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Hot Off The Press: The Latest TV News and Information - Page 2819

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FRIDAY's fast affiliate overnight prime-time ratings -and what they mean- have been posted on Analyst Marc Berman's Media Insight's Blog
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Originally Posted by slowbiscuit View Post

That's disgusting, but par for the course for TLC. How far this channel has fallen from its start as The Learning Channel, just like NatGeo, History, A&E, Discovery and a lot of others.

Animal planet has stooped to showing "Infested!: Cockroaches Everywhere". Those aren't the animals I want to watch.
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Winter TCA Tour Notes
Showtime’s 2013 Schedule: ‘Dexter’ Moves To Summer, Will Launch ‘Ray Donovan’; ‘Homeland’ Paired With ‘Masters Of Sex’
By Nellie Andreeva, Deadline.com - Jan. 12, 2013

At TCA today, Showtime entertainment president David Nevins laid out the pay cable network’s scheduling plans for the rest of 2013. The biggest change is the decision to separate veteran Dexter and Homeland, which have been paired since Homeland‘s launch in fall 2011, helping both shows break ratings records. “Dexter has proved incredibly valuable as a launch pad for Homeland,” Nevins said. “Our plan is to harness (the success) and use the shows to launch the next generation of Showtime drama series.”

Dexter will get on the air earlier than usual, on June 30 at 9 PM, serving as a lead-in for new crime drama Ray Donovan. The early return has not affected production on Dexter. “There is no less production time, just a little less vacation time between the seasons,” Nevins dais, adding that the drama’s producers and cast had gotten enough lead time to adjust to the scheduling change.

On Sept. 29, “we are employing our crown jewel Homeland to launch Masters Of Sex,” Showtime’s new drama about real-life pioneers of the science of human sexuality, William Masters and Virginia Johnson, Nevins said.

Here are month-by-month highlights of Showtime’s original programming slate for the rest of 2013:


Season 3 of SHAMELESS starring William H. Macy and Emmy Rossum premieres Sunday, January 13th at 9:00 p.m. along with the second season of HOUSE OF LIES followed at 10p.m., and the sixth season of CALIFORNICATION at 10:30 p.m.


INSIDE COMEDY will premiere season two of its critically-acclaimed documentary series on Monday, February 11th at 11 P.M. The ten, half-hour episodes will feature David Steinberg along with a line-up of comedy luminaries including Louis C.K., Steve Martin, Tina Fey, and Will Ferrell.


THE WORLD ACCORDING TO DICK CHENEY premieres Friday, March 15th. From Emmy winner R.J. Cutler (The September Issue), who spent a great deal of time with former Vice President Cheney, and with his full support, delves into his life and career. Includes original interviews with his family and Donald Rumsfeld.


NURSE JACKIE Season Five starring Emmy® Award winner Edie Falco, will debut on Sunday, April 14th, at 9 PM. A repeat of the premiere episode of Nurse Jackie will air at 9:30 PM; followed by the third season debut of THE BORGIAS at 10 PM, starring Oscar® winner Jeremy Irons in his Golden Globe® nominated role as Pope Alexander.

Moving to Mondays, THE BIG C: hereafter will conclude with a four-part limited event series on Monday, April 29th at 10 PM, starring Laura Linney in her Golden Globe® Award-winning and Emmy®-nominated role as Cathy Jamison.


The eighth season of the network’s award-winning drama, DEXTER will be moved up to a summer premiere, and will be the springboard for the highly anticipated series premiere of RAY DONOVAN on Sunday June 30th. DEXTER will premiere at 9 pm followed by RAY DONOVAN at 10 pm.


Season Three of the Emmy® and Golden Globe® award winning drama series HOMELAND will return this fall on Sunday, September 29th at 9 pm followed by the premiere of the new drama series MASTERS OF SEX at 10 pm.

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Winter TCA Tour Notes
'Elementary' Boss Teases Super Bowl Episode, Moriarty and Irene Adler
By Philiana Ng, The Hollywood Reporter - Jan. 12, 2013

As the most-watched new season of the show, Elementary is prepping its anticipated post-Super Bowl episode, almost guaranteeing it will be a ratings behemoth.

"It's been a bear, but in a lovely way," executive producer Rob Doherty said of the anticipated hour. The pressure isn't lost on him, however, as they wrap production in the episode in the coming days.

"It's hard to go from 10 to 11, but I did. Mostly what we felt was great excitement," Doherty said, adding that the post-Super Bowl episode will "expose the show to people who may not have checked it out yet" and yet will be "something that our regular audience would really have fun with."

Though Elementary has continued to maintain the episode of the week format, the introduction of Sherlock Holmes' greatest foe Moriarty will cause the series to head into having a heavier mythology.

"We have a strong sense of what we want to do," Doherty told reporters Saturday at the show's Television Critics Association's press tour session. "As we get closer and closer to wrapping the season, there will be more serialization."

It was important to Doherty that the casting of Moriarty be kept secret for as long as possible. "We're approaching very carefully and as quietly as we can. At the end of the day, we want a tremendous actor," he said. "It's less fun for me if you know who he is."

Doherty added: "We have a few more weeks before we have to sweat that."

Holmes' former flame Irene Adler has also been dolloped out throughout the season, and though Doherty wouldn't directly address whether she was truly dead, he did reveal that they want to attach a face to her.

"She's an important element to Sherlock's backstory. I'd love to have a face to that name," he said. "She's got to be unique. You will see a living, breathing actress reading lines and portraying Irene," though hinting that that could be in flashback form.

As far as the Holmes-Watson dynamic is concerned, Doherty reaffirmed what was said last year, saying that though some viewers will want a hookup, "I don't think we need it."

Elementary airs 10 p.m. Thursdays on CBS.


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Winter TCA Tour Notes
'Social Network' Influenced CBS' 'Golden Boy,' Says Creator

It was The Social Network that influenced executive producer Nicholas Wootton's midseason entry Golden Boy.

"When I saw The Social Network, -I thought- that feels to me like the modern young male. There is this drive, ambition, this thoughtless, forward-thinking, 'I don't care who gets burned' ambition," he told reporters at the CBS drama's Television Critics Association's winter press tour session Saturday. "I thought, 'What if it was a cop?' "

What if there was a show centered on "a young man who has this ferocious ambition and always wants more than what's on his plate," Wootton said. "What's the next thing?" Golden Boy follows the meteoric rise of a New York City cop from his days as an officer to homicide detective to police commissioner in seven years.

It was executive producer Greg Berlanti who brought the idea of seeing where Walter William Clark Jr. (Theo James) ends up seven years down the line. Employing the use of flashbacks was also a key structural choice that Berlanti felt was important to bring to Golden Boy, citing the use of them in The WB's Jack & Bobby. "I think it works well for television," Berlanti said, having "that extra layer."

Golden Boy hit a snag when Ryan Phillippe dropped out as the title character, before producers filled James in the role. The panelists noted the shift from the show being a "one-star vehicle" to becoming a more "mentor/mentee" feel between James and Chi McBride, who plays a more veteran NYPD detective.

"It developed naturally from when we started the pilot," James said. "It was a little bit of art imitating life. I'm a young English punk ... Chi has been doing this for a long time, he's a veteran," likening their onscreen relationship to a father-son, Obi-Wan/Luke Skywalker dynamic.

Wootton referred to his previous experience working on NYPD Blue as being a significant reason why he decided to pitch a show like Golden Boy, which wrapped production on its 13 episodes earlier this week.

"The thing I thought worked amazingly about that show was [that] it was a show about its time," Wootton said. "There was something fascinating to me about a character that would make mistakes and be redeemed. If I was ever to do a cop show, that would have to be the genesis."

Think of Golden Boy more as a character-driven drama with mythology than a straight cop procedural. And that means not everyone is safe.

"Pretty much every single thing that's talked about in the pilot takes place in the series," said Wootton. "I certainly know where certain characters die. ... I know that Theo James' character does not die."

In terms of the show's format, Wootton noted that the pilot essentially sets up a potential seven-year plan, with each season serving as one year of the over-arching mystery.

Golden Boy premieres Feb. 26 at 10 p.m. on CBS.

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Winter TCA Tour Notes
Stephen King's 'Under the Dome' Gets CBS Premiere Date
By Tim Molloy, TheWrap.com - Jan. 12, 2013

CBS announced Saturday that Stephen King's "Under the Dome," a 13-part serialized drama about a small town in Maine trapped under a giant dome, will premiere Monday, June 24.

