Thursday, July 23, 2009

TV Guide Channel Acquires Ugly Betty Reruns; TBS Orders More House of Payne; Network Notes

In a significant move to bolster its programming and attract new viewers, TV Guide Network announced that it has entered into an agreement with Disney-ABC Domestic Television to acquire the exclusive basic cable off-network rights to ABC Studios Golden Globe Award winning television series Ugly Betty. It is TV Guide Networks first scripted series acquisition and part of a multi-tiered programming strategy to evolve the network as an entertainment destination.
The deal includes access to existing and future episodes of Ugly Betty which will begin airing as a weekly strip on TV Guide Network in fall 2010. As part of the agreement, TVGuide.com will have rights to stream up to five Ugly Betty episodes at a time online. In addition, the deal includes repurpose rights for the upcoming fourth season of Ugly Betty premiering in October 2009 on ABC. The repeat telecast of the new episodes will air on TV Guide Network within two weeks of their premiere on ABC.

TBS is expanding the network's groundbreaking partnership with Tyler Perry and Debmar-Mercury by ordering an additional 20 episodes of the powerhouse comedy Tyler Perry's House of Payne. The order will bring the number of episodes in the series to 172, a remarkable total for any sitcom. House of Payne, along with Tyler Perry's Meet the Browns, continue to rank as the top sitcoms on cable.
House of Payne and Meet the Browns rank as ad-supported cable's top two original sitcoms of all-time among adults 18-49, viewers and households. So far in 2009, the shows are television's top two series in delivery of African-American adults 18-34. Meet the Browns also ranks as television's #1 program among African-American viewers and adults 18-49. This year, new episodes of Meet the Browns have averaged 3.2 million viewers, while new episodes of House of Payne have averaged 3 million viewers.
House of Payne is owned by Perry, distributed by Debmar-Mercury and licensed by TBS - debuted in 2006 with a test run of 10 episodes. After early results showed promise, TBS ordered a then-unprecedented 100 episodes. TBS later ordered an additional 26 episodes, followed by a deal for 26 more and the 20-episode order being announced today. The series is set in Atlanta and features LaVan Davis as fireman Curtis "Pops" Payne, a man who believes his house should be his castle, he the king and his wife, Ella (Cassi Davis), the queen. Unfortunately, their castle has turned into Grand Central Terminal, thanks to the constant comings and goings of immediate and extended family members. Lance Gross, Keshia Knight Pulliam, Allen Payne, Demetria McKinney, Larramie "Doc" Shaw and China McCain co-star.

ABC has announced premiere dates for Eastwick and Brothers & Sisters for the 2009-10 season. Eastwick will premiere on Wednesday, Sept. 23 at 10pm ET/PT, while Brothers & Sisters will launch its fourth season on Sunday, Sept. 27 at 10pm ET/PT. These two were the last of the fall premiere dates yet to be announced by ABC. Private Practice launches its third season on Thursday, Oct. 1 at 10pm ET/PT.
Recap yourself with the full ABC fall 2009 premiere dates.
Meanwhile, Wipeout, ABC's outrageously popular reality series, has been picked up for a third season. Twenty-four thrill-seekers will compete in the world's largest extreme obstacle course designed to provide the most spills, face plants and wipeouts ever seen on television. Moving nights, from Tuesday last summer to Wednesday this year, against tougher competition from Fox's time-period veteran So You Think You Can Dance, ABC's Wipeout is No. 1 during the 8 o'clock hour in Total Viewers and across each of the key Men demographics (M18-34/M18-49/M25-54). In Adults 18-49, Wipeout is a strong and very close second to Fox's Dance. Since its debut, Wipeout stands as Wednesday's No. 1 TV program in each of the Men demos (M18-34/M18-49/M25-54). It's the No. 5 TV series of Summer 2009 with Adults 18-49 and No. 1 with Men 18-49. On average to date, Wipeout is drawing ABC's largest summer audience in the Wednesday 8 o'clock hour in 13 years and highest Adults 18-49 rating during the summer frame in 10 years since 1996 and 1999, respectively.
In other summer news, ABC will launch Crash Course on Wednesday, August 26, 2009 airing Wednesdays at 9pm through and including Wednesday, Sept. 16. As of now, only four episodes are scheduled to air. The series, hosted by Orlando Jones and Dan Cortese, is a comedic auto-obstacle course series. It will air after Wipeout and will replace I Survived a Japanese Game Show, which would conclude its run the previous week.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (June)

