Monday, April 30, 2012

Yes, Dear Joins Nick at Nite Schedule On May 1; NBC Pulls Best Friends Forever, Gives Community 3-Episode Finale


Yes, Dear
As we broke back last year, Nick at Nite has acquired the rights to air the Mike O'Malley sitcom Yes, Dear. The 2000-06 sitcom will start airing tomorrow, Tuesday, May 1, 2012! Yes, a short notice as I don't think it was being planned this early in 2012. Why do I say that because TBS will still air the sitcom weekdays 12-1pm and in a Saturday morning block anytime between 8:30am-12pm. However, TBS will be removing the series from its schedule beginning in July, but we will save that news for another day. Today it is all about Nick at Nite adding the series! Nick at Nite's line-up of modern comedies expands on Tuesday, May 1 to include the complete library of the beloved series Yes, Dear. This 122-episode family comedy stars Mike O'Malley (Glee, GUTS) and follows two couples and their wildly divergent parenting styles. Yes, Dear will air regularly on the network Monday-Friday at 11:00 & 11:30 p.m. ET/PT. The series will also encore at approx. 2:30am & 3:00am.

What about the rest of the line-up? That '70s Show will move from 10-11pm to 8-9pm to start the line-up off replacing My Wife & Kids. From 9-10pm, George Lopez will remain in the time period. From 10-11pm with '70s moving to 8-9pm, Friends will slide into the hour. Then as we mentioned, Yes, Dear will air in the 11pm hour, as Friends will not air in a two-hour block anymore. Not to worry though as Friends will still have a second hour from 12-1am, it is just that it won't be in a two-hour block. The late night schedule will have an encore of George Lopez from 1-2am, replacing the '70s Show encore. At 2am, the half-hour Everybody Hates Chris will remain. At 2:30am and 3:00am, as we mentioned Yes, Dear will encore replacing George Lopez, which of course is moving up to 1-2am. My Wife & Kids is also losing its late night hour, as The Nanny gets two more airings at 3:30am and 4am. The Nanny will also remain at 4:30am leading now into Family Matters from 5-7am (but that's just three airings due to the off-the-clock timings for the network after 11pm).
Nick at Nite has not announced its weekend plans yet, so this is just for Mon-Fri, as we won't know if My Wife & Kids is off the line-up completely until we know the weekend schedule. We will let you know if anything should change on weekends starting May 5. So stay tuned! For now view the Nick at Nite May 2012 weekday schedule.

NBC has pulled low rated single-camera comedy Best Friends Forever after just four episodes. There were just two episodes left to air, but NBC has decided it will air all-new episodes of the hidden camera series Betty White's Off Their Rockers for the full hour now. BFF was coming off a 0.8 rating in adults 18-49, which is very poor. Off Their Rockers does about double that rating and that is by no means a big hit even. In other NBC scheduling news, this season's last two original episodes of Community are being moved up a week to air on Thursday, May 17 at 9:00 & 9:30pm ET/PT. As a result, Awake, which was scheduled for a two-hour block, goes back to an hour at 10pm ET/PT on May 17 and the Awake finale is now the following week on May 24 at 10pm ET/PT. I'm 99.99% sure, Awake will never be seen on NBC after that airing due to low ratings, as that is also coming off a 0.8 18-49 rating this past Thursday. Community was originally set to have a one-hour season finale on May 24 from 8-9pm, but now instead it will be on May 17 at a special hour of 9-10pm. In addition, that night it will also air in its regular 8:00pm half-hour, too, so yes three all-new episodes that night! The Office and Parks & Recreation, which normally air in the 9pm hour, will have their finales early this season, airing May 10. Which NBC sitcoms will be back next season? I would bring back Community for one last season, cancel 30 Rock, renew The Office for possibly one last season, and bring back Parks & Recreation. And the only other NBC comedy left is Up All Night and I would cancel that. We shall know very soon as we are officially just two weeks away from the upfront season! Stay with us for continued updates!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Week 32 TV Ratings and Analysis; How the Sitcoms Did

2011-12 Week 32 TV Ratings (first four nights final ratings, Mon-Thu): 

Households:N/A
Total Viewers: N/A.
Adults 18-49: N/A

Week 32 (April 23-29) Analysis: Week 32 has some repeats but since Thursday everything is now new as we have entered May sweeps! We don't have the the first four night averages, but we can project ABC, CBS and Fox are very close to each other again in HH/viewers, with Fox on top, followed by ABC then CBS, as CBS was in repeats thru Wednesday. In the more important adults 18-49, it is more clear. Fox is by far first, followed by ABC.  CBS and NBC are battling for third. NBC is a distant fourth in HH/viewers. When the week is over by tonight, it could be a bit different since 100% new programming was Thu-Sun. More on the prediction of week 32 below. As for last week, week 31, Fox took the 18-49 crown, while CBS took home HH/total viewers. ABC was second in 18-49 and also HH/viewers. CBS was third in 18-49, while Fox was third in HH/viewers. And that left NBC fourth across the board.

On Monday, it was NBC with the edge over ABC in adults 18-49. First, on ABC, Dancing with the Stars started it off from 8-10pm doing a first place 17.62 million and a 3.2 rating, up three tenths from previous week as it will now climb I think until the end of the season. At 10pm, Castle was preempted for a special edition of 20/20 on the behind scenes of Dancing with the Stars and did 10.68 million and a 2.1 18-49 rating. Not bad. For CBS, a repeat of How I Met Your Mother did 4.69 million and a 1.7 18-49 rating, which seems below average for its repeat ratings. A repeat of 2 Broke Girls followed with 5.13 million and a 1.7 18-49 rating, not as good as it could be. A repeat of Two and a Half Men followed at 9 with 6.67 million and a 2.0 rating, the best of the block but it also is below normal for a repeat. A repeat of Mike & Molly was next and did 6.0 million and a 1.7 18-49 rating. At 10, a repeat episode of Hawaii Five-0 did 7.7 million and a 1.6 18-49 rating, on par with previous week but much more total viewers. Fox started off the night with Bones doing 7.38 million and a 2.2 rating, on par with the previous week. House was new at 9 with 6.49 million and a 2.3 rating, up three tenths from previous week. NBC started it off with a two-hour The Voice and did a second place 10.31 million and a 3.8 18-49 rating, which was up a tenth from previous week's season low. It has certainly fallen a lot since February. Still good, but NBC should have placed it on another night for mass ratings instead of going against another reality juggernaut. Then at 10pm week twelve of critical darling Smash was next doing 6.01 million and a 2.0 18-49 rating, which was up a tenth from previous week's series low. It's coming back for a second season anyway, but the show is pricy, so it needs to do better. The CW aired an all-new Gossip Girl and did just 990,000 viewers and 0.5 18-49 rating, down a tenth from previous week. A new Hart of Dixie followed with 1.28 million and a 0.5 rating, also down a tenth from previous week.

On Tuesday, it was close for first place with Fox edging NBC and ABC. First on CBS, NCIS at 8 started it off with a repeat doing 12.41 million and a 2.0 18-49 rating. Nice total viewers, but low 18-49 considering the total viewers. Then a repeat of NCIS: Los Angeles at 9pm did 9.66 million and a 1.7 18-49 rating, down three tenths from previous week, when its lead-in was new. At 10pm, a repeat of Unforgettable did 7.79 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating, on par with previous week. ABC aired a repeat of Last Man Standing doing 5.69 million and a 1.3 18-49 rating, as they re-aired the episode with Kim Kardashian. Final two episodes of the season starts this Tuesday! A new Cougar Town did 4.89 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating, up a tenth week-to-week, which could be better but at least it went up when its lead-in was a repeat. At 9pm, the live Dancing with the Stars: The Results did 14.54 million and a 2.4 18-49 rating, down a tenth from previous week, as we said goodbye to the music legend Gladys Knight. Next at 10pm, was second week of Private Practice on its new night doing 8.13 million and a 2.2 18-49 rating, up a nice half a point from previous week's return. That's more like it, and this show should be in this range for the rest of the season. Fox aired a new Glee doing 6.9 million and a 2.7 18-49 rating, up three tenths from previous week's low.  New Girl was new at 9 too and did 5.2 million and a 2.6 18-49 rating, down a tenth from previous week despite its lead-in going up. At 9:30pm a repeat followed and did just 3.11 million and a 1.4 18-49 rating. NBC was next with The Biggest Loser cut to the 8pm hour only doing 6.87  million and a 2.2 18-49 rating, which was down a tenth from previous week. At 9, NBC aired the live The Voice results show doing 8.93 million and a 3.4 18-49 rating, up a tenth from previous week. At 10pm, NBC's new reality series Fashion Star did just 4.59 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating, on par with previous week. This show is not cutting it after a big lead-in. The CW was all-new with 90210 doing 1.11 million and a 0.6 18-49 rating. Then at 9pm, the series premiere of LA Complex did just 630,000 viewers and a 0.3 18-49 rating, for the lowest drama premiere in the history of broadcast TV. Ouch.

Wednesday it was all Fox with the win as the other networks were mostly repeats. First, CBS started the night off with a new Survivor: One World doing 9.81 million and a 2.7 18-49 rating, which was down a tenth from previous week, tying a series low. Then at 9pm, a repeat of Criminal Minds did 7.61 million and a 1.8 18-49 rating, up a tenth week-to-week. And at 10pm a repeat of CSI did 6.59 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating, on par with previous week. ABC was almost all repeats for its Laugh On comedy block, as a repeat of The Middle started it off doing 4.89 million and a 1.3 18-49 rating, on par with previous week. Suburgatory followed with a repeat at 8:30pm doing 4.39 million and a 1.4 18-49 rating, building from its lead-in. The mega hit Modern Family was next at 9pm with a repeat and it did 5.83 million and 2.2 18-49 rating, which was the best sitcom repeat of the week. At 9:30pm, week three of the hilarious Don't Trust the B---- In Apartment 23 was all-new and did 4.91 million and a 2.0 18-49 rating, down six tenths from previous week when its lead-in was new. Not telling, as it followed repeats. Expect it to be back up big this week to close to a 2.6 or more. At 10pm the addicting Revenge was new and did 7.03 million and a 2.1 18-49 rating, down two tenths from previous week. Not bad as the rest of the night was basically repeats. Fox aired American Idol from 8-10pm doing 16.87 million and a 4.8 18-49 rating, on par with previous week and still good for #1 for the week again. Take that again The Voice, says Fox. NBC opened the night with a new Betty White's Off Their Rockers doing 5.83 million but just a 1.7 18-49 rating, up a tenth from previous week. Episode four of new comedy Best Friends Forever followed with only 2.65 million and a 0.8 18-49 rating, on par with previous week's low. Not good, and NBC has pulled it now. At 9pm, a new Rock Center with Brian Williams at 9pm did 3.7 million and a 0.9 18-49, but actually up three tenths from previous week. And at 10pm, a new Law & Order: SVU got hurt as a result and did 6.56 million and a 1.7 18-49 rating, up a tenth from previous week's series low. The CW had a repeat of LA Complex start it off at 8pm doing 690,000 viewers and a 0.3 18-49 rating, which is not good. A new America's Next Top Model followed at 9 and did 1.115 million and a 0.5 18-49 rating, down a tenth from previous week thanks to the lead-in.

