Monday, February 27, 2017

Good TVeets

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Cable Lawsuit

Susan Crawford points to a lawsuit against Charter as a possible starting point for making cable companies accountable for taking advantage of customers.

Supergirl & LGBTQ Stories

Estelle Tang looks at how LGBTQ representation has become important to The CW's Supergirl and its viewers.

Black-ish Branded Content

Jason Lynch covers a Black-ish branded content spot that aired during last week's episode.

Millennial Men Shunning Pay TV

Toni Fitzgerld reports on new studies finding that Millennial men are particularly resistant to subscribing to cable TV.

True Crime Week at IMR

In Media Res last week focused on true crime:

AwesomenessTV Departure

AwesomenessTV's founder and CEO is exiting the company.

5-Year-Old Girls

A group of writers at LA Review of Books assesses the five-season run of Girls.

Sports News

NASCAR and the channels that host its races are making changes in hopes of reversing a ratings slide. FS1 has cancelled Fox Sports Live. Tal Shachar considers how sports media needs to evolve to stay vital.

Trump Stuff

Donald Trump seems to be good for Stephen Colbert, as well as cable news networks and SNL. But his Press Secretary raised major concerns Friday by blocking CNN and other members of the press from a press gaggle.

NBC News' Future

Sarah Ellison points to Matt Lauer as a cautionary tale for NBC News as it brings Megyn Kelly on board. And Gretchen Carlson is now reportedly in negotiations to join MSNBC.

Pilot Drama Directors

Nellie Andreeva notes that only one of 41 network drama pilots is helmed by a woman director.

New Emmy Categories

Music supervisors and reality casting directors can now win Emmys, plus the single-cam cinematography award will be split between one-hour and half-hour series.

Renewals & a Cancellation

Days of Our Lives will get a 52nd season at NBC, while Fox wants second seasons of The Mick and Lethal Weapon. But after only two episodes, CBS is done with Doubt.

Monday, February 20, 2017

WGA Awards

WGA Awards were handed out last night, and FX was the big TV winner. Other TV winners included BoJack Horseman, Confirmation, This is Us, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, John Oliver, Frontline, Hollywood Game Night, and SNL.

Netflix Reality TV

Natalie Jarvey explores how a new Netflix reality TV series could have global impact.

Trump Stuff

Lloyd Grove notes that Stephen Colbert seems to be finding a groove in the Trump era. Maxwell Tani observes that entertainment sites are now regularly covering politics. Paul Farhi sees the White House using unresponsiveness as a weapon against the press. Erik Wemple is concerned about how much attention Donald Trump is paying to Fox News.

Playwrights in TV

David Canfield analyzes the migration of playwrights to TV.

Gender Non-Binary Character

James Hibberd talks with the showruuners of Billions about the introduction of a gender non-binary character.

YouTube Ad Change

YouTube says it won't force you to sit through 30-second ads starting in 2018.

MTM at Flow

The new issue of Flow focuses on Mary Tyler Moore:

Sunday Ratings

Network numbers from TV By the Numbers.

Analysis from Spotted and Littleton.

Good TVeets

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Black Shows with Non-Black Viewership

Shadow and Act highlights shows with Black leads that are drawing significant non-Black viewership.

Netflix & Amazon at Festivals

Rebecca Ford and Scott Roxborough note how Amazon and Netflix have become forces at film festivals like Sundance and Berlin.

Golden Girls & AIDS

Jim Colucci looks back on The Golden Girls' boldness in tackling the AIDS epidemic.

New CST Posts

New blog posts at Critical Studies in Television:

Fake News Marketing Campaign

20th Century Fox has apologized for using fake news to market a movie.

Year in Sports Media Report

Nielsen has released a report on 2016 in sports media.

Fighting Fake News

Both Wikipedians and librarians are joining the fight against fake news.

Billions Boost

Jason Lynch notes Showtime's big marketing push for Billions comes as part of a defining year for the premium channel.

