Tuesday, January 12, 2010

TCA Winter 2010 Press Tour: ABC; Rita Rocks Canceled By Lifetime; TV Land Picks-Up Series, Announces Cast For Sitcom Pilot

The final day for the broadcast networks at the TCA winter press tour is today and ABC gets to close things out. First up at 9am PT was a panel on LOST! On hand were stars Emilie de Ravin, Michael Emerson, Jorge Garcia, Josh Holloway, Daniel Dae Kim, Evangeline Lilly, and Terry O'Quinn, along with executive producers Damon Lindelof & Carlton Cuse. Among the items answered: Damon and Carlton announce that Cynthia Watros (Libby) and Harold Perrineau (Michael) are confirmed for this final season. Season 6 will be like Season 1. Don't know what that means, you'll have to watch and see. Holloway says the season 6 premiere felt like a finale. Good stuff! The final season begins Tuesday, Feb. 2 at 8/7 central with a three-hour event (clip show recap and two-hour premiere)! If you need to refresh yourself, ABC will air last season's season finale on Tuesday, Jan. 26 at 9/8 central!

After that, there was the Executive Session with Stephen McPherson (President of ABC Entertainment Group) at 10am PT. Among the items given were details on a The Bachelor/The Bachelorette spin-off titled The Bachelor Pad. It will launch after the season of The Bachelorette ends this summer and will reunite 20 former contestants from both series all living in a house at the same time. An all-star edition!
Comedy wise, ABC has given early pick-ups for the Comedy Wednesday comedies The Middle, Modern Family and Cougar Town for 2010-2011 season! All three are safe and will return next season and have been extended beyond 22 episodes for this season (likely 24 for all three this season)! As for Hank, he mentions the writing wasn't that good but he loves Kelsey. So Hank is officially canceled. ABC will air the last two episodes of the season of [scrubs][med school] on a special night of Wednesday on Wednesday, Jan. 27 and Wednesday, Feb. 3 at 8pm. Until then the series will air Tuesdays at 9pm (repeats at 8pm on Jan. 12 and 19) thru Jan. 26 at 8pm. Better off Ted still will have two episodes unaired after its Jan. 26 airing. Decision will be made after that whether or not both series will return next season, but ABC was disappointed by the numbers for both. McPherson loves Ugly Betty and wants to find the right slot for it. And hoping people know now about the move to Wednesdays. Alyssa Milano's sitcom Romantically Challenged could be a contender for Wednesdays at 8pm, but no premiere date yet.
As for other midseason stuff, V and FLASHFORWARD return in March, as we all know. FLASHFORWARD is not returning in January because ABC would have had a lot of repeats scheduled and the show doesn't repeat well. V returns Tuesday, March 30 at 10, while FLASHFORWARD returns Thursday, March 18 at 8 with a two-hour return. V was always planned to air in chapters, but chapter one should have been longer but production issues was the reason for only four episodes for the first chapter. He mentions Happy Town is serialized and it has a beginning, middle and end for this run. Still waiting on when to schedule it. ABC could order more Conveyor Belt of Love specials or as a series. Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution will air Fridays at 9pm starting March 26. The series is produced by Ryan Seacrest Productions and Fresh One Productions. In the series, Oliver heads to Huntington, West Virginia -- which has been called the unhealthiest city in America -- to start his new cooking initiative. He hopes to help get Huntington off that list and start a chain reaction of positive change across the country. Shark Tank will finish its season on Friday, Feb. 5 at 9, then ABC will take a three week break on Fridays (and Saturdays) with movies opposite the Winter Olympics. It is unclear what will air Fridays, March 5, 12, and 19 at 9pm still.
On all this late night fiasco, he said there are too many jokes to make on it. He also said, "We don't have any plans to change our late-night right now. I love Kimmel."
As for Dancing with the Stars, it will be back twice a year still and will have 11 contestants this season as last season had a bit too many he thought. The season ten premiere will be Monday, March 22 from 8-10pm and will air Mondays 8-10pm. The Results Show premieres Tuesday, March 30 at a new time of 8-9pm.
Read more about ABC's TCA Announcements via press releases, which includes a new book on Castle! Speaking of Castle, a special two-part Castle episode airing Sunday, March 21 and Monday, March 22 at 10pm with guest star Dana Delaney (Desperate Housewives)! No dates yet for Romantically Challenged, Happy Town or the return of Wife Swap. When it is announced, we will let you know, so stay with us!

After the executive session there will be panels for the upcoming midseason legal drama The Deep End at 11am PT. On hand for the panel are stars Matt Long, Billy Zane, Clancy Brown, Leah Pipes, Tina Majorino, Ben Lawson and Mehcad Brooks, along with executive producers David Hemingson & Jan Nash. The series premieres Thursday, Jan. 21 at 8/7 central on ABC!
Next up at 11:45am PT is a panel for upcoming midseason mystery drama Happy Town. In this session we have stars Geoff Stults, Sam Neill, Lauren German, Steven Weber, and Amy Acker along with executive producers Josh Applebaum, Andre Nemec, & Scott Rosenberg (from October Road & Life on Mars).
Lunch is next at 12:30pm PT, then at 2pm PT there will be a panel for ABC Comedy Wednesday Show Runner Panel. Questions will be answered by show runners Eileen Heisler & DeAnn Heline (The Middle), Steven Levitan (Modern Family and Bill Lawrence (Cougar Town/Scrubs).
At 3:30pm PT ABC Family takes over at the press tour and will have a panel on their original sitcom 10 Things I Hate About You. The rest of the tour will be ABC Daytime and SOAPnet driven with a panel for All My Children's 40th Anniversary and SOAPnet soap Being Erica.
Be sure to check out the great TVTango.com as they were there doing the best job covering the TCA press tour! Hats out to them!


Turning to regular news, Lifetime has canceled original sitcom Rita Rocks after just two seasons. The series starred Nicole Sullivan as Rita, a working mom who starts a garage band. The series also starred Tisha Campbell-Martin, Richard Ruccolo, Natalie Dreyfuss, Kelly Gould and Raviv Ullman. As of now, Lifetime still has original sitcom Sherri, which recently just completed its first season of 13 episodes. No decision has been made on a second season yet. Both shows didn't do so hot in the ratings this fall.

Meanwhile, TV Land has picked up an original series starring real-life Hollywood couple Lisa Rinna and Harry Hamlin. It will be a six-episode docu-soap entitled Harry Loves Lisa featuring pop culture sensation Lisa Rinna and her heartthrob husband, Harry Hamlin. The series will be executive produced by Jason Carbone and centers on the relationship between Rinna and Hamlin as they navigate together through the highs and lows as a devoted family living a hectic Hollywood lifestyle. Harry Loves Lisa brings to life the romantic notion that opposites attract as Lisa's playful spontaneity differs from Harry's more reserved demeanor. Audiences will watch as the two balance their differences in the midst of insane professional lives as working actors and entrepreneurs who are parenting two pre-teen daughters. One of Hollywood's most enduring‪ couples, the Hamlins' contradictory personalities make for amazing chemistry both on-screen and off. The TV Land PRIME original series is scheduled to air in Fall 2010 on TV Land.
In other TV Land news, we gave you details on the George Segal sitcom pilot, now they have announced casting for their other sitcom pilot. TV Land has tapped sitcom veterans Valerie Bertinelli (One Day at a Time), Jane Leeves (Frasier), Wendie Malick (Just Shoot Me!) and TV legend Betty White (The Golden Girls) to star in its comedy pilot Hot in Cleveland. Written by Frasier alum Suzanne Martin, Hot in Cleveland revolves around three eccentric forty-something best friends from L.A. (Bertinelli, Leeves, Malick) who wind up stuck in Cleveland and decide to stay there when they realize the locals consider them glamorous. Betty White plays a grumpy and opinionated lady who has lived in the cottage of the trio's Cleveland house for 50 years.
Hot in Cleveland has NOT yet been picked-up as a series, nor has Retired at 35 starring George Sagal. As soon as both or one of these are picked-up as a series, we will let you know. But both sound good to me! Stay with us, and thanks for visiting on this very busy Tuesday!

