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Stick a Fork In Him...
Joe Bastianich to Exit "MasterChef"
From Entertainment Weekly
MasterChef and MasterChef Junior judge Joe Bastianich is moving on.

A report from Entertainment Weekly confirms that Bastianich, a restauranteur and winemaker, is exiting the franchise after MasterChef Junior‘s third season.

Producers are still searching for someone to replace him alongside returning judges Gordon Ramsay and Graham Elliot.

“Joe has played an integral role in the success of both MasterChef and MasterChef Junior, and we all appreciate his incredible culinary insight, sense of humor and passion,” Fox said in a joint statement with producers Shine America and One Potato Two Potato. “He will always remain a member of the Masterchef family.”

Entertainment Weekly

posted 11/26/14

Her Too.
Cheryl Burke Hanging Up Her "Dancing" Shoes, Calling It A Career
From the Wrap
ABC's “Dancing With the Stars” will celebrate its 10th anniversary next season in the spring, but one of its veterans won't be there for the festivities.

After teasing her departure for weeks, dance pro Cheryl Burke has decided to leave the ABC dance competition when her contract expires with Tuesday's finale.

“Cheryl has been on the show for close to 10 years,” “DWTS” executive producer Rob Wade told TheWrap exclusively. “She has done a great service to the show and I think she feels that it's time for her to move on.”

Burke, 30, who has been with the show since its second season, was eliminated along with her partner, soap opera actor and model Antonio Sabato Jr. on Week 5 of Season 19 in late-October. She's the show's first female pro to win two consecutive mirror-ball trophies.

Wade feels that the popular pro's exit gives the series a chance to highlight other dancers.

“We'll only survive as a show if we keep innovating and changing. It's very sad to see cast members leave, but again that gives you the opportunity to grow. So, I'm quite positive about having the opportunity to bring new people in or bring back some of the old faces.”

Additionally, head judge Len Goodman, who took a several weeks off this past season due to conflicts with shooting the show's U.K. version, will be back full-time on Season 20. And although there's some scheduling conflicts still to be resolved, Julianne Hough is also contracted to return in the spring to the judges’ table.

The Wrap

posted 11/26/14

Six Teams, One Trophy
Meet the Teams for "The Sing-Off" Special
From the Futon Critic
NBC has announced the six groups competing for a first-place prize of $50,000 on the two-hour Wednesday, Dec. 17 special (8 p.m. ET/PT) of the popular musical competition series "The Sing-Off."

Returning judges Jewel and Shawn Stockman will be joined by Fall Out Boy frontman Patrick Stump while Nick Lachey is once again set as host.

· From Nashville, Timothy's Gift is comprised of six women who met at church and often sing at maximum security prisons around the country to inspire inmates to have hope.

· Also from Nashville is Melodores, a group of 12 male students who attend Vanderbilt University. Founded in 2009, Melodores strives to be the best all-male collegiate group in the world. Lead singer Ted Moock is featured in the upcoming film "Pitch Perfect 2."

· From Los Angeles, several members of The Exchange battled against each other on different teams in season three but have now combined forces to bring their united voices to a new musical level.

· From New York, Traces are five spirit-filled divas who give gospel a modern twist with voices as big as their personalities. With their roots firmly entrenched at church, these women find time away from work to perform afternoon shows in front of appreciative and awe-filled audiences.

· From Northern California, San Fran 6 has a passion for pop. After having formed just a little more than a month ago by compiling the best a capella talent from the Bay Area, the group has all-star talent that is ready to shine.

· From New Haven, Conn., A. Squared is offering their innovative take on a capella reinvented. In fact, leader Jacob Reske turned his senior project into an hourlong 12-song performance.

Also performing on the special will be season four "Sing-Off" champions Home Free, who will sing with Lachey and all three judges, as well as season three winner and hugely popular group Pentatonix.

The Futon Critic

posted 11/26/14

Tuesday: And the First Sweep Goes To...
CBS Wins Viewers, NBC Wins Demo
From the Futon Critic & TV Media Insights
With two days of data left to process, NBC will win its third consecutive November sweeps period in adults 18-49, which is the longest winning streak for the network in the demo since it won four in a row from 2000 to 2003. Through Monday, Nov. 24 (26 of the 28 nights), NBC is averaging a 2.3 rating/6 share in adults 18-49 (-12 percent in rating from the comparable year-ago period), followed by ABC (2.0/ 6: no change), CBS (1.8/ 6), Fox (1.3/ 4: -24) and The CW (0.6/ 2: no change). NBC will also win the sweeps period in adults 18-34, adults 25-54 and all key adult-male demos. Had sports been excluded, ABC would finish first in adults 18-49. Keep in mind that these results do not include the season-finale of ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” last night.

Tops in total viewers, once again, is CBS with 9.48 million (also through 26 out of 28 days), which is a loss of three percent from one year earlier. Next is ABC at 8.27 million (+ 1 percent), followed by NBC (6.40 million: + 5 percent), Fox (3.67 million: -20 percent) and The CW (1.62: + 4 percent).

Speaking of "Dancing's" finale, ABC (14.312 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.6, #1) was the network to beat for the first time this season on Tuesday thanks to its "Dancing with the Stars: Road to the Finals" (11.250 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.9, #5) recap and the two-hour season finale of "Dancing with the Stars" (15.843 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.9, #1).

CBS (12.915 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.1, #2) then took home the silver with its trio of "NCIS" (15.686 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.4, #2), "NCIS: New Orleans" (14.195 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.3, #T3) and "Person of Interest" (8.864 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.7, #6).

Next up was NBC (6.187 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.6, #3) and its mix of "The Voice" (9.179 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 2.3, #T3), "Marry Me" (3.746 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T11), "About a Boy" (3.101 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.0, #13) and "Chicago Fire" (5.959 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.6, #7).

Meanwhile, FOX (3.299 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.3, #4) offered up new episodes of "MasterChef Junior" (4.044 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.5, #8), "New Girl" (2.767 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.3, #10) and "The Mindy Project" (2.339 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T11).

And finally, originals from "The Flash" (3.408 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.4, #9) and "Supernatural" (2.290 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.9, #14) on The CW (2.849 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.1, #5) closed out the night.

Spike's "Ink Master" led the games in cable with 1.423 million. "Chopped" had 1.102 million.

TV Media Insights
The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers

posted 11/26/14

Nine Cubed
Phillip Schofield Challenge Game Reupped
From Digital Spy
The Cube is to return to ITV for a ninth series.

The Phillip Schofield game show's latest run was filmed in September and will air in 2015, Broadcast reports.

The new series will also feature a number of celebrity specials, with the likes of ex-footballer Fabrice Muamba and comedians Rufus Hound, Katherine Ryan and Rob Beckett taking on The Cube for charity.

Elsewhere, Schofield will attempt to break the British record for the longest live TV broadcast in December as part of Text Santa.

The presenter has also recently appeared in an ITV mornings promotional video and Cadbury's 2014 Christmas advert.

Digital Spy

posted 11/26/14

Dropped in Norway
Zodiak Commission for TV2
From World Screen
TV2 Norway has tapped Zodiak Media's Mastiff Norway to produce a local version of the hit prime-time adventure game show Dropped.

The 10x90-minute production will see sports celebrities dropped from a helicopter to face a survival challenge in remote locations. Production is already under way on the local treatment, shooting in locations such as Kenya, Nepal and Argentina. Dropped will launch on TV2 in spring 2015. The show was previously commissioned by TF1 in France and TV4 in Sweden.

Zodiak Rights represents the Dropped format internationally.

World Screen

posted 11/26/14

Wednesday Lightning Round
... or "Thanks"

posted 11/26/14

Baggage Hits the Road January 7
Jerry Springer Returns to Host
From the Futon Critic
GSN, the leader in game shows and competitive entertainment, announced today that BAGGAGE ON THE ROAD - a new, 20-episode traveling version of the network's hit series "Baggage" - will debut on Wednesday, January 7 at 9:00pm ET/PT. Jerry Springer, original host of "Baggage," will also host the new series, which travels in its first season to four locations: Austin, Texas; Tampa, Florida; Baton Rouge, Louisiana (at Louisiana State University) and Storrs, Connecticut (at University of Connecticut).

BAGGAGE ON THE ROAD is a half-hour comedic dating game show where one contestant chooses from three potential partners, all of whom come with their own quirky, annoying and sometimes truly shocking physical and emotional "baggage" that could eliminate them from the competition. With Springer guiding the fun, contestants will be required to reveal the various intimate secrets and hidden flaws - housed inside literal suitcases - that typically aren't revealed on a first date. Eventually, only one suitor will win a date with the contestant... as long as that person can also accept the contestant's baggage in a final role-reversal round.

BAGGAGE ON THE ROAD is produced for GSN by Wilshire Studios. Lisa Tucker (Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D List) serves as executive producer.

The Futon Critic


"Baggage on the Road" premieres on GSN January 7
photo courtesy GSN

posted 11/25/14

We're Running Out of Pointless Jokes
BBC Renews Survey Quiz for 110 Episodes, Closing In on 1000
From World Screen
The BBC has placed a multi-series order for the game show Pointless, greenlighting 38 episodes of Pointless Celebrities for BBC One and 110 episodes of Pointless for BBC Daytime.

The commission takes the total number of episodes up to nearly 1,000. Remarkable Television, an Endemol company, will produce the new batch of 148 episodes. Alexander Armstrong will continue to host along with Richard Osman, who provides obscure facts and figures.

Damian Kavanagh, controller of BBC Daytime, and Pam Cavannagh, commissioning editor, ordered the series. James Fox, Michelle Woods, Richard Hague and Dom Waugh exec produce for Remarkable Television, as well as Cavannagh for the BBC.

“As we head towards our 1,000th episode, Pointless continues to go from strength to strength,” said Fox, who is also the creative director at Remarkable Games. “This is testament to the brilliance of Xander and Richard, our hard-working production team and our fantastically loyal viewers. We can’t wait to bring them even more Pointless facts and fun in 2015 and beyond.”

Cavannagh added: “Our audience loves spending time with Xander and Richard and there is no sign of the appetite for the show waning.”

World Screen
C21 Media

posted 11/25/14

Syndies: Week 8 (Sweeps Week 3)
Results for the Week Ending November 16
From B&C
Halfway through the November sweep in the week ending Nov. 16, talk and game shows came on strong, with Dr. Phil, Ellen, Maury, Queen Latifah, Judge Judy, Paternity Court, Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy! all hitting season highs and Family Feud hitting both a season high and an all-time high.

NBCU’s Meredith Vieira, which will return next season, held at a 1.2, tying Debmar-Mercury’s Celebrity Name Game, which was unchanged. The Real remained at a 1.0 in households for the seventh consecutive week. Trifecta’s Judge Faith rebounded 17% to a 0.7 in households.

CTD’s Judge Judy scored a new season high 7.4, gaining 4% from the prior week, and tying CTD’s Wheel of Fortune for the overall syndication lead.

All of the top three game shows hit new season highs. Wheel of Fortune gained 3% for the week to the aforementioned 7.4, down 1% from last year. CTD’s Jeopardy! improved 4% for the week and 8% for the year to a 7.0. Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud, which is produced by FremantleMedia North America, hit an all-time high, gaining 8% for the week to a 6.4, up 23% from last year at this time. Among women 25-54, Feud finished first among the games with a 3.1, followed by Wheel’s 2.6 and Jeopardy!’s 2.4. Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to be a Millionaire was unchanged for the week at a 1.9 in households, but down 10% from last year at this time.

B&C
TV by the Numbers
TV News Check

posted 11/25/14

Monday: The Home Stretch
ABC Tops with "Dancing"; "Voice" Gets the Younguns to NBC
From the Futon Critic
NBC (8.905 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.4, #1) held onto the demo crown on Monday thanks to a new "The Voice" (10.183 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.7, #1) and week two of "State of Affairs" (6.349 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T8).

ABC (13.505 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.3, #2) then was a close second with the penultimate night of "Dancing with the Stars" (14.800 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.4, #T2) and a new "Castle" (10.915 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.0, #T6).

Next up was CBS (9.266 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.1, #3) and its mix of "2 Broke Girls" (8.522 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 2.2, #5), a repeat "The Big Bang Theory" (7.822 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 2.0, #T6), "Scorpion" (10.450 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.4, #T2) and "NCIS: Los Angeles" (9.177 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T8).

Meanwhile, FOX (5.128 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.9, #4) served up the fall finale of "Gotham" (6.004 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 2.3, #4) and a new "Sleepy Hollow" (4.251 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.4, #10).

And finally, fresh installments of "The Originals" (1.274 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.6, #11) and "Jane the Virgin" (1.052 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.4, #12) on The CW (1.163 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.5, #5) closed out the evening.

