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City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
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Archive for December, 2011

Watching New Year’s on TV this year and yes, Ryan Seacrest is there for you

Ryan Seacrest and Dick Clark shepherd in 2012 on ABC. CREDIT: ABC

Ryan Seacrest and Dick Clark shepherd in 2012 on ABC. CREDIT: ABC

Not big on the partying? Just want to sit in front of your TV to herald in 2012?

As usual, there are plenty of options with lots and lots of music, from pop to country to hip-hop to classical. Last year, stalwart “New Year’s Rockin’ Eve” on ABC was the most popular pick, drawing 18.8 million viewers in the final half hour. And, yes, Dick Clark is still hanging in there.

ABC’s “New Year’s Rockin’ Eve.” (8 p.m. to 11 p.m., 11:30 p.m.-1:08 a.m.) The 40th edition of this tradition is the most popular and the longest, too, starting at 8 p.m. and running more than four hours total featuring 29 musical performance.

The first two hours are hosted by Fergie and Jenny McCarthy, highlighting the 40 most memorable performances of the past 40 years. Year one in 1972 featured the likes of Helen Reddy, Al Green and Three Dog Night. At 10 p.m., Dunwoody High School grad Ryan Seacrest and 82-year-old Clark host from Times …

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Kelly Clarkson endorses Ron Paul, gets hit hard on Twitter

Kelly Clarkson delves into political opinion and finds not everyone agrees with her. CREDIT: AP

Kelly Clarkson delves into political opinion and finds not everyone agrees with her. CREDIT: AP

When it comes to endorsements, everyone looks to “American Idol,” right? They at least have the “vote early, vote often” concept down pat.

Kelly Clarkson tweeted her support for Libertarian-leaning Ron Paul early Thursday and set off a maelstrom. Here’s the Tweet:

I love Ron Paul. I liked him a lot during the last republican nomination and no one gave him a chance. If he wins the nomination for the Republican party in 2012 he’s got my vote. Too bad he probably won’t.

Some Paul opponents began attacking her selection, noting that he had a newsletter out years ago that featured commentary against gays and various races. He has said he didn’t write them and isn’t racist or homophobic. She responded thusly:

I am really sorry if I have offended anyone. Obviously that was not my intent. I do not support racism. I support gay rights, straight rights, women’s rights, men’s rights, …

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‘Jeopardy’ moves back to 11 Alive at 7:30 p.m. starting Jan. 2, 2012

jeopardy-pic

11 Alive at 7:30 p.m.

Where is “Jeopardy” airing starting January 2 in Atlanta?

For the past five years or so, the popular game show has been on sister station WATL-TV (My Atl) at 7:30 p.m. right after “Wheel of Fortune.”

But management at Gannett, which owns both stations, has decided to move “Jeopardy” back to the more prominent WXIA-TV station while keeping “Wheel of Fortune” in its place at WATL.

“Jeopardy” saw a major drop-off in ratings in Atlanta in November 2011 vs. November 2010, falling nearly 30 percent. It had a 3.8 rating, by far the best on WATL-TV but down from 5.4 a year earlier.

Entertainment show “Extra” moves to 6:30 p.m. on WATL from the 7:30 p.m. slot at 11 Alive and “Everybody Loves Raymond” takes over the 7:30 p.m. slot at WATL.

General manager John Deushane explains in an email:

Extra goes to 6:30 on WATL where it will be the only show of that genre in the time period. It was getting killed against ET, TMZ and Inside Edition, all of which aired at …

Continue reading ‘Jeopardy’ moves back to 11 Alive at 7:30 p.m. starting Jan. 2, 2012 »

ABC’s ‘Cougar Town’ holds screening party in Atlanta

"Cougar Town" writer Kate Purdy and actor Dan Byrd at Dantanna's with fans of the show. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

"Cougar Town" writer Kate Purdy and actor Dan Byrd at Dantanna's with fans of the show. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

“Cougar Town” creator Bill Lawrence knows a thing or two about survival on TV.

He managed to keep his quirky comedy “Scrubs” alive for nine season on two different networks and endless numbers of time slots.  “Scrubs” never became a big hit but it developed a small, loyal fan base that helped keep the show alive year in and year out.

Lawrence seems to be re-living that fate with “Cougar Town,’” starring Courteney Cox.

The show, which has aired after “Modern Family,” struggled to hold on to that huge audience last season in its sophomore year. But it too has developed a fervent fan base that enjoys the show’s wine-induced irreverence and light-hearted humor.

ABC, however, didn’t place “Cougar Town” in its fall lineup – or its official mid-season lineup either. The show was then cut from 22 episodes to 15. It appears ABC is basically holding “Cougar Town” in …

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Video: Atlanta & TV year in review

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By Rodney Ho, Radio & TV Talk

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CNN ratings in 2011 show improvement; Fox remains the leader

fox-news-logoFor each of the three major news networks in 2011, there was good news and bad news, depending on how you spin it.

Fox News could take comfort that it remains the dominant ratings leader, drawing more viewers than CNN and MSNBC combined both during the entire day and prime time. It averaged 1.1 million total day and 1.9 million viewers each night. Its top 11 shows all exceeded 1 million viewers each, a figure no CNN or MSNBC program achieved.  It has remained the news leader for the past decade.