CBS will give the series some high-profile advertising by airing promos during the Super Bowl, CBS entertainment chief Nina Tassler said. The show was one of several, including "Unforgettable," to have its summer premiere date announced on Saturday.

The series is based on King's novel of the same name and produced by Steven Spielberg's Amblin Entertainment. "Lost" writer Brian K. Vaughn, who also wrote the celebrated comic book "Y: The Last Man," is scripting.

In a preview shown to reporters at the Television Critics Association winter press tour Saturday, King described scenes in which a plane crashes into the dome as it suddenly appears over the town. Plane and body parts fall to the ground. As scarcity sets in, the story explores how people deal with diminishing resources. The dome brings out the best in some and the worst in others.

In other premiere announcements, CBS said a new reality competition based on the British hit "The Great British Bake Off" will debut Wednesday, May 29. "Big Brother" will get an earlier-than-usual start, premiering June 26. "Unforgettable," which will take over the time slot of "The Good Wife," will begin its second season on Sunday, July 28.

Here is CBS' summer lineup, as provided by the network:

CBS Wednesday, Effective May 29

8:00-9:00 PM UNTITLED BAKING SERIES (Premiere)

CBS Monday, Effective June 24

9:00-9:30 PM 2 BROKE GIRLS
9:30-10:00 PM MIKE & MOLLY
10:00-11:00 PM UNDER THE DOME (Premiere)

CBS Wednesday, Effective June 26

9:00-10:00 PM BIG BROTHER (Season Premiere)

CBS Sunday, Effective June 30

7:00-8:00 PM 60 MINUTES
8:00-9:00 PM BIG BROTHER (Premiere)
9:00-10:00 PM THE GOOD WIFE
10:00-11:00 PM THE MENTALIST

CBS Tuesday, Effective July 2

8:00-9:00 PM NCIS
9:00-10:00 PM BIG BROTHER (Premiere)
10:00-11:00 PM NCIS: LOS ANGELES

CBS Wednesday, Effective July 17

8:00-9:00 PM BIG BROTHER (New Time Period)

CBS Sunday, Effective July 28

7:00-8:00 PM 60 MINUTES
8:00-9:00 PM BIG BROTHER
9:00-10:00 PM UNFORGETTABLE (Premiere)
10:00-11:00 PM THE MENTALIST


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Winter TCA Tour Notes
Nina Tassler Defends 'Criminal Minds' Violence: 'I Don't Let My Kid Watch it. I Do'

Days after another network chief criticized the violence on CBS's "Criminal Minds," CBS entertainment president Nina Tassler defended the series but said she doesn't allow her 14-year-old daughter to view it.

"It's a much-maligned show," she said after a Television Critics Association panel on Saturday. "I happen to enjoy the show. It's not for everybody. It's an adult show. ... It's given an appropriate rating every week. I don't let my kid watch it. I do."

Both Tassler and NBC's Bob Greenblatt, who said last Sunday that "Criminal Minds" is "worse than 'Dexter'" in terms of violence, were responding to critics' questions about whether they are changing their programming because of recent mass shootings. Greenblatt ran Showtime when "Dexter," which features a serial-killer antihero, premiered on the cable network.

Tassler praised "Criminal Minds" and other procedurals on CBS as "mini morality stories" and said it is up to parents -- including her -- to decide what children should watch. She chided Greenblatt for calling out her network's show.

"I think we're making a huge mistake -- and I would say it to Bob to his face -- to let any of the conversation devolve into a discussion of my show versus your show or one show versus the other," Tassler said. "This is a much bigger issue, and thank God it's finally being discussed on the level that it is."

The National Rifle Association alleged after the killings in Newtown, Conn., that violent entertainment, not guns, was to blame for mass shootings. This week, Vice President Joe Biden summoned Hollywood executives to Washington to discuss their portrayals of violence.

Tassler said she believes everything her network airs is "appropriate."

"We try to make responsible decisions every day about our content," she said, echoing comments by Greenblatt and other network heads.

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Winter TCA Tour Notes
Showtime orders Dracula series from 'Skyfall' writer
By James Hibberd, EW.com's 'Inside TV' Blog - Jan. 12, 2013

Mockingbird Lane might be dead on NBC, but a monster mash series is still coming to TV thanks to Showtime.

The network has greenlit Penny Dreadful, a new series where famous literary characters — including Dr. Frankenstein and his creature, Dorian Gray and figures from the novel Dracula – become embroiled in Victorian London. The show will be written and executive produced by John Logan — the extremely accomplished screenwriter of titles like Gladiator, Aviator and last year’s Skyfall. Oscar winner Sam Mendes (American Beauty) is also an executive producer and may direct the first episode.

“It’s very realistic, it’s very grounded,” Showtime entertainment president John Logan said of the show. “The characters are all in very human form in turn-of-the-century London. It’s very psychological and highly erotic.”

That last quote prompts images of Dracula and Frankenstein … well, you know. Though NBC passed on continuing Mockingbird beyond its Halloween special/backdoor pilot, the broadcaster is making its version of Dracula starring Jonathan Rhys Meyers, so expect plenty of comparisons between these two projects.

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TV Review
'House of Lies' (Showtime)
Tipsy Corporate Intrigues That Fill Billable Hours
By Neil Genzlinger, The New York Times - Jan. 12, 2013

There aren’t enough church services to cleanse Sunday of what Showtime does to it with the return of its iniquitous triumvirate, “Shameless,” “House of Lies” and “Californication.”

Together the three shows, which begin new seasons on Sunday, constitute a two-hour clinic in bad behavior. The “Shameless” premiere, introducing the third season of the antics of the Gallagher family, includes theft, drug smuggling, dismemberment, toilet misuse and a kinky historical re-enactment involving Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings. In “Californication” Hank (David Duchovny), the lead character, begins the season on a bender so epic that his daughter complains: “You used to be such a good drunk. Now you’re just disgusting. And bloated. And smelly.”

But let’s focus on the youngest of the shows, “House of Lies,” one of last season’s more brash and intriguing newcomers. It stars Don Cheadle as Marty Kaan, a fast-talking, hard-living consultant who specializes in slinging the kind of business jargon that makes clients think he can solve their problems. Sometimes he and his team (played by Kristen Bell, Josh Lawson and Ben Schwartz) actually do solve problems, but they also spend a lot of time carousing and fornicating.

“House of Lies” started out as a ribald satire on consultants and the deep-pocketed clients who can hire them. Everyone was a sleazeball, and greed and carnal desire were the only motives to be found. The humor was quick and savage, most of it aimed at easy targets: big business, megachurches, Ivy Leaguers.

But the series grew deeper as it went along, thanks largely to the evolving side plot of Marty’s home life, which centered on a custody dispute over his quirky young son, Roscoe, a smart lad with some nontraditional ideas about his sexual identity. Donis Leonard Jr.’s portrayal makes Roscoe one of the most appealing child characters on television, and the contrast between Roscoe, comfortable with what he is, and the reckless Marty has become a strength of the show.

And so “House of Lies” began as a brash comedy but ended its first season as a drama-comedy hybrid, a direction that needs to continue to keep the show from drowning in its own caricatures. The future might lie in Ms. Bell’s character, Jeannie.

In last season’s final episodes Marty and his team derailed a merger that might have left them all jobless. That was accomplished largely by Jeannie, who had to sacrifice her fiancé and her dignity to do it. In terms of the show’s structure, Jeannie, who spent the early episodes mostly making wisecracks and being the comic foil for male characters, gradually emerged as a significant player, ending the season with a back story almost as rich as Marty’s.

The opening of Season 2 suggests that there will be more for Jeannie to do as the series rolls along. Much of the first episode is devoted to efforts by Jeannie and Marty to remember what happened when they went off together on a celebratory binge after thwarting the ominous merger. Did they have sex, or didn’t they? The writers dangle that question for the entire episode, but the revelation goes in a different direction entirely.

Here’s hoping that for Jeannie and Ms. Bell (who has talked about amusing efforts to hide her real-life pregnancy during filming), it’s a harbinger of more complex things to come.

Showtime, Sunday nights at 10, Eastern and Pacific times; 9, Central time.

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Winter TCA Tour Notes
Grammys Execs Defend Trimming Of Categories & West Coast Tape Delay
By The Deadline.com - Jan. 12, 2013

Diane Haithman is contributing to Deadline’s TCA coverage.

