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October 20, 2014

Sunday

CBS makes a surprise choice for the post-Super Bowl spot

by Allison Waldman, posted Dec 21st 2009 10:28AM
cbs_logo_black_whiteOne of the most coveted parcels in prime time real estate is the hour after the broadcast of the Super Bowl. In 2010, CBS has the big game on Sunday, February 7, and after the pads pop and the Vince Lombardi trophy is hoisted, the program that the Tiffany network will air is not one of the usual suspects. The slot won't be used to pump up the next edition of Survivor, as many experts guessed.

It also won't be used to reinforce the success of sophomore drama The Mentalist, nor will the space be handed over to The Big Bang Theory for a one-hour stretched out sitcom episode. And the network isn't going to pump up a slipping series like CSI, which isn't getting the gaudy numbers it did in the William Peterson days. So, what will they run? Follow me after the jump to find out -- and consider this a SPOILER ALERT.

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Chuck to return in January

by Brad Trechak, posted Nov 20th 2009 11:31AM
ChuckChuck will be returning to the airwaves on NBC on Sunday January 10th at 8 PM. The third season will start with a two-hour premiere and then the show will be on again the following night in its regular timeslot right after Heroes. This is three hours of Chuck over two days.

The pity is that Chuck is actually a good show and Heroes hasn't been as such since the first season. Perhaps Heroes should be the lead-in for Chuck? With the boost in the number of episodes and the guest-stars galore slated for the coming season, it's a very exciting time to be a Chuckaholic like me. This could also be a sign that NBC is giving more support for Chuck and less for the dying Heroes.

Zachary Levi is great in his role and Yvonne Strahovski is much fun to look at, but what really makes the show is Adam Baldwin. Perhaps John Casey should get his own show? Nah. He's better as a foil for Chuck Bartowski.

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The Cleveland Show gets a full second season

by Brad Trechak, posted Oct 15th 2009 5:47PM
The Cleveland ShowNot that the future of this series was ever in doubt, but Fox has extended its original season-and-a-half order of The Cleveland Show to a full two seasons. Given the strong premiere ratings for the show, seasons beyond number two will likely be in the bag. If Fox didn't extend, they'd have to deal with an irate Seth MacFarlane who currently controls most of their Sunday night line-up.

Is The Cleveland Show going to end up being more popular than its progenitor Family Guy? Do these ratings simply represent a high initial interest in the new show that will wane over time? I have used the analogy of The Jeffersons spinning off from All In The Family, but did The Jeffersons ever beat All In The Family in the ratings?

Whatever the case, Seth MacFarlane doesn't have to worry about it for at least two seasons, and probably longer.

[Watch clips and free episodes of The Cleveland Show at SlashControl]

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Seth MacFarlane also doing Fox variety show

by Brad Trechak, posted Oct 14th 2009 1:08PM
Seth MacFarlaneThe man who virtually owns Fox Sunday nights, Seth MacFarlane, will be joining Carrie Underwood in what is seemingly Fox's attempt to revive the variety show genre. Didn't anybody learn the lesson of Rosie O'Donnell?

The show is called Family Guy Presents: Seth and Alex's Almost Live Comedy Show. It'll be broadcast on November 8th and be commercial-free thanks to Microsoft (who will be promoting Windows 7). The special will be a mix of animated and live performances. I've seen Seth MacFarlane and Alex Borstein (the voice of Lois Griffin) perform together in Family Guy Live and they're certainly better together than anything Rosie could produce.

It's interesting how retro these planned variety shows are going. It used to be that shows like The Colgate Comedy Hour would have live sketches about their sponsors sprinkled throughout the show. I wonder how MacFarlane and company will handle shilling Windows 7. Do they even like Windows 7? MacFarlane strikes me more as a Mac guy. "Mac" is even part of his last name.

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Mad Men: Out of Town (season premiere)

by Allison Waldman, posted Aug 17th 2009 12:35AM
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(S03E01)
The more things change, the more they stay the same. Don has returned to Betty, the baby's on the way, but all's not right in Don's world. There's turmoil in the office and a current of unrest thanks to the British takeover of Sterling Cooper.

But if you hoped, or believed, that Don's sojourn to Los Angeles and his contemplation of another life was a wake-up call, think again. Don Draper remains Dick Whitman. A leopard doesn't change his spots.