The Futon Critic

posted 11/25/14

Unleash the Drag Race
New Cast to Be Revealed on New Now Next Awards December 7
From the Futon Critic
Logo TV today announced that for the first time in network history, the new cast of queens competing on the upcoming season of mega-hit reality show "RuPaul's Drag Race" will be revealed live during the 2014 "New Now Next Awards." The shroud of secrecy surrounding the 14 elite drag performers who'll comprise the seventh season cast will be lifted via a series of OMFG interstitials interspersed throughout the "New Now Next" telecast on Sunday, December 7 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT.

"I've devoted my life to the art of drag. But NOTHING could have prepared me for this season's queens," warned Executive Producer, RuPaul. "They are truly twisted, sickening, and out of control."

As a lead up to the big reveal during the 2014 "New Now Next Awards," Logo TV will air "RuPaul's Drag Race: 15 Fan Favorite Queens of All Time" on Sunday, December 7 at 7:30- p.m. ET/PT. This all-new, half-hour countdown special will unveil the fifteen favorite queens of all time as voted on by fans. Packed with the most gag-worthy clips from all six seasons of "RuPaul's Drag Race," former drag racers share their thoughts on the most surprising and significant moments that made fans fall in love with these now-iconic contestants.

Additionally, starting Thursday, December 4, diehard fans can embark on a social scavenger hunt across Logo's social channels to "ruveal" a Season 7 queen ahead of the "New Now Next Awards" on the 7th. Logo will be sharing exclusive sneak peeks at the upcoming cast via Snapchat (username: LogoTV), with snaps featuring pieces of a digital code which fans will then use to unlock their first look at the exciting new cast. To piece together the clues, fans will be encouraged to screen grab and share these messages from the popular self-destructing message app on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using #ruveal, all to be featured on ruveal.logotv.com, where fans will be inputting the individual clues to form a 7-digit code to claim their prize.

"RuPaul's Drag Race" fans can keep the party going as season six winner Bianca Del Rio takes to the stage at the 2014 "New Now Next Awards," which honor the year's best new actors, artists, films, television and more. The event will include performances by Kristin Chenoweth, Jessie J and Betty Who as well as special appearances from Jennifer Hudson, Joe Jonas, Laverne Cox, Tyler Oakley, "Looking's" Raul Castillo, Fifth Harmony, and more.

"RuPaul's Drag Race: 15 Fan Favorite Queens of All Time" is produced by World of Wonder Productions with Fenton Bailey, Randy Barbato, Tom Campbell, Mandy Salangsang, Steven Corfe and RuPaul Charles serving as Executive Producers. Chris McCarthy, Pamela Post and Tim Palazzola serve as Executive Producers for Logo.

For more information on "RuPaul's Drag Race" and sneak preview clips, go to LogoTV.com. For up-to-date "RuPaul's Drag Race" news and exclusives, join the "RuPaul's Drag Race" Facebook page or follow #DragRace conversation on Twitter at @RuPaulsDragRace. Follow along with live gifs from the show on Tumblr and additional content on the show's Instagram page.

The Futon Critic

posted 11/25/14

Weekend: Something for Everyone
ABC, CBS Split Night
From the Futon Critic
ABC (6.983 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.6, #1) was once again the demo champ on Friday thanks to its mix of "Last Man Standing" (7.107 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T4), "Cristela" (5.286 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.0, #10), "Shark Tank" (7.825 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.0, #1) and "20/20" (6.929 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.6, #2).

CBS (9.188 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T2) then was the most-watched network thanks to its trio of "The Amazing Race" (6.062 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.2, #8), "Hawaii Five-0" (10.002 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T4) and "Blue Bloods" (11.500 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T4).

Next up was NBC (5.545 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T2) with originals from "Dateline NBC" (7.664 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.5, #3), "Grimm" (5.429 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T4) and "Constantine" (3.543 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.1, #9).

Meanwhile, FOX (1.823 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.6, #4) served up encores of "MasterChef Junior" (2.393 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.8, #11) and "Gotham" (1.252 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T14).

And finally, The CW (1.375 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.5, #5) closed out the evening with the season finale of "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" (1.645 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T12), a repeat "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" (1.528 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T12) and a new "America's Next Top Model" (1.164 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T14).

On Food Network...

- 8p: Guy's Grocery Games: 1.160 million viewers
- 9p: Holiday Baking Championship: 1.435 million viewers
- 10p: Cutthroat Kitchen: 1.162 million viewers

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 11/25/14

Tuesday Lightning Round
... or "Small Potatoes"

  • "The Big Adventure" ends small... a little too small (Sydney Morning Herald)
     
  • Bradley Walsh may very well be the best quiz show host in the UK today (The Guardian)
     
  • "Dancing With the Stars" broke for news last night... And Twitter a'sploded (BONUS: Sadie & Mark as Peach & Mario) (USA Today)
     
  • Diem Brown actually died at 34, not 32. Here's why she had her age changed (People)

posted 11/25/14

Money, Money, Yeah, Yeah
Hulu's "Money Where Your Mouth Is" Opens Second Season
From Stream Daily
Believe Entertainment Group on Monday debuted S2 of the game show Money Where Your Mouth Is on Hulu and Hulu Plus.

Hosted by comedian and actor Jay Mohr, the 7-episode series will roll out weekly on Tuesdays. It’s financed by Believe Entertainment Group and sponsored by Campbell’s, which was also the brand partner for the first season that debuted last fall.

Billed a “game show for the man’s man,” Money Where Your Mouth Is sees friends wager their possessions in a battle of “man wits.”

The show is exec produced by studio partners Dan Goodman, Danny Fishman, William H. Masterson III along with Lowell Mate, Barry Katz and Mohr. It’s directed by John Crane and Erik Wong and produced by Andrew Egiziano.

“Besting their buddies is what guys do and it’s something I know well. I’m thrilled to be continuing on with Money Where Your Mouth Is and to see it really come into its own. I’m excited to be a part of it and grow with it,” Mohr said in a statement.

The first season of Money was among the top game shows of the 2013-14 winter season on the streaming service, and the series ranked among the top 40 shows among men aged 25 to 44 for 8 weeks, according to Hulu’s internal stats.

Campbell’s companion content includes behind-the-scenes clips, branded scoreboards, and pre-roll ads promoting both the show and the product.

Stream Daily
VideoInk

posted 11/24/14

Mensa Kids?
Catch "Child Genius" on Lifetime January 6
From the Futon Critic
Lifetime's all-new competition series Child Genius (#ChildGenius) centers on America's most extraordinary and gifted children and their families as they prepare for a national intelligence competition. In cooperation with American Mensa, the competition takes place over eight weeks and tests the nation's brightest young minds on their knowledge of Math, Spelling, Geography, Memory, the Human Body, U.S. Presidents, Vocabulary, Current Events, Zoology, Astronomy and Space, Inventions, Literature and the Arts, Earth Science and Logic.

Hosted by Leland Melvin, former NASA astronaut, the show features 20 boys and girls ages 8 to 12 from across the country, all competing for a $100,000 college fund and the title of Child Genius 2014. Immediately following the Season 5 premiere of Dance Moms(R), Child Genius bows on Tuesday, January 6, 2015, at 10pm ET/PT.

Based on the popular U.K. format, Child Genius is produced by Shed Media. Pam Healey (Who Do You Think You Are?, The Real Housewives of New York City), John Hesling (Atlanta Exes, Top Gear), Dan Snook (Escape Club, Apocalypse Preppers) and Laurie Girion (Cheerleader Nation, Showville) serve as executive producers, along with Lifetime's Eli Lehrer, Mary Donahue and David Hillman.

The Futon Critic

posted 11/24/14

Stop Me If You've Heard This One
"Last Comic Standing" on Hold for Retooling
From the Comic's Comic
Hurry up and wait is a common expression in show business.

Now it's all too relevant to the ninth season of NBC's Last Comic Standing, which now has to figure out whether it can return in time for summer 2015 after telling comedians this weekend that production has been put on hold.

"It is on hold for now while we work on revising the format with the network," executive producer Page Hurwitz told The Comic's Comic today. "Once we have something we all like, we'll get rolling."

After being revived by Hurwitz and Wanda Sykes in 2014 with a successful summer season that both NBC brass and comedians seemed to applaud, NBC quickly ordered a ninth season for next summer. New judges Roseanne Barr, Keenen Ivory Wayans and Russell Peters all wanted to return, too.

Last Comic producers reacted even quicker to that news, scouting and auditioning stand-up comedians in clubs across America in September, with callbacks in New York City and Los Angeles in October. Last Comic didn't even hold auditions this past year for season 8, instead screening potential contestants themselves and via email submissions. For season 9, however, producers and casting agents already had their list of contestants narrowed down to 200, with the "Top 100" invitationals scheduled to convene in California in March.

But stand-ups were told to effectively stand down on Friday night.

Late Friday, NBC announced it had let upcoming sitcom Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt break free to debut on Netflix instead. NBC Entertainment Chairman Robert Greenblatt cited "a very drama-heavy midseason schedule" that had no room for the sitcom. Greenblatt also already has brought back The Celebrity Apprentice for January (it's already wrapped production), and has a recurring summer reality competition in America's Got Talent.

Hurwitz tells The Comic's Comic writer Sean McCarthy, however, that it's more of a need to retool and get things right first before resuming production.

Last year's format began with the "Top 100" Invitationals rounds before breaking down into challenges (sketch comedy, talk-show interview, roast), with challenge winners receiving immunity and other comedians facing off in head-to-head stand-up eliminations before the judges and a live audience. What'll it be for Season 9? That remains to be seen.

So everything is no go for now. Let's hope they come up with something both they and NBC like by March.

The Comic's Comic

posted 11/24/14

Factor Four?
Report: Simon Cowell Looking to Bring "X Factor" Back to US
From TV Line
Is Fox looking to reunite with its X?

The network reportedly is in talks with Simon Cowell to bring The X Factor, which was cancelled in February after three seasons, back for Season 4.

Cowell, who created the singing competition and is now a judge on its British version, would leave that post in order to return to the United States, the British publication Mirror reports.

Representatives from the network have not commented on the report. X Factor‘s Season 3 finale was watched by only 6.2 million people — and scored a 1.7 demo rating — marking year-to-year declines of 36 and 45 percent.

The series’ American iteration made several changes during its run, including dropping mentors Paula Abdul and Nicole Scherzinger and host Steve Jones after the first season and adding Britney Spears and Demi Lovato to the mix in Season 2.

If Cowell does depart the British X Factor, it will be the second time he’s done so; the first was in 2010, to get Fox’s Factor going.

Per the Mirror report, Fox’s relaunched X Factor would bow in 2015.

TV Line

posted 11/24/14

Monday Lightning Round
... or "Fast Money"

  • Steve Harvey sued by a videographer for $20 million. Something tells me that early stand-up is not the issue here (Courthouse News)
     
  • "Red or Black's" first big winner in big trouble over abusive texts (Metro)
     
  • Gwen Stefani, Pharrell Williams to perform together December 1 on "The Voice" (The Futon Critic)

posted 11/24/14

Spike Syncs Up
Greenlight for Jimmy Fallon Project
From the Futon Critic
The pop culture phenomenon of lip sync battling will now have its very own television show. Spike TV is partnering with Jimmy Fallon and his Eight Million Plus Productions, John Krasinski ("The Office," "Promised Land," "It's Complicated") Stephen Merchant ("Hello Ladies," "Extras," "The Ricky Gervais Show") and Matador ("Banksy Does New York") to create a new, half-hour original series "Lip Sync Battle." The announcement was made by Jimmy Fallon last night on "The Tonight Show" during his interview with Stephen Merchant.

"Lip Sync Battling is one of the coolest things happening in pop culture right now and already has a huge fan base thanks to the amazing talent involved," said Casey Patterson, Executive Vice President, Talent Development and Production, Viacom Entertainment Group. "We're thrilled to be in business with producers as talented as Jimmy, John and Stephen as Spike broadens its programming in new and exciting ways."

Each "Lip Sync Battle" episode will feature celebrities going head to head - lip synching the song of their choice - battling for the coolest bragging rights on the planet.

Along with serving as executive producers, Fallon, Krasinski, and Merchant will appear and perform on "Lip Sync Battle." The series will tape in January in New York City and will premiere Thursday, April 2, 2015. Show host and list of talent who will be battling to be announced in the coming weeks.

Spike TV's "Lip Sync Battle" will be executive produced by Jimmy Fallon's Eight Million Plus Productions, John Krasinski, Stephen Merchant, Rick Schwartz of Eight Million Plus, Jay Peterson of Matador, and Casey Patterson, Executive Vice President, Talent Development and Production, Viacom Entertainment Group. Emmy(R)-award winning Beth McCarthy-Miller ("Saturday Night Live," "30-Rock," "The Sound of Music Live," "Modern Family") will serve as Director.

The Futon Critic
Deadline

posted 11/21/14

Thursday: Closing Time for Shondaland
ABC Wins Odd Night on Winter Finales
From the Futon Critic
Due to live coverage of the Presidential Address, Fast Nationals for FOX, ABC, CBS and NBC are approximate. The Presidential Address aired from 8-8:17pm, with FOX sliding prime in 36% of the country and joining prime in progress in 3% of the country.

