Friday, March 04, 2022

Fri-Yay: How Do You Define a Hit in 2022?; Full Cast Announced for Blockbuster Video Comedy Series; Remembering Farrah Forke of Wings

It's time for another edition of Fri-Yay! That means we will take a look back on some sitcom happenings in recent days or weeks or other fun sitcomy stuff. It's a sitcom lover's paradise! Happy Fri-Yay!

Abbott Elementary

by Vincent

This season, with a handful of unexpectedly popular shows on network television, I've been seeing a lot of articles touting ratings for new shows. For example, it often gets shared that Abbott Elementary is ABC's highest rated sitcom in years, outrating even the last few seasons of Modern Family after all platform data is in. The ratings that typically get shared include multiplatform delivery a month out (L+35/MP35 ratings) and seem to be the most common audience delivery used in network "fluff" pieces touting their shows' ratings. There are also a lot of articles quoting Hulu audience delivery. However, how relevant are these numbers? At one time, digital/streaming and DVR ratings were considered inferior to live broadcast ratings due to the fact that viewers could skip or watch less ads, making those views less profitable to advertisers.

However, linear live+same day broadcast ratings have gotten so low that it seems like perhaps the days of that being true are over. So what do networks use to determine what shows to renew and cancel? At one time, you could predict pretty easily what shows would be making the cut next year based on their ratings, which occasional "in between" shows (once called "bubble shows"). Now, though, it isn't as simple. There are so many factors to ratings, from digital/streaming numbers to live+SD numbers to DVR numbers to licensing agreements to critical acclaim to what company owns each show, that it's a bit of a mystery sometimes what shows make it and what shows don't. Ratings certainly aren't irrelevant, and they still make probably the bulk of the decisions. But much like with streaming series, predicting what shows will be renewed and what shows are cancelled is much less if an exact science than before. And networks are looking at broadcast series as streaming series as well.


Tyler Alvarez, Madeleine Arthur, JB Smoove, Olga Merediz and Kamaia Fairburn

Netflix's upcoming new comedy Blockbuster has started production and has added new cast members! Tyler Alvarez, Madeleine Arthur, and Olga Merediz join as series regulars, while JB Smoove and Kamaia Fairburn are recurring. They all join series stars Randall Park and Melissa Fumero in the new comedy series. Ten episodes have been ordered. An ensemble comedy that takes place in the last Blockbuster Video in America, that explores what it takes - and more specifically who it takes - for a small business to succeed against all odds.

Farrah Forke

Actress Farrah Forke, who starred as Alex Lambert on Wings, has died. She died of cancer in Houston, Texas on February 25. Ms. Forke was 54.

Wings

Forke starred as Alex Lambert on 35 episodes of the NBC sitcom Wings from 1992 to 1995. Alex Lambert is a helicopter pilot who moves to Nantucket to start her own helicopter tour business. She has a relationship with Brian Hackett (Steven Weber). Forke joined the series as a recurring cast member in the fourth season (1992-1993) before becoming a regular in the fifth season (1993-1994). She made a final guest appearance in the sixth season. The cast also included Tim Daly, Crystal Bernard, David Schramm, Rebecca Schull, Thomas Haden Church (1990-1995), Tony Shalhoub (1991-1997) and Amy Yasbeck (1994-1997).

Dweebs

She starred as Carey on the short-lived 1995 CBS sitcom Dweebs. Carey is an office manager for a Seattle computer software company called Cyberbyte. The series also starred Peter Scolari, Corey Feldman, David Kaufman, Stephen Tobolowsky and Adam Biesk.

Mr. Rhodes

Forke starred as Nikki Harkin on the short-lived 1996-1997 NBC sitcom Mr. Rhodes. Nikki Harkin is Tom Rhodes (Tom Rhodes) high school fantasy girl who is a guidance counselor at Harkin Academy, a small-town prep school. The series also starred Stephen Tobolowsky, Ron Glass, Jessica Stone, Shaun Weiss, Lindsay Sloane, Travis Wester and Alexandra Holden.

Some of her sitcom guest appearances included A Whole New Ballgame, Ned and Stacey and Jenny.

Dean Cain, Farrah Forke and Teri Hatcher - Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman

She had a recurring role as Mayson Drake, an attorney who considers Superman (Dean Cain) a vigilante, but holds a candle for Clark Kent (Dean Cain), on four episodes of Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman from 1994 to 1995. Her other drama guest appearances included Fantasy Island (1998) and three episodes of Party of Five as Tracy in 1999.

Forke provided the voice of Big Barda / Barda Free on two episodes of Batman Beyond in 2000 and one episode of Justice League Unlimited in 2005. She provided a voice for a 1997 episode of Duckman: Private Dick/Family Man. She was the voice woman of several companies, including Cadillac and Arby's.

