However, in the middle of the panel, a Barton question did come up. Kutcher was quick to defend the actress, saying she was "never unavailable for a day of work." With all the young people in the cast, he thinks the "good thing about Mischa is that she's done it before," and can provide guidance.
John Scott Lewinski did a bang-up job of covering the Con for us; now I'm off to L.A. for the press tour. This summer, the tour will take place at the lovely Langham Huntington Hotel & Spa in Pasadena, where cable, PBS, and the broadcast networks will parade their new and returning shows in front of critics and writers for almost two weeks. There will also be set visits and a few other fun things going on.
As I've done in the past, I'll try my best to give you the entire picture: dispatches from the panels, one-on-one interviews, executive tap-dancing, and more. I'll also be tweeting away on TV Squad's Twitter feed, so be sure to look there for the most up-to-the-minute news.
Anyway, now that I have a day or two to reflect, I took a cue from our friends at AOL and came up with a list of things I learned on this press tour. But this list will involve both the network-related things I learned with what I learned about celebrities, my fellow critics, and myself.
But then, people started recognizing the voice, or turned in the direction of the questioner, and realized what was going on: It was Jimmy Kimmel, and he had some pointed -- and funny -- questions for McPherson about the possibility of Jay Leno coming to ABC.
Because the writers' strike scuttled the winter edition of the twice-yearly tour earlier this year, this is the first time in a year that the various networks have had a chance to go though the painful process of peddling their wares in front of a group of cranky, jet-lagged, and hungry TV critics and journalists. This year should be interesting, since the broadcast networks don't really have much to offer in terms of new shows (and even fewer pilots for the shows they are picking up), and the whole nature and effectiveness of the press tour is being called into question by both the networks and the critics (more on that in a second).
All that being said, though, you can be sure that TV Squad will be at the Beverly Hilton to cover the dog-and-pony show. Kristin will attend selected cable presentations, and I'll be flying in Sunday, just in time for the broadcast networks to do their thing. Expect reports about executives and producers getting grilled, critics jostling each other out of the way to get a question in during post-press conference scrums, and tales of the unusual happenings at the all-star parties. Also keep an eye on our Twitter page, as I'll likely be throwing out silly dispatches (and maybe even breaking news) from the various events.
Outside of panels for Jericho (which I'm sure is thrilled to be coming back) and Viva Laughlin (which I'm sure is thrilled to have been picked up), CBS' day two of the press tour is about reality (Survivor: China), game shows (Power of 10), research and new media (that still makes my head spin).
No major mingling with talent until the evening at the CBS Stars Party, which might be just as well.
Sadly, the eye network got snubbed in major categories at the Emmys this morning. Julia Louis-Dreyfus (last year's Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy) for The New Adventures of Old Christine, Two and a Half Men (for Comedy Series) and Men's Charlie Sheen (for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy) got nods in top categories. (CBS did score some supporting nods.)
It's too bad our panel with Chuck Lorre (nominated for Men) and his new show -- The Big Bang Theory -- was yesterday. Like with comedy itself, the most important thing about getting Emmy reaction -- is timing.
Will Nip/Tuck have a season six? Why is James Gandolfini going back to HBO and will Larry David end Curb Your Enthusiasm?
These tidbits -- and a tons of swag -- came out at today's TCA press sessions at the Beverly Hilton hotel. I had to remind myself that today was a cable day because the roster of talent read like a major network.
Jason Priestly (Beverly Hills 90210) led the cast of Side Order of Life, a Lifetime series in which star Marisa Coughlan has second thoughts about marrying Priestly. But, hey, if Big dumped Natasha on Sex in the City then I suppose anything's possible.
TCA - Day 1 (or 4, if you count PBS)
TCA -- aka the TV Critics' press tour -- is a convention for journalists where the major networks and cable outlets unveil their fall programs to the press for review. The tour, which is held at the Beverly Hilton hotel in Beverly Hills, began on Monday (with PBS) and runs until July 26th with ABC.
About 200 plus members of the press from across the country are inundated with reality, comedy, drama and other types of programs. Interview opportunities are non-stop. We're fed constantly and given tons of free gifts -- trinkets, pens, paperweights, DVDs and press materials.
Groening gives the show's loyal fans all the credit in the world for helping the show come back. "The continued devotion of the fans, chiefly on the Internet, kept us thinking that maybe we could bring this back," he said.
But you've also heard tales from tired and cynical critics talking about fighting other critics for the microphone during a Gilmore Girls press conference, measuring the success of a show by the star's behavior on the tour, and putting up with carping networks and spin-happy executives. Then there are the crowds of critics surrounding the stars after a show's conference, parties where reporters try to get quotes from bored celebrities over loud music, and arranged tours of sets that seem more organized than tours of the Vatican. Oh, and all of this takes place over two-plus weeks in sweaty Burbank.
But we've also heard great tales of stars making good jokes at their own expense, and some interesting tidbits about how the fine treatment the critics receive from the networks.
- Tina Fey leaves SNL.
- So does Rachel Dratch.
- ABC sets up anti-Hanso Foundation site.
- Idol finalists to visit White House.
- NBC to air edited Madonna concert.
- They will also air two episodes of Psych.
- Veteran character actor Jack Warden dies at 85.
- Colin Farrell confronted by stalker on The Tonight Show.
- Fan site for Heroes is already up and running.
- Joel Siegel walks out on Clerks II; Kevin Smith fights with him on the radio.
- This isn't the first time Siegel's been loud at a screening.
- Full episodes of BSG and Eureka are now online.
- Diahann Carroll to guest on Grey's Anatomy.
- Nobody's Watching picked up by NBC.
- America's Next Top Model's writers threaten to strike.
- Patricial Wettig to leave Prison Break.
- Camryn Manheim joins the cast of Ghost Whisperer.
- YouTube sued for copyright infringement.
- ABC renames newscast to World News with Charles Gibson.
- FOX to start national morning show.
- Regina King to join cast of 24.
- Dave Navarro, Carmen Electra separate.
- Mickey Spillane dead at 88.
- J.J. Abrams signs megadeal with two studios.
- Adam remembers The Sweet Spot.
- If you see TV Squad T-shirts at Comic-Con, thank Ryan Budke.
- What do you think is the best show on TV?
- Bob doesn't want to see MSNBC's control room so much.
- Jonathan's blackout adventures look like an episode of Rescue Me.
- Keith takes an early look at ABC's Day Break.
- Anna wonders why Rob and Amber from Survivor can't get real jobs.
- OK! It's hot out! I don't need a reminder while I'm watching Dr. Phil.
- Anna thinks Jen Aniston is the most boring celebrity... ever.
- The X-Files: "Ice"
- NewsRadio: "Sweeps Week"
- Sports Night: "Thespis"
- Firefly: "Out of Gas"
- Strangers with Candy: "Feather in the Storm"
- The Simpsons: "Lisa on Ice"
- Angel: "Bachelor Party"
- Futurama: "My Three Suns"
- Stargate Atlantis: "Misbegotten"
- Monk: "Mr. Monk and the Big Game"
- Stargate SG-1: "Morpheus"
- Psych: "Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Piece"
- It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia: "The Gang Gives Back"
- Big Brother All-Stars: Elimination #2
- Hustle: Episode #16
- Blade: "Bloodlines"
- Project Runway: Miss USA
- Eureka: Pilot
- Last Comic Standing: The five finalists perform.
- The Closer: "Out of Focus"
- Deadwood: "A Rich Find"
- Entourage: "Three's Company"
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