ABC (9.368 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.9, #1) was the network to beat on Thursday with the fall finales to "Grey's Anatomy" (8.283 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 2.4, #5), "Scandal" (10.017 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 3.1, #T2) and "How to Get Away with Murder" (9.805 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 3.1, #T2).

The silver then went to CBS (8.904 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.1, #2) and its mix of "The Big Bang Theory" (14.647 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 4.0, #1), "Mom" (10.644 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.7, #4), "Two and a Half Men" (8.970 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 2.3, #6), "The McCarthys" (6.353 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.4, #8) and "Elementary" (6.405 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.0, #12).

Next up was NBC (4.425 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.3, #3) with its lineup of "The Biggest Loser" (5.127 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T9), "Bad Judge" (4.093 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.2, #11), "A to Z" (3.048 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.9, #13) and "Parenthood" (4.578 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.5, #7).

Meanwhile, FOX (4.225 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.0, #4) served up originals from "Bones" (5.244 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T9) and "Gracepoint" (3.205 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T14).

And finally, new episodes of "The Vampire Diaries" (1.671 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T14) and "Reign" (1.154 million viewers, #16; adults 18-49: 0.4, #16) on The CW (1.413 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.6, #5) closed out the evening.

On cable, it was another good night for "Pawnography" with 1.569 million at 10p and 1.525 million at 10:30p. "Project Runway: All-Stars" logged in 1.519 million. "Beat Bobby Flay" has 1.127 million fans. "Project Runway: Threads" sewed up 778,000. "Food Truck Face Off" fed 771,000.

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers
Showbuzz Daily

posted 11/21/14

Happy Friday Lightning Round
... or "Notes of Great Importance"

  • "American Idol": January 7. MasterChef Junior: January 6. Hell's Kitchen: March 3 (The Futon Critic)
     
  • Carson Daly undergoes a live testicular cancer check (NBC News Today)
     
  • More on Tylenol Throwback Thursday (Forbes)
     
  • GSN and Worldwinner vs. Stephenson: the final decision (National Law Review)
     
  • CASTING COUCH: a "reality fame project" (Deadspin)

posted 11/20/14

Tyler Florence Rolls into Worst Cooks
Catch Season 6 January 4
From the Futon Critic
Worst Cooks in America, the hit competition series that transforms kitchen disasters into confident cooks, is back for a sixth season on Sunday, January 4th at 9pm ET/PT with returning Chef Anne Burrell going up against first-time opponent Chef Tyler Florence. In the seven-episode series, Anne and Tyler each lead a team of kitchen-challenged recruits in a grueling culinary boot camp designed to turn them into skilled cooks. A $25,000 grand prize is awarded to the contestant who makes the most impressive culinary transformation, in addition to delivering victory and bragging rights for their team leader.

"Welcoming a new roster of Worst Cooks is an annual tradition, and our viewers love watching their comical kitchen mishaps evolve into serious cooking chops," said Bob Tuschman, General Manager and Senior Vice President, Food Network. "Anne and Tyler are both fiercely competitive and determined to whip their contenders into tip-top culinary shape, and the transformations are remarkable."

In the season premiere, an open call brings some truly horrible cooks to the table to meet Anne and Tyler. Fourteen new recruits are selected for boot camp and each presents their signature dish, then contestants are divided into Team Anne and Team Tyler. In lesson one, recruits must make the ultimate romantic meal. Anne's red team tackles Roasted Chicken with Israeli Couscous and Pomegranate Sauce, while Tyler's blue team makes Chateaubriand with Mashed Potatoes and Roasted Mushrooms. The least successful competitors from each team are sent home, while the remaining 12 move on to the next challenge. Upcoming episodes feature a food trivia game, international taco themed competition and a breakfast menu challenge with special guest, Good Morning America Chief Meteorologist and resident foodie Ginger Zee. The season culminates in a finale on Sunday, February 15th at 9pm ET/PT where the most improved recruit is awarded a $25,000 grand prize.

Viewers wanting more can visit FoodNetwork.com/WorstCooks for behind-the-scenes photos, interviews, easy cooking tips and more insider coverage. Fans can also connect with each other on Facebook at Facebook.com/FoodNetwork and on Twitter with the hashtag #WorstCooks.

The Futon Critic

posted 11/20/14

Wednesday: Split Down the Middle
CBS, ABC Split Night
From the Futon Critic
ABC (7.648 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.3, #1) was the demo champ on Wednesday thanks to its lineup of "The Middle" (8.324 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 2.2, #6), "The Goldbergs" (7.701 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 2.4, #T3), "Modern Family" (10.902 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 3.7, #1), "Black-ish" (7.948 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 2.6, #2) and "Nashville" (5.506 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T10).

CBS (9.473 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.1, #2) then was a close second place with its trio of "Survivor: San Juan del Sur" (9.823 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.4, #T3), "Criminal Minds" (10.612 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.3, #5) and "Stalker" (7.982 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.7, #8).

Next up was NBC (7.885 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.6, #3) with fresh installments of "The Mysteries of Laura" (8.570 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.4, #12), "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (7.863 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.8, #7) and "Chicago PD" (7.223 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.6, #9).

Meanwhile, FOX (3.447 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.2, #4) served up originals from "Hell's Kitchen" (3.943 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T10) and "Red Band Society" (2.951 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T13).

And finally, new episodes of "Arrow" (2.625 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T13) and "The 100" (1.658 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.6, #15) on The CW (2.142 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.7, #5) closed out the evening.

Almost a million (949,000, to be exact) tuned into "Top Chef" on Bravo opposite 717,000 for Food's "Kitchen Inferno" and 381,000 for Fox Sports 1's "The Ultimate Fighter". A total of 632,000 stayed up for "@midnight". 

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 11/20/14

South of the Border
Catch Season Finale of "Top Chef" January 28
From the Futon Critic
For the first time, Bravo's "Top Chef" travels south of the border to Mexico in a fiery three-part finale beginning Wednesday, January 28 at 9pm ET/PT. Tempers and temperatures rise in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, where the final three will learn which chef from "Top Chef: Last Chance Kitchen" will be rejoining the competition. The knives will come out as the cheftestants battle for $125,000 furnished by Healthy Choice, a feature in FOOD & WINE magazine, a showcase at the annual FOOD & WINE Classic in Aspen and the prestigious title of Top Chef.

For a sneak peek at the remainder of the season, visit www.bravotv.com/top-chef/season-12/videos/still-to-come-on-season-12-of-top-chef

Upcoming guest judges and diners include Chef Barbara Lynch, "Top Chef" season 10 winner Kristen Kish, New England Patriots star Rob Gronkowski, "Watch What Happens Live" host Andy Cohen, culinary legend Jacques Pepin, Harvard Professor Michael Brenner, and many other award-winning chefs including Enrique Olvera and Sean Brock.

The Futon Critic

posted 11/20/14

More on "Face Off: Return of the Champions"
Catch It on Syfy January 13
From the Futon Critic
Syfy’s critically-acclaimed reality competition series Face Off – the network’s most watched unscripted series – will return on Tuesday, January 13 at 9PM for an action-packed eighth season themed “Return of the Champions.” In a twist on the show’s traditional format, three former champions, Rayce Bird (Season 2), Anthony Kosar (Season 4) and Laura Tyler (Season 5), will return in the premiere and select teams of five new artists who they will coach throughout the season.

Additionally, the Season 8 premiere will be super-sized over two episodes. At the end of premiere, host McKenzie Westmore delivers a challenge twist in lieu of an elimination, forcing the action of the premiere to carry over into the next week’s episode. Makeup super-legend and seven-time Academy Award-winner Rick Baker (makeup artist for American Werewolf in London, The Men in Black trilogy, Michael Jackson’s Thriller, Planet of the Apes) will appear in both episodes, first mentoring the artists and then appearing as a guest judge.

In a first for the series, Season 8 will feature an instant “watch and win” sweepstakes. During each episode, fans will be prompted to discuss who their favorite contestant is by using Twitter - making them automatically eligible to win a weekly prize. At the end of each episode, one lucky fan will be announced in an on air spot, on Twitter and featured on the Face Off show site on Syfy.com.

Season 8 will also feature the full-time return of fan-favorite and Academy Award-winning judge, Ve Neill, who recently wrapped work on The Hunger Games franchise.

The Futon Critic

posted 11/20/14


MIKE NICHOLS: 1931-2014
Noted Producer Played "What's My Line", "Laugh Line"
From the
Jewish Journal
Mike Nichols, a nine-time Tony Award winner on Broadway and the Oscar-winning director of influential films such as "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf," "The Graduate," and "Carnal Knowledge," died on Wednesday at age 83.

The prolific director passed away at his home of cardiac arrest, his spokeswoman said. A private service for the family will be held this week, followed by a memorial at a future date.

No director had ever moved between Broadway and Hollywood as easily as Nichols, one of the few people to win the Oscar, Tony, Emmy and Grammy Awards.

Nichols, whose career first blossomed with a comedy partnership with Elaine May in the late 1950s, was married to Diane Sawyer, former anchorwoman of ABC's "World News Tonight" broadcast.

ABC News President James Goldston announced Nichols' death in a memo to staff, saying he "passed away suddenly on Wednesday evening."

"In a triumphant career that spanned over six decades, Mike created some of the most iconic works of American film, television and theater," Goldston said. "He was a true visionary."

In memory of Nichols, marquees on Broadway theatres in New York will be dimmed on Friday evening for one minute.

"Legendary director Mike Nichols shared his distinct genius for storytelling through the worlds of stage and film. Throughout his celebrated career in many mediums that spanned decades, he was always in awe of the thrill and the miracle that is theatre," Charlotte St. Martin, the executive director of the Broadway League, said in a statement.

In addition, Nichols was a guest on "Laugh Line" and "What's My Line?".

GSNN's Jason Huhn & Chico Alexander contributed to this report.

Jewish Journal
Communities Digital News

photo courtesy Rotten Tomatoes

posted 11/20/14


MARIA JOSE ALVARADO: 1995-2014
Miss Honduras, "X-O" Model Murdered
From the Irish Independent
The boyfriend of Miss Honduras’ sister has confessed to killing her and the 19-year-old beauty queen, a leading police officer has said.

Two bodies believed to be of Maria Jose Alvarado, who was due to compete in the Miss World Pageant in London in December, and her sister, Sofia, 23, were found buried on a river bank in mountains near Santa Barbara in Honduras on Wednesday.

Police General Ramon Sabillion told the Associated Press that Sofia’s boyfriend, Plutarco Ruiz, had admitted shooting the two women dead and taken officers to the burial site. A second man was also in custody.

Ruiz and the two sisters had gone to La Aguagua spa on Thursday last week to celebrate his birthday.

General Sabillon said Ruiz apparently shot Sofia after they argued because she had been dancing with another man. He then shot Maria Jose as she tried to run away, hitting her at least twice in the back.

The sisters were officially classed as missing for six days until the discovery of their bodies. The identities were still to be formally confirmed.

Their mother, Teresa Munoz, told Televicentro: “They were not very astute about assessing the people around them. They were just friendly. They were taken out by people they hadn't known very long.”

She added that Ruiz had called her the morning after their disappearance, acting nervously and claiming the women had left the party in a car with some other people.

Ms Alvarado had worked as a model on the TV game show El Show X O da Dinero, run by former presidential candidate Salvador Nasrallah.

Irish Independent
BBC News
The Guardian
London Evening Standard

photo courtesy Hispanic News Network

posted 11/20/14


DIEM BROWN: 1982-2014
"Challenge" Contestant Loses Battle with Cancer
From MTV
Diem Brown, whose tenacity shined bright throughout her years on “The Challenge” and embodied an unparalleled strength during numerous battles with cancer, has passed away, People confirms. She was 32.

“MTV is tremendously sad to hear the news that Diem Brown has lost her long battle with cancer,” the network said in a statement. “We send our deepest condolences to her family and friends. Diem was a true fighter and brought passion to everything she touched. We will miss her.”

Viewers were first introduced to the Southern native when she appeared on “Fresh Meat” in 2006. The then-wide-eyed newbie revealed on the series that she was suffering from ovarian cancer and opened up about her uphill battle to recover. But she was able to beat the disease and shortly after treatments — including chemotherapy, as well as surgery to remove an ovary, several lymph nodes and part of her fallopian tube — she returned to take part on “The Duel.” The warrior-like competitor showed her incredible bravery by removing her wig in front of the cameras — thanks to the encouragement of eventual boyfriend Chris “CT” Tamburello — and the touching incident is widely regarded as one of the most profound moments in the show’s storied history.

From there, she appeared on “The Gauntlet III,” “The Duel 2, “The Ruins” and “Battle of the Exes.” And while she never took home a top prize, her athleticism and grit were always on display.

