Thursday, November 12, 2009

ABC Cancels and Pulls Hank, CW Finalizes Mondays; TV Land Orders Season 3 of She's Got the Look

ABC has canceled the Kelsey Grammer sitcom Hank and will replace it immediately on the schedule as well. This is no surprise at all, especially since I announced on Tuesday that ABC has pulled all promos for Hank that were set to air during the CMA Awards last night. ABC will place repeats of Modern Family in Hank's Wednesdays at 8pm slot starting next week (Nov. 18). Repeats thus far scheduled in the 8pm slot for Modern Family are "The Bicycle Thief" on Nov. 18, "The Incident" on Nov. 25, and "Run for Your Wife" on Dec. 2. Of course Modern Family will be all-new still in its 9pm half-hour on Wednesdays.
As for Hank, the show aired only 5 episodes, and still has 5 more episodes to air. They had a 13 episode order, but ABC has stopped production. They finished taping an episode (#10) this week. Hank joins The Beautiful Life: TBL, Trauma, and Eastwick in freshman series cancelations. Still yet to hear its fates are Brothers and Three Rivers, everything else has been given additional episodes or full seasons. V just started and is doing great in the ratings, but it will only air for 13 weeks this season no matter what.
In other ABC schedule updates, as we mentioned the other day, Find My Family will launch on Monday, Nov. 23 at 9:30pm following the Dancing with the Stars performance finale. It will be a 30-minute preview, as one-hour episodes will air on Mondays at 9pm starting Nov. 30 through and including Dec. 21. Crime drama Castle wasn't originally scheduled to air on Nov. 23 in its 10pm slot, but it will now for the last Monday in November sweeps. Castle will be getting Saturday at 10pm repeats starting Dec. 12 through at least Jan. 9. And finally, Let's Dance will be scheduled on ABC in 2010, either mid-season or in the summer. It is just delayed due to the celebs other commitments during the holidays it couldn't launch Nov. 23.
Stay tuned for mid-season news very soon, as we find out when Lost airs!

Also, the other day we mentioned The CW's Monday plans, now we have actual dates. The CW Network announced it will air all-original episodes of three series - Gossip Girl, One Tree Hill and the new drama Life UneXpected – on Monday nights from mid-January through May 2010. The three series will air in a revolving schedule as follows:
The network's new drama series, Life UneXpected, will premiere Monday, January 18 at 9:00 p.m. ET as we mentioned, following the return of original episodes of One Tree Hill that night in the 8:00 p.m. timeslot. OK, we announced this part already the other day, but we now have it confirmed.
Then as we mentioned, Life UneXpected will move to the 8:00 p.m. timeslot, but now we have a date on that, it will be on March 8. Original episodes of the pop-culture sensation Gossip Girl will return on March 8 in its 9:00 p.m. ET time slot.
And finally, on April 19, after Life UneXpected has completed its initial 13-episode run, the Monday-night schedule will finish the broadcast season with One Tree Hill at 8:00 p.m. and Gossip Girl at 9:00 p.m.

TV Land announced that it has picked up the hit original reality model competition She's Got The Look for a third season and is moving the series production to Los Angeles, CA. Premiering in 2010, this season of She's Got The Look sets out to discover a beautiful, sophisticated and confident woman over the age of 35 who has the potential to transform herself into a model representing some of the most high-profile brands and highly-coveted campaigns in the fashion and beauty industry. Emmy Award-Winner Allison Grodner (Big Brother) returns as executive producer and has teamed up with executive producer Rich Meehan (Big Brother) in their first project together under their new banner, Fly On The Wall Entertainment. The show has also renewed partnerships with SELF Magazine and world-renowned modeling agency, Wilhelmina Models, Inc.
If you want to join the show, open casting calls for She's Got The Look begin Sunday, December 6 in Los Angeles, CA. Additionally, there will also be open casting calls in New York, NY on December 12, in Memphis, TN on December 13 and in Columbus, OH on December 15. Thousands of applications have already been received for the third season. For the most current information on casting, log onto TVLandPrime.com.
Stay with us for the premiere date announcement soon!

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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

ABC Fall Pilot Review: Hank - Premieres September 30; ION Not Airing Season 2 of Durham County...Yet

Hank

Hank - Wednesdays 8:00PM ET/PT on ABC
Premieres Wednesday, September 30, 2009 at 8:00PM ET/PT

Sometimes scaling back is the best way to get ahead. A legendary entrepreneur in the sports retail world, Hank Pryor (Kelsey Grammer) and his wife, Tilly, have been living the high life in New York City. That is until Hank is forced out of his CEO job and has to downsize and move his family back home to the small town of River Bend, Virginia.