Thursday it was the first night of May sweeps, and Fox edged out CBS for the win. Starting with ABC, they opened the night with week seven of Missing doing 6.98 million and a 1.4 18-49 rating, on par with previous week again. Total viewers is still good (and up from previous week) but the 18-49 needs to be better. Perhaps a good Friday destination in the fall or a summer option, if it were to come back? At 9pm, a new Grey's Anatomy aired doing 9.45 million and a 3.3 18-49 rating, on par with previous week. Awesome episode again, too!  At 10pm, Private Practice is now Tuesdays at 10, as now Scandal airs in this slot and week four did 6.86 million and a 2.0 18-49 rating, on par once again from previous week. Four weeks in and the same ratings. That's a good thing for a possible renewal. CBS started with a new episode of The Big Bang Theory doing a great 12.65 million and a 4.1 18-49 rating, but a season low. I think repeats the last few weeks hurt it and a bit because of the NFL Draft, but that's not a big excuse. A new Rules of Engagement did 8.17 million and a 2.5 18-49 rating, up three five tenths from previous week when its lead-in was a repeat. Could be better still.  A new episode of Person of Interest aired next at 9 and did 12.73 million and a 2.4 18-49 rating, down big from its last new airing. Many repeats the past few weeks and NFL draft the culprit? The Mentalist was next at 10 and new too and did 12.03 million and a 2.2 18-49 rating, lower than normal. Rumors are flying that it will be on the move next season. We shall see. Fox aired American Idol at 8 doing 14.87 million and a 4.0 18-49 rating, on par with previous previous week. Still good enough for #1 for the night despite massive year to year drops. Fox aired a new episode of Touch at 9 doing 6.43 million and a 1.9 18-49 rating, which was down two tenths from previous week. It has fallen a lot, so that's not a good sign.  NBC was all-new with a new Community up first doing 3.21 million and a 1.4 18-49 rating, which was up a tenth from previous week's series low. I still think it will return though for one last season, but it still sucks in the ratings. At 8:30pm, 30 Rock was new (and a live episode) at 8:30pm and did 3.47 million and a 1.6 18-49 rating, up a tenth from previous week. As I keep saying, time to end it after six seasons especially if they decide to bring back low rated shows like Community and Parks. A new The Office was next and did just 4.17 million and a 2.1 18-49 rating, down a tenth from previous week and a series low. NBC needs a comedy anchor badly now. Matthew Perry to the rescue next fall, as his pilot was picked-up to a series order already. At 9:30pm Parks & Recreation was new and did just 3.17 million and a 1.6 18-49 rating, down a tenth week-to-week. At 10pm, week nine of Awake is not awake in the ratings as it did 2.21 million and a 0.8 18-49 rating, down a tenth week-to-week for a series low. Another series that won't be back, I think. The CW's big gun Vampire Diaries was new and did 2.22 million and a 1.1 18-49 rating, up a tenth from previous week for still seems low for this show. The CW can't catch a break. Then at 9pm, drama The Secret Circle was new too and did 1.15 million and a 0.5 18-49 rating, on par with previous week. So besides a tenth or two, everything was fine tonight but CBS. And I think CBS was down because it has been in repeat mode for the past few weeks while ABC, Fox and NBC have been all-new. Don't blame the NFL Draft for all of this because every other network was on par, or down just a tenth or two.

Now, final numbers for Friday and Saturday are not available, but CBS and ABC lead the pack. Shark Tank at 8pm was new and solid, but Undercover Boss returned and edged it for first place. At 9pm NBC's Grimm tied for the win at 9pm with CSI: NY on CBS. CBS' Blue Bloods was down a lot and tied ABC's 20/20 for #1 at 10. Fox's Fringe was low at 9pm but up a bit.
Saturday numbers have Fox and ABC tying for the night. ABC aired the network premiere of The Blind Side and did solid while Fox had NASCAR, which both beat NBC's all-new Escape Routes and The Firm. CBS and NBC could not compete.

Tonight ABC's line-up is AFV, Once Upon a Time, Desperate Housewives & GCB. Look for solid numbers for the entire night and a #1 position Once Upon a Time will win the night and the countdown is on for the final episodes of Desperate. NBC has Dateline at 7, with Celebrity Apprentice from 9-11pm, and Harry's Law leading in. Maybe a third place finish. CBS has new airings of 60 Minutes then Amazing Race, The Good Wife and week three of low rated NYC 22. A second or third place finish I think, but could be tied with NBC. Fox has Animation Domination which could have them in second place, but I also could see them in third.

As for the week (week 32), Fox will likely win the week in 18-49 easily. And CBS should win HH/viewers. ABC will be second in 18-49 and HH/viewers. CBS will beat NBC in 18-49 for third, with Fox should be third in HH/viewers. NBC will be fourth for sure in HH/viewers. As for the coming week, week 33, it's the first full week of May sweep. New episodes all around, so make sure you tune into your favorite series as we get near the finales!

Week 32 How the Sitcoms Did

Last Sunday Sitcoms (counts for Week 31 -- April 16-22)
  • The Simpsons (Fox) - A special repeat of its very first episode at 7:30pm in honor of Fox's 25th Anniversary did 3.17 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating, up four tenths from previous week's 7pm repeat. Not bad. At 7pm, Fox also aired the pilot episode of Married...with Children from 1987 and did 2.93 million and a 1.3 18-49 rating. Not bad for a repeat from 25 years ago!
  • The Cleveland Show (Fox) - preempted.
  • Bob's Burgers (Fox) - preempted.
  • Family Guy (Fox) - preempted.
  • American Dad! (Fox) - preempted.
Monday Sitcoms
  • How I Met Your Mother (CBS) - A repeat delivered 4.69 million and a 1.7 18-49 rating. This show could do better. Spring is a reason.
  • 2 Broke Girls (CBS) - A repeat did 5.13 million and a 1.7 18-49 rating. Yes, it is a repeat and yes it is spring, but if CBS uses this as an anchor next season, will it deliver?
  • Two and a Half Men (CBS) - A repeat of this sitcom did 6.67 million and a 2.0 18-49 rating. Question is, will CBS keep this show in this slot next season?
  • Mike & Molly (CBS) - 6.0 million and a 1.7 18-49 rating for a repeat. About the same as the other shows.
Tuesday Sitcoms
  • Last Man Standing (ABC) - A repeat did 5.69 million and a 1.3 18-49 rating. Not bad. New episodes for the next two weeks as it wraps up its first season. It'll be back next season, I can assure you.
  • Cougar Town (ABC) - A new episode unfortunately didn't do that well with 4.89 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating, but up a tenth from previous week, when its lead-in was new. So a good sign!
  • New Girl (Fox) - A new episode at 9pm did 5.2 million and a 2.6 rating, down a tenth from previous week again. It's not a mass appeal show, but 18-49 is decent enough. A repeat at 9:30pm followed and didn't do well with 3.1 million and a 1.4 18-49 rating.
Wednesday Sitcoms
  • The Middle (ABC) - A repeat did 4.89 million and a 1.3 18-rating, on par with previous week's repeat. It returns with new episodes this Wednesday as Whoopi Goldberg guest stars! Whoopster!
  • Suburgatory (ABC) - A repeat did 4.39 million and a 1.4 18-49 rating, as it continues to build from its lead-in.
  • Best Friends Forever (NBC) - The fourth episode did just 2.65 million and a very low 0.8 18-49 rating, tying its low from previous week. It is now pulled and gone.
  • Modern Family (ABC) - A repeat of this mega hit did 5.83 million and a 2.2 18-49 rating, the best repeat 18-49 rating of the week. Power of comedy...look for it do well in syndication in fall 2013.
  • Don't Trust the B---- In Apartment 23 (ABC) - The third episode did 4.91 million and a 2.0 18-49 rating, down six tenths from previous week when its lead-in was new. This week's episode is one we saw for review ("The Wedding") and it is outstanding! Tune in for some laughs, dancing, a wedding and Kevin Sorbo!
Thursday Sitcoms
  • The Big Bang Theory (CBS) - A new episode at 8 did 12.65 million and a 4.1 18-49 rating, which is excellent but a season low. Repeats the past few weeks could be a reason why it was down.
  • Rules of Engagement (CBS) - A new episode did 8.17 million and a 2.5 18-49 rating, which is up three tenths from previous week when its lead-in was a repeat.
  • Community (NBC) - A new episode did 3.21 million and a 1.4 18-49 rating, up a tenth from previous week's series low.
  • 30 Rock (NBC) - A new episode did 3.47 million and a 1.6 18-49 rating, up a tenth from previous week actually. It aired a live episode, so it should have been up more. But at least it was up!
  • The Office (NBC) - A new episode did only 4.17 million and a 2.1 18-49 rating, down a tenth for a series low. Eeck, calling back Steve Carell?
  • Parks and Recreation (NBC) - The a new episode did 3.17 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating, down a tenth week-to-week.
Friday Sitcoms
  • None.
Saturday Sitcoms
  • None
Airing tonight (Sunday) are Fox Animation Domination comedies from 7-10pm, with new episodes starting at 7:30pm.

Summing it up. Airings of The Big Bang Theory, New Girl, Modern Family, Two and a Half Men, were impressive for the week. Everything else was OK (such as How I Met Your Mother, 2 Broke Girls) or just plain old terrible (such as Best Friends Forever, Cougar Town).

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Digital Digest: Covert Affairs - Season Two DVD Review


Welcome to Digital Digest! We have another one of those slow Saturdays for you, but fear not, we're here as always with all of your news, a preview of Tuesday's releases, and more! And this week, we have a review of Tuesday's release of Cover Affairs - Season Two! Let's get going!


DIGITAL NEWS

Warner Archive, which has been bringing us all of the Hanna-Barbera classics which have ever existed over the past year or so, has another very rare release (like many of them) went on sale this week without much prior notice. The classic 1973 series Inch High Private Eye is now available to purchase from the website.

There haven't been any Saturday Night Live season releases lately (and it seems unlikely that there ever will be any further ones, as the intention was only to release the first five seasons anyway), but that doesn't mean that the series is done on DVD. Special "best of" releases have always been a mainstay for the series, and the next one to come is Saturday Night Live - The Women of SNL. The single disc release comes from Universal (this has to be confusing, since some releases of the series come from Lionsgate and others from Universal, though it has been mostly Universal lately) on June 3, and looks back at the women who have created some of the most memorable characters of the series. You can read more about the release here.

Earlier this week, Mill Creek announced a deal in which they will be licensing 250 movies (no television series, but movies) for release on DVD and Blu-ray from Sony. While we can't stress enough that this deal only includes movies, and NO television series, this is indeed great news to hear from the studio, as it indicates that the studio is serious about acquisitions from major studios (the same studios which hold all of our favorite series) and is developing relationships with those studios. So while this isn't exactly news that our readers can use right now, we certainly hope that this is a springboard for good news for television fans in the near future, and will certainly keep you updated about any future progress which is made.

