday Morning 60s/70s DVD. For Languages, we can have either have English, Espanol, Portuguese or Japanese. For subtitles we have those four again and also French and Thai! The Features section has the specials listed, we can also select Play All to play them consecutively. Finally, Special Features is on disc two only and lists the featurette and a trailer for Harry Potter.

The video and audio is tremendous once again. These specials are all so good ever since they stated the Remastered Collection sets. They have never looked better or sounded better ever. I am very impressed yet again; what more can I continue to say about these digitally remastered sets? Warner continues to do a great job on this remastering of all these classic specials. Each special has 5 chapter stops and runtimes are all between 25:00-25:15-ish. So, yes of course it is unedited! These sets are must buys for the video quality alone!

As for special features, we get a nice featurette! It is titled "Woodstock: Creating Snoopy's Sidekick" and runs 12:42. Find out how the little yellow Woodstock was born and more on the loveable non-speaking character. Interviewed are Lee Mendelson (executive producer), Phil Cousineau (author), Alexis Fajardo (cartoonist), Derek Bary (Peanuts Historian), and Jean Schulz (Charles' wife).

I once again highly do recommend this set for any Charlie Brown-Peanuts fan and classic animation in general. Continue your collection, because we get another two specials we never had on DVD before and one remastered for the first time on DVD. This is worth it! It is now safe to say we have the first 6 specials from the '70s remastered! We have 6 more to go from the '70s still, and I'm sure Warner will do a good job on that set as well, but let's hope they announce a street date for that soon. Warner continues to do a wonderful job with the remastering and the behind the scenes extras for each set. Let's hope they continue to release more Peanuts specials and eventually we get them all remastered in our personal libraries! So head back to the grooving '70s and relive the first six classic specials from that decade all over again! The doctor is certainly in on this DVD!

-- Reviewed by Pavan
(4/5 stars)

To purchase the DVD, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
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Related links:
SitcomsOnline.com Full DVD Reviews Page
Charlie Brown Official Page
Charlie Brown Specials

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Friday, October 23, 2009

Nick at Nite, Lifetime Schedule Updates; Flintstones Musical Episodes Marathon on Boomerang

Nick at Nite has made some schedule changes. First off, they removed Home Improvement weekdays at 6am this past Tuesday with more The Nanny, while Roseanne replaced Everybody Hates Chris' 2-3am hour, so Roseanne now airs 2am-6am every night. The rest of the changes are basically to Fridays and Saturdays, and they start this weekend. George Lopez now airs in the 9pm hour on Fridays, which is technically still Nickelodeon, replacing Everybody Hates Chris. George will also still air in the 10pm hour on Fridays. Then we have a block of The Nanny from 11pm-2am, as George's 1am hour is no more on Fridays. On Saturdays, Malcolm in the Middle and Everybody Hates Chris will air in new timeslots, with Malcolm in the 11pm hour and Chris in the 12am hour. George Lopez will be the lead-in and lead-out airing in the 10pm hour still and gaining the 1am hour. So The Nanny doesn't air at all on Saturdays now. Sundays is petty much the same as now, but The Nanny is 11pm-2am. And this Sunday (Oct. 25) there is a marathon of The Nanny all-night long from 8pm-2am and some encores from 2am-6am. As we mentioned, there is a Halloween stunt on Monday, Oct. 26 from 8-11pm, but now we have some time shifting. Glenn Martin and Malcolm in the Middle Halloween episodes are still in the 8pm hour, but now George Lopez's Halloween episodes are airing in the 9pm hour followed by an Everybody Hates Chris Halloween episode at 10pm and an encore of the Glenn Martin Halloween episode at 10:30pm. These three-hours will encore on Halloween night (Saturday, Oct. 31) from 10pm-1am.
So that should catch everyone up. View the updated Nick at Nite schedule and highlights. We'll have November info soon, stay tuned.

Moving on to Lifetime, it seems original sitcoms Sherri and Rita Rocks are underperforming with new episodes in the Tuesday at 10pm hour. So, Lifetime will move Rita Rocks to Mondays with a block of episodes airing 9pm-11pm, as new episodes will air from 10pm-11pm. Sherri will air Tuesdays with a block of episodes airing 9pm-11pm, and new episodes at 10pm. Lifetime is trying to get better ratings and a block of the same show usually does the trick.
Lifetime is also changing their daytime line-up starting Monday (Oct. 26). Reba's two-hour block goes from 10am-12pm to 8am-10am. Less than Perfect is now totally gone and off the schedule. Frasier moves up an hour from 9am-10am to 10am-11am and Will & Grace gets the 11am hour, as that was only airing at 8:30am in the mornings. In the afternoon, we now get three Wife Swap episodes, as 1-3pm remain but also 12pm is added replacing Medium. We also now get three episodes of Desperate Housewives from 3pm-6pm, shifting the three episodes of Grey's Anatomy to 6pm-9pm, as Medium is replaced at 8pm. Medium can now be seen weeknights at 12:30am & 1:30am. All is not lost for Medium, as it will get a Halloween marathon next Friday (Oct. 30) from 11am-8pm.
View the full updated Lifetime schedule.

Finally, In addition to making television history as the world's first prime-time animated series (ABC), The Flintstones also offered viewers many samplings of fun, culturally relevant music that delighted viewers throughout the show's six-year run. On Sunday, Oct. 25, these classic animated musical moments will return for a command performance as Boomerang presents a day-long marathon of the best of The Flintstones musical episodes: Bedrock 'N' Roll. From 8am-11pm (ET), America's favorite Stone-Age families--Fred, Wilma and Pebbles Flintstone plus Barney, Betty and Bamm-Bamm Rubble--will "rock out" to prehistoric beats while they welcome a number of celebrity guests, including Ann-Margaret (Ann Margrock) and James Darren (Jimmy Darrock).
Once again showing the depth and breadth of its incredible classic cartoon library, Boomerang presents a rollicking good time with a commercial-free marathon of 15 jamming episodes guaranteed to get your toes tapping. The seven-and-a-half hour rock block will be followed by an encore presentation so that music aficionados coast-to-coast can join in the fun.
View the highlights of some of the episodes airing.

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Thursday, October 22, 2009

ABC, CW and Fox Updates; JustMyShow.com's Podcast with Billy Vera

ABC's sophomore drama Castle and The CW's freshman drama The Vampire Diaries are the latest series to have their initial 13-episode order extended to the full 22 full-season order. Both were not surprises and are doing well in the ratings. Castle is in its second season, but the show only received a 13-episode order for this season after launching with 10 episodes last March.
Also, the CW has ordered more episodes of Melrose Place, ordering five additional episodes instead of the full back nine. The series has really disappointed in the ratings, but they are obviously waiting to see how much of an impact Heather Locklear will have when she joins the show reprising her character Amanda Woodward starting Nov. 17.
Castle and Vampire Diaries join Modern Family, Cougar Town, The Middle, FLASHFORWARD, Glee, NCIS: Los Angeles, The Good Wife, and The Cleveland Show getting full season orders. The only official cancelation has been The CW drama The Beautiful Life: TBL. Hank, Eastwick, Community, Mercy, Trauma, Brothers, and the forgotten still have not heard their fates yet beyond the original 13 episodes, as well as sophomore drama Dollhouse. I expect a few of those to get picked-up at least. ABC's Hank will be preempted next week (Oct. 28 at 8pm) for the classic special It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.
Meanwhile, Fox has announced some schedule changes. After this Friday, the line-up of sitcom Brothers, 'Til Death, and drama Dollhouse will be pulled for November sweeps. So starting Friday, Oct. 30 repeats of House and Bones takes over the night. Freshman sitcom Brothers will air Sundays at 7pm now with new episodes, while 'Til Death has been benched completely...again. And after just four airings, Dollhouse will be benched, but it will return in December to Fridays airing back-to-back at 8pm & 9pm starting Dec. 4. It is not expected Dollhouse will get more than 13 episodes, so it should be finished for good in January.

Our good buddy Eric from JustMyShow.com is back with an all-new podcast! It shot up the charts after being featured in a few classic episodes of Family Ties, now Billy Vera is at JustMyShow.com to talk about the #1 hit "At This Moment" and much more. Billy Vera wrote and performed that #1 hit, which was featured in a few classic episodes of Family Ties. He talked about music and the song, but also about the show and how it helped it take off. In addition, Eric has a bonus chat with Family Ties producer Michael Weithorn (who went on to co-create The King of Queens) about both the song and the episodes. You can hear a comment or two from him in the show and the rest in the "bonus audio" section. Also in the "bonus audio" section are comments from Billy about The King of Queens and Empty Nest opening themes, both of which he performed.
So, head on over to JustMyShow.com for all of this!

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

ABC Family's 2009 Countdown to 25 Days of Christmas; Comedy Central Acquires Reruns of Philadelphia

While ABC Family Channel's annual 25 Days of Christmas programming doesn't start until Tuesday, December 1, like previous years they will still have the "Countdown to 25 Days of Christmas" that starts Nov. 10 at 7pm with the holiday movie Snow followed by the sequel Snow 2 Brain Freeze. Other holiday movies or specials airing are Santa Jr., Snowglobe, Eloise at Christmastime, A Dennis the Menace Christmas, Richie Rich's Christmas Wish, Gotta Catch Santa Claus, Christmas Caper, A Carol Christmas, Santa Who?, I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus, A Chance of Snow, Stealing Christmas, The Christmas Box, The Christmas Secret, The Christmas Wish, Once Upon a Christmas, Twice Upon a Christmas, Christmas in Boston, Christmas Do-Over, Chasing Christmas, Santa Baby, Holiday in Handcuffs, A Holiday to Remember, Unlikely Angel, Holly and Hal Moose: Our Uplifting Christmas Adventure, Sons of Mistletoe, The Christmas List, Miracle on 34th Street, Home Alone 4, Naughty or Nice, and the ABC Family original movie premiere of The Dog Who Saved Christmas starring Mario Lopez, Dean Cain, and Adrienne Barbeau.
Wow and this is just the countdown! Stay tuned for the actual 25 Days of Christmas schedule!

Comedy Central has reached a deal with Twentieth Television for the exclusive basic cable syndication rights to the critically-acclaimed FX comedy series It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, in a multi-year deal that will see the series start its run on Comedy Central beginning in summer 2010. Following the limited summer 2010 window, the series with settle into its long-term, multi-year run in January 2011.
First-run seasons of Sunny will of course continue to air on FX. In addition to its current fifth season that runs through November 5, the network has ordered seasons six and seven which will air in 2010 and 2011 respectively. FX Productions will have produced 84 episodes though season seven.
The half-hour series, starring Charlie Day, Rob McElhenney, Glenn Howerton, Kaitlin Olson and Danny DeVito, is currently in its 5th season and features the cast as self-centered owners of Paddy's Irish Pub in Philadelphia who will do just about anything, no matter how reprehensible, in an attempt to better their own situation. Serious issues such as racism, abortion, underage drinking, molestation, gun control, cancer and death somehow weave their way into the cockeyed universe of "The Gang." The characters are experts on every subject but actually possess expertise in nothing at all. They often use revisionist history to bolster their self-worth, which contrasts sharply with the true reality of their lives.

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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

WGN America's Halloween Freak Week; IFC Acquires Arrested Development

We broke the news a few weeks back that WGN America is planning Halloween marathons for The Munsters and The Addams Family, but now we have more of their Halloween plans!
This Halloween you'll scream with delight as WGN America presents "Halloween Freak Week," a monstrous mash of movies and marathons--including the first families of fright, The Munsters and The Addams Family. "Halloween Freak Week" on WGN America begins on Monday, October 26 and will have you howling with laughter through Halloween night--Saturday, October 31.
Airing during "Halloween Freak Week" are three back-to-back Halloween-themed episodes of America's Funniest Home Videos on Monday, October 26 starting at 7pm ET/4pm PT until 10 pm ET/7 pm PT. Then on Tuesday, October 27 at 8pm ET/5pm PT it is the movie The Rage: Carrie 2. On Wednesday, October 28, as part of WGN America's retro movie night "Way Back Wednesday with Winslow," they have the classic film Gremlins at 8pm ET/5pm PT. On Thursday, October 28 some regularly scheduled sitcoms get the Halloween treatment! Bewitched & Cheers will air Halloween-themed episodes in their normal timeslots beginning at 4pm ET/1pm PT. On Friday, October 30, The Beverly Hillbillies gets to air a Halloween themed episode in its regular timeslot of 2:30 pm ET/11:30am PT. On Friday, October 30, I Dream of Jeannie also gets to air a Halloween themed episode at 3:30 pm ET/12:30pm PT, leading into the "The Monstrous Munster Mash Marathon." 16 back-to-back classic episodes of The Munsters, hosted by legendary shock rocker Alice Cooper. The eight-hour marathon features the odd occupants of 1313 Mockingbird Lane as the iconic Alice Cooper, who was named the world's most "beloved heavy metal entertainer" by Rolling Stone, will be hosting the opens and interstitials for all 16 episodes of The Munsters. WGN America will also air the broadcast debut of Alice Cooper's new video "Keepin' Halloween Alive" immediately following the marathon, which we told you previously will run from 4pm ET/1pm PT until 12am ET/9pm PT. And finally on Halloween itself, Saturday, October 31, "The Addams Family Fright Fest" will air with 18 back-to-back episodes of The Addams Family on Halloween. The 9-hour marathon will feature the creepy, kooky, mysterious and spooky Addams Family, which we told you previously will run from 3pm ET/12pm PT until to 12am ET/9pm PT. Following the marathon get scared on Halloween night with the horror movie Pet Semetary 2 at 12am ET/9pm PT.
The fun all starts next week! But if you can't wait for Halloween to get your Herman fix, then WGN American has something already for you! Do you have the brains to make ghouls drool? Put your Munsters knowledge to work with Alice Cooper's Monstrous Munster Mash Game on WGNAmerica.com. Correctly answer trivia and Alice will spare your army of Munster-like zombies a horrible fate. The Monstrous Munster Mash Game is "alive" through November.

