Saturday, April 17, 2010

Digital Digest: Ally McBeal - The Complete Second Season; DVD Packaging Changes on Older Releases

It's time for Digital Digest, your weekly roundup of news, reviews, and more about TV on DVD! Luckily, we don't have any bad news to report this week, a refreshing change from last week! We have news about newly announced series on DVD, a major update (with excellent news) about Leave it to Beaver - The Complete Series, an update about Big John, Little John on DVD (a slight bit of good news to counteract last week's announcement of a delay), and a preview of next week's home media releases. Plus, we have a review of Ally McBeal - The Complete Second Season and we're going to take a look at packaging on some of our favorite DVDs, specifically how some DVDs released several years ago are now being repressed with new (and often lower quality) packaging. So enough with the introductions... let's get going!

DIGITAL NEWS

We are finally getting some details in on Shout! Factory's upcoming release of Leave it to Beaver - The Complete Series (June 29), and one thing is for sure: it is going to be one of the most amazing DVD releases ever. Some of the features announced include:
  • Never-before-seen footage of the cast, as shot by the cast, including Barbara Billingsley, Tony Dow, and Jerry Mathers.
  • Six radio episodes of Stu's Show from Shokus Internet Radio featuring the cast of the series.
  • Featurette focusing on Ken Osmond and Frank Bank.
  • Original promos from the series.
  • Original pilot from the series.
  • Savings bond promo film from the United States Treasury featuring Leave it to Beaver.
  • Physical recreation of the Leave it to Beaver board game, manufactured by Hasbro in the 1950s.
Wow! That is simply an amazing list of special features, particularly that physical recreation of the board game! Aside from the radio interviews from Stu's Show, all of these special features will only be available on the Leave it to Beaver - The Complete Series set (they will not be on the individual season sets). The pilot episode of the series was previously released as part of Universal's Leave it to Beaver - The Complete First Season, but this new release appears to be much more worthwhile. It comes at a $199.98 MSRP, which sounds expensive, but in actuality is less than $34 a season, and of course lower prices can be found. You can buy this excellent set now on Amazon.com!

We still have more news from Shout! Factory, though! Special features have been announced for the May 4 release of The Facts of Life - The Complete Fourth Season. It isn't a long list, but both are very nice, and include the movie The Facts of Life Goes to Paris and an interactive trivia game. It comes at a $39.97 MSRP. Also, some details have emerged about the June 29 release of Mad About You - The Complete Fourth Season, specifically in regard to special features. It will contain episode introductions on "select episodes" from Paul Reiser and Helen Hunt. Hopefully we'll have more details and be able to follow up on that in the future.

Last week, we reported that Virgil Film's release of the series Big John, Little John had been delayed on DVD, and that a new date had not been announced yet. That has not changed. But, we have found out, thanks to a member of our message boards, that the entire series has been released on a legitimate DVD release (not a bootleg) in Australia, and that it has been released in a region-free format! Your best bet is to just wait for Virgil Film's release (it should come eventually), but if you just can't wait to see the series, you can order it now, directly on Amazon.com.

There have been several--at least a dozen--reports of various current network and cable series coming to DVD soon in the past week. After all, DVDs are typically announced about 3 to 4 months in advance, and most of the studios want their product on the shelves just in time for the new season to kick off. We won't even discuss all of them, because there are just way too many of them and most are beyond the general scope of our website. But as far as the sitcoms are concerned, Amazon.com has made available for pre-order DVDs of ABC's The Middle - The Complete First Season and NBC's action-comedy series, Chuck - The Complete Third Season (also for Blu-ray). There are absolutely no details about these releases yet, but you can pre-order them. Other current series that have popped up for pre-order on Amazon.com in the past week include C.S.I. - The Complete Tenth Season, C.S.I.: Miami - The Complete Eighth Season, Criminal Minds - The Fifth Season, The Good Wife - The First Season, NCIS: Los Angeles - The First Season, and Numb3rs - The Sixth Season. Wow! That is a long list of series from CBS! I'm sure that nursing homes nationwide are overflowing with joy with this news... we're only kidding, we love CBS.

Finally, we end our news with some excellent news about MPI's long-anticipated release of The Mothers-in-Law - The Complete Series. MPI has been talking about this series for well over a year now, but they have finally set a street date (July 27). The set is going to contain all 56 episodes of the series and a ton of special features, including interviews, the original pilot, unaired pilots of related series, and more at an incredibly low $39.98 MSRP! We encourage you to check out this report from TVShowsOnDVD.com which gives the rather lengthy list of special features. The set doesn't appear to be available for pre-order just yet, but we'll let you know when it is!

UPCOMING WEEK PREVIEW
There is only one lonely sitcom scheduled for release for next week (April 20), and that is Shout! Factory's long-awaited The Bill Cosby Show - Season Two. It is one of their direct-to-consumer titles, although as is the case with the rest of these titles, it can be purchased on Amazon.com. We haven't received a review copy of it yet, and we aren't sure when/if we will receive one. Also, Warner Home Video is bringing out Falcon Crest - The Complete First Season and CBS DVD has Perry Mason - Season 5, Volume 1. We will cover both of these titles sometime soon, but you can pre-order all of them now.

BLOG FEATURE REVIEW

In 1997, a new legal drama hit the air that was nothing like anything that preceded it. This one contained a lot of humor, sexual innuendo, hallucinations (anybody remember the dancing baby?), and many other unique elements in a series about a woman trying to balance her romantic life and her life at work. Ally McBeal - The Complete Second Season is the second of five seasons of this unique series.

DVD Review: Ally McBeal - The Complete Second Season
by Pavan

Ally McBeal - The Complete Second Season
(Fox, $39.98) is back on DVD in an individual set featuring all 23 episodes from the series' excellent (and most popular) second season. The series premiered in 1997 on Fox and lasted five seasons, becoming one of the most talked about shows in the late '90s. The series was created by David E. Kelley The cast was brilliant led by Calista Flockhart in the title role as a young lawyer working in the Boston law firm Cage, Fish and Associates with other young lawyers. Also starring on this show are all recognizable names: Gil Bellows as Billy, Courtney Thorne-Smith as Georgia, Greg Germann as Richard Fish, Lisa Nicole Carson as Renée, Jane Krakowski as Elaine, with Peter MacNichol as John Cage and Vonda Shepard as Herself. Portia de Rossi as Nelle and Lucy Liu as Ling Woo join the cast this season.

The second season begins with the episode "The Real World," where Fish and Cage hire a new associate, Nelle "sub-zero" Porter (Portia de Rossi) and Cage tells Ally about his attraction to Nelle. In the very next episode, "They Eat Horses, Don't They?," Lucy Liu joins the cast as Nelle's friend and client, Ling Woo, who sues a radio DJ for making sexually explicit comments on air and to the disgust of Ally, drops the case as a legal tactic. In "It's My Party," Ally defends George Madison (special guest star John Ritter), editor of a feminist magazine fired for his religious views on women and Ally finds herself attracted to George, but Elaine implies that she and George are an item. Later, Ally is told to stop wearing miniskirts in court and when she refuses, she is held in contempt and taken into custody. This is one of the best episodes in the entire series! In the very next episode, "The Story of Love," Ally is arrested after a fight with a young woman angry with her best friend for stealing her boyfriend, meanwhile George (John Ritter) begins to show an interest in Ally, and Elaine begs her not to date him. Cage brings in his pet tree frog, Stefan, whom he is training for a competition. And the frog popularity begins after this!
In "Pyramids On the Nile," Fish agrees to hire Ling, to the annoyance of the firm except Nelle, while Ally and Billy defend a couple fired because they were dating and then Billy admits, after the trial, he still has feelings for Ally and they share a kiss. In "Sex, Lies, and Politics," Cage and Ling help a bookstore owner sue a senator after he falsely accuses her of selling pornography, causing her to lose business, while Ally obsesses over the kiss with Billy, and struggles with the urge to tell Georgia. In "Civil Wars," Georgia finds out about the kiss, and rumors spread through the office, while Ally and Cage oppose Fish and Georgia in court over a date rape case, but as tension increases between Georgia and Ally, the two get into a fight in the bathroom with Ling and Nelle, with Elaine filming. In the season finale, "I Know Him By Heart," Ally becomes increasingly depressed about her love life, until Fish gives her a pep talk, while Ally and Renee decide to go on as many dates as possible until they find the right man. Notable guest appearances for this season include, the aforementioned John Ritter (who was nominated for an Emmy), Wayne Newton, Rob Schneider, Jennifer Holliday, Lara Flynn Boyle, Bruce Willis, Anna Nicole Smith, Barry White, Rosie O'Donnell, Jesse L. Martin, Larry Green, and the Emmy winning performance by Tracy Ullman.

