Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Lifetime Announces Halloween Programming; Remembering TV Composer Neal Hefti

Wow...two days in a row of Lifetime news! There is no shortage of blood-chillers this Halloween. That mysterious creaking emanating from the shadows. Hockey-masked killers and otherworldly marauders. The Dow. Lifetime Networks is getting in the "spirit" of the season too, rolling out a slate of tricks and treats on Lifetime Television and Lifetime Movie Network.
Lifetime hits the ground running Halloween week beginning Monday, October 27 every day at 11 AM (ET/PT), with five new episodes of Lisa Williams: Voices From the Other Side, featuring the renowned clairvoyant's eerie encounters beyond the grave. Each day's show will feature a lead-in of a quite different brand of terror with themed episodes of Wife Swap at 10 AM (ET/PT). Halloween-themed episodes of the sitcoms Frasier, Reba, Still Standing and Will & Grace will also pepper the week-long schedule.
Over on sister channel Lifetime Movie Network, it's a full weekend of supernatural movies (Saturday, October 25-Sunday, October 26) ranging from the classic scares of The Rage: Carrie 2 and The Unquiet to contemporary paranormal stories like The Watch, You Belong to Me and Nightmare at End of the Hall.

Neal Hefti, a TV composer who composed the memorable themes for the movie The Odd Couple and the campy hit TV series Batman, has passed away. Hefti died Saturday (October 11) at his home in Toluca Lake, said his son, Paul. He did not know the cause of death, but said his father had been in good health.
While known primarily as a film composer, his two TV themes are his most famous work. Among his credits as a film composer are Sex and the Single Girl, Harlow (one of his most famous tunes, "Girl Talk," came out of the score), How to Murder Your Wife, Boeing Boeing, Duel at Diablo, Barefoot in the Park, A New Leaf, Last of the Red Hot Lovers and The Odd Couple, whose theme he reprised for the 1970s ABC TV series. Hefti also gained wide notice for composing the energetic title theme for Batman, the over-the-top 1966-68 ABC superhero series that became an overnight sensation. Hefti's Batman theme became a Top 40 hit and won a 1966 Grammy Award for best instrumental theme.
Hefti retired in 1976. He will be deeply missed but his themes will live on forever. Mr. Hefti was 85.

We'll return with more news, if any...stay tuned!

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Thursday, October 04, 2007

Customizable Versions of Classic TV Music; Beaver Reunion Video

SmartSound Software, Inc., the leading provider of music and scoring technology for film and video professionals, today announced the launch of four new customizable music libraries featuring all original music from the film and television catalog of EMI Music Publishing, one of the world's largest music publishers. Each track is licensed for unlimited use in home movies and is encoded to work with SmartSound-enabled applications, including many leading video editing software products. This nostalgic music combined with SmartSound's patented technology allows users to set the music into any length scene and listen to all possible arrangements that have a musical beginning and ending fit exactly to the scene.
Each library includes ten tracks. They can be purchased directly from SmartSound at http://www.smartsound.com/moviemusic for $39.95 each or just $99 for all four discs as a set. Here are the TV Classics Library details:
EMI TV Classics -- Memorable music from favorite TV shows of the 1960s and 1970s. Includes music from such popular shows as Batman, Bewitched, The Avengers and Lost in Space.

In case anyone missed it this morning, ABCNews.com has put up the video of the Leave it to Beaver reunion segment. Tom Bergeron, host of Dancing with the Stars, conducted the interview. Can you believe Barbara Billingsley is 91?? Anyway, see for yourself by clicking HERE. There are two video links there on the right.

Yesterday we reported that tonight's Grey's Anatomy will encore on Friday at 9 on ABC, but now ABC has decided not to. Private Practice will now air on Friday, October 5, 2007 at 9:00 PM ET/PT. This episode will be a repeat telecast of the Wednesday, October 3, 2007 broadcast.

