Wednesday, December 31, 2014

There Are Good Reasons CBS Dominates The American TV Nielsen Ratings

Below are the Nielsen Ratings for the week ending December 21, 2014. This was the last week before TV went into mostly re-run and specials mode, due to Christmas.

Has CBS ever dominated the ratings at the level CBS is currently beating ABC, NBC and FOX?

Previously I blogged about being perplexed as to Why Must We Now Have A TV Provider To Watch Most Network & Cable TV Online? 

In that blog post I made note of the fact that CBS was not playing along with the insistence that one needed to log in to ones TV cable provider in order to watch a CBS show online, on ones smart phone or on a tablet.

In addition to not requiring a cable provider, CBS is now also going the Netflix-type route with the option of giving viewer's next day online access to current programs along with access to the entire CBS library dating back to the age of I Love Lucy in the 1950s.

CBS next day and library access cost $5.99 a month.

CBS seems to play the TV game much smarter than the other networks. And I am not just referencing the quality of the CBS programming.

For instance, before I bailed on the AT & T U-Verse service CBS had caused me to get hooked on multiple CBS shows I had not had a habit of watching. Shows such as CSI, NCIS,  NCIS: Los Angeles, Undercover Boss, Hawaii Five-O, Bluebloods, Elementary and others.

How did CBS cause me to watch its shows on AT & T U-Verse? Well, with the CBS version of Viewing On Demand, on AT & T, CBS had minimal commercials, with most of those being promos for other CBS shows. Plus CBS allowed fast forwarding. None of the other On Demand networks allowed fast forwarding. Eventually, prior to cancelling U-Verse, CBS had joined the others in disabling fast forwarding.

Or maybe AT & T did the disabling.

Anyway, it is no surprise to me that CBS is by far the dominant American TV Network.

RankShowsR=Repeat S=Special P=PremiereNetViewers (Live +SD) (000)
1NBC Sunday Night Football-12/21NBC19293
460 Minutes-12/21CBS13179
8Big Bang Theory, THE-12/18RCBS10605
14Person Of Interest-12/16CBS8937
15Two and a Half Men-12/18CBS8796
16Mentalist, THE-12/21CBS8677
17Undercover Boss 12/21-SP-12/21SCBS8189
18MIKE & MOLLY-12/15CBS7849
192 Broke Girls-12/15CBS7807
25Dateline FRI-12/19NBC6768

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Survivor: Worlds Apart with White Collar vs. Blue Collar vs. No Collar

The Amazing Race twinnie, Natalie, winning Survivor: San Juan Del Sur was the first time in several Survivors where the winner seemed, to me, to be the worthy winner.

But, overall, multiple  times I almost bailed  on Survivor's latest edition, thinking the show had maybe come to its time to end.

Then, the last few episodes sort of redeemed San Juan Del Sur with some good strategizing and blindsiding, mostly by Natalie.

The two hour finale and reunion show seemed to be the best edited that I remember. Interspersing live elements from CBS Television City in Los Angeles was a good thing. Eliminating that embarrassing segment where the final three walk by tombstone crosses representing those who have gotten the boot is a good move. If I remember right that has been gone for a couple Survivor seasons now.

The #1 thing I did not like about Survivor: San Juan Del Sur was what seemed to me to be the overfeeding of the beach dwellers. Did anyone lose any weight?

The upcoming 30th season of Survivor looks promising. It premieres February 25, 2015.

What looks promising about the upcoming Survivor: Worlds Apart is the concept.

Regular people we have not seen before on Survivor or The Amazing Race.

Of course that could change once we meet the Survivors.

The concept is class warfare featuring White Collar vs. Blue Collar vs. No Collar.

The goofy tribe names this time are Masaya ("White Collar"), Escameca ("Blue Collar") and Nagarote ("No Collar").

I suppose among the White Collars there could be someone well known like, I don't know, Bill Gates or Nancy Pelosi. Yeah, I'm sure that might happen.

I can not think of any well known Blue Collar type who might ruin that no one we already know about concept.

For No Collar I am thinking Paris Hilton would qualify. Okay, I would actually not object to Paris Hilton getting all down and dirty and hungry on Survivor.

I suppose, come February 25 of the new year of 2015, I will be watching the 30th season of Survivor....

