Arts & Entertainment Network

TVAnother retro gem shared by Retrontario reminded me of the origins of the A&E Network.

When I first saw A&E, it was called the Arts & Entertainment Network and it was very PBS-ish. Lots of BBC stuff and upper crust viewing, as I recall. Here's an Arts & Entertainment Network promo to give you a taste of what it once was.

It's hard to believe that evolved (devolved?) into the A&E of today. Now it's all Gene Simmons: Family Jewels and Dog the Bounty Hunter and such.

At least it supplied me with my nightly Law & Order fix during my uni days.

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The Cliche Family in Televisionland

XXXThis video was made around 1965 as an in-house joke at an ad agency.

No word if it came from SCDP or not...

[via MetaFilter]

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Ann Rohmer's Reappearance on CP24

Ann RohmerAnn Rohmer announced she was leaving CP24 back in May. She was leaving television for the aviation industry, as I recall. There was a farewell bash and everything.

On September 21, Susan Cunningham chimed in with the following comment.

It appears that as of today Ann Rohmer is back on CP24 on a regular basis. Maybe the airline industry did not pan out. Who knows.

And the hits kept on coming...

I thought Ann was leaving but she's on CP24 more now than before she quit!

Can someone please tell her to get a new hairstyle?? Those wing things hanging on the sides of her face have got to go.


They should say something if she has returned. CP24 made a big thing for about a month that she was leaving, Tell us CP24 if she is back from the plane ride!! Or the plane did not take off.

All that fuss before Ann Rohmer left to pursue a career in aviation and now she's back like it never happened. I feel like the viewers are due some kind of explanation.

Does anyone have an update as to Ann's reappearance on CP24? Did they make any announcements as to why she is back?

Does anyone know why Ann Rohmer has suddenly reappeared on CP24?

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The Rapid Decline of 30 Rock

TVI caught on to 30 Rock late in its first season, but I've been hooked ever since. It's a rarity for me: a basic cable comedy I actually enjoy.

At least I used to enjoy it. This season, it's gone flat. In season two I remember laughing aloud frequently and these days I'm lucky if there are two or three chuckles. 30 Rock's decline in comedic quality was quite rapid. It's barely watchable these days.

Are there any other 30 Rock fans out there who have noticed this?


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My Love Affair With Mad Men

TVI finished the finale of The Wire in April 2009 and wondered where I could go from there? The Wire was stellar television and I couldn't find anything else as compelling and smart. Then, I found Mad Men.

Mad Men is the first show since The Wire that I've loved. It's so different from The Wire in terms of content, but both grip me and leave me wanting more. I'm half way through season four right now, so keep spoilers to yourself!

Although Mad Men has a great cast, it all revolves around the complex tortured soul of Don Draper. Don Draper is one of the best characters on television, ever.

Now excuse me, it's time for my smoke break.

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Cleveland Show Tribute to Joe Bowen's Down Goes Brown

TVI PVR The Cleveland Show. It's part of the Sunday night cartoon block I record on Fox and watch when unwinding. Last night, while The Cleveland Show aired live, I started seeing tweets about a "Down goes Brown" call. Here's The Cleveland Show's "Down goes Brown" reference I just captured on my digicam and uploaded to YouTube.

If you Google "Down goes Brown", the results are flooded with info about this guy. But Down Goes Brown the hilarious Barilkospherian blogger took his handle from Joe Bowen's legendary call on The FAN 1430 back in 1992 of Sylvain Lefebvre knocking out Rob Brown. Here's Joe Bowen's "Down goes Brown" call.

I know what you're thinking... How is it possible The Cleveland Show would parody a local Toronto radio call this obscure? Surely this is one big coincidence...

My forensic analysis is complete, and I'm ready to declare this is in fact a homage to Joe Bowen's 1992 call. As you heard in the Zapruder film above, the announcer repeats several well known calls after he mimics Joe Bowen with "Down goes Brown! Down goes Brown!" They are:

  1. "I don't believe what I just saw!" - This was Jack Buck's famous call after Kirk Gibson's walk-off World Series homer in 1988
  2. "Do you believe in miracles? Yes!" - This was Al Michaels' famous call after the USA hockey team stunned the Soviets in the 1980 Olympic Games
  3. "President Reagan has been shot." - This was the famous first announcement that John Hinckley had shot President Ronald Reagan in 1981 (I'm not sure who said it first)
  4. "Soylent Green is people!" - This was the famous final line from Charlton Heston in the movie Soylent Green
  5. "Fahrvergn├╝gen" - This was an advertising slogan used by Volkswagen in 1990

With this additional context, it's clear "Down goes Brown!" is being used in The Cleveland Show as a parody of a famous call, and "Down goes Brown!" has no other meanings in popular culture. Some of you will say it's a spin on Howard Cosell's famous call when George Foreman knocked down Joe Frazier, as was Joe Bowen's original call. Cosell's call was "Down Goes Frazier! Down Goes Frazier! Down Goes Frazier!". I feel sorry for those who choose to believe such things.

Without a doubt, someone on The Cleveland Show writing staff is a big Toronto Maple Leafs fan who felt it was time an American series paid homage to Joe Bowen's legendary call. Like The Hip said, it's been a long time coming, but it's well worth the wait.

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They Smoke A Lot In Mad Men

tvI love watching Mad Men. I'm currently plowing through season 3, so please, no spoilers.

They sure smoke a lot in Mad Men. Here's every cigarette smoked in the show.

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Boardwalk Empire Looks Good

tvThere's a new series from HBO coming this September that looks pretty good. It's called Boardwalk Empire and it's got a lot going for it.

  1. It stars Steve Buscemi
  2. It's from Emmy award-winning screenwriter and producer Terence Winter of The Sopranos
  3. The pilot episode was directed by Martin Scorsese
  4. Omar's in it

Looking forward to it...


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Norwich Union Life Insurance Commercial - At Last!

tvIn "It's Patrick, He Got Life Insurance", I wrote about an old ad I must have seen a hundred times, but couldn't find.

Now I've found it. Here's the ad:

And here's a few reasons I liked the ad.

  1. The old dude answered the phone and a mere second later announces to his wife that it's their son Patrick and he got life insurance. Patrick must be one hell of a fast talker, because the speed at which this information is conveyed is unbelievable. He doesn't open with a "Hi dad, how are you?" but in a one-second time period he manages to cram in the "hi dad, it's Patrick" and "I got life insurance" and the dad deems this news so exciting that he can't wait a minute to share it with his wife.
  2. Throughout the call, the mother of Patrick had several questions about this life insurance. She asked these questions through her husband by writing them down on paper. But not just any paper with any pen or pencil, but big white paper with coloured markers, that just happened to be by the phone. How convenient!
  3. And finally, we know the son is a fast talker, but he comes by it honestly. Mom is a super fast writer. The speed at which she neatly wrote the questions in magic marker was incredible.

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Enough's Enough - I Want My Louie

louieI think Louie CK is friggin' hilarious, but who doesn't? His new series has been airing on FX in the USA since June, and I've been hoping a Canadian network would pick it up. I desperately want to watch this show.

Here's part of episode 6. This is damn funny, but NSFW. I'd embed it, but FX won't let me. Trust me, it's worth the click.

This delay in bringing Louie to Canada has left me no choice. The Pirate Bay it is.


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