Awards & Indie TV

Aymar Jean Christian is frustrated by the WGA Awards' ignorance of independent television.

TV Writer Bargaining

David Robb assesses TV writer claims about declining earnings as WGA contract negotiations loom. (Note: A number of people in the comments section are calling this analysis misleading.)

Defining BBC America

Josef Adalian talked to BBC America president Sarah Barnett about the channel's brand and expansion beyond British TV.

Spectrum Auction Update

The head of the National Association of Broadcasters says the spectrum auction has been a disappointment, but The Economist insists the auction is still a model to be followed elsewhere. A Vermont PBS station reaped a windfall in the auction, while a New Hampshire station brought in a lot of money for its owner but will be shut down. Howard University opted not to sell its TV license and pulled out of the spectrum auction. The auction will expire at the end of March.

Full Frontal Ratings

Oriana Schwindt identifies a ratings surge for Full Frontal with Samantha Bee in 2017, this year of Trump.

The Royals Renewed

The Royals is getting a fourth season on E!.

Television Graveyards

Jason Koebler takes us inside warehouses filling up with old TV sets, as the challenges of safe disposal accrue.

Trump & TV

Shane Savitsky analyzed Donald Trump's tweeting patterns and aligned that with morning TV viewership. Conor Friedersdorf notes that anyone consuming news from conservative outlets got a very different impression of Trump's press conference last week than others. And Jim Rutenberg highlights a story of potential political censorship related to Trump and the media at a local station in Texas.

BIg Bang Theory Renewal

The Big Bang Theory is reportedly close to a two-season renewal at CBS.

Viacom-Hulu Deal Expires

Janko Roettgers notes that a Viacom-Hulu licensing deal has expired, as Viacom retrenches in pay TV under new CEO Bob Bakish.

Morning Boosts

Brian Steinberg notes that the network morning shows have offered a good platform for executives on the rise.

SNL Branded Content

When Saturday Night Live returns from its brief hiatus, you'll get to see its first examples of branded content.

Verizon-Yahoo Deal

Verizon has reportedly renegotiated a better merger deal for Yahoo thanks to the latter's recent security breaches.

Oscars Sold Out

If you were planning to spend a few million for an ad during the Oscars, you're too late; it's sold out.

CNN News

Venezuela's government pulled CNN's Spanish-language service off its cable providers last week for making what it deemed unfair and false reports about the country. Back in the US, it's Jared Kushner who doesn't like what he's seeing on CNN. He complained to Time Warner about it, which Klint Finley finds interesting in light of the need for federal approval of Time Warner's merger with AT&T (which shareholders have approved). Jeff Zucker has said Donald Trump's attacks on CNN haven't harmed the outlet's brand or advertising support and says they may even be boosting morale among staffers.

Apple & Video

Mark Gurman explains why Apple has yet to revolutionize TV as pledged. Vindu Goel looks at Apple's plan to move into original video content production, and Will Richmond and Colin Dixon's podcast contrasts Apple's moves in video with Facebook's.

Unbundling & Rebundling

Jeremy G. Phillips points out that a wave of unbundling thanks to the internet is now reversing itself.

This Network Season

Jason Lynch talked to the five broadcast network presidents about how this season has looked so far.

Cannon Out at AGT

Nick Cannon has reportedly quit America's Got Talent after NBC took issue with what he said on a Showtime stand-up special.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Good TVeets: Special Trump Presser Edition

Good TVeets

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

NBC Winning

Toni Fitzgerald says NBC looks likely to win this season's 18-49 ratings race.

PewDiePie Dumped

Disney has cut ties with YouTube star PewDiePie over anti-Semitic posts. Paul Armstrong sees this as a lesson for brands to be careful with influencer relationships. Emma Grey Ellis points out that PewDiePie's racism is not new or unknown. Jacob Clifton sees this as a symptom of much larger problems.

Young Pope's Victory

Josef Adalian highlights the unexpected success of The Young Pope for HBO.