Three years ago we told you that cable network G4 has acquired the short-lived sitcom Arrested Development for a three-year term, but now that term is up. So IFC (Independent Film Channel) has now acquired the cable rights to the series starting this Sunday (Oct. 25). IFC will air Arrested Development Sundays at 10:00pm and 10:30pm and Tuesdays at 9:00pm and 9:30pm. This is the second major acquisition for IFC in October. The network picked up the complete series of Monty Python's Flying Circus earlier, to go along with its six-hour documentary about the legendary British comedy troupe.
The Emmy-winning Arrested Development, created by Mitch Hurwitz, never drew a large crowd in its three-season run on Fox but has endured as a cult fave. There's also been endless chatter about a possible feature adaptation of the laffer, which starred Jason Bateman, Michael Cera, Will Arnett and Jeffrey Tambor.
In addition to G4, Arrested Development previously aired on HDnet and was offered online via MSN.com.

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Monday, October 19, 2009

TV One November 2009 Highlights; New Biography Episodes in November on Bio TV

This November on TV One there won't be any regular schedule changes, so it will remain the same as October, but there will be plenty of sitcom related stunt marathons! On Friday, November 13 beginning at 10pm, it's a comedy master class as TV One presents the "Martin 'Thug Homey' Mega-thon," a 24-hour comedy event that features episodes of TV One sitcom favorite Martin with Martin Payne (Martin Lawrence) in aggression mode battling his friends, his enemies, his woman, and even himself in this hilarious TV One comedy extravaganza.
Thursday, November 26 is Thanksgiving Day and TV One has programming scheduled to keep viewers "Home for the Holidays" and in the holiday spirit in the day and thumping to a music beat throughout the evening, while the rest of the holiday weekend includes a mix of TV One originals and TV One sitcom favorites, and movies. Thanksgiving weekend programming plans for sitcoms are as follows:
On Thursday, November 26, Thanksgiving Day will begin at 6am with a sitcom marathon consisting of Thanksgiving themed episodes of TV One sitcoms Half & Half, Martin, The Hughleys, Living Single, Good Times, and All of Us through 1pm with select encores in the overnight from 2am-6am.
Then on Friday, November 27 beginning at 10pm, it's a Holiday Comedy Mega-thon as TV One airs 24-hours of holiday themed episodes of TV One sitcom favorites Martin, Good Times, The Jeffersons, Eve, Amen, The PJs, The Hughleys, Living Single, Cedric, Half & Half, Where I Live, Good News, Amen, Sanford & Son, , and All of Us in this holiday comedy mega-thon event.

This November Bio TV will launch a few TV related Biography episodes. Teri Hatcher (Desperate Housewives, Lois & Clark) will be featured on Wednesday, November 4 at 10pm and Woody Harrelson (Cheers) is featured on Tuesday, November 24 at 10pm. For Teri Hatcher, a profile of the glamorous Desperate Housewives star whose career and personal life have seen many ups and downs. Hatcher suffered sexual abuse as a young girl. But her career took off when she appeared on TV's Seinfeld and starred as the girlfriend to both Superman on TV and James Bond in the movies. After her professional life cooled down a decade ago, she came roaring back with Housewives and her 2006 autobiography, "Burnt Toast and Other Philosophies of Life," which was endorsed by Oprah's Book Club. For Woody Harrelson, a portrait of the actor who was plucked from obscurity and found stardom on the hit TV sitcom Cheers. Harrelson became a violent youth when his father was sent to jail. He started acting in high school, and nailed the audition for Cheers after hearing about the casting call from a friend. He went on to star in White Men Can't Jump and such controversial movies as Natural Born Killers and The People vs. Larry Flynt. Harrelson also became a vegan, took up yoga, and became an activist--he was arrested for climbing the Golden Gate Bridge in an effort to protect California's redwoods.
Repeat episodes airing this month include Biography episodes on Alyssa Milano, Tony Danza, Melissa Gilbert, Michael Landon, Aaron Spelling, Burt Reynolds, Heather Locklear, Shaun Cassidy, Valerie Bertinelli, Gary Coleman, Bob Saget, Dana Plato, Diff'rent Strokes, Kristy McNichol, Billy Crystal, Reba, Suzanne Somers, Patrick Duffy, Don Knotts, John Ritter, Three's Company, Patricia Heaton, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Kirstie Alley, Cheers, Batman, The Partridge Family, Full House, Doris Roberts, Shirley Jones, Bill Cosby. Truth Behind the Sitcom Scandals: Gilligan's Island and Diff'rent Strokes; Laverne & Shirley and Cheers, Dynasty Reunion, The Cosby Show: A Look Back, Cast Confessions: Facts of Life, and Laverne & Shirley Reunion will also reair.
And about 10 days ago we told you the Celebrity Ghost Stories episodes for November that will feature stars like Lisa Rinna, Eric Roberts, Justine Bateman, and Jay Thomas.

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Sunday, October 18, 2009

Week 4 TV Ratings and Analysis; How the Sitcoms Did

Week 4 numbers (first four nights, Mon-Wed):
(Network averages for Thursday were not available once again, thus here are final network averages for Mon-Wed. Final program numbers are available in the analysis, though.)


Households: #1. CBS 8.3/13.4; #2. ABC 6.6/10.5; #3. Fox 5.1/7.9; #4. NBC 4.4/7.1; #5. The CW 1.4/2.1
Total Viewers: #1. CBS 13.19 million; #2. ABC 10.06 million; #3. Fox 8.73 million; #4. NBC 6.95 million; #5. The CW 2.06 million.
Adults 18-49: #1. Fox 3.6/9.6; #2. CBS 3.6/9.5; #3. ABC 2.6/6.9; #4. NBC 2.3/6.2; #5. The CW 1.0/2.6.

Week 4 Analysis: For week three we have CBS on top through the first four days in all categories (though they were tied with Fox in 18-49 through Wednesday). Fox will likely win the week in 18-49 thanks to MLB ALCS on Friday and Saturday. Through the first four days in week four I can project, CBS has the lead in all categories, with ABC second in HH/viewers but third in 18-49, with Fox in third in HH/viewers, but a close second in 18-49 and NBC is back in fourth everywhere. Last week, week 3, CBS won the week in HH/viewers and 18-49, while ABC was second in HH/total viewers, but fourth in 18-49 (though only .1 behind Fox for second). NBC was third in HH/viewers, with Fox fourth. NBC was tied for second in 18-49 with Fox.
On Monday ABC, Fox and CBS did well again. A two-hour Dancing with the Stars won the total viewer race with 16.79 million for ABC, up some from the previous week. An all-new Castle followed with a solid 9.77 million, up again from the previous week! Very consistent. Next up was CBS with its comedies and CSI: Miami. How I Met Your Mother started it off with 8.56 million, up some from the previous week and Accidentally on Purpose followed doing 7.73 million and a 3.0 18-49 rating, both up a tad from the previous week. Two and a Half Men followed with 14.17 million which was also up from the previous week, and The Big Bang Theory followed and continues to impress and did a nice 13.07 million, up from the previous week. The show also did a 5.0 18-49 rating, its second highest ever. A new episode of CSI: Miami did 13.27 million, down a bit from the previous week...the only program on CBS to go down on the night. Fox had a new episode of House and it did 13.5 million, which was down a bit from previous week... the show did a 5.2 A18-49 rating, down from the 5.4 the previous week. NBC followed with the free-falling Heroes doing 5.55 million, up a tad from the previous week. A new episode of Trauma followed and did only 5.49 million and only a 1.8 A18-49 rating, both up a tick the previous week though. The Jay Leno Show followed with only 5.1 million, but actually up some from previous week. The CW on Mondays has been a struggle so far, with One Tree Hill doing only 2.55 million and Gossip Girl at an even worse 2.36 million...but up some week-to-week.
On Tuesday, CBS was in control. CBS had the always reliable NCIS opening the night off with 21.04 million, up from the previous week. Another series high. A new episode of NCIS: Los Angeles was next and did 15.38 million, down a million again from the previous week despite the lead-in going up. And finally CBS aired The Good Wife and did 12.98 million, down from the previous week. ABC was a distant second with a new episode of Shark Tank doing only 5.24 million...but up a bit week-to-week again. At least it goes up, but this is perfect for summer. Then it was Dancing with the Stars: The Results doing 13.96 million, up a lot week-to-week as we said goodbye to Chuck Liddell. ABC followed with a new episode of the forgotten doing 7.43 million, down a bit week-to-week but up a tick in 18-49. NBC was next with The Biggest Loser 2-hour show doing 9.14 million, down a bit from previous week, followed by the The Jay Leno Show at just 5.77 million, which was down from previous week again. Fox aired the two-hour finale of Hell's Kitchen doing 8.04 million and a solid 3.8 18-49 rating, both of course up week-to-week. Fox will miss this show. So You Think You Can Dance can't do this well. The CW aired 90210 with just 2.25 million, followed by dud Melrose Place at an even worse 1.38 million. The latter was down from previous week, while the former was up.
Wednesday again it was CBS with the overall win. CBS started slow with Old Christine doing 6.99 million, which was up a tad from the previous week, followed by Gary Unmarried at 6.91 million, also up a bit from its previous week. Veteran drama Criminal Minds did 13.92 million which was down a bit from the previous week, with CSI: NY doing 13.4 million, up a million from previous week. ABC started the 8pm hour with Hank & The Middle and did OK. Hank did an OK 6.15 million but only a 1.6 18-49 rating again. The Middle did a better 6.77 million and a 2.0 18-49 rating, nice builds from the lead-in in 18-49. New episodes of the hilarious sitcoms Modern Family and Cougar Town both did well again with 9.35 and 8.0 million, but up from previous week. The A18-49 ratings for both were more telling doing 3.6 and 3.3. Shelley Long and the entire Modern Family episode was SO funny this week! Loved the song! At 10pm Eastwick did only 5.08 million, on par really from previous week, wish it was doing better because it is a nice guilty pleasure. NBC opened the night with Mercy doing 7.37 million, down a tad from the previous week. Law & Order: SVU followed and did 8.77 million, up some from previous week. Slowly going up, while Criminal Minds is slowly going down. At 10pm NBC aired The Jay Leno Show of course at just 6.15 million, up week-to-week and best showing of the week. Fox was fourth, with So You Think You Can Dance at 7.21 million...up a million from previous week, and then Glee followed to a decent 7.65 million and a 3.4 A18-49 rating, both up from previous week. The CW had its usual showing of Top Model at 3.0 million, down a tad from previous week and a repeat of Melrose Place followed with just 800,000 viewers. This is a dud!
Thursday it was ABC on top in 18-49 and CBS overall again. ABC opened the night with FLASHFORWARD doing 9.07 million and a 3.1 18-49 rating, both up some from previous week. Dominc Monaghan joins the cast officially this week. A new Grey's Anatomy followed with 13.79 million and a great 5.0 A18-49 rating, but both down from previous week. And a new episode of Private Practice did a solid 10.36 million and a first place at 10pm 3.8 A18-49 rating, both up week-to-week. Dr. Bailey was great, could we see Dr. Sam Bennett go to Seattle Grace as the "cardio god?" Hmm... CBS opened with Survivor: Samoa at 11.78 million and a 3. A18-49 rating, both up a tick week-to-week. A new episode of CSI followed with 15.38 million, up some week-to-week, while The Mentalist was also up week-to-week with 15.08 million. Fox started off well with Bones at a solid 9.59 million...down from previous week, and Fringe followed and only did 5.78 million and a 2.2 18-49 rating, both basically the same as previous week. NBC was next with Community at 8pm doing 5.01 million up some from previous week, followed by sitcom dud Parks & Recreation at only 4.53 million, down week-to-week. At 9pm, The Office did 8.03 million and a solid 4.1 18-49 rating, both down week-to-week when the special one-hour episode aired. Season premiere of 30 Rock did only 6.39 million, down big from Palin infected last fall. The Jay Leno Show closed the night with only 5.37 million, but up week-to-week. The CW's only consistent player so far is Vampire Diaries doing 3.88 million, up week-to-week, followed by Supernatural at a could-be-better 2.58 million, but up some from previous week.
Now, final numbers for Friday and Saturday are not available, but CBS won Friday with their dramas overall but Fox won the 18-49 rating crown with MLB ALCS Game 1. Much better than the regular Brothers, 'Til Death & Dollhouse while ABC did OK with Ugly Betty's premiere.
Saturday numbers were not available, but look for Fox to win big with MLB ALCS Game 2, as the Yankees won a long thriller!
Tonight the full ABC Sunday line-up is airing (AFV, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Desperate Housewives, and Brothers & Sisters), look for solid numbers as usual. NBC should have something to tout about with the NFL game, but could be down from previous week due to MLB Playoffs on TBS. CBS has its usual players, but Three Rivers will be slaughtered again, as the cancelation click is ticking. Fox has its animation block from 8-10pm, including rookie The Cleveland Show. A new Brothers also airs again tonight at 7 on a special night and time.
As for week three, CBS will win in HH, viewers and but Fox will win 18-49 thanks to MLB ALCS games. Look for ABC in second in HH/viewers, but likely third in 18-49. NBC will be fourth in all categories, as Fox will over take them in HH/viewers this week.