Executive forces behind the Grammys today addressed the much-protested issue of last year’s elimination of more than 25% of the awards categories — from 109 to 81. The same question that fueled last year’s controversy was asked at the TCA presentation on this year’s 55th Annual Grammy Awards: While the cut streamlined the TV show, has it lead to an underrepresentation of some musical genres?

Neil Portnow, president and CEO of the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (who appeared on the panel with executive producer Ken Erlich, CBS Entertainment’s executive vice president of specials, music and live events, and returning host/producer LL Cool J) defended the move. Re-evaluating the categories, Portnow said, “hadn’t been done for 50 years,” adding that every genre of music that falls within the eligibility time window “still has a place within our system.” He said that every year the producers will continue to re-evaluate existing categories.

“Great music doesn’t always make great television”, Portnow said, but he stressed the producers’ commitment to keep presenting jazz, Broadway, classical and other forms besides pop music on the broadcast.

It was pointed out before the panel that last year’s Grammy telecast, which occurred the night after Whitney Houston’s death, beat the Academy Awards telecast in the ratings. Erlich said interest in Houston did fuel the ratings but the drama of singer Adele returning after throat surgery and Katie Perry coming back after a well-publicized divorce and superstar appearance of Paul McCartney and others also attracted a large viewership.

Will the Grammys every return to New York? Portnow said “We love New York, I’m actually a New Yorker, my first show, the 45th, was in New York.” He said that in recent years a return has not been considered because Madison Square Garden is under renovation but “each year we will be looking to see if that makes sense.”

Another bi-coastal question: Whether the telecast, shown live at 8 p.m. EST but delayed on the West Coast, will ever be shown live at 5 p.m. on the West Coast, since East Coasters are reporting and tweeting the results in advance of the West Coast broadcast. Erlich and Sussman said no, because information coming from the East Coast helps promote interest on the West Coast, rather than spoiling the surprises. “They have another reason to want to watch,” Sussman said.

In response to a question about whether music competition shows help or hurt the Grammy show, Portnow said that those shows fuel an interest in music, but “There’s no competition to what we do, it’s apples and oranges. I don’t say that immodestly, if you ask the artistic community what really means something, the Grammys are what it’s all about.”


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Winter TCA Tour Notes
Mark Burnett Explains His “Kinder Approach” For CBS’ ‘The Job’

Ray Richmond is contributing to Deadline’s TCA coverage.

Reality TV megaproducer Mark Burnett may have caused a few eyes to widen this morning during a TCA panel promoting the new midseason CBS business competition series The Job (premiering February 8th) when he said at the outset of the discussion that the series “proves a kinder approach on television does work.” This, from the man who helped to pioneer the reality competition genre with the cutthroat Survivor, which launches its astonishing 26th cycle this year. “No one’s ripped down” in The Job, Burnett went on. “America doesn’t want to see people ripped down.” The Job gives candidates from around the country a chance to win positions at top companies. Hosted by Lisa Ling, each episode features a handful of candidates who endure several rounds of elimination challenges before a panel of executives while competing for their dream job. After the panel, Burnett was asked to elaborate on his “kinder, gentler” declaration and he maintained that the bigger point he was trying to make was that shows designed to make people look foolish — as American Idol helped turn into an art form — are simply no longer in vogue and helps explain the big success of programs like The Voice and Shark Tank. “I just don’t think that watching public humiliation is cool (anymore),” Burnett stressed. “In the past it worked very well, but there’s a wave of change. Humiliating people seems spiteful. And I think The Voice proved by being the Number 1 music show in America that you don’t have to do that. You can make good TV without that. The Job is great TV without making anybody look bad.” He also disagreed that Survivor is at its core a nasty show, despite its backstabbing and scheming alliances. “The whole premise is is that you get a million dollars if people want to give it to you. So if you screw people over relentlessly, you won’t get the million.”

Burnett also discussed his history with his fellow exec producer on The Job, Michael Davies, who produced Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? and famously rejected Survivor before it was picked up by CBS while he was in charge of ABC’s alternative programming. “Michael thought that only one million-dollar prize would work on television,” he said. “But we’ve stayed friends.” After the panel, he also addressed how he’s managed to remain on top as a reality producer since hitting the big time in 2000 with Survivor. Basically, he said, he’d good at figuring out how to work with good, smart people rather than fools. Burnett works to avoid the ignorant and the dangerous “because they don’t know what they don’t know. And when given the gift of primetime television, you have to treat every hour like it’s a hundred-million-dollar movie. When you (partner) with people who know what they’re doing, there’s a higher likelihood of success.” He also figures that’s why producers like he and Davies keep getting hired over and over. “Networks are nervous,” he emphasized, “and like to get insurance policies.” Burnett briefly addressed his own favorite shows as well. They include Dancing with the Stars, Extreme Makeover, Homeland, Game of Thrones, Big Bang Theory and How I Met Your Mother.

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Nielsen Overnights
'Shark Tank' Leads Friday, CBS Lineup Gets Season Highs
By Michael O'Connell, The Hollywood Reporter's 'Live Feed' Blog - Jan. 12, 2013

Fast National returns give CBS and ABC a shared demo victory on Friday night, but it's the former that earned the most notable victories. After a boosted (20 percent) Undercover Boss (1.8 adults), both CSI: NY (1.6 adults) and Blue Bloods (1.6 adults) reached season highs in the demo. They were up two and three tenths of a point, respectively. CBS averaged a 1.6 adults rating and 10.3 million viewers for the night.

Also pulling a 1.6 in adults, and coming in second with 6.1 million viewers, ABC started the night with boosted showings from Last Man Standing (1.5 adults) and Malibu Country (1.4 adults). The duo rose one tenth and two tenths of a point, respectively. Shark Tank (2.0 adults) was up two tenths, topping all efforts across broadcast for the night, and 20/20 (1.5 adults) was up a tenth.

NBC encored the first two episode of 1600 Penn before a two-hour Dateline (1.4 adults), which was off a tenth of a point from last week. The network averaged a 1.2 rating in the demo and 4.8 million viewers.

Fringe (0.8 adults) dropped two tenths of a point on Fox, falling shy of a Kitchen Nightmares encore. Fox pulled a 0.9 adults rating and 2.5 million viewers.

Nikita and Arrow encores earned a 0.3 adults rating and 924,000 viewers for The CW.

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Originally Posted by dad1153 View Post

Winter TCA Tour Notes
Grammys Execs Defend Trimming Of Categories & West Coast Tape Delay
By The Deadline.com - Jan. 12, 2013

Diane Haithman is contributing to Deadline’s TCA coverage.

Another bi-coastal question: Whether the telecast, shown live at 8 p.m. EST but delayed on the West Coast, will ever be shown live at 5 p.m. on the West Coast, since East Coasters are reporting and tweeting the results in advance of the West Coast broadcast. Erlich and Sussman said no, because information coming from the East Coast helps promote interest on the West Coast, rather than spoiling the surprises. “They have another reason to want to watch,” Sussman said.

Right, sure it does, and it has nothing to do with getting much better ad rates in primetime. rolleyes.gif
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Winter TCA Tour Notes
ABC's "Nashville" poses a viewership riddle
By Meg James, Los Angeles Times' 'Company Town' Blog - Jan. 12, 2013

When it comes to ABC's critically acclaimed drama "Nashville," ABC Entertainment President Paul Lee has an uncommon complaint for a network suit:
"We don't have enough older women watching the show," Lee said this week during the Television Critics Assn. convention in Pasadena.

"Nashville" has presented ABC with a knot. Created by Callie Khouri ("Thelma & Louise"), the Wednesday night drama about the cutthroat worlds of country music and local politics has not produced the level of viewer applause that the Walt Disney Co.-owned network had hoped.

"Nashville" has averaged 8.12 million viewers an episode, according to Nielsen data. That's a respectable sized audience -- but short of expectations. So when ABC began slicing the numbers, executives uncovered fascinating findings that run counter to network viewership trends.

Nearly half of the "Nashville" audience are viewers in the advertiser-preferred category of 18- to 49-year-olds. Most surprising to ABC, about a third of that segment are young women between the ages of 18 and 34.

So strong in the women 18- to 34-year-old demographic, "Nashville" is tied with NBC's "Revolution" for the bragging rights as the No. 1 new show among young women. The program also has one of the highest rates of digital recording, with DVR playbacks adding nearly 3 million additional viewers to its live viewing numbers.

Women over 35 historically are the most loyal audience for network dramas -- but they are in far shorter supply for "Nashville," leading to Lee's unusual complaint.

