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Ask Matt: Serial-Killer Thrillers, CSI: NY and Criminal Minds Renewals

Hugh Dancy

Send questions and comments to askmatt@tvguidemagazine.com and follow me on Twitter!

Question: This TV mid-season has brought us three dramas about serial killers: The Following, Hannibal and Bates Motel. Why do competing networks often program similar TV shows? Remember the recent explosion of shows set in the 1960s (The Playboy Club, Pan Am, The Hour)? Last year we had the more successful slate of fantasy universe-meets-modern universe shows (Grimm, Once Upon a Time). What gives? Are the networks just waiting around for word of what their rivals are doing so that they can make a duplicate? Or is it all just coincidence? — Sam

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The Tuesday Playlist: Justified's Manhunt, Preacher's Daughters, Hell's Kitchen

Jim Beaver

The title of this week's pivotal episode of FX's Justified (Tuesday, 10/9c), "Get Drew," may evoke memories of an Elmore Leonard classic (Get Shorty), but Justified is a modern classic in its own right, honoring Leonard's spirit with wit and suspenseful grit and twisty plotting that just won't let up. That's especially true after last week's revelation of the identity of the long-missing and much-sought-after Drew Thompson, who sets off a multi-faceted manhunt.

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Ask Matt: The Good Wife, Scandal, Smash, Walking Dead, NCIS, Grey's, Once Spin-off

Kerry Washington and Tony Goldwyn

Send questions and comments to askmatt@tvguidemagazine.com and follow me on Twitter!

Question: Along with Parenthood, The Good Wife is in my opinion still one of the best dramas on network TV. And the mock trial episode was, as you recently noted, the best so far of the season. However, I have recently been feeling that this show has been lacking, not necessarily in quality (with the exception of the whole Kalinda's husband debacle), but in freshness. For me the show has been very stagnant. A case here, a little Will/Alicia flirtation there, mixed in with Peter's campaign and/or Eli's troubles. Every week is pretty much the same thing with a different guest star. Nothing seems to be new or fresh. What's most frustrating about the lack of freshness is how easily they could remedy that. I would be extremely interested in watching what Cary proposed unfold, for he and Alicia to form their own firm. Watching Cary and Alicia go head to head with Will and Diane would be a welcome change to the same old same old.

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Rosie O'Donnell to Make Cameo on Smash

Rosie O'Donnell

Rosie O'Donnell is heading to Smash.

"On my way to film SMASH - love that show so much ... I am playing me - luckily I have done a lot of research ;)" she tweeted on Tuesday morning. "It's the TONY AWARDS episode," she added.

An email to NBC was not immediately returned.

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After A Lackluster Year, Networks Aim to Make More Noise This Pilot Season

Michael J Fox

The broadcast networks are desperate for your attention. They know that you're overwhelmed with their programming and distracted by cable, the Internet and now even streaming services. Plus, they didn't produce a new major hit this season, and their ratings are suffering for it.

That's why this year's crop of nearly 100 series pilots at the five networks (48 comedy and 50 drama from the five networks) is all about being big: big stars, big producers, big concepts.

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Pilot Season: NBC Orders Three Dramas, Four Comedies from Carlton Cuse, Dick Wolf, More

NBC logo

NBC has given pilot orders to two dramas and three comedies from Carlton Cuse, Dick Wolf, Jason Bateman and others.

From Lost's Cuse, The Sixth Gun is a supernatural Western that follows the story of... read more

Keck's Exclusives: Smash's Sophomore Season Surprises

Smash

Smash executive producers Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman's high-energy music and lyrics for the show's fictional play Bombshell helped earn the NBC drama a Golden Globe nod for Best Comedy/Musical. For Season 2, premiering February 5, the duo have composed tunes for other faux Broadway shows that will compete with Bombshell for ticket sales as the Marilyn Monroe-themed production nears its premiere.

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Will & Grace's Sean Hayes to Star in New NBC Comedy

Sean Hayes

Sean Hayes could be returning full time to primetime next season. The Will & Grace alum has signed on to executive produce and star in a new NBC sitcom project from writer Victor Fresco (Better Off Ted). read more

Keck's Exclusives First Look: Up All Night's Wedding Flashback

Up All Night

Get ready to see the wild 2004 wedding of Up All Night's Reagan (Christina Applegate) and Chris (Will Arnett), courtesy of a flashback that will air December 13.

The episode also... read more

Up All Night 2.0: Love It or Leave It?

Up All Night

Up All Night's second season is barely recognizable from the workplace comedy we saw last year. While the core actors Christina Applegate, Will Arnett and Maya Rudolph remain the same, the trio's been placed inside a... read more

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