Thursday, October 11, 2012

Remembering Webster's Alex Karras; First Cancelation of Fall 2012: CBS Drama Made in Jersey

Alex Karras

Actor and former NFL player Alex Karras, who starred as George Papadapolis in Webster, has died. Karras died at his Los Angeles, California home in the morning hours on October 10 of complications from kidney failure. He had suffered from a variety of health problems in recent years, including dementia, heart disease and stomach cancer. Mr. Karras was 77.

Karras' acting career begain in 1968 when he played himself in the film adaptation of Paper Lion. He made many television guest appearances in series such as Daniel Boone, Love American, Style, The Odd Couple, McMillian & Wife and M*A*S*H. In 1974, he played thug Mongo in the Mel Brooks' comedy film Blazing Saddles. His character knocks out a horse with a single punch in a memorable scene. He played Hans Brumbaugh in the 1978-1979 NBC miniseries Centennial. Karras' television movie credits included Hardcase, The 500 Pound Jerk, Babe (a 1975 biopic where he met his wife Susan Clark), Mad Bull, Jimmy B. & André, Alcatraz: The Whole Shocking Story, Masada and Made in America. His theatrical film credits included Victor Victoria, Porky's and Against All Odds.

Karras played the lovable George Papadapolis, a former professional football player turned sportscaster, in the hit sitcom Webster. The series was about a couple who adopts a recently orphaned 7-year-old child named Webster. Karras starred with his real-life wife Susan Clark and Emmanuel Lewis. ABC aired the series for four seasons from 1983-1987 before it moved into first-run syndication for the final two seasons from 1987-1989. A total of 150 episodes were produced. Karras and Clark were among the producers of the series through their Georgian Bay Entertainment production company.

He played college football at the University of Iowa from 1956-1957. Karras was a first team All-American in 1956. In 1957, he helped his team win the Rose Bowl and received the Outland Trophy for the best interior lineman. He finished as the runner-up in voting for the Heisman Trophy. The Detroit Lions drafted him 10th overall in the first round of the NFL draft in 1958. He was one of the most dominant defensive tackles in the league during his 12 seasons in the league from 1958-1962 and 1964-1970. Karras was named to Pro Bowl team four times in 1959, 1960, 1961 and 1965. He was also named to the 1960s All-Decade NFL team. Following the end of his career, he later worked on ABC's Monday Night Football broadcast team with Howard Cosell and Frank Gifford for three seasons from 1974-1976.

Karras' survivors include his wife, Susan Clark; his sons George, Alex Jr. and Peter; and daughter, Katie. He was a talented man on and off the field. While he was one of the most fearsome players in football, he was a gentle giant on screen as an actor. We loved his work on Webster. It's very sad that he had dealt with so many health problems in recent years. He will be greatly missed.

Share your memories of Alex Karras here. Visit our Webster fan site for all things Webster.


Made in Jersey

CBS has pulled its new Friday drama Made in Jersey after just two airings. This is the first official cancelation of the 2012-13 season. The drama only mustered a 0.8 adults 18-49 rating last Friday in week two, after premiering to just a 1.1 adults 18-49 rating the week prior. CBS will move CSI: NY to the hour effective immediately this Friday (Oct. 12). CSI: NY was airing in the 8pm hour and also was struggling. Drama repeats will air for the next three weeks at 8pm (NCIS on Oct. 12 and 26 and Hawaii Five-0 on Oct. 19). CBS will launch the new season of Undercover Boss on Friday, Nov. 2 at 8pm. It will be opposite Kitchen Nightmares on Fox in terms of reality, as ABC's Shark Tank will be moving to 9pm on that night.

No word if CBS will air the remaining episodes that were already in the can. It is not known how many were completed in production. The series starred Janet Montgomery, Erin Cummings, Kristoffer Polaha, Kyle MacLachlan, Megalyn Echikunwoke and Toni Trucks. Will more series that are struggling be pulled soon too? Some candidates include The Mob Doctor, Animal Practice, Partners and sophomore comedy Up All Night. Stay with us, and also stay with us for any full season pick-ups (that's what we like to tell you more about, of course)!


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Tuesday, November 21

The Middle - "Eyes Wide Open" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Axl heads to Chicago to visit Hutch for the weekend but discovers that his friend, who has his own apartment and a job, is now acting more like a responsible adult than the free-spirited college student he once knew. Meanwhile, Sue’s excitement over having the apartment to herself over the weekend turns to horror when she is unable to sleep after watching “Silence of the Lambs”; and Brick enlists Frankie and Mike’s aid to help convince Lilah, a new student who doesn’t know anyone at school yet, that she and Brick would make a cute couple.

