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JUN
28
1 years

Lost in the Supermarket: How to Survive When There's Too Much Good TV

Lost in the Supermarket: How to Survive When There's Too Much Good TV

One of the great ongoing mysteries about the television business that keeps intriguing me is failure analysis. I’ve written about it seemingly for ages -- and the problems only get worse or more complicated or more numerous.

How the hell does anyone survive in this business?

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OCT
18
2 YEARS

Television's Ghoul Pool About To Get More Active

Television's Ghoul Pool About To Get More Active

 

As Halloween creeps closer and the TV industry ghouls swirl around in increasing numbers, the death toll on new fall shows is starting to pile up.

The ax first swung and hit CBS’s Made In Jersey – probably not the first pick you had in the office pool.

NBC then canceled Dane Cook’s Next Caller before it got on the air, but we only officially count canceled series if they get to air.

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OCT
3
2 YEARS

The Cruelest Cut: Weeding Out Fall's Failures, Rewarding the Winners

The Cruelest Cut: Weeding Out Fall's Failures, Rewarding the Winners

It’s that time, people. (Quietly slips black hood over head.) Every new television season brings more and more shows to prance in front of your eyes or sit like little presents on your DVR. But even the most devoted television viewer has limits. There is a capacity to what can be watched. There are time issues -- because time is the most precious commodity in the lives of most viewers. So every year, it’s necessary to swing the ax and get rid of the dead wood.

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SEP
25
2 YEARS

Race, Weight and Beauty: How 'The Mindy Project' Is Both Funny and Important

Race, Weight and Beauty: How 'The Mindy Project' Is Both Funny and Important

As The Mindy Project is set to premiere at 9:30 tonight on Fox tonight, we’re on the verge of two small steps that could make important advances. Then again, history says they won’t. But we can hope.

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SEP
6
2 YEARS

Is Social Media the Enemy of Greatness?

Is Social Media the Enemy of Greatness?

This column contains spoilers about Breaking Bad and Mad Men.

If you’re online at all, perusing television sites or participating vociferously on Twitter, nitpicking the beautiful elements of truly great series, then you are part of a phenomenon that few people saw coming.

You are the people who make the pursuit of brilliance more daunting than it already is.

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AUG
2
2 YEARS

How Much TV Is Too Much TV? (Analysis)

How Much TV Is Too Much TV? (Analysis)

As the Television Critics Association press tour winds down -- Friday is the last day -- one mostly exciting but partly troublesome theme has been unavoidable.

There’s a lot of original scripted content looking to get noticed. And the vast volume of it, growing aggressively the past few years, is making it harder for cable channels to stand out and find an audience.

TCA 2012: TV's Winners, Losers and What Was Overheard

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AUG
1
2 YEARS

Advice to Aaron Sorkin On the 10 Things He'll Be Asked Today at TCA

Advice to Aaron Sorkin On the 10 Things He'll Be Asked Today at TCA

Aaron Sorkin will be meeting with his TV critic friends from across the country and even Canada today as part of the Television Critics Association summer press tour.

He will be talking about his HBO show, The Newsroom. A whole lot of critics really hate it. And they seem to be growing more agitated with each episode. (Although you have to give Sorkin credit for making them poke at an aching tooth each week like they did with Smash on NBC. Oh, those masochistic critics!)

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JUL
31
2 YEARS

The Magical Mystery of The CW (Analysis)

It might sound harsh, but there’s very little fascination over The CW as a television network, other than how long it can last and how it can survive as essentially a content provider for streaming services.

And yet, both of those mysteries are, unto themselves, very fascinating. But as the network tries to get people to believe it is popular via “aggregation,” trying to figure out how that works can lead to aggravation.

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JUL
27
2 YEARS

Why the 'Modern Family' Cast Should Get Paid Right Now

Editor's note: An earlier version of this post incorrectly said ABC was responsible for paying the salaries of the Modern Family cast. 20th Century Fox Television employs and pays the cast. The post has been edited to correct that error.

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JUL
25
2 YEARS

TCA 2012: Don't Worry About NBC Going Dumb (Analysis)

TCA 2012: Don't Worry About NBC Going Dumb (Analysis)

It’s rare that I walk out of a network’s executive session and not know what to do with the information that was gathered. But there I was Tuesday, stymied by what NBC entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt had to say about the evolving nature of his network.

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JUL
23
2 YEARS

TCA 2012: It Took a While, But Fox Is Full-Time Funny Now (Analysis)

TCA 2012: It Took a While, But Fox Is Full-Time Funny Now (Analysis)

Not every network or cable channel that comes before the nation’s television critics and writers ends up having the day go swell. We are an odd collection of interests, capable of nitpicking the life out of you or simply demanding that you not forget your failures, which we had to endure. And plenty more people in the room aren’t even a part of the Television Critics Association, so God knows what they’ll say.

For its part, Fox had a day to remember on Monday.

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JUN
28
2 YEARS

Did NBC Just Botch the Ann Curry Issue? (Analysis)

Did NBC Just Botch the Ann Curry Issue? (Analysis)

NBC dumping Ann Curry from Today seemed like both calculated assassination and bizarrely ill-timed roll of the dice. It also seemed, well, like NBC.

Can’t this network do anything right? We’re a long way past “this is starting to get embarrassing” and nudging up against “this is starting to get pathological.”

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JUN
26
2 YEARS

Why Is Aaron Sorkin Such a Hot Button? (Analysis)

Why Is Aaron Sorkin Such a Hot Button? (Analysis)

Well, at least we know, if we didn’t already, that Aaron Sorkin is a lightning rod.

PHOTOS: The Most Talked-About TV News Faces

The television and film writer’s latest project for HBO, The Newsroom, was met with a flurry of mixed reviews, with people either hating it (and in a lot of ways, Sorkin) or loving it (ditto).

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JUN
8
2 YEARS

Thoughts on 'Game of Thrones,' 'Mad Men' and 'The Killing' Season Finales

Thoughts on 'Game of Thrones,' 'Mad Men' and 'The Killing' Season Finales

Sometimes in TV Land it’s hard to think about endings when they are scattered across the calendar and there are so many beginnings to screw up your head. Yes, the broadcast networks have ended their regular seasons -- right? And a bunch of great cable series are about to end, or have ended, just as a new batch begins. Remember when, ahem, certain people argued that a year-round television schedule would be awesome?

Be careful what you wish for.

But there are three shows in particular that need to be discussed as they come to an end (or have ended).

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