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THURSDAY: Still Trying to Survive
CBS Wins on Comedy
From The Futon Critic

CBS (7.852 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.7, #1) pulled into the top spot on Thursday with its original lineup of "The Big Bang Theory" (13.834 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 3.1, #1), "The Odd Couple" (8.639 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.7, #5), "Mom" (8.405 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.8, #T3), "2 Broke Girls" (6.934 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.8, #T3) and "Rush Hour" (4.650 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.0, #8).

ABC (6.079 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.5, #2) then claimed the silver with its trio of "Grey's Anatomy" (7.618 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.0, #2), "Scandal" (6.000 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.5, #6) and "The Catch" (4.619 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.9, #9).

Next up was NBC (4.458 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 0.9, #3) and its combination of "STRONG" (3.027 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T10), "The Blacklist" (6.847 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.3, #7) and "Game of Silence" (3.501 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T12).

Meanwhile, FOX (3.267 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.8, #4) offered up fresh installments of "Bones" (4.276 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T10) and "American Grit" (2.259 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T12).

And finally, new episodes of "DC's Legends of Tomorrow" (1.849 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T12) and "The 100" (1.184 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.4, #15) on The CW (1.516 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.5, #5) closed out the night.

On cable...
- Alone (History/SP): 1.520 million
- Project Runway All-Stars (Lifetime): 1.482 million
- Beat Bobby Flay (Food): 1.079 million
- Lip Sync Battle (Spike): 1.071 million
- Cooks vs. Cons (Food/SF): 893,000
- Comedy Knockout (truTV/P): 339,000
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy): 327,000

Flavorwire
AV Club
The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/22/16

Happy Friday Lightning Round
... or "The Case of the Misleading Headline"

  • "TV Game Shows Are Dying And I'll Miss Their Shiny Pointlessness"... says this writer, citing only Deal or No Deal and Million Dollar Drop. Apparently the only game shows she's watched or even heard of (VICE UK)
     

  • Gwen Stefani dons a red nose (TV Insider)
     

  • BRUTALLY HONEST REVIEW: Alone (History, Thursday) (AV Club)
     

  • FIRST LOOK: Match Made in Heaven... season 2 (WE, May 19) (The Futon Critic)

posted 4/22/16


Rolling Stone
PRINCE: 1958-2016
Legendary Musician Performed "American Idol" Finale
From
Reuters

Prince, the innovative pop superstar whose songwriting and eccentric stage presence electrified fans around the world with hits including "Purple Rain" and "When Doves Cry," died on Thursday in Minnesota. He was 57.

His influential, genre-defying music blended jazz, funk, R&B, disco and rock, winning seven Grammy Awards and an Oscar.

Prince was found unresponsive in an elevator at his Paisley Park Studios compound, which included his home, in the Minneapolis suburb of Chanhassen, according to the Carver County Sheriff's Office.

In a transcript of a 911 call made from the complex and released by the sheriff's office, an unidentified male initially reported that someone was dead at the home, later identifying that victim as Prince.

The sheriff's office said it was investigating the circumstances. The local medical examiner's office said in a tweet that an autopsy had been scheduled for Friday.

In 2007, he performed the "American Idol" finale when Taylor Hicks was crowned the winner.

Reuters
Irish Independent
Rolling Stone

posted 4/21/16


CBS
JOANIE "CHYNA" LAURER: 1970-2016
Wrestling Pioneer Also Dabbled in Game Shows
From KTLA Los Angeles

WWE legend Chyna, whose real name was Joanie Laurer, was found dead Wednesday afternoon in her Redondo Beach apartment, police said. She was 45.

“It is with deep sadness to inform you today that we lost a true icon, a real life superhero. Joanie Laurer aka Chyna, the 9th wonder of the world has passed away. She will live forever in the memories of her millions of fans and all of us that loved her,” a post on her Facebook page stated.

Officers were called to Laurer’s apartment in the 900 block of Esplanade around 3:35 p.m. after receiving a 911 call from a friend who said the former star wrestler was not breathing, according to Sgt. Shawn Freeman with the Redondo Beach Police Department.

The friend had dropped by to check on Laurer after not hearing from her in several days, Freeman stated in a news release.

There were no indications or signs that her death was a result of foul play, according to the release.

Investigators said it appeared Laurer had died prior to being discovered by her friend.

The exact nature, cause and time of death were still being investigated by the Los Angeles County Coroner.

Laurer’s manager Anthony Anzaldo confirmed to KTLA that she was found dead Wednesday afternoon at her home in Redondo Beach.

In the game show world, Laurer competed against Diamond Dallas Page on "Street Smarts" and hosted Spike's run of "Robot Wars: Grand Champions", a repurposing of original UK episodes.

KTLA Los Angeles
NBC Sports

posted 4/21/16

Almost Impossible MTV
MTV's Upfront Reveals American Version of UK Series
From the Futon Critic

MTV, a unit of Viacom (NASDAQ: VIAB, VIA) today revealed a programming slate of fourteen new series and specials, including "Wonderland," the network's first weekly live music performance series in nearly twenty years debuting this fall. The network will provide a first look at the new series - along with projects with partners Mark Burnett, Zac Efron, Drew Barrymore, Pitbull, John Legend, Dwayne Johnson and Dany Garcia, and more - at the 2016 MTV Upfront at Skylight at Moynihan Station tonight in New York, NY.

"We're on a mission to reignite MTV with everything that makes it one of the world's most iconic brands - its soul of music, its love of pop culture, and its unexpected, groundbreaking creative," said Sean Atkins, President of MTV. "What we share today is just the beginning, but it's a strong first step in the journey and shows how aggressively we are moving to energize the extraordinary promise of this great brand."

MTV committed to bringing more live music and music-inspired programming to the network, announcing greenlights for "Wonderland," a new L.A.-based weekly music series featuring live performances from three different acts; a yet-untitled music competition series from Executive Producer Mark Burnett; and a newly reimagined version of the beloved "MTV Unplugged."

MTV announced greenlights for  "Stranded with a Million Bucks," a reality competition that employs drone camera technology to follow contestants fighting brutal conditions on a remote island with only one possession: a suitcase full of a million dollars; and "The Almost Impossible Game Show," an absurd new competition format adopted from the hit UK version.

The 2016 MTV Upfront will be hosted by Nicole Byer and feature a performance by multiplatinum Top Dawg Entertainment recording artist and seven-time Grammy Award-winner Kendrick Lamar. The presentation will eschew the traditional theater format and instead take shape as a pop art tradeshow called "Buy MTV," complete with interactive booths of upcoming series and initiatives, a faux retail storefront featuring limited-edition MTV collectibles, and surprise stage moments.

NEW SERIES AND SPECIALS

"The Almost Impossible Game Show"

A hilarious half-hour comedic game show in which contestants complete physical challenges ranging from the absurd to the outlandish to beat the game and win cash prizes. Riding tiny bikes over a mud pit, putting on oversized pants while running full-speed on a giant treadmill and grating a heaping block of cheese onto a plate of nachos by using a grater attached to their derrières are just a few of the outrageous challenges the contestants will face. "The Almost Impossible Game Show" is based on a popular UK format by the same name, produced by Endemol Shine UK company Initial for ITV2. MTV is producing with Endemol Shine. Executive producers include Rob Smith and Georgie Hurford-Jones for Endemol Shine North America; Matt Odgers and Scott Teti for Left Hook Media.

"Stranded with a Million Bucks"

Ten cast members are stranded on an island with nothing but the clothes on their back and a million dollars in cash! Those who survive for 40 days will split that money as their prize. The catch? They can buy any supplies they want, but everything is crazy expensive - and comes out of their prize money. Tollbooth TV is producing. Kevin Lee is Executive Producer.

"Mark Burnett Music Competition"

Welcome to the recording studio, where talent is transformed and legends are discovered. At the intersection of music and business, this show gives hip hop's freshest talent a chance at every musician's dream: getting signed. Mark Burnett, the Executive Producer of SHARK TANK and THE VOICE, brings us the best of both worlds, with undiscovered artists performing in front of music's biggest moguls, each eager to sign the next breakout star. But forget the shiny floor stage - it's all happening in the recording studio in the first of its kind, organic music competition series that breaks all the rules. The yet-untitled series from executive producer Mark Burnett will be executive produced by Burnett and MGM Television with MGM also serving as international distributor.

The Futon Critic
TV Insider
Hollywire
NBC Sports
World Screen
Awful Announcing

posted 4/21/16

Centric Looks for A "Queen Bee"
BET Sister Network Reveals Upfront Slate
From Shadow & Act

BET Networks announced today its upcoming programming schedule for BET and Centric at its annual Upfront presentation, including new original scripted series, movies, as well as reality series, and the network's returning hits.

"We have developed a deep and authentic relationship with our audience over the last 36 years, and it is that genuine connection that has allowed BET to expand into a global multiplatform brand. This year, we are committed to reaching far beyond the television screen and continuing to deliver more of the premium content that our audiences have come to expect," said Debra Lee, Chairman and CEO, BET Networks. "With BET being more accessible across more platforms, we are creating a powerful 360 degree experience for our audience to interact with the BET brand like never before."

The full lineup and breakdown of each series follows below, via press release.

COMPELLING NEW UNSCRIPTED PROGRAMMING ON BET:

ONE SHOT - "ONE SHOT" is a high-octane hip hop lyrical competition series hosted by Sway Calloway, iconic hip hop personality and radio host. Sway leads a panel of hip hop legends in a nationwide quest for the next explosive hip hop star with mass appeal, on-the-fly musicianship and command of the stage. Neither battle show nor glossy newcomer search, "ONE SHOT" provides the first and only dynamic platform for America's best rising hip hop talent. Each contestant's main competition can be found in the mirror. Sway serves as Executive Producer along with Mike Smith, Dominick Wickliffe p/k/a "Kxng Crooked", Rod Sepand p/k/a "King Tech", Nancy Nayor and Dean Hadaegh. Zach Hermann and Erika Smith serve as Co-Executive Producers. Julie Insogna Jarrett and Seth Jarrett will also serve as Executive Producers for production company, Jarrett Creative.

EMPOWERING NEW PROGRAMMING ON CENTRIC:

QUEEN BEE - Entrepreneurs are an enormous force in American business and culture, and African American women are among the fastest growing segment of entrepreneurs in the nation. They have the ideas, the creativity, and the drive, but too often they fly under the radar and don't get the mentoring and capital they need to launch their product or take their company to the next level. Developed by Jon Housman, Ora TV, and SWSI, this ground-breaking reality competition series discovers amazing entrepreneurs building real-life companies, and then challenges them to take their skills to the next level. Mentored - and put to the test - by a panel of celebrities and successful entrepreneurs, our contestants will go through a series of intense challenges in an effort to win the competition - and a potentially life-changing opportunity to become Queen Bee. Jon Housman and Jamie Schutz serve as Executive Producers.

Shadow & Act/Indiewire
B&C
Worldscreen

posted 4/21/16

WEDNESDAY: Split Down the Middle
CBS, Fox Split Night on "Survivor", "Empire"
From the Futon Critic

FOX (7.005 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.4, #1) was the demo champ for the fourth consecutive week thanks to new episodes of "Rosewood" (4.593 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T5) and "Empire" (9.418 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 3.6, #1).

CBS (8.559 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.7, #2) then took home the silver with its mix of "Survivor: Kaoh Rong" (9.187 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.0, #2), "Criminal Minds" (9.010 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.7, #3) and "Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders" (7.480 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.3, #4).

Next up was ABC (3.964 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.0, #3) and its repeat lineup of "The Middle" (4.529 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T7), "The Goldbergs" (4.118 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T7), "Modern Family" (4.172 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T5), "Black-ish" (3.566 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T7) and a new "Nashville" (3.699 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T10).

Meanwhile, NBC (3.946 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.8, #4) offered up a new "Heartbeat" (4.042 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T10) alongside repeats of "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (3.747 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T10) and "Chicago PD" (4.051 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T10).

And finally, second runs of "Arrow" (1.166 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.3, #T14) and "Supernatural" (0.893 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.3, #T14) on The CW (1.029 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.3, #5) closed out the night.

On cable...
- The Ultimate Fighter (FS1/SP): 479,000
- Skin Wars (GSN/SP): 428,000
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy): 397,000
- Idiotest (GSN/11:30p): 228,000
- Political Idiotest (GSN/S): 176,000
- TUF Talk (FS1/P): 173,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/21/16

Lying in Welsh... Again
S4C Renews Irish Format
From C21 Media

Welsh-language public broadcaster S4C has renewed its quizshow Celwydd Noeth, its local version of producer STV and Irish channel TV3’s The Lie.

S4C bought the format in 2014. Welsh indie Cwmni Da worked on the local version, which premiered last year. The format, which sees pairs pick out lies from a list of facts against the clock, is distributed by Red Arrow International.

C21 Media

posted 4/21/16


Sony Pictures TV
"Sports Jeopardy!" Called Up to Bigs
Season 3 to Air on NBCSN, Stream on Crackle Starting August 6
From the Futon Critic

NBC Sports Group and Crackle will present "Sports Jeopardy!" on NBCSN following the network's nightly coverage of the Rio Olympics. NBCSN has acquired the exclusive television rights to the series hosted by Emmy Award-winning sportscaster Dan Patrick, which airs originally on Crackle. The 30-minute sports quiz show will air on NBCSN on Saturday, August 6, and will then air nightly for two consecutive weeks until the conclusion of the Games. Following a brief hiatus, "Sports Jeopardy!" will return in the fall of 2016 to air weekly on NBCSN immediately following the network's coverage of the NHL hockey game on 'Wednesday Night Rivalry.' NBC Sports commentators and highlights of NBC Sports live events will be incorporated into the show.

The multi-year agreement between NBC Sports Group and Crackle will include over 100 existing episodes plus any additional episodes of "Sports Jeopardy!" produced for Crackle. NBC Sports Live Extra, NBC Sports Group's live streaming product, will also stream episodes that are televised on NBCSN.

Sports Jeopardy! is executive produced by Harry Friedman and the multiple-Emmy Award winning team behind Jeopardy! Sports Jeopardy! is produced by Sony Pictures Television, a Sony Pictures Entertainment company.

“We’re excited to work with Crackle to bring Sports Jeopardy! to NBCSN’s television audience of more than 82 million homes,” said Jon Miller, President of Programming, NBC Sports and NBCSN. “Dan Patrick, Sony Pictures Television and the team at Crackle have created a great show that we know our viewers will enjoy.”

“Sports Jeopardy! has been a critically-acclaimed weekly series on Crackle for the past year and a half and we can’t wait to bring episodes of the series to NBCSN,” said Eric Berger, EVP Sony Pictures Television Digital Networks and GM, Crackle. “Making the series available on both TV and streaming on demand during the most important athletic event of the year is a win for everyone.”

“For us…the special few who ignored the so-called important news growing up and spent our days reading box scores, watching random sports and getting C’s in our classes, we finally have a show,” said Patrick. “If you know…off the top of your head…Joaquin Andujar’s career ERA…or Warren Moon’s CFL stats…this is the show for you.”

The Futon Critic
Multichannel News
Adweek
AV Club
NBC Sports
World Screen
Awful Announcing

posted 4/21/16

TUESDAY: CW Moves to Third!
NBC, CBS Split Weak Pre-Sweep Field
From the Futon Critic

NBC (8.655 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.7, #1) led the demo race on Tuesday with its trio of "The Voice" (9.681 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.8, #T1), "Chicago Med" (8.120 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T4) and "Chicago Fire" (8.164 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.7, #3).