Tune in tonight on NBC for the Comedy Done Right sitcoms starting at 8/7 central with My Name is Earl followed by the season premiere of 30 Rock and an all-new one-hour episode of The Office.

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Monday, October 01, 2007

AmericanLife Adds Batman, Trapper John, Lou Grant, Green Hornet and More; Nick at Nite Starts With Fresh

AmericanLife TV Network, the cable network devoted to the Baby Boomer generation, debuts lots of new shows including three new action and adventure programs this October on its primetime program schedule. Mission: Impossible premieres on Monday, October 1, and Batman and Green Hornet follow on Friday, October 5.
Mission: Impossible (Mondays at 8:00 p.m. ET /PT) premiered in 1966 and aired for seven years. The series stars Greg Morris, Peter Lupus, Peter Graves, Martin Landau, Barbara Bain and Bob Johnson, who was the voice on the tape that intoned, "Your mission, should you decide to accept it..." Mission: Impossible chronicles the adventures of a secret government agency tasked with conducting covert missions, including freeing hostages, releasing war weapons and solving international mysteries. The series won numerous awards, including three Golden Globe Awards, three Emmy Awards and a Grammy Award for Best Original Score Written for a Motion Picture or Television Show.
Batman (Fridays at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT), based on the comic book series, follows Batman and his sidekick Robin as they fight Gotham City’s villains. Starring Adam West as Batman and Burt Ward as Robin, the series also attracted A-list Hollywood talent to play the roles of the villains: Frank Gorshin and John Astin as The Riddler, Burgess Meredith as The Penguin, Cesar Romero as The Joker, Victor Buono as King Tut, Vincent Price as Egghead and Julie Newmar and Eartha Kitt as Catwoman. Batman premiered in 1966 on ABC and aired four years.
Green Hornet (Fridays at 9:30 p.m. ET /PT) stars Van Williams as Britt Reid, a newspaper publisher who becomes the masked hero to fight criminals. He is assisted by his secretary, Lenore "Casey" Case (Wende Wagner), and Asian valet and martial arts expert Kato (Bruce Lee). Only airing for one season in 1966, this series marked Lee's debut on American television.
AmericanLife will be adding lots of other ner series this month as well. The other new shows are: Lou Grant, Trapper John M.D., Rat Patrol, 12 O'Clock High, Big Valley, and Burke's Law.
With all these new shows coming from the Fox and Paramount libraries, the Warner Bros. library will be leaving. The shows leaving are: 77 Sunset Strip, China Beach, Gallant Men, I Spy, The Man from U.N.C.L.E., The Girl from U.N.C.L.E., The F.B.I., Our Gang, Adventures of Superman, My Favorite Martian, F Troop, Chico and the Man, Welcome Back Kotter and Lawman. The Warner Bros. deal has lasted quite a while on the network, so you all should have taped your shows while you had the chance.
For the full list of changes and to discuss these changes, I urge you to click HERE!

Other highlights for October include a Halloween-themed special (Nancy Kerrigan's Halloween on Ice) and classic television series featuring guest star appearances by several television and film celebrities.

Thursday, October 4
The Time Tunnel: Carroll O'Connor guests in "Last Patrol" (9:00 p.m. ET/PT).

Sunday, October 7
St. Elsewhere: Judith Light guest stars in "Dog Day Hospital" (8:00 p.m. ET/PT).

Thursday, October 11
Lost in Space: Warren Oates guest stars in "Welcome Stranger" (8:00 p.m. ET/PT).
The Time Tunnel: Oscar-winning actress Ellen Burstyn guests in "Crack of Doom" (9:00 p.m. ET/PT).

Friday, October 12
Mission: Impossible: Lloyd Bridges guest stars in "Fakeout" (8:00 p.m. ET/PT).

Sunday, October 14
Mission: Impossible: William Smithers guests in "The Ransom" (8:00 p.m. ET/PT).

Wednesday, October 17
Combat!: James Coburn guests alongside ex-heavyweight boxing champ Rocky Marciano, making his television acting debut, in "Masquerade" (7:00 p.m. ET/PT).