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Friday, October 23, 2009

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

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

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

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

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Monday, October 12, 2009

TV Land November 2009 Highlights; Lifetime Weekday Changes

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

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

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Friday, August 28, 2009

New York City Locals Fall 2009 Schedules; A&E Buys Lifetime; Series High for Joan Rivers' TV Land Show

It's that time of year again...fall 2009 schedules for New York City stations! I have for you the full schedules for WNYW, WWOR and WPIX. Unfortunately, I couldn't obtain the schedules for WABC, WCBS, and WNBC at press time, but they rarely make changes. Independent WLNY's schedule also is not known at this time. Cold Case Files is coming to WLNY (M-F 1pm) and WCBS (TBD late night), though.
We'll start with WNYW's Fall 2009 schedule. New series this fall are Dr. Mehmet Oz at 11am & 3pm, Judge Jeanine Pirro at 4pm, and The Office at 7:30pm & 11pm. The Office will also air weekends, Saturdays at 7:30pm and Sundays at 11pm. Summer launches will continue in the fall with Wendy Williams Show continuing to air weekdays at 10am and Wedlock or Deadlock will move to 12:30pm (from 11am). Among the series leaving are Inside Edition, Morning Show with Mike & Juliet, Bananas and Scrubs.
Sister network WWOR will be making more changes than WNYW in Fall 2009. New series this fall are Dragonfly Mondays at 7am, My Name is Earl at 7:30am & 8am, America's Funniest Home Videos at 2pm, Everybody Hates Chris at 4pm & 4:30pm, Law & Order: SVU at 11:30pm, Deadliest Catch Saturdays at 4pm & 11:30pm, Bones on Saturdays at 8pm & 9pm, and Swap TV on Sundays at 11:30am. Joining the schedule from WPIX will be My Wife & Kids, airing weekdays at 5:30pm. Everybody Hates Chris will also air Saturdays at 6pm & 6:30pm. Among the series leaving are Animal Atlas E/I, Scrubs, One on One, Trivial Pursuit, UFC Wired, The Dead Zone, and Law & Order: Criminal Intent.
Finally, we have WPIX's Fall 2009 schedule. New series this fall are Street Court at 1pm & 1:30pm, Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader? at 5pm & 5:30pm, Star Trek: The Next Generation at 3am, The Hills Saturdays 1pm & 1:30pm, The Brian McKnight Show Saturdays at 11pm, and Smash Cuts Sundays at 7pm & 7:30pm. Joining the schedule from WNYW/WWOR will be Scrubs, airing weeknights at 2am and Saturdays at 1am. Also, joining from WNYW is Inside Edition, airing weeknights at 6pm leading into the new PIX News at 6:30pm. CW Daytime now adds Best of Tyra Banks and The Tyra Banks Show at 3pm & 4pm, replacing Judge Jeanine Pirro and sitcoms Wayans Bros. and Jamie Foxx. Among the other series leaving are Judge Karen, My Wife & Kids, Sex and the City, The Jeffersons, and the '60s Star Trek.
View the FULL Fall 2009 schedules for WNYW, WWOR, and WPIX in New York City! Stay tuned for updates, if any. From New York, goodnight!

The Disney-ABC Television Group, Hearst Corporation and NBC Universal announced an agreement for A&E Television Networks to acquire Lifetime Entertainment Services. The parent company will retain the name A&E Television Networks, LLC (AETN), and its subsidiary will retain the name Lifetime Entertainment Services, LLC. The closing of the transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to occur in 2009. Financial terms were not disclosed.
AETN will now include: A&E Network, History, Lifetime Television, Lifetime Movie Network, Bio, History International, Lifetime Real Women, History en Espanol, Military History and Crime & Investigation Network.
Before the reshuffling, Disney-ABC and Hearst each held a 37.5% stake in AETN, while NBC Universal controlled the remaining 25%. Once the dust settles, Disney and Hearst will each hold an estimated 42.5% stake in AETN, leaving NBC with about 15.5%. Lifetime was a 50-50 joint venture between Disney-ABC and Hearst before AETN acquired it.

Wednesday night's episode of TV Land PRIME's original reality series, How'd You Get So Rich? averaged nearly 800,000 total viewers, making it the most-watched episode of the season to date, according to Nielsen Media Research. The telecast posted huge, triple-digit increases in rating and delivery among Adults 25-54 and Adults 40-54 in addition to total viewers over recent levels. It also witnessed gains over its 9:30 p.m. lead-in among A25-54 and double-digit gains among women 25-54. The new series, starring the hilarious and often outrageous Joan Rivers, takes viewers on a journey to meet millionaires who worked hard and struck gold as she tours the most lavish and extravagant homes and introduces them to folks who made a lot of money in really interesting ways the way only Joan can.
The episodes posted a 0.4 A25-54 rating and 426,000 viewers among A25-54, up a whopping 150% in rating and 148% in viewers in that demo versus the prior 4 week primetime average. The network averaged 771,000 total viewers, up 117% over recent levels. Among the network's core A40-54 audience, the premiere earned a 0.4 A40-54 rating and 240,000 viewers among A40-54, an increase of 153% in rating and viewers in that demo over recent levels in primetime.
The telecast posted increases among men and women 25-54 over recent primetime levels as well. Among women, it scored a 0.5 W25-54 rating and 247,000 viewers among W25-54, up 109% in rating and 111% in viewers in that demo versus previous four week primetime average. Among men the installment scored a 0.4 M25-54 rating and 179,000 viewers among M25-54, a triple digit increase of 218% in rating and 225% in delivery. How'd You Get So Rich? experienced appointment viewing as it lifted 8% among A25-54 over its 9:30 p.m. lead-in.

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Thursday, August 13, 2009

TV Land and Spike TV Fall 2009 Updates; Lifetime Original Sitcoms Update; A Personal Message

Today we have a couple of updates to fall schedules we already gave you. Viacom strikes again. Yesterday we mentioned Married...with Children is returning to TV Land effective immediately. So yes this will indeed affect TV Land's September line-up that we originally gave you. Married...with Children will remain on the TV Land schedule this September as well! Starting Sept. 14 it will air weeknights 8-9pm and will join the weeknight 9pm-12am block on Tuesday nights. So this means Andy Griffith Show will not air weeknights 7-9pm anymore, as originally planned. Beverly Hillbillies will still fill the 7pm hour, as that change starts next week. Originally the 9pm-12am block from Mon-Thurs had Andy on Monday, Roseanne on Tuesday, M*A*S*H on Wednesday, and Cosby Show on Thursday. Now it will be Andy on Monday, Married...with Children on Tuesday, Cosby Show on Wednesday, and Roseanne on Thursday.
Also, Married...with Children will air on Saturdays as well in marathon blocks during the day instead of Andy Griffith, but that will remain on Sundays. Late Sunday nights from 4-6am will now be Brady Bunch airings. And since the Cosby Show primetime block goes from Thursdays to Wednesdays, the 25th anniversary marathon moves to Wednesday, Sept. 23.
View the fully updated TV Land September 2009 line-up.

And that's not all for changes! Spike TV's Fall 2009 line-up starts on Monday, Sept. 28, as we told you. There is one change now. Instead of Married...with Children from 9-11am on weekday mornings, we now get a morning movie. Why? You guessed it...sister network TV Land is now airing the show on weekdays and Saturdays as we mentioned above. But on Sundays, Spike TV will still air the show in the mornings and sometimes in the 1am hour on that night. Everything else for Spike TV Fall 2009 is the same as we previously relayed to you, so Unsolved Mysteries is still Mon-Wed nights at 2am.

Moving on to Lifetime, we first announced the premiere date for Lifetime's new original sitcom Sherri as October 5 on our Lifetime Fall 2009 schedule...now we have full details on that and the return of Rita Rocks.
The all-new, multi-camera comedy series Sherri, premieres Monday, October 5, at 7PM ET/PT on Lifetime Television. Sherri will bow as part of a one-hour comedy block paired with the returning Rita Rocks, starring Nicole Sullivan, at 7:30PM ET/PT. Both series will feature stripped original episodes for a full week in the 7PM hour. Sherri will then move into its regular timeslot Tuesdays at 10PM ET/PT, followed by Rita Rocks Tuesdays at 10:30PM ET/PT--both starting Oct. 13.
Sherri centers around a newly single mom, paralegal and part-time comedienne/actress who tries to get back into the dating scene and move on with her life after divorcing her cheating husband. Sherri finds solace and support among her girlfriends at the office while juggling her hectic life.
Sherri marks the first comedy series ever to be wholly owned by Lifetime. The Network has picked up 12 episodes of the program, to be produced in New York by Lifetime Television. Also starring in the series are Elizabeth Regen, Kate Reinders, Kali Rocha and Tammy Townsend. Classic TV stars Malcolm-Jamal Warner and James Avery will guest-star in multiple episodes.

Finally, I have a few personal news for you. Tonight's episode of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire is the one I went to! Watch Night 5 tonight at 8pm ET/PT on ABC. Hint: I'm sitting close to where the contestant's spouse/family member sits, but in the third row instead of the first row. And finally, since 1997 I've been raising money for a Walkathon. This year I'm raising money online as well. So I'm asking you readers out there to help me out for my online portion and donate for a great cause that benefits so many causes, including the American Cancer Society. Any amount is good and you'll feel good for donating! So please donate today (I sound like Sally Struthers, don't I?)! You'll find all the info on that link...it is amazing. Please help us out!

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Thursday, July 09, 2009

Old Christine Coming to Lifetime in Fall 2010; 30 Rock Heads Locals in Fall 2011, ION Q2 Ratings Growth

Lifetime Television has acquired the cable rights to air reruns of The New Adventures of Old Christine starting Fall 2010 every weekday. Lifetime has reportedly paid $350,000 per episode to air the reruns.
It will join the Lifetime line-up with such off-net series such as How I Met Your Mother, Grey's Anatomy, Will & Grace, Desperate Housewives, Medium, and Wife Swap.
Old Christine is about a divorced mom who has got a handle on her career and motherhood, and a pretty good relationship with her ex-husband. Until, that is, he introduces her to his new girlfriend, a younger woman also named Christine.
As we previously reported, Old Christine will also air in local broadcast syndication starting in Fall 2010 airing on such stations such as WPIX in NY, KTLA in LA, and WCIU in Chicago.