A self-made man, Hank is used to being the boss. But now that he's lost almost everything, is he up for the even bigger challenge of being a husband and father? While Tilly regrets having to leave the glitz of New York City to move back to her hometown, Hank is gung-ho to relaunch his career in the place where it all began for him. Unfortunately this also means having to spend way too much time with his brother-in-law, Grady, who delights in Hank's recent misfortunes. Hank struggles to find common ground with his kids -- offbeat son Henry, who would rather play with action figures than toss a baseball with his dad, and daughter Maddie, a hip, New York City teen in whose eyes Hank can do no right. But every great businessman knows that the key to success is to turn setbacks into opportunities. It may take a while for this corporate giant to figure out how to mingle with the little people -- like his family -- but Hank's up for the challenge, a man who feels he is destined to return to greatness. And he is. It's just not the greatness he imagined.

This hilarious family comedy mixes genuine, heart-warming moments with Grammer's trademark blustery humor.

Cast Details:

* Kelsey Grammer as Hank Pryor
* Melinda McGraw as Tilly Pryor
* David Koechner as Grady Funk
* Jordan Hinson as Maddie Pryor
* Nathan Gamble as Henry Pryor

Kelsey Grammer (Hank Pryor) has excelled at the highest level in theatre, television and film as an actor, producer, executive producer and director. Grammer was cast in two TV miniseries, first as Stephen Smith in Kennedy (NBC, 1983), and next as Lieutenant Stewart in George Washington (CBS, 1984). Then, an initial guest-starring role as Dr. Frasier Crane on Cheers developed into the cornerstone of actor's career. He continued playing the celebrated character in two different television series (Cheers and then Frasier) over the span of 20 years, tying the record for longest-running television character. This fall Grammer of course stars in the show but also serves as executive producer of the series. Portraying Crane, Grammer won four Emmys, two Golden Globes and a SAG Award, and received an unparalleled 16 Emmy nominations, eight Golden Globe nominations and 16 SAG nominations. Fifteen years ago, Grammer created Grammnet, a TV production company which has produced such hit television shows as the Emmy-winning Medium for NBC/CBS and The Game and Girlfriends for UPN/CW. Grammer has directed single episodes of Everybody Hates Chris, My Ex Life and Out of Practice. He has also directed several episodes of Frasier, one of which earned him a DGA nomination.
Also accomplished as a voice-over artist, Grammer plays the character Sideshow Bob on The Simpsons, for which he won an Emmy in 2006. He has also lent his voice to the feature films Toy Story 2, Anastasia and Teacher's Pet, to the television series Father of the Pride and Gary the Rat and to the Emmy-nominated Animal Farm for TNT. Other acting credits include Vivendi Universal's An American Carol, Disney's Swing Vote, Fox's blockbuster hit X-Men: The Last Stand, Fox TV's Back to You -- in which he also served as executive producer -- A Christmas Carol for NBC, Benedict Arnold for A&E, Mr. St. Nick for ABC's Hallmark Hall of Fame, and many more films. In his latest film project, a remake of Fame, he stars as the orchestra maestro at the prestigious New York City High School of Performing Arts.

Melinda McGraw (Tilly Pryor) has made regular and recurring appearances on Mad Men, Journeyman, The West Wing, Desperate Housewives, Inconceivable, Center of the Universe, The District, My Adventures in Television, Skin, Living in Captivity, Pursuit of Happiness, The X-Files, The Commish and The Human Factor. She has also appeared in Law & Order: SVU, Saving Grace, The Practice, Ally McBeal, Mad About You, Larry Sanders and Seinfeld. In addition to television, she appeared in the films Meeting Spencer, Skateland, Weather Girl, The Dark Knight, Wrongfully Accused, Nutty Professor: The Klumps and Albino Alligator.

David Koechner (Grady Funk) spent one season on the cast of Saturday Night Live before moving to Los Angeles, where he landed guest appearances on Curb Your Enthusiasm, Reno 911 and played a recurring character on Still Standing. And in film comedies like Out Cold, My Boss' Daughter and A Guy Thing. Concurrently, Koechner, along with Dave "Gruber" Allen, developed and performed The Naked Trucker & T-Bones Show on stage at Club Largo in Los Angeles, which later became a Comedy Central series. Koechner's first major film break came when he was cast as Champ Kind in Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy. Since then he has been seen in a variety of films, inlcuding The Dukes of Hazzard with Johnny Knoxville, Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, Snakes on a Plane, the animated feature Barnyard, the family film Yours, Mine and Ours, the critically acclaimed Thank You for Smoking, opposite Aaron Eckhart and Maria Bello, Semi-Pro and Get Smart. He recently starred in the Fox Atomic comedy The Comebacks. Koechner can be spotted in cameo roles in The 40 Year Old Virgin, Balls of Fury, and Sex Drive. He continues to play the recurring character Todd Packer on NBC's The Office as well.