Her film credits included Discloure (1994), Heat (1995), Ground Control (1998) and Hitman's Run (1999).

She is survived by her two sons, Chuck and Wit Forke; her mother and stepfather, Beverly and Chuck Talmage; her three sisters, Paige Inglis, Jennifer Sailor and Maggie Talmage; and her best friend, Mike Peterson.

Ms. Forke was funny and memorable as Alex Lambert on Wings. She later took a break from the acting community to raise her twin sons in Houston. We thank her for the laughs and entertainment she brought us on television. She will be deeply missed.

Share your memories on our Wings message board. View photos in our galleries.


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Wednesday, August 17

Abbott Elementary - "Pilot" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
In this workplace comedy, a group of dedicated, passionate teachers — and a slightly tone-deaf principal — are brought together in a Philadelphia public school where, despite the odds stacked against them, they are determined to help their students succeed in life. Though these incredible educators may be outnumbered and underfunded, they love what they do — even if they don’t love the school district’s less-than-stellar attitude toward educating children.

Abbott Elementary - "Work Family" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
After Jacob reveals a detail about his personal life, Janine realizes she doesn’t know the other teachers as well as she thought. Meanwhile, as Gregory’s stern teaching approach is causing his whole class to underperform, Barbara and Melissa teach him how to relax and make his lessons more fun.

Abbott Elementary - "Step Class" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Janine is thrilled when Ava asks to help her teach the after-school step class, but the two don’t see eye to eye on how to run the program. Later, when Barbara, Melissa and Jacob plan an “eat-off” to decide who makes the best pizza in Philadelphia, Gregory is forced to reveal a secret.

Abbott Elementary - "Desking" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
When the students start participating in a new online trend that causes disruption to the school, the teachers band together to put an end to it. Meanwhile, Mr. Johnson provides comforting life advice to Gregory; and later, the teachers finally meet Jacob’s boyfriend, Zach, who joins in to help stop the students “desking”.

Wellington Paranormal - "Mobots" (The CW, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Officer Minogue meets Officer O'Leary's mom when they use her house for a stakeout to investigate why a mass quantity of obsolete electronics goes missing.

Wellington Paranormal - "The Invisible Fiend" (The CW, 9:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Minogue and O'Leary investigate a mysterious home invasion with no visible signs of entry, managing to arrest an invisible creature and bring it back to the station for questioning.

grown-ish - "You Don't Know Me" (Freeform, 10:00PM ET/PT)
The girls enlist Junior's help to find their shady roommate, Lauryn, who has a habit of mysteriously disappearing; Junior wonders if Annika is starting to catch feelings for him; Aaron suspects that Doug isn't being honest with him.

Everything's Trash - "Rom-Coms Are Mostly Trash" (Freeform, 10:30PM ET/PT)
After Phoebe suddenly sees Michael in a new light, she attempts to set him up with Malika, who already has her eye on an old flame; Jayden worries that he and Jessie have lost their spark, so they decide to spice things up.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of August 15)

Wednesday, August 17

  • Alison Brie (GLOW/Community) - Watch Alison Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Sasheer Zamata (Home Economics/Woke) - Sasheer appears on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Nicole Byer (Grand Crew/Loosely Exactly Nicole) - Nicole guest hosts Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Demi Lovato (Sonny with a Chance) - Demi co-hosts The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:35pm on NBC.
  • Kenan Thompson (Kenan/Kenan & Kel) - Kenan will be on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:35pm on NBC.
  • Zazie Beetz (Atlanta) - Zazie appears on a repeat of Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Simu Liu (Kim's Convenience) - Simu chats with the ladies of The View on a repeat on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Susan Walters (Dear John/The War Next Door) - Susan is a guest on a repeat of The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Blair Underwood (The New Adventures of Old Christine) - Blair will be on LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
  • Kel Mitchell (Game Shakers/Kenan & Kel) - Kel appears on a repeat of The Kelly Clarkson Show, so check your local listings.
  • Sherri Shepherd (Mr. Iglesias/Trial & Error/Sherri/Less Than Perfect/Suddenly Susan) - Sherri guest hosts a repeat of The Wendy Williams Show, so check your local listings.
  • Josh Peck (Grandfathered/Drake & Josh) and Rhea Perlman (Cheers/Pearl/Kirstie) - Josh and Rhea talk about Netflix's 13: The Musical on Access Daily, so check your local listings.
  • Murray Bartlett (Physical/Looking) - Murry talks about White Lotus on ABC's GMA 3: What You Need to Know at 1pm.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (April-August)

Up All Night - The Complete Series (Blu-ray) The Danny Thomas Show (aka Make Room for Daddy) - The Complete Fourth Season Becker - The Complete Series (2022 Release) The Neighborhood - Season Four The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet - The Complete Season Three

