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It's Happy Happy Time!
Happy Birthday...

... to Vanna White. The "Wheel of Fortune" letter toucher turns 57.

Happy Anniversary...
... to The Pyramid.
The game with arguably the most exciting endgame on television turns 40.

Happy Trails...
... to "What's My Line?" On this date in 1967, the original series left the air after more than 17 years on CBS. The last mystery guest: Moderator John Charles Daly.

 

Scene and Heard...

"If you like what I did, I'm Bob Eubanks. If you don't like what I did, I'm Bob Barker."
-Bob Eubanks, on "The Newlywed Game"

 

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Thursday: This Is Where I Leave You
Fox, CBS Split Night of Finales
From The Futon Critic
FOX (9.256 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.4, #1) claimed the top demo spot on Thursday with a new "American Idol" (10.535 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.7, #1) followed by the premiere of "Backstrom" (7.978 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 2.0, #5).

CBS (9.512 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.0, #2) then took home the silver with a repeat "The Big Bang Theory" (11.626 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.4, #3) followed by new episodes of "Mom" (11.162 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.5, #2) and "Two and a Half Men" (9.556 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.3, #4), another "The Big Bang Theory" (8.259 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.9, #6) repeat and a new "Elementary" (8.236 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.5, #7).

Next up was NBC (3.886 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.1, #3) and its mix of "The Biggest Loser" (4.636 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.2, #9), the departing "Bad Judge" (3.039 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T10) and "A to Z" (2.142 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.6, #13) plus the penultimate week of "Parenthood" (4.433 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.3, #8).

Meanwhile, ABC (2.778 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.7, #4) offered up the season finale of "The Taste" (3.026 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T10) alongside a repeat "How to Get Away with Murder" (2.283 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.5, #14).

And finally, the return of "The Vampire Diaries" (1.654 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.7, #12) and "Reign" (1.254 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.4, #15) closed out the evening on The CW (1.454 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.6, #5).

On cable...

- Pawnography (History, 10p): 1.839 million
- Pawnography (History, 10:30p): 1.721 million
- Project Runway All-Stars (Lifetime): 1.672 million
- Chopped Canada (Food): 1.009 million
- Beat Bobby Flay (Food): 901,000
- Redneck Island (CMT): 585,000
- @midnight (Comedy): 462,000

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers
Showbuzz Daily
Yahoo! TV

posted 1/23/15

Renewed "Fighters"
NBC Reups for Second Run of Adam Richman Series
From Deadline
NBC has picked up summer culinary competition show Food Fighters for a second season.It’s slated to air this coming summer. Hosted by Adam Richman, Food Fighters features amateur cooks going head-to-head against professional chefs who try to cook each contestant’s best “family recipe” better than the contestant does. The dishes are tasted and judged by “the dinner party,” a group of everyday food enthusiasts who taste both creations in a blind taste test. As the contestants advance, the cash prize grows, as does the incentive to out-cook the professional. Electus International is handling the international rollout.

In its first season last summer, Food Fighters was modestly rated delivered the biggest regularly scheduled week-one to week-two gain in adults 18-49 for any new series on the Big 4 networks in more than two years, according to NBC.

Deadline
Eater
The Futon Critic

posted 1/23/15

Happy Friday Lightning Round
... or "Cheap Seats"

  • FIRST LOOK: "Broke A$$ Game Show" (MTV, February 5) (MTV)
     
  • Maks & Peta are spotted together. Needless to say, they're totally together again. (Us)
     
  • CASTING COUCH: Game testers needed (Reality Wanted)
     
  • Chrissy Teigen injures her foot (New)
     
  • Las Vegas is on board for Monopoly Millionaires' Club, providing tax incentives (Casino City Times)
     
  • VIDEO WALL: Terry Crews plays his own wife (E!)
     
  • YOU CAN'T MAKE THIS $#*! UP!: Someone in Japan turned the car-destruction bonus in "Street Fighter 2" and turned it into a game show (Tech Times)

posted 1/23/15

Don't Call It a Comeback, Because She Never Left
Paula Abdul Joins Jason DeRulo on "SYTYCD"
From The Futon Critic
World-renowned choreographer, performer, singer and songwriter Paula Abdul and global superstar, singer/songwriter/dancer Jason Derulo will join Nigel Lythgoe at the judges' table, alongside returning host Cat Deeley, for the 12th season of SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE. The upcoming season will feature a new twist in the competition: stage dancers vs. street dancers.

"With the new and exciting format comes a new and exciting panel of judges," said executive producer and judge Lythgoe. "I'm delighted that Paula Abdul and Jason Derulo will be joining me at the judges' table this season on SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE. Paula is an incredible artist and she brings the perfect combination of expertise and heart to the panel. Jason's insight, humor and creativity will add a new perspective to the panel that we haven't had before."

"I have dedicated a large part of my career as a choreographer to discovering and mentoring some of the most iconic artists and performers from all over the world," said Abdul. "SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE has a long-standing history of launching brilliant careers for young choreographers and dancers in the industry. It's going to be a true honor and pleasure joining this panel with Jason and Nigel, and I'm looking forward to an exciting new season!"

"I am truly excited, and eagerly look forward to joining the cast of SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE," added Derulo. "It is one of the most respected and longest-tenured shows on network television, and I hope to be a part of new growth and continued success."

SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE returns this summer on FOX. Auditions for the new season start in New York, NY (Saturday, Jan. 24); Dallas, TX (Saturday, Feb. 14); Detroit, MI; (Sunday, Feb. 22); Memphis, TN (Sunday, March 8); and Los Angeles, CA (Sunday, March 15).

Auditioners traveling to cities for the open calls should make arrangements to stay for at least two days following their initial audition (three days for Memphis) in the event of a callback.

The Futon Critic
Yahoo! TV
Showbuzz Daily

posted 1/22/15

Syndies: Week 16
Results For the Week Ending January 11
From B&C
With the holidays behind them and awards season ahead, almost all of syndication was sharply up in the week ended Jan. 11.

The game shows also climbed, with three out of four hitting new season highs.
CTD’s leader Wheel of Fortune accelerated 25% to a new season-best 8.0, while CTD’s Jeopardy! jumped 23% to a 7.6. The pair finished first and second in overall syndication. Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud picked up 18% to also hit a new series high 6.7. Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to Be a Millionaire was flat at a 1.8.

In daytime, CTD’s Hot Bench, this season’s rookie first-run leader, gained 12% to hit a new series high 1.9. Debmar-Mercury’s Celebrity Name Game added 8% to a 1.3. NBCU’s Meredith Vieira, which has been renewed for season two in 80% of the country, climbed 9% to a 1.2. Warner Bros.’ The Real, which had dropped to its season low in the prior week, rebounded 22% in households and landed at a fourth place 1.1.

Among women 25-54, The Real led the pack with a 0.9, followed by Hot Bench and Celebrity Name Game, which were tied at a 0.8. Trifecta’s Judge Faith was the only rookie to decline, dropping 13% to a 0.7 in households.

B&C
TV by the Numbers

posted 1/22/15

Wednesday: 800-588-2300, Empire
Fox Wins The Middle of the Week
From The Futon Critic
FOX (11.242 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 3.8, #1) was the top draw on Wednesday with another big week from "American Idol" (11.534 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 3.3, #2) and "Empire" (10.950 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 4.3, #1).

CBS (9.229 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.6, #2) then was a distant second place with its trio of "The Mentalist" (9.532 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T4), "Criminal Minds" (10.156 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.9, #3) and "Stalker" (7.998 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T4).

Next up was NBC (6.167 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.2, #3) with a repeat "The Mysteries of Laura" (4.775 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.8, #13) followed by originals from "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (6.746 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.2, #10) and "Chicago PD" (6.982 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T4).

Meanwhile, ABC (3.787 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.0, #4) offered up its repeat lineup of "The Middle" (5.550 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T8), "The Goldbergs" (4.598 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T8), "Modern Family" (5.334 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T4), "Black-ish" (3.949 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T11), another "Black-ish" (1.824 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.5, #15) and "Modern Family" (1.467 million viewers, #16; adults 18-49: 0.4, #16).

