The No. 1 broadcast network delivered a welcome jolt of energy to its day in the TCA press-tour spotlight when CBS CEO Leslie Moonves, one of network TV's most boisterous showmen and champions, took the stage Monday morning for the first time since 2005 (filling in at the last minute for entertainment president Nina Tassler, called away for a friend's funeral). Bluntly bullish on CBS's prospects for the new season ("We're confident we're going to be up this year"), Moonves credited stability as a primary factor for the network's long-term success.
"It's great to be able to renew 20 shows. It really is. ... When you can do that, it makes it easier to launch shows when you're launching them in positions that are behind successful shows. Obviously, it doesn't work all the time [RIP, Vegas and Golden Boy], but it leads to a degree of being able to win year after year." Moonves suggested the streak won't last forever, pointing to NBC's fall from grace when it couldn't find new hits to replace Friends and ER. But given the lackluster state of so much of this new fall season, it's hard to imagine any rival unseating CBS anytime soon.
Whether it's the self-absorbed (and completely un-self-aware) Gob Bluth on Arrested Development or Jack Donaghy's ridiculously competitive archnemesis Devon Banks on 30 Rock, Will Arnett is best known for his more, shall we say, eccentric roles. But for...
In our very first issue, TV Guide Magazine polled the top names in TV — including Ed Sullivan, Milton Berle, Jackie Gleason and Sid Caesar — on what the new medium had taught them. "TV is a great way to reach millions of people — who, luckily, can't reach me," Berle quipped. For 60 years, this publication has chronicled the evolution of what remains the world's most dominant source of entertainment. And while viewers now have hundreds of channels at their fingertips and can watch whatever they want, whenever they want, on a multitude of platforms, one thing hasn't changed: Audiences are hungry for great fare, from I Love Lucy to Modern Family and Playhouse 90 to Homeland.
We spoke to 13 titans of TV and asked them a few questions about where TV has been, what it looks like now and where it's headed.
Up All Night
NBC's Up All Night should have been a hit. The show came with a strong comedy pedigree: It starred Christina Applegate, Will Arnett and Maya Rudolph and was produced by Saturday Night Live don Lorne Michaels. At the center was what seemed to be a relatable premise for the young adults watching the network's upscale comedies: a hip, young couple adjusts to life with a baby.
But two years after creator Emily Spivey shot the pilot (then called Alpha Mom), Up All Night is all but gone, suffering the death of a thousand tinkers. A heavily touted plan to morph the show into a multi-camera sitcom is now mostly abandoned, and some of the outlandish ideas bandied about for the revamp (including one idea involving rock star...
And so the fall TV season officially begins tonight — with a bit of a whimper in the new (though it already feels a bit musty) CBS sitcom Partners (8:30/7:30c). Remember how groundbreaking Will & Grace was back in the day? Also how hilarious it was?
Sex and the City alum Michael Patrick King and comedian Whitney Cummings have just won the TV pilot equivalent of the Super Lotto. Comedy directing master James Burrows has signed on to direct King's...
Romantically Challenged, ABC's comedy about four friends trying to find love, will debut on Monday, April 12 at 9:30/8:30c.
The series centers on Rebecca Thomas (Alyssa Milano), a recent...
Patricia Heaton and Kelsey Grammer in Back to You by Joe Viles/Fox
If you could just ignore those pesky months between September and December, Fox would be sitting pretty. The challenge each year for this network is how to schedule a fall start that will live up to the blockbuster spring finish provided by late-arriving shows like American Idol and (even a diminished) 24.In the last of the weeks Upfront presentations, Fox Entertainment president Peter Ligouri made the curious choice of putting himself in the middle of a 24 parody, trading exchanges on the phone with clips of Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland, not in attendance in New York this year) from 24, in which Jack addressed the president. The ticking-clock (ticking bomb?) metaphor isnt the most natural fit for a sales presentation, youd think. And given that the first thing anyone in Los Angeles (where Ive been the last three weeks) wants to talk to me about is the steep decline in 24s quality this season, is this really putting your best foot forward? ...
For months, the thing about Heroes that bothered me most was Milo Ventimiglias hair: specifically, that dreaded dangling forelock Peter Petrelli kept playing with, as if in thrall to a fetish. Ive long wanted the boy to get a haircut. But not like this!Quite the horrifying climax to the March cliff-hanger (no new episodes until April 23), as Sylar pinned that dupe Mohinder to the ceiling while slicing into Peter Petrellis skull to see why Peter ticks like Sylar, only less murderously. Blood drops from Peters forehead onto the floor, followed by that hank of hair. I cringed, then I cheered. Well done.The episode was a crackerjack thrill ride with one reversal after another. Simone rising from the dead? Shut up! Its really Candice, the slinky shape-shifter! Mrs. Bennet betraying her hubby, in cahoots with The Company? Shut up! Its really Candice, the slinky shape-shifter! What fun.By the way, I love how the writers have evolved HRG from sinister man...