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Hot Off The Press: The Latest TV News and Information - Page 2940

post #88171 of 93688
Business/Legal Notes
Hearst TV Sues Aereo in Boston Over Copyright Infringement
By Katy Bachman, AdWeek.com - Jul. 9, 2013

Hearst TV, owner of WCVB-TV, the ABC affiliate in Boston, opened up a front in the broadcast legal battle against Aereo TV.

Like the suits filed by broadcast TV owners in New York, Hearst claims Aereo is infringing on its copyright by retransmitting its signal without permission.

Aereo has been operating in New York since last year, but it recently launched in Boston in May and is rolling out to other markets. The company gets around the copyright claims, arguing that it is renting (for about $8 a month) a small personal antenna to subscribers in order to stream local stations over the Internet.

Broadcasters call Aereo's business model nothing but gamesmanship.

So far, the New York courts have refused to halt the service, but broadcasters are confident they can eventually win the case on the merits.

http://www.adweek.com/news/television/hearst-tv-sues-aereo-boston-over-copyright-infringement-151086
post #88172 of 93688
Nielsen Notes (Daytime)
Networks Cleaning Up Again With Their Daytime Soaps
By Rick Kissell, Variety.com - Jul. 9, 2013

Don’t plan on anyone popping the daytime soap bubble anytime soon.

There may only be four left on ABC, CBS and NBC, but they are holding onto their audience. In fact, for the first time in memory, each of these shows — which have been around for a combined 144 years — actually posted quarterly ratings gains vs. the previous year.

The simple fact that there are fewer dramas fighting for the afternoon audience, and not many half-hours where the current shows overlap, is likely a contributing factor.

But these improvements in daytime come at a time when a pair of former daytime soaps, “All My Children” and “One Live to Live,” have found second lives online. Also, serialized programming has never been hotter in primetime — from reality programs across the dial to the hottest scripted dramas like “The Walking Dead,” “Downton Abbey” and “Scandal.”

Looking at the most current Nielsen numbers for the second quarter of 2013 (April 1-June 30), CBS’ longtime daytime leader “Young and the Restless” led the pack with an average daily audience of 4.771 million — up 5% from last year. It’s followed in the rankings by CBS’ “Bold and the Beautiful” (3.535 million, up 13% from last year), ABC’s “General Hospital” (2.843 million, up 11%) and NBC’s “Days of Our Lives” (2.672 million, up 4%).

Collectively, these four shows also drew more viewers this spring (13.82 million) than the same period in 2011 (13.27 million), with only “Y&R” down.

“General Hospital,” which celebrated its 50th anniversary this year and is the oldest of the remaining daytime soaps, has been on the upswing in recent quarters and is at its highest levels since “All My Children” and “One Life to Live” were still airing in the hours preceding it as part of a three-soap ABC lineup.

In fact, this spring marked the third straight quarter that “GH” has risen by double-digit percentages from the comparable year-ago period.

For “Bold and the Beautiful”, this spring was the fourth straight quarter (going back to the third quarter of 2012) that it posted year-over-year growth. It is now within a little more than 1.2 million of its lead-in, “Young and the Restless,” which has been on top of the soap ratings heap since 1987.

“B&B” has also grown year-over-year in the key women 18-49 demo for four straight quarters.

“Days of Our Lives,” which recently won the Daytime Emmy for drama series for the first time in 35 years, logged its second best quarter in adults 18-49 since the first quarter of 2012 and its second largest overall audience for a quarter in at least two years.

Earlier this year, “Days” was renewed by NBC through September 2014, and it could be poised for another extension — especially since 2015 would mark the show’s 50th anniversary.

While nobody should confuse the current era of soaps for its heyday of the ’80s and ’90s, any ratings growth these days is noteworthy — as is survival. And this year, for the first time since 2007, none of the broadcast dramas will be saying goodbye.

http://variety.com/2013/tv/news/networks-cleaning-up-again-with-their-daytime-soaps-1200525644/
post #88173 of 93688
Quote:
Originally Posted by dad1153 View Post

Business Notes
ESPN Takes A Hit As Q2 Ratings Dive 32% Over 2012
By Erik Pedersen, Deadline.com - Jul. 9, 2013

Is the Worldwide Leader looking over its shoulder? Two months after laying off hundreds of staffers and three weeks before the launch of Fox’s rival sports network, ESPN saw its second-quarter ratings plunge compared with last year. Sports Business Daily reports that the Disney-owned sports behemoth saw a 32% ratings dive for the April-to-June period versus the same period in 2012.

http://www.deadline.com/2013/07/espn-takes-a-hit-as-q2-ratings-dive-32-over-2012/

It looks like people are tired of feeding this greedy monopoly and they are tuning out. If you are greedy it will come back to bite you.
post #88174 of 93688
TV Review
FX's 'The Bridge' a gripping look at crime on El Paso/Juarez border
Cops Diane Kruger and Demián Bichir investigate a serial killer
By Alan Sepinwall, HitFix.com - Jul. 9, 2013

Many elements of FX's new crime drama "The Bridge" (it debuts Wednesday night at 10) may seem familiar. One of its two main characters, El Paso homicide detective Sonya Cross (Diane Kruger) suffers (undiagnosed) from Asperger's syndrome, putting her into good, if socially clumsy, current company with the likes of Temperance Brennan on "Bones," Will Graham on "Hannibal" and both the Cumberbatch and Miller versions of Sherlock Holmes. It will spend most of its first season dealing with the pursuit by Cross and Mexican cop Hector Ruiz (Demián Bichir) of a baroque serial killer, which invites immediate comparisons to "Dexter," "Hannibal," the current season of "The Killing" and virtually every other serial killer-obsessed cop show of the moment. And it is, like "The Killing," a remake of a popular Scandinavian series, "Bron," which was set on the border between Denmark and Sweden.

But what makes "The Bridge" special, and potentially great, is an attribute more often applied to real estate than TV drama: location, location, location.

When Meredith Stiehm, the creator of "Cold Case" and one of the best writers on "Homeland" seasons 1 and 2, was tasked with adapting the series, the instructions were to begin on the bridge connecting Detroit and Windsor, Ontario, or another spot where America and Canada touch. But Stiehm and partner Elwood Reid had our other border in mind, and successfully argued to set their version in El Paso and Juárez. And that choice, and what Stiehm and Reid do with it, makes all the difference in helping "The Bridge" stand out.

So, yes, our heroes are chasing yet another serial killer who targets women (and, at times, men) and does unspeakable things to them, but it's a killer who's making a very specific socio-political point about the disparities between the city to the north of the border (which the killer notes averages 5 homicides a year) and the one to the south (where thousands die).

"Why is one dead white woman more important than so many just across the bridge?" he asks in a taunting message left for the cops. "How long can El Paso look away?"

Cross' difficulties demonstrating empathy or reading social cues, meanwhile, only become magnified when she has to partner up with Ruiz, a warm and outgoing man who comes from a completely different cultural context than the one she's used to. It's a buddy cop show pairing of opposites with a genuine reason for the two to mistrust and misunderstand each other.

And the series seems at least as interested in depicting its fictionalized take on the two border cities as it is in following Cross and Ruiz's investigation into the murders taking place in both.

Stiehm has told me that the goal is to turn "The Bridge" into a series dealing with all corners of life in El Paso and Juárez, using this series of murders as a way into that world in the same way "The Wire" used its initial drug investigation to tell the story of Baltimore as a whole. To that end, we meet not only the cops (including Ted Levine as the El Paso homicide lieutenant Hank Wade); but an El Paso trophy wife (Annabeth Gish) whose husband has been up to shady dealings across the border; a pair of reporters (Matthew Lillard and Emily Rios) looking into the killings while also letting us see the dire straits of the local news media; Ruiz's wife (Catalina Sandino Moreno) and son (Carlos Pratts), who cross the border each day to work and study at a Texas college; and Steven Linder (Thomas M. Wright), a sketchy character who lives in a desert trailer and has an intense interest in the women of Juárez.

The murder investigation touches many of these peoples' lives — Linder(*) is presented as an early suspect for the audience, if not for the cops — but there are also instant story possibilities raised by each character intersection, and by the way the series depicts its reluctant twin cities. Though much of the series is actually filmed in Southern California, there's an immediate sense of place to its version of El Paso, and especially to Juárez. Even if "The Bridge" were to stay a simple police story, there would be enormous promise just in the faulty assumptions each cop makes about the other: Ruiz works in a place where police corruption is treated as a given, while the Mexicans view Cross' department as dismissive and contemptuous of anything that happens on the wrong side of the bridge.

(*) Wright is an Australian actor who made an impression earlier this year as Elisabeth Moss' lover in the fantastic Sundance miniseries "Top of the Lake." Here, he's unrecognizable in bushy sideburns and speaking with a marble-mouthed American accent that makes him sound like... well, like a certain serial killer famously played by his new co-star Ted Levine. It's a big performance, to say the least, and how I feel about it will ultimately come down to whether or not he's the killer or a red herring.

It can't be overstated just how charming Bichir (Oscar-nominated a couple of years ago for "A Better Life") is as Ruiz, who lives a shambling but largely honest existence, just trying to get through another day (this case begins shortly after a vasectomy that gives him an amusing bowlegged walk), completely baffled by this strange American woman who's become his new partner. It's a marvelous, totally natural performance, and a necessary contrast to the iciness of Kruger as Sonya Cross.

