But, Joan being Joan, she also randomly let loose on Brooke Shields, Sarah Palin, and whoever else was in her mind during the ten minutes we spoke.
We start off by talking about longevity. She feels one of the reasons she stays relevant is that she doesn't live in the past. "I don't give a shit about Johnny Carson," she said.
In the latest issue of Time (hits newsstands tomorrow) the mag's resident critic James Poniewozik has a great article on the upcoming prime-time premiere of The Jay Leno Show. Poniewozik makes the argument (an ubiquitous one at this point) that as a result of Leno's move to 10 p.m., your TV is shrinking.
As he puts it, in a TV viewing world where the attention span of potential eyeballs is so segmented because of cable, DVRs, and Hulu, NBC is throwing all their eggs in one basket with "America's most successful purveyor of vanilla."
However, a lot of people really like vanilla. Good sign? Hard to say.
Highlights and a look the issue's cover after the jump.
It's hard to believe that Oprah is going into her 24th season. Actually, it's not that hard, as it feels like Oprah has always been around. Oprah is likely such a big part of the economy of Chicago that she probably has the Mayor in twice a week to clean her apartment.
If this is how the Queen of Daytime Television is starting her 24th season, how is she going to top it when she starts her Silver Anniversary season? Will she simply given a thousand bucks to every person in Chicago?
This week's Entertainment Weekly features a new photo of the cast for their Curb Your Enthusiasm guest appearances with Larry David. The cast will be in several episodes this season, playing themselves. The plot will have David getting them together for the Seinfeld reunion that fans want to see and we'll get a behind-the-scenes look at the fictional reunion and the fictional making of that reunion, which itself will be a real reunion.
Excuse me. What? An awards event hosted by a British organization for a British group is taking place in New York? Isn't that somewhat counter-intuitive? Unless IFC is picking up the whole check (which is a distinct possibility), this should be moved to London.
What do they all have in common?
EPs Jeff Pinkner and J.H. Wyman, along with co-creators Roberto Orici and Alex Kurtzman, even talked about a day of shooting in a super-hot Vancouver soundstage, where Nimoy acted like a pro. "He never went back to his trailer, and shot pages of dialogue." So it seems like they like having him around the set.
The show will take place mostly in the present universe, but there will be some events that happen in the parallel universe introduced last year ( "over there," as the producers put it). Events "over there" will affect events in the present universe, as well.
More on the panel later.
That line, from the hilarious Chappelle's Show bit where Brady made fun of his squeaky-clean image, came up halfway through, when a critic asked Brady the question, "submitted from one of our readers on Twitter." I wonder if that reader was one of us critics, who all burned up the Twitterverse with the line as soon as we heard Brady would be here today.
Brady, who can improvise a song on the spot, just sat there in semi-silence. "That was a great choice of question," he said sarcastically. He isn't running from the bit, he said, and he's heard ten-year-olds try to say the line back at him at airports. But he's promoting a daytime, family-oriented show and just wanted people to talk about that.
Patti Smith had the last session, to promote her biographical movie on POV called Patti Smith: Dream of Life. It was fascinating, as she was pretty open with the reporters about why she let filmmaker Steven Sebring into her life for eleven years, what she likes to watch on YouTube (Maria Callas for one) and all sorts of fun stuff. But I had to leave to interview another legend, Norman Lear, who was there with producer Mark Johnson to promote the documentary Playing For Change: Peace Through Music.
When we were done with the interview, Lear, Johnson, the publicists and I were about to walk our separate ways when we heard music coming from the ballroom. When we open it, we see Patti Smith playing her guitar for the critics, in the middle of her second song. So imagine me and Norman Lear, standing there, listening to Patti Smith.
The members gave ER its Heritage Award, which honors the impact the show has had on the TV landscape. As for current shows, the members gave Battlestar Galactica the Program of the Year award, Mad Men Outstanding Achievement in Drama. The Big Bang Theory won for Outstanding Achievement in Comedy, and Jim Parsons won the Individual Achievement in Comedy award for his performance. Bryan Cranston of Breaking Bad won the Individual Achievement in Drama award. True Blood won the Outstanding New Program Award. And, finally, the award I'm most excited about (because she'll likely be there): Betty White received the Career Achievement award.
A complete list of winners is after the jump.
But l couldn't let two of HBO's panels go without comment. One was for the new comedy Bored to Death, based on the writings of Jonathan Ames. Joining Ames on the panel were Jason Schwartzman (via satellite), Ted Danson, and the hot comedian of the moment, Zach Galifianakis. The other was Robin Williams, who was promoting his new HBO special, Robin Williams: Weapons of Self-Destruction, which is set to air in December.
It wasn't surprising that Galifianakis' weird sense of humor dominated his panel; anyone who's seen him on the Comedians of Comedy tour or in The Hangover would have expected that. The surprise was that, in his panel, Williams was more reflective and pensive than manic.
At today's HBO session at the TCAs, Larry David came on stage to talk about the upcoming season of Curb Your Enthusiasm. In it, as we all know, he'll be reuniting the Seinfeld cast on the show. And what will they be doing? They'll be working on... a Seinfeld reunion episode.
"The context is that for years I've been asked about a Seinfeld reunion," said David, "and i'd say no it's a lame idea. And then i thought it might be very funny to do that on Curb, and I kept thinking about it and different scenarios of how to pull it off."
When he talked to Jerry Seinfeld and the cast about it, they were all game. "So doiung a Seinfeld reunion show on Curb we'll see writing read through rehersals show being filmed. You won't see the entire show, you'll see parts of the show get an idea of what happened eleven years later."
But Rivers also took some vicious shots at David Tutera, the party planner who left her and Duke high and dry on The Celebrity Apprentice's finale, quitting after Joan asked him to make some changes to his plan. Since Tutera is scheduled to do a panel on his show My Fair Wedding on Friday, I wanted to post what she said about him here and then give Tutera a chance to respond.
Well, well, well. How interesting to see the purchase of the nail gun we saw in the first episode of season four of The Wire come back around to bring everything together. "It's a tomb," says Freamon in "A New Day," and it all makes sense to me. Well, some of it makes sense anyway.
And then there's the teetering decision of whether Freamon will keep getting crap from the higher-ups about going out and looking for Marlo's bodies, using up manpower, and upping the murder rate of the city, or whether they'll do the right thing and actually do their jobs. Oh, the bodies that rolled in.
It seemed like a respectful decision, but it felt a bit wrong to me. The voice over was a simple sentence: "This is the CBS Evening News with Katie Couric." That's it. It felt like a good way to pay tribute to his immense contributions to television news and to bridge the years between his era and the current one. And, shockingly enough, it wouldn't have felt creepy at all, just comforting.
Cronkite's family must have felt the same way, as they've given CBS permission to keep using his voice at the top of the broadcast. How long CBS will keep doing it is anyone's guess. But if Billy Mays can keep selling Oxi Clean from the Great Beyond, why can't Uncle Walter keep introducing the news?
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