Week 4 How the Sitcoms Did

Last Sunday Sitcoms (counts for week 3-- October 5-11)

  • Brothers (Fox) - A special new episode at 7pm did only 1.7 million, but it was preempted in 20% of the country for NFL. Everyone came on board at 7:23pm and still only did 2.47 million.
  • The Simpsons (Fox) - 7.6 million and a 3.7 18-49 rating...both down a lot from the previous week as no direct NFL lead-in this week.
  • The Cleveland Show (Fox) 2 episodes - 7.87 million and a 3.9 18-49 rating. Both down a lot from the week prior, but still very good to build on the lead-in. A special repeat of the pilot at 7:30pm did 3.7 million.
  • Family Guy (Fox) - 8.97 million and a 4.6 18-49 rating. Both down from the previous week, again no direct NFL lead-in this week.
  • American Dad (Fox) - 6.75 million and a 3.5 18-49 rating...both down just some from previous week.

Monday Sitcoms

  • How I Met Your Mother (CBS) - New episode did 8.56 million, higher than the previous week, and back to a 3.6 A18-49 rating after dropping a bit the previous week.
  • Accidentally on Purpose (CBS) - 7.73 million and a 3.0 18-49 rating, both up from the previous week. Bleeding stopped a bit, as it went up some.
  • Two and a Half Men (CBS) - 14.17 million...up from the previous week. Sitcom leader overall.
  • The Big Bang Theory (CBS) - 13.07 million...up from the previous week and still built from the lead-in's 18-49 rating from a 4.8 to a 5.0, though not as high of a build than the past few weeks. Still sitcom leader in 18-49.


Tuesday Sitcoms

  • None.

Wednesday Sitcoms
  • Old Christine (CBS) - New episode did 6.99 million, up a bit from previous week. 18-49 rating of a 2.1 was also up.
  • Gary Unmarried (CBS) - Like the lead-in, 6.91 million, up a bit from previous week, but built from the lead-in a bit in 18-49 to a 2.3 rating.
  • Hank (ABC) - Down a bit from previous week's 6.45 million to 6.15 million...not good, but not totally bad either. 18-49 rating was even from previous week at 1.6...needs to do better.
  • The Middle (ABC) - 6.77 million, basically on par from previous week and it built nicely from the lead-in in 18-49 from a 1.6 to a 2.0.
  • Modern Family (ABC) - A hilarious episode did 9.35 million and a nice 3.6 18-49 rating, both up week-to-week. Shelley Long deserves an Emmy here. Single camera sitcom leader overall now.
  • Cougar Town (ABC) - A great episode did 8.0 million and a 3.3 18-49 rating, both also up some from previous week.

Thursday Sitcoms

  • Community (NBC) - New episode did 5.01 million and a 2.0 18-49 rating ... both up a tad from previous week.
  • Parks & Recreation (NBC) - This show did terrible doing only 4.53 million and just a 2.0 A18-49 rating, down some from previous week.
  • The Office (NBC) - 8.03 million for a new episode, down from the special one-hour episode the previous week, but better than the previous weeks. In 18-49 it did a 4.1 rating.
  • 30 Rock (NBC) - Season premiere only mustered 6.39 million and a 3.0 18-49 rating. Dropped over a point in 18-49 from the lead-in...not good.

Friday Sitcoms

  • Brothers (Fox) - preempted for baseball.
  • 'Til Death (Fox) - preempted for baseball.

Saturday Sitcoms

  • None.

Airing tonight (Sunday) are new episodes of Fox's animated comedies from 8-10PM, along with Brothers at 7.

Summing it up. Two and a Half Men, Modern Family, Cougar Town, The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, The Office were impressive for the week. Everything else was OK (such as The Middle, 30 Rock) or just plain old terrible (such as Hank, Parks & Recreation).

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Saturday, October 17, 2009

Blog DVD Review: Saturday Night Live - The Best of Amy Poehler (10/20)

It is Saturday so it must mean it is time for the weekly "Blog DVD Review." Today we we take a look at Universal Home Entertainment's Saturday Night Live - The Best of Amy Poehler. SNL of course is the long running Saturday late night sketch comedy series. This set features Amy Poehler themed episodes. See Seth Thrasher's blog DVD review of Saturday Night Live - The Best of Amy Poehler and:

Saturday Night Live - The Best of Amy Poehler (Universal, $19.98) is now on DVD with a best of special featuring Amy Poehler. This has aired on NBC already this past April. If you're a fan of the work of SNL alumnus and star of NBC's Parks and Recreation, then Universal has a new DVD set coming out you might well be interested in - it's a "best of" compilation from her years at SNL. Classic bits such as the Clinton & Palin opening gag from last year's election segment to the various recurring original characters and one-off bits (such as "Adventures of a Dollar," an underrated bit from the show's recent past). Highlights of her SNL career spanning much of this decade (2001-2008) are featured.

The set includes miscellaneous sketches from Poehler's run on the show, spread fairly well across the run. This presents an interesting scenario when you get into the technical nuts and bolts of the set, as the show switched from 4:3 SD to 16:9 HD roughly halfway into her tenure on the show. This causes a bit of a problem with regards to the video if you're watching this set on some older television sets (more on that in a bit). If you noticed earlier, I was a bit light on details of the sketches. This is for a decent reason...unfortunately, I'm not that big a fan of much of Amy's work on SNL. While I can appreciate that others find her funny, her humor style doesn't mesh well with what I consider funny. It's just an issue of personal tastes, but as a consequence there's not much on this set to hold my interest.

In addition to the two sketches I mentioned earlier, there's also a Live with Regis & Kelly parody, with guest Queen Latifah that was fairly decent. Other sketches included include a Kaitlin sketch, one staging of the recurring "Dakota Fanning Show" bit, two miscellaneous compilations of short bits - one from Weekend Update, one from sketches, plus more. With regards to guests, aside from the myriad of regular cast members you also get the various guest hosts from those episodes, including Alec Baldwin, Drew Barrymore, Justin Timberlake, Hugh Jackman, Josh Brolin, and Christopher Walken, plus more.

There is one disc in the set - the full feature is a single one hour twenty minute compilation episode. The artwork is a white background, with miscellaneous green splotches and dark scribbles. The disc has the same artwork. With regards to the content on the set, earlier I mentioned the video early in the review because of an important problem this WILL cause for some buyers: For this set, the show is presented in anamorphic widescreen, with the non-widescreen segments being pillarboxed into the native widescreen of the DVD. If you're watching this set on an older square television set with your DVD player in Letterbox, this will mean the unenviable presence of twin boxes - both letterboxed (horizontal bars) and pillarboxed (vertical bars) on some sketches. You poor, poor souls.

The video quality itself falls into two categories. The HD-era video is flawless, with absolutely no deterioration or noise. The SD-era video shows slight color issues. One sketch in the set is made to look deliberately poor - a video designed to parody 1980s workout tapes. The video is deliberately set up to look like a 3rd-generation VHS tape. This is part of the gag, and as such isn't an issue. The audio is Dolby Digital 5.1, with the extra channels getting used more on the more recent skits. Chapter stops are placed at the end of EVERY sketch, as you can select individual sketches from the main menu and it's important to access those easily.

Every now and then, SNL puts out a compilation DVD of various cast members. Given the slow release in season sets, I suppose it's better than nothing. I suppose here that's my opinion of this set - it's better than nothing. Of the *primary* cast members from SNL from the 2000s, there are quite a few I'd rather see DVD sets of - but again, that's really personal taste at work. What bothers me, those tastes aside, is the price point for this set. $20 for what amounts to a single episode of SNL and no bonus material? Really? That's absolutely ridiculous - I wouldn't pay for a 90 minute compilation set for ANY cast member at that price - luckily they eventually come down.
If you're an Amy Poehler fan, go ahead and pick this set up. Otherwise, there are other ways to spend your $10-$20 than this. A $20 MSRP for 90 minutes of a TV show is just ridiculous. Recommendation to avoid.

-- Reviewed by Seth Thrasher
(2.5/5 stars)

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Friday, October 16, 2009

WPIX's Halloween Chiller Theatre and a November 13 Marathon of a Sitcom; Hallmark Cuts Lucy...Again

While WGN America airs a Munsters and Addams Family marathon for Halloween (Oct. 30 and 31), local New York station WPIX is going for some movie horror. WPIX is airing The Evil of Frankenstein on Halloween night (Saturday, October 31) at 8pm (as Chiller Theatre) and this year its hosted by Elvira, Mistress of the Dark and will feature the original Chiller Theatre opens: "The Six-Fingered Hand" and the "Monster Montage"
(wpix.com/chillertheatre).
Chiller Theatre originally aired on WPIX from 1961-1978 and again from 1980-1982. After WPIX resurrected Chiller Theatre in 2008 (with a broadcast of Tarantula hosted by Zacherley) the station received hundreds of requests from viewers demanding the return of Chiller Theatre to the air. So this year, Elvira, Mistress of the Dark will host WPIX's Chiller Theatre presentation.
The 1964 campy chiller The Evil of Frankenstein -- from Hammer Film Productions, one of the most famous names in horror -- Peter Cushing stars as Baron Frankenstein who resurrects his monster only to have him come under the spell of Zoltan, a svengali-like carnival hypnotist who mesmerizes the creature into doing his evil bidding.

And that's not all the WPIX news we have! Let's see if you can guess it before I reveal it. On what opening theme did we have a narration that mentioned November 13? Did you figure it out? Still stumped? Read this: "On November 13, Felix Unger was asked to remove himself from his place of residence. (Unger's unseen wife slams door. She reopens it and angrily hands Felix his saucepan) That request came from his wife. Deep down, he knew she was right, but he also knew that someday, he would return to her. With nowhere else to go, he appeared at the home of his childhood friend, Oscar Madison. Sometime earlier, Madison's wife had thrown him out, requesting that he never return. Can two divorced men share an apartment without driving each other crazy?"
Yes, the classic '70s ABC sitcom The Odd Couple! In a cool marathon stunt, WPIX will air a late night marathon of The Odd Couple on that very day when Felix leaves his wife and moves in with Oscar...and that's how they became The Odd Couple. WPIX in New York will air the marathon from 11pm-4:30am on Friday, November 13 with classic episodes. Episodes airing are "Password," "You Saved My Life," "Sleepwalkers," "The Flying Felix," "The Odd Monks," "Felix Calypso Singer," "Let's Make a Deal," "The Subway Show," "The New Car," "A Grave for Felix," and "I Gotta Be Me." We'll have more on this if anything new arises, and let's hope WPIX can do some more marathons of shows!

It was just on Tuesday when we announced that we would be getting more I Love Lucy on Hallmark, but guess what...now that will be cut. Like I said, Hallmark's love and hate relationship continues with Lucy. They quietly removed the weekdays 9-10am hour of I Love Lucy yesterday and returned Golden Girls in the hour, so now that airs 9am-1pm...for now (keep reading). Starting Monday (Oct. 19) Touched by an Angel returns to weekdays at 12 noon, replacing an hour of The Golden Girls, as that is now 9am-12pm every weekday morning. Then once again I Love Lucy is given a short leash and is getting cut completely from its current 5pm-11pm hours. M*A*S*H returns and will air in its old 5pm-8pm hours, while Touched by an Angel returns at 8pm, and the primetime movie from 9-11pm. So I Love Lucy goes from 7 hours a day this week to ZERO hours a day next week! What is with the love-hate relationship? Ratings must be key to the changes, but it seems Hallmark makes moves and changes those moves within days. Are you getting tired of it? Sound off on our message board! Ah, the on going soap opera of Hallmark Channel schedule changes!

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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Nick at Nite Changes Midnight Hour; Season 2 of Durham County Premieres in January on ION

If you were watching Nick at Nite last night, they made a very last minute change. Every night in the midnight hour is now another hour of The Nanny instead of Malcolm in the Middle. So this means The Nanny is now 11pm-1am. Malcolm in the Middle will remain in the 8pm hour every Sun-Thurs and weekends 1-2am. In other changes, it seems Everybody Hates Chris has gained the Friday 9pm hour from Nickelodeon, so now it airs an extra night in primetime since it already was airing Sun-Thurs in the hour.
For the week of October 19, which is next week, Nick at Nite has listed Glenn Martin, DDS in the 8pm half-hour from Mon-Thurs, so that means Malcolm in the Middle is only 8:30pm. We are not certain yet if this is only for that week or until further notice. So stay with us!

The lesson that "love hurts" is well learned by the characters who inhabit the eerie suburb of Durham County when the original scripted primetime series launches its second season on ION Television in January, 2010. The series, which debuted this fall, returns to the bleak and disturbing landscape of an alienated suburbia with a new star villain – Michelle Forbes, known for her intense portrayals on the hit HBO series True Blood and In Treatment this year.
Produced by Muse Entertainment and Back Alley Films, Durham County unfolds season two in the aftermath of the devastating impact of serial killer Ray Prager (Romano Orzari) on the lives of its characters, anchored by Homicide Detective Mike Sweeney (Hugh Dillon), his now estranged wife Audrey (Hélène Joy) and their traumatized teenage daughter Sadie (Laurence Leboeuf). While the true villain of the first season turned out to be Sweeney's former high school classmate and new neighbor, the evil threat in the second season comes from a woman who develops a close bond with Mike, the brilliant, but deeply troubled forensic psychiatrist Pen Verrity (Michelle Forbes). Rejected by her husband and grieving for a daughter we can't be certain she didn't kill, she sets her sights on having Mike Sweeney - at any cost.
The series just completed its first season of six episodes on ION Television on Monday (Oct. 12), but the ratings for the series dropped a lot from first to the sixth episode, with the lowest episodes doing a 0.2/0 HH rating/share.

