Thursday, May 29, 2008

WGN Adds Weekly Retro TV Block, Renames to WGN America; TV Tonight

Late last week we told you all that WGN was planning a '70s TV week called "The Outta Sight Retro Nights Week: Flashback to the 1970s" from June 2-6 featuring The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Barney Miller, Taxi, Welcome Back Kotter and WKRP in Cincinnati from 8-10pm each day that week...now they have added a weekly "Outta Sight Retro Night" airing each Sunday starting June 8! The block will feature three classic TV shows airing from 7-10pm ET (4-7pm PT). Kicking it off from 7-8pm each Sunday will be WKRP in Cincinnati! Following WKRP, we get reruns of Bob Newhart's second series, the '80s sitcom Newhart from 8-9pm and closing the night is the all-time classic The Honeymooners from 9-10pm. These three shows will air every Sunday night starting June 8 and will go in order, so get those VCRs/DVRs ready.
Now WGN is also planning more theme weeks. The '70s week is the first of many to come. They tentatively have an '80s week planned for July and we could see ALF, Family Ties, and more shows. So stay tuned to that when it is announced! Casey Kasem will be announcing during promos and voice-overs for the theme weeks and the regular Sunday block...how cool!
We will certainly let you know if more of these shows join the actual line-up...so far WKRP is the only one joining the line-up that has aired during a theme week. I wouldn't be surprised though if Newhart is in the '80s week and IF they have a '50s week, The Honeymooners could air in that. And once again all this is not available for the local WGN in Chicago. This is for the national WGN only, the cable version.

Also, the national WGN was called Superstation WGN for many years, but this past Monday they changed their name to WGN America. So, from now on I'll refer WGN to WGN America. The new name and logo was introduced this past Monday and also with the slogan "TV You Can't Ignore." According to the Chicago Tribune, WGN America's new "eyes" logo, which resembles the one used for much of the '90s by cable's The Movie Channel, was the inspiration of Tribune Co. Chief Innovation Officer Lee Abrams. The former radio consultant wanted the channel to look more like an album cover. It resembles the eyes of the woman on Duran Duran's "Rio" album, but Abrams said he was just trying to help the channel break from traditional TV.
Sean Compton, a former Clear Channel exec recruited to tend to Tribune TV programming, meanwhile is repackaging reruns (WKRP, etc) and old movies (Rocky movies, etc) and giving away prizes via WGNAmerica.com, the new website. By the end of the summer, the plan is to introduce an original program. And within 18 months or so, Compton hopes the nation will barely recognize the channel.

We leave you tonight with a reminder. Tonight is the last of the regular season show's, as Lost will ends its season with an all-night event. At 8pm an encore of the previous episodes will air with bonus footage followed by the game changing two-hour season finale from 9-11pm on ABC. It should do big. Only other new programming on the night is summer reality series: So You Think You Can Dance on Fox from 8-10 and Last Comic Standing on NBC from 8:30-10:30pm. Sitcom wise, NBC will wraparound The Office repeats around Comic at 8 and 10:30pm. CBS will encore Big Bang Theory and How I Met Your Mother from 8-9pm. But you should be getting Lost tonight! After tonight, the summer season will really begin since the regular season scripted series will come to an end until the new season.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (May)

Mad About You - The Complete Series The Jim Gaffigan Show Newhart - The Complete Fifth Season The Facts of Life - The Final (Ninth) Season The Wonder Years - Season Five

05/03 - Mad About You - The Complete Series
05/03 - The Jim Gaffigan Show - Season One
05/10 - Newhart - The Complete Fifth Season
05/17 - Angie Tribeca - The Complete First Season
05/17 - The Facts of Life - The Final (Ninth) Season
05/24 - The Wonder Years - Season Five
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Tuesday, May 24

Fresh Off the Boat - "Bring the Pain" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Louis’ estranged brother, Gene (Ken Jeong), comes to visit, and he has big news to share with the family. And Eddie tries to find creative ways to watch the latest Chris Rock age-inappropriate stand-up comedy special despite his parents’ and brothers’ disapproval.

The Real O'Neals - "The Real Prom" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
As the school prom approaches, Kenny tries to think of who the best guy would be to ask as his date. With time running out, Kenny and Jimmy try to come up with the perfect “prom-posal” for the classmates they each have set their sights on. Shannon thinks the idea behind prom is a scam and would rather stay at home, but once Pat discovers she was asked to attend, he tries to convince her to go. Meanwhile, Eileen tries to keep VP Murray’s romantic attention at bay but struggles to resist.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of May 23)

Tuesday, May 24

  • Dave Franco (Scrubs/Do Not Disturb) - Catch Dave on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Demi Lovato (Sonny with a Chance) - Demi is a guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Sean Hayes (The Millers/Sean Saves the World/Will & Grace) - Sean appears on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS. He will also be on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Brooklyn Decker (Grace and Frankie/Friends with Better Lives) - Brooklyn is a guest on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS. She will also be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 12:30pm ET.
  • Fozzie Bear (The Muppets) - Fozzie Bear appears on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • John Hodgman (Married) - John is a guest on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • Kristen Schaal (The Last Man on Earth/Bob's Burgers/30 Rock) - Kristen appears on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • Eugene and Dan Levy (Schitt's Creek) - Eugene and Dan are guests on Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Laura Linney (The Big C) - Laura stops by Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Fred Savage (The Grinder/Working/The Wonder Years) - Fred guest co-hosts LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • NeNe Leakes (The New Normal) - Meredith's favorite reality stars are featured on The Meredith Vieira Show, so check your local listings.
  • June Diane Raphael (Grace and Frankie/Players) - June is a guest on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 12:30pm ET.
  • G Hannelius (Dog with a Blog/Good Luck Charlie) - G discusses her role in History Channel's adaption of Roots on the AOL Build Show at 11am.
  • Kevin Hart (The Big House/Undeclared) - Kevin dishes on his new movie Central Intelligence on People Now at 8:30am.
  • Will Arnett (Arrested Development/The Millers/Up All Night) - Will talks about Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am. He also chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.