Black Bachelorette

ABC has introduced its first Black bachelorette. Melanie McFarland says this is late in coming, and Linda Holmes analyzes the dynamics in play.

Fox News Investigation

Fox News is reportedly under federal investigation over payouts stemming from the Roger Ailes sexual harassment claims. There are also hacking and surveillance allegations.

Pilots Coverage

Daniel Holloway and Elizabeth Wagmeister track network pilot trends. Lesley Goldberg features producers with multiple pilots in development this season.

Network News Anchor Interview

Brian Steinberg conducted a joint interview with the three nightly network news anchors: Scott Pelley, Lester Holt, and David Muir.

Trump & Murdoch

Jim Rutenberg highlights the ties between Donald Trump and Rupert Murdoch. Staffers at Murdoch's Wall Street Journal are reportedly concerned about pro-Trump treatment by the paper, while Fox News was criticized for its light treatment of the Flynn resignation story. Eric Peckham analyzes the tenets of Murdoch's business strategies.

Trump & the Media

Kelly Field talked to academics who study reality TV about how Donald Trump has used the genre's techniques in politics. Emily Yahr considers how reality TV could change in the wake of his election. Hank Stuever notes that Trump himself appears to be addicted to TV. John Oliver will try to take advantage of that by running Trump-targeted ads on the cable news morning shows intended to educate Trump on key issues.

Trump is favoring only conservative outlets in taking questions at recent news conferences, and it's leading reporters to start to turn on each other.Morning Joe says Kellyanne Conway won't be back again because they're tired of her shit, part of a larger turn against her.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Good TVeets

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Good TVeets

Saturday, February 11, 2017

TV & Trump

Erik Wemple notes that Fox News has become Trump TV. Caroline Framke observes that the rest of cable news is becoming more like The Daily Show in covering Trump. Jeet Heer doesn't think comedy will bring Trump down, but it'll help his opponents survive his reign. Sonia Saraiya reflects on the changing meaning of TV in this new political reality.

Sean Spicer's press briefings are drawing great daytime ratings. The NYT offers visualizations of how Spicer is shaking up press briefing traditions.

Hadas Gold considers the impact of cable news outlets and pundits realizing Trump is watching their shows.

Daytime Drama Podcast

The new episode of the podcast Advanced TV Herstory focuses on the cultural history of the daytime drama.

Wed/Thur/Fri Ratings

Wednesday network numbers from TV By the Numbers. Final ratings. Cable ratings.
Analysis from Spotted and Schwindt.

Thursday network numbers from TV By the Numbers. Final ratings. Cable ratings.
Analysis from Spotted and Schwindt.

Friday network numbers from TV By the Numbers.
Analysis from Spotted.

The Smothers Brothers Today

50 years after The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour premiered, David Bianculli looks back on its powerful political satire.

Planet Earth II's Lessons

Jeremy Enger finds in Planet Earth II lessons for nature documentary filmmakers to stand out in a crowded landscape. But Colin Dickey has concerns about what such documentaries obscure.

A&E & Snapchat

Jason Lynch looks at A&E Networks' move into Snapchat originals, joining other media companies already there.

Teen TV Praise

Margaret Lyons sings the praises of teen TV dramas in an era when dark prestige dramas get all the acclaim.

Streaming Across Borders

John Hopewell reports on a new European Union streaming portability agreement, which will let streaming service subscribers in the EU access their accounts when they're traveling in another EU country.

Renewals & Cancellations

ABC has renewed its Shondaland Thursday trio of shows, while MTV has cancelled Mary + Jane and Loosely Exactly Nicole, leaving Sweet/Vicious on the bubble.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Good TVeets

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Conway Ethics Violation

Democrats are calling for an investigation into a possible ethics violation by Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway for plugging Ivanka Trump's clothing line on Fox News. The House Oversight Committee may call for a review. The White House has reportedly "counseled" Conway about this, and she will appear on Fox News tonight to address it.