Finally, speaking of TV movies, Sony Pictures OnDemand's Choice Collection will be releasing two TV movies featuring classic sitcom stars releasing this Tuesday (May 1). The first one is the 1986 movie titled Kate's Secret. Meredith Baxter (Family Ties and Bridget Loves Bernie) plays the wife who seems to have everything in this made-for-TV-movie, which illuminates the problem of bulimia. In fitness-obsessed Southern California, Kate Stark struggles to hide her eating disorder, characterized by a psychological need to binge eat and purge, from her husband (Ben Masters), best friend (Shari Belafonte), and everyone around her who could help her fight this life-threatening illness. When finally confronted by the seriousness of her situation, Kate encounters the caring Dr. Resnick (Ed Asner), and patients with similar issues (played by Tracy Nelson and Mackenzie Phillips), who help her to acknowledge and accept her problem… the first step to healing. Also being released on May is More Than Friends from 1978. Childhood friends in the Bronx during the 1950s and '60s, Alan Corkus (Rob Reiner, All in the Family) and Maddy Pearlman (Penny Marshall, Laverne & Shirley) grew into awkward teenagers who attended their Senior Prom together. Despite their crossing paths again at City College, where a mutual initiation to sex helps their friendship grow into love, they never seem able to express their true feelings for each other. Years later, both have gone their separate ways, each finding frustration in love and career. When Maddy's love affair with a fellow actor ends disastrously, she surprises Alan with a visit, and the two decide to move in together. But the road to bliss is bumpy, and Maddy decides to move on again, leaving Alan unhappily trying to have relationships with other women, only to have Maddy return again... This charming comedy about their on-and-off relationship, and the bittersweet nature of love between friends -- directed by sitcom director Jim Burrows and from a screenplay by Reiner and Phil Mishkin -- is a realistic take on the perils and pitfalls of modern romance. See links to pre-order both below!

UPCOMING WEEK PREVIEW

Tuesday (May 1) brings us more of The Dick Van Dyke Show from Image with their release of The Dick Van Dyke Show - Carl Reiner's Favorites. The three disc set contains 20 of the creator's favorite episodes of the series. Shout! Factory has their release of Love is On the Air, containing some of the greatest love themed episodes from series including Leave it to Beaver, That Girl, Dennis the Menace, Father Knows Best, The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet, The Patty Duke Show, and Hazel. Also from Shout! Factory on Tuesday comes another season of a classic detective drama with Kojak - Season Four (read our review). Of course, as we've already mentioned, Universal has Cover Affairs - Season Two, which we have a review of today. And finally, Sony has a few of MOD offerings with Ten Items or Less - The Complete Third Season and the very rare early '70s suspense anthology series hosted by Sebastian Cabot, Ghost Story - The Complete Series. Additionally, Sony is going to "try again" on Tuesday with their MOD release Benson - The Complete Second Season, which we hope will be improved from the botched set which made it to some customers early last month before being made unavailable. And finally, Sony has the two TV movies: Kate's Secret and More Than Friends starring sitcom stars.

BLOG FEATURE REVIEW



Blog DVD Review: Covert Affairs - Season Two (Universal, $39.98)
by Pavan

Runaway hit USA Network original series, Covert Affairs, stars Golden Globe-nominated Piper Perabo as Annie Walker, a young CIA operative whose exceptional linguistic skills and spot on instincts make her invaluable to the Agency. In season two, Annie's personal and professional lives crash into one another, and the balance of her relationships are forever changed. The series also stars Christopher Gorham, Sendhil Ramamurthy, Anne Dudek, Kari Matchett and Peter Gallagher. Watch all sixteen suspenseful and dynamic episodes uninterrupted, coming from the producer of The Bourne Trilogy, on a four-disc DVD set from Universal Studios Home Entertainment.

The first half of the second season (10 episodes) premiered last June on USA Network and did well in the ratings airing Tuesday nights in the summer. The second half (6 episodes) returned in November and aired in-season for the very first time, though the ratings dropped. The series will return for a third season July 10, 2012 in its Tuesday at 10pm timeslot. Another sixteen episodes have been ordered and will be split into two halves again. No idea yet when the final six episodes of season three will air, but the first ten episodes will air from July-September, 2012. Anyway, as for this season two DVD, memorable episodes include the season two premiere "Begin the Begin," where Ben and Annie return to Washington D.C., where Ben disappears yet again, however Annie is quickly assigned another mission when she has to protect an Estonian tennis player (Marija Karan) who is considered a CIA asset. In "Around the Sun," during a mission looking into a potential leak at NASA that could threaten the U.S.'s spy satellites, Annie has to get used to working with a new tech operative (Jaimie Alexander) after Auggie takes the OCA position. In "Half A World Away," Auggie is aided by a flight attendant (Rebecca Mader) while on his vacation to the international jazz festival in Istanbul and his trip turns into a mission when he inadvertently records the voice of the man who injured him during the war in Iraq, as Annie later learns the whole story of Auggie's blindness. In "World Leader Pretend," which is the mid-season finale, Annie runs an extraction mission of a Chinese scientist she's been corresponding with who is willing to defect, she runs into complications and is forced to make a difficult choice when they both seem to have been poisoned with polonium, while a friend of the scientist at the Asian Cultural Organization is the prime suspect when Annie discovers he may be a spy for the PLA special forces. Meanwhile, Joan transfers Jai to a new division in Arizona, and after two years, Annie finally tells Danielle her CIA secret, leading her sister to distrust her and ask Annie to move out. In the return, "The Wake-Up Bomb," after failing a mission in Venice, Annie feels lonely during some time off and meets a chef (Santiago Cabrera) with connections to the ETA, a Basque separatist movement, through his brother. In "What's the Frequency, Kenneth," an MI6 operative (Tony Curran) mistakes Annie for an actual Smithsonian employee and attempts to recruit her for a covert op he bases on a hunch about a "dodgy" art restorer at the museum. And on the season finale, "Letter Never Sent," when Annie and Danielle go vacationing in Stockholm, Sweden, it turns dangerous when Danielle is mistaken for a spy. Jai Wilcox reveals his plans to Arthur, after having triggered a somewhat unexpected situation and his father Henry Wilcox ends up being denounced as the source leaking confidential information to journalist Liza Hearn.

Guest stars include Eion Bailey as Ben Mercer, Gregory Itzin as Henry Wilcox, Emmanuelle Vaugier as Liza Hearn, Oded Fehr, Marija Karan, Ben Lawson, Rena Sofer, Mark Moses, Jamie Alexander, Bruce Davison and Rebecca Mader. The episodes all appear to be unedited how you saw them originally last summer/fall on USA Network. Here are the runtimes:

Disc 1:
1. "Begin the Begin" (42:34)
2. "Good Advices" (42:44)
3. "Bang and Blame" (42:49)
4. "All the Right Friends" (41:57)

Disc 2:
5. "Around the Sun" (42:10)
6. "The Outsiders" (42:11)
7. "Half a World Away" (42:47)
8. "Welcome to the Occupation" (42:53)

Disc 3:
9. "Sad Professor" (42:29)
10. "World Leader Pretend" (42:49)
11. "The Wake-Up Bomb" (42:53)
12. "Uberlin" (42:58)

Disc 4:
13. "A Girl Like you" (41:59)
14. "Horse To Water" (42:57)
15. "What's the Frequency, Kenneth?" (41:49)
16. "Letter Never Sent" (43:19)

As far as packaging goes, we have an outer box that holds a case this time instead of slim cases in season one. The outer box is all white with a shot of Annie Walker holding a gun in a suit. Her shirt is a a bit unbuttoned. The tagline "Under Cover Girl." is printed on the front along with the series logo mentioning "From the Producer of The Bourne Trilogy." The back has artwork of Piper with the men (Gorham, Ramamurthy, and Gallagher). Sad they didn't include the females. We also have a description of the series and set and a list of bonus features. When we open the case, there are two plastic holders which you can flip like a page in a book. Discs one and two are on the first holder, with disc one on the front and disc two on the back. Discs three and four are on the second holder, with disc three on the front and disc four on the back. Disc artwork is plain in grey with lettering in blue (last time it was red). There is no artwork on the discs besides the blue lettering and the series logo. On the panels, we have a disc-by-disc breakdown featuring the episode titles, descriptions, and bonus features. We also have some nice episodic photos. There is an also an ad inset that features Covert Affairs new season this summer.

The menu screens are really good. Before the main menu on disc one there are auto trailers for series from USA Network and Syfy. Then we get to the main menu which has the closing theme playing in the background, like season one. The artwork is the same as the cover artwork with Annie in the suit, but a more wider shot of her. The options for the main menu are: Play All, Episode Index, Bonus Features, Setup, and Previews (on disc one only). Previews has more trailers for such series as The Office, Parks & Recreation and other Universal DVDs. Setup has English Digital Dolby 5.1 audio, but this time also DVS (Descriptive Video Service), and you can turn on English subtitles. Episode Index has the episode number, title and if it has a deleted scene or alternate scene you can choose that here. You can also choose those in the Bonus Features section, which lists all the special features for the disc.

The video quality is superb, as it should be since it is a new series and the season ended last December. It looks like HD even on DVD and it is in widescreen, as my DVD upconverts it to full screen. If this series were being offered on Blu-ray, I can't imagine how better it would look since this DVD is such great quality. The audio is perfect as well. It is clear and crisp and with Dolby Digital 5.1, you can't go wrong. There are 4 chapter stops per episode, so that is convenient if you want to skip to a scene you're looking for in particular.

There are plenty of special features. I'll detail them by disc. We don't have any audio commentary, which is disappointing. On disc one, we have three deleted scenes for "Good Advices" (1:15). Disc two has an alternate scene for "Around the Sun" (1:06). I am glad they went with the actual scene, as we get to see Piper in a bra and underwear instead, as this alternate scene was not good. For the episode "Half A World Away," we have a deleted scene and an alternate scene running a total of 1:16.

Moving on to disc three we have two more episodes with deleted scenes. The first is "Sad Professor" (1:01) and the other one is "Uberlin" (0:50). And finally on disc four, we have the main special features! First, we have deleted scenes for the final two episodes of the season: "What's the Frequency, Kenneth" (1:20) and "Letter Never Sent" (0:58). Now onto the main features, we have a "Gag Reel" that runs 2:15. This is self-explanatory and always fun to watch flubs and goofs, and this time the opening theme is playing in the background! Then we have the "Piper Perabo Comic-Con Intro Scene" (2:50), which was used to introduce the series to Comic-con last year. Nice to see they added that as it is very cool to see. Probably the best feature on the set is "Covert Affairs On Location." This has behind the scenes look at the different locations they went to. It is broken into by different locations. First up is Istanbul (6:30). Christopher Gorham gives us an inside look at the location shoot via a camcorder! We also see Rebecca Mader, Gene Klein (producer), and Felix Enriquez Alcala (director). This was certainly very fun! The next location is Venice (3:32). This one has a tour from co-executive producer Matt Corman. We also see Christopher Gorham, Piper Perabo, Elan Dassani (VFX Supervisor), Jamie Barber (director of photography), and Stephen Kay (director). Next up is Berlin (2:58) as Corman gives us a tour again and we also see Peter Gallagher, Doug Liman (executive producer), Stephen Kay, and Christopher Gorham. And finally it is on to Stockholm (3:15). On this location we see Jamie Barber, Piper Perabo, Stephen Kay, Christopher Gorham, Anne Dudek, and Chevy Chen (VFX Supervisor). So Gorham was in all of them!