Jordan Hinson (Maddie Pryor) began acting in plays at the age of five. When she was 11, she moved to Los Angeles to pursue her acting career. She began modeling and appeared in several television commercials. Shortly thereafter, Hinson was cast in her first starring role as Kaitlin Kingsford, an aspiring figure skater in the Disney Channel Original Movie, Go Figure. She went on to play Zoe Carter for three seasons on Syfy's highest rated series, Eureka. She also co-starred with Angie Harmon in the movie Glass House 2: The Good Mother. Between seasons of Eureka, she continued to work, guest starring in such shows as Dirt and CSI: Miami.

Nathan Gamble (Henry Pryor) has already established an impressive career in television and film at age 10. His introduction into the entertainment business came when he played the role of Mike, Brad Pitt's son, in the Golden Globe-winning picture Babel. Babel director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu discovered Nathan after a nationwide search encompassing more than 20,000 young boys, all eager to play the part. Nathan's career soon took off, as he appeared in the feature Marley & Me, starring Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson, the blockbuster hit The Dark Knight, directed by Christopher Nolan, in Stephen King's The Mist, opposite Thomas Jane and Marcia Gay Harden and directed by Frank Darabont, and in the 3-D feature The Hole for Bold Films.
His television credits include the CW series Runaway, as Donnie Wahlberg's son, and the pilot Captain Cook's Extraordinary Atlas, directed by Tommy Schlamme for ABC. Nathan has also had guest appearances on Ghost Whisperer, CSI, Without a Trace and House, MD.


Pilot Plot:

#1 "Pilot" (Airs September 30)
A legendary entrepreneur in the sports retail world, Hank Pryor, and his wife, Tilly, have been living the high life in New York City. That is until Hank is forced out of his CEO job and has to downsize and move his family back home to the small town of River Bend, Virginia.
"Pilot" was written by Tucker Cawley, and directed by Andrew Weyman.


Analysis:

I saw both the original pilot and the new pilot. They are pretty much the same but with new actors playing the children. There are a few scene changes, such as the opening scene is almost completely different and for the better. I think this new pilot is a bit better than the original pilot. I don't like that they replaced Macey Cruthird with Jordan Hinson, though Hinson sort of does look like Cruthird. Why the change then? Actually before Hinson was cast as the daughter, they had Sasha Pieterse replacing Cruthird. Not sure what happened there, but they didn't shoot any scenes with Pieterse. The son was also recast from the original pilot. Originally it was Ryan Wynott, now it is Nathan Gamble.

Anyway, as for the pilot itself. It is nothing special so far. There are a few laughs, but it has potential. Kelsey Grammer is clearly the star and is in nearly every scene. It's nice to see him in a family comedy for once and playing a dad, but he still has a bit of Frasier in him. The show is about him as a big time CEO who lost his job in New York and he decides to move his family back to his hometown in Virgina. The chemistry between Kelsey and Melinda McGraw, who plays his wife on the show, is not there yet...but I see potential. They had a great scene in bed that was actually funny. She calls Hank, "Awesome Hank." Not sure why since the entire family seems to think he isn't awesome. They all basically ditched his family meeting (see preview video below). Hank is out of touch completely with his family. He has no idea what his kids like and do...so it will be interesting for him to learn now. By the end of the first episode he learns a bit about his son, but also gets played a bit by both the daughter and son. That was one of the better scenes. Brother-in-law Grady Funk is also a bright spot, but I wish he was in it more. David Koechner is a hilarious actor!

Usually pilot episodes, especially for family comedies, are usually one of the weaker episodes because they are setting things up for the show. So I hope the show does get better because we need a multicamera family comedy. I don't think this is in the same league as recent ABC multicamera family comedies such as 8 Simple Rules, George Lopez, My Wife & Kids, Hope & Faith or According to Jim. But Kelsey is certainly a big name and will draw an initial audience. Let's hope the show gets better!


