Bateman, who starred in Arrested Development -- the Emmy-award winning comedy that the network dumped unceremoniously because of low ratings -- was behind the camera for The Inn pilot. The show, which is about the haves and have-nots in a fancy, five-star New York City hotel, has a promising cast of funny folks including Niecy Nash (Reno 911!), Jerry O'Connell (who looks like Jason's twin), and the really hilarious Jesse Tyler Ferguson (remember him on The Class -- he was so funny!).
I guess if you're trying to revive the dying sitcom, a good way to start is by assembling a top-notch team. And Fox's new Wednesday night comedy, Back to You, does just that.
Well, I posted information on the campaign to keep Traveler on the air, as well as the send-in project to get Katharine McPhee back into the good graces of American Idol next season, so why the hell not post information on a new petition. I mean, its summer . . . what else to I have to do anyway?
Today's campaign is to renew the CBS comedy The Class. According to the campaign's very plain and easy-to-read website most people have been mailing in erasers and/or Moroccan Chicken recipes to CBS Entertainment President Nina Tassler and Executive VP of Programming Kelly Kahl. They have also been sending in packs of Skittles because of a line mentioned by one of the characters ('I ate so many Skittles I peed the rainbow').
1. Where were you born?
Los Angeles, California.
2. How many siblings do you have?
Three. Carly, Tyler, and Stella.
4. Do you have any pets?
I had a lot growing up! My apartment doesn't allow pets. I want a dog though! I love dogs. Thelma and Louise were our two dogs growing up. We also over the years had a bunch of cats. First we had Pippi, who my sister named (The Pippi Longstocking movie had just come out), and Pippi had two kittens, that my brother and I each got to name. I named mine "Fluffy," because I'm sooo creative, and my brother named his "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Ghostbuster," who was also known to the rest of us as "patches."
- At 8, ABC has a new Wife Swap, followed by new episodes of Supernanny and What About Brian.
- FOX has a new, two hour 24.
- CBS has new episodes of How I Met Your Mother, The Class, Two and a Half Men, Rules of Engagement, and CSI: Miami.
- NBC has a new Deal or No Deal at 8, then new episodes of Heroes and Studio 60.
- There's a new Everybody Hates Chris on the CW at 8, then new eps of All Of Us, Girlfriends, and The Game.
- PBS has a new Antiques Roadshow at 8, followed by a new American Experience.
- Four good Friends episodes on TBS starting at 8, with Tom Selleck and that creepy guy Eddie who moved in with Chandler for a short time.
- Lifetime has two new eps of Gay, Straight, or Taken at 8, then the new movie Nora Roberts' Blue Smoke. What's with all the Nora Roberts movies on Lifetime lately?
- ABC Family has a new Wildfire at 8.
- Emeril is cooking for couples on a new Emeril Live at 8 on Food Network.
- USA has the opening night of the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. It's on at 8 too.
- At 9, Nickelodeon has a Growing Pains marathon.
- TCM has Barefoot in the Park at 9.
- At 10, Discovery has two new eps of Stunt Junkies.
- Also at 10: HBO has a new REAL Sports with Bryant Gumbel.
Check your local listings for more.
This isn't unexpected, since the producers said that a) they were going to concentrate on the romantic storylines on the show and b) it was obvious to everyone that her storyline, which included her gay-but-not-gay husband, wasn't working. She was being shown on the program less and less, usually reporting something that set up some plotline in an episode. But to unceremoniously dump her like that, wiping her off the screen like she was never there, seems pretty cold to me.
The first webcast is The Table Read on Monday, January 15th at 11 am (Pacific). You'll get to peek in as the cast gives a first reading (literally around a table) of that week's script. The next live webcast is the following Wednesday a 1 pm (Pacific) when the cast will do a run-thru of the script with all the changes made since Monday. This is an event that usually doesn't have an audience, so it will be pretty cool to see. Of course, it sort-of ruins the episode for you since you know what is going to happen. I suppose it will be interesting to see the final product when it airs.