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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Ugly Betty Reruns on TV Guide Network Details; TeenNick, Nick at Nite Halloween Programs

Back in July we told you that TV Guide Network has gotten the rerun rights to Ugly Betty starting this October with repurpose rights then daily strip rights starting in fall 2010...now we have details on the repurpose rights!
Thursday nights are about to get a little bit 'Bettyer' as TV Guide Network prepares to telecast encore airings of the new season of Ugly Betty this fall. Longtime fans and curious newcomers that miss the Friday premiere of new Ugly Betty episodes on ABC can get caught up with TV Guide Network Thursdays at 7:00 p.m. ET/PT, beginning October 22.
The season premiere this year is a two-part episode, so part two will air on TV Guide Network on Friday, October 23 at 7:00 p.m. And if you forgot what happened on last season's season finale, then you can catch up on either Thursday or Friday of this week (Oct. 15 and 16) and watch it on TV Guide Network at 7pm both nights, just in time for the two-hour season premiere on ABC from 8-10pm on Friday.
Leading up to the October 22 encore telecast, TV Guide Network will air special Ugly Betty themed programming including a behind-the-scenes look at the set of Ugly Betty, cast interviews, a series overview, scoop on the new season, and fashion tips on how to emulate the characters' signature styles on the show.
Among the specials airing are inFANity: Ugly Betty (October 19 at 7 p.m.); The Fashion Team: Ugly Betty Style (October 20 at 7 p.m.); and Look-A-Like: America Ferrera (October 21 at 7 p.m.). Other specials that will air are Look-A-Like: Salma Hayek, Lindsay Lohan, and Lucy Liu...all who appeared on the show.
TV Guide Network also wants to give Ugly Betty fans a chance to be on television. Fans are invited to share their comments and reactions to the new season by uploading video comments to a new YouTube channel created specifically for them. Fans who visit www.youtube.com/uglybettyfans will have the opportunity to share their thoughts on the show, talk about which characters they love and which they love to hate, give their reactions to the latest episodes, and send a hello to their favorite cast members. A selection of YouTube video posts will air on TV Guide Network leading up to each Thursday Ugly Betty encore telecast.
On Saturday, October 17 between 1:00 and 3:00 p.m., Ugly Betty fans in the Los Angeles area are invited to meet in the second floor courtyard area of the Hollywood & Highland Center for a chance to be interviewed about the show. Fans are encouraged to dress as their favorite character and should come prepared to talk about their favorite Ugly Betty episodes and stars, and why they love the show. Fan interviews will air on TV Guide Network Thursdays before Ugly Betty encore airings.
Read more about the special Ugly Betty programming TV Guide Network has planned the week of Oct. 19.

TeenNick's (Formerly The N) has a week-long Halloween marathon that will...well scae you! TeenNick's "Now THAT's Scary" programming will include marathons featuring the hair-raising chills and thrills of teendom from Monday, Oct. 26 to Thursday, Oct. 29, starting at 8:00 p.m. (ET) through 12:00 a.m. (ET) and continues Friday, Oct. 30 and Saturday, Oct. 31 with afternoon marathons starting at 3 p.m. (ET) of Degrassi: The Next Generation through 12:00 a.m. (ET). The "nightmare-athons" in primetime (Oct. 26-29) will feature episodes of Full House, Sabrina, The Teenage Witch, One on One and What I Like About You with a block of each show each night.
Other Nickelodeon family of networks Halloween programming includes a Glenn Martin Halloween episode on Nick at Nite. On Monday, Oct. 26, Nick at Nite will kick off a night of Halloween-themed programming with a brand-new Glenn Martin, DDS at 8:00 p.m. followed by Halloween-themed episodes of Malcolm in the Middle, Everybody Hates Chris and George Lopez from 8:30-11pm.
And Nickelodeon will have Halloween-themed episodes of its live action series The Troop and True Jackson VP on Oct. 23 and 24 at 8:30pm.


Don't forget ABC Comedy Wednesday starting tonight at 8/7 central! Today's blog is sponsored by Modern Family, airing 9/8 central tonight on ABC Comedy Wednesday. Funniest episode yet with special guest Shelley Long! The song at the end will have you in tears of laughter!

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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

More Lucy on Hallmark; ABC Picks Up FLASHFORWARD for Full Season

Last Friday we told you about some Hallmark Channel changes beginning Monday (yesterday), now they have made a change that starts tonight! We get even more I Love Lucy! They must have a love-hate relationship with Lucy! In addition to the changes listed on Friday's blog, now effective tonight (Tuesday, Oct. 13), I Love Lucy will air 9-11pm as well replacing Touched by an Angel, which is off the line-up for NOW. It's slated to return to 8pm starting Oct. 26, but that could change. As of now, I Love Lucy airs weekdays 5-11pm and also in the morning 9-10am. That's a whole lotta Lucy! Will it last? You'll just have to keep checking back with us to see!

Also last Friday we announced that ABC has picked-up Comedy Wednesday comedies The Middle, Modern Family, and Cougar Town for full seasons, now no surprise they have picked up drama FLASHFORWARD for a full season.
From 8:00-9:00 p.m. on Thursday, ABC's FLASHFORWARD ranks No. 1 in Adults 18-49, leading CBS' time-period veteran Survivor: Samoa through its first three airings. On its series debut telecast, the new ABC drama became the first regular program since Friends in 2004 to beat Survivor in the key young adult sales demo. The ABC freshman is an exceptionally strong draw among Adults 18-34, dominating its time period and qualifying as TV's No. 1 new drama series this season. The new series is greatly improving its time period year-to-year for ABC, boosting the hour by 1.8 million viewers and by 32% in Adults 18-49 over the same nights last year. Based on DVR playback during season-premiere week (Sept. 21-27), FLASHFORWARD finished as TV's biggest freshman gainer, as its numbers jumped by 2.0 million viewers (12.5 million to 14.5 million) and 8-tenths of an Adult 18-49 rating point (4.1 rating to 4.9 rating) from the initially reported next-day numbers to 7-day DVR finals.
ABC has said they have picked up 25 episodes of the series, so that is three more than usual. As of now the comedies are 22 each, but that could change to something more if necessary.
Building on its lead-in at 8:30 p.m. among viewers (+4%) and young adults (+26%), ABC's The Middle qualifies as the most-watched TV show in its time period and a ranks a strong No. 2 in the half-hour to Fox's time-period regular So You Think You Can Dance among Adults 18-49. The new ABC comedy also holds the No. 1 position in its half-hour with Adults 25-54 and Men 18-49. On average, The Middle is boosting ABC's numbers in half-hour year-to-year by 2.1 million viewers and by 20% in Adults 18-49, over the same nights last season.
Standing as TV's most-watched new comedy this season, ABC's Modern Family ranks No. 1 in its half-hour among Adults 18-49. Modern Family is also No. 1 in its slot among Women 18-49 and Men 18-34. On average, the freshman comedy is improving the time period year to year for ABC, growing its half-hour over the same nights last year by 3.0 million viewers and by 36% in Adults 18-49. The mockumentary style sitcom is out-delivering NBC's similar style The Office in total viewers this season averaging 10.47 million viewers through its first three airings.
And finally, exhibiting impressive compatibility, ABC's Cougar Town holds 100% retention of its Modern Family lead-in in Adults 18-49. Cougar Town ranks a strong No. 2 in its half-hour in Adults 18-49, just two-tenths of a ratings point behind and tied in audience share with first-place CBS's veteran drama, Criminal Minds. The new show leads its time period among Men 18-34. The freshman comedy is also improving the time period for ABC year-to-year, boosting ABC's results over the comparable year-ago nights in Total Viewers (+19%) and Adults 18-49 (+23%).

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Monday, October 12, 2009

TV Land November 2009 Highlights; Lifetime Weekday Changes

This November on TV Land, there will be no schedule changes, as of now, but we have movie premieres and the annual Thanksgiving event! The regular schedule with changes that started in October will carry over into November. So Married...with Children is still not back on TV Land. Friday PRIME movie premieres for November are Crocodile Dundee II and Twelve Angry Men. Encores for the month are City Slickers and Footloose. TV Land will also premiere the big screen Dennis the Menace movie on Saturday, November 21 at 8am. Not sure why they didn't premiere it in primetime...could be a contract thing. Weekend marathon blocks continue in November, but Sundays are now the same every week with blocks of Hogan's Heroes, Beverly Hillbillies, TV Land Goes West and Andy Griffith Show. But on Saturdays they are different each week. We will see marathon blocks such as Brady Bunch, Sanford & Son, 3rd Rock from the Sun, Leave it to Beaver, and The Beverly Hillbillies.
As for stunts, all we have in November 2009 is the 3rd Annual Overstuffed Thanksgiving Weekend from Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 26) to Sunday, November 29. TV Land knows that once the holidays begin that you can always make room for one more - eating one more helping of food, giving one more gift or watching one more of your favorite classic TV shows! The 3rd Annual Overstuffed Thanksgiving Weekend will serving up four days filled with multi-packs of great TV. So gather the family around and feed your funny bone with multiple TV servings as well as a back-to-back double-features of some our viewers' favorite movies. With favorites The Andy Griffith Show, Sanford & Son, Little House on The Prairie, Beverly Hillbillies, Brady Bunch and Hogan's Heroes together with movies Crocodile Dundee II and Footloose, there will be something for everyone in the family!
It looks like a November to remember on TV Land! View the full TV Land November 2009 schedule and highlights!

Starting today Lifetime has made some minor schedule changes. The 12pm airing of Wife Swap will be replaced by Medium, but Wife Swap will still remain 1pm & 2pm. Then weeknights at 7pm starting tomorrow (because Project Runway marathon is today from 3pm-11pm) will be a third consecutive hour of Grey's Anatomy, replacing Medium. Grey's Anatomy's late night airing of 1:30am will be replaced by Medium starting tonight, though. So Medium gets a third airing, but it loses its evening slot. And finally on weekends, How I Met Your Mother was airing Saturday nights 1-2am, now that will be Sunday nights 1-2am instead.
As for original sitcoms Sherri and Rita Rocks, catch new episodes Tuesdays at 10pm & 10:30pm and then encores later that night at 1am & 1:30am. And for this week only, the comedies are encoring 10am-11am weekdays this week ONLY.

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Sunday, October 11, 2009

Week 3 TV Ratings and Analysis; How the Sitcoms Did

Week 3 numbers (first four nights, Mon-Wed):
(Network averages for Thursday were not available, thus here are final network averages for Mon-Wed. Final program numbers are available in the analysis, though.)

Households: #1. CBS 8.3/13.3; #2. ABC 6.4/10.2; #3. Fox 4.8/7.4; #4. NBC 4.4/7.0; #5. The CW 1.4/2.2
Total Viewers: #1. CBS 13.11 million; #2. ABC 9.72 million; #3. Fox 8.05 million; #4. NBC 6.84 million; #5. The CW 2.01 million.
Adults 18-49: #1. CBS 3.5/9.2; #2. Fox 3.3/8.8; #3. ABC 2.5/6.5; #4. NBC 2.4/6.3; #5. The CW 1.0/2.7.