CBS (10.794 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.5, #2) then took home the silver with its mix of "NCIS" (14.572 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.8, #T1), "NCIS: New Orleans" (12.016 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T4) and "Limitless" (5.796 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T6).

Next up was The CW (2.376 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.9, #3) with a new "The Flash" (3.029 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T6) and the launch of "Containment" (1.725 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T14).

Meanwhile, FOX (1.839 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.8, #4) offered up fresh installments of "New Girl" (2.055 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T8), another "New Girl" (1.725 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T11), the season finale of "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" (2.032 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T8) and a new "The Grinder" (1.545 million viewers, #16; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T14).

And finally, ABC (2.649 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 0.7, #5) closed out the evening with a repeat "Fresh Off the Boat" (3.141 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 0.7, #13) alongside originals from "The Real O'Neals" (2.985 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T11), "Marvel's Agents of SHIELD" (2.832 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T8) and "Beyond the Tank" (2.054 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.5, #16).

On cable...
- Chopped Champions (Food): 1.283 million
- Ink Master (Spike): 1.134 million
- America's Greatest Makers (TBS): 786,000
- Ink Master: Redemption (Spike): 575,000
- Separation Anxiety (TBS): 533,000
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy): 360,000
- Chasing Destiny (BET): 349,000
- Idiotest (GSN/SP): 304,000
- Idiotest (GSN/10:30p): 290,000

Showbuzz Daily
The Futon Critic

posted 4/21/16

Thursday Lightning Round
... or "Doves Are Crying"

  • "Loveline", the show that launched the careers of Dr. Drew and Mike Catherwood, is signing off (The Wrap)
     

  • Jodie Sweetin rushed to hospital after injury (E!)
     

  • Worst. Beast performance. Ever? (News.com.au)
     

  • Paul Sinha to play Morley (Morley Observer)
     

  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Jimmy Carr (San Francisco Examiner)

posted 4/21/16


ABC
ABC: Hot Fun in the Summertime
Dates Announced for "Battlebots", "Feud", "Pyramid", "500 Questions", "Truth"
From the Futon Critic

ABC's summer premiere dates are chronologically listed as follows (all times are EDT/PDT):

Thursday, May 26
- 8:00-10:00 p.m. "500 Questions"

Tuesday, June 14
- 8:00-9:00pm "To Tell the Truth" (Sneak Peak)
- 10:00-11:00 p.m. "To Tell the Truth" (New Series Premiere)

Thursday, June 23
- 8:00-10:00 p.m. "BattleBots"

Sunday, June 26
- 8:00-9:00 p.m. "Celebrity Family Feud"
- 9:00-10:00 p.m. "The $100,000 Pyramid" (New Series Premiere)

Tuesday, August 2
- 8:00-10:00 p.m. "Bachelor in Paradise"

Monday, August 8
- 8:00-10:00 p.m. "Bachelor in Paradise" (Time Period Premiere)

Tuesday, August 9
- 8:00-9:00 p.m. "Bachelor in Paradise"
- 9:00-10:00 p.m. "Bachelor in Paradise: After Paradise"

Following are upcoming summer series descriptions in chronological order (all times EDT/PDT):

"500 QUESTIONS" - RETURNS THURSDAY, MAY 26 (Season 2)

Hosted by Dan Harris (ABC's "Nightline" and weekend edition of "Good Morning America"), "500 Questions" challenges the smartest people in the country to achieve the seemingly impossible task of answering 500 of the most difficult general knowledge questions ever devised. There's only one simple rule: never get three wrong in a row - or you're gone. No saves, no helps, no multiple choice, "500 Questions" keeps you on the edge of your seat to see if any of these geniuses can do it. It is the ultimate test, where intellect, strategy and stamina are all equally essential in order to win. Mark Burnett and Phil Parsons are the executive producers. Ed Egan is the co-executive producer. The show was created by Mike Darnell and Mark Burnett and produced by MGM Television in association with Warner Horizon Television.

"TO TELL THE TRUTH" - PREMIERES TUESDAY, JUNE 14

Hosted by Anthony Anderson, "To Tell the Truth" is an anarchic and funny re-imagination of the beloved, game show of the same name. The all-new version takes the excitement to another level, featuring fun characters from pop culture over the six-episode series. Anderson presides over four famous faces, including legend Betty White (who has appeared on previous versions of the show), actress NeNe Leakes, NBA star Jalen Rose and a special guest for each episode. In each round they are presented with three people who all claim to be the same person with the same incredible talent, job or achievement. One is sworn to tell the truth while the others are not. The panel of celebrities has a chance to grill each participant before taking turns deciding who they think is telling the truth. "To Tell the Truth" is produced by FremantleMedia North America. Barry Poznick, Toby Gorman, Jeff Gaspin, George Moll and Anthony Anderson are executive producers.

"BATTLEBOTS" - RETURNS THURSDAY, JUNE 23 (Season 2)

"BattleBots" is a reimagined take on the killer robot combat sport, from Whalerock Industries and the creators of the original "BattleBots" franchise, Ed Roski and Greg Munson. The homemade robots are back for season two, where they will battle against each other in a single elimination tournament until there is one champion. The ten episode series will feature next generation robots - bigger, faster and stronger than ever before. The show will continue to emphasize the design and build elements of each robot, the bot builder backstories, their intense pursuit of the championship and the spectacle of the event. While there's only one weight class, there are a huge variety of deadly weapons. Forty-eight robots will enter, but in the end, only one will win the final trophy. Executive producers are Lloyd Braun, Chris Cowan, Edward P. Roski (Trey), Greg Munson and Aaron Catling.

"CELEBRITY FAMILY FEUD" - RETURNS SUNDAY, JUNE 26 (Season 2)

The primetime summer hit "Celebrity Family Feud," a celebrity version of "Family Feud," returns for a second season. The 10-episode series will feature celebrity families and their immediate family members or their extended TV families, competing against each other to win money for charity. Hosted by Steve Harvey, the highly popular multi-hyphenate standup comedian, actor, author, deejay and Emmy(R) Award-winning game show host, "Celebrity Family Feud" pits celebrities and their families against each other in a contest to name the most popular responses to a survey-type question posed to 100 people. "Celebrity Family Feud" is produced by FremantleMedia North America and is taped in front of a live audience in Los Angeles, California. Gaby Johnston and Jennifer Mullin are executive producers.

"THE $100,000 PYRAMID" - PREMIERES SUNDAY, JUNE 26

The Pyramid is back! Hosted by Pro Football Hall of Famer and celebrated TV personality Michael Strahan, "The $100,000 Pyramid" features 10 episodes with 100 grand up for grabs each week when some of today's hottest stars team-up with players from across the country to take on the timeless war of words, racing against the clock to give and guess clues in one of TV's all-time great word-association games. "The $100,000 Pyramid" is produced by SMAC Entertainment in association with Sony Pictures Television and is taped in front of a live studio audience in New York. Michael Strahan, Constance Schwartz and Vin Rubino are the executive producers.

"BACHELOR IN PARADISE" - RETURNS TUESDAY, AUGUST 2 (Season 3)

The much anticipated third season of the hit series "Bachelor in Paradise" returns with all the shocking twists, surprises, unexpected guests and some of the most unlikely relationships in "Bachelor" history that viewers have come to expect. The cast, comprised of former fan favorites and controversial characters from "The Bachelor" franchise, is back looking for a second chance at love. They all left "The Bachelor" or "The Bachelorette" with broken hearts, but now they'll travel to a romantic paradise, hoping to turn a potential summer fling into the real thing. We'll follow these former bachelors and bachelorettes as they explore new relationships while living together in a secluded and dreamy paradise. America will watch as they fall in love or go through renewed heartbreak. Chris Harrison hosts. "Bachelor in Paradise" is produced by Next Entertainment in association with Warner Horizon Television. Mike Fleiss, Elan Gale, Peter J. Scalettar and Nicole Woods are executive producers.

"BACHELOR IN PARADISE: AFTER PARADISE" - RETURNS TUESDAY, AUGUST 9

"After Paradise" features host Chris Harrison discussing and dissecting the most recent episodes of "Bachelor in Paradise," alongside cast members and celebrity fans. The man who has seen it all as the host of "The Bachelor" franchise since the first rose ceremony took place over 13 years ago, Harrison presents questions and comments from viewers, debuts deleted scenes, outtakes and exclusive extra content, all the while allowing members of #BachelorNation to have their say. "Bachelor Live" is executive produced by Mike Fleiss for Next Entertainment in association with Warner Horizon Television, and Michael Davies, Jen Patton and Elan Gale for Embassy Row.

The Futon Critic
TV.com
The Hollywood Reporter
BuddyTV
Deadline
Variety

posted 4/20/16

"Alone" Again... for the Third Time
History to Bow Season 2, Renew for Season 3
From Deadline

Ahead of its Season 2 premiere tomorrow night, History has ordered a third season of its hit survival series Alone.

Related
'Vikings' Casts Alex Andersen As New Regular & Part Of Plot Twist

Additionally, the series will move from Vancouver Island to South America.

Alone places ten hardcore survivalists alone in the wilderness and the contestants have one mission: to stay alive. There are no camera crews, no teams, and no gimmicks. At stake is a $500,000 cash prize awarded to the person who can last the longest. Filming begins in Patagonia, South America next month.

The Season 1 finale of Alone pulled in 2.4 million total viewers, up 50% from its series premiere and becoming History’s No.1 new non-fiction series of 2015 among all key demos.

“The success of ‘Alone’ truly speaks to the fact that there is simply nothing else like it on television.” said Paul Cabana, Executive Vice President and Head of Programming of Histroy. “Season two truly takes the series to the next level and gives us the confidence to trigger season three immediately.”

Equipped only with limited gear, their wilderness experience, and cameras to self-document their journeys, these brave men and women are completely separated from one another in harsh, unforgiving terrain. To survive, they must find food and water, build shelters and fend off predators. They will face extreme isolation, psychological distress, and treacherous environmental conditions as they descend into the unknown.

Alone is produced for History by Leftfield Pictures. David George, Brent Montgomery, Shawn Witt, Zachary Green and Gretchen Palek serve as executive producers for Leftfield Pictures. Russ McCarroll and Zachary Behr serve as executive producers for History.

Deadline
The Futon Critic

posted 4/20/16

Wednesday Lightning Round
... or "Fallout"

posted 4/19/16

SYNDIES: Week 30
Results for the Week Ending April 10
From B&C

The NCAA's nail-biting men's basketball final aired across TNT, TBS and truTV in the week ending April 10, presenting stronger than usual competition for shows in access time periods on Monday, April 4.

All of the top-three game shows fell slightly compared to the prior week. CBS Television Distribution’s Wheel of Fortune dipped 1% to a 6.6 live plus same day household ratings average, according to Nielsen Media Research. Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud, which had been first or tied for first for the past three weeks, was off 4% to a second-place 6.4. CTD’s Jeopardy! weakened 3% to a 6.1.

Further back, Debmar-Mercury’s Celebrity Name Game and Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to Be a Millionaire both were unchanged at a 1.4 and 1.3, respectively. However, year to year, Name Game gained 8% while Millionaire lost 24%. Wheel dipped 3% compared to last year, Feud added 7% and Jeopardy! declined 9%. Feud also led all of syndication among women 25-54 at a 3.1.

B&C

posted 4/19/16

MONDAY: More Talent
NBC, ABC Split Night
From the Futon Critic

NBC (8.513 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.9, #1) led the demo charge on Monday with new episodes of "The Voice" (9.949 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.2, #1) and "Blindspot" (5.642 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T4).

ABC (9.313 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.4, #2) then was the most-watched network overall with originals from "Dancing with the Stars" (10.957 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.6, #2) and "Castle" (6.026 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.0, #9).

Next up was CBS (7.384 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.3, #3) and the season finale of "Supergirl" (6.170 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T6) followed by new episodes of "Scorpion" (8.241 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.5, #3) and "NCIS: Los Angeles" (7.742 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T6).

Meanwhile, FOX (3.772 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.2, #4) offered up fresh installments of "Gotham" (3.684 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T6) and "Lucifer" (3.861 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T4).

And finally, the season finale of "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend" (0.841 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.3, #11) and a new "Jane the Virgin" (0.943 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.4, #10) on The CW (0.892 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.4, #5) closed out the evening.

On cable....
- Cupcake Wars (Food): 708,000
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy): 372,000
- RuPaul's Drag Race (Logo): 320,000
- Gay for Play Game Show Starring RuPaul (Logo): 170,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/19/16

WEEKEND: Typical Friday
CBS, ABC Split The Audience
From the Futon Critic

CBS (8.006 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T1) was the most-watched network on Friday with its trio of "The Amazing Race" (5.536 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T8), "Hawaii Five-0" (8.324 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T3) and "Blue Bloods" (10.159 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T1).

ABC (5.404 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T1) however shared in the top demo honors with its mix of "Last Man Standing" (6.351 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T3), "Dr. Ken" (4.783 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T5), "Shark Tank" (5.595 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T1) and "20/20" (5.051 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T5).

Next up was NBC (3.885 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 0.8, #3) and its combination of "Caught on Camera with Nick Cannon" (3.403 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.6, #11), "Grimm" (3.863 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.8, #10) and "Dateline NBC" (4.390 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T5).

Meanwhile, FOX (2.428 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.7, #4) offered up an encore "Hell's Kitchen" (1.864 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.5, #12) and a new "Hell's Kitchen" (2.992 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T8).

And finally, fresh installments from "The Vampire Diaries" (1.165 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.4, #13) and "The Originals" (0.954 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.3, #14) on The CW (1.059 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.4, #5) closed out the night.

On cable Friday...
- Binge Thinking (MTV2): 104,000

On cable Sunday....
- Spring Baking Championship (Food): 1.582 million
- Guy's Grocery Games (Food): 1.246 million
- Cutthroat Kitchen (Food): 1.056 million
- Steve Austin's Broken Skull Challenge (CMT): 391,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/19/16

Tuesday Lightning Round
... or "End Run"

  • Michael Strahan exits "Live!" for "GMA" (TV Insider)
     

  • Bradley Walsh to Richard Osman: Oh yeah? (Huffington Post)
     

  • VIDEO WALL: you saw this clip from Thursday's "Lip Sync Battle". You can't un-see it (TV Insider)

posted 4/19/16


Hallmark Channel
DORIS ROBERTS: 1925-2016
Raymond's Mom Was Everyone's Game Show Mom
From
USA Today

Doris Roberts, celebrated for her portrayal of a loving but meddling mom on Everybody Loves Raymond, died Sunday.

Roberts' son, Michael Cannata, confirmed the news of his mother's death in a statement issued Monday.

The 90-year-old actress, whose celebrated career spanned six decades, won four Emmys for her portrayal of Marie Barone on the top-rated, long-running CBS comedy series (1996-2005). She won an Emmy earlier in her career for supporting actress for her role on NBC's medical drama St. Elsewhere.

Raymond star Ray Romano remembered the actress who played his title character's mother in a statement: "Doris Roberts had an energy and a spirit that amazed me. She never stopped. Whether working professionally or with her many charities, or just nurturing and mentoring a young, green comic trying to make it as an actor, she did it all with such a grand love for life and people and I will miss her dearly."

On Raymond, Roberts' Marie was a loving, sometimes smothering and often all-knowing (at least in her own mind) presence in the home of son Raymond and his wife, Debra (Patricia Heaton), who did not always appreciate Marie's interference. The late Peter Boyle played Marie's husband, Frank, and Brad Garrett played Raymond's brother, Robert, who always felt that he played second fiddle to the coddled Raymond.

Roberts, who was born in St. Louis and grew up in New York, was a veteran of Broadway before starring in various films and TV series during an illustrious acting career that began in the 1950s. Her stage credits include The Desk Set, The Last of the Red Hot Lovers and Bad Habits, for which she won an Outer Critics Circle Award.

