Thursday, December 04, 2008

WGN America's 2008 Holiday Programming; NBC Announces More Midseason 2009 Changes; ABC Update

WGN America has announced its holiday schedule for 2008! They are airing holiday movies all month long such as the 1985 movie Santa Claus: The Movie on Saturday night, I'll Be Home for Christmas starring Jonathan Taylor Thomas & Jessica Biel, and It's a Very Muppet Christmas Movie. But what about their stunt on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day itself? On Christmas Eve, you can catch Christmas episodes of regularly scheduled timeslot series Beverly Hillbillies, Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie, Matlock, In the Heat of the Night, and Nash Bridges from 8am to 1pm ET. Then after the WGN News at 1pm ET, Christmas episodes of The Cosby Show will air at a special time of 2-3pm ET (instead of the usual Homicide) followed by the classic 1977 Christmas special A Flintstone Christmas from 3-4pm ET and the 1980 Yogi Bear classic Yogi's First Christmas from 4-6pm ET. A Flintstone Christmas will also air Monday, Dec. 22 in primetime from 8-9pm ET, while Yogi's First Christmas will also air in primetime on Friday, Dec. 19 from 8-10pm ET. Back to Christmas Eve, WGN America will then reair the movie Santa Claus: The Movie from 6-8pm ET. Then in primetime, WGN America will spend the holidays with The Honeymooners from 8-9pm ET, includes the classic Christmas episode, leading into the Yule Log from 9pm-6am! Who needs a fireplace when you have the classic Yule Log playing classic Christmas songs from the Golden Age of Radio!
On Christmas Day itself, WGN America will air Midnight Mass from Chicago at 8am ET and Midnight Mass from New York at 9:30am ET, with Feed the Children at 11am ET before regular programming starts at 12pm ET with a holiday movie marathon until 10:30pm ET, with stars in movies such as Peter Falk, William H. Macy, Don Rickles, Patricia Heaton, Valerie Bertinelli, and Katey Sagal. At 10:30pm ET WGN will air a half-hour special called WGN News Holiday Special.
Now originally the plan was for some sitcom holiday episodes during the day on both days, but that is not happening. It was supposed to be from 2pm-6pm ET on Christmas Eve with holiday showings of Cosby Show, Coach, Becker, NewsRadio, Bewitched, WKRP and two episodes of Beverly Hillbillies leading into A Flintstone Christmas and Yogi's Fist Christmas. The Yule Log was originally slated for Christmas Eve night and Christmas morning from 1:30am-6am and again 8am-11am ET followed by a sitcom marathon from 11am-4pm ET of Beverly Hillbillies, Coach, Sister Sister, Cosby Show, Becker, NewsRadio, WKRP, Bewitched and more Coach & Hillbillies leading into three movies. It is too bad this isn't happening, but still WGN is giving us some goodies at least with the animated classic specials. NewsRadio fans might be happy though, as that series is airing as a filler now at times on Fridays at 10:30pm ET, and its holiday episode will air on Dec. 26! Make note of it!
So what does WGN America have in store for New Year's Eve and New Year's Day? We can tell you it is a sitcom marathon! We will announce it next stay tuned! Come on back!

NBC has announced its plans for their post Super Bowl schedule starting Feb. 2. We gave you their January schedule, now they have announced their February and March plans. Immediately following Super Bowl XLIII on Sunday, February 1, NBC will broadcast an original, hour-long episode of The Office from approx. 10:30-11:30 p.m. ET (airing simultaneously to all time zones). Then starting the next day, February 2, Monday nights will feature the returns of Chuck (8-9 p.m. ET), the latest volume of Heroes (9-10 p.m. ET) and the season premiere of Medium (10-11 p.m. ET), back in its old slot. Tuesdays will remain the same as they did in January with The Biggest Loser: Couples and Law & Order: SVU. Wednesdays will have the return of Life starting Feb. 4 in between Knight Rider and Law & Order. Speaking of Knight Rider, NBC has cut its episode for the series from the full 22 episodes to 17 episodes due to declining ratings. Knight Rider will now have its season finale on Feb. 25, with a new show launching March 4, but NBC has not announced what yet. Thursdays will stay the same until mid-March, when ER has its two-hour series finale on March 12 from 9-11pm. NBC has ordered an extra ER episode, giving it 20 for this final season. The following week NBC will launch new series Kings with a two-hour premiere on March 19 from 9-11pm, before settling to its new timeslot of 10pm on March 26. I just don't get why NBC is not launching this earlier when they have the Super Bowl platform. Kings is a riveting new drama about a modern-day monarchy. It is a contemporary retelling of the timeless tale of David and Goliath. This series is an epic story of greed and power, war and romance, forbidden loves and secret alliances -- and a young hero who rises to power in a modern-day kingdom. I don't know if the ER audience will stick for something like this. Anyway, Fridays will remain the same in February & March as January with Howdie Do It, Friday Night Lights, and Dateline. Saturdays will continue to have more Law & Order and Law & Order: SVU encores. While Sundays will continue the event specials with the new miniseries XIII airing a week after the Super Bowl from 9-11pm on Feb. 8 and concluding on the week after on Feb. 15 from 9-11pm. XIII is a high-stakes cat-and-mouse thriller starring Val Kilmer, Stephen Dorff, Stephen McHattie and Jessalyn Gilsig, as the first female U.S. president is shot dead by a sniper during her Veterans Day speech. Three months later, a wounded man is found tattered in a forest with no memory of his identity. The only clue is a tattoo on his neck -- XIII. NBC has not announced what will air 7-9pm on Sundays, but it will likely be Dateline or possibly the missing Deal or No Deal. NBC has not announced what special is airing on Feb. 22, but starting March 1, Celebrity Apprentice will air Sundays from 9-11pm.
NBC says premieres for additional midseason shows such as The Untitled Amy Poehler Comedy and The Philanthropist, will be announced at a future date.
View the NBC Feb-March 2009 press release for more details on these shows.