The writers and Kruger are walking a very high and narrow tightrope with Sonya, whose particular brand of social clumsiness — extremely literal, brusque, unable to maintain eye contact without great effort — fits many Asperger's profiles, but which makes it questionable that this particular woman would rise as high as she has in the department, and be placed at the center of such a sensitive investigation. Sonya's also portrayed as intuitively brilliant, and it's clear that Hank has been protecting her for years, but Kruger commits to such an intense, remote take on the character that it feels on occasion like a miracle that she's even gotten this far, let alone that she'd be given this important assignment. Like a few other components of "The Bridge" (including a good ol' boy fellow El Paso detective who strays perilously close to caricature) Sonya feels like she could plummet off the rope at any moment, but she remains aloft through the first three episodes.

Our understanding of television storytelling, and the way we talk about it, has changed so much over the years that I often wonder how successful a serialized mystery story can be in this day and age. By the time Stiehm, Reid and company unveil the killer's identity and motives, odds are everyone who cares will have talked all the possibilities to death online, and will either be disappointed that it isn't someone they picked, or find it unsurprising if it is.

The way to work around that problem is to offer the audience so much beyond whodunnit that the mystery's resolution ultimately won't matter that much. With these characters, with this fascinating, complicated place — and one that's at the forefront of so much of what we're talking about in real world politics — and the sense of atmosphere instilled by directors like Gerardo Naranjo, "The Bridge" is off to such an outstanding start that I can't wait to see what this creative team does not only with the rest of the serial killer story, but well beyond it.

http://www.hitfix.com/whats-alan-watching/review-fxs-the-bridge-a-gripping-look-at-crime-on-el-pasojuarez-border
post #88175 of 93688
TV Notes
On The Air Tonight
WEDNESDAY 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)

ABC:
8PM - The Middle
(R - May 1)
8:30PM - Family Tools (Series Finale)
9PM - Modern Family
(R - May 1)
9:31PM - The Neighbors
(R - Dec. 12)
10PM - ABC's The Lookout
* * * *
11:35PM - Jimmy Kimmel Live! (Kevin Nealon; Michael B. Jordan; Karmin performs)
12:37AM - Nightline

CBS:
8PM - Big Brother SD
9PM - The American Baking Competition (Season Finale)
10PM - Criminal Minds
(R - Oct. 24)
* * * *
11:35PM - Late Show with David Letterman (Salma Hayek Pinault; Tony Hale; Houndmouth performs)
12:37AM - Late Show with Craig Ferguson (Cedric the Entertainer; Jess Weixler)

NBC:
8PM - America's Got Talent
(R - Jun. 18)
9PM - America's Got Talent
10PM - Camp (Series Premiere)
* * * *
11:35PM - The Tonight Show With Jay Leno (John Malkovich; Olivia Munn; Blackberry Smoke performs)
12:37AM - Late Night With Jimmy Fallon (Adam Sandler; Mireille Enos; Eleanor Friedberger sits in with The Roots)
1:36AM - Last Call with Carson Daly (Zach Braff; author Neil Gaiman; METZ performs)
(R - May 8)

FOX:
8PM - MasterChef (120 min.)

PBS:
(check your local listing for starting time/programming)
8PM - NOVA: Building Pharaoh's Chariot (R - Feb. 6)
9PM - Secrets of the Dead: Ultimate Tut (120 min.)

UNIVISION:
8PM - Porque El Amor Manda
9PM - Amores Verdaderos
10PM - Qué Bonito Amor

THE CW:
8PM - Arrow
(R - Jan. 30)
9PM - Supernatural
(R - May 1)

TELEMUNDO:
8PM - Dama y Obrero
9PM - Marido en Alquiler (Series Premiere)
10PM - El Señor de los Cielos

TBS:
11PM - Conan (Kevin Bacon; Charlie Hunnam; Bernhoft)

E!:
11PM - Chelsea Lately (Channing Tatum; Sarah Colonna; Julian McCullough; Gary Valentine)
(R - Jun. 27)
post #88176 of 93688
TV Review
‘Camp,’ up a creek without a paddle
NBC dramedy over-reaches by mixing teen and adult romance
By Tom Conroy, Media Life Magazine - Jul. 8, 2013

There’s a good reason that teen sex comedy is a genre and teen sex dramedy isn’t. There’s also a good reason not to combine a teen sex dramedy with a single-mom sex dramedy.

Those are two lessons to be taken from NBC’s new series “Camp.”

The people who could take the romantic problems of its teenage characters seriously are probably too young for the smutty humor, and they’re definitely too young to care at all about the fortysomething main character’s adult dating issues. Grown-ups who might identify with the older protagonist should be ashamed of themselves if they get caught up in the teens’ story lines.

By aiming at a too broad demographic, the show misses everyone in it.

Premiering this Wednesday, July 10, at 10 p.m., “Camp” stars Rachel Griffiths as Mackenzie Granger, the owner of a lakeside camp called Little Otter. As the summer season opens, Mackenzie is recovering from her divorce from Steve (Jonathan LaPaglia), who has recently left her for a young Russian “esthetician,” prompting everyone, including their teenage son, Buzz (Charles Grounds), to make jokes about bikini waxes.

Since Steve wants to be paid for his share in the camp, Rachel is under pressure to sell to Roger (Rodger Corser), the handsome, twice-divorced guy who owns the fancier camp across the lake. She and Roger have a love-hate-flirt relationship just like those we’ve seen on TV. (Oddly, although all of the principal actors seem to be Australian, Rodger Courser is the only one who speaks in his native accent.)

In the course of the three episodes that were made available for review, we learn that Rachel’s handsome and inappropriately young handyman, Cole (Nikolai Nikolaeff) may, as they say on TV, “have feelings” for her.

The younger characters’ problems mainly revolve around sex. In a scene that could come from any teen sex comedy, Buzz tells a fellow counselor in training that he has a timetable for the various milestones of sex he’s going to pass this summer. “By the Fourth of July,” he says, “I’m going downtown. By the end of summer, I’m getting laid — or at least a BJ.”

Buzz has a fine time smoking marijuana in the premiere, and in a later episode, his mother walks in on him while he’s, uh, concentrating intently on a swimsuit catalog. Parents who have been letting their kids watch TV later since school is out are forewarned.

Two new counselors in training, Kip (Thom Green) and Marina (Lily Sullivan), becomes friends right away, partly because each is hiding something. We learn her secret first: She sent a picture of herself flashing her chest to a boy who shared the picture with everyone in their school. Three mean-girl counselors keep snubbing or insulting her.

Two senior counselors, Robbie (Tim Pocock) and Sarah (Dena Kaplan) have to decide if they’re going to maintain their decade-long camp romance, which they put on hold every fall.

All the ingredients for a guilty-pleasure sex comedy are here — going for the cliché, the writers even make Roger’s camp counselors a bunch of preppy-jock bullies — but the show pulls back. Sarah starts a serious flirtation with a successful novelist, Miguel Santos (Juan Pablo Di Pace), who is renting a cabin nearby, jeopardizing her relationship with Robbie.

In later episodes, Robbie deals with his mother’s gambling addiction; Kip’s secret turns out to be rather depressing; and Buzz spends most of his time dealing with his parents’ divorce.

Mackenzie’s adult issues pale by comparison. She passes her evenings drinking while discussing her sex life with the parents of some of her campers, who seem to be living on the grounds with them for the duration. These scenes might please “Cougar Town” fans, but teen-sex fans will be reaching for the remote.

Never quite funny, dramatic or sexy enough, “Camp” is simply dull. Viewers will be forgiven for hoping that maybe a hockey-mask-wearing killer will come rising out of that lake.

http://www.medialifemagazine.com/camp-up-a-creek-without-a-paddle/
post #88177 of 93688
TV Review
Need a Chris O'Dowd fix? Drop by 'Moone Boy'
An imaginary friend, played by the 'Family Tree' star, figures prominently in this sweet, eccentric jaunt back to 1989 Ireland.
By Robert Lloyd, Los Angeles Times - Jul. 9, 2013

Like it were planned, and perhaps it was, American fans of Chris O'Dowd left bereft by the end of Christopher Guest's HBO series "Family Tree" may jump, as from a lovely frying pan into a really nice fire, to O'Dowd's own "Moone Boy," which begins streaming Wednesday on Hulu.

As it happens — and not surprisingly, given that the improvisatory "Family Tree" made much use of O'Dowd's own voice — the two series have a lot in common. Both are sweet and a little eccentric, interested in small things and informed by the creator-star's seeming good nature, though perhaps that is just the soft music of the accent. (I think perhaps you should read this whole review in that accent.) He may be a raging tyrant offstage, for all I know, but "Moone Boy" does not seem to me the sort of series a raging tyrant would bother, were he at all able, to make.

It begins: "Ever wanted to be the imaginary friend of an idiot boy in the West of Ireland? Me neither, but there you go."