Besides Raymond, Roberts had memorable roles in other TV series, including Remington Steele and Angie. Early in her career, she appeared on such classic shows as The Naked City and Ben Casey and more recently she was featured in ABC's Desperate Housewives, Grey's Anatomy and The Middle, which stars Heaton.

In the game show world, she had notable stints on "Hollywood Squares", "All-Star Blitz", "Hot Potato", and "Celebrity Family Feud".

Roberts' feature film roles include Barefoot in the Park (1967), The Heartbreak Kid (1972) and The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1974), National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (1989) and Madea's Witness Protection (2012).

Roberts' passion for cooking was reflected in her 2005 book, Are You Hungry, Dear? Life, Laughs and Lasagna, which she co-wrote with Danielle Morton.

In addition to son Michael, Roberts is survived by her daughter-in-law, Jane, and three grandchildren: Kelsey, Andrew and Devon Cannata.

USA Today
Moviefone
TV Insider

posted 4/18/16

Talking "TUF"
FS1 to Launch Aftershow for Wednesday's "Ultimate Fighter" Premiere
From the Futon Critic

FOX Sports announces the premiere of TUF TALK, a half-hour late-night companion show to THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER, Wednesday, April 20 (12:00 AM ET), immediately following the special two-hour premiere of THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER: TEAM JOANNA VS. TEAM CLAUDIA (10:00 PM ET). TUF TALK originally debuted on FS1 as a segment of FOX SPORTS LIVE and has been expanded this year into its own show. Co-hosted by veteran combat sports journalist Karyn Bryant and retired UFC fighter and TUF Season 1 cast member Kenny Florian, each episode of TUF TALK recaps the latest episode of THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER, features cast interviews and provides exclusive show outtakes. After the premiere week, TUF TALK moves to 11:00 PM ET for the remainder of the season.

"I'm fired up for the new season of TUF Talk," says Bryant. "Not only because this season of TUF has two very talented, very competitive and very outspoken coaches in Joanna [Jedrzejczyk] and Claudia [Gadelha], but also because our newly expanded show gives us even more time to get to know the latest pool of up-and-coming talent. We'll deliver in-depth fight analysis and technical breakdowns of the action in the Octagon, giving UFC fans more of what they love."

"I'm excited to follow along once again for this season of THE UTLTIMATE FIGHTER," says Florian. "As a TUF alum, I'm looking forward to seeing how it all unfolds and what the experiences were like for the coaches and competitors involved."

The TUF TALK premiere features interviews with THE UTLIMATE FIGHTER coaches strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk and No. 1-ranked Claudia Gadelha, who discuss the upcoming season, their teams and more. For Wednesday's premiere episode, light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier fills in as co-host for Florian.

The exciting season premiere of THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER kicks off Wednesday with 32 competitors in the light heavyweight and strawweight divisions battling for one of 16 spots available in the competition. Once the final cast is set, coaches Jedrzejczyk and Gadelha pick their teams and then lead the fighters through the toughest reality show on television. There will be no love lost between the two as their epic feud plays out every Wednesday night leading up to their highly anticipated rematch.

The Futon Critic

posted 4/18/16

BattleBots Round 2 Begins with Preview
Samantha Ponder, Clark Gregg Join Crew May 10
From the Futon Critic

The epic robot-fighting tournament "BattleBots" is back for season two this summer and kicks off with a preview special entitled "BattleBots: The Gears Awaken," on TUESDAY, MAY 10 (10:00-11:00 p.m. EST), on the ABC Television Network. The robot shrapnel will fly in the BattleBox once again, with expert play-by-play analysis from veteran sports broadcaster Chris Rose, and color commentary from former UFC fighter Kenny Florian. This season will be hosted by ESPN's Samantha Ponder. "BattleBots: The Gears Awaken" will feature twelve robots fighting it out in a series of rumble matches for the final four spots in the field of forty-eight, who will ultimately vie for the championship trophy. Covering every inch of the robot fighting mayhem is sideline reporter Alison Haislip. Judging the battles are former BattleBots competitor & special effects artist Fon Davis, the face of "Nerdist" Jessica Chobot and a special guest judge for each round of the competition. For "BattleBots: The Gears Awaken," Clark Gregg ("Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D") will be the first guest judge. Ring announcer Faruq Tauheed will preside as the bots go metal-a-metal.

"BattleBots" is a reimagined take on the killer robot combat sport from Whalerock Industries and the creators of the original "BattleBots" franchise, Ed Roski and Greg Munson. The homemade robots will battle against each other in a single elimination tournament until there is one champion. The ten episode series will feature next generation robots - bigger, faster and stronger than ever before. The show will continue to emphasize the design and build elements of each robot, the bot builder backstories, their intense pursuit of the championship and the spectacle of the event. While there's only one weight-class, there are a huge variety of deadly weapons. Forty-eight robots will enter, but, in the end, only one will win the final trophy. Executive producers are Lloyd Braun, Chris Cowan, Edward P. Roski (Trey), Greg Munson and Aaron Catling.

The Futon Critic

posted 4/18/16

Mastermind Returns to NZ
Peter Williams to Host New Series
From Stuff

Mastermind is returning to Kiwi TVs after being taken off the air in the early 90s.

New Mastermind host Peter Williams has revealed the 2016 version of the popular quiz show will feature a major format change.

Back on TV One shortly after a 25-year absence, the show will now feature three rounds, instead of the traditional two.

"It used to be contestants got two minutes on their specialist subject and 90 seconds of general knowledge questions, but we've reduced the first round time to 90 seconds and added an extra round on a New Zealand subject area," says Williams.

"Contenders get to select from one of five topics beforehand – history, art and literature, popular culture, science and nature – including geography – or sport. It just adds a little extra piece of intrigue into each of the heats because people can come from behind or fall off the pace if they don't do so well in the second and third rounds."

That also has the effect of mitigating somewhat one of the old bugbears of the show – that someone choosing a very narrow specialist subject (say the novel Lorna Doone) would have a huge advantage over someone selecting something more ambitious (The History of Newspapers in New Zealand).

Williams admits that there are some quite narrow topics this time around, especially sports ones like the Rugby World Cups of 1987 and 2011 and the Cricket World Cups from 1992 onwards.

"Interestingly the life and music of David Bowie [the topic that helped celebrity "quiz kid" Hamish McDouall win the title in 1990] has come up again, although the questions are quite different now because of the 25 years of music and work Bowie did in the interim."

Kiwi audiences will soon be able to see 32 contestants will take the Mastermind challenge.

Stuff

posted 4/18/16

A Make or Break Pilot for Alan Carr
Comic Lined Up for C4 Game
From Chortle

Alan Carr is set to host a new comedy game show for Channel 4.

The Chatty Man star will be recording an initial episode of Make Or Break next month.

It is part of the £5million ‘golden handcuffs’ deal Carr signed with the broadcaster to keep his chat show on air until the end of 2017.

At the time, a source said: ‘Alan is so popular he will be doing way more than just Chatty Man over the next two years.’

Nothing is known about the new show, but fans have been invited to apply for free tickets to the recording of the pilot episode at the London Studios on May 1, with the promise of ‘an amazing night of fun and laughter’.

Carr previously hosted the gameshow Celebrity Ding Dong, which ran for two series in 2008, where famous people took on members of the public, and in 2014 he hosted the talent show The Singer Takes It All – although neither format took off.

Channel 4 moved Chatty Man to Thursday nights for this series to avoid a clash with Graham Norton on BBC One – but at a cost to ratings; with overnight audiences of around 700,000 – half a million down on the last run.

Chortle

posted 4/18/16

Monday Lightning Round
... or "Losing It"

  • Would you take weight loss advice from JD Roth? (TV Insider)
     

  • ICYMI: Vin Scully reading a grocery list (CBS Sports)
     

  • Cheryl Burke said that Ian Ziering made her want to slit her wrists... (TMZ).... right before apologizing for making light of suicide (E!)
     

  • YOU CAN'T MAKE THIS $@&! UP: busted dealer claims he won his money from "Deal or No Deal" (BBC News)
     

  • Ronnie Corbett: a final farewell (Telegraph)
     

  • It's taking a lot to keep Daryl Somers "back in the room" (News.com.au)
     

  • CBS Daytime launches "Not Safe for Daytime" (Broadway World)
     

  • Holly Willoughby hosts Bradley Walsh vs. Richard Osman (Daily Express)
     

  • Eamonn Holmes on life after double hip replacement (Daily Record)
     

  • "University Challenge": not the show your parents watched, apparently (Daily Telegraph)
     

  • Michael Barrymore calls gimmick infringement on Bradley Walsh (The Sun)
     

  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Alex Trebek... on his 50th year of game show hosting (MPR News)

posted 4/18/16

Fast Food Competition: Part 2
Food Network Fast-Tracks "Cooks vs. Cons" for Season 2 This Summer
From Variety

Food Network has put its reality-competition series “Cooks vs. Cons” back into production for a second season that will debut this summer.

The Scripps Networks-owned outlet said the series, currently in the midst of a six-episode debut run, has notched double-digit increases in viewers between 25 and 54 and in viewers between 25 and 34.

In the series, home cooks battle with trained professionals, whose true identities are concealed, for a panel of judges. Only after the panel’s decision is revealed do the contestants reveal who they really are. Chef Geoffrey Zakarian hosts the hour-long episodes. Judges have included Kardea Brown, Josh Elkin, Graham Elliot and Daphne Oz. They make decisions based on taste and presentation.

“It’s not as easy as one might think and it absolutely proved to be engaging,” said Didi O’Hearn, senior vice president of programming, Food Network & Cooking Channel, in a prepared statement. “We are thrilled with how the series launched ” The series is produced by Cakehouse Media.

Under the aegis of Kathleen Finch, Scripps Networks’ chief programming, brand and content officer, Food Network has pursued more competition programming, particularly ideas aimed at luring families to the cable network’s 8 p.m. hour. Zakarian, a popular restaurateur, has been featured in such Food Network series as “Chopped” and “Iron Chef.”

Variety

posted 4/15/16

THURSDAY: Rocky Start for "Grit"
ABC Wins on TGIT
From the Futon Critic

ABC (6.916 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.8, #1) staked claim to the top spot on Thursday with a new "Grey's Anatomy" (8.103 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.2, #T1), a second "Grey's Anatomy" (7.838 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.2, #T1) and "The Catch" (4.808 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.0, #8).

CBS (6.341 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.3, #2) then had to settle for second place with a repeat "The Big Bang Theory" (8.540 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T3) followed by originals from "The Odd Couple" (7.204 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T3), "Mom" (7.512 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T3), "2 Broke Girls" (6.280 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T3) and "Rush Hour" (4.256 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T9).

Next up was NBC (4.592 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.0, #3) and its new lineup of "STRONG" (3.240 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T11), "The Blacklist" (6.561 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.3, #7) and "Game of Silence" (3.975 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T11).

Meanwhile, FOX (3.395 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.9, #4) offered up the return of "Bones" (4.357 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T9) and the launch of "American Grit" (2.434 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T11).

And finally, new episodes of "DC's Legends of Tomorrow" (2.026 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.7, #14) and "The 100" (1.130 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.4, #15) on The CW (1.578 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.5, #5) closed out the night.

On cable...
- Project Runway All-Stars (Lifetime): 1.376 million
- Lip Sync Battle (Syfy): 1.207 million
- Beat Bobby Flay (Food): 1.128 million
- Alone (History/S): 1.096 million
- Cooks vs. Cons (Food): 1.069 million
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy): 374,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/15/16

More on "Coupled"
Catch It May 17 on Fox
From TV Insider

Fox and Mark Burnett (the über-producer behind reality franchises Survivor, The Voice, The Apprentice) are teaming up to showcase dating in the modern era with the new series Coupled. Terrence J is set to host the new unscripted series.

Coupled brings modern dating techniques to the reality show stage: every contestant is equipped with a cell phone, so texts, videos and photos are part of how the potential romances unfold. (And naturally, the conversations and content won't stay private.)

Additionally, with groups of men and women in the mix, neither gender holds the power over how the relationships evolve.

Intrigued? Fox will air its first promo for Coupled during the American Idol series finale. And in the meantime, check out the exclusive key art (above) for the new reality series.

Coupled premieres Tuesday, May 17 at 9/8c on Fox.

TV Insider
The Futon Critic

posted 4/15/16

Happy Friday Lightning Round
... or "Big Shots... or Wannabes?"

  • NBC, Fox learn, it's hard out here for a reality show pimp (Deadline)
     

  • LIST ABUSE: 9 things you didn't know about "The Chase" (BT)

posted 4/15/16

WEDNESDAY: "STRONG" Is Anything But
Fox, CBS Split Night; NBC's New Entry DOA
From Men's Fitness

FOX (7.234 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.5, #1) was the demo champ on Wednesday with its original duo of "Rosewood" (4.421 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.2, #10) and "Empire" (10.047 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 3.8, #1).

CBS (8.488 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.7, #2) then claimed the silver with its mix of "Survivor: Kaoh Rong" (8.516 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.9, #3), "Criminal Minds" (8.900 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T5) and "Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders" (8.048 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.5, #9).

Next up was ABC (5.758 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.5, #3) and its quintet of "The Middle" (6.840 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T5), "The Goldbergs" (6.200 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.8, #4), "Modern Family" (7.410 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 2.2, #2), "Black-ish" (5.708 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.6, #8) and "Nashville" (4.196 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T11).

Meanwhile, NBC (5.205 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.2, #4) offered up a special "The Voice" (8.819 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T5) followed by the premiere of "STRONG" (3.723 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T11) and a second "STRONG" (3.072 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.9, #13).

And finally, repeats of "Arrow" (1.068 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.3, #T14) and "Supernatural" (0.931 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.3, #T14) on The CW (0.999 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.3, #5) closed out the night.

On cable...
- Face Off (Syfy/SF): 1.023 million
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy): 339,000

Men's Fitness
TV Insider
The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/14/16

TV One Plays "Dating Games"
Upfront for African-American Network Held
From Mediapost

TV One intends to continue growing its slate of originals in both scripted and non-scripted categories, including its first original scripted drama. The network is also continuing and strengthening its commitment to TV-movie production, vowing to premiere 26 original movies in the 2016-17 season, according to D’Angela Proctor, senior vice president of original programming and production.

No details about TV One’s new drama series were forthcoming, however. In her portion of Thursday morning’s presentation, Proctor indicated that the project has not reached the announcement stage in its development. But she promised that the show-runner would be someone with a track record that would impress. Expect an announcement in the next few weeks.

TV One was able to announce two new reality shows, plus a game show. One of the reality shows is “Sneaker Pawn,” about a 16 year-old African-American entrepreneur in New York who has become a dealer in high-end, collectible sneakers -- a business in which he employs his own father. The other reality show is “Family Bond” about another family business -- a North Carolina bail bonds firm.

TV One’s new game show is called “The Dating Games.” It will have teams of contestants watching video of two people on a date, and then hazarding guesses about the the couple’s status, their relationship and their prospects for more dates. The winning team is the one that makes the most correct guesses.

Mediapost

posted 4/14/16

Keshet, Talpa Deal
Formats Sold Abroad
From Realscreen

Israeli producer-distributor Keshet International has finalized a format deal with Vietnam’s TTN Media Corporation for the youth-focused musical talent show Master Class (pictured).

The weekly talent format features 16 children – aged eight to 14 – performing popular songs to only positive reviews at a music school and its auditorium. The children, who do not face elimination challenges, are mentored by four of the country’s top music artists in a nurturing environment in order to make the most of their potential.