Monday, December 8, 2014

Survivor: San Juan Del Sur Blood vs. Water Has Outlasted Its Welcome

Survivor: San Juan del Sur, the twenty-ninth season of one of the first American Reality TV shows, seems to me to be nearing the end of its run.

Unless Survivor re-invents itself, somehow.

I did not like the first version of Survivor: Blood vs. Water. That version had people who had previously been on Survivor returning with a loved one.

The current relative version is made up of people who had not been on Survivor, previously. However, two of the Blood vs. Water pairs had people known to some, as in infamous baseballer, John Rocker, and the twinnies from The Amazing Race, Natalie and Nadiya.

This iteration of Survivor seems to be the only season where those surviving seem to be gaining weight, rather than getting skinny.

Reward Challenge. Want to know what you're playing for? One week fixing's for a barbecue, another week a trip to a Mexican food all you can eat buffet, with beer and margaritas, another week a yacht trip with sandwiches, along with more beer, another week a trip to a baseball game with hot dogs, popcorn, candy and more beer.

And then there was when the two tribes merged and found themselves with a big buffet spread to gorge themselves on.

Or the one week where the Reward Challenge rewarded with food followed by the Immunity Challenge having more food to tempt the Survivors to give up the challenge.

Oh, and if you somehow eat up the supply of rice you are provided, Probst will show up to make a deal with you for another big bag of rice.

And speaking of Jeff Probst. The Probst play by play at the challenges really needs to be toned down. As does the way Probst asks leading questions at the Tribal Councils, leading questions about things like Immunity Idols not being used, which then causes a flurry of panic which disrupts the well planned who to kick off the island scheme.

As for the challenges, it only makes sense that after 29 seasons the challenges would start to have a deja vu feeling to them. But when, in an effort to do something different you have Probst touting something like "In the first time in Survivor history for this challenge Survivors can only use their feet" it would seem we have gone into Jumping the Shark territory.

For Survivor: Season Thirty, I hope Survivor returns to Survivor: Old School. Don't supply so much food. Make it so hunting, fishing and foraging is the food source.

And no gimmicks, no Redemption Island, no Exile Island, no Hidden Immunity Idols.

And cast only people who have never been on TV before, real people, and no people with serious personality disorders....

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

American Idol Season 14 Starts January 14 While Thailand's The Voice Is All About That Bass

The guy you see here is a judge on The Voice.

Don't recognize him from NBC's The Voice?

You don't recognize him because he is not on NBC's The Voice, he is on Thailand's version of The Voice.

I have watched very little of the American version of The Voice. It did not hook me like early seasons of American Idol did.

Have any of the winners of America's The Voice gone on to become known names like so many of the American Idol contestants have?

Is there any The Voice equivalent of American Idol's Kelly Clarkson, Clay Aiken, Carrie Underwood, Fantasia, Jennifer Hudson, Catherine McPhee, Chris Daughtry, Jordan Sparks, Adam Lambert, Phillip Phillips and others I'm likely not remembering?

Speaking of Phillip Phillips. He seems to be the last hit American Idol has had. I don't remember who won the season after Phillip Phillips. I quit watching when it got down to only a few remaining, none of whom I found pop star worthy. I also bailed on last season. Has anyone heard the winner, Caleb Johnson, on the radio?


Me either.

Season 14 of American Idol starts up January 14. I won't be watching. Jennifer Lopez, Keith Urban and Harry Connick, Jr. are back as the judges. Jennifer Lopez and Keith Urban's head bobbing and dancing to the singing got on my nerves. It was an uncomfortable thing to watch.

I think it likely that the current era of singing competitions shows on American TV is coming to an end.

Below is a YouTube video from Thailand's The Voice. A girl butchers Meghan Trainor's All About That Bass. Do all the singer's on this Thai show sing songs in English? Everything else is in Thai, including the amusing Listerine commercial....

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Cutting The Cable TV Cord Watching TV Series, Documentaries and Movies on YouTube

What is Google's YouTube up to?

Is Google on track to turn YouTube into the Google version of Netflix?

Why do I ask these questions?

Well. Back when I first was a YouTuber, uploading YouTube videos, one was restricted to a maximum running time of 10 minutes.

Soon after I cut my connection to my Cable TV provider, AT & T U-verse, I discovered that YouTube had drastically changed.

YouTube now has full length movies available for free viewing. I've long wanted to watch the controversial Leni Riefenstahl documentary, Triumph of the Will. I watched it on YouTube.

