Friday, January 30, 2009

Nielsen Ratings for January 19 - 25

The Nielsen Rating's Top 20 TV Shows for January 19 - January 25. The first number is the ranking, the second number is the season average, then the show name and network. The last number represents the number of viewers in millions. An 'x' indicates non-series special programming. An asterisk * indicates a tie.

1. 1 American Idol Fox 25.9
2. 2 American Idol Fox 22.8
3. 3 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation CBS 17.6
4. 4 Two and a Half Men CBS 16.1
5. 8 House Fox 15.0
6. 6 CSI: Miami CBS 14.6
7. 5 Grey's Anatomy ABC 14.4
8. 7 60 Minutes CBS 14.2
9. 9 Criminal Minds CBS 13.8
10. 10 Cold Case CBS 13.3
11. X Neighborhood Ball ABC 12.6
12. 15 Lie To Me Fox 12.4
13. 13 Eleventh Hour CBS 12.3
14. 17 24 Fox 12.1
15. 17 Fringe Fox 12.0
16. 11 Loving Leah CBS 11.7
* 15 NCIS CBS 11.7
18. 14 CSI: NY CBS 11.6
* 20 Extreme Makeover: Home Edition ABC 11.6
20. 23 Lost ABC 11.3

TV Or Not TV

I haven't written about anything I've seen on TV for over a week. Why, I do not know. Partly using a DVR is to blame, in that I've always had trouble getting around to watching something I've recorded. Also I've been enjoying reading.

Right now, this Wednesday's episode of LOST is sitting, unwatched inside my DVR. I'm liking LOST so far. Though it can be quite confusing.

The DVR works great for American Idol. I can fast forward through the commercials and anything that bores me, reducing the viewing time to less than a half hour. I am enjoying American Idol, for the most part, though the sad sob stories are getting a bit tired. But I guess that is just part of the new, kinder American Idol.

I did manage to watch Wednesday's Top Chef, last night, a day after the episode ran. I was surprised to see Jeff get told to pack his knives and leave. I was glad Carla finally won a challenge. Carla is one of my all time favorite reality tv show people. She's funny.

I also managed to watch Monday's episode of 24, a couple days late. 24 is being real good, so far, this year. But we are only about 5 hours into the day. 24 gives away too much info in its preview of the next week's episode. The preview showed the bad rebel leader terrorist guy who wants to take over Sengala and has taken over America's information infrastructure to try and stop America from invading his country and at the same time arranged to kidnap the current leader of Sengala.

Well, we learn in the previews that Jack and Crew find the bad guy. It appears he gets blown up. I would have preferred to be surprised.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Nielsen Rating's Top 20 TV Shows for January 12 - January 18

The Nielsen Rating's Top 20 TV Shows for January 12 - January 18. The first number is the ranking, the second number is the season average, then the show name and network. The last number represents the number of viewers in millions. An 'x' indicates non-series special programming. An asterisk * indicates a tie.

1. X AFC Championship CBS 40.6
2. 1 American Idol Fox 30.4
3. 1 American Idol Fox 30.3
4. 4 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation CBS 24.2
5. 5 NCIS CBS 18.6
6. 8 The Mentalist CBS 18.1
7. 12 Two and a Half Men CBS 17.1
8. X The Mentalist CBS 16.4
9. 15 CSI: Miami CBS 15.8
10. X CSI: Crime Scene Investigation CBS 15.5
11. 11 Criminal Minds CBS 13.6
12. 20 Eleventh Hour CBS 13.2
13. 9 Desperate Housewives ABC 13.1
* 12 Grey's Anatomy ABC 13.1
15. 14 CSI: NY CBS 12.7
16. 18 Without a Trace CBS 12.4
17. 17 24 Fox 12.3
18. 35 How I Met Your Mother CBS 11.8
* 35 Big Bang Theory CBS 11.8
20. N/A Numb3rs CBS 11.0

Monday, January 19, 2009

Hour 5 Tonight on 24

The 4 Hour season start of 24 on Fox did not disappoint. 24 had been absent for too long, so my memory might be faulty, but it seemed, to me, as if the number of twists and unexpected turns was breaking a 24 record.

I'm thinking running the 24: Redemption prequel in November, that helped set up the new season, helped amp up the speed of the plot.

I was liking the demise of CTU and finally a new location, not centered on Los Angeles. But by hour 2 I was starting to think that except for Jack and, the for awhile, evil, Tony Almeda, there were none of the 24 regulars.