Ratings, however, were down about 8 percent year over year and 14 percent in the 25 to 54 year old demographic during prime time and 5 percent overall. (Its 2010 numbers were boosted by the mid-term elections and will likely go up again during the 2012 presidential election year.)

It lost viewers at the 5 p.m. hour, where “The Five” replaced Glenn Beck mid year but the network said advertisers are more welcoming to the new show than Beck.

Atlanta-based CNN bounced back from a dismal …

Continue reading CNN ratings in 2011 show improvement; Fox remains the leader »

Simon Cowell predicts a ‘bloodbath’ for ‘X Factor’ season two

THE X FACTOR: Simon Cowell at the Los Angeles taping of THE X FACTOR airing on FOX. CR: Ray Mickshaw / FOX.

THE X FACTOR: Simon Cowell at the Los Angeles taping of THE X FACTOR airing on FOX. CR: Ray Mickshaw / FOX.

Who do you like the most of the three new judges so far?

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Simon Cowell isn’t stupid. He certainly was aware of the criticisms of the show.

He told People magazine: “Can we make the show better? Yes. I will never ever go into anything going forward unless I can believe I can make it better. Next year will be a bloodbath. We have to come out with something better than the rest, and that’s what we aim to do.”

A bloodbath? That’s a mighty strong word, even for Cowell.

Hapless host Steve Jones will almost certainly be given one-way ticket back over to the U.K. where he can lick his wounds and realize maybe TV isn’t his thing. Nicole Scherzinger, feeling sufficiently burned by the experience, is an odds-on goner, too.

But what else will Simon do? He recoiled at times to all the seemingly hundreds of …

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Q&A with Amy Schumer, at the Punchline New Year’s Eve

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I tried to set up a phone interview with the esteemed Amy Schumer, a very funny stand-up who finished fourth on NBC’s “Last Comic Standing” in 2007 and killed during the Comedy Central roast of Charlie Sheen earlier this year. But  we couldn’t work out a time. So I had to settle for a quick email Q&A to promote her two shows Friday and three shows New Year’s Eve at the Punchline. (You can get tickets here.)

Here it is:

Q: I was born in Rockville Centre, where you grew up, but never lived there.(I’m Oyster Bay High School graduate, Class of 1987). Did you luck out by actually getting to grow up there?

Schumer: No. Long Island is a dump.

Q; On the William Esper Studio Alumni website, your name is not included – yet. Where’s the respect?

Schumer: I have two movies this year. A pilot at CBS and Comedy Central. Maybe I blue balled the person who updates the site or maybe they still just think of me as a comic. Either way. It’s cool.

Q:  It has now been more than four years since …

Continue reading Q&A with Amy Schumer, at the Punchline New Year’s Eve »

TV 2011 year in review: Oprah, Paul Ossmann, ‘The Voice,’ Nancy Grace

Oprah Winfrey moved from syndicated talk-show world to cable TV network life. CREDIT: AP

Oprah Winfrey moved from syndicated talk-show world to cable TV network life. CREDIT: AP

TV in 2011 brought America a fair share of idiocy, often attached to a Kardashian or Sheen. There was no shortage of laughs, from Jimmy Fallon to Louis C.K. to Zooey Deschanel.

And Atlanta was the home to more zombies, werewolves and vampires than you could fend off with a battalion of “Real Housewives.”

Cable continued to feed viewers complex, character-driven programs, engaging and confounding them, often at the same time. Two notable examples: AMC’s “The Killing” and Showtime’s “Homeland.” Successful new broadcast dramas veered more on the soapy, whimsical side, with ABC’s “Once Upon a Time” and “Revenge” capturing the most buzz.

Reality programming didn’t break much new ground, generating even more variations of “Pawn Stars” and “Real Housewives.” And two singing competition shows (”The X Factor” and “The Voice”) tried to one-up “American Idol” with mixed results.

Here are some …

Continue reading TV 2011 year in review: Oprah, Paul Ossmann, ‘The Voice,’ Nancy Grace »

‘American Idol’ 2011 year in review

The new judges panel, Steven Tyler, Jennifer Lopez and Randy Jackson, return season 11. CREDIT: AP

The new judges panel, Steven Tyler, Jennifer Lopez and Randy Jackson, return season 11. CREDIT: AP

“American Idol,” in a make or break year, found its footing while facing more competition than ever. Here is my semi-thorough year in review.

1) Cleaning house. Nigel Lythgoe returned to give “Idol’ a facelift after a soul-sucking season nine. Key move: he revamped the judges’ panel. With Simon Cowell already out, he dumped ineffectual Ellen DeGeneres and bland Kara DioGuardi and brought in two A-list music acts Steven Tyler and Jennifer Lopez. On the most part, it worked. Randy Jackson became the congenial lead judge with no “mean” judge in sight. Jennifer was nurturing and sweet, along the lines of Paula Abdul though her constructive critiques early on degenerated into pablum by season’s end. Steven was wacky fun at times, but he too lost his charms by the end, tending to be more repetitive than insightful. Nonetheless, it was a net gain. Ratings went up for the first time …

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