Conclusion:

Originally this show was titled Awesome Hank. I think they should have kept that because Hank seems so dry and broad. Well maybe they decided not to name it that because Awesome Hank is a weird nickname for Hank because they really don't think he is awesome, but maybe they do deep down. I like the nickname for his daughter Maddie better, Moody Maddie! I think you should give the show a chance, meaning not just this episode because it isn't that good. Give it a few episodes to find its footing. Kelsey Grammer deserves that because he is such a great sitcom actor and he even is producing this show. So maybe it will get better. I haven't seen any subsequent episodes, but the second episode is about a yard sale in which Hank tries to run that as he did as a corporation. It's going to be interesting to see if Hank can find himself as a father. The competition isn't that strong in the Wednesday at 8pm hour, so Hank certainly has a shot and ABC Comedy Wednesday is off to a great start already with Modern Family and Cougar Town. Try this....but stick with it for more than just the pilot, because this is just a set-up that isn't very funny yet but has potential. America is an economic crisis, so maybe the nation will watch as it is a reality.


Final Numbers (out of 5 stars):

Watchability: 3.5/5
Funniness: 3/5
Overall: 3.5/5

-- Reviewed by pavanbadal on 09/29/09

Discuss the show after you watch it on Wednesday, September 30 on our message board.

Related Links:

  • ABC.com Official Site
  • TV.com
  • epguides.com
  • Internet Movie Database
  • Wikipedia
  • Hank Photo Gallery

    Preview:



    Part of ABC Comedy Wednesday:


    Stay tuned tomorrow for our pilot review of The Middle, which follows Hank on ABC Comedy Wednesday at 8:30pm ET/PT.



  • ION Television has been airing original series Durham County, a one-hour crime-drama series that follows the troubled world of Homicide Detective Mike Sweeney, on Mondays at 10pm since Sept. 7. The show has six episodes for its first season, and ION will air all six...but season two was supposed to start immediately following season one starting Oct. 19. Now that will not happen. Effective Monday, October 19 Criminal Minds will take over the Monday at 10pm slot on ION. Durham County will still air repeats Mondays at 11pm, though. So will ION air the season two episodes at a later date? I'm not sure, but I think they will. 6 more were ordered for season two. The ratings have not been too good, though. The series is a Canadian production and season two has already aired in Canada. Stay with us for continued updates!

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    Saturday, August 08, 2009

    Summer 2009 TCA Tour: ABC

    We are preempting our Saturday blog DVD review this week so we can cover the last day of the summer 2009 TCA press tour. Today ABC will be up, and it is a full docket! Kicking it off will be panels starting at 9am PT for Modern Family, Shark Tank, The Middle, Hank, and FlashForward. FlashForward's pilot will be screened during lunch. Then we have the executive session, where we should learn a whole lot. After that, we have more panels for new series, The Forgotten, Cougar Town, Eastwick, and V. ABC is set to announce that V will launch in November. Finally, the night concludes with the Disney-ABC Cocktail Reception!
    ABC is promoting their new Wednesday comedy block as "ABC Comedy Wednesday," and starting today promos for Comedy Wednesday will crank up as stars of those comedies join the ABC House! Check out two of those new ABC House promos, featuring Comedy Wednesday casts. As of this writing, the first spot will air today during the ABC Afternoon Movie at 4pm. The Middle and Hank promos begin tonight during the ABC Saturday Night Movie at 8pm!

    V will launch on Tuesday, November 3 at 8pm! In other confirmations, ABC has confirmed they have picked-up the sitcom Romantically Challenged for midseason. The show stars Alyssa Milano and Kyle Borneheimer.

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    Wednesday, June 10, 2009

    ABC Fall 2009 Premiere Dates; Futurama Returns in Mid-2010; TV Land Changes Night and Time for Originals