And finally, the return of "Arrow" (2.958 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 1.1, #T11) and "The 100" (1.569 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.6, #14) on The CW (2.263 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.8, #5) closed out the evening.

Bravo's night was a mixed bag. "Top Chef" moved to 9p, and the move tacked on viewers with 990,000. Numbers for the premiere of "Best New Restaurant" - as well as are forthcoming.

"@midnight" pulled in 555,000.

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers
Showbuzz Daily

posted 1/22/15

NATPE 2015: Missed Connection?
Warners Looking to Revive "Love Connection" for a Third Time
From B&C
Warner Bros. is shopping a remake of Love Connection that would be hosted by The Real's Loni Love, said several sources at NATPE this week.

The show is a possible replacement for Let's Ask America, a game show that airs on several Scripps-owned stations. Should Scripps decide to pick up the show, it would likely begin as a slow roll-out on a handful of stations, much like Warner Bros.' TMZ spin-off, TMZ Live.

A Warner Bros. spokesman said the company declines to comment on development.

The Real, a first-run panel talk show, is cleared in 90% of the country for next year and is expected to return.

Among other NATPE developments today...

- Sky Vision is at NATPE launching gameshow 1000 Heartbeats, which comers from Hungry Bear Media and ITV in the UK, and Sky1 and John Stanley Productions primetime quiz Relatively Clever.-

Worldscreen
Variety
C21 Media
C21 Media
The Hollywood Reporter
Worldscreen
B&C
TBI Vision

posted 1/22/15

More on "The Voice" Season 8...
Report: The Mentors Are...
From Yahoo! TV
Season 8 of The Voice might already have its guest mentors selected.

The NBC singing competition has reportedly recruited Meghan Trainor, Nick Jonas, Ellie Goulding and Lionel Richie to assist its quartet of coaches for the show's spring run.

According to Us Weekly, Richie will step into the rehearsal room for the battle round with Pharrell Williams; Goulding will help Adam Levine; Jonas will work with returning coach Christina Aguilera; and Trainor will team up with Blake Shelton.

Richie is the only musician to have previously served as a guest mentor (alongside Aguilera in season two), yet all three of the other singers have taken the Voice stage as performers.

While most of the reported pairings make sense (Jonas and Aguilera are both former Disney stars, after all), the duo that might raise eyebrows most is that of Shelton and pop singer Trainor. Is NBC steering away from country music, the genre that's dominated the series for so many seasons?!

Not at all -- don't forget, the Nashville-residing Trainor has penned country tracks for Hunter Hayes and Rascal Flatts. Even more so, Trainor and Miranda Lambert paired for a somewhat countrified version of her hit "All About That Bass" at the CMAs this past November. If Trainor's got the approval of Shelton's wife, she's certainly fit to assist contenders on how to effectively introduce both a hit single and debut album in under a year -- country or otherwise.

The Voice returns to NBC on Monday, Feb. 23. NBC did not immediately respond to The Hollywood Reporter's request for comment.

Yahoo! TV
Eater

posted 1/22/15

Braaaaaaaaaaains
John Craven to Front New Quiz Show for BBC Two
From Seen It
Broadcasting legend John Craven, famed for Newsround, Swap Shop and Countryfile is to host a new BBC Two quiz show.
The channel has ordered 30 episodes of Beat The Brain which will see teams of four square up to the eponymous Brain and compete in a series of zones that test the full range of their mental capabilities.

Instead of questions, participants will face visual puzzles, logic problems, memory challenges and an array of thorny brain teasers designed to give them and viewers a complete mental workout.

The series is being co-produced by Objective Productions and Over The Top Productions and will air on BBC Two later this year.

Nigel Hall, Managing Director of Over The Top Productions, says: “I am really excited to be working with the legend that is John Craven, who has starred in so many landmark TV shows in his career.

“We were absolutely thrilled he chose Beat The Brain to be his next TV project.

“These brain games are addictive and we are confident that this will be a show that the whole family can enjoy together.”

Seen It
BBC
Digital Spy
Broadcast

posted 1/22/15

SRK to Return to Game Shows
Former KBC Host to Front "Who's Asking"
From Now Running
Superstar Shah Rukh Khan returned to the small screen with a bang - he will host "India Poochega - Sabse Shaana Kaun", a game show adapted from the "Who's Asking?" international format.

The show will air on &TV, a new Hindi general entertainment channel launched by Zee Entertainment Enterprise Limited (ZEEL) Wednesday night.

Looking his charming self, Shah Rukh took mediapersons present at the launch through the show's format.

He said: "I like the question and answer format. I do that with my children and family. This show will deal with questions that have been asked by common man and will be answered by the common man himself to win the prize money.

"The questions will be those which people think are easy to answer or sometimes don't even think about it. Many people have different questions to ask. I will just make sure the show has a lot of fun."

The 49-year-old, who sported a dapper, clean-shaven look in a formal blue suit, ensured the audience had a taste of the entertainment in store from the show, at the launch itself. His sense of humor and one-liners did the trick.

Now Running
Najasthan News
Bollywood Mantra

posted 1/22/15

Tuesday: State of the Union
NBC, Fox, CBS in Three-Way Split on Atypical Night
From the Futon Critic
NBC (4.564 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T1) was the top demo draw on Tuesday with its mix of "Parks & Recreation" (4.084 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.5, #2), another "Parks & Recreation" (3.625 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T3), "NBC News Special" (5.260 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T3) and analysis from another "NBC News Special" (3.895 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T11).

FOX (4.132 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T1) then shared the adults 18-49 crown thanks to a new "MasterChef Junior" (5.417 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.7, #1) and "FOX News Special" (2.848 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.9, #10).

Next up was CBS (8.098 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.2, #3) with repeats of "NCIS" (11.873 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T3) and "Mike & Molly" (3.848 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T13) bookending "CBS News Special" (6.997 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T6).

Meanwhile, The CW (3.132 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.1, #4) served up the return of "The Flash" (3.733 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T6) and "Supernatural" (2.534 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 1.0, #9).

And finally, a repeat "Marvel's Agents Carter" (3.248 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T11), "ABC News Special" (4.733 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.1, #8) and a repeat "Black-ish" (3.254 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T13) closed out the evening on ABC (3.991 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.9, #5).

Among cable networks not airing the SOTU, "Chopped" reigned supreme with 1.665 million viewers. The rest of the field...

- "Face Off" (Syfy, 9p): 1.044 million
- "The Challenge: Battle of the Exes II": 843,000

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 1/22/15

Thursday Lightning Round
... or "Stan the Man"

  • If there's anything to be taken from the Kai Hibberd story, it's this: there are three sides to every reality TV story... contestant... producer... and somewhere in the middle: the truth (People)
     
  • Howie Mandel plays Milwaukee (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
     
  • A mayor, a hurler, a TV host, a cheerleader, and the city of Cincinnati as itself on the next "Let's Ask America" (Cincinnati.com)
     
  • #TBT: Will the real Stan Lee please stand up? (ComicBook.com)

posted 1/22/15


LeBron Taking His Talents to Game Shows
NBA Star Teams with Glassman Media for New Project
From ESPN
LeBron James is getting into the game show business.

James' SpringHill Productions is partnering with NBC to create a prime-time game show with payouts that could reach seven figures. The lead producer on the project is Andrew Glassman, who has developed shows "Average Joe" and "Three Wishes" for NBC. The game show doesn't have a formal name or air date yet.

At James' request, the show is doing its first casting in the Cleveland and Akron areas, looking for couples to compete in the show. Details in the picture in the story header.

"It gives people here an opportunity to live out a dream, the things they only dreamed about, and that's to make more money than they ever thought they could make in their lives," James said Wednesday. "So it's a life-changing experience if they get an opportunity to be selected, and I thought starting here, with the people that I love here, means a lot to them. And me being a part of the game show is just all part of my team doing things that's outside the box but also that's fun for families and people that any ages can gravitate to."

