Monday, July 21, 2008

Summer 2008 TCA Press Tour: NBC, Day 2; Remembering Dave Powers; Retroality.TV Officially Launches!

Today is the last day of the summer 2008 TCA press tour. NBC is up for the second and final day of its portion. Tomorrow the TCA tour concludes with a set visit where critics will visit the sets of series such as Pushing Daisies and ER.
Today's docket has a session on the summer Olympics, Election 2008 with NBC News and MSNBC, NBC Executive Session (more on that below), on the panel with sophomore dramas Chuck, Life, & Lipstick Jungle, followed by panels of Deal or No Deal, Kath & Kim, Knight Rider, The Office, My Own Worst Enemy, Kings, and NBC Sunday Night Football/Super Bowl.
NBC has adjusted its primetime premiere schedule for Fall 2008.
Returning drama Life will follow Heroes on two special Monday broadcasts (10-11 pm. ET) in addition to its regularly scheduled timeslot on Fridays (10-11 pm. ET) giving Life four hours of originals in two weeks on September 29, October 3, October 6 and October 10.
After Life's two-week Monday trial, new drama My Own Worst Enemy will make its series debut on Monday, October 13 (10-11 p.m. ET) and remain in all originals in its regular timeslot (Mondays, 10-11 p.m. ET) through December.
In other scheduling changes, new comedy Kath & Kim and 30 Rock will switch time periods on Thursday nights. Kath & Kim moves to 8:30 p.m. (ET) starting October 9 after My Name is Earl (8-8:30 p.m. ET), which will allow for a strong audience flow for these two compatible shows. 30 Rock will settle into the 9:30 p.m. (ET) starting with its season premiere after The Office on October 30. Remember SNL Thursday will air October 9, 16, and 23 at 9:30 p.m.
The Biggest Loser: Families premieres on Tuesday, September 16 (8-10 p.m. ET). Likewise, summer hit America's Got Talent returns after the Olympics on August 26 (8-10 p.m. ET) and runs through to its season finale on Wednesday, October 1 (9-10 p.m. ET).
Other series' premieres remain unchanged from NBC's original premiere announcement.
At the executive session, NBC did a copy cat of ABC by having Jay Leno impersonate a reporter asking a question about his future, just like Jimmy Kimmel did last week when Kimmel asked is ABC interested in Leno? Leno impersonated a bald reporter and asked: When is Leno's final show? Will he be paid for the rest of the year? Is it true you've offered Jay Leno a fifth hour of the Today show? Will Manimal come back? What about Brett Favre's retirement/unretirement? What if Jay changes his mind? Silveman answers, "Everyone's entitled to change their mind, but I imagine that puts management in an impossible situation."
If NBC is getting rid of Leno, why make him do that? So maybe they do have plans for him in some shape or form. NBC announced Leno's last night on the Tonight Show will be Friday, May 29, while Conan O'Brien takes over on Monday, June 1. Late Night with Jimmy Fallon will launch first as online series before moving to 12:35am in March or April, so Conan's last night on Late Night will be before May 29.
Amy Poehler has officially signed on to star in a possible a new Thursday-night comedy series from Office exec producer Greg Daniels. Ben Silverman says however this will NOT be a spin-off of The Office. The spin-off is pretty much dead right now, but if it goes forward it will have "existing Office characters."
We'll be back with more...so keep coming back and refreshing!

We have some sad news to report. One of the best TV directors of all-time has passed away. Dave Powers passed away on July 3, 2008, in Rancho Mirage, CA, after a hard fought battle with skin cancer. He began his career in television in 1951, when he was employed by CBS as an usher at KNXT, working on the Dinah Shore Show. In 1956, while working in the cue card department on The Bob Crosby Show at CBS Television City, he was promoted to Stage Manager and joined the Director's Guild of America, where he would be a Guild member for the next fifty-seven years.
Dave got his biggest break when he became the director of The Carol Burnett Show in 1968. During that time, he was nominated eleven times by the Television Academy of Arts and Sciences and won four primetime Emmy Awards for "Best Director" in 1974, 1975, 1977 and 1978. In addition to directing The Carol Burnett Show for ten years he was also the director on Three's Company for six seasons starting in 1978 and Mama's Family for four years, reuniting himself with Vicki Lawrence (and Carol Burnett a few times).

