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July 24, 2014

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Halle Berry Eyes a Return to TV

by Catherine Lawson, posted Jun 1st 2011 6:15AM
Halle BerryOscar-winning actress Halle Berry could be coming to a small screen near you. It's been reported that she's attached to star in a drama project currently being shopped around pay cable networks like HBO and Showtime.

According to Deadline.com, DreamWorks TV has sent out a spec for the project -- entitled 'Higher Learning' -- to several pay cable networks, and is hoping for a quick decision. Details are sketchy right now, but the TV drama would see Berry starring as a college professor.

The script was written by 30-year industry veteran Lee Rose, who was queen of TV movies in their heyday during the 1990s. Since then Rose has worked as a director and producer on series such as 'Weeds,' 'Related,' 'Haven' and 'Greek.'

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Online Viewers Haven't Abandoned Traditional TV, According to Nielsen Study

by Gary Susman, posted Nov 15th 2010 5:00PM
Coaxial cableLooks like the cable and network TV industries can breathe a small sigh of relief. Conventional wisdom may suggest that the growing number of people who stream their favorite shows from the Internet to their TVs will give up their cable TV subscriptions, but actually, that's not happening.

So says a new study from the Nielsen company, as cited by the Hollywood Reporter. According to the study, only 3 percent of viewers who stream online content to their TVs are canceling cable. Some 84 percent of such viewers say they are watching as much or more regularly scheduled TV than they did before they began Web-to-TV streaming.

And 53 percent of streaming viewers say the Internet has introduced them to shows that they then began watching on regular, scheduled TV.

In the parlance of the study, then, there are a lot more "cord keepers" than "cord cutters."

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Comcast served legal papers by The Tennis Channel

by Bob Sassone, posted Jan 6th 2010 4:03PM
ComcastGet it? Tennis Channel? Served? Ha! (Sorry, no more jokes like that.)

The Tennis Channel has filed a lawsuit against Comcast, saying that the cable giant discriminates against its programming. Comcast has channels like The Golf Channel and VERSUS on various tiers of their cable system but no Tennis Channel.

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Why You Can't Watch Food Network and HGTV on Cablevision

by Gary Susman, posted Jan 4th 2010 2:30PM
The price battles between TV channels and cable service providers continue. While Time Warner Cable and Fox have called a truce and reached a temporary agreement that allows TWC subscribers to keep watching 'House' and weekend football, the dispute continues between Cablevision and Scripps over fees for Food Network and HGTV, leaving 3.1 million subscribers in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut without access to Bobby Flay or 'Design Star.'

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Is cable killing free TV?

by Danny Gallagher, posted Dec 29th 2009 12:38PM
Here's a scary thought. One day, you might have to actually pay for all that free quality programming beaming through the magic picture box in your living room.

A scary new article by the Associated Press shows that advertising revenue has not provided enough income for the free networks to support all of their programming efforts. And thanks to the rise of cable and the web, some companies are considering new business models that are cutting the "free" out of "free TV."

Given the way things are going, do you think there could come a time when free TV is a thing of the past like top 40 AM radio, Olestra chips and an ozone layer?

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Comcast changes ending to FIOS commercial (but it's easy to understand why)

by Bob Sassone, posted Jun 25th 2009 3:43PM
You've seen the commercial below. It's a Comcast ad that takes on Verizon FIOS by saying that FIOS costs more, doesn't have as much HD as Comcast, and is filled with too many lame videos.

Last night I watched the commercial again (for the 4000th time) and I noticed that they've changed the ending. The FIOS guy used to say "I'm going to write down your credit card number which I memorized when I was looking..." I always thought that was an odd line, pretty much insinuating that a Verizon rep would take someone's credit card number like that. But they've now taken that line out and replaced it with something else (though the new line escapes me at the moment - anyone?). I wonder if Verizon complained?

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Hawthorne: Pilot (series premiere)

by Michael Pascua, posted Jun 17th 2009 12:20AM
Jada Pinkett Smith as Christina Hawthorne(S01E01) I often get complaints from my registered nurse parents about the inaccuracy of hospital drama shows. Don't even get me started on how much my mother hates Grey's Anatomy. I came to Hawthorne with hesitation: can the show balance the drama with the medical cases? I was surprised how well the show balanced meetings, patients, and outlying drama.

Anyone else think that Jada Pinkett Smith deserves a better career than she's gotten? Her IMDB page screams regrettable movies that didn't showcase her acting skills. I loved watching her in Hawthorne and truly think she can handle Oscar-caliber roles.

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Network viewership dropping? Nudity and swearing to the rescue!

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 8th 2008 3:25PM
Curb Your EnthusiasmWould you like to see more nudity and profanity on network television?