Yesterday we mentioned 30 Rock was bought by Comedy Central and WGN America for a cable rerun deal beginning fall 2011, now Universal has sold the comedy to local broadcast syndication beginning in fall 2011 as well!
30 Rock has been sold to the Fox Television Stations and Tribune Broadcasting stations in the nation's top markets, including WNYW-TV New York (Fox), KTTV-TV Los Angeles (Fox), WGN-TV Chicago (Tribune) and WPHL-TV Philadelphia (Tribune).
Additional Fox stations include KDFW-TV/KDFI-TV Dallas, KRIV-TV/KTXH-TV Houston, KSAZ-TV/KUTP-TV Phoenix, WOFL-TV/WRBW-TV Orlando and KMSP-TV/WFTC-TV Minneapolis. Tribune stations that have also acquired 30 Rock include WDCW-TV Washington D.C., KCPQ-TV/KMYQ-TV Seattle, KRCW-TV Portland, WSFL-TV Miami, KSWB-TV San Diego, KTXL-TV Sacramento, WXMI-TV Grand Rapids, WPMT-TV Harrisburg and WNOL-TV/WGNO-TV New Orleans.

ION Television announced across the board viewership growth during the second quarter 2009. Overall, ION Television's household delivery in primetime increased 59%, while primetime delivery for adults 25-54 shot up by 74% year over year. In addition, June 2009 attracted the highest viewership in primetime of any month since ION officially re-launched in 2008, with year over year viewing doubling in the demo.
The popularity of ION Television's off-net series and its movies has resulted in this successful viewership growth trend. NCIS continued its solid performance with a quarterly average of over 1 million households for the first time.
This fall, in addition to the off-network debut of Criminal Minds, ION will launch their first ION Television original series, Durham County.

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Monday, July 06, 2009

Lifetime Makes Late Afternoon Changes; Retroality.TV Posts July 2009 Features; Remembering Harve Presnell

Starting today (Monday, July 6), Lifetime will make some last-minute late afternoon changes. Weekdays at 4pm will now be another episode of Wife Swap, replacing an hour of Reba. And if that wasn't enough, Wife Swap will also air at 5pm replacing an hour of Still Standing. Still Standing will still air in its 8am hour on weekdays, so not to fret. If you're keeping track, Wife Swap now airs weekdays from 2pm-6pm, that's four straight episodes every weekday! And finally the 6pm hour will now be an hour of Reba, replacing Less than Perfect. Less than Perfect is now only weekdays in the 9am hour. Reba will air primarily weekdays from 6-9pm, with some preemptions such as How I Met Your Mother on Mondays in the 7pm hour. Less than Perfect fans, don't worry you'll get a better slot than just 9am come September. And as a reminder, Grey's Anatomy and Medium join the weekday schedule this September, so you can sure bet that Wife Swap four-hour blocks are just for the summer. Stay tuned in the coming weeks for the Lifetime September schedule and many other fall line-ups in our fall schedule barrage blog posts. Don't you love that time of year?

The great Chris Mann has posted his July cover story and blog updates on his wonderful retro website Retroality.TV. This month's highlights includes a tribute to the incomparable Farrah Fawcett by Jack Condon, the author of the definitive Charlie's Angels Casebook that served as the basis of NBC's 2004 Behind the Camera TV movie about the series. Jack even has a whole room of Angels posters, which you can see on Retroality.
Chris will also post a Michael Jackson tribute on his blog, as well as part two of Holly Hallstrom's tell-all audio interview about Bob Barker and The Price is Right. This candid and no-holds-barred audio series will play out across several weeks this summer, Chris says. She even talks about working next door to the Three's Company stage during the late '70s/early '80s! She has some cool stories about working at CBS Television City during Price from the same era. She also talks about the showcase skits and how they made Price somewhat of a sitcom within a game show. We like sitcoms! Finally, she discusses Bob Barker's recent reported feud with Betty White, and his controversial appearance on GSN's recent Game Show Awards.
And soon he'll post an interview with tennis great Monica Seles (who was on Dancing with the Stars last fall), along with contributor Roselyn Sacco's review of Seles' new book Getting a Grip.
And Chris says he is planning exclusive video later this month, as well as lots of other goodies. Groovy! So check out Retroality.TV! Bookmark it!

Harve Presnell, whose booming baritone graced such Broadway musicals as The Unsinkable Molly Brown and Annie, and in many TV roles has died. The actor died Tuesday (June 30, 2009) of pancreatic cancer at St. John's Health Center in Santa Monica, CA.
He appeared in many TV series in his career. He was a regular on the series The Pretender, and guest starred in many series such as Alfred Hitchcock Presents, Ryan's Hope, Nash Bridges, Grace Under Fire, Star Trek Voyager, George & Leo, Two Guys and a Girl, The Outer Limits, Payne, Dawson's Creek, Frasier, The Practice, Charmed, Monk, ER, and was Lois Lane's father on Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. He also appeared on all episodes of the short-lived sitcom Andy Barker, P.I. He appeared on the original pilot of Hope & Faith as Hope and Faith's father, but it never aired. His final role was a guest shot on Cold Case this past March.
Although he was best known for his roles in musical theater, Presnell also is remembered as William H. Macy's father-in-law in the Coen brothers' 1996 film
Fargo. Among his other movies were When the Boys Meet the Girls, The Glory Guys, Paint Your Wagon, Saving Private Ryan, Mr. Deeds, Patch Adams, Face/Off, and recently on Evan Almighty. He also won a Golden Globe in 1965 for Most Promising Male Newcomer, shared with George Segal and Topol.
He will be deeply missed. He is survived by his second wife, Veeva, six children and several grand children. Harve was 75.

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Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Lifetime Brings Back Still Standing; AmericanLife TV Sold to Another Company; Obsessed with TV?

Lifetime is bringing back sitcom Still Standing after a short hiatus. The sitcom will return to the schedule on Monday (June 8) in the 5pm hour replacing two episodes of Cybill. Cybill will still however air in the 8am hour and at 2am, though the 8am half-hour lately has been encores of reality original Cook Yourself Thin, but it should be back to a full-hour of Cybill by June 29.
And don't forget to watch Less than Perfect on Lifetime, in the 9am hour and 6pm hour, as it just started this week!
As for Still Standing, for blue-collar Chicago couple and former high school sweethearts Judy (Jami Gertz) and Bill Miller (Mark Addy), raising a family is a huge challenge--especially with clashing parenting philosophies. Judy takes a more serious stance, while Bill holds a more relaxed approach.
Cybill is about Cybill Shepherd starring as Cybill Sheridan, a woman who has it all: two spiteful daughters, two clingy ex-husbands, an outrageous best friend, an unstable future and a house on an eroding LA hillside. But with humor and determination, Cybill braves each new challenge that comes her way, while having the time of her life discovering that life after forty is anything but...

We hinted (on our message board) when we announced the AmericanLife TV June schedule over a month ago that AmericanLife is being sold and now we have the details! ComStar Media Fund, LP, through its subsidiary ComStar Networks, LLC has acquired the popular "baby boomer" network AmericanLife TV Network (ALN) for an undisclosed sum.
ALN thrives as the only independent network devoted to America's baby boomer generation and their families, delivering classic TV, lifestyle, original and socially responsible programming that addresses compelling issues important to today's baby boomer audience. With the acquisition of ALN, ComStar has a vehicle to build out a premiere family-friendly network that will amalgamate television and Internet mediums and fill a void for safe, family programming targeting viewers of all ages.
The network provides a platform for the return of Reverend Robert A. Schuller to the media marketplace. One of the most recognized orators in the world, Dr. Schuller served as Senior Pastor of Crystal Cathedral Ministries and hosted the phenomenally popular global weekly television program The Hour of Power.
Changes at the network will include improving the network's on-air look, revamping syndicated programming and strategically rebranding the network as the destination for family values. The network will develop new original family-friendly based content to compliment an expansive offering of classic programs and films.
The network has gotten a new logo and website look as well since Monday, when their new schedule launched.
We will have more news on ALN in the future for sure, especially if they bring in more new classic shows.

Our friend Chris Mann of Retroality.TV has a new interview posted for June! He sits down with David Hofstede, author of the new super-cool trivia book Obsessed with TV. So who looks better in short-shorts Catherine Bach or Cheryl Ladd? Who are the best comedic duo Laurel & Hardy or Gleason & Carney? The book has 2,500 questions to test your knowledge of TV! There is even an interactive piece on it. Find out how that works and more by reading the two-page interview on Retroality.TV (continues on page 2)!
GSN is even promoting the book and copies were given away on GSN Live.

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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

CBS Upfront 2009-10: Fall 2009 Schedule; Lifetime Picks-Up Sherri Shepherd Sitcom

Your first look at CBS's official line-up!

CBS 2009-10

Fall 2009

Sundays

7:00PM 60 Minutes
8:00PM The Amazing Race
9:00PM Three Rivers (NEW!)
10:00PM Cold Case

Mondays
8:00PM How I Met Your Mother
8:30PM Accidentally on Purpose (NEW!)
9:00PM Two and a Half Men
9:30PM The Big Bang Theory
10:00PM CSI: Miami

Tuesdays
8:00PM Navy NCIS
9:00PM NCIS: Los Angeles (NEW!)
10:00PM The Good Wife (NEW!)