The localized version of the format will air on the HTV3 channel in Vietnam.

Originally created in Israel by Yoav Tzafir, Tmira Yardeni and Zvika Hadar, the format has previously been adapted by TV2 in Hungary, MegaTV Channel in Greece, and China’s Yunnan TV and Beijing Satellite TV.

Armoza’s “Marry Me Now” walks the aisle in two territories

Talpa Media’s game show format Battle of the Sexes has been acquired by Lithuania’s LNK TV. The format, which first aired on RTL4 in the Netherlands, pits four male and female celebrities against one another in a series of challenges and question rounds revolving around perceived differences in how each gender thinks, feels and acts.

The Northern European country is the seventh territory to acquire the gender competition format following acquisitions by China, Germany, Russia, Czech Republic, Ukraine and the Netherlands.

Realscreen

posted 4/14/16

Thursday Lightning Round
... or "The Beginning of the End"

  • CBS' finales get dates:

  • BRUTALLY HONEST REVIEW: "American Grit" (Fox) (Time)
     

  • "The Voice UK" has a new problem... where does it go on ITV's schedule (Radio Times)
     

  • Dermot O'Leary may have gotten his "X Factor" job back, but at the cost of... well, dinner (Telly Mix)
     

  • VIDEO WALL: a precision F-bomb during "The Chase" (OK!) PLUS taking a low offer will open you up to being called a wuss (Mirror)
     

  • Tony Barber recalls the time a champion died on set (News.com.au)
     

  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with @midnight champ Ron Funches (Leafly) and "Modd Couples" host David Millbern (Outtake)

posted 4/14/16

TUESDAY: This Is ... Weird
NBC Squeaks By CBS for the Win
From The Futon Critic

NBC (9.315 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.0, #1) was the network to beat on Tuesday with an expanded two-hour "The Voice" (10.707 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.2, #1) followed by a new "Game of Silence" (6.531 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.5, #2).

CBS (9.306 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.2, #2) then claimed the silver with its repeat lineup of "NCIS: New Orleans" (9.002 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T4), "NCIS" (9.925 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.3, #3) and another "NCIS: New Orleans" (8.994 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T4).

Next up was ABC (2.740 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T3) and second runs of "Fresh Off the Boat" (3.509 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 0.8, #9) and "The Real O'Neals" (2.727 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 0.7, #10) followed by originals from "Marvel's Agents of SHIELD" (3.011 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.0, #7) and "Beyond the Tank" (2.092 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T11).

Meanwhile, FOX (2.013 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T3) offered up its quartet of "New Girl" (2.631 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.1, #6), a repeat "Grandfathered" (1.651 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T11), "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" (2.136 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.9, #8) and "The Grinder" (1.634 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T11).

And finally, a new "iZombie" (1.403 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T14) and the season finale of "iZombie" (1.228 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T14) on The CW (1.316 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.5, #5) closed out the night.

On cable:
- Ink Master (Spike): 1.214 million
- Chopped Champions (Food): 1.086 million
- Ink Master: Redemption (Spike): 759,000
- America's Greatest Makers (TBS): 522,000
- Idiotest (GSN/SP): 397,000
- Idiotest (GSN/10:30p): 358,000
- Separation Anxiety (TBS): 333,000
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy): 330,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/13/16

A Jugar Para Azteca
"La Hora Ganadora", "Ahora Caigo" Lined Up
From Multichannel News

Azteca America, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mexican broadcaster TV Azteca, S.A.B de Cv., one of the two largest producers of Spanish-language content in the world, kicked off the New York leg of its “Game On!” 2016-2017 Upfront tour tonight by announcing a roster of entertaining family game shows, adventure reality programming, thrilling dramas and spectacular sporting events as well as innovative ways to reach consumers through a new advertising production arm. The announcements were made by Azteca America executives Manuel Abud, President and Chief Executive Officer, and Craig Geller, Executive Vice President, Network Sales and Digital. They were joined by popular network talent Verónica del Castillo (co-host of “Al Extremo”), Rafael Mercadante (co-host of “Escape Perfecto”), network sports journalist Inéz Sainz, and the voice of Liga MX on Azteca, Christian Martinoli (co-host of “Primetime Fútbol”), at the Gramercy Hotel.

The network, which ended 2015 as the fastest-growing Spanish-language network in primetime with 41 percent growth among adults 18-49 and 44 percent growth among adults 18-34, is showcasing its new programming and digital offerings to advertisers in four key markets – Los Angeles, Chicago, New York and Dallas – via customized, solutions-based presentations emphasizing Azteca’s reach as a multiplatform, data-driven media company.

“Azteca America enters this upfront season on the heels of delivering its best March ratings in five years across all key demos in primetime,” said Abud. “We have made good on all of last year’s promises and our ‘Game On!’ theme underscores our proven counter-programming strategy, further solidifying our position as an entertainment leader in the U.S.”

This year welcomes the return of the incredibly successful 7PM family hour, La Hora Ganadora (The Winning Hour) with the debut of “Ahora Caigo” (pictured). The 8PM adventure reality block features the new international adventure reality show “Desafío” followed later in the evening at the 10PM hour by the riveting drama series “Rabia.” They join “Al Extremo” and “Primetime Futbol” two of the network’s most successful franchises, to round out a compelling programming slate that appeals to U.S. Hispanic audiences of all ages and programming tastes.

- On the heels of a successful debut year, La Hora Ganadora (The Winning Hour) returns to the 7PM hour, or “win-o’clock” hour, with a 60-minute block of interactive programming for the entire family to enjoy.

- New to La Hora Ganadora, “Ahora Caigo” is a crossword-style game show where a single contestant (the “Hero”) tries to beat 10 other individuals (the “Strangers”) for a chance to win a grand prize. Watch as they try to solve the puzzle and beat the 20 second clock!

Multichannel News
Variety
World Screen
Mediapost

posted 4/13/16

Wednesday Lightning Round
... or "Nice To See You"

  • Bruce Forsyth gets his kudos on "The Interviews" (BT)
     

  • John Barrowman to resurrect "Torchwood"... in comics form (Bleeding Cool)
     

  • Nigel Barker reveals he was sexually assaulted as a child (People)
     

  • CASTING COUCH: "Paradise Run" casting on Kauai (The Garden Island)
     

  • "Game ng Bayan" is one month and goodnight (Inquirer.net)
     

  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Robin Slonina (Las Vegas Review-Journal)

posted 4/13/16

SYNDIES: Week 29
Results for the Week Ending April 3
From B&C

Syndies were mostly back to regular scheduling in the week ended April 3 with March Madness near its end and news preemptions at a minimum, but weeks of repeats, spring sunshine and daylight saving time kept ratings for most shows down or flat.

In access, nearly all of the game shows improved from the prior week when they faced preemptions and competition from NCAA basketball.

Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud and CTD’s Wheel of Fortune tied for the lead at a 6.7, with Feud up 5% for the week and Wheel up 18%. CTD’s Jeopardy! had 15% more buzz at a 6.3 for second place.

Debmar-Mercury’s Celebrity Name Game improved 8% to a 1.4. Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to Be a Millionaire was unchanged for the week at a 1.3.

B&C
TV Newscheck

posted 4/12/16

BuzzerFeed
BuzzFeed to Develop Game Show on Facebook Live
From Variety

BuzzFeed is working on a game show concept for Facebook Live, founder and CEO Jonah Peretti revealed on stage at Facebook’s f8 developer conference in San Francisco on Tuesday. Peretti said during a fireside chat with Facebook’s chief product officer that BuzzFeed is thinking about a number of additional uses for live video streaming, including the possibility to broadcast more content directly from BuzzFeed’s offices around the world.

Peretti said that one option could be to turn live feeds from BuzzFeed’s offices into a kind of worldwide reality show, constantly giving readers a view at what’s going on within the company. This could include live sets from artists visiting BuzzFeed offices, but also company parties and even mishaps like employees getting stuck in elevators. “It can have a really cool effect on the company culture too,” Peretti said.

BuzzFeed pushed the envelope of Facebook Live a few days ago when a live stream of an exploding watermelon attracted an audience of up to 800,000 concurrent live viewers. Peretti said that this was the first time that he had seen live audiences similar to the ones tuning into TV shows for online content since he he began working in media.

Variety

posted 4/12/16

MONDAY: New Week, Same Result
ABC, CBS Split The Week Opener
From the Futon Critic

NBC (8.661 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.0, #1) was still the demo champ on Monday with new episodes of "The Voice" (10.151 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.2, #1) and "Blindspot" (5.683 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.4, #4).

ABC (10.420 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.7, #2) then was the number two draw with its duo of "Dancing with the Stars" (12.358 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.0, #2) and "Castle" (6.545 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T8).

Next up was CBS (7.594 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.4, #3) and its trio of "Supergirl" (6.204 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T5), "Scorpion" (8.494 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.6, #3) and "NCIS: Los Angeles" (8.085 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T5).

Meanwhile, FOX (3.574 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.1, #4) offered up originals from "Gotham" (3.680 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.2, #7) and "Lucifer" (3.469 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T8).

And finally, new episodes of "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend" (1.318 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.4, #11) and "Jane the Virgin" (1.411 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.5, #10) on The CW (1.364 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.5, #5) closed out the night.

On cable...
- Cupcake Wars (Food/SP): 796,000
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy): 327,000
- RuPaul's Drag Race (Logo): 326,000
- Gay for Play Game Show Starring RuPaul (Logo/P): 183,000
- Gay for Play Game Show Starring RuPaul (Logo/10:30p): 137,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/12/16

WEEKEND: Big Eyes
Mainstays Help CBS Win
From the Futon Critic

CBS (8.062 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T1) was the most-watched network on Friday with its mainstays "The Amazing Race" (5.595 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T3), "Hawaii Five-0" (8.471 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T3) and "Blue Bloods" (10.121 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T1).

Sharing the demo crown was ABC (5.293 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T1) with originals from "Last Man Standing" (6.360 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T6), "Dr. Ken" (4.706 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T8), "Shark Tank" (5.342 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T1) and "20/20" (5.005 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T3).

Next up was NBC (4.060 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 0.9, #3) with a repeat "Caught on Camera with Nick Cannon" (3.232 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T11) alongside new episodes of "Grimm" (4.494 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T6) and "Dateline NBC" (4.455 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T8).

Meanwhile, FOX (2.812 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.7, #4) offered up the season finale of "Sleepy Hollow" (2.913 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T11) and a new "Hell's Kitchen" (2.711 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.8, #10).

And finally, fresh installments of "The Vampire Diaries" (1.170 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T13) and "The Originals" (1.138 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T13) on The CW (1.154 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.4, #5) closed out the night.

On cable...
- Celebrity Name Game (Pop/R): 133,000
- Binge Thinking (MTV2): 106,000

On Sunday...
- Spring Baking Championship (Food/SP): 1.527 million
- Guy's Grocery Games (Food): 1.137 million
- Cutthroat Kitchen (Food): 1.096 million

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/12/16


Blogpreston.org.uk
DAVID GEST: 1953-2016
Former Husband of Liza Minnelli A Star of "Celebrity Big Brother"
From AP/Salt Lake Tribune

David Gest, a music producer, reality TV star and former husband of Liza Minnelli, was found dead Tuesday at a London hotel. He was 62.

Gest's friend Imad Handi confirmed his death, remembering Gest as "a natural star and a genuine celebrity."

"David was truly larger than life. He was not just a huge talent and a dear friend but a showbiz icon," Handi said.

The Metropolitan Police force said officers were called to "reports of an unexplained death of a man in his 60s" at the Four Seasons Hotel in London's Canary Wharf on Tuesday morning.

The force said an autopsy would take place "in due course" to determine the cause of death, but it was not being treated as suspicious.

Born in 1953, Gest was raised in southern California, where he became friends with Michael Jackson and his family. He worked as a music promoter and television producer, and was introduced to Minnelli by Jackson when Gest produced the King of Pop's 30th anniversary tribute concert for television in 2001.

The couple married in 2002, at a celebrity-studded ceremony with Jackson as best man and Elizabeth Taylor as maid of honor.

They separated in a burst of headline-grabbing acrimony in 2003. Gest sued Minnelli for $10 million, alleging that she beat him so badly during alcoholic rages that he suffered permanent injuries. Minnelli struck back with a $2 million suit claiming Gest had stolen money from her.

The pair ended their dispute in 2007 when their lawyers filed court papers saying they had settled their differences and agreed to divorce without fault.

AP/Salt Lake Tribune
Newser
The Straits Times
Digital Spy
RTE
Guardian

posted 4/12/16

Tuesday Lightning Round
... or "The Fantasy Suite"

  • Mike Fleiss is looking for love... or rather, someone to love his Hawaiian villa (Los Angeles Times)
     

  • Howie Mandel checks out "Deal or No Deal" the slot in Foxwoods (Norwich Bulletin)
     

  • Paul Daniels joking to the bitter end (RTE)
     

  • CROWNING MOMENT OF AWESOME: Australian policeman sets a new "Hot Seat" record (9News)

posted 4/12/16

A Big Day For Gay-me Shows
"Gay For Play Game Show Starring RuPaul" Premieres Tonight on Logo!
From AV Club

The eighth season of RuPaul’s Drag Race has brought with it a few milestones, including the series’ 100th episode and 100th queen. Drag Race will soon be joined by another RuPaul creation that, while not exactly a spin-off of the show, is still part of the Drag Universe (not to be confused with the Drag U-verse). With the “Snatch Game” now established as one of the most anticipated parts of any Drag Race competition, creator RuPaul is launching the Gay For Play Game Show Starring RuPaul, a half-hour trivia game show that borrows more than just set design from its predecessors.

Gay For Play’s trivia showdown takes place in front of a live studio audience, and not just a rotating lineup of judges led by RuPaul. But the mononymous ringleader still deftly trades quips with the panelists, including Drag Race fixture Michelle Visage (taking the Charles Nelson Reilly seat on the upper right hand side of the panel) and frequent guest judges Carson Kressley and Ross Matthews, as well as viral sensation Todrick Hall. Fans of the Drag Race panel’s dynamic and asides will get a kick out of the Gay For Play interactions, which include plenty of wisecracking from Drag Race season seven runner-up and Miss Congeniality Katya who, if there’s any justice in the world, will get her own spin-off soon enough.

AV Club
Broadway World
Zap2it
Flavorwire
TV Insider
The Daily Beast

posted 4/11/16

Kids Play With Fire for Fun and Profit
Food Network Greenlights "Kids BBQ Championship"
From the Futon Critic

Eight of the country's finest young BBQers cook it out in the first-ever battle to find the best kid grill master in the new primetime series Kids BBQ Championship, premiering Monday May 23rd at 8pm ET/PT. During the six-episode season, hosts Camila Alves and Eddie Jackson lead the young chefs through a series of red-hot challenges testing their BBQ skills and creativity on the grill - and only one competitor takes home the grand prize: $20,000 and a feature in Food Network Magazine. With themes ranging from a Hawaiian luau competition to a cowboy campfire challenge, each episode also features some of the biggest names in BBQ as guest judges.

"The competitors may be under the age of thirteen, but their BBQ skills are over the top," said Didi O'Hearn, Senior Vice President Programming, Food Network. "Camila and Eddie are the perfect duo to lead the culinary action in this fun, fiery and family-friendly addition to the primetime lineup."

Kids BBQ Championship competitors are: Josie Burkhardt (Medford, New Jersey; age 11), Sydney Groves (Euharlee, Georgia; age 10), Paris Hale (Johns Creek, Georgia; age 11), Tyler Zager (Weston, Florida; age 11), Carter Hull (Austin, Texas; age 12), Ty Machado (Seguin, Texas; age 13), L.J. Ruth (Tampa, Florida; age 11) and Jacob Scott (Yahoo City, Mississippi; age 12).

