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As Jimmy Fallon's "Tonight Show" hums along nicely -- and will in fact turn 1 month old next week -- one of the pleasures of watching has been to determine which sketches are new, and which are recycled from "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon."
So far, almost all are recycled to some degree, as far as I can tell, like "Pros and Cons," "Thank You Notes," and so on. Just to be clear, there's certainly nothing wrong with that, and pretty much everything right: Why discard material that worked so well before, this time for many new viewers? Plus, Fallon always said he was going to do the same show. Promise kept! There were in fact many dozens of bits from the old "Late Night" -- certainly well over a hundred. Expect many more to be reborn here.
Wednesday night is a good example: Just about everything, best I could tell, had been done before on "Late Night": "Flaming Eyes," "Black Simon & Garfunkel," "Audience Suggestion Box" and ..."Yahoo Answers."
Check it out: Audra McDonald, who does this flawlessly, reprises a bit that is very amusing ..."Yahoo Answers:"
(App readers, watch the video here: http://bit.ly/O6IJUc. Unfortunately, this content is unavailable on mobile phones.)
Jay Leno got into the Television Academy Hall of Fame on Tuesday, and when that sort of thing happens, they just don't send you a citation thanking you for "your many years of great service." Oh no: You have to actually go to a dinner and give a speech. You have to work for the thing. Leno gave his speech, and it was gracious and in parts interesting, even a bit reflective. There's a tempus fugit quality to this that indicates Jay really, truly has moved on, not just from "Tonight," but from television altogether. Check this out and wonder -- as I did -- whether this is Jay essentially saying he is done with TV forever.
Of additional interest, he directs some comments to Rupert Murdoch in the audience; Fox, of course, has been rumored as Jay's next stop. But that is probably not going to happen, nor is CNN, nor (I suspect) is anyplace else. (Why, you ask, is Murdoch even attending a rubber chicken dinner? Does he perhaps have his eye on Jay...?)
Naturally, talk show hosts who have spent their lives in front of the camera always reserve the right to change their minds. The tab shows gathered outside this speech the other night and pryed some additional news out of Jay -- that he's certainly going on "Late Show with David Letterman." I do in fact expect that to happen. But a regular TV gig again? Doubtful ... or maybe Jay just has to ask himself the chilling rhetorical question, "Do you really want to become Billy Crystal's character in "Mr. Saturday Night?' "
NBC has a good new drama: How many times have you read those words anywhere over the last year? Even though "The Blacklist" was certainly good, and "Hannibal" has emerged as the real deal, and -- hey! -- a lot of people even liked the launch of "Believe" last Sunday (myself included), the network has been scratching to get back in the elite drama game, with mixed results. But Sunday has a good newbie,...Read more »
Michael J. Fox, in the Hollywood Reporter, says that his NBC series, currently off the air, isn't canceled just yet, but ...well, let him tell you. Here's the quote and go here for the As Told To piece by Lacey Rose. (NBC gave the series a full season order, and a total of seven have yet to air.)
I love this show and I love the people that I work with, and I'd love to continue on with it if that's what happens. I have a feeling of accomplishment, of camaraderie and of affirmation. The hardest thing about doing something is getting started, and once you get started, it gets a life of its own, and you just ride it and see where it takes you. We just have to see where this takes us. But I don't think this journey is finished. I think these episodes, if they're put in a more advantageous spot on the schedule, can attract an audience and keep it. Family Ties was nowhere until the third season.
"The Big Bang Theory" will be back (and back, and back): CBS just handed the series a three-year renewal notice that'll keep it on the schedule through 2017, or the hit's 10-year anniversary.
“This multi-year deal further strengthens our network’s position for future seasons," said CBS Entertainment chief Nina Tassler in a statement. Indeed it does. "BBT" is TV's most watched comedy, and big hits like this don't roll around all that often anymore.
"Game of Thrones," a TV classic even midway through its run, will likely end at seven seasons, the showrunners told Vanity Fair in the April cover story. That would mean -- maybe -- a 2017 wrap.
Unless ... HBO plays what now seems to be a favored game of splitting final seasons in two, all the better to stretch them out (my dear...).
At least that's been AMC's modus ... it's not exactly an HBO one.
David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, series showrunners, told Vanity Fair contributing writer Jim Windolf that they also now know from master of the "GoT" universe, George R. R. Martin, how the saga ends. Martin says the same thing to Jim.
Here are key quotes provided by Vanity Fair:
“It doesn’t just keep on going because it can,” Weiss says. “I think the desire to milk more out of it is what would eventually kill it, if we gave in to that.”
“Last year we went out to Santa Fe for a week to sit down with him [Martin] and just talk through where things are going, because we don’t know if we are going to catch up and where exactly that would be. If you know the ending, then you can lay the groundwork for it. And so we want to know how everything ends. We want to be able to set things up. So we just sat down with him and literally went through every character.” Martin tells Windolf, “I can give them the broad strokes of what I intend to write, but the details aren’t there yet. I’m hopeful that I can not let them catch up with me.”