The Simpsons' Gay Milestone

Alan Siegel points to a 1997 Simpsons episode with John Waters as a key moment in the historical representation of LGBT characters on TV.

State of the Broadcast Industry

Ooyala is offering a State of the Broadcast Industry report download.

Netflix Merchandise

Netflix will move into licensing merchandise and toys tied to its shows.

Business-Minded FCC

Adonis Hoffman notes the shift from Tom Wheeler to Ajit Pai also means a shift from a pro-consumer bent the FCC to a pro-business one.

UTA's Statement

Caroline Framke says UTA is making a big statement by cancelling its Oscar party and hosting a rally for refugees instead.

NBC & American Idol

Daniel Holloway reports that NBC is talking with FremantleMedia about resurrecting American Idol. Andy Dehnart considers why NBC would want to bring Idol back.

Costas Stepping Back

Bob Costas will cede his Olympics hosting duties to Mike Tirico.

This is Us-Fueled Hope

John Koblin notes that the success of NBC's This is Us is fueling network hopes that hits can still happen.

Remembering Must See TV

A group of former NBC execs gathered to look back on the network's Must TV era, particularly ER, Seinfeld, and Will & Grace.

Time Warner News

Time Warner reported strong quarterly earnings, with good results at CNN helping out. We also learned that HBO Now has grown to 2 million subscribers.

Disney News

Disney released Q1 earnings yesterday; Forbes has key takeaways. ESPN continues to be a revenue drag, but Barron's says Disney's stock is still a winner. On a conference call, CEO Bob Iger said he's eyeing OTT deals, including for ESPN. Disney also announced an ad sales restructuring for its entertainment channels.

Megyn Kelly's Past

Caitlin Flanagan considers the extent to which Megyn Kelly's Fox News past will follow her to NBC.

Nielsen Digital Measurement Granted Accreditation

The Media Rating Council has granted accreditation to Nielsen's cross-platform measurement service, which incorporates digital viewership into TV ratings. Jason Lynch says ad buyers will be pleased by this development.

Netflix Renewals

Netflix has renewed Love and The OA.

WV Public Broadcasting Threatened

The governor of West Virginia is proposing the elimination of state funding for public broadcasting as part of a new budget plan. On behalf of West Virginia Public Broadcasting, Susan C. Hogan and Ted Armbrecht explain why this would be "unwise and irresponsible."

Viacom Overhaul

Jason Lynch reports on Viacom's attempts to revive its cable TV portfolio, which will see resources diverted from lesser channels like TV Land and Logo to the "flagship six" channels, including MTV, BET, Nickelodeon, and Comedy Central. As part of this overhaul, Spike TV is rebranding as Paramount Network. Spike TV's president talked to Lesley Goldberg about the rebranding plan. Viacom's CEO talked to Deadline about the new moves. And his earnings call, the CEO also discussed limiting licensing its shows to streaming services.

Tuesday Ratings

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

Analysis from Spotted and Schwindt.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Good TVeets

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Book on Internet-Distributed Television

Amanda Lotz has released a new book on internet-distributed television that is available open access online and in print on Amazon.

Demo History

Anthony Crupi says focus on the 18-49 demo began with an early 1960s ABC sales tactic and should be viewed as obsolete now.

3D Failure

Katie Morley reports the last two major 3D TV set manufacturers, LG and Sony, have stopped making them.

New Flow Issue

New Flow issue featuring:

Procedurals' Cable Slump

Nellie Andreeva reports that off-network procedurals are less in demand on cable, with movies increasingly taking their place.

Monday Ratings

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

Analysis from Spotted and Schwindt.

Vizio TV Set Suit

Vizio has settled a lawsuit with the FTC over internet-connected TVs that track owner behavior without consent.

Union Threat

Jonathan Handel notes new GOP legislation pushing to spread "Right to Work" laws nationwide could imperil Hollywood unions.

