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

Monday, March 19

Kevin Can Wait - "Delivery Guy" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Vanessa convinces Kevin to go on a TV talk show with the “baby boy” he helped deliver years ago as a cop, but her plan to promote Monkey Fist backfires when Kevin runs into his arch-nemesis, Frank Munson (Ricardo Chavira), at the appearance. Michael Yo returns as Tom, a morning show host.

Man with a Plan - "March Madness" (CBS, 8:30PM ET/PT)
When Adam and Andi lose footage of an intimate moment they accidentally recorded, they have to track it down before anyone can see it.

Superior Donuts - "The Chicago Way" (CBS, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Randy, who just passed the detective’s exam, is asked by her former supervisor, Ted (guest star Christopher McDonald), to talk to a female rookie who has filed a sexual harassment complaint against him. Also, Arthur’s usual arrangement with a city health inspector to ignore violations in the shop goes awry when a new by-the-book inspector shows up.

Living Biblically - "Thou Shalt Not Steal" (CBS, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Chip infuriates his colleagues when he decides to follow the commandment “Thou Shalt Not Steal” and begins returning office supplies he stole.

American Dad - "" (TBS, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Stan deals with childhood issues of abandonment, which affects his performance at work; Klaus builds a website based on Smith family fails.

Complete TV Listings

Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of March 19)

Monday, March 19

  • Drew Barrymore (Santa Clarita Diet) - Watch Drew on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Adam DeVine (Workaholics/Modern Family) - Adam appears on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Kumail Nanjiani (Silicon Valley) - Kumail is a guest on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Jenny Slate (Married/Parks and Recreation/Bob's Burgers) - Jenny visits The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Josh Radnor (How I Met Your Mother) - Josh stops by Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Burt Reynolds (Evening Shade) - Burt appears on Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Krysten Ritter (Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23) - Krysten chats on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Allison Janney (Mom/Mr. Sunshine) - Allison is a guest on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Zach Woods (Silicon Valley/Playing House/The Office) - Zach drops by The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Billy Ray Cyrus (Still The King) - Billy Ray appears on a repeat of Harry, so check your local listings.
  • The Cast of You Me Her - Greg Pohler, Rachel Blanchard and Priscilla Faia are guests on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.
  • Swoosie Kurtz (Mike & Molly/Love & Money/Love, Sidney) - Swoosie talks about The Dangerous Book for Boys on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Nia Long (Uncle Buck/The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air) - Nia talks about Roxanne Roxanne on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
  • Jay Pharoah (White Famous) - Jay talks about Unsane on the BUILD Series at 1pm.