As in no dour funny Chloe.

And then Jack breaks Tony away from FBI custody into the waiting van of the former head of CTU, Bill Buchanan, so then we had one more regular.

With the best moment being when Bill got Jack and Tony to their secret location, went inside, and Chloe walked out from the shadows.

Chloe was looking good in a setting other than CTU. I hope we get to see Chloe and some good machine gun action some time during the day.

They have 20 hours to go. 19 after tonight. Currently 24 is back being my favorite TV show. The past few seasons it wasn't. But then again, 24 has 20 hours to go sour on me.

Friday, January 16, 2009

The Kinder, Gentler American Idol & Michael Nicewonder

I got around to watching Wednesday's second episode of the new season of American Idol, last night. I'm still not quite getting how this version, that is supposed to be somehow a kinder, gentler version, is much different than previous versions of American Idol.

After I watched the first 2/3rds of the first episode and wrote about it, I said it appeared that it was being kinder and gentler, due to not showing a lot of self-deluded nutcases. Well, when I finally got around to watching it, the final third of that first episode brought out the cases of delusion. An entire long montage of them all singing the same song.

The second episode did the same thing. That part of American Idol, though often funny to watch, has always seemed a bit mean-spirited to me. And with some of these people seeming to be maybe right on the edge of mental illness, it seems sort of cruel to humiliate some of these sad creatures.

Like on the Wednesday, Kansas City episode, there was this pathetic guy named Micheal Nicewonder who was sure he was about to be discovered, despite his mother telling him he couldn't sing.

The judges could barely contain their wonder and Nicewonder when he walked in before them. The poor guy is a strange looking soul. Overweight, slobby-looking, banana yellow hair, badly cut, wearing a t-shirt with his "fans" signature on it and a medal he won for singing. In 8th grade, to which he had attached a fortune cookie that made no sense to me.

Nicewonder asked if he could sing an original song. Of course you can, he was told. He then proceeded to sing, badly, a very morose song that sounded like it was directed at an ex-girlfriend. When asked by Simon if Nicewonder wrote that song for a pet, he said, no, he wrote it about his mother.

Simon then prolonged the agony by asking Nicewonder if he had a more upbeat song to sing. Sure I do, Nicewonder said, one I wrote to my grandmother.

It sounded the same as the first. After Nicewonder got the bad news that he wouldn't be going to Hollywood, he exited awkwardly, then began to bellow out his pain, crying and sobbing. He felt Simon had been mean to him.

Now, if putting a sad case like this kid on the screen for a dose of public humiliation is a new kinder, gentler American Idol, well, I think it's just wrong. It would be one thing if the person being humiliated was not so obviously burdened with serious problems, but this Nicewonder kid, well, he had issues, and that was just cruel, what American Idol did to him.

Aside from all that, I could not figure out what Nicewonder had all over his face. In high definition it looked like maybe oddly shaped moles. And why were his eyelids so pink? Was that makeup. It was all just very disturbing in so many ways.

Maybe the kinder, gentler American Idol has to do with all the sad, maudlin back stories they are doing, but they've always done those. Maybe there are more of them this time. We did get a guy sobbing over his recently deceased wife, another who was victim of a tornado, another without a mom and dad, living with her very very old grandma, who can't hear.

I'm sure there were more sad stories that I'm not remembering. Oh, the blind guy that ended the first episode. I liked him. His story was more uplifting than sad.

And I guess the judges, well, Simon, is maybe being a bit less harsh. Maybe.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Nielsens Ratings For January 5 - 11

The Nielsen Rating's Top 20 TV Shows for January 5 - January 11. The first number is the ranking, the second number is the season average, then the show name and network. The last number represents the number of viewers in millions. An 'x' indicates non-series special programming. An asterisk * indicates a tie.

