Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Netflix HD

Brian Barrett looks at Netflix's push toward 4K, ultra high-def, and beyond.

Black Actor Challenges

An anonymous black actress describes the challenges of working in TV.

Discovery Calms Down

Brian Steinberg says Discovery Communications plans to shift its channels away from sensationalistic stunt programming and reality TV. But don't worry, Naked and Afraid will still be around.


Alan Wolk sees pay TV's TV Everywhere apps as well positioned to deal with OTT services.

Charter Buys Bright House

Charter Communications will buy Bright House Networks to consolidate cable even more.

Social Media Service

Mike Farrell looks at how cable operators are using social media outreach to bolster customer service.

Daytime Emmy Nominations

Daytime Emmy nominations are out, and CBS and General Hospital have the most to celebrate.

CAA Agents Defect

In a huge shakeup in the agency world, a group of top CAA comedy agents have departed for UTA, and more will reportedly follow, along with big clients like Will Ferrell and Chris Pratt. Matthew Belloni considers the possible legal fight to come. Update: ten agents have left so far.

Bloodline Renewed

Netflix wants a second season of Bloodline.


The Americans has been renewed, as has New Girl.

Noah's Tweets

Incoming Daily Show host Trevor Noah is coming under fire for jokes he has tweeted. Sonia Saraiya predicted a right-wing backlash yesterday, and adds more thoughts today. Sam Adams considers how tweets matter. Alyssa Rosenberg proposes how Noah can save his job. Dave Schilling puts this in the context of the state of insult comedy. Andrew Wallenstein says Comedy Central should defend Noah's comedy rights...and shortly after he posted that, Comedy Central indeed offered a statement of support for Noah.

Monday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: Dancing with the Stars (ABC), The Voice (NBC)
- Losers (excluding repeats): The Following (Fox), the Night Shift (NBC)

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

Analysis from Fienberg.

Casting Comedy

Stephen Rodrick profiles casting director Allison Jones and her significant impact on comedy.

Dunham & Jewish Identity

Sarah Todd analyzes Lena Dunham and modern Jewish identity.

Reality Show Synergy

Andy Dehnart describes two synergistic reality shows coming from Esquire and Oxygen, both following the same group of comedians, with one show focusing on their performing lives and another on their home lives.

Black Characters on Soaps

Aaron Foley highlights the legacy of diversity in daytime soap opera, which is now being touted as a revolution in prime time.

Walking Dead Success

The Walking Dead's finale on Sunday set a ratings record. And as Ben Kuchera notes, it has become an advertiser's dream. Brian Lowry considers where the finale left things narratively and in terms of the franchise. Ed Martin looks at the big night AMC had on Sunday.

Limited Series

Anthony Crupi says the networks are still enthusiastic about limited, sort-run series despite some ratings struggles.

Netflix Universality

Christopher Hooten reports on Netflix's goal to release content simultaneously worldwide.

Vue vs. Apple TV

Andrew Tonner argues that Playstation Vue is better positioned than cable and Apple TV for the future.

Good TVeets

Crowdfunding Changes

An SEC ruling change opens up film crowdfunding for investment, not just donations.

WWE Entertainment

Pilot Viruet argues that WWE offers entertainment that surpasses dramas and sitcoms.

Old & Young Shows

Tony Maglio charts the 50 oldest- and 50 youngest-skewing broadcast network shows. Oldest? 60 Minutes. Youngest? Family Guy.

Black Crime Coverage

A study of New York news found disproportionate coverage of black crime on local newscasts.

NBC News Changes

Joe Flint reports that NBC has agreed to stop airing national ads in its overnight rebroadcasts of Nightly News due to advertiser complaints, which also means those broadcasts won't factor into evening ratings. And David Bauder reports on the challenge new NBC News head Andy Lack will have with fixing MSNBC.

Mogul Control

Cynthia Littleton looks at how Rupert Murdoch, Brian Roberts, and other media moguls control their empires.

Religious TV

Meredith Blake reports on the growth in religious-themed projects.

Coach to Return

This news broke last week, but I'm blogging it now to affirm that it is really real: NBC is bringing Coach back.

Sally's Life

Hazel Cills appreciates how Mad Men has brought us the evolution of Sally Draper.

Complex TV

Jason Mittell explains why television storytelling has gotten more complex.

Diversity Issues

Deadline's Mike Fleming, Jr., attempted an apology for the "ethnic castings" article of last week. But Howard Sherman says this doesn't finish the matter and wants to hear from author Nellie Andreeva. Jeff Yang follows up his own story on diversity in TV by offering more charts on how diversity is enhancing TV's bottom line, which Michelle Castillo's reporting also affirms.

Monday, March 30, 2015

MVPD Consolidation

Thirteen companies now control 95% of pay TV subscriptions in the US, with more mergers likely to come.

OTT Coverage

Richard Greenfield argues that Netflix still has growth potential within the increasingly crowded OTT world. Karl Bode thinks skeptical cord cutting analysts are ignoring piracy. Sling TV is having to blackout some programming on channels it carries due to rights issues, and subscribers are unhappy they weren't warned about this. Colin Dixon covers a study on how impatient millennials may be with faulty OTT streams. Lauren Goode explains Apple TV, and Peter Kafka reports Comcast hasn't heard from Apple yet about the Apple TV web service.

NewsRadio History

Uproxx offers an oral history of the great and glorious NewsRadio.

The Wiz

NBC has settled on The Wiz as its next live musical, and it will be followed by a Broadway adaptation.

HBO-Vice Deal

HBO and Vice have signed a deal to launch a daily newscast, and Andrew Wallenstein sees this as a game-changer for TV news.

Mad Men Coverage

Alan Sepinwall talks to Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner, as the show prepares to draw to a close. Steven Perlberg highlights some of AMC's marketing gimmicks for Mad Men's end. Jeanine Poggi considers AMC's post-Mad Men strategies. Vikram Murthi argues that Don Draper is not an antihero. A blogger has collected links to reviews of each episode of Mad Men.

New Daily Show Host

Trevor Noah will take over The Daily Show from Jon Stewart. Dave Itzkoff reports. Josef Adalian has analysis. Alex Weprin reports that the show will go in a new direction, and David A. Graham says this is a globalization attempt. Georg Szalai talks to Comedy Central's president about the choice. Andy Greenwald offers info on who Noah is. Tim Grierson thinks the hire is a great idea, Merrill Barr says it's brilliant, and Whitney Friedlander lists five reasons why this is a good choice. Tim Goodman considers the impact this will have on late night. Arit John says this will impact America's image of Africa, as Noah is South African, and South Africans are reportedly excited about Noah's selection. If you're not familiar with his Daily Show work, you can catch a few of Noah's segments on YouTube. Noah is part of a wave of non-American hosts.

Good TVeets

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Downton to End

Downton Abbey will be done at the conclusion of its next season. It's official now.

Comcast-TWC Timeline

Jon Brodkin says we can expect a Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger decision this summer.


Matt Yoder says ESPN's coverage of WWE events signals pro wrestling's move into mainstream sports.

Mad Men Elevator Scenes

John Jurgensen offers detailed analysis of elevator scenes in Mad Men.

The Problematic Jinx

Sam Adams sees negatives in The Jinx's possible influence on documentaries to come.

Season's Lessons

Ed Martin highlights lessons learned from this season's hits and failures.

Wednesday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
-Winners: Survivor (CBS), Modern Family (ABC)
- Honorable Mention: The Goldbergs (ABC), Criminal Minds (CBS)
- Fading: American Idol (Fox)
- Losers: The Mysteries of Laura (NBC), Supernatural (CW), Nashville: On the Record 2 (ABC)

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

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

Empire & Black Drama

Wesley Morris covers Empire in the context of the state of blackness in dramas today.

Trans Turning Point

Craig Tomashoff says we're at a turning point for transgender characters and stories.

Streaming Assessment

James Poniewozik considers how streaming services could change our TV experience.

Comedy Ambition

Jason Zinoman says new comedies are trading jokes for narrative ambition.

Agency Fees Questioned

Gavin Polone calls out the agency packaging fee as unjustified (and explains what it is, if you're not familiar with it).

Upfronts Outlook

Suzanne Vranica and Joe Flint say we should expect upfronts declines.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Tuesday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
-Winners: NCIS (CBS), The Voice (NBC), NCIS: Los Angeles (CBS)
- Honorable Mention: The Flash (CW)
- Promising: iZombie (CW)
- Disappointing: Undateable (NBC)
- Losers: Repeat After Me (ABC), One Big Happy (NBC), The Mindy Project (Fox), Forever (ABC), The Night Shift (NBC)

Network numbers from TV By the Numbers.

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

Vessel Launches

Todd Spangler describes what the new Vessel video service offers, as it won't be traditional TV shows and movies.

Moonlighting's Meta Legacy

Greg Cwik says Community has Moonlighting to thank for pioneering its meta style.

Nielsen Streaming Measurement

Gerry Smith reports that Nielsen will offer viewing data about network series (not originals) on Netflix and Amazon by summer.

Cable Still Rules

Geoffrey A. Fowler insists that cable TV is still the better option over OTT services right now.

Cable Engagement

Toni Fitzgerald highlights the cable shows with the most dedicated viewership based on engagement measurements.

Streaming Establishment

Emily Steel notes that Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu now represent the old guard of streaming services, as new competitors arise.

Looking Done?

Rumors are swirling that HBO is canceling Looking but will produce a wrapup film.

Update: Looking has indeed been canceled, with one last special to come.

"Ethnic Castings"

If you missed what the stir is all about in Good TVeets today, it's this: Nellie Andreeva at Deadline reports that there's a backlash brewing among Caucasians against casting for diversity this pilot season. You can check Good TVeets for how that went over on Twitter, including a lengthy response from media scholar Kristen Warner, who has a book coming out soon on race and casting. Also Shonda Rhimes was not pleased. Sonia Saraiya points out what's wrong with Andreeva's piece and the claims it represents. Luvvie also responds, as does Jai Tiggett.

Good TVeets

Tuesday, March 24, 2015


The annual Society for Cinema and Media Studies conference is this week, and I'll be in attendance throughout. That means posting might be sporadic here, but I'll try to keep up (depending on how the hotel wifi is, as always).

If you'd like to follow the conference events on Twitter (or mute them :), the hashtag is #SCMS15. There are also some Twitter accounts dedicated to coverage of the conference, including @CJSCMS for general observations and @CJSCMSm for live-tweet coverage of TV Studies panels and workshops, while @CJSCMSc is for film panels.

Silly Animation Decline

Charles Kenny says the rise of animation targeted to older audiences has meant a decline in more light-hearted forms.

UKS & Trauma

Emily Nussbaum analyzes the underlying theme of rape survival in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.

Best Series Emmy

Matt Brennan advocates for a single Best Series category at the Emmys.

Gotham Aesthetics

Thomas West offers an aesthetic analysis of Gotham.

Comedy + Time

Todd VanDerWerff argues that the longer running times on Yahoo have helped make Community funnier, something more comedies could benefit from.

DirecTV Suit

The Supreme Court has agreed to hear a lawsuit against DirecTV over early termination fees.

Cable Ratings

Toni Fitzgerald compares top cable ratings to broadcast network results.

Discovery Bundle Pressure

Rebecca McClay reports that Discovery Communications is feeling pressure from OTT services to shrink bundles.

Net Neutrality Suits

The lawsuits against the FCC's net neutrality rules have begun. Brian Fung reports. The FCC's funding could be under threat from this.

X-Files Revival

It's official: The X-Files is coming back, with a six episode order. Merrill Barr says this is about Netflix. Brian Phillips adds thoughts.

The Jinx Coverage

Kate Aurthur digs up deeper holes in The Jinx. Devin Faraci argues that the timing of the second interview doesn't matter.  Robert Greene is critical of the series. Jonathan Mahler sees entertainment and journalism in tension during the series.

Monday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: Dancing With the Stars (ABC), The Voice (NBC)
- Honorable Mention: Scorpion (CBS)
- Losers (excluding repeats): The Following (Fox), The Night Shift ( NBC)

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

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

Streaming Coverage

Peter Kafka reports on the NFL's plans to stream a game next year; Will Richmond has analysis. Colin Dixon looks at the growing power of OTT platforms like Roku. Gary Bourgeault questions Apple TV's viability (registration required to read the whole article). Netflix has launched in Australia; Michael Lallo has analysis from the Australian perspective.  Mark Serrels details the pricing.

Good TVeets

Monday, March 23, 2015

Americans Praise

Emily Nussbaum appreciates the bleakness of The Americans.

NFL Blackout Rule

The NFL is dropping its practice of blacking out local game broadcasts when the stadiums don't sell out, at least for next season.

Scandal & Black Female Desire

Kristen Warner discusses Scandal's "Olitz" pairing and the affect of black female desire. (Note: this article is behind an academic journal paywall.)

Indecency Fine

The FCC has fined a TV station in Roanoke for a fleeting image of porn in a news broadcast. Harry A. Jessell argues that this fine is absurd.

Looking Coverage

Bent highlights five posts calling for HBO to renew Looking. Tim Teeman figures it's too late to save it, and Andy Greenwald considers why Looking hasn't broken out to a wider audience. And Sonia Saraiya talks to Daniel Franzese about playing an HIV-positive character.


Cade Metz says the new OTT options are opening the gates to cord cutting. Oriana Schwindt covers what cutting the cord could cost you. Harry A. Jessell covers how local stations are dealing with these online moves. Amy Schatz says Comcast's TWC merger could be helped out by the new streaming services, and Jeremy Bowman thinks HBO Now could benefit Netflix. Will Richmond writes the article he says the mainstream media will write about HBO Now in May.

Sunday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: 60 Minutes (CBS)
- Promising: The Last Man on Earth (Fox)
- Losers: Bob’s Burgers (Fox), The Good Wife (CBS), Battle Creek (CBS)

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

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

Good TVeets

Sunday, March 22, 2015

No Dodgers Deal

There's still no deal for carriage of the Los Angeles Dodgers' regional network beyond owner Time Warner Cable. Claire Atkinson and Josh Kosman note the big loss TWC is taking on the Dodgers rights deal due to the carriage issues, but TWC disputes this report.

New Bundles

Dave Morgan considers what could happen to bundling as more OTT services arrive, and Andrew Wallenstein says March Madness highlights this issue right now.

GLAAD Media Awards

GLAAD handed out media awards last night; Transparent and How To Get Away With Murder were TV winners.

NewsRadio Praise

Todd VanDerWerff explains why NewsRadio was the best sitcom of the 1990s. (It really was.) Libby Hill highlights ten representative (i.e. perfect) episodes.

Anthology Era

Screenwriter Jonathan L. Davis is glad that television storytelling has diversified to embrace the serialized anthology drama.

Documentary Prominence

Matthew Gilbert covers the current wave of documentary popularity on TV. And Richard Sandomir highlights sports documentaries as key for sports television today.

Saturday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: Nothing
- Losers: The night overall…as usual.

Network numbers from TV By the Numbers.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Breaking Story

TV writer Kate Powers describes the process of generating episode plots in the TV writers' room.

X-Files Revival

A short-order X-Files revival is reportedly close to happening.

Empire Stereotypes

Eric Deggans explores the issue of racial stereotyping in Empire.

Glee Coverage

Damian Holbrook looks back on Glee's legacy and its boldness. Kevin Fallon wants us to remember the progressive importance of Glee. Myles McNutt reviews the finale in light of the series' evolution over the years. James Poniewozik reviews the finale, as does Alyssa Rosenberg.

Friday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: Last Man Standing (ABC), Shark Tank (ABC), Dateline (NBC)
- Losers (excluding repeats): Glee (Fox), Hart of Dixie (CW)

Network numbers from TV By the Numbers.

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

Good TVeets

Friday, March 20, 2015


Check out a new set of Critical Studies in Television posts:

Google Fiber Ad Measurement

Sam Thielman reports that Google Fiber is rolling out an ad tracking system that distinguishes individual users and strategically times ads. Conor Dougherty also reports.

Yahoo Comedies

Todd Spangler looks at Yahoo's strategy of bringing attention to its video offerings with TV-style comedies.


The TV Academy has declared that Orange is the New Black must compete at the Emmys as a drama.

Unbundling in Canada

Canada's TV regulator has approved a "pick and play" ruling, which will allow pay TV subscribers to select smaller channel bundles starting in March 2016. Christine Dobby considers the impact on Canadian broadcasting, while Etan Vlessing notes that this could affect contracts with American content providers.

Netflix-Hasbro Deal

Netflix has renewed its deal with Hasbro.

Reilly & Empire

Joe Flint notes that Empire's success must be bittersweet for Kevin Reilly, who ordered the show for Fox but later was fired.

Thursday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: Grey’s Anatomy (ABC), Scandal (ABC)
- Positive Start: NCAA March Madness: Second Round Games (CBS)
- Honorable Mention: Dateline (NBC), The Blacklist (NBC)
- Disappointing: American Crime (ABC)
- Losers (excluding repeats): The Slap (NBC), The Vampire Diaries (CW), Reign (CW)

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

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

The CW's Magic

Sonia Saraiya looks at how supernatural shows are building The CW's success.

Colbert's PAC Lessons

Leigh Ann Caldwell says Stephen Colbert's satirical super PAC actually set a template for real presidential candidates to follow.

Fuller on Cancellation

Jennifer M. Wood talks to Bryan Fuller about his past shows and dealing with cancellation.

Anatomy of a Hit

Oriana Schwindt tries to deconstruct the factors that go into making a TV show a hit, beyond just ratings.

Letterman Farewell

Adam Buckman wonders why there isn't more buzz about David Letterman's impending departure.

S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Improvement

Todd VanDerWerff explores how Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. went from terrible to terrific.

Seinfeld Theme

Reed Dunlea talks to the creator of Seinfeld's theme song about how the tune came about.

Empire's Future

Emily Yahr compares Empire to other season one phenoms and wonders if it will go the Glee route and fade or follow the Scandal path to more growth.

Glee Ending

Glee ends tonight. Lesley Goldberg considers the series' legacy. Maria Tallarico says Empire and Nashville owe Glee a debt of gratitude. Joshua Alston covers Glee's evolution across the years. Out has an in-depth oral history of the show's pilot production.

OTT Interface

Adam Flomenbaum talks to the CEO of Mohu, maker of a device that organizes a viewer's over-the-air, over-the-top, and web content into one interface.

Online TV Coverage

David Lazarus says the new OTT options will break up bloated bundles, Holman Jenkins also says bundling is under pressure, but Alan Wolk explains why he doesn't think Apple's new service will immediately bring major change. Will Richmond's podcast covers Apple TV's possibility for success. Megan McCardle says those complaining about bundling need to think everything through. And net neutrality issues are cropping up already related to streaming services, as HBO, Showtime, and Sony are reportedly putting pressure on internet providers for "fast lanes" for their services.

Good TVeets

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Different World Episodes

Joshua Alston picks out ten episodes of A Different World that help define the series.

State of Canadian TV

D.K. Latta argues that Canadian-produced programming is doing better than some assume.

Merger Impact

David Goodfriend argues that the Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger would be bad for sports fans.

Faulkner Profile

Brian Steinberg profiles Harris Faulkner, a black female anchor at Fox News.

Empire on Hulu

Hulu has secured exclusive SVOD rights for the first season of  Empire.

Documentary Viewership

Stephen Battaglio says viewership of The Jinx proves that documentaries can draw significant audiences.

Sitcom Pilots

Michael Schneider highlights this year's sitcom pilot trends.

Sleepy Hollow Moving

Production of the next season of Sleepy Hollow will move to Atlanta, due to the trimming of tax incentives in its previous location of Wilmington, NC.

Transgender Soap Character

The Bold and the Beautiful has revealed a transgender character.

OTT Competition

Sam Thielman says the new Apple TV and other web services will put major pressure on traditional TV services. Emily Steel highlights all the new options for cord cutters. Phillip Swann considers the impact Playstation Vue could have, and David Katzmaier compares Vue and Sling TV. Will Richmond proposes criteria for judging the potential of OTT services. Cecilia Kang wonders if Apple could become the next Comcast. And a group of video app experts discuss the options in today's video apps market. The Verge offers a cord cutting cost calculator.

Wednesday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: Empire (Fox)
- Honorable Mention: Survivor (CBS)
- Losers (excluding repeats): Noting…38 percent of the line-up was encore telecasts.

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

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

Empire was crazy huge again, earning its highest ratings yet and smashing more records. It also dominated Twitter.

March Madness Numbers

Bill Cromwell lists financial and viewership figures tied to the NCAA basketball tournament.


March Madness is upon us, which means the annual re-discovery of TruTV is too. Joe Lucia praises TruTV's use of Twitter to remind us of its existence. And Todd VanDerWerff details the history of the channel.

News Strategies

Dylan Byers covers the overhaul being launched at MSNBC to counteract dropping ratings. Over at NBC News, the network is having success with re-airing Lester Holt's evening newscast after midnight. And over at PBS, NewsHour is finding success online.

Empire Coverage

Josef Adalian charts out Empire's impressive ratings feats and details what has been learned from its success. James Poniewozik looks at the game-changing nature of the series. The NYT collects answers as to why Empire is so addictive. Cynthia Littleton talks to showrunner Ilene Chaiken about the series. Linda Holmes covers the finale. Michael Schneider wonders why radio hasn't embraced Empire yet. Jason Lynch offers advice for Fox to keep the momentum going with Empire off the air. Tambay A. Obenson reminds us of the UPN show Platinum, a 2003 hip-hop drama, as does Jon Caramanica.

Good TVeets

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Global Viewership

Viacom International Media Networks has announced a new study into global viewership and international viewer relationships with television.

AT&T-DirecTV Merger

Alina Selyukh and Diane Bartz remind us that AT&T merging with DirecTV is still happening, as we're distracted by objection to Comcast-TWC.

Apple Streaming

Vikas Bajaj looks at how Apple TV could affect the future of TV streaming. Claire Atkinson predicts Comcast may be forced to play nice with Apple due to the NBCU merger deal. And Ben Thompson extensively analyzes how web TV services like Apple's are changing the structure of the TV industry.

Vue TV

Sony's internet TV service Playstation Vue has launched in three cities. Jason Abbruzzese sees it as coming close to replicating linear on the internet. Nathan Ingraham covers what you'll get for $49.99 a month. ESPN is not included, so this will be a test of the lure of sports.


Sleepy Hollow is getting a third season, which Tambay A. Obenson finds somewhat surprising. Also, Amazon wants a second season of Bosch.

Tuesday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: The Voice (NBC)
- Promising: Undateable (NBC), One Big Happy (NBC)
- Respectable Sampling: iZombie (CW)
- Losers (excluding repeats): The Mindy Project (Fox)

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

Analysis from Spotted.

Good TVeets

Fox News Influence

A blogger departing the Daily Caller laments the heavy influence of Fox News over conservative media.

Episodes & Friends

Ben Travers explores the connections between this season of Episodes and Friends.

Glee Still Matters

Louis Peitzman argues that Glee's celebration of queerness is still important.

Latino Media

Columbia University has released study on the state of Latinos in the media.

Net Neutrality Issues

The grilling of Tom Wheeler by Republicans has begun, and the GOP has launched an investigation into the FCC's net neutrality rules procedures. Michael Fitzgerald details what reporters need to know about net neutrality to cover the issue properly.

OTT Costs

Keach Hagey and Shalini Ramachandran look at the growing options for OTT TV access and the costs. Karen Fratti covers reactions to these new offerings and if these are a deal. Michael Learmouth says web TV won't end up cheaper than pay TV.

Emmy Comedies

The TV Academy has agreed to slot Shameless, Jane the Virgin, and Glee as comedies for Emmy Awards consideration. Anna Silman finds the new comedy rules baffling.

Empire Coverage

BuzzFeed reporters staffers discuss what Empire has meant for the representation of blackness on TV. Josef Adalian talks to showrunner Ilene Chaiken about the show's success, and Kevin Fallon talks to co-creator Danny Strong about building the show. And John Koblin covers Empire's stunning rise.

The Jinx Attention

Rick Kissell reports on the ratings spike for The Jinx's final episode. And Margaret Sullivan reflects on the New York Times' Jinx reporting. Rick Ellis thinks HBO should have thought more like Discovery in building buzz around The Jinx. Kevin Lincoln insists the concept of the spoiler can't apply to The Jinx. There are ethical questions about if the Jinx filmmakers should have involved police earlier.

CBS Data

Sam Thielman describes CBS's new efforts to use data to prove to advertisers that network TV is still powerful. Jon Lafayette also reports.

Fashion Police Pulled

EI has decided to put Fashion Police on hiatus.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Netflix Stock Doubt

Todd Spangler reports that Netflix stock has been downgraded, as its competitors expand.

OTT Experience

Colin Dixon says HBO Now may be an example of how the OTT experience can be better than the pay TV one.

Monday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: Dancing With the Stars (ABC), The Voice (NBC)
- Losers (excluding repeats): The Originals (CW), The Following (Fox), Jane the Virgin (CW), The Night Shift (NBC)

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

Analysis from Spotted.

Good TVeets

Monday, March 16, 2015

Walking Dead Advertising

Anthony Crupi breaks down the types of ads that air during The Walking Dead, including food ads that brush up against gore.

Broad City Critique

Rebecca Wanzo and Kyla Wazana Tompkins converse about why they find Broad City off-putting.

Jane the Virgin Discussion

Helen Z. Carefoot praises Jane the Virgin for prompting discussion of social issues.


Michelle Castillo highlights four shows that have successfully used South By Southwest as a marketing platform.

HBO Now Via Cablevision

Keach Hagey reports that Cablevision has made a deal to carry HBO Now for its broadband customers.

Apple TV Service

The WSJ reports that Apple is planning to launch a streaming TV service of about 25 channels, including broadcast networks not called NBC. Swanni says we've heard this before without it happening. Brian Stelter wonders if this could reinvent TV. Marc Gurman reports that NBC does want to get an authenticated app on Apple TV.

The Jinx Questions

Andy Dehnart summarizes the questions that are emerging today for the filmmakers of The Jinx, and Jason Lynch says it seems like the filmmakers are trying to hide something. Also, Anne Helen Petersen digs deeply into the final episode's aesthetics and finds some key manipulations. Rich Juzwiak also tries to pin down the timeline.

HBO's Sports Fee Threat

Will Richmond sees HBO Now as a threat to the huge cost of sports rights fees on pay TV.

Jinx Ending

The NYT has more on how the filmmakers of The Jinx got to the ending that aired tonight. Reactions to the ending from James Poniewozik, Jon Hendrickson, Alan Sepinwall, David Sims, Matt Brennan, Myles McNutt, Eric Deggans. Aly Semigran considers the possibility that The Jinx could result in justice. Bruce Fretts follows up with the directors about the ending.

All Access Affiliate Take

Harry A. Jessell reports on a deal in the works that would give CBS affiliates $.50-$1 per subscriber on CBS All Access.

Wheeler's Fight

Alex Byers and Kate Tummarello look at Tom Wheeler's battle ahead as he goes to Congress to defend the FCC's new net neutrality rules against GOP opposition. Timothy B. lee says the full report shows where the battles could come.

State of Comedy

Liz Shannon Miller and Ben Travers podcast about the state of the sitcom, including the innovations of The Last Man on Earth and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. The latest episode of The Spinoff also covers those sitcoms.

YouTube Subscription Service

Abhimanyu Ghoshal reports that YouTube has an SVOD service in the works.

Millennials & News

A new report finds that millennials like to keep up with the news from a range of sources, but not all want to have to pay for it.

After Sumner

Claire Atkinson considers what could happen at Viacom and CBS when Sumner Redstone's reign ends.

Hulu Complaints

Phillip Swan looks into why Hulu has gotten an F from the Better Business Bureau. Update: Things got even stranger with this story supposedly due to a software glitch.

Prime-Time Troubles

As upfronts loom, Brian Steinberg warns that the value of network prime time ad space is precipitously declining.

Sunday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: Nothing
- Losers (excluding repeats): Battle Creek (CBS), Revenge (ABC)

Network numbers from TV By the Numbers.

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

Good TVeets

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Twin Peaks Uncertainty

Liz Shannon Miller reports that contract issues may tank Twin Peaks' return. Update: Showtime says it's still moving forward with the project.

Comcast Block

John Bergmayer and Shiva Stella argue that it's absurd for Comcast to be block HBO Go app access via the Playstation 4.

Interconnection Disputes

Jon Brodkin notes that battles over interconnection and broadband network congestion keep coming.

Bachelor Tweeting

Jon Greenberg profiles Good TVeets favorite Dana Weiss, who has mastered the art of live-tweeting The Bachelor.

ER Oral History

TV Guide offers an oral history of ER's powerful "Love's Labor Lost" episode.

Making Last Man on Earth

David Fear covers the development of The Last Man of Earth.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

FOTB Viewing Party

Dawn Chan offers observations of a Fresh Off the Boat viewing party in New York City's Chinatown.

Arab Anchor Video

Robert Mackey follows the viral spread of a clip of a female Lebanese news anchor scolding a rude male guest.

Prime Time Adult Swim

John Jurgensen reports that Adult Swim's growing success has now brought a move into prime time.

Cord Cutting Apps

In the latest entry in her series on cord cutting in 2015, Sarah Perez highlights helpful apps.

TV's Rich History

James Wolcott offers a historical chronicle of TV's super-rich characters.

Biblical Trend

Neil Genzlinger notes the growth of Bible-themed programming.

CanCon Quotas

Canadian quotas requiring minimum percentages of Canadian-produced content have been relaxed, owing to on-demand competition.

Friday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: Shark Tank (ABC), Blue Bloods (CBS)
- Honorable Mention: The Amazing Race (CBS), Hawaii Five-O (CBS)
- Losers (excluding repeats): World’s Funniest Fails (Fox), Glee (Fox)

Network numbers from TV By the Numbers.

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

More Empire

Lacey Rose reports on plans for Empire's second season, as well as growing international interest in the series.

The Jinx Inquiry

HBO's documentary miniseries The Jinx has has tied in with a reopened inquiry into the death depicted in the series.

Life After The Bachelor

Samantha Rollins talked with former Bachelor and Bachelorette participants about being on the show and the aftermath.

Trekker Culture

Jason Wilson discusses the global spread of Star Trek fandom and its cultural productivity.

Selma Newsfilm

Aniko Bodroghkozy highlights the crucial importance of the TV newsfilm that captured the events at the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma in 1965.

Buress Series

Hannibal Buress is getting a series on Comedy Central.

ABC-Yahoo Expansion

ABC and Yahoo will share more content with each other, including Katie Couric material and clips from ABC shows.

100 Praise

Maureen Ryan prefaces her review of The 100 finale with praise for the series' thematic consistency and complexity, which she argues measures up favorably to The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones.

Google TV

Peter Kafka says Google only cares about its pay TV service insofar as it can help sell its fiber broadband service.

Queerness in Kids TV

Laurence Barber closes out his series on queerness in children's TV by considering future directions.

The Daily Show's Technological Triumphs

Rex Sorgatz chronicles the Daily Show's many successes in capitalizing upon new technological developments under Jon Stewart's tenure.

Amex Ad

American Express requested that Saturday Night Live run an ad in proximity to a sketch satirizing its ad campaign.

Simulcast Feats

CSI now owns the world record for largest TV drama simulcast of all time: 171 countries. HBO reportedly intends to simulcast Game of Thrones to 170 countries in April. Preventing 171? The UK.

Comcast Annoyed

Comcast is tired of people objecting to its Time Warner Cable merger.

Canadian Netflix

Ira Wagman tells us what Netflix in Canada tells us about Canada and Netflix.

