Monday, August 31, 2009
TV Land invites you again for the annal event CASA Family Day. Spend the 6pm hour with your family around the family table during CASA's annual Family Day on Monday, September 28. This year an episode of Little House on the Prairie will air.
This Halloween be scared. Be very scared! Because it's Roseanne's Wicked Halloween Bash! Catch every single Halloween episode from Roseanne's run on Halloween night from 10pm-2am! What better way for a wicked Halloween bash? Michael Myers who?
Finally, the TV Land PRIME movies for October are Police Academy, Office & a Gentleman, The Mod Squad, The Bodyguard, and Private Benjamin.
View the TV Land October 2009 Highlights.
Chris Mann's Retroality.TV has many many new features coming this September that will something for everyone! The cover story for September will be about Susan Olsen's new book Love to Love You Bradys, a look at how the Bradys paved the way for reality TV! There will be another cover story as well! Chris Mann has part 1 of an explosive two-part, in-depth interview with Farrah's Story executive producer Craig J. Nevius. Two days before NBC premiered the special back in May, Nevius sued Ryan O'Neal and Alana Stewart, claiming they interfered in the project and barred him from carrying out the terms of his signed April 2008 contract with Farrah. Nevius also was barred from contacting Farrah during the last three months of her life. She died of course on June 25 after a three-year struggle with anal cancer. In part one of this exclusive interview, Nevius discusses his five-year friendship and business relationship with Fawcett--beginning with a failed Charlie's Angels reunion and then TV Land's Chasing Farrah--and his promise to help her win an Emmy (She and Nevius are nominated for their roles as executive producers in Farrah's Story). Part 2 of the story will post by Sept. 7, leading up to the Creative Arts Emmys on Sept. 12.
Also, coming this September to this wonderful and cool website is a story on why TV Land censors Sanford and Son from guest columnist John Wekluk. And Price is Right fans take note, part four of Holly Hallstrom's audio interview will be posted in mid-September. She discusses, among other things, Rod Roddy's tragic, lengthy battle with colon cancer and why Bob Barker's longtime on-screen sidekick was suddenly taken off camera--against Roddy's wishes--on The Price is Right in 2002. Was it "Come on Out" instead of "Come on Down" for Roddy? You'll want to hear this!
And finally, the home page of Retroality.TV will feature links to last month's exclusive Hollywood Show video interviews, including Chris' chat with Tanya Roberts (who discusses her husband's death after a long illness, as well as Farrah's passing), Three's Company's Jenilee Harrison (Cindy Snow), and his revealing four-part chat with Susan Olsen (who gives Chris Brady scoops on her book, the Jan and Marcia "feud" and a rumored Oprah reunion this fall). That Olsen video is perfect timing since one of the cover stories is on Susan Olsen!
So head on over to our pals at Retroality.TV! Chris Mann never disappoints!
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Summer Week 14 Sitcom Ratings; Blog DVD Review: Brothers & Sisters - The Complete Third Season (9/1)
Last Sunday Sitcoms (counts for week of August 17-23)
- Til Death (Fox) - A repeat at 7pm did 2.44 million...up a lot week-to-week.
- The Simpsons (Fox) 2 episodes - We got double dose of repeats this week with the regular 8pm airing getting 4.18 million, down from previous week. A repeat at 8:30pm did better with 4.71 million.
- King of the Hill (Fox) - preempted.
- Family Guy (Fox) - A regular repeat at 9pm did 5.17 million.
- American Dad! (Fox) 2 episodes - Only 3.97 million for a repeat at 9:30pm. Special repeat at 7:30pm did 2.46 million.
- How I Met Your Mother
(CBS) 2 episodes - 5.36 million for a repeat airing in its normal 8pm slot, up over a million from previous week. 1.9 A18-49 rating was up half a rating point from the previous week...nice. A repeat at 8:30pm did 5.65 million and a 2.2 A18-49 rating, both way up from previous week.
- Two and a Half Men (CBS) - 9.55 million for a repeat, up a million from previous week. 2.9 A18-49 rating was up nearly a half a point from previous week.
- The Big Bang Theory (CBS) - 8.56 million for a repeat is up a half a million from previous week. 2.9 18-49 rating is excellent for repeats, up a bit previous week.
- Old Christine (CBS) - preempted for Ted Kennedy special.
- Gary Unmarried (CBS) - preempted for Ted Kennedy special.
- The Office (NBC) - 3.97 million for a repeat at 9pm...up a lot from previous week, maybe a summer repeat high for this summer.
- 30 Rock (NBC) 2 episodes - 3.49 and 3.1 million for repeats at 8 and 9:30pm...8pm did better than previous week again, while 9:30pm was basically on par again.
- Parks & Recreation (NBC) - A repeat did just 2.84 million at 8:30pm...the lowest of the sitcom repeats again, but up some from previous week's repeat.
- Everybody Hates Chris (The CW) - A repeat at 9pm did a prelim 1.45 million. That was up from previous week's prelim numbers. Keep in mind it can change drastically in the final ratings.
- The Game (The CW) - A repeat did a prelim 1.48 million, also up from previous week's prelim numbers. As with the lead-in, final ratings can change drastically. Stay with us on our message board for final ratings.
It is time for a special Sunday edition of the "Blog DVD Review." Today we we take a look at ABC Studios' Brothers and Sisters: The Complete Third Season. Brothers and Sisters is of course the current ABC Sunday family drama starring Calista Flockhart and Sally Field. The show follows the Walker family, with the ups and downs of running a family business. This show is so great and even funny. See my Blog DVD Review of Brothers and Sisters: The Complete Third Season:
Brothers and Sisters: The Complete Third Season (ABC Studios, $59.99) brings all 24 heartwarming episodes of the third season of the hit family drama on DVD! Take a fascinating look at a complex American family much like your own as you witness the loves, the losses and the personal triumphs of the Walker clan. Their differences make them human and their bond makes them family. The series airs Sundays at 10PM on ABC and stars Calista Flockhart as Kitty Walker, Sally Field as Nora Walker, Rachel Griffiths as Sarah Walker Whedon, Ron Rifkin as Uncle Saul Holden, Balthazar Getty as Tommy Walker, Matthew Rhys as Kevin Walker, Dave Annabale as Justin Walker, Sarah Jane Morris as Julia, Emily VanCamp as Rebecca Harper, Luke Macfarlane as Scotty, with Rob Lowe as Senator Robert McCallister, and Patrica Wettig as Holly Harper. Recurring are Kerris Dorsey as Paige Whedon, Maxwell Perry Cotton as Cooper Whedon, Ken Olin as David, Eric Christian Olsen as Kyle DeWitt, Will McCormack as Ethan Travis, and Luke Grimes as Ryan Lafferty. With special guest star Tom Skeritt as William Walker. Other guest stars include Mitch Pileggi, David Andrews, Dave Foley, Steven Weber, Nigel Havers, Regis & Kelly, Sonja Sohn, Matt Letscher, Jason Lewis, and Cristian de la Fuente.
This third season is very good. When the Walkers get together for a family dinner or any event all together it makes for great television. Some classic episodes include the season premiere "Glass Houses," Kevin gets access to his boss's beach house, he wants to spend a romantic weekend for two with Scotty, but the entire family accidentally butts in and havoc breaks, as always. In "Bakersfield," Nora and Kitty go to Bakersfield, where they meet with George Lafferty, but it doesn't go as planned. In "Just a Sliver," baby Elizabeth needs a liver transplant and with moral support of Scotty and Rebecca respectively, Kevin and Justin both get tested for paternity in order to save her. In "It's Not Easy Being Green," Sarah throws a party for the launch of Greenatopia, while Justin becomes a sponsor to an attractive girl to the dismay of Rebecca, and at the Greenatopia party, Ethan has a shocking revelation for Sarah, as she, Nora and Rebecca each face temptations. In "Lost & Found," Nora invites Ryan to her house, while Holly discovers what Tommy's been up to and the ownership he has in Ojai Foods. In the two-hour movie event titled "Troubled Waters," the Walker family experiences the thrill of a new life born and the desperation and terror of loss when one of their own has a life-threatening crisis. In the very fun episode "Spring Broken," Kevin and Justin take Tommy on a getaway to help him make a decision about his legal future. In "S3X", the Walkers keep up hope that Tommy will return home when Holly considers dropping the charges, meanwhile Sarah makes yet another major career change, Kitty questions whether or not her marriage will survive, and Kevin and Scotty consider a surprising proposal from Chad (guest starring Jason Lewis). And finally in the season finale, "Mexico," the Walker family reaches out to Tommy, they're devastated to find that he may be unwilling to accept their help. Those episodes really stand out, but they are all very good I think and make for a great TV drama.
The episodes run usually in the 42-43 minute range (with a few at 42 or under 42 a bit)...unedited of course. There are about 8 chapter stops per episode. The video is digitally mastered and is in widescreen and looks very good! The audio is great and sounds very good, as it is in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound. This is from the 2008-09 season, so it has to be good. The two-hour movie is presented as two separate episodes as part one and two, which is fine.