Overall this is a great set and a great show. Again, it's not Alias, but that doesn't matter because it shouldn't set to copy a show like that. This is its own show and it works. Piper Perabo is brilliant on this show and was nominated for a Golden Globe in season one and I think she is just as good in season two. Christopher Gorham turned in a brilliant performance in "Half A World Away," and I hope he is honored in some way this award season. This DVD is well-produced with good packaging, menus, audio/video and special features. There is really nothing to complain about except audio commentaries was missing this time. Another featurette would have been cool in addition to the On Location ones. New series on DVD are expected to be as good as this set is. Again, the only thing making this set not a 5 star set is it needed one more big special feature. But 4 1/2 stars once again, like in season one, is not too shabby! Kick some spy butt with the sexy Piper Perabo by buying this DVD below, as we get ready for season three on July 10 at 10pm ET/PT on USA Network!

(4.5/5 stars)

To purchase this DVD, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
Amazon.com

Related links:
SitcomsOnline.com DVD Reviews Page
Covert Affairs on TV.com


CLICK OF THE WEEK

The SNL Archives (snl.jt.org) - We talked about Universal's June release of another release related to the series Saturday Night Live in our news section today, but if you want to know more (or literally everything) about the classic TV series, then The SNL Archives is the website to be. The website doesn't necessarily look like much from the main page (mainly because it isn't cluttered like some sites tend to be), but you'll find any information which you are looking for on this website. Of course, the website has all of the basic information, such as cast and guest stars from each episode over the nearly forty seasons which the series has aired. But there is so much more.

Have you ever wondered which season your favorite sketch aired? You can certainly find it on here. If you're trying to remember certain characters from the series over the years, you'll find them on here. If you just want to know who did the "live from New York" line on a given episode, even that is on there, along with a still photograph of the actor saying it. It gets even better, because you can go through every season of the series and find a precise listing of all of the sketches from each episode, the order in which they aired, and even all of the songs performed by the musical guests.

There is so much information about each of the episodes on the site, and the best part is that when you are done looking through all of this, you can watch the episodes online if you subscribe to Hulu+ (although they are terribly edited versions which are often missing about half of the episode due to licensing issues... but it is something). So even if it isn't Saturday night quite yet at the time of this posting, it can be Saturday night all the time when you visit The SNL Archives.

That's it for this week. Until next time, keep it digital!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Guest Stars Galore on TBS' Men at Work; Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of April 30, 2012)


Men at Work
Men at Work, the new TBS original comedy series from Sony Pictures Television, has begun production in Los Angeles. Created by Breckin Meyer, the sitcom stars Danny Masterson (That '70s Show), Michael Cassidy (The O.C.), Adam Busch (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), James Lesure (Las Vegas) and Meredith Hagner (Royal Pains). In addition to starting production, Men at Work has signed up its first guest stars: Stacy Keibler, J.K. Simmons and Kathy Najimy. Men at Work centers on four buddies who work together at a magazine. Masterson plays the recently dumped Milo, whose friends are determined to help him get back in the dating game. Lesure is Gibbs, a photographer and successful ladies man. Cassidy plays Tyler, a features writer who brings a dose of style and sophistication to the group. And Busch is Neal, a somewhat nebbish reporter and the only one in the group with a steady girlfriend (Hagner). Together, the four friends help each other navigate the treacherous waters of work, friendship and women.
As for the guest stars, Stacy Keibler will play Keri, a gorgeous girl who hooks up with Milo and Gibbs at a bar and offers them an interesting proposition. J.K. Simmons will play P.J. Jordan, the stern and demanding publisher of the magazine where the guys work. He also happens to be the father of Neal's girlfriend, Amy. And Kathy Najimy will play Sasha Ryan, a well-known sex blogger being interviewed by Tyler and photographed by Gibbs... and attracting the attention of both.
Men at Work is slated to air on TBS Thursdays at 10 p.m. (ET/PT), beginning with back-to-back episodes on May 24. The series will then air every Thursday in the 10 p.m. half-hour. Ten episodes have been ordered and will run through July 12, before being taken over by another original sitcom: Sullivan & Son. The season finale of Men will be back-to-back episodes as well on July 12.


It's Friday, so it is time for "Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows" for the coming week. This is where we list what sitcom stars are appearing on talk shows for the coming week, the stars are both current and past sitcom stars, so this is for all sitcom fans of all eras!
For the week of April 30-May 4, 2012, we have many current sitcom stars and past sitcom stars on TV talk shows! All times listed are Eastern. So get your DVR's (or whatever you use) ready! Ready? Here is all what you need to know for the coming week!

Monday, April 30, 2012
  • Don Rickles (C.P.O. Sharkey/Daddy Dearest) - Watch Mr. Warmth on The Late Show with David Letterman at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Rashida Jones (Parks and Recreation/The Office) - Rashida stops by The Tonight Show with Jay Leno at 11:35pm on NBC.
  • Jim Gaffigan (My Boys/Welcome to New York) - Jim appears on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Alison Williams (Girls) - Alison visits Late Night with Jimmy Fallon at 12:37am on NBC.
  • Alec Baldwin (30 Rock) - Alec is a guest on a repeat of Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Damon Wayans Jr. (Happy Endings) - Tune in to see Damon on a repeat of Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Marilu Henner (Taxi) - Marilu joins the Chew Crew on The Chew on ABC at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT.
  • Debra Messing (Will & Grace) - Debra joins The Revolution on ABC at 2pm ET/1pm PT/CT.
  • Jennifer Tilly (Out of Practice) - Jennifer drops by The Wendy Williams Show at 12am on BET or on your local stations. She will also be on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Kristen Johnston (The Exes/3rd Rock From the Sun) - Kristen guest co-hosts Anderson, so check your local listings.
  • Sherri Shepherd (Less Than Perfect/Sherri) - Sherri appears on Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
Tuesday, May 1, 2012
  • Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Modern Family/The Class) - Catch Jesse on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Lennon Parham (Best Friends Forever/Accidentally on Purpose) - Lennon is a guest on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Jim Gaffigan (My Boys/Welcome to New York) - Jim continues to make the rounds on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon at 12:37am on NBC.
  • Sofia Vergara (Modern Family/The Knights of Prosperity/Hot Properties) - Sofia appears on a repeat of Conan at 11pm on TBS.
Wednesday, May 2, 2012
  • Reno Wilson (Mike & Molly) - Watch Reno on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Amy Poehler (Parks and Recreation) - Amy appears on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon at 12:37am on NBC.
  • Eden Sher (The Middle) - Eden appears on ABC's Good Morning America between 7-9am. She later guest co-hosts The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Annie Potts (Designing Women) - Annie visits The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Gabourey Sidibe (The Big C) - Gabourey is a guest on The Wendy Williams Show at 12am on BET or on your local stations.
  • Meredith Baxter (Family Ties) - Meredith stops by The Wendy Williams Show at 12am on BET or on your local stations.
  • Aziz Ansari (Parks and Recreation) - Aziz appears on Anderson, so check your local listings.
  • Jenna Fischer (The Office) - Jennifer visits Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
  • Yvette Nicole Brown (Community) - Yvette guest co-hosts The Nate Berkus Show, so check your local listings.
Thursday, May 3, 2012
  • Lena Dunham (Girls) - Catch Lena on The Colbert Report at 11:30pm on Comedy Central.
  • Tracy Morgan (30 Rock/The Tracy Morgan Show) - Tracy chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Beth Behrs (2 Broke Girls) - Beth drops by LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • Cheryl Hines (Suburgatory/Curb Your Enthusiasm) - Cheryl shares how laughter helped her to make a revolution in her own life on The Revolution on ABC at 2pm ET/1pm PT/CT.
  • Joel McHale (Community) - Joel visits The Wendy Williams Show at 12am on BET or on your local stations.
  • Jennifer Aspen (Rodney) - Jennifer is a guest on The Wendy Williams Show at 12am on BET or on your local stations.
  • Cybill Shepherd (Cybill) - Cybill appears on Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
Friday, May 4, 2012
  • Zooey Deschanel (New Girl) - Watch the adorkable Zooey on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Patrick Warburton (Rules of Enagement/Seinfeld) - Patrick appears on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Cobie Smulders (How I Met Your Mother) - Cobie joins the joins the Chew Crew on The Chew on ABC at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT.
  • Regina King (227) - Regina is a guest on a repeat of Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Raven-SymonĂ© (That's So Raven/Hangin' with Mr. Cooper/The Cosby Show) - Raven visits The Wendy Williams Show at 12am on BET or on your local stations.
Leave us comments on our message board or Tweet/Facebook us to let us know what you think of this Friday feature! We do listen!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Spend Mother's Day With Good Times On TV One; CBS Summer Has Reality


Good Times
TV One is inviting you to spend Mother's Day afternoon with them as they present a Good Times marathon on Sunday, May 13, 2012. The marathon will be a short three-hour block, but it will feature classic episodes dealing with mom Florida Evans. The block will air from 4-7pm. Encores of the upcoming TV One original series My Momma Throws Down will lead-in from 12-4pm. The series is an original food competition show where the only thing that matters in the end is taste. But, along with healthy portions of food, these contestants and their families will be serving up a serious side-order of attitude as family dynamics becomes as important as the competition itself. The series premieres Friday, Mat 4 at 8pm. Anyway, back to Good Times, some of storylines in the marathon include Florida's strange behavior has the family and Willona wondering whats wrong with her, as Michael thinks shes beginning menopause while Willona believes shes fed up with the boredom that comes with being a housewife. In another episode, the kids feel Florida has been spending too much time alone and they decide to cancel their plans and spend an evening with their mom but Florida surprises them all and goes out with Willona as she takes her to a local night spot where they have an exciting evening. In a two-part episode, a student whom Florida drives to school on her bus, becomes the center of attention when Florida discovers he has a hearing problem and his mother refuses to believe Florida's suspicions. Don't miss the motherly marathon on Mother's Day on TV One!