Diem wasn’t only an inspiration onscreen: She used her personal experiences to become a patient advocate and founded Medgift, a gift registry site to aid anyone going through a medical hardship. She also hosted an MTV.com special in 2012, in which she spoke with young cancer survivors about their struggles.

But in June 2012, six years into remission, Diem faced another hurdle: Traces of the disease had returned. She candidly opened up about her second battle with cancer, even courageously documenting her hair loss and revealing plans to freeze her embryos in order to fulfill her dream of becoming a mother.

Diem prevailed again, sharing her positive prognosis in February 2013, and not long after undergoing chemotherapy, she returned to the “Challenge” circuit on “Rivals II,” where she and her partner Aneesa finished strong in fourth place.

Diem faced her toughest hardship in August, when she was diagnosed with cancer for a third time. But through it all, she showed her resilience and vowed to never give up, even during her final days.

“You can count me out all you want,” she recently told People. “But I’m not out. I’m fighting. I want to be here.”

MTV
The Daily Beast
Us Magazine
The Wrap
PerezHilton.com

photo courtesy the Daily Beast

posted 11/20/14

Thursday Lightning Round
... or "Dismissed"

  • "American Idol" racism suit dismissed (Deadline)
     
  • The story behind the famous moniker of Winston Conrad Martindale (ABC News)
     
  • @midnight: making America fall in love with the panel show, one (^_^) joke at a time (The Guardian)
     
  • When is "MasterChef" competing against itself? When it's up for best adapted format at the Asian Television Awards (Business Recorder)
     
  • #TBT: Guy Fieri in 2000... for real this time (Deadspin)

posted 11/20/14

A Family Trip to Flavortown
Catch "Guy's Grocery Games" During January
From the Futon Critic
Guy Fieri's favorite things are food, fun and family, and he is bringing all three together in the New Year for a Guy's Grocery Games: Family Style showdown, premiering Sunday, January 4th at 8pm ET/PT on Food Network. The families will compete over four episodes, with each episode consisting of four teams made up of a different variation of family members, each including a chef, as they compete for a chance at the grand prize. Whether it is a child with two parents, a parent with two children or siblings working together, the families must navigate their way through the aisles of a grocery store, battling it out in different supermarket-themed obstacles, including shopping and cooking on a budget, cooking a meal with five ingredients or less, or the new game of station swap, among others. One-by-one the losing families must "check out" by a rotating panel of judges, featuring Melissa d'Arabian, Richard Blais, G. Garvin, Troy Johnson, Beau MacMillan, Catherine McCord and Aarti Sequeira. The last family standing goes on a shopping spree of a lifetime worth up to $20,000. These families know, live and love food, so don't miss all the laughs, tears, and sibling rivalries delivered Family Style!

Check out FoodNetwork.com/GroceryGames to get Guy's exclusive take on the family-style competition, learn more about the families competing, and see bonus behind-the-scenes photos and videos, including how Flavortown Market was built.

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers

posted 11/19/14

Tuesday: The War At 8
The Hour Gives Us Options, All Winners
From the Futon Critic
CBS (14.748 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.2, #1) moved into the top spot on Tuesday with its trio of "NCIS" (17.889 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.6, #T1), "NCIS: New Orleans" (16.677 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.3, #3) and "Person of Interest" (9.679 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T5).

NBC (7.678 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.0, #2) then had to settle for second place with its mix of "The Voice" (10.497 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.6, #T1), "Marry Me" (5.327 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T5), "About a Boy" (4.307 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T10) and "Chicago Fire" (7.718 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 2.0, #4).

Next up was FOX (3.382 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.4, #3) with originals from "MasterChef Junior" (4.180 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.5, #8), "New Girl" (2.800 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 1.4, #9) and "The Mindy Project" (2.371 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T12).

Meanwhile, ABC (4.483 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T4) served up a repeat of "Shark Tank" (4.504 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T12) followed by new episodes of "Marvel's Agents of SHIELD" (4.535 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.6, #T5) and "Forever" (4.409 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T14).
And finally, new episodes of "The Flash" (3.579 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T10) and "Supernatural" (2.627 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T14) on The CW (3.103 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T4) closed out the night.

But the news continues to be bright for "The Chase". The GSN original quizzer was consistent with 645,000, leading into two new episodes of "IdioTest" at a series-high 561,000 and 505,000.

Elsewhere, "Ink Master" had 1.341 million. "Chopped" edged it out with 1.430 million. "@midnight" had 584,000.

The Futon Critic
TV Media Insights
TV by the Numbers
Showbuzz Daily

posted 11/19/14

Wednesday Lightning Round
... or "Empire State"

  • "American Idol" has a drop date: January 7 (Deadline)
     
  • "The Voice"... a case of Too Many Cooks? (Hollywood Reporter) PLUS Blake Shelton thinks he knows why we don't have a megastar yet... (Buzzfeed)
     
  • Alex Trebek gets namechecked and hood-passed (Eurweb) ... meanwhile, he'll be hosting the Tech Emmy Awards in January 6 (Broadway World)
     
  • Christopher Titus heads to Broadway (Broadway World)
     
  • LIST ABUSE: five neato keen game show facts... with Wink Martindale! (Mashable)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Terry Crews (WTVD Durham)

posted 11/18/14

GSN in 2015
Development Slate Includes Steampunk, Apps, and a Hellevator
From Deadline
GSN is delving into new genres of game programming as it expands its competitive entertainment roster for 2015. The network has six projects in development, including horror-themed game show Hellevator, produced by Matador and Jason Blum’s Blumhouse Prods in association with Lionsgate TV. Matador’s Jay Peterson and Todd Lubin executive produce.

Hellevator features contestants entering a dark, mysterious warehouse – via an ominous-looking elevator – where they will compete in a series of scary, suspenseful and emotionally exhausting challenges. Only the survivors will make it out as winner.

Also on the 2015 development slate is Steampunk’d, a competition series featuring talented artists, designers and inventors who create “steampunk,” a popular genre of science fiction and fantasy that fuses modern technology and Victorian Age aesthetics to turn everyday objects into works of art. Other projects in development are How-To Games (working title), which utilizes popular Internet how-to videos to see how quickly contestants can pick up and repeat a wide range of tasks; Bingo Bash, which brings GSN’s popular digital app to the small screen; numbers game Winsnity, which features contestants’ attempts to organize seven compelling and surprising facts in numerical order, from lowest to highest; and Face 2 Face, a studio-based dating series for the 21st century, which uses an app to drive a tailored search for each dater/contestant’s ideal physical “type.” Complete descriptions are below.

Previously announced pilot App Wars has tapped actress Danica McKellar (The Wonder Years, Dancing With The Stars) as host and tech experts Nolan Bushnell, Alyson Shontell and Prerna Gupta as judges. App Wars is executive produced by Cheri Brownlee and Barry Hennessey through Cheri Sundae Productions.

GSN recently announced a 65-episode second season of original series Idiotest, hosted by comedian Ben Gleib. It joins pickups for matchmaking series It Takes A Church and body-painting competition show Skin Wars, hosted by Rebecca Romijn.

GSN’s projects in development include:

HELLEVATOR

The horror-themed game show Hellevator features contestants entering a dark, mysterious warehouse – via an ominous-looking elevator – where they will compete in a series of scary, suspenseful and emotionally exhausting challenges. Only the survivors will make it out as winners. Hellevator is produced by Matador and Blumhouse Productions in association with Lionsgate Television. Matador’s Jay Peterson and Todd Lubin executive produce. Blumhouse Productions’ Jason Blum (“Paranormal Activity,” “The Purge,” “Insidious” and “Sinister” franchises), who won a 2014 Emmy® Award for “The Normal Heart,” also executive produces.

STEAMPUNK’D

Steampunk’d is a wildly creative competition series featuring talented artists, designers and inventors who create “Steampunk,” a popular genre of science fiction and fantasy that fuses modern technology and Victorian Age aesthetics to turn everyday objects into works of art. Contestants will be challenged to marry objects from the past and present in order to create futuristic designs and inventions. Dramatic reveals each week will build to a grand finale of a fully Steampunk’d world, so get ready for “before” and “after” like none you’ve ever seen before! Steampunk’d is executive produced by Kimberly Belcher Ehrhard, John Ehrhard (“Hogan Knows Best,” “Miami Social”) and Lauren Stevens of Pink Sneakers Productions.

HOW-TO GAMES (working title)

This fast-moving game show utilizes hugely popular internet how-to videos to see how quickly contestants can pick up and repeat a wide range of tasks, from simple to complex: tasks like tying a bowtie, creating a balloon animal, cutting your own hair or picking a lock. How-To-Games is executive produced by Dwight Smith and Michael Agbabian of Mission Control Media, Inc. (“Face Off,” “Hollywood Game Night”).

BINGO BASH

In a first for GSN, the network is bringing its internationally popular digital app, Bingo Bash (over 900,000 players daily), to the small screen. Bingo Bash welcomes one lucky player into the studio each week and pits him or her against online opponents for the chance to win life-changing money.

WINSANITY

In Winsanity, one contestant attempts to organize seven compelling and surprising facts in numerical order, from lowest to highest. Each successful ranking wins prizes for the team…and the audience, who also has a stake in the game. When the contestant wins a prize, the entire audience is awarded that same prize! However, if the contestant strikes out, then the audience members lose everything in this ultimate game of numbers. From executive producers Barry Poznick (“Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?”) of Barracuda Television Productions, and Chris Grant and Corie Henson of Electus.

FACE 2 FACE

Face 2 Face is a studio-based dating series for the 21st century, using an app to drive a tailored search for each contestant’s (dater) ideal physical “type.” During the show, the dater can see and hear the singles who have been chosen as potential matches, and is privy to everything about their lives via social media. However, the singles are not afforded the opportunity to see the dater. After the dater has narrowed the field to just one single, the tables are turned, with the winning single afforded the opportunity to see who’s been judging them. The single must now decide whether to stay and meet the dater, or bail before ultimately meeting face to face. Face 2 Face is based on a Keshet International format, produced by Keshet DCP.

Deadline
TV Guide
B&C
Variety
AV Club
TV Week
The Hollywood Reporter

posted 11/18/14

Syndies: Week 7 (Sweeps 2)
Results for the Week Ending November 9
From B&C
The start of daylight savings and the November sweep were both in full effect in the week ending Nov 9, with several syndies hitting season highs. Meanwhile, a few shows were hurt by the President’s post-election news conference on Nov. 5, which caused a number of preemptions.

Most game shows played well. CTD’s Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy! both hit new season highs. Wheel rolled to a 7.2 in households, inching a tenth ahead of CTD’s Judge Judy for the first time in 33 weeks, while advancing 4% from the prior session and staying even with last year. Jeopardy! notched a 6.7, up 3% for the week and year. Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud finished 5% lower for the week at a 5.9, but was up 18% from last year at this time. Among women 25-54, Feud led the game shows with a 2.8, followed by Wheel at a 2.5 and Jeopardy! at a 2.3.

Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to be a Millionaire showed improvement with a 1.9 in households in its ninth week with new host Terry Crews, up 6% for the week but down 14% from last year at this time.

Among the first-run rookies, CTD’s Hot Bench declined 6% to a 1.5, after hitting a new series high in the prior session. Hot Bench led the first-run rookies among women 25-54 at a 0.8, down 11% from the prior week. NBCU’s already-renewed Meredith Vieira was steady at a 1.2. Debmar-Mercury’s Celebrity Name Game, with numerous access clearances in top markets, tied Meredith with an unchanged 1.2.

B&C
TV by the Numbers
The Futon Critic

posted 11/18/14

Monday: State of Play
NBC, ABC Split Night
From The Futon Critic
NBC (10.070 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.7, #1) held onto the top demo spot with a new "The Voice" (10.782 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 3.0, #1) and the premiere of "State of Affairs" (8.647 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 2.2, #4).

ABC (13.062 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.3, #2) then snagged the silver with its duo of "Dancing with the Stars" (14.634 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.4, #2) and "Castle" (9.917 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.0, #T6).

Next up was FOX (5.506 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.9, #3) with originals from "Gotham" (6.405 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 2.3, #3) and "Sleepy Hollow" (4.608 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T9).

Meanwhile, CBS (8.605 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.8, #4) offered up its mix of "2 Broke Girls" (7.920 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 2.1, #5), the departing "The Millers" (6.303 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T9), "Scorpion" (10.006 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.0, #T6) and "NCIS: Los Angeles" (8.698 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.7, #8).

And finally, new episodes of "The Originals" (1.414 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.7, #11) and "Jane the Virgin" (1.114 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.4, #12) closed out the evening on The CW (1.264 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.6, #5).

On Comedy Central, "@midnight" gets 695,000 viewers.

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers

posted 11/18/14

Weekend: 100 Sharks
ABC's Landmark Friday Offering Reaches 100 Episodes, Takes a Bite Out of CBS
From The Futon Critic
ABC (6.491 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.4, #1) was still the network to beat on Friday with its mix of "Last Man Standing" (7.075 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T2), "Cristela" (5.252 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.1, #6), "Shark Tank" (7.575 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.7, #1) and "20/20" (5.736 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T4).

