It's called XFinity, which sounds like that name for the next Stargate spinoff but is actually a new part of the Fancast site where you can watch TV shows from channels like HBO, AMC, A&E, STARZ, The History Channel, and Cinemax. That means you can watch shows like True Blood, Entourage, Mad Men, The Colbert Report, Big Love, and many other shows. (By the way, right now Fancast is running a marathon of Friends Christmas episodes.)
Now that Comcast owns a big chunk of NBC, I wonder how this service could someday be combined with Hulu in some way, or if launching this service will affect Hulu in other ways.
But TV has always been a part of that equation, and it had no less of a role for me this year. So, in the TV world, here is what will make me thankful as I dive into the turkey tomorrow:
ABC's Wednesday comedy line-up: Against all trends, ABC rolled the dice and started a whole new night of comedy on Wednesdays. And while Hank flamed out, The Middle, Modern Family, and Cougar Town look like they have staying power, both from a quality and a ratings standpoint.
Damn the TCA's, screw billboards and to hell with magazine advertising! Slowly, ever so slowly, TV networks are beginning to realize that the Internet is the way to go to promote new and ongoing shows. The ways I mentioned above, those are the Stone Age, man. The newfangled World Wide Web is how their shows are going to become hits.
Case in point: the season 3 premiere of Kyle XY. While it's network television premiere is next Monday on ABC Family, you denizens of the technological world can see it over at Fancast right now. Heck, you can't even see it on ABC Family's website -- those primitives. For the interested, this is the conclusion to the season two cliffhanger that left Kyle searching for the abducted Amanda.
Look, if you are one of those people who like to stay one step ahead of everyone else, get your butt over to Fancast and watch the premiere. Then, you can let all of your commoner friends know what happened. Just make sure you limber up first because you are sure to be chased by fans of the show after you reveal all the spoilers.
Comcast-owned internet media portal Fancast is expanding its content library through a partnership with Viacom. The upshot is that for the first time, you'll be able to catch full length episodes of two of Comedy Central's most popular shows: The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. While you can currently find clips of each show on the program's website, there's no way to watch a single episode from start to finish over the web.
Fancast will also be adding South Park and select content from other Viacom properties including MTV Networks, Nickelodeon, and BET Networks. You can already find a wide range of TV shows and movies on Fancast thanks to partnerships with CBS and Hulu.
The site provides all sorts of detailed information about actors, movies, TV shows, directors, and so on. You can type in a name and Fancast will pull up a biography, photos, and videos. You can also check out "six degrees" and see related projects or order movie tickets through Comcast-owned Fandango. Eventually Comcast plans to add full length TV episodes and movies to the site.
But while the site has far more multimedia content than IMDB, it's somehow less useful. Like Craigslist, IMDb thrives on simplicity. Sure, there are links to photos, videos, and external web sites with more information. But at its most basic level, IMDb lets you do things like find out every movie or TV show an actor was ever in at a glance. And the way Fancast is laid out makes that task much more difficult.
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