It's no secret that the networks are losing ground to the cable channels when it comes to original scripted programming, especially dramas. Just take a look at the Emmy nominations for Best Drama this year and you see that three of the six nominated are from cable: Mad Men, Damages, and Dexter). And the three that are from the networks are shows that have been a while and are (arguably) on the back nine when it comes to their life: Boston Legal, Lost, and House. While the network shows obviously get more viewers than cable, cable (and online) is the place to go for more creative content and buzz.

Wired's Epicenter blog has a piece about how the more free world of cable television is hurting network TV.

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TV Obits: Bullock, Powers, Caray, Ackerman, Whitehead

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 4th 2008 12:05PM
BullockA roundup of TV people from in front of the camera and behind the scenes who have passed away.

  • Hiram Bullock: He was a veteran session guitarist probably best known to TV fans as being a guitarist in Paul Shaffer's band during the first couple of years of Late Night with David Letterman on NBC. He also played on classic albums by everyone from Billy Joel and Steely Dan to Barbara Streisand and Sting. He died in New York at age 52.

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So what are you looking forward to watching this summer?

by Bob Sassone, posted May 23rd 2008 3:41PM

Mad Men

So here we are at the end of another television season. We're all exhausted from watching all of the finales, whether it was American Idol or The Office or Grey's Anatomy or Desperate Housewives (there's still one biggie left to come next week: Lost!), and we're ready to take the summer off and enjoy cheeseburgers and the beach and fireworks and road trips, making sure we don't turn on our televisions unless it's for the news or maybe some daily soaps.

Of course, television doesn't really work that way anymore. There is no complete summer hiatus on the networks anymore. They all have reality shows and new scripted shows too, both network and cable. Here are the four shows that I'm most looking forward to watching this summer, and - God help me - there's one reality show in the mix.

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Dexter: Dex, Lies and Videotape

by Keith McDuffee, posted Nov 4th 2007 10:52PM
dexter
(S02E06) A couple of commenters last week mentioned they thought Harry could possibly be Dexter's biological father. Someone else mentioned that Dexter actually had a blood test done to prove who his father was, and I seem to remember that myself as well, though for some reason I can't remember the details.

In any case, Dexter continues to question how honest Harry had been with him when he was alive. In fact, he's getting pretty angry at him. It seems to me that, along with Lila's influence (whether positive or negative), Dexter not trusting what Harry taught him is just going to cause Dex to become even more sloppy.

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Dexter: See-Through

by Keith McDuffee, posted Oct 21st 2007 10:13PM
dexter's lila
(S02E04) A lot of commenters mentioned the change in Rita this season. I think it's understandable given what she went through with Paul, and then him dying in prison and her kids being affected so much. I think she maybe be finding she needs to keep her guard up more than ever now, to make sure she's doesn't make the same mistake again.

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Dexter: An Inconvenient Lie

by Keith McDuffee, posted Oct 14th 2007 11:26PM
dexter
(S02E03) As if the last two episodes weren't enough to make you realize how great this season's going to play out, Dexter's new foray into "addicts" anonymous is a brilliant storyline. And that it got Doakes off his tail is even better. Could a 12-step program really put a dent into the kind of addiction Dexter suffers from? Perhaps indirectly, it seems.

One thing that's so completely frustrating and, honestly, uninteresting to me is the Lt. Pascal storyline with LaGuerta. Obviously everything can't be about Dexter, and we need to make the other characters human, which is the only purpose I can find for this so far.

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Brotherhood: Samyutta 11:10

by Michael Canfield, posted Aug 14th 2006 10:55AM
Cast of Brotherhood(S01E06) Samyutta 11:10* The line separating the bad guys and the worse guys gets further obliterated this week. Caffe brother Michael does a favor that taints those involved. Poor brother Tommy, meanwhile, already torn up inside after having to ask his father-in-law for help last week, now has his lovely mother Rose rub his nose in it at the weekly family dinner. Just when was almost beginning to sympathize with her. Never again, she's foul.

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Blade: Bloodlines

by Michael Canfield, posted Jul 20th 2006 8:23AM
Kirk Jones and Jill Wagner (Blade and Krista)(S01E04) A big chunk of Blade's past is revealed when the daywalker gets captured by survivors of a street gang that had rescued him as a homeless kid years before. Blade then spends the entire episode chained-up, getting the bejesus beat out of him. Turns out the gang - now called the Bad Bloods - is where Blade got his signature look. His tats are gang tats.

Blade repaid his adopted bro's by turning them all into vampires. Not nice -- but remember he was just a kid. The ganstas don't let him forget that, and keep calling him "little one" which has to hurt at least as much as does the beating he takes. Also, seems getting turned by Blade makes you persona-non-grata in the undead community - so these dudes have been hunted into near-extinction by Chthon and the other vampire Houses. Now the Bloods want to trade Blade to Marcus in exchange for peace in our time. Great! Just what I needed, another faction to try and keep track of. But it's a pretty cool wrinkle added to Blade's history, and anyway, the gang looks to be history itself after tonight.

Meanwhile, Krista, for her half of the episode, is still pained, conflicted, and smoking hot.

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