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The Latest in TV with Lisa de Moraes

Mar 29, 2013

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

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I'm seeing 1pm in the header and 2pm on the Right side

We've started!

You know, Lisa... I actually came to enjoy this show. It actually had some clever jokes in it. Well... they were clever if you follow politics and wonky stuff, I guess, but I ended up laughing quite a bit. Any chance it comes back?

The numbers are not encouraging, but then loads of numbers at NBC weren't encouraging -- until "The Voice" and "Revolution"'s like the first quarter just started at NBC this week. Stay tuned....

Here is a theory: There are shots on 2030 daughter and 2030 son in some of the framing scenes. Why not just use that actress who plays the daughter since those scenes were filmed like 8 years ago so she must be older enough to play the mother.

ick, ick, ick.... (brilliant!)

Although I'm much more excited that "Call the Midwife" is returning on Sunday, should I watch "Mr. Selfridge" too? Or will I just think that Ari Gold has travelled back in time?

You will, for the first few minutes, but then you'll get over it. It's well worth watching -- a fun story

Hey Pookie, With the announcement that Baba WaWa is retiring, do you think that means "The View" will, ultimately, go off the air next year as well? ... I can't imagine it continuing to be very well received by an audience without her making an appearance at least three to four times a week.

No. It's clearly in for an overhaul -- Joy's leaving and who knows what's up with Elisabeth, but you don't kill a franchise like this under these circumstances. You simply look for her replacement...

For those who have asked about the show two weeks ago, it is being presented on Chiller, which is available on Direct TV, at 9 and 10 Tuesday nights. I believe episodes 5 & 6 or 7 & 8 will be presented this Tuesday. It's repeated at late night (1 & 2 or 2 & 3).

Thanks -- I too saw that it was on Chiller. Hooray!

Am I the only one who got these two programs confused? I thought they were trying to improve viewership for Smash by having celebrities do high-dives, like the program's ratings ... Eventually I noticed they were on different networks.

And isn't "Splash" doing better than "Smash", and, if so, what does this say about us? Other than that we're not buying Kat McPhee as Marilyn.... And that we like to see celebrities in bathingsuits. ...And that....

Retire from what?? A once-a-year "fascinating people" show and occasional drop-ins on her screaming-heads cash-cow "The View"? Plus occasional other projects if she feels like it? That's some tough job ...

Like I said, she's been in semi-retirement for a while....

Chris Cuomo would have been a better co-host on GMA then George Steph---too-lazy-to-internet-search-and-copy-&-paste-his-last-surname.

Maybe so, but you can't argue with the ratings success of "GMA" with George Stephanopoulos. ABC is not going to mess with this success.

Any reason why F/X didn't air The Americans this week?

There was a hitch in production on the show after Hurricane Sandy, which caused it to have to take a break this week, says FX....

Nashville is the only "soap" that I watch and I admit I love every soapy bit of it (even - or especially - Powers Booth's OTT villan). Please tell me it will be renewed or at the very least have the chance to tie up stories. I couldn't bear it if Rayna and Deacon don't end up together!

"Nashville" is doing'll be back.

Dear Lisa: Solely due to your expressions of affection for The Neighbors, I starting watching the show. It really is an original delight. The season finale was especially hilarious. I always worry when there are celebrity stunt castings (i.e., George Takei and Mark Harmon were guests) but the script was witty throughout, especially with the wink, wink lines to the audience about the show's future. Anyhow, thanks so much for the recommendation, Pookie. You made me a fan of the show and an even bigger fan of you!

Why, thank you! It's a silly little show -- we need more silly little shows.

I can't remember a faster image crumble than Matt Lauer's. Is there a serious chance he'll exit? Anderson Cooper would be a great replacement if Lauer goes; can't immediately think of an equally good possibility.

Really? Daytime viewers weren't that hot on Anderson Cooper -- his syndicated show has been canceled -- ending when this season wraps. I was surprised to learn NBC News contacted him about possibly replacing Lauer in light of his talk show's soft numbers. Ironically, his show is better this season with regular co-hosts, though I don't think Savannah would be the right person to bring out the best in Cooper -- he needs a  Kathy G type -- and I hope news of the pilot he's done with her is real.


I saw that ESPN is giving Robin Roberts some kind of award. Isn't it an amazing coincidence that she works for the same company?

