Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Antenna TV In Cleveland Soars In Ratings; Remembering All in the Family Director John Rich and Seinfeld's "Mr. Pitt"

Antenna TV continues to grow in the ratings as it is just a little over a year old now. Viewers are flocking in for some classic TV, especially in the Cleveland market last month. Antenna TV on Cleveland's WJW-DT2 equaled the delivery of cable networks such as Oxygen, Nat Geo and The Big 10 Network in Cleveland from 3pm-12a Monday-Friday in the December 2011 sweep. Antenna TV beat cable networks Starz, Military Channel, Weather Channel, Disney XD, Nicktoons, NBC Sports Network, NFL Network, BBC America, Oprah Winfrey Network and MTV2 in Cleveland in the sweep as well. Some of the great performing TV series on Cleveland's Antenna TV includes Leave It To Beaver, which airs weeknights from 6-7pm. The classic sitcom outperformed programs on WKYC, WBNX, WOIO and WUAB in December 2011! The sitcom averaged a 0.3/1 rating/share in both adults 18-49 and adults 25-54, beating first-run programs like The Talk, Dr. Drew, Anderson, Family Feud and America Now. Also performing well for Antenna TV in Cleveland is the Friday primetime 8-9pm airing of Too Close for Comfort, ranking second of all Antenna TV series on weekdays on WJW-DT2 with a 0.2/1 rating/share in both adults 18-49 and adults 25-54. The same goes true for the classic sitcom Dennis the Menace which airs weeknights from 5-6pm leading into Leave it to Beaver at 6pm.
On weekends, Adam-12 has done well outperforming programs on WKYC, WBNX, WOIO, WVPX, WEWS, WJW and WUAB! The series airs Saturday nights from 8-9pm and delivers a 0.2/1 rating/share in adults 18-49 and a 0.3/1 rating/share in adults 25-54! Talk about being "hot in Cleveland" as Antenna TV continues to grow. Stay with us for the Antenna TV spring schedule (and not just for Cleveland, but all Antenna TV stations!) that will begin in April and will have the addition of WKRP in Cincinnati, as we mentioned.

John Rich

We have a couple of recent deaths to tell you about. John Rich, an award-winning television director for The Dick Van Dyke Show and All in the Family, has died. Rich died on January 29 at his Los Angeles home after a brief illness. Mr. Rich was 86.

His nearly 50-year career in Hollywood included directing and producing episodes of many different television series. Rich directed over 40 episodes of The Dick Van Dyke Show and won his first Emmy in 1963. He directed over 80 episodes of All in the Family and won two Emmys and two Golden Globes for his work on the series. The memorable scene of Sammy Davis, Jr. kissing Archie Bunker in the episode Sammy's Visit was directed by him. His many other directing credits included episodes of I Married Joan, Where's Raymond?, Our Miss Brooks, Gilligan's Island, Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C., The Brady Bunch, That Girl, Good Times, Barney Miller, Newhart, Benson and Dear John. In the 1980s Rich and Henry Winkler formed a production company called Henry Winkler/John Rich Productions and together they produced MacGyver for Paramount Television from 1985-92.

You can view an extensive interview with him at the Archive of American Television. Rich is survived by his wife of 22 years, Patricia; his three children, Catherine, Anthony and Robert; his three stepchildren, Megan Lewis, Kimberly Beres and Dana Benton; and eight grandchildren. We thank him for bringing us many hours of quality television. He will be missed.

Ian Abercrombie

Ian Abercrombie, a veteran English actor who played Elaine Benes' boss Mr. Pitt during the sixth season on Seinfeld, has died. Abercrombie died at a Los Angeles hospital on January 26 from complications of kidney failure and recently had been diagnosed with lymphoma. Mr. Abercrombie was 77.

His American stage debut was a 1951 production of Stalag 17 with Jason Robards and Jules Munshin. Abercrombie made guest appearances on many television series such as Dynasty, Falcon Crest, Murphy Brown, NewsRadio, Star Trek: Voyager, State of Grace, Birds of Prey, Desperate Housewives, How I Met Your Mother, Happily Divorced and Wizards of Waverly Place. He voiced characters in The Batman, Green Lantern: The Animated Series, Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Rango. His film credits included Army of Darkness, Addams Family Values, The Lost World: Jurassic Park and Garfield: A Tale of Two Kitties. We'll never forget his memorable and hilarious character on Seinfeld. He was just a very solid and dependable character actor. Mr. Abercrombie is survived by his wife, Gladys, and his brothers Douglas, Donald and Alex. He will be missed.