Family Feud's Success

Keli Goff covers Family Feud's resurgence thanks to Steve Harvey and viral media.

Friday, March 13, 2015

GoT End Debate

James Hibberd covers discussions about how many seasons Game of Thrones should last.

Fine Brothers Show

YouTube stars the Fine Brothers are moving to TV courtesy of TruTV.

Samberg Emmys Host

Andy Samberg is your next Emmy Awards host.

Seinfeld Streaming

Joe Flint reports that Sony is close a streaming deal for Seinfeld reruns, with bidders including Hulu, Amazon, and Yahoo, but not Netflix.

Empire Music

Empire is looking to make money from its music, not just its ratings. Jon Caramanica says the soundtrack is "ambiguously modern."

Reality Dangers

A pair of helicopters crashed while filming a French reality TV show in Argentina earlier this week, resulting in ten deaths, with three prominent athletes among the victims. The remaining cast and crew are now headed back to France as an investigation is underway. Richard Verrier puts the accident in the context of rising tragedies for reality TV as the genre's demand for dramatic footage grows.

New In Media Res

Theme: Sony Hack

  • Monday, March 9, 2015 - Maya Montanez Smukler (UCLA & The New School) presents: Can the Sony Hack Prove Hollywood is Sexist? 
  • Tuesday, March 10, 2015 - Emily Carman (Chapman University) presents: Illicit Achive: Sony Hack as Access for Media Industry Studies 
  • Wednesday, March 11, 2015 - Ross Melnick (University of California-Santa Barbara) presents: A Cold Day in Culver City: Why the Sony Hack Further Complicates Future Archival Access for Scholars
  • Thursday, March 12, 2015 - Jennifer Porst (UCLA) presents: Lessons Learned from Sony’s handling of The Interview, Theaters, and VOD 
  • Friday, March 13, 2015 - Phil Scepanski (Vassar College) presents: The Interview: Cultural Superiority as International Satire

Bubble & Renewals

Josef Adalian offers a bubble meter on shows still awaiting word of their 2015-16 fate. Renewals are in for CBS's 2 Broke Girls, Mike & Molly, and Mom. Also, Syfy wants a second season of 12 Monkeys, and The Fall will be back for a five-episode third season.

Mad Men App

A new Mad Men app allows you to insert your own photos into "the Carousel pitch."

Thursday Ratings

Marc Berman's summary:
- Winners: The Big Bang Theory (CBS), Scandal (ABC), Mom (CBS)
- Disappointing: American Crime (ABC)
- Losers (excluding repeats): The Vampire Diaries (CW), Reign (CW), The Slap (NBC)

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

Analysis from Spotted and Fienberg.

If you missed Wednesday's ratings, Empire grew again in total viewers but stayed even in 18-49.

Racial Representations

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt has raised discussions of race this week; Alison Herman covers some of them (plus there was Alyssa Rosenberg's post) and offers the context of Tina Fey's past work. And Alyssa Rosenberg analyzes race in Scandal.

More on Kimmy and race from Hoai-Tran Bui and Arthur Chu. BuzzFeed covers the issue. Kat Chow covers the varied reactions to Dong.

Cable Viewership

Sam Thielman says new analysis from MoffettNathanson offers lessons for advertisers coming to cable upfronts, in that cable TV viewers "overwhelmingly watch cable for library content, not originals. And the originals they reliably watch aren't the big award winners, either."

Viacom Layoffs

Brian Steinberg covers the labor impact of Viacom's restructuring efforts, as layoffs hit its cable channels.

Walking Dead Companion Series

AMC has given a two-season order to its as-yet-untitled Walking Dead companion series. The producer of the series tells us some of what we can expect.

Empire's Success

Andy Greenwald says Empire's mideason success goes well beyond diversity and is more rooted in its entertainment quality and innovation. And Empire has now surpassed The Walking Dead as the most-tweeted show.

Mad Men Coverage

THR released an in-depth dive into Mad Men this week. If you don't have time to read the whole thing, Anna Silman highlights eight key takeaways. One of them is that AMC considered a possible Peggy or Sally spinoff. Also, Meredith Blake has coverage of a Mad Men museum exhibit.

Renew Looking

Brandon Nowalk argues that HBO should renew Looking, even though its ratings are low.

News Coverage

A new study finds sharp division in news trust between conservatives and liberals, and there's particularly little middle ground in judging Fox News.

Jeanine Poggi looks at how CNN is selling a balance of breaking news and original programming to advertisers at its upfront. One of CNN's new shows will be hosted by W. Kamau Bell. Mike Shields reports on CNN's push to host more original digital video online.

Over in the network world, NBC News is doing fine with Brian Williams so far, while Dr. Nancy Synderman has been fired.