Analysis: For week three we have CBS on top through the first four days in all categories and it will remain that way after tonight, too. I'll explain why later. Through the first four days in week two, CBS has the lead in all categories, with ABC second in HH/viewers but a close third in 18-49 (after Thursday numbers are counted in), with Fox in third in HH/viewers, but second in 18-49 and NBC is back in fourth everywhere. Last week, week 2, Fox took the crown in 18-49 nipping both ABC and CBS (tied for second), while CBS won the week in HH/total viewers. ABC was second in HH/viewers. NBC was third in HH/viewers (thanks to an NFL game), with Fox fourth. NBC was fourth in 18-49, though...even with the NFL.
On Monday ABC, Fox and CBS did well again. A two-hour Dancing with the Stars won the total viewer race with 16.35 million for ABC, down from the previous week, but ABC programs were preempted in the Minneapolis, Milwaukee/Green Bay markets for the huge NFL game. An all-new Castle followed with a solid 9.23 million, up from the previous week a bit despite not airing in those markets this week due to NFL. Good job! Next up was CBS with its comedies and CSI: Miami. How I Met Your Mother started it off with 8.08 million, down from the previous week by nearly a million and Accidentally on Purpose followed doing 7.17 million and a 2.8 18-49 rating, which could be better...both down from the previous week. Two and a Half Men followed with 13.3 million which was down a bit from the previous week, but The Big Bang Theory continues to impress and did a nice 12.52 million, but that was down nearly a million from the previous week. The show also did a 4.7 18-49 rating, down from the series high of 5.3 the previous week. A new episode of CSI: Miami did 13.43 million, down a bit from the previous week. Fox had a regular edition of House and it did 13.74 million, which was down a million from the the previous week... the show did a 5.4 A18-49 rating, down from the 5.8 the previous week. NBC followed with the free-falling Heroes doing 5.46 million, down from the previous week. A new episode of Trauma followed and did only 5.36 million and only a 1.7 A18-49 rating, both down from the premiere the previous week. The Jay Leno Show followed with only 4.45 million, down a million from previous week. The CW on Mondays has been a struggle so far, with One Tree Hill doing only 2.13 million and Gossip Girl at an even worse 2.08 million...both down week-to-week.
On Tuesday, CBS was in control despite some declines. CBS had the always reliable NCIS opening the night off with 20.7 million, down from the series high the previous week. A new episode of NCIS: Los Angeles was next and did 16.31 million, down a million again from the previous week and lost the 18-49 crown for the first time. And finally CBS aired The Good Wife and did 13.69 million, exactly the same as previous week. Wasn't Without a Trace doing about the same and CBS canned it? ABC was a distant second with a new episode of Shark Tank doing only 5.15 million...but up a bit week-to-week. Again, this show is perfect for summer. Then it was Dancing with the Stars: The Results doing 12.42 million, down week-to-week as we said goodbye to Debi Mazar and also Tom Delay as he left due to injury. ABC followed with a new episode of the forgotten doing 7.55 million, up a bit week-to-week despite the lead-in going down. NBC was next with The Biggest Loser 2-hour show doing 9.25 million, up a bit from previous week, followed by the The Jay Leno Show at just 6.22 million (the best it can do), which was down from previous week. Fox aired Hell's Kitchen at 8 doing 7.43 million and a solid 3.3 18-49 rating, both up week-to-week. Quietly this show delivers. So You Think You Can Dance Tuesday was next and it bombed with only 5.47 million, but up week-to-week. The CW aired 90210 with just 2.09 million, followed by dud Melrose Place at an even worse 1.6 million. The latter was up a bit from previous week, while the former was down.
Wednesday again it was CBS with the overall win, but ABC and Fox had a lot doing well. CBS started slow with Old Christine doing 6.86 million, which was up a tad from the previous week, followed by Gary Unmarried at 6.84 million, up a bit from its previous week. Veteran drama Criminal Minds did 14.05 million which was down a bit from the previous week, with CSI: NY doing 12.43 million, down from previous week. ABC started the 8pm hour with Hank & The Middle but saw declines. Hank did an OK 6.45 million but only a 1.6 18-49 rating, both down from the premiere the previous week. The Middle did a better 6.79 million and a 2.1 18-49 rating, nice builds from the lead-in in 18-49, as it shows Hank is the weak link. New episodes of the hilarious sitcoms Modern Family and Cougar Town both did well again with 8.82 and 7.84 million, but down some from previous week. The A18-49 ratings for both were more telling doing 3.4 and 3.2. Look for Shelley Long on Modern Family this week, and I have seen it and it is SO funny! Best episode probably yet. If you liked the pilot, you're in for some great stuff again. WATCH!! At 10pm Eastwick did only 5.14 million, down from previous week, which is a shame because that was the best episode yet. NBC opened the night with Mercy doing 7.43 million, up a tad from the previous week. Law & Order: SVU followed and only did 8.29 million, but up some from previous week. At 10pm NBC aired The Jay Leno Show of course at just 5.71 million, down week-to-week again. Fox was fourth, with So You Think You Can Dance at 6.22 million...down from previous week, but then Glee followed to a decent 7.28 million and a 3.3 A18-49 rating, both were on par really from previous week. The CW had its usual showing of Top Model at 3.16 million, down a tad from previous week and a repeat of Melrose Place followed with just 980,000 viewers.
Thursday it was ABC on top in 18-49 and CBS overall again. ABC opened the night with FLASHFORWARD doing 9.0 million and a 3.0 18-49 rating, both very solid but down some from previous week. Look for it to do better this week. A new Grey's Anatomy followed with 14.13 million and a great 5.4 A18-49 rating. And new episode of Private Practice did a solid 9.5 million and a first place at 10pm 3.6 A18-49 rating. Dr. Bailey guest stars next week! CBS opened with Survivor: Gabon at 11.69 million and a 3.4 A18-49 rating. A new episode of CSI followed with 14.9 million, down a million week-to-week, while The Mentalist was also down a million week-to-week with 14.7 million. Fox started off well with Bones at a solid 10.29 million...up again from previous week, but Fringe followed and only did 5.83 million and a 2.1 18-49 rating, both down from previous week. Baseball on TBS could have effected all the male driven shows on this night like FLASHFORWARD and Fringe. NBC was next with Community in its new time of 8pm doing 4.87 million down from SNL's numbers the previous week and its own numbers, followed by sitcom dud Parks & Recreation at only 4.75 million, though it was up ever so slightly week-to-week. At 9pm a special one-hour episode of The Office did 9.42 million and a solid 4.8 18-49 rating, both up big week-to-week. The Jay Leno Show closed the night with only 4.84 million, down week-to-week again. It went down every night this week. Stupid NBC. The CW's only consistent player so far is Vampire Diaries doing 3.5w million, on par really week-to-week, followed by Supernatural at a could-be-better 2.47 million...what happened this season?
Now, final numbers for Friday and Saturday are not available, but CBS won Friday with their dramas but only mustered a prelim 1.9 18-49 rating average. Fox continues to stumble on Friday with Brothers, 'Til Death & Dollhouse watching the cancelation clock.
Saturday numbers had CBS win with College Football as #1 Florida beat #4 LSU in a defensive battle.
Tonight the full ABC Sunday line-up is airing (AFV, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Desperate Housewives, and Brothers & Sisters). NBC should have something to tout about with the NFL game, but could be down from previous week due to MLB Playoffs on TBS. CBS has its usual players, but Three Rivers will be slaughtered again. Fox has its animation block from 8-10pm, including rookie The Cleveland Show. But how will it due this week without NFL? A new Brothers also airs tonight at 7 on a special night and time.
As for week three, CBS will win in HH, viewers and even 18-49 thanks to College Football on Saturday probably tripling their usual numbers. Look for ABC in second in HH/viewers, but likely third in 18-49. NBC could be 3rd in HH/viewers, and a closer fourth in 18-49. With Fox likely taking second in 18-49 but fourth in HH/viewers.

Last Sunday Sitcoms (counts for week of September 28-October 4)

  • Brothers (Fox) encore - preempted.
  • The Simpsons (Fox) - 9.37 million and a 4.4 18-49 rating...both up from the season premiere the previous week. A direct NFL lead-in helps.
  • The Cleveland Show (Fox) - 8.86 million and a 4.4 18-49 rating. Both down from the series premiere a week prior, but still very good.
  • Family Guy (Fox) - 9.86 million and a 5.1 18-49 rating. Both down just a tad from the season premiere. Fox doesn't have a direct NFL lead-in this week...so expect big declines for all of the animated comedies.
  • American Dad (Fox) - 7.14 million and a 3.6 18-49 rating...both exactly the same from the season premiere a week prior. Not bad, but could be better considering the lead-in.

Monday Sitcoms

  • How I Met Your Mother (CBS) - New episode did 8.08 million, lower than the previous week, but the 3.4 A18-49 rating is solid.
  • Accidentally on Purpose (CBS) - 7.17 million for week three and a 2.8 18-49 rating, both down from the previous week. Concerning, but let's see the next few weeks how it does.
  • Two and a Half Men (CBS) - 13.3 million...down some from the previous week.
  • The Big Bang Theory (CBS) - 12.52 million...down from the previous week but still built from the lead-in's 18-49 rating from a 4.4 to a 4.7...nicely done.


Tuesday Sitcoms

  • None.

Wednesday Sitcoms

  • Old Christine (CBS) - New episode did 6.86 million, up a bit from previous week. 18-49 rating of a 1.9 was the same though.
  • Gary Unmarried (CBS) - Like the lead-in, 6.84 million, up a bit from previous week, but built from the lead-in a bit in 18-49 to a 2.2 rating.
  • Hank (ABC) - Down two million from 8.34 million to 6.45 million in week two. 2.2 18-49 for the premiere was down to 1.6 this week. Not good.
  • The Middle (ABC) -6.79 million for week two is not too good, but it built nicely from the lead-in in 18-49 from a 1.6 to a 2.1. ABC needs to remove Hank. This show is not the problem...it has been picked-up for a full season!
  • Modern Family (ABC) - Episode three did 8.82 million and a nice 3.4 18-49 rating, but both down week-to-week. Look for a rise this week with Shelley Long guesting. And it is GREAT. I've seen it. Trust me!
  • Cougar Town (ABC) - Episode three for this great sitcom did 7.84 million and a 3.2 18-49 rating, both also down some from previous week. Promos for next week look good with Cox in a hot dress with noodles in her hair? Find out what I mean this Wednesday!

Thursday Sitcoms

  • Parks & Recreation (NBC) - This show did terrible doing only 4.75 million and just a 2.1 A18-49 rating...sorry Amy Poehler, but you did go up from previous week a bit for a second straight week!
  • The Office (NBC) - Building on the lead-in, the special one-hour wedding episode did 9.42 million, but its strength is 18-49 and it did a 4.8 rating.
  • Community (NBC) - The series is now at 8pm and only did 4.87 million and a 1.9 18-49 rating ... both down big from previous week when it had the cushy Office lead-in.

Friday Sitcoms

  • Brothers (Fox) - Worse than the previous two weeks! Prelim ratings show a terrible 2.35 million.
  • 'Til Death (Fox) - Premlim shows 2.36 million, but better than the previous week's prelim of 2.29 million!
  • Modern Family (ABC) - Special encore of Wednesday's episode did a prelim 2.95 million at 9pm. Anything for more exposure!
  • The Middle (ABC) - Special encore of Wednesday's episode did a prelim 2.76 million. Hey it beat the Fox sitcoms!

Saturday Sitcoms

  • None.

Airing tonight (Sunday) are new episodes of Fox's animated comedies from 8-10PM, along with Brothers at 7.

Summing it up. Two and a Half Men, Modern Family, Cougar Town, The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, The Office were impressive for the week. Everything else was OK (such as The Middle, Accidentally on Purpose) or just plain old terrible (such as Community, Brothers).

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Saturday, October 10, 2009

Blog DVD Reviews: The Very First Alvin Show and The Chipmunks Go to the Movies: Star Wreck

It is Saturday, so that must mean it is time for the weekly Blog DVD Reviews. This week we take a look at Paramount Home Entertainment's Alvin & the Chipmunks: The Very First Alvin Show and Alvin & the Chipmunks Go to the Movies: Star Wreck. It is so cool to have an episode of the '60s series The Alvin Show on DVD! See my Blog DVD Reviews of Alvin & the Chipmunks: The Very First Alvin Show and Alvin & the Chipmunks Go to the Movies: Star Wreck:

Alvin & the Chipmunks: The Very First Alvin Show (Paramount, $16.99) brings the very first episode of the '60s classic The Alvin Show on DVD along with A Chipmunk Reunion from 1985 and a 1991 retrospective. In the '60s series' first episode, "Stanlet the Eagle," Alvin, Simon, and Theodore get a "pet" eagle, and they have to teach it how to fly. Each episode of the series had two episodes and two musical segments. The second mini-episode features the scientist Clyde Crashup who tries to invent the sport "Baseball" in his own way. The two musical segments are Alvin and the Chipmunks singing "Oh, Gondaliero!" and "I Wish I Could Speak French."

We have had many Chipmunk sets, some even re-released. Basically, we have had Chipmunks Go To The Movies sets (which featured episodes like "Daytona Jones and the Pearl of Wisdom," "Robomunk," "Star Wreck," "Batmunk," and "Funny...We Shrunk the Adults"). We have also had holiday themed sets such as Valentine's, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas specials releases. Paramount has also released the Chipmunk Adventure feature film from 1987. We also had episodes featuring The Chipettes from the original series 1983-87 series. And my personal favorite was the Alvinnn! Edition, which was the first set to have episodes from the original 1983-87 series.

This set has the first episode of the 1961 series. The first episode runs 25:36 with six chapter stops. We also get a 1985 episode from Alvin & the Chipmunks era titled "A Chipmunk Reunion." In "A Chipmunk Reunion," the Chipmunks search for their long lost mother. The episode is from the 1983-87 series and runs around 24:00 with seven chapter stops available. The next is an NBC special from 1991 titled "The Chipmunks Present Rockin' Through the Decades." This is a 1991 special hosted by Will Smith with many special guests like Markie Post. This special runs 23:21 with seven chapter stops.

Packaging is simple and in the same line as the previous Chipmunks sets--a nice simple case with the discs inside. Cover art features the original Alvin, Simon, & Theodore from The Alvin Show with Clyde Crashcup and Leonardo lurking in a flying cup. Back of the case we have info on the set and the episodes, with all three Chipmunks with Dave Seville. There are also four little episodic photos. We get a red box listing the episode titles for the set. Disc art has the same artwork as the cover art, but we don't see Clyde Crashcup & Leonardo this time. And finally there is an insert inside that is a comic strip style featuring Clyde and Leonardo. All the artwork is from the '60s series!

The menu screen has the same artwork has cover art. We have an option to Play All, but the episodes are listed right on the menu screen. We do have a Previews option, but that is the same thing as the auto-trailer for Chipmunk sets before the main menu begins. At least we don't get any other trailers. This is very basic, but it works. I wish we had some music at least playing in the background!
The video and audio are GREAT for The Alvin Show first episode. Paramount transferred this from 35mm to HD! A Chipmunk Reunion and the retrospective are similar to previous sets. They are certainly not remastered or anything, but are watchable, though. So it is worth the buy, just because The Alvin Show is so rare. Even Alvin & The Chipmunks is not on TV anymore in reruns, so it is nice to see those, too!

I highly do recommend any fan to pick up this set. It is so nice that they FINALLY released an episode of The Alvin Show on DVD. Since they remastered the pilot episode to HD, I hope that means we get the entire series soon? I am more familiar (and a big fan) with the '80s series, but I hope to see more of the '60s series! I never watched the '60s series in repeats on Nickelodeon in the early '90s, but I wish I did. It is also nice we get the 1991 retrospective on DVD as well. But come on Paramount let's release a complete series set of The Alvin Show and start releasing Alvin & The Chipmunks in season sets as well! Fans want this! So anyway, first let's get the episode that started it all!

