Friday, December 19, 2014

FCC Rule Change

The FCC's proposal to let internet TV providers license TV shows just like pay TV providers do is official. A comments period now commences.

NY PBS Moves Doc Shows

Dru Sefton covers the move of Independent Lens and POV off of WNET's main channel to a secondary one, leaving documentary advocates highly dismayed.

Screen Clutter

John Ourand laments how cluttered with graphics sports broadcasts have become. John Teti also takes on this issue and offers suggestions for improvement.

Thursday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: The Big Bang Theory R (CBS), Mom (CBS), Two and a Half Men (CBS)
- Losers (excluding repeats): The Taste (ABC), People Magazine Awards (NBC),

Network numbers from TV By the Numbers. Final ratings. Cable ratings.

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

2014 Numbers

Toni Fitzgerald summarizes the year in media numerically.

Love's Last

Dave Itzkoff previews Darlene Love's final Christmas performance on David Letterman tonight.

Simpsons Words

Michael Adams highlights words and catch phrases originating from The Simpsons that have become part of everyday language. And the writer of the Simpsons' premiere episode discusses the script's origins.

Marketing the Worst

Jason Lynch looks back on the marketing campaigns for some of TV's biggest failures.

Sony Responses

George Clooney has shared his thoughts on the Sony Pictures debacle, and the NYT offers an op-ed. Michael Cieply and Boroks Barnes note that the impact of the hack is reverberating beyond Sony.

Colbert Report Ends

Todd VanDerWerff fills you in on what happened on the final episode of The Colbert Report, and James Poniewozik and Brian Steinberg have reviews. PBS has a report on the Report. Vulture collected celebrity farewells to Colbert. Allison Silverman, the show's first head writer, discusses the early days. Jesse David Fox laments the loss of one of TV's great characters. Leslie Savan covers what the show revealed about conservative psychology. Noel Murray analyzes the finale and the show's seriality. Andy Greenwald offers an appreciation of Colbert's genius. Vulture slideshows everyone who was in the finale sing-along.

Good TVeets

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Mom Interview

Daniel Fienberg talks to Mom start Sadie Calvano about the serious drama in tonight's episode, thereby highlighting the uniqueness of the multi-cam sitcom.

Social Synch

NBCU has unveiled something called Social Synch, which is a multi-platform social media campaign service for advertisers.

Cuban Media

A CNN journalist in Cuba discusses media coverage of the US-Cuba deal within the country.

Pay TV Bills To Increase

Mike Farrell says rising sports and retrans fees will raise pay TV bill surcharges in 2015.

Hulu-FX Deal

Hulu has picked up a big chunk of FX Networks' programming. Janko Roettgers says this makes Hulu look more like Netflix, rather than just a catchup service.

Diversity in State of Affairs

Merrill Barr appreciates the gender and racial diversity in State of Affairs and other 2014 series.

No Offline Netflix

Hugh Langley reports word from Netflix that offline viewing is not in the cards.

WGNA's Conversion

Kent Gibbons notes that WGN America has started its conversion from superstation to cable channel.

Cable News & Race

Matt Wilstein reports on Nielsen figures detailing cable news channel viewership by race and highlights Fox News' vast white viewership.

The Interview Halted

You've surely read about this elsewhere, but just to cover it: Sony won't release The Interview anywhere and (for now) any time. Todd VanDerWerff says Sony is making the wrong move. Bryan Bishop argues the film should be released online. (Though I've seen mentioned elsewhere that any release of any sort will negate full insurance coverage.) There's also reportedly a plan to drop DVDs of it over North Korea. Russell Brandom offers a primer on all the hacking events. Speculation about who really is behind the hack is still ongoing. Alyssa Rosenberg offers cultural analysis.

Colbert Numbers

Dave Itzkoff numerically breaks down The Colbert Report. Also, Colbert jumped the shark last night.

5 Changes

Sam Thielman highlights five big changes to TV in 2014.

HBO Goes L+7 Only

Cynthia Littleton reports that HBO will no longer report overnight ratings, only Live + 7 figures.

Wednesday Ratings

Network numbers from TV By the Numbers. Final ratings. Final ratingsCable ratings.

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

The Best of 2014

If I've missed any Best of TV lists for 2014, please let me know. Also, check out the 2013 list if you'd like to see last year's results.

Because the list is long, I've placed only a handful on the main page. You can find the whole list after the jump.

Good TVeets

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Tuesday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: NCIS (CBS), NCIS: Los Angeles (CBS), The Voice (NBC)
- Losers (excluding repeats): Nothing…’tis the season for only good things!

Network numbers from TV By the Numbers. Final ratingsCable ratings.

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.


Peter Kafka looks at Vessel, a new YouTube competitor from ex-Hulu CEO Jason Kilar. Janko Roettgers also reports. Eric Blattberg considers Vessel's chances.

Pay TV & Broadband

Albert Lai considers how pay TV and broadband services are tied together, which means OTT services won't be as disruptive to pay TV companies as they could be.

UK Drama

Jon Creamer surveys the state of British drama, which is strong.