She's also filling in for Ripa on "Kelly & Michael" I read from Disney the other day....

Am I the only one that is confused with the attire on Revolution? It's been a long time without electricity so mass production of clothing should be gone but there's Charlie with her fancy clothes and makeup. Where did it come from?

Her off-season cedar closet? I give up --where?

GoT is BACK. You psyched? Anyways is Veep starting this weekend too in the same timeslot? I liked having it to take the edge off GoT before going to sleep.

"Veep's" season starts April 14. I'm still catching up on "GoT"....

How is "Go On" doing? Is it going to survive? Because if it doesn't, Matthew Perry's going to have to take his character to CBS next and try to fit a new concept around it. And I say this as someone who was/is a fan of Mr. Sunshine/Go On. Also, the actor who plays Mr. K on Go On deserves an Emmy nomination, at least.

"Go On" was doing well when "The Voice" and "Revolution" were on the schedule, but not so hot when it wasn't hanging out in that ratings petri (sp?) dish....but you could say the same for other NBC shows. This season has been some kind of ratings roller coaster for NBC.

How much validity to rumors being floated of Matt Lauer succeeding Alex Trebek as next host of "Jeopardy!"? Personally, I'd rather it be Anderson Cooper, or Meredith Vieira (based on her previous experience with "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire"), or the ever-delightful Tom Bergeron. Any other nominees?

When people in the industry are in play, you start hearing their names floating around:   Anderson Cooper may be taking over on "Today," Matt Lauer may be taking over "Jeopardy", blah, blah, blah. it's part of the fun covering the biz

How about Jay Leno? It seems that NBC just can't get rid of him...

Why would they? He's winning his timeslot. Yes, they need to move on to the next host for their late night franchise (they tried with Conan, it failed and now they're about to try to Fallon, who seems a better bet). But NBC has hung on to Leno because it's been in NBC's best interest to hang on to him. That said, of course you're kidding on the "Today" show -- he'd be all wrong. I wonder why no one's talking about Ryan?

52 year old male here who avoided HBO's "Girls" because ... well, just because. Currently in the middle of one of those back-to-back-to-back marathons and I'm near the end of season 1. I think it's the best TV I've seen in awhile. Ever been pleasantly surprised by a show you thought you'd hate?

Yes -- the aforementioned "The Neighbors" among them. It happens a lot. I want to know more about what you like about "Girls." It intrigues me that a 52 year old guy likes the show, since Dunham tries so hard to not write to viewers like you. .

Ken Jennings! Would any contestant complain to him that he was wrong (except that Watson machine)?

Ugh -- personality of a halibut. Sorry, but he'd be all wrong. I'm liking the Bergeron idea, but you know I'm a big Bergeron fan. How about Craig Ferguson?

They have another season right? Do you think PBS will let us rewatch the old seasons before the next one starts? PBS is ususally so good with reruns. Also, I want to type Bandersnatch Cummberbund in every chat you have between now and when you leave us.

I hope you will! Yes, another season has been ordered. Yes, a "season" continues to mean three episodes, which is always disappointing.

I object to Matt Lauer taking over Alex Trebek hosting "Jeopardy" in 2016. Anderson Cooper would be so much better....or Ken Jennings!

Wow, there's a whole Ken Jennings fan base I did not know about. Maybe I need to reconsider...

It is kind of weird when you see those kids in framing scenes on "How I Met Your Mother" since they have the same expression every time since it just loop of stuff from the first season. Also weird is that those kids are wearing the same outfits so they must have listening to his story for a really long time.

Once Dad gets talking, he never stops. On the bright side, some parts of his story are pretty raunchy, so it's worth it...

Maybe the same physics are in play that gave Ginger & Mrs. Howell their limitless, bandbox perfect ensembles every week. They were on a mysterious island after all.

Are you suggesting "Revolution" is a comedy? I'm willing to entertain that theory....

Ok, I admit I liked "Smash" last season, even though I thought Ivy as Marilyn was a no-brainer and I hated the creepy assistant. And I understand that Theresa R. was a pain to work with (read some lengthy article somewhere about how she refused to work collaboratively with anyone). But it was still better last year! Not nearly enough Ivy this year (Megan Hilty is extremely talented), way too much time spent on Jimmy, who, if anything, is even more annoying that the creepy assistant - honestly, why Jack (and several others) don't slug him is beyond me. And the notion that Karen - or any adult woman - would be interested in that petulant little boy is laughable. So - that's off my chest - what do you think?