-- Reviewed by Pavan
(4/5 stars)

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Alvin & the Chipmunks Go to the Movies: Star Wreck (Paramount, $16.99) brings the gang spoofing Star Trek along with Dick Tracy and Sherlock Holmes. Funny things are happening where no Chipmunk has dared to go! Alvin stars as Captain Dirk, commander of the S.S. Boobyprize; Simon is Mr. Speck, and Brittany is Uhaha. Together, they must rescue fellow crewmember Dr. McRoy (Theodore) after he gets abducted by a weird extraterrestrial family! This high-flying spoof of the box office smash will leave you beaming with laughter!
We have had many Chipmunk sets, some even re-released. Basically, we have had Chipmunks Go To The Movies sets (which featured episodes like "Daytona Jones and the Pearl of Wisdom," "Robomunk," "Star Wreck," "Chip Tracy," "Batmunk," and "Funny...We Shrunk the Adults"). We have also had holiday themed sets such as Valentine's, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas specials releases. Paramount has also released the Chipmunk Adventure feature film from 1987. We also had episodes featuring The Chipettes from the original series 1983-87 series. We even got the old 1961 pilot of The Alvin Show. And my personal favorite was the Alvinnn! Edition, which was the first set to have episodes from the original 1983-87 series.

This set has two episodes from The Chipmunks Go to the Movies (1990) and an episode from The Chipmunks years (1988-89). The "Star Wreck" episode runs 22:33 with five chapter stops, but the closing credits are missing. Next we have the episode "Chip Tracy," from the Movies season. In "Chip Tracy," we follow the only clean cop in a city awash in crime. The episode runs 23:07 with five chapter stops. The final episode is from The Chipmunks years. In "Elementary, My Dear Simon," we find the Chipmunks on the trail of the infamous Moriarty. This episode runs 23:35 with five chapter stops.

Packaging is simple and in the same line as the previous Chipmunks sets--a nice simple case with the discs inside. Cover art features Alvin, Simon, & Theodore in their Star Wreck characters. Back of the case we have info on the set and the episodes, with the trio sitting inside the spaceship. We get a little light blue/greyish box listing the episode titles for the set. Disc art has the same artwork as the cover art. Inside the case we also have an insert for Chipmunks sets on DVD and Chipmunks.com.

The menu screen has the same artwork has cover art. Options are Play All, but the episodes are listed right on the main menu. We also have a Previews option, but it the same as the auto-trailer for Chipmunks sets found before the main menu starts. At least we don't get any other trailers.
The video and audio are OK at best, some episodes look good (not great though), some don't. If you have any of the other sets, you'll know what I mean. They are certainly not remastered or anything, like I have mentioned before. They are watchable, though. So it is worth the buy, especially since this series is not on television anymore. The copies are a bit better than VHS that you may have recorded from the original run or 90s syndication. These episodes are from 1988-1990, so they aren't too bad. The audio is in stereo.

I highly do recommend any fan to pick up this set. Especially if you have all the Chipmunks Go to the Movies sets so far. It would have been better if all were released at once rather than all these sing disc sets, but what can we do?
These episodes are not as good as the 1983-87 seasons or even the 1988-89 season, but they are still good to see and collect! Spoofs are always cool to see. We get this Star Wreck episode for some reason a second time on DVD. They should have released "Kong!" at least, since that hasn't been released on DVD yet. Other episodes from this season not yet released are: "S.T.", "Irrational Buffoon's European Vacation," "Gremilonis," and "Sploosh." Give us that complete season set of this already! Anyway, it is time to boldly go where no Chipmunk has dared to go...again, but at least we get to solve crime with Chip Tracy and Sherlock Holmes!

-- Reviewed by Pavan
(4/5 stars)

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Friday, October 09, 2009

ABC Picks Up Full Seasons of 3 New Comedies; Hallmark Does More Changing; Bio TV's TV Related Specials

ABC has announced it has given early full season orders to three of the four new Comedy Wednesday sitcoms. The Middle starring Patricia Heaton, Modern Family starring Ed O'Neill and Cougar Town starring Courtney Cox were given at least 22 episodes for this season, adding on nine episodes at least in the original 13 episode order. The latter two especially has done well in the ratings, in particular in 18-49. They have set up for a good comedy foundation for the network. No news was given yet on Hank starring Kelsey Grammer, the next few airings will be key for its future.
The three comedies join CBS's NCIS: LA & The Good Wife, along with Fox's Glee and Cleveland Show in full season pick-ups, though the latter was given multiple season orders before it even aired. Look for more full season renewals officially soon such as for ABC drama FLASHFORWARD.

Well it must be Friday because The Hallmark Channel has made some changes to its schedule. Effective Monday (October 12), the weekday 9am hour will now be I Love Lucy instead of The Golden Girls. So Golden Girls in the mornings are now 10am-1pm instead of 9am-1pm. And it will still air weeknights 11pm-2am. Then starting next Saturday (Oct. 17), M*A*S*H returns and will air Saturdays from 9am-11am replacing The Golden Girls. Then on both Saturday and Sunday nights starting next weekend, Walker, Texas Ranger is back, replacing The Golden Girls from 1-3am on both nights. And finally Sundays starting next Sunday we have another hour of Jack Hanna's Animal Adventures on Sundays in the 10am hour, and yes it replaces The Golden Girls. The Golden Girls is now totally off the line-up on weekends but remain of course on weekdays. So if you're keeping track, Jack Hanna's Animal Adventures airs Saturdays 6am-9am and Sundays 8am-11am.
And for the November schedule, Touched by an Angel will replace I Love Lucy in the 8pm hour starting Oct. 26, but Lucy will remain 5-8pm. Touched by an Angel will not be airing 9pm and 10pm because of the previously announced movie airing weeknights 9-11pm starting Oct. 26.

Finally Bio TV has some new specials this month that are interesting. First on Tuesday (Oct. 13) at 10pm, they are airing Cast Confessions: The Facts of Life. This special takes you behind the scenes to reveal everything you never knew about one of our favorite sitcoms...The Facts of Life. Revisit this classic comedy as back-stage secrets and hidden drama are revealed through exclusive footage and interviews with original cast members, writers and network executives. Sounds interesting!
They have also premiered a new series called Celebrity Ghost Stories. It launched last Saturday and airs Saturdays at 10PM. In the premiere last week, celebs featured were Joan Rivers, David Carradine, Scott Baio, Teri Polo. Joan Rivers asks a voodoo priestess to help her with an angry ghost; Scott Baio's unresolved issues with his father haunt him when his dad dies; Teri Polo has a horrifying encounter one night when she's just 8 years old; and David Carradine has a strange encounter with his wife's dead husband. Airing tomorrow (Oct. 10) are about celebs Barry Williams, Debi Mazar, Greg Grunberg, Sammy Hagar. When Barry Williams holds a memorial service for his father, a few strange "happenings" make the day even more unforgettable; Debi Mazer gets a hostile welcome from a ghost when she moves into a friend's home; Greg Grunberg meets a ghost with a shocking past; and Sammy Hagar gets a visit from Van Halen's dead manager.
Upcoming celebs featured are: Carrie Fisher, Rue McClanahan, John Waters, Federico Castelluccio (10/17); Tom Arnold, Dee Snider, Carnie Wilson, Nia Long (10/24) Lisa Rinna, Jeffrey Ross, Vincent Curatola, Illeana Douglas (11/7); Carnie Wilson, Eric Roberts, Elisabeth Rohm, C. Thomas Howell (11/14); Justine Bateman, Traci Lords, Jay Thomas, James Kyson Lee (11/21). There will be a marathon on Halloween night starting at 8pm.

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Thursday, October 08, 2009

WGN America Long Term Pick-Ups, Munsters/Addams Family Halloween Marathon; CBS Orders Full Seasons of NCIS LA, Good Wife

We previously announced that 30 Rock and Entourage were coming to WGN America in Fall 2011 and Fall 2010 respectively, now they have announced other deals officially. They have announced that they have also acquired How I Met Your Mother, Old Christine and Curb Your Enthusiasm for Fall 2010. How I Met Your Mother and Old Christine will be shared with Lifetime, while 30 Rock will be shared with Comedy Central. Spike TV and Comedy Central will also air Entourage. All of these are first time in syndication and they have spent a lot of money for these off-network deals, but they will be shared with other networks so the price tag is down for both parties and that the other networks don't see WGN America as a strong competitor in the general entertainment realm. WGN America is focusing on contemporary sitcom fare with a little more edge.
But they still will have classic TV! In fact this Halloween, WGN America will have marathons of The Munsters and Addams Family! The Munsters marathon will air on Friday, October 30 from 4pm-12am ET (1pm-9pm PT). That's 16 classic episodes! And on Halloween itself (Saturday, October 31) spends the day with The Addams Family with a marathon from 3pm-12am ET (12pm-9pm PT). That's an hour more than The Munsters as we get 18 classic episodes!
View the episode info for each marathon.

CBS has given full season orders to NCIS: Los Angeles and The Good Wife, the top two new series of the 2009-2010 season thus far in total viewers. NCIS: Los Angeles the number one new program of the season in total viewers and ranked second among all primetime programs, is averaging 17.47 million viewers, 4.1/11 in adults 18-49 and 5.6/13 in adults 25-54 over its three broadcasts so far. NCIS: Los Angeles has won its Tuesday (9:00-10:00 PM) time period in viewers and adults 25-54 every week this season and placed first in adults 18-49 twice.
The Good Wife, the number two new series of the season in total viewers, is averaging 13.70 million viewers, 3.0/8 in adults 18-49 and 4.2/11 in adults 25-54, winning its Tuesday (10:00-11:00 PM) time period in all key measures each telecast thus far.

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Wednesday, October 07, 2009

TV Land Acquires Raymond, Boston Legal for 2010, Borrows Home Improvement, Nanny; Nick at Nite Renews Glenn Martin

TV Land has landed the exclusive primetime broadcast rights for the Emmy® Award-winning comedy, Everybody Loves Raymond, from CBS Television Distribution beginning June 2010. The series ran in primetime for eight seasons, totaling 212 episodes and will premiere in TV Land PRIME, the network's primetime programming block designed to appeal to the attitudes, life stage and interests of people in their 40s. Additionally, the network announced three other new series to hit the airwaves in 2010: Boston Legal, Home Improvement and The Nanny.
Everybody Loves Raymond will be shared with cable network TBS, which airs the series in daytime and will still do so next June. Boston Legal will premiere on TV Land in the first quarter of 2010, while Home Improvement is being borrowed from sister network Nick at Nite and will be either on both networks or will move to TV Land by first quarter 2010. My guess is that it will totally move to TV Land. Home Improvement also airs in the daytime on TBS, so TV Land will only have evening rights. The Nanny will also be borrowed from sister network Nick at Nite and will be either on both networks or will move to TV Land, but this won't happen until third quarter 2010...next fall. Boston Legal is currently not on cable besides the weekend play on WGN America, though ION Television does have broadcast weekday rights.
These four series represent a continued commitment to build TV Land PRIME, the network's primetime programming destination dedicated to 40-somethings - a vibrant group with unmatched purchasing power and living in the most dynamic stage of their lives with relationships at work, with family and with friends all thriving. All of the programming in TV Land PRIME is hand-picked to appeal to the attitudes, life stage and interests of this important demo.

Nickelodeon/Nick at Nite has ordered a second season of 20 episodes of stop-motion animated series Glenn Martin, DDS, the first television series from Michael Eisner's Tornante Animation. The animated comedy series chronicles the offbeat adventures of the Martin family as they crisscross America in their tricked-out RV, encountering an array of bizarre situations and colorful locals. Ranked as the number-one program on Nick at Nite last quarter, the show features an all-star voice cast that includes Kevin Nealon as Glenn Martin, Catherine O'Hara as Jackie Martin and Judy Greer as Wendy Park.
Glenn Martin, DDS ranks as Nick at Nite's number-one program among total viewers average with 2.1 million total viewers each week, in third quarter 2009. In its first week, Glenn Martin, DDS reached a total of 11.3 million viewers and averaged 2.6 million (P2+) total viewers per telecast (Monday-Thursday, Aug. 17-20, 8 p.m.-8:30 p.m. [all times ET/PT]), according to Nielsen. The series also ranked as ad-supported cable's number-one co-viewed entertainment series in prime time for the premiere week with 40% of Adults 18-49 watching with at least one kid per household. Forty percent of Adults 18-49 watched with at least one kid 2-11 per household.
Season one has featured celebrity appearances, including Wendie Malick and Betty White, and will soon feature Bret Michaels, Chrissie Hynde, Gene Simmons, Sean Hayes, Jim Parsons, Estelle Harris and Don Johnson, among others.
Recently, Nick at Nite added hit series Everybody Hates Chris and Malcolm in the Middle, strengthening its slate of popular hit family comedies including the Emmy Award-winning series George Lopez, Home Improvement, The Nanny and Roseanne.

Don't forget ABC Comedy Wednesday starting tonight at 8/7 central! Today's blog is sponsored by Cougar Town, airing 9:30/8:30 central on ABC Comedy Wednesday. Because 40 is the new 20!

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Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Gospel Has Amen, Sister Sister Every Weekday Now; Ugly Betty Season Premiere Now Oct. 16

Gospel Music Channel quietly added Sister Sister and Amen to their regular weekday schedule. Previously both were airing just a few times week. Sister Sister now airs weekdays 10-11am and 10pm-12am and also on Saturdays from 9am-11am. Amen airs weekdays 11am-12pm and 1am-2am and also on Saturdays from 8-9am. The weekday dramas have some time changes as a result. The dramas start at 1pm with back-to-back Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman, followed by Promised Land at 3pm, Sue Thomas F.B.Eye at 4pm, and Doc at 5pm. Encores of Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman, Sue Thomas F.B.Eye, Doc air from 6pm-10pm.
Now they have more of a daily schedule and it is so much easier to follow! Movies are now on weekends and Fridays in primetime.