The Futon Critic

posted 4/11/16

Monday Lightning Round
... or "You Better Check Yourself..."

  • Alex Trebek thinks he can play Turd Ferguson (USA Today) plus there's only one Power Player in DC... (Daily Gazette/Washington Post)
     

  • Maks Chmerkovskiy to judge DWTS, or, as the Eagles once sang, "You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave" (ABC News)
     

  • BRUTALLY HONEST REVIEW: American Grit (Fox, Thursday) PLUS a few good minutes with John Cena (TV Insider)
     

  • Simon Cowell is going to shove Ant & Dec down our American gullets if it's the last thing he does (Mirror)
     

  • Tiffany Bolton, the announcer/sidekick on "Beat the Geeks", has resurfaced as a "Real Housewife" (Bustle)

posted 4/11/16


FremantleMedia North America
THURSDAY: The Final Curtain Call
Idol's Long Day's Journey Into Night Gives Fox the Win
From various sources

 American Idol finished its15th and "farewell" (not "final") season on Thursday (April 7) with a little something for everybody.

There were dozens of performances, from Idol veterans both recognizable and confusing, categorized in ways that made a lot of sense, a little sense and no sense at all.

There were cameos from people both extremely memorable and not the least bit memorable in American Idol lore.

There was a result which must've made collective "America" pleased, but ticked off my Twitter feed and was certainly the wrong choice in my opinion.

And we got a twist. Kinda. Ryan Seacrest finished things up with an initially heartfelt, "And one more time... This is so tough... We say to you from Hollywood... Good night, America..." Then, after a cutaway, Seacrest added (possibly pre-recorded), "For now."

FOX (12.937 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 3.0, #1) was the top draw on Thursday with a new "American Idol" (11.738 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.6, #3) followed by the series finale of "American Idol" (14.137 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 3.3, #1).

CBS (7.316 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T2) then was the number two network with its mix of "The Big Bang Theory" (13.240 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 3.0, #2), the season premiere of "The Odd Couple" (7.816 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.6, #6), "Mom" (7.296 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.5, #7), "2 Broke Girls" (5.889 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.4, #8) and "Rush Hour" (4.827 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.9, #11).

Next up was ABC (6.028 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T2) and its trio of "Grey's Anatomy" (7.295 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 2.1, #4), "Scandal" (5.900 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.7, #5) and "The Catch" (4.889 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.1, #10).

Meanwhile, NBC (4.881 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.9, #4) offered up repeats of "Little Big Shots" (4.545 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T12) and "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (3.855 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T12) bookended around a new "The Blacklist" (6.244 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.2, #9).

And finally, The CW (1.645 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.6, #5) closed out the night with originals from "DC's Legends of Tomorrow" (2.026 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.7, #14) and "The 100" (1.265 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.5, #15).

On cable...
- Project Runway All-Stars (Lifetime): 1.342 million
- Beat Bobby Flay (Food): 1.125 million
- Lip Sync Battle (Spike): 1.096 million
- Cooks vs. Cons (Food): 979,000
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy): 371,000

The Futon Critic
The Futon Critic
The Hollywood Reporter
The Hollywood Reporter
People
Vulture
E!
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/8/16

Happy Friday Lightning Round
... or "For Now"

  • The BBC looks to the US for its next Saturday night hit (The Guardian)
     

  • Brendon Villegas & Rachel Reilly welcome new baby (Us Magazine)
     

  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Ray J (All Hip-Hop)

posted 4/8/16


FremantleMedia North America
WEDNESDAY: And Then There Was One
Idol's Long Day's Journey Into Night Gives Fox the Win
From various sources

Although ratings and interest have waned in recent seasons, “American Idol” had been a cultural juggernaut for many years, crowning superstar musicians and bringing in over 30 million viewers at its peak.

After 15 seasons, the Fox singing competition will end its run in a three-part finale, with a retrospective episode Tuesday night and the crowning of a winner on Thursday.

That “American Idol” actually accomplished one of the things it set out to do—find and celebrate new talent—remains an integral part of its legacy. The track record of other U.S. singing competition shows is hit-or-miss: “The Voice” hasn’t been as strong, despite drawing from a deep talent pool, although current pop darlings Fifth Harmony are alums of “The X Factor.” (Internationally, things are much different, as both One Direction and Little Mix are reality music show alums.) Pre-fab pop music, whether formed by a TV show or a label, has always been stigmatized as being somehow less authentic or even fake. Although “American Idol” didn’t completely erase this perception, it did wonders to underscore that it doesn’t matter how or where a musician was discovered, as long as the talent is there.

As a Stereogum post on the show points out, “American Idol” also revolutionized TV, in that it “hybridized two primetime mainstays, the game show and the reality show, creating a genre that has flourished to the point that we now accept it as one of the foundational pillars of primetime programming.” Early in its tenure, this combination also produced big ratings for Fox, a sign that the show’s underlying, addictive conceit—watching regular people possibly be plucked from obscurity and elevated to stardom—had vast mass appeal. It’s easy to see why: “American Idol” first and foremost appealed to the collective, enduring affection people have for fairy tales. The show craftily let viewers learn about the personal lives of the contestants (albeit in a shiny, packaged way), which made for good TV and made them relatable. As a result, people were invested enough to pick up a phone (and, later, text) in support of a favorite singer. No wonder so many contestants developed loyal fanbases who, even to this day, follow and support their own idols.

Although that same Stereogum article criticizes the show because it didn’t change music, “American Idol” reflected tastes more than it refracted them. That often led to unpopular winners and early exits for favorites, of course, as well as accusations of voter racism and criticism when the show was suspected of trying to steer the results by employing ringers. But the ideals held up by “American Idol,” that people have the ability to choose and support favorites, are influential. Sure, things could get dicey in terms of post-show success, but because the initial boost comes from popular support, not beancounters or Svengalis, there’s at least the illusion of power in play. This idea would soon saturate the way we consume media, and it explains why the show became an online phenomenon, with writers and fans dissecting the show’s every move on message boards and blogs. Indeed, it’s important to remember the time period in which “American Idol” started was very different: Napster was kaput, Friendster was the charming online network of choice and MySpace was still several years away from widespread popularity. In other words, the show was pre-everything social and viral—e.g., Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Snapchat, Vine.

FOX (10.454 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 3.2, #1) was the top draw on Wednesday thanks to the penultimate "American Idol" (9.580 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.2, #T2) and a new "Empire" (11.329 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 4.2, #1).

ABC (5.711 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.5, #2) then achieved the silver with its mix of "The Middle" (6.905 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.7, #6), "The Goldbergs" (6.138 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.8, #5), "Modern Family" (7.413 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.2, #T2), "Black-ish" (5.510 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.6, #7) and "Nashville" (4.151 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.0, #10).

Next up was CBS (7.761 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.4, #3) with originals from "Survivor: Kaoh Rong" (9.016 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.9, #4), "Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders" (7.327 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T8) and another "Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders" (6.940 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T8).

Meanwhile, NBC (3.916 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.8, #4) offered up a new "Heartbeat" (3.983 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T14) alongside repeats of "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (3.850 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T11) and "Chicago PD" (3.916 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T11).

And finally, new episodes of "Arrow" (2.242 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T11) and "Supernatural" (1.763 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T14) on The CW (2.003 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.7, #5) closed out the night.

On cable...
- Face Off (Syfy/SF): 817,000
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy): 347,000

New York Times
New York Times
Popdust
Salon
Vocativ
Vulture
The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/7/16

Italy Bursts for "Bubble"
Israeli Series Heads to Europe
From C21 Media

Italian production outfit Pesci Combattenti has acquired its first international format, an Israeli gameshow.

The Bubble, developed by Armoza Formats in cooperation with Avri Gilad, isolates contestants for a week before bringing them to the studio and presenting them with the week’s current affairs to decide fact from fiction.

The show has already been adapted in countries including Denmark, Sweden, the Netherlands and on the UK’s BBC, while a 30-episode season is also airing on Croatian pubcaster HRT. No broadcaster has yet been named for the Italian version.

Riccardo Mastropietro, CEO of Pesci Combattenti, said: “Having developed our own original formats in the last years, and as a well-known creative production company in Italy, we are thrilled to be taking this new step forward in bringing this successful format to Italy.

Wonder_kids
“We believe that The Bubble will be a perfect fit for the Italian audiences that we know so well, and look forward to adapting it in partnership with Armoza Formats.”

C21 Media

posted 4/7/16

Resell Me The Answer
Asianet Picks Up Season 2 of "Sell Me The Answer"
From Indian Television

On 4 April, the Star Networks Malayalam general entertainment channel Asianet launched the second season of quiz based show Sell Me The Answer . The show airs every Monday to Thursday between 9.00 and 10.00pm. The show tests the knowledge of the contestant more than her or his brain power claims the channel.

Like the previous season, Sell Me The Answer will run through 80 episodes. Participants have been selected through an audition process, a written exam, interview and a phone in.

The show has popular Malayalam actor Mukesh as the celebrity quiz master to conduct the show. Mukesh was also the quiz master for season one. Mukesh is already hosting a comedy show on Asianet titled Badhai Bunglow.

The quiz based show demands that the contestant to utilize both their IQ and EQ. Asianet says that the format of Sell me the Answer on Asianet is unique and different from the previous quiz shows as the show gives opportunity for both the contestants and the traders to win the prize money, with their knowledge as well as confidence. As per the format, there are 10 questions, 10 answers and one can answer these questions with or without the help of traders.

Indian Television

posted 4/7/16

Thursday Lightning Round
... or "One Man, One Stage"

  • Marc Summers takes the stage... and the slime (Playbill)
     

  • WHY THE BLEEP IS THIS NEWS?: Amanda Holden waxes someone's chest (Digital Spy) plus more "Got More Talent" mayhem this weekend (Telly Mix)
     

  • It's a fact of life: the sky is blue, water is wet, bears do their business in the woods, and Twitter has a problem with "The Chase" (Metro)
     

  • Tom Cohen goes from "Cash Cab" to fighting against leaf blowers (DCist)
     

  • LIST ABUSE: the 14 gayest moments in all of game shows (NewNowNext)
     

  • Simon Cowell named in the Panama Papers... In a near-miss (Newsweek)
     

  • Jeff Schroeder & Jordan Lloyd finally get married... and got busy (Entertainment Tonight)
     

  • BRUTALLY HONEST REVIEW: Chasing Destiny (BET) (New York Post)
     

  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Chris Hardwick (New York Times)

posted 4/7/16

SYNDIES: Week 28
Results for the Week Ending March 27
From B&C

CBS (11.237 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.6, #1) pulled into the top spot on Tuesday with new episodes of "NCIS" (15.362 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.0, #1), "NCIS: New Orleans" (12.162 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.7, #2) and "Limitless" (6.190 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T7).

NBC (7.185 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.5, #2) then was a close second with a "The Voice" (6.707 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.3, #6) recap, followed by new episodes of "Chicago Med" (7.145 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.5, #4) and "Chicago Fire" (7.703 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.6, #3).

Next up was FOX (5.144 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.3, #3) with a special edition of "American Idol" (5.917 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.4, #5) and a new "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" (2.824 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T10).

Meanwhile, ABC (2.917 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.8, #4) offered up originals from "Fresh Off the Boat" (4.196 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T7), "The Real O'Neals" (3.657 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.0, #9), "Marvel's Agents of SHIELD" (2.869 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T10) and "Beyond the Tank" (1.957 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.5, #12).

And finally, a repeat of "The Flash" (1.370 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T13) and a new "iZombie" (1.077 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T13) on The CW (1.223 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.4, #5) closed out the night.

On cable...
- Chopped Champions (Food): 1.165 million
- Ink Master (Spike): 1.115 million
- Chasing Destiny (BET/P): 720,000
- Ink Master: Redemption (Spike): 675,000
- Separation Anxiety (TBS): 341,000
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy): 334,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/6/16


TV Guide
"Room" For Taye Diggs
Fox Names Host for "You're Back in the Room"
From the Futon Critic

Taye Diggs ("The Best Man Holiday") will host YOU'RE BACK IN THE ROOM (working title), the new eight-episode one-hour hypnotic comedy game show. Additionally, award-winning hypnotist Keith Barry, who stars in the original U.K. show, will join as resident hypnotist.

"The second I saw this show I knew I needed to be a part of it. It's the most unique blend of comedy and competition I've seen in years," said Diggs. "I'm also quite excited as this is a program I can watch and laugh at with my six-year-old son."

Based on the smash-hit U.K. format of the same name, YOU'RE BACK IN THE ROOM (wt) features physical comedy and unpredictable situations, as contestants work together in teams and are challenged to complete a variety of simple, everyday tasks, from frosting a cake to blowing up balloons... after being hypnotized. With big money at stake, these contestants need to work together as a team, but their entranced state causes hysterical hurdles that unwittingly sabotage their progress.

The series will begin production in July.

Taye Diggs currently stars as "Detective Terry English" in the drama series "Murder in the First," currently in its third season. Diggs recently concluded a multi-episode arc on FOX's hit drama series, ROSEWOOD, before ending his run in the title role of Broadway's "Hedwig and the Angry Inch," historically marking the first time an African-American took on the title role. He recently wrapped production on the upcoming feature film "One Shot," opposite Topher Grace. Other TV credits include "Private Practice," "Daybreak," "Will & Grace," "Ally McBeal" and "Kevin Hill." In 2013, Diggs appeared in "The Best Man Holiday," the sequel to the hit feature comedy "The Best Man," in which he also was featured. Additional film credits include "Baggage Claim," "The House on Haunted Hill" and "Go." He also is the author of two children's books.

Keith Barry is the world's leading TV hypnotist, mentalist and brain hacker. He has toured for many years showcasing his skills across the globe and has starred in over 40 international TV shows, his most recent being the U.K. version of "You're Back in the Room." Barry also starred in cable's "Deception with Keith Barry" and the Irish TV Studio series "Brain Hacker." He also has appeared many times on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" and "Conan," among others. Barry has been awarded both the prestigious Merlin Award for "Mentalist of the Year 2009," and "Best Magician in Las Vegas 2009," as voted for by the Las Vegas Review Journal. His TED talk has been in the Top 20 TED Talks since 2008 and it currently has over 10 million views on the TED Talks website and over 30 million views in total. Barry is the Chief Magic and Mentalist Consultant on the upcoming feature film "Now You See Me: The Second Act," slated to premiere in June.

"You're Back In The Room," produced by Tuesday's Child, debuted in the U.K. as the No. 1 new unscripted entertainment series in 2015, ending its first season as a Top 10 series overall. The series is currently airing its second season and the format has been produced in France, The Netherlands and Australia and optioned internationally in multiple territories, including Belgium, Brazil, Chile, Columbia, Denmark, Germany, Italy, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Portugal and Spain.

YOU'RE BACK IN THE ROOM (wt) is executive-produced by Tuesday's Child in association with BBC Worldwide Productions. Karen Smith and Joe Sungkur serve as executive producers.

The Futon Critic
TV Insider
TV Guide
B&C
Deadline
Los Angeles Times
Indiewire

posted 4/5/16


IMDB
Mark Burnett, Steve Harvey Team Up to Take on Small Business
ABC Greenlights 13 Episodes
From the Hollywood Reporter

Two of reality's biggest names are joining forces.

Mark Burnett and Steve Harvey are teaming up for a new business competition series at ABC, it was announced Tuesday.