SpringHill Productions, which is led by James' business partner Maverick Carter, currently is involved with "Survivor's Remorse" for Starz and "Becoming" on Disney XD. James and Carter also have been developing a movie script with Kevin Hart.

James is not working on the project day to day during the season. The project was launched last summer.

ESPN
Cleveland.com

posted 1/21/15

CNN: Anything But Politics As Usual
Anderson Cooper to Host One-Off Presidents' Day
From New York Daily News
CNN is game for a quiz show.

The former all-news network is producing a political game show, the television industry website TVNewser first reported.

The show is tentatively scheduled to air on President’s Day, Feb. 16 , and will be hosted by CNN anchor Anderson Cooper. TVNewser reports that the show - which will focus on presidential politics - is a one-time episode for the holiday, but if the show does well, further episodes will be produced,

The quiz show is the latest non-news fare for CNN to be championed by the network’s chief, Jeff Zucker.

Since he took over in 2013, the former NBC honcho packed the news channel’s schedule with entertainment programming, like Anthoy Bourdain’s “Parts Unknown” and Mike Rowe’s docu-series, “Somebody’s Gotta Do It.”

While he never hosted a quiz show before, Cooper has experience hosting competition programming — before joining CNN, he was the host of the ABC’s 2000 reality game show, “The Mole.”

CNN officials declined to comment.

New York Daily News
Variety

posted 1/21/15

Worlds Collide
Meet the Cast of Survivor
From the Futon Critic
CBS announced today the 18 castaways who will compete on the next SURVIVOR when the Emmy Award-winning series returns for its 30th season with a special 90-minute premiere, Wednesday, Feb. 25 (8:00-9:30 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Emmy Award winner Jeff Probst is host.

After 15 years and 30 seasons, the newest edition will feature the first-time theme of "Worlds Apart," with castaways from very different backgrounds divided into the three separate tribes. The all-new castaways will be grouped by White Collar, Blue Collar and No Collar.

The White Collars (Masaya Tribe), known for making the rules, includes a corporate executive, a retail buyer and a marketing director. The Blue Collars (Escameca Tribe), known to follow the rules, consists of a postal worker, an oil driller and a contractor. The No Collars (Nargarote Tribe) boasts free spirits who are known to break the rules. This tribe consists of a coconut salesman, a sailing instructor and a YouTube sensation. These three tribes will have very different approaches to how they play the game and interact with each other, while sharing the same goal: to outwit, outplay, outlast and ultimately be crowned Sole Survivor and winner of the $1 million dollar prize.

The battle unfolds when these three tribes compete against each other on SURVIVOR:

White Collar (Masaya Tribe)
- Tyler Fredrickson (33; Los Angeles; ex-talent agent assistant)
- So Kim (31; Long Beach, CA; retail buyer)
- Carolyn Rivera (52; Tampa; corporate executive)
- Max Dawson, PhD (37; Topanga, CA; media consultant)
- Shirin Oskooi (31; San Francisco; Yahoo! executive)
- Joaquin Souberbielle (27; Valley Stream, NY; marketing director)

Blue Collar (Escameca Tribe)
- Kelly Remington (44; Grand Island, NY; state trooper)
- Sierra Dawn Thomas (27; Roy, UT; barrel racer)
- Mike Holloway (38; North Richland Hills, TX; oil driller)
- Lindsey Cascaddan (24; College Park, FL; hair dresser)
- Dan Foley (47; Gorham, ME; postal worker)
- Rodney Lavoie Jr. (24; Boston; general contractor)

No Collar (Nargarote)
- Jenn Brown (22; Long Beach, CA; sailing instructor)
- Hali Ford (25; San Francisco; law student)
- Joe Anglim (25; Scottsdale, AZ; jewelry designer)
- Nina Poersch (51; Palmdale, CA; hearing advocate)
- Vince Sly (32; Santa Monica, CA; coconut vendor)
- Will Sims II (41; Sherman Oaks, CA; YouTube sensation)

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers

posted 1/21/15

Monday: CBS Stings
"Bachelor", "Apprentice" No Match for Strong Eye Lineup
From the Futon Critic
CBS (10.194 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.0, #1) was the network to beat on a competitive Monday thanks to new episodes of "2 Broke Girls" (8.890 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.2, #T1), "Mike & Molly" (9.299 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.1, #T4), "Scorpion" (12.033 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.2, #T1) and "NCIS: Los Angeles" (9.454 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.5, #7).

ABC (7.525 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.9, #2) then was a close second place with fresh installments from "The Bachelor" (7.520 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 2.1, #T4) and "Castle" (7.537 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.4, #8).

Next up was FOX (5.297 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.7, #3) with originals from "Gotham" (6.433 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 2.2, #T1) and "Sleepy Hollow" (4.162 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.3, #9).

Meanwhile, NBC (5.821 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.6, #4) served up new episodes of "The Celebrity Apprentice" (6.487 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.8, #6) and "State of Affairs" (4.490 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.1, #10).

And finally, the return of "The Originals" (1.484 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.6, #11) and "Jane the Virgin" (1.424 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.5, #12) on The CW (1.454 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.6, #5) closed out the evening.

And at midnight, "@midnight" pulled in at-midnight numbers, 545,000.

The Futon Critic
Yahoo! TV
Showbuzz Daily

posted 1/21/15

Friday: Stick to Millionaire
Another New Episode of "Shark Tank", Another ABC Win
From the Futon Critic
ABC (6.689 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.6, #1) was the demo champ on Friday with its mix of "Last Man Standing" (6.995 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.3, #6), "Cristela" (5.163 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.1, #8), "Shark Tank" (8.520 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.2, #1) and "20/20" (5.470 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T2).

CBS (10.404 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.4, #2) however was still the most-watched network with originals from "Undercover Boss" (8.160 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T2), "Hawaii Five-0" (10.444 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T2) and "Blue Bloods" (12.608 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T2).

Next up was NBC (4.060 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.0, #3) with the return of "Constantine" (3.080 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.8, #11), "Grimm" (4.601 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.2, #7) and "Dateline NBC" (4.500 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T9).

Meanwhile, FOX (2.656 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.9, #4) served up the debut of "World's Funniest Fails" (3.333 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.0, #T9) and a new "Glee" (1.978 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.7, #12).

And finally, The CW (1.043 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.3, #5) closed out the evening with its mix of "Hart of Dixie" (1.162 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.4, #13), a repeat "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" (0.851 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.3, #T14) and "Masters of Illusion" (0.998 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.3, #T14).

On Food Network Sunday...

- 8p: Guy's Grocery Games: 1.117 million
- 9p: Worst Cooks in America: 1.732 million
- 10p: Cutthroat Kitchen: 1.376 million

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 1/21/15

Wednesday Lightning Round
... or "Wheel Doubles Down"

  • Double Down Casino app adds a "Wheel of Fortune" slot (Gaming Intelligence)
     
  • "The X Factor", "Great British Baking Show", Ant & Dec winners at 2015 NTAs (STV)
     
  • Is "American Idol" a victim of its own success? Seems like we're asking this question every year. We keep saying "For God sakes, YES!", but they still ask it... (Insider)
     
  • Miranda Lambert is worried about Blake Shelton pulling double duty on SNL (Yahoo! TV)
     
  • CASTING COUCH: A dating show (Reality Wanted)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Billy Gardell (Pottsgrove Mercury)

posted 1/21/15



Buzzr-Worthy
Fox, Debmar-Mercury Take Stock in FremantleMedia Library Subchannel
From TV by the Numbers
FOX Television Stations has acquired rights to BUZZR TV from FremantleMedia North America (FMNA) and Debmar-Mercury. BUZZR TV will showcase FremantleMedia’s extensive library of game show content in all 17 FOX O&O markets, including nine out of the top 10, and 14 out of the top 20 DMAs.

Thom Beers, the CEO of FremantleMedia North America, has made launching this channel a top priority for the business. “FremantleMedia has consistently been the leader in the game show space, with long-running and more-popular-than-ever titles such as Family Feud and The Price is Right,” said Thom Beers. “When I joined the company two years ago, it became instantly clear that there was a huge opportunity for us to not only be a producer in the space, but also a programmer. We are thrilled to have FOX, one of the nation’s largest owned-and-operated network broadcast groups, as our launch partner on BUZZR TV. Jack Abernethy and Frank Cicha’s enthusiasm for both the channel and our product was clear from the get-go, and we look forward to bringing this beloved genre to viewers across the country.”

Frank Cicha, SVP of Programming for FOX Television Stations, said, “Buzzr will be a great addition to our D2 portfolio. The possibilities to have fun creatively, and to make it fun for the viewer, are endless. And in a D2 landscape this competitive, the ability to control your own product is a big plus. FremantleMedia can certainly do that.”

Debmar-Mercury, which brokered the BUZZR TV deal on behalf of FMNA, will conduct meetings with FMNA and other major station groups at NATPE to expand the multicast network’s footprint.

“There is nothing else like BUZZR TV,” said Ira Bernstein and Mort Marcus, co-presidents of Lionsgate-owned Debmar-Mercury. “It will be the only game show network operating in the digital multicast universe, providing stations with a highly marketable asset. We believe the depth of the FremantleMedia library will allow the network to secure its future, offering viewers a proven, quality and unique alternative to other digital channels.”

FremantleMedia is the owner of the largest game show library in the world with over 40,000 episodes of some of the greatest, most recognized game shows of yesterday and today. Iconic titles that will be featured when the channel launches include Family Feud, featuring hosts Richard Dawson, Ray Combs, Louis Anderson, Richard Karn and John O’Hurley; Let’s Make a Deal, featuring host Monty Hall; as well as famed titles To Tell the Truth, Password, Match Game, Beat the Clock, What’s My Line, Blockbusters and Card Sharks.

TV by the Numbers
Entertainment Weekly
Variety
Deadline
Realscreen

posted 1/20/15

Mark the Race Date
Catch the Season Premiere February 24 on CBS
From the Futon Critic
CBS announced today the 11 teams racing around the globe for the opportunity to win the $1 million dollar prize, on a special season of THE AMAZING RACE. This season will feature 11 new teams of all dating duos with a twist: six who are preexisting couples, and five duos who will meet for the very first time at the starting line when they are set up on the most extreme blind date ever. THE AMAZING RACE rounds out a night of reality television when it premieres with a 90-minute episode on Wednesday, Feb. 25 (9:30-11:00 PM, ET/PT), following the premiere of SURVIVOR (8:00-9:30 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. The Race moves to its regular time period on Friday, Feb. 27 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT). Phil Keoghan (@philkeoghan) is the host.

"Usually we have people who know each other really well. In this particular case, we have five blind dates and six regular dates," said Bertram van Munster, Co-Creator and Executive Producer of THE AMAZING RACE. "Going on a blind date to a restaurant is one thing, but going on a blind date around the world is like rolling the dice in a big way,"

The preexisting dating teams traveling around the world include New Kids on the Block member Jonathan Knight and his partner Harley Rodriguez, and Olympic medalists Aly Dudek and Steven Langton. Dudek won bronze at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics in short track speed skating and Langton won two bronze medals at the 2014 Sochi Olympics in bobsledding. Those being set up on the blind dates of a lifetime include a Navy physician and a registered nurse and two lawyers.

The couple's relationships will be tested right from the starting line as they navigate a muddy obstacle course before jetting off to Tokyo, Japan. The course will continue through Bangkok, Namibia, Monaco, and more, spanning five continents, eight countries and more than 35,000 miles.

The dating teams will also have an opportunity throughout the race to win the all-new "Date Night" reward. This allows one lucky couple to enjoy a one-on-one romantic activity, such as a steamy evening at a hot springs resort in Nagano, Japan, or star-gazing at the Bavarian Public Observatory in Munich, Germany.

The Preexisting Dating Couples:

- Aly Dudek & Steven Langton (24/31; Milwaukee/Boston, Olympic athletes)
- Harley Rodriguez & Jonathan Knight (41/46; New York City, fitness trainer/former New Kid on the Block)
- Jeff Magee & Lyda Grawn (57/49; McCall, ID/Scottsdale, AZ; pilot/flight attendant)
- CJ Harris & Lebya Simpson (26/25; Tuskegee, AL; IT tech/medical support assistant)
- Matt Cucolo & Ashley Gordon (30/28; Scarsdale, NY; hairstylist)
- Rochelle Nevedal & Michael Dombrowski (29/26; Kalkaska/Traverse City, MI; contract engineer/truck stop manager & pro wrestling promoter)

The Blind Date Couples:
- Hayley Keel & Blair Townsend (28/31; St. Petersburg/Jacksonville, FL; registered nurse/Navy physician)
- Jackie Ibarra & Jeffrey Weldon (27/26; Las Vegas/Tampa; dancer/account executive)
- Laura Pierson & Tyler Adams (29/26; Los Angeles/Santa Monica, CA; talent booker & mobile app developer)
- Jenny Wu & Jelani Roy (32; Los Angeles/New York City; lawyers)
- Bergen Olsen & Kurt Jordan Belcher (23/24; Sunnyvale, CA/Butler, KY; HR project manager/pageant consultant

The Futon Critic
Yahoo! TV

posted 1/20/15

Tuesday Lightning Round
... or "Grumpy Britches"

  • Len Goodman will be "Dancing" in America after all. Wait, what? (Yahoo! TV)
     
  • One thing that ISN'T coming back? "The X Factor". The words "played out"... play out (Yahoo! TV)
     
  • Chris Harrison "shocked" about the latest "Bachelor" breakup. Chris Harrison. A host of a TV show that routinely matches up people, only to have those couples routinely fall apart anywhere from years to moments after the finale.... and you're shocked. I'm shocked that YOU'RE shocked. "The Bachelor" is a show about breakups. It should be called "The Breakup". And you're shocked. JUST STOP. (Yahoo! TV)
     
  • Gary Kroeger needs to beat the clock in order to attract newlywed votes for a run in 2016, otherwise, he'll run into a Whammy of a primary (West Cedar Falls Courier)

posted 1/21/15


DON HARRON: 1924-2015
Hosted "Anything You Can Do", "Beat the Clock"
From Hollywood Reporter
Don Harron, who wore a trademark sweater and cap to play the character Charlie Farquharson on the U.S. variety show Hee Haw and The Red Green Show in Canada, has died. He was 90.

Harron died on Saturday at his home in Toronto after a long battle with cancer, the CBC News website reported. Born in Toronto in 1924, Harron first introduced the Farquharson character in 1952 on the CBC variety show The Spring Thaw.

Harron later wrote the lyrics for Anne of Green Gables: The Musical, which has been staged every year in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, since 1965. And he hosted the CBC radio show Morningside from 1977 to 1982. He also hosted Anything You Can Do from 1972 to 1974, taking over as host of Beat the Clock after Gene Wood switched to an announcer role.

Harron also hosted The Don Harron Show on the CTV network from 1983 to 1985. He received the Order of Canada in 1980.

Harron is survived by his partner Claudette Gareau and three daughters, one of whom is Mary Harron, director of American Psycho and The Moth Diaries.

The Hollywood Reporter
Hollywood Life
CBC News
National Post

posted 1/19/15


Now Boarding for Season 2
"The Game Plane" Begins Production for Sophomore Run
From Los Angeles Times
When you run a small, low-cost carrier with a tiny marketing budget, you have to be creative to get publicity.

That explains why Las Vegas-based Allegiant Air has allowed a television crew to film a game show in the cabin of its planes during regularly scheduled flights.

“We are always looking for ways to get lots of exposure,” said Brian Davis, Allegiant’s vice president of marketing.

“The Game Plane,” hosted by Mark Walberg of PBS’ “Antiques Roadshow,” recently signed with Allegiant to begin filming a second season of episodes that include trivia contests and onboard games of skills, with cash prizes and vacations awarded between takeoffs and landings.

Allegiant reported 13% growth in passengers in 2014 compared with the previous year, plus a 9.5% increase in income for the first nine months of the year.

Davis said he doesn’t know whether the game show has played a direct role in boosting the carrier's popularity or profit, but passengers seem to like being part of the show.

“The feedback we’ve gotten from customers has been great,” he said.

The renewal means that every fall 2014 game show entry has been given the green light for a second season.

Los Angeles Times

posted 1/19/15

1000 Heartbeats, One Look
Sky Vision Deals with Hungry Bear
From Realscreen
Distributor Sky Vision has inked a first-look deal with London-based indie Hungry Bear Media.

The deal gives Sky Vision – the international distribution arm of UK broadcaster Sky – distribution rights for all forthcoming programming from Hungry Bear, which was launched last January by ex-Talkback MD Dan Baldwin, former Talkback development exec Juliet Denison and entrepreneur Peter Jones.

Later this month Sky Vision is slated to launch 30- and 60-minute versions of the Hungry Bear-produced game show format 1000 Heartbeats (pictured above) for ITV.

The deal is the latest in a number of partnerships for Sky, which acquired a minority stake in Los Angeles- and London-based prodco Znak&Jones in September and most recently penned a development and distribution deal with Chalkboard TV in November.

“We are absolutely delighted to have signed such a landmark deal for the company so early on in our journey with a partner that pulled out all the stops to work with us,” said Dan Baldwin, MD of Hungry Bear Media, in a statement.

Barney Shingleton, director of entertainment and factual at Sky Vision, added: “We are really looking forward to working with Hungry Bear Media. It’s clear they are going to become a serious player in the UK as an independent producer and their shows have great potential for the international market.”

Realscreen

posted 1/19/15

"The Voice UK" Gains Half a Mill
"Planet's Got Talent" Struggles Out of the Gate
From Broadcast
The Voice UK gained half a million viewers, thrashing a poor second outing for Stars In Their Eyes.

The Voice (BBC1) 7pm-8.25pm
8.5m (38.5%)

Wall To Wall’s chair-spinning singing show grew in strength, adding to the 8m (35.9%) that tuned in for last week’s series four opener.

It also smashed BBC1’s slot average of 6m (29.3%) for the last 12 months and was up on the equivalent episode last year, which performed to 7.6m (32.9%).

Harry Hill’s reboot of Stars In Their Eyes had differing fortunes, losing 1.2m viewers from last week to entertain 2.5m (11.5%) between 7pm and 8.05pm. It also fell 2m short of ITV’s 4.5m (22.2%) slot average.

Planet’s Got Talent (ITV) 6.30pm-7pm
2.4m (11.7%)

The Warwick Davies-narrated Thames and Syco Entertainment co-production struggled to match ITV’s slot average of 2.8m (15.8%).

The clip show of the best and worst acts on Got Talent around the world also fell well short of BBC1’s Now You See It, according to Barb data supplied by overnights.tv.

The archive magic format comfortably won the 6.30pm and 7pm slot with an audience of 4.8m (23.7%), but this fell slightly short of the 5m (25.3%) conjured up by last week’s opening episode.

On Channel 4, a repeat of George Clarke format Restoration Man informed 580,000 (2.8%) between 6.30pm and 7.30pm, while BBC2’s Dad’s Army amused 2.2m (10.9%) in the half-an-hour slot up to 7pm.

The National Lottery: Win Your Wish List (BBC1) 8.25pm-9.15pm
4.9m (23%)

The Victory Television produced National Lottery format reached its halfway mark with a series high. The eight-part, Shane Richie-fronted game show has recorded a series average of 4.5m (21.1%) to date.

Dating format Take Me Out was ITV’s best offering of the day. It flirted with an audience of 3.3m (15.3%) from 8.05pm to 9.20pm, losing 300,000 from last week’s second episode of the series.

Later on in the evening C5’s Celebrity Big Brother captured 2.6m (11.7%) between 9pm-10pm, adding 300,000 to last Saturday’s viewership.

Broadcast

posted 1/19/15

Monday Lightning Round
... or "Betty Betty Happy Birthday!"

  • Betty White turns 93... and have we got a surprise for her! (The Futon Critic)
     
  • A former "Biggest Loser" calls the show "a fat-shaming disaster"... among other things that we can't in good conscience print here (Yahoo! TV)
     
  • VIDEO WALL: Dancing with the Feud (Yahoo! TV)
     
  • Joan Rivers makes one more appearance on "The Celebrity Apprentice" (Yahoo! TV)
     
  • Desiree Hartsock a "Bachelorette" no more (E!)
     
  • And neither a bachelor is Stephen Fry (BBC News)
     
  • CASTING COUCH: Season 2 of Fake Off (Reality Wanted)
     
  • "The Million Euro Challenge" draws complaints (Irish Independent)
     
  • A FEW GOOD MINUTES with Shane Richie (Daily Express)

posted 1/19/15

People Power!
USA Revives "WWE Tough Enough"
From Sporting News
WWE and the USA Network announced on Wednesday afternoon that the reality series "Tough Enough" is coming back in 2015.

The show debuted in 2001 on MTV where it aired for three seasons with a fourth season included in WWE SmackDown. The show then ended until USA Network brought it back in 2011 for one season. There had been talk last year that the show would make a return on the WWE Network but instead, it is coming back to cable television.

"I am pleased to announce that USA is bringing back 'Tough Enough,' the action-packed competition reality show from the ratings juggernaut, WWE," said USA Network President Chris McCumber during the Television Critics Association winter press tour. "The show will have a completely new format, with live elements that will truly make this event television."

WWE also made the announcement of the show coming back on Twitter:

Who is Tough Enough? Find out when @WWE #ToughEnough returns to @USA_Network this year. http://t.co/f1Z6h9T83W

— Vince McMahon (@VinceMcMahon) January 15, 2015

There is no exact word on when the show will be back on the air, but there is already a casting call online for anyone interested in trying to earn a WWE contract.

Sporting News
Deadline
Hitfix

posted 1/16/15

Another Simon Exiting Fox
Reality Head Andreae Falls on Lackluster Sword of a Season; Corie Henson Steps In
From Deadline
Simon Andreae is stepping down as head of alternative programming for Fox after a year on the job. He will be succeeded by Electus’ Corie Henson, who has been named EVP of alternative entertainment, overseeing the network’s slate of unscripted programming, specials and development. She reports to entertainment president David Madden. Meanwhile, Andreae will be returning to his producing roots, inking a producing deal with the network.

"Corie has the perfect combination of broadcast and producing experience to help us move our unscripted brand forward,” said Fox TV Group chairmen Dana Walden and Gary Newman. “Seeing the tremendous work that she, Chris Grant and the team at Electus have done, Corie clearly knows what it’s like to be on the creative side of the business, but also has a proven track record of developing and shepherding big, broad network hits.”

Andreae had a tough act to follow, taking the top unscripted post after the departure of long-time Fox reality boss Mike Darnell. He took a few swings, including buying preemptively the big-budget John de Mol social experiment Utopia and also picking up the eyebrow-raising “bomb-defusing” game show format Boom.

Fox went all in on Utopia, which fizzled, cancelled after a brief run. No other concepts developed or bought by Andreae have hit the air yet though several are in the pipeline. Additionally, Andreae’s bi-continental life — he continues to travel back and forth between Los Angeles and his native UK where his family lives — has been logistically challenging.

“I’ve had a tremendous adventure at Fox and I’m so proud to have built such a strong team of talented executives,” said Andreae. “We have a really exciting range of new unscripted shows in the pipeline, and I am looking forward to continuing to collaborate with the Fox team in this new role.”

This is the second department head to depart under Fox’s new regime of Walden, Newman and Madden. Shana C. Waterman, who oversaw longform/event series programming for the network, exited in November.

Rumors about a possible change at the helm of Fox’s alternative department intensified several weeks ago when Newman and Dana reportedly started quietly meeting with potential candidates.