CBS has finally announced its summer schedule. CBS will heat up summer with the return of its reality franchise Big Brother, the new unscripted dating series 3 and the previously announced Dogs in the City. The new season of Big Brother, hosted Julie Chen, premieres Thursday, July 12 at 9:00 PM, ET/PT with the first of its three weekly broadcasts. It will also be broadcast Wednesdays at 8:00 PM ET/PT, beginning July 18 and Sundays at 8:00 PM ET/PT, beginning July 15. The new dating series 3 is where three single women of different ages, life experiences and backgrounds meet for the first time with a common goal - finding true love - has a special 90-minute premiere Sunday, July 22 from 9:00-10:30 PM, ET/PT. Additional episodes will be one-hour, creating a new nightly two-hour reality block with Big Brother from 8-10PM on Sunday nights. As previously announced, the new reality series Dogs in the City, starring New York City dog guru Justin Silver, a master at resolving issues between canines and their owners - no matter whose behavior is at fault - premieres Wednesday, May 30 at 8:00 PM, ET/PT and will run through July 11, keeping the time period warm until Big Brother returns July 18.
Everything on CBS summer will likely be repeats, with the exception of news magazines 48 Hours and 60 Minutes. Repeats of the Monday comedies and Hawaii Five-0 is likely on Mondays. On Tuesdays, NCIS and NCIS: LA is likely to repeat, but 10pm is still a question mark. Wednesdays will be new with reality at 8pm, followed likely by repeats of Criminal Minds and CSI. Thursdays is likely Big Bang and another comedy in the 8pm hour leading into Big Brother. At 10pm, possibly Person of Interest will air repeats in the time period. Perhaps on Fridays, The Mentalist will encore with CSI: NY and Blue Bloods. And finally on Sundays, 60 Minutes of course will lead into the new reality block from 8-10pm, possibly leading into repeats of The Good Wife at 10pm. The repeat schedule all depends likely on what CBS plans in the fall, and we will know in a month. So stay tuned...

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Hallmark Schedules Mary Tyler Moore, Bob Newhart Marathons; Comedy Awards Lines Up Presenters

Mary Tyler Moore The Bob Newhart Show
They might have been removed from the regular schedule, but Hallmark Channel has still not given up on The Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Bob Newhart Show. The cable network has scheduled Memorial Day weekend marathons of both classic sitcoms! On Saturday, May 26, 2012 from 10am-10pm, enjoy twelve hours of The Mary Tyler Moore Show in marathon form on Hallmark Channel! The sitcom launched to a marathon on April 1, so this will actually be its second marathon. Unfortunately its regular airings didn't last long (it aired early mornings 4-6am), but fans can still watch the series in marathon spurts (and on MeTV and FamilyNet, if you get those networks). If I were to guess, we'll see more marathons like this for the sitcom in the coming months on Hallmark. The same goes true for The Bob Newhart Show, that sitcom also was removed from the regular schedule recently, but Hallmark will air a twelve hour The Bob Newhart Show marathon on Sunday, May 27, 2012 from 10am-10pm! 24 classic episodes!
No changes to report on the regular schedule, but we do have one other note! On Sunday, June 3, 2012, following the morning The Golden Girls airings, Hallmark will air a Touched by an Angel marathon through 10pm! The classic family drama has not aired in a while on the network, so it's good to see it airing. I believe it has been over a year since it last aired on the network, at least regularly. Stay with us for continued updates on all things Hallmark Channel including the on going saga of their schedule changes.

The Comedy Awards, the annual event dedicated to honoring and celebrating the world of comedy, today announced talent scheduled to attend the April 28 ceremony, including the first announced presenters of the 2012 Comedy Awards which include Chris Rock, Will Arnett, Tracy Morgan, Maya Rudolph, Adam Scott and the previously announced Jon Stewart, who will present Don Rickles with the "Johnny Carson Award For Comedic Excellence."
Joining Rickles on comedy's biggest night will be Robin Williams, who will receive the "Stand-Up Icon" award will be some of the biggest names in the genre including Hannibal Buress, Ty Burrell, Louis C.K., Chevy Chase, Paul Feig, Tina Fey, Melissa McCarthy, Wendi McLendon-Covey, Annie Mumolo, Amber Nash, Jim O'Heir, Chris Parnell, Amy Poehler, Maya Rudolph, The Gregory Brothers, Aisha Tyler and Kristen Wiig. Additional names will be released later this week. The Comedy Awards, now in its second year, is dedicated to celebrating the art of comedy with an historic, one-night-only celebration honoring the most talented writers, directors, actors and stand-ups, who provided the laugh track to our lives this past year. The ceremony will take place at New York City's Hammerstein Ballroom on Saturday, April 28 and premiere on Comedy Central on Sunday, May 6, 2012 at 9PM. Please read the nominees. Stay tuned for a list of winners!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

TNT Begins Castle Reruns In June 2012; Mother's Day With Brothers & Sisters On SOAPnet

Castle
As we already announced Castle is headed to syndication this fall on broadcast stations on weekend, but cable network TNT will get a head start starting this summer by airing reruns of seasons one and two! TNT aired a one day marathon in September to get everyone ready for the fourth season on ABC, but now TNT will begin airing the series on a regular basis! Starting Thursday, June 7, 2012, TNT will air repeats of Castle every Thursday night back-to-back at 9pm and 10pm starting with the very first episode! Enjoy it from the beginning, especially if you've never seen it! Reruns of The Mentalist will lead-in from 3-9pm. The drama will join other popular reruns on the network such as Law & Order, The Mentalist, Bones, CSI NY, Cold Case, Charmed, Supernatural, Las Vegas, Angel, and Smallville. Castle is of course a comedic/romantic crime drama starring Nathan Fillion (Firefly, Desperate Housewives) and Stana Katic (Quantum of Solace, TNT's The Librarian: Curse of the Judas Chalice). Also as part of TNT's TV Everywhere rollout, Castle will also be available for online viewing through mobile phones, tablets, computers and other devices starting this June. TNT will be able to air more than just the first two seasons I believe by Fall 2013. So catch seasons one and two this June on TNT and then weekend broadcast syndication this fall, so check your local listings for times and station as we get closer to the fall!

The series is currently in its fourth season on ABC and the season will wrap up on May 7 with its fourth season finale. The series will be entering its fifth season on ABC this fall. Stay tuned for more information on Castle on TNT and in broadcast syndication!

If you still get SOAPnet, then you'll see a Brothers & Sisters marathon this Mother's Day! Spend the mother of all holidays with the Walkers as SOAPnet celebrates Mother's Day with the "Mothers, Brothers & Sisters" marathon on Sunday, May 13, from 3pm– 7pm. The four-hour marathon features mother-themed episodes of Brothers & Sisters. The series of course follows the lives of The Walker Family who include: Nora Walker, her brother Saul and her grown children Sarah, Kitty, Tommy, Kevin, and Justin. The Walkers are a fiercely loyal, loving and bickering family. Friends as much as siblings, while they may often disagree, they always support each other through joy and heartache. But when the father they love and respect suddenly dies, secrets slowly unravel that serve to test the family and their business, to its limits.
In this short marathon you'll see Sarah struggling with being a working single mother, especially when Paige wants to wear a grown up outfit to a party. With motherhood around the corner, Kitty's torn on whether to take a new job, and as a result of her anxiety, when the family throws her a baby shower, it erupts in typical Walker drama; Kitty asks Nora to be in the delivery room with her when the baby's born. In a two-part episode, Kitty is furious when their birth mother goes into labor and Robert is at a press conference to announce his run for governor instead of the hospital. In the conclusion, still angry with Robert, Kitty's stunned to learn that he suffered a heart attack as their new son was being born, even though Robert's health has improved, as Kitty brings Evan home from the hospital, she comes to the realization that she'll be raising him alone.

Monday, April 23, 2012

TV Land Brings Back I Love Lucy in June 2012; Good Morning America's TV Reunion Blowout: One Day at a Time, Laverne & Shirley, and More

I Love Lucy

As we mentioned about ten days ago, TV Land will air That '70s Show this June. We also hinted that another sitcom will join the line-up and we can reveal what that is now! TV Land is bringing back the classic '50s sitcom I Love Lucy! The Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz comedy has not aired on the network since the end of 2008 and then it moved to Hallmark in January 2009. As of now, Hallmark Channel will still air I Love Lucy come June when TV Land will start airing the series again. We'll let you know if anything should change. As for TV Land, the network will bring back the iconic series on Monday, June 4, 2012! It will air weekday mornings from 11am-12pm, Saturdays 9-11am, and a block on Sundays starting at 11am (usually lasting to 4:30pm). I Love Lucy will air in a black and white morning sitcom block which features Leave it to Beaver at 9am, The Dick Van Dyke Show at 10am, I Love Lucy at 11am, and The Andy Griffith Show at 12 noon. This means M*A*S*H is out of the morning block, but it will still air weekdays from 6-8pm. Murder, She Wrote continues to kick off the morning line-up at 8am (with Boston Legal on Fridays). The rest of the weekday daytime schedule will remain intact with Gunsmoke at 1pm & 2pm and Bonanza from 3-6pm leading into M*A*S*H.

In primetime, Home Improvement remains at 8pm into Everybody Loves Raymond in the 9pm hour. Now The King of Queens block will move to 10pm-12am, as the second hour of Raymond will move to 1am. TV Land will air new addition That '70s Show in the 12am hour, so its lead-in is King of Queens and its lead-out is Raymond. In late night, 2am will be Roseanne, followed by two episodes of Three's Company at 2:30am & 3am. Then it's another Roseanne at 3:30am leading into an hour of Home Improvement at 4am, which moves up an hour, as That '70s Show will get an encore in the 5am hour. This means The Nanny is off of the TV Land line-up come June with the addition of That '70s Show.

How about on weekends? Well primetime and late night will look like it does on weeknights from 8am-6am. Weekend mornings kicks off with a mix of Roseanne and Three's Company from 6-9am. 9am-11am on Saturdays is I Love Lucy, followed by Extreme Makeover: Home Edition from 11am-2pm. From 2-4pm on most Saturdays will be an hour each of Good Times and The Jeffersons, the only time you'll see these two comedies now. A movie follows at 4pm leading into Home Improvement from 6:30-9pm. On Sundays, an original sitcom block airs from 9-11am leading into I Love Lucy which will air from 11am-4:30pm on most Sundays, leading into M*A*S*H from 4:30pm-9pm, as Home Improvement is preempted on Sundays at 8pm.

As for original programming, TV Land will have the season finales of Hot in Cleveland and Happily Divorced on Wednesday, June 6 at 10pm. TV Land will air new series The Soul Man starring Cedric the Entertainer starting Wednesday, June 20 at 10pm leading into season two of The Exes at 10:30pm. Both series will have 12 episodes this season. The second season of Retired at 35 will air Tuesdays at 10pm starting June 26 for ten episodes. On Sunday, June 24 TV Land Presents The 2012 AFI Life Achievement Award: Shirley MacLaine from 9-11pm. Saturday movies in May and June include Stir Crazy, The Golden Child, Coming to America, Barber Shop 2, and Beauty Shop. Stunts for June are the That '70s Show launch marathon from Friday, June 1 to Sunday, June 3, 9pm-12am each night. An Andy Griffith Show Memorial Day marathon on May 28 from 10am-2pm. That's all we have for June, it's one of the busiest months for TV Land in terms of new additions in a while, so that's a good sign! Stay with us for continued updates.

GMA TV Reunion Blowout

Sticking to classic TV, the 10th Annual TV Land Awards are coming up next Sunday (April 29) and will feature reunions of Murphy Brown, In Living Color, One Day at a Time and Laverne & Shirley. But before the awards air, ABC's Good Morning America has interviewed the cast of each show in detail as part of their "TV Reunion Blowout!" GMA news anchor Josh Elliott and lifestyle anchor Lara Spencer sat down with each cast at the TV Land Awards to reminisce about these classic series and how it feels reuniting after all these years! GMA aired the Murphy Brown reunion on Friday (watch here), but the rest will air starting Wednesday with In Living Color, then One Day at a Time on Thursday and Laverne & Shirley on Friday. Tune in to ABC in the 8am hour on these days for these classic reunions! "This is it!"