Yesterday we mentioned we thought ABC would air the docudrama Border Security USA as a lead-in to Lost starting Jan. 28. Now ABC has announced it has renamed the series to Homeland Security USA and will launch it instead on Tuesdays at 8pm starting Jan. 6 as a lead-in to the ABC premiere of Scrubs, a week before Idol comes. So this means According to Jim will not move to that slot on that date. Promos for Homeland started airing last night. However, it seems ABC is only airing 5 of the 11 episodes right now for Homeland Security USA as According to Jim is listed in returning on Feb. 10, though that could change. Looks like ABC wants to do better vs. Idol and give Scrubs a better lead-in. ABC still has not announced what will air as a lead-in to Lost...could it possibly be repeats of Lost? We will keep you up to date on this. But it seems the According to Jim holiday episodes in December will be it for awhile, so watch it all this month Tuesdays 9-10pm! Meanwhile, ABC has cut the episode order for upcoming new series Cupid from 13 to 9 episodes, as it is launching pretty late in the season...on March 24. ABC already cut The Unusuals and Castle from 13 to 10 episodes due to so many series, so this is nothing against Cupid.

New on DVD/Blu-ray (September)

The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Ninth Season Newhart - The Complete Sixth Season 2 Broke Girls - The Complete Fifth Season Family Matters - The Complete Eighth Season Modern Family - The Complete Season 7

09/06 - Coach - Season One (Mill Creek) / Season Two / Seasons One and Two
09/06 - South Park - The Complete Ninteenth Season (Blu-ray)
09/13 - The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Ninth Season (Blu-ray)
09/13 - Newhart - The Complete Sixth Season
09/20 - 2 Broke Girls - The Complete Fifth Season
09/20 - Family Matters - The Complete Eighth Season
09/20 - Modern Family - The Complete Season 7
09/20 - Veep - Season 5
09/27 - The Wonder Years - Season Six
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest

Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Tuesday, October 25

The Middle - "Halloween VIII: The Heckoning" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
As Halloween approaches, Frankie is taken aback when she discovers that, if the circumstances ever arose where she and Mike got divorced, the kids would all choose to live with Mike. Meanwhile, Sue tries everything in her power to get her room back from Brick, and having to be so nice around girlfriend April all of the time leads Axl to lash out at his family.

American Housewife - "Westport Zombies" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Katie, jealous of Taylor’s friendship with neighbor Viv (Leslie Bibb), reluctantly competes in the Westport Halloween “Zombie Run” after she finds out they’ll both be running. Meanwhile, Greg and Anna-Kat get a little too much in character for the “zombie” part of the run’s obstacle course.

Fresh Off the Boat - "Louisween" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
It’s Louis’ favorite holiday, and he makes every attempt to scare Jessica into the Halloween spirit, but she is buried in her word processor, drafting her first horror novel. Meanwhile, Emery and Evan debate costume choices, and Eddie and his crew are excited to party with high schoolers at Nicole’s house.

The Real O'Neals - "The Real Halloween" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
When Halloween arrives, or what Kenny refers to as “the gay Super Bowl,” he plans to go to Boystown to watch the festive costume parade. In an effort to prevent Kenny from attending, Eileen agrees to let him throw his own Halloween party at home. Eileen’s tolerance is ultimately tested when Kenny recruits Stuart and his gay friends to join the big party, and he makes a BIG costume change. Meanwhile, Jimmy and Shannon plan to pull off an epic Halloween prank.

Atlanta - "Junteenth" (FX, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Why my Auntie trying to make me go to one of these bougie Junteenth parties again? I don't like them sadity people and I'm gonna miss my shows. Le sigh.

Family Time - "Head of House" (Bounce TV, 9:00PM ET/PT)
When the Stallworths have an unexpected visitor, they learn of a vicious crime that took place in their home years ago.

Complete TV Listings

Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of October 24)

Tuesday, October 25

  • Will Forte (The Last Man on Earth) - Catch Will on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS. He also chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Matt LeBlanc (Man with a Plan/Episodes/Friends) - Matt is a guest on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Cobie Smulders (How I Met Your Mother) - Cobie appears on Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Skylar Astin (Ground Floor) - Skylar is a guest on Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Ron Howard (Happy Days/The Andy Griffith Show) - Ron drops by Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Mary Lynn Rajskub (How to Be a Gentleman/Veronica's Closet/The Larry Sanders Show) and David Koechner (Another Period/Hank/The Office) - Mary and David are guests on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • John Lithgow (3rd Rock from the Sun/Twenty Good Years) - John appears on LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • Jamie Lee Curtis (Scream Queens/Anything But Love) - Jamie Lee is a guest on Harry, so check your local listings.
  • Erinn Hayes (Kevin Can Wait/Guys with Kids/Worst Week) - Erinn plays a celeb guessing game with Rach, who’s serving up no-fail make-your-own takeout, on Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
  • Mary Steenburgen (The Last Man on Earth/Ink) - Mary joins the Chew Crew on ABC's The Chew at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT.
  • Ana Gasteyer (People of Earth/Lady Dynamite/Suburgatory) - Ana will be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 12:30pm ET. She will also be on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
  • Cheryl Hines (Son of Zorn/Suburgatory/Curb Your Enthusiasm) - Cheryl is a guest on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Abbi Jacobson (Broad City) - Abbi will be on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am. She will also be on the AOL Build Show 4pm.
  • Don Rickles (C.P.O. Sharkey/Daddy Dearest) - Don is a guest on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am.
  • Nico Tortorella (Younger) - Nico appears on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.