The silver then went to NBC (5.465 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.2, #2) with originals from "Dateline NBC" (7.974 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T2), "Grimm" (4.983 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T4) and "Constantine" (3.438 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 0.8, #7).

Next up was FOX (2.068 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.6, #3) with encores of "MasterChef Junior" (2.366 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.7, #8) and "Gotham" (1.771 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.6, #9).

Meanwhile, CBS (3.657 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T4) served up its specials "Hollywood Film Awards" (4.141 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T10) and "Hollywood Film Awards Post-Show" (2.691 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T12) to limited results.

And finally, The CW (1.359 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T4) closed out the evening with a new "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" (1.658 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.5, #T10), a repeat "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" (1.393 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T12) and a new "America's Next Top Model" (1.192 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T12).

"Deal With It" gave TBS 1.067 million viewers, over its average at the 9p timeslot. On the other hand, "On the Menu" continued its long strange trip downward with 393,000 for TNT.

On Food Network, we had...

- 8p: "Guy's Grocery Games" - 1.364 million
- 9p: "Holiday Baking Championship" - 1.750 million
- 10p: "Cutthroat Kitchen" - 1.331 million

Variety
TV by the Numbers
Showbuzz Daily
The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers
TV by the Numbers

posted 11/18/14

Tuesday Lightning Round
... or "NAKED GRANDMA!"

  • Steve Harvey reveals the worst answers he's ever heard (Zap2it)
     
  • Michael Johns died of natural causes... namely an enlarged heart (TMZ)
     
  • "You Don't Know Jack" is back (Hardcore Gamer)
     
  • LIST ABUSE: five consonants and a vowel about "Wheel of Fortune" (MSN)
     
  • Utopia's feel good cow story (Yahoo!)

posted 11/18/14

SYTYCD: Stage vs. Street
Fox Returns Dance-Off for 12th Season
From The Futon Critic
FOX has renewed the Emmy Award-winning SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE for a 12th season. From 19 Entertainment, a division of CORE Media Group, and dick clark productions, SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE will return in the summer of 2015 with a dramatic new twist.

Throughout the auditions, the dancers who advance will be placed into two teams - the STAGE dancers, featuring those trained in styles such as contemporary, ballet, jazz or tap; and the STREET dancers, hopefuls skilled in hip-hop, animation or breaking. As the auditions continue, the judges, along with each team's All-Star Mentor, will eliminate dancers until only the Top 20 - 10 Street Dancers and 10 Stage Dancers - remain. When the competition goes "live," the Top 20 will be challenged weekly to perform a variety of styles, working with world-renowned choreographers. One dancer from each genre will be eliminated each week leading up to the Season Finale. Who will win... a dancer from the stage or the street? Find out when SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE returns in summer 2015.

"SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE is a rare jewel. It combines high art with mass entertainment in a seamless, sophisticated and hugely satisfying way," said Simon Andreae, Executive Vice President, Alternative Entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company. "It's produced and consumed with tremendous passion and it's developed one of the most deservedly loyal followings in all of unscripted television. We are immensely proud to be returning it to the schedule with a thrilling new twist that will bring it up to date and introduce a whole new set of rooting opportunities."

"The competition is going to be much more exciting for viewers and even more demanding for the dancers," said co-creator and executive producer Nigel Lythgoe. "Dancers from different genres have always been competitive with each other and we've found a great way to harness that to bring out the absolute best performances in the best dancers across the country."

Audition cities and dates to be announced soon.

In September, Ricky Ubeda was named the Season 11 winner during the live two-hour Season Finale. Miami native Ubeda, 18, received the most votes and danced off with the cash prize of $250,000, the cover of Dance Spirit Magazine and the offer of a role in the Broadway revival of "On The Town." Ubeda also joined the rest of the Top 10 dancers for the Season 11 SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE Live Tour, which visits 77 cities in the U.S. and Canada and runs through February 18, 2015 at the Scheels Arena in Fargo, ND. Ticket information and more details are available at www.fox.com/dance.

The Futon Critic
TV Line

posted 11/17/14

CW? More Like 3-W!
"Top Model", "Masters of Illusion", "Fool Us" Get New Orders
From The Futon Critic
The CW has ordered new seasons of AMERICA'S NEXT TOP MODEL, PENN & TELLER: FOOL US and MASTERS OF ILLUSION to air during 2015. Each series will roll out throughout the year with specific premiere dates to be announced at a later time.

After acquiring the original British series from DCD Rights to air this past summer, The CW has ordered 13 brand new one-hour episodes of PENN & TELLER: FOOL US,which will go back into production next year. As in the previous series, 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. PENN & TELLER: FOOL US is created and produced by 117 PRODUCTIONS and September Films (part of DCD Media) for ITV, with executive producers Peter Adam Golden and Andrew Golder.

Hosted by actor Dean Cain ("Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman"), these 13 all new half-hour episodes of MASTERS OF ILLUSION feature great escapes, fascinating sleight-of-hand, and large scale illusions, all in front of a studio audience. The series features amazing magic performed by cutting-edge illusionists and escape artists, and performers in each episode display skills ranging from perplexing interactive mind magic to hilarious comedy routines. Live audience members and viewers at home will be baffled by the astounding skills of these modern illusionists. MASTERS OF ILLUSION is from Associated Television International with executive producers David McKenzie ("The 38th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards," "Marie"), Al Schwartz ("The 38th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards," "The Golden Globe Awards" 2013 & 2014, "The Gulf is Back"), Gay Blackstone ("The World Magic Awards" 2007-2009) and David Martin ("Marie"), along with co-executive producers Justin Pierce ("The Rocky Saga: Going the Distance") and Jim Romanovich ("Inside Story: Ferris Bueller's Day Off").

The CW has also ordered the 22nd cycle of AMERICA'S NEXT TOP MODEL, which will again feature men and women contestants vying for the TOP MODEL title. Dates for the start of production and premiere will be announced at a later date

The Futon Critic
TV Line

posted 11/17/14

Monday Lightning Round
... or "Starting Over Again For The First Time"

  • VIDEO WALL: new week, new "American Idol" promo (The Futon Critic)
     
  • It's about to get cold in Cleveland for Betty White, as TV Land ends the six-season sitcom (The Holllywood Reporter)
     
  • Guess who's big fat behind is about to go into the Indian "Big Brother" house (The Hollywood Reporter)
     
  • A shot of baby with Tila Tequila (Us Magazine)
     
  • Daniel Goddard, Melissa Ordway go from actors to models to judges (Soap Opera)
     
  • WHY THE BLEEP IS THIS NEWS?: Noel Edmonds exercises in the dark with electronic pulses (Bristol Post)
     
  • BRUTALLY HONEST REVIEW: Hair Jacked (Washington Post)
     
  • Claudia Jordan, come on down! You're the next "Real Housewife of Atlanta" (Zap2it)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with George Gray (Miami Herald)

posted 11/17/14

Thursday: No More Miller Time
CBS, ABC Split Night
From The Futon Critic
ABC (9.159 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.8, #1) was the demo champ on Thursday thanks to new episodes of "Grey's Anatomy" (8.287 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 2.4, #5), "Scandal" (9.976 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 3.2, #2) and "How to Get Away with Murder" (9.216 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 2.9, #3).

CBS (9.866 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.3, #2) then took home the silver with its mix of "The Big Bang Theory" (17.070 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 4.5, #1), "Mom" (11.839 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.8, #4), "Two and a Half Men" (9.451 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.2, #6), "The McCarthys" (6.940 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.6, #7) and "Elementary" (6.949 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T8).

Next up was FOX (4.471 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T3) with fresh installments of "Bones" (5.510 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T8) and "Gracepoint" (3.432 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.8, #13).

Meanwhile, NBC (3.704 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T3) served up originals from "The Biggest Loser" (4.452 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T8), "Bad Judge" (3.692 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.9, #12), "A to Z" (2.354 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.6, #15) and "Parenthood" (3.637 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.0, #11).

And finally, new episodes of "The Vampire Diaries" (1.558 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.7, #14) and "Reign" (1.209 million viewers, #16; adults 18-49: 0.4, #16) closed out the evening on The CW (1.383 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.6, #5).

History's "Pawnography" lead the cable troops with 1.717 million for its 10p showing & 1.534 for its 10:30p showing. "Project Runway All-Stars" had 1.512 million. "Beat Bobby Flay" had 1.149 million. "Project Runway: Threads" have 701,000.

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers
Showbuzz Daily

posted 11/14/14

Miracle Wheel
Wheel Teams with CMN Hospitals
From PR Web
America’s Game®, Wheel of Fortune is once again presenting its popular “Secret Santa Sweepstakes” brought to you by Walmart, and this year the at-home viewers aren’t the only winners. A Children’s Miracle Network Hospital of the winner’s choice will receive a cash donation matching their winnings with a minimum of $300,000 being donated during the course of the sweepstakes.

Each weeknight, from Dec. 8-19, Wheel of Fortune Wheel Watchers Club members will be watching to see if their Special Prize Identification Number (SPIN) ID is revealed, making them the winner of the same prizes as the show’s in-studio contestants. Whatever the home viewer wins will be matched in cash and donated to a Children's Miracle Network Hospital of the at-home winner’s choice. This marks the first time in Wheel of Fortune’s 32 seasons that the popular game show has produced weeks of shows that will directly benefit one charity.

“We are thrilled to join America’s No. 1 game show to help children’s hospitals this holiday season,” said Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals president and CEO John Lauck. “I hope everyone has signed up for the Wheel Watchers Club and will be watching Wheel of Fortune to see if their SPIN ID comes up because those winners will provide charitable care, therapy programs and specialized life-saving treatments and equipment for the 10 million kids treated in our hospitals each year.”

To be eligible to win Wheel of Fortune’s “Secret Santa Sweepstakes,” viewers are asked to join Wheel of Fortune’s loyalty program, the Wheel Watchers Club, for free at wof.childrensmiraclenetworkhospitals.org by Nov. 30. Each member is automatically assigned a unique, alpha-numeric SPIN ID Number.

If the viewer has a Wheel Watchers Club SPIN ID number, he or she will be eligible to win the exact same prizes won by the in-studio contestant and be able to pay it forward by selecting a Children’s Miracle Network Hospital of their choice to receive the cash equivalent of their prizes or a minimum of $10,000.

Wheel Watchers Club members will want to watch Wheel of Fortune to see if their SPIN ID number is revealed and then log on to wheeloffortune.com within 24 hours of the broadcast to claim their prizes and take the first step to helping one of 170 Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.

The sweepstakes SPIN ID reveal period spans “Walmart Family Week” (Dec. 8 – Dec. 12) and “Secret Santa”-themed shows (Dec. 15 – Dec. 19) on Wheel of Fortune. Walmart is a longtime supporter of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. The company’s associates and customers have raised more than $750 million for member hospitals throughout the partnership.

PR Web

posted 11/14/14

Happy Friday Lightning Round
... or "Wink!"

  • SPOILER ALERT!: If you haven't seen Ken Jennings on "Millionaire" and wish not to be spoiled, do NOT CLICK THIS ARTICLE! (USA Today)
     
  • "The Carlton" may force Alfonso Ribeiro to the Dancing sidelines (TMZ)
     
  • Bonnie Hammer angry over lackluster ratings for a series that no one has heard of, no one is watching, and no one is pubbing (The Wrap)
     
  • "Bachelor in Paradise" plus "Rising Star" plus "The Quest" equals BYE FELICIA! Lisa Berger out at ABC (B&C)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Wink Martindale (Fox News)
     
  • Craig Ferguson on the big story of the day... (Monsters & Critics)
     
  • Steve Harvey: real people trump celebrities (Orlando Sentinel)
     
  • Marc Summers could've been host of "Hollywood Squares" were it not for his OCD, so he says (Huffington Post)
     
  • CASTING COUCH: Dating Naked (Reality Wanted)
     
  • Bob Barker donates $500,000 for rescued circus animals (New York Daily Animals)
     
  • A FEW MORE GOOD MINUTES with Wink Martindale (ABC News)

posted 11/14/14

A New Batch of Rednecks
Catch "Redneck Island" December 4
From The Futon Critic
CMT's ultimate competition series, REDNECK ISLAND, returns with a rowdy cast of rednecks beginning Thursday, December 4 at 10:00-11:30 p.m., ET/PT. Hosted by wrestling icon Steve Austin and country singer/songwriter and TV personality Jessie James Decker, the 10-episode series is filled with hijinks and hookups as 12 guys and 12 girls discover a new twist to the game which pairs male and female teammates up as bunkmates. Teams will have to prove they have the physical and mental toughness to survive, and make it to the end for the $100,000 cash prize. CMT will debut a sneak peek at the all-new season tonight, Thursday, November 13 at 10:58 p.m. ET/PT.