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Week 31 TV Ratings and Analysis; How the Sitcoms Did

2011-12 Week 31 TV Ratings (first four nights final ratings, Mon-Thu): 

Households:N/A
Total Viewers: N/A.
Adults 18-49: N/A

Week 31 (April 16-22) Analysis: Week 31 had mostly all new programming minus a few shows, as we near May sweep starting April 26. We don't have the the first four night averages, but we can project ABC, CBS and Fox are very close to each other in HH/viewers, which Fox on top, followed by ABC then CBS, as CBS was in repeats on Thursday. In the more important adults 18-49, it is more clear. Fox is by far first, followed by ABC.  CBS is third in adults 18-49, just ahead of NBC. NBC is a distant fourth in HH/viewers. When the week is over by tonight, it could be as it is right now, I think. More on the prediction of week 30 below. As for last week, week 30, Fox took the 18-49 crown, while CBS took home HH/total viewers. ABC edged Fox for second in HH but Fox did have the slight edge in total viewers over ABC. CBS was second in 18-49. ABC was third in 18-49, while NBC was fourth across the board.

On Monday, it was NBC with the edge over CBS and ABC. First, on ABC, Dancing with the Stars started it off from 8-10pm doing a first place 16.65 million and a 2.9 rating, down a tenth from previous week. At 10pm, Castle was all-new and did 11.23 million and a 2.1 18-49 rating. For CBS, a new episode of How I Met Your Mother did 7.24 million and a 3.1 rating, down four tenths from previous week and a clear season low. A new episode of 2 Broke Girls followed with 8.52 million and a 3.4 18-49 rating, still good but down a tenth week-to-week and another series low. Spring has certainly begun. A new Two and a Half Men followed at 9 with 11.22 million and a 3.8 rating, up two tenths from previous week's series low. A new Mike & Molly was also new and did 9.54 million and a 3.1 18-49 rating, off a tenth from previous week. At 10, a repeat episode of Hawaii Five-0 did 6.12 million and a 1.6 18-49 rating. Fox started off the night with Bones doing 7.15 million and a 2.2 rating, on par with the previous week. House was new at 9 with 5.61 million and a 2.0 rating, up a  tenth from previous week's series low. NBC started it off with a two-hour The Voice and did a second place 10.03 million and a 3.7 18-49 rating, which was down three tenths from previous week for a season low. It has certainly fallen a lot since February. Still good, but NBC should have placed it on another night for mass ratings instead of going against another reality juggernaut. Then at 10pm week eleven of critical darling Smash was next doing 5.95 million and a 1.9 18-49 rating, which was down a tenth from previous week and another series low. It's coming back for a second season anyway, but the show is pricy, so it needs to do better. The CW aired an all-new Gossip Girl and did just 1.06  and 0.6 18-49 rating, up a tenth from previous week's pathetic ratings. A new Hart of Dixie followed with 1.37 million and a 0.6 rating, up a tenth from previous week.

On Tuesday, it was close for first place with all four networks close to each other again with NBC actually with the edge. First on CBS, NCIS at 8 started it off with a new episode doing 18.08 million and a 3.1 18-49 rating, on par with previous week's season low. Skews old and spring blues for even the top shows. Then a repeat of NCIS: Los Angeles at 9pm did 11.17 million and a 2.0 18-49 rating, strange it was a repeat since its lead-in was new but I guess with a two-episode season finale next month, that's the reason why. At 10pm, a repeat of Unforgettable did 8.19 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating. ABC aired a new Last Man Standing doing 6.51 million and a 1.6 18-49 rating, down two tenths from previous week and a series low. A repeat airs this week with Kim Kardashian. A new Cougar Town did 4.45 million and a 1.4 18-49 rating, down a tenth week-to-week, which could be better and hoping it would do better. At 9pm, the live Dancing with the Stars: The Results did 14.17 million and a 2.5 18-49 rating, up two tenths from previous week's low for a Results low, as we said goodbye to Gavin DeGraw. Next at 10pm, was the return of Private Practice on a new night doing 6.53 million and a 1.7 18-49 rating, lower than previous week's Body of Proof season finale but at least it skewed younger. I think both shows will be back. Fox aired a new Glee doing 6.23 million and a 2.4 18-49 rating, down three tenths from previous week for a new low. How the mighty have fallen this season. New Girl was new at 9 too and did 5.22 million and a 2.7 18-49 rating, down a tenth from previous week. At 9:30pm Raising Hope had its season finale and did just 3.79 million and a 1.8 18-49 rating, on par with previous week. NBC was next with The Biggest Loser cut to the 8pm hour only doing 6.96 million and a 2.3 18-49 rating, which was up two tenths from previous week. At 9, NBC aired the live The Voice results show doing 8.86 million and a 3.3 18-49 rating, down two tenths from previous week. At 10pm, NBC's new reality series Fashion Star did just 4.46 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating, down three tenths from previous week. This show is not cutting it after a big lead-in. The CW was a repeat with 90210 doing 680,000 viewers and a 0.3 18-49 rating, on par week-to-week. Then at 9pm, Ringer was new and did 1.2 million and a 0.5 18-49 rating, up a tenth week-to-week. I still don't think it will return.

Wednesday it was Fox with the win another two-hour Idol leading the way of course doubling second place ABC. First, CBS started the night off with a new Survivor: One World doing 9.69 million and a 2.8 18-49 rating, which was up a tenth from previous week's series low. Then at 9pm, a repeat of Criminal Minds did 7.4 million and a 1.7 18-49 rating. And at 10pm a repeat of CSI did 6.73 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating. ABC was almost all-new for its Laugh On comedy block, as a repeat of The Middle started it off doing 4.6 million and a 1.3 18-49 rating. Suburgatory followed with a new episode at 8:30pm doing 5.69 million and a 2.0 18-49 rating, only down a tenth from previous week even when its lead-in was a repeat. Not bad. The mega hit Modern Family was next at 9pm with a new episode and it did 10.21 million and 4.1 18-49 rating, which was down a tenth from previous week for a season low but still impressive. At 9:30pm, week two of the hilarious Don't Trust the B---- In Apartment 23 did a solid 6.43 million and a 2.6 18-49 rating, down just three tenths from previous week. Good sign. At 10pm the addicting Revenge returned to 7.7 million and a 2.3 18-49 rating, on par with its last new airing about six weeks ago. Not bad. Fox aired American Idol from 8-10pm doing 16.89 million and a 4.8 18-49 rating, down two tenths from previous week and still good for #1 for the week again. Take that again The Voice, says Fox. NBC opened the night with a new Betty White's Off Their Rockers doing 5.98 million but just a 1.6 18-49 rating, on par with previous week despite ABC a repeat in this slot. Episode three of new comedy Best Friends Forever followed with only 2.83 million and a 0.8 18-49 rating, down a tenth from previous week for another low. Not good, and perhaps NBC will drop it soon? But it gets worse for NBC, at 9pm, a new Rock Center with Brian Williams at 9pm did only 2.55 million and a 0.6 18-49, but actually up a tenth from previous week's low. And at 10pm, a new Law & Order: SVU got hurt as a result and did 5.95 million and a 1.6 18-49 rating, down a tenth from previous week for another series low. The CW had a repeat of America's Next Top Model start it off at 8pm doing 930,000 viewers and a 0.4 18-49 rating. A new America's Next Top Model followed at 9 and did 1.31 million and a 0.6 18-49 rating, tying NBC again in the hour and up a tenth from previous week.

Thursday it was Fox again for the win, with CBS in mostly repeat mode. Starting with ABC, they opened the night with week six of Missing doing 7.23 million and a 1.4 18-49 rating, on par with previous week. Total viewers is still good (and up from previous week) but the 18-49 needs to be better. Perhaps a good Friday destination in the fall, if it were to come back? At 9pm, a new Grey's Anatomy aired doing 9.82 million and a 3.3 18-49 rating, up four tenths from previous week. Awesome episode, too!  At 10pm, Private Practice is now moving to Tuesdays starting Tuesday, as now Scandal airs in this slot and week three did 7.21 million and a 2.0 18-49 rating, on par once again from previous week. Three weeks in and the same ratings. That's a good thing for a possibly renewal. CBS started with a repeat of The Big Bang Theory doing a great 9.29 million and a 2.5 18-49 rating, but down three tenths from previous week. A new Rules of Engagement did 7.57 million and a 2.2 18-49 rating, down a concerning five tenths from previous week. It was impressive previous week but this airing was down. I guess since it was not sandwiched between comedies this time. A repeat of Person of Interest aired next at 9 and did 8.81 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating, down three tenths from previous week when its repeat was at 10. The Mentalist was next at 10 and a repeat did 8.24 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating. Rumors are flying that it will be on the move next season. We shall see. Fox aired American Idol at 8 doing 14.99 million and a 4.0 18-49 rating, down three tenths from previous week. Still good enough for #1 for the night despite massive year to year drops. Fox aired a new episode of Touch at 9 doing 7.32 million and a 2.1 18-49 rating, which was down two tenths from previous week. It has fallen a lot, so that's not a good sign.  NBC was all-new with a new Community up first doing 2.77 million and a 1.3 18-49 rating, which was down a tenth from previous week and ties its series low. I still think it will return though for one last season, but it still sucks in the ratings. At 8:30pm, 30 Rock was new at 8:30pm and did 3.06 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating, up a tenth from previous week. As I keep saying, time to end it after six seasons especially if they decide to bring back low rated shows like Community and Parks. A new The Office was next and did just 4.35 million and a 2.2 18-49 rating, on par with previous week and ties its series low. I called low 2's, didn't I? NBC needs a comedy anchor badly now. Matthew Perry to the rescue next fall, as his pilot was picked-up to a series order already. At 9:30pm Parks & Recreation returned and did just 3.46 million and a 1.7 18-49 rating. At 10pm, week eight of Awake is not awake in the ratings as it did 2.8 million and a 0.9 18-49 rating, on par week-to-week's series low. Another series that won't be back, I think. The CW's big gun Vampire Diaries was new and did 2.21 million and a 1.0 18-49 rating. That seems low for this show. The CW can't catch a break. Then at 9pm, drama The Secret Circle was new too and did 1.14 million and a 0.5 18-49 rating, not good.

Now, final numbers for Friday and Saturday are not available, but ABC and NBC tied on Friday in a half repeat night. ABC was #1 for a REPEAT of Shark Tank at 8pm as Undercover Boss was preempted for comedy repeats, which did not do well. At 9pm What Would You Do? did #1 for ABC tying NBC's Grimm for the hour, as CSI: NY was a repeat. CBS' Blue Bloods was also a repeat, so NBC's Dateline sneaked pass ABC's 20/20 for #1 at 10. Fox's Fringe was low at 9pm but up a bit.
Saturday numbers have Fox and ABC tying for the night. ABC was lead by a Special Edition of 20/20 while Fox had a two-hour AMW special, which both beat NBC's all-new Escape Routes and The Firm.

