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July 25, 2007 |

By Seth Freilich | Industry | July 25, 2007 |

Well there’s been much speculation, with many names tossed into the ring, but we now have final confirmation — ladies and gentlemen, Drew Carey is your new host of the “The Price is Right.” This seems a pretty good choice, although I personally find Carey much funnier when he’s doing stand-up as opposed to when he’s hosting something and is forced to be watered-down (see the terrible Americanized “Whose Line Is It Anyway” for all the evidence you’ll ever need). But watered-down will suit the morning “Price” gig perfectly, and I’m sure he’ll be quite well-received.

You know, when I was in high school and college, I loved me some “Price.” Any time I was ditching sick, I’d make sure to tune into CBS to watch some Plinko and listen to Bob Barker explain the necessity of spaying and neutering my pets. Although I wasn’t as hog-crazy about the show as one dude I know — years later, when we were both living in L.A., he conducted a careful study of the show to figure out the prime characteristics he would need to have while queued up for a taping to get pre-selected to “come on down.” I don’t think he ever actually made it to a taping to put his studies into action, but the point is, he was way more into the show than I ever was. And the point of that is that I’m not sure this changing of the guard really has any major impact in my life whatsoever. Although it does mean that when I’m sitting down with Pajiba, Jr. to watch Happy Gilmore (as Mrs. Pajiba-hyphenate probably won’t let him watch any good movies until it’s much too late for them to impact his development, it’ll fall on Uncle TV Whore to play bad influence, letting him see the goods when mom’s not paying attention), I’ll have to explain to him who this Bob Barker fellow is beating the shit out of that guy who Pajiba, Jr. only recognizes from whatever shitty commercials Sandler will hopefully have been reduced to by that time.

Meanwhile, CBS has decided that it’s fed up with “Pirate Master” and has canceled the show — effective immediately — although it’ll put the five remaining episodes up on the website for those of you who need to know how it all plays out. I had been watching this show as a time-killer, but I was so uninterested that I feel absolutely no need to actually check out these website episodes. In fact, I’m actually pretty pleased that CBS has given me back an hour of my life because, for some reason, I couldn’t muster the energy to delete the season pass on my own. So, good on you, CBS!

But while I’m tipping my hat to CBS, I’m also wagging my finger at NBC. Or more accurately, I’m wagging my finger at the folks behind my beloved “Friday Night Lights.” Why for, you ask? Because, fuck fuckity fuck fuck fuck, they’re looking at casting Rosie O’Donnell. Word is that it’ll only be for one scene, initially, as the coach of a girl’s soccer team, but that they will tailor this character to her. And if she wants to do more, they say they’ll be more than happy to oblige. The only thing I can hope for is that her commitment to “Nip/Tuck” keeps her from taking on additional work here. I mean, it’s bad enough I’m going to have to suffer through her over there on FX (and please, Jebus, do not make me see anymore sex scenes). You know, maybe life would’ve been better if she had gotten the “Price is Right” gig over Carey, so that she wouldn’t have time for all these acting stints.

On the good-news casting front, Katee Sackhoff has signed onto NBC’s “Bionic Woman” remake as a full-time recurring character (she already had a guest spot in the pilot as a gone-rogue bionic chick, but no commitment beyond that). Don’t know if this says anything about how much we’ll see of her on “Battlestar Galactica,” though I wouldn’t read too much into it. More importantly on the “Bionic” front, however, the show has also brought Mark Sheppard in as a series regular. This makes me happy as hell, because I thoroughly loved his guest stints on both “Battlestar” and “Firefly,” and I was just recently saying to myself, “Self, I’d love to see Shepard get a full-time gig someplace.” Ask and I shall receive, I guess. Hmmmm….

“Please don’t cast Rosie on ‘Friday Night Lights.’ Please don’t cast Rosie on ‘Friday Night Lights.’ Please … don’t cast Rosie on ‘Friday Night Lights.’”

Let’s see how that goes and, in the meantime, we’ll move on to the TCA press-tour news, presented in bullet-form (but stay tuned at the end for a special rant):