The episodes are unedited and has all the original music! This season was released in the complete series set back in October 2009, so the content is exactly the same as that set. But if you have not gotten that complete set, there is nothing to worry about on this set. Runtimes are as follows:

Disc 1:
1. "The Real World" (45:16)
2. "They Eat Horses Don't They?" (44:56)
3. "Fool's Night Out" (45:25)
4. "It's My Party" (43:21)

Disc 2:
5. "Story of Love" (44:30)
6. "World's Without Love" (42:56)
7. "Happy Trails" (45:25)
8. "Just Looking" (45:18)

Disc 3:
9. "You Never Can Tell" (44:03)
10. "Making Spirits Bright" (45:27)
11. "In Dreams" (45:26)
12. "Love Unlimited" (45:14)

Disc 4:
13. "Angels Over Blimps" (45:21)
14. "Pyramids On The Nile" (44:23)
15. "Side Show" (44:42)
16. "Sex, Lies & Politics" (45:25)

Disc 5:
17. "Civil Wars" (45:26)
18. "Those Lips, That Hand" (45:25)
19. "Let's Dance" (44:51)
20. "Only The Lonely" (44:45)

Disc 6:
21. "The Green Monster" (45:02)
22. "Love's Illusions" (45:01)
23. "I Know Him By Heart" (45:19)

Now I didn't get the complete series set, but the case (and the rest of the packaging) for season two is the same as it was on that set. The cover art has a full body shot of Ally in black with the show logo in the middle in orange and white coloring. The color scheme for the set is orange and white. Also on the cover art we have four small black and white headshots of Cage, Nelle, Billy and Ling Woo. The back of the case has info on the set and series, with a close-up of Ally in black and a strip about five episodic photos. Inside the case are the discs of course. Disc one is on the left panel, while discs two and three are on a plastic holder that you can flip like a book. The same goes true for discs four and five. And disc six is on the right panel. Artwork inside the case is in orange and we have a disc-by-disc breakdown of episode titles on the panels. When we remove discs one and six, there is some cool artwork, that I won't spoil. Each disc has the same artwork, of a frog, the show logo, and it matches the set's color scheme.

The menus on the set are very nicely done, with different artwork on each disc. The main screen has a different shot of Ally on each disc. The submenus have other castmembers. The main menu has the theme song playing in the background. It is so catchy! The main menu have an option for Play All and the episode titles are listed right on the main menu. When selecting an episode, it takes you to another menu that have the options Play Episode, Language Selection, and Scene Selection. Language tracks are available in English, French and Spanish. Subtitles are available in English and Spanish. In Scene Selection, each episode has about 15 different positions you can start at. Chapter stops have the same selections. It is a bit much for an hour-long series.

The video and audio on the set is looks really good. The video is available in a nice widescreen, and if your DVD player upconverts to HD, it looks so nice. The audio is also very good and is presented in Dolby Surround. This season is from 1998-99, so while it is over a decade in age, it is very well presented here in both video and audio. All of the episodes on the set are closed-captioned for those who need them.

One bad thing about this set is that there are no special features available. They should have gave us a seventh disc with some extras. The complete series set had a bonus disc and in that it did have some features for season two. It would be nice if they included the season two material from that on this set. But that would mean more manufacturing for them. So the only way to see bonus features for this season is to buy the complete series set. That is too bad, especially if someone can't afford that or just wanted this season (like me). I basically was a fan for the first two seasons, but I never really watched the show after that much.

This is a good set, but it is exactly the same content that was available for this season in the complete series set. It is good and amazing that all of the original music is intact, though! Kudos to 20th Century Fox for doing that since this show had A LOT of music! Each episode is also unedited in content, so another thing to be grateful for. The packaging and menus are also great. Everything on this set is great, except for the lack of bonus features. It's not like nothing was available. Fox could have given us the same season 2 features on the bonus disc on the complete set, but they didn't. I was hoping they would, because I have not seen those bonus material. Anyway, the episodes are great and this is my favorite season of the show. It has a nice mix of comedy and drama. Ally's short skirts, Cage's frog, wild hallucinations, special guest John Ritter, this season has it all! A must buy if you don't have the complete series set!

(4/5 stars)

To purchase this DVD, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
Amazon.com

Related links:
SitcomsOnline.com DVD Reviews Page
Ally McBeal on TV.com

BLOG FEATURE STORY

DVD Packaging Changes on Older Releases
by skees53

About a month or so ago, Target had a really nice deal on the season sets of the series Saturday Night Live that I couldn't resist. I had always liked the series, but never bothered to pick up the DVDs because the MSRP was more than I wanted to pay. I picked up all of the first four seasons without really looking at the packaging, but when I got home, I noticed that the first season had been placed in a newer (and cheaper) standard digipack inside of a slipcase. I hadn't yet opened the set, but was wondering what exactly was going on with this different packaging. As I later found out, the older releases of the series were no longer being printed with the special limited packaging, and I had to go on a hunt all over town to find a USED (yes, USED) copy of the first season in the original packaging--which ended up costing me about $10 more than my new copy from Target in the new packaging.

At the time, I didn't realize that the studios were repackaging TV series on DVD, but in the past few months, it has become a very common practice. In most cases, the original packaging is being shoved aside in favor of the newer Viva packs--you know, the standard plastic DVD cases that can hold multiple discs. Nobody is publicly saying why this practice is occurring, but there are many potential reasons, including cheaper cost of production (perhaps the main reason), lower package weight, smaller package size (beneficial for storage warehouses and store shelves), or perhaps to just make older releases more consistent with newer releases (which are more often than not being released in Viva packs).

20th Century Fox Home Entertainment and ABC Studios seem to be spearheading most of these "evolving packages." As I have discovered, 20th Century Fox began the practice with repackaging older releases of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Arrested Development, and How I Met Your Mother, all of which were previously released in slimcases, in the regular Viva packs. Now, some other older releases series are starting to show up on store shelves in the new packaging, including American Dad!, Family Guy, King of the Hill, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Remington Steele, and even MGM's releases of The Addams Family and Green Acres. All of the 20th Century Fox titles have the same UPC as the original release, same disc content, same disc artwork (sometimes with a few minor changes), but different packaging. Unfortunately, on some of the sets, the different packaging means losing some very nice things included on the original releases, such as detailed episode descriptions. Even more frustrating is Fox's DVDs of The Simpsons, which, even though they have not changed the packaging itself on these sets, they are no longer including the very nice and detailed episode booklets on older releases, instead opting for an empty pocket where the booklet should be.

ABC Studios has been reissuing many of their older titles that were previously released under the Buena Vista Home Entertainment brand, replacing all references to BVHE with ABC Studios. But that isn't all. They have been repackaging many series in their library in the same standard plastic DVD cases as 20th Century Fox, only there is one exception with the ABC Studios products: they are including cardboard slipcovers for most of the products. Packaging has been updated for series including Alias, Desperate Housewives, Grey's Anatomy, Scrubs, and more. You can also determine which of these sets are the newer ones, as they have the disc count as a banner on the top of the front of the packaging. Just like 20th Century Fox, these sets carry the same UPC as the original releases. ABC Studios has, in the past, had some of the most unique and creative packaging for a lot of their sets, and these newer packages take away what made a lot of these older sets special. You can even see a comparison of the old vs. new packaging for Scrubs - The Complete Fourth Season below. It was originally packaged in a digipack, but has since been replaced with a standard plastic DVD case. Note that the disc artwork (not shown) is the same in both versions.

Old Packaging:


Outside of old packaging for Scrubs - The Complete Fourth Season.



Inside of old packaging for Scrubs - The Complete Fourth Season.

New Packaging:


Outside of new packaging for Scrubs - The Complete Fourth Season.


Inside of new packaging for Scrubs - The Complete Fourth Season.

