Tuesday, October 8, 2019
ON THIS DAY
“The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet” debuted on CBS radio in 1942. The TV show version aired for 14 seasons on ABC (from 1952 to 1966) and remains the longest running live action scripted sitcom in TV history…There were three series premieres: “Lawrence Welk’s Top Tunes and New Talent” on ABC in 1956, which aired for three seasons (in addition to Welk’s perennial music/variety hour); the NBC dramedy “Ed” in 2000, which featured “Modern Family’s” Julie Bowen; and WB sitcom “Nikki,“ also in 2000…TV movie “The Burning Bed,” with Farrah Fawcett and Paul Le Mat, debuted in 1984…
Celebrity Birthdays: Jesse Jackson is 78; Original “SNL” cast member Chevy Chase is 76; actress Sigourney Weaver is 70; Oscar winner Matt Damon is 49; “The Masked Singer” host Nick Cannon is 39; wrestler The Miz is also 39.
Did You Know?
The role of Francine Hughes on “The Burning Bed” was originally offered to Cheryl Ladd, but she declined the part. Ladd, of course, joined the cast of “Charlie’s Angels” on ABC in season 2 as Farrah Fawcett’s sister after Fawcett prematurely exited.
Note: Nielsen has stopped reporting the household overnight ratings in the morning, and the national fast affiliate results are now our first source of data for each weekday. These are time period based, which means they are approximate because it includes anything airing in the time period (and not just the designated series if it is pre-empted). It features total viewers and the adult 18-49 rating and share (not to mention other demos). And the data arrives at approximately 11 a.m. ET. So, look for this second email alert by 11:30 a.m. ET each day or visit our website at programminginsider.com.
Source: Nielsen Media Research
TV AND DIGITAL UPDATES
How “The Golden Girls” – which Ended in 1992 – Ruled Comic Con 2019
Yes, you read the title right. And, no — beloved Betty White was not at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City for Comic Con 2019 dressed as Wonder Woman or Batgirl.
But, among the endless array of DC Comics and Marvel super-heroes this past weekend, not even Batman or Superman, The Incredible Hulk or the Justice League, Arrow or The Flash, and Aquaman or Batwoman, could compare to “The Golden Girls” — Rose (Betty White), Dorothy (Bea Arthur), Blanche (Rue McClanahan) or Sophia (Estelle Getty) — on that endless array of merchandise for sale.
The Girls were everywhere. Dolls, t-shirts, socks, pictures, mugs, shot glasses, books, games, magnets, air fresheners and, of course, in those Funko Pop action figures with the oversized heads. There was even a “Golden Girls Cross Skitch” kit where, according to the instructions, you can “learn to skitch 12 designs inspired by your favorite sassy seniors!” For more, click here
A Brief History of “Leave It to Beaver” – Click here
PI Podcast with Douglas Pucci and Scott Nolte
This week, Douglas and Scott discuss syndicated daytime entries “The Kelly Clarkson Show,” “Judge Jerry” and game shows “25 Words Or Less” and “America Says.” To listen, click here
A Brief History of “The Brady Bunch” – Click here
Fall TV Preview 2019: What to Watch (and What’s Not Worth It) – Click here
NEW PROGRAM ANNOUNCEMENTS
50 Cent to Produce Docuseries
Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson has signed a deal for a scripted docuseries that will showcase historical moments in hip-hop culture and revolve around a different music icon, sports hero, infamous drug organization. The untitled series, scheduled to premiere in early 2020, will feature profiles on Snoop Dogg, producer Scott Storch, Beyonce, Fat Joe, Christina Aguiler and former NBA player Rafer Alston, who was charged with assault and public intoxication after a pair of public incidents, among others.
“Bob Hearts Abishola” Looks Like A Keeper, After All
Note to self: Never judge a series by its premise. And that is exactly what I did when I heard that Billy Gardell, now Bob, was “cheating” on Melissa McCarthy as Molly. McCarthy, of course, was the Molly of “Mike & Molly,” which aired on CBS from 2010 to 2016. So how, just three years later, is Gardell formerly as Mike now believable as Bob in pursuit of Folake Olowofoyeku as a Nigerian immigrant named Abishola on CBS’ “Bob Hearts Abishola”? Wouldn’t it have made more sense to use Gardell for something outside of the familiar premise of the early stages of a TV sitcom relationship?
Technically, Gardell is the exact same as affable Chicago cop Mike, only this time a compression sock salesman in Detroit with a mustache who has a heart attack and meets Abishola as his by-the-book cardiac nurse. Like “Mike Hearts Molly,” I mean “Mike & Molly,” he develops a crush on Molly, I mean Abishola, and goes in pursuit of a date. For more, click here
SERIES RENEWALS AND CANCELLATIONS
Fox Orders Full Season of Freshman
Just two episodes in and Fox has greenlit scripted drama “Prodigal Son” for the full current TV season with an order for nine additional episodes. That takes the first season order of “Prodigal Son” to 22 hours.
The series centers on Malcolm Bright (Tom Payne, “The Walking Dead”), a psychologist who has a gift for understanding how serial killers think, because his father, Dr. Martin Whitly (Michael Sheen, “Masters of Sex,” “Frost/Nixon”), was one of the worst, a notorious serial killer called “The Surgeon.” Bright is the best criminal psychologist around and murder is the family business. He uses his twisted genius to help the NYPD solve crimes and stop killers, all while dealing with his manipulative mother, Jessica Whitly (Bellamy Young, “Scandal,” “Criminal Minds”), his sister Ainsley Whitly (Halston Sage, “The Orville”), and a homicidal father still looking to bond with his prodigal son, not to mention his own constantly evolving neuroses.
“Prodigal Son” is produced by Berlanti Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television and Fox Entertainment. Greg Berlanti and Sarah Schechter serve as executive producers. Chris Fedak and Sam Sklaver are both executive producers, showrunners and writers on the series. Lee Toland Krieger directed and executive-produced the pilot.
Showtime Renews “Couples Therapy” for Season Two
Showtime has picked up a second season of the docuseries “Couple’s Therapy” from filmmakers Josh Kriegman, Elyse Steinberg and Eli Despres. The sophomore season will feature therapist Dr. Orna Guralnik.
The logline: “Couples Therapy” unlocks a hidden world of other people’s relationships. Far from reality-show caricatures, this is true documentary filmmaking that brings viewers into the authentic and visceral experience of weekly therapy with four couples. Dr. Guralnik deftly guides the couples through the minefield of honest confrontation with each other and with themselves, revealing the real-life struggles – and extraordinary breakthroughs – typically hidden behind closed doors.
“Couples Therapy” is produced by Edgeline Films for Showtime. Kriegman, Steinberg and Despres serve as executive producers and directors. Carly Hugo and Matt Parker are producers, and Dan Savage is a consulting producer.
MARK YOUR CALENDARS
Four-part PBS series “Life From Above,” which tells the stories of our planet from a perspective from space, will debut on Wednesday, Oct. 23 at 10 p.m. The series reveals amazing events happening every day in both the natural and human worlds. The logline: From the intimate to the epic, the surprising to the familiar, “Life From Above” offers a rare look at Earth, its landscapes and its inhabitants that goes beyond what we thought we knew.
The sixth — and final — season of History drama “Vikings” will begin with z two-hour on Wednesday, December 4 at 9 p.m. ET. The 20-episode season will air in two parts, with the last 10 episodes to be rolled out in 2020. The logline: Seasonsix returns following the battle between brothers which has left Bjorn victorious and a hero to the people who have been under the tyrannical rule of Ivar for so long. As the new leader of Kattegat, Bjorn struggles to fill his late father’s shoes as king, while facing several dilemmas and wrestling with the idea that power overshadows morals. Meanwhile, Ivar, searching for a new path to separate him from his past, is seen traveling along The Silk Road eventually leading him to Russia. He meets his match in Prince Oleg (Danila Kozlovsky), a ruthless and unpredictable Russian ruler, who shocks even Ivar with his merciless actions.
ON THE AIR TONIGHT
Season premieres: “The Flash” on The CW; “Finding Your Roots” on PBS…BET offers “The 2019 Hip Hop Awards”…For the listing of available programs for Tuesday, October 8 click here