Today's News: Our Take


SHORT CUTS

David Bowie canceled a concert in Miami on Thursday after a local stagehand fell to his death prior to the show... Warner Bros. has acquired big-screen rights to Jonathan Larson's acclaimed musical Rent... Finally, if you haven't already done so, don't forget to enter to win one of Kwame Jackson's signed balls (tee-hee) by clicking on the Apprentice Contest link at the top of this column. (Come on, you know you want one.) Until next time, Ausiello out! read more

FRIENDS 'TIL THE END

More than 51 million viewers were there for Friends in its final hour last night, making the farewell the second most-watched telecast of the season — behind only the Super Bowl. The figure, which was pretty much in line with expectations, pales in comparison to the 76 million who turned out for Seinfeld's big finish in 1998. Speaking of the big good-bye, could it have been any more satisfying? Well, let's examine the evidence: Ross and Rachel finally got their happy ending; Monica and Chandler became the proud parents of twins; Phoebe discovered her inner filangee; and Joey laid his Foosball table to rest. Earlier in the day, the sextet — Jennifer Aniston, David Schwimmer, Courteney Cox Arquette, read more

SURVIVOR MAKEOVER

In related news, Survivor madwoman Susan Hawk will be virtually unrecognizable (read: kinda-sorta hot) at Sunday's All-Stars reunion show. Shortly after her run-in with Richard Hatch's genitalia, the 42-year-old truck driver underwent an extreme makeover, including a breast enlargement, eye lift, facial peel, tummy tuck and a chip reduction on her shoulder. For a preview of her Swan-like transformation, watch Extra tonight or simply click here. read more

FRIEND IN NEED

With Friends now history, NBC is looking to another Must-See legend to re-energize its Thursday night lineup. According to Variety, on May 20 — the final Thursday of May sweeps — the network will air The Adventures of Seinfeld & Superman, a special based on Jerry Seinfeld's current American Express Web series. It'll air from 8:44-9 pm/ET, following a supersized Friends repeat. read more

THE BIG FINISH

On Thursday's penultimate Survivor: All-Stars, Big Tom became the latest dimwitted castaway to get knifed in the back by Boston Rob. "I'm still bleeding," cracks the 48-year-old speaking-impaired Virginian, who hints that he may exact some sweet revenge during Sunday's finale (8-11 pm/ET). "If Rob makes it to the final two, I will be proud to tell him what I think." Here's hoping it doesn't come to that. (Go Rupert!) read more

THE PLOT THICKENS

The actress found dead in Phil Spector's home last year had gunshot residue on both of her hands and was shot with a gun inside her mouth, according to a just-released coroner's report. The findings would seem to bolster Spector's contention that Lana Clarkson killed herself. However, a rep for the prosecution tells Reuters that "Spector also had gunshot residue on him." The music producer is currently free on $1 million bail. read more

I LOVE IT, I LOVE IT, I LOVE IT!

Fox has signed SNL grad Molly Shannon, last seen in the network's short-lived comedy Cracking Up, to a one-year development deal, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The pact, said to be worth seven figures, calls for Fox to develop a comedy series project (ideally, a funny one) for the actress. read more

FriendsAfter 10 years, hundreds...

Friends After 10 years, hundreds of episodes, probably thousands of hairdos and weight fluctuations, and immeasurable laughs and tears, it's finally (mercifully) over. Although we all knew that the end could never live up to the media hype or fans' expectations, and despite the fact that there were no real surprises or moments of hilarity or genuine emotion, there was really no nicer, neater or more humane way to wrap things up. Unbelievable as it was, I loved that Monica and Chandler ended up with two babies. What else were Phoebe and Mike going to do besides start a family of their own? Joey will always be Joey (even if it's on the Left Coast this fall). And I'll even grudgingly accept that Ross and Rachel were meant to be together. At the very least, making them a couple again will save countless guys and gals they might have dated a fortune in therapist bills.
So no formal critique or review, just some random observations from a forever fan:

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    Survivor's Shii Devil Speaks!

    Shii Ann Huang lived up to her "Shii Devil" rep on last Thursday's Survivor: All-Stars when she tore into her knucklehead tribemates for annihilating what was left of the Mogo Mogos instead of targeting the game's biggest threats (i.e. Amber, Rob, Rupert... ). In the end, the 30-year-old Big Appler still got her torch snuffed, but at least she went down fighting. Here, Shii Ann dishes about her climactic Tribal Council tirade, her real feelings about Boston Rob and why swimming challenges are the death of her.

    TV Guide Online: I loved your speech during tribal council.
    Shii Ann Huang:
    Thanks! I am really happy with the way it turned out. It was everything that I felt that I'd been holding in for a couple of days. It was really exciting to just let loose.

    TVGO: Do you think it will help?
    Shii Ann:
    I don't know that it was meant to be helpful. I just kind of wanted people to stop being so content with coming in third, read more

    Mary Tyler Moore's Big Break

    Before The Dick Van Dyke Show made Mary Tyler Moore a sitcom star, she was a pretty young dancer, best known for her legs and voice — viewers never saw her face — on the 1950s crime drama Richard Diamond, Private Detective. On May 11, Moore reprises her career-making role as Laura Petrie in The Dick Van Dyke Show Revisited (9 pm/ET on CBS). Here, she reminisces about landing the big gig — for which she beat out 40 other actresses — and her favorite memories from the landmark series.

    TV Guide Online: Winning the role of Laura Petrie was a great step up for you.
    Mary Tyler Moore:
    I almost didn't go to the audition. When my agent called, I said, "I'm tired. I've had too many disappointments all week." He said, "You just get in your car and go over there." I walked in, and there was Carl Reiner, on whom I had a tremendous crush from The Sid Caesar Show. We sat down to read this scene — and about a thir read more

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