Thursday, December 01, 2005

In Memoriam: Wendie Jo Sperber and Macon McCalman; Mid-Season for FOX and NBC

We have lost two sitcom stars this week. First, Wendie Jo Sperber lost her life on Tuesday after an eight year battle with breast cancer. Sperber is best remembered as playing Michael J. Fox's character's sister in the Back to the Future films, but she also co-starred in many sitcoms including with Tom Hanks in Bosom Buddies, Private Benjamin, Women in Prison, Babes, and with John Ritter and Billy Bob Thornton in season one on Hearts Afire. She also has guest starred on many sitcoms such as Designing Women, Parker Lewis Can't Loose, Married...With Children, Murphy Brown, and Will & Grace. Even with breast cancer, she continued to work landing guest appearances on multiple episodes on the John Ritter sitcom 8 Simple Rules.
After being diagnosed with breast cancer in 1997, the actress became an advocate for cancer care. In 2001, she founded the weSPARK Cancer Support Center, which provides free emotional support, information and social activities for individuals and families affected by cancer.
Sperber helped unveil and promote a breast cancer stamp for the U.S. Postal Service in 1998. Ms. Sperber was 46 years old.

We have also lost sitcom veteran Macon McCalman. The name might not sound familiar, but he has been around for a long time. He never starred in a sitcom as a regular but he had many guest appearances on many sitcoms. You might remember him as Janet Wood's father on Three's Company and before that he played the boss hitting on Chrissy also on Three's Company, he also played the racist club president on an episode of Diff'rent Strokes, he played a dentist on Perfect Strangers where chaos happened after Larry & Balki visited, and you might remember him as the minister who married Eunice and Dutch on Soap. He also visited shows like Lois & Clark, Maude, The Jeffersons, The Bob Newhart Show, Family Ties, Newhart, Designing Women, Fresh Prince, The Wonder Years, and Cheers. What a resume he had. He retired from the business in 1997 after having a heart attack. "The ultimate character actor" died Tuesday after having a series of strokes over the years. "Sonny" was 72 years old.

FOX has announced its mid-season schedule and American Idol results show will stay put on Wednesdays after all. Among the changes include the moving of Wednesday sitcoms That '70s Show and Stacked to a tough Thursday at 9 p.m. slot. FOX will also air a reality show with celebrities ice skating, titled Skating with Celebrities. You'll see Todd Bridges of Diff'rent Strokes on this! For the full line-up for FOX mid-season, click here.
NBC has also released their mid-season line-up and they will return to a four comedy night on Thursdays, but Joey will not be on it! NBC says Joey will return in March. The next installment of The Apprentice will too. New sitcom Four Kings will air Thursdays at 8:30 p.m., with Will & Grace moving to 8 p.m. and My Name is Earl and The Office will move from Tuesdays to Thursdays. And Scrubs returns on Tuesday nights for a full-hour! For the full line-up for NBC mid-season, click here.
Meanwhile ABC has quietly removed the repeat broadcasts for Hot Properties on December 16, 23 and 30 and replaced it with original episodes. So, this is good news as ABC will indeed air all 13 episodes of this series. The next episode will air December 9--so tune in!


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Tuesday, July 17

The Middle - "Bat Out of Heck" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Frankie is surprised but relieved when Dr. Goodwin (Jack McBrayer) agrees to buy all of the peanut brittle that Brick needs to sell for school. But the good doctor displays a bit of Mr. Hyde behavior when Frankie doesn’t deliver the product in an expeditious manner. Meanwhile, Axl is getting sick and tired of having Mike tell him how to run his life; and things go off the rails when Axl attempts to trade in the Winnebago and buy a car. Sue is more determined than ever to win a very prestigious and competitive hotel scholarship; and Frankie swears that she’s seeing something mysterious flying through the house.

The Middle - "Great Heckspectations" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Frankie has to force Brick into asking Cindy to the high school prom but worries that his quirkiness could spoil the happy event; Lexie talks a clueless Axl into giving Sue a belated 21st birthday present; and Mike becomes frustrated over how to get used to a new TV remote.

black-ish - "Things Were Different Then" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Dre reluctantly helps Junior plan Pops’ 65th birthday party and starts to see his dad’s past in a new light. Meanwhile, Bow decides to say “yes” to everything for a whole year and Jack & Diane take advantage of her.

black-ish - "Elder. Scam." (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Ruby gets scammed and Dre begins to suspect that she isn’t as sharp as she used to be, particularly because she was the one who used to scam other people. Zoey’s friend Aaron visits and Diane develops an instant crush on him.