The all-new REDNECK ISLAND cast includes 24 contestants from across the south, including such states as Alabama, Texas, South Carolina, North Carolina, Louisiana, Georgia, Kentucky and Missisippi. For the full rundown of this season's contestants, visit the official show page at CMT.com.

Fans can follow along for exclusive news and video, photo galleries and more on CMT.com, the CMT App, the official REDNECK ISLAND Facebook page and on Twitter using #RedneckIsland.

The Futon Critic

posted 11/13/14

Wednesday: Burnett vs. Burnett
"Voice" Leads NBC over CBS
From TV Line
NBC (10.029 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.4, #1) got a boost on Wednesday thanks to a special "The Voice" (10.609 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.5, #T2) followed by new episodes of "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (10.013 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.4, #4) and "Chicago PD" (9.466 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 2.2, #7).

ABC (7.425 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.1, #2) then claimed the silver with its mix of "The Middle" (8.117 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.9, #9), "The Goldbergs" (7.541 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 2.1, #8), "Modern Family" (9.767 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 3.1, #1), "Black-ish" (7.867 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 2.5, #T2) and "Nashville" (5.631 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T11).

Next up was CBS (8.820 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.0, #3) with originals from "Survivor: San Juan del Sur" (9.381 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 2.3, #T5), "Criminal Minds" (10.100 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.3, #T5) and "Stalker" (6.979 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T11).

Meanwhile, FOX (3.276 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.2, #4) served up fresh installments of "Hell's Kitchen" (3.712 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.5, #10) and "Red Band Society" (2.839 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T13).

And finally, The CW (2.178 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.7, #5) closed out the evening with new episodes of "Arrow" (2.568 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T13) and "The 100" (1.788 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.6, #15).

Wednesday on cable... Nothing broke a million.

- Top Chef (Bravo, 10p): 901,000
- Kitchen Inferno (Food, 10p): 650,000
- Rewrapped (Food, 7:30p): 648,000
- @midnight (Comedy Central, 12m): 611,000
- The Ultimate Fighter (FS1, 10p): 578,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 11/13/14

Thursday Lightning Round
... or "Exile in Redemption"

posted 11/13/14

Randy Jackson Leaving American Idol
For Real This Time
From TV Line
The Dawg has (once again) (finally) left the House That Kelly Clarkson Built.
Randy Jackson announced today that he will not return as a mentor (or in any other capacity) for Season 14 of American Idol — and whatever feelings of nostalgia you may or may not have about his run on Fox’s reality juggernaut, his exit is long, long overdue.

“After 13 seasons, I felt now was the perfect time to leave,” Jackson told our sister site Deadline, in a statement. “I’m proud to have been a part of a series that discovered some incredible artists and will go down in history as one of the most successful television shows ever. A true original, Idol started it all. Onto what’s next.”

Jackson served as a judge for the show’s first 12 seasons, but after announcing his intent to leave in May 2013 (along with one-season-only disasters Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey), he was chosen to replace Interscope Records chairman Jimmy Iovine as in-house mentor for Season 13, launching a post-Hollywood Week “Boot Camp” with Idol grads Adam Lambert and Chris Daughtry, and then — at least in theory — helping the Top 13 with song choice and arrangement once the live voting rounds began.

TV Line
Deadline
The Wrap

posted 11/12/14

Tuesday: Return of the Mack
"Chase" Powered GSN Returns Big; NBC, CBS Split Broadcast
From various sources
NBC (10.526 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.7, #1) claimed top demo honors on Tuesday thanks to a special two-hour "The Voice" (11.242 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.9, #1) and a new "Chicago Fire" (9.094 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.2, #3).

CBS (13.769 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.9, #2) then took home the silver with originals from "NCIS" (17.406 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.3, #2), "NCIS: New Orleans" (14.876 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.0, #4) and "Person of Interest" (9.027 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T8).

Next up was FOX (3.753 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.5, #3) and its combination of "MasterChef Junior" (4.805 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.8, #5), "New Girl" (2.949 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T8) and "The Mindy Project" (2.453 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T10).

Meanwhile, ABC (3.852 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T4) offered up a new "Selfie" (3.267 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T12), a repeat "Modern Family" (2.890 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T12) and fresh installments of "Marvel's Agents of SHIELD" (4.266 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.5, #6) and "Forever" (4.211 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T10).

And finally, new episodes of "The Flash" (3.402 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.4, #7) and "Supernatural" (2.192 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.9, #T12) on The CW (2.797 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T4) closed out the night.

Spike's "Ink Master" led the demos with 1.402 million total to "Chopped's" 1.118 million. GSN's "The Chase" returned to 618,000 viewers, followed by a 392,500 average for "IdioTest".

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers
TV Media Insights

posted 11/12/14

More on "Let's Make a Deal: The Musical"
Catch It Thursday on CBS!
From The Philadelphia Tribune
On Thursday Nov. 13 on CBS, Wayne Brady will host a brand new “all-musical” themed episode of “Let’s Make a Deal,” celebrating “30,000 Reasons to Love Me” recipient of the show’s first-ever Emmy Award for “Best Original Song,” Thursday, Nov. 13, on CBS.

Brady, an improvisational genius, will sing his way through the wacky daytime game show, and encourage the zealous contestants to do the same.

“I’m from Arizona!” croaks one female contestant.

“You’ve got a face for film and a voice for magazines!” Brady, without missing a beat, sings in response.

Each “act” will feature a different style of music and varying levels of vocal skills. Brady and announcer Jonathan Mangum will show off their musical talent in numbers performed throughout the episode.

“I’ve been saying this so long now about the show. This is not a regular game show,” Brady, a multiple Emmy Award winner, said recently on “The Talk.” “I couldn’t have signed on to do a regular game show, ‘cause that’s not me. We — the whole team — they have crafted this thing where randomly, songs happen. Randomly, someone will dance. Randomly, I’m doing a scene with someone. Randomly, Jonathan and I are being silly doing this stuff, and we still get to have fun and give away the money. So we figured, why not just have an all-musical show where we get to have fun and we give [composer] Cat Gray a chance to play, and Jonathan and I, we improvise. And we sing a lot of the deals. We just won an Emmy, myself and Cat Gray, for the song that we wrote, which actually means a song that we improvised in a minute! That’s pretty cool, so we decided to devote a whole episode to it.”

The Philadelphia Tribune

posted 11/12/14

Wednesday Lightning Round
... or "Side Jobs"

  • Jane Lynch joins "Fox's Cause for Paws" Thanksgiving (The Futon Critic)
     
  • Nick Cannon looking for champagne wishes, caviar dreams for NBC (The Hollywood Reporter)
     
  • Nikki Ferrell confirms what we already know. Now how about those three months you owe ME. (E!)
     
  • VIDEO WALL: CraigyFerg's Movember (YouTube)
     
  • Bruce Beresford-Redman, the producer awaiting trial for his wife's murder, gives CBS "48 Hours" (TV by the Numbers
     
  • Wink Martindale, Tylenol help GSN salute its game show heritage (TV Media Insights)
     
  • Pat Sajak sets straight a moment that really doesn't need to be set straight, but because it's 2014... (BizPacReview)
     
  • Steve Harvey's got a new book out, "Act Like a Success, Think Like a Success" (Forbes)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Bob Eubanks (Lansing City Pulse)

posted 11/11/14

More "Wild'n Out" On the Way
But That's Not All!
From Broadway World
Continuing to build on its record-breaking ratings momentum while growing its pipeline of original comedic content, MTV2 today announced new season pickups for network hits "Nick Cannon Presents: Wild 'N Out" and "Guy Code," both of which will air in 2015. The network also greenlit two new comedy series, "MTV2's Joking Off" and "Number 2 News" (working title). Additionally, MTV2 is developing a new talk show pilot, "Uncommon Sense with Charlamagne," starring "Guy Code" fan favorite Charlamagne tha God, with Rich Korson ("The Daily Show with Jon Stewart," "The Colbert Report") serving as the showrunner.

"With 'Wild 'N Out' and 'Guy Code' we created a home where comedians could break through and define THE VOICE of MTV2," said Chris McCarthy, General Manager of MTV2, mtvU and Logo TV. "Now with 'MTV2's Joking Off' and 'Number 2 News,' we're cultivating new playgrounds to discover rising talent - and build on the network's historic ratings."

Fueled by its slate of original programming, MTV2 recently recorded its most-watched broadcast year ever (October 2013 through September 2014) among the network's core demographic of young people ages 12-34. "Nick Cannon Presents: Wild 'N Out" is the highest-rated series in MTV2 history and it recently wrapped the first half of its sixth season in September 2014 as the top cable series in its time period among Teens. The sixth season will resume in Winter 2014 before the seventh season premieres in 2015. "Nick Cannon Presents: Wild 'N Out" is executive produced by Nick Cannon and Michael Goldman for NCredible Entertainment. Nile Evans serves as showrunner and executive producer. Candida Boyette-Clemons and Paul Ricci are executive producers for MTV2.

"MTV2's Joking Off" is where social media meets improv comedy. Featuring teams of rising young comedians, the hilarious, fast-paced, half-hour comedic game show celebrates the best of social media and the Internet, delivering laugh out loud reactions to the most ridiculous tweets, Instagram images, videos and write-ups ever posted. The teams must avoid getting joked off before one comedian reigns supreme. "MTV2's Joking Off" is executive produced by Back Roads Entertainment, with showrunner Michael Canter also serving as an executive producer. Candida Boyette-Clemons, Darin Byrne, Paul Ricci and Chris McCarthy serve as executive producers for MTV2.

Broadway World
Entertainment Weekly
Deadline
B&C
Variety
The Hollywood Reporter

posted 11/11/14

Syndies: Week 6 (November Sweeps 1)
Results for the Week Ending November 2
From B&C
Syndication kicked off the November sweep in the week ended Nov. 2. The week included the first two weekdays of the sweep, which runs Oct. 30 – Nov. 26.
.
Debmar-Mercury’s Celebrity Name Game, with access clearances in 11 of the top 30 markets, tied Meredith at an unchanged 1.2. Among women 25-54, the show recovered 17% the prior frame to a second-place 0.7, tying Warner Bros.’ The Real in the demo.

Three of the four game shows all hit new season highs. CTD’s Wheel of Fortune accelerated to a 6.9, up 6% from the prior week but down 4% from last year. CTD’s Jeopardy! posted a 6.5, up 3% both weekly and annually, and started its Tournament of Champions on Monday, Nov. 10. Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud finished 5% higher at a 6.2 and was up 29% from last year. Feud also led the games among women 25-54 at a 2.8, followed by Wheel at a 2.3 and Jeopardy! at a 2.1.

On the other hand, Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to be a Millionaire, with new host Terry Crews, was unchanged at a 1.8 in households, down 18% from last year at this time.

B&C
TV News Check
TV by the Numbers

posted 11/11/14

Monday: Blacklisted
NBC; ABC Split Night on First Night of "The Voice" Playoffs
From the Futon Critic
NBC (10.807 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 3.0, #1) was once again the demo champ on Monday thanks to a new "The Voice" (11.364 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 3.2, #1) and the fall finale of "The Blacklist" (9.693 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.5, #2).

ABC (12.137 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.9, #T2) then was the most-watched network with its mainstays "Dancing with the Stars" (13.379 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.1, #4) and "Castle" (9.653 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.7, #7).

Next up was FOX (5.450 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.9, #T2) with originals from "Gotham" (6.301 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 2.2, #3) and "Sleepy Hollow" (4.600 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T8).

Meanwhile, CBS (8.432 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.7, #4) offered up new episodes of "2 Broke Girls" (7.643 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.9, #6), "The Millers" (6.523 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T8), "Scorpion" (10.038 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.0, #5) and "NCIS: Los Angeles" (8.175 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T8).

And finally, fresh installments of "The Originals" (1.542 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.7, #11) and "Jane the Virgin" (1.219 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.5, #12) on The CW (1.380 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.6, #5) closed out the evening.

"@midnight's" return to LA brought in 424,000.

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 11/11/14

Take Me Back
ITV Greenlights 7th Season of "Take Me Out"
From Digital Spy
ITV has confirmed the return of Take Me Out and spinoff show The Gossip.

Paddy McGuinness will return to host a seventh series of the dating game show on ITV in early 2015.

Take Me Out: The Gossip will also return on ITV2 with Mark Wright and new co-host Laura Jackson.

A new lineup of 30 single women will try and secure a date with a series of men on the isle of Fernando's.

McGuinness said: "I can't wait to get back in the studio and meet a brand new set of girls all hoping to meet their perfect man! With two marriages, three engagements and two babies under our belts, the girls and boys are in good hands!"

Digital Spy

posted 11/11/14

Weekend: Another Split End to the Week
ABC Gets the Youth Vote, CBS Gets Everyone Else
From the Futon Critic
ABC (6.840 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.6, #1) was the demo champ on Friday thanks to its mix of "Last Man Standing" (6.630 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T5), "Cristela" (4.976 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T9), "Shark Tank" (7.763 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.9, #1) and "20/20" (6.954 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.7, #2).