Wednesdays
8:00PM Old Christine
8:30PM Gary Unmarried
9:00PM Criminal Minds
10:00PM CSI: NY

Thursdays
8:00PM Survivor
9:00PM CSI
10:00PM The Mentalist

Fridays
8:00PM Ghost Whisperer
9:00PM Medium (CBS premiere)
10:00PM NUMB3RS

Saturdays
8:00PM-10:00PM Crime Repeats
10:00PM 48 Hours Mystery


Mid-Season:

Returning series: Rules of Engagement. New series: Miami Trauma, The Bridge, Arranged Marriage, Undercover Boss. Flashpoint returns summer 2010.

Canceled: The Unit and Without a Trace
Discuss CBS's 2009-10 line-up and view the full press release.


As I predicted, Lifetime has picked-up the Sherri Shepherd sitcom pilot to a series order. The series will be simply titled Sherri. I knew they would pick it up since they picked-up the off-network rerun rights to Less than Perfect, which starts June 1.
Lifetime Television has picked up 12 episodes of the all-new, multi-camera comedy series Sherri, starring comedienne and 2009 Daytime Emmy(R) Award-nominated co-host of The View, Sherri Shepherd (Less Than Perfect). The program, to be produced in New York by Lifetime Studios, marks the first comedy series ever to be wholly owned by Lifetime.
Sherri centers around a newly single mom, paralegal and part-time comedienne/actress who tries to get back into the dating scene and move on with her life after divorcing her cheating husband. Sherri finds solace and support among her girlfriends at the office while juggling her hectic life. Also starring in the series are Tammy Townsend (Lincoln Heights), Kali Rocha (Grey's Anatomy), Elizabeth Regen (The Black Donnellys) and Kate Reinders (Ugly Betty). Terri Minsky (Less Than Perfect, Lizzie McGuire) has been named writer/executive producer of Sherri. The program will also be executive produced by Nina Wass and Gene Stein (Less Than Perfect), while Dave Flebotte (Desperate Housewives), who executive produced the pilot, will be a consultant. Shepherd, who will continue to co-host the hit ABC daytime talk show The View, will serve as a co-executive producer of Sherri. The comedy reunites Shepherd, Minsky, Wass and Stein, who last worked together on the ABC sitcom Less Than Perfect, and reruns of that will now be on Lifetime in the 6pm ET hour starting June 1.
Sherri will join Lifetime's family comedy Rita Rocks. Set to return for its second season in the fall, the series stars Nicole Sullivan as Rita Clements, an overworked wife and mother trying to find time for herself. Other comedies that currently air on Lifetime include the off-net acquisitions How I Met Your Mother, Reba, Will & Grace, Cybill and Frasier.
Once we get a premiere date for Sherri, we will of course let you know!

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Friday, May 15, 2009

Less Than Perfect Joins Lifetime; Samantha Who and In the Motherhood Return to ABC in June; More Lucy on Hallmark

The 2002-2006 ABC sitcom Less than Perfect starring Sara Rue, Andy Dick, Zachary Levi, Andrea Parker, Patrick Warburton, Will Sasso, and Sherri Shepherd is coming to Lifetime with all of its 81 episodes, including the 8 unaired episodes! It seems they picked the show up since they could be ordering an original sitcom starring Sherri Shepherd. They also did that with Cybill, since they could order an original sitcom (Alligator Point) starring another Shepherd, Cybill Shepherd (no relation to Sherri). Right now both are just ordered to pilot, but this could be good news for both. Cybill airs weekdays in the 8am hour, 5pm hour and 2am.
Less than Perfect lasted four seasons and was about a young female office employee (played by Sara Rue) and her co-workers. The sitcom will join the Lifetime line-up on Monday, June 1, airing in the 9am hour and 6pm hour. In the 9am hour, it will replace Reba. In the 6pm hour it will replace Still Standing. The morning airing of Reba will move to the afternoon in the 4pm hour, replacing an episode of Wife Swap. And recently Reba returned in the 8pm hour, replacing Will & Grace. So Reba is back to 7-9pm week nights, while Will & Grace 8-9pm airings moves to the 1am hour and it still has the 11am and 11pm hours. Also, starting Monday, June 8 in primetime we will get an Army Wives encore at 9pm leading into repeats of Desperate Housewives at 10pm each Monday. Desperate Housewives will also still air weekdays at 12 and 1pm. Movies remain in the 9-11pm block every other weekday, but Fridays is still Wife Swap. Army Wives returns for its third season on Sunday, June 7 for 18 episodes airing Sundays at 10pm.
So, the addition of Less than Perfect means Still Standing is totally off the schedule. Last month it seems, Lifetime removed Medium from Fridays at 11pm, so that is off the schedule, too. Medium is eligible to air five days a week starting this fall, as will Grey's Anatomy (which currently airs Sundays at 11pm), so Medium will likely return then. But the schedule may be less than perfect, but Less than Perfect is a great addition to the schedule!
View the full Lifetime June 2009 schedule and highlights.

ABC sitcoms Samantha Who? and In the Motherhood will return to the schedule on Friday, June 5 in the 9pm hour. Both sitcoms were pulled from the Thursday night schedule two weeks earlier than planned in April. Samantha Who? has 7 episodes remaining to air, while In the Motherhood has 3 more. For Samantha, this could be a slot it can air next season, as it is expected to return for a third season. The sitcom could be in a change of format, though. It is rumored to be changing to a multicamera set-up or a hybrid setup (mix of both single and multicamera). Why? This will cut costs. ABC also might do the same for Scrubs, giving it new life for a ninth season. In the Motherhood is not expected back, so this is just a burn-off. We will find out what all this means on Tuesday, when ABC announces their 2009-2010 schedule and pick-ups. Could Samantha Who? be part of a Friday comedy block in the fall? We shall see. If a Friday block is not in their plans then they should move these Samantha Who episodes to Wednesdays at 9:30pm in the summer instead of Surviving Suburbia. That would work better on Fridays at 9. Just my two cents.

Finally, we end the day with some classic TV news. Hallmark Channel has made a last minute schedule change that goes in effect this Monday (May 18). Replacing two episodes of Matlock, weekdays at 3pm & 4pm will be two-full hours of I Love Lucy! It seems like Hallmark has a love-hate relationship with Lucy. They give it a good slot, pull it, and then give it another good slot. Currently, the series was airing at 2:30am weeknights, and will remain in that slot, too. Everything else will remain the same as it is now. So Matlock is off the schedule again. I Love Lucy 3-5pm will lead-into M*A*S*H.

Stay tuned tomorrow for our blog DVD review of course and a special upfront rumblings edition. Upfront week is next week, so join us all next week. We have some WGN America schedule news as well!

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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Lifetime Networks 2009 Upfront; Network Notes; Remembering Wendy Blair

Lifetime Networks unveiled its 2009-10 program slate that encompasses the most powerful line-up of original series and movies in Lifetime Television and Lifetime Movie Network's history, headlined by the sixth season of cable's hottest unscripted competition series, Project Runway.
Project Runway, featuring host Heidi Klum, mentor Tim Gunn and judges Michael Kors and Nina Garcia, is set to make its long-awaited return to television on Thursday, August 20, at 10:00 PM (ET/PT) with 14 hour-long episodes. The series, the highest-rated unscripted competition show on all of cable, will seamlessly lead into Models of the Runway at 11:00PM (ET/PT), beginning August 20, an all-new, half-hour companion series will center around the drama, anxiety, tears and joys of Project Runway's models as they compete for money and a major magazine cover shoot. In other unscripted news, new shows Cook Yourself Thin debuts on May 4 at 5:00 PM (ET/PT), and DietTribe is scheduled to return for its second season later this year.
As we mentioned, Lifetime's hit drama series Army Wives returns for its third season at 10:00 PM (ET/PT) on Sunday, June 7. Joining Army Wives this summer will be Drop Dead Diva, the spirited new comedic drama, starring newcomer Brooke Elliott (Hairspray, Wicked) and Margaret Cho (17 Again). It will air at 9:00 PM (ET/PT) starting Sunday, July 12. Lifetime has many original dramas in development. However, they have not been picked-up as series just yet. In development are: Mona Lisa Smile, based on the feature film of the same name; Mystic Pizza: Another Slice, a two-hour, back-door pilot based on the hit film; Marry Me, a limited-run anthology series that starts with a couple who meets in the pilot and concludes with a wedding in Episode 13; Queens of the Rodeo, a comedic drama with the exciting and dangerous rodeo circuit as the backdrop; The Fallen (working title), based on T. Jefferson Parker's novel of the same name; and Murder in Suburbia, formatted from the popular British series.
Rita Rocks, its first original comedy in a decade, stars Nicole Sullivan as an overworked wife and mother trying to find time for herself, will return for its second season in the Fall. Lifetime has three other original comedies in the works, but have not been picked-up as a series yet. In production for pilots are Sherri, loosely based on Sherri Shepherd's (The View) personal family experiences; The Valerie Bertinelli Project (working title) is about a newly divorced mother (Bertinelli) who must maintain a balance between her family and running her ex-husband's struggling hardware business; Alligator Point, is from Kelsey Grammar and stars Cybill Shepherd following the life and times of an eccentric group of Floridians whose lives change when a "Yankee" becomes part of their disjointed family. We will let you know if any of these three gets picked-up as a series joining Rita Rocks.
As for daily strip schedule, this fall Lifetime will begin airing two high-profile, off-net properties nightly, the popular dramas Grey's Anatomy and Medium. Currently, they both air once a week. They join a strong schedule that already features such top acquired product as Wife Swap, Desperate Housewives, Reba, Will & Grace and Frasier. Cybill joins the daytime line-up on May 4. Finally, in September 2010, Lifetime will also begin stripping the hit off-net comedy How I Met Your Mother, which currently fills one hour of the network's schedule per week on Mondays.
View more on Lifetime and LMN's upfront, which includes all the original movies they have in the works for 2009 and 2010.