Tonight ABC's line-up is AFV, Once Upon a Time, Titanic, and Hallmark Hall of Fame movie. AFV is a repeat but Once Upon a Time is back and all-new and will win the night. ABC won't have enough for a first place win though since 9-11pm is preempted for a movie. NBC has Dateline at 7, with Celebrity Apprentice from 9-11pm, and Harry's Law leading in. Maybe a second or third place finish. CBS has new airings of 60 Minutes then Amazing Race, The Good Wife and week two of low rated NYC 22. A fourth place finish I think. Fox preempts Animation Domination but they have the Fox 25th Anniversary Celebration that should be enough for a win tonight.

As for the week (week 31), Fox will likely win the week in 18-49 easily. And they could win HH/viewers, too, especially if tonight is big. ABC will be second in 18-49, while ABC and CBS will battle for second in HH/viewers. CBS likely will beat NBC in 18-49 for third. NBC will be fourth for sure in HH/viewers. As for the coming week, week 32, can you believe May sweeps starts Thursday? The season is now four weeks away from being over--yikes!  Fastest season I have ever seen!

Week 31 How the Sitcoms Did

Last Sunday Sitcoms (counts for Week 30 -- April 9-15)
  • The Simpsons (Fox) 2 airings - A new airing at 8pm did 4.96 million and a 2.3 18-49 rating. A repeat at 7pm earlier in the night did 2.39 million and a 1.1 18-49 rating, up three tenths from previous week.
  • The Cleveland Show (Fox) - A new episode at a special time of 9:30pm did 4.34 million and a 2.1 18-49 rating, which is OK and could be better. A repeat in its normal time of 7:30pm did 2.72 million and a 1.2 18-49 rating, but that was up three tenths from previous week's repeat.
  • Bob's Burgers (Fox) - A new episode at 8:30pm did 3.9 million and a 1.9 18-49 rating, clearly the weak link in the block.
  • Family Guy (Fox) - A repeat at 9 did 4.55 million and a 2.2 18-49 rating, up four tenths from previous week's repeat.
  • American Dad! (Fox) - preempted.
Monday Sitcoms
  • How I Met Your Mother (CBS) - 7.24 million and a 3.1 18-49 rating is a season low and down four tenths from previous week's season low. Concerning, but it is spring. I wish the season was Sept-March and then an episode or two in May sweep, like it used to be years ago.
  • 2 Broke Girls (CBS) - A new showing did 8.52 million and a 3.4 18-49 rating, for another series low. Blame spring.
  • Two and a Half Men (CBS) - A new episode of this sitcom did 11.22 million and a 3.8 18-49 rating, the best of the block and bouncing back a bit from previous week's lows.
  • Mike & Molly (CBS) - 9.54 million and a 3.1 18-49 rating is pretty good but down a tenth from previous week.
Tuesday Sitcoms
  • Last Man Standing (ABC) - A new episode did 6.51 million and a 1.6 18-49 rating, a series low and the spring blues continues on the networks.
  • Cougar Town (ABC) - A new episode unfortunately didn't do that well with 4.45 million and a 1.4 18-49 rating, down a tenth from previous week. This really needs to be airing on Wednesdays.
  • New Girl (Fox) - A new episode at 9pm did 5.22 million and a 2.7 rating, down a tenth from previous week. It's not a mass appeal show, but 18-49 is decent enough.
  • Raising Hope (Fox) - The season finale at 9:30 did just 3.79 million and a 1.8 rating, on par with the previous week. It's coming back next season anyway.
Wednesday Sitcoms
  • The Middle (ABC) - A repeat did 4.6 million and a 1.3 18-rating. It returns with new episodes starting May 2.
  • Suburgatory (ABC) - A new showing did 5.69 million and a 2.0 rating, off only a tenth from the previous week, as its lead-in was not new this time. Good sign.
  • Best Friends Forever (NBC) - The third episode did just 2.83 million and a very low 0.8 18-49 rating for another low. When will it be pulled?
  • Modern Family (ABC) - A new episode of this mega hit did 10.21 million and a 4.1 18-49 rating, down a tenth from previous week though and a season low. But still the tops for scripted TV again.
  • Don't Trust the B---- In Apartment 23 (ABC) - The second episode did 6.43 million and a 2.6 18-49 rating, down just three tenths from previous week. Solid! I think it will be back next season. Make sure you keep watching, episode three is this week and the following week is the one we saw for review ("The Wedding") and it is outstanding!
Thursday Sitcoms
  • The Big Bang Theory (CBS) - A repeat at 8 did 9.20 million and a 2.5 18-49 rating, which is excellent for a repeat but down three tenths from previous week.
  • Rules of Engagement (CBS) - A new episode did 7.57 million and a 2.2 18-49 rating, which is down a half a point from previous week. It did much better previous week.
  • Community (NBC) - A new episode did only 2.77 million and a 1.3 18-49 rating, down a tenth from previous week as it tied its series low.
  • 30 Rock (NBC) - A new episode did 3.06 million and a 1.5 18-49 rating, up a tenth from previous week actually.
  • The Office (NBC) - A new episode did only 4.35 million and a 2.2 18-49 rating, tying its series low from previous week. Eeck, calling back Steve Carell?
  • Parks and Recreation (NBC) - The finale did just 3.46 million and a 1.7 18-49 rating, on par with what it was doing at 8:30 a few weeks back. Better than Up All Night at least.
Friday Sitcoms
  • Mike & Molly (CBS) - A repeat on a Friday didn't do well with a prelim 4.25 million and a prelim 0.9 18-49 rating.
  • Rules of Engagement (CBS) - A repeat of this at 8:30pm on a Friday did only a prelim 3.55 million and a prelim 0.8 18-49 rating.
Saturday Sitcoms
  • None
Airing tonight (Sunday) are just repeats on Fox of the Married...with Children pilot from 1987 and a repeat of The Simpsons from 1987, as Fox celebrates its 25th anniversary tonight from 8-10pm, preempting the animated comedies.

Summing it up. Airings of Modern Family, Two and a Half Men, 2 Broke Girls, How I Met Your Mother, Mike & Molly, The Big Bang Theory, Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23, New Girl were impressive for the week. Everything else was OK (such as Last Man Standing, Rules of Engagement) or just plain old terrible (such as Best Friends Forever, Community).

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Digital Digest: S.W.A.T. - The Final Season DVD Review


Welcome to Digital Digest, your weekly source for all things digital when it comes to your favorite sitcoms... and other TV genres, of course! We've got all of your news and a preview of next week's releases, as usual, and this week, we've got a review of S.W.A.T. - The Final Season, which comes to DVD on May 22 (yes, we're a month early on this review, since the studio did a great job of getting it to us early) from Shout! Factory. Let's get going!


DIGITAL NEWS

Big news was announced this week regarding The Carol Burnett Show. The series has been released in a "best of" format and sold through infomercials over the past decade or so, but now, Time Life is really stepping up the game with a few releases of the series, ranging from a single disc "best of" release to a TWENTY disc set containing fifty complete episodes, along with plenty of bonus features. Full details aren't known yet, but releases will include a single disc release, a two disc release, a six disc set, and of course, the twenty disc set. And, unlike many Time-Life releases, this set will actually be available in stores. The big date for all of these releases is September 25, and you can read more about it all here.

Last week, we mentioned that Sony's MOD release of Benson - The Complete Second Season, which was scheduled to be released a few weeks ago, had shipped with some major defects and the item was subsequently removed from various websites. This week, the listing on amazon.com is showing a new release date of May 1, which leads us to believe that a corrected version of the release will begin shipping on that date. While we don't know this for certain, we'll certainly update you when we know for sure.

Finally, CBS has announced another release of the series Father Dowling Mysteries, with Father Dowling Mysteries - The Second Season. The three disc set, to be released on July 10, will contain all thirteen episodes of the second season of the series.


UPCOMING WEEK PREVIEW

Tuesday (April 24) is a great day for fans of black and white series, with releases of two vintage sitcoms which were short-lived (but full of laughs), with Shanachie's release of Car 54, Where Are You? - The Complete Second Season and TV Time Machine's release of I'm Dickens... He's Fenster - Volume One. You can read our review of Car 54, Where Are You? here, and I'm Dickens... He's Fenster is actually just the wide retail release of the set (it has been available from the series official website for several months), and you can read our original review of that set here.


BLOG FEATURE REVIEW


Blog DVD Review: S.W.A.T. - The Final Season (Shout! Factory, $44.99)
by skees53

Aaron Spelling was known for bringing many series to television over the years, and in the '70s, he seemed to hit his stride with police dramas. The most well-known of those, of course, was Charlie's Angels, but he also introduced series such as Starsky & Hutch and The Rookies. And from The Rookies came a spinoff, one which only lasted for two seasons, but left a legacy as well: S.W.A.T. The series, which starred Steve Forrest as Lt. Dan "Hondo" Harrelson, Robert Urich as Officer Jim Street, Roddy Perry as Sgt. "Deacon" Key, Mark Shera as Officer Dominic Luca, and James Coleman as Officer T.J. McCabe, follows a fictitious version of the real Los Angeles Police Department's Special Weapons and Tactics team as they go into the most dangerous situations that the ordinary police officers just can't handle with their training. In each and every episode, the team gets into dangerous situations where you never know if they're going to make it out alive... well, except that you know that it is a TV series, and that they can't just kill off characters every week.

There is likely going to be a bit of confusion about this release and even debate over whether this is the "complete" second season. Before I go any further, I should say that Shout! Factory didn't exactly do anything wrong, necessarily, with this set. They included all 24 of the episodes which were produced for the second season of the series, while Columbia Tristar (now going by their parent company name of Sony) included all 13 of the episodes which were produced for the first season of the series on their release several years ago. But online episode guides will clearly indicate that there were actually twenty five episodes aired in the second season. So where did the other one go? Well, the episode "Time Bomb," which AIRED during the second season, was actually produced during the FIRST season... and since Columbia Tristar (at that time, at least) had a tendency to release everything in production order. So to be clear, this set DOES complete the series, if you purchase the first season as released by Columbia Tristar (and if you are a fan, I'd strongly recommend that you do so as soon as possible, as nearly all releases from Sony have been going out of print lately).

The season begins with "Deadly Tide," a double-length episode where jewel thieves go underwater while committing their crimes. The team is facing a threatening force when they find a dead officer with the threatening words pinned to his chest in "Kill S.W.A.T." The team has to help in a dangerous eviction (yes, eviction) in "Vendetta." A former US Senator may have sinister motives when he befriends an officer in "Criss Cross." In "Vigilante," a radio repairman tunes into the team's radio frequencies, and arrives on the scene before they can... allowing him to effectively seek his own justice for his wife's murder. In "Ordeal," taking a convict to prison becomes very dangerous for Harrelson. The team is assigned to protect a prosecutor in "The Swinger."