The untitled series brings together rival entrepreneurs who competitively pitch their ideas head to head in front of a live studio audience. The audience then votes on which entrepreneur will receive funding for his or her idea. Harvey, who will serve as host, will become the “funder of dreams,” as he brings his personal business experience and encouragement.

ABC has ordered 13 episodes of the series to debut later this year. MGM Television will produce and distribute the series. Burnett will exec produce.

This will be Burnett's fourth series on ABC, joining fellow business unscripted series Shark Tank and spinoff Beyond the Tank as well as game show 500 Questions. His many other credits include Survivor and The Voice.

For Harvey, this comes off the success of Little Big Shots, which ranks as the biggest reality broadcast launch in nearly five years. He also hosts Celebrity Family Feud, which was a surprise hit for ABC last summer and was renewed for a second season. Harvey is repped by WME.

“My dream has been to work with Steve, and this is the perfect project for us to do together,” Burnett said in a statement. “He is an amazing talent and has an enormous heart for entrepreneurs, some of whom will get their business jump-started because of him.”

Added Harvey: “I’m thrilled to have another passion project on the ABC schedule. This is just the type of show that gives folks a vehicle to breathe life into their dreams.”

The Hollywood Reporter
Yahoo!
Variety
The Futon Critic

posted 4/5/16

MONDAY: Talent Showdown
Dancing, Voice Go 1-2 in Both Audiences
From The Futon Critic

NBC (8.748 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.1, #1) was the network to beat on a repeat heavy Monday with new episodes of "The Voice" (10.270 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.4, #1) and "Blindspot" (5.704 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.4, #5).

ABC (10.016 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.5, #2) then was the number two draw with its duo of "Dancing with the Stars" (11.586 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.7, #2) and "Castle" (6.878 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.2, #6).

Next up was CBS (5.923 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.1, #3) and its repeat lineup of "The Big Bang Theory" (6.805 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.5, #4), another "The Big Bang Theory" (7.135 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.6, #3), "Scorpion" (5.419 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.0, #7) and "NCIS: Los Angeles" (5.381 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 0.8, #8).

Meanwhile, FOX (1.981 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.6, #4) offered up second runs of "Gotham" (1.855 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T9) and "Lucifer" (2.108 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.6, #T9).

And finally, encores of "iZombie" (0.761 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.2, #T11) and "Jane the Virgin" (0.471 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.2, #T11) on The CW (0.616 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.2, #5) closed out the night.

On cable...
- Cake Wars (Food/SP): 796,000
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy): 352,000
- RuPaul's Drag Race (Logo): 327,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/5/16

Italy Goes "Boom"
Discovery Italy Greenlights Their Own Version
From Variety

Discovery Group Italy has licensed hit game show format “Boom!” from Keshet International in a move indicative of its expansionist ambitions in Italy’s generalist TV landscape.

Endemol Shine Italy will produce “Boom!” for Discovery’s recently rebranded and relaunched channel Nove. The format combines mind and body challenges in a high octane show that sees contestants race against a clock displayed on a replica bomb in the middle of the studio. Plan is for “Boom!” to air in a daily access prime-time slot on Nove starting this fall.

Discovery Italy Svp of programming Laura Carafoli called “Boom!” a great opportunity for new soul of channel Nove.

“We want to bring Discovery’s DNA and creativity into Italian general entertainment TV,” she added in a statement.

Variety
C21Media

posted 4/5/16


Deadline
New Season... New Host... New Fools
Alyson Hannigan to Host Season 3 of "Penn & Teller: Fool Us!"
From Entertainment Weekly

The CW Network has set its summer premiere dates, including a new cycle of PENN & TELLER: FOOL US, with new host Alyson Hannigan, the return of WHOSE LINE IS IT ANYWAY?, and Cycle Three of magic series MASTERS OF ILLUSION.

Returning Monday, July 11 (8:00-9:00pm ET/PT), PENN & TELLER: FOOL US is a one-hour competition series celebrating magic and featuring the legendary duo Penn & Teller. On each episode of PENN & TELLER: FOOL US, aspiring magicians are invited to perform their best trick to try and fool the world-famous team of Penn & Teller. Anyone who succeeds wins the right to perform with Penn & Teller in their celebrated show at the Rio Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. The live studio audience and the TV audience watch along with Penn & Teller as they try to figure out the secrets. Penn & Teller see the trick only once and have to immediately try to work it out. The live studio audience knows there are no camera tricks, secret edits or helpful camera cuts. This is all real magic. Hosted by actress Alyson Hannigan ("How I Met Your Mother," "Buffy the Vampire Slayer"), PENN & TELLER: FOOL US is created and produced by 117 PRODUCTIONS and September Films (part of DCD Media), with executive producers Penn Jillette, Teller, Peter Adam Golden and Andrew Golder.

WHOSE LINE IS IT ANYWAY? is back with all new episodes Monday, May 23 (9-9:30pm ET/PT and 9:30-10:00pm ET/PT). Hosted by comedian Aisha Tyler, WHOSE LINE IS IT ANYWAY? features cast members Ryan Stiles, Wayne Brady and Colin Mochrie, who helped make the original U.S. version of this comedy improv series such a hit. Along with a special guest comedian in each episode, the cast members must put their comedic skills to the test through a series of spontaneous improv games. Prompted only by random ideas supplied by the studio audience and host Aisha Tyler, our four performers must use the little information they have and their wild imaginations to depict different characters and an array of scenes, as well as perform songs. After each round of improvisation, Aisha will dole out points to our four performers and declare a winner at the end of every episode.

Entertainment Weekly
Deadline
The Wrap
TV Insider
The Futon Critic
Variety

posted 4/5/16

WEEKEND: Amazing Return
CBS Wins with Return of Regular Lineup
From The Futon Critic

CBS (8.162 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.1, #1) was no April Fool on Friday with the post-NCAA return of "The Amazing Race" (5.909 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T2), "Hawaii Five-0" (8.320 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T2) and "Blue Bloods" (10.257 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.2, #1).

ABC (4.499 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 0.9, #2) then was the number two draw with repeats of "Last Man Standing" (4.722 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T8), "Dr. Ken" (3.799 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T10) and "Shark Tank" (4.500 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T4) plus a new "20/20" (4.737 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T4).

Next up was NBC (3.900 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 0.8, #3) and a repeat of "Caught on Camera with Nick Cannon" (3.544 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T10) followed by originals from "Grimm" (4.094 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T6) and "Dateline NBC" (4.062 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T6).

Meanwhile, FOX (2.642 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.7, #4) offered up a new "Sleepy Hollow" (2.627 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T10) and the relocated "Hell's Kitchen" (2.657 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T8).

And finally, the return of "The Vampire Diaries" (1.169 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.5, #13) and "The Originals" (0.958 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.4, #14) on The CW (1.063 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.4, #5) closed out the night.

On cable Friday:
- Binge Thinking (MTV2/P): 70,000

On cable Sunday:
- All-Star Academy (Food/SF): 1.399 million
- Guy's Grocery Games (Food): 1.031 million
- Cutthroat Kitchen (Food): 842,000
- Steve Austin's Broken Skull Challenge (CMT): 250,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily
Showbuzz Daily

posted 4/5/16

Tuesday Lightning Round
... or "The Return of Deez Nuts"

  • LIST ABUSE: once Bradley comes to, here's a collection of the worst "Weakest Link" answers ever (Mirror)
     

  • Simon Cowell: "Idol" failed not because I left... but because Paula left (New York Daily News)
     

  • Brian Dunkleman is returning to say goodbye, according to... (TMZ)

posted 4/5/16

Rivals III: May 4
MTV Lines Up New Season of "The Challenge"
From The Futon Critic

MTV announced today that the new season of fan favorite "The Challenge: Rivals III," will return with a 90-minute premiere on Wednesday, May 4 at 10:00 PM ET/PT.

Filmed in stunning Hautulco Mexico, "The Challenge: Rivals III" brings 13 teams from "Real World," "Challenge," and "Are You the One," for a return to one of the games' most popular formats. Like every challenge, "Rivals III" requires strength, stamina, and perseverance. For the first time, each pair of bitter rivals are co-ed teams and more than ever, it's going to require mental toughness to succeed. While some rivals are able to overcome their difficulties, other pairs' animosity deepens amidst the intense competition. And this time, with $350,000 at stake, the pressure is even greater. TJ Lavin returns as the host for a season full of some of the series' craziest hook-ups, fights and the most jaw dropping twist in Challenge history.

The Futon Critic

posted 4/4/16

tWitch & Allison Go Digital with Ellen
"Kids Dance Challenge" to Launch on EllenTube
From the Hollywood Reporter

Ellen DeGeneres is going digital.

The talk-show host announced on Monday the launch of tWitch & Allison’s Dance Challenge, a new online competition series featuring dancing kids.

Hosted and judged by choreographer and Ellen DJ Stephen ‘tWitch’ Boss and his wife, Allison Holker, of Dancing With the Stars, the eight-episode digital show will follow six contestants between the ages of 10 and 14, as they perform various dance styles, including contemporary, hip-hop and pop animation. The two professionals will mentor them in teams and offer them the opportunity to work with Emmy-winning choreographer Travis Wall.

tWitch & Allison’s Dance Challenge is the first original digital series created exclusively for DeGeneres' video website, EllenTube, and produced by Ellen Digital Ventures, a partnership created by DeGeneres and the Warner Bros. Television Group. It continues the talk show's tradition of showcasing talented kids on the dance floor, and ultimately one finalist will perform on The Ellen DeGeneres Show in May.

The first episode is online right now.

The Hollywood Reporter
Worldscreen

posted 4/4/16

Aussies Head Back to "The Room"
Local Version Attracts 1.16M Viewers
From Australia Network News

Nine’s latest installment “You’re Back in the Room” debuted on television to 878,000 viewers across Australia, many of whom actually hated the show. The high metro ratings though do not stop it from being one of the most criticised shows on Aussie TV screens.

“You’re Back in the Room” had a phenomenal Sunday debut, informs Adnews. The show secured 1.16 million metro viewers, putting it in second place behind “My Kitchen Rules.” Daily Mail reveals that across the 25-54 age group alone it had attracted 878,000 viewers. The show marks the return of Daryl Somers of the “Hey Hey It’s Saturday” fame.

However, the legend could not prevent the show from getting bad reviews. Nine reveals that “You’re Back in the Room” is a hilarious game show comprising of four contestants. They have to finish a couple of tasks to win a pot of cash but there is the catch. The challenge is not a straight forward one. The contestants will be hypnotized by world-renowned Keith Barry and they will have to finish the tasks in this hypnotic state.

The show is an Aussie version of a British television game show by the same title and it also follows the footsteps of its British counterpart in getting mixed reviews. There were very few who thought yesterday’s episode was a funny one but there were many others who were angry that they had to watch the show as against the cricket finals.

Australia Network News
mUmbrella

posted 4/4/16

1000 Heartbeats to Play in the Philippines
TV5 to Air Local Adaptation
From Worldscreen

The family game show 1000 Heartbeats has landed in the Philippines following a deal between distributor Bomanbridge Media and TV5 Network.

The local adaptation of the Hungry Bear Productions format is due out on TV5 in July. Viva Communications will produce the 60 hour-long episodes. The show, which first aired on the U.K.’s ITV, sees contestants complete challenges and climb a money ladder before an allotted 1,000 heartbeats run out. Bomanbridge Media serves as an Asian consultant for Sky Vision, the international production and distribution arm of Sky, which represents the format worldwide.

“Bomanbridge is known increasingly for presenting the best formats to Asia from all parts of the world,” said Sonia Fleck, the CEO of Bomanbridge Media. “1000 Heartbeats, created by Hungry Bear Productions, brings heart-pounding excitement to the forefront. This exhilarating format is sure to become addictive for TV5’s audience and we look forward to its success.”

Worldscreen
C21Media

posted 4/4/16

MGM Sells Coupled
Fox to Air in May
From C21 Media

MGM International Television Distribution is bringing 19 formats to MipFormats and MipTV, including new dating show Coupled.

The expanded format catalogue follows US-based MGM’s acquisition of United Artists Media Group, now under the MGM Television umbrella.

Coupled, from Mark Burnett, debuts on US network Fox in May. The show follows 12 single women looking for love on a Caribbean island where they have to text other participants their conversations.

Other shows on MGM’s slate include Greatest Makers, The Apprentice and Celebrity Apprentice franchises and gameshow Generation Gap.

C21Media

posted 4/4/16

Russia in the Hunt
Shine Format Goes to NTV
From C21 Media

A Russian broadcaster has become the latest to pick up Endemol Shine Group’s hit factual format Hunted for a local remake.

NTV Channel has commissioned the show, in which groups of ordinary people go on the run while a team of investigators tries to track them down.

It will be produced by Weit Media, ESG’s production company in Russia, and air during primetime.

The original format was created by Shine TV in the UK, debuting on Channel 4. It has since sold around the world, including to CBS in the US, and is on sale at MipTV in Cannes.

Lisa Perrin, CEO of Creative Networks at ESG, said the show “really represents Endemol Shine Group at its best, with successful new formats quickly adapted by our local production companies for broadcasters around the world to suit their own culture and budgets.”

Yulia Sumacheva, CEO of Weit Media, added: “Hunted is a fascinating and bold social experiment and we have no doubt the audience in Russia will be completely gripped with this authentic real-life thriller.”

C21Media

posted 4/4/16

TF1's on Fire
Pilot Rolls on Newen Format
From C21 Media

French commercial broadcaster TF1 has commissioned a pilot of the latest gameshow from Newen, following its purchase of the production group at the turn of the year.

Bibiane Godfroid, who joined the production powerhouse as CEO of content in December, announced the TF1 pilot of On Fire at MipFormats here in Cannes last night. The format has contestants competing for cash but the money they don’t win gets burned in front of them.

A former Canal+, France Télévisions and Fremantlemedia France executive, Godfroid was also M6 programmes director for the past eight years. She joined Newen in the wake of the group’s acquisition by TF1

C21Media

posted 4/4/16

Train of Thought to Return to UK
Nippon TV Format Last Broadcast in 2011
From B&C

Nippon Television Network Corporation (Nippon TV) today announced that it has agreed to a renewal of its UK deal for the format Train of Thought, an original family game show. Known by the title Copycats in the UK market, the format makes a comeback since it was last produced in 2011. Nippon TV has previously licensed the format to CBBC, which produced the Copycats series in-house which aired on one of the BBC’s children’s channel, CBBC.

The original game show format Train of Thought, also known as Magical Brain Power, was launched more than 25 years ago and is a proven ratings winner with over 270 episodes produced in Japan. The format has been adapted and aired in many countries, including Taiwan, Indonesia, Thailand and Italy. Train of Thought is a format that has been hugely successful for the BBC network, with a total of more than 150 episodes produced in the UK since it first aired in 2009.

Yukiko Kimishima, Divisional President of International Business Development at Nippon TV commented, “We’re thrilled to be working again with the CBBC and delighted to see the show returning to the UK once again.”

B&C

posted 4/4/16

Keshet Trades Up to China
CCTV2 Gets Popular Series Format
From Realscreen

Israeli producer-distributor Keshet International has sent its branded automotive game show Trade Up to Chinese state television channel CCTV-2.

Beijing Tong Chang Tong Ying will helm the localized adaptation of the series, with production to commence in the near future. A scheduled broadcast date has been set for September.

The series, which is originally produced by Keshet Broadcasting, features two families as they compete to answer various trivia questions in an elimination competition. Working together, families select a key that potentially unlocks a brand new car. Winning families can choose to keep the car should the key start the ignition, or trade up to the next car.