CBS (8.809 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T2) then was the most-watched network with its trio of "The Amazing Race" (6.104 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T7), "Hawaii Five-0" (8.915 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T7) and "Blue Bloods" (11.411 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T3).

Next up was NBC (5.305 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.2, #T2) with originals from "Dateline NBC" (7.847 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T3), "Grimm" (4.936 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T5) and "Constantine" (3.131 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T9).

Meanwhile, FOX (1.662 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.5, #4) served up encores of "MasterChef Junior" (2.035 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.6, #11) and "Gotham" (1.289 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T13).

And finally, The CW (1.187 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.4, #5) closed out the evening with a new "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" (1.400 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.5, #12), a repeat "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" (1.214 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T13) and a new "America's Next Top Model" (1.068 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.4, #T13).

On cable, here's how Food Network's lineup fared.

- 8p: Guy's Grocery Games - 1.133 million
- 9p: Holiday Baking Championship (premiere) - 1.543 million
- 10p: Cutthroat Kitchen - 1.210 million

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 11/10/14

Duh, Twinning.
VH1 Greenlights New Competition
From TV by the Numbers
Identical twins have a unique and undeniable bond, sharing things with each other that fascinate the rest of us. Some sleep in the same bed. Some sleep with the same people. They all claim special "twin powers" that range from the amusing, like finishing each other’s sentences, to the astonishing, like actually feeling each other’s physical pain. Now, for the first time ever, VH1 is doubling down on a reality competition series that will put this twin-tuition to the test. “Twinning” (working title) will premiere in Summer 2015 with ten hour-long episodes.

Created and produced by Lighthearted Entertainment (“Dating Naked”), “Twinning” (WT) is an arc’d competition series in which twelve sets of twins will go head to head for a grand prize of $222,222.22. But getting there won’t be easy. Viewers can expect double the meltdowns, double the hook-ups, and, of course, double the twists as the contestants are pushed to their limits in unexpected ways.

"’Twinning’ (WT) is a crazy concept and we are all the way in,” said Susan Levison, EVP of Original Programming and Production for VH1. "This will be a competition series like no other and we love to pique our viewers’ twinterest. Come one, come all for the noisiest house show in years.”

As the strengths and weaknesses of each twin pair is revealed, relationships will be tested and resentments will be exposed. In the end, the pair of twins left standing will win the cash prize, and be crowned as the twinners.

Lighthearted Entertainment’s Howard Schultz, Rob LaPlante and Jeff Spangler will serve as executive producers. Executive producing for VH1 are Susan Levison, Jill Holmes, Kristen Kelly, Fernando Mills and Tricia Biggio.

TV by the Numbers
Deadline
The Futon Critic

posted 11/11/14

Tuesday Lightning Round
... or "Ponies"

  • #ICYMI: Pat Sajak walks off "Wheel" set after 31 years of.... well... see for yourself (People)
     
  • VIDEO WALL: Jeff Daniels, Jimmy Fallon, Usher & Nick Jonas play a mean "Pyramid" (Cinema Blend)
     
  • Craig Charles: I'm a smeghead! Get me out of here! (Mirror)
     
  • "Knightmare" voted the best kids' program in the UK over the last 60 years. Blue Peter unavailable for comment (Bristol Post)
     
  • Joan Rivers' autopsy reveals doctors were negligent during fatal operation (Jezebel)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Brooke Burns (Lansing State Journal)

posted 11/11/14

The Show: TONIGHT!
Ben Ingram, Julia Collins, Arthur Chu Joins Field of 15 for Jeopardy! TOC
From the Futon Critic
Julia Collins and Arthur Chu, two of the most talked-about JEOPARDY! contestants ever, return to battle for a $250,000 grand prize with 13 other former champions in the Tournament of Champions, beginning Monday, November 10.

The two-week event showcases the most successful contestants from the past two seasons, including Collins and Chu. In June of this year, Collins captured the nation’s attention by becoming the first woman in JEOPARDY! history to win 20 games, a streak that places her 2nd on the all-time consecutive wins list; only Ken Jennings (74 games) has won more games than she has. Arthur Chu generated headlines last spring with his controversial playing style, using the “Forrest Bounce” technique instead of running through a category in order. He won 11 games, placing him 4th on the all-time consecutive wins list.

“Collectively, the 15 players returning for the Tournament of Champions have won 100 games, which illustrates the high level of competition viewers should expect from this year’s tournament,” said JEOPARDY! host Alex Trebek. “With so many bright, successful contestants in the mix, it’s nearly impossible to predict a winner, so you’ll have to watch to see who comes out on top.”

The tournament field consists of the players who won the most games since the last JEOPARDY! Tournament of Champions in February 2013. In addition to the top-scoring multi-game winners, two College Championship winners and one Teachers Tournament winner earned automatic berths by winning their respective tournaments. The full contestant field is as follows:

- Sandie Baker, 6 games won, $140,200 total winnings, Eastpoint, Mich.
- Joshua Brakhage, 5 games won, $103,205 total winnings, South Coffeyville, Okla.
- Arthur Chu, 11 games won, $,297,200 total winnings, Broadview Heights, Ohio
- Julia Collins, 20 games won, $428,100 total winnings, Kenilworth, Ill.
- Jim Coury, College Champion S29, $100,000 total winnings, Olmstead Falls, Ohio
- Jared Hall, 6 games won, $181,001 total winnings, Washington, D.C.
- Drew Horwood, 8 games won, $138,100 total winnings, Maple Grove, Minn.
- Ben Ingram, 8 games won, $176,534 total winnings, Florence, S.C.
- Mark Japinga, 4 games won, $112,600 total winnings, Madison, Wisc.
- Sarah McNitt, 5 games won, $89,398 total winnings, Ann Arbor, Mich.
- Andrew Moore, 6 games won, $137,803 total winnings, Dacula, Ga.
- Terry O’Shea, College Champion S30, $100,000 total winnings, Bridgewater, N.J.
- John Pearson, Teachers Tournament Champion, $100,000 total winnings, Richardson, Texas
- Rani Peffer, 5 games won, $68,701 total winnings, Crittenden, Ky.
- Rebecca Rider, 5 games won, $101,600 total winnings, Queens, N.Y.

GoUpstate.com
Halifax Telegram
MLive.com
Tumblr: @jeopardy

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WAAY Huntsville
Wall Street Journal
Zap2it

posted 11/10/14


Jeff Foxworthy Goes Back to School
Fox Greenlights THIRD Version of "Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader"
From the Futon Critic
FOX is bringing back the popular and critically praised quiz show ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 5th GRADER? for another season on FOX. Executive-produced by Mark Burnett, the show features comedian Jeff Foxworthy, who returns as host.

"ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 5th GRADER? shares so much DNA with the FOX brand that it feels only natural to return it to the schedule - it's smart, witty, irreverent and it turns the adult/child power dynamic upside-down," said Simon Andreae, Executive Vice President, Alternative Programming, Fox Broadcasting Company. "All of the core components of the classic format will be there, but we are also adding new twists that make it fresher and more fun for viewers."

"I have loved this competition from our first show and the timing couldn't be better for 5th GRADER to return to FOX, as there is nothing like it on television," added Burnett. "Kids today are smarter than ever and the adults who try to take them on will have an even harder task ahead of them."

Unlike the typical game show that measures intelligence, ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 5th GRADER? tests adults' lack of knowledge - as revealed by how much they've forgotten since their grammar school days, proving that older doesn't always mean wiser. Grown-ups will again find themselves in a classroom setting, revisiting their youth, as they tackle subjects they've already been taught, ranging from art to geography and math to social studies.

Test questions, which are derived from actual textbooks from 1st grade through 5th grade, could be similar to, and as simple as, the following:

· In what state is the Grand Canyon located?

· What are the names of the first three Presidents?

· Is 17 a prime number or a composite number?

Have you forgotten? Are you stuck? Well, in ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 5th GRADER?, the players are not alone. There is a way for contestants to be permitted to "cheat" in this classroom. The adults will have the opportunity to get some help from real grade-schoolers, who will offer what they think is the correct a-n-s-w-e-r.

Premiering in 2007, ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 5th GRADER? immediately resonated with viewers, winning its Thursday time period among Adults 18-49, Adults 18-34 and Teens. Following three seasons on FOX, the series enjoyed a successful syndication run.

The Futon Critic
TV Line
AceShowbiz
TV Media Insights

Variety
Deadline
The Hollywood Reporter
AV Club
Broadway World

Screen Junkies
TV Week
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TV.com
World Screen
CASTING COUCH: Reality Wanted

posted 11/10/14

GSN Lines Up the Premiere
Catch the 2-Hour Premiere Event December 23!
From Multichannel News
As an alternative to TV’s familiar December diet of holiday-themed specials and repeats, Game Show Network, the leader in game shows and competitive entertainment, will debut an original two-hour traveling game show event, THE LINE, produced by High Noon Entertainment, on Tuesday, December 23 at 9pm ET/PT.

Shot on location in Nashville, TN, THE LINE is a unique game show offering everyday people the chance to win cash and prizes for doing something that often can be stress-inducing, especially during the holidays: standing in line! Though the ultimate goal is to get to the “Trivia Vault” at the front of the line, where each contestant attempts to win a jackpot by answering eight true or false questions, many will have an opportunity to play and win just by standing in line. The jackpot grows with each contestant who fails to answer his or her eight questions correctly while in the “Trivia Vault” – so being at the end of the line could have a big payout! Unlike many game shows where only a few people are chosen to play, everyone who shows up in THE LINE gets an opportunity to win.

Co-hosts Jeff Davis and Candace Bailey help keep THE LINE lively and moving. Davis is best known for frequent guest appearances on the long-running “Whose Line is it Anyway?” and appearances on “The Norm Show,” “The Drew Carey Show” and “The Sarah Silverman Show,” among others. Bailey, formerly the co-host of G4’s “Attack of the Show,” was most recently a panelist/judge on “The Next Geek Thing.”

THE LINE is produced by High Noon Entertainment for GSN. Executive producers are Jim Berger, Scott Feeley and Michael Dietz.

Multichannel News

posted 11/10/14

Monday Lightning Round
... or "The Cleveland Show"

posted 11/10/14

Thursday: Too Little, Too Late?
NBC Canceled Sitcoms Gain; CBS, ABC Split Night
From the Futon Critic
ABC (9.001 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.7, #1) was the demo champ for the second week in a row thanks to "Grey's Anatomy" (8.041 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 2.4, #5), "Scandal" (9.779 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.9, #2) and "How to Get Away with Murder" (9.183 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 2.8, #3).

CBS (10.115 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.3, #2) then claimed the silver with its mix of "The Big Bang Theory" (16.570 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 4.2, #1), "Mom" (11.518 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.6, #4), "Two and a Half Men" (9.824 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.3, #6), "The McCarthys" (7.429 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.7, #7) and "Elementary" (7.675 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T8).

Next up was NBC (4.238 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.3, #3) with its lineup of "The Biggest Loser" (4.733 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T10), "Bad Judge" (4.180 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.1, #12), "A to Z" (3.166 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 1.0, #13) and "Parenthood" (4.308 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T8).

Meanwhile, FOX (4.287 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.0, #4) served up originals from "Bones" (5.598 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T10) and "Gracepoint" (2.976 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T14).

And finally, new episodes of "The Vampire Diaries" (1.559 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T14) and "Reign" (1.324 million viewers, #16; adults 18-49: 0.4, #16) closed out the evening on The CW (1.442 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.6, #5).

"Pawnography" returned with 1.675 million to lead the night, leading to 1.536 million for the nightcap. "Project Runway All-Stars" had 1.396 million. "Project Runway Threads" continues to struggle with 722,000. "@midnight" ended its week in NYC with 548,000. "Beat Bobby Flay" had 836,000.

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers
Showbuzz Daily

posted 11/7/14

More on "The Sing-Off"
Patrick Stump Replaces Ben Folds as Judge
From the Futon Critic
NBC will air a two-hour holiday special of its popular a cappella musical competition series "The Sing-Off" on Wednesday, Dec. 17 from 9-11 p.m. ET/PT. Six new groups will compete for a first-place prize of $50,000.

Returning judges Jewel and Shawn Stockman will be joined by Fall Out Boy frontman Patrick Stump while Nick Lachey is once again set as host.

Patrick Stump is the lead singer for Chicago-based Grammy-nominated rock band Fall Out Boy. The band's first single, "Centuries," from their forthcoming album for Island Records/DCD2, has become a multi-format radio smash, quickly charting in the top 10 on modern rock and now exploding on the Top 40 chart. The track debuted at #1 on the iTunes Alternative Chart and the song already has more than 20 million plays on Spotify and 3 million plays on YouTube in just three weeks. Fall Out Boy has also written the song "Immortals," featured in the trailer and the film "Big Hero 6" from Disney.