I haven't had a chance to post this on the blog, but I did break the news on our message board about the season premiere of Ugly Betty being delayed a week on ABC. The two-hour season premiere of Ugly Betty is now scheduled to air on Friday, October 16, 2009 from 8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT and not on Friday, October 9, 2009 from 8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT as previously announced. Instead encores of this week's FLASHFORWARD, Modern Family and The Middle will air from 8-10pm on Friday (Oct. 9). Ugly Betty will begin airing in its regular 9:00 PM ET/PT hour effective Friday, October 23, 2009.
The season premiere of Supernanny is now scheduled to air on Friday, October 23, 2009 in its regular 8:00 PM ET/PT hour. It was previously scheduled to have its season premiere on October 16, but now that will be Ugly Betty from 8-10pm.
In other updates, It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown is scheduled to air on Tuesday, October 27, 2009 from 8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT on ABC (ABC will air the full-length version of this classic Charlie Brown special including a bonus Charlie Brown cartoon entitled, You're Not Elected, Charlie Brown, which has the Great Pumpkin in the storyline.).
Finally in November, In The Spotlight With Robin Roberts: Bright Lights, Big Stars, All Access Nashville is airing on Tuesday, November 10, 2009 from 10:01-11:00 PM ET/PT. This special features interviews with country superstars Carrie Underwood and Tim McGraw on the eve of the CMA's (airs November 11 on ABC). the forgotten will be preempted on this night.

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Monday, October 05, 2009

Nick at Nite Brings Back Roseanne; Centric Acquires Miami Vice, Homicide

Late last week we told you Roseanne was going to be cut by an hour on TV Land to 12-2am instead of 12-3am, and now we know why. Sister network Nick at Nite will bring back the show and also air it in late nights starting TONIGHT! Nick at Nite will air Roseanne every night from 3-6am, replacing the nightly marathons of The Nanny, Family Matters and Home Improvement. In fact, Family Matters will be gone totally now, while Home Improvement will only air weekdays at 6am. Big bummer. Of course The Nanny will continue to air in the 11pm hour every night.
So if you're keeping track, Roseanne airs on TV Land every night from 12-2am, except it is longer on Thursdays (9pm-2am) and Fridays (11pm-2am) and now every night on Nick at Nite from 3-6am. Just last week it was looking like Roseanne would finally be reduced, but now here comes Nick at Nite re-adding the series. At least the TV Land reduction brought Three's Company (my personal favorite) another half-hour on weeknights (now 3:30am-5am) and on Saturdays we now get the series from 2-6am instead of 4-6am.

Exactly a week ago today we told you that BET J (spin-off network of BET) was renaming to Centric, now today they will launch their regular schedule after having stunts last week. And they have acquired two dramas! They have acquired the rights to the '90s drama Homicide: Life on the Street and '80s action drama Miami Vice. Both will start airing TONIGHT every weeknight! Homicide will air 9pm & 12am while Miami Vice will air 11pm & 4am. Miami Vice is also slated for Saturdays from 3-6pm.
These new acquisitions join Centric's line-up of The Montel Williams Show, Judge Karen, and sitcom The Steve Harvey Show (daytime, 11am-2pm); Afternoon Movie, VH-1/MTV/BET Reality Series (late afternoons, 4pm-8pm), and original series at 8pm. Centric is also airing reruns of BET's American Gangster weeknights at 10pm and 1am, while the afternoon movie encores weeknights at 2am. Soul Train will air once a week on Fridays at 7pm and encores Saturdays at 12 noon & 6pm.
We will keep you up to date on any further developments, but adding these two dramas is a nice start, especially Miami Vice!

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Sunday, October 04, 2009

Week 2 TV Ratings and Analysis; How the Sitcoms Did

Week 2 numbers (first four nights, Mon-Thurs):

Households: #1. CBS 8.6/14.0; #2. ABC 7.1/11.5; #3. Fox 4.8/7.5; #4. NBC 4.3/7.0; #5. The CW 1.6/2.5
Total Viewers: #1. CBS 13.8 million; #2. ABC 10.96 million; #3. Fox 7.99 million; #4. NBC 6.76 million; #5. The CW 2.37 million.
Adults 18-49: #1. CBS 3.8/10.3; #2. ABC 3.2/8.8; #3. Fox 3.2/8.5; #4. NBC 2.4/6.7; #5. The CW 1.1/3.1.

Analysis: For week two we had some new series debuts along with season premieres for this 2009-10 season. Through the first four days in week two, CBS has the lead in all categories, with ABC second, Fox in third and NBC is back in fourth. ABC was up through the first four days during premiere week, but CBS is on top so far this week. Last week, week 1, ABC took the crown in 18-49 nipping CBS, while CBS just edged ABC in HH/total viewers. NBC was third in HH/viewers (thanks to an NFL game), with Fox fourth. It was the opposite among 18-49 with Fox third, and NBC in fourth. Without the NFL, NBC is in terrible shape. Jay Leno might be cheap to make, but 8pm and 9pm are even weaker now for NBC.
On Monday ABC, Fox and CBS did well. A two-hour Dancing with the Stars won the total viewer race with 17.03 million for ABC, down a bit from the premiere the previous week. An all-new Castle followed with a solid 9.15 million, basically on par with its numbers the previous week. What a great and fun show this is! Next up was CBS with its comedies and CSI: Miami. How I Met Your Mother started it off with 8.71 million, down a bit from the premiere and Accidentally on Purpose followed doing 8.03 million and a 3.1 18-49 rating, which could be better...both down from the premiere a bit. Two and a Half Men followed with 13.86 million which was up a bit from the season premiere, but The Big Bang Theory continues to impress and did a nice 13.27 million, up from the premiere. The show also did a mammoth 5.3 18-49 rating, for a series high. A new episode of CSI: Miami did 13.96 million, down a bit from the premiere. Fox had a regular edition of House and it did 14.71 million, which was down nearly three million from the two-hour premiere the previous week... the show did a 5.8 A18-49 rating, down from the 6.7 the previous week. NBC followed with the free-falling Heroes doing 5.72 million, down from the premiere previous week. The series premiere of Trauma followed and did an OK 6.68 million but just a 2.2 A18-49 rating. The Jay Leno Show followed with only 5.52 million, down from previous week. The CW on Mondays has been a struggle so far, with One Tree Hill doing only 2.51 million and Gossip Girl at an even worse 2.36 million...but both were up week-to-week.
On Tuesday, CBS was in control. CBS had the always reliable NCIS opening the night off with 21.37million, up from the season premiere even and this was another series high. Don't know how, though. A new episode of NCIS: Los Angeles was next and did 17.4 million, down over a million from the series premiere. And finally CBS aired The Good Wife and did 13.69 million, also solid and on par with the premiere really. Good Tuesday for CBS overall. ABC was a distant second with the return of Shark Tank doing only 4.75 million...needs to do better. This show is perfect for summer. Then it was Dancing with the Stars: The Results on its normal night and time doing 13.02 million as we said goodbye to Kathy Ireland. ABC followed with a new episode of the forgotten doing 7.45 million, down two million from the series premiere. NBC was next with The Biggest Loser 2-hour show doing 9.18 million, up a lot from previous week, followed by the The Jay Leno Show at just 6.58 million (the best it can do), which was down from previous week. Fox aired Hell's Kitchen at 8 doing 6.64 million and a solid 3.1 18-49 rating. So You Think You Can Dance Tuesday was next and it bombed with only 5.18 million. The CW aired 90210 with just 2.21 million, followed by dud Melrose Place at an even worse 1.42 million. The latter was down a bit from previous week, while the former was up.
Wednesday again it was CBS with the overall win, but ABC and Fox had a lot doing well. CBS started slow with Old Christine doing 6.65 million, which was down from the season premiere, followed by Gary Unmarried at just 6.65 million as well, down a bit from its premiere. Veteran drama Criminal Minds did 14.24 million which was down well over a million from the season premiere, with CSI: NY doing 13.16 million, down two million from previous weeks' premiere. ABC started the 8pm hour on top with Hank & The Middle with their series premiere. Hank did a solid 8.34 million but the 2.2 18-49 rating was low. The Middle did a better 8.71 million and a better 2.6 18-49 rating. If ABC can keep those numbers or close to it, they'll take it in this weak hour. New episodes of the hilarious sitcoms Modern Family and Cougar Town both did very well in week two with 9.99 and 9.25 million, but the 3.8 A18-49 ratings for both were more telling giving ABC the win at 9pm. At 10pm Eastwick did an OK 6.57 million, down two million from the premiere. It's a surprisingly good show! NBC opened the night with Mercy doing 7.39 million, down a million from the premiere. Law & Order: SVU followed and only did 8.08 million...see you can't just move a 10pm hit and move it to 9pm where this is more competition. At 10pm NBC aired The Jay Leno Show of course at just 6.11 million, down week-to-week. Fox was fourth, with So You Think You Can Dance at 6.81 million...up from previous week since there was no Dancing on ABC, but then Glee followed to a decent 7.4 million and a 3.3 A18-49 rating, both were up from previous week. The CW had its usual showing of Top Model at 3.28 million, up a lot from previous week and a repeat of Melrose Place followed with just 1.02 million.
Thursday it was ABC on top in 18-49 and CBS overall. ABC opened the night with FLASHFORWARD doing 10.73 million and a 3.7 18-49 rating, both very solid and competitive. A new Grey's Anatomy followed with 15.69 million and a great 6.1 A18-49 rating. And the season premiere of Private Practice impressed with 11.58 million and a great 4.6 A18-49 rating. What a premiere that was! CBS opened with Survivor: Gabon at 11.54 million and a 3.7 A18-49 rating. A new episode of CSI followed with 15.94 million, down a tad week-to-week, while The Mentalist was up week-to-week with 15.75 million. Fox started off well with Bones at a solid 9.43 million...up some from previous week, but Fringe followed and only did 6.03 million and a 2.3 18-49 rating, on par from previous week. NBC was in the familiar fourth place with SNL Thursday Update doing only 5.02 million but it was up from previous week, followed by sitcom dud Parks & Recreation at only 4.67 million, though it was up week-to-week. At 9pm The Office only mustered 7.41 million but a solid 3.9 18-49 rating, but way down than last year. Community closed the comedy block with only 5.86 million, but up some from previous week. The Jay Leno Show closed the night with only 5.03 million, down a bit week-to-week. The CW's only consistent player so far is Vampire Diaries doing 3.53 million, off a bit week-to-week, followed by Supernatural at a could-be-better 2.6 million.
Now, final numbers for Friday and Saturday are not available, but CBS won Friday with their dramas but only mustered a prelim 1.7 18-49 rating average. Fox continues to stumble on Friday with Brothers, 'Til Death & Dollhouse and NBC was a disappointment.
Saturday numbers had ABC win with Saturday Night Football in all categories and Fox was solid in young adults with its crime reality.
Tonight the full ABC Sunday line-up is back (AFV, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Desperate Housewives, and Brothers & Sisters). Some good stuff on Brothers and Sisters tonight...it is great. NBC should have something to tout about finally this week with the NFL game. CBS has the premiere of Three Rivers which could be slaughtered. Fox has its animation block from 8-10pm, including rookie The Cleveland Show.
As for week two, CBS will win in HH, viewers and 18-49. Though ABC could nip CBS in 18-49. Question is if NBC can move from 4th to 3rd thanks to NFL?

Last Sunday Sitcoms (counts for week of September 21-27)

  • Brothers (Fox) 2 episodes - 1.79 million and 3.64 million for two repeats. Some of the country had NFL until 7:21, so the first repeat was joined in progress and it did 3.3 million after the game, which is terrible.
  • The Simpsons (Fox) - The season premiere did an outstanding 8.31 million and a 4.3 18-49 rating.
  • The Cleveland Show (Fox) - The highly promoted series premiere did 9.51 million and an impressive 4.9 18-49 rating. If it can hold that, Fox will be more than pleased.
  • Family Guy (Fox) - Wow the season premiere did 10.11 million and a huge 5.2 18-49 rating. It won't last, but that is a good start!
  • American Dad (Fox) - The season premiere did 7.14 million and a solid but could be better (since the lead-in did excellent) 3.6 18-49 rating.

Monday Sitcoms

  • How I Met Your Mother (CBS) - New episode did 8.71 million, lower than the season premiere, but did retain the 3.6 A18-49 rating.
  • Accidentally on Purpose (CBS) - 8.03 million for week two and a 3.1 18-49 rating, both down from the premiere. If it falls below 8 million and a 3 18-49 rating, then CBS will be concerned.
  • Two and a Half Men (CBS) - 13.86 million...up from the season premiere.
  • The Big Bang Theory (CBS) - 13.27 million...also up from the season premiere and built from the lead-in's 18-49 rating from a 4.8 to a 5.3...nicely done. That was a great episode, too. That insect professor was a riot!


Tuesday Sitcoms

  • None.