Packaging has a nice red/orange outer box with headshots of the main cast on a tree on the front cover...the back cover has information on the series & set and has three screen shots. There is also a section detailing the special features in an orange box with technical specifications also. Inside the box is a digipak case. The front of the digipak has a cast photo with nearly everyone holding a wine glass. The back of the digipak has the start of a nice cast photo of Saul, Justin, Nora and Rebecca. Opening the case once, we get a pocket on the left that holds inserts and also a disc-by-disc breakdown on the left panel itself. On the right panel we have a continuation of that cast photo, this time of Kevin, Sarah & Holly. The pocket holds inserts for other ABC Studios products and Blu-ray. We don't get an episode booklet this time. Last set had that nice family recipe cards. Opening the case once more, we get discs one and two in the middle, with the cast photo continuing, this time of Tommy, Julia, Kitty, Robert & Scotty. Opening it one final time, now we see discs three and four, and discs five and six on the far right. The discs overlap, like most ABC Studio DVDs. Each disc is in red/orange color like the color scheme of the set and has artwork of two characters per disc. Disc one has episodes 1-4 with artwork of Robert & Kitty. Disc two has episodes 5-8 and has artwork of Nora & Saul. Disc three has episodes 9-12 and has artwork of rivals Sarah & Holly. Disc four has episodes 13-16 and has artwork of Kevin & Scotty. Disc five holds episodes 17-20 with artwork of Rebecca & Justin. And finally disc six holds episodes 21-24 and has artwork of Tommy & Julia. After you remove the discs, you see nice promotional photos on the panels itself...very cool.
The menu screen starts by showing us little video clips inside of wine glasses before we get to the main menu with the wine glass in the middle. The closing theme is playing in the background. It is really neat once again. On disc one only, before the main menu we have auto trailers for DVDs of ABC TV on DVD, Desperate Housewives, The Proposal and Blu-ray DVD. The options on the main menu are Play All, Episode Selection, Bonus Features, Set Up, and Sneak Peeks. Sneak Peeks is just on disc six. Set Up section has the option of subtitles in English, French, Spanish or Chinese and how to register your DVD. Before everything on each disc, you'll get this option as well for languages. Bonus Features are on each disc and evenly spread. The Episodes option gives us the episode number and title to choose along with a screenshot from the episode.
Moving on to the bonus features. Each disc has deleted scenes for episodes from that disc. I like that instead of having them all on one disc. Disc one has three deleted scenes running 0:54, 1:46 and 0:28. Disc two has four deleted scenes running 0:19, 0:35, 1:16, 0:33. Disc three has two deleted scenes running 2:13 and 0:13. Disc four has three deleted scenes running 0:29, 2:05, and 0:43. Disc five has three more deleted scenes running 0:58, 0:22 and 2:04. And finally disc six has four more deleted scenes running 1:18, 0:40, 0:28, and 0:55. Wow, so that is a total of 19 deleted scenes!
As far as featurettes, disc one has "The Ojai Experience." This runs 12:42 and has cast members going to an acual family winery in Ojai, CA. The cast and crew that were were Sparky Hawes (co-producer), Ron Rifkin, Ken Olin, Matthew Rhys, Dave Annable, and Patricia Wettig. Disc two has a featurette called "In-Between Scenes." This runs 6:33 and we get to see what they do in between scenes as there are a lot of jokes and practical jokes being done. Interviewed are David Marshall Grant (writer/producer), Dave Annable, Scott Scherick (Assistant to Annable), Michael Foley (writer/producer), Matthew Rhys, and Dave Foley. On disc three we have a featurette called "The Mothers of Brothers & Sisters." This runs 10:16 and is about all the mothers on the show and off the show as well with cast and crew. This is a tribute to all moms out there! Interviewed are Rob Lowe, Sarah Jane Morris, Luke MacFarlane, Sarah Caplan (exec producer), Matthew Rhys, Emily VanCamp, Sally Field, Dave Annable, Michael Morris (supervising producer), Balthazar Getty, Ken Olin, Patricia Wettig, Rachel Griffiths, Sparky Hawes, Elysse Applebaum (assistant), Judy Daly Torres (craft services), Denny Dugally (production designer), Ellis Janes (best boy grip), Adria Badagnani (set decorator coordinator), Cole Fowler (assistant), Darlene Brumfield (hair dept. head), Nathan Bishop (production assistant), Alison Schapker (executive producer/showrunner), Kerry Blackman (assistant editor), Eric LaBonte (set dresser).
Disc four has audio commentary on part one of "Troubled Waters" by executive producer Monica Owusu-Breen and actors Matthew Rhys (Kevin) and Rob Lowe (Robert). The trio return for part two on disc five for "Troubled Waters" as well! This is very informative to listen to and see all the tidbits on how Rob Lowe did the heart attack scene and more. Very cool! The final audio commentary is on disc six for the episode "Mexico," which was the season finale, of course. Executive producer Monica Owusu-Breen this time is joined by Ken Olin (David/executive producer) and Alison Schapker (writer/exec producer). They also give great details on this episode. Listen and see! We finally have 5:03 worth of Bloopers & Outtakes. Very fun to watch always and a bit longer than last year.
I highly recommend this series and set. It is such a well written and acted show. Sally Field and Rachel Griffiths have been nominated already, but Rob Lowe and Calista Flockhart deserved nominations this year also. I look forward to it every Sunday on ABC and can't wait until the fourth season starts on Sept. 27. Last time I suggest they release the DVD on the same day as Desperate Housewives, and they did this time! So you ca catch up in time for the Sept. 27 season premiere if you missed any episodes. Don't go all the way to Baja or Bakersfield to buy this DVD because you can just click below to order and you can gather your family and watch the Walker family on your TVs! Your family can't be as wild I hope?
-- Reviewed by Pavan
To purchase the DVD, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
SitcomsOnline.com Full DVD Reviews Page
Brothers and Sisters TV.com Page
Saturday, August 29, 2009
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation - The Ninth Season (CBS DVD/Paramount Home Video, $98.18)
Follow the evidence... again and again. Television's number-one drama continues to deliver as LVPD's brilliant forensics team encounters their greatest challenges yet in the stunning ninth season of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. Watch and learn as the team wrestles with death, destiny and inner demons. This must-own collection includes the historic departure of Gil Grissom (William Petersen) and the much-anticipated arrival of Dr. Raymond Langston (Laurence Fishburne).
This 6-disc set contains all 24 episodes from the ninth (2008-09) season of the long-running crime drama. The episodes are presented in Anamorphic Widescreen enchanced for 16:9 tvs with Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround audio. It has a total running time of approximately 17 hours, 22 minutes. The attractive packaging has profile photos of Laurence Fishburne, Marg Helgenberger and William Petersen on the front cover with the Las Vegas skyline in the background. There is an embossed CSI: Crime Scene Investigation logo at the top of the box. Nine cast members are featured on the back of the box with the largest photos of William Petersen and Laurence Fishburne. A short synopsis of the set, a listing of the special features and the DVD specs are given. The inside case is in a book format that you can flip through to get to the discs. There is a montage of various photos of the cast on the front and back covers. A content locator lists the episodes by disc and the special features on the inside cover. Each disc lists the episodes and has the CSI logo and a green background. These sets have retained consistent packaging, while CSI: Miami and CSI: NY have switched to slimcases. They also still include the Crime Scene: Do Not Cross tape around the packaging. That is always a nice touch.
The menus on these sets have always been very slick looking and easy to navigate. There is a series of 5 minutes of previews for some other CBS DVD releases that you can play or skip at the beginning. The main menu opens with a view from a bus on the street. This leads to a montage of video clips that run a little over a minute with some of the wonderful instrumental music by composer John M. Keane in the background. Options are avaiable for Episode Selection, Set Up and the Special Features (on select discs). On the Set Up menu, you can choose either Dolby Digital 5.1 English Surround or Español. Closed captioning is available for all of the episodes but some of the special features may not be closed captioned. As you would expect from such a recent show, the video and audio quality is outstanding. The show looks stunning and even better on Blu-ray. They do a lot of nighttime shooting and make the show look dark and like a theatrical film. There is no disclaimer on the back of the box about any of the episodes possibly being edited. Episodes are presented in their original broadcast order and numbered by the production number, which was the same order for this season. Running times are between 42-44 minutes in length.
A decent number of special features are spread out over the 6 discs. Once again, there are only 2 audio commentaries on this set like last season. They have really cut back on the number of them from previous seasons for all of the CSI franchise shows. There are 4 features that total approximately 78 minutes. Deleted scenes are included for 6 episodes and run approximately 9 minutes. A pop-up style text information track is available on one episode. Here is the breakdown by disc:
Episode 902 "The Happy Place" - Deleted Scene (2:00) - A scene with Wendy Simms and Detective Williams questioning the pit boss, Randy Hopper.
Crime Scene Iniation (14:43) - This featurette includes interviews with William Petersen, Executive Producer Naren Shankar, Executive Producer Carol Mendelsohn, Eric Szmanda, Marg Helgenberger, Laurence Fishburne, George Eads, Robert David Hall, Wallace Langham, Lauren Lee Smith and Paul Guilfoyle. This details the two new cast members that were brought in for this season. They talk about how Laurence Fishburne was cast, about the character he was playing and how they wanted him to be different than Grissom. Then they talk about how Lauren Lee Smith was cast, her character and her relationships with the other characters.
Episode 909 "19 Down..." - Deleted Scenes (1:30) - 3 short scenes: 1) Greg and Conrad talk. 2) Hodges and Simms talk. 3) Greg and David Phillips examine the plastic bag contents with an x-ray machine.