Fresh Off the Boat - "The Vouch" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Louis gets himself into a sticky situation when he lies to Jessica and tells her that he loves her newly finished horror novel. When news that Kenny Rogers is paying a visit to Cattleman’s Ranch, Jessica insists that Louis give him a copy of her book for his agent, making him extremely uncomfortable. Eddie and his friends purchase a 300-disc CD carousel to play all of their music, but Eddie thinks he is the only one in charge and becomes a tyrant.

The Mick - "The Homecoming" (Fox, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Mickey and Jimmy decide to take the gang back to their hometown in celebration of Jimmy's high school baseball jersey number being retired; Chip and Sabrina become caught in a difficult situation with a group of spoiled teens.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine - "Two Turkeys" (Fox, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Jake and Amy hope to have their parents bond over Thanksgiving dinner, but the family's first holiday together doesn't go as well as they planned; Capt. Holt searches for the person who stole an important Thanksgiving pie from him and Kevin.

Teachers - "Dire Straights" (TV Land, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Ms. Feldman struggles between her budding romance with Fillmore’s new anti-drug officer and her love of marijuana. Ms. Watson becomes addicted to bingo; Mrs. Adler wreaks havoc when she tries to quit smoking.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of November 20)

Tuesday, November 21

  • Paul Shaffer (A Year at the Top) - Paul is a musical guest on a repeat of Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • John Leguziamo (The Brothers Garcia) - Catch John on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Daveed Diggs (black-ish) - Daveed visits The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Jay Pharoah (White Famous) - Jay appears on a repeat of Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Carly Chaikin (Suburgatory) - Carly is a guest on a repeat of Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Jim Jefferies (Legit) - Jim appears on a repeat of Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Michael Rapaport (Atypical/The War at Home) - Michael is a guest on a repeat of Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Drew Carey (The Drew Carey Show/The Good Life) - Drew visits The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Sofia Vergara (Modern Family/The Knights of Prosperity/Hot Properties) - Sofia stops by The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Mario Cantone (Sex and the City) - Mario appears on The Wendy Williams Show at 2am on BET or on your local stations.
  • Anthony Anderson (black-ish/Guys with Kids/All About the Andersons) - Anthony is a guest on Harry, so check your local listings.
  • Suzanne Somers (Three's Company/She's the Sheriff/Step by Step) - Suzanne talks about her new book Two's Company on Harry, so check your local listings.
  • Kim Fields (The Facts of Life/Living Single) - Kim talks about her book Blessed Life and the Lifetime movie Wrapped Up in Christmas on Steve, so check your local listings.
  • Tatyana Ali (The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air/Love That Girl!/Second Generation Wayans) - Tatyana talks about the Lifetime movie Wrapped Up in Christmas on Steve, so check your local listings.
  • Kimberly Williams-Paisley (According to Jim) - Kimberly talks about the Hallmark Channel original movie The Christmas Train on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Alicia Witt (Cybill) - Alicia talks about the Hallmark Channel original movie The Mistletoe Inn on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Bob Saget (Full House/Surviving Suburbia/How I Met Your Mother) - Bob is a guest on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.
  • Candace Cameron Bure (Fuller House/Full House) - Candace will be on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
  • Tim Meadows (Son of Zorn/Marry Me/Mr. Box Office/The Bill Engvall Show) - Tim appears on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (June/July/August)

Father Knows Best - Season Six Diff'rent Strokes - The Complete Sixth Season Alice - The Complete Fifth Season Rhoda - Season Four Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Four

06/13 - The Andy Griffith Show - Return to Mayberry
06/13 - That's My Mama - The Complete Series
06/20 - Workaholics - The Final (Seventh) Season
06/20 - Workaholics - The Complete Series
06/27 - The Jamie Foxx Show - The Complete Third Season
07/04 - Superstore - Season Two
07/18 - Father Knows Best - Season Six
07/25 - Diff'ernt Strokes - The Complete Sixth Season
07/25 - Girls - The Final (Sixth) Season (Blu-ray)
08/01 - Alice - The Complete Fifth Season (WBShop.com)
08/01 - Crashing - The Complete First Season (Blu-ray)
08/15 - Rhoda - Season Four
08/22 - Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Four
08/29 - Will & Grace - Season One (Universal)
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest