Friday, January 19, 2018

Good TVeets

The Role of Criticism

Tim Goodman reflects on the role of the critic in an era saturated with great TV, which offers an urge to not bother with bad or "ordinary" TV.

Roseanne & Trump

Roseanne executive producer Whitney Cummings explains the motivation behind exploring Trumpism in the new version of the series, while Harry Waksberg is excited about the revival but questions the logic of Roseanne and Dan being Trump voters.

Sesame Street on HBO

Troy Patterson assesses the state of Sesame Street two years into its HBO partnership.

Streaming Churn

Carol Lombardo takes note of a challenge for streaming services: keeping people subscribed once they've seen their favorite show.

New Hires

Disney has hired a former Apple exec to head up its upcoming SVOD service, while Facebook has appointed a new exec to help with its push into international sports rights,

The Good Place's Creativity

Carly Lane praises The Good Place's ability to keep reinventing itself. GQ's Karen Ho interviewed The Good Place's costume director, and Allie Tollaksen noticed significance in how Eleanor dresses.

Cable News & Median Age

A.J. Katz has 2017 figures on median age of cable news channel viewers.

The Need to Get Bigger

Recode has a great chart that helps explain why CBS and Viacom are talking merger again: they need to get bigger to compete in the current media landscape.

TCA Takeaways

Variety details ten things its reporters learned at TCA.

Amazon's Cancellations

Josef Adalian explores reasons why Amazon just canceled three comedies. Pilot Viruet laments the loss of the queer gem One Mississippi. Ann-Derrick Gaillot also believes Amazon is making a big mistake.

Freeform News

Lesley Goldberg checks out Freeform's new branding efforts. Also part of Freeform's future will be a second season of Grown-ish.

Black-ish Salaries

Tracee Ellis Ross is speaking out about the disparity between her paycheck and Anthony Anderson's for Black-ish and threatening to limit her appearances on the show.

Update: Ross has tweeted a denial of the above report.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Trump & the News

Donald Trump revealed his "fake news" awards last night, though it was really just a list of reporting errors that outlets corrected. In response to Trump's list, the Committee to Protect Journalists released a list of Press Oppressor awards, where Trump was runner-up. Susan Murray says his whole awards charade shows the danger of Trump seeing his presidency as a reality TV show.

In related news, there are new studies on the degradation of trust in the news media, like a Knight Foundation report called American Views: Trust, Media, and Democracy and a Rand Corporation report titled Truth Decay: An Initial Exploration of the Diminishing Role of Facts and Analysis in American Public Life.

The AP reports on the alternative reality Trump has created around his presidency.  Brian Stelter literally counted how much Trump has used the word "fake," almost always in terms of the news media.

As news has emerged of an alleged sexual relationship and payoff between Trump and an adult-film actress, there's word that Fox News had the story before the election and shelved it, and Paul Farhi question why no one went with the story when they had it last year. One story we'll apparently get more of: Michael Wolff's Fire and Fury book is being adapted for TV.

Breaking Bad Oral History

Esquire has an oral history of Breaking Bad.

Lear Interview

Matt Zoller Seitz interviewed Norman Lear about family TV shows.

Gender Pay Gap

Tatiana Siegel looks at how actresses are speaking out about their salaries to bring more attention to the gender pay gap, and Rebecca Sun offers ways women in Hollywood can negotiate better deals.

Goodbye Spike, Hello Paramount Network

Spike TV has shuffled off this mortal cable coil and is now the Paramount Network. It did not leave quietly, with stunts on Facebook and Twitter. EW's Darren Franich offers a requiem for Spike.

Lindelof Deal

Damon Lindelof is extending his stay at Warner Bros. with a new overall deal.

Press Tour Reflections

Daniel Fienberg names shows that helped themselves at TCA and those that didn't. He previously wrote about AMC's "prestige popcorn" approach that was discussed at TCA.

CBS-Viacom News

Shari Redstone is reportedly pushing for CBS merger talks, as well as new CBS board members, which is drumming up tension within Viacom.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Amazon Cancellations

Amazon has announced three cancellations: I Love Dick, One Mississppi, and Jean-Claude Van Johnson.

Wiig Show for Apple

Apple has picked up a 10-episode comedy series starring Kristen Wiig, its third series with Reese Witherspoon as producer.

NAACP Image Awards

The NAACP handed out its annual Image Awards Monday night; TV winners included black-ish, Power, and Insecure.

Actress Salaries

In a compelling statement to THR, Ellen Pompeo discusses how she persevered against the industry's power dynamics to become prime-time drama's highest paid actress. And Lesley Goldberg covers how Big Little Lies' lead actresses negotiated big paydays for season two. Meanwhile, Rebecca Sun details how black women in Hollywood experience an even wider pay gap than their white counterparts.

Today News

Today is getting a new executive producer, the first woman to hold that top job for the show's opening hours. And former Today host Ann Curry told CBS This Morning she wasn't surprised by the Matt Lauer allegations.

9-1-1 Renewed

Fox has renewed 9-1-1 for a second season following a strong debut.

Lionsgate's a Takeover Target

Deadline reports that Amazon, Verizon and CBS and/or Viacom are eyeing Lionsgate as an acquisition.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Major Crimes Questions

Maureen Ryan has questions about how Major Crimes wrapped up, particularly in regard to the main star's treatment.

TiVo Sues Comcast

TiVo has sued Comcast over DVR patents.

Vietnam War Doc & History

Colleen Flaherty presents academic historian concerns about the critical perspective of Ken Burns and Lynn Novick's Vietnam War documentary.

