Wednesday, October 05, 2011

IFC Acquires Malcolm in the Middle; NBC Cancels Playboy Club, Picks-Up Up All Night, Whitney

IFC has acquired another sitcom, this time it is the family comedy Malcolm in the Middle starring Frankie Muniz. The sitcom actually started last week (Sept. 26) and it airs weeknights back-to-back starting at 6pm and 11:30pm. The series also is airing Tuesday nights from 7-10pm. The deal is not exclusive as TeenNick has been airing the series weeknights 10-11pm and 4-5am and will continue to do so. The series also was on FX but they removed it a few months ago, as they lost rights. The comedy also stars critically acclaimed actors Jane Kaczmarek and Bryan Cranston, who has made it big on Breaking Bad.
Malcolm in the Middle joins other comedies on IFC such as Arrested Development and other series such as Freaks & Geeks, Mr. Show with Bob and David and Undeclared, which is being relegated to a few airings in early mornings. FC has announced the season two renewal of Portlandia, created by and starring Fred Armisen (SNL) and Carrie Brownstein (Sleater-Kinney). IFC has ordered 10 episodes of its original series Portlandia, up from season one's six episodes. Production began this summer with the debut scheduled for January 2012. And The Onion News Network returned last night for its second season airing Tuesday nights at 10pm after Malcolm in the Middle.
Created and executive produced by Emmy Award-winning writer Linwood Boomer, Malcolm in the Middle is an inventive half-hour series that is seen through the eyes of Malcolm, a regular kid trying to navigate his way through life despite the various obstacles thrown in his way--a complete misunderstanding of girls, an eclectic group of classmates and the constant burden of masterminding plans to get himself and his brothers either into or out of trouble.

The first cancelation of the new TV season is... NBC's The Playboy Club. After just three weeks, NBC has pulled the struggling drama from its schedule. It was more than likely determined after week two but NBC went ahead and aired episode three anyway and the ratings dropped again. NBC will now air repeats of Prime Suspect instead, which is struggling itself on Thursday nights. Repeats will air for three weeks (Oct. 10-24) in the Monday at 10pm timeslot, then starting Monday, Oct. 31 (which is the first Monday of November sweeps), NBC will launch a new news-magazine titled Rock Center with Brian Williams to be the replacement for at least three months (Oct. 31-Jan. 30). While that might be an improvement to Playboy Club's ratings, does NBC honestly believe it will do that well? Not sure what they are expecting here, but I don't think it will be that much.
Led by Brian Williams, the newsmagazine will feature Harry Smith, Kate Snow and other award-winning correspondents and anchors of NBC News, including Meredith Vieira, Dr. Nancy Snyderman, Richard Engel, Matt Lauer and Ann Curry. Broadcast live from the historic Studio 3B in Rockefeller Center, the weekly, hour-long newsmagazine will be built around the week’s most provocative events, compelling coverage, and newsmaker interviews. In this new venue, Williams and NBC's trusted global news division will take viewers deeper into the world's most talked-about stories -- and raise the curtain on stories begging to be told.

NBC has picked up the new comedies Up All Night and Whitney for the remainder of the 2011-12 season, which means at least 22 episodes, joining Fox's New Girl (which will air 24 episodes actually). Up All Night has aired three episodes so far, with the fourth one airing tonight. Despite the ratings dropping each week, it has performed decently for NBC. As for Whitney, the series has only aired twice and saw a decent size drop in week two, making this early pick-up a bit surprising. Nevertheless, Whitney airs episode three tomorrow night. The jury is still out on new comedy Free Agents, which airs tonight, possibly for the last time ever as it has done poorly from the get go.
On Up all Night, Christina Applegate (Samantha Who?) stars as Reagan Brinkley: loving wife, successful career woman, life of the party and, most recently, mom. Determined not to compromise her career or cool reputation to the clichés of motherhood, Reagan adjusts to life with a baby and returns to work with the support of her stay-at-home husband, Chris (Will Arnett, Arrested Development). As Reagan and Chris figure out their new life, self-doubt, sleep deprivation and the pressure of today's parenting protocols rattle their confidence. What's more, the endless needs of Reagan's boss, ambitious but vulnerable talk-show host Ava (Maya Rudolph, Saturday Night Live), threaten to throw Reagan off balance.
NBC's new multi-camera comedy Whitney is a look at modern-day love, which centers around Whitney (Whitney Cummings, Chelsea Lately) and Alex (Chris D'Elia, Glory Daze), a happily unmarried couple. Together for three years, the duo is in no rush to get hitched, which seems to get a mixed response from their friends.
I expect full season pick-ups in the next week or two for 2 Broke Girls, Revenge, Suburgatory, Ringer, Pan Am, and likely Unforgettable. The CW's Secret Circle and Hart of Dixie are iffy. Fox's Terra Nova is only producing 13 episodes due to cost, so if there is a pick-up, it will be for a second season for next year. And Fox's The X Factor will air through mid-December, as previously announced, so no pick-up is needed, unless it is for next fall. Joining Free Agents on the "got to be nervous list" are A Gifted Man, Charlie's Angels, How To Be A Gentleman, H8R, and Prime Suspect. Will some of these go the same way as Playboy Club? Still yet to premiere are ABC's Last Man Standing, Man Up!, Once Upon a Time, NBC's Grimm and Fox's I Hate My Teenage Daughter. I expect two of those to do somewhat well (Last Man Standing and Once Upon a Time) and the rest, well you can probably tell. Stay tuned!