PHOTOS: Celebrity Web series

The speaker is Seán Murphy (O'Dowd), imaginary friend; Martin Moone (a marvelous David Rawle), the so-called idiot boy, is the youngest and only male child of four. They live together, on their intersecting planes, in the small country town of Boyle, County Roscommon, which is O'Dowd's hometown as well. The year is 1989, a time of change, for our hero and his people, but as old-fashioned as Mayberry from the super-connected aspect of now.

"Hello, Mr. Farmer! Hello, Mr. Farmer's dog," cries Martin as he rides by on his cereal coupon-bought birthday bike, soon to be dismantled by twin bullies. (His father, played by Peter McDonald, having armed himself with a small hammer, will pay a visit to the bullies' father, who will invite him in for a "quick cuppa tea — did I say tea? I meant gin." It is that sort of series.)

He is a dreamy youth, a little slow, but also a little clever. We meet him trying to revive a dead bird ("You'll be back on your feet in no time, Mrs. Magpie"); failing that, he draws its picture, which, as with other drawings throughout the show, springs to animated life. And Seán, within the limits of his invisibility, is unfailingly supportive:

"Mom says you were a mistake," says a surly sister.

"Not a mistake!" Seán pipes up in support. "An accident!"

And later, after a sudden attack of puberty:

Martin: "Oh my God, what was that?"

Seán: "Maybe an allergy thing? Oh, had you eaten strawberries?"

The series has some of the youth-as-legend feel of American shows such as "Malcolm in the Middle" and "Everybody Hates Chris," or the movie "A Christmas Story." It's the imaginary friend who narrates here and not the child — though, as Martin grows up to be, in a sense, O'Dowd, we may regard them nearly as one. (Seán has some independent agency, however — when a beloved uncle advises Martin to grow up, Seán heads off to shoot pool with some other rejected imaginary friends.)

Co-written by O'Dowd with Nick Vincent Murphy, it is a finely crafted little jewel of a show. Its humor is quiet — which is not to say polite or conventional — but nearly every laugh line delivers. You want to turn the dialogue over in your hand in appreciation. It leaves you feeling happy, without ever trying to make you "feel good."

There are only six episodes in the season; the trick will be not to watch them all at once. Then again, second and third series are already underway — so, all right, go ahead.

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/tv/showtracker/la-et-st-0710-moone-boy-20130710,0,1996947.story
post #88178 of 93688
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jedi Master View Post

It looks like people are tired of feeding this greedy monopoly and they are tuning out. If you are greedy it will come back to bite you.
Monopoly? Last I looked, there are a LOT of cable sports networks. I rather doubt the decline is a chunk of the population saying "we're not gonna take it anymore" and tuning the channel out because they're angry over their business practices. More likely, the other cable networks have attracted enough of the audience to affect ESPNs numbers. Hockey's on NBCSN, Baseball's mostly on Fox Sports regionals.. even CBS Sports Net is stealing eyeballs and on and on and on. Not a monopoly by any stretch of the imagination.
post #88179 of 93688
Quote:
Originally Posted by dad1153 View Post

Technology/Business Notes
3-D at home not the ticket it is in theaters
ESPN's recent announcement that it will shutter its ESPN 3D broadcast channel doesn't mean the death knell for 3-D at home.

"ESPN truly was ahead of its time," Jaffe says. "We think there is tremendous benefit to in-home 3-D. It hasn't taken off for a variety of reasons. Will it translate to the home? We still believe the answer to that is yes."

Without glasses and as a no extra cost feature when you buy a set? Sure. Otherwise, no. The marketing was way ahead of the actual interest here given the current tech.
post #88180 of 93688
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDon View Post

Monopoly? Last I looked, there are a LOT of cable sports networks. I rather doubt the decline is a chunk of the population saying "we're not gonna take it anymore" and tuning the channel out because they're angry over their business practices. More likely, the other cable networks have attracted enough of the audience to affect ESPNs numbers. Hockey's on NBCSN, Baseball's mostly on Fox Sports regionals.. even CBS Sports Net is stealing eyeballs and on and on and on. Not a monopoly by any stretch of the imagination.

Same with college football, which is huge down here - yeah ESPN family gets a lot of the good games but so does CBS and Fox plus the Fox SNs, and even the CW local here with the ACC network. No way are they a monopoly and if they ever bailed on the SEC package frex there would be plenty of others stepping in.
post #88181 of 93688
Quote:
Originally Posted by dad1153 View Post

Business Notes
ESPN Takes A Hit As Q2 Ratings Dive 32% Over 2012
By Erik Pedersen, Deadline.com - Jul. 9, 2013

Is the Worldwide Leader looking over its shoulder? Two months after laying off hundreds of staffers and three weeks before the launch of Fox’s rival sports network, ESPN saw its second-quarter ratings plunge compared with last year. Sports Business Daily reports that the Disney-owned sports behemoth saw a 32% ratings dive for the April-to-June period versus the same period in 2012.

The discrepancy is due in part to the network’s rotten luck with a little-watched NBA Western Conference Finals — the San Antonio Spurs’ sweep/beatdown of the Memphis Grizzlies — compared with its airing of the thrilling 2012 Eastern Conference Finals, in which the Miami Heat beat the Boston Celtics in seven games. But the bad news gets worse: ESPN also posted its lowest total-day numbers since the George W. Bush administration, down 20% to an average of 715K viewers on a 24-hour basis.

The depressed numbers come despite record viewership for The Masters in April and near-record tune-in for the NBA Draft. But Credit Suisse analyst Michael Senno is upbeat about ESPN going forward; he reiterated his “outperform” recommendation for Disney shares this week and raised his target price for the stock by $1 to $74. Football will be a salve for the recent burns in the late summer and fall, when ESPN starts airing NCAA games and NFL Monday Night Football.

But before that, on August 17, Fox Sports 1 will take the field — and Wall Street predicts that it will be a winner. The News Corp-owned 24-hour sports net plans to announce its pending arrival in a big way next week with a 90-second ad during Fox’s coverage of the Major League Baseball All-Star Game. Call it a brushback pitch.

http://www.deadline.com/2013/07/espn-takes-a-hit-as-q2-ratings-dive-32-over-2012/

Many people are growing increasingly tired of ESPN's over-the-top promotion and self-promotion and their on-air personalities.
post #88182 of 93688
Critic's Notes
Bianculli's Best Bets
By David Bianculli, TVWorthWatching.com - Jul. 10, 2013

TO ROME WITH LOVE
Starz!, 7:05 p.m. ET

This 2012 Woody Allen movie may not have captured attention like its immediate predecessor, Midnight in Paris, but as a cleverly written and performed love letter to another global city, it’s nearly as endearing. Among the standout plots and performances, watch for Roberto Benigni as an ordinary Italian citizen who suddenly is celebrated and hounded by the media and surrounded by all the trappings of stardom, for no discernible reason. It’s Allen’s most overt take on celebrity culture since Stardust Memories and, yes, Celebrity.

GASLAND PART II
HBO2, 8:00 p.m. ET

Just another urging to watch Josh Fox’s follow-up to his 2010 documentary about the history and impact of the natural-gas mining technique known as fracking. The conclusion asserts strongly that we’re all about to become victims of an international, multi-generational scam, committing nationally to the procedure of allowing companies to pursue fracking to generate natural gas as a domestic alternative to buying foreign oil – then turning around and selling that natural gas, at much higher profits, overseas, raising our own oil prices as a result. It’s a depressing conclusion, but one that demands attention and consideration, just like the rest of this follow-up documentary.

FUTURAMA
Comedy Central, 10:00 p.m. ET

Imagine the SPF sunblock number Fry and company have to use here: In order to take a job involving miners on the inside of the sun, our animated heroes have to spray themselves with a protective coating. Considering that this is one of two Matt Groening TV cartoons, it’s worth noting that the spray-on color employed here is somewhat… Simpsons-esque. I’m just saying.

THE BRIDGE
FX, 10:00 p.m. ET
SERIES PREMIERE:
Diane Kruber and Demian Bichir star in this new murder mystery series, adapted from a Scandinavian series and transplanted to the U.S.-Mexico border. Imagine The Killing with sunny skies instead of rain, and with occasional subtitles, and you’ve got some idea of what to expect. But expect more than just that, because in terms of both performance and plot, The Bridge is well above average. For full reviews, see Eric Gould’s Cold Light Reader, and read or hear my own review on NPR’s Fresh Air with Terry Gross.

CAMP
NBC, 10:01 p.m. ET
SERIES PREMIERE:
This summer TV series about summer camp probably won’t be viewed by its perfect target audience, because summer campers will be… away at camp. But even the promos for this new comedy-drama feature a few laughs, which are a few laughs more than many NBC comedies these days. And the leading character, a woman who inherited the camp and continues to run it after her husband suddenly walks out, is played by Rachel Griffiths, who won so many fans in both Six Feet Under and Brothers & Sisters. So that’s one reason to give this new summer series a try. Other reasons? It’s not a rerun, and it’s not a reality show.


http://www.tvworthwatching.com/
post #88183 of 93688
TV/Washington Notes
Senator Seeks F.C.C. Review of WWOR-TV’s License
By Brian Stelter, The New York Times - Jul. 10, 2013

WWOR, the New Jersey-based television station, faced a new challenge to its license on Tuesday from United States Senator Robert Menendez.