Call the Midwife & Social Issues

Erica Wagner delves into how Call the Midwife has covered radical social issues, and Hannah Hamad discusses recent representations of intersectionality on the series.

Black-ish Ad Deal

Brian Steinberg reports on what's behind a scene in Tuesday's Black-ish episode in which characters discuss a Proctor & Gamble short film.

NFL Ratings

Alex Putterman reports on low ratings for the NFL's playoff games this weekend.

Trump's Fox News Safe Space

Gabriel Sherman discusses the affinity between Donald Trump and Fox News.

Altice Changes Course

Altice announced a major reorganization last week, splitting the company into separate US and European divisions. Nick Kostov has analysis of the move.

#MeToo and the Writers Room

Michael O'Connell relays concerns about how a cautious climate in the wake of the #MeToo movement could affect TV show writers rooms.

Fake News Field Guide

The Public Data Lab has posted A Field Guide to Fake News and Other Information Disorders, which Poynter describes as like a cookbook for fake news, containing "a number of 'recipes' for tracing things like trolling practices, the circulation of viral memes and the financial incentives that hold it all together."

Models & Stratgies

Will Richmond questions what Apple's original programming model will be given that it doesn't already have an SVOD, membership, or advertising service like the dominant streaming services.

Joe Flint reports on HBO touting the value of its limited development model over Netflix's content stockpiling approach.

Coverage of execs talking about their channel models at TCA: Turner, Paramount Network, AMC/SundanceTV, E!, Sony Crackle (which is the new name for Crackle), and TLC.

Walking Dead Renewed With New Showrunner

Lesley Goldberg reports on new creative oversight at The Walking Dead with the series renewed for a ninth season.

Daytime Flux

Cynthia Littleton discusses the challenging state of the local daytime first-run syndication marketplace right now.

Curse Words on TV

It's been a big week for curse words on TV, as Donald Trump made news outlets debate whether or not to say "shithole" on the air. The FCC actually received complaints over use of the word on NBC and CNN (which the FCC has no jurisdiction over as far as content). Cable news also chatted about Trump's racism, and late-night hosts went to town on his remarks. Margaret Sullivan discusses the media reaction.

Meanwhile, on Saturday Night Live, Sam Rockwell said the F-word, and Brian Steinberg has analysis of recent instances of profanity on SNL and whether they're worth concern.

Harmon Apology

After being confronted by Megan Ganz on Twitter, Dan Harmon apologized on his podcast for sexually harassing her when they worked on Community. Ganz has accepted the apology and says she feels vindicated. Caroline Framke praises the apology as a self-reckoning. SorryWatch also has analysis.

ER on Hulu

Hulu made a big splash at TCA with the announcement that the streaming service now offers all 15 seasons of ER. Colin Dixon and Will Richmond talked Hulu on their weekly podcast.

Lady Dynamite Canceled

Netflix has decided it's done with Lady Dynamite, which got two seasons.

Fox Wants Sinclair Stations

Rupert Murdoch is reportedly trying to buy ten Sinclair stations, which happen to be located in big football markets. Meanwhile, the FCC has paused its review of Sinclair's Tribune purchase to give Sinclair more time to get in compliance with ownership rules.

Viacom + CBS

Viacom and CBS are reportedly eyeing a merger deal again, a rumor which shot their stocks up.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Disney/ABC News

Lacey Rose covers ABC entertainment chief Channing Dungey's session at TCA. Todd VanDerWerff considers the role FX could play at Disney.

What To Watch For in 2018

Richard Greenfield lists eighteen media events and predictions to watch for in 2018, and Amanda Lotz explains the likely results of deregulation in the coming year. Ben Travers looks ahead to Netflix's 2018 strategies.

This is Us Ad Deal

NBC and State Farm have partnered on commercials for the insurance company made in the style of This is Us.

Shonda Rhimes at TCA

Lesley Goldberg covers Shonda Rhimes' session at TCA. Jim Halterman shares into on the upcoming Grey's Anatomy spinoff.

Roseanne on Trump

Roseanne Barr spoke at TCA about her support for Donald Trump and justified how it will be incorporated into the new Roseanne. Todd VanDerWerff has analysis.

Hulu News

Hulu now has 17 million subscribers and claims it can offer over 75,000 episodes of TV to them. But episodes of Chance will stop at 20, as Hulu has canceled the Hugh Laurie series. Hulu's ad revenue for 2017 topped $1 billion.

Senate Net Neutrality Bill

Enough senators have signed on to a bill blocking the FCC's net neutrality repeal for it to move forward to a vote, though it likely won't muster enough Republican support to pass.

BoJack Being Shopped

Netflix is seeking a cable syndication home for BoJack Horseman.

TBS Drops C.K. Show

TBS won't move forward with an animated comedy created by Louis C.K. following his sexual harassment allegations.

Trump & TV Viewing

Andrew Marantz covers the relationship between Fox & Friends and Donald Trump. And Jonathan Swan details Trump's schedule, which appears to have lengthy chunks blocked off for TV viewing and doesn't start until he's watch cable news in the morning.

Oprah's Speech

The biggest takeaway from the Golden Globes wasn't the winners but Oprah WInfrey's speech. James Poniewozik outlines what politicians could learn from her whether she runs for president or not. Dahlia Lithwick says we should understand her speech as telling us we need to act, not wait for her to save us.

About the rest of the ceremony, Poniewozik highlights the "woke" elements, and Mark Harris assesses the night of activism. Jenna Wortham laments empty red carpet gestures.

Ratings Bits

Some ratings headlines: Golden Globes ratings were down a bit from last year, while College Football Playoff games on ESPN were up. The Chi can tout a solid start on Showtime, while The X-Files is crashing.