04/05 - Up All Night - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
04/26 - The Danny Thomas Show (aka Make Room for Daddy) - The Complete Fourth Season
04/26 - Jackie Gleason TV Treasures - 70th Anniversary Collection (including Honeymooners Rarities)
05/03 - No Activity - Season Three
05/13 - The Donna Reed Show - The Complete Seasons 1-5 (Time Life)
05/31 - Becker - The Complete Series (2022 Release)
06/14 - Curb Your Enthusiasm - The Complete Eleventh Season
06/14 - Hacks - Season One (Blu-ray) (DVD)
06/14 - Rutherford Falls - Season One (Blu-ray) (DVD)
06/21 - The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet - The Complete Season One / Season Two
07/19 - The Neighborhood - Season Four
07/19 - Reno 911! - The Hunt for QAnon (Blu-ray) (DVD)
07/26 - The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet - The Complete Season Three / Season Four
08/16 - And Just Like That... - The Complete First Season (Warner Bros. - Canada)
08/16 - South Park - The Complete Twenty-Fourth Season (Blu-ray) (DVD)
More Recent and Upcoming TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Recent SitcomsOnline.com News Blog Posts

08/16 - Nexstar Media Group to Acquire The CW Network; Tubi Orders Breaking Bear, New Animated Comedy
08/15 - Abbott Elementary Summer School Marathon on ABC; Freevee's High School Premieres in October
08/14 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of August 15, 2022)
08/13 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Game Shows Moving to Primetime Emmys; Ring Doorbell Viral Video Show in the Works
08/12 - Apple TV+ Renews Physical for Season 3; Lifetime Orders It's a Wonderful Lifetime and Ripped from the Headlines Titles for Fall & Winter
08/11 - Hallmark Original Series Sets Cast; Remembering Pat Carroll, Roger E. Mosley and Vin Scully
08/10 - Cobra Kai Returns Sept. 9 on Netflix; Marlon Wayans Gets Starz Comedy
08/09 - COZI TV Celebrates Emergency! 50th Anniversary with Documentary; Kaley Cuoco Heads to Peacock for Comedic Thriller Series
08/08 - FETV Acquires Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman; Disney+ Orders 2nd Season of Robin Roberts Talk Show
08/07 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of August 8, 2022)
08/06 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Everybody Still Hates Chris Animated Series in the Works; HBO Max and Discovery+ Merging Into One
08/05 - Disney+ Series Premiere Dates, Includes Dancing with the Stars; Hallmark Orders New Original Drama
08/04 - NBC Moving Days of Our Lives to Peacock, Replacing with News Show; Selena + Chef Returns on HBO Max
08/03 - FX's Atlanta Final Season Launches Sept. 15; Elisabeth Moss Gets New Hulu Series
08/02 - Showtime Orders Comedy Pilot Titled Mason; NBC Renews Weakest Link Revival for Season 3
08/01 - HBO's Los Espookys Returns in September; Good Grief Is Back on IFC
07/31 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of August 1, 2022)
07/30 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Max Headroom Reboot in Works at AMC Networks; Jeopardy! to Continue Dual Host Plan
07/29 - HBO Max and Hulu to Share Streaming Rights to Abbott Elementary; Reboot Gets Premiere Date
07/28 - ABC to Present Norman Lear: 100 Years of Music and Laughter; Remembering Tony Dow of Leave it to Beaver and Paul Sorvino
07/27 - The Orville Coming to Disney+ and Continues on Hulu; Retta Continues Partnership with HGTV
07/26 - Mythic Quest Returns for 10 Episodes in Fall; Patton Oswalt's Netflix Comedy Special We All Scream Premieres September 20
07/25 - American Dad! Returns Labor Day on TBS; Krapopolis Gets Special Nov. 27 Preview on Fox
07/24 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of July 25, 2022)
07/23 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Abbott Elementary Given Full Second Season; Preview of New Beavis and Butt-Head Episode
07/22 - Ghosts Dives Into the Metaverse with a Game; Jo Koy Gets 4th Netflix Special; Remembering Rebecca Balding of Soap
07/21 - South Park's 25th Anniversary Concert Event; FETV's Historic June Numbers
07/20 - Hulu's This Fool Premieres August 12; Mo'Nique Gets Netflix Comedy Special
07/19 - Apple TV+ Comedy Central Park Returns in September; Leah Remini Game Show Is Back on Aug. 1
07/18 - Paramount+ Revives Criminal Minds; AMC Network Sizzling in August with Hot Originals
07/17 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of July 18, 2022)
07/16 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Beavis and Butt-Head Premiere Date Set; TBS Abruptly Cancels Chad Hours Before Season Premiere