You are preaching to the choir....and many others feel similiarly, which is why it's off to Burnoff Theater for the show, and you should not expect to see it next season.

That's the hole in the show's logic you found?

are there others? Let's list the ways....

Have they decided their best "hook" for an audience is making all their characters awful? Is there even the slightest chance they survive their Saturday night burn-off?


My mom was dating a guy on the university rugby team. They were at a party after the game and she and her friend, who was also dating a guy on the team, wanted to try pot for the first time. So they found out that one of the guys on the team was dealing and got introduced. The rugby teammate dealer was... PAPA

Is this about to become an episode of "HIMYM"? Your parents' story sounds much more interesting than the CBS show. Anybody else out there have an interesting "How I Met Your Mother" story?

Why is the percentage of tennis-playing Americans so much lower than the tennis-playing percentages from other countries?---it can't be our propensity for sloth, it has to be television's fault, right?

Everthing is television's fault, ultimately.

He definitely needs someone to play off of, but anybody that makes Kelly Ripa palatable needs serious consideration. Plus, he's got the hard news chops.

I think they'd have to seriously gut the show to make him work. I just don't see sparks between him and Savannah. But then, I've never seen them co-host anything..maybe there are hidden depths.

We missed you last week. And I'll miss the chat tomorrow as I'll be en route to the parental homestead for a weekend full of mad cap merriment. Or alcohol. Lots of alcohol.

...and jellybeans?

I watched two episodes of "Girls." I'd rather eat glass than watch again. Not upset about nudity or sex; just that the characters are so astoundingly self-absorbed and obnoxious, while not being particularly entertaining.

now that's the kind of response I'd expect from someone who isn't 13-28 and female....

Charlie Rose would be good, actually.

Oh, golly, no! Unless there was a drinking game and he was the one doing the drinking. He's very bright, but pretty stiff.

So you've just been punking us this whole time, right? Come May we'll all wake up and you'll be in the shower with Bobby Ewing?

Pookie, if I'm going to be in the shower with someone it most certainly is not going to be Bobby Ewing...

But he has the personality of a cold fish on TV. Not good for AM TV.... He had one great moment with Katrina, and since then - meh. If NBC wants to stay in the family, they should just move Lester Holt over from the weekends (IMO). As far as Jeopardy goes, Craig Ferguson would be fantastic - He could really out-do Alex in the "oh, you silly person who doesn't have the answers like me, how could you not know the answer is: What is Burkina Faso?" (but with comedic self-awareness).

Craig would be pretty perfect for "Today" show too, don't you think? I say, give him all the available gigs that Jimmy Fallon isn't taking!

No electricity, but no reason that stores and warehouses of already-manufactured clothes aren't still around. I'm willing to suspend my disbelief on the whole electricity shutdown thing, but I still don't understand why steam and mechanical energy stopped working...

You and me both...I think we're not supposed to think that hard.

Darrell Hammond - as Sean Connery.

That would be hilarious -- including the reaction of the   diehard "Jeopardy" wonks.

As one of the 10 people in America who still watches Smash, I am pleased to tell you that (SPOILER ALERT) McPhee is no longer Marilyn.

For now. Never underestimate this show's ability to get it wrong...

Any truth to the rumors that My Boys will be coming back? Couldn't resist. Happy Easter.

You're sweet -- thank you!

Well, it's about as funny as about every other comedy on NBC these days...

Da dum dum!

is pretty hilarious on Twitter. Check him out. Don't know if that will translate as a host, though.

Okay -- I had no idea. I stand corrected.

Hey Pookie, What do you think about Zucker's braggadocio over Tapper and the low 318,000 viewers for his new show? ... How soon before management over there realizes that only Zucker is drinking his own Kool-Aid?

I think Zucker will roll up his sleeves and fix it...don't count him out.

Craig Ferguson would never be able to behave himself in prime time! It would make Jeopardy more interesting...

I know!