Mr. Menendez, a Democrat, wrote to the Federal Communications Commission to urge a “prompt and thorough review” of the license that permits WWOR to profit from the public airwaves. His letter came one day after the station replaced its traditional half-hour nightly newscast, the only daily news on its schedule, with a tabloid-style magazine program called “Chasing New Jersey.”

“In light of WWOR’s decision to drop their nightly news programming, a decision which affects millions of New Jerseyans, it is becoming increasingly critical that the F.C.C. make a determination about WWOR’s license and whether they are adequately serving New Jersey as the law and F.C.C. rules stipulate,” Mr. Menendez wrote to Mignon L. Clyburn, the acting chair of the commission.

WWOR, the only big commercial station in the state and otherwise served by the New York and Philadelphia media markets, has been controversial for some time because its license specifically asserts that the station must pay special attention to the people of northern New Jersey. Since 2001, the station has been owned by the News Corporation, which last month split into two companies, the News Corporation and 21st Century Fox. WWOR is now part of 21st Century Fox.

When the station’s license expired in 2007, the F.C.C. declined to renew it, but did not revoke it either, allowing the station to continue operating in the interim. Station licenses are typically renewed every eight years, so WWOR is now approaching its next scheduled review period.

In his letter on Tuesday, Mr. Menendez hinted that he believed that the license should be taken away from 21st Century Fox. Such a move by the F.C.C. is extremely rare. Since Ms. Clyburn’s term as chairwoman is temporary — Tom Wheeler, President Obama’s pick to be the next chairman, is awaiting Senate confirmation — the commission may tread especially carefully. A spokesman for the F.C.C. declined to comment on Tuesday night. A spokesman for Mr. Menendez said the senator had reached out to Mr. Wheeler to schedule a meeting about the matter.

With the letter, Mr. Menendez appeared to be picking up where his late Senate colleague, Frank R. Lautenberg, left off. Mr. Lautenberg, a longtime critic of WWOR, died last month. The New Jersey governor, Chris Christie, appointed Jeffrey Chiesa, the state’s attorney general, to be Mr. Lautenberg’s interim replacement in the Senate. A special election to fill the seat is scheduled to take place in October.

“It is my hope and will be my mission to see that Senator Lautenberg’s longstanding and well-founded concerns are not forgotten,” Mr. Menendez wrote.

When reached for comment, a spokeswoman for WWOR did not directly address Mr. Menendez’s comments, but she provided a statement from the station’s vice president and station manager, Dianne Doctor, who defended the new programming strategy.

“Based in Trenton, ‘Chasing NJ’ is a news program immersed in all aspects of the state,” she said. “Politics. People. Issues. It’s enterprise journalism that no one else is doing.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/10/business/media/senator-seeks-fcc-review-of-wwor-tvs-license.html?ref=television&_r=0
post #88184 of 93688
Quote:
Originally Posted by dad1153 View Post

TV/Washington Notes
Senator Seeks F.C.C. Review of WWOR-TV’s License
By Brian Stelter, The New York Times - Jul. 10, 2013

“Based in Trenton, ‘Chasing NJ’ is a news program immersed in all aspects of the state,” she said. “Politics. People. Issues. It’s enterprise journalism that no one else is doing.”

With its format they should just call it "TMZ NJ" but if it means less Russ Salzberg im all for it. biggrin.gif
post #88185 of 93688
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDon View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by NetworkTV View Post

I'm not even sure how bankruptcy law even can allow for something like that to happen.

Where was that $2.7 Billion hiding out all this time?
They've emerged from bankruptcy. Therefore, the law doesn't apply. Was this a cash deal? I really don't know, but it's much easier to get a line of credit once you've re-organized under Chapter 11.. which is what I thought the whole point of Chapter 11 is: Reorganize debts and contracts and emerge as a profitable entity. Profitable entities are free to take out loans to buy businesses. But, as I said, if it's a cash deal, then I wanna know where it came from, too wink.gif. Heck, I'm still trying to figure out how K-Mart bought Sears.

Part cash, part line of credit (something like $4B). Remember it is mostly the old creditors own it now.
post #88186 of 93688
TUESDAY's fast affiliate overnight prime-time ratings -and what they mean- have been posted on Analyst Marc Berman's Media Insight's Blog
post #88187 of 93688
Nielsen Overnights (18-49)
‘America’s Got Talent’ lifts NBC to No. 1
Reality show rises 4 percent over last week
By Toni Fitzgerald, Media Life Magazine - Jul. 10, 2013

“America’s Got Talent” rose week to week and boosted NBC to another easy Tuesday night win.

The veteran reality show averaged a 2.5 adults 18-49 rating, according to Nielsen overnights, up 4 percent over last week.

It was easily the No. 1 show of the night, well ahead of Univision’s “Amores Verdaderos,” which was second with a 1.6.

That lifted Univision into a second-place tie on the night with Fox.

At 8 p.m., Fox’s two-hour “So You Think You Can Dance” remained even to last week with a 1.5.

ABC’s “Extreme Weight Loss” rose 10 percent from last week to a 1.1 at 8 p.m.

And the series finale of Telemundo’s “La Patrona” drew a 1.0, a good rating for the network, with a two-hour sendoff at 9 p.m. that peaked with a 1.2 in its final hour.

NBC was first for the night among 18-49s with a 2.0 average overnight rating and a 6 share. Fox and Univision tied for second at 1.5/5, CBS was fourth at 1.0/3, ABC fifth at 0.9/3, Telemundo sixth at 0.8/3 and CW seventh at 0.2/1.

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-eight percent of Nielsen households have DVRs.

At 8 p.m. Fox and Univision tied for first at 1.5, Fox for “Dance” and Univision for “Porque el Amor Manda.” CBS was third with a 1.1 for a repeat of “NCIS.” ABC and NBC tied for fourth at 1.0, ABC for “Extreme Weight Loss” and NBC for reruns of “Betty White’s Off Their Rockers.” Telemundo was sixth with a 0.5 for “Dama y Obrero” and CW seventh with a 0.2 for a repeat of “Hart of Dixie.”

NBC took the lead at 9 p.m. with a 2.3 for “Talent,” while Univision came in second with a 1.6 for “Verdaderos.” Fox was third with a 1.4 for more “Dance,” ABC fourth with a 1.1 for another hour of “Weight,” CBS fifth with a 1.0 for a repeat of “NCIS: Los Angeles,” Telemundo sixth with a 0.9 for the first hour of “Patrona” and CW seventh with a 0.1 for a repeat of “America’s Next Top Model.”

At 10 p.m. NBC led again with a 2.7 for more “Talent,” with Univision second with a 1.4 for “Que Bonito Amor.” Telemundo was third with a 1.2 for more “Patrona,” CBS fourth with a 0.9 for a repeat of “Person of Interest” and ABC fifth with a 0.5 for a “Body of Proof” rerun.

NBC also finished first for the night among households with a 4.6 average overnight rating and an 8 share, edging out second-place CBS’s 4.5/8. Fox was third at 2.7/5, ABC fourth at 2.2/4, Univision fifth at 1.8/3, Telemundo sixth at 1.1/2 and CW seventh at 0.3/1.

http://www.medialifemagazine.com/americas-got-talent-lifts-nbc-to-no-1/

* * * *

TV Notes
Alas, no handyman fix for ‘Family Tools’
ABC sitcom didn't premiere until May and was axed quickly
By Louisa Ada Seltzer, Media Life Magazine - Jul. 8, 2013

After the success of “Home Improvement” all those years ago, you can’t blame ABC for trying another comedy about home improvement called “Family Tools.”

Unfortunately, all the things that “Improvement” had going for it, like a great cast, slick writing and a great timeslot, were lacking on “Tools,” which airs its series finale tonight on ABC at 8:30 p.m.

“Tools” never made much of an impression. The show, about a man who returns home to take over his ailing father’s hardware business, debuted in May to lackluster numbers.

Less than two weeks after its premiere, ABC canceled the show though leaving it on the air to run out the season. The show was averaging a mere 1.3 adults 18-49 Nielsen rating and seeing almost no DVR gains.

It’s the fourth and final comedy that premiered on the Big Four during the past two months to end its run. All of the others (NBC’s “Save Me,” Fox’s “Goodwin Games” and ABC’s “How to Live With Your Parents (For the Rest of Your Life”) were also canceled before their finales aired.

Ultimately “Tools’” only real function was reminding people about the golden days of family comedy 20 years ago, when “Improvement” and “Roseanne” were drawing huge ratings for ABC.

Though there are a lot of funny shows on TV now, from “New Girl” to “The Big Bang Theory” to “Parks and Recreation,” few of them have the family elements that made those shows work.

http://www.medialifemagazine.com/alas-no-fix-for-family-tools/
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Critic's Notes
A Passion Born in Stolen Glimpses
A Young TV Lover Grows Up to Be a TV Critic
By Alessandra Stanley, The New York Times - Jul. 10, 2013

I once met a gallery owner who told me that he fell in love with art by watching “I Dream of Jeannie.” This refined man grew up in a sterile suburb in the Southwest and was raised entirely on sitcoms. He recalled the jolt of pleasure he felt when the show took viewers inside Jeannie’s bottle, to a sumptuous décor that — as he remembered it — included a Chinese vase next to an oil painting.