Episode 911 "The Grave Shift" - View the episode in CSI Mode (Comprehensive Scientific Information Mode) - This has some pop-up style information boxes that give information on forensic science. It would be interesting to have these and general trivia tracks on more episodes.
Episode 914 "Miscarriage of Justice" - Deleted Scene (:42) - A scene with Catherine in the court room with the lawyers and judge.
Episode 916 - "Turn, Turn, Turn" - Audio Commentary by Actor George Eads, Actress Taylor Swift and Writer Tom Mularz - Taylor Swift makes her primetime television acting debut. Over 20.8 million viewers watched.
Episode 920 "A Space Oddity" - Deleted Scene (3:15) - Simms and Hodges talk at the convention and the murdered victim is discovered.
Episode 920 "A Space Oddity" - Audio Commentary by Executive Producer & Writer Naren Shankar, Actor Wally (Wallace) Langham, Actress Liz Vassey, Writer Bradley Thompson, Writer David Weddle, Actor John Wellner, Actor Archie Kao and Actress Sheeri Rappoport. The annual lab rats episode is always a fun time and the commentary is lively and entertaining.
Episode 920 "A Space Oddity" - Rats in Space (27:18) - This featurette incldues interviews with Naren Shankar, Jon Wellner, Walalce Langham, Sheeri Rappaport, Liz Vassey, Supervising Producers Bradley Thompson and David Weddle, Archie Kao, Director Michael Nankin, Set Decorator Erin Smith, Lead Buyer Adam Braid, Property Master Michael Lindsay, Special Effects Make-Up Matthew Mungle, Department Head Make-Up Melanie Levitt and Costume Designer Eileen Barker. This details the annual lab rats episode, which also has an audio commentary available. This episode dealt with a real murder at a science fiction convention. They talk about the challenge in writing the episode, how this was an ambitious and complicated episode with a lot of production value, the sci-fi convention set and other sets they created, the props, the alien heads and make-up and how they made costumes for 60 people.
From Zero to 200 in Nine Seasons (18:54) - This featurette includes interviews with Executive Producer Carol Mendelsohn, Executive Producer Naren Shankar, Director William Friedkin, Producer Dustin Abraham, Laurence Fishburne, George Eads and Robert David Hall. This extra celebrates and details the 200th episode "Mascara". It was directed by William Friedkin and dealt with the Lucha libre and Mexican wrestling. They talk about how they cast real wrestlers, the location shooting and sets and working with William Friedkin. There is also some footage shown from the 200th episode press/cast party where Carol Mendelsohn, Anthony E. Zuiker and Jerry Bruckheimer speak.
Episode 921 "If I Had A Hammer" - Deleted Scene (1:25) - A scene with Conrad and Catherine.
Episode 922 "The Gone Dead Train" - Deleted Scene (:47) - A scene with Ray and Nick.
Good-bye Grissom (17:37) - This featurette includes interviews with Executive Producer Carol Mendelsohn, Executive Producer Naran Shanka, William Petersen, Jorja Fox, George Eads, Marg Helgenberger, Paul Guilfoyle, Eric Szmanda, Wallace Langham and Robert David Hall. They talk about how it was set up that William Petersen was going to leave after 10 episodes and his reasons for wanting to do other things that weren't possible while doing a weekly series. They talk about Grissom's and Sarah's relationship and how the other characters as students no longer needed a teacher. Then they show how each character got to say goodbye to Grissom and some footage from Petersen's farewell parties are shown.
Final Comments: It was another sad and stunning season of CSI. William Petersen's Gil Grissom was always my favorite character, so seeing him leave the show was emotional. The show has lost 3 major cast members over the last few seasons. It has some lost a lot of the magic of the earlier seasons with so many likable characters departing. I think Laurence Fishburne is a great actor, but the character he was playing was just too inexperienced as a criminalist. I know they wanted him to be a completely different character than Grissom, but I think making him a complete rookie was a mistake. I'm sure many die-hard fans didn't want to see some of the same newbie forensic gathering techniques that they saw in the first season. Other cast members like Marg Helgenberger and George Eads seemed to have less to do than in earlier seasons. Lauren Lee Smith's Riley character brought some more youth and spunk to the show, but she was really never given much to do and won't be back for the tenth season. The show is still doing well in the ratings and has some good seasons left, but I hope they can go back to having it being more of an ensemble show with everybody as a true team and involved in each episode. I look forward to the tenth season premiere on September 24. Jorja Fox will be returning as Sara Sidle for 5 episodes.
-- Reviewed by Todd Fuller
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Friday, August 28, 2009
New York City Locals Fall 2009 Schedules; A&E Buys Lifetime; Series High for Joan Rivers' TV Land Show
We'll start with WNYW's Fall 2009 schedule. New series this fall are Dr. Mehmet Oz at 11am & 3pm, Judge Jeanine Pirro at 4pm, and The Office at 7:30pm & 11pm. The Office will also air weekends, Saturdays at 7:30pm and Sundays at 11pm. Summer launches will continue in the fall with Wendy Williams Show continuing to air weekdays at 10am and Wedlock or Deadlock will move to 12:30pm (from 11am). Among the series leaving are Inside Edition, Morning Show with Mike & Juliet, Bananas and Scrubs.
Sister network WWOR will be making more changes than WNYW in Fall 2009. New series this fall are Dragonfly Mondays at 7am, My Name is Earl at 7:30am & 8am, America's Funniest Home Videos at 2pm, Everybody Hates Chris at 4pm & 4:30pm, Law & Order: SVU at 11:30pm, Deadliest Catch Saturdays at 4pm & 11:30pm, Bones on Saturdays at 8pm & 9pm, and Swap TV on Sundays at 11:30am. Joining the schedule from WPIX will be My Wife & Kids, airing weekdays at 5:30pm. Everybody Hates Chris will also air Saturdays at 6pm & 6:30pm. Among the series leaving are Animal Atlas E/I, Scrubs, One on One, Trivial Pursuit, UFC Wired, The Dead Zone, and Law & Order: Criminal Intent.
Finally, we have WPIX's Fall 2009 schedule. New series this fall are Street Court at 1pm & 1:30pm, Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader? at 5pm & 5:30pm, Star Trek: The Next Generation at 3am, The Hills Saturdays 1pm & 1:30pm, The Brian McKnight Show Saturdays at 11pm, and Smash Cuts Sundays at 7pm & 7:30pm. Joining the schedule from WNYW/WWOR will be Scrubs, airing weeknights at 2am and Saturdays at 1am. Also, joining from WNYW is Inside Edition, airing weeknights at 6pm leading into the new PIX News at 6:30pm. CW Daytime now adds Best of Tyra Banks and The Tyra Banks Show at 3pm & 4pm, replacing Judge Jeanine Pirro and sitcoms Wayans Bros. and Jamie Foxx. Among the other series leaving are Judge Karen, My Wife & Kids, Sex and the City, The Jeffersons, and the '60s Star Trek.
View the FULL Fall 2009 schedules for WNYW, WWOR, and WPIX in New York City! Stay tuned for updates, if any. From New York, goodnight!
The Disney-ABC Television Group, Hearst Corporation and NBC Universal announced an agreement for A&E Television Networks to acquire Lifetime Entertainment Services. The parent company will retain the name A&E Television Networks, LLC (AETN), and its subsidiary will retain the name Lifetime Entertainment Services, LLC. The closing of the transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to occur in 2009. Financial terms were not disclosed.
AETN will now include: A&E Network, History, Lifetime Television, Lifetime Movie Network, Bio, History International, Lifetime Real Women, History en Espanol, Military History and Crime & Investigation Network.
Before the reshuffling, Disney-ABC and Hearst each held a 37.5% stake in AETN, while NBC Universal controlled the remaining 25%. Once the dust settles, Disney and Hearst will each hold an estimated 42.5% stake in AETN, leaving NBC with about 15.5%. Lifetime was a 50-50 joint venture between Disney-ABC and Hearst before AETN acquired it.
Wednesday night's episode of TV Land PRIME's original reality series, How'd You Get So Rich? averaged nearly 800,000 total viewers, making it the most-watched episode of the season to date, according to Nielsen Media Research. The telecast posted huge, triple-digit increases in rating and delivery among Adults 25-54 and Adults 40-54 in addition to total viewers over recent levels. It also witnessed gains over its 9:30 p.m. lead-in among A25-54 and double-digit gains among women 25-54. The new series, starring the hilarious and often outrageous Joan Rivers, takes viewers on a journey to meet millionaires who worked hard and struck gold as she tours the most lavish and extravagant homes and introduces them to folks who made a lot of money in really interesting ways the way only Joan can.
The episodes posted a 0.4 A25-54 rating and 426,000 viewers among A25-54, up a whopping 150% in rating and 148% in viewers in that demo versus the prior 4 week primetime average. The network averaged 771,000 total viewers, up 117% over recent levels. Among the network's core A40-54 audience, the premiere earned a 0.4 A40-54 rating and 240,000 viewers among A40-54, an increase of 153% in rating and viewers in that demo over recent levels in primetime.