We got word on July 9 of Dave's passing from my friend and author of Come and Knock on Our Door: A Hers and Hers and His Guide to Three's Company (and now of Retroality.TV) Chris Mann, that Dave had passed away on July 3. It wasn't officially released until last Wednesday. Chris heard from Joyce DeWitt (Janet on Three's Company) who heard from Priscilla Barnes (Terri on Three's Company). Chris had some very nice things to say about Dave that I must share with you all, "He was a good man, very beloved and enormously talented. Not only is he responsible for so much of Three's Company's under-appreciated signature slapstick style, he was rightly hailed in the industry for his work with Carol Burnett and company. He was always a gentleman during his Three's Company book and DVD interviews, and he clearly loved the Three's Company "kids" -- John Ritter especially -- as much as they loved him."
Chris also said, "In his home office he displayed autographed photos of Carol Burnett, Vicki Lawrence and Suzanne Somers in a classic Chrissy pose. "Those are my three ladies," he told me proudly. Also, John Ritter, Joyce DeWitt, Richard Kline, Don Knotts, Norman Fell, Audra Lindley et al always sang his praises. He will be deeply missed."

Dave also directed many episodes of both of the Three's Company spin-off shows, The Ropers and Three's a Crowd. After Mama's Family and a Carol Burnett Reunion Show, Dave retired from the business in the late '80s/early '90s. After retirement Dave and his wife Georgette made a fun and rewarding hobby of owning and restoring antique and classic wooden boats which they housed and used at their Big Bear Lake home.
A "Celebration of Life" will be held for Dave on August 2, 2008 at the Four Seasons Resort, Aviara, in Carlsbad, CA. He will be deeply missed as he directed the best comedic stars ever in Carol Burnett, John Ritter, Don Knotts, Tim Conway, Harvey Korman, and Vicki Lawrence. Dave was 75.


If you all recall in late May we made the announcement that Chris Mann had launched Retroality.TV. Now it has officially fully launched! Chris has interviewed '80s bombshell Heather Thomas (The Fall Guy, Zapped!) to lead off his site's official launch this month! Heather is the author of the hot new novel Trophies. Chris has an in-depth, provocative interview with Heather, who expresses her views on everything from being an '80s sex symbol-turned-writer to becoming a socio-political activist. Her controversial comments on the Bush administration, oil and 9/11 will surprise many. She'll be on NBC's Today show today, but Retroality and Chris Mann had her first!
Chris says, "So far we've featured retro stars about to make a very current media splash. Soon after we posted our May/June cover story on Lynda Carter (Wonder Woman), CNN reported she found a dead body floating in a river. And after we posted our Q&A with the fun-loving Susan Olsen (Cindy of Brady Bunch), every media outlet in America reported that she almost threw up on live radio. Coincidence? Methinks not!"

And that's not all! Chris has much more than that on the website! The Heather Thomas interview is just the "cover story." Chris also has items such as an interview with the sexy Stacy Keibler that was published in this month's Muscle & Body. Chris also has a Muscle & Body cover-story on several Olympic hopefuls coming in August, along with an interview with gold medalist swimmer-turned-Celebrity Circus performer Janet Evans. Wow! What a busy guy Chris is! I'm so glad he is doing well because he is a good person and truly deserves it!
And he even gets busier! This week he'll be off interviewing Olivia Newton-John and Fran Drescher, both cancer awareness advocates, for future health magazine cover stories! What a lucky guy! Again head on over to Retroality.TV because it is one website that you should bookmark and visit because it will get bigger and bigger everyday and soon it will be a website everyone knows by name! It'll be like the Cheers of the internet!


New on DVD/Blu-ray (April)

Barney Miller - The Complete Seventh Season Frasier - The Complete Series What's Happening!! - The Complete Series The Jeffersons - Season Seven Sgt. Bilko (The Phil Silvers Show) - The Second Season

04/07 - Barney Miller - The Complete Seventh Season
04/07 - The Brady Bunch - The Complete Series
04/07 - The Crazy Ones - The Complete First Season
04/07 - Frasier - The Complete Series
04/07 - King of the Hill - The Complete 9th Season
04/07 - King of the Hill - The Complete 10th Season
04/07 - 1600 Penn - The Complete Season 1
04/07 - Wanda at Large - The Complete First Season (WBShop.com)
04/07 - Wilfred - The Complete Season 4
04/14 - Growing Pains - The Complete Fourth Season (WBShop.com)
04/21 - What's Happening!! - The Complete Series (Mill Creek)
04/28 - I Love Lucy - I Love Mom Edition
04/28 - The Jeffersons - Season Seven
04/28 - Mama's Family - Mama's Favorites: Season 5
04/28 - Sgt. Bilko (The Phil Silvers Show) - The Second Season
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Tuesday, April 21

Fresh Off the Boat - "So Chineez" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Jessica fears her family has assimilated so much to life in Orlando that they’ve lost their Chinese identity. So she drives everyone nuts making them reconnect with their culture, from Louis, who she insists decline an invite to join the country club, to Eddie, who she makes do a report on China for his World Day project.