A few years later, he felt that pang again on his first trip to a museum; there was a Ming vase next to a Picasso. He moved to New York to study art and never left. When I met him, his gallery specialized in early-20th-century Italian drawings.

That is not my story.

My favorite show as a toddler was “La Lucha” and featured huge men in tights hugging each other. That’s what Pilar, our Spanish baby sitter, called professional wrestling. “Los Tontos,” her name for the other show she turned on when our parents were out, was “The Three Stooges.”

I would have watched the test pattern. Television was all but forbidden when I was growing up. It’s not that my parents had high standards or academic expectations. They were of a time when adults set limits just because they could.

Sometimes we were allowed to watch “Perry Mason” because my grandfather liked it; my parents liked “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.,” so they let us watch that, on occasion. When they went out, we watched what Pilar liked. Pilar liked “La Lucha.” I loved it.

I don’t remember the Kennedy assassination well, but I do remember that all regular programming, including cartoons and professional wrestling, was pre-empted for the funeral. I cried all day.

We moved to Paris when I was 9, and all the restrictions were waived. Our parents wanted us to learn the language quickly, so they told us we could watch as much French television as we wanted. The problem was, back then there was one state-controlled network and almost no entertainment. I became obsessed with “Thierry la Fronde,” the adventures of a Robin Hood-like rebel resisting the British occupation during the Hundred Years’ War.

That period of deprivation cemented a lifelong passion for television as acute as the diabetic’s craving for chocolate, the smoker’s need for a puff. I watched “Star Trek” in secret in high school and then defiantly in college. Most undergraduates were too busy, too high-minded or just too high to watch television.

I don’t often get asked to speak at graduations or school assemblies, probably because my message is a bleak one: Limit television at your own peril, because just saying no can cause addiction.

It never occurred to me in college that I could work in television, or write about it. Many classmates went into law, medicine or the fine arts. I drifted into journalism, covering politics and foreign affairs and all kinds of news. Television was a slightly shameful pastime, a notch below doll collecting. It wasn’t until I went overseas as a foreign correspondent and wrote about Russian sitcoms and Italian game shows that it occurred to me that maybe I could someday write about American television.

When I asked to be considered for the job of television critic, my husband at the time, Michael Specter, warned my editors that it would be like sending a cocaine addict to head The New York Times’s bureau in Bogotá, Colombia.

Nobody nowadays asks me how can I bear watching so much trash. Television in the last decade has gotten better and better. All the talent and creativity that used to turn to the movie industry has found more receptive soil on television. Now it’s the film critics who receive pitying looks.

It’s been almost 10 years, and not a day goes by when I don’t celebrate my good fortune. Every day is Christmas morning. I spring out of bed, knowing that I get to spend most of the day watching TV. I have friends, really smart friends who write books and edit magazines, who watch almost as much television as I do. They just don’t get paid to do it.

I take the responsibility seriously. When my daughter, Emma, walks into my office while I’m watching television, I say, often huffily, “Can’t you see I’m working?” Once, when she was in eighth grade, I came home to find her in my office, watching TV with her feet up on my desk, a pen in one hand like a cigarette and a soda in the other. I screeched. Without looking up she replied: “Relax, Mom. It’s Take Your Daughter to Work Day.”

Emma has always watched as much TV as she wanted. (My most painful moment in the delivery room was when the obstetrician turned off the “Today” show.) She knows Gilbert and Sullivan because of “The West Wing” and recently waved her phone and complained, “I’ve been on hold for an entire episode of “Will & Grace.”

And yet, I sometimes feel guilty for spending eight hours straight catching up with Season 6 of “Mad Men.”

That’s until I am reminded that it’s my job. Reading a book or going for a walk is, at best, a distraction; at worst, it’s a dereliction of duty.

A childhood without art turned a sensitive boy into a gallery owner. I became a television critic because it was the forbidden fruit of my youth. Be careful what you deprive your children of — they may spend their adult lives catching up on what they missed.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/11/arts/television/a-tv-lover-grows-up-to-be-a-tv-critic.html?ref=television&_r=0
post #88189 of 93688
TV Notes
Summer Glau To Recur On CW’s ‘Arrow’
By The Deadline.com Team - Jul. 10, 2013

Summer Glau has been cast in a recurring role on the CW‘s Arrow, which kicks off its second season October 9. Glau, who has amassed plenty of genre street cred in TV series like Joss Whedon’s Firefly and Dollhouse, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles and most recently as a recurring on Syfy’s Alphas, is set to play the dangerous Isabel Rochev, Vice President of Acquisitions of Stellmoor International, a company looking to take over Queen Consolidated.

Arrow gained an early second season pickup in February and was the CW’s breakout hit last season, performing strongly after it posted the network’s best series-premiere numbers since 2009. Glau is repped by UTA and the Schiff Co.

http://www.deadline.com/2013/07/summer-glau-to-recur-on-cws-arrow/
post #88190 of 93688
TV Notes
5 Great International Shows That Should Be Streaming
By Margaret Lyons, Vulture.com (New York Magazine) - Jul. 10, 2013

FX's new Tex-Mex serial killer drama The Bridge premieres tonight (10 p.m.), and it's pretty good. (Read Matt Zoller Seitz's review here.) The series is based on a Danish and Swedish show called Bron/Broen, though, and that show is really good. But it's far from the only international series we're dying to be shown on American TV. There are loads and loads of other recent international shows we wish would formally air or stream in the U.S., but thanks to the magical powers of the Internet, even though these shows aren't technically "available" in the States, they're, well, pretty available. If you're poking around the unofficial TV corners of the Internet, this is what to watch next.

Borgen: This 2010 political drama centers on the first female prime minister of Denmark, Birgette Nyborg, but unlike American political characters who tend to be either secretly villainous or superhumanly valorous, Nyborg's more like an actual person. (An awesome actual person with a super-hot husband, but still pretty regs.) There are 30 episodes over three seasons, but the show's so compulsively watchable that will seem like a tragically small number. Feminism! Lefty politics! Deep familial love!

The Politician's Husband: Former Doctor Who David Tennant stars as the titular husband in this gripping three-part miniseries from the U.K., which just aired there last spring. Said politician is Emily Watson, and their characters' marriage is fascinatingly dysfunctional: Both husband and wife are politicians, but her star rises as his suddenly fades, disrupting the awkward power balance in the bedroom, in their household, in the halls of parliament. The combo of light kink and severe cynicism is basically irresistible. (BBC America excitedly wrote about the show in April, but gave no indication of if or when it would run in the States.)

Blackstone: This under-the-radar Canadian drama airs on APTN — the Aboriginal People's Television Network — but it's so bleak and gutsy it would be at home on FX, HBO, or AMC. (Well, it would if those channels decided to air shows that were not almost exclusively about white people.) Blackstone is about the internal politics, power-grabs, and violence within the (fictional) Blackstone First Nation reserve — troubled teens, scheming elders, the whole shebang. There's some talk of the show airing in the U.S., luckily.

The Returned (Les Revenants): French ghosts! They're French, they're ghosts, it's a French ghost drama, and it's great. Deceased residents of a small French town return to their lives as if nothing has happened and they haven't been dead for years. (It's a similar premise to the ABC's upcoming fall drama Resurrection.) It's both sad and spooky.

Puberty Blues: If you can't get onboard with a seventies-set Australian coming-of-age drama, you have no business watching television. Based on the book (and movie) of the same name, the show follows teenage BFFs and their respective families through the ups and downs of jazzy seventies sexual awakenings with a gentle pacing and understated simplicity. Surfing, hanging out, squabbling — not everything has to be ghosts and prime ministers.

http://www.vulture.com/2013/07/5-great-shows-that-should-be-streaming.html
post #88191 of 93688
TV Notes
Saturday Turns Into Burnoff Bonanza for Broadcasters
By Rick Kissell, Variety.com - Jul. 10, 2013

Fans of ratings-challenged series often cling to the flimsiest threads of hope that their shows will stick around.

But there’s one sure-fire sign that the network sees no future for your fave: Said show is airing an original episode on a Saturday night of a holiday weekend.

Last Saturday saw a virtual broadcast burnoff bonanza as four failed shows spread across three networks aired original episodes — to predictably meager ratings.

CBS’ “Brooklyn DA” was the “winner” among them with 2.41 million, followed by ABC’s “Zero Hour” (1.89 million) and “666 Park Avenue” (1.88 million) and NBC’s “Do No Harm” (1.56 million). None was among the night’s eight most-watched programs, according to Nielsen.

These shows ended up playing in firstrun on Fourth of July weekend after ingloriously short runs in their original timeslots. “666 Park Avenue” (pictured above) played nine times on Sunday last fall and was probably the only one of the bunch that could put up a reasonable argument for being pulled too soon.

It averaged a 2.4 rating in adults 18-49 — higher than eight scripted series returning this fall on ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox. (And ABC fared much worse with the show that replaced “666″ in the spring, “Red Widow”).

“Do No Harm” and “Zero Hour” were Thursday dramas that premiered with fairly high hopes in the February sweep — but they each aired just twice on the night. And “Brooklyn DA,” a summer unscripted series, aired twice on Tuesdays before shifting to Saturday last month.