Last year's "Sing-Off" champions Home Free saw their recent album release "Crazy Life" go to #1 on the country iTunes chart and #4 on the overall iTunes chart. They embarked on a 36-show tour in support of the album and have appeared on shows such as "Today" and "Fox and Friends."

As another sign of the influence of "The Sing-Off," Pentatonix have become a musical force since winning the third season. Since their debut in 2011, the quintet has released four EP's and their first full-length holiday CD "That's Christmas To Me,", selling more than 600,000 copies combined with three of the releases debuting in the Top 10 on Billboard's Top 200 chart. Having recently eclipsed 6.6 million subscribers and over 625 million cumulative views, the Pentatonix official YouTube page is currently the 13th most subscribed-to music channel, having surpassed the subscriber totals of both Avicii and Beyoncé.

"The Sing-Off" is produced by United Artists Media Group (a joint venture among MGM, Mark Burnett, Roma Downey and Hearst Corporation) along with Outlaw Entertainment and Sony Pictures Television.

Mark Burnett (NBC's "The Voice") is the executive producer. Deb Newmyer, Sam Weisman and James Sunderland are also executive producers.

The Futon Critic

posted 11/7/14

Happy Friday Lightning Round
... or "League of International Hosts"

  • Stephen Fry QuIts Twitter (The Telegraph)
     
  • Elvira Kurt spins off into a play November 22 (KawarthaNow.com)
     
  • ICYMI: Stephen Colbert introduces Thursday's #HashtagWars (YouTube)
     
  • Gordon Ramsay gets the riot act from PETA about Thursday's bonus trip, gives ZERO damns (The Wrap)

posted 11/7/14

Wednesday: Nashville
CMAs Help ABC to O-N-E
From the Futon Critic
ABC (16.145 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 4.5, #1) was of course the network to beat on Wednesday with its coverage of "The 48th Annual CMA Awards" (16.145 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 4.5, #1).

The silver then went to CBS (8.699 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.0, #2) and its trio of "Survivor: San Juan del Sur" (9.192 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.3, #2), "Criminal Minds" (9.629 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.1, #3) and "Stalker" (7.276 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.5, #5).

Next up was NBC (6.923 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.4, #3) with originals from "The Mysteries of Laura" (7.761 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.2, #8), "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (6.910 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.6, #4) and "Chicago PD" (6.098 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T6).

Meanwhile, FOX (3.247 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.1, #4) offered up new episodes of "Hell's Kitchen" (3.619 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T6) and "Red Band Society" (2.874 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.9, #10).

And finally, first-run installments of "Arrow" (2.624 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.0, #9) and "The 100" (1.715 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.6, #11) closed out the evening on The CW (2.170 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.8, #5).

On cable, "Top Chef" drummed up 906,000. "@midnight" have 564,000. "The Ultimate Fighter" had 494,000.

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 11/6/14

Chinese Kids Get a Voice
Youku Tudou License Format
From Gnomes
China’s leading Internet television company, today announced that it has obtained the exclusive rights from Talpa Holding, an international media company, to produce The Voice Kids format in China. This project will be operated by the company’s Tudou division. This collaboration combines the strengths of Youku Tudou and Talpa media with the power of The Voice franchise.

The Voice Kids was created by the Dutch media tycoon John de Mol as a sister show to the widely successful reality show, The Voice. The positive and compassionate nature of The Voice is easily transformed into a fun and enriching kids’ vocal competition. Launched in 2012, The Voice Kids offers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for talented children, as top recording artists guide them with care to help develop their talent from beginning to end. There are currently 25 local versions of The Voice Kids in production worldwide and the show has become a primetime success in its own right.

The Voice of China has already been a social phenomenon, and a smash hit in each of its three seasons, garnering the No.1 viewership rating among shows in its category. The Voice Kids is expected to build on the popularity of this franchise in China.

The Voice of China Kids will retain the classic format including blind auditions, electrifying battles, and professional coaching. As it is based on an internet platform, it will have opportunities for viewers to interact with the show across multiple screens.

“We’re excited to bring this worldwide hit format to China and its integration into the Youku Tudou media and entertainment ecosystem will add further appeal beyond its already great interactive, participatory quality and unique design. I believe that The Voice of China Kids provides a wonderful opportunity for today’s kids who are very expressive and want a platform to show their talents. By appealing to all ages, I’m sure it’ll be great for families to watch together week after week,” said Weidong Yang, President of Tudou.

“I am thrilled that The Voice Kids will come to the Chinese audience through a pioneering media outlet such as Tudou. The Voice Kids has already received high ratings and recognition from around the world. With the huge success of The Voice of China, I believe The Voice of China Kids will receive massive attention and generate a huge amount of buzz for the Chinese audience,” said John de Mol, President of Talpa Media.

Gnomes

posted 11/6/14

Thursday Lightning Round
... or "Chef Irons"

  • Aaron Grissom goes from yelling on "Top Chef" to smacking his woman up (TMZ)
     
  • Merv Griffin heading to DVD (Deseret News)
     
  • Colin Mochrie & Brad Sherwood head to Red Bank (Asbury Park Press)
     
  • "Wheel of Fortune" slots again to IGT (Gaming Intelligence)

posted 11/6/14

Spike Has the Framework
Common Hosts New Series
From The Futon Critic
Spike TV is building a new original non-scripted franchise with the first-ever furniture design competition series, "Framework," hosted by renowned hip-hop artist, actor, and author, Common. Premiering Tuesday, January 6 at 10:00 PM, ET/PT, "Framework" will showcase the nation's best emerging furniture designers as they compete for a $100,000 cash prize and the opportunity for their work to be sold by a major manufacturer.

Over the course of ten weeks, 13 of these innovative and inspiring builders will put their artistry and skill to the test in a series of challenges. The competitors will be pushed to the brink of their physical and creative limits with challenges that ask them to reconsider everything they know about designing and building furniture. The builders will use unconventional materials, rethink classic furniture pieces, and incorporate a variety of techniques and disciplines to demonstrate their mastery of furniture creation. In each episode, a contestant will be eliminated by a panel of judges led by host Common. Throughout his career as an artist, Common has been on the cutting edge of trends and brings his keen eye for style and understanding of consumer desire to the competition. He will be joined by two of the most influential names in the furniture world today; Nolen Niu and Brandon Gore.

Niu, whose award-winning designs have been featured in over 300 publications worldwide and whose varied client list includes Andaz hotels, MGM Mirage properties and Esquire Magazine will speak to the contestants' designs. Gore, internationally acknowledged as an artisan who has revolutionized the use of concrete in furniture, will critique the builders on their ability to execute their designs. Gore's furniture line, Hard Goods, has been featured in Dwell, Vogue, Wired and many other design publications and won "Best Furniture Design" at Dwell on Design 2012. As judges, Niu and Gore possess a critical eye for creativity and quality - along with constructive yet brutal honesty. They will also serve to inspire and counsel the builders in an effort to bring out their best work.

No stranger to outstanding work, Common has inspired audiences through music, movies, television, books and his philanthropy. Common is one of hip-hop's most poetic and respected lyricists having garnered multiple Grammy Awards throughout his career. His tenth studio album Nobody's Smiling debuted at #1 on Billboard's Top R&B/Hip Hop Chart in July 2014. In addition to his award-winning music career - Common's work in film ("American Gangster," "Wanted," "Terminator Salvation,"), television (acclaimed AMC series "Hell On Wheels"), and his multiple written works (The MIRROR and ME, I Like You But I Love ME, and New York Times Best Seller, One Day It'll All Make Sense) have proven his status as a true entertainment multi-hyphenate. In addition to his music, film, and literary pursuits, Common has been the face, voice and inspiration behind some of the largest consumer brands in the country including SPRITE, Gatorade's G Series, Diesel's fragrance for men, "Only the Brave," and Microsoft's "Softwear" clothing t-shirt line.

"Framework" is a ten one-hour episode series created by Dwight D. Smith and Michael Agbabian of Mission Control Media ("Hollywood Game Night," "Face Off") who serve as Executive Producers. Andrea Richter ("Ink Master") and Common also serve as Executive Producers.

The Futon Critic
The Wrap

posted 11/5/14

Tuesday: Master Class
MasterChef Junior Helps Fox to 1st in the Demo; CBS Takes Audiences
From the Futon Critic
FOX (4.108 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.6, #1) took home the demo crown on Tuesday thanks to the return of "MasterChef Junior" (5.051 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.8, #2) followed by new episodes of "New Girl" (3.422 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.6, #3) and "The Mindy Project" (2.909 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T6).

NBC (6.114 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.5, #2) then claimed a close second place with its mix of "The Voice" (9.517 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.3, #1), "Marry Me" (4.981 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T6), "About a Boy" (4.130 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.1, #9) and "NBC News Special" (4.270 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T10).

Next up was CBS (9.027 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.2, #3) with repeats of "NCIS: New Orleans" (10.001 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.4, #5) and "NCIS" (11.712 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.5, #4) plus "CBS News Special" (5.367 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T13).

Meanwhile, ABC (3.681 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.0, #4) offered up a new "Selfie" (3.945 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T10), a second "Selfie" (3.419 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.9, #12) and specials "Marvel: 75 Years, From Pulp to Pop!" (3.853 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.2, #8) and "ABC News Special" (3.508 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T13).

And finally, repeats of "The Flash" (1.870 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.6, #15) and "Supernatural" (1.288 million viewers, #16; adults 18-49: 0.5, #16) on The CW (1.579 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.5, #5) closed out the night.

On cable... "Ink Master" topped the A18-49 bracket with 1.456 million. "Chopped" had 1.247 million watchers. "@midnight" stayed up to 658,000.

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TV by the Numbers

posted 11/5/14

No Points!
"@midnight" Cancels Artie Lange's Appearance Since Obscene Twitter Rant
From Buzzfeed
On Wednesday, comedian and television personality Artie Lange tweeted that his appearance on late-night comedy show @Midnight had been cancelled due to his tweets regarding Cari Champion, host of ESPN2’s First Take.

"They're now telling me I can't appear on @midnight tonight cause of the pressure they're getting from these groups," Lange tweeted. "But who cares. I love the show & it's my living but who cares. These groups have won again. All I care about is @CariChampion Truly. But I'm sure you'll be ok. You're gorgeous & talented. I hope I didn't offend U. To the PC army. Congrats! U won again! Gluten free cake!"

On Tuesday, in a series of tweets, Lange described a fantasy that we cannot in good conscience post here.

Buzzfeed
NJ.com
Entertainment Weekly

posted 11/5/14

Technical Difficulties Threaten "Takeaway"
WGA East Threatens Strike
From The Wrap
After he hosts the Oscars in February, Neil Patrick Harris might have to cross a picket line to get to his next gig. The WGA East is threatening to strike the NBC variety show he will host next year unless its producers sign a guild contract. And if it comes to a strike, Harris’ all-around-good-guy image could take a drubbing because he’s one of the show’s executive producers.

NBC last week ordered 10 episodes of the variety show based on Britain’s popular Saturday Night Takeaway. Trouble is, it will be produced by ITV Studios America, which hasn’t signed a contract with the guild and has been locked in a bitter labor dispute with the union over reality shows it produces in the U.S. Unfortunately for Harris, he has walked into a long-running fight: The guild has been trying to get a contract with ITV for its American reality shows for more than four years, and in June it accused the company of working its nonunion writers and producers in “sweatshop conditions.”

In a letter sent Friday to ITV executives, WGA East Executive Director Lowell Peterson said that he is “puzzled that ITV apparently intends to produce the show” with nonunion writers and producers. “We have already alerted our many hundreds of comedy-variety members to the fact that ITV is fighting the guild and will not agree to the standard terms of a collective bargaining agreement with us,” Peterson told the ITV executives, reminding them that “fighting the guild is counterproductive for a company that seeks to solidify and expand its presence in American television.”

A spokesperson for ITV Studios America said the company “is very excited about the series … but we are not yet in production and no airdates have been set.” NBC declined comment.

Harris tweeted, "Know this: my variety show will absolutely be crafted by union writers. I've been assured by ITV that it will be a WGA show. Period."

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Neil Patrick Harris hosts an adaptation of "Saturday Night Takeaway" for NBC

photo courtesy Broadway.com

posted 11/4/14

Wednesday Lightning Round
... or "Money Money Yeah Yeah"

  • FIRST LOOK: "The Price Is Right's" Big Money Week (next week!) (CBS) and "The Bachelor" (Entertainment Weekly)
     
  • Animals can stay in "Utopia"; isn't this how "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" began? (TMZ)
     
  • Claudia Jordan opens up about bout with depression (Inquisitr)
     
  • VIDEO WALL: W-H-E-E-... (Business2Community) plus a few good minutes with Vanna (KHON Honolulu)
     
  • LIST ABUSE: six game show themes with lyrics (AV Club)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with "Spin-Off" host Elvira Kurt (Straight.com)

posted 11/5/14

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