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The Next Food Network Star's Ten Dollar Dinners debuts

by Allison Waldman, posted Aug 9th 2009 6:02PM
melissa_darabian_food_NetworkA week ago -- in TV time -- Melissa D'Arabian was crowned the winner of The Next Food Network Star. Presto-chango and one week later, her new show debuted on The Food Network, called Ten Dollar Dinners with Melissa D'Arabian. That wasn't the concept she was talking about during the competition, but within hours of last Sunday's finale, FN had decided that this would be the format for Melissa.

It was with a lot of curiosity that I checked out the debut of Ten Dollar Dinners. Would Melissa be able to adapt her "kitchen survival guide" and perky homemaker style to a skin flint, sawbuck a dinner concept? Would the personality -- that the judges harped on wanting to see -- come out in a slickly-made premiere episode?

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Drop Dead Diva -- An early look

by Allison Waldman, posted Jul 9th 2009 10:16AM
brooke_elliott_margaret_cho_drop_dead_divaCertain shows seem to be perfect for certain television networks. That's the point of programming, no doubt, and Lifetime has done a good job filling their female-centric niche with TV movies and series like Army Wives. That said, I think there will soon be a new favorite on Lifetime and it's called Drop Dead Diva. It's chick-flick, rom-com for weekly TV viewers, and while men might enjoy the whimsical plot and attractive characters, this is a show that ladies will adore.

If you were talking high concept like a Hollywood pitchman, you could describe Drop Dead Diva as Ally McBeal for the Lane Bryant set. Or maybe it's Sara Lee meets Heaven Can Wait. However, you put it, Drop Dead Diva is a switcheroo story about a vapid, but lovable, gorgeous size 2 model who dies at the exact same time as a brilliant, generous size 16 workaholic attorney, and in one of those wonderful Hollywood comedy devices, shallow Deb's spirit winds up in good Jane's body.

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Bobby Cannavale bounces back to Cold Case

by Allison Waldman, posted Jun 24th 2009 11:10AM
Bobby_Cannavale_Kathryn_Morris_Cold_Case
You think Bobby Cannavale has felt the sting when all those episodes of the failed second go-round of Cupid have been burned off by ABC this past few weeks? It's got to be a shot to the ego, even for an established, successful Emmy-winning actor. Well, here's some news that should puff him back up again. Cold Case is bringing Bobby Cannavale back for the new season.

Cannavale appeared last season on Cold Case as Detective Eddie Saccardo, an undercover narcotics cop -- think Serpico with a sense of humor -- who had a brief romantic fling with Lily. It was one of the only happy things in Detective Rush's life last season, so the return of Eddie could be just what the doctor ordered for Kathryn Morris's character.

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CNN's Wolf gets some rest as John King takes over Sunday

by Richard Keller, posted Dec 8th 2008 3:07PM

Wolf BlitzerCNN's Wolf Blitzer must be running on Energizer batteries. Between his duties on his weekly The Situation Room program and Sunday's two-hour Late Edition talkfest, Wolf is on the air 17 hours a week. While this makes him the leader in face time over any other television anchor it probably doesn't bode well for his social and family life. Not to mention that he's probably missing the new season of According to Jim. So, the cable news network is doing something to free his schedule up.

Sometime in the new year, Wolf will step down from his Late Edition duties and will be replaced by chief political and magic map correspondent John King. The revamped Sunday schedule will begin at 9 a.m., with the first hour dedicated to politics and opinions on the new Obama administration. Later hours will touch on national and world affairs with commentary on current events. And, most likely, John will use the powers of the magic map to make some of the less likable pundits disappear.

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NBC settles on David Gregory for Meet the Press

by Allison Waldman, posted Dec 8th 2008 9:57AM
MTP GregoryThey passed the torch on NBC yesterday. After weeks of speculation, it wasn't either Ted Koppel or Rachel Maddow that received the choice assignment. Nope. It's David Gregory who'll take over Meet the Press -- effective immediately. On Sunday morning's broadcast, interim host and NBC anchorman emeritus Tom Brokaw made it official by officially letting the world know it was a done deal by presenting Gregory on air.

Apparently, some at NBC were miffed that this information was leaked last week, spoiling the big surprise today, but really, there wasn't much suspense. Joel wrote about it. The selection of David Gregory is a safe, solid and somewhat staid choice.