On my smart phone.

I've long wanted to watch Charlie Chaplin's The Great Dictator. YouTube had that movie available for free viewing.

When James Garner died I wondered if YouTube had any Rockford Files episodes online. Near as I can tell the entire series is available for YouTube viewing.

I don't know where one can find a comprehensive listing of what's available on YouTube. I found The Rockford Files via the YouTube search tool. After I watched a few Rockford episodes YouTube started recommending other series, like the original Hawaii 5-0, Quincy, Gunsmoke, Beverly Hillbillies, Mary Tyler Moore, All in the Family, The Carol Burnett Show, I Love Lucy, Perry Mason and others I am not remembering right now.

Sometimes when you search for a specific recent movie YouTube will offer to show it to you for a price, like $1.99 to view it. Is this the direction YouTube is heading? Will all this new content eventually no longer be free to view?

I have no idea. All I know is what Google and YouTube are doing right now sure made it painless to cut the Cable TV cord....

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Why Must We Now Have A TV Provider To Watch Most Network & Cable TV Online?

For months I had grown weary of the ever increasing AT & T U-verse bill, with the increased weariness coming from the charge for cable TV.

When a AT & T salesman, several years ago, convinced me to switch from Charter TV to U-Verse promises were made about the cost not increasing.

Well. AT & T's U-verse stayed steady at around $100 for about two years, and then began to go up, til it neared $160. I decided to cut U-verse, keeping only the Internet connection, with increased speed.

I figured I could watch the few TV shows I watch via the Internet via the various websites of the various networks and cable stations.

I figured wrong for the most part.

My thinking I could easily watch TV via the Internet was due to years ago losing an episode of LOST due to a weather event. The next day I went to ABC, found the full episodes option.  LOST started right up, with an announcement that it would be presented with few commercial interruptions.

So, I watched that lost episode of  LOST, on the same computer I am using now, but on a slower Internet connection and found the experience flawless, no sputtering, few commercials, full screen, high definition.

Imagine my surprise and disgust to find, years later, that when I went to the same ABC website I found episodes locked for week, watchable only if you providing TV provider!

And then, when I went to watch an un-locked ABC program, I found even with the screen not full, that there was a lot of sputtering, long commercial breaks, basically not watchable. And so I did not watch.

Soon I was to find that most of the networks and cable stations required a TV provider to watch recent episodes. And that the quality of what you could watch was not good, and with a lot of commercials.

Of all the networks and cable stations only CBS and Lifetime seem to not be playing along with the provide your TV provider demand.

I have discovered that watching CBS and Lifetime programs on my phone is a very satisfying experience.

What I do not understand is the logic of demanding a TV provider by most of the networks and cable stations. I mean, why are the networks even bothering to stream their material online if it is only available to those with a cable TV connection?

If one had a TV provider wouldn't one watch TV on ones TV rather than ones computer? And what if you are on the road, checked into motel with wi-fi, wanting to watch something not on the motel's TV?

I am assuming the cable TV providers have made this demand of the content providers, that they must block access to new programming to those who are not feeding the cable TV money. When did the power shift from the content producers to the content conveyors?

And why are CBS and Lifetime not playing along?

I have also found much un-locked on A & E, however their commercials are annoyingly repetitive. As in five times in a row, in one commercial break, repeating a Reliant Energy ad. Very counter-productive for Reliant Energy. And then the next commercial break comes with five more Reliant Energy repeats.

I have also found that content on the CW is watchable, except for the bad repetitive commercial breaks.

BravoTV is the worst I have experienced. Erratic with what is locked and unlocked. And bad streaming with too much sputtering to be watchable.

It has now been over two months since I cut the cable TV cord. Withdrawal has been much easier than I thought it would be. And because of the cable cutting I have discovered things I did not know about. Such as on YouTube you can now watch full length TV shows without commercial interruption. Lately I have been enjoying The Rockford Files.

On YouTube you can also watch full length movies. A few days ago I watched Chaplin's The Great Dictator. I have discovered the current version of YouTube is very addictive.

When I accessed TV via cable I never stayed up late watching TV. Last night, whilst in bed, I watched YouTube til  past 11. The Lucy Desi Comedy Hour hour long episode titled Lucy Goes To Mexico. It was hilarious....