1. X BCS Championship Fox 26.8
2. X NFC Playoffs: Arizona/Carolina Fox 23.8
3. 6 The Mentalist CBS 19.6
4. 3 NCIS CBS 19.1
5. X Fiesta Bowl Fox 17.1
6. 8 60 Minutes CBS 15.0
7. X Golden Globe Awards NBC 14.9
8. 10 Grey's Anatomy ABC 13.9
9. 7 Desperate Housewives ABC 13.8
10. 16 Without a Trace CBS 13.1
11. 15 24 Fox 12.6
* X Barbara Walters ABC 12.6
13. 18 Cold Case CBS 12.3
14. 16 Biggest Loser NBC 11.9
15. 11 Two and a Half Men CBS 11.6
16. 2 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation CBS 11.0
17. 31 Law & Order: SVU NBC 10.8
18. 25 Ghost Whisperer CBS 10.6
19. 13 CSI: Miami CBS 10.4
20. N/A Extreme Makeover: Home Edition ABC 10.3
* N/A Law & Order NBC 10.3

American Idol's Season 8 Premieres With Girls In Bikinis

It's a year ago on this very blog that I whined about not knowing if I wanted to start watching a new season of American Idol, due to the amount of time it sucks. And never really caring, in the end, who wins the thing.

In the end, I ended up watching it all the way through to the Two Davids Ending.

I've read where this latest season of American Idol had made some changes. I watched 3/4s of last night's first episode. The only change I detected was the addition of a 4th judge. A good looking woman named Kara DioGuardi. I'd never heard of her before.

Yesterday, I thought I read in the Dallas Morning News that the new American Idol Judge was married to the first season of American Idol's runner-up, Justin Guarini, making her Kara DioGuardi Guarini. But, in my haste I'd misread. The writer was just being cute, suggesting this would make a good pairing, due to the name similarity.

Last night's American Idol did not seem all that different from previous American Idols. Except for that new judge. I liked her. She is more critical than bubbly Paula Abdul. And more articulate.

There did not seem to be so many weirdly deluded people auditioning last night in whatever city they were in. Was it Oklahoma City? This is a sad indicator of how closely I pay attention. Or maybe a sad indicator of the sad state of my memory.

The most amusing moment of the night was when this girl in a very skimpy bikini appeared. She did not take the new judge's criticism well, telling the judge she doesn't sing all that well either. Now I am totally tone deaf, it didn't seem to me Bikini Girl sang all that well, nor did the new judge seem to think so.

Simon Cowell and Randy were acting all googly eyed at the stripper-like spectacle, so it didn't surprise me, too much, that they chose to send Bikini Girl to Hollywood, but, when Kara and Paula also said "Yes," that surprised me. With Kara telling Bikini Girl, "Come naked next time."

I tried to Google to find out what city it was they were in last night. No luck, not even on the Fox American Idol website. I did find out tonight they are in Kansas City. The one in Missouri? Or the one in Kansas? I don't know. I also don't know if I'll be watching.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Nielsen Rating's Top 20 December 29 - January 4

The Nielsen Rating's Top 20 TV Shows for December 29 - January 4. The first number is the ranking, the second number is the season average, then the show name and network. The last number represents the number of viewers in millions. An 'x' indicates non-series special programming. An asterisk * indicates a tie.

1. X Indianapolis vs. S.D. NBC 27.8
2. 7 Desperate Housewives ABC14.4
3. X Sugar Bowl Fox 13.4
* 3 NCIS CBS 13.4
5. 16 Cold Case CBS 12.7
6. 8 60 Minutes CBS 12.3
7. 10 Two and a Half Men CBS 11.9
8. 14 CSI: Miami CBS 11.4
9. 21 Extreme Makeover: Home Edition ABC 10.9
10. X Superstars of Dance NBC 10.6
11. X Kennedy Center Honors CBS 10.5
12. 27 Million Dollar Password CBS 10.4
13. X CSI: Crime Scene Investigation CBS 9.8
14. 31 The Unit CBS 9.7
15. X Law & Order: SVU NBC 9.6
16. X Deal or No Deal NBC 9.5
17. X Orange Bowl Fox 9.3
18. 24 Brothers & Sisters ABC 9.1
19. N/A Law & Order: SVU NBC 8.9
* X Rose Bowl Postgame ABC 8.9

Monday, January 5, 2009

ABC's The Bachelor & True Beauty

Television is coming out of its Holiday doldrums. As in some new shows are starting up.

I sometimes can get hooked on good train wreck reality type TV shows. Tonight starts up yet one more iteration of ABC's The Bachelor. This time the bachelor is that guy who got jilted by that annoying Deanna Pappas woman, who chose a snowboarder over Jason Mesnick, he being the new Bachelor.

The greasy-haired snowboarder, I think his name was Jesse and Deanna are no longer pretending to be a couple. This new Bachelor guy, Jason, has a kid. He has been married. He is from up in the Seattle zone, Kirkland, I think. People report, from up there, that Mesnick has said he is engaged.

