Today's News: Our Take


HOLIDAY HORROR

Tin-eared American Idol reject William Hung is banging out a Christmas album. Little is known about the CD, except that it'll make Santa's ears bleed. read more

RED-HOT BLUE

WB's new sketch comedy Blue Collar TV, starring Jeff Foxworthy, Bill Engvall and Larry the Cable Guy, attracted 5 million viewers in its debut last Thursday. The show finished second in several key demos, including young adults and middle-aged folks who think their front lawn is a driveway. read more

I SEE VILLAGE PEOPLE

Here's another little tip about the mysterious monsters terrorizing The Village: They attract some serious green. The latest mystery-thriller from M. Night Shyamalan debuted at No. 1 with an estimated $50.8 million. It ranks as the auteur's second-best opening ever, behind 2002's Signs ($60 million). The Bourne Supremacy slipped to No. 2 with $23.4 million, followed by Denzel Washington's Manchurian Candidate redo, which bowed with a respectable $22.2 million. Meanwhile, here's one more clue about those Village creatures: They stand three apples tall and live in mushroom houses — and that's all you're gettin' from me. read more

BEWARE, KIDS

The conservative family watchdog group Parents Television Council has named the WB drama Everwood the worst TV show for family viewing. Runners-up include Fox's That '70s Show, NBC's Fear Factor and CBS's Cold Case. The Eye net's Joan of Arcadia topped the best list, followed by Doc (Pax), Sue Thomas: F.B. Eye (Pax), Reba (WB) and 7th Heaven (WB). In related news, if anyone knows what the heck Sue Thomas: F.B. Eye is, please let me know. read more

NEW HOMELESS SHELTER?

California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and his wife, Maria Shriver, have sold three properties on their posh Pacific Palisades, Calif., compound for $18 million, the Los Angeles Times reports. The couple moved into a $11.9-million estate in nearby Brentwood two years ago. read more

CONVENTIONAL WISDOM

Turns out some folks did actually watch the Democratic National Convention last week. Nielsen estimates that roughly 24.4 million viewers caught John Kerry's 55-minute acceptance speech Thursday night. That's up from the 21.1 million who watched Al Gore's acceptance speech in 2000. CNN was the top draw among cable nets, easily outpacing second-place Fox News (4 million to 2.6 million). read more

LIVE WIRE

Saturday Night Live is courting politician-turned-author Bill Clinton to host the skitcom this season, TV Guide Online has learned. According to sources, the former president has been offered the gig if he wants it; a decision is expected by next week. Of course, that depends on what Clinton's definition of "is" is. read more

THIRD TIME'S THE CHARM?

Nicolas Cage married 20-year-old sushi waitress Alice Kim on Friday in Northern California. The couple met in February when Cage visited the Los Angeles restaurant where she worked. According to sources, she had him at "Hello — hot towel?" read more

FAMILY WAY

Fox will air two Family Guy mini-marathons opposite NBC's Olympics coverage on Aug. 18 and 25 from 8 to 10 pm/ET, Variety reports. This will mark the first time the show has aired on Fox since the network axed it in 2002. Original episodes of the cult phenom will debut on Fox next year. read more

I SPY A CASTING COUP

Alias has tapped Oscar-nominated thesp Angela Bassett to play the show's new CIA director. For more on how long she'll be sticking around, pick up the new issue of TV Guide magazine, on sale Thursday. While you're at it, pick up two! read more

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