20th Century Fox Home Entertainment and ABC Studios aren't the only studios making these changes. HBO Home Entertainment has been re-releasing several older releases of series, including Da Ali G Show and Entourage, in newer (and cheaper) packaging. Sony Pictures Home Entertainment is doing the same thing with All in the Family and Soap, releasing them in the cheaper black spindle cases that everybody seems to hate about Sony. One positive note about Sony, though, is that they are at least changing the UPC so that consumers are aware of what they are getting. And Lionsgate, while not making any packaging changes quite yet (that I'm aware of, anyway) has been excluding episode descriptions/booklets and cardboard slipcases on newer copies of older releases. Warner Home Video hasn't changed a whole lot, but some sets (such as The Flintstones) that were originally released with transparent plastic slipcases are being replaced with standard cardboard slipcases. So far, aside from the Saturday Night Live season sets (which were only supposed to be produced in limited numbers for the special packaging anyway), Universal and CBS DVD products haven't been affected... yet.

So is this all a good thing or bad thing? It depends upon what you are looking for. First and foremost, I find the practice of keeping the same UPC on the repackaged products very shameful, because if somebody orders a DVD online, they have no clue which version they will be getting. This issue has even resulted in Amazon.com being forced to put a disclaimer on some products about the packaging. Aside from that issue, though, let's take a look at some of the pros and cons of new packaging for older sets:
Pros:
  • Thinner and more compact, thus allowing more shelf space.
  • Often less cumbersome than old packaging (particularly folding digipacks).
  • Similar style packaging for all releases of a given series rather than having older style packaging for older seasons and more standardized packaging for newer releases.
  • Plastic cases often show much less wear and tear.
Cons:
  • Plastic cases usually simply look cheaper.
  • Retailer selection of DVDs often includes both older and newer packaging, sometimes meaning only newer packaging available for older sets and only older packaging available for newer sets, thus creating a hodgepodge of packaging between seasons for collectors.
  • Creative packaging designs are usually lost in the transition.
  • Episode descriptions, and in some cases even general lists, are being lost in the newer designs.
All in all, there seem to be about an equal number of pros and cons to the new packaging styles. It really all depends upon what your preferences are. Whenever possible, I've attempted to opt for the original packaging on just about every DVD set that I own, and I have been completely successful in this endeavor so far. Recently, it even meant going to four different Target locations to find the original packaging for the first three seasons of How I Met Your Mother. With a little work (and sometimes scouring used book and DVD stores), you can usually find the version that you are looking for, but using the same UPC certainly does create some confusion.

LOOKING AHEAD

We will, of course, return next Saturday with more news and reviews for you. We're still working on what will be on slate for next week, but we will have reviews coming up of The Unusuals - The Complete Series, Perry Mason - Season 5, Volume 1, Marcus Welby, M.D. - Season One, and who knows what else... sometimes we just review random and unexpected things that we stumble upon (and oddly enough those reviews tend to be the most interesting). We are going to have more feature stories in the next few weeks, and among some that we are working on include stories on out-of-print DVDs, an in-depth look at Blu-ray, a look at some rare (as well as some not-so-rare) finds on public domain DVD, and we will even start talking about the online sources for watching TV shows--the legal ones, anyway. We'll also plan to talk about more special deals on home media as we find them (I didn't mention this anywhere else in the blog today as we aren't fully covering deals yet, but I'll just say that you can find some excellent deals on some rather popular Lionsgate releases at T.J. Maxx and Marshalls stores). That's it for this week, but remember, we do want to hear your feedback about Digital Digest. Tell us on our message board or Tweet/Facebook us. Until next time, keep it digital!

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Tuesday, February 23, 2010

TV Land April 2010 Has 8th Annual TV Land Awards; FX Renews Archer for Second Season

Before we get into TV Land April 2010, we have to say that the weekday TV Land morning marathons that started yesterday will continue until further notice. Originally they announced it would be just for two weeks, but it will continue beyond that. Airing weekdays from 9am-1pm, it is Leave it to Beaver on Mondays, The Beverly Hillbillies on Tuesdays, Sanford & Son on Wednesdays, Hogan's Heroes on Thursdays, and Fridays it is a mix of Beaver/Gunsmoke/Bonanza.
Now we can move on to TV Land April 2010! As of now, there are no regular schedule changes. TV Land will continue to air original series First Love, Second Chance on Wednesdays at 10pm through April 14, when it will have its season finale. So the Wednesday schedule for April 21 and April 28 will change a bit, with Everybody Loves Raymond taking the 10pm hour and Home Improvement taking the 8pm hour. On Wednesdays only it was Raymond in the 8pm hour, so it could still have its two-hour block (8-10pm instead of 9-11pm). That is likely just for a few weeks, as in May, TV Land will start the second season of How'd You Get So Rich. Stay with us for that.
On Sunday, April 25, 2010 at 9pm, TV Land presents the 8th Annual TV Land Awards! Get a good seat as the stars arrive! The 8th Annual TV Land Awards roll out the red carpet to honor the best of TV, movies and music. All your favorite classic and contemporary stars come together one night to celebrate and honor the wonder of TV. This year's show is going to be another unforgettable evening of laughter, tribute, remembrance and celebration, honoring the best shows and brightest stars. Stay with us for details in the coming weeks, including who will be hosting!
Friday Night PRIME movies for April 2010 are premieres of Footloose and Pretty in Pink, and with encores of St. Elmo's Fire and The Fugitive.
I suggest you view the full TV Land April 2010 schedule, so you see what is on and what one-time adjustments are made. Adjustments include a Three's Company morning marathon on Sunday, April 18 from 8am-12pm and sitcom marathons on Sunday, April 25 leading into the TV Land Awards.

FX has given the go ahead for a second season of its critically acclaimed animated comedy series Archer. The network increased the episode order to 13 for season two, which is scheduled to debut in 2011. FX ordered 10 episodes for its first season.
Archer (TV-MA) has still three new episodes slated for air this season. Through seven episodes the series is averaging 1.2 million total viewers, 853,000 adults 18-49 and 573,000 adults 18-34. This Thursday, February 25, FX will air the "Four-Play Marathon," four episodes of Archer from 10 PM to midnight ET. Archer will return with new episodes on Thursday, March 4 at 10 PM and the season-one finale airs on March 18 at 10 PM.
Archer was one of three comedy pilots shot by FX in 2009 to receive a series order, along with The League and Louie (premieres in June). The League recently received a second-season order and it returns this summer for 13 episodes. FX's acclaimed hit series It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia returns for a sixth season this summer with 14 episodes.
Archer is an animated, half-hour comedy set at the International Secret Intelligence Service (ISIS), a spy agency where espionage and global crises are merely opportunities for its highly trained employees to confuse, undermine, betray and royally screw each other. The series features the voices of H. Jon Benjamin as suave master spy "Sterling Archer"; Jessica Walter as his domineering mother and boss, "Malory Archer"; Aisha Tyler as his ex-girlfriend and current co-worker, "Agent Lana Kane"; George Coe as his aging-but-loyal butler, "Woodhouse"; Chris Parnell as ISIS comptroller and Lana's new love interest, "Cyril Figgis"; Judy Greer as Malory's lovesick secretary, "Cheryl"; and Amber Nash as "Pam," the director of human resources for ISIS.

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Thursday, February 18, 2010

TV Land Adds Morning Marathons; ION Delays Emeril Lagasse Show

TV Land is adding morning marathons to weekdays beginning next week (Feb. 22). As of now, the marathons are only set for the next two weeks -- week of Feb. 22 and March 1. But I'm sure they will be extended into March as well, but it isn't official. The next two Mondays (Feb. 22/March 1) will have a marathon of Leave it to Beaver from 9am-1pm. Then on Tuesday, there will be a Beverly Hillbillies marathon on Feb. 23 and Sanford & Son on March 2, both from 9am-1pm. On Wednesday, there will be a Sanford & Son marathon on Feb. 24 from 9am-12pm, but on March 3 the previously scheduled marathon of High School Reunion will remain as the season finale is later that night. On Thursday, Hogan's Heroes takes the morning from 9am-1pm on both Feb. 25 and March 4. And finally on Friday, we have a mixed bag on both Feb. 26 and March 5. Leave it to Beaver kicks it off in the 9am half-hour, followed by Gunsmoke at 9:30am and then it is Bonanza until 5pm.
This means the current weekday 9am-1pm block of Leave it to Beaver, back-to-back Beverly Hillbillies, single All in the Family, back-to-back Sanford & Son and Hogan's Heroes are not airing in their normal slots for these two weeks (and beyond I bet). Stay with us for details.
And also of note, the Bewitched launch on Sunday (Feb. 28) has a time change now, it will be 11am-2pm instead. The series still joins the weekday schedule the next day (March 1) in the 5pm hour.
View the updated TV Land February 2010 schedule with these changes. And also view the updated TV Land March 2010 schedule with these changes. Look under the one-time-only adjustments section.