Check it out at www.CBS.com.
Most of the other television awards followed similar lines. The award for Best Drama went to Grey's Anatomy. Best Actor was Patrick Dempsey (Grey's Anatomy). Best Actress went to Eva Longoria (Desperate Housewives). Best Competition/Reality show was, of course, American Idol. Best Animated Show was The Simpsons. The only real surprise came in the new categories. Best New Drama was Heroes, which isn't a surprise, but Best New Comedy, The Class? I didn't see that one coming. The television awards were rounded out with Ellen Degeneres winning Best Talk Show Host.
Movies and Music winners after the jump.
- At 8, ABC has a new Wife Swap, followed by new episodes of Supernanny and What About Brian.
- CBS has a new How I Met Your Mother, followed by new episodes of The Class, Two and a Half Men, Old Christine, and CSI: Miami.
- NBC has a new Deal or No Deal, then two repeats of Heroes.
- FOX has the Tostitos BCS National Championship college football game at 8.
- There's a repeat Everybody Hates Chris on The CW at 8, followed by repeats of All Of Us, Girlfriends, and The Game.
- Lifetime has two new eps of Gay, Straight, or Taken at 8.
- ABC Family has two new eps of Wildfire starting at 8, then the debut of Lincoln Heights.
- TCM has West Side Story at 8.
- Also at 8: G4 has a new X-Play.
- At 9, Food Network has a new "Breakfast Foods" episode of Unwrapped.
- Kellie Martin stars in a new Mystery Woman movie, Wild West Mystery. It's on Hallmark at 9.
- Sci-Fi has a Star Trek: Enterprise marathon tonight.
So, let's start with the Good Stuff, and then do the Bad Stuff:
But it looks like the show's creators, David Crane and Jeffrey Klarik, are getting the message. According to this AP article, they have decided to create more epsiodes where the group is together, rather than the disparate storylines that dominated the first ten or so episodes of the season. They admit that, while having a soapy, separate-thread structure for the show was a novel concept for a sitcom, it just wasn't working. And the actors wanted to do more scenes together, too, so it seems like going back to a traditional format is working better for everyone.
"We're in a bad place," Bright said. "Since Will and Grace I haven't seen one original idea on network TV." (Update: here's a link to the original Boston Globe article this quote came from. Looks like he doesn't absolve himself from blame here -- remember Joey? Thanks to Katie S. for pointing this out.)
Mind you, this includes The Class, which is being produced by David Crane, one of Bright's partners on Friends. I wonder if Mr. Crane gave Bright a call when word of this got back to him. Anyway, I think Bright is being too harsh; yes, there are not a lot of sitcoms out there right now, but most of the ones that are on are pretty fresh and funny (at least until According to Jim comes back from hiatus). Even The Class started with a pretty unique premise, even if it's taking time for it to figure out how to juggle all its characters (last night's episode was the first that did a good job of it). It's not like Bright should be bitter; Friends made him a nice pot of "F you" money.
But the show is not getting the entire "back nine" just yet. According to that Variety article, CBS is hoping the mid-season show Rules of Engagement, starring David Spade and Patrick Warburton, will work well in the Monday comedy block where The Class currently resides.
Another article, on USAToday.com, says that newer episodes of the show will concentrate on fewer characers.
That's what I'd like to say in my post about why I'm not reviewing The Class anymore, but since I get paid to actually render more thoughtful (and longer) opinions than that, I'll give you folks a little more insight.
I had faith in this show when it first started; after all, the comedic pedigree behind it -- James Burrows, David Crane, Jeffrey Klarik -- was stellar. And, while the pilot was a bit of a jumbled mess, the next two episodes had some laugh-out-loud moments. But after that, it crashed and burned, and really hasn't made me laugh since.
So, now that things are a bit smoother and less cluttered, there'd be more room for the funny right? Well, that's what you might think, but you'd be wrong.
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