Ian Abercrombie (Mr. Pitt) on Seinfeld

Who can forget Mr. Pitt eating a Snickers bar with a knife and fork? What are your favorite Mr. Pitt moments? Discuss them on our Seinfeld message board.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (October/November)

Dr. Ken - Season One Mike & Molly - The Complete Sixth and Final Season Family Matters - The Complete Ninth Season The Lucy Show - The Complete Series The Mindy Project - Season Four

10/04 - The Andy Griffith Show - The Christmas Special (Colorized)
10/04 - I Love Lucy - Superstar Special #1 (Colorized)
10/11 - Dr. Ken - Season One
10/11 - Mike & Molly - The Complete Sixth and Final Season
10/11 - Mike & Molly - The Complete Series
10/11 - Nurse Jackie - Seasons One and Two
10/11 - Weeds - Seasons One and Two
11/01 - Schitt's Creek - Seasons One and Two
11/08 - Family Matters - The Complete Ninth Season
11/08 - Your Family or Mine - Season One
11/15 - Community - The Complete Series
11/15 - The Lucy Show - The Complete Series
11/15 - The Mindy Project - Season Four
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Sunday, December 11

The Simpsons - "The Nightmare After Krustmas" (Fox, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Krusty tries to impress his daughter as they spend Christmas with the Simpsons. Meanwhile, Reverend Lovejoy seeks converts after church attendance plummets, and Maggie is haunted by a spooky Christmas toy.

Son of Zorn - "The War on Grafelnik" (Fox, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Torn between Edie’s Christmas and Zorn’s Grafelnik – the Zephyrian holiday of revenge – Alan realizes he can play his parents off each other to get better presents.

Family Guy - "How the Griffin Stole Christmas" (Fox, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Peter is asked to fill in for the mall Santa, until he gets drunk on the power when he realizes that Santa can get away with anything. Meanwhile, Stewie and Brian crash holiday office parties for the free food, drama and women.

The Last Man on Earth - "If You're Happy and You Know It" (Fox, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Carol is bummed about Gail’s absence, so Tandy tries to cheer her up with the honeymoon vacation they never had. Meanwhile, Lewis finds new success with his pursuits in aviation and Melissa is contained.

The Dick Van Dyke Show - Now in Living Color - (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Spread the holiday cheer with “The Dick Van Dyke Show – Now in Living Color!,” a new one-hour special featuring two newly colorized back-to-back classic episodes of the beloved 1960s series, to be broadcast Sunday, Dec. 11 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Series creator and co-star Carl Reiner personally supervised the colorization of the episodes.

The special features the groundbreaking episode “That’s My Boy??” and “Coast to Coast Big Mouth,” which ranked #8 on TV Guide’s list of the “100 Greatest TV Episodes of All-Time.” Both episodes were written by Bill Persky & Sam Denoff. The main titles and end credits of the two episodes are seamlessly combined into one set – at the beginning and end of the hour – with no interruption between the episodes.

In “That’s My Boy??,” as Rob and Laura host a dinner party with a few friends, Rob recalls the hectic days after their son Ritchie was born, when he was sure the hospital had given him and Laura the wrong baby. The episode, originally broadcast on Sept. 25, 1963, was the third season premiere.

In “Coast to Coast Big Mouth,” Laura Petrie blurts out a top secret on a national television quiz show, revealing that comedian Alan Brady wears a toupee. The episode, which was the show’s fifth and final season premiere, was originally broadcast on Sept. 15, 1965. “Coast to Coast Big Mouth” won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series in 1966.

Bizaardvark - "Agh, Humbug" (Disney Channel, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Bernie gets bummed about not being invited to the Vuuugler-only holiday party, so the gang tries to turn him into an overnight online star so that he can attend, too.

Best Friends Whenever - "Revenge of the Past" (Disney Channel, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Shelby gets trapped in the 16th century after trying to save Daisy from marriage, so the friends join forces to help rescue her.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of December 12)

Monday, December 12

  • Jennifer Lawrence (The Bill Engvall Show) - Watch Jennifer Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Bryan Cranston (Malcolm in the Middle) - Bryan is a guest on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC. He also chats about the film Why Him? on LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • John Goodman (Roseanne/Normal, Ohio) - John appears on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS. He will also be on CBS This Morning sometime between 7-9am.
  • Chris Pratt (Parks and Recreation) - Chris visits The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Olivia Munn (Perfect Couples) - Olivia is a guest on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS. She joins the Chew Crew on ABC's The Chew at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT.
  • Matthew Perry (The Odd Couple/Go On/Mr. Sunshine) - Matthew stops by The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Kevin Nealon (Man with a Plan/Weeds/Hiller and Diller/Champs) - Kevin appears on Harry, so check your local listings.
  • Will Smith (The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air) - Will talks about Collateral Beauty on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
  • Henry Winkler (Happy Days/Out of Practice/Arrested Development) - Henry will be on NBC's Today in the 9am hour.
  • Megan Mullally (Will & Grace) - Megan is a guest on the AOL Build Show at 4pm.
  • Kathy Griffin (Suddenly Susan) - Kathy appears on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.