Younger - "Sex, Liza and Rock & Roll" (TV Land, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Liza is called in for reinforcements when Charles runs into trouble with a rock-star author on Shelter Island. Maggie reaches a career milestone.

Teachers - "Wake and Blake" (TV Land, 10:30PM ET/PT)
Ms. Bennigan tries to win over Blake on a camping trip, and Ms. Snap decides to give back to the community.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of July 16)

Tuesday, July 17

  • David Spade (Rules of Engagement/8 Simple Rules/Just Shoot Me!) - Catch David on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Joel McHale (Community/The Great Indoors) - Joel appears on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC. He will also be on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
  • Eva Longoria (Telenovela) - Eva is a guest on a repeat of The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS. She will also be on a repeat of Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Tichina Arnold (Survivor's Remorse/Happily Divorced/Everybody Hates Chris/Martin) - Tichina visits The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Niecy Nash (Getting On/The Soul Man/Reno 911!) - Niecy stops by LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
  • Sherri Shepherd (Trial & Error: Lady, Killer/Sherri/Less Than Perfect - Sherri appears on The Wendy Williams Show, so check your local listings.
  • Jon Bernthal (The Class) - Jon is a guest on a repeat of Harry, so check your local listings.
  • Deon Cole (grown-ish/black-ish/Angie Tribeca) - Deon guest co-hosts a repeat of The Real, so check your local listings.
  • Eddie Griffin (Malcolm & Eddie) and Boris Kodjoe (The Last Man on Earth/Second Time Around) - Steve's favorite Hollywood hunks are featured on Steve, so check your local listings.
  • Melissa Leo (I'm Dying Up Here) - Melissa talks about The Equalizer 2 on Chatter on PeopleTV at 8pm.
  • Daveed Diggs (black-ish) - Daveed will be on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
  • Vivica A. Fox (Mr. Box Office/Getting Personal/Out All Night) - Vivica talks about The Last Sharknado: It's About Time on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Candace Cameron Bure (Fuller House/Full House) - Candace talks about her health secrets on The Doctors, so check your local listings.
  • Bobcat Goldthwait (Unhappily Ever After/Capitol Critters) - Bobcat talks about Bobcat Goldthwait’s Misfits & Monsters on the BUILD Series at 3pm.
  • Jim Gaffigan (The Jim Gaffigan Show/My Boys/Welcome to New York) - Jim will be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (June/July)

New Girl - The Complete Seventh Season Alice - The Complete Seventh Season Green Acres - The Final (Sixth) Season The Last Man on Earth - The Complete Fourth Season The Good Place - The Complete Second Season

06/05 - Living Single - The Complete Fifth Season
06/05 - New Girl - The Complete Sixth Season
06/05 - South Park - The Complete Twenty-First Season (Blu-ray)
06/12 - Fresh Off the Boat - The Complete Fourth Season
06/12 - Life in Pieces - The Complete Third Season
06/12 - The Office - The Complete Series
06/12 - Speechless - The Complete First Season
06/12 - Speechless - The Complete Second Season
06/12 - Step by Step - The Complete First Season
06/12 - Will & Grace (The Revival) - Season One (Blu-ray)
06/19 - Perfect Strangers - The Complete Fourth Season
06/26 - Last Man Standing - The Complete Fifth Season
06/26 - Last Man Standing - The Complete Sixth Season
06/26 - The Mick - The Complete First Season
06/26 - The Mick - The Complete Second Season
07/03 - New Girl - The Final (Seventh) Season
07/10 - Alice - The Complete Seventh Season (WBShop.com)
07/10 - The Bill Engvall Show - The Complete First Season (WBShop.com)
07/10 - Green Acres - The Final (Sixth) Season
07/10 - The Last Man on Earth - The Complete Fourth Season
07/17 - Cooper Barrett's Guide to Surviving Life - The Complete Series
07/17 - The Good Place - The Complete Second Season
07/17 - Son of Zorn - The Complete Series
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