Wednesday Sitcoms

  • Old Christine (CBS) - New episode did 6.65 million, down from the season premiere. 18-49 rating of a 1.9 needs to be better and also down from the premiere.
  • Gary Unmarried (CBS) - Like the lead-in, 6.65 million, not as much down from previous week, but built from the lead-in a bit in 18-49 to a 2.2 rating.
  • Hank (ABC) - The series premiere was sampled...did a decent 8.34 million but the 2.2 18-49 rating could be better.
  • The Middle (ABC) -8.71 million for the premiere was solid but thanks to the lead-in the 18-49 rating was a disappointing 2.6 rating. If it can hold that, then that is fine. Funny show!
  • Modern Family (ABC) - Episode two did 9.99 million and a nice 3.8 18-49 rating. Looks like a solid hit that skews young!
  • Cougar Town (ABC) - Episode two for this great sitcom did 9.25 million and also a 3.8 18-49 rating. If both of these can do a 3.6 or more every week, then ABC is in business and has a good comedy foundation.

Thursday Sitcoms

  • Parks & Recreation (NBC) - This show did terrible doing only 4.67 million and just a 2.0 A18-49 rating...sorry Amy Poehler, but you did go up from previous week a bit!
  • The Office (NBC) - Building on the lead-in, the series did 7.41 million, but its strength is 18-49 and it did a 3.9 rating.
  • Community (NBC) - A new episode did 5.86 million and a 2.9 18-49 rating ... both up some from previous week. Wonder if it can retain that when it moves to 8pm soon?

Friday Sitcoms

  • Brothers (Fox) - Worse than the premiere! Prelim ratings show a terrible 2.42 million.
  • 'Til Death (Fox) - The season premiere did only a prelim 2.29 million!

Saturday Sitcoms

  • None.

Airing tonight (Sunday) are new episodes of Fox's animated comedies from 8-10PM.

Summing it up. Two and a Half Men, Modern Family, Cougar Town, The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, The Office, & The Middle were impressive for the week. Everything else was OK (such as Hank, Gary Unmarried) or just plain old terrible (such as 'Til Death, Brothers).

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Saturday, October 03, 2009

Blog DVD Review: CSI: Miami - The Seventh Season

It is Saturday, so that must mean it is time for the weekly Blog DVD Review. This week we travel south to sizzling and sunny Miami for CSI: Miami: The Seventh Season. CSI: Miami stars David Caruso, Emily Procter, Adam Rodriguez, Jonathan Tigo, Rex Linn and Eva La Rue. See my Blog DVD Review of CSI: Miami: The Seventh Season:

C.S.I.: Miami - The Seventh Season

C.S.I.: Miami - The Seventh Season (CBS DVD/Paramount Home Video, $71.41)

The sizzling, sun-drenched action heats up in CSI: Miami's thrill-packed Seventh Season, as the team uncovers increasingly exotic and bizarre crimes within the worlds of air travel, reality television, and horse racing. Meanwhile, life takes a dangerous turn for lead criminologist Horatio Caine (David Caruso) as he races to protect his team, his family and even himself. All of which makes this spectacular 25-episode collection almost too hot to handle!

This 7-disc set contains all 25 episodes from the seventh (2008-09) season. The episodes are presented in Anamorphic Widescreen (16:9) with Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround audio. It has a total running time of approximately 18 hours, 15 minutes. The attractive packaging features a holofoil photo of David Caruso wearing his trademark sunglasses on the cover. This is the third consecutive release where only David Caruso was on the cover. The holofoil background is used on the back and sides of the packaging as well. On the back cover, there are photos of Adam Rodriguez, Jonathan Tigo, Eva La Rue, Emily Procter, Rex Linn and David Caruso. A synopsis of the set, a listing of the special features and the DVD specs are provided. The four black slim cases slide out from the right of the outer cardboard box. The slim cases feature a large photo of David Caruso, with smaller photos of Rodriguez, Togo, La Rue, Procter and Linn in the background. A fire explosion is at the top of the case. There is a photo of a boat on fire on the back cover. The episode titles and special features are listed by disc. Inside the slim cases, there is just blank space. Some more photos or episode summaries would have been nice to see. The discs have the CSI: Miami logo and a silver background. Each slim case holds 2 discs, except for the fourth case which holds only 1 disc.

The menus are very simple and easy to navigate. They have a montage of video clips, with some instrumental music playing in the background that loops after about 45 seconds. Options are available for Episode Selection, Set Up and the Special Features (only on Discs 3, 6 and 7). There are some sound effects and instrumental music played during the transitions on the menus. You can choose either English 5.1 Surround or Español audio on the Set Up menu. Closed captioning is available for all of the episodes. The special features are not rated and some are not closed captioned. The video and audio quality is once again outstanding. Too bad these episodes aren't yet available on Blu-ray. All of the episodes are in their original broadcast order and appear to be unedited, with runnings times of 42-44 minutes. There is nothing on the packaging to indicate that any of the music had to be changed. I'm sure they have deals in place for DVD rights before they use any song on the show.

Special Features include 2 audio commentaries, 3 featurettes totaling about 65 minutes, and a pop-up information track on 1 episode. It seems like the amount has dropped off from previous seasons, although the featurettes are pretty detailed and offer a lot of interesting technical information. Here is the breakdown by disc:

Disc 2
Audio Commentary on "Wrecking Crew" by Director Joe Chappelle, Visual Effects Supervisor Larry Detwiler and Writer Corey Miller - Calleigh and Eric are going over a witness's testimony and getting him ready for transfer to the court building when a crane crashes into a building. One of the most ambitious episodes of the season. A lot of interesting technical information on how they shot the episode.

Wrecking Crew: Miami Classified - View the episode with pop-ups providing more background information or random facts about what appears on-screen - These pop-up type videos are interesting, but I think they should be on episodes which don't already have commentaries. The information tends to overlap a bit.

Audio Commentary on "Gone Baby Gone" by Producer Don Tardino, Writer/Producer Barry O'Brien and Director Carey Meyer - A baby is taken from her mother's arms in broad daylight, and the team must race against time to find her. Teri Polo guest stars.

Disc 3
The Miami Sound Machine (30:02) - An in-depth look at the sounds of CSI: Miami. This featurette includes interviews with Director Mario Black, Executive Producer Sunil Nayar, Co-Producer Melissa Black, Sound Supervisor Tim Kimmel, Co-Producer Bruce Davidson, Boom Operator John Bauman, Production Sound Mixer Donavan Dear, Adam Rodriguez, Boom Operator James Mase, Boom Operator Chris Walmer, Rex Linn, Music Supervisor PJ Bloom, Music Editor Skye Lewin, Composers Kevin Kiner and Jeff Cardoni, Dialogue Editor Todd Niesen, ADR Mixer Greg Steele, Loop Group Leader Joyce Kurtz, Sound Effects Editor Bradley Katona, Foley Artists James Bailey and Joseph Sabella, and Re-Recording Mixers Bill Smith and Yuri Reese. Not only do they have high definition video, they have high definition sound. They've basically had the same sound crew since season 1. This featurette is divided into two sections: Production Sound and Post Production Sound. Production Sound is the recording of the initial dialogue and sounds on location with the boom mics. The Post Production Sound is the final editing, music soundtrack and score, ADR/looped lines, sound effects, foley (re-recording of footsteps and props, and final mixing of the episode. This was quite an interesting feature. There are really a lot of behind-the-scenes people involved in the making of a finished episode.

Disc 6
The New AV Lab (14:10) - This new look was first introduced in Season 6 and further developed in Season 7. Interviews include Jonathan Tigo, Eva La Rue, Producer Don Tardino, Visual Effects Supervisor Larry Detwiler, Executive Proudcer Sunil Nayar, Co-Executive Producer Barry O'Brien, Director Joe Chappelle, Emily Procter, Adam Rodgriguez, Lead Compositor Robert Konuch, and Visual Effects Artists Jeffrey Olney and Russell Welch. They talk about designing the room, acting without having anything to interact with, adding the visual effects and graphics, and re-designing the AV Hummer. This show has become so much more high tech than the early seasons.

Disc 7
CSI: Miami - Heating Up Season 7 (21:35) - A general overview of the major storylines and new and returning characters of Season 7. Interviews include Co-Executive Producer Barry O'Brien, Executive Producer Sunil Nayar, Producer Don Tardino, Eva La Rue, Jonathan Tigo, Emily Procter, Rex Linn, Evan Ellington, Adam Rodriguez and Megalyn Echikunwoke. They talk about the major themes of season like the Russian mob, bringing back characters from the sixth season like Julia Winston (Elizabeth Berkley) and Horatio's son Kyle, the new character of medical examiner Tara Price, the character's personal lives, Frank's promotion and desire for a girlfriend, Natalya's background, Delko's father, and the relationship between Delko and Calleigh.

Final Comments: It was another explosive and action-packed season of the world's most watched television program. Some of my favorite episodes of the season were "Tipping Point," "And They're Offed," "Collateral Damage," and "Dissolved." The show always remains fresh and interesting, as they delve further into the character's personal lives and background. It's sad to see so many of the original cast members leave the show over the years, but I guess that is part of the business. The show has reached over 150 episodes, which is quite a feat these days. This DVD set has everything that you have come to expect with in-depth featurettes and commentaries. CSI: Miami has some great performances by the actors, but it's always nice when all of the behind-the-scenes people are recognized on the special features for all of the hard work they do with the look and sounds of the show.

-- Reviewed by Todd Fuller
(4/5 stars)

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Friday, October 02, 2009

Schedule Changes for Next Week for TV Land, WGN America, Hallmark, TV One and ION

It's Friday and my oh my we have so many schedule changes taking place starting next week! So saddle up and get ready! First up, TV Land is removing Married...with Children again despite good ratings. Why? I think they are removing it because as I mentioned, sister network Spike TV will air it weekdays again starting Monday from 12-2pm. Who knew TV Land would remove it again? This Saturday is the last airing on TV Land (for now, knowing them) with the Saturday marathon. Starting next week, 3rd Rock from the Sun returns from the dead and will air Tuesdays 8pm-12am replacing the Married...with Children Tuesday block. The regular 8-9pm hour from Tues-Fri will also be replaced, with Hogan's Heroes on Wednesday and The Brady Bunch on Thursdays and Fridays. Actually those two shows will air 7-9PM, so they replace The Beverly Hillbillies in the 7pm hour...but that sitcom still airs in the afternoon at 1pm. The Saturday Married marathons will also be replaced starting Oct. 10 with various sitcoms. On October 10 we have Hogan's Heroes from 2:30-6pm, followed by a movie (Police Academy) until 8pm, then the M*A*S*H and Roseanne blocks have earlier start times, 8pm-11pm and 11pm-4am. Now TV Land has not announced yet if these changes are beyond next week, but I think they are.
View the updated TV Land October schedule.

Next up is WGN America. Starting Monday night, The Cosby Show will return to the WGN America regular line-up, as it was airing just Sundays. It will air Mon-Wed nights in the 4am hour replacing AFV, which only aired for a week there. And finally Toni On! New York will switch with Reno 911. Toni On! moves to Sundays at 5am, while Reno 911 moves to Mondays at 5am. That makes sense since now Reno 911 airs weeknights at 5am. Minor changes, but still changes!
Moving on to The Hallmark Channel, they get even more Lucy! Beginning Monday, October 5, I Love Lucy gets another hour. It will expand into 5-9pm, instead of 5-8pm. The 8pm hour addition replaces Touched by an Angel, which will still air from 9-11pm.

As for TV One, beginning on Tuesday October 6, TV One airs the sitcom For Your Love in the weekday morning 7am timeslot. The TV One original financial advice series Singletary Says previously announced for this time period will slide down a half hour and will now air weekdays at 7:30am. Finally, beginning on Thursday, October 8, TV One presents Thankful Thursdays with religious based sitcom Good News returning to the primetime mini-marathons airing Thursdays from 8pm to 10pm with encores from 3am to 5am until further notice, replacing the planned Sanford & Son marathons. Also of note, on Sunday, October 11 at 4pm, TV One encores the original special Living Single: The Reunion Show that reunites the cast of the popular TV One sitcom for a trip down memory lane.
The rest is the same as we previously announced for TV One October.
Finally, ION Television has announced the TBD slots on weekend afternoons will indeed be Reba starting this weekend. Reba will air in the 3pm ET half-hour this Sunday (Oct. 4).

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Thursday, October 01, 2009

Nick at Nite October 2009; Encore Westerns Re-Acquires Gunsmoke, Travel, Rawhide

October has just started and Nick at Nite has released their October 2009 schedule. There aren't any regular schedule changes, so the same changes from September will carry over into October. There will be a George Lopez marathon this Sunday (October 4) from 9pm-4am. Leading into the marathon will be George's movie Mr. Troop Mom from 7pm-9pm, so it's an all George night! Episodes airing for the marathon are "Love Bites," "Charity," "Team Leader," "Long Time No See," "Sabes Quake," "George Takes a Stroll Down Memory Pain," "George Buys a Vow," "George Watcha's Out For Jason," "George's Grand Slam," "George Needs Anchor Management," "George Vows to Make Some Matri-Money," "George Discovers How Mescal-ed Up His Life Would Have Been Without the Benny-Fits," "George's House Has Two Empty Wombs," and "George Nieces a New Media Room."
Also in October you can catch new episodes of original animated comedy Glenn Martin, DDS every Monday at 8pm.
View and discuss the Nick at Nite October 2009 highlights.

Encore Westerns has acquired the rights to air several classic Western series from CBS TV Distribution. They have acquired Gunsmoke, Have Gun Will Travel and Rawhide. Black and white episodes of Gunsmoke will return to Encore Westerns in January (TV Land has the other package still), with Have Gun Will Travel and Rawhide airing sometime next year.
Fans were devastated when Gunsmoke went off the channel four long years ago, so they decided to re-acquire it! Currently Encore Westerns airs Maverick, Cheyenne, The Gene Autry Show, Bret Maverick, Cimarron Strip, and The Magnificent Seven. Stay with us for more on this!

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