ABC has been trying to figure out what's going on, and theories abound. The show features Connie Britton ("Friday Night Lights") and Hayden Panettiere ("Heroes"), two talented actresses who developed their own followings during their previous shows' runs on NBC.

ABC executives had expected that Britton, who plays an aging country music megastar in a flawed marriage, would help draw in women in their 30s and 40s. But Panettiere, who plays a brash rising musician who craves acceptance, might have been a more potent lure. After all, at its peak "Heroes" attracted about 16 million viewers an episode, while "Friday Night Lights" was more of a cult favorite. The latter's highest-rated telecast, in October 2006, drew 8.3 million viewers.

And then there are the politics of country music. Lee said ABC research showed that some women in their 40s and 50s who grew up favoring rock bands like U2 and Bon Jovi might be more snobbish when it comes to country music.

There is no such stigma among younger viewers, who quickly warmed to country stars Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood. (NBC's hugely popular "The Voice" features Blake Shelton, another country star, who has become a favorite among viewers.)

Younger women also might be more drawn to the on-screen fight between Britton's character, Rayna Jaymes, and Panettiere's Juliette Barnes. This is, after all, the cohort that embraced MTV's "Real World," and "Jersey Shore," and Bravo's "Real Housewives of Orange County."

"We were thrilled to see some strong millennial numbers for 'Nashville,' the 18 to 34 numbers, but we really want to build those 35 to 49 numbers as we go through the season, and you'll see us doing that as we support that show," Lee said.

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Winter TCA Tour Notes
'Almost everything is completed' on 'How I Met Your Mother' renewal
By Alan Sepinwall, HitFix.com - Jan. 12, 2013

When a late December report suggested that "How I Met Your Mother" was on the verge of being renewed for a ninth season, I began speculating once again on when Carter Bays and Craig Thomas intend to introduce us to Ted Mosby's future wife, and came to the conclusion that they'd rather that not happen until the very end of the series.

The renewal still isn't official, but CBS president Nina Tassler told reporters at press tour today that, "I will be very happy to report, in a very few days, I believe, that things will be resolved. We're very confident and excited that things will all work out. Almost everything is completed."

And comments she made about the pending renewal suggested that, no, we will not be meeting the Mother anytime soon.

After the session, I asked whether storytelling decisions had come up in the renewal talks, or if it was just about locking down all the actors.

"They had two plans in place," Tassler said of Bays and Thomas, "which is 1)what they would do if we resolve this year, and 2)what they would do if we came back next year. So we're probably going to sit down and talk to them, probably, in about a month."

As the scrum continued, Tassler insisted, "I'm feeling very very confident" of renewal. "I'm feeling good!"

And is there a chance the show could continue for a tenth season or longer, given the ratings?

Tassler said, "We talked about this the other day: do people watch the show beyond knowing the Mother? I bet there are a lot of people that would continue to watch after that. But it would be the end as designed by Carter and Craig, and I wouldn't want to even attempt to undermine whatever their creative goal is."

This pretty clearly suggested that "the end as designed by Carter and Craig" involves taking the title of the series literally, but when another reporter pointed this out to Tassler, she doubled back and insisted, "I'm not telling you when you're going to meet the Mother."

And so we wait... and wait... and wait some more. And hope that things will be funny until we get there.

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Winter TCA Tour Notes
CBS plots summer moves, ratings win
By Gary Levin, USA Today - Jan. 12, 2013

CBS , already the most popular network, is about to go into ratings overdrive, with football's AFC championship, the Super Bowl and the Grammy Awards all airing in prime time in the next month.

NCIS is TV's top show, and The Big Bang Theory hit another series high this week with 20 million viewers. "The ubiquity in syndication has certainly helped" expose the show to new viewers, says CBS Entertainment president Nina Tassler.

CBS will win its 10th season in 11 years. But it also has a strong chance of winning among young adults, the key audience for advertisers, aided by sports and sharp declines at perennial young-adult winner Fox. (This season, Big Bang also has eclipsed ABC's Modern Family among that crowd.)

Tassler is also planning the network's "most aggressive" summer, with a 13-episode adaptation of Stephen King's Under the Dome, which, like The Simpsons Movie, involves a giant dome enveloping a small town, with calamitous results. It's due June 24, and in success could return.

An expanded season of Big Brother will arrive earlier than usual, on June 26, and Unforgettable, the cancelled-then-resurrected series starring Poppy Montgomery, will return July 28.

Since it hasn't developed new comedy hits, CBS wants its aging but still popular duo Two and a Half Men and How I Met Your Mother back for new seasons. Negotiations for Mother are "almost done," but Men needs to sign a new deal with star Ashton Kutcher, who replaced Charlie Sheen.

And despite young Angus T. Jones' videotaped rant, calling the show "filth" and urging viewers to stop watching, "we'd like him to be part of that next year," Tassler says. "He made his public apology and has moved on."

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Winter TCA Tour Notes
Showtime’s David Nevins On End Game For ‘Dexter’, ‘Californication’ & ‘Homeland’
By Nellie Andreeva, Deadline.com - Jan. 12, 2013

With Dexter headed into Season 8 and Californication into Season 6, attention understandably is focused on Showtime’s plans for ending the two series. Both series have found a second wind, hitting some of their best ratings in their most recent seasons. The two-year pickup of Dexter for Seasons 7 and 8 was unofficially billed as the serial killer drama’s final act. But, at Showtime’s TCA session today, Showtime entertainment president David Nevins stopped short of committing to an end date for the show. “We’re not making any announcements today about when Dexter will end,” he said, adding, “I think I will clarify before Dexter goes on this season (in June). We have clear end game in place, I can’t talk about it just yet.” Just how important Dexter has been to Showtime? “Dexter to Showtime is what Batman is to Warner Bros., it is a cornerstone franchise,” Nevins said.

Having a set end point is not as critical for Dexter‘s companion Homeland, Nevins said. “It is a show that is incredibly changeable if you haven’t noticed,” he said. “I think it’s got a really long life, it is on the rise, like Dexter.” While he admitted that he agrees with some of the criticism about the recent second season, Nevins said he personally liked it. “It started really strong and ended really strong,” he said. Speaking of Homeland‘s Season 2 ending, Nevins would not confirm whether star Damian Lewis will be back as a series regular next season.

On Californication, whose sixth season premieres tomorrow night, “we’ll make a decision about another season I think fairly quickly into this run,” Nevins said. “It’s a decision on year by year, season by season basis.”

Overall, giving series proper ending is “really important to me,” Nevins said. “It’s really important to me that our audience feels taken care of.” That is why Showtime decided to bring Big C as a limited series, he said.

Other notes from Showtime’s session:

– David Nevins on passing on Under The Dome, which has since been picked up to series by broadcast sibling CBS: “I really liked the script for Under the Dome but it always felt fundamentally not us and more network,” he said. “I tried at one point to push it, but I felt I was pushing it out of what it was meant to be. But I actually facilitated helping get the script to (CBS’) Nina (Tassler), and I think it’s found a really good home. I think it’s gonna be a really good show…I think it’s going be better in a broadcast environment than it would be on pay-cable.”

– Matt Damon will guest star in Season 2 of House of Lies, which premieres Sunday. “He stars as himself,” Nevins said. “He comes to those guys trying to figure out how he can get a charitable organization so he can compete better with (George) Clooney.”

– Episodes’ third season will premiere in early 2014 because creators David Crane and Jeffrey Klarik, who write every episode, have full creative freedom and scheduling flexibility. It will be “fairly split between London and Los Angeles.”


* * * *

Winter TCA Tour Notes
Showtime’s Sunday Theme: ‘Shameless’, ‘House Of Lies’ And ‘Californication’

Diane Haithman is contributing to Deadline’s TCA coverage.

Premium cable channels enjoy the luxury of not having to worry as much as commercial TV about success in certain time slots, Showtime entertainment chief David Nevins said during today’s TCA Q&A with reporters. He pointed out that 65% of the Dexter audience watches the show at some time after its original airing.

But Showtime chose to focus on a time slot – an evening, that is — in presenting this afternoon’s panel featuring actors from its Sunday night series House of Lies (Don Cheadle, Kristen Bell), Californication (Evan Handler, Pamela Adlon) and Shameless (William H. Macy, Emmy Rossum).