Late-Night Ratings

Oriana Schwindt notes Stephen Colbert beat Jimmy Fallon in total viewers this week, as Fallon's viewership is declining.

AMC's Future

Gerry Smith looks at AMC's challenge ahead as The Walking Dead's ratings decline.

Pai's Plans

Cecilia Kang reports on Ajit Pai moving quickly to roll back FCC regulations, with net neutrality in his sights, and Sameer Rao notes that controversy is following.

Bravo's New Look

Bravo has changed its logo, jingle, and color palette in an effort to appeal more to men.

CBS Fridays

Stephen Battaglio looks at the success of CBS's Friday night broad-appeal programming strategy.

Comedy Execs Interviewed

Josef Adalian talked with comedy execs at FX, HBO, Amazon, TBS, and an upcoming Verizon-Awesomeness premium content service about the state of TV comedy.

Min Leaving THR

Janice Min is leaving her position as top editor at The Hollywood Reporter and will be replaced by Matt Belloni.


NBC renewed The Good Place for a second season. Amazon renewed Mozart in the Jungle for a fourth season, as well as Red Oaks for a final season.

Trump Coverage

Brian Stelter notes that Donald Trump has taken to calling polls that don't favor him "fake news."  Maureen Ryan characterizes Trump as like "a showrunner who doesn't take notes from anyone."

Philip Bump observes that Fox News is helping to back Trump's claims that anti-Trump protesters are violent and illegitimate. John Cassidy considers the problem that Trump seems to have his world view shaped by watching cable news.

Trump claimed the media is underreporting Islamic terrorists attacks; the AP has offered a fact-check. Mike Cavender, executive director of the Radio-TV-Digital News Association, calls it a ridiculous accusation.

CNN has confirmed that it declined a Kellyanne Conway interview. Jim Rutenberg points to her "Bowling Green massacre" reference as a turning point in fake news. But Conway was back on CNN this afternoon in an interview with Jake Tapper.

Rolling Stone talked to John Oliver about crafting comedy in the Trump era. Ian Crouch analyzes types of comedy aimed at hurting Trump.

Tech leaders are speaking out against Trump's immigration ban.

The White House is reportedly searching for a communications director to take that burden off Sean Spicer.

SNL & Trump

Melissa McCarthy did an amazing impression of Trump press secretary Sean Spicer on Saturday Night Live this weekend. (So good that it's overshadowed that host Kristen Stewart said the f-word in her monologue.) Spicer has tried to laugh it off, but there are reports that it got under Trump's skin, especially because Spicer was portrayed by a woman and made to look especially weak. Anna North explains why the cross-gender casting is so crucial. Now people are calling for SNL to bring on more women, such as Rosie O'Donnell, to portray White House figures, perhaps the entire administration. Cynthia Littleton notes that political controversy is paying off for SNL's ratings this season.

It's being reported that SNL is considered a prime-time spinoff of Weekend Update.

24: Legacy Coverage

24: Legacy followed the Super Bowl; Oriana Schwindt on its unimpressive ratings start, as it became the lowest-rating entertainment show to ever follow the Super Bowl. It did ok on night two (plus The Masked Scheduler has post-Super Bowl programming analysis at that link).

James Poniewozik says the premiere episode was like an ad for Islamophobia, In an interview with THR, the producers defend their storytelling choices. Paul Tassi says the show is "terribly tone deaf."

Super Bowl Coverage

Josef Adalian reports on the Super Bowl ratings. With extra ads in overtime, Fox pulled in $500 million in ad sales across the day. Donald Trump's pre-Super Bowl interview fell short of Obama's previous results there. Colin Dixon reports on the streaming figures; he suggests an audience of about 2 million. Phillip Swann notes that there were technical problems with streams. Will Richmond looks back on the NFL season's ratings problems.

In Canada, many watched on Fox rather than CTV to see the American ads. Toni Fitzgerald breaks down the ads by numbers and notes that it was the second-most ad-cluttered Super Bowl ever, as ads took up 51 minutes and 30 seconds.