Different guy but same demo--mid 50s male. I enjoy it because I respect Dunham as a writer, and I like to see how a young talent like her will progress. It's very off-Broadway--some hits, some misses, and some odd and exciting choices. Also, I'm from Brooklyn, and I like to see areas that used to be slums that I can now no longer afford.

Well, I'm pleasantly surprised.

They started filming the 3rd series last Monday, so it will be awhile before you see it.

Yes, has to air in UK first. It's a rule.

This is my connumdrum on a Friday Night?

Answer: DVR

Well I wasn't always 52. Some things are kind of timeless: having no money, trying to write something decent, chasing girls (guys), dealing with your loopy parents. She gives voice to that slice of life, in a very funny way. Hey, life's just one continuous loop with a different soundtrack and clothe styles. I saw "On the Road" this week too. The Girl's Adam could have hung out with those Beats.

"Well I wasn't always 52" is the best answer to the question -- ever... Thanks for putting me in my place. Seriously.

I will watch any episode of America's Funniest Home Videos with Tom hosting. He just makes hosting look effortless which is a real skill. He would be perfect on Today!!

..or "Jeopardy".....

Why isn't anyone thinking of Lester to replace Lauer, if it comes to that? He's great on the weekends, with Erica Hill. ... And Anderson's better in the field and in the evenings on CNN. He like's action, not the cushy couch/anchor thing.

A couple of press reports have mentioned Lester, if only to say that he's not on the radar...strange.

So I'm only seeing 3 hours that they need to fill next season. Does this mean their pilots really stunk?

Or it may mean CBS execs think there's an upside at the upfronts to presenting the most stable schedule.

When is Leno's contract over so I can start watching it again?


Can either of these be saved? Maybe if you put them all together with Quaid, Chiklis, and Chi McBride...

Not a great sign that "Vegas" and "Golden Boy" were not mentioned in CBS's sweeping show-renewal announcement this week. In this case, it probably will depend on how the network's drama development comes out.

"Hey, life's just one continuous loop with a different soundtrack and clothe styles." I LOVE THIS!!! Thank you!!

52 Again: you have lots of fans on this chat!

We went to the same church. Sorry, no pot.

One season and out...add the pot and you've got at least two seasons.

It's probably Easter-related, but you and the Commenteers (that's us) are equating personalities to fish. So please write us a column that connects the dots: Fish: tuna, carp, gold fish, puffer (my favorite), eel, dolphin (not a fish, I know), etc. Personality: Charlie Rose, Craig Ferguson, Simon Cowell, Kelly Ripa, Matt Lauer, etc. Thanks, and Happy Easter

Simon would have to be the puffer. On the others I'm flexible, but that's non-negotiable

Sorry, I know the guy and the halibut assessment is pretty darn accurate.


Well, we knew ratings would be bad on that channel. I haven't seen it since it left Fox

bad fit.

I think that guy from Meet the Press would be pretty good - seems he and Savannah has chemistry, I loved it when he did the Gangnam style dance - Matt is way to high and mighty to have done it. He has a great personality and news chops too!

I had to see it to believe it.....

Thanks for that - I'm wiping off my screen as I type.

I'd like to take credit but it was the chatter who made the suggestion. Maybe I get points for publishing the question?

Either Ferguson or Bergeron would be excellent replacements as host of Jeopardy. Or most shows in general, for that matter. It's more fun to watch guys who seem to be having a good time.

I''m wtih you..

Craig Ferguson - eel. Charlie Rose - carp. Kelly Ripa - gold fish (because guppy isn't listed).

thanks for weighing in!

We were in math & physics classes together in high school, and we've been together ever since.


My dad was the regular vacation driver for my mom's family, back in the late 1920s-early 1930s, when country roads were horrible and auto repairs (a lot more than just patching tires) were necessary en route. Also, his family was Catholic, but my mom's wasn't. OMG, shades of Branson and Lady Sybil!!!

what a great story....

Meredith could host Jeopardy

I'm ready for her to spend more time with her family.

NPR puzzle-master, and NY Times crossword puzzle editor, Will Shortz?

any good on TV?

Are we sure he's really going? I haven't seen that much tenacity outside of a "Friday the 13th" movie.

looks likely. on the other hand, it did last time too...

met at some dance somewhere. that's what mom told me. so romantic.

Very romantic. I'm out of time. Thanks for joining me. See you next week!

In This Chat
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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