The telecast posted increases among men and women 25-54 over recent primetime levels as well. Among women, it scored a 0.5 W25-54 rating and 247,000 viewers among W25-54, up 109% in rating and 111% in viewers in that demo versus previous four week primetime average. Among men the installment scored a 0.4 M25-54 rating and 179,000 viewers among M25-54, a triple digit increase of 218% in rating and 225% in delivery. How'd You Get So Rich? experienced appointment viewing as it lifted 8% among A25-54 over its 9:30 p.m. lead-in.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
The program will air simultaneously on BET, BET J, CMT, CMT Pure Country, COMEDY CENTRAL, Logo, MTV, MTV Jams, MTV Hits, MTV Tr3s, MTV2, mtvU, Nickelodeon/Nick at Nite, Nicktoons Network, Palladia, Spike TV, The N/TeenNick, TV Land, VH1, VH1 Classic and VH1 Soul.
Anyway, back to BET September. They will air back to school programming in honor of this initiative. The Game will kick it off on Labor Day weekend from Saturday, Sept. 5 through and including Monday, Sept. 7. The marathon will air 9am-12am on Saturday, 1pm-6pm on Sunday, and 9am-11pm on Monday. Season one episodes will air Saturday and Sunday and season two episodes on Monday.
Next up in this week-long initiative is the launch of Everybody Hates Chris to BET. It will air Tuesday, Sept. 8 from 9am-6pm. It technically launches Sunday, Sept. 6 in the 12-1pm hour, though. Airing Wednesday-Friday that week are One on One on Wednesday, Smart Guy on Thursday, and Sister Sister on Friday...all from 9am-6pm. And finally on Saturday (Sept. 12), the week-long event concludes with The Proud Family from 9am-10:30am and The Steve Harvey Show from 10:30am-4:30pm, as this series airs for the first time on BET in a while. BET will also have a special called Bring Your "A" Game premiering Saturday, Sept. 12 at 9pm ET and encores Sunday, Sept. 13 at 12:30pm ET.
As for the regular schedule, it will start Monday, Sept. 14, but the regular schedule (as of now) isn't changing. Morning hours of Smart Guy, One on One, Sister Sister and The Game will air from 9am-1pm. A movie follows at 1pm, then more sitcoms starting at 3pm with One on One, Sister Sister and The Game. The 12:30pm & 5:30pm episodes of The Game will be season three episodes for the first time on BET. The Game will air on some nights in the 10pm hour as well. As of now, Everybody Hates Chris will just air on weekends. We mentioned Sundays in the 12-1pm hour starting Sept. 6. Saturdays will be added starting Sept. 19 airing Saturdays 3-4pm. One on One and The Game will be its lead-in on Saturdays. Everybody Hates Chris will be also airing on sister network Nick at Nite every night at 10pm and 2am ET/PT starting Sept. 7, as we mentioned.
Stay tuned if we have any further updates on this schedule. Could Chris also come to weekday afternoons? Stay with us.
The Hallmark Channel continues with the little changes basically every week it seems. Starting next week (Monday, Aug. 31), Cheers replaces I Love Lucy in late nights at 2:30am ET/PT. So this means I Love Lucy is off the schedule totally now, while Cheers now gets a two-hour block from 1am-3am. It's been good news for Cheers, as it will also air weekday afternoons now on WGN America this fall, in addition to its Sunday airings. As for I Love Lucy, it will be no where to be found nationally now. Hopefully Hallmark Channel brings it back very soon.
Nick at Nite's new stop-motion animated original series Glenn Martin, DDS reached a total 11 million viewers (8/17/09-8/20/09) and averaged 2.6 million viewers per telecast in its premiere week (Monday-Thursday, Aug. 17-20, 8 p.m.–8:30 p.m. [all times ET/PT]), according to Nielsen. The first television series from Michael Eisner's Tornante Animation starring Kevin Nealon, Catherine O'Hara and Judy Greer, also ranked as ad-supported cable's number-one co-viewed entertainment series in prime time for the week with 40% of Adults 18-49 watching with at least one kid per household.
The premiere episodes that week held 89% of its lead-in ratings (new episodes of The Penguins of Madagascar) with kids 2-11 (3.9 K2-11 rating/1.4 million K2-11 viewers); 83% with Adults 18-49 (0.5 18-49 rating/581,000 viewers 18-49); and 91% with total viewers (2.6 million).
The week of premieres also propelled Nick at Nite's prime-time growth. Year to date, the network posted gains of 50% with total viewers during prime time and quarter to date, it grew 39%.
The series airs new episodes every Monday at 8pm after that premiere week...however a new episode of Glenn Martin was added for this past Tuesday (Aug. 25) at 8pm (with an encore at 1am). Encore episodes were also added for this Wednesday and Thursday at 8pm & 1am, along with Friday (Aug. 28) 9-10pm and Saturday and Sunday night at 1am for this week. Wow! More encores to come I'm sure. It looks like Nick at Nite has an original hit.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Moving on to the week of September 14, South Park will join the late night line-up airing weeknights at 12:00am & 12:30am ET (9 & 9:30pm PT), replacing Bob & Tom Show, which will move to 2am ET (11pm PT) replacing Steve Wilkos Show...which is now gone. And as I was saying, the late night 4am-5:30am block for week of Sept. 7 was temporary. Effective Sept. 14, Reno 911! will air Mon-Wed at 4am ET, South Park on Thursdays from 4-5am ET, and Chappelle's Show on Fridays from 4-5am ET. The Cosby Show will air Mondays and Tuesdays at 4:30am ET, while Reno 911! airs for the full 4am hour on Wednesdays. And Funniest Pets & People will expand to all five days at 5am ET (2am PT), but for this week only.
Next up is the week of September 21, we now get two hours of In the Heat of the Night, as Nash Bridges is off the schedule at 12pm ET. The Beverly Hillbillies will return to WGN America and at a better time now! It will air weekdays in the 2pm ET (11am PT) hour replacing Bewitched, which moves to the 4pm ET (1pm PT) hour replacing The Cosby Show. The Cosby Show will only air now Monday nights at 4:30am and in the Sunday night block in the 7pm hour. Joining the weeknight schedule now will also be Punk'd airing weekdays at 5am ET (2am PT) replacing Funniest Pets & People, which will leave the line-up. Punk'd will also air Tuesdays at 4:30am ET. Joining the Sunday schedule will be new first-run syndicated series Smash Cuts airing for a full-hour on Sundays at 4pm for its first week only & will regularly air at 4am ET on Sunday nights. South Park will air Sundays in the 3am ET hour, while Nash Bridges will air in the 2am ET. Boston Legal will air weekends at 1pm ET after baseball season is over (starting Oct. 10).
Finally by September 28, we are all set basically for the fall. Just a few more changes are happening. Punk'd will get a decent addition airing Thursdays at 9pm ET replacing American Gladiators, which is leaving. It will also air Sundays at 11am ET after baseball season. Joining the weekend schedule will be Bones on Saturdays at 6pm and 7pm ET and Law & Order: Criminal Intent on Saturday nights at 4:30am ET and Sunday nights at 2am ET for its first week ONLY before settling into Saturday afternoons at 2pm and 3pm ET after baseball season is over.
Boy that's a lot of new additions! Let's recap: South Park, Punk'd, Smash Cuts, Bones, Law & Order: Criminal Intent are all new. Beverly Hillbillies returns. Corner Gas, Funniest Pets & People, Homicide: Life on the Street, Steve Wilkos, American Gladiators, Bullwinkle, WKRP in Cincinnati, Coach are leaving. Coach is not scheduled, but they will likely air it at some point (enjoy the marathon on Sept. 6).
View the FULL WGN America Fall 2009 schedule, so you get the full taste of the line-up that will essentially happen by Sept. 28.
As for highlights, we already noted the marathons including the Cosby Show 25th anniversary marathon on Sunday, Sept. 20. We now get word the marathon is even longer now! 1pm-5:30pm ET has been added, in addition to the 5:30pm-7pm ET & 11pm-4am ET. The 25th anniversary half-hour special is airing at 1pm and 6:30pm ET. Classic NBC line-up on that date from 7pm-10pm ET is of course airing with The Cosby Show pilot at 7pm ET, Family Ties at 7:30pm ET, a full-hour of Cheers at 8pm ET and Hill Street Blues at 9pm ET. All episodes that exactly aired on NBC from that night. View more marathon info for Honeymooners and Coach.
Moving on to some TV tidbits...Senator Ted Kennedy has passed away at age 77 yesterday. In honor of his memory we have some specials. Bio TV will air Biography Remembers: Ted Kennedy on Thursdays at 9pm ET and Saturday at 12pm & 4am ET. Biography: John F. Kennedy and Biography: Barack Obama will air before and after Kennedy's episode on Thursday evening and Saturday afternoon. Biography: John F. Kennedy Jr. will air at 11pm Thursday and 10am Saturday.
On the broadcast networks, ABC will air ABC News Special: Remembering Ted Kennedy at 10pm ET, preempting Primetime: Crime. Charles Gibson and Diane Sawyer will anchor this special. CBS will air Ted Kennedy: The Last Brother at 8pm ET preempting comedy repeats. Katie Couric will report. NBC will expand NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams to one-hour, but nothing will air in primetime. CNN will air the documentary Teddy: In His Own Words from 7-9pm ET.
Finally, NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution has sold Bravo's unscripted series The Real Housewives as a one-hour syndicated strip for fall 2010 to NBC and Hearst television station groups, B&C reports. The series has taken place in Southern California's Orange County, New York City, New Jersey and Atlanta. It will reach 100 episodes this fall on Bravo.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Full House in primetime will be just for two weeks, the week of Aug. 31 from 8pm-12am and the week of Sept. 8 from 8pm-10pm. It will move to its regular slot of 6-7am starting Sept. 8. One on One returns to the line-up and will air 8pm-12am starting week of Sept. 14. While One on One returns, Moesha will be leaving the schedule as its morning 8-9am airing will be replaced by more Zoey 101 and its late night block will be replaced by One on One from 4-6am. What I Like About You now will air 6-8pm and 2-4am, while That '70s Show remains from 12-2am. The rest of the schedule is filled with Nickelodeon and The N originals: Unfabulous, Zoey 101, Caitlin's Way, Radio Free Roscoe, The Assistants, The Best Years, True Jackson VP, and of course Degrassi: The Next Generation.
Weekends will have various programming and is different each week it seems. Marathons of True Jackson VP (Sept. 13 6am-6pm; Sept. 19 6am-6pm) and Degrassi: The Next Generation (Sept. 12 1pm-10pm; Sept. 13 6pm-11pm) are among the highlights.
Degrassi: The Next Generation will have a Labor Day (Monday, Sept. 7) marathon from 6am-12am. Degrassi: The Next Generation closes The N on its last weeknight as well on Friday, Sept. 25 with a marathon from 6am-12am. There will be a two-night late night block as well that week on Thursday night and Friday night from 2am-6am. And finally, Degrassi: The Next Generation closes The N on the weekend of Sept. 26-27 from 6pm-12am with two-hour episodes. Technically Sabrina the Teenage Witch will be the last show on The N at 5:30am before it turns into TeenNick on Sept. 28. Yes, the rotating wheel on Sundays at 5:30am continues with Clueless, Growing Pains, and Sabrina.
View the full The N September 2009 schedule and stay with us for updates on the transformation of The N to TeenNick! And also stay tuned for fall schedules for WGN America, BET, New York City local stations and more.
This September, A&E will expand Criminal Minds to 5 days a week! Right now it was just airing two nights a week in primetime but starting Monday, August 31 Criminal Minds will air weekdays at 1pm and 7pm ET/PT.
The weekday schedule will now look like this starting at 7am with Crossing Jordan, The Sopranos, American Justice, Cold Case Files, double shot of CSI: Miami at 11am & 12pm, Criminal Minds at 1, more The Sopranos, American Justice, Cold Case Files, another double shot of CSI: Miami at 5pm & 6pm, and Criminal Minds at 7pm. Original programming airs from 8pm-4am on weeknights.
Criminal Minds will continue to air on Friday and Sunday nights in primetime as well. CSI: Miami will continue to air on weekends and primetime as well, as well as The Sopranos. And finally, Criminal Minds will have a Labor Day (Sept. 7) marathon from 8am-8pm.
Monday, August 24, 2009
There will be a NUMB3RS marathon on Sunday, October 11 from 12pm-12am ET/PT. NUMB3RS will be exclusive to TNT until fall 2010 when local broadcast syndication will start airing it on weekends. Criminal Minds and NUMB3RS will join weekends in local syndication replacing CSI: NY and CSI: Miami. Criminal Minds will be on ION Television this fall as wel as A&E on cable.
Anyway, view the full TNT Fall 2009 schedule.
The sitcom The Game was just canceled by The CW after three seasons, but now cable network BET could pick it up for another season, the Hollywood Reporter is reporting! BET currently airs repeats of the sitcom in its weekday line-up. BET is in talks with CBS Television Studio for another season. BET is owned by Viacom, so it would make sense.
Series creator Mara Brock Akil in April pitched an hourlong version of the show as a way of to keep it on The CW, which was exiting the half-hour comedy business...but that didn't work. If it would come to BET, it would be a half-hour version, I'm sure. The options on the actors have expired, so if a deal is reached with BET, CBS TV Studios would have to make new deals with them. As they say, stay tuned...
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Last Sunday Sitcoms (counts for week of August 10-16)
- Til Death (Fox) - A repeat at 7pm only mustered 1.72 million...but up slightly week-to-week...after going going down slightly the previous week.
- The Simpsons (Fox) 2 episodes - We got double dose of repeats this week with the regular 8pm airing getting 4.74 million, a big boost from normal! Why? because a special 7:30pm repeat was the lead-in and did 2.71 million, much better than the usual American Dad 7:30pm repeat.
- King of the Hill (Fox) - preempted.
- Family Guy (Fox) 3 episodes - A mini marathon from 8:30pm-10pm did decent for repeats. 8:30pm repeat did 4.91 million, while the regular 9pm airing did 5.3 million for a repeat. A 9:30pm repeat did 5.03 million. 2.4, 2.5 and 2.3 A18-49 ratings as well. Very solid for repeats these days.
- American Dad! (Fox) - preempted.
- How I Met Your Mother
(CBS) 2 episodes - 4.28 million for a repeat airing in its normal 8pm slot, down from previous week. 1.4 A18-49 rating was also down as the previous week. A repeat at 8:30pm did worse with 4.22 million and a 1.5 A19-49 rating, both lower than the usual Rules of Engagement repeats from this summer in this slot.
- Two and a Half Men (CBS) - 8.55 million for a repeat, down a bit from previous week. 2.5 A18-49 rating was up though by a bit from previous week.
- The Big Bang Theory (CBS) - 8.04 million for a repeat is down from previous week. when it has the closest retention yet in total viewers from the lead-in. 2.7 18-49 rating is excellent, though down a tenth from previous week...but still up .2 from the lead-in! This is the sitcom to watch in the fall.
- Old Christine (CBS) - Only 3.82 million for a repeat, up some from previous week and up a tenth also in A18-49 rating with a 1.1 rating...up from previous few weeks.
- Gary Unmarried (CBS) - Only 3.73 million...on par really from previous week again, and the same A18-49 with a 1.2 rating from previous week.
- The Office (NBC) - 3.28 million for a repeat at 9pm...up a tad from previous week.
- 30 Rock (NBC) 2 episodes - 3.07 and 3.04 million for repeats at 8 and 9:30pm...8pm did better than previous week weeks, while 9:30pm was basically on par.
- Parks & Recreation (NBC) - A repeat did just 2.37 million at 8:30pm...the lowest of the sitcom repeats again.
- Everybody Hates Chris (The CW) - A repeat at 9pm did a prelim 964,000 viewers. That was down from previous week's prelim numbers.
- The Game (The CW) - A repeat did a prelim 1.2 million, also down from previous week's prelim numbers.
- According to Jim (ABC) - A one-time-only repeat at 8pm did a prelim 3.14 million (could change due to NFL preemptions). This was the last network airing of the show on ABC.
Coming Week Preview (Aug. 24-30):
I'm going to have to preempt this section for a blog DVD review again.
It is time for a special Sunday edition of the "Blog DVD Review." Today we we take a look at CBS DVD's Sixth Season of Navy NCIS. See Seth Thrasher's blog DDVD review of NCIS - The Sixth Season and:
NCIS - The Sixth Season (CBS, $55.98) is now on DVD. This season finds the highly skilled NCIS team still under the able command of Special Agent Jethro Gibbs (Mark Harmon), an uncompromising leader who will see justice done -- even if it means bending the rules. This season, Gibbs starts out welcomes two new members to the unit, wile directing the veteran agents in their dangerous investigations outside the chain of Naval and Marine command. Co-starring Michael Weatherly, Pauley Perrette, David McCallum, Sean Murray, Cote de Pablo, and Rocky Carroll, this six-disc set includes all 25 action-packed Season Six episodes.
After last season's awesome cliffhanger, fans were left wondering why the team had been split up. The answers are provided in the first episode of the season, Last Man Standing -- when it's revealed that there was in fact a traitor in their midst -- the agents assigned to Gibbs are in fact the suspects. The storyline, while appearing to be resolved to the main characters, ultimately comes back later in the season. One of the nice things about NCIS in particular is the way that storylines branch out from one episode to the next. It's one of the things (quality of characters is another) that sets this apart from other similar series in the genre. This plot arc style would surface in a larger way in the series final few episodes, as more and more questions arise over the loyalty of Ziva. At the season's end, Gibbs' boat is no more, the team presumes Ziva to be back working in Israel, and in the final shots...Ziva has been taken captive and is being asked what she knows about NCIS.
In terms of the technical side of the set, the packaging is as always an outer box containing slimcases -- three cases holding six discs this season. The discs feature the standard silver look of Paramount/CBS releases. Box art features Gibbs (Harmon) in the foreground, with the remainder of the cast members each occupying a narrow vertical bar behind him. The rear cover's photo has the entire cast posed in a white room, all wearing various elegant clothing.
Menus are well-designed but static, with no music in the background. Each main menu features the white room featured on the rear cover, with a photo of one of the cast members. Each disc's main menu features a different member of the team.
In regards to audio and video, a great thing about working with newer series is that the video quality and audio quality are great almost by default. This set is no exception -- the video looks flawless in its presentation. Color balance is nice and even, there are no compression artifacts, there are no problems in the transfer -- nothing. Audio is a crisp and clear 5.1 audio track. The only way this show's presentation could be nicer would be for the show to appear on one of the high-definition video formats. You get the usual disclaimer about how some episodes might be edited, but the only thing I noticed was that, as always, the "Next time on NCIS" bumpers are gone. More than likely, in an era of pre-negotiated DVD rights, that disclaimer is just for legal purposes. I highly doubt anything substantive is cut.