Saturday, October 20
The Big Valley: Mary Astor guest stars in "Who Killed Cable Roberts?" (6:00 p.m. ET/PT).

Monday, October 22
The Mary Tyler Moore Show: Vic Tayback guests in "Second Story Story" (9:00 p.m. ET /PT).

Wednesday, October 24
Trapper John, M.D.: Emmy and Golden Globe winning actress Shelley Long guest stars in "The Shattered Image" (10:00 p.m. ET/PT).

Thursday, October 25
Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea: Richard Carlson guest stars in "The Village of Guilt" (10:00 p.m. ET /PT).

Friday, October 26
Combat!: Actor and director Ron Howard guests in "What Are the Bugles Blown For? Part I" (7:00 p.m. ET /PT) (Part two airs Monday, October 29 at 7 p.m. ET /PT).

Nick at Nite will be kicking off each night this week with The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, replacing one of the Home Improvement airings. No other changes will be made. Maybe Fresh is coming into boost the ratings a bit? We'll see, but as of now it is just for this week...but that could change.

Don't forget tonight to tune in to the series premiere of Aliens in America on The CW, along with the rest of the season premieres of The CW Monday comedies. And if that is not all, it is week two of the CBS Monday comedies! The fun starts 8/7 central on both CBS and The CW. Watch and TiVo!
8:30pm will be a busy slot as Perfect Strangers launches on ION tonight! Get out of the city!

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Saturday, June 23, 2007

Mini-DVD Review: The New Adventures of Batman (June 26); Solomon's Weekly Rant: Cable TV

Welcome to another edition of mini-DVD reviews. This week we take a look at Warner Home Video's The New Adventures of Batman. The New Adventures of Batman is the short-lived 1977 animated series that reunited Adam West and Burt Ward (from the original live action 60s Batman series) as Batman and Robin, but this time in animation, rather than live action. See my mini-DVD review of The New Adventures of Batman:

The New Adventures of Batman (Warner, $26.99) brings all 16 episodes from the short-lived classic animated series reuniting the Caped Crusader (Adam West as Batman) and The Boy Wonder (Burt Ward as Robin)!
In this series, we see Batgirl from time to time and a new sidekick called Bat-Mite. Some of the villains they will battle include The Joker, The Penguin, Catwoman, and Mr. Freeze. Can they save Gotham City from these dangerous masterminds? You'll have to watch the episodes to find out! Each episode runs approx. 22:50. The lowest one is 22:14, which is the first of a 2-part episode. There are NO chapter stops, which is not good. The video is OK, not great, but not bad either. There are some white flashing dots from time to time, but that is to be expected. This series is also available on AOL's In2TV for free view, if you have never watched it. The audio is decent, nothing too bad about it. Packaging has a nice slim outer box with Batman and Robin running on the front cover...the back cover has tons of information a picture of Batman and Robin in the Batmobile. Inside the box is the very slim digipak case. All two discs are inside. There are two panels, the first panel gives a breakdown of each disc, which episodes, and if any extras. The second panel holds the discs...overlapping each other. The second disc is double-sided, so there is no art on it. The first disc's art has the villains, The Joker, Penguin, etc.
The menu screen has Play and Episodes. The main menu has a nice blue background with Batman. The selector is cool, when we point to an option, it is the Bat sign.
Moving on to the extras. The only extra is on disc two side B. A featurette called Dark Knight Revisited. It is very interesting and packed with lots of information on Batman. It runs 18:45 and any fan of any type of Batman series, movie or comic strip will enjoy it.
I highly do recommend any fan of Batman to pick up this set, especially fans of the classic '60s Batman. And if you never have watched the show, give it a try on In2TV for free then pick this set up! Holy DVDs Batman!
-- Reviewed by Pavan
(4/5 stars)

To purchase the DVD, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
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Related links:
SitcomsOnline.com Full DVD Reviews Page
New Adventures of Batman TV.com Page


Solomon's Weekly Rant
Saturday, June 16, 2007
"Cable Companies Making It Hard To Enjoy Television"
By Solomon Davis

It now seems like cable companies are competing with one another in coming up with creative ways to suck money out of cable customers. This really seems unfair to customers who pay their bills on time and are never late with a payment. But Comcast has made TV watching very expensive these days and it appears they will continue to jack up cable fees because they know true cable fans will always pay the increase. I guess this means that DirecTV is currently winning the battle and Comcast has made up for it by turning into "Jack the Increaser." I swear the President of Comcast should just put on a mask the way Comcast has sneakily drained money from us cable lovers.
First of all, I cannot believe I'm being charged to watch reruns of the NBC sitcom, The Office on Demand when it is completely free to watch on NBC from September to May. But once again Comcast is so money hungry and sneaky that they had to charge its customers 99 cents to watch a network TV program and didn't even tell customers there was a fee. We didn't find out until the bill came in the mail and saw that it is a dollar to watch NBC or CBS shows through Comcast OnDemand. When you first clicked on The Office you never saw that it was 99 cents, it was just recently put there now because of angry calls from cable customers. At least TubeTime is FREE!
Now I just found out that my grandmother who is a huge fan of Gunsmoke will have to upgrade her cable service in 2008 because Comcast is getting rid of basic cable. So now it is going to be all digital cable and that is not fair to a 79 year old woman who is on a fixed income and can't afford to pay more money to see a 1955 TV show. I haven't told my grandma this horrible news because I know she will be forced to pay the increase because she is so used to having cable. But Comcast can care less and they know my grandmother will find a way to pay the bill because of her cable TV addiction. My grandmother has gotten used to paying $33.00 a month for basic cable and now will have to pay a $15.00 increase for a TV show that started way before there was even cable television. Now it's looking relaxing and enjoying TV at home will be a costly experience and since Comcast MUST pull in more money than satellite rivals like DirecTV. With all the fees like maintenance, payment over the phone fee, and sales tax fee, everything will seem like PAY-PER-VIEW TV soon and we will all feel like putting a quarter in back of the cable box every time we turn on the television. I just want to know should I be furious with Comcast for finding ways to steal money from me or mad at myself for being a fan of cable television?

Agree or disagree with Solomon? Discuss it here.

DISCLAIMER: Remember, Solomon is not the voice of SitcomsOnline. He is just stating his opinions and does not reflect what SitcomsOnline says or thinks. It is just his 'View' but it is always quite entertaining.

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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

AmericanLife TV Acquires Classic 20th TV Shows, WKRP, Newhart, Mary Tyler Moore, Batman, etc.; Nick at Nite Schedule Switcharoo

AmericanLife TV Network, the only independent network devoted to the Baby Boomer generation, has reached a long-term agreement with Twentieth Television for a library of classic television series. Among the series that they have acquired are: Batman, Bob Newhart Show, Hill Street Blues, L.A. Law, Lost in Space, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Newhart, St. Elsewhere, WKRP in Cincinnati.
Hill Street Blues, St. Elsewhere and L.A. Law will debut June 3 in an all-new Sunday "The Greatest Drama" primetime schedule from 8-11pm (with an encore from 11pm-2am). The other programs acquired (such as Batman and Lost in Space) will be airing in varying time slots later this year. We will let you know when we know when they will launch! It seems the current Sunday night shows ("The Greatest Drama" block) The Courtship of Eddie's Father, Mayberry RFD, I'll Fly Away and Homefront will be off the line-up completely.
Click HERE to view the press release and to discuss this news!

A Nick at Nite change (yes, what else is new?)...Roseanne will return to Sun-Thurs 10-11PM now and Fresh Prince will move back to Sun-Thurs 11PM-12AM starting May 28. Fresh Prince will still air 11PM-12AM on Fri-Sat.

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