Streaming Horror

AMC and DramaFever are teaming up to launch a streaming site featuring horror content. This will be their second such site; the other features documentaries.

TV Resolutions

Jason Lynch offers New Year's resolution advice for TV's key players and revisits his 2014 suggestions.

Directing Doctor Who

Alyssa at Whovian Feminism talks to Doctor Who director Rachel Talalay about directing, gender, and fandom.

Network Grades

Toni Fitzgerald hands out 2014 network grades.

Colbert's End

Bill Carter considers the end of The Colbert Report, and Will Leitch offers a requiem.

Netflix on Dish

Dish Network is adding Netflix to its Hopper set-top boxes.

Good TVeets

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Comic Book TV

Alan Sepinwall surveys the year in comic book TV.

OTT Impact

Mike Farrell says distributors and programmers have conflicting thoughts about how OTT services will impact the TV industry.

TV Torture

Catherine Rampell argues that television bears responsibility for acceptance of torture techniques described in the recent CIA torture report. Eric Deggans also covers this issue, as does Brian Lowry. Alyssa Rosenberg also jumps into this topic.

Movies & TV

Peter Allen argues that the new "golden age of TV" has helped cinema, while Mark Harris says Hollywood's toxic addiction to franchise blockbusters has let TV usurp film quality. David Poland disagrees with a number of Harris's claims.

No-Comedy Thursday

Henry Hanks that NBC will no longer have any comedies on Thursday nights at midseason.

NBC Live Stream

Joe Flint reports that NBC is launching a TV Everywhere live stream, but it will require pay TV authentication. Kwame Opam also reports.

Sony Hack Reactions

More Sony hack reactions: Hollywood insiders react, Michael Hiltzik says the press must report this info, Ted Johnson highlights the legal ramifications of publishing the revealed emails. Colin McEnroe is highly critical of Aaron Sorkin's take on the situation.

Most-Tweeted Shows

The Walking Dead was the most-tweeted show in the US, while Sherlock topped a list of most-tweeted TV moments in the UK. In the U.S., the most-tweeted moment was on The Voice.

Monday Ratings

Network numbers from TV By the Numbers. Final ratings. Cable ratings.

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

Coke Drops Idol

Brian Steinberg reports that Coca-Cola will end its American Idol sponsorship. Sam Thielman says this shows how Idol's future is in doubt.

Good TVeets

Monday, December 15, 2014

TV Schedule

Karen Fratti reports on a study finding that a majority of viewers today like to have a guide of TV listings to consult, despite all the time shifting going on.

DVR Winning

Toni Fitzgerald looks at the big boost many network shows are getting from DVR ratings. She writes, "We have finally reached the point where just as many people are time-shifting a broadcast show as watching it live. Actually, make that several shows."

Gracepoint Done

Fox does not want Gracepoint back.

Sony Demands & Ethics

Sony has delivered a letter to news organizations demanding that outlets not use any of the materials unearthed in the hack, but Jeff John Roberts says there's not legal credibility behind their threats. Aaron Sorkin has chimed in and says it is unethical for journalists to use the stolen information. James Poniewozik says stolen news is still news.

Sony's TV Set Business

Eric Pfanner and Takashi Mochizuki assess the state of Sony's TV set unit, which is trying to recover from a slump.

Live & Non-Live Tweets

Nielsen offers a chart on volume of program tweets sent while a show is airing compared to later.

Spot Forecast

The spot TV ad forecast for 2015 is tepid. But Wayne Friedman says the scatter market currently strong.

Homeland's Reality

Daily Beast talked to CIA agents about the authenticity of Homeland.

4K Coming

David Katzmeier says 2015 will be a big year for 4K TV sets.

UK Retrans Fees

A retrans fee system could be coming to UK TV.

New In Media Res

Theme: Sidekicks

  • Monday, December 15, 2014 - Eleanor Huntington (University of Southern California) presents: High School for Superheroes and Sidekicks 
  • Tuesday, December 16, 2014 - Jeff Casey (University of Wisconsin—Madison) presents: Can the Sidekick Protest? The Dissonant Sidekick and the Limits of Representing Difference in Contemporary Media 
  • Wednesday, December 17, 2014 - Lisa Glebatis Perks (Nazareth College) presents: Heroes, Sidekicks, and Powerful Love 
  • Thursday, December 18, 2014 - Natasha Patterson (Simon Fraser University) presents: Joan Watson Deserves Better: Audience Reception and the Gender Politics of TV Sidekickdom 
  • Friday, December 19, 2014 - Sammi Dittloff (University of Wisconsin—Milawaukee) presents: A Certain Bromance

TV Advertising

Alan Wolk says the TV industry has to figure out soon how to deal with people avoiding TV ads.

Williams Renews at NBC

Brian Williams has extended his NBC News contract.

Sunday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: Sunday Night Football (The Dallas Cowboys at the Philadelphia Eagles), 60 Minutes (CBS), Undercover Boss (CBS)
- Losers (excluding repeats): Backstage With Disney on Broadway: Celebrating 20 Years (ABC), CSI (CBS)

Network numbers from TV by the Numbers. Final ratingsCable ratings.

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

Good TVeets