The lively conversation ranged all over the map but at one point wandered to Macy’s short haircut, a marked difference from the filthy flowing locks his character sported when Shameless began (and the clean flowing locks the actor wore in the 2012 movie The Sessions). “I cut it off on the show, it was very dramatic,” the actor said, joking that after his buzz cut he enjoyed watching the faces of onlookers searching for something positive to say about his new look. “I got 7 hats for Christmas,” he added.

Of his character, the actor drew laughs by saying: “There is no low for this character. They have installed special low-cal scenery because I’ve been eating so much of it.”

Cheadle was also in fine comedic form while listening to co-star Bell praise him for never abusing his role as both star and executive producer by forcing his opinions on the ensemble. “There was never a time when anyone felt like he was giving a note,” Bell said as Cheadle quietly handed her money (a bill, denomination unknown) that she slipped inside the front of her dress. “You’re so handsome,” she purred as she accepted the money.

Watching the payoff, Handler quipped: “You do give notes.”

In response to a question, the actors considered which of their respective characters is “the most ****ed up.” The general consensus seemed to be that it was Macy’s Frank Gallagher.

Amid the silliness, actors on two of the series did manage to reveal a little about where their shows are headed in the new season. Cheadle and Bell said House of Lies would continue to expand on the relationship of their characters rather than stress the world of corporate America. “The procedural has been altered a bit, each episode is more about their lives,” Bell said. “It’s not get the deal, close the deal, end of episode.”

In Shameless, Russum said, the story may take a look at some of the ramifications of Frank Gallagher’s drinking. “This season one of the themes is how alcohol and drugs can really kill your body,” she said. While he might experiment with sobriety, Russum added to laughs: “This is never going to be Parenthood.”


* * * *

Winter TCA Tour Notes
‘Real L Word’ To Continue As Documentary
By Nellie Andreeva, Deadline.com - Jan. 13, 2013

After making a transition from a scripted drama to a reality series, Ilene Chaiken’s L Word franchise is about to undergo another format metamorphosis, becoming a documentary.

“The Real L Word is an important franchise,” Showtime’s entertainment president David Nevins said after the network’s executive session at TCA. “I want to change up the show and probably not continue it in exactly the same form. I’ve been talking a lot with (executive producers Dan (Cutforth) and Jane (Lipsitz) and Ilene about exploring sort of L Word culture, lesbian culture in places outside of New York and L.A., places where the subculture is not so defined and it’s maybe not so easy. And I think we’ll do a Real L Word documentary. We did the scripted show, did an ensemble reality show, and now it’s probably going to become a stand-alone documentary this year. But I think it’s an important franchise for us. It could be one-part, be two parts, they’re diving in doing research right now.”

post #84555 of 93726
Originally Posted by dad1153 View Post

Showtime’s 2013 Schedule

By Nellie Andreeva, of Deadline.com
… doesn't mention "Episodes" anywhere, though earlier reports said it was renewed.  Maybe it's not coming back until 2014, or perhaps Andreeva's report is incomplete?
post #84556 of 93726
^^^ Check post #84622 (first story of three):

– Episodes’ third season will premiere in early 2014 because creators David Crane and Jeffrey Klarik, who write every episode, have full creative freedom and scheduling flexibility. It will be “fairly split between London and Los Angeles.”
post #84557 of 93726
TV Notes
On The Air Tonight
SUNDAY Network Primetime Options
(All shows are in HD unless noted; start times are ET)

7PM - America's Funniest Home Videos
8PM - Onc Upon A Time
9PM - Revenge
10:01PM - Happy Endings
10:31PM - Don't Trust the B_____ on Apt. 23

7PM - NFL Football, AFC Divisional Playoff: Houston Texans at New England Patriots (From 4:30PM, LIVE)
8PM - 60 Minutes
9PM - The Good Wife
10PM - The Mentalist

7PM - Golden Globes Arrival Special (LIVE)
8PM - The 70th Annual Golden Globe Awards (3 hrs., LIVE)

7PM - Bob's Burgers
(R - May 6)
7:30PM - The Cleveland Show
8PM - The Simpsons
8:30PM - Bob's Burgers
9PM - Family Guy
9:30PM - America's Dad

(check your local listing for starting time/programming)
7PM - Masterpiece Classic: Downton Abbey (120 min.)
(R - Jan. 6)
9PM - Masterpiece Classic: Downton Abbey
10PM - The Abolitionists: American Experience - Part One: 1820s-1838
(R - Jan. 8)

7PM - Aquí y Ahora
8PM - La Rosa de Guadalupe (120 min.)
10PM - Sal y Pimienta

6:30PM - Movie: Return to the Blue Lagoon (1991)
8:30PM - Movie: The Incredibles (2004)
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Critic's Notes
Bianculli's Best Bets
By David Bianculli, TVWorthWatching.com - Jan. 13, 2013

Fox, 1:00 p.m. ET

The Seattle Seahawks beat the Washington Redskins last week, and now are 12-5. But now they travel to Atlanta, and face the 13-3 Falcons, who had last week off.

CBS, 4:30 p.m. ET

The Houston Texans beat the Cincinnati Bengals last week, and travel to New England with a 13-4 record. That’s better than the Patriots, who have a 12-4 record, but Patriots QB Tom Brady has been here before. Plenty of times.

NBC, 8:00 p.m. ET

The awards here are next to meaningless, but the entertainment value is high: This is the one awards show with an open bar, and with nominees grouped in tables of warring cliques, like a black-tie high school cafeteria. And taking over the hosting chores this year: former Saturday Night Live cohorts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.

PBS, 9:00 p.m. ET

If you missed last week’s Season 3 premiere, it’s repeated tonight at 7 p.m. ET. Either way, the second episode of the year is televised at 9 p.m. ET, and it’s another well-written, captivating installment – even without new cast member Shirley MacLaine, whose character came and went in the season opener. But so long as we have Maggie Smith around, there’s plenty of entertainment for everyone. Check local listings.

HBO, 9:00 p.m. ET

SEASON PREMIERE: Lena Dunham’s comedy series begins Season 2 with a few changes, and even more to come, in a second season that starts out even more confidently and impressively than the first. For my full review, of this and other returning Sunday night series, see Bianculli’s Blog (above). And for another review of Girls, see Ed Bark’s Uncle Barky’s Bytes.

post #84559 of 93726
Originally Posted by Aliens View Post

Public hangings. Just for disagreeing with someone. And people will cheer. Seriously, they will.

Where do I go to nominate contestants?
post #84560 of 93726
Originally Posted by MRinDenver View Post

Where do I go to nominate contestants?

You can start with this group.

post #84561 of 93726
Originally Posted by dad1153 View Post

^^^ Check post #84622 (first story of three):

– Episodes’ third season will premiere in early 2014 because creators David Crane and Jeffrey Klarik, who write every episode, have full creative freedom and scheduling flexibility. It will be “fairly split between London and Los Angeles.”
Completely missed that.  Thank you.
post #84562 of 93726
Originally Posted by MRinDenver View Post

Where do I go to nominate contestants?


You can get all you need right from one place - the Yahoo news comments sections. smile.gif

post #84563 of 93726
SATURDAY's fast affiliate overnight prime-time ratings -and what they mean- have been posted on Analyst Marc Berman's Media Insight's Blog

SUNDAY's fast affiliate overnight prime-time ratings -and what they mean- have been posted on Analyst Marc Berman's Media Insight's Blog
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Nielsen Overnights (18-49)
Golden numbers for NBC’s Globes
Averages a 13.1 in metered-market households
By Toni Fitzgerald, Media Life Magazine - Jan. 14, 2013

With a strong hosting duo and the new year’s most buzz-worthy pop culture moment so far, as Jodie Foster came out without actually saying she was out, the Golden Globes saw strong gains over last year’s ceremony last night on NBC.

The telecast averaged a 13.1 household rating from 9 to 11 p.m., according to Nielsen metered-market ratings, up 12 percent from an 11.7 last year.

In fact, it was the best Globes rating in six years, since the awards show drew a 16.0 in 2007.

It saw even bigger gains among adults 18-49, where it averaged a 7.6 rating, according to local people meters, up 23 percent from last year’s 6.2.

Hosts Amy Poehler and Tina Fey received universal praise for their funny, well-paced performance.

Foster, meanwhile, set off a storm of comments on Twitter during her lifetime achievement award acceptance speech, when she questioned the need for celebrities to have an actual “coming out” but nonetheless publicly acknowledged her female former partner and current co-parent.