Lili Loofborouw reads a lot of the Super Bowl ads as brands bailing on Donald Trump. Alia E. Dastagir questions if any of the companies with politically charged ads will actually follow through on political action. Trump supporters didn't like Budweiser's immigrant ad; that ended up as the most-watched ad online. Thomas Heath has detail on the 84 Lumber ad. Jody Patterson wants funny ads back.

R. Thomas Umstead highlghts the ads that ran for cable channels and streaming services. Jason Lynch reports on ads for Netflix's Stranger Things and Hulu's The Handmaid's Tale.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Good TVeets

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Good TVeets

Please Like Me Over

The creator of Please Like Me announced on Twitter that the series has ended with its fourth season.

Cable Coverage Estimates

Sports TV Ratings has a great chart listing the estimated number of homes all nationally measured cable channels are in.

Few Shows Gaining

Toni Fitzgerald points out that only seven veteran shows this season are showing 18-49 gains over last year.

Oxygen Rebranding

Oxygen will rebrand, still targeting women but with crime-focused programming.

Subscriber Losses

Toni Fitzgerald covers Nielsen figures on cable channels experiencing the biggest subscriber declines. NBCU is shutting down the channel at the top of the list, Esquire, and has shut down another channel, Cloo.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Emmy Drama

Todd VanDerWerff sees an exciting race for the Best Drama Emmy coming for the first time in awhile.

New Doctor

Peter Capaldi has announced his Doctor Who stint will end with this year's Christmas special. Liz Giuffre says it's time for a woman to get the role, and Alasdair Stuart wants to see someone other than a white man play the Doctor.

NBC & Conservatism

Page Six reports insider buzz that NBC News chief Andy Lack is trying to push his outlet more to the right politically, hence the hires of Megyn Kelly and Greta Van Susteren. Kelly's arrival apparently pushing out Tamron Hall is raising concerns among Black journalists.

Trump Coverage

The White House is having its surrogates avoid CNN, and Mike Pence will appear on four of the five major Sunday public affairs programs, with the fifth being CNN's State of the Union.

Sopan Deb looks at Trump's battle against the pop culture world that he once aggressively courted. Sam Bee will host a roast of Trump the same night as the annual White House Correspondents' Associaton dinner, which high-profile publications are starting to pull out of.

Cynthia Littleton notes that late-night hosts are heavily addressing Trump's Muslim travel ban order. Vikram Murthi reports that the ban could start affecting TV casting. Rupert Murdoch's sons offered a pro-immigration statement.

Lili Loofbourow covers Kellyanne Conway's rise to master spin doctor. Conway has had a busy 24 hours.

Early FCC Moves

The FCC's new chairman Ajit Pai vows to roll back industry regulations,  and Harry A. Jessell says Pai will be a champion for broadcasters. Pai has pulled back his predecessor's set-top box plan and has dropped some companies from a federal plan to supply offer internet access to low-income homes. The sole Democrat on the commission right now is highly critical of Pai's early moves.

Super Bowl Ads & Promos

Brian Steinberg has been on the Super Bowl beat this week, with articles on the pressure on host Fox and big advertisers, the bevy of show promos Fox will air across the day, how Trump makes things tricky for advertisers, the decline of the two-minute ad trend, and notable ad efforts from Proctor & Gamble and Mercedes Benz.

Maria Godoy covers the debate over Budweiser's immigration ad. Todd Spangler has predictions for streaming numbers. Bill Cromwell highlights some "firsts" happening across the day, including a virtual reality feed. Joe Flint highlights the heavy coverage on Fox and ESPN hours before the game. Ashley Rodriquez charts the Super Bowl's unique status in an era of fragmented viewership.

New In Media Res

Last week's In Media Res focused on Post-Truth

Friday, February 3, 2017

Good TVeets

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Good TVeets