Today's News: Our Take


SLEEPLESS NIGHTS

ABC is developing a drama series based on last year's woefully underrated Al Pacino-Hilary Swank thriller Insomnia. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the potential series would pick up two years after the film left off. read more

COPYCAT?

Madonna is being sued by the son of late photographer Guy Bourdin, who claims the pop superstar-turned kiddie author's "Hollywood" video copied at least 11 of his father's photos published in French Vogue from the 1950s to the '80s. Samuel Bourdin is seeking unspecified damages. read more

JOE DOUGH

Here's some "TV News" scoop from the current issue of TV Guide magazine (on sale now): Don't feel too bad for Matt Kennedy Gould, the ultimate practical-joke victim on Spike TV's faux reality romp The Joe Schmo Show. According to a show insider, the affable lug will walk away from the Oct. 28 finale with a six-figure check and other prizes — just enough to keep the producers from going straight to hell. read more

Navy NCIS CBS already has a cop...

Navy NCIS
CBS already has a cop show with a funny title and criminalists doing lots of flashy forensics work. It's called CSI. Click. Wait, let me just say, Mark Harmon looks great with white hair. Still studly, after all these years. But I'm still clickin' back over to Gilmore Girls.

Gilmore Girls
This week's episode was so much better than last week's stressfest. Why? Lorelai and Rory deal with all that separation anxiety by having some actual fun. On Rory's first night at Yale, her too-cool-to-be-real mom invites the whole dorm to a pizza party. "Bring some music!" she tells the coeds. "But if it's Evanescence, you'll be severely mocked." Nice one. But how can Lorelai's antics — like singing into a hairbrush microphone — not embarrass Rory? C'mon, she's a teenage girl being upstaged by her mom, in front of all her new gal pals! How can Rory ever live up to such coolness? Lorelai is read more

THE EYE HAS IT

Bolstered by strong debuts for Two and a Half Men, Joan of Arcadia, Cold Case and The Handler, CBS won the first week of the new TV season among total viewers. The Eye network averaged 14 million viewers, followed by NBC (12.6 million), ABC (10.6 million), Fox (6.0 million), the WB (4 million) and UPN (3.4 million). NBC was tops in all major demo categories (including adults 18-49), while ABC was the only network showing any growth over fall 2002. Other freshman series showing early promise include NBC's Las Vegas and The Lyon's Den (tied at No. 31) and ABC's Hope & Faith (No. 34). Last week's top five shows overall were CSI, Friends, ER, Law & Order and Everybody Loves Raymond. read more

Navy NCIS CBS already has a cop...

Navy NCIS
CBS already has a cop show with a funny title and criminalists doing lots of flashy forensics work. It's called CSI. Click. Wait, let me just say, Mark Harmon looks great with white hair. Still studly, after all these years. But I'm still clickin' back over to Gilmore Girls.

Gilmore Girls
This week's episode was so much better than last week's stressfest. Why? Lorelai and Rory deal with all that separation anxiety by having some actual fun. On Rory's first night at Yale, her too-cool-to-be-real mom invites the whole dorm to a pizza party. "Bring some music!" she tells the coeds. "But if it's Evanescence, you'll be severely mocked." Nice one. But how can Lorelai's antics — like singing into a hairbrush microphone — not embarrass Rory? C'mon, she's a teenage girl being upstaged by her mom, in front of all her new gal pals! How can Rory ever live up to such coolness? Lorelai is read more

OSCAR BAIT

Ridley Scott loves his epics. The Gladiator helmer has sealed a deal with 20th Century Fox to direct the Crusader-era saga Kingdom of Heaven, Variety reports. The pic revolves around a young blacksmith who becomes a knight and helps defend Jerusalem against the Crusaders. And when he's not busy with that, he meets and falls in love with a princess. (If only it were that easy...) read more

Meet Cable's New Wildlife Hunks

Martin Kratt's calling in by satellite phone from a snowy outpost in mountainous Australia. He's there with his brother Chris to film segments about kangaroos for their new National Geographic Channel series Be the Creature, which debuts Sunday night at 8 pm/ET. "It's been raining for four days," Kratt says. "The kangaroos have a great coat of fur that repels the rain, but we are getting soaked!"


TV Guide Online: The hook of your show is that you and your brother Chris not only hang out with animals in the wild, you mimic their behaviors and assimilate into their environments. Why?
Martin Kratt:
We get such a better feel for the animals when we try to do what they do. You can see what it takes, and you can appreciate the physicality. You can also understand the struggle for survival they face on a daily basis. You know, we've been here in the rain, and I don't know where that phrase "creature comforts" comes from. These kangaroos have no she read more

Hotel's Charla Loses "Virginity"!

We admit it: At first, we didn't really get Charla. Although she was among the hottest of the sunbathing beauties on Fox's summer skin parade, Paradise Hotel, the loner seemed adrift in the game and, therefore, a likely candidate for early eviction. But as the weeks (and weeks and weeks!) dragged on, she worked out a buddy system with fellow outcast Dave, and together with sly pin-ups Keith and Tara, they forged a powerful alliance that withstood everything from muscle-head Zack's crude manipulation to bipolar body builder Toni's over-the-top tantrums. And, by God, we also figured out our heroine. We finally got her! She wasn't pulling a Garbo at all, she was just waiting for some folks to show up with whom she could share more than sex on the beach — the drink, that is, not the act. Now, as the guilty pleasure airs what we're sure will be its "shocking" finale (Wednesday at 8 ET), the founder of Team Barbie read more

The Skinny on Survivor's Ryan


After leading us to believe that whiny Osten was going to get the boot last week on Survivor, the Morgan tribe pulled a switcheroo and voted out the castaway they assumed was the weakest link, Ryan Shoulders. The eager 23-year-old was disappointed to be ousted so early, but more annoyed that he was saddled with the disparaging nickname "Skinny Ryan."

"I think it was Osten that came up with the name, but he came up with nicknames for everybody," Shoulders tells TV Guide Online. "Nobody called me 'Skinny Ryan' to my face, except for Andrew and then everyone wrote down 'Skinny Ryan' on their papers at tribal council. I don't want to be stuck with a nickname that Andrew calls me."

Perhaps he could exact revenge on the so-far-unsuccessful leader of the Morgan tribe by giving him an unflattering new moniker. "I know some certain words that could go along with Andrew," he laughs, "But I'm not sure if I should comment further." read more

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