The strong ratings for the Globes hurt ABC and Fox’s regular lineups, which usually do well among the same 18-49s. Of course Fox’s animated shows were also hurt by the fact that they did not enjoy the huge lead-in from football that they had last week.

Fox’s “The Simpsons” (2.4, down 43 percent), “Bob’s Burgers” (2.3, down 26 percent from last week’s two-year high), “Family Guy” (3.1, down 14 percent) and “American Dad” (2.4, down 14 percent) all declined. “Guy” was the No. 1 non-entertainment, non-sports show on broadcast.

ABC’s “Once Upon a Time” drew a 2.8 at 8 p.m., off 10 percent from the previous week, while lead-out “Revenge” fell to a season-low 2.0, off 17 percent.

Not every regularly scheduled show declined. CBS’s “The Good Wife,” which started a bit late due to NFL playoff overrun earlier in the evening, matched a season high with a 1.9 at 9 p.m., and lead-out “The Mentalist” had its second-best rating, a 2.0.

NBC was first for the night among 18-49s with a 4.7 average overnight rating and an 11 share. CBS was a close second at 4.6/11, with Fox third at 2.1/5, ABC fourth at 1.8/4, Univision fifth at 0.8/2 and Telemundo sixth at 0.5/1.

As a reminder, all ratings are based on live-plus-same-day DVR playback, which includes shows replayed before 3 a.m. the night before. Seven-day DVR data won’t be available for several weeks. Forty-six percent of Nielsen households have DVRs.

At 7 p.m. CBS was first with a 10.8 for the end of its football game, followed by NBC with a 2.5 for “2013 Golden Globes Red Carpet Special.” ABC was third with a 1.4 for “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” Fox fourth with a 1.2 for a repeat of “Burgers” (0.9) and a new “Cleveland Show” (1.4), Univision fifth with a 0.6 for “Aqui y Ahora” and Telemundo sixth with a 0.5 for the movie “Return to the Blue Lagoon.”

NBC took the lead at 8 p.m. with a 5.1 for the Golden Globes, while CBS slipped to second with a 3.7 for “60 Minutes.” ABC was third with a 2.8 for “Time,” Fox fourth with a 2.4 for “Simpsons” (2.4) and a new “Burgers” (2.3), Univision fifth with a 0.8 for “Rosa de Guadalupe” and Telemundo sixth with a 0.5 for the end of “Blue Lagoon” and start of the movie “The Incredibles.”

At 9 p.m. NBC led with a 5.5 for the Globes, with Fox second with a 2.8 for “Guy” (3.1) and “Dad” (2.4). ABC was third with a 2.0 for “Revenge,” CBS fourth with a 1.9 for “Wife,” Univision fifth with a 1.0 for more “Rosa de Guadalupe” and Telemundo sixth with a 0.6 for its movie.

NBC was first again at 10 p.m. with a 5.5 for the final hour of the Globes, followed by CBS with a 2.0 for “Mentalist.” Univision and ABC tied for third at 0.9, Univision for “Sal y Pimienta” and ABC for “Happy Endings” (1.0) and “Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23″ (0.8). Telemundo was fifth with a 0.6 for its movie.

CBS was first for the night among households with a 10.3 average overnight rating and a 15 share. NBC was second at 9.0/13, ABC third at 3.3/5, Fox fourth at 2.4/4, Univision fifth at 1.2/2 and Telemundo sixth at 0.6/1.

Edited by dad1153 - 1/15/13 at 9:55am
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TV Notes
Scott Gimple Promoted To Showrunner Of ‘The Walking Dead’, Replaces Glen Mazzara
By Nellie Andreeva, Deadline.com - Jan. 14, 2013

For a second consecutive time, The Walking Dead is reaching within to replace a showrunner. The series’ supervising producer Scott M. Gimple is finalizing a deal to become executive producer and new showrunner of the hit zombie drama series. Gimple is expected to convene his writing team to begin work on Season 4 in the next two weeks. He replaces Glen Mazzara, who exited when Walking Dead was renewed for a fourth season last month. Mazzara in turn succeeded The Walking Dead creator/director/original showrunner Frank Darabont several episodes into production on Season 2. Both Darabont and Mazzara were removed from the series. Mazzara’s departure is said to have been done under pressure from Walking Dead executive producer Robert Kirkman, on whose comic the TV show is based.

While controversial, the transition from Darabont to Mazzara proved seamless, with the series continuing to break ratings records, including in the blockbuster recent fall portion of Season 3 whose premiere stands as the top-rated fall telecast on broadcast or cable. Gimple has been with The Walking Dead since the beginning of Season 2 when the show established a writing staff. He currently serves as supervising producer. This season, Gimple wrote the Nov. 18 episode Hounded and the penultimate Season 2 hour, which airs on March 24. The Walking Dead returns with originals Feb. 10. Gimple, repped by UTA, Thruline and Ziffren, also has worked on series Chase, FlashForward, Life and wrote a script for the upcoming Starz drama Da Vinci’s Demons. On the feature side, he co-wrote Ghost Rider: Spirit Of Vengeance.

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Nielsen Overnights (Cable)
'Californication,' Other Showtime Premieres Hit Records, HBO's 'Girls' Drops With Return
By Tim Kenneally, TheWrap.com - Jan. 14, 2013

The season premieres of "Californication" "Shameless" and "House of Lies," turned out to be potent combination for Showtime on Sunday night, as all three series grabbed record ratings, the network said Monday.

Also on Sunday, the second season of HBO's "Girls" -- which cleaned up at Sunday night's Golden Globe Awards -- returned for a second season down slightly from its series premiere.

The third season premiere of "Shameless" at 9 p.m. took in 2 million viewers, the series' highest-rated episode to date and a 46 percent boost over the show's Season Two average. The Season Three opener was also up a considerable 26 percent from last season's kickoff.

With re-airings taken into account, the "Shameless" premiere amassed 2.6 million viewers, a 26 percent jump over its cumulative total for the Season Two premiere.

The second season of the Don Cheadle-starring "House of Lies," meanwhile, kicked off at 10 p.m. and drew in 1.19 million total viewers -- a series best for the show, and up 43 percent from its Season One average. (Compared to its series premiere, "House of Lies" was up 15 percent.) Overall for the night, "House of Lies" accumulated 1.54 million total viewers, up 33 percent from its Season One average.

The most senior series of the trio, "Californication," also started its latest season on a personal best, drawing a series-high average of 1.07 million viewers with its 10:30 airing, a 48 percent surge over its Season Five average and a 41 percent boost over its previous season's premiere. With re-airings taken into account, the "Californication" premiere amassed 1.3 million total viewers, a 39 percent jump over last season's average and a 26 percent leap over its Season Five premiere.

In the meantime, HBO's "Girls" -- which took home two Golden Globes on Sunday night -- premiered its second season on Sunday with 866,000 total viewers with its initial 9 p.m. airing, down slightly from the 872,000 that tuned in for the series premiere last April.

Across three plays, "Girls" accumulated 1.6 million total viewers, 42 percent higher than last year's series premiere, though that episode only had two airings for its premiere night. (Maybe fans were busy watching "Girls" creator Lena Dunham collect her trophies at the Globes when the show had its first airing Sunday night?)

HBO's "Enlightened" also kicked off its second season Sunday night, enjoying a 43 percent boost over its series premiere (which aired on a Monday) last year with 300,000 viewers for its initial 9:30 p.m. airing. Over the course of three airings, the "Enlightened" premiere accumulated 609,000 total viewers.

The season premiere of "True Blood" creator Alan Ball's new drama, "Banshee," got off to a decent start Sunday on Cinemax, attracting almost 1 million viewers over three plays. The initial 10 p.m. airing drew 483,000 viewers, the network's best performance for an original series since the series premiere of "Strike Back" in August 2011.

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TV Review
Golden Globes Was Anything but Boring This Year
By Tim Goodman, The Hollywood Reporter - Jan. 14, 2013

While the Golden Globes suffered the fate of far too many awards shows -- having to play off the winners the audience most wants to see because of time constraints -- it was nevertheless a funny, rousing and swiftly paced affair. Credit in large part goes to hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, plus Cecil B. DeMille Award recipient Jodie Foster, whose enigmatic acceptance speech was, by turns, funny, personal, touching and odd.

Fey and Poehler lightly mocked past host Ricky Gervais and then -- with the audience believing this would be a night filled with less stinging sarcasm -- turned their attentions to director Kathryn Bigelow. Poehler said, brilliantly, "I haven't been following the controversy surrounding Zero Dark Thirty, but when it comes to torture, I trust the woman who spent three years married to James Cameron."