The team is after an arsonist posing as a firefighter in "Murder By Fire." In "Silent Night, Deadly Night," what begins as an ordinary Christmas party for children in the hospital quickly turns into a situation where a millionaire's bodyguard is murdered in the same hospital. Some girls who decide to stay at school over the weekend (in part because of Luca) find themselves in grave danger when thieves plan to use the school (which they anticipated being empty) as an entry point to a bank vault in "Lessons in Fear." Chinatown criminals are being given S.W.A.T. secrets after a new lieutenant joins Harrelson in "The Chinese Connection." A group of militants threaten to blow up a radio station if their demands aren't met in "Any Second Now." In "Soldier on the Hill," Vietnam flashbacks cause serious problems for a veteran when he has to be disarmed by the team. The series ends with "Officer Luca, You're Dead," where Luca is charged with manslaughter after he is forced to kill a man who was holding his own wife hostage at gunpoint.

The episodes appear to be unedited based upon their runtimes. Most of the episodes have a Columbia Pictures Television logo from the early '90s on them, so I'm guessing that these were prints made for a network which aired it at that time (which I'm not sure off top of my head which network was airing the series at the time, and although I'm sure some fans would know, I'm not going to make a guess here). Runtimes are as follows:

Disc 1:
1. "Deadly Tide" (1:36:35)
2. "Kill S.W.A.T." (49:35)
3. "Dealers in Death" (50:16)

Disc 2:
4. "Vendetta" (50:01)
5. "Criss Cross" (50:03)
6. "Vigilante" (50:09)
7. "Courthouse" (50:04)

Disc 3:
8. "Ordeal" (49:45)
9. "Strike Force" (50:09)
10. "The Swinger" (49:52)
11. "Terror Ship" (49:59)

Disc 4:
12. "Murder by Fire" (49:58)
13. "Silent Night, Deadly Night" (50:09)
14. "The Running Mad" (1:38:57)

Disc 5:
15. "Lessons in Fear" (49:45)
16. "Deadly Weapons" (50:05)
17. "The Chinese Connection" (50:05)
18. "Dragons and Owls" (50:09)

Disc 6:
19. "Any Second Now" (50:09)
20. "Soldier on the Hill" (50:00)
21. "Dangerous Memories" (50:03)
22. "Officer Luca, You're Dead" (50:06)

The DVDs are packaged in a Viva case with very nice packaging artwork. I don't know what it is about the packaging artwork on this set, but it is one of the nicest sets I've ever seen in regards to packaging. On the cover, we have a cast photo, with a grayish blue background. Shout! Factory even followed the tradition of Sony's release of the first season and listed the names of all of the stars underneath the series title. On the back, there is a very short description of the season, along with a few episode snapshots. Inside the case, you'll find the discs (six of them), which have very basic artwork with just the series logo. Each disc contains four episodes (or in some cases, one double-length episode and two regular length episodes). Episode titles are printed inside the case, but unfortunately, there are no descriptions or airdates.

The menus on this set are probably the most elegant and appropriate menus that I've ever really seen on a DVD set. Much like the packaging artwork, the menus feature a cast photo (actually the same one seen on the cover art), with several flashing lights and a floating "target" on the screen, with options of Play All and Episodes. Selecting Episodes takes you to a menu where some of the series incidental music plays, and all of the episodes are typed on a crinkled note, which actually moves around the screen JUST a little bit (not enough to make the menus confusing to navigate). There are also some red, white, and blue lights which move around the screen like a flashlight here... it is a very cool effect. Once you select an episode, it plays immediately, with chapters placed throughout the episode at all of the appropriate places.

The video and audio quality of the episodes on the set is decent, but I don't think anybody will be overly impressed. The colors are kind of dull, and there is some grain and debris... in essence, it looks like most of the '70s Aaron Spelling police dramas. The audio seems pretty decent, with levels remaining consistent throughout the episodes. The episodes are not closed-captioned, unfortunately.

There are no special features on this set at all, which is unfortunate because the first season didn't have any other. But at least we got the series completed on DVD... finally.

I think this series has won the award for the longest wait between seasons for ANY TV series. The first season was released in June 2003... NINE YEARS AGO... to tie in with the Samuel L. Jackson movie (which many people have long since forgotten even existed) released at that time. If fans were to ever give up hope of a series being continued, this would have been the one... but fortunately that was proven to be incorrect, and Shout! Factory has come through to give us the remainder of the series. It is too bad that this show didn't go beyond two seasons, but at least it didn't get a chance to really grow old. Fans of the series are certain to enjoy this, though. Fans of similar police dramas of the same era may or may not necessarily be able to get into this series, as it isn't as light-hearted as other ones (including some of Spelling's other ones) of the era, but nonetheless, it is still a great series to watch.

(4/5 stars)

To purchase this DVD, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
Amazon.com

Related links:
SitcomsOnline.com DVD Reviews Page
S.W.A.T on TV.com


CLICK OF THE WEEK

All Things Carol Burnett (www.carolburnettfan.com) - The big news from this week was, of course, the announcement of several releases of Carol Burnett DVDs from Time Life. The news of these releases has been floating all over the internet, but one website that many people seem to be referring back to, including in the article from TVShowsOnDVD.com which we linked to earlier, is All Things Carol Burnett. It isn't an official website for the star, but it not only comes close to that, but in fact exceeds what you'd normally expect from an official website. On this website, you'll find a complete biography of Burnett, plenty of photos, and more. If you're looking to meet Burnett, you'll find out where you can meet her here... all of her appearances are listed, and it is updated frequently. The site also manages to get every little piece of news imaginable about the star. And finally, there is a connected website dedicate solely to the series itself. While the site is not necessarily a "content haven" as many other sites are, it is the level of dedication, and how well it manages to keep up with the star, which makes this our Click of the Week.


That's it for this week. Until next time, keep it digital!
Sitcoms Airing Tonight (Thursday, April 24)

The Big Bang Theory - "The Anything Can Happen Recurrence" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT)
When Sheldon tries to be spontaneous, it leads to unexpected friction between Penny, Amy and Bernadette. Meanwhile, Raj seeks Howard’s help in preparing for a date with Emily.

The Millers - "Tomlandia" (CBS, 8:30PM ET/PT)
When Nathan pitches a children’s show to his boss, Ed Dolan, based on Tom’s imaginary comic book, Tom has an adverse reaction to the tweaks made to his cherished world. Jeffrey Tambor returns as Ed Dolan, Nathan’s boss.

Two and a Half Men - "Lotta Delis in Little Armenia" (CBS, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Alan stumbles upon an opportunity to make money. Meanwhile, Walden has to address his co-dependency issues.

Bad Teacher - "Pilot" (CBS, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Former trophy wife Meredith Davis seeks a return to a life of leisure and luxury by posing as a teacher at an upscale elementary school to meet the students’ rich, single fathers and land one to marry. However, her plan hits a major snag and she faces exposure when her unconventional – and mostly unsuitable – teaching methods raise the suspicions of a fellow faculty member. Read our review.

Surviving Jack - "Something to Talk About" (Fox, 9:30PM ET/PT)
During an evening of inopportune timing, Frankie introduces his new girlfriend, Heather (guest star Lili Reinhart), to Joanne, who has just gotten her tubes tied and is still on pain medication. Instead of taking care of Joanne post-surgery, Jack has his hands full policing Frankie and Rachel. Meanwhile, George and Mikey try to retrieve a porn video they disguised in a "Casablanca" VHS case that has been placed into the wrong hands at the Dunlevy house.

Parks and Recreation - "Moving Up" (NBC, 8:00-9:00PM ET/PT)
Leslie (Amy Poehler), Ben (Adam Scott), and Andy (Chris Pratt) head to San Francisco for a National Parks Conference. Tom (Aziz Ansari) opens his restaurant, Ron (Nick Offerman) has another run-in with his ex-wife Tammy 2 (Special Guest Megan Mullally), Andy lives a rock and roll fantasy, and Leslie makes a huge decision about her future.

Saint George - "Hot Blooded" (FX, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Alma sets George up on a date with a Latina doctor, and George discovers the woman is crazy.

Anger Management - "Charlie Spends the Night with Lacey" (FX, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Charlie spends the night with Lacey to keep her from killing her ex-boyfriend.

Sirens - "There's No "I" in Ice Cream" (USA Network, 10:00PM ET/PT)
The crew remembers a day that followed the full spectrum of excitement; Johnny tries to find out who ate the last doughnut.

Instant Mom
- "Distant Mom" (Nickelodeon, 8:00PM ET/PT)
The kids return from a vacation to Mozambique with their mom, Kim, only to learn the trip was actually a job interview at the embassy. They soon find out they are moving to Africa and away from Stephanie and Charlie. Guest Star: Holly Robinson Peete.

See Dad Run - "See Dad Run Into Marcus' Nephew" (Nickelodeon, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Emily takes Amy's car to a party with Marcus' nephew after she was forbidden from driving at night, and must race back to beat David home. Joe wants more responsibility so asks to babysit Janie. Guest Star: Larramie "Doc" Shaw.

The Rickey Smiley Show - "Roll Pounce" (TV One, 10:00PM ET/PT)
The annual skate off has a surprise entry.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of April 21) (All times Eastern unless noted)

Thursday, April 24

  • Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother/Doogie Howser, M.D.) - Catch Neil on The Late Show with David Letterman at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Sarah Hyland (Modern Family) - Sarah appears on The Late Show with David Letterman at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Julie Bowen (Modern Family) - Jim is a guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • James Van Der Beek (Friends with Lives/Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23) - James stops by The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC. He will also be on Big Morning Buzz Live on VH1 at 10am.
  • Zoe Lister-Jones (Friends with Better Lives/Whitney) - Zoe visits The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Tom Lennon (Sean Saves the World/Reno 911!) - Tom is a guest on @midnight at midnight on Comedy Central.
  • Mary McCormack (Welcome to the Family) - Mary guest co-hosts Chelsea Lately on E! at 11pm.
  • Mario Lopez (Saved by the Bell) - Mario appears on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Brandy Norwood (The Game/Moesha) - Tune in to see Brandy on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • The Cast of Bad Teacher - Sara Gilbert, Ari Graynor, David Alan Grier and Ryan Hansen are guests on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Candace Cameron-Bure (Full House) - Candace guest co-hosts The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Molly Ephraim (Last Man Standing) - Molly shares behind-the-scenes stories from her show on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Max Greenfield (New Girl/Modern Men) - Max shares his passion for teaching kids the love of reading and the value of giving back on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • William Shatner ($#*! My Dad Says) - William chats and performs on The Queen Latifah Show at 12am on BET or on your local stations.
  • Timothy Simons (Veep) - Timothy will be on HuffPost Live.
  • Mayim Bialik (The Big Bang Theory/Blossom) - Mayim is a guest on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.
  • Christine Lakin Step by Step) - Christine will be on Big Morning Buzz Live on VH1 at 10am all this week.
  • B.J. Novak (The Office) - B.J. is a guest on NBC's Today between 7-9am.
  • Jamie Foxx (The Jamie Foxx Show and Sally Field (Gidget/The Flying Nun) - Jamie, Sally and the rest of the cast The Amazing Spider-Man 2 will be on ABC's Good Morning America between 7-9am.