We have a lot of network notes for you today. First off, ABC will air a repeat of Grey's Anatomy this Thursday (April 23) at 8pm leading into the return of all-new episodes at 9pm. The repeat will be the last original episode that aired, so fans can remember what happened, if they need refreshing. This means In the Motherhood and Samantha Who? will not return to the slot now since yesterday we announced Ugly Betty was coming back a week earlier than planned (April 30). So updating my story from yesterday, Motherhood will now have three episodes still remaining to air, as it will have 4 of its 7 aired (though they had only planned to air 6 anyway). Samantha Who? looks like will only air 13 of its 20, with seven still left in the can, but ABC could certainly use those next season, which is more than likely to happen despite the ratings falter on Thursdays.
In other ABC notes, ABC has announced the celebs and athletes for the new summer series The Superstars! The eight athletes are Jennifer Capriati (tennis), Brandi Chastain (soccer), Robert Horry (basketball), Jeff Kent (baseball), Kristi Leskinen (X Games), Lisa Leslie (basketball), Bode Miller (skiing) and Terrell Owens (football). The eight celebrities are David Charvet (actor), Maksim Chmerkovskiy (Dancing with the Stars), Dan Cortese (host/actor), Paige Hemmis (Extreme Makeover: Home Edition), Julio Iglesias, Jr. (singer), Joanna Krupa (model), Ali Landry (model/actress) and Estella Warren (actress). The series is based on ABC's classic Wide World of Sports, which pitted athletes from all different sports against each other to determine the best athlete in the world. The Superstars pairs the celebrities with the athletes to compete in varying sporting events. Participants found out who their selected partners were only when they met for the first time at the Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas. The six-episode series premieres Tuesday, June 23 at 8:00PM on ABC. The team pairings for The Superstars will be Terrell Owens & Joanna Krupa; Jeff Kent & Ali Landry; Robert Horry & Estella Warren: Bode Miller & Paige Hemmis; Kristi Leskinen & Maksim Chmerkovskiy; Lisa Leslie & Dan Cortese; Jennifer Capriati & David Charvet; and Brandi Chastain & Julio Iglesias, Jr. Every week a team will be eliminated until one team is ultimately crowned the winner. Competitors' athletic prowess and strategy will be put to the test to excel in events including swimming, biking, running and kayaking, in addition to other head-to-head athletic challenges everyone must try to conquer. Find out more on the celebs and athletes.

Moving on to NBC, they have pulled drama Kings from Saturdays even after just one airing. Repeats of Law & Order: SVU will air instead at 8pm (it was at 9pm), with Southland encores moving to 9pm (from 10pm), and now Law & Order repeats will close out the night at 10pm. Then after May sweeps ends, Law & Order: Criminal Intent repeats will air for a few weeks at 8pm before Kings returns. 7 episodes of Kings remain and NBC promises to return the series on Saturday, June 13 at 8pm to finish them off. That date was originally the plan to end the series, now that will be the return date. The series will last through July 25, bearing any more changes of course.
Finally Fox has changed its summer schedule a bit again. New series Mental will now air Tuesdays at 9PM starting May 26 following summer repeats of House. Mental was previously scheduled to launch on Friday, May 29 at 9PM. It will still air Fridays, but now they will be encores of the Tuesday episodes. However, the Tuesday airings will only last through June 23. The Friday encores will become the new night for new episodes for Mental starting July 3 through August 14. Fox has also announced that it will return reality show The Moment of Truth on Wednesday, July 29 airing Wednesdays at 9PM, following So You Think You Can Dance. Dance ends its season in early August (Aug. 5 & 6), though, so Truth will then have repeats of Bones as its lead-in starting Aug. 19. August 12 will see two episodes of Moment of Truth from 8-10pm. View the complete Fox summer schedule.

Finally, we leave you today with some sad news. Wendy Blair died of cancer on Tuesday, April 14, 2009 in North Hollywood. Blair enjoyed a long career in the entertainment industry, having served as the first female junior executive at CBS Television City in the mid-1950s. Known for being analytical and extremely organized, she worked as an associate producer and producer on a number of popular television series. Among the series she worked on as an associate producer are Three's Company, and both of its spin-off series The Ropers and Three's a Crowd, as well as several variety shows and specials for companies including Dick Clark Productions and Sid and Marty Krofft Enterprises, such as Dr. Shrinker.
Her other producer credits include pilots and series such as What a Country! in 1986, I Married Dora in 1987, Mutts in 1988, and Where's Rodney? in 1990. She later segued from working in production to serving as the manager of business operations for The Smothers Brothers and was active in this role until the beginning of 2009. Now, Joanne McCracken has taken over. Blair was a member of the Directors Guild of America, the Producers Guild of America and was a founding member of the Association of Associate Producers (which later merged with the PGA). Blair was devoted to her family and family traditions. She will be deeply missed, especially by Three's Company fans and The Smothers Brothers followers. She was only 70.

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Friday, April 03, 2009

ABC Mid-Season Pilot Review: Surviving Suburbia - Premieres April 6; Lifetime TV Acquires Cybill

Surviving Suburbia

Surviving Suburbia - Mondays 9:30PM ET/PT on ABC
Premieres Monday, April 6, 2009 at 9:30PM ET/PT

In the family-centered tradition of Roseanne and Home Improvement, Surviving Suburbia opens the curtain to follow Bob Saget (How I Met Your Mother, Full House) and Cynthia Stevenson (Men in Trees, Dead Like Me) as Steve and Anne Patterson, a seemingly normal couple who have been married for 20 years, have two children and a cookie cutter house in the idyllic suburbs. But Steve maintains a rather cynical point of view on family, friends, neighbors, society -- pretty much everyone and everything -- as he tries to survive suburban life.
Surviving Suburbia takes a contemporary look at family life and the reasons one might have to question the system -- How does exchanging keys with a neighbor for emergencies result in house sitting? Why do kids' classroom projects inevitably become the parents' responsibility? When did we start needing mediators to handle disagreements between adults? - all of which goes to prove that it's never just another sunny day in the suburbs.
Also starring in the half-hour comedy series are Jared Kusnitz and G Hannelius as the Patterson kids, Henry and Courtney, plus Jere Burns (Good Morning Miami, Something So Right) as Dr. Jim. Dan Cortese (What I Like About You) and Lorna Scott (Criminal Minds, The OC) are recurring guest stars as Onno and Monica, respectively.


Cast Details:

* Bob Saget as Steve Patterson
* Cynthia Stevenson as Anne Patterson
* Jere Burns as Dr. Jim
* G. Hannelius as Courtney Patterson
* Jared Kusnitz as Henry Patterson
* Dan Cortese as Onno
* Lorna Scott as Monica

Bob Saget (Steve Patterson) is known worldwide for his many television roles and for setting a precedent by simultaneously starring in two Top 10 primetime series, the long-running sitcom Full House and as host of ABC's America's Funniest Home Videos for eight years. He's also familiar to a more 'adult' audience through his edgy standup comedy, theater and film work. In August 2008 Saget was honored with The Comedy Central Roast of Bob Saget, one of the highest rated shows for all of 2008 on Comedy Central. In the past two years, Saget has made his Broadway debut in the Tony Award winning play, The Drowsy Chaperone, hosted the quiz show 1 vs. 100, starred in his own HBO special, That Ain't Right, and kicked off a national theater tour. In the past few years he has also played a murderer on Law & Order: SVU, poked fun at his own image on Entourage, guest-starred on Huff, and had a hit music video from MTV, "Rollin' With Saget," in which he starred with friends Jamie Kennedy and Stu Stone.

Cynthia Stevenson (Anne Patterson) was born in Piedmont, CA but grew up in Bellevue, WA and Vancouver, BC. After attending American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco, followed by Drama Studio London at Berkley, she moved to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career. Her work in improv and in theatre landed her an agent and an immediate job doing 26 episodes of a sketch comedy TV show entitled Off The Wall. After doing guest parts on the sitcoms The Famous Teddy Z, Newhart and Cheers, Stevenson was cast as the lead in the sitcom talk show My Talk Show. That proved to be her big break, as director Robert Altman noticed and cast her in his Oscar nominated film The Player. Series regular roles on such shows as Bob and Hope & Gloria followed. Additionally Stevenson played the lead on the cable series Oh Baby, then she moved to Vancouver and starred in Dead Like Me. Her feature roster also includes such films as Agent Cody Banks, Agent Cody Banks 2, Neverwas, Case 39 and the Disney Air Bud comedies. She was a series regular on ABC's series MEN IN TREES, had a recurring role on According to Jim and starred in the TV Christmas movie, Will You Merry Me. She can also be seen in the recent and upcoming films Dead Like Me: The Movie, Reunion, I Love You Beth Cooper and Jennifer's Body.

Jared Kusnitz (Henry Patterson) teams him once again with Jere Burns, with whom Kusnitz starred in the indie film Otis, also starring Illeana Douglas and Daniel Stern and written by Emmy Award winning writer Erik Jendresen (Band of Brothers). In February 2009, Kusnitz was nominated for a Zombie Dead Letter Award in the category of Best Actor for his performance as Jimmy Dunn in the film Dance of the Dead, which also garnered eight nods in other categories, including Best Movie. Kusnitz's skill and comedic timing inspired writer Joe Ballarini to rewrite the script with the unlikely hero, Dunn, as the lead.

