Television


This is an Entry About Oprah

tvI've written about the cult of Oprah before. My wife is an Oprah fan. She records every show, reads her magazine, talks about her with friends. She's a big fan.

The big Oprah news of the day is that she's pulling the plug on the Oprah Winfrey Show in 2011. Oprah fans everywhere are mourning the loss of their show, but don't believe the hype. It's a ruse!

Oprah ain't goin' anywhere. This is from her own site.

For an hour a day, she's been bringing 'live your best life' television right into your living room. Well now it's time for what's next. Not just what's next for Oprah, but what's next for you. The Oprah Winfrey Network will be a 24/7 cable network devoted to self-discovery, to connecting you to your best self and to the world. Oprah will be with us every day. She's the life force of OWN.

That's right, she's leaving her hour talk show to focus on her 24/7 cable network. In 2011 we'll have more Oprah than ever before.

That's not retirement, that's business.

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Seinfeld Reunion Update, Courtesy of Curb Your Enthusiasm

tvI loved Seinfeld and I love Curb Your Enthusiasm. Last night, as I watched Sunday's episode of CYE, I was treated to the best of both worlds.

If you're a fellow Seinfeld fan, you've got to see this episode. The primary Seinfeld actors had a table reading of Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David's Seinfeld Reunion script and we gained insight into what's happened to the characters these past dozen years.

Here are some of the highlights: (SPOILER ALERT, ELVIS!

  • Elaine had a baby courtesy of Jerry’s donated sperm.
  • George got rich inventing an iToilet app for the iPhone, but lost all his money to Bernie Madoff.
  • George’s ex-wife, Amanda, still had her hefty divorce settlement, so naturally he wants to win her back.
  • Newman is still a postman.

We're promised more Seinfeld character updates next week.

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TV Tax Ads Lie, Annoy and Infuriate

thumbsdownI hate those TV Tax ads. There are the two varieties... the ones from the cable and satellite guys and the ones from the networks telling us "Local TV Matters". I hate them both.

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That's my tweet after seeing another TV Tax ad during the Leafs game last night. I thought they were gone, but apparently not.

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That was someone replying to me on Twitter, helping to explain why these ads are so annoying. I find them insulting, but not just because of the obnoxious sarcasm. I resent the implication we're about to be hit with a TV tax. There is no TV tax!

Only the government can tax us. The government is not taxing us here, the CRTC is just ruling whether TV broadcasters can charge the cable and satellite providers for their content. If our cable bill increases as a result, it's because Bell and Rogers and the gang passed on the extra cost. It's not a tax, it's a multi-million dollar company passing on a new business expense to its customers.

And correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't Bell on both sides of the fence here? Bell is one of the big names behind the "TV Tax" ads (along with Rogers, Telus, Cogeco, EastLink, BellAliant and others), but they're also part-owner of the CTV network, one of the big names behind the "Local TV Matters" ads (along with CBC, Global, A Channel, CHEK and others). They simply can't lose.

I fully expect my Rogers bill to go up after this CRTC ruling, but it won't be because of a TV Tax. The TV Tax doesn't exist. My bill will go up because the cable and satellite companies are greedy bastards.

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Raised on Sesame Street

rewindI grew up on Sesame Street. I watched it daily as a toddler. In the mid-70s, it was the show for us kids.

I recently revisited the late-70s Sesame Street episodes that included Eleven Twelve, one of my favourite bits. Sesame Street became common ground for my kids and I, even though I continuously booed Elmo and Zooey when they appeared on the screen and openly complained that Snuffleupagus could now be seen by everyone, not just Big Bird.

My personal favourite memories of Sesame Street include that wonderful Camping in Canada cassette and my very favourite bit of all time, Cookie Monster as Casey McPhee getting that train through.

Happy 40th Birthday, Sesame Street. Thanks to Google for tipping me off.

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My PVR Hit List These Days

tvI caved and got a PVR earlier this year. It has radically altered the way I watch television.

Other than live sporting events, everything else I watch is watched at my convenience after I've recorded it. I watch television when I'm ready to watch television, typically at about 10pm, and I fast forward all the commercials.

Here are the television programs I currently record and watch when I get a chance.

  • Curb Your Enthusiasm
  • The Simpsons
  • The Cleveland Show
  • Family Guy
  • American Dad
  • 60 Minutes
  • The View From Here
  • The Passionate Eye
  • Modern Family
  • Glee (the kids like it, it bores me to tears when they're not singing)
  • The Office
  • 30 Rock
  • Californication
  • Dexter
  • Saturday Night Live

That's my current PVR hit list. When Lost starts up again, we'll throw that in the pile.

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WUTV Buffalo 29 Says Happy Halloween

WUTV Buffalo 29 Says Happy HalloweenIt's almost Halloween. I've got pumpkins to carve, dammit!

Here's a special, seasonal message from WUTV Buffalo 29 circa 1984.


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CBC Newsworld Renamed CBC News Network (CBC NN)

cbcI've already admitted I'm a CBC Newsworld fan. It's actually where I get my television news. I have several sources online, but when I'm looking for a news update on television, I get it from CBC Newsworld.

CBC Newsworld now has a new name. It's now CBC News Network (CBC NN).

That's right, they've named it CBCNN. Not CNN or BNN but CBCNN. Rolls off the tongue, doesn't it?

I think I'll keep calling it CBC Newsworld.

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Carny Doc from TVO - Watch it Here

tvI watch a lot of documentaries. I love a good doc. One of my favourite documentary series is The View From Here on TVO. If you have a PVR, I highly recommend recording The View From Here as it's better than anything you'll find on ABC, CBS, NBC or FOX.

With the Ex in full swing, my own personal memories of carny folk have peculated to the top of my mind. I'm planning a visit to the Ex next Saturday, and in preparation for that visit, I took in the TVO documentary "Carny" that aired as part of their The View From Here series.

"Carny" is fascinating. Here's the description from TVO.

This documentary will explore the slowly-disappearing world of the family-based traveling carnival and the ubiquitous itinerant workers that inhabit this world. The filmmaker will follow a traveling three-generation family carnival and capture the poetry of the fairground experience. This will be a glimpse into a mysterious, intoxicating and often maligned subculture, providing a unique point of view into a contemporary nomadic way of life that is quickly vanishing.

You've got to check this out. Let me make this easy for you. Watch "Carny" in its entirety below. You're welcome.

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Who's Your Favourite Television Character?

TVI have a crazy day today. I'm in meetings all morning, than I have a company softball tournament all afternoon before my late night double header for Raging Storm.

Since I'll be offline all day, I want to leave you all with one question.

Who is your favourite television character of all-time? All visitors must leave a comment, that's an order.

My favourite television character? That's easy...

omar

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Nurse Jackie

TVI'm always on the lookout for a good television series. They're few and far between, and TV in the post-Wire world seems worse than TV in the pre-Wire world.

I've watched the first six episodes of Nurse Jackie and I'm enjoying it. It's nice and dark, just the way I like it. Initially I had trouble getting used to Carmela Soprano as a New York City nurse, but Edie Falco is such a good actress, she wins you over.

I mentioned it's dark. It's not overly dark, but it's got a healthy tinge of cynicism and Nurse Jakie is a nicely flawed heroine.

I'm watching this Showtime series on TMN. If you've got TMN, you can catch up pretty quick.

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