And since NCIS is a popular series currently airing on TV, that means more effort goes into the bonuses on a release. It's always nice to review a set whose DVD presentation isn't half-baked. There are SEVEN special features, including cast and crew commentaries, a tour of the company that creates the bodies used on the show, a feature on the season's opening arc, a feature revolving around the season episode "South By Southwest," two pieces with the cast and crew reflecting on the season, as well as a special feature in which Pauley Perrette *sings*. All great stuff to sit through and watch/listen to. The commentaries in particular are interesting to listen to -- I just wish there were more than the three included on the set. The three episodes with commentary are "Broken Bird" (commentary by David McCallum and James Whitmore Jr.), "Bounce”" (commentary by Michael Weatherly), and "Toxic" (commentary by Pauley Perrette and Sean Murray.)
I was fortunate to have a former roommate of mine get me hooked on the show early on. There are as mentioned still viewers, six years on, who haven't come to understand what a quality series this is. Perhaps, they're scared off by the basic framework of the typical crime procedural. The show does feature those elements, but they're secondary to the story elements themselves -- the plot (yes, NCIS does typically feature an actual plot) and characters (the show has some of the best on broadcast TV right now). Others might be a little weary over the military aspect. The series was a spin-off of JAG, a series that I'll be the first to admit was neck-deep in the military aspect. On NCIS, it provides the setting and back-story, but unlike JAG it's typically only a minor to intermediate part of any plot -- in most episodes, anyway.
If you're reading this and you aren't really a fan, I'd like to ask you to give the show a chance. USA Network runs the show approximately a billion times per week, so if you're dedicated you can pretty much catch the entire run in about a week. Exaggeration aside you *can*, in one week's time on USA you can catch a large quantity of episodes to sample, and I urge you to do so. I think that if you give the show a fair chance, you'll come to really enjoy it.
Those of you who already enjoy it? This set streets on Tuesday, and if you don't have it pre-ordered you know what you should be doing as soon as it's financially sound to do so. This set wants a place in your DVD collection, and it most certainly deserves it. Strong recommendation.
-- Reviewed by Seth Thrasher
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Saturday, August 22, 2009
MonsterQuest - Season Three, Set One (A&E Home Video, $24.95)
Throughout history there have been countless sightings of mysterious creatures, from Megladon, the father of the great white shark; to gators in the sewer, a result of the rising gator populations clashing with human encroachment; to the Snow Beast of the Colorado Rockies that is thought to be hunting the elk population while fleeing man.
Most of what we know of these creatures comes from campfire stories, blurry films and grainy photographs. In Season Three of MonsterQuest, History brings science and technology to bear on these creatures of legend and seeks confirmation of their existence. Combining open-eyed historical research, state-of-the-art equipment, and high-tech expeditions, each episode examines the best evidence available, from pictures and video, to hair and bones, to actual eyewitness accounts.
From pilots to policeman to ship captains, a number of seemingly credible people have seen things they can't explain. One part history, one part science and one part monsters, MonsterQuest discovers the truth in these sightings, and the legendary creatures behind them.
MonsterQuest Season Three, Set One features 8 mysterious episodes on two DVDs. The packaging for this set is a standard Amaray movie-style snap case. A mysterious creature's eyes are on the cover. In the top right corner, there is the History logo. There is a steel background with the set title printed. On the back of the box, there is a short synopsis of the series, a listing of the episodes and the DVD specs. The discs are held in embedded holders with one disc in the middle holder and the second on the back case. Each disc contains 4 episodes. The same drawing of the mysterious creature's eyes and the show logo are on the discs.
When you first insert a disc, they show about 15 seconds of the opening credits with the instrumental theme and no narration. This leads to the main menu where they have an alligator and the show logo. The episode titles are listed vertically in white at the bottom. The highlighted episode you choose is in yellow and turns gray upon your selection. This takes you to another sub-menu where there is a drawing of the creature that is featured in the episode and a listing of the scene selections. You can choose a scene individually or use the "Play All" button to view the entire episode.
As you would expect for a series that just aired in recent months, the video and audio quality is outstanding. The episodes are presented in widescreen and in their original broadcast order. These are the first 8 episodes of season three. Most of the on location shooting and interviews look excellent. Some of the submitted video varies depending on the source. I really like the narration by Stan Bernard and the music they use. It gives it a certain level of creepiness and drama. The audio is a Dolby Digital 2.0 track. Closed captioning is available on all of the episodes. The total running time is approximately 6 hours, 10 minutes. Running times range from 44:25-44:53.
Unfortunately, there are no episode summaries or original airdates listed anywhere on the packaging. It would have been nice if they included a sheet or booklet. Here are the 8 episodes you are getting. Episode summaries are courtesy of the official site and iTunes where you can also purchase the episodes. Running times and original airdates are noted in the parentheses.
Death of Loch Ness (02/04/09 - 44:53) - The search for the Loch Ness Monster has captivated the world for decades, but now a startling realization about "Nessie" might shatter this age-old myth. Could the Loch Ness Monster be dead? And do its remains lie hidden at the bottom of the lake? Robert Rines, a world-renowned inventor and explorer has spent much of his life searching for Nessie. He believes he may have seen the remains of this mythical beast while mapping the lake floor with sonar. Now he is on a mission to find scientific evidence to prove it. Rines, who says he saw the creature surface in the lake in 1972, now believes that the images explain the recent decrease in sightings, and that they can only mean only one thing: Nessie is dead. MonsterQuest's search team travels to the lake looking for evidence and deploying the latest technology including remote operating vehicles (ROVs), sonar and specialty cameras as we search for Nessie's remains.
Cattle Killers (02/11/09 - 44:25) - Something mysterious and violent is killing cattle of the North American plains, but what is behind these gruesome attacks -- satanic cults, an unknown predator, or something previously unknown to man? For 40 years, there have been thousands of cases of cattle found mutilated under abnormal circumstances; these livestock are found dead, often with their blood drained and organs or body parts removed from their bodies. Abnormally high radiation levels have been detected in the soil near the dead animals when they are found, and the deaths often do not match the pattern of known predators. With no apparent footprints or tracks leading to or from the carcases and strange circles near the site, the mystery only deepens. A MonsterQuest team will gather samples and head to a laboratory to scientifically analyze the most compelling evidence.
Swamp Stalker (02/18/09 - 44:53) - In the marshy swamp land of Texarkana a legendary beast has hunted the residents of a small Arkansas town. Their story was immortalized in a well-known movie, The Legend of Boggy Creek. The real events were a series of violent nocturnal attacks that left behind not only fear and panic, but also remarkable tracks. But the evidence is not just confined to history. Scientific clues continue to emerge to this day, and point to a malevolent monster that stalks the Deep South, with physical encounters by trained trackers and discoveries of tracks and scat. The strongest evidence will be examined using the latest scientific testing and two MonsterQuest teams will isolate the search area using both kayaks and horses to penetrate deep into territory that may the hold the swamp stalker.
Devils in New Jersey (02/25/09 - 44:53) - For over 250 years a frightening winged beast has been menacing the residents of New Jersey. The Jersey Devil is described as a winged half-bird half-horse, with hoofed feet, a reptilian tail and a penetrating scream that echoes through the forests of New Jerseys Pine Barrens. During one phenomenal week, more than 1,000 individuals were terrorized: A trolley car was attacked, schools were closed and panic gripped the area. Wildlife experts claim that a misidentified but known animal may be responsible for the encounters, but recent witnesses who have seen the beast are scared for their lives, and say the scientific evidence will prove there is a monster. MonsterQuest launches an unprecedented expedition, sending detectives to question witnesses and 60 men into the forbidding forest, in search of the Jersey Devil.
Gators in the Sewer (03/04/09 - 44:53) - What if one of the most famous and terrifying urban legends was not a legend but a frightening fact? History tells us that the idea of alligators lurking around in the sewers of New York City is based in truth. In the mid 1930s three teenagers pulled an eight-foot alligator from a storm drain. Reports persisted until a skeptical superintendant of sewers, Teddy May, was forced to investigate for himself. What May found shocked even him--swarms of alligators alive beneath the busy main street of Americas biggest city. Crews were sent in to kill the deadly reptiles, but the stories of the gators in the sewers lived on. Experts, however, are divided over whether it is scientifically possible for alligators to continue to exist in the sewers, so a MonsterQuest team sets out to search for modern evidence of these monsters. Herpetologists and underground explorers join forces and use the latest in remote-operated camera technology to delve into the depths of New York's sewers.
Snowbeast Slaughter (03/11/09 - 44:54) - The most compelling evidence for the creature known as Bigfoot may be the increasing close encounters that are frightening witnesses in rural America. Historic stories have told of violent interactions that range from objects being thrown to frightening abductions by hairy beasts. As extraordinary as these stories sound, people continue to recount physical interactions with creatures that they cannot explain. Witnesses from Minnesota and Washington State have all had frightening run-ins with the monsters while driving; another witness in rural Indiana talks with terror of the night that he was grabbed by something very powerful out in a forest. MonsterQuest will investigate whether witness are seeing known animal or the same Bigfoot creature that has been spoken of throughout history. MonsterQuest employs polygraph examinations, DNA analysis and bite force tests to discover what monster is turning up its aggression.
