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 (July/August)

Family Matters - The Complete Seventh Season Hangin' with Mr. Cooper - The Complete First Season Maude - The Complete Final (Sixth) Season Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Three Superstore - Season One

07/08 - The Monkees - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
07/12 - Grady - The Best of Grady
07/20 - Bob's Burgers - The Complete 5th Season
07/26 - Family Matters - The Complete Seventh Season (WBShop.com)
07/26 - Where's Huddles? - The Complete Series (WBShop.com)
08/02 - Hangin' with Mr. Cooper - The Complete First Season (WBShop.com)
08/09 - Maude - The Complete Final (Sixth) Season
08/23 - Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Three
08/23 - Superstore - Season One
08/23 - The Wonder Years - Complete Series (New Slipcase Version)
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Thursday, August 25

The Big Bang Theory - "The Line Substitution Solution" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Sheldon hires Stuart to spend the day with Amy when he’d rather go to a movie screening. Also, Leonard’s mother, Beverly (Christine Baranski), comes to town and Penny struggles to make a connection with her.

Life in Pieces - "Prank Assistant Gum Puppy" (CBS, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Feeling threatened by Jen’s very handsome new assistant, Jake (Gregg Sulkin), Greg tries to appear more masculine. Also, Heather and Tim pull a prank on Tyler’s school, Joan secretly lets Sophia chew gum even though Heather forbids it, and John takes his new puppy on a date with Colleen and her dog, Princess.

Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll - "Rolling in the Deep" (FX, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Someone from the band's past shows up as tension reaches an all time high.

Bunk'd - "Zuri Had a Little Lamb" (Disney Channel, 8:00PM ET/PT)
The boys find that Gladys has been hiding a secret in the woods; Lou assigns Emma and Zuri to barn duty.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of August 22)

Thursday, August 25

  • Alec Baldwin (30 Rock) - Catch Alec on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Tony Hale (Veep/Arrested Development) - Tony stops by The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Chelsea Handler (Are You There, Chelsea?) - Chelsea visits Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC. She also talks about Chelsea on NBC's Today in the 9am hour and the AOL Build Show at 12pm.
  • David Krumholtz (Partners/The Trouble with Normal/Chicago Sons) - David is a guest on a repeat of @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • Jane Lynch (Angel from Hell) - Jane appears on Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • George Lopez (Lopez/Saint George/George Lopez) - George chats with the ladies of The View on a repeat on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Jason Ritter (Another Period/The Class) - Jason is a guest on a repeat of The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Joel McHale (The Great Indoors/Community) - Joel guest co-hosts a repeat of LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • Zachary Levi (Less Than Perfect) - Zachary appears on a repeat of The Wendy Williams Show at 12:07am on BET or on your local stations.
  • Miriam Shor (Younger/Big Day/Inside Schwartz) - Miriam is a guest on a repeat of The Meredith Vieira Show, so check your local listings.
  • John Krasinksi (The Office) - John talks about The Hollars on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am.
  • John Corbett (Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll/United States of Tara) - John dishes on his comedy-drama series Northern Exposure on People Now at 8:30am.
  • Reid Scott (Veep/My Boys) - Reid is a guest on a repeat of Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
  • Tika Sumpter (The Game) - Tika discusses Southside with You on the AOL Build Show at 3pm and on Essence Live at 4pm.