Carl Reiner, The Jewish Americans
Tonight, Part 2 of The Jewish Americans (check local listings for time, PBS) focuses on early 20th-century America, where artists like songwriter Irving Berlin and The Goldbergs' Gertrude Berg found mainstream acceptance despite growing anti-Semitism. Writer-director-actor Carl Reiner recalls America in the '40s and the Catskills resorts where many great comics — Reiner included — honed their craft. He spoke with us about the performers who inspired him.
TV Guide: How did growing up Jewish influence your work?Carl Reiner: Radio had some of the funniest comedians. With the exception of Fred Allen, they were all Jewish — Jack Benny, Eddie Cantor, George Burns. And somebody said, "You can do it if you're Jewish — look at these people."
TV Guide: Why d
Lucy Liu, Frances O'Connor, Bonnie Somerville and Miranda Otto, Cashmere Mafia
They play Manhattan's most powerful gal pals; get to know the ladies of Cashmere Mafia (tonight at 10 pm/ET, ABC).
Miranda OttoPLAYS Juliet Draper, the classy, serene chief operating officer of a giant hotel chain. Behind closed doors, however, she's dealing with a cheating hubby (Peter Hermann, real-life husband of Mariska Hargitay) and a rebellious teen daughter. YOU KNOW HER FROM The Starter Wife and the Lord of the Rings films. MIRANDA SAYS "She's different from me," notes one of the cast's two imports. (She's Australian, Frances O'Connor is British) "It's a challenge to play someone who is much more held back. That's what appealed to me about the character."FASHION STYLE Juliet's the elegant member of this fashion-forward gang. Her sophisticated wardrobe, consisting o
Bonnie Somerville in Cashmere Mafia by Patrick Harbron/ABC
Wednesday's ratings rundown:8 pm/ETTrailing Deal or No Deal (13.35 million total viewers) was Wife Swap (7.8 mil, down 720K from premiere). Power of 10 (6.1 mil, -610K) and Crowned (1.8 mil, -130 thou) were both down week-to-week.9 pmCriminal Minds (14.6 mil) dominated, followed by Law & Order: CI (9.57 mil) and Supernanny (8.9 mil). An audience of 2.34 mil (up 160K) enjoyed Gossip Girl's "climax."10 pmCSI: NY (11.6 mil) came out on top with 11.6 mil, though Law & Order was close behind with 11.05 mil (down 2.8 mil from a week ago). In its regular time slot, ABC's Cashmere Mafia (6.26 mil) lost 41 percent of its premiere audience. Come back, Darlings!
Can TV's new Terminator series succeed where last fall's botched Bionic Woman failed? Fair question.
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles is even more relentlessly grim, and way more bone-crunchingly violent, than NBC's Bionic dud. But dull it's not. Set in the aftermath of Terminator 2: Judgment Day, this show lives up to its franchise's reputation for suspenseful action.
TV's riveting incarnation of Sarah Connor, unlike the sullen cipher of the new Jaime Sommers, embodies primal urges anyone can relate to: a mother's ferocious need to survive and to safeguard her offspring.
Lena Headey (300), projecting urgent desperation amid the mayhem, is awesomely capable of filling Linda Hamilton's running shoes. On the lam from the law and from the killer machines sent back from an apocalyptic future, she is both a fox and a lioness. Acting tough may keep her alive. Enforcing tough-love discipline may keep her teenaged son alive.
Question: Please tell me Cashmere Mafia gets better! Please! It was worst written pilot I've ever seen.
Answer: If by "better" you mean "worse," than, yes, it gets better. A lot better.
A few ratings highlights from this Sunday evening: The last new Desperate Housewives episode in existence delivered 19.77 million total viewers, a drop of 810,000 from Dec. 2. But I'll be damned if Mrs. McCluskey didn't have me sniffling! NBC's American Gladiators averaged 12.04 million over its two-hour premiere, trailing Housewives at 9 in viewers and key demos, then trouncing ABC's Cashmere Mafia at 10 in both measures. Cashmere Mafia drew 10.72 mil samplers, retaining only 54 percent of the Housewives audience.
The "special" premiere of ABC's Cashmere Mafia has been pushed back a few days, from Thursday, Jan. 3, to Sunday the 6th (at 10 pm/ET). The Lucy Liu-starrer then settles into its regular time slot on Wednesday the 9th at 10.Similarly, NBC's The Celebrity Apprentice has had its debut delayed a week, and now launches Thursday, Jan. 10, at 9 pm. So reschedule that big viewing party you know you were planning!
As first teased by the Ausiello Report, Lost has found a new home Thursdays at 9 pm/ET, with the new season premiering Jan. 31 (at which time fresh Grey's episodes will have expired). That pits the castaways against CSI repeats, Don't Forget the Lyrics, Celebrity Apprentice and Supernatural. Greg Berlanti's Eli Stone (starring Jonny Lee Miller and Victor Garber) debuts that same night, following Lost.Also of note on ABC's just- (and finally!) released "strike" schedule: Oprah's Big Give, a new unscripted (and undoubtedly inspirational) series, will air Sundays at 9, pushing Housewives back an hour.More scheduling announcements: Cashmere Mafia gets a special premiere on Thursday, Jan. 3, before claiming Wednesdays-at-10 as its regular home. Dance War: Bruno vs. Carrie Ann steps out with a two-hour special Monday, January 7, at 8 pm, then airs weekly 90-minute episodes after that. Samantha Who? returns with fresh episodes in February. According to Jim returns...
Get your scorecards handy, because this is only the beginning of the strike-related fallout you'll wanna keep track of: Although a location manager for CBS' Cane hired two security guards to help out while the show shot scenes from a long-completed script at a Hollywood cafe, 20 angry writers who were yelling and using a bullhorn brought the production to a halt anyway. ABC has postponed the debut of its Sex and the City rip-off, Cashmere Mafia to sometime after Jan. 1. The Nov. 27 Dancing with the Stars finale is being expanded to two full hours to fill the void. Sometime-writer Steve Carell didn't report to The Office yesterday, Rainn Wilson called in sick, and B.J. Novak and Mindy Kaling, who are members of the show's writing staff, were on strike. As a result, only two scenes managed to get shot. Ellen DeGeneres bailed on her show yesterday "in support of her writers," her publicist said. Ben Katner
Lourdes Benedicto by Jeremy Cowart/ABC
Lourdes Benedicto, formerly of The Nine, 24 and NYPD Blue, has been cast as Bonnie Somerville's lesbian love interest on ABC's midseason drama series The Hot Dream Rosie Had Last Night Cashmere Mafia.... Also from the Hollywood Reporter, Melrose Place brat Laura Leighton is Daniel's Daughter in a Hallmark Channel weeper about a high-powered magazine editor who comes to some realizations about life when she takes time off to spread her father's ashes.More TVGuide.com casting news: Exclusive: Eddie Cibrian Gets Dirty, Exclusive: George Michael Gets Stoned for ABC