Mega Jaws (03/18/09 - 44:53) - Sharks have terrified people for centuries and deep within the forbidding waters of Mexico's Baja Peninsula may lurk a mammoth sixty foot monster. Could it be a new giant species or some living relic, hidden in the sea? In prehistoric times, huge carnivorous sharks, more than twice the size of a great white, ruled the waves. Marine experts claim these giants went extinct, but evidence may challenge that. Meanwhile, frightened Mexican fisherman talk of being stalked by a 'Black Demon;' and sailors report close collisions with a shark unlike anything that they have encountered before. In a search for answers, MonsterQuest uses a combined air and sea search for this monster shark that may be prowling the last unexplored frontier of our planet.
Monster Close Encounters (03/25/09 - 44:53) - Sharks have terrified people for centuries and deep within the forbidding waters of Mexico's Baja Peninsula may lurk a mammoth sixty foot monster. Could it be a new giant species or some living relic, hidden in the sea? In prehistoric times, huge carnivorous sharks, more than twice the size of a great white, ruled the waves. Marine experts claim these giants went extinct, but evidence may challenge that. Meanwhile, frightened Mexican fisherman talk of being stalked by a 'Black Demon;' and sailors report close collisions with a shark unlike anything that they have encountered before. In a search for answers, MonsterQuest uses a combined air and sea search for this monster shark that may be prowling the last unexplored frontier of our planet.
Previous seasons on DVD have included some additional footage or featurettes. Unfortunately, there are no extras included on this set. I would have thought with this volume being only 8 episodes that they would have included some additional footage/deleted scenes, featurettes, behind the scenes material or audio commentaries. The special features on the first two seasons weren't outstanding, but they did add some value to those releases.
Final Comments: There's really not a weak episode in this bunch. My 3 favorite episodes of this group are the Devils in New Jersey, Gators in the Sewers and Mega Jaws. As they got to season three, I thought they would have run out of ideas. They are still coming up some very interesting episodes and new angles on Bigfoot, which they have covered already many times.
My only complaint about this set other that the lack of any special features are the split volumes. CBS DVD/Paramount seemed to start this trend in recent years. If they could release all 20 episodes of season two of MonsterQuest on one set, why couldn't they do the same with the 23 episodes of season three? You are getting the first 8 episodes sooner than you would on a complete season set, but these split volumes are only going to cost consumers more money. It looks like it will take three sets to complete season three unless they include 15 episodes on a second volume. Even a 12 and 11 episodes split would have looked better.
Tune in for the season three finale on "The Real Moby Dick" on Wednesday, August 26 at 9PM ET/PT on History!
-- Reviewed by Todd
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Cryptomundo.com - for Bigfoot, Loch Ness, and More
Friday, August 21, 2009
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air will launch on Disney XD with a three-night marathon event starting Friday, September 18, 2009 and running through Sunday, September 20, 2009! On all three nights, the marathon will air from 7pm-6am, with only season one episodes. As a result, most of them will air three times each. Season one had 25 episodes and they will go in order in this marathon event. Then starting Monday, September 21, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air will join the regular weeknight schedule and air weeknights at 7pm, 9:30pm & 10pm with encores at 12am & 2:30am. It will also air on weekends, both Saturday and Sundays in the 5pm hour and Sundays in the 7pm hour as well. Sister network ABC Family will air it weeknights in the 6pm hour and sometimes late nights on Saturday nights beginning at 11pm.
View the full Disney XD September 2009 schedule.
Hallmark Channel is making more changes. Beginning Monday (August 24) midday movies will replace Touched By An Angel at noon & 1pm, while a triple shot of episodes of 7th Heaven replace Little House on the Prairie from 2pm-5pm. Touched by an Angel will of course remain in primetime from 8-11pm, while 7th Heaven returns to the schedule but Little House on the Prairie leaves the schedule.
Meanwhile, TV Land will also make a schedule change starting Monday (Aug. 24). It's a very minor one, but still nevertheless a schedule change. Weekdays at 9am will now be another hour of Good Times, replacing Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. That show will still be on sister network CMT, so not to worry. Good Times will air now for two full hours from 9-11am, when there are no encores of How'd You Get So Rich. This change is through at least week of Sept. 21. Not sure yet if this will run into October schedule (which starts Sept. 28). Stay with us for more on TV Land in October.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Starting Monday, August 31, Promised Land will now air also on weekdays. It'll air weekdays at 1pm and will also continue to air in primetime on Wednesdays from 8pm-11pm (encore from 11pm-2am). Meanwhile, Dr. Quinn goes from weekdays 5-7pm to 6-8pm, while Doc moves from 7pm to 5pm.
Starting Monday, September 14, Gospel Music Channel has acquired another new series. This time Sue Thomas F.B.Eye. Sue Thomas F.B.Eye will air weekdays at 4pm replacing Christy, which will leave the line-up.
Everything else remains the same basically, with series like Clash of the Choirs airing Sundays at 10pm and weekday afternoon movies at 2pm such as The Dreamer of Oz starring John Ritter (Sept. 23 at 2pm). That is a very rarely seen movie and it will come out on DVD on Sept. 29 part of the Oz The 70th Anniversary Ultimate Collector's Edition from Warner Home Video.
Early last week we broke the news about WGN America honoring The Cosby Show with a very special 25th anniversary marathon. Now we have the FULL details on it!
Sunday, September 20, 2009 marks the 25th anniversary of The Cosby Show and to celebrate the milestone (to the day) WGN America will be airing a series of tributes to The Cosby Show including the replication of the original NBC Thursday night lineup as it aired on Thursday, September 20, 1984 (the day The Cosby Show premiered) with interviews by Lilly Tartikoff, a Cosby Show Viewer's Choice Marathon, an online contest and an online game.
Following the WGN America broadcast of the Chicago Cubs baseball game at 5:30pm ET, WGN America will be committing the prime and overnight schedule to The Cosby Show and the NBC Thursday night line-up that dominated the 80's. At 5:30pm and 6:00pm ET will see two best-of episodes and at 6:30pm ET WGN America will air a 25th Anniversary Special. Then from 7-10pm ET WGN America will re-air the original Brandon Tartikoff NBC Thursday night line-up EXACTLY AS IT AIRED IN 1984: The Cosby Show: "Pilot Presentation," Family Ties: "The Gambler," Cheers: "I'll Be Seeing You, Parts 1 and 2," and Hill Street Blues: "Eva's Braun."
Additionally, WGN America has interviewed philanthropist Lilly Tartikoff who shares her thoughts on the iconic programs of 1984 and memories of her husband, programming visionary Brandon Tartikoff. Lilly's interviews will air as interstitials in primetime from 7-10pm ET during the WGN America recreation of the 1984 lineup. Also, from 7-10pm ET WGN America will adopt the NBC theme "Let's All Be There" (circa 1984) using original promotional elements (A special thank you to NBC for sharing their archive materials).
In the overnight (11pm-4am ET), WGN America will air a viewer's choice marathon of the top ten Cosby episodes voted by viewers at WGNAmerica.com. Voting for The Cosby Show Viewer's Choice Marathon begins today and runs through Monday, September 14.
The Cosby Show Viewer's Choice Marathon will also have a contest component, all viewers who submit their favorite episode to WGNAmerica.com will be entered to win a complete DVD set of all eight seasons of The Cosby Show autographed by Bill Cosby plus a Cosby Show Prize Pack. Four runners up will receive a complete DVD set.
View the complete press release.
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
ION Television will be airing Ghost Whisperer Mon-Thurs at 8pm as we mentioned, but now we can give you the timeslots for the show on cable on WE tv and Syfy. WE tv will the show weeknights at 7pm ET starting Monday, Sept. 7. WE tv won't be making any other changes in September, so that means series like Hope & Faith, Dharma & Greg, Girlfriends, and The Golden Girls will remain in their current timeslots.
Syfy will air Ghost Whisperer on Monday nights from 7pm-11pm also starting Monday, Sept. 7. A marathon of Ghost Hunters will be its lead-in on Sept. 7 (8am-7pm). The rest of the regular schedule will remain intact in September as well, with the daily daytime rotation marathon from 8am-4pm, Star Trek Enterprise at 4pm, Stargate Atlantis at 5pm, Stargate SG-1 at 6pm, Lost at 1am, and X-Files at 2am. Various programming airs from 7pm-1am each night with originals, blocks, and movies. Among highlights, 31 Days of Halloween begins October 1 on Syfy. So lots of marathons such as Friday the 13th: The Series and movies are planned and will preempt the schedule until 7pm each night.
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
We can't release The N schedule for September just yet. They will be renaming to TeenNick starting Sept. 28. Will we see more schedule changes? Stay tuned. But for now the only change in early September is the addition of Full House. I doubt it will continue to air 8pm-12am weeknights, so stay with us for more on this.
ION Television has acquired over 40 new A-list feature film titles through multiple theatrical film deals with NBC Universal Domestic Distribution (NBCU) and Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution (WBDTD). The newly acquired titles will begin airing later this month and will continue to roll out on ION Television's schedule throughout the fall and into 2010.