Realscreen
Worldscreen

posted 4/4/16

Monday Lightning Round
... or "Music of the Heart"

  • PROGRAMMING NOTES: ABC in May:

    • Shark Tank season finale: May 20
    • Dancing with the Stars season finale: May 23-24
    • The Bachelorette season premiere May 23 (The Futon Critic)
       
  • Simon Fuller: "Idol" will be back (Hollywood Reporter)
     

  • Billy Eichner signs with UTA (Deadline)
     

  • Kaye Ballard to get a statue (CBS Miami)
     

  • ICYMI: We don't know what's funnier, this "Chase" answer or Brad's reaction to it (OK) plus meet the worst. Team. Ever (Metro)
     

  • Simon Cowell takes shots at "The Voice" (TellyMix)

posted 4/4/16

THURSDAY: And Then There Were Three
The Countdown to the Final "American Idol" Begins
From The Winnipeg Free Press

When American Idol crowns its 15th and final winner this Thursday night, the reaction of many TV-watchers will be something like this:

"Who cares?"

But it’s important to remember that the answer to that question, not that many seasons ago, was "Almost everybody."

For most of its prime-time life, American Idol was the 900-pound gorilla of TV shows, dominating the January-to-May ratings so completely that it was a foregone conclusion Fox would win the overall fall-to-spring ratings race based solely on the audience Idol attracted in the second half of the TV season.

By conventional standards, a TV show is considered a success if it stays on the air for five seasons — long enough to reach the 100-episode mark that makes it marketable and profitable as a second-run syndication offering. American Idol has lasted 15 seasons, and for nine of those, it was the most-watched program on U.S. television.

Not bad for a series that was viewed as a format-import throwaway by the network it basically ended up saving. American Idol’s debut aired on June 11, 2002 (with the soon-to-be-shortened title American Idol: The Search for a Superstar), a clear indication that Fox’s schedule-makers had so little confidence in this reworked version of Britain’s Pop Idol that their first inclination was to burn it off during TV’s off-season summer months.

But within weeks, Idol was a pop-culture sensation, thanks in large part to the caustic contributions of judge Simon Cowell, who had been imported from Pop Idol and quickly established Idol’s identity, while at the same time setting the template for a generation of rude-Brit commentators that would invade popular American TV in the decade that followed.

By the time Kelly Clarkson was crowned the first season’s winner (over runner-up Justin Guarini), Idol had attracted a U.S. audience of nearly 12 million, an impressive feat for a summer fill-in series. Because of its early success, Fox moved Idol’s second-season première up to January 2003, and its audience ballooned to more than 20 million.

Last night, FOX (9.061 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.1, #1) claimed top honors with the penultimate week of "American Idol" (8.844 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.0, #4) and a second hour of "American Idol" (9.278 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.1, #3).

CBS (7.464 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.8, #2) then took the number two spot with new episodes of "The Big Bang Theory" (13.966 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 3.4, #1) and "Life in Pieces" (8.071 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.9, #5) followed by the season finale of "Life in Pieces" (6.812 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.7, #7), a new "2 Broke Girls" (5.737 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.6, #8) and the premiere of "Rush Hour" (5.098 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T9).

Next up was ABC (6.437 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.7, #3) with its trio of "Grey's Anatomy" (7.801 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 2.2, #2), "Scandal" (6.485 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.8, #6) and "The Catch" (5.026 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.0, #11).

Meanwhile, NBC (3.672 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.7, #4) offered up the season finales of "You, Me and the Apocalypse" (2.793 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.6, #13) and "Shades of Blue" (5.357 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T9) around a repeat of "The Blacklist" (2.868 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T14).

And finally, fresh installments of "DC's Legends of Tomorrow" (2.064 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.7, #12) and "The 100" (1.279 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T14) on The CW (1.672 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.6, #5) closed out the night.

On cable...
- Project Runway All-Stars (Lifetime): 1.423 million
- Beat Bobby Flay (Food): 1.132 million
- Cooks vs. Cons (Food): 1.071 million
- Lip Sync Battle (Spike): 1.045 million
- Redneck Island (CMT/SF): 279,000
- Man vs. Child: Chef Showdown (FYI): 127,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily
Winnipeg Free Press
TV Insider

posted 4/1/16

More on "First Impressions"
Freddie Prinze Jr. to Host for USA May 10
From The Futon Critic

USA Network's unscripted competition series, FIRST IMPRESSIONS, featuring Emmy Award-Winner and "SNL" Alum Dana Carvey, has locked in Freddie Prinze Jr. ("Star Wars Rebels") to host the weekly half-hour battle. The series is set to premiere on Tuesday, May 10 at 10:30/9:30 c. In addition to Carvey and Prinze Jr., FIRST IMPRESSIONS will also welcome an all-star celebrity line-up to cheer-on the contestants; Steve Carell ("The Big Short"), Jay Leno ("The Tonight Show"), Kevin Nealon ("SNL"), Yvette Nicole Brown ("Community"), Tom Arnold ("Sons of Anarchy"), Jon Lovitz ("Saturday Night Live") and Kate Flannery ("Inside Out") will coach the aspiring impressionists through a variety of challenges, helping them to hone their skills.

"FIRST IMPRESSIONS gives up-and-coming impressionists a unique opportunity to share their skills with the master," said Prinze Jr., "I've always been a huge fan of Dana and watching him in action, working with our talented competitors, is incredible."

Carvey is the "expert-in-residence" in this comedic series that pits America's best amateur impressionists against each other in a battle of celebrity impression. Each week the studio audience will crown a winner. From Renegade 83 and Gaspin Media, Carvey, Jeff Gaspin, David Garfinkle and Jay Renfroe will executive produce.

Prinze Jr., is best known for starring in movies such as "She's All That," "I Know What You Did Last Summer," the "Scooby-Doo" franchise and "Summer Catch." Additionally, he is the voice of several characters on animated series and video games including "Robot Chicken" and "Star Wars Rebels." Prinze Jr. was also a part of the cast of the hit series "24" for its final season. This summer, he is exploring another one of his passions with the release of his first cook book, Back to the Kitchen, out June 7, 2016. The book is filled with recipes that pay homage to his New Mexican Roots, his Puerto Rican heritage and his travels as an actor. Prinze Jr. is represented by The Gersh Agency, Brillstein Entertainment Partners and Morris Yorn Barnes Levine.

The Futon Critic
TV Line
Bustle
PerezHilton.com

posted 4/1/16

NBC Slots "Spartan"
Catch The Preview After "ANW" June 13
From The Futon Critic

NBC has set Monday, June 13 (10-11 p.m.) as the preview of the highly anticipated new alternative competition series "Spartan: Ultimate Team Challenge."

Following previews on June 13 and June 20 with "American Ninja Warrior" as its lead-in, "Spartan: Ultimate Team Challenge" will shift to its regular 9 p.m. timeslot on Thursday, June 23.

Inspired by Spartan Race - the creators of the world's most demanding obstacle course races - "Spartan: Ultimate Team Challenge" raises the bar on team competitions. Groups of friends, families, co-workers and more must work together as they race across specially designed Spartan courses engineered to test their determination, endurance and will. Teams of five will compete on one the most demanding courses ever devised and will have to push through the pain to win $250,000.

"Spartan: Ultimate Team Challenge" is executive produced by A. Smith & Co. Productions' founders Arthur Smith and Kent Weed ("Hell's Kitchen," "Unsung," "Ellen's Design Challenge"), along with Anthony Storm ("American Ninja Warrior").

The Futon Critic
TV Line

posted 4/1/16


ITV/Shutterstock
RONNIE CORBETT: 1931-2016
One of "The Two Ronnies" Hosted "Small Talk"
From Variety

Scottish comedian Ronnie Corbett, best known as one-half of British comedy television staple “The Two Ronnies,” died on Thursday at age 85.

“Ronnie Corbett CBE, one of the nation’s best-loved entertainers, passed away this morning, surrounded by his loving family,” his publicist said in a statement to the BBC.

His partner on “Two Ronnies,” which aired for 16 years, was Ronnie Barker, who died in 2005. They were two of the U.K.’s most beloved comedians. Their signature sign-off, “Now it’s goodnight from me,” “and it’s goodnight from him” became known to a wide audience even after their show ended in 1987.

Many comedians took to Twitter to remember the late comedy star. British actor John Cleese, who worked with Corbett on “The Frost Report” in the 1960s, tweeted, “He had the best timing I’ve ever watched. He was a great, kind mentor and a wonderfully witty companion.”

“House” alum and star of the “The Night Manager” Hugh Laurie also expressed his sadness over Corbett, describing him as “a beautiful, brilliant man.”

English comedian Miranda Hart wrote, “Having a little weep at the death of one of my heroes Ronnie Corbett. As he would say, ‘Miranda, you can’t look up to me.’ Goodbye from me.”

“Monty Python” comedian Michael Palin told the BBC that Corbett had “a great sense of silliness.”

“He could do the serious stuff as well, but there was a lovely sort of mischief, his eyes twinkled,” Palin said. “He was absolutely delightful to play with and against, and do material with and, also, just a good friend, too.

“Thanks for all the laughs, mate,” Russell Crowe tweeted, quoting his catchphrase.

Corbett was born in Edinburgh, Scotland. He knew he wanted to be an actor at an early age, so he moved to London to forge an acting career after he finished his obligatory time in the National Service.

He performed in cabarets, onstage and films, including “Rockets Galore,” before he landed on David Frost’s “The Frost Report,” which made him a household name. One famous sketch from the show, which included Corbett, Barker and Cleese, was about British social classes, using the different heights of the three comedians to represent the lower, middle and upper class.

In 1971, Barker and Corbett teamed up for the successful BBC sketch comedy show “Two Ronnies.” The difference in their sizes difference lent itself to many comedic acts that included spoofs and musical numbers. At one point, the show had 17 million viewers.

After the show’s end, Corbett starred in the British sitcom “Sorry!” in the ’80s and hosted a game show called “Small Talk” in the ’90s.

In 2005, he reunited with Barker for “The Two Ronnies Sketchbook,” although Barker died later that year. He influenced many comedians, including Ricky Gervais, who tweeted, “It was an absolute honor and joy to have known him.”

Former British prime minister John Prescott tweeted a mash-up photo that referenced one of Corbett’s most popular sketches on “Two Ronnies,” where as a shopkeeper he hands Barker’s character four candles instead of what he had asked for — “fork handles.”

Tonight’s edition of BBC’s “The One Show” will pay tribute to the late Corbett.

Corbett is survived by his wife and two daughters.

Variety
South Wales Argus
BBC
RTE
Metro
London Evening Standard
Consequence of Sound
AL.com
TMZ
TV Insider
Us Magazine
AL.com
TV Insider

posted 3/31/16

Science Looking for New "Mythbusters".... CONFIRMED
Reality Competition Greenlit to Search for New Hosts
From The Hollywood Reporter

Science Channel is reviving MythBusters.

The Hollywood Reporter has learned exclusively that the Discovery-owned cable network has greenlighted a reality competition series titled Search for the Next MythBusters, which comes on the heels of the series finale for the original show in early March. MythBusters, which ran for 14 seasons, featured Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman using science to put various myths and rumors to the test.

Search will focus on finding an "all-new generation of myth-busting science superstars with mind-blowing build skills and nerves of steel." It will involve both social media and stunts as it tests a cast of hopefuls on their skills as they compete in various challenges.

"When I got to the network, and we clearly identified MythBusters as a franchise and something that was important to Science Channel and Discovery, and it was such a beloved show, I didn't want to let it go," says Marc Etkind, who became general manager of Science Channel in September after serving in the same role at sibling network Destination America. "So we looked really closely at what would be the best way to keep it going and invigorate it and thought, 'Let's host a worldwide search for the next MythBusters.'"

To that end, Science Channel is inviting viewers to submit videos. Ideal candidates are "people who have building skills and are naturally inquisitive," Etkind says. "People who don't mind getting embarrassed a little bit, who ask lots of questions and have the skills and knowledge to put those to the test." (Science Channel's website has further details.)

The competition will start with 15 participants who look to solve challenges that include classic myths from the show as well as new myths. Hopefuls will be eliminated on each episode by a panel of judges — consisting of those who have been involved with MythBusters at some point over the years — until the final picks are made. Etkind says it could be one person or several people, depending on what happens.

Asked if the next incarnation of MythBusters will have the same format or be something entirely new, Etkind says that remains to be seen. "We'll see who emerges victorious and from those folks determine what the best format is," he explains. "It's a long-running goal for Science Channel to have MythBusters on the air."

The Hollywood Reporter
The Futon Critic
CNET

posted 3/31/16

Don't Call It a "Comeback"... New Season of "Food Network Star" Comes with a Twist
Catch It May 22!
From The Futon Critic

Food Network's competition series Food Network Star returns for a twelfth season on Sunday, May 22nd at 9pm ET/PT, with culinary icons Giada De Laurentiis and Bobby Flay looking to discover the next promising food television star. Thirteen talented culinary hopefuls are put through the ringer this season, battling it out in challenges that not only test their kitchen skills but also their on-camera chops, to find out who has the talent and charisma to follow in Giada and Bobby's footsteps and win the ultimate prize: their own Food Network show. New this year, Food Network Star: Comeback Kitchen, co-hosted by Valerie Bertinelli and Tyler Florence, premieres on Sunday, May 8th at 8pm ET/PT, with seven former Food Network Star finalists returning to compete over three episodes for a coveted spot as the thirteenth finalist within season twelve's premiere. Web-series Star Salvation, hosted by Alex Guarnaschelli and last season's Food Network Star winner Eddie Jackson, returns again to give one eliminated finalist the opportunity to rejoin the competition during the season. The Food Network Star season twelve winner will be crowned on Sunday, July 31st at 9pm ET/PT.

Starting May 8th on Food Network Star: Comeback Kitchen, seven unforgettable former finalists enter the Star kitchen for another shot at stardom. When co-hosts Valerie Bertinelli and Tyler Florence introduce the first challenge, the competitors are forced to face their pasts by attempting to redeem the dish that was the downfall in their respective season. The alumni must then shoot a one minute "Where Are They Now?" video, updating viewers on what they've been up to and how they've improved since their Food Network Star appearance. Through three episodes, Valerie and Tyler determine who has earned a spot on the new season of Food Network Star.

In the May 22nd season premiere of Food Network Star, the finalists must shoot a 30-second screen test to give viewers a quick culinary preview of what they are all about. The videos debut during a VIP event at a luxury theater in Los Angeles in front of an audience; but when Bobby and Giada surprise the finalists with news that the Food Network Star: Comeback Kitchen winner will also join the competition, how will they handle this twist? Comeback Kitchen hosts Valerie Bertinelli and Tyler Florence help Giada and Bobby decide who will be the first to be sent home. During the season the finalists encounter challenges that not only test their culinary skills, but also their on-camera presence, from trying their hand at delivering food reports for Entertainment Tonight co-hosts Nancy O'Dell and Kevin Frazier, to shooting a promo for their own show, the finalists are challenged to not only create great food but great TV.

"Viewers will be inspired watching these competitors pull out all the stops as they follow their dreams of becoming a Food Network Star," said Didi O'Hearn, Senior Vice President Programming, Food Network & Cooking Channel. "With Bobby and Giada leading the action, joined by an amazing group of world-class guest judges, the suspense of the season will be rivaled only by the big personalities and talent these finalists display."

The Futon Critic

posted 3/31/16

WEDNESDAY: "Empire" Holds Court
Fox Splits Night with CBS
From The Futon Critic

FOX (8.686 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 3.0, #1) surged to the top spot on Wednesday with a new "Rosewood" (5.135 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T5) and the return of "Empire" (12.239 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 4.7, #1).