G Hannelius (Courtney Patterson) was born in Boston, MA but moved with her parents to southern Maine when she was still very young. At the age of seven she landed the title role in Madeline's Rescue at The Children's Theatre of Maine. When the family relocated to Los Angeles in 2008, Hannelius promptly booked commercials for Orville Redenbacher's Popcorn, Little Caesar's Pizza, Dairy Queen and a regional spot as the spokeskid for The Aquarium of the Pacific, which caught the attention of a more than a few casting directors. A notice seeking "the representative for the little girl in the Aquarium commercial" led to an opportunity to read for the lead role in ABC's new sitcom, Surviving Suburbia, with co-stars Bob Saget and Cynthia Stevenson. Hannelius recently worked a guest lead role in an episode of the Disney Channel comedy, Sonny with a Chance, and fulfilled her cherished dream to work with Miley Cyrus when she booked a role as a zealous fan on the hit Disney Channel series Hannah Montana. She is also part of the promotional campaign for Leo Little's Big Show, co-hosting spots on the Disney Channel.

Jere Burns (Dr. Jim) was born and raised in Cambridge, MA. He graduated from UMass, Amherst and attended the MFA program at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. His New York theatre credits include The New York Shakespeare Festival, The Public Theatre, Manhattan Theatre Club, The Culture Project and, most recently, Hairspray at The Neil Simon. On television Burns is a veteran of eight series, including Dear John, Something So Right, Help Me Help You, and Good Morning Miami. He has also appeared in numerous made for television movies and independent and feature films.

Dan Cortese (Onno) has both acting and hosting credits in television. He burst onto the small screen hosting MTV Sports, then hosted My Dad Is Better Than Your Dad. His acting credits include such sitcoms as Joey, Veronica's Closet, What I Like About You, Seinfeld and Rock Me Baby.


Pilot Plot:

#1 (PROD #106) "Hero" (Airs Monday, April 6, 2009)
Steve reluctantly agrees to house sit for Onno (recurring guest star Dan Cortese) and ends up starting a fire that he later claims to have stopped. Steve gets caught up in being praised as a hero by his daughter and his neighbors, until his conscience gets the better of him.
Special Guest Star: Dan Cortese as Onno. Guest Cast: Paul Nobrega as Guy and Michael Christian Alexander as paramedic.
"Hero" was written by Don Beck and directed by Emile Levisetti.


Analysis:

I received for review the first episode airing, which is titled "Hero." This is actually the sixth episode produced. Originally this sitcom was supposed to be for The CW's Sunday night block, which was produced by Media Rights Capital. But due to low ratings, The CW canceled that block in the fall, thus giving this series no home as it was set to launch in January. But fortunately for Surviving Suburbia, ABC picked up the show in February and announced it would air it after Dancing with the Stars starting in April! 13 episodes have already been taped, but likely only 6 will air for now on ABC as they won't have room for all 13 this season. So there you have it, the history of the show in a nutshell.
Now to the actual analysis...Bob Saget returns to ABC! The first episode they are airing has some very funny moments and I could certainly see this being a promising series with many laughs. This is for sure a throwback to traditional family sitcoms such as Home Improvement. Bob Saget plays Steve Patterson, a husband and father. He is certainly not squeaky clean and perfect like he was on Full House. On this show, he gets into a lot of messes. This show is certainly his vehicle, as on Full House it was more of an ensemble and later turned into "the Olsen twins show with John Stamos." Bob does get to play a father once again to a little girl. This time the little girl is not as annoying as Michelle on Full House (sorry I know there are MANY fans of that show, but it clearly was very sappy to me). The daughter (Courtney) on this show is very adorable (yes, so was Michelle) and pretty smart. She is funny, too. Bob's character, Steve, connects with her very well.
In the first episode airing, Courtney announces for her project she is writing that Zach Efron is her "hero." Later Steve's neighbor Onno comes by as he is going on a trip, so he asks Steve to take care of his house and gives him the key to the house. Steve and his friend Dr. Jim go to the house and accidentally set the curtain on fire! Steve puts out the fire and is credited as a hero, yet no one knows he was the one that started the fire! Anyway, then daughter Courtney changes her hero project to her dad. Steve now feels bad because he didn't deserve it. What will happen? You'll have to tune in.
So what works and doesn't? Obviously the connection between Steve and daughter Courtney is very much there. Right now there is not much connection between Steve and his son Henry, but I see potential as we go on. Henry seems to be 17 or so, while the daughter has to be 10 or less. The chemistry between Steve and Anne is somewhat there, but I need to see more episodes. It gets better between them as the episode goes on, though. Dr. Jim is going to be a classic character. He is the classic sitcom "buddy." He could be on the same page as Larry from Three's Company and more recently Andy on According to Jim. He is just a fun character that gives many laughs. Dan Cortese's character Onno, didn't have much to do in this episode and I didn't see Lorna Scott's character Monica in this episode. And finally, Bob Saget shines in this. He is very funny and better like this than Danny Tanner. The only gripe I have about him here is that it seems Bob is not standing straight at any time. He looks like Big Bird as he is 6'4". Maybe he has a neck or a back problem?


Conclusion:

Well this is certainly a traditional comedy. Comedies of this type are what we need right now. This is ABC's first stab at launching a traditional comedy since believe it or not Crumbs back in January 2006. In the fall of that season (fall 2005) they launched Freddie and Hot Properties, while airing returning series such as According to Jim, Rodney, George Lopez, and Less than Perfect. After that season only Jim and George remained, and then after that just Jim. So the timing seems to be very right for Surviving Suburbia to launch and succeed, as viewers like these types of comedies. CBS's Monday comedies have seen ratings climb this season, as they are the only traditional comedies airing on network TV right now. You won't see this show win any awards like Samantha Who or 30 Rock, but I'm sure this show will outright do much better than single camera sitcoms in the ratings.

The premiere episode is decent. It is not perfect at all, but Bob is good in it. Many fans and TV fans will be tuning in for sure to see Bob return to TV comedy. The promos for the show have been hilarious and most of the stuff in the promos are not for this first episode that is airing. So that is promising that the show will deliver laughs in future episodes. The first one they are airing is not the greatest episode probably of this show, but I see lots of potential and viewers should stick around to see them all. ABC says they have added a new into to this episode with the family watching and talking about Dancing with the Stars. That was not in the version I saw, but can't wait to see that. Hopefully they don't edit anything out, because the version I saw starts with Steve talking to his daughter. Tune in Monday at 9:30pm on ABC because we need the traditional sitcom to come back!


Final Numbers (out of 5 stars):

Watchability: 4/5
Funniness: 4/5
Overall: 3.5/5

-- Reviewed by pavanbadal on 04/03/09

Discuss the show after you watch it on Monday, April 6 on our message board.

Related Links:

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




  • Finally, we end today with some news! As promised, I will reveal what sitcom Lifetime TV has acquired! They have acquired the Cybill Shepherd '90s sitcom Cybill! The show will launch on Monday, May 4, airing weekdays at 8am & 8:30am and 2am ET/PT. The morning airings will replace Still Standing, which will still remain in the 6pm hour, and the late night airing will replace encores of original sitcom Rita Rocks. Cybill aired for four seasons from 1995-1998 on CBS.
    Cybill was last seen on cable on Oxygen earlier this decade for a few years. Cybill Shepherd is starring on the Lifetime sitcom pilot Alligator Point, a comedy about an eccentric group of Floridians who find refuge in the southern hospitality of Mae's Oyster Bar. So with the pick-up of Cybill, maybe that sitcom will be ordered to series? Kelsey Grammer is producing the pilot. We will let you know if it gets picked-up.
    Other schedule changes for Lifetime in May 2009 is original series Cook Yourself Thin replacing the third Wife Swap airing. That will air weekdays at 5:00pm & 5:30pm starting Monday, May 4. 20 episodes have been ordered. Based on the hit British series and popular cookbook, Cook Yourself Thin encourages women to lose weight by changing their eating habits. So after that series concludes, Cybill will also air in the early evenings, airing at 5:00pm & 5:30pm starting Tuesday, May 26. It will also air in its other timeslots as well.
    Rita Rocks will return with new episodes sometime this summer, while new episodes of Army Wives begins Sunday, June 7 at 10pm for its third season (18 episodes).

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    Monday, March 16, 2009

    ABC Mid-Season Pilot Review: Better Off Ted - Premieres March 18; Lifetime Schedule Change

    Better Off Ted

    Better Off Ted - Wednesdays 8:30PM ET/PT on ABC
    Premieres Wednesday, March 18, 2009 at 8:30PM ET/PT

    Better Off Ted is a satirical office comedy about successful good guy, Ted, who runs research and development at the morally questionable Veridian Dynamics. No achievement is too far-fetched and no invention too unorthodox for Veridian. Need cow-less meat grown in a test tube? Done. Need pumpkins that also double as weapons of mass destruction? No problem. Ted's a single dad to a seven-year-old girl, and he loves his job, but he's starting to take a closer look at the company's extremely dubious practices. Do you manufacture the best teeth whitener ever if it could also kill off all of the planet's fish? Probably not, but...
    Ted's also fighting an attraction to co-worker Linda, who enjoys small acts of rebellion against Veridian (she's secretly stealing and hoarding all the company's creamer packets). But he holds back about his true feelings. He's already had his self imposed "one office affair" with überboss Veronica. Incredibly beautiful (if seemingly devoid of conscience and also emotion-free), Veronica lets nothing get in her way when it comes to serving Veridian's needs... even if it means doing something like cryogenically freezing an employee for testing purposes. And after all, the employee, research scientist Phil, survived (after he thawed out). So what if he screams like an eagle at the slightest provocation? He and his best friend, fellow research scientist Lem, are both geniuses and when they're not bickering, they're responsible for many of Veridian's miracles of weird science.