It was the night's best and biggest laugh, a well-crafted thing of beauty that will be remembered for a very long time. And it set the tone for the much-loved comedic actresses to host the rest of the awards show (though there were points where they were badly needed back onstage, mostly when there were technical glitches or when the pomposity had reached proportions that needed tamping down). Fey had another rousing joke when she congratulated Anne Hathaway's performance in Les Miserables and added, "I have not seen someone alone and abandoned like that since you were on stage with James Franco at the Oscars."

The duo later would dress up as fake acting nominees, and the celebrities who were announcing went along with the trick, which worked because it was both funny and absurd.

And that's what you really want at the Golden Globes. You want a party where celebrities can relax (unlike at the Oscars) and drink Champagne and mingle with other stars to the delight of the home viewing audience. The Globes are best when they don't take themselves seriously, when there are gaffes that are overcome or messy parts that are not given an apology. The Golden Globes can be the best awards show on television (admittedly, a low bar) when people at home feel like cameras have been dropped into a lavish Hollywood party, with schmoozing and gorgeous dresses, cleavage and bright smiles galore.

Although the Gervais hosting years were considered controversial (though he was brought back because he was a magnet for attention and interest), they also were quite funny and gave celebrities a good skewering, which is sometimes (check the economy) a good thing for normal people at home. But along with that, Gervais had become the show, so it was nice to see Fey and Poehler prove that they could be fantastic, funny hosts while also staying out of the limelight.

FULL LIST: 2013 Golden Globes Winners

You can debate the winners and losers somewhere else, but as for the content and how it played as a television event, there wouldn't be much to change. Former President Bill Clinton made a surprise appearance to introduce Lincoln (leading Fey and Poehler to say with faux giggly excitement that they'd seen Hillary Clinton's husband); Paul Rudd worked, comically, through some notable technical glitches and just laughed it off like a pro; singer Adele was the breath of fresh, unpretentious air that she always is (can she be invited to every awards show?); Jason Bateman played straight man to Aziz Ansari talking about the Downton Abbey people and pot; and Lena Dunham from Girls won best actress and fit her character almost too perfectly, wobbling on heels too high for her but then gushing out praise for being able to make a show about people trying to find their place.

In fact, Dunham got up again because Girls won for best show, and she inadvertently gave Poehler and Fey some great material because Dunham said their work helped her get through her adolescence. "Congratulations, Lena, glad we got you through middle school," Fey joked about feeling old.

There weren't many bits that flopped, though Sacha Baron Cohen might have qualified enough for some viewers (mocking, among others, Gerard Depardieu with a crude bathroom joke). Mel Gibson's presence in the room (guest of Foster) seemed to make people antsy. And Pepsi didn't do anyone any favors by playing its annoying Sofia Vergara commercial endlessly.

But the show had a forward motion all of its own, which is half the battle with these things. It was moving crisply until Foster's speech, which was both puzzling and poetic. Believably acting -- she is rather good, you know -- that she was going to "come out" on television, even though she already has, led to a joke about being single, then some very touching comments about former partner Cydney Bernard and their two boys. But there also were curious diversions into reality television, her age, coming out to close friends and her future as a director, then back to a very moving mention of her mother, etc. Not all of it made sense or seemed coherent, but there wasn't a moment of the speech that wasn't magnetic.

Now, the length of Foster's speech might have put the show's director and producer on their heels, but whatever time constraints that weren't addressed on the fly led to the inevitable downfall of all of these ceremonies: playing off winners in the biggest categories. They are at least partly why viewers tune in to the show, and playing them off seems rude while it deprives fans of moments they want to witness.

Is there no producer-director combo that can come up with a plan to avoid this?

Ultimately, however, even that wasn't enough to dull the night. The Globes were bubbly and entertaining, there were moments to remember, winners and losers to argue about and a pair of hosts who really nailed it. "We're going home with Jodie Foster" they yelled at the conclusion.


The Bottom Line: The hosts, the speeches and some of the winners (and losers) helped make up for a ceremony that — surprise! — played off the stage most of the big winners because of time constraints. But the Globes were more fun than infuriating, and the pace was quick.


Edited by dad1153 - 1/14/13 at 11:02pm
post #84568 of 93726
Critic's Notes
NBC has no qualms about using news unit as a marketing tool
By Joe Flint, Los Angeles Times' 'Company Town' Blog - Jan. 11, 2012

NBC's symphony strategy is starting to hit a bad note.

When Comcast took over the network in 2011, NBCUniversal Chief Executive Steve Burke put an emphasis on using one entertainment property to promote another. He dubbed the approach "Project Symphony."

To be sure, the idea of media companies making use of their platforms to advertise their own assets and personalities is nothing new. ABC's "Good Morning America" has no qualms about using its valuable time to talk about "Dancing With the Stars."

But NBC is becoming the most aggressive in doing this and if it continues it could harm the credibility of its news division. The latest example was Thursday's episode of the news magazine "Rock Center," which featured a long segment devoted to promoting the new NBC sitcom "1600 Penn."

The comedy is about the family of the president trying to adjust to life in the White House. The piece was "reported" by Jenna Bush Hagar, daughter of the former president. The hook was that she was interviewing the actor -- Josh Gad -- who plays an out-of-control kid living in the White House. Art imitating life.

NBC has also not been shy about using its Washington newsmagazine "Meet the Press" to market other company assets. Jay Leno appeared on "Meet the Press" under the guise of discussing political comedy during election season but in reality it was just a way to promote the "Tonight Show."

"Meet the Press" also did a feature on the Stanley Cup during the last hockey season. NBC, of course, has TV rights to hockey.

"Meet the Press" host David Gregory is also jumping on the "1600 Penn" bandwagon. He interviewed Bill Pullman, who plays the fictional president on "1600 Penn." That piece is for a webcast, but it will also air in Washington's WRC-TV, the NBC-owned station there.

With NBC, Project Symphony is a two-way street. News hypes the shows and in return the shows hype the news. NBC News personalities pop up on entertainment programs on a regular basis. It used to be cute when Brian Williams showed up on "30 Rock." But now it seems desperate. MSNBC personalities have already been on "1600 Penn" and will likely be such a visible presence that they might be eligible for Emmy Awards.

Yes, news personalities have appeared in entertainment shows before. ABC's Robin Roberts was on the network's new drama "Nashville." Walter Cronkite famously once did an episode of "Mary Tyler Moore." But he didn't do episodes of "The Jeffersons," "The Waltons" and "M*A*S*H" all in the same week.

Crazy idea, but maybe news programming should be kept to news. That does not mean that a network can't do an occasional profile of a celebrity on a news property if there is a good story there to tell.

But that is not what NBC, ABC and the other networks are doing. Instead, they often use news programming as a platform to promote entertainment shows. Not only does it hurt the integrity of the news division, there's also no proof it helps boost ratings. The morning news programs have already become more about entertainment and pop culture and self-promotion. Do newsmagazines have to follow their lead?

The desire of an entertainment giant to use all its assets to promote its products is perfectly acceptable. But there is a fine line between smart cross-promotion and damaging valuable brands. With regard to Project Symphony, NBC needs to retune its instruments.


* * * *

Critic's Notes
For ABC, broadcasting Miss America Pageant is a big news story

On Friday, this space took NBC to task for going overboard in using its news division to promote entertainment programming and vice versa.

So it seems only fair to shine a light on ABC and its efforts to hype its Saturday telecast of the Miss America pageant. Not only did ABC's "Nightline" run a lengthy feature on the pageant during Friday night's edition of "Nightline," but also scheduled for Saturday is a full episode of "20/20" devoted to the event an hour before the broadcast.

To be sure, when it comes to networks risking the credibility of their news units by using them to promote their own entertainment shows, that horse left the barn a long time ago.

But now the horse is on its fifth lap around the farm. The practice has become so accepted that media critics rarely raise eyebrows about it anymore.

Perhaps they should. The resources used for stories to promote a network's entertainment fare takes dollars away from more substantial pieces. No one is suggesting that ABC not be allowed to air an hourlong program aimed at increasing awareness for the Miss America contest. The question is whether it is necessary to do that program through the news division and its "20/20" show.

News has gotten soft enough without also turning it into an infomercial.