By the way, seven often is a magic number for series because that's often the length of contracts that key actors sign. It's effectively a security blanket for both network and show, kinowing that the headliners are attached if the series is a success. Of course, many shows bite the dust long before they ever reach seven -- and "GoT" isn't necessarily a book or TV series predicated on the health and longevity of key protagonists, is it? Will Peter Dinklage -- Tyrion Lannister -- be here for the long haul? If King George deems that he be, sure. (And remember that death is not always forever in Westeros.)
It should also be noted here that these are just words -- HBO and showrunners could also decide to opt for an eighth season if they reasonably feel like there's more story to tell and strrretching it one more year wouldn't be a travesty to either fans or Martin's opus (Martin is an executive producer, by the way.)
So theoretically, "GoT" could even end in 2018 (or '19!).
No reason, in other words, to begin planning your finale viewing parties right now.
Anne Sweeney, the Disney president who has long been graced (or burdened) with the label of "Hollywood's Most Powerful Woman," is stepping down from the company early next year, Disney announced.
"Mild shock" are the words that should greet this story - Sweeney, a well-regarded chief executive, was not expected to get Bob Iger's job when he steps aside next March (Iger is Disney...Read more »
"America's Funniest Home Videos," which America hasn't much watched during the past few years, is losing a star: Tom Bergeron is ankling, to use a bit of Variety-ese. This news surfaced Tuesday, via Joe Adalian and Vulture, which reported a statement from TB: “I’ve decided that, after 15 wonderful seasons as host of AFV, next year, the show's 25th anniversary(!!), will be my last.”
Now quick, who were the first hosts of "AFHV?" Come on... you know... sure you do... Bob Saget. But here's the real trivia question -- who followed? Answer: Daisy Fuetes and John Fugelsang.
Of course, people still watch the show -- it wouldn't be on the air if they did not. It's been a Sunday fixture for as long as anyone can remember, and ABC may even be shocked to learn it's still on its air. But Bergeron, as with "DWTS," is a vital part of the success; he's got that "who-me-take-this-nonsense-seriously?" attitude that makes all the silliness so much more palatable. He will, no doubt, be missed sorely by fans.
"The Bachelor," otherwise known as Juan Pablo's Sexxytime Show, ended Monday night with no ring, no proposal and no declaration of love. At least the rose didn't go to waste.
In what had to be the most bizarre finale in "Bachelor" history, Juan broke the rules (as if there were such a thing as mundane or silly as a "rule" on "The Bachelor") by refusing to propose to the "winner" -- again, a ridiculous word, but it will have to do -- Nikki Ferrell. For ABC, this presented a problem, because the expensive ring that remained in his pocket is part of a product placement deal. What happened to the ring? (Who knows, maybe Juan hocked it.) But it has been that kind of ride for ABC, which has squirmed through this season -- which became especially squirmy after Juan Pablo said in an interview that gays should not be on reality shows because "they are more pervert in a sense..." (He apologized, saying he didn't know the meaning of "pervert.")
If you've missed this season's "Bachelor" -- and I've mostly caught up with it via "Tonight," "Letterman" or "Kimmel," where it has remained a joyous staple of enduring amusement -- Juan Pablo has effectively stood the show on its ear. He is either playing it for laughs, or playing it straight, but either way ... the laughs still come out regularly.
But give him credit at least for not proposing -- a proposal which clearly would've been written on the wind anyway. Pabs was in this for the champagne, free trips, unintentional laughs and ladies. That's right -- Juan Pablo Galavis is dumb like a fox..
To the clips! Let's begin with the one from Andi Dorfman, who was also named the next "Bachelorette" Monday night; it's full of high comedy. Finally, "Ladies Tell All." Some (clearly, sadly) assumed this whole thing really is about finding true love; Juan, not so much... : (App readers: Watch here: http://bit.ly/1fo7e9U. Unfortunately, this content is unavailable on mobile phones.)
Then the non-proposal...
Then, after the ring that was never given....
The comedy is over; TV will never be the same. Certainly "The Bachelor" won't be.
Ladies tell all...)
"Lindsay" -- which yours truly called "utterly absorbing," an opinion clearly in the minority and possibly an overstatement when viewed in the cold light of dawn -- was seen by only 693,000 viewers. That seems like a small number in TV terms because it is.
OWN did see the sliver lining, of course: "This marks OWN’s highest rating in the Sunday 10 p.m. hour in 27 weeks among women 25-54."
And in fairness to, ummm, myself, I did indeed think "Lindsay" was absorbing if only because it tried to humanize her, which doesn't exactly happen every time you see her on screen. This coulda been a disaster. It was not. Have at me if you disagree... Comment below!