    Cast Details:

    * Jay Harrington as Ted Crisp
    * Portia de Rossi as Veronica Palmer
    * Andrea Anders as Linda Zwordling
    * Jonathan Slavin as Phil Mymen
    * Malcolm Barrett as Lem Hewitt
    * Isabella Acres as Rose Crisp

    Jay Harrington (Ted) has a recurring role on Private Practice as Dr. Wyatt Lockhart and has appeared on The Inside and Coupling. Other television credits include Teri Hatcher's doctor-turned boyfiend Dr. Ron on Desperate Housewives, Ghost Whisperer, Las Vegas, The Division, The Shield, Without a Trace and the Lifetime movie Why I Wore Lipstick to My Mastectomy. His feature film credits include Partners, Whatever It Takes and Anywhere But Here. Jay is also an avid sports fan. He plays in the NBA Entertainment League and dons skates for a local hockey team.

    Portia de Rossi (Veronica) has had a widely varied career, captivating audiences in both television and film. She recently starred as a fifth-season series regular on the FX popular original drama Nip/Tuck as Olivia Lord, a holistic medicine practitioner who has problematic relationships with both her girlfriend, Julia, and her out-of-control daughter. She also starred as Lindsay Bluth Funke in the critically acclaimed Fox comedy Arrested Development. The show won a Primetime Emmy Award in 2004 for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble and was nominated for an Emmy Award in 2006 and a SAG Award in 2005. De Rossi is perhaps best known for her portrayal of enigmatic lawyer Nelle Porter on Fox's hugely successful Ally McBeal. On the big screen, she starred in Wes Craven's Cursed, opposite Christina Ricci, Chris Ver Wiel's Who is Cletis Tout?, opposite Richard Dreyfuss and Tim Allen, Paul Goldman's The Night We Called It a Day, opposite Dennis Hopper and Melanie Griffith, Wes Craven's Scream 2, Rupert Wainwright's Stigmata, Bruce Wagner's Women in Film, Noah Stern's The Invisibles and Michael Goorjians Ambition to Meaning, with Wayne Dyer.

    Andrea Anders (Linda) is best known to television audiences for her roles as Nicole Allen on the sitcom The Class and as Alex Garrett in the comedy Joey. Additional television credits include Law & Order, Tru Calling, Oz and Numb3rs. Her feature film credits include the road comedy Sex Drive and The Stepford Wives.

    Jonathan Slavin (Phil) has been acting steadily in recent years. After a string of "insert occupation here" guy TV roles (Flower Delivery Guy, Fish and Chips Guy, Computer Tech Guy, etc.), Slavin landed a memorable turn as "Ice Cream Guy" on Caroline in the City, and has worked in television ever since. He has appeared as a series regular on Andy Richter Controls the Universe and Union Square, and had recurring roles on My Name is Earl, Summerland, Inconceivable and Wings. Recent guest starring roles include Life, Grey's Anatomy, CSI, Ugly Betty, Friends and Bones. He has also appeared in the feature films Hard Pill, A Cinderella Story, Grand Theft Parsons, Race to Witch Mountain and My Mother's Hairdo.

    Malcolm Barrett (Lem) has appeared on a number of series as either a regular or guest star, including The Bonnie Hunt Show, Kelsey Grammar Presents: The Sketch Show, Monk, Psych, Ghost Whisperer, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Law & Order, Law & Order: Criminal Intent and The Sopranos. Feature film credits include My Best Friend's Girl, Hurt Locker, American Violet, The Rhythm of the Saints, King of the Jungle and Swimfan.

    Isabella Acres (Rose) was born in Atlanta, where she discovered her love for acting in children's theater. Since relocating to Los Angeles she has appeared on such TV series as Monk, Hannah Montana and Jimmy Kimmel Live. She has also appeared in the recurring role of Jane's daughter on The Mentalist. Isabella has extensive voiceover credits, including the feature films Horton Hears a Who, Four Christmases, The Women and Fred Claus, and has voiced characters in the animated series Phineas and Ferb and Special Agent Oso.


    Pilot Plot:

    I received two episodes for review. So, I will base my thoughts on the show on these two.

    #1 Pilot (Airs March 18)
    Ted finds out just how far Veronica's willing to go for Veridian's greater good when she charges him with convincing brilliant research scientist Phil to be cryogenically frozen for a test experiment. Phil is excited, even if best friend and research partner, Lem, is a little jealous...and Ted is more than a little worried about the long-term effects if the experiment actually goes ahead.
    Guest starring are Maz Jobrani (The Knights of Prosperity) as Dr. Bhamba and Jim Lau as the screaming office worker. "Pilot" was written by Victor Fresco and directed by Mike Fresco.

    #2 "Through Rose Colored HAZMAT Suits" (Airs April 1)
    When the nanny calls in sick, Ted reluctantly takes daughter Rose to work, where Veronica forms a surprising (if frightening) bond with the little girl. Rose's visit to Veridian also stirs up trouble when a casual remark she makes sends Phil and Lem into a tailspin about just who has the upper hand in their work relationship. Meanwhile, Ted finds out where he stands with Linda when her ex-boyfriend comes back to town.
    Guest starring are Julian Bailey as Hal, Martha Boles as Lisa, Mason Lauderdale as the little boy, Sean Christopher Davis as Jerry and Richard Fancy as Mr. Campbell. "Through Rose Colored HAZMAT Suits" was written by Justin Adler and directed by Michael Fresco.


    Analysis:

    After watching two episodes, I am pleased. The show is very smartly written and has some laugh-out-loud moments. Both Jay Harrington and Portia de Rossi as Ted and Veronica are strong leads and likable, yet de Rossi's character is a bit weird and wacky, but at the same time hilarious. Some of the stuff she says is priceless! The supporting cast includes scientists Phil and Lem, who are an excellent comedic duo. They are very funny. Also, we have co-worker Linda, who has instant chemistry with Ted...but will they get together? Or will Veronica beat Linda to it? And finally we have Rose, who is Ted's little daughter. She is smart and blends in well with Veronica, as you'll see on episode three (the second one I saw).

    As for the plot of the show, it is all centered around the workplace. Both episodes I saw starts off with a one-minute presentation for Veridian Dynamics. Very cool and hilarious to start like that. Veridian Dynamics is certainly a future company. We can see that as they develop quite outrageous stuff, but it is funny. Some of the hilarious and wacky stuff they want to do are...to freeze Phil, just to see if it is possible; itchy chairs to have better production at work; and exploding pumpkins with Dr. Bhamba! If you like The Office, you'll certainly like this show. I hate that show, yet I liked this show, though. Why? There is no weird camera zooming to make this look documentary style or cheap. Plus this actually has music and background sound, unlike that show. The similarities for that show with this show so far is that this really is a good cast and ensemble. Everyone plays well off each other and Veridian Dynamics is a very fun place to work, even though they have weird ideas! It just makes it funny!

    Will this series work for ABC? It will be following new episodes of Scrubs, so the young audience ABC is hoping for will certainly be there. It will air in a rather weak timeslot with the only competition really from Fox's Lie to Me and CBS's Gary Unmarried, the latter is also a comedy and ABC should have no problem beating it in 18-49. Hopefully this show surprises and at least becomes a cult hit like The Office that skews very young.


    Conclusion:

    This show is very funny. It is not as crazy as say Worst Week, but is much better written and relies more on dialog. Though this show has its fair share of physical comedy as well. Having both funny dialog and physical comedy, along with a great ensemble make a recipe for a great comedy. This show has so much potential. The promos have been showcasing scenes from later episodes, so I cannot wait to see a worker jumping out of a window, and the human resources lady saying "that's gonna be some paperwork," Ted staring at Linda's butt, and Veronica making fun of the balding guy. So there are going to more fun stuff coming soon, and I cannot wait! I hope to see more of Dr. Bhamba, too. He was only in the pilot episode but will make more appearances this season. He is played by Maz Jabrini, who was on The Knights of Prosperity, which is the funniest sitcom to air in the last few years. Too bad it didn't last...but I hope and think this will. There are stuff I didn't like, such as sitcom cliches (smart daughter, sitcom romance), but who cares. We need bread and butter sitcoms to get an audience, even though this is not a traditional sitcom.

    Freezing Phil, training children of Veridian Dynamics "life skills," and so much more makes this show top-notch and a must watch. Watch the premiere, and if you like it...please tune in every week as we need a new sitcom hit. And if you like the premiere but are on the fence, don't give up because episode two is even better! Portia de Rossi deserves an Emmy nomination for her work here!