The package from NBCU includes over one dozen hit movies including The Break Up, starring Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughn debuting on Sept. 1; Miami Vice, starring Colin Farrell and Jamie Foxx and I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry, starring Adam Sandler and Kevin James. Other titles in the package include the Back to the Future trilogy, Inside Man and The Hitcher.
The network has also expanded on its existing agreement with Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution, bringing its current library to over 100 high profile Warner Bros. films in the ION library. The 30-plus additional films in the new package include the Academy Award® -winning documentary March of the Penguins, the award-winning Troy, starring Brad Pitt, and The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, also starring Brad Pitt, Oscar® nominee Casey Affleck and Mary-Louise Parker. Additional titles include The Matrix Revolutions, The Matrix Reloaded, GoodFellas, Ladder 49, City by the Sea and Taking Lives.
Monday, August 17, 2009
All 88 episodes of Everybody Hates Chris will air on Nick at Nite as the show will air every night at 10 & 10:30PM ET/PT starting the next night as well as 2 & 2:30AM ET/PT. The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air will be leaving the schedule, as the contract has indeed expired, as we guessed a few weeks back. The show will air on Disney-owned ABC Family and Disney XD (more on Disney XD soon) on weeknights in September, while continuing to air on TBS in the mornings. As we mentioned Chris will air in the 10pm hour, this is now shifting the second hour of George Lopez back to 1am. The Nanny's weeknight 11pm-3am block is now just the 11pm hour, as Malcolm in the Middle returns to 12 midnight. 3-6am every night will be a rotating wheel of three series: The Nanny (Mon, Thurs, Sun), Family Matters (Tues, Fri) and Home Improvement (Wed, Sat). Also, the 6am half-hour will now be a wheel of these three series as well. This means Family Matters and Home Improvement will not air before 3am, as the 8pm-3am schedule is consistent each night with a few exceptions (Glenn Martin Mondays at 8 and Malcolm in the Middle Sunday nights in the 1am hour).
Other September highlights include a week-long marathon of George Lopez prior to Everybody Hates Chris joining. George week will be Aug. 31-Sept. 6, from 9pm-6am (10pm-6am on Fri-Sat). And of course original series Glenn Martin, DDS continues Mondays at 8pm. The original stop-motion animated series follows the life of Glenn Martin (Kevin Nealon), who yearns for a change of scenery and a deeper connection with his family.
View the FULL Nick at Nite Fall 2009 schedule that begins Sept. 8. As always, especially with Viacom owned networks, this is subject to change. So stay with us for continued updates.
An all new cast of celebrities hits the dance floor on ABC's Dancing with the Stars with the highly anticipated two-hour season premiere on Monday, September 21, 2009 from 8:00-10:02 p.m., ET/PT on ABC. With its biggest season yet, Dancing with the Stars Season Nine introduces us to 16 new stars, including an Osmond and an Osbourne, two Grammy Award ® winning artists, a Cowboy, a model CEO and a former House Majority Leader.
During the first week, eight teams will strut their stuff on Monday night (Sept. 21), while the other eight teams will show off their moves on Tuesday night (Sept. 22) at a special time of 8:00-10:00 p.m., ET/PT. On a special night and time, two couples will learn their fate and be sent home on Wednesday night (Sept. 23) from 8:00-9:00 p.m., ET/PT.
The series will regularly air Mondays 8-10 p.m. ET/PT and the results show on Tuesdays from 9-10 p.m. ET/PT. A 90-minute performance finale is scheduled for Monday, November 23 with the two-hour season finale on Tuesday, November 24 from 9-11 p.m. ET/PT. Four new dance styles -- the Bolero, the Charleston, the Two Step and the Lambada -- are also going to be introduced. The middle stages of the competition feature the return of the "Dance Off" on Tuesday nights, where contestants will perform a dance style of their choosing to fight for their spot in the competition, and three consecutive double eliminations promise the most dramatic period of Dancing with the Stars.
And the stars are: Aaron Carter (singer/actor), Natalie Coughlin (Olympic swimmer), Mark Dacascos (chef, Food Network), Tom DeLay (politician), Macy Gray (singer), Ashley Hamilton (actor, son of George Hamilton), Melissa Joan Hart (sitcom star/actress), Kathy Ireland (model, CEO), Michael Irvin (NFL legend), Joanna Krupa (model, The Superstars), Chuck Liddell (UFC mixed martial arts), Debie Mazar (actress), Mya (singer), Kelly Osbourne (singer/actress, personality), Donny Osmond (singer/actor/host, brother of Marie Osmond), and Louie Vito (professional snowboarder).
View full details on all the cast members for Season Nine and more!
New on DVD/Blu-ray (September)
09/02 - Benson - Season 1 (Mill Creek) / Season 2 / Seasons 1 & 2
09/02 - The Dick Van Dyke Show - Halloween Episodes Collection
09/02 - It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia - The Complete Season Nine
09/02 - The League - The Complete Season Five
09/02 - New Girl - The Complete Season Three
09/02 - Soap - Season 1 (Mill Creek) / Season 2 / Seasons 1 & 2
09/02 - What's Happening!! - Season 1 (Mill Creek) / Season 2 / Seasons 1 & 2
09/09 - The Goldbergs - The Complete First Season
09/16 - About a Boy - Season One
09/16 - Awkward - Season 3
09/16 - The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Seventh Season (Blu-ray/DVD)
09/16 - South Park - Season 17 (Blu-ray)
09/23 - Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season One
09/23 - How I Met Your Mother - The Ninth and Legendary Final Season / The Complete Series
09/23 - Mama's Family - The Complete Fifth Season / The Complete Collection
09/23 - Modern Family - The Complete Fifth Season
09/23 - Mom - The Complete First Season
09/30 - The Donna Reed Show - Season 1 (MPI)
09/30 - Mike & Molly - The Complete Fourth Season
Other TV Series:
09/02 - Grey's Anatomy - The Complete Tenth Season
09/09 - Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. - The Complete First Season (Blu-ray)
09/16 - CSI: Crime Scene Investigation - The Fourteenth Season
09/16 - Castle - The Complete Sixth Season
09/23 - Nashville - The Complete Second Season
09/23 - Scandal - The Complete Third Season
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest
Sitcoms Airing Tonight
Monday, September 15
The Big Bang Theory - "The Gorilla Dissolution" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
bad day causes Penny to reevaluate her life choices – including Leonard. Meanwhile, Howard and Bernadette struggle to care for Mrs. Wolowitz, and Raj gets relationship advice from Sheldon.
Mom - "Smokey Taylor and a Deathbed Confession" (CBS, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Christy and Bonnie help Violet through labor. Meanwhile, Christy is convinced that Bonnie still has feelings for Alvin. Kevin Pollak returns as Alvin.
Two and a Half Men - "Oh, WALD-E, Good Times Ahead" (CBS, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Alan confesses his true identity to Larry and has to face the consequences. Kimberly Williams-Paisley returns as Gretchen, Alan’s fiancée, and her real-life husband, Brad Paisley, makes a cameo appearance.
The Big Bang Theory - "The Status Quo Combustion" (CBS, 9:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Sheldon is forced to confront an uncertain future and considers a major move. Meanwhile, Raj and Emily take it to the next level, and Mrs. Wolowitz’s injury is a major headache for Howard and Bernadette.
Monday, September 15
- Ike Barinholtz (The Mindy Project) - Watch Ike on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
- Mindy Kaling (The Mindy Project/The Office) - Mindy is a guest on The Colbert Report at 11:30pm on Comedy Central. She will also be on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
- Nasim Pedrad (Mulaney) - Nasim appears on Conan at 11pm on TBS.
- Connie Britton (Spin City/The Fighting Fitzgeralds) - Connie visits Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
- Justin Long (Mom/Ed) - Justin stops by Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
- Queen Latifah (Living Single) - Queen Latifah chats on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
- Michael Strahan (Brothers) - Michael is a guest on Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
- Judith Light (Who's the Boss?/Phenom) - Judith drops by the Better Show, so check your local listings. She will also be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 12:30pm ET.
- Steve Harvey (The Steve Harvey Show) - Steve dishes on taking Meredith's Ice Bucket Challenge and reveals secrets from his new book (Act Like a Success, Think Like a Success) on The Meredith Vieira Show, so check your local listings.
- Nathan Gamble (Hank) - Nathan talks about working with his animal co-stars in Dolphin Tale 2 on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
- Holly Robinson Peete (Hangin' with Mr. Cooper/For Your Love) - Holly and her husband Rodney Peete are guests on SportsNation at 3pm on ESPN2.
- James Van Der Beek (Friends with Better Lives/Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23) - James will be on HuffPost Live at 1:30pm. He is also a guest on PIX11 Morning News on WPIX in New York at 7:45am.
- Keke Palmer (True Jackson, VP) - Keke will be on PIX11 Morning News on WPIX in New York at 8:35am.
- Bebe Neuwirth (Cheers/Frasier) - Bebe is a guest on HuffPost Live at 5:30pm.
- Kathy Griffin (Suddenly Susan) - Kathy appears on Larry King Now at 2/5pm PT/ET on Ora.tv and Hulu.
- Jada Pinkett-Smith (A Different World) - Jada talks about her new series Gotham on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am and in the 10am hour.
- Haley Joel Osment (Thunder Alley/The Jeff Foxworthy Show) - Haley Joel is a guest on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.