The networks have been using Saturday to burn off shows for years.

Earlier this year, NBC demoted “Smash” from Tuesday to Saturday, where it aired most of its final episodes. And Fox used the Saturdays of Christmas and New Year’s week (as well as New Year’s Eve, a Monday) to unleash remaining episodes of failed fall drama “Mob Doctor.”

CBS was especially clever/cruel in the way it finished off “Made in Jersey.” The net brought it back for original episodes on Saturdays starting with Thanksgiving weekend and said goodbye to the show with back-to-back original episodes on Dec. 29.

The networks burn off episodes on little-watched nights to try to recoup some advertising money after making such a big financial commitment with a series order, typically of 13 episodes in length. But in some cases, like “Made in Jersey,” eight was enough.

http://variety.com/2013/tv/news/saturday-turns-into-burnoff-bonanza-for-broadcasters-1200560905/
post #88192 of 93688
Quote:
Originally Posted by dad1153 View Post

(quoting Louisa Ada Seltzer in Media Life Magazine from July 8, 2013)

After the success of “Home Improvement” all those years ago, you can’t blame ABC for trying another comedy about home improvement called “Family Tools.”
"Family Tools" does not have "Home Improvement" in its pedigree at all.  It descends from "Worst Week," where likewise Kyle Bornheimer played a hapless guy who couldn't please the authority figure from the previous generation no matter what.
post #88193 of 93688
Quote:
Originally Posted by dad1153 View Post

TV Notes
5 Great International Shows That Should Be Streaming
By Margaret Lyons, Vulture.com (New York Magazine) - Jul. 10, 2013

FX's new Tex-Mex serial killer drama The Bridge premieres tonight (10 p.m.), and it's pretty good. (Read Matt Zoller Seitz's review here.) The series is based on a Danish and Swedish show called Bron/Broen, though, and that show is really good. But it's far from the only international series we're dying to be shown on American TV. There are loads and loads of other recent international shows we wish would formally air or stream in the U.S., but thanks to the magical powers of the Internet, even though these shows aren't technically "available" in the States, they're, well, pretty available. If you're poking around the unofficial TV corners of the Internet, this is what to watch next.

Borgen: This 2010 political drama centers on the first female prime minister of Denmark, Birgette Nyborg, but unlike American political characters who tend to be either secretly villainous or superhumanly valorous, Nyborg's more like an actual person. (An awesome actual person with a super-hot husband, but still pretty regs.) There are 30 episodes over three seasons, but the show's so compulsively watchable that will seem like a tragically small number. Feminism! Lefty politics! Deep familial love!

The Politician's Husband: Former Doctor Who David Tennant stars as the titular husband in this gripping three-part miniseries from the U.K., which just aired there last spring. Said politician is Emily Watson, and their characters' marriage is fascinatingly dysfunctional: Both husband and wife are politicians, but her star rises as his suddenly fades, disrupting the awkward power balance in the bedroom, in their household, in the halls of parliament. The combo of light kink and severe cynicism is basically irresistible. (BBC America excitedly wrote about the show in April, but gave no indication of if or when it would run in the States.)

Blackstone: This under-the-radar Canadian drama airs on APTN — the Aboriginal People's Television Network — but it's so bleak and gutsy it would be at home on FX, HBO, or AMC. (Well, it would if those channels decided to air shows that were not almost exclusively about white people.) Blackstone is about the internal politics, power-grabs, and violence within the (fictional) Blackstone First Nation reserve — troubled teens, scheming elders, the whole shebang. There's some talk of the show airing in the U.S., luckily.

The Returned (Les Revenants): French ghosts! They're French, they're ghosts, it's a French ghost drama, and it's great. Deceased residents of a small French town return to their lives as if nothing has happened and they haven't been dead for years. (It's a similar premise to the ABC's upcoming fall drama Resurrection.) It's both sad and spooky.

Puberty Blues: If you can't get onboard with a seventies-set Australian coming-of-age drama, you have no business watching television. Based on the book (and movie) of the same name, the show follows teenage BFFs and their respective families through the ups and downs of jazzy seventies sexual awakenings with a gentle pacing and understated simplicity. Surfing, hanging out, squabbling — not everything has to be ghosts and prime ministers.

http://www.vulture.com/2013/07/5-great-shows-that-should-be-streaming.html
Could not agree more. I've seen Bron/Broen(The Bridge), Borgen and the first season of Blackstone and they are all high quality TV. The comment about Blackstone finding some air in the US is encouraging, it would be a great fit right after Longmire on A&E.
post #88194 of 93688
TV Notes
Cote De Pablo To Depart CBS’ ‘NCIS’
By The Deadline.com Team - Jul. 10, 2013

CBS has just confirmed that Cote de Pablo is not coming back for the 11th season of the network’s hit drama NCIS this fall, though she will appear long enough for her character Ziva David to finish out her storyline. CBS and producer CBS TV Studios said in a joint statement today that the decision was de Pablo’s to end her longtime run on the show. “We respect Cote’s decision, thank her for being an important part of the NCIS team, and for eight terrific years playing Ziva David”, the statement says. “Cote and CBS share a great respect for the NCIS audience, and we look forward to working with her and the producers on appropriate closure in this chapter of Ziva’s story.”

De Pablo had been the only other cast member without a deal (it expired at the end of the most current season) after star Mark Harmon re-upped in February, an agreement that allowed CBS to renew network TV’s most-watched drama soon after. Season 11 is set to premiere September 24. Most of the cast’s contracts are on a different schedule, with only Harmon and de Pablo up the same year. Michael Weatherly, Sean Murray, Pauley Perrette, Rocky Carroll, Brian Dietzen and David McCallum also star. Said de Pablo in her own statement today: “I’ve had 8 great years with NCIS and Ziva David. I have huge respect and affection for Mark, Gary, Michael, David, Rocky, Pauley, Brian, Sean, all of the team and CBS. I look forward to finishing Ziva’s story.”

This past season NCIS topped even NBC’s Sunday Night Football as TV’s most-watched series, averaging around 22 million viewers — up about 7% from previous season. It also ranked No. 1 in the 25-54 demo. NCIS is also licensed in more than 200 markets and ranks as cable’s No. 1 off-network drama in domestic syndication, boosting ratings for USA Network.

http://www.deadline.com/2013/07/cote-de-pablo-leaving-ncis/
post #88195 of 93688
Business Notes
To Cut Taxes, Tribune Is to Split Into Broadcasting and Publishing Units
By Christine Haughney and David Carr, The New York Times - Jul. 11, 2013

The Tribune Company’s decision to divide itself into separate broadcast and publishing companies may help avoid a big tax bill, but the split does not address the bigger problem facing newspaper executives: buyers just do not want to spend on print.

Months after Tribune announced it was exploring opportunities for its newspapers, including The Los Angeles Times and The Chicago Tribune, the company instead said on Wednesday that it would spin them off into a separate entity called the Tribune Publishing Company. In doing so, Tribune followed the example of Time Warner and News Corporation, which also recently announced spinoffs of their publishing businesses, even though print properties are the backbone of their companies.

“These companies were built on print. These guys are walking away from decades-long legacies. This is a big moment,” said Alan D. Mutter, a newspaper consultant who writes the blog Reflections of a Newsosaur. “It’s like everybody is saying, ‘We’re out.’ ”

By spinning off the newspapers instead of selling them, Tribune avoids the tax consequences of a sale in the near term while still allowing the company, now led by Peter Liguori, a longtime broadcasting executive, to focus its efforts on television, including 19 local stations that it acquired for $2.7 billion at the beginning of the month.

In making the announcement, Mr. Liguori said that “the separation is designed to allow each company to maximize its flexibility and competitiveness in a rapidly changing media environment.”

The spinoff of the newspapers leaves Tribune as largely a broadcasting company, which will include 42 local television stations and interests in the Food Network,Web sites like Classified Ventures and CareerBuilder and its real estate holdings, including the Tribune Tower in Chicago.

The new publishing company, which will have its own board and leadership, will include the Los Angeles and Chicago papers along with The Baltimore Sun, The Sun Sentinel in Florida, The Orlando Sentinel, The Hartford Courant and The Morning Call in Pennsylvania. The newspapers’ operational tie-ins with Tribune’s digital sites, a valuable part of the enterprise, will remain intact after the split.

The publishing side of Tribune actually had higher revenue than the broadcasting side in 2012 — $2 billion compared with $1.14 billion. But according to Ken Doctor, a newspaper analyst, publishing revenue at Tribune has dropped 51 percent from 2005 and 2011, mirroring the halving of revenue in the rest of the industry. The newspapers have had deep editorial cuts and a loss of luster after a debt-laden purchase by Sam Zell in 2007. In February, Tribune announced that it had hired Evercore Partners and JPMorgan Chase to look into the sale of its newspapers. Several bidders expressed interest, including Charles and David Koch, the conservative billionaires; Aaron Kushner, the owner of The Orange County Register; and a group led by Eli Broad, the Los Angeles billionaire. But the efforts to sell have proceeded slowly, and the financial deal books that generally precede a sale have yet to go out.

The spinoff does not preclude a quick sale of the newspapers, but because the necessary filings will take months to prepare and be followed by putting together a new board and leadership for the publishing enterprise, Tribune’s decision could push any sale further down the road.

