TV Tidbits

It’s Friday, and since we no longer get to spend the day in eager, breathless anticipation of the arrival of ABC’s TGIF lineup, I guess the only thing to do is look at a few TV news items, blog posts, and clips:

NBC is dropping The Listener. CTV hasn’t decided what they’re going to do with it.

Earl Pomerantz talks about “period” comedies and why they don’t usually click with the audience. (I would say that M*A*S*H is a different kettle of fish because it had very few period touches — and the movie had even fewer. It deliberately played up the resemblance to our time.)

– In a clear suggestion that Nikki Finke’s influence is waning, The New York Times does an article about how influential she is. In a strange way, her success is similar to the type of success achieved by many modern TV shows (and therefore by the studios she writes about): she’s not a mass-audience success, but she’s hugely popular with a niche audience, of people who care about the business end of this business we call show. And by catering to a niche audience, she’s become more important and successful than someone who starts up yet another celebrity-gossip blog.

– Howard Bernstein on the CRTC and carriage fees.

– Just because you’re a long-running series going off the air doesn’t mean the Emmy voters will treat you with affection.

– Remember the Sotomayor episode of The Dukes of Hazzard?

And for fans of musicals and/or the era when New York was at the centre of the TV universe, a trip back to that time: Rodgers and Hammerstein as the “mystery guests” on What’s My Line.

Rodgers and an ailing Hammerstein made a return visit a few years later to plug a more successful show, The Sound of Music, and once again, that spoilsport publisher Bennett Cerf recognized their voices.