Ballers - The Complete First Season The League - Season 7 - The Final Fantasy Maude - The Complete Fifth Season Workaholics - Season Six Two Guys and a Girl - The Complete Series

06/14 - Ballers - The Complete First Season (Blu-ray)
06/14 - The League - Season 7 - The Final Fantasy
06/14 - The League - The Complete Series
06/14 - Maude - The Complete Fifth Season
06/14 - Survivor's Remorse - The Complete Second Season
06/21 - Workaholics - Season Six
06/24 - The Monkees - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
06/28 - Two Guys and a Girl - The Complete Series
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Tuesday, June 28

The Middle - "Risky Business" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Frankie is completely gobsmacked when Mike’s brother Rusty (Norm Macdonald) pays an unexpected visit and offers him an opportunity to partner on one of his crazy business ideas — and Mike wants in. Meanwhile, Axl goes to extreme measures to prove to Mike that he can handle riding his dad’s new motorcycle; and unbeknownst to her parents, Sue tells Brad that her college roommate is so horrible that she’s resorted to living in her car.<> black-ish - "Churched" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
In the Johnson home, Sundays involve SAT prep and sports, so when the family is invited to Church on Sunday by the neighbors, Dre goes against his instinct of always saying “no” and agrees. When they end up having one of the best Sundays they can remember, they realize they should say “yes” to things more often. Meanwhile, Jack and Diane find out they were never baptized, and take it upon themselves to do whatever they want.

Uncle Buck - "Going to Jail Party" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Alexis is convinced that Buck is to blame for Miles’ new, impulsive attitude after she catches him attempting a risky stunt for his YouTube channel. With Miles’ punishment looming, Buck decides to throw a “going to jail” party while Mom and Dad are out, but unfortunately a creepy neighbor calls the cops and ruins their celebration. Buck, Miles, Tia and Maizy seek revenge and end up in a prank war.

Uncle Buck - "I Got This" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Buck and his buddy Cy have a tradition of watching the Bulls games on TV together with Buck’s lucky basketball beside them (or the Bulls lose). But Buck’s multi-tasking skills are pushed to the limit as Tia, Miles and Maizy all have separate crises on the night of a big game, and Will and Alexis are out celebrating their anniversary.

Wrecked - "The Community Pile" (TBS, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Pack goes on a vision quest; Danny helps Owen relax; Todd makes a power play to take control; the survivors make a discovery that could change everything.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of June 27)

Tuesday, June 28

  • Jim Jefferies (Legit) - Catch Jim on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Sarah and Erin Foster (Barely Famous) - Sarah and Erin are guests on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Paul Scheer (The League/Fresh Off the Boat) - Paul is a guest on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • Jade Catta-Preta (Manhattan Love Story) - Jade appears on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • Drew Carey (The Drew Carey Show/The Good Life) - Drew is a guest on a repeat of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Steve Harvey (The Steve Harvey Show) - Steve appears on a repeat of The Meredith Vieira Show, so check your local listings.
  • Sherri Shepherd (Lesss Than Perfect/Sherri) - Sherri is a guest on Steve Harvey, so check your local listings.
  • Busy Philipps (Vice Principals/Cougar Town) - Busy discusses her new HBO show Vice Principals, a new comedy series, created by Danny McBride and Jody Hill, that follows a high school and the two people who almost run it on the AOL Build Show at 1pm. She will also be on Good Day New York on WNYW-Fox5 in New York sometime in the 9am hour.
  • Jonathan Groff (Looking) - Jonathan talks about Looking on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
  • Constance Zimmer (Good Morning, Miami), Shiri Appleby (Sunday Dinner) and Craig Bierko (Unhitched/Madman of the People/Sydney) - The stars of Lifetime's UnREAL are guests on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
  • Arsenio Hall (Arsenio) - Arsenio guest co-hosts Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.