Henson most recently served as EVP of Unscripted Television at Electus, where she oversaw the company’s unscripted TV business, including Running Wild With Bear Grylls, and the upcoming Breaking Greenville and The Raft. Prior to that, Henson was VP of Alternative Series at ABC Entertainment, where she oversaw new series development, as well as production for hit series, including Dancing With The Stars, Shark Tank and the Extreme Makeover franchise.

Henson has also served as a producer on such series as Big Brother for CBS, Grease: You’re The One That I Want!’ for NBC and the syndicated show On Air With Ryan Seacrest for Fox affiliates; and as an executive producer on The Secret Life Of A Soccer Mom for TLC.

Deadline

posted 1/16/15

Thursday: A Bland Taste
ABC Goes Nowhere, while Fox Continues to Slide
From the Futon Critic
FOX (10.357 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.6, #1) was the network to beat on Thursday with a new "American Idol" (9.834 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 2.3, #4) followed by a second "American Idol" (10.881 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.8, #1).

CBS (9.220 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.8, #2) then claimed the silver with a repeat "The Big Bang Theory" (12.063 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.5, #2) followed by originals from "Mom" (10.841 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.4, #3), "Two and a Half Men" (9.391 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 2.1, #5), "The McCarthys" (6.914 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.5, #6) and "Elementary" (8.055 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.3, #7).

Next up was NBC (3.515 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 0.9, #3) with fresh installments of "The Biggest Loser" (4.219 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.1, #9), "Bad Judge" (2.773 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T11), "A to Z" (1.728 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.5, #13) and "Parenthood" (4.077 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.2, #8).

Meanwhile, ABC (3.058 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.8, #4) served up the penultimate week of "The Taste" (3.274 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.9, #10) and a repeat "How to Get Away with Murder" (2.627 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.7, #T11).

And finally, The CW (1.924 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.4, #5) closed out the evening with "The World Dog Awards" (1.924 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.4, #14).

On cable...

- Project Runway: All-Stars (Lifetime) - 1.642 million
- Pawnography (History, 10p) - 1.509 million
- Pawnography (History, 10:30p) - 1.441 million
- Beat Bobby Flay (Food) - 1.074 million
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy Central) - 560,000

The Futon Critic
Yahoo! TV
Showbuzz Daily

posted 1/16/15

Wednesday: Crazy Like a Fox
"Idol", "Empire" Give 1st to 4th Network
From the Futon Critic
FOX (10.475 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 3.4, #1) was the network to beat on Wednesday with week two of "American Idol" (10.662 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.9, #3) and "Empire" (10.289 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 4.0, #1).

ABC (6.234 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.8, #2) then claimed the silver with originals from "The Middle" (7.821 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 2.2, #T5), "The Goldbergs" (7.183 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 2.3, #4), "Modern Family" (9.348 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 3.0, #2) and "Black-ish" (6.602 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 2.0, #7) plus a repeat "Forever" (3.224 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 0.7, #13).

Next up was CBS (9.103 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.7, #3) with a new "The Mentalist" (9.359 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.3, #11) followed by the return of "Criminal Minds" (10.174 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 2.2, #T5) and "Stalker" (7.775 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T8).

Meanwhile, NBC (6.601 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.3, #4) served up fresh installments of "The Mysteries of Laura" (6.296 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 1.1, #12), "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (6.789 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.4, #10) and "Chicago PD" (6.720 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T8).

And finally, repeats of "Arrow" (0.840 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.2, #T14) and "The Flash" (0.931 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.2, #T14) closed out the evening on The CW (0.885 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.2, #5).

On cable...

- Top Chef (Bravo) - 945,000
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy Central) - 686,000
- IdioTest (GSN, 8p) - 343,000
- IdioTest (GSN, 8:30p) - 289,000
- Baggage on the Road (GSN, 9:30p) - 290,000
- Baggage on the Road (GSN, 9p) - 208,000

The Futon Critic
Yahoo! TV
Showbuzz Daily
TV by the Numbers

posted 1/16/15

A Link Between Seasons
BBC One Quiz Renewed
From STV
STV Productions has made a brand new series of the hit game show The Link.

The Link sees three teams race against time over the course of 45 minutes to find the link between questions.

The gripping quiz puts contestants' knowledge to the test while rewarding bold, tactical teamwork.

The aim is to make the connections, break the links and win cash.

The Link is presented by actor Mark Williams of Father Brown, Blandings and Harry Potter fame.

Alan Clements, from STV Productions, said: "It is fantastic news that The Link proved such a hit with the daytime audience first time round. We are thrilled the series is continuing on BBC One with Mark Williams at the helm."

The first series of The Link aired in May 2014 and ranked number one in its daytime slot.

This new series, in association with LTV, will begin on January 26 on BBC One at 3pm.

STV

posted 1/16/15

Happy Friday Lightning Round
... or "Betty Betty Happy Birthday!"

  • Betty White turns 93 (Entertainment Tonight) PLUS List Abuse: 93 facts you may not know about Betty (Yahoo! TV)
     
  • Donald Trump told a crowd of TCA reporters that "The Celebrity Apprentice" is the #1 show on television. Yeah... about that...  (Yahoo! TV) PLUS... he's not a fan of Bill Cosby (Yahoo! TV)
     
  • Eddie Huang on his new sitcom: let's get this uncomfortable discussion on race, y'all! (Yahoo! TV)
     
  • Keshet bolsters UK output (Broadcast)

posted 1/16/15

It Takes A... Pastor
WEtv Gets Into the Dating Game with "Match Made in Heaven" February 4
From the Futon Critic
Meet Shawn Bullard, an African American real estate magnate and former college athlete looking for true love. And who better to help him find The One than the man upstairs - or someone with a close connection? Enter Pastor Ken Johnson (spiritual advisor to the Indianapolis Colts) who guides Shawn and observes the authenticity and godliness of 24 women living under one roof hoping to find a love connection with Shawn. Not only does the pastor weigh in on Shawn's choices, but when his very outspoken mother moves in, she too has a say on who could potentially be her daughter-in-law. While some ladies are sane and sweet, others are downright devilish leading to plenty of drama and bad behavior. After a series of dates, romantic rendezvous, harsh eliminations, and solicited (and unsolicited) advice from the Pastor and his mother, find out if Shawn finally meets his match. "Match Made in Heaven" premieres on WE tv, Wednesday, February 4 at 10pm ET/PT

In each of the eight hour-long episodes, the bevy of beauties will face temptation at every turn. From the sweet girl next door to the smoking hot vixen; the polished career women to the innocent virgin; no one is immune to temptation. In this proverbial Garden of Eden, the ladies are constantly met with the opportunity to make a choice between good and evil in their quest for Shawn's love. Should they undermine their fellow housemates to win him over? Or take the high road and trust in their connection with him? Does "do unto others" have an alternate meaning? Will Shawn be tempted to take a bite of the forbidden fruit these women have to offer? Or will Pastor Ken and Mama Bullard be able to guide Shawn into the light so he can pick the right girl to spend the rest of his life with? Tune in Wednesday, February 4 at 10pm ET/PT

Produced for WE tv by Glassman Media with Andrew Glassman executive producing, and Gaspin Media with Jeff Gaspin executive producing. Lauren Gellert and Suzanne Murch also serve as the executive producers for WE tv.

The Futon Critic

posted 1/15/15

Syndies: Week 15
Results for the Week Ending January 4
From B&C
Most of syndication returned to normal in the week ended Jan. 4, which included New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, after plunging during the little-watched Christmas week. The gains came despite preemptions for special New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day programs, and of course, sports.

In access, CTD’s Wheel of Fortune rebounded 7% from its season low in the prior session to a 6.4, although that was still down 6% from last year at this time. CTD’s Jeopardy! grew 3% to a 6.2, unchanged from last year. Debmar-Mercury’s Family Feud fell 2% to a 5.7, but picked up 4% from last year. Disney-ABC’s Who Wants to Be a Millionaire rose 6% to a 1.8 (a six-week high), but was down 22% from last year.