So, this time I guess he doesn't get rejected when he proposes. The Bachelor version of this train wreck is more fun to watch than The Bachelorette version. To me, one guy going after a large number of women seems less unseemly than one girl going after a large number of guys. And when it's all those guys together in one house, they seem to get along way too well. Where with the woman, there is sure to be several nutjobs and some good catfighting.

I sort of got why that Deanna Pappas girl rejected Jason. To me there was something just a bit too needy about him. He got on my nerves.

So, The Bachelor comes on at 7 in my time zone, that being Central. At 9 a new reality show called True Beauty starts up. The premise is a group of hunks and dolls think they are in some sort of beauty contest thing, when in reality the judges, Cheryl Tiegs, Vanessa Minnillo and Nole Martin, will be judging them on their inner beauty, rather than how they look. The previews look pretty funny.

9 is late TV viewing for me. That's what the DVR is for. True Beauty is produced by Tyra Banks and Ashton Kutcher. Ashton Kutcher is repsonsible for some pretty rude TV, but his Beauty and the Geek doesn't have a mean-spirited edge to it. It's actually kind of good. And not really in a train wreck sort of way.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Real Housewives of New York City's Alex

I saw my other blog was getting a lot of hits on something I wrote long about Bravo's Real Housewives of New York City. I did not know, at that time, that today Bravo is running a Marathon of Housewives of NYC episodes.

I learned about the Marathon at lunch, when I turned on the TV and it was already on Bravo and The Real Housewives of New York City reunion episode was running.

I remember the reunion episode as being very bizarre and entertaining. With Alex McCord and her gay Australian husband, Simon, wannabe social climbers, who live in a rundown fixer upper, spending $10K on tickets to some opera opening event, along with another $10K for a new dress for Alex. So they can be seen on the red carpet by high society. And make eye contact with Jane Fonda.

When called on all their pretentiousness about being part of New York society, both Alex and Simon acted as if it was editing that made them look like foolish fools. Then clips were shown, showing Alex and Simon thrilled to see that the back of Alex had made it on to page 25 of the Society section of the New York Times.

Even after being presented with the evidence, Alex and Simon continued to deny that this was them, acting like fools. The others, including the host were exasperated.

And then the subject turned to nude photos of Alex that had turned up, mysteriously, during the course of the show. Alex is quite proud of them. Ramona's gag reflex kicked in and she made a very lady-like exit from the stage.

Bethany said she had seen the photos and she complimented Alex on them. I thought Bethany was being very generous. I've seen the photos. I would not do any complimenting about them. Then Bethany asked Alex if the photos just showed New York. Or did they go all the way to Florida?

Alex said, there were only tasteful topless shots.

Well. I have seen the photos. Not only do the photos go all the way to Florida, they go to South Florida, they go all the way down to Key West. A gynecologist could do an exam just by looking at those photos.

So, basically, Alex and her gay husband, Simon, are total liars. Either that or they have achieved some amazing level of self-delusion that I did not think was humanly possible.

Trust me, if you have any appreciation of the naked female form in its beautiful glory, you do not want to be seeing the naked photos of Alex with the censor spots removed. It took me at least to recover. I still have nightmares where Alex crops up and scares me.

Nielsen Rating's Top 20 December 22 - 28

The Nielsen Rating's Top 20 TV Shows for December 22 - 28. The first number is the ranking, the second number is the season average, then the show name and network. The last number represents the number of viewers in millions. An 'x' indicates non-series special programming. An asterisk * indicates a tie.

1. 5 Sunday Night Football NBC 14.8
2. 8 60 Minutes CBS 14.1
3. 10 Two and a Half Men CBS 11.8
4. X The Mentalist CBS 10.7
5. X NCIS CBS 10.6
6. 28 Million Dollar Password CBS 9.8
7. 17 Cold Case CBS 9.7
8. 14 CSI: Miami CBS 8.5
9. X CSI: Crime Scene Investigation CBS 8.0
10. X Ghost Whisperer CBS 7.8
11. 21 The OT Fox 7.6
12. 36 Football Night Pt. 3 NBC 7.5
13. X Eleventh Hour CBS 7.4
14. 31 The Big Bang Theory CBS 7.2
15. 28 Law & Order: SVU NBC 7.1
16. X CSI: NY CBS 6.9
* 28 Worst Week CBS 6.9
18. 31 How I Met Your Mother CBS 6.8
19. 16 House Fox 6.7
* N/A Numb3rs CBS 6.7