Thursday, March 24, 2011

Hallmark Channel Upfront 2011; Centric Adds Weekend Sitcom Marathons; Free Soup from the Soup Nazi

Many cable networks are having their upfronts. We have covered just Nickelodeon/Nick at Nite thus far, but other cable networks such as Syfy, Cartoon Network have gone recently. Yesterday The Hallmark Channel had its upfront. They didn't announce any sitcom acquisitions or anything like that, though. But we will cover what they did announce. Hallmark Channel announced that internationally renowned cultural icon and recent Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient Maya Angelou will debut a new 13-episode unscripted, half-hour Hallmark Channel Original Series, The Spirit Table as part of the network's portfolio of lifestyle series beginning Q1 in 2012. The Spirit Table, blends Maya Angelou's Letter to My Daughter with Hallelujah, the Welcome Table to bring together the best of Maya Angelou, her family and traditions, in an entertaining and inspiring series that celebrates life's special moments with a feast from the heart. New traditions will unfold and today's most fascinating people will gather to bring substance and sustenance to Maya Angelou's table.
The second season of Hallmark Channel Home, Hallmark Channel's entertaining and informative daily lifestyle programming block, will premiere in September 2011. The block is headlined by the seventh season premiere of The Martha Stewart Show, the Emmy(R) Award-winning, daily series featuring a Who's Who of innovators and top personalities and inspiring ways to live life to its fullest - from cooking, crafting and collecting to decorating, gardening and even pet care, no one does it better than Martha. 140 new hours have been ordered. Also returning for its second season on Hallmark Channel is Petkeeping with Marc Morrone with 20 new half-hours. A contemporary Dr. Doolittle, Morrone is Martha Stewart's Go-to guy for all things pet related. Joining Hallmark Channel Home is Emeril Lagasse in Emeril's Table, a new daily half-hour cooking series featuring the celebrated chef and restaurateur with a table full of enthusiastic guests in each episode. 52 half-hours have been ordered. Martha follows up her popular and successful primetime holiday and interview "Martha Stewart Presents" specials with all-new Halloween and specials in primetime on Hallmark, celebrating the seasons as only this style and cultural maven can.
Hallmark Channel also announced it will partner with Hallmark Cards in an integrated, multi-platform holiday campaign to bring to life Hallmark Cards' hit interactive character, Jingle(TM) the Husky Pup. The multi-platform deal includes in-store exposure in Gold Crown stores for Hallmark Channel to drive tune-in for an animated holiday special featuring Jingle - Jingle All the Way - as well as the opportunity to drive traffic to from's popular "Interactive Storybook and Story Buddies(TM) Page" for exclusive trailers and behind-the-scene footage. Jingle All the Way premieres as part of Hallmark Channel's holiday-themed original programming event, "Countdown to Christmas." Jingle the Husky Pup is a very good dog who does everything he is told. Unfortunately, the only thing Jingles can't do is go home, because he doesn't have a home. But this holiday season, Jingle and all of his friends come home to Hallmark Channel, America's family network.
Finally, 25 all-new Hallmark Channel Original Movies and eight Hallmark Movie Channel Original Premiere movie will air in 2011-2012. Stars include: Wendie Malick, Catherine Bell, Kim Delaney, Sir Roger Moore, Martin Mull, Judd Nelson, Adrian Pasdar, Rhea Perlman, Teri Polo, James Patrick Stuart, Billy Ray Cyrus, Cheryl Ladd, Bruce Boxleitner, Nancy McKeon, and many more.

Centric has just added a few weekend marathons for the next few weekends. The weekend stunts kick off this coming weekend with The Jamie Foxx Show. The sitcom will air on Saturday (March 26) from 12pm-8pm and will be repeated the next day (Sunday, March 27) from 9am-5pm! Sister, Sister was removed from the regular schedule a few weeks ago for another hour of In Living Color, but Centric will give it a weekend stunt next weekend (April 2-3) with the same timings. The next weekend stunt for the weekend of April 9-10 will feature sketch comedy In Living Color. Nothing further has been announced yet, but when they do, we will let you know.
Also at Centric, they will make some schedule changes beginning next week (March 28). The Unit will join the schedule and air weekdays at 6am replacing Miami Vice, which will be moved to 8am. Everything else remains the same as it is now. The Unit will continue to air on sister network BET on weekends.

Yesterday I had free soup from Seinfeld's actual Soup Nazi in New York City, as I tweeted. The event was organized by New York station WPIX, which has reacquired the series in local syndication after 10 years. WPIX has a special "Nothing But the Big Apple" theme week all this week at 11pm & 11:30pm, focusing on classic New York episodes including "The Non-Fat Yogurt," "The Subway" and "The Soup Nazi." As part of the promotion for the move in New York, The Soup Nazi himself (actor Lary Thomas) was at Liati's Cafe in the WPIX building giving out FREE soup for lunch, taking pictures with you, and signing autographs! I also got a Seinfeld keychain and a soup bowl! If you missed it yesterday, not to worry, WPIX will be doing it today as well from 12-2pm! So if you're in New York City, head on over to 220 E. 42nd Steet (near 2nd Avenue) and meet with The Soup Nazi while eating some good soup! It isn't "no soup for you" this time, it's "soup for you!"
And then catch the classic "The Soup Nazi" episode tonight at 11pm on WPIX in New York!

New on DVD/Blu-ray (September)

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

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

Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Friday, October 28

Bunk'd - "Treehouse of Terror" (Disney Channel, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Zuri, Jorge and Tiffany enlist the support of an unexpected camper to help restore an abandoned treehouse, so they can use it as a new hangout; Emma and Lou and Ravi and Xander get competitive during a friendly game of billiards.

Tyler Perry's For Better or Worse - "Do What You Gotta Do" (OWN, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Joseph experiences an episode of sexual frustration due to Leslie's vow of chastity.

Complete TV Listings

Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of October 24)

Friday, October 28

  • John Lithgow (3rd Rock from the Sun/Twenty Good Years) - Watch John on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Drew Carey (The Drew Carey Show/The Good Life) - Drew visits on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS. He also talks about The Price is Right on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
  • Kevin Hart (The Big House/Undeclared) - Kevin appears on a repeat of Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Terry Crews (Brooklyn Nine-Nine?/Are We There Yet?/Everybody Hates Chris) - Terry is a guest on a repeat of The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Ricky Gervais (The Office) - Ricky stops by LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • Colin Hanks (Life in Pieces) - Colin joins the Chew Crew on ABC's The Chew at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT.
  • Melissa Joan Hart (Melissa & Joey/Sabrina, the Teenage Witch/Clarissa Explains It All) - Melissa looks back at her earliest memories on Clarissa Explains It All – and says she was really bossy on People Now at 8:30am.
  • Damon Wayans (My Wife and Kids) - Damon is a guest on The Real, so check your local listings.