Among this season’s rookies, all of which will be back next season, CTD’s Hot Bench lived up to its name. The panel judge show heated up 21% to a 1.7 in households to match its series high even though the show remained in repeats all week. Hot Bench also topped the rookies among women 25-54, spiking 29% to a 0.9. Debmar-Mercury’s Celebrity Name Game recovered 9% to a 1.2 in households and jumped 17% in the demo to a 0.7. NBCU’s Meredith Vieira was steady at a 1.1 in households, while growing 20% to a 0.6 in the demo. Warner Bros.’ The Real dropped 10% to a 0.9 in households, but was flat in the demo at a 0.7. Finally, Trifecta’s Judge Faith jumped 14% to a 0.8, while remaining at a 0.4 among women 25-54.

B&C
TV by the Numbers
Broadway World

posted 1/15/15

Second House
E! Renews "DVF"
From B&C
E! has renewed The Royals and House of DVF each for a second season, the network announced Thursday at the TCA winter press tour.

The Royals, the first scripted series for E!, is set to premiere March 15. The hour-long drama, about a fictional British royal family, is produced by Lionsgate and Universal Cable Productions and was created by Mark Schwahn.

House of DVF, produced by Electus and Hud:sun Media, features young designers being mentored by Diane von Furstenberg.

B&C

posted 1/15/15

Nerdy Team-Up
Catch "King of the Nerds" Season 3 January 23
From the Futon Critic
As nerds everywhere eagerly await the return of the ultimate geeky competition series King of the Nerds, TBS and Twitch are teaming up for a special sneak preview event to be held at Twitch's San Francisco headquarters on Friday, Jan. 16. King of the Nerds hosts and executive producers Curtis Armstrong and Robert Carradine will be on-hand for the event, which will feature a sneak peek screening of the first episode of season 3 and a chat session with the hosts to take place live on Twitch. Top Twitch influencers Marcus "djWHEAT" Graham and Jon Carnage are set to moderate the event, which will mark Twitch's first-ever live television viewing party. Fans will be able to watch the fun live on Twitch.tv/twitch on Friday Jan. 16, at 6:00 p.m. PT.

Each year, TBS's King of the Nerds welcomes 12 competitors from across the nerd spectrum who come together to vie for the ultimate nerd title. But first they must face a series of elimination challenges that test their intellect, ingenuity, skills and pop-culture prowess. In the end, only one competitor will be named the quintessential master of all things nerdy, winning the $100,000 prize.

Season 3 of King of the Nerds is set to launch on Friday, Jan. 23, at 9 p.m. (ET/PT) on TBS, with each episode available via TBS's VOD, digital and mobile platforms the following day. Among the challenges this season will be "Cosplay," "Nerd Anthem" and "Nerdy Game Night." King of the Nerds also features several guest appearances, with season 3 set to welcome such nerd favorites as Danica McKellar, Michael McMillian, Yaya Han, Billy Boyd, Moby, Lisa Loeb, Travie McCoy, Penn Jillette and Rachelle Lefevre.

The Futon Critic

posted 1/15/15

DGA Heads to Broken Skull
CMT Series Nominated for Reality Prize
From TV by the Numbers
STEVE AUSTIN’S BROKEN SKULL CHALLENGE has been named a contender for this year’s Directors Guild of America Award for outstanding direction in the Reality Programs category, it was announced yesterday by the DGA. The nomination marks a first for both CMT and Adam Vetri, who serves as director on the series for 51 Minds, along with associate director Ian Blankenship and stage manager Richard Mercury Melendez. To capture the gritty and explosive action on BROKEN SKULL CHALLENGE, the series incorporates high-speed slow motion and a Cablecam aerial camera system for each of the dramatic competitions. The DGA Awards honor outstanding directorial achievement in film, television, commercials and documentaries, and winners will be announced at the 67th Annual DGA Awards on Saturday, February 7.

STEVE AUSTIN’S BROKEN SKULL CHALLENGE returned to CMT in January, and has experienced double-digit ratings growth across the first two episodes. The premiere episode, which aired January 4, earned the series’ highest-rated and most-watched telecast to date with 754,000 total viewers (Nielsen Live +3), up an impressive +48% from its season one average.

TV by the Numbers

posted 1/15/15

Tuesday: Eye Guess
If It's Tuesday, It's CBS
From the Futon Critic
CBS (15.257 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.2, #1) was the top draw on Tuesday thanks to originals from "NCIS" (19.615 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 2.8, #1), "NCIS: New Orleans" (16.124 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.2, #2) and "Person of Interest" (10.033 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.6, #5).

ABC (5.683 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T2) then claimed the silver with a special "Shark Tank" (7.346 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.8, #3) followed by new episodes of "Marvel's Agents Carter" (5.053 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T6) and "Forever" (4.648 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 1.0, #12).

Next up was FOX (3.801 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T2) with fresh installments of "MasterChef Junior" (4.922 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.7, #4), "New Girl" (2.917 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.4, #10) and "The Mindy Project" (2.441 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 1.1, #11).

Meanwhile, NBC (4.197 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.3, #4) served up the return of "Parks & Recreation" (3.761 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T6) followed by a second "Parks & Recreation" (3.296 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T6), "Marry Me" (2.196 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 0.7, #14), "About a Boy" (2.758 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.9, #13) and "Chicago Fire" (6.587 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.5, #T6).

And finally, repeats of "The Flash" (1.614 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.4, #15) and "Arrow" (1.149 million viewers, #16; adults 18-49: 0.3, #16) on The CW (1.381 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.4, #5) closed out the evening.

On cable...

- Chopped (Food) - 1.448 million
- Face Off (Syfy) - 1.199 million
- The Challenge: Battle of the Exes (MTV) - 907,000
- @midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy) - 638,000

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers
Showbuzz Daily

posted 1/15/15

GSN's Among Cable's Fastest Growing Networks
2014 Sees Network Make Strides
From the Futon Critic
GSN, the leader in game shows and competitive entertainment, announced today that 2014 was the network's most-watched year ever in cable primetime among total viewers, Adults 18+, Women 18+, People 25-54 and Women 25-54[1]. This is also the third consecutive year of growth for the 20-year old cable network, bucking the current downward trend in viewership being felt by other well-established cable channels.

Additional end-of-year ratings highlights for the network include: 2014 tying with 2013 as the most watched year ever in total day among total viewers; growing their P25-54 and W25-54 for a third consecutive year in cable primetime, which is a first for the network; and ending 2014 on a strong note by delivering its most watched fourth quarter ever in total day among total viewers and in cable primetime among W18+[2]. GSN was also one of the top ten fastest growing ad supported cable entertainment networks in 4Q in cable primetime among P18-49 and P25-54.[3]

The network has also found success with three new series that launched in 2014 and will return in 2015: "Skin Wars," hosted by actress Rebecca Romijn, "Idiotest," hosted by comedian Ben Gleib and "It Takes A Church," featuring award-winning vocalist Natalie Grant. The Emmy(R)-nominated quiz show "The Chase," hosted by Brooke Burns and featuring trivia master Mark "The Beast" Labbett, also returns for a fourth season.

"GSN's commitment to both increasing original programming and expanding the genre of television game has resulted in three years of consecutive growth for our target demo," said Amy Introcaso-Davis, GSN's Executive Vice President of Programming and Development. "We are excited that our audience has embraced these creative, fun, contemporary shows and can't wait for them to see the whole 2015 line-up."

The Futon Critic
Broadway World

posted 1/15/15

Thursday Lightning Round
... or "Wipeout"

  • #ICYMI: karmically speaking, this more than makes up for "Extreme Gong" (Broadway World)
     
  • VIDEO WALL: no more calls, we have a winner, the best answer Steve Harvey has ever heard (Uproxx)
     
  • "Family Feud Australia's" Biker-gate: the counterargument (Sydney Morning Herald)
     
  • Steve Harvey has a few surprises waiting for him... the least of which is a street (WRAZ Raleigh)

posted 1/15/15


Dancing with the Anniversary
Catch Season Premiere on ABC
From the Futon Critic
ABC today announced the premiere dates for the 10 year anniversary edition of "Dancing with the Stars," MONDAY, MARCH 16 (8:00-10:01 p.m., ET).