CBS (8.693 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.8, #2) then was the number two demo draw with its mix of "Survivor: Kaoh Rong" (9.426 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.1, #2), "Criminal Minds" (9.338 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.8, #3) and "Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders" (7.317 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T5).

Next up was NBC (5.845 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.3, #3) with originals from "Heartbeat" (4.810 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T12), "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (6.032 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T5) and "Chicago PD" (6.693 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.5, #4).

Meanwhile, ABC (4.412 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.1, #4) opted for repeats of "The Middle" (5.441 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T9), "The Goldbergs" (4.606 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T9), "Modern Family" (4.735 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.3, #8) and "Black-ish" (3.943 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.1, #11) plus a new "Nashville" (3.873 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T12).

And finally, fresh installments of "Arrow" (2.436 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T12) and "Supernatural" (1.563 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.6, #15) on The CW (1.999 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.7, #5) closed out the night.

On cable:
- Face Off (Syfy): 965,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 3/31/16

"Wheel" House
Discovery Greenlights "The Wheel" Survival Series
From The Futon Critic

Discovery is taking the survivalist genre to the next level with THE WHEEL, the network's newest series from Pilgrim Media Group.

While most survival shows feature just one or two extreme environments, THE WHEEL demands that participants conquer eight distinctly grueling landscapes across the world, each requiring a completely different set of survival skills. With each turn of the Wheel, survivalists must tackle the planet's most unforgiving terrains - including freezing tundra, parched deserts, rugged mountains and steamy jungles - one immediately after another, with little time to prepare what few tools and materials they have.

The participants are completely at the Wheel's mercy, as its every rotation thrusts them into a new harrowing domain without warning. When and how quickly will the Wheel turn? That's for the viewers to know... and for the survivalists to agonize and obsess over.

When a survivalist breaks down and taps out, the Wheel keeps on turning until only one is left standing. But can anyone survive THE WHEEL?

THE WHEEL is produced for Discovery Channel by Pilgrim Media Group. For Pilgrim Media Group, Executive Producers are Craig Piligian and Sam Korkis. For Discovery Channel, Executive Producers are Joseph Boyle and Kyle Wheeler and Coordinating Producer Brian Peterson. To learn more, go to www.discovery.com, on Facebook at Facebook.com/discovery and on Twitter @Discovery.

The Futon Critic

posted 3/31/16

Upfront: Food Network
On Deck: Tournaments, "Food Network Star Kids"
From Media Life

Food Network is coming off a solid first quarter in ratings, but it won’t be relying on those same shows for the remainder of the year.

At the Scripps Networks upfront presentation this week the cable network revealed a list of 15 new shows to premiere between April and the end of the year, in addition to a slew of returning series.

Below are some of Food Network’s programming highlights for the coming year.

– “Celebrity Food Fight” (May): Half dinner party, half food competition, featuring celebrities, chefs and host Andy Richter.

– “Cutthroat Kitchen: Time Warp Tournament” (June): A new version of the series featuring dishes of different decades from the 1950s to the ’90s.

– “Clash of the Grandmas” (November): Reality competition featuring four contestants a la “Chopped,” only this show features grandmothers.

Other new series this year include: three new editions of “Guy’s Grocery Games,” “Buddy’s Family Vacation,” “Food Network Star: Comeback Kitchen,” “Kids BBQ Championship,” “Food Network Star Kids,” a “Cutthroat Kitchen” Halloween tournament, “Copped + Beat Bobby Flay” and “Worst Bakers in America.”

The cable network’s list of new shows is lengthy, but its collection of returning shows is even longer.

Shows returning this year include: “Beat Bobby Flay,” “Chopped,” “Chopped: Champions,” “Cutthroat Kitchen,” “Restaurant: Impossible,” “Chopped Junior,” “Guy’s Grocery Games,” “Spring Baking Championship,” “Food Network Star,” “Cake Wars,” “Chopped: After Hours, “Chopped Grill Masters,” “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives,” “Camp Cutthroat,” “Chopped Teen Tournament,” “The Great Food Truck Race,” “Worst Cooks in America: Celebrity Edition,” “Halloween Baking Championship,” “Halloween Wars,” “Cake Wars: Christmas,” “Holiday Baking Championship,” “Kids Baking Championship,” “Worst Cooks in America” and “Guys Grocery Games: Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives Tournament.”

Whew.

Media Life

posted 3/31/16

MIPTV: Passion
On Offer: "Gay for Play", "Fresh Paint", "Robot Wars"
From Worldscreen

At MIPTV 2016 Passion Distribution is presenting a lineup of new and returning entertainment and lifestyle series.

The competition series Robot Wars, meanwhile, had nine seasons air between 1998 and 2004, and the show has been rebooted with an emphasis on updated robotic technologies. Passion Distribution is selling the 6×1-hour BBC Two version, as well as the format rights for the series.

There is also the new game show Gay for Play, hosted by RuPaul. The trivia game show sees a panel of six celebrities help two contestants answer questions about pop culture in hopes of winning prizes and more than $5,000 in cash. Gay for Play is a World of Wonder production for Logo.

Another highlight on Passion’s slate is Skin Wars: Fresh Paint, also hosted by RuPaul. The show sees three artists leave their comfort zones to compete in body painting for the first time. The company is also offering the third season of the competition series Skin Wars, which sees contestants go head-to-head in body-painting challenges.

Worldscreen

posted 3/31/16

CBS Daytime: The Best Keeps Getting Better
"Deal" Hits a New High
From Soap Opera Network

Citing newly released Nielsen Media Research ratings data, CBS’ “The Young and the Restless” is up during first quarter 2016 over first quarter 2015 in Total Viewers. The daytime drama series averaged 5.38 million viewers during the quarter, which is a gain of 11,000 viewers over the comparable quarter a year ago.

Outside of “Y&R,” both CBS game shows “The Price is Right” and “Let’s Make a Deal,” along with the network’s “The Talk,” continue to show ratings growth.

Broken down into two separate programs, “Deal 1” hit all-time first quarter highs in Total Viewers and matched its best performance in Women 18-49 ratings. The program averaged 3.34 million viewers (+2% over last year) and a 0.7/5 in Women 18-49 (+17%). “Deal 2” averaged 3.85 million viewers (+1% over last year) and a 0.8/6 in Women 18-49 (+14%).

Also broken into two separate programs, “Price 1” averaged 5.37 million viewers during first quarter 2016 (+5% over first quarter 2015) and “Price 2” averaged 6.16 million viewers (+4%).

Soap Opera Network

posted 3/31/16

Happy Friday Lightning Round
... or "Music of the Heart"

  • "American Idol" supports music programs in our schools (The Futon Critic)
     

  • ... meanwhile: the Idol tour of finalists? Yeah, that's canceled (Hollywood Reporter)
     

  • ICYMI: Mastermind came down to triple overtime (Metro)
     

  • Paul Daniels laid to rest (A-List)
     

  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Vernon Kay (TellyMix) and Johnny Vegas (TellyMix)

posted 3/31/16

Meet the Power Players
Catch The Special Jeopardy! Week Next Month
From The Hill

Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), “Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd, former Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele and CNN’s Anderson Cooper and S.E. Cupp are among the political and media personalities going buzzer-to-buzzer on “Jeopardy!” next month.

The long-running Alex Trebek-hosted quiz show is filming its “Power Players Week” in Washington next month.
“Saturday Night Live” alum Franken — who has competed on the show twice before — is believed to be the first sitting lawmaker to be featured as a “Jeopardy!” contestant.

Among the other high-profile names slated to appear at the D.C. taping: Republican strategist Ana Navarro, comedian Louis C.K., CNN’s Kate Bolduan and David Gregory, former MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry, “60 Minutes” correspondent Lara Logan, “Mad Men” creator Matthew Weiner, ABC News legal correspondent Sunny Hostin, The Washington Post’s Jonathan Capehart and author Jonathan Franzen.

The contestants all receive a guaranteed $10,000 to go toward the charity of their choice for their participation, while the winner of each game will earn a minimum of $50,000 for their charity.

The Hill
DCist
Salon
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Slate
Los Angeles Times

posted 3/30/16


Reuters/Irish Times
PATTY DUKE: 1946-2016
"$64,000 Question" Contestant Turns Hollywood Powerhouse, Panelist
From CNN

Patty Duke, the actress who won fame with her stage and screen portrayals of Helen Keller in "The Miracle Worker," died Tuesday, according to her agent. She was 69.

Duke died of sepsis from a ruptured intestine, according to a statement from Mitchell K. Stubbs & Associates, the agency that represented her.

"This morning, our beloved wife, mother, grandmother, matriarch and the exquisite artist, humanitarian, and champion for mental health, Anna PATTY DUKE Pearce, closed her eyes, quieted her pain and ascended to a beautiful place," her family said in a statement posted by her son actor Sean Astin. "We celebrate the infinite love and compassion she shared through her work and throughout her life."

Duke won a best supporting actress Academy Award in 1963 for "The Miracle Worker."

She also was known for roles in "Valley of the Dolls," "My Sweet Charlie" and "Me, Natalie," as well as for TV's "The Patty Duke Show," which aired from 1963 to 1966.

Duke also struggled with mental illness, having been diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 1982.

"I don't mind being thought of as someone who was crazy, because I had no control over that situation," she wrote in her 1988 autobiography, "Call Me Anna." "What I don't like is for people to believe I chose to do destructive things."

In the last half of her life, Duke became an advocate on mental health issues, writing a book in 1992 highlighting bipolar disorder and its treatments and using her fame to fight for others struggling with the disease.

"Her greatest achievement was confronting her mental illness and making her story public," Astin said on fundraising page to set up a new mental health initiative in her name. "She crossed the Nation speaking and campaigning and lobbying for mental health. My mom took her place as a mental health advocate in the greatest tradition of noble leadership."

She was born Anna Marie Duke on December 14, 1946, in Elmhurst, New York, and began acting as a child.
Her first major role came in 1959, when she portrayed the blind and deaf Keller on Broadway. The success of that two-year run led to her playing the same part in the 1962 film version of "The Miracle Worker," for which she won an Oscar and a Golden Globe.

"The Patty Duke Show" followed for three years. Duke played the twin roles of English and American cousins living in New York.

In 1967, she starred in "Valley of the Dolls," followed by "Me, Natalie," an independent film that netted her a second Golden Globe award. That same year, at the age of 12, she won $32,000 on "The $64,000 Question".

She returned to Keller's story in 1979 for a television movie in which she played Keller's teacher, Annie Sullivan. The project brought her third Emmy; she had previously won for the 1970 TV movie "My Sweet Charlie" and the 1976 miniseries "Captains and Kings."

She then served as president of the Screen Actors Guild from 1985 to 1988.

During the 1970s & 1980s, she appeared on numerous game shows including "Tattletales" (with then-husband John Astin), "The $100,000 Pyramid", "Match Game", "Password Plus/Super Password", "Stumpers!", "Chain Reaction", "Hollywood Squares", "Mindreaders", "The Movie Game", and the Alex Trebek-hosted "Double Dare".

Actress Holly Robinson Peete was among the many paying tribute to Duke, calling her a "legendary actor" and "eloquent humanitarian."

Actress Marlee Matlin called Duke "brave, outspoken & humanitarian."

Duke was married four times, including a 13-year marriage to actor John Astin, best known for his role on "The Addams Family."

Sean Astin is best known for his role in the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy. A second son, Mackenzie Astin, is also an actor. She adopted another son, Kevin, in 1989 with her fourth husband, Michael Pearce.

Her last tweet came on their anniversary, March 15: "30 years ago today, Mike and I married. We having a very happy and quiet day. Love and hugs to all."

GSNN's Jason Huhn and Doug Morris contributed to this report.

CNN
NPR
Irish Times
People
Thompson on Hollywood
Los Angeles Times
Consequence of Sound
AL.com
TMZ
TV Insider
Us Magazine
AL.com
TV Insider

posted 3/30/16

SYNDIES: Week 27
Results for the Week Ending March 20
From B&C

Daylight saving time kicked in during the week ending March 20, resulting in lower levels of people using television and lower ratings. The NCAA’s annual basketball tournament, known as March Madness, also heavily penalized shows cleared on CBS-owned stations but also equaled stronger than usual competition for shows airing on other outlets. Overall, preemptions hit hardest shows that air in access and in some cases, early fringe.

Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud faded 3% to a 6.4, but beat CBS Television Distribution’s Wheel of Fortune for first place among games. Wheel fell 14% to a second-place 6.0, with the show feeling the effects of March Madness. CTD’s Jeopardy! was similarly affected, eroding 11% to a 5.7.

Debmar-Mercury’s Celebrity Name Game and Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to Be a Millionaire were both flat at a 1.3, although compared to last year at this time, Name Game lost 7%, while Millionaire was down 28%, the biggest drop of any first-run strip.

B&C
TV by the Numbers

posted 3/30/16

TUESDAY: Chicago Love
NBC Wins on Chicago Shows, The Voice
From the Futon Critic

NBC (9.390 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.9, #1) was the top draw on Tuesday with a new "The Voice" (10.820 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.3, #1) alongside the return of "Chicago Med" (8.616 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.8, #T2) and "Chicago Fire" (8.736 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.8, #T2).

CBS (7.783 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.1, #2) then took home the silver with repeats of "NCIS" (10.324 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T5) and "NCIS: New Orleans" (8.763 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T5) plus its special "The Late Late Show Carpool Karaoke Primetime Special" (4.264 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T10).

Next up was ABC (3.193 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T3) with originals from "Fresh Off the Boat" (4.556 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T5), "The Real O'Neals" (3.752 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T8), "Marvel's Agents of SHIELD" (3.231 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T8) and "Beyond the Tank" (2.195 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.6, #13).

Meanwhile, The CW (2.328 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T3) offered up new episodes of "The Flash" (3.329 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.3, #4) and "iZombie" (1.328 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T14).

And finally, FOX (1.700 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.7, #5) closed out the night with a new "New Girl" (2.223 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T10), a repeat "Grandfathered" (1.300 million viewers, #16; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T14), an original "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" (1.963 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.8, #12) and a repeat "The Grinder" (1.312 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.4, #16).

On cable...
- Ink Master (Spike): 1.172 million
- Chopped Champions (Food/SP): 1.024 million
- Separation Anxiety (TBS): 870,000
- Ink Master: Redemption (Spike): 758,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 3/30/16

MONDAY: Super Bounce
NBC SQUEAKS by ABC for the Win
From The Futon Critic

NBC (9.527 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.4, #1) was the network to beat on Monday with originals from "The Voice" (11.219 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.8, #1) and "Blindspot" (6.142 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T4).

The silver medal then went to CBS (8.196 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.5, #2) and its trio of "Supergirl" (7.241 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T2), "Scorpion" (8.626 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T4) and "NCIS: Los Angeles" (8.723 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T7).

Next up was ABC (9.324 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T3) with a new "Dancing with the Stars" (11.833 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T2) and a special encore of "The Catch" (4.308 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 0.7, #9).

Meanwhile, FOX (3.781 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T3) offered up fresh installments of "Gotham" (3.775 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.3, #6) and "Lucifer" (3.787 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T7).

And finally, The CW (0.924 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.4, #5) closed out the evening with new episodes of "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend" (0.921 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.3, #11) and "Jane the Virgin" (0.928 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.4, #10).

On cable...
- Cake Wars (Food): 711,000
- RuPaul's Drag Race (Logo): 297,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 3/30/16

Wednesday Lightning Round
... or "One Letter"

  • VIDEO WALL: the one-letter solve in "Wheel of Fortune" from Friday (AV Club)
     

  • THIS DAY IN GAME SHOW HISTORY: 52 years ago today, Jeopardy! premiered (Everett Herald)

posted 3/30/16

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