ION Television was set to launch The Emeril Lagasse Show on Sunday, March 28 airing Sundays at 8pm, but they just announced it has been delayed. We are not sure if the delay is only a week or a bit longer. Of course as soon as know, we will let you know. Whenever it launches, it will feature one of America's most popular chefs as he has never been seen before. Each week, Emeril will welcome celebrity guests, musicians and entertainers to break news and break bread as Emeril shares his world, his friends and his passions with the studio audience and viewers at home.
Instead on Sunday, March 28, ION will air back-to-back airings of the big screen movie I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry (2007) from 4pm-6:30pm and 6:30pm-9pm. The TV series Shark follows in its normal Sunday slots of 9pm and 10pm. An hour of M*A*S*H will kick off the block from 3-4pm. In other ION Television changes, they have added the premiere of the big screen movie Daredevil (2003) starring Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner for Saturday, March 27 at 7pm. The movie replaces an immediate encore of spin-off movie Elektra (2005) starring Jennifer Garner, which will remain airing at 5pm that night.
View the updated ION Television March 2010 schedule. Stay with us for updates on Emeril's new series. Bam!

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Saturday, July 04, 2009

2009 4th of July TV Marathons; Blog DVD Review: Matlock - The Third Season

As America celebrates its 233rd birthday, you can celebrate by watching television marathons of course! If you are not doing anything outdoors, what better way to celebrate? Among the marathons of course is the launch of Sister, Sister on BET, as we previously mentioned. The fun starts at 9am and runs all the way to 4am! TV Land will spend the day with classic marathons of Leave it to Beaver and Andy Griffith Show before its feuds and fireworks event with Roseanne for the night capper from 8pm-6am. TV One celebrates the holiday with Martin until 8pm. The N has over a 70-hour Degrassi marathon then continues today and tomorrow. So far all of these we have already announced in the past in our news reports. Hallmark Channel will celebrate with the Love's movie franchise all day today and tomorrow they will have Little House on the Prairie. On Friday they had M*A*S*H.
Elsewhere, what 4th of July would it be without The Twilight Zone on Sci-Fi? It started yesterday and will air all-day today until 6am Sunday morning! Reality is the way to go otherwise with Deadliest Catch on Discovery Channel and The Revolution on History. Movie lovers might like the James Bond movie marathon on USA Network, and the movies on ABC Family, Lifetime, FX, and TNT.
It's not as many marathons as usual since the holiday is on a Saturday this year it seems.

Now back to our regularly scheduled blog programming:

It is Saturday, so that must mean it is time for the blog DVD review! Today we take a look at CBS DVD's Matlock: The Third Season. Matlock of course is the very popular courtroom drama starring Andy Griffith that is often mentioned on The Simpsons as Grandpa Simpson's favorite show. See skees53's blog DVD review of Matlock: The Third Season:

Matlock: The Third Season (CBS DVD, $49.99) serves 20 episodes of justice to fans in a five disc DVD set. When you've been charged with a serious crime in Atlanta and you know you are innocent, you need the best. You need somebody that will play rough and dirty with the prosecutor. You need somebody that isn't afraid to go there. You need a man in a gray suit. You need Atlanta's finest, Ben Matlock (Andy Griffith).

The Third Season of Matlock is the season where we are introduced to a new neighbor and friend of Matlock, Les "Ace" Calhoun (Don Knotts). Knotts, of course, worked with Andy Griffith in the 1960s on the classic TV hit The Andy Griffith Show, and this reunion of Griffith and Knotts brings back a lot of the old chemistry that they had working together on that series. Knotts would make many appearances on the series in this recurring role for several seasons, until the series moved to ABC in the early 1990s. As for the rest of the cast, we still have Matlock's partner in his firm, Michelle Thomas (Nancy Stafford) and his private investigator, Tyler Hudson (Kene Holliday), who always seems to have to do the rough and dirty work on behalf of the law firm. Prosecutor Julie March (Julie Sommars) is there as Matlock's opponent, and although she simply can't win against the ruthless defense techniques of Ben Matlock, she isn't nearly as incompetent as the character of Hamilton Burger on the TV series Perry Mason. But Matlock is in it to win it, and you can't go wrong with him on your side.

We are introduced to Les Calhoun in the third season premiere, "The Lemon," when he buys a used car from a shady used car dealer (he buys a DeLorean, the same car used on the Back to the Future movies). But like every DeLorean, he ends up with a lemon and gets angry with the car dealer, and not long thereafter, the car dealer ends up murdered. It's Matlock to the rescue! Matlock must go to New York City to defend a British ambassador accused of murder in the two-part episode "The Ambassador." Matlock (reluctantly) agrees to take the case of a shock jock accused of murdering his competition in "The D.J." Matlock must take on a vigilante police captain in "The Captain." The entire office (sans Matlock) is being held hostage in "The Vendetta," but why are they being held hostage? And why isn't Matlock there to save the day?
Matlock has a client that is accused of a political assassination in Chicago in the two-part episode "The Mayor," but he simply can't find the evidence to acquit him. In "The Black Widow," a man is wrongly accused of murder after his wife fakes her own death, but after he serves his sentence and released she actually is murdered. Can Matlock exonerate him? The first runner-up in a beauty contest will never be called upon to fulfill her duties in "The Starlet" after she is murdered, but did the winner murder her? A psychic predicts a murder in "The Psychic," but was this truly an accurate prediction or did she have worldly knowledge?
Everything is complicated in the two-part episode "The Thief," where a coin shop owner is accused of killing one of his employees, and one of Matlock's suspects kidnaps the daughter of the female detective that he put on the case. A mentally challenged man is accused of murder in "The Thoroughbred," and Matlock has to do his best to defend him based upon his innocence. Matlock is determined to not give up on his client after being hit by a car in "The Model." In "The Cult," a man is accused of killing the cult-leader that brainwashed his son, and Tyler has to join the cult in order to do some undercover work to prove his innocence. The season ends with "The Priest," where a priest is murdered... or is he?

The set does not have any fancy packaging, which should be expected from a CBS DVD set. It is just the standard CBS DVD plastic case, containing five discs. The cover art has a very basic cast photo shot, and inside the case, we have a listing of all of the episodes, along with original airdates and brief descriptions. There are exactly four episodes on each disc. Of course, as this is a CBS DVD product, the menus are the same as every other CBS DVD set as well, with nothing more than a main menu that has a listing of all of the episodes on the disc, as well as a Play All option.

Once again, the episodes appear to be unedited, although it is important to note that the set DOES contain a disclaimer saying that some episodes may be edited from their original network versions. I did not notice anything significant. However, as was the case with the previous season, all of the episode previews have been removed from the episodes. This isn't significant, as these merely preview what is going to be on the upcoming episode, but if the producers saw it appropriate to include them on the TV broadcast, I can't understand why they should remove them on the DVD set. Still, they are not an integral part of the episode. Each episode runs around 48 minutes. Every episode is closed-captioned for the hearing-impaired. There are no special features at all on this set. It would have been nice to have seen something from the original cast, such as a cast reunion.

This set is a very basic set that isn't fancy or flashy, but then again, Matlock is a very basic series that isn't fancy or flashy. This is a great show to watch, even if it is unrealistic to think that there may actually be a defense attorney in the world that is as effective as Ben Matlock. My only hope is that future sets include something--anything really--along the lines of special features! The Second Season did include alternate endings to one episode, but other than that, we have seen nothing on these sets. This is a cult favorite (even if that cult consists of a lot of senior citizens, although the series is popular among younger people as well), and the fans want something extra on these sets! Still, it is nice to see that CBS DVD is releasing (what appears to be) unedited episodes with mostly decent video and audio quality. I will now rest my defense of this sufficient set of this excellent series and hope that you judge this DVD set the same way.