    ABC has announced most of the premiere dates for the 2009-2010 season. Additional premieres will be announced at a later date. Most of the series will launch or return for premiere week (Sept. 21-27), but there are some before and after. Saturday Night Football returns on Saturday nights at 8pm ET starting Saturday, Sept. 5. 20/20 will launch its new season (it never has repeats though) on Friday, Sept. 11 at 10pm. Then we move on to premiere week. Dancing with the Stars kicks-off premiere week and the new season for ABC on Monday, Sept. 21 from 8-10pm followed by the season premiere of Castle at 10pm. Dancing with the Stars will also air on Tuesday, Sept. 22 from 8-10pm leading into the series premiere of The Forgotten. Airing at 8pm on Tuesdays will be Shark Tank starting Aug. 25 (with special airings after Who Wants to Be a Millionaire on Sundays at 9 on Aug, 9, 16 & 23), but Shark Tank is preempted on Sept. 22, but will return Sept. 29 at 8. On Wednesday, Sept. 23, a special Dancing with the Stars: The Results on a special night & time of 8pm will lead-into the comedy premieres of Modern Family & Cougar Town. No word yet what will air at 10pm on this night, as ABC has not announced when new drama Eastwick will launch. Dancing with the Stars: The Results will move to its regular Tuesdays at 9pm slot the following week (Tues., Sept. 29). On Thursday, Sept. 24, ABC launches the premiere of Flash Forward at 8pm followed by the season premiere of Grey's Anatomy. ABC has not announced yet when Private Practice will launch. On Sunday, Sept. 27, ABC will have a two-hour season premiere of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition from 7-9pm, followed by the season premiere of Desperate Housewives at 9pm. No date for Brothers & Sisters has been announced yet.
    Premiering out of premiere week will be new comedies Hank and The Middle on Wednesday, Sept. 30 in the 8pm hour. Also, AFV will launch its new season on Sunday, Oct. 4 at 7pm, as Home Edition moves back to the regular 8pm hour. Premiering in week three will be the two-hour season premiere of Ugly Betty from 8-10pm on Friday, Oct. 9, before moving to its regular 9pm slot the following week. And Supernanny launches its new season in week four at 8pm on Oct. 16. That's good to launch the Friday series a bit later as Friday ratings tend to be very low until its gets cooler.
    So, to recap so far no premiere dates for Brothers & Sisters, Private Practice and new drama Eastwick. Why? I think ABC might be mulling a special preview for Eastwick. If I were to guess, Eastwick would get a special premiere on Sunday, Sept. 27 at 10 following Desperate Housewives, with Brothers & Sisters launching its new season the following Sunday at 10 (Oct. 4). Eastwick would have its Wednesday premiere on Sept. 30 at 10. During premiere week they might have a special at 10pm on both Wednesday, Sept. 23 and Thursday, Sept. 24 to fill those vacant spots, so maybe Private Practice will not launch until week two (Thursday, Oct. 1). Just my guesses. We also don't know yet what is airing on Fridays the first two weeks from 8-10pm? Maybe special encores of something during the week?
    View the premiere dates in list form. We'll inform you as soon as we know about the missing premiere dates.

    20th Century Fox Television, the animation powerhouse that brought Family Guy back from the dead five years ago, has done it again: Matt Groening and David X. Cohen's brilliantly subversive animated sci-fi comedy Futurama will return to production on 26 new half-hour episodes more than six years after the series aired its last original episode. The move comes on the heels of the series' blockbuster performance on DVD and on Comedy Central.
    The new episodes will be available in mid 2010 to be shown on Comedy Central. However, Twentieth Century Fox Television retains the option to license the original runs of the new episodes to a broadcast network as well.
    Futurama was a staple of Fox's Sunday night animation block from 1999 to 2003 before ceasing production on original episodes. In June 2006, Comedy Central acquired the rights to the existing 72 episodes of the series, which the channel began airing in January 2008, and four recently-produced extended length Futurama adventures: "Bender's Big Score," "The Beast with a Billion Backs," "Bender's Game" and "Into the Wild Green Yonder," which enjoyed enormous success both on Comedy Central and in DVD release. This new deal marks the show's return to episodic series production on original episodes. Futurama becomes only the second series in the history of the medium to go back into production based on the strength of its DVD sales and repeat airings on cable.

    TV Land announced today that it is making changes to its summer schedule as upcoming original series How'd You Get So Rich? starring Joan Rivers and the comedic hidden camera series Make My Day will now premiere on Thursday, August 6 at 9 p.m. ET/PT and 9:30 p.m. ET/PT respectively.
    It was previously announced that they would premiere on Wednesday, August 12 at 10 p.m. ET/PT and 10:30 p.m. ET/PT. The series' will premiere in TV Land PRIME, the network's new primetime programming block designed to appeal to the attitudes, life stage and interests of people in their 40s.
    Premiering on Thursday, August 6 at 9 p.m. ET/PT, How'd You Get So Rich? stars the notoriously uncensored gossip diva Joan Rivers as she explores the lifestyles of the fabulously rich and lucky in this 30-minute, six-episode series. Following How'd You Get So Rich? is the premiere of the six-episode show Make My Day at 9:30 p.m. ET/PT. This comedic hidden-camera series provides a window into one day in the life of an unsuspecting participant. Tune in as cameras capture the action as they experience weird coincidences, extraordinary situations and surprise celebrity appearances for one whole day.
    It seems Thursdays at 9PM is the new hour for TV Land originals, as TV Land also launches the second season of She's Got the Look tomorrow (June 11) on the night and time.

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