Edited by dad1153 - 1/14/13 at 11:34pm
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TV Notes
On The Air Tonight
TUESDAY Network Primetime/Late Night Options
(All shows are in HD unless noted; start times are ET. Network late night shows are preceded by late local news)

8PM - Modern Family
(R - Nov. 14)
8:30PM - The Middle
(R - Nov. 7)
9PM - Happy Endings
9:30PM - Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23
10PM - Private Practice
* * * *
11:35PM - Jimmy Kimmel Live! (Rob Lowe; NBA player Bryce Harper; Big Boi performs)
12:35AM - Nightline

9PM - NCIS: Los Angeles
10PM - Vegas
* * * *
11:35PM - Late Show with David Letterman (Jennifer Lawrence; writer Alan Zweibel; A$AP Rocky performs)
12:37AM - The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson (Lena Dunham; Bill Pullman)

8PM - Betty White's Off Their Rockers
8:30PM - Betty White's Off Their Rockers
9PM - Go On
9:30PM - The New Normal
10PM - Parenthood
* * * *
11:35PM - The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (Jessica Simpson; D.L. Hughley; Vintage Trouble performs)
12:37AM - Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (Charlie Sheen; Emmy Rossum; Vogue creative director Grace Coddington; Yo La Tengo performs)
1:37AM - Last Call with Carson Daly (Comic W. Kamau Bell; singer Lianne La Havas; The Hives perform)
(R - Oct. 2)

8PM - Raising Hope
8:30PM - Ben and Kate
9PM - New Girl
9:30PM - The Mindy Project

(check your local listing for starting time/programming)
8PM - Pioneers of Television: Funny Ladies (Season Premiere)
9PM - The Abolitionists: American Experience - Part Two: 1838-1854
10PM - Frontline: Inside Obama's Presidency

8PM - Por Ella Soy Yo
9PM - Amores Verdaderos
10PM - Amor Bravio

8PM - Hart of Dixie
10PM - Emily Owens, M.D.

8PM - Rosa Diamante
9PM - La Patrona
10PM - Pablo Escobar: El Patron del Mal
10:30PM - El Rostro de la Venganza

11PM - The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (Journalist Bob Schieffer)
11:31PM - The Colbert Show (Author Jared Diamond)

11PM - Conan (Jesse Tyler Ferguson; Teresa Palmer; Baron Vaughn)

11PM - Chelsea Lately (Bill Maher; Chris Franjola; Lauren Lapkus; TJ Miller)
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Critic's Notes
Bianculli's Best Bets
By David Bianculli, TVWorthWatching.com - Jan. 15, 2013

PBS, 8:00 p.m. ET
This documentary series about TV returns tonight with Funny Ladies, the first of four installments devoted to specific television subjects and dramas. (For a full rundown, and an interview with the documentary’s producers, see Tom Brinkmoeller’s Raised on MTM below.) I have the same polar reaction to this new season as I have in years past: I love the subject matter, but usually end up disappointed or frustrated by the specific inclusions and omissions. It feels like these hours are written backward: booking interviewees first, then crafting the program to fit. How else to explain that Marla Gibbs, a supporting player on The Jeffersons and spinoff star of 227, gets lots of screen time, while Gertrude Berg, the truly pioneering star and writer of The Goldbergs, is dismissed in a sentence or two? It’s valuable, truly, to have Carol Burnett and Mary Tyler Moore on tap, and they’re duly honored, as is Lucille Ball. But if we’re talking pioneers in female TV comedy – and we are – you can’t elevate Phyllis Diller above, say, Our Miss Brooks star Eve Arden and expect to be taken too seriously. Check local listings.

NBC, 10:00 p.m. ET

Time flies when you’re having crises: The season’s almost over for Parenthood, as this is the show’s penultimate episode. And it’s a pivotal one, with Mark (Jason Ritter) returning to try and patch things up with Sarah (Lauren Graham), who’s torn between Mark and Hank (Ray Romano).

PBS, 10:00 p.m. ET

As Barack Obama’s second term as President is about to begin, Frontline assesses his first, in a profile that is critical as well as complimentary. In any event, with Obama drawing lines in the sand, this month, about debt ceilings and gun control, it’s certainly a timely halftime show. Check local listings.

FX, 10:00 p.m. ET

In this second episode of the new season, Patton Oswalt continues his delightful recurring role as Constable Bob Sweeney, who becomes the newest and most comically entertaining sidekick of Timothy Olyphant’s Raylan Givens. But while they’re fun to watch, there’s a lot of serious stuff afoot as well, as this year’s major antagonists and plot lines continue to be introduced.

TBS, 10:00 p.m. ET

This week’s episode may as well be a tribute to Tom Selleck and Sam Elliott: the guys decide to sport major moustaches, as a way of proving, well, something. I'm not sure what, exactly -- and I've seen the show.


* * * *

Critic's Notes
'Pioneers of Television' Continues its Look at TV's Best
By Tom Brinkmoeller, TVWorthWatching.com - Jan. 14, 2013

Fans of this website surely understand an enthusiasm for extraordinary television programming and the excitement of sharing that enthusiasm with others. Writing and reading about TV Worth Watching is what brings us here.

That's the best part of Pioneers of Television, which begins its third season on PBS Tuesday, Jan. 15 at 8 p.m. ET (check local listings). The people who put these shows together are genuinely excited about sharing some of the history of television with viewers who want to know more about that subject. They have fun telling and we can have fun watching. Or not. A couple of loud objections came from some who watched the previous two seasons, and the loudest gripe was that each subject didn't cover enough eligible subject matter.

The subjects chosen for the previous seasons were: late night, sitcoms, variety, science fiction, westerns, crime dramas and local children's television. This season begins with TV's female comedy stars, followed in subsequent weeks by primetime soaps, superheroes and miniseries. Each has an hour to do the job. The producers of these programs know they can't compile museum completeness into a slot that size. They just want to offer an overview of some of the highest points and give anyone in the audience who might want more scholarly detail some directions on where to find it.

"We're not trying to be an encyclopedia," Mike Trinklein said in a recent phone interview. He and Steve Boettcher are executive producers of the series. "We have had to make some choices. To us, that means we're focusing on the people and not on the shows. We don't try to be a comprehensive look at anything.

"We're not guided by the concept of just nostalgia, either. What we want to accomplish is to provide an insight into the people who shaped our media."

As a result, viewers may not see clips of and interviews with a favorite comediennein the Funny Ladies season opener this week. But they will get to see legends like Carol Burnett, Lucille Ball and Betty White (left) in some very memorable moments and see segments of interviews that give added depth to a TV era that increasingly more people who like television didn't have a chance to witness as it happened.

This year's four Pioneers installments entertain, enlighten more than a little and perform a function no other productions have had the resources, love of the medium and the time to do. (The two producers have been doing this since 2004, and Trinklein assessed what they've done till now "a very large investment of our time.")

Next week's program about nighttime soaps focuses mostly on Dallas, Dynasty and Knots Landing, but puts them into a larger context. Superheroes gets similar treatments, with closeups of a couple of series supplemented by a briefer overview. The best part of the final week's focus, miniseries, is its retelling of how, in 1977, Roots captured the country's interest like nothing else before it, set ratings records and raised awareness of racial history and relationships in this country.

Trinklein told how the process begins with PBS agreeing on topics. Once that is completed, getting agreements with people who they want to interview is a sometimes-difficult task. (Boettcher, his partner said, has even slipped notes to the barista who regularly serves the person they want to interview, asking that the request be passed on in person.) It took "a few years," he said, to get Carol Burnett to agree to be interviewed. David Carradine died days before he was to be interviewed. And the Phyllis Diller (right) and Larry Hagman interviews were done shortly before each died.

The next-largest obstacle, he said, is getting rights to the show clips and photos that help make watching Pioneers so much fun.

"There are hundreds and thousands of stills and clips, and each one takes negotiations," Trinklein said. Some people they have approached have adamantly refused to help, while others took a bit more convincing than normal. "You quickly end up knowing who you have to avoid and who you have to be nice to."

And some ideas have not be approved because not enough visuals exist. He said PBS did not approve a segment on early TV drama series for that reason.

Hard as it has been, at times, to put the three seasons together, the partners and PBS are convinced the results have been worth it. They already have proposed four episodes for the next series, though it's too early for final approval from PBS: medical shows, people who transitioned from stand-up comedy to sitcoms, ones that have broken barriers and character actors.

The subject matter has yet to be tapped out, he said, and their enthusiasm has remained high. And with each new season, he added, "I think we're getting better at it."

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