-- Reviewed by skees53
(4/5 stars)

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Related links:
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Thursday, July 02, 2009

TV Land August 2009 Schedule; Bio TV July Premieres; Scrubs Joins MTV

This August on TV Land we will have more weekend Classic Marathons along with some schedule changes (primarily weekday mornings) and the premiere of two new original series. First let's start with the schedule changes. Cosby Show will get the primetime block of 8-11pm on Tuesday nights starting Aug. 4, replacing Roseanne, while Roseanne takes Wednesday nights now from 8-10pm replacing Cosby Show...a flip-flop basically. Roseanne also gains Thursdays from 9pm-12am since She's Got the Look's season will be over.
The weekday morning changes begin on Monday, August 10. Kicking off mornings now will be Extreme Makeover: Home Edition in the 9am hour replacing an episode of All in the Family and Sanford & Son. At 10am we get back-to-back Good Times replacing The Jeffersons. At 11am we get back-to-back Sanford & Son replacing Good Times. In the 12pm hour we now get an episode each of All in the Family and Leave it to Beaver replacing Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. So basically everything changes times only, but The Jeffersons is totally removed and Beaver is in. Why? Because The Jeffersons' contract is up after Aug. 31, and we don't have official word yet but it seems they will not renew since it is not listed on the regular schedule. More on The Jeffersons below. The only other change is Monday nights from 10pm-12am will now be M*A*S*H instead of Roseanne.
TV Land will have two all-new half-hour original series this August. They will air in the 10pm hour on Wednesdays starting Aug. 5. First up is How'd You Get So Rich? Sure, the economy is in the tank, but like it or not, there are still millionaires out there -- and they didn't all get rich by stealing your money (thanks for nothing, Wall Street). They made their fortunes by inventing Billy Bob Teeth and Butt Paste. Enter Joan Rivers and her money-obsessed new show, How'd You Get So Rich? Then we have Make My Day at 10:30pm. 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. Make My Day is a 30-minute series produced for TV Land by Embassy Row (Power of Ten, Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?), Monkey Kingdom and Sony Pictures Television. Michael Davies serves as the executive producer.
As for the weekend Classic Marathons, they will continue in August! We get two marathons a day and Andy Griffith Show is always the second one. Joining Andy are shows like Leave it to Beaver, Bonanza, Beverly Hillbillies, 3rd Rock from the Sun, Green Acres, and The Jeffersons. The latter two could be farewell marathons since they are expiring at the end of the month. Tune in on Aug. 9 from 11am-5pm for The Jeffersons and Aug. 15 from 12pm-5pm for Green Acres (and a special block from 6am-8:30am on Aug. 22). They both seem gone to me, but that will be confirmed in September.
Next it's the M*A*S*H Flashback Weekend the weekend of Aug. 21-23 in primetime. TV Land PRIME is taking M*A*S*H fans back to where it all began. The event begins on Friday at 10pm in the PRIME Movie block, when PRIME looks back at the feature film that inspired the series. Relive all of the unforgettable moments, and enjoy extra M*A*S*H commentary and trivia in the breaks from TV Land's own PRIME Players. PRIME is even taking you all the way back to the series premiere as the Flashback Weekend continues with three nights of back-to-back episodes from the first season of the hit show. So for that weekend sit back, kick back, and flash back with TV Land's M*A*S*H Flashback Weekend!
Finally, the movies for the month are Clue, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, M*A*S*H, and Doc Hollywood.
View and discuss more on TV Land August 2009.

Bio TV this July will have all-new Biography episodes of your favorite series. On Tuesday, July 7 at 10PM we get an all-new Biography on Full House. It was one of the most popular family sitcoms of the late 80s and early 90s. Over the course of eight wildly entertaining seasons, Full House enthralled audiences, created iconic teen idols, and launched the ever-expanding Olsen Empire. In this hour, Bio TV steps behind the scenes and hear from former cast members what it was like to grow up in one of TV's wackiest, most unconventional families. Join us as Bio TV opens the doors and go on a special tour of the Tanner Family's Full House.
We get the Biography premiere on David Letterman at 10pm on Wednesday, July 29. A former TV weatherman who once predicted hail stones "the size of canned hams," David Letterman was a struggling stand-up comic and TV writer when guest shots on shows such as The Gong Show caught the attention of Johnny Carson. As a result, he eventually became the permanent substitute host for the The Tonight Show. When Carson retired, however, Letterman lost a mano-a-mano battle for the coveted seat to Jay Leno and he left NBC, landing at CBS and his own late night show. Along the way, Letterman has overcome a determined stalker, emergency quintuple bypass surgery, and several failed relationships, before finding a measure of happiness in his marriage to his longtime girlfriend and the birth of their son.
These are just the premieres, there will be plenty of other TV/sitcom related Biography encores such as Diff'rent Strokes, Facts of Life, The Partridge Family, John Stamos, Bob Saget, Dana Plato, Bill Cosby, Mackenzie Phillips, Valerie Bertinelli. The Truth Behind the Sitcom Scandals airing for the month is an episode with The Jeffersons & One Day at a Time. They will also the reunion A Cosby Show: A Look Back.
Coming in August, three all-new Biography episodes of three classic sitcoms and more! Stay tuned in the coming weeks!

Finally, it looks like Scrubs is joining MTV beginning Monday (July 6, 2009). Scrubs will air weekdays in the 4pm hour on the Viacom owned network. MTV also recently began airing reruns of Degrassi weekdays in the 10am hour (from Viacom's The N) and recently aired Futurama in the 4pm hour for a few weeks (from Viacom's Comedy Central). Talk about Viacom sharing! This is getting crazier everyday. Because of the MTV addition, Comedy Central will remove the weekday afternoon slots of Scrubs (2:30-3:30pm), but it will still air weekdays 7-8pm.
Scrubs was supposed to join the weekday line-up on Viacom's Spike TV starting July 6, but maybe because of this change it didn't happen. Scrubs is airing for at least until end of July on MTV. There is word Scrubs will appear on Spike TV at a later date, so stay tuned for that. Spike did air a few Thursday late night airings and Sunday morning airings for a few weeks.

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Monday, June 29, 2009

TV Land Classic Marathons on Weekends Continues; Remembering Gale Storm

We have some minor TV Land schedule changes to tell you about. First off, Married...with Children is indeed airing tonight from approx. 8-11pm ET/PT for its last "scheduled" airing on TV Land. We have said that many times before, too, though and it always returns. Starting next Monday (July 6), TV Land will air another night of PRIME movies from 8-10pm, with Roseanne getting the 10pm hour. PRIME Monday movies scheduled for July are the premiere of History of the World and encores of Doc Hollywood, National Lampoon's Vacation, and National Lampoon's European Vacation.
Now as we all have seen the last few weekends, TV Land is having marathons on weekends during the day and now they will continue in July as well now. This past weekend was Married...with Children, but it was abbreviated because of the Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson tributes. These marathons are called "Classic Marathons" and will consist of a classic show followed by an Andy Griffith Show marathon, so yes, Andy will still be on weekends only. The first show airs usually from 11am-5pm, with Andy from 5-10pm, but the times vary. The weekend of July 4-5 will be Leave it to Beaver and Andy (with the scheduled "Roseanne 4th of July Feuds & Fireworks" marathon from 8pm-6am both nights). July 11-12 it will be Hogan's Heroes and Andy. July 18-19 its The Brady Bunch and Andy on Saturday, while Bonanza gets the nod on Sunday with Andy. Finally on July 25-26 it will be The Jeffersons and Andy on Saturday, and Sanford & Son and Andy on Sunday. Those are classic shows indeed! We will have TV Land August 2009 soon, but it is expected these marathons on weekends will continue as well. Stay tuned for that.
For the full schedule and more, view our updated TV Land July 2009 schedule & highlights.

We keep losing famous people. We have lost Billy Mays, the infomercial guru yesterday at the age of 50, but we won't cover his life here. We will however cover the life of Gale Storm, who passed away as well. Gale Storm, whose wholesome appearance and perky-personality made her one of early television's biggest stars on the comedy My Little Margie and The Gale Storm Show, died Saturday (June 27, 2009) at a convalescent hospital in Danville, CA. My Little Margie debuted on CBS as a summer replacement for I Love Lucy in 1952. It quickly became an audience favorite and moved to its own slot on NBC that fall. The premise was standard sitcom fare: Charles Farrell was a business executive and eligible widower, Storm was his busybody daughter who protected him from predatory women. After the series ended its 126-episode run in 1955, she moved on to The Gale Storm Show, which lasted until 1960 on CBS and later on ABC. This time she played Susanna Pomeroy, a trouble-making social director on a luxury liner.
After her comedies, she moved on to become a singer basically, but she did have some TV roles as well. She guest starred on Burke's Law, The Love Boat and Murder, She Wrote.
She will certainly be missed and let's hope one day My Little Margie is on DVD! Gale was 87.