Robert Willens, a longtime tax analyst who runs the firm Robert Willens L.L.C., said that Tribune could avoid roughly $250 million in taxes on the sale of its newspapers, which have been valued at roughly $623 million, by creating a separate company. He added that for the deal to pass muster with the Internal Revenue Service, Tribune just has to show that it has not had discussions over price with potential buyers for two years before the creation of the new company.

“People do spinoffs all the time for the purpose of avoiding taxes,” said Mr. Willens. “That’s the beauty of a spinoff. It permanently avoids the tax that would be payable on a more straightforward or conventional disposal of the business.”

The company, he noted, is already grappling with a $190 million tax bill, plus 20 percent penalty, on its sale of the Long Island newspaper Newsday to Cablevision in 2008. In its most recent earnings report, Tribune Company said that it also might have to pay an extra $225 million in taxes after the I.R.S. finishes auditing the company’s 2009 tax return over a sale of the Chicago Cubs baseball team.

Despite the immediate interest from bidders, Tribune faces a tough market for newspapers, especially large regional dailies that have been hit hard by changes in advertiser and consumer behavior. In October, The Tampa Tribune sold for a scant $9.5 million; Philadelphia’s newspapers sold for $55 million in April 2012 after fetching $515 million in 2006.

Some investors are so concerned about print that they will not buy any companies with publishing stakes, according to Reed Phillips, a managing partner for DeSilva & Phillips, a media banking firm. “Shareholders aren’t rewarding companies for being diversified anymore,” he said. “Print media, there’s a real negative connotation.”

He said investors wanted to see companies that were exclusively focused on print and were trying to show how they would make a profitable transition to digital. “They’re going to have to be transformed,” said Mr. Phillips about these print companies. “Then investors may get re-excited.”

John Morton, an independent newspaper analyst, expects that the new company will make it easier to sell the papers. It also means the new broadcasting company can assume the tax liabilities lingering from its sales of Newsday and the Chicago Cubs, rather than pass them on to the newspaper company.

The split, like News Corporation’s, is expected to take months and is subject to some regulatory approvals. Once the new publishing company is formed, it must operate for at least a year before selling assets, or the tax liabilities will revert to the original owner, said an executive involved in the deal who was not authorized to speak publicly about operational matter.

Those who have been kicking the tires on the company’s newspapers may be in for a long wait. Mr. Kushner, the owner of The Orange County Register, said that the latest announcement did not change his interest. “I don’t lose sleep about how long it’s going to take for them to spin off the newspapers or not,” he said. “I don’t think it has any particular bearing on the ultimate disposition of the newspapers.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/11/business/media/tribune-co-to-split-in-two.html?ref=media&_r=0
post #88196 of 93688
TV Review
'Sharknado': SyFy's latest shark movie, with Ian Ziering, Tara Reid and Cassie Scerbo, is wonderfully bad
By David Hinckley, New York Daily News - Jul. 11, 2013

“Sharknado” is bad to the bone.

It’s absurd. It’s ridiculous. If you’re a fan of low-budget horror movies and you miss it, you will regret it for the rest of your life.

“Sharknado” tops Syfy’s previous gem “Sharktopus” as effortlessly as a hungry fish drops out of the sky into the swimming pool at a retirement community.

Yes, that happens. And someone tells a retirement community resident, “Run!” And she replies, “I can’t run. I can’t even walk.”

The premise of “Sharknado,” just so no one accidentally mistakes it for “Argo,” is that a huge Pacific storm has morphed into tornados. As the waterspouts gain strength over the ocean off the coast of L.A., they suck up thousands of sharks.

When they move inland and lose power, they spill out the sharks like piñatas gone terribly wrong. The sharks swim along flooded freeways and slam through windows to gobble up people inside.

One shark not only finds a way to secure itself to the top of an SUV going 40 or 50 mph, but it pries open the moonroof to see what kind of tasty morsels are nervously waiting inside.

Nor does the human dialogue lack bite, with lines like “I hate sharks. I’m from Wyoming.”

And don’t think for a minute that being in “Sharknado” makes the actors seem ridiculous. On the contrary, stars Ian Ziering, Tara Reid and Cassie Scerbo make it look like a day at the beach. How often do you find a role where it’s impossible to overact?

“Sharknado” is an hour and a half of your life that you’ll never get back. And you won’t want to.

SHARKNADO
Network/Time: SyFy, Thursday at 9 p.m.
Rating: ★★★★ (out of five)


http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/tv-movies/sharknado-tv-review-article-1.1395021
post #88197 of 93688
TV Review
‘Hollywood Game Night,’ real celebs
NBC game show is the sort of game show not seen in years
By Tom Conroy, Media Life Magazine - Jul. 10, 2013

Current reality series like “Dancing With the Stars” and “Celebrity Ghost Stories” aren’t the first TV shows to debase the notion of stardom or celebrity by featuring supposedly famous people whose names need to be Googled to be recognized. For decades, game shows have left young viewers wondering exactly who were such so-called celebrities as Peggy Cass, Jaye P. Morgan, Brett Somers and Bruce Vilanch.

NBC’s new series “Hollywood Game Night” is basically an old-fashioned celebrity-panel game show, with one nontraditional element: The panelists are neither obscure nor washed-up. The star power and the relaxed atmosphere make for pleasant entertainment, even if 60 minutes is a little long for such fluff.

Premiering this Thursday, July 11, at 10 p.m., the show is supposedly based on the game nights hosted by one of its executive producers, the actor Sean Hayes. With the actress Jane Lynch as TV host, two teams consisting of a regular citizen and three celebrities compete in various party games.

The first episode’s celebrities are Martin Short, Alyson Hannigan, Kristen Bell, Daniel Dae Kim, Lisa Kudrow and Matthew Perry. Ignoring the remarkable fact that none of them is a former reality-show star, Lynch points out that this qualifies as a “Friends” reunion, even though Kudrow and Perry are no longer speaking to each other. Presumably this is a joke, but we never actually see Kudrow and Perry speaking to each other.

Short spends the most time goofing off, probably blowing some answers in the interest of getting laughs. Perry acts miffed when Lynch says that he has “the best hair in show business — but your hair isn’t looking so great today.” He acts grumpy for the rest of the show. The rest of the celebrities tend to concentrate on the games.

The regular folks are an insurance salesman named Kevin and a drug counselor named Amy. Lynch says Amy’s services would be probably be covered by the policies that Kevin sells. Although the line doesn’t get a big laugh, Lynch brags that it was an ad-lib.

The teams sit apart from each other on living-room couches, with glasses of what Lynch says is chardonnay close at hand.

The first game, called “Crunch Time,” involves looking at a photo of a snack food and guessing what it is. The teams compete in pairs, shuttling quickly between their couches and a podium with two buzzers. As Short and Kudrow cross paths, he pretends to grope her.

Rather than hazard a guess on a bowl of Tostitos, Short guesses that they’re “things that you find in Rush Limbaugh’s couch” and then accuses the show of giving Bell the correct answer.

Teasing the next game before a commercial break, Lynch says that the stars are “going to have to put aside their egos and come together as one. That seems unlikely, doesn’t it?”

In the game, the three celebrities help their civilian teammate guess a clue by giving clues of one word only. For example, for the answer “octopus,” Kim, Perry and Bell say, in order, “legs,” “eight” and “tentacles.” Unfortunately, Amy answers “spider.”

Having the advantage of seeing how it’s done, Kevin’s team rocks, and Short asks if they could be nicknamed “Smart” and the other team nicknamed “Sad.”

The next game has the players guess the identity of celebrity portraits — one of which is of a panelist on this very episode — that were painted by elementary-school students. Lynch keeps referring to the pictures as “portraitures.”

Then each team has to put a series of six red-carpet photos of a celebrity in chronological order. Lynch points out that Johnny Depp doesn’t seem to care anymore how he looks and that Brad Pitt is starting to resemble Jeff Bridges.

The last game is a rapid-fire version of charades in which the team members act out the titles of films: Team Kevin gets Tom Hanks movies; Team Amy gets Tom Cruise movies. Like most of the games, this has a strong “play along at home” element that makes it less boring than it sounds.

For the bonus round, in which both the civilian member of the winning team and one of his teammates could get up to $25,000 — the celebrity’s winning go to charity — the celebrity provides spoken clues to the identity of another celebrity: e.g., “big old booty” and “she’s from the block” are meant to evoke “Jennifer Lopez.” The celebrity will probably lose some Republican fans when they see she offered “she wanted to be vicepresident” and “really dumb” as clues for “Sarah Palin.”

Throughout, the low stakes and low payoff keep the focus on the stars, which will be fine for most viewers.

Since everyone seems to be having a good time, “Hollywood Game Night” should grab channel surfers and hold them until at least the next commercial break. Since it’s summer and the stakes are low in network TV, that payoff should be enough to keep the show on the air for a while.

http://www.medialifemagazine.com/hollywood-game-night-real-celebs/
post #88198 of 93688
TV Review
'Orange Is The New Black'
Subversive Netflix Prison Drama Proves Addictive
By Maureen Ryan, HuffingtonPost.com - Jul. 10, 2013

There was some grumbling when "Orange Is the New Black," a prison drama that debuts on Netflix Thursday, was renewed for a second season before the first had even appeared.