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Tuesday, February 25

The Conners - "Bad Dads and Grads" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Dan starts to bond with his younger half-brother (guest star Noel Fisher), but he can’t get over the fact that their father paid for Ed Jr.’s college education, something he refused to do for Dan. Jackie hits it off with a fun married couple (guest stars and real-life husband and wife Clark Gregg and Jennifer Grey), so much so that they “invite” her into their relationship. Harris and Mark do not react well to the news that Darlene is trying to have a baby with Ben.

Bless This Mess - "Völsung and the Beef Boy" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
When faced with choosing between meat judging (his dad Beau’s preference) or playing music (his shared bond with Mike), Jacob realizes he must figure out what his passions are on his own. Meanwhile, Rio takes driving lessons from Kay, but their friendship hits a bump in the road when Kay learns that Rio has secretly been getting lessons from other townspeople.

mixed-ish - "Say Hello, Wave Goodbye" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
The Johnsons welcome an African American family that has just moved into their mostly white neighborhood. Santamonica doesn’t get along with the new neighbor’s daughter, until she gives Santamonica attitude. Meanwhile, Rainbow is excited to celebrate her one-month anniversary with Bryce, but he tells her some devastating news.

black-ish - "You Don't Know Jack" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Jack joins the robotics club and Dre worries it might be a detrimental failure for him after already being cut from the basketball team. Ruby embellishes a story for Diane’s school project.

Schitt's Creek - "The Presidential Suite" (Pop, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Johnny and Moira spend a night at the presidential suite in the new motel, while Alexis receives a surprise visitor.

Miracle Workers: Dark Ages - "Dark Ages: Holiday" (TBS, 10:30PM ET/PT)
Al and Prince Chauncley struggle to deal with their families over the holidays.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of February 24)

Tuesday, February 25

  • Nick Jonas (Jonas) - Catch Nick on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:35pm on NBC. He also talks about The Voice on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am.
  • Juliette Lewis (Camping/I Married Dora) - Juliette drops by Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC. She will also be on the BUILD Series at 3pm.
  • Adam Pally (Indebted/Making History/The Mindy Project/Happy Endings) - Adam visits The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS. He will also be on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Karen Gillan (Selfie) - Karen appears on A Little Late with Lilly Singh at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Tommy Davidson (Between Brothers) - Tommy is a guest on The Wendy Williams Show, so check your local listings.
  • Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Modern Family/The Class) - Jesse stops by The Kelly Clarkson Show, so check your local listings.
  • Cheryl Hines (Curb Your Enthusiasm/Son of Zorn/Suburgatory) - Cheryl appears on The Kelly Clarkson Show, so check your local listings.
  • Leslie Odom Jr. (Big Day) - Leslie is a guest on Access Live, so check your local listings.
  • Chris Spencer (Significant Others) - Chris appears on Access Live, so check your local listings.
  • Jason Ritter (The Class) - Jason talks about Frozen 2 on E!'s Daily Pop at 12pm.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (December/January/February)

Fuller House - The Complete Fourth Season My Three Sons - The Fifth Season - Volume One Martin - The Complete Series Step by Step - The Complete Sixth Season Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt - The Complete Series

12/03 - The Simpsons - The Nineteenth Season
12/03 - The Simpsons - Seasons 1-20: Limited Collector's Set
12/06 - 9JKL - The Complete Series
12/10 - Family Guy - Season Seventeen
12/17 - Atlanta - Season 2 - Robbin' Season
12/17 - Fuller House - The Complete Fourth Season
12/17 - Hogan's Heroes - The Complete Series (2019 Release)
12/17 - The Other Two - Season 1
01/02 - My Three Sons - The Fifth Season - Volume One
01/02 - My Three Sons - The Fifth Season - Volume Two
01/14 - Veep - The Final (Seventh) Season (Blu-ray)
01/14 - Veep - The Complete Series (DVD)
01/21 - Hangin' with Mr. Cooper - The Complete Third Season (WBShop.com)
01/21 - The Mindy Project - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
01/28 - Ballers - The Complete Fifth and Final Season
01/28 - Ballers - The Complete Series
01/28 - The Mindy Project - The Complete Series (DVD)
02/04 - Martin - The Complete Series
02/11 - Step by Step - The Complete Sixth Season (WBShop.com)
02/18 - Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


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