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Friday, June 19, 2009

The N Brings Back Kenan, Growing Pains; Retro Television Coming to Columbia, SC

As we patiently wait for Nick at Nite's official July schedule with the addition of Malcolm in the Middle, we will bring you the July schedule for sister Viacom network The N. The new The N schedule starts Monday, July 6. The N, like other Viacom networks, likes to double-dip their comedies. Kenan & Kel will return to The N schedule! Starting at 6am we get back-to-back Caitlin's Way, Radio Free Roscoe, Kenan & Kel, Amanda Show, Moesha, and a four-spot of Degrassi from 11am-1pm. Afternoons starting at 1pm its back-to-back Beyond the Break, H2O, Saved by the Bell, Kenan & Kel, Unfabulous, and a four-spot of Zoey 101 from 6-8pm. The four-spots continue from 8pm-6am as well with What I Like About You, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, That '70s Show, What I Like About You, and Moesha. On Fridays, 7pm-8:30pm its Degrassi, followed by the new original series The Assistants at 8:30pm & 9pm for its premiere (then will air 8:30pm only weekly) with encores at 10:30pm & 2am. More Degrassi on Fridays are 9-10:30pm and 11pm-12am. What I Like About You is extended on Fridays from 2-6am instead of just 2-4am.
Weekends is the same as weekdays from 6am-10am. Then we have the four-spots of series from 10am-6pm with Unfabulous, Zoey 101, Degrassi and iCarly. Zoey 101 will air in the 6pm hour on Sundays. Then it gets a bit complicated for the rest of the night on weekends, so I suggest you view that schedule. Growing Pains is returning to the schedule but just once a week on late Sunday nights (early Monday mornings) at 4am ET/PT. The first week it will air at 3:30am, though. It joins a block of Clueless (4:30am) and Sabrina the Teenage Witch (5-6am), as both of those are on just once a week as well. Too bad Growing Pains isn't returning to weekdays in its old 11am hour timeslot.
View and discuss the entire The N July 2009 schedule.

WKTC-My63, Columbia's My Network TV affiliate, is proud to announce that it has signed an exclusive agreement with RTV (Retro Television) to begin broadcasting classic TV programming on its digital subchannel, WKTC-DT2 (63.2), starting tomorrow (Saturday June 20, 2009)!
Daytime programming will include classic comedy hits such as Leave it to Beaver, McHale's Navy, and drama Marcus Welby, while evenings will be filled with hits such as Knight Rider, The A Team, Magnum P.I. and The Rockford Files.

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Thursday, June 18, 2009

TV Land Adds Married with Children Weekend Marathon and First 2 Weeks of July Change; Emmy Awards Changes Date Again

Previously on "TV Land Schedule Changes," Bree wanted Orson to stop stealing, oops wrong show...we told you the changes from June 15-28, now we have June 27 through July 12! This is like a soap opera, isn't it? The weekend of June 27-28 will now have a change now. It will have a Married...with Children marathon primarily. Al Bundy and family will air from 9:30am-8pm on Saturday, June 27 and from 8am-2am on Sunday, June 28. That's a whole lotta Bundy! Encores of movies Grease and Grease 2 will also air on Saturday, June 27, with Roseanne blocks as well. Then the regular schedule starting Monday, June 29 is pretty similar to the changes that started on June 15, but just a few things. For weekdays, the 12pm hour is now back to Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, replacing Leave it to Beaver/Beverly Hillbillies. But Beverly Hillbillies will air in the 1pm hour, so that means TV Land Goes West (2 episodes of Gunsmoke & Bonanza each and one Little House) goes from approx. 1:30pm-7pm to now more on the clock from 2pm-7pm. This means Beaver is now weekends only again if they have a marathon. Mondays from 8pm-11pm will now be yet more Roseanne replacing Married...with Children, so Married is now off the regular schedule, but not to worry as it returns to Spike TV weekdays on July 6. So it looks like (for now I guess) Married (which is doing decent for them) will have its last TV Land airing during that weekend marathon (June 27-28). I expect we will see more soon as they keep bringing it back and changing the schedule, so stay tuned. Everything else on weekdays is the same as it is now, so yes, Andy Griffith is not on weekdays through July 12.
On weekends we get marathon blocks ("Andy & Friends" as I'd like to call it). But first, from 6-8am on both days we now see more Roseanne, so that replaces Star Trek, Bonanza, Gunsmoke, and whatever else pops up weekend mornings usually. But remember, as of now this is through July 12 only. The weekend of July 4-5 will see Leave it to Beaver and Andy Griffith. On Saturday, July 4, we see Beaver from 11am-3pm and Andy Griffith from 3pm-8pm. On Sunday, July 5 we see Beaver from 12pm-3pm and more Andy from 3pm-8pm. As previously announced, Roseanne July 4th Feuds & Fireworks Marathon airs from 8pm-6am on both nights. The weekend of July 11-12 will see more marathons. A special SpongeBob SquarePants block will air on Saturday, July 11 from 10am-12pm, as SpongeBob is getting ready for his 10th birthday on Nickelodeon with "The Ultimate SpongeBob SpongeBash." We will have more on that during our Nick at Nite July schedule & highlights very soon, as SpongeBob will have about a 50-hour non-stop marathon on Nick/Nick at Nite from July 17-19. Back to TV Land, it's more marathons as the weekend of July 11-12 it is Hogan's Heroes and Andy Griffith. Hogan's Heroes on both days will air from 12pm-5pm while Andy will air both days from 5pm-10pm. Regular weekend schedule will air elsewhere. So is TV Land trying to phase Andy out by airing it only on weekends? Sound off on our message board and also you can view these changes in a list form. Remember TV Land keeps releasing schedules two weeks at a time, so as of now this is through July 12 only. Stay tuned for more!

The 61st Primetime Emmy Awards has been re-scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 20 from approx. 8:00-11:00 PM, live ET/delayed PT) on CBS. That was the original date and now CBS has gone back to that after moving it to Sunday, Sept. 13. But September 13 is the same day for the MTV Video Music Awards. So CBS had to move it back to the original Sept. 20. date. CBS moved it to Sept. 13 originally because of an NFL game from 4-7:30pm ET. To present The 61st Primetime Emmy Awards as close as possible to its scheduled 8:00 PM start, 60 Minutes is planning a flexible broadcast following CBS Sports late afternoon NFL game. So we will finally see a shortened 60 Minutes or possibly preempted totally in the East if the game goes over 7:30pm ET.
Remember nominations will be announced Thursday, July 16 at 5:40 AM PT from the Television Academy's Leonard H. Goldenson Theatre in North Hollywood. You can watch it live on CBS's Early Show.

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Friday, May 01, 2009

TV Land June 2009 Has Roseanne; ABC/Disney Now on Hulu

This June on TV Land they will launch sitcom Roseanne in TV Land PRIME, launch the second season of reality series She's Got The Look on a new night and time, and spend Father's Day with TV Land Rough n Rugged.
TV Land PRIME welcomes Roseanne to the network with a week long, primetime marathon beginning Friday, June 5. The marathon will air 8pm-1am each night and encore 1am-6am each night through Friday, June 12, before the series joins the regular schedule on Saturday, June 13. Roseanne is the quintessential sitcom about a working class family that put the "Real in TV" long before reality television became the norm. Travel back in time with the "Queen of Comedy" as TV Land PRIME chronicles the Conner family's ups and downs, laughs and love, and dreams - both real and imagined.
Roseanne will air Saturdays from 9pm-11pm & 2am-4am; Sundays from 12am-2am; Mon-Tues & Thurs 11pm-2am; Tues-Fri from 8pm-10pm (except 9-10pm on Thursdays); and Wednesdays & Fridays 1-2am. That's a whole lotta Roseanne! And good news for classic TV fans because Leave it to Beaver is renewed and on the June schedule airing Saturdays from 12-2pm. Three's Company is unfortunately off the line-up for now with the addition of Roseanne, as will be Hogan's Heroes & Green Acres. The other big change is late nights on weeknights. 2am-6am all get changed, with The Cosby Show airing in the 2am hour, 3rd Rock from the Sun will only air now at 3am, followed by the return of Scrubs at 3:30am, followed by M*A*S*H at 4am, Sanford & Son at 4:30am, The Jeffersons at 5am, and Good Times at 5:30am. So this does mean M*A*S*H is just once a night on weeknights, but it will still air on Sunday nights, but now 9pm-12am. We have the full schedule for you to click on below...so keep reading!
They're back again... and this time the stakes are bigger and better as 12 gorgeous women 35-and-over grace TV Land PRIME in season 2 of the modeling competition series that's like no other...She's Got the Look! For one very lucky winner, a second chance for a supermodel career, a life changing contract with the world famous Wilhelmina Modeling Agency, and a spread in Self magazine awaits. Watch the nationwide search, follow the drama as the number of contestants dwindles, and root for your favorite to win it all. Join in on the fun on a new night and time starting Thursday June 11, 2009 at 9pm for eight straight weeks through July 30. Encores of the show will air Thursdays at 10pm & 1am; Fridays at 12 midnight; Saturdays 10am & 1am; Sundays 3am; Mondays 11am; Tuesdays 2am; Wednesdays 10pm; and the next Thursday at 12 noon.
But before the premiere on June 11, catch a sneak peek at She's Got the Look season two on Wednesday, June 3 at 11pm following the finale of The Cougar.
It's Dad's Day and TV Land has 12 hours of rough rugged entertainment planned that will keep dad glued to his seat. Starting with a 7-hour block of movies featuring fights and sports, a classic Mel Brooks comedy and a 4 hour western block featuring popular episodes of Bonanza and Gunsmoke, Dad is sure to appreciate that you've kept him busy doing his most favorite thing: sitting on the couch and watching good manly TV! Catch the movies Slapshot 2, Slapshot, and History of the World Part 1.
Other TV Land PRIME movie premieres for the month are Another 48 Hours and Driving Miss Daisy.
View the full TV Land June 2009 schedule, with full highlights and one-time adjustments.

Hulu and The Walt Disney Company announced that Disney, through a subsidiary of ABC Enterprises Inc., has agreed to join NBC Universal, News Corporation and Providence Equity Partners as a joint venture partner and equity owner of Hulu, a leading online aggregator of video content. Upon closing, the agreement will enhance Hulu's programming lineup through the expanded online distribution of Disney's most popular current and library primetime series and library feature films. In particular, full-length episodes of hit current and library programs like Lost, Grey’s Anatomy, Desperate Housewives, Private Practice, Ugly Betty, Scrubs, Greek, Hope & Faith, Less than Perfect, Wizards of Waverly Place, Phineas and Ferb, Who Wants To Be a Millionaire, General Hospital, The View and The Secret Life of the American Teenager will soon be streamed on Hulu on an ad-supported basis.
· Full-length episodes of ABC primetime programs like Lost, Grey's Anatomy, Desperate Housewives, Ugly Betty, Samantha Who?, Scrubs, Private Practice and popular late night talk show Jimmy Kimmel Live!
· Full-length episodes of hit ABC Family series like The Secret Life of the American Teenager and Greek
· Popular series from ABC Daytime and SOAPnet like General Hospital and The View
· Classic series from ABC's library like Hope & Faith, Less than Perfect, Commander in Chief, Who Wants To Be a Millionaire and past seasons of the megahit Dancing with the Stars
· Select hit programs from Disney Channel like Wizards of Waverly Place and Phineas and Ferb which can be easily accessed from a new DISNEY location in the Channel section of Hulu.com
· Popular library titles from The Walt Disney Studios
· Short-form content including webisodes, sneak peeks and episode recaps from ABC Entertainment, ABC Family and SOAPnet
That is a lot and this is huge! ABC/Disney has bought 30% of Hulu. There is no date yet when all of this will appear, but we will let you know.

Stay tuned tomorrow for our regular blog DVD review and a look at what we think will be picked-up by NBC for both new and returning series. NBC has their "infront" on Monday and will announce what they will pick-up, but an actual schedule won't be announced until upfront week (week of May 18). NBC continues to be the oddball with this "infront" stuff.

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Thursday, April 30, 2009

TV Land Changes May Schedule; Adult Swim Acquires British The Office

Today we were supposed to give you TV Land June 2009, continuing our June week, but now TV Land has edited their May schedule. We will have to delay the June schedule until tomorrow or next week. So stay tuned for that. TV Land has changed their May schedule a bit starting May 4. Among the changes are more Gunsmoke & Bonanza on weekdays now extended from 2pm-6pm from Tues-Fri. This means the Monday block is now from 12pm-6pm. Evening sitcoms now start 6pm with Hogan's Heroes moving to the 6pm half-hour, followed by Green Acres at 6:30pm. The Beverly Hillbillies remains in the 7pm hour.
TV Land Goes West is added also on Saturdays from 1pm-7pm, just like how it airs on Sundays, with two Gunsmoke episodes followed by four episodes of Bonanza. This means the TV Land movie encores are now just Saturdays at 6am. The Brady Bunch on Saturday mornings is now 9am-11am, with Leave it to Beaver from 11am-1pm leading into the westerns block. Beaver also airs 7-8pm on Saturdays, followed by blocks of Andy Griffith from 8pm-11pm, M*A*S*H from 11pm-1am, and Three's Company from 1am-3am. Sundays has an extended Hillbillies from 10am-1pm leading into the westerns. Andy follows from 7-10pm, then M*A*S*H from 10pm-1am, Hillbillies from 1am-3am, and now only an hour of Brady Bunch (in the 3am hour).
It is not many changes, but this make schedule more of a regular schedule, especially on weekends with shows getting set time slots now. What does this mean for June? We will have to wait and see, but we know one thing, Roseanne is joining the TV Land PRIME line-up. But for now, view the full updated TV Land May 2009 schedule.

The Office, the BBC series that spawned the NBC comedy of the same name, is returning to American television on Adult Swim. The Turner-owned network, which shares channel space with Cartoon Network, has acquired both seasons of the British comedy, as well as The Office Christmas Special and will start airing them this summer.
Created, written and directed by Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant, The Office is about the day-to-day lives of employees in the Slough, Bershire branch of the fictitious Wernham Hogg Paper Company. The series' main character, David Brent, as portrayed by Gervais, is familiar to office workers everywhere. As regional manager of the company, Brent fancies himself as a great team leader using humor to win the loyalty of his staff. In reality, he is belittling, smug, sexist, insensitive, patronizing and unthinkingly offensive.
Adult Swim also airs the BBC hit The Mighty Boosh, since March 29. They recently secured the rights to Look Around You.
The U.S. version of the series airs in repeats on sister station TBS.

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Wednesday, December 24, 2008

'Twas the Day Before Christmas....2008 Christmas Marathons on Television

'Twas the day (or night, depending on when you read this) before Christmas...when all through the blog not a creature was stirring, not even Mickey Mouse! Sorry, that was the best I could come up with. Well it is indeed Christmas Eve! Marathons will be airing all this long holiday weekend and we will let you know what and where. We have told you many of the notable ones in our regular stories, such as Retro Television Network's Leave it to Beaver marathon starting today at 4pm and running until 11:59pm on Christmas Day! That's 32 hours of The Beav! Gee whiz, Wally, can't we sleep and stuff? Nope! We have a promo for the marathon for you to watch. Our gift to you! Well, from RTN to you. Enjoy the marathon, if you get the channel.


Now for the other holiday helpings...we told you about BET's Holiday Sitcom Marathons that started yesterday with Family Matters. It continues today with One on One, Smart Guy on Christmas Day, The Proud Family on Friday, and Girlfriends on Saturday. And Fresh Prince to throw in on Monday even. Nice! TV Land has holiday episodes starting at midnight ET tonight running until 9pm on Christmas Day with such series such as Night Court, Cosby Show, All in the Family, and The Jeffersons labeled as their Merrython. Nick at Nite also has holiday episodes tonight and tomorrow, with series such as Family Matters and George Lopez in primetime. We mentioned WGN America's holiday programming, such as the Yule Log tonight and holiday classics like The Flintstones and The Honeymooners today. Catch holiday episodes of sitcoms on TV One, FX, ABC Family, Lifetime, and more in their regular slots today as well. And TBS has its annual showing if 24 hours of the holiday movie classic A Christmas Story starting tonight a 8pm. What we didn't mention yet for today: Family Feud marathon on GSN, Top Chef on Bravo, James Bond movies on Spike and Ghost Hunters on Sci Fi. On Christmas Day, we haven't mentioned: Mythbusters on Discovery, Card Sharks on GSN, Law & Order on TNT, Star Trek: The Next Generation on Sci Fi, House on USA Network, Rocky movies 1-5 on Versus, and James Bond films continues on Spike.
Among the day after Christmas marathons we haven't mentioned include CSI on Spike, Amazing Race 13 on Travel, Super Password on GSN, Highlander: The Series on Sci Fi, and House continues on USA.