New Girl - "Shark" (Fox, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
After Winston graduates from the Police Academy, Nick and Coach worry when they see his new training officer (guest star Nasim Pedrad, "Mulaney"). Meanwhile, Jess uses Schmidt to try and influence a councilwoman (guest star Zoe Lister Jones, “Friends with Better Lives”) to stop the night construction taking place outside the loft.

Weird Loners - "Weird Knight" (Fox, 9:30PM ET/PT)
As a favor, Caryn reluctantly goes on a date with a nerdy guy from Eric’s human chess league, but becomes interested in him when he doesn’t call her back following their dinner. Meanwhile, Stosh becomes Zara’s “agent” and gets her to enter an art contest.

Undataeable - "A Priest Walks Into a Bar" (NBC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
When Justin (Bren Morin) calls Danny (Chris D'Elia) a loser, Danny is motivated to make a career move to prove him wrong. Meanwhile, Leslie (Bianca Kajlich) persuades Justin to be tough with Danny. Back at the bar, Candace (Bridgit Mendler) tries to help Shelly (Ron Funches) deal with being just a booty-call and never the boyfriend.

One Big Happy - "A Tale of Two Hubbies" (NBC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
On a group trip to Las Vegas, Luke (Nick Zano), Prudence (Kelly Brook) and Lizzy (Elisha Cuthberg) visit the chapel where Nick and Prudence got married – only to discover that it was a sham and their marriage is not legal. Lizzy takes it upon herself to plan a spectacular new wedding with a special surprise. However, the group is in for an even bigger surprise about Prudence’s past life in England.

Your Family or Mine - "The Couch" (TBS, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Ricky plans on throwing out Oliver's childhood couch, but both he and Jason are ready to fight for it. Claire panics when Louis brings home a piece of art that features her in the nude.

Younger - "Girl Code" (TV Land, 10:00PM ET/PT)
After lending Kelsey a hand in the bathroom, Liza joins Kelsey's inner circle and neglects Maggie at the worst possible time. Diana's excited by the arrival of Empirical's handsome and potentially soon-to-be-divorced publisher.

Mann & Wife - "Mann-datory" (Bounce TV, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Daniel and Michael are forced to attend communication therapy; the kids fight for equal rights of their household chores.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of April 20) (All times ET unless noted)

Tuesday, April 21

  • Courteney Cox (Cougar Town/Friends) - Catch Courteney on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC. She will also be on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Betty White (Hot in Cleveland/The Golden Girls/The Mary Tyler Moore Show) - Watch Betty on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Kumail Nanjiani (Silicon Valley) - Kumail is a guest on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Jeff Garlin (The Goldbergs/Curb Your Enthusiasm) - Jeff appears on Comedy Central's The Daily Show with Jon Stewart at 11pm.
  • John C. McGinley (Ground Floor/Scrubs) - John is a guest on a repeat of Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Ana Gasteyer (Suburgatory) - Ana visits Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Mo'Nique (The Parkers) - Mo'Nique chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Oliver Hudson (Rules of Engagement) - Oliver stops by The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Tiffani Thiessen (Saved by the Bell/Saved by the Bell: The College Years) - Tiffani serves up braised tri-tip roast on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Edie Falco (Nurse Jackie) - Edie drops by The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Christopher Meloni (Surviving Jack/The Fanelli Boys) - Christopher is a guest on a repeat of The Queen Latifah Show on your local station or at 1am on BET.
  • David Hyde Pierce (Frasier) - David and David Burtka from the new musical It Shoulda Been You are guests on Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
  • Jonathan Kite (2 Broke Girls) - Jonathan cracks the audience up with his celebrity impressions on Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
  • Cristela Alonzo (Cristela) - Cristela guest co-hosts The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Chris D'Elia (Undateable/Whitney) and Brent Morin (Undateable) - Chris and Brent are guests on Steve Harvey, so check your local listings.
  • Suzanne Somers (Three's Company/She's the Sheriff/Step by Step) - Suzanne reveals the devastating family health crisis that took years to diagnose and the 4 point detox checklist that she says helped save her and her family’s life on The Dr. Oz Show, so check your local listings.
  • Lori Loughlin (Full House) - Lori talks about her two Hallmark Channel projects Garage Sale Mystery: The Deadly Room and the return of her show When Calls the Heart on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings. She will also be on KTLA 5 in Los Angeles live at 9:30am PT.
  • Romeo Miller (Romeo!) - Romeo will be on PIX11 Morning News on WPIX in New York at 8:50am.
  • Jamie Foxx (The Jamie Foxx Show) - Jamie can be heard on Sirius XM's Morning Mash Up at 9:30am.
  • Nick Kroll (The League/Cavemen) - Nick talks about Adult Beginners on SI Now.
  • Jeremy Miller (Growing Pains) - Jeremy is a guest on NewsNation on MSNBC at 11am.