    Final Numbers (out of 5 stars):

    Watchability: 4/5
    Funniness: 4.5/5
    Overall: 4/5

    -- Reviewed by pavanbadal on 03/16/09

    Discuss the show after you watch it on Wednesday, March 18 on our message board.

    Related Links:

  • ABC.com Official Site
  • TV.com
  • epguides.com
  • Internet Movie Database
  • Wikipedia
  • Better Off Ted Photo Gallery



  • Finally, if you didn't see this posted on our message board over the weekend, Lifetime made a schedule change effective today. They are replacing the afternoon movie with an extra Desperate Housewives and Wife Swap, so both of those shows will now air three in a row...12-3pm and 3-6pm. Also, in primetime, Will & Grace will be airing in the 8pm hour, while the primetime Wife Swap moves from Mondays to Fridays, 9-11pm. A movie will still air in primetime the other nights. Late nights, we now have a Reba hour at 1am replacing the late Desperate Housewives airing, followed by a Rita Rocks half-hour at 2am, five days a week. Rita Rocks won't be airing in primetime until it returns with new episodes now. No other changes are being made.

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    Monday, March 02, 2009

    TV One April 2009 Includes That's My Mama Marathon; Lifetime Renews Rita Rocks for 2nd Seasons

    This April on TV One, comedy is once again king! On Easter Sunday (Sunday, April 12, 2009) beginning at 12 Noon, the classic '70s sitcom That's My Mama comes to the TV One airwaves with an all-day marathon from 12pm-7pm with the first two episodes encoring from 5-6am. The classic sitcom which starred Theresa Merritt in the title role as Eloise "Mama" Curtis took place in Washington D.C. and centered around Clifton Curtis, Mama's son and young barber, he had inherited the family barbershop from his late father, Oscar Curtis. Mama wanted the best for her son and that meant a woman in his life, so she often tried finding him a mate even though he enjoyed bachelor life. The series also stars Clifton Davis and Jester Hairston (who both went on to star in another TV One favorite Amen), Ted Lange (who went on to star in The Love Boat), Lynn Moody (Roots), and Theodore Wilson (Sweet Daddy from TV One favorite Good Times).
    On Sunday, April 19 at 5pm, the gang is back together again as TV One encores their original special Living Single: The Reunion Show which reunites the cast of the popular sitcom Living Single including Kim Fields, Kim Coles, Erika Alexander, John Henton, and T.C. Carson as they take a stroll down memory lane with bloopers, set stories, and little known backstage gossip and antics that will have viewers wanting more. So if you missed it or need to record it, April 19 at 5pm is your chance!
    Finally, on Friday, April 24 beginning at 10pm, TV One presents the "Viewers Choice Good Times Mega-thon," a 24-hour event that airs the funniest and most talked about episodes from the long running classic sitcom and lets viewers decide (by voting on the TV One website) on their favorite episodes which will air at the end of the mega-thon from 8pm to 10pm on Saturday April 25.
    There are no changes really to the schedule, but some minor stuff. The short-lived comedy Good News has been removed from weekdays at 8:30am and Sunday mornings and replaced by Comics Unleashed. That change happened early last month though. TV One has scheduled original series Black Men Revealed at 11am on weekdays, so the daily marathons are now 12-3pm instead of 11am-3pm. More TV One originals air at 3pm. The Divorce Court encores weekdays from 5-6am have been replaced by the original series Get the Hookup. Court will still air weekdays 4-5pm, though. That's about it...no other real changes.
    We don't see That's My Mama airing on the regular schedule, so for now it is just a one-time marathon...but wouldn't it be nice if it appears in May in time for Mother's Day? Mama would be proud...but spend this Easter with Mama! Mama Curtis, that is!

    Rita Rocks, Lifetime Television's first original primetime comedy in 10 years, has been picked up for a second season. The 20-episode order was announced today. The family comedy starring Nicole Sullivan premiered on October 20, 2008, and, in a unique programming strategy, stripped original episodes for a full week before moving into its regular timeslot (Tuesdays, 8:30 p.m. ET/PT before moving to Mondays at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT). Developed as a companion to Lifetime's most popular comedy, Reba, Rita Rocks met with early success and frequently built on or retained the Reba audience. Since its debut, the first season has cumed more than 36.4 million viewers total.
    The first season had its season finale last Monday. Reruns from the beginning start tonight at 8:00PM every Monday, so get hooked again or watch for the first time! No start date has been given for the second season premiere, but as soon as we know...we'll let you know because we 'rock'.

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    Tuesday, January 20, 2009

    Lifetime March 2009 - Golden Girls Expires

    As we see our new President get inaugurated, we have some sitcom news for you! Best of luck to Obama!
    For the first time since 1997, The Golden Girls will be off the Lifetime schedule starting Monday, March 2, 2009. The sitcom will be moving to Hallmark Channel and WE tv this March as we mentioned previously. We don't have timeslots and premiere dates for those yet, but as soon as we do, we'll let you know!
    As for Lifetime March 2009, The Golden Girls will have its last airing on Friday, Feb. 27 in its regular timeslots (weekdays 8-10am and 1am-2:30am). The show will not get a send-off marathon, at least as of now. It will leave the line-up softly with its regular airings. But if Lifetime does plan a marathon, we'll let you know. So stay tuned! Replacing Golden Girls from 8-10am will be more episodes of Still Standing and Reba, with back-to-back episodes of each. In the 1am hour, we will get an extra cycle of Desperate Housewives. The show will still air 12pm and 1pm as well, but this cycle will start from the beginning and be different from those afternoon airings! And finally in the 2am half-hour, we get an extra Reba on Tues-Thurs and Rita Rocks encores on Monday and Friday nights.
    View the full Lifetime March 2009 weekday line-up and discuss these changes.

    On this special day, the other news has been very slow. So if we have anything later in the day, we will bring it to you. Come on back!

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    Monday, December 01, 2008

    Lifetime December 2008 and January 2009 Changes; Cincinnati Station Changes Name to WKRP

    We didn't get a chance to mention it, but effective last week (Nov. 24), Lifetime removed The Nanny from the line-up. The contract for the show expires later this month, and TV Land and Nick at Nite gain access to it starting this spring, but not sure yet when and where it will air. We'll let you know. The Nanny was airing weeknights at 2am, and Lifetime replaced it with an extra episode of The Golden Girls. Also, The Golden Girls is now airing in the 8am hour replacing Still Standing's morning airings...it will still air weekdays 7-8pm. So The Golden Girls as of now is airing 8-9am, 9-10am, and 1-am-2:30am...7 airings a day. It will be cut to 6 in January, more on that below.
    As we mentioned previously, effective today (Dec. 1), Lifetime will add the original series Mom's Cooking in the weekday 11am hour (20 episodes have been ordered) and will add another Wife Swap episode at 10am leading into the series...so Will & Grace and Frasier are off of the daytime line-up until further notice (thru end of January at least), but remain in late night. No other changes are being made in December, so the rest of the line-up is the same as it is now.
    Starting in January we get a few more changes. Lifetime will start airing How I Met Your Mother on Monday evenings from 7-8pm starting Monday, January 5, 2009. This is its pre-syndication start before Lifetime can air it daily starting in fall 2010, as we mentioned before. Reba will be the lead-in (6-7pm) and lead-out (8pm) to the How I Met Your Mother airings, while original sitcom Rita Rocks moves from Tuesdays at 8:30pm to Mondays at 8:30pm. Lifetime will move the primetime airing of Wife Swap from Tuesdays at 10pm to Mondays at 9pm leading into their new original series DietTribe, airing Mondays at 10pm starting January 5 thru Feb. 2. Rita Rocks and DietTribe will repeat later on Mondays starting at 1am. So Mondays is a big night for Lifetime in January.
    Also, starting Jan. 5, Will & Grace will expand to three episodes airing 11pm to 12:30am, while the Frasier hour slides to 12:30am-1:30am, and the The Golden Girls airs 1:30-2:30am, so it loses an airing. The Golden Girls is moving to Hallmark Channel and WE tv in the spring, so we are down to the last months of the series on Lifetime. Frasier will get an additional slot in January, airing Sundays 12-1am after Grey's Anatomy. There will be no other changes, as of now.

    WKRP is actually on the air! No, I don't mean the TV series is on TV, but a local station in Cincinnati has changed its call letters to WKRP! Low-power Channel 38 known as WBQC-TV since 1995, has changed its call letters to WKRP-TV to promote its new digital TV signal.
    This is the first time a station here has been known as WKRP since the CBS premiere 30 years ago of WKRP in Cincinnati, a TV sitcom about a wacky rock radio station fictionally set in Cincinnati. Elliott Block, general manager and chief engineer for WKRP-TV says, "When I call someone out-of-town and say we're a TV station in Cincinnati, the response usually is, 'WKRP in Cincinnati?' This gives us recognition." He also has tried to acquire the TV series to air on WKRP-TV, but says "We've checked, but WKRP in Cincinnati is not available for broadcast. It's only available for cable." He is correct, it airs Sunday evenings on WGN America and Monday nights on AmericanLife TV.
    So what does WKRP-TV air? Right now just stuff like Matlock, One on One, Punk'd, Cops, and first-run syndicated stuff like Cold Squad and Jury Duty. Nothing out of the ordinary, but still the name change is cool. So baby, if you've ever wondered if there was a real WKRP, now you know there is! Check out WKRP-TV's website. "I'm at WKRP in Cincinnati..."

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