Wednesday, April 09, 2014

The CW Schedules Sitcom This Summer from Online World; NBC's Comedy Playground Initiative: You Decide The Next Sitcom

Backpackers

A digital sitcom goes to TV. In a first for the network's digital studio, CW Seed, the original digital series Backpackers will make the jump from online-only to the broadcast network, with brand new original episodes of Backpackers set to premiere on The CW Television Network this summer. Backpackers will premiere with ten original half-hour episodes on The CW Network later this summer, with a date and time to be announced at a later date. The first four episodes contain material previously released as digital episodes on CW Seed; the final six wholly original episodes will be specifically written and produced for The CW Network.

In Backpackers, best friends Ryan (Noah Reid) and Brandon (Dillon Casey, Nikita) race across Europe in search of Ryan's missing bride-to-be, while also struggling with the eternal twenty-something question of what to do with their lives. When Ryan's lost journal suddenly gets posted online and explodes across the internet, Ryan's life dream of becoming a published author becomes real - if only he can track down the jerk who stole the journal. With Brandon's slacker brother Andrew (Giacomo Gianniotti, Reign) in tow, they travel from Thailand to Canada in search of the missing journal, while also seeking the ultimate answers to life, love and partying. Backpackers is produced by Shaftesbury U.S. and Smokebomb Entertainment, Shaftesbury's award-winning digital media arm, in association with The CW Television Network. Developed for television and produced by Jay Bennett, Backpackers is executive produced by Maggie Murphy, Christina Jennings, Scott Garvie and Tom Mazza.


NBC Comedy Playground

In an unprecedented effort to discover fresh comedic voices, NBC Entertainment President Jennifer Salke announced "NBC Comedy Playground," a grassroots initiative designed to invest in new cutting-edge comedy through a groundbreaking national campaign that offers aspiring comedy writers from across the country the opportunity to take their concepts from pitch to broadcast. An all-star comedy Advisory Board comprised of A-list talent, including Aziz Ansari, Jason Bateman, Robert Carlock, Sean Hayes, Mindy Kaling, Jason Katims, Josh Lieb, Eva Longoria, Adam McKay, Seth Meyers, Todd Milliner, Will Packer, Amy Poehler, Craig Robinson, Maya Rudolph, Mike Schur, Adam Scott and Mike Shoemaker will help the network ultimately select two winners to create original shows intended for telecast during summer 2015 on NBC. Through "NBC Comedy Playground," the network aims to uncover additional sources of talent and open the door for aspiring comedy writers - reaching beyond the traditional talent labs of film schools and NY/LA comedy clubs -- in a grassroots effort to find and nurture new creative voices and expand and enrich the traditional television development model.

Beginning May 1, aspiring comedy writers are asked to submit their ideas to be considered for both digital and network comedy shows. Entrants may submit up to two video samples (5-10 minutes each) of their pre-existing work, along with up to two video pitches (2-5 minutes per pitch), each describing a unique, original show idea, to www.nbccomedyplayground.com. The Official Rules, including all eligibility requirements, are available at www.nbccomedyplayground.com. Up to 10 finalists will be chosen by the NBC Selection Panel, and NBC will provide funding for each finalist to produce a full pilot presentation based on his/her original pitch. Two winners will be selected by the all-star comedy Advisory Board, in consultation with NBC. Each of the winners will have their show broadcast on NBC. The remaining finalist presentations that aren't selected will be posted to the "NBC Comedy Playground" website where the public will vote for their favorites - and the one receiving the most votes will then be developed as a digital show.


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Tuesday, June 19

The Middle - "Hecks vs. Glossners: The Final Battle" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
It’s the Orson showdown of the century when the Hecks – along with the Donahues and Bill Norwood – wage a war against the Glossners after they steal Sue’s car.

The Middle - "Thank You for Not Kissing" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
After Dr. Fulton (Dave Foley) calls Frankie and Mike into his office to inform them that Brick and Cindy have been making out all over school, Frankie tasks Mike into having a talk with his son to discuss dating etiquette. Meanwhile, Sue attempts to work up the gumption to give Sean the snow globe and confess how much she likes him; and after discovering a box full of unfinished thank you notes for gifts received over the years, Frankie orders Axl to finish and mail them all out.

black-ish - "Juneteenth" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
The Johnsons go to Jack and Diane’s school play about Columbus Day, and Dre is dismayed by the historically inaccurate way that the holiday is portrayed. He feels like there aren’t enough black holidays, so he enlists Aloe Blacc at work to help him create a catchy song to raise awareness for a holiday worth celebrating, Juneteenth.

black-ish - "Dog Eat Dog World" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
The family is divided over the idea of getting a dog after Dre and Bow promise Jack they can get one after he gets Straight A’s – and he does! Meanwhile, Bow’s brother Johan is in town and he doesn’t get the warm welcome he expects from Ruby.

Younger - "The End of the Tour" (TV Land, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Liza faces complications on the Marriage Vacation book tour. Kelsey and Zane head to D.C. to court a speechwriter’s prospective memoir.

Teachers - "Of Lice and Men" (TV Land, 10:34PM ET/PT)
Ms. Bennigan wrestles with how far she’s willing to go sexually with Hot Dad, while Ms. Cannon learns how to drive in the midst of an apocalyptic lice outbreak at Fillmore.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of June 18)

Tuesday, June 19

  • Martin Short (Mulaney/The Martin Short Show) - Catch Martin on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Whoopi Goldberg (Whoopi/Bagdad Cafe) - Whoopi is a guest on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Michael Ian Black (The Jim Gaffigan Show/Ed) - Michael stops by Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Tracy Morgan (The Last O.G./30 Rock/The Tracy Morgan Show) - Michael visits LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
  • Sarah Jessica Parker (Divorce/Sex and the City/Square Pegs) - Sarah appears on LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
  • Jennifer Lawrence (The Bill Engvall Show) - The Ellen DeGeneres Show has the best moments from the biggest stars in Season 15, so check your local listings.
  • Debra Messing (Will & Grace/Ned & Stacey) - Debra is a guest on a repeat of Harry, so check your local listings.
  • Marlon Wayans (Marlon/The Wayans Bros.) - Marlon drops by Access Live, so check your local listings.
  • Brian Tyree Henry (Atlanta) - Brian is a guest on Access Live, so check your local listings.
  • BD Wong (All-American Girl) - BD talks about the off-Broadway production of The Great Leap on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (June)

Living Single - The Complete Fifth Season Step by Step - The Complete First Season Will & Grace (The Revival) - Season One Perfect Strangers - The Complete Fourth Season Last Man Standing - The Complete Sixth Season

06/05 - Living Single - The Complete Fifth Season
06/05 - New Girl - The Complete Sixth Season
06/05 - South Park - The Complete Twenty-First Season (Blu-ray)
06/12 - Fresh Off the Boat - The Complete Fourth Season
06/12 - Life in Pieces - The Complete Third Season
06/12 - The Office - The Complete Series
06/12 - Speechless - The Complete First Season
06/12 - Speechless - The Complete Second Season
06/12 - Step by Step - The Complete First Season
06/12 - Will & Grace (The Revival) - Season One (Blu-ray)
06/19 - Perfect Strangers - The Complete Fourth Season
06/26 - Last Man Standing - The Complete Fifth Season
06/26 - Last Man Standing - The Complete Sixth Season
06/26 - The Mick - The Complete First Season
06/26 - The Mick - The Complete Second Season
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest