What's new in TV for next fall: Lisa de Moraes Live

May 18, 2012

Note to readers: Lisa's next chat will be June 8.

The Post's TV columnist Lisa de Moraes discussed the latest in TV news - on and off the screen.

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UPFRONT WEEK COVERAGE


NBC moves ‘The Voice’ to fall, ‘Community’ to Friday, Matthew Perry to Tuesday

 

Fox has Britney, Demi, Mindy; NBC has a monkey

 

Britney Spears, Demi Lovato join 'The X Factor'; 'Glee' moves to Thursdays

 

ABC moves 'Revenge' to 'Desperate' timeslot, loads up on comedies for fall

 

Jimmy Kimmel jabs networks' new schedules

 

TBS/Turner upfront has Conan O'Brien, cast of 'Cougar Town,' partnership with Funny or Die

 

CBS moves 'Two and a Half Men' to Thursday, 'Mentalist' to Sunday

 

CW announces 'Carrie Diaries,' theme nights, moves nearly every show to a new timeslot

 

CW launches CWD, for digital content only

 

CLIPS/TRAILERS:


new NBC shows

new Fox shows

new ABC shows

new CBS shows

new CW shows

 

ALSO:

 

CBS officially cancels 'CSI: Miami'


'Dancing With the Stars': The final four perform

 

Craig Ferguson persuades Scotland’s first minister, Alex Salmond, to make an appearance on an American talk show

 

'America's Got Talent' ratings take a dive with Howard Stern

 

Michelle Obama to appear on Food Network's 'Restaurant: Impossible'

 

'Dancing With the Stars': Maria Menounos goes home; Donald Driver, William Levy, Katherine Jenkins advance to finals

 

'DWTS': Did Katherine Jenkins's injury send her to the finals, and Maria Menounos home?

 

'American Idol': The final three perform

 

Still wondering if your favorite show is canceled? [PHOTO GALLERY]

 

USA Network releases first look at 'Political Animals' [VIDEO]


PBS's 'Capitol Fourth' gets a new host: Tom Bergeron

 

Conan O'Brien visits David Letterman, and naturally, talks Jay Leno

 

Nickelodeon's 'iCarly' will end this year

Happy Friday. I just got back to the office from New York, where I went to spend that Most Wonderful Time of the Year: Broadcast TV Upfront Week... Here's this week's reading material....

Who is going to watch a show called, "Elementary"? A show entitled "Bandersnatch Cumberband" is a show that people would watch.

 "CSI: Bandersnatch Cummerbund."  That said, do watch "Elementary"  which, based on only the short clip shown at CBS's upfront presentation looks very interesting...

We've joked a lot about NBC being a blackhole for ratings, but I read somewhere that ABC was actually 4th place in ratings for the under 50 demographic. Is that true? Did NBC actually beat another network at something? How much of that is due to the NFL on Sundays?

NBC eeked out a third place finish, putting ABC in fourth place, thanks to -- NBC's broadcast this season of the Super Bowl.. without it, NBC finished fourth.

PLEASE tell me that 'Community' is indeed being moved to Fridays. If it's true, I'll swear on a stack of bibles that I'll never complain about that program again!

Yes, NBC will move it to Fridays because, its execs reckon, the show's fans are so rabid they'll follow it anywhere. At their presentation to advertisers this week, NBC chief Bob Greenblatt sent out a clarion call to "Community" fans to start tweeting to each other, like mastedon calling to mastedon across the primeval ooze, that they needed to change their habits of a lifetime and start watching TV on Friday -- or DVR-ing it and watching within three days (C3 ratings are the ratings advertisers pay out on)...

Next year is the last year of the show, right? Please say yes, pookie.

Not if Fox can help it... they've moved it into a protected timeslot -- following "X Factor" in the fall and "Idol" in the spring -- and signed big name talente for multi-episode guest arcs to try to bolster back up the show's ratings. In theory, a show of this age is still going strong and can be used as a springboard off of which to grow new hits... it's not supposed to be a franchise that needs to be coddled in the network's cushiest timeslot.

As someone who used to listen to country music, I have deep love for Reba. She's one of the classiest women in music. But how is this new show different from her old show besides the cast?

In this show, she's a country music star trying to to make a comeback while living in her Malibu beach house after dumping her deadbeat husband, where she has to work hard to keep her kiddies and herself from being corrupted by the evil all around her in the form of Hollywood celebrities and producers. The big difference between this show and her last show is the sheer horror of Lily Tomlin playing her mother...

Didya see the way Quinn was dancing around on Glee last night? Why just two short musical comedy weeks ago Ms. Fabray was in a wheelchair and here she is now dancing her little feet off. More figgy pudding please.

It is a Christmas Miracle! Either that, or she's like "Heidi's"  time-lapse Klara Sesemann! Either way -- very literary and I approve...

I went into the season really wanting to love Smash. One of the first dance numbers, involving Marilyn, men and bats, seemed cliche'd and unoriginal, but I kept with it because, how often does one see Broadway on TV? I watched religiously for a couple of weeks, until Angelica threw her second drink into the ex's face, and then I decided that they were out of ideas. I tried to believe that KMcP could dance, really I did. I fast forwarded through the rest of the first half of the season, stopping at the production numbers. Then I just stopped and deleted it off my Tivo without watching, along with Glee, Community, and some Mexican soap opera my wife records on Univision, but never watches. I am going to try again next year, but they only have 3 weeks, tops.

You are in good company -- I'm hearing that from loads of people... they have a new show runner next season, so maybe there is hope.. On the other hand, to hear NBC chief Bob Greenblatt at his presentation to advertisers this week, "Smash" is a brilliant success on all fronts, including its creatives... in his defense, he has to be captaion of the cheerleaders when talking to advertisers...

Pookie: I am completely sloshed, have toasted the memory of poor departed Sammy and the departure of the mirrored sunglasses one time too many. Can you please give me some sobering news to set things right? But props to Revenge for the best line of the week on TV: you look like a demonic succubus. I say that every morning in the mirror now.

Phillip Phillips is going to win American Idol... did that sober you up? and I love the "demonic succubus" gag so much I have vowed to use it every day in the column next week -- I love a challenge..

hope someone at Wapo can avoid what happened last week: after LIsa posted the first response, with twitter feeds, I couldn't view the chat or submit a question. Couldn't read the transcript until Monday of this week. I could see that something like 49 responses were there, but couldn't view them. But everything else on Wapo functioned, all the other chats were visible. Was it just me? There was no response from any of the help links that I sent messages to.

It appears that when I copied and pasted all that  Twitter blah, blah, blah about Bandersnatch Cummerbund -- some stowaway  HTML tagged along and caused the problem...

 

Pookie, I'm not sure what's more delicious: Rory Gilmore playing a trampy suburban housewife? Betty Francis jugging that Reddi Whipp right into her mouth and then spitting it out (a Weight Watchers "no no" for sure!)? Or that little MJ Delfino has found life after Desperate Housewives playing the fourth Bobby Draper? Sincerely, Student of Serious Television, Class of 2012

Why shouldn't suburban housewives get to be trampy -- why should city-dwelling housewives have all the fun?

I want to see the National Theater Live production of Frankestein. Bandersnatch and his co-star (Jonny Lee Miller) are alternating parts in the production - one taking the part of Victor and the other the part of the Creature. This is playing all over the country in movie theaters. There are two broadcasts, one with each casting. Which should I see - Bandersnatch as the monster or Bandersnatch as the monster's creator? Yeah, I could go to both, but it seems a bit much to do that when all the rest of the production is the same. I tried reading the English critics on-line but it was all very educated and a lot of it was about the novel more than the production. I read the novel in the 8th grade. I know what is in it. I know Mary was 19 and living in Europe with a group of friends doing drugs and trying to amuse themselves during an absurdly cold summer (having to do with volcanic ash or somethng). Not what I want to know. I want to know who is better as a self-loathing monster and who is better as the mad scientist who loves to hate his creation. For what it is worth, I believe that the monster is naked for a while. Thanks, Pookie.

In the very few minutes I saw of Jonny Lee Miller as modern day "Sherlock" I'd say go with Miller as scientist and Bandersnatch as monster.... Miller is one heck of a Sherlock...

Remember when NBC gave all their 10 o'clock shows to Jay Leno? Did that really happen, or did I dream that?

Wasn't that an episode of "Flash Forward"?

Did you see Conan on Dave last night? If only we could burn the giant Jay Leno-sized chips on both those guys shoulders for fuel, we could solve our country's energy needs forever.

Two Miss Havishams who have both  stopped all the clocks in their lives at the exact point at which each learned he had been betrayed by NBC...  makes for very creepy TV.

Pookie, what do you hear about "Missing" possibly being picked up on another network? That's a terrific show, very disappointed it was cancelled by ABC.

I have heard nothing. It would surprise me if that happened....sorry, pooks!

It is back for one more year! What are the chances it makes it another year? A Friday night time slot with young viewers? I think people who don't like it are the target of Community's humor or just don't get it. Maybe we could convince NBC they can get some sort of "community service" credit (ha, a pun!) for Community? What other show would turn itself into a video game or claymation? The community needs Community.

As I said the day NBC made the announcement they were returning it -- but on Friday nights -- look for it to be the show that has 100 percent of its viewers watching via DVR....NBC chief Bob Greentblatt put "Community" fans son notice: watch it Fridays, or else....

Is he frumious or frabjous?

frumious, for sure:

 

"Jabberwocky" (by Lewis Carroll)

'Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.

"Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
The frumious Bandersnatch!"

He took his vorpal sword in hand:
Long time the manxome foe he sought—
So rested he by the Tumtum tree,
And stood awhile in thought.

And as in uffish thought he stood,
The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
And burbled as it came!

One, two! One, two! and through and through
The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
He went galumphing back.

"And hast thou slain the Jabberwock?
Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!"
He chortled in his joy.

'Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.

Especially when they outsell their runners-up. That means voters liked their music most. But with Phillip Phillips, you get someone with the health issues of Bo Bice, the resistance to stylistic compromise of Taylor Hicks, and the vocal limitations of Lee DeWyze. I don't see how the title does him or the show any favors. I think the girl with the vocal control, the R&B direction, and the functioning kidney should win, even though she wasn't my favorite this season.

As I said back when they came up with the top 24, or top whatever on "Idol" : Phil2 is cute, scruffy, white, safe and guitar-ed: he wins.

 

 

Will it be all new student cast-members next season, or will we be watching the college lives of the recent graduates? Or some combination of the two?

Both -- and I think the graduated ones are going to a performing arts school in New York, and maybe try out for roles on B'way. Maybe one of them can replace KMcP as Marilyn... please?

So Harry's Law was cancelled as it skewed too old, although it had good ratings. IMO the over 50 crowd watches quite a bit of TV, what do they have to do to get some programs they enjoy? This is the opposite of politics where the older folks vote and get a voice in the results.

Yes, it is the opposite of politics, because it's about what advertisers want, not about what viewers want... The way for the over 50 crowd to get some programs they enjoy is for them to get viewers under 50 to watch as well...that was the downfall of "Harry's Law" which did NOT get good ratings in the age bracket NBC sells to advertisers. It got a large, old audience...

I must confess that CSI: MIami was a guilty pleasure of mine. I actually used to record the episodes during the season and then watch them all in the summer. This is my last summer for this ritual. Sigh. Yes, the plots were silly and the acting was bad (although Caruso was so bad he was great), but it LOOKED good and was fun. I wonder if this season ended with an unresolved cliffhanger. I guess I will know in a few weeks.

I won't spoil it for you....

"I don't bail. I'm still watching 'Smash'!" -- Liz Lemon in last night's "30 Rock," trying to reassure her boyfriend that she won't dump him. Of course, I immediately thought of you when she spoke that line, Pooks. And I wonder if that "30 Rock" episode was taped before the "Smash" season finale aired? Because its über-soapiness finally soured me on the show -- and that's even though I'm fascinated by the depiction of what goes into mounting a play, and also even though I think it's terrific that women and men over the age of 60 are major characters with sexual feelings towards each other, rather than just parents/grandparents important only for how their wills will impact their off-spring, lechers, or (like the Bernadette Peters character) over-the-hill narcissists who continue to stifle their children. What have you heard?

What have I heard about what? Is there a question in there somewhere?

NBC is accepted as the worst network and cancels on of its popular shows-Harry's Law--because its audience skews too old. [Aside: I have never seen Harry's Law.] Isn't an old audience better than no audience? Don't some people who tune in for one show, stay to watch others (thus increasing the audience size for other shows)?

But if they're over 50, they're flotsam and jetsam, not "viewers"....NBC did not own "Harry's Law" -- it was from Warner Bros., which probably also played into its decision. And Kathy Bates can't be cheap...

What happened? Were the ratings really that low? Of all the new shows to be renewed or axed, this cancellation surprised me most. I actually liked A Gifted Man but expected it to be cancelled and was uncertain that Hart of Dixie would be renewed but it was. Why not Ringer? It was well acted, written and produced. I've signed an online save the show petition. Any hope?

Nope... ratings weren't great, and, rumor has it.. Sarah MG is pregnant which would have meant two pregnancy storylines, or one twin spending half a season delivering lines from behind a potted palm... oh, and "not cheap" gag works here too...

I'm guessing that Conan wanted to talk about Jay because his own show isn't exactly setting the world on fire. That plan to boost George Lopez's ratings by bumping him to the later timeslot so Conan could take over worked out so well for George /sarcasm It was annoying enough at first when Team Coco went on his 'woe is me' whinefest about being fired (though he wasn't) from NBC. But the fact that he turned around and did to Lopez what NBC wanted to do to him was just the icing on the 'go die in a fire' cake that I would like to serve him.

Now I'm going to have to go back and watch his appearance on Dave's show.. sounds like a real love fest...

is The Office coming back next year? Seems like there are not enough fumes left in that tank to keep it running for another year..

Yes, NBC is bringing it back for another season....minus some cast members, including Mindy K. who has her own show at Fox next season...

With The Mentalist moving to Sunday nights, will that bump off "The Good Wife?" Or will it be "60 Minutes, "Amazing Race," "Good Wife," "The Mentalist?"

You got it right -- "The Mentalist" at 10

I'm sorry, but if we've agreed to take a stand against "continue on" and the like, then "demonic succubus" has to go too. A succubus is a demon. There aren't angelic succubi.

Point taken!

In response to a question from last week, I do watch "30 Rock" and even watched it live this week. Also, "Mad Men," "The Good Wife" and other, more embarrassing fare that I'll keep to myself. No reality TV, though - can't stand any of the shows.

Welcome back! Important question: will you watch "Smash" next season? Will you watch "Community" on Friday, or record it and watch within 3 days...

It seems that almost half of the new shows that have been announced won't actually start until well into next winter, not this fall. I find this terribly confusion, since in September I'll be looking for these new shows, not remembering which ones won't actually be on yet. By the time they finally do come on, I will have forgotten what they were supposed to be about, so all this hype about them now is just a waste. Why do they bother announcing them now, at the same time they announce the fall shows?

Because upfront presentations are like a pep rally for next season to advertisers. The advantage of a show starting midseason is that a network only has so much on-air promo time to push all of its new shows in the fall, and a set budget for off-network promotional buys... And there's a lot of clutter.. later in the season, a network will trot out maybe just one new show in a month and can give it a lot more promotional push than it could if it launched in the fall.. Look at the gimongous campaign NBC launched to plug the start of "Smash" for instance...

A succubus is a female demon. It's repetitious to say "demonic succubus"

Yes, we've already had our knuckles rapped...

As a television professional, why do you think "HAPPY ENDINGS" is struggling like it is? It's got a little for everyone. Is it too sarcastic?

Struggling?! It's got a programming chief who's positively orgasmic over it....It's getting a great Tuesday 9 p.m. timeslot next season, after "Dancing with the Stars".. this is not "struggling"....

I understand that the new season will be nothing like last season, and that while Jessica Lang is returning, she will be playing a different character. Any of the other cast members from last season returning in different roles?

Zachary Quinto, Evan Peters, Sarah Paulson, Lily Rabe... Finally, a network has figured out how to mount a successful Ryan Murphy series -- let him start over every year, because he always seems to run out of gas somewhere around the second season on his series.. It's the Practically Perfect Ryan Murphy Show...

So, when I read "One of the first dance numbers, involving Marilyn, men and bats" in an earlier post, I immediately wondered "wooden clubs or winged rodents?" I realize it was probably a DiMaggio reference, so likely the former, which then got me thinking "a) it would be so much cooler with the flying kind, and b) ooohhh, if we just substitute 'little hatchets' for '(baseball) bats', maybe they could do a "Sister Wives" musical next season, which I'm sure would be awesome!" So you see, all television roads lead back to Pookie.

It gave me pause too, only because it's on NBC...

I know your chatters are a bunch of haters, but I have to say the last few episodes have been really funny - particularly Andy's Anger ep. The impotency meeting had us cracking up all night.

My chatters are not haters, pookie -- they are people who enjoy television and have opinions, to which they are entitled... You have yours too, and you are very welcome here... Meanwhile, some of this chat's harshest critics of the show are people who say they were, until recently, its most rabid fans...they have said they're sad that the show seems to have stayed at the party too long... These aren't haters -- these are distraught lovers.

Come on, they were hilarious together. It was like overhearing a conversation at one of my high school reunions with 2 women discussing one of the former mean girls who has gained 50 pounds and her 3d husband just ran off with a boyfriend. Plus Jay is fair game because he's just not funny.

No, he's not.. But I wish these two boys could move on.... it's kind of an old gag to keep whacking at Jay...

Pookie, You'll be pleased to know that my 90-year old grandmother who usually watches cable news called my mother to say that she was looking at people yelling at each other on Bravo. Sure enough it was the good ol' Real Housewives of New Jersey. Andy Cohen hooked another one. This gang of misfits rescued her from too much Fox News.

I will be sure to pass along your thanks when I see Andy at Summer TV Press Tour 2012!

Disappointing ratings for X-Factor, declining ratings for American Idol and The Voice, premiere ratings down for America's Got Talent -- is this a sign that America's interest in these competition shows is fading??

No, it's sign there are three singing competition shows where once there was one -- American Idol. And the audience for Idol is still very big, though Fox suits have said it dropped more than they thought it would and will "tweak" it next season. Which may just be their way of pretending, should JLo leave, that it was part of their grand master plan for the show next season, while she's saying it's her idea....

Pookster, any good scoop from your visit to NYC this week that you haven't reported and were saving for us today when the question was finally asked?

Best moment of the tour came during CW's news conference after the presentation to advertisers, when one reporter got up on his soapbox and began ranting about the network once again lacking diversity in its new-show casting, in response to which CW president Mark Pedowitz told the guy he was speaking from ignorance and began ticking off all the minority leads in next season's shows --  and then, for good measure, suggested the guy look around the room at the lack of diversity among The Reporters Who Cover Television...it was a show stopper.

Dearest Darling Pookster, Considering how well Cougar Town did last season, why did ABC decide to throw it under the bus this season? No, it's not as funny as it was, but the scheduling department didn't do it any favors.

Death by timeslot is a time honored way of executing shows the network's programming chief doesn't like and doesn't want... this is just the latest example...

Brian Williams magazine show has been removed for may sweeps. Thank god! Anytime he fails television wins!

I'm a Williams fan -- nobody slow-jams the news like Williams. And, "Rock Center" has "failed" so bad -- it's getting NBC's best 10 p.m. timeslot in the fall....go figure...

What do you think of Revenge taking over the 9PM Sunday slot?

It was the most likely candidate to replace "Desperate Housewives," don't you think, once "GCB" failed?

What is it about The Voice that negates the "cute, scruffy, white, safe and guitar-ed" rule? I was assuming your theory would apply there too, but Tony Lucca came in 3rd.

Apparently tweener girls have not taken over the voting on this one....yet...

Week after week I read people bash Smash. I really enjoyed the season (of course, it had its moments) but overall I like this show. And the season finale was good. Am I the only one out here?

I too thought the season finale was its best episode since its premiere, and I have been one of its harshest critics -- mostly because I was so looking forward to it....

Am I hopelessly naive to believe that the NBC suits and not Jay Leno decided to return Leno to the 11:30 time slot?

Yes, it was a call made by suits, not Leno. He does not own the network. Network suits are perfectly capable of messing things up...

Will there be a new show-runner, star, whatever that might redeem the show?

new show runner yes... no new star that I know of. I think we're stuck with McPhee...

Smash - no. I started it, with very positive thoughts because I had missed the whole "Glee" boat, but I quickly lost interest. Katherine McPhee is not a good actress, or at least not good enough to make me think she has a tenth of MM's sex appeal and charisma, but the show seems to want the viewers to think she is the bomb. The only character I really liked was Tom, and most of the others I actively disliked. So, I bailed. I've never watched "Community" and now feel like I'm too late and wouldn't understand most of what goes on. Am I wrong about that? Can I jump in at this late date?

"Community" is a pretty hard show to jump into at this stage of the game... unless you want to watch previous seasons before the next one starts... and yes, at the risk of sounding like a broken record (I know, wildly out of date reference) McPhee is too hard to buy as "the perfect Marilyn" when every scene in which Megan Hilty played Marilyn she was so very much better a Marilyn...

I don't suppose her ditching idol means there is any chance of Paula Abdul and her percocet and vodka bottles will be back?

that is not moving forward... how about Britney Spears? Oh, she's spoken for....

I even sat through the two tortuous hours that was Plunket & McLane. Now both of the leads are stars on ABC. Whodathunk?

Did you actually sit through all of "Eli Stone"? You are a brave soul... Watching him in the "Elementary" trailer was a revelation for me...

Considering what NBC did to Johnny Carson regarding The Tonight Show, why are Dave and Conan surprised at what happened to them? Besides, it's not exactly like either one ended up on unemployment waiting for government cheese.

theyr'e both gajillionaires and let's not waste another minute feeling sorry for them...

Was discussing television with my brother earlier in the week (yeah, we roll like that) and during the course of dissing "Whitney" and, more relevantly "It's Chelsea's Liver" we hit upon a strange commonality of ensemble comedies -- what's up with the "Rule of Six", as I'm calling it? Sure, there are exceptions, but it occurred to me that the number of gender-balanced, 6 co-lead ensemble comedies is a formula that America loves. (Except, of course, for the gawd-awful US-version of "Coupling" -- but that must just be the exception that proves the rule) Starting with "Friends" and now with the current "Happy Endings" and "Whitney" (and I'm sure others in the intervening years that I'm conveniently forgetting), what is it about the 3 men/3 women paradigm that seems to engender (heh, se what I did there?) ratings success? Is it some kind of numerology magic?

It's called "Short Attention Span Theatre"...the show keeps jumping from quick gag to quick gag, couple to couple, like a chamois of the Alps  leaping from craig to craig... this is how you have to do comedy when you've got a commercial break every seven minutes

I stuck with Smash until the season finale, because I just kept thinking there was no way they could pick KMcP for Marilyn. Megan Hilty is so obviously a bajillion times more talented/more believable as Marilyn than KMcP that they couldn't possibly think viewers were too stupid to notice. But the finale annoyed me so much, I don't know if I can keep watching. Everyone looking all goo goo-eyed at KMcP ridiculous Marilyn is just enough.

Maybe the new show runner will have that piano fall on her character in the november sweep... can we start an online petition now?

Why do people like Two Broke Girls? It's eye-bleedingly terrible. This is your constructive question of the day.

Why do people eat deep-fried Twinkies? Some things are just beyond us to explain....CBS programming chief Nina Tassler, however, had a theory at a news conference held a few hours before she unveiled her new primetime schedule to advertisers... She said it's because the two characters care so much about each other, and are so relatable...

Have we scraped the bottom of the reality TV barrel when a show is developed for a movie star's wife and a random gaggle of people in their lives?

In re "Mrs. Eastwood & Company" I was thinking of it more as another sign of the coming apocalypse, but I like your theory too...

I just watched the season finale of Grey's, and I wish they would've killed off a different character. But since 5 injured surgeons remain in the woods around the demolished jet, with no food, the show could eliminate other cast members over the summer. Do you think they'll take that opportunity, and who's on the chopping block?

I think Shonda has killed off enough characters with this finale to satisfy her blood lust/show budget....that said, who else would you like to see go? And how?

What do you anticipate will be the first new show to get yanked?

"The Neighbors" on ABC, in the best comedy timeslot in the whole TV landscape -- post "Modern Family".. it's spectacularly bad, verging on "Work It" bad...it's the show about a couple who get a great deal on a house in a gated community and discover all their neighbors are aliens who ooze green slime from their ears when they weep...

This looks very interesting, especially with Terry O'Quinn as Satan & Vanessa Williams as Mrs. Satan! It seems like a cross between Rosemary's Baby, The Glow, and Hotel California!

Very campastic trailer....

or whatever. In any case, last week's Hound of Baskervilles was frightfully disappointing. Fear gas? It was like Batman and Scarecrow except no Cillian Murphy or fancy gadgets. Not even his deduction skills seemed that great. The only scene I liked was when he revealed he tricked Watson. I hope this episode was a fluke!

I only got to watch the first half... Fear gas? Is this gas that makes everyone scared -- like watching "Dateline: My Kid Would Never Do That"?

A moment please for Donna Summer, who graced our television sets on Soul Train, American Bandstand and Solid Gold and was an integral part of our musical coming of age.

amen.....(silence please)

You made up that green slime stuff didn't you?

(end of silence)...No way, pookie. It's for real... In the show, anyway...

How about a Donner Party scenario, because with all their surgical skills the survivors could do a really professional job of butchering the corpse?

Love it -- guessing advertisers would not, however...

Don't forget DUETS!!!!

How can we?  ABC won't let us...

Is that description for real? What form of drugs were the ABC Execs on when they not only picked that one up, but put it after Modern Family....

The head of programming at ABC is a Brit... I rest my case...

Yes, I actually sat through all of Eli Stone. Which was also remarkable because when it aired my mother was dying of a brain tumor and I was avoiding most things that had to do with people with terminal conditions. And you know what, I kinda liked the show. That's how much I admire Mr. Miller. I'm not going to analyze this too much beyond that.

I'm very sorryabout your mother.... And, if you admire Miller that much, you are going to love "Elementary"....

I'm still enjoying it. Is it dying?

Here's the trailer for "The Neighbors"

It's dead..sorry. And Emily has added a trailer here so skeptics out there can see I am not making up the green ear-slime crying that is "The Neighbors"...

My neighbors' kids have green slime coming out their noses. Do you think they're aliens, too?

Yes.

Do the Brits have a long, storied tradition of performers oozing green slime from their ears, and am I unsophisticated for not knowing that?

No, they just have very different taste in comedy...for instance, ABC's Brit programming chief Paul Lee thought "Work It" -- beefy guys dressing as women to land jobs--  was a laugh riot and would do well here...

Do your puppies have any recommendations for summer TV viewing?

Vanderbilt hates television, firmly believing I should be spending the time playing with him instead....Winkie's on the fence...

Don't diss Lilly Tomlin! She was awesome as Danny McBride's Mom on "Eastbound and Down." Of course, I'm guessing she won't be able to drop as many f-bombs on Reba's show.

I'm not dissing her. It was tragically sad to watch her in the trailer... does she need money badly, or something I don't know about?

Did the Reporters Who Cover Television have a consensus choice of which new show is so terrible that it will be the first one to be sent to the chopping block?

"The Neighbors" -- it's the popular fave everywhere... I'm out of time. Well, actually, I'm out of gas, having flown in very early this morning and not having had nearly enough caffeine... see you next week!

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Lisa de Moraes
Pulitzer Prize winner, Peabody recipient, Medal of Freedom honoree -- Lisa de Moraes is none of these, but she is an authority on the bad direction, over-acting, and muddled plot lines being played out in the TV industry's executive suites. de Moraes worked for a decade as the television editor at The Hollywood Reporter, the entertainment industry trade paper, where she was routinely on the receiving end of more shouting phone calls from TV suits than Paula Abdul's manager.

When she upgraded to The Washington Post in 1998, a well-known executive producer called to suggest she have someone else start her car, but her trenchant writing (and refusal to use words like "trenchant") earned her the following praise from the brilliant, handsome media observer at Slate: "She writes like a wicked bitch." Wikipedia has called her "a noted television columnist," but they're often unreliable. It's pronounced "deh more ICE."

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