I couldn't happier about the early renewal. "Orange" is one of the best new programs of the year, and the six episodes I've seen have left me hungry to see more.

Creator Jenji Kohan hasn't just given us an intriguingly compromised lead character, she's also created an entire world, an alternately sly and sad pressure cooker that offers an enticing range of complicated relationships and unstable power dynamics. But what may be most impressive is the fact that Kohan and her writers have fun with a whole array of "Women in Prison" tropes while allowing many of the central characters to have dignity, depth and even moments of pathos. This mixture of melodrama, subversive comedy and drama could have been a big ol' mess, but "Orange" ends up a rich, flavorful stew.

In other words, "Orange" is the first Netflix original series that I'm seriously excited about. It doesn't have the big names of "House of Cards" or the name recognition of "Arrested Development," but it has vision and verve. It fits in well with the trend I've been calling "B-Movie TV": Like a host of other recent shows found online or on smaller networks, "Orange" is a scrappy, entertaining, low-budget program that doesn't try to be a Serious Drama, but instead uses the cover of a well-known genre to explore bracing and challenging places.

The center of "Orange's" prison saga is Piper Chapman (Taylor Schilling), an engaged yuppie whose life is turned upside-down by a criminal conviction. Something that Chapman did in her past comes back to haunt her, and before she knows it, she's gone from a Whole Foods-and-"Mad Men" lifestyle to a bunk in a federal prison. To say she is a fish out of water is putting it mildly.

The show certainly gets plenty of mileage out of Chapman's ongoing adjustment to prison culture, and Schilling plays her confusion and well-intentioned cluelessness with admirable resolve. Chapman desperately attempts to hang on to her old life -- during one phone conversation, she makes her fiancee (Jason Biggs) describe the groceries he's just bought, and she tries to keep managing the artisanal soap business she started with her best friend (fellow inmates are unimpressed by the fact that her products are sold at Barney's).

But the realization that her efforts to cling to her old life are doomed dawns on her slowly through her first few weeks in a federal pen. In order to fit into her new environment, Chapman has to get her head in the game; she has to stop thinking like a privileged, organic-produce-eating urbanite and create a cagier, tougher identity. But doing that creates a gulf between the new inmate and her friends and family, one that only grows during brief visits and phone calls (the show doesn't call attention to this running gag, but every single time Piper calls home, a woman on the next phone is crying).

It's a useful starting point for the show, but if "Orange" had focused too tightly on Chapman's story, it probably would have felt too claustrophobic (always a danger for prison-set shows). Kohan instead has given herself plenty of other directions in which to go by making the show a true ensemble piece: "Orange" explores the lives and connections of a whole host of prisoners, and flashbacks offer insight into how each of their lives ended up going off the rails. If I have one issue with "Orange," it's that these flashbacks could be even longer and meatier; the glimpses into the women's past lives are too tantalizingly brief in some cases.

Where "Orange" sometimes wobbles is in its structure: Episodes of "Weeds," which Kohan also created, clocked in at under half an hour, and at times "Orange" episodes feel like two half-hour segments mushed together. It's not bad that storytellers are playing around with the idea of what an episode actually is, given the possibilities of all these new delivery systems, but sometimes that feels like an excuse to meander. And some characters veer into caricature, most notably Taryn Manning's Southern inmate and Piper's WASP mom, played by Deborah Rush (who appeared as an identical character a few months ago on "Girls").

Still, given that most of "Orange's" running time is spent thoughtfully and wittily illuminating the lives of women whom most of society has rejected, the show's occasional lack of nuance and a mild tendency to sprawl are minor complaints. It's far easier to think of things to praise: Laura Prepon and Natasha Lyonne give terrific performances as fellow inmates (the charismatic Lyonne owns every scene she's in, and I could easily see "Orange" morphing into a vehicle for her cynical, bruised character). Kate Mulgrew gives wary, weary solidity to the role of the powerful Russian inmate who runs the kitchen, and Pablo Schrieber, Matt McGorry and Michael J. Harney are wonderful in very distinct ways as three very different guards.

It is mind-boggling that so many disparate things hang together so well in "Orange," which manages to be both subversive and serious, sweet and viciously barbed. There's a guard-inmate romance that's so tender it's nearly "Everwood Behind Bars." There's a lunatic inmate named Crazy Eyes who more than lives up to her name, and on the other end of the subtlety spectrum, Laverne Cox gives an amazing performance as trans inmate, Sophia. Scenes of Sophia's pre-surgery life as a man whose wife is struggling with his choices are among the most moving on-screen moments I've seen all year.

"Orange" features the usual array of fights, thefts, betrayals, mess-hall showdowns, odd couples, comedic complications and dangerous crises you'd expect from any prison drama, and like "Oz" before it, "Orange" treats matters of race with astonishing frankness. Several characters also have a fluid sexuality that is barely remarked upon (it's assumed that every woman's rating on the Kinsey scale is flexible once she is in prison -- or quite possibly before that). There's something refreshing about a show that delves headfirst into matters that other dramas reserve for Special Episodes or porn-tastic sidebars.

Ultimately, it's easy to envision an "Orange" in which Chapman's story is just one of many jockeying for space and attention. Given its setting, perhaps it's unsurprising that the rest of the ensemble basically steals "Orange" out from under the new girl.

Not for long, maybe. She's learning.

"Orange Is The New Black" premieres on Netflix on July 11.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/maureen-ryan/orange-is-the-new-black_b_3574249.html?utm_hp_ref=tv
post #88199 of 93688
TV Notes
'American Idol' Alum Adam Lambert Joins 'Glee'
By Jethro Nededog, TheWrap.com - Jul. 10, 2013

Adam Lambert is coming to the fifth season of Fox's "Glee."

Showrunner and co-creator Ryan Murphy broke the news Wednesday on Twitter.

It's unclear whether the role will be a guesting, recurring or regular role on the series. A show representative told TheWrap that there is no additional information on the role at this time.

Lambert's appearance on the show follows fellow "American Idol" alum Jessica Sanchez's appearance on the musical series last season. She appeared on two episodes as Frida Romero, the lead vocalist of the glee club, The Hoosierdaddies.

Lambert, who has been floated by reports, as a possible judge next season on "Idol," arrives to the series during a time of transition.

Recently, it promoted five recurring actors to series regulars. They replace five original cast members who won't be returning for Season 5 (unless they're tapped to guest star).

While Lambert has plenty of on-air experience, he hasn't done a lot of television acting. He has only really done a small part on ABC Family's "Pretty Little Liars" last season.

"Glee" returns Thursday, Sept. 19 at 9/8c.

http://www.thewrap.com/tv/article/american-idol-alum-adam-lambert-joins-glee-102391
post #88200 of 93688
TV Notes
On The Air Tonight
THURSDAY 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)

ABC:
8PM - Wipeout
9PM - Motive
10PM - Rookie Blue
* * * *
11:35PM - Jimmy Kimmel Live! (Jeff Bridges; designer Jeff Lewis; Capital Cities perform)
12:37AM - Nightline

CBS:
8PM - The Big Bang Theory
(R - Apr. 25)
8:31PM - Two and a Half Men
(R - Feb. 7)
9:01PM - Big Brother (LIVE) SD
10:01PM - Elementary
(R - Oct. 4)
* * * *
11:35PM - Late Show with David Letterman (Kevin James; snowboarder Shaun White; Darius Rucker performs)
12:37AM - Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (Maria Bello; Scott Adsit)

NBC:
8PM - The Winner Is...
(R - Jun. 17)
9PM - The Winner Is... (Season Premiere)
10PM - Hollywood Game Night (Series Premiere)
* * * *
11:35PM - The Tonight Show With Jay Leno (Helen Mirren; Ben Schwartz; The Olms perform)
12:37AM - Late Night With Jimmy Fallon (Salma Hayek Pinault; Charlie Day; chef April Bloomfield; Chrisette Michele sits in with The Roots)
1:36AM - Last Call With Carson Daly (California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom; artist Phil Hansen; Purity Ring performs)
(R - May 9)

FOX:
8PM - Hell's Kitchen
(R - Jun. 27)
9PM - Hell's Kitchen

PBS:
(check your local listing for starting time/programming)
8PM - The 'This Old House' Hour (R - Jan. 10)
9PM - Frontline: Two American Families (90 min.)
(R - Jul. 9)
10:30PM - Antiques Roadshow: Vintage Rochester
(R - Jul. 8)

UNIVISION:
8PM - Porque el Amor Manda
9PM - Amores Verdaderos
10PM - Qué Bonito Amor

THE CW:
8PM - The Vampire Diaries
(R - Jan. 24)
9PM - Beauty and the Beast
(R - May 2)

TELEMUNDO:
8PM - Dama y Obrero
9PM - Marido en Alquiler
10PM - El Señor de los Cielos

TBS:
11PM - Conan (Mel Brooks Jibber Jabber; John Malkovich; Derek Waters; Skillet)

E!:
11PM - Chelsea Lately (Eve; Claire Titelman; Fortune Feimster; Jo Koy)
(R - Jun. 26)
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