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Rachel Maddow for Meet the Press?

by Allison Waldman, posted Dec 1st 2008 12:12PM
MaddowMeet the Press, NBC's venerable (six decades!) political affairs news program and a staple of Sunday morning TV, has been in flux ever since the untimely death of Tim Russert. Tom Brokaw has been sitting in the big chair, brought out of semi-retirement and keeping the show together in Tim's stead. But NBC has confirmed that Brokaw is leaving on December 7. They have not confirmed who will become the new face of Meet the Press.

Last week, Bob speculated about Ted Koppel joining NBC to anchor the show, and he was certainly be a credible choice. Tina Brown at The Daily Beast web site has another idea; she says that Rachel Maddow should take over Meet the Press.

My first reaction to Brown's idea was, "No, not Rachel." But that was just because I wouldn't want Rachel to give up The Rachel Maddow Show, her prime time MSNBC show. I enjoy her daily take on the world of politics. She's smart, insightful, a good interviewer, and despite her liberal leanings, surprisingly critical of the left. She could bring all the critical thinking to MTP.

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Hmmm ... will Ted Koppel take over Meet The Press?

by Bob Sassone, posted Nov 25th 2008 4:43PM
Ted KoppelWhen Tim Russert passed away earlier this year, the talk of course turned to the topic of who would take over for him on NBC's long-running Sunday news show Meet The Press. Tom Brokaw has been doing the show for several weeks now, but could former Nightline host Ted Koppel be the new guy in the interviewing chair?

Koppel has announced that he and The Discovery Channel have parted ways. He still had six months left on his contract but decided to leave. This is all just speculation at this time, of course, but since he's leaving Discovery early and the end of the year is upon us, it's interesting timing.

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60 Minutes scores with Obama

by Allison Waldman, posted Nov 18th 2008 8:27AM
60 min logoAll things Obama are doing really well right now. Not just winning the election, but the top of the charts for Senator Barack Obama's two books, merchandise with Obama's image and name, anything and everything about the president-elect is hot, hot, hot. Thanks to the first major post-election sit-down interview with Barack and Michelle Obama last Sunday, CBS's 60 Minutes had its largest audience in nearly a decade. The 6.4 rating/16 share (adults 18-49) translated into a viewing audience of just under 25 million.

The enthusiasm and excitement for Obama is not unusual when you're talking about a new president. I recall this kind of buzz before Bill Clinton took office in 1993. The Clinton Inaugural even warranted a two-hour TV special that featured a glitzy array of celebrity Friends of Bill, like Barbra Streisand, Aretha Franklin, Fleetwood Mac, Warren Beatty and more.

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Comic-Con Countdown: Sunday, July 27th

by Richard Keller, posted Jul 17th 2008 10:33AM

The last day, but plenty of television-related events to attendWhew! After several days of sore feet (and sore booties from sitting on the hard floor waiting for the next panel), dwindling funds, and tons of TV-related panels, San Diego Comic-Con comes to an end. That doesn't mean that all of the television folks have packed up an left in order to catch the Silver Bullet train to Los Angeles (does a train even run between San Diego and Los Angeles?) or an aeroplane to Vancouver. There are still some panels waiting for your utmost attention.

It's Kids' Day at the convention, so there are panels on a Mr. SquarePants, Phineas and Ferb, The Backyardigans, and those wacky Muppets from Fraggle Rock. For the more adult crowd there are Q&As for It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Supernatural, Smallville, and another panel on cartoon voices. The final TV-related event is a rousing sing-a-long with the Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode "Once More With Feeling." After that, you can climb into your hotel bed, train berth, car seat, or nearby street corner resplendent with the fact that you had taken in everything television at the Comic-Con.

So, if you are staying just one more day, here are the television-related events for Sunday, July 27th. For a full schedule of events you can check out the official schedule on the Comic-Con website. And, for old times sake, remember that times, panelists and events can change at a moment's notice. That, and the panels are on a first-come, first-serve basis.

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Things I Hate About TV: Sunday sports running over into primetime

by Allison Waldman, posted Apr 28th 2008 5:21PM
Joe NamathLet me start this rant by saying that I like sports. No, I love sports. I'm a fan. I get the DirecTV NBA package and the major league baseball games. I can talk to you for hours about stats and players and great games. That said, I hate the way Sunday sports programming drifts over into primetime. This happens primarily on CBS and Fox with the NFL games in the fall and winter, but the other networks have been guilty of staying with the game and then still insisting on showing the primetime schedule after the game is over -- even if that means that an 8 o'clock show begins at 8:45 and your DVR gets all screwed up and you wind up with only 15 minutes of a show you wanted to see!

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