"Dancing With the Stars" returns for its 20th season with an all-new celebrity cast-- to be announced at a later date -- who will brave the dance floor for the first time. Each week, these celebrities will leave their comfort zones and endure hours of grueling rehearsals to master technical choreography and entertaining performances. In the end, only one star will rise above the rest to be crowned champion and win the coveted mirror-ball trophy. Hosted by Emmy(R) Award-winning Tom Bergeron ("America's Funniest Home Videos") and Erin Andrews, "Dancing with the Stars" is the hit series in which celebrities perform choreographed dance routines judged by renowned ballroom judge Len Goodman and dancer/choreographers Bruno Tonioli, Carrie Ann Inaba and Julianne Hough. "Dancing with the Stars" is produced by BBC Worldwide Productions. Rob Wade, Ashley Edens-Shaffer and Joe Sungkur are executive producers.

The Futon Critic
Yahoo! TV

photo courtesy ABC

posted 1/14/15

Monday: War of the Roses
ABC, CBS Wins Night Dominated by the CFB Final
From the Futon Critic
ABC (6.510 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.6, #1) was the broadcast network to beat on Monday with a new "The Bachelor" (6.383 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T3) and the return of "Castle" (6.762 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.4, #5).

CBS (7.216 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T2) then claimed the silver with a repeat "The Big Bang Theory" (10.049 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 1.9, #2), a new "Mike & Molly" (9.169 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 2.1, #1) and second runs of "NCIS: Los Angeles" (6.731 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.2, #6) and "Scorpion" (5.308 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.1, #7).

Next up was NBC (5.085 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.4, #T2) with fresh installments of "The Celebrity Apprentice" (5.817 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.7, #T3) and "State of Affairs" (3.620 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T8).

Meanwhile, FOX (2.275 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 0.7, #4) served up encores of "Empire" (2.761 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T8) and "Sleepy Hollow" (1.789 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 0.5, #10).

And finally, The CW (1.095 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 0.3, #5) likewise went with repeats of "Jane the Virgin" (1.100 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 0.3, #T11) and another "Jane the Virgin" (1.090 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.3, #T11).

On cable, "@midnight with Chris Hardwick" scored 501,000.

The Futon Critic
Yahoo! TV
Showbuzz Daily

posted 1/14/15

Wednesday Lightning Round
... or "Tours of Duty"

posted 1/14/15


Christina Tosi Joins "MasterChef"
Culinary Franchise Renewed
From the Futon Critic
Fox Broadcasting Company (FOX) has ordered a fourth season of the hit cooking competition series MASTERCHEF JUNIOR. Additionally, Christina Tosi, renowned pastry chef, owner and founder of New York City's Milk Bar, will join award-winning chef Gordon Ramsay and acclaimed chef Graham Elliot on both the MASTERCHEF and MASTERCHEF JUNIOR judging panels.

"MASTERCHEF has been one of my favorite shows since it began, and like so many others, I fell in love with MASTERCHEF JUNIOR," said Tosi. "I'm incredibly humbled by the opportunity and excited to pay forward all that I owe to learning what you're made of in the home kitchen, and putting your neck on the line to show what you've got to the rest of the world!"

"Christina is one of the most exciting, dynamic and inspirational people in food today, whose brilliant ideas and incredible work ethic have resulted in a meteoric rise in the culinary world," added Ramsay. "I have tremendous respect for her opinions, and she'll be an incredible judge and phenomenal mentor to the best home cooks in America."

Season Six of MASTERCHEF is currently in production and will air this summer. Production on Season Four of MASTERCHEF JUNIOR will begin this spring.

The Futon Critic
TV by the Numbers
Yahoo! TV

photo courtesy ABC News

posted 1/13/15

Sunday: NFL Beats Golden Globes
CBS Wins Night
From the Futon Critic
CBS (18.498 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 4.5, #1) was the network to beat on Sunday with a full hour of "NFL Overrun" (36.568 million viewers, #1; adults 18-49: 11.4, #1) followed by "60 Minutes" (17.355 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 3.6, #3), "Madam Secretary" (11.590 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.7, #7) and "The Good Wife" (8.479 million viewers, #6; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T10).

NBC (14.462 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 4.3, #2) then was a close second with its coverage of the "Golden Globes Red Carpet" (9.527 million viewers, #5; adults 18-49: 2.2, #4) and "The 72nd Annual Golden Globe Awards" (16.107 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 5.0, #2).

Next up was FOX (3.057 million viewers, #4; adults 18-49: 1.4, #3) and its mix of "Mulaney" (1.310 million viewers, #17; adults 18-49: 0.5, #17), a repeat "The Simpsons" (1.944 million viewers, #16; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T14) and new episodes of "The Simpsons" (4.385 million viewers, #8; adults 18-49: 2.0, #T5), "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" (3.303 million viewers, #14; adults 18-49: 1.5, #9), "Family Guy" (4.092 million viewers, #10; adults 18-49: 2.0, #T5) and "Bob's Burgers" (3.308 million viewers, #13; adults 18-49: 1.6, #8).

And finally, originals from "America's Funniest Home Videos" (5.984 million viewers, #7; adults 18-49: 1.1, #13), "Galavant" (4.358 million viewers, #9; adults 18-49: 1.3, #T10), another "Galavant" (3.836 million viewers, #11; adults 18-49: 1.2, #12), "Resurrection" (3.073 million viewers, #15; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T14) and "Revenge" (3.648 million viewers, #12; adults 18-49: 0.8, #T14) on ABC (4.201 million viewers, #3; adults 18-49: 1.0, #4) closed out the evening.

On cable, "Worst Cooks in America" was the leader with 1.456 million viewers, followed by 1.171 million for "Cutthroat Kitchen". Third was "Guy's Grocery Games" with 1.153 million, followed by "Steve Austin's Broken Skull Challenge" (730,000).

The Futon Critic
Showbuzz Daily

posted 1/13/15

Catchphrase au Français
ITV Sells Format to France
From Broadcast
ITV gameshow Catchphrase and Channel 4 property format Selling Houses are set to be remade in France after indie Pernel Media struck two option deals.

The French production company, set up by factual and entertainment producer Samuel Kissous in 2009, is now in negotiations with French broadcasters to commission local versions of the programmes.

Kissous inked the deal for Catchphrase, which returned to ITV in 2013, with distributor DRG and for Reef Television’s Selling Houses, which airs on More 4 and is fronted by Amanda Lamb, with Passion Distribution.

Pernel Media has previously remade British formats including Optomen’s The Great British Menu, Lion TV’s Cash Cab, Hat Trick’s Dinner Date, Objective’s Balls of Steel and Mentorn’s Most Identical in France.

“There is a significant appetite in France for proven formats from Britain,” said Kissous.

“Broadcasters aren’t necessarily concerned that a show was created 15 years ago – they’re looking for shows that feel fresh and exciting to French audiences and we’re confident once again of proving our expertise at adapting great British formats and making them a success in France.”

Broadcast

posted 1/12/15

Tuesday Lightning Round
... or "Dancing with the Big Time"

  • Derek Hough taking next season off for Broadway, Nashville (Yahoo! TV)
     
  • YOU CAN'T MAKE THIS $#*! UP: Jimmy Kimmel guest hosts "The Bachelor". (Yahoo! TV)
     
  • WHY THE BLEEP IS THIS NEWS? Andi Dorfman wanted three baby media hoes (LA Travel)
     
  • Usher hits his button for Grace Miguel (E!)
     
  • 2015 will be the year of the Australian Quiz Show Wars (News.com.au)
     
  • VIDEO WALL: another day, another clip of Brad Walsh giggling while Shawn Wallace just stands there being a bad ass (Who Ate All The Pies)
     
  • CraigyFerg's new website (The Interrobang)
     
  • Sports Jeopardy! gets a second screen (B&C)
     
  • CASTING COUCH: "Family Feud" in Louisville (WDRB), "House of DVF" season 2 (Reality Wanted), and... something Money is producing called "Money Match" (Time)

posted 1/13/15

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