TV Guide Magazine


Matt's TV Week in Review

Susan Lucci, Erika Slezak

There will come a time when we tell future generations about the good old days when serialized soaps blanketed the daytime TV landscape — the way prime time once was overrun with Westerns, variety shows and big-ticket miniseries, among other fondly remembered, now-faded formats. The latest death knell, not unexpected but still a shock when it sounded, came late this week when ABC confirmed that the venerable, iconic All My Children and the similarly long-running One Life to Live had been taken off life support. Word of their demise had circulated for some time — AMC takes its final bow in September, One Life to Life will soldier on until January — but it's still a jolt to the system when confronted with the unmistakable signs than an era is ending. Changing viewing habits and economics have conspired against scripted daytime dramas in favor of cheaper-to-produce talk/lifestyle shows. Just as the remnants of variety TV can be found in the results shows of reality competitions American Idol and Dancing With the Stars, soap intrigues have been upstaged by celeb-reality high jinks: the plastic casts of Bravo's various Real Housewives shows, the debauched antics of Jersey Shore, which is being spun off while the daily soaps dwindle to a mere few... read more

American Idol's Paul: "I Was Always Kind of Uncomfortable On the Idol Stage"

Paul McDonald

The boys' club finally took a hit. Paul McDonald, the soulful, raspy-voice singer/songwriter from Nashville, says he had a feeling "in my gut" that it was his turn to be voted off American Idol. But there were no tears. In fact McDonald, who has toured for years with his band The Grand Magnolias, was surprised he made it as far as he did.

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HBO Unveils Newest Epic Series Game of Thrones

Sean Bean

Winters that last decades. Zombielike creatures called "white walkers." Supersized wolves. A cache of dragon eggs. Game of Thrones, based on the best-selling fantasy novels by George R.R. Martin, is definitely not of this world. But it centers on one of the most familiar things on earth: mighty families vying for ultimate control.

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On the Set of the Burn Notice Prequel Movie

RonReaco Lee, Bruce Campbell

Sam Axe is stumbling down a hill, throwing himself at a couple of armed soldiers who drag him off to their leader. He tells them in broken Spanish he just escaped from the Flaming Sword guerilla group. "Cut! Very good," shouts a familiar voice through a megaphone. Burn Notice: The Fall of Sam Axe, the hotly anticipated prequel starring Bruce Campbell and directed by Jeffrey Donovan, is under way.

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The Biz: Lou Dobbs Reemerges on Fox Business

Lou Dobbs

Lou Dobbs is back. One of the original anchors at CNN — who departed in November 2009 — he has re-emerged in the cable news wars on the Fox Business Network where he now holds court weeknights at 7 p.m. with his new show Lou Dobbs Tonight. He's still a pretty big name and The Biz asked if there are bigger plans ahead for him at Fox News.

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Smallville's Cassidy Freeman on Tess' Latest Tangle with Alt-World Clark and Finale Chills

Cassidy Freeman

The alt-world Clark is back on Smallville tonight (8/7c on The CW) and you know what that means: More Luthor madness for everyone's favorite reformed bad girl, Tess. Here, in one of her final Smallville interviews, the fabulous Cassidy Freeman fills us in on what to expect when trouble from another universe comes to visit... and how she reacted to reading the script for the show's finale.

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ABC's The Revolution Producer to Soap Fans: I Feel Your Pain

Tim Gunn, Kimberly Locke

Reality producer J.D. Roth had a hunch that ABC was close to picking up his new daytime series The Revolution. But Roth says he had no idea until Thursday morning that his greenlight would come at the expense of two soap opera staples.

Thursday's ABC soapocalypse left daytime fans reeling, as the network pulled the plug on 43-year-old One Life to Live and 41-year-old All My Children. Roth, whose new show will take the place of OLTL in January, says he first brought The Revolution to ABC more than a year ago.

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Waiting for Superman: Tom Welling Reflects on Smallville's 10-Year Odyssey

Tom Welling

On a visit to the Smallville set in Burnaby, British Columbia, last month, there was little indication that the 10-year-old series was in the last days of production. Though the final hour of the show (airing May 13) had already been filmed a few weeks earlier, it was business as usual for the cast and crew as they still had to shoot a couple of earlier episodes. But there was one clue that Clark Kent's long-awaited transformation into Superman was approaching. As series star Tom Welling filmed a scene in the Phantom Zone with Justin Hartley (aka Oliver Queen, aka Green Arrow), the camera zoomed in on Welling's chiseled face, revealing a well-placed wisp of hair forming what looked a lot like pop culture's most iconic spit curl. (The episode, directed by Hartley, airs April 29. New episodes return tonight at 8/7c on The CW.) A few hours later, wearing a royal blue t-shirt, black jeans and black boots, a relaxed Welling took a break from filming to talk to TV Guide Magazine about his decade-long odyssey as the man who would be Super.

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American Idol Backstage Report: Paul McDonald Goes Out in Style

Paul McDonald

He may not have won the crown. But soulful, raspy-voiced Paul McDonald can leave American Idol knowing that he was one of those rare contestants who had such great personal style that he didn't need a makeover.

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Roush Review: Grim Thrones Is a Crowning Achievement

Mark Addy

Everyone keeps warning that "Winter is coming" in Game of Thrones, but I can't remember the last series that packed this much heat. After putting its distinctive stamp on genres as diverse as the mob drama (The Sopranos and Boardwalk Empire), the Western (Deadwood), the urban crime saga (The Wire), the period-piece potboiler (Rome), the horror-show bodice-ripper (True Blood), HBO now turns its extravagant attention to adult epic fantasy. HBO has found its answer to Lord of the Rings in adapting George R.R. Martin's enthralling, sprawling, ruthlessly brutal and magnificently entertaining series of page-turners.

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