Make notes of all these marathons and enjoy them with your family this holiday. Come on back tomorrow for a bit, if you get a chance! Be on the look out for Santa tonight! Clear those chimneys and fireplaces! Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!

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Friday, December 19, 2008

TV Land Brings Back All in the Family, Other Minor Changes; CMT's Mama's Family Block on Dec. 27-28

We gave you many updates already for TV Land January, now TV Land has made some minor changes to its January line-up. First, starting January 2, weekdays in the 5pm hour will now be more Hogan's Heroes, replacing Leave it to Beaver. So, Hogan's Heroes will air weekdays from 4-6pm, four episodes in a row. Beaver will only air on weekends as a result of this change, Saturdays 8-9am and Sunday nights 2-4am. Also starting Sunday, Jan. 4, TV Land Goes West gets extended to 2-7pm instead of 2-6pm, an extra Bonanza episode is added replacing essentially Hogan's Heroes in the 6pm hour on Sundays. It will be three Bonanza episodes from 2-5pm and two Gunsmoke episodes from 5-7pm.
Finally, effective Monday, January 5, All in the Family returns to the regular schedule airing weekdays at 9am replacing an episode of Sanford & Son. Sanford & Son will continue to air weekdays at 9:30am. All in the Family will go in order from the beginning but the first episode will be skipped. Boy the way Glenn Miller played!
View full schedules and highlights for TV Land January 2009.

Mama's back! Well for one weekend, that is. Mama's Family returns to CMT for a special weekend block on Saturday, December 27 and Sunday, December 28 from 10pm-2am ET on both nights. As you all know, Mama's Family airs from time to time on CMT, mostly in special marathon blocks. Episodes 17-32 will air on these two nights, so from "Naomi and the Stork" to "Mama's Birthday." I think CMT has not aired anything after season two, though they might have aired a few episodes in early season three.
Mama's Family was last seen on CMT on a Saturday this past September with an eight episode marathon. CMT briefly aired it weekday afternoons in summer 2007.

Next week is Christmas, but that won't stop us. As always, we will have a story everyday...including lots of great stuff early in the week, such as WGN America's January 2009 changes. Can that channel get any better? Find out Monday! But before that join us this weekend for a blog DVD review of Password and our last ratings report for 2008 on Sunday!

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Friday, December 12, 2008

Leave it to Beaver Christmas Marathon on RTN; Unsolved Mysteries To Return on Spike TV in January

Retro Television Network (RTN) will celebrate the Christmas holiday with a marathon of America's favorite family...The Cleavers, with a marathon of Leave it to Beaver! Every single RTN affiliate will air 32 straight hours of Leave it to Beaver beginning at 4pm on Christmas Eve. The 32-hour marathon will conclude at midnight Christmas night.
You will see 64 classic episodes of the sitcom that featured Jerry Mathers as the Beaver. Among the episodes you'll see are "In the Soup," "Beaver's Report Card," "Wally's Dream Girl," "Beaver's First Date," "Eddie Quits School," and the very last episode "Family Scrapbook."
This is a marathon you will not want to miss! Spend Christmas with your family watching the Cleaver family on RTN! I just always wondered why there never was an actual Christmas episode of Leave it to Beaver? View full episode info for the marathon.

Many of you have been wondering what has happened to Unsolved Mysteries on Spike TV lately? Spike TV decided to give all-day marathons of CSI and CSI: NY all December long and thus the entire schedule has been preempted this month, with James Bond movies during Christmas week. Even Married...with Children is not airing weekdays. Not to worry everything will be back in January! But first, week of December 29 will feature a marathon of one show per day. The marathon starts with a Married...with Children all-day marathon on December 29 and concludes on January 2 with Unsolved Mysteries. Unsolved Mysteries. will then have a week-long marathon from Monday, Jan. 5 to Friday, Jan. 9 from 9am-6pm each day! Talk about returning in style! But what about airing regularly? That will happen, too! Effective Monday, Jan. 12, Spike TV will have a new weekday line-up. The Shield kicks it off at 9am, followed by four episodes of Married...with Children from 10am-12pm, then Unsolved Mysteries will launch in its new time period with three episodes in a row from 12-3pm. The schedule continues with CSI: NY from 3-7pm and CSI from 7-9pm. Then we have primetime from 9pm-12am, and in the late night we have CSI: NY at midnight, Disorderly Conduct: Video on Patrol at 1am, Spike's Most Amazing Videos at 2am, and Star Trek: Voyager at 3am. Some nights late in week from 1-4am we get episodes of Married...with Children, The Shield, and MXC: Most Extreme Elimination Challenge as well. You Unsolved Mysteries fans can see the series on most Sunday afternoons as well in January.
View complete details for Spike TV January 2009.

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Friday, November 14, 2008

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

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

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

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

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Monday, November 03, 2008

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

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

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

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

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

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Thursday, October 16, 2008

Many Universal Series Seasons Not on DVD on Netflix.com!; Network Notes

Tired of waiting for some of your favorite Universal series to continue on DVD? Now Netflix is giving you the entire run of many series that are not yet complete on DVD from Universal! Shows include Coach, Charles in Charge, Leave it to Beaver, Gimme a Break!, Kate & Allie, Dragnet '67, Adam-12, Emergency!, Kojak, Simon & Simon, McMillian & Wife, Quincy, seaQuest DSV, The Rockford Files, Airwolf, Murder She Wrote and Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries. Wow you can watch every episode of Leave it to Beaver! Even season 6! Now you don't have to wait for Universal to complete the series and all the rest of these! All you have to do is to be a Netflix subscriber and you can watch all these episodes instantly on your computer in a nice streaming quality! Don't like that? Get the Netflix Ready Device so you can download these episodes to a device and play them on your TV! I know many of you would like to own the episodes on DVD, but this is a start in watching them.

It's time for more wheelings and dealings...it's network notes! CBS has given a full season order to its new drama The Mentalist, the season's top new freshman series in viewers and adults 25-54 so far. No surprise.
The Mentalist is averaging 16.14 million viewers (No. 7 among all primetime programs), 5.3/12 in adults 25-54 and 3.8/9 in adults 18-49. The series stars Golden Globe Award nominee Simon Baker as Patrick Jane, an independent consultant with the California Bureau of Investigation (CBI), who has a remarkable track record for solving serious crimes by using his razor sharp skills of observation. The series joins Fringe and 90210 for full season orders for rookie series.
Meanwhile, NBC's veteran drama Medium returns sometime this mid-season (or earlier I bet) and NBC has ordered three additional episodes. Last season the show had 16 episodes, so we are not sure what the original episode order was for this year. Could be 13 or 16 and you can tack on three more for Patricia Arquette's series.
ABC's Eli Stone will have 4 more episodes this season as well. The show was ordered for 13 episodes in its second season, so you can tack on four more to that at least, pending the ratings being decent enough. ABC has been pleased with the quality and direction so far, thus their decision in adding four more. And if you haven't seen the season premiere yet, you missed out on an excellent season premiere with guest Sigourney Weaver. Catch it on abc.com if you missed it and don't forget to tune in for the second episode this Tuesday at 10PM ET, with special guest star Katie Holmes! As I said before, I saw this episode already from a review screener and she is excellent. Gina Torres and Katey Sagal also guest star. Have faith in Eli!
Finally, it seems that Fox will also air the half-hour political ad from Presidential Candidate Barack Obama on Wednesday, October 29. CBS and NBC have already signed on to air it. However, Major League Baseball would have to push back the start of game six of the World Series, if necessary, so Fox can air the Obama. The game was scheduled to have first pitch at 8:20pm, but Fox and MLB could move it to 8:35pm if necessary. ABC is in discussions as well to air it, but maybe on a different night like Tuesday instead, since they air an hour-long sow (Pushing Daisies) in the time period. CBS has two half-hour sitcoms and will preempt Gary Unmarried on the night and shift Old Christine to 8:30 for this night. NBC will preempt Knight Rider altogether and air a TBD show at 8:30.

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