  • CBS is planning a crossover between “CSI” and “Without a Trace,” with William Peterson and Anthony LaPaglia showing up on each other’s shows. And “Cold Case” is going to have an episode featuring only Nirvana tunes, because that’s what the hip kids are listening to these days. If I watched any of these shows, I still wouldn’t care.
  • You can pretty much say goodbye to Nestor Carbonell on “Lost,” along with the theories that his character was the one really running things for the Others. He’s on CBS’ upcoming “Cane,” and while he said he’d love to still show up on “Lost,” and while the show’s producers said they have no problem with it either, CBS’ head said “no way.” Nina Tassler thinks the television audience would get confused by seeing him in two roles at the same time, so she says it’s very unlikely the network would let him pop up on “Lost.” Way to respect your audience, Nina.
  • For the “How I Met Your Mother” fans out there, the season premiere will apparently drop a big, fat hint about who Mommy Dearest actually is. And there’s also going to be a clue about when Barney can expect his third slap (and it might just have something to do with
  • Fuck “Big Bang Theory,” which is that stupid new show about two nerds who have a hot chick move in next door. During the press tour, a reporter was complaining to the producers that the hot chick’s character might be just a bit too stupid, and exec producer Chuck Lorre apparently got pissed and told the reporter that he just needed to watch the pilot again and “try harder.” I’m so not watching this damn show.
  • Last thing about CBS — the network has announced a new e-mail program, cleverly called “CBS Eye-lerts,” that’ll let folks know when showtimes get jacked because of sports (i.e., football causing the Sunday night shows to run late). I don’t care much about this, frankly, but I love the other step they’re taking, which is to work with TiVo on a way to have our TiVos automatically adjust recordings when these scheduling snafus happens. I’m not sure they’ll ever be able to pull it off (because that would require a push of information from the TiVo servers, whereas right now your home TiVo actually pulls information — the nerds out there get what I’m talking about), but I like the initiative and attempt to work with these new-fangled technologies.
  • Over at the CW, meanwhile, president of entertainment Dawn Ostroff said that some of the network’s reality shows are “aspirational.” Not sure if she’s including “Beauty and the Geek” or “The Next Pussycat Whore” in that category — she might just be referring to, and I’m not making this title up, “Farmer Needs a Wife.”
  • …That’s all I have to say about the CW.
  • And then there was Fox. Not much to really talk about here, either. Although I will actually give the network some props for taking the (rare for them) high road. I guess there was a school-shooting bit in the pilot of “The Sarah Connor Chronicles” which won’t be seeing the light of day now because of the VT tragedy from earlier this year. Don’t know if that’s the right call or not; as I say, it’s rare that Fox actually bothers to even consider these things, so good on them for that.
  • And speaking of that show, they may be changing the title to the slightly longer “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles.” Seems silly to me. I would think that fans of The Terminator already get the show’s connection to the flicks, and that an explicit shout-out to the flicks wouldn’t be likely to pull many others in who aren’t already on-board. Then again, I don’t run a TV network, so what the hell do i know.
  • Lastly, at the panel for “K-Ville” (the show about cops in post-Katrina New Orleans — and props to the show’s producers for refusing Fox’s request to film most of the show in L.A., instead shooting it entirely on location in N’Orleans) … anyway, at the panel, someone complained about the fact that nobody actually refers to New Orleans as “K-Ville,” and another reporter rightly pointed out that before another little Fox show, nobody called Orange County “the O.C.” Unfortunately, the reporter didn’t emphasize their point by punching the complainer and saying “welcome to K-Ville, bitch!” But they should have.

OK, and here’s that rant I promised. I’ve fucking had it. I’m not trying to start any sort of intertubes war here and, quite frankly, I’m sure he has no idea who I am or what this Pajiba thing is. And that’s fine. But some of y’all have asked why I despise TV Guide’s (egotistical douchebag) Michael Ausiello so much. Well, here’s one reason. As I’ve explained before, I read his damn columns not by choice, but because I have to — since I’m not a full-time round-the-clock critic, I don’t have the resources or connections cats like Ausiello have, so I need to rely on them as my informational sources. Anyway, Douchebag has this goddamned tendency to refer to every other piece of news he reports as either a “scoop” or an “exclusive.” For example, while he was live-blogging from the TCAs, he claimed to have a “scoop” when Dick Wolf announced who the new “Law & Order” prosecutor would be (it’s Linus Roache, for those that care).

But here’s the fucking thing Ausiello — it’s not a goddamn scoop when Dick Wolf is telling a whole room full of fucking reporters. Also, you might want to make sure your fucking scoops are, you know, right, before extolling your wonderful fact-finding skills. Ausiello also gave a scoop about who CBS was planning to hire to replace Mandy Patinkin on “Criminal Minds,” saying: “Want a little scoop? I hear they’re wooing ******* *e****.” Don’t get me started on the whole blind-name bullshit. But he doesn’t even appear to be right, as every indication, even on Ausiello’s own blog, is that Geena Davis is going to be Patinkin’s replacement, and her name doesn’t exactly fit into Douchebag’s little blind-name bullshit.

And this is just one of many reasons why I can’t stand the sycophant that is Michael Ausiello.

Seth Freilich is Pajiba’s television editor. He was originally going to invite Ausiello over for tea and crumpets, but decided it would be more fun to simply piss and moan.

The Price is Wrong, Pajiba!

The Trade Round-Up / The TV Whore
July 25, 2007

Industry | July 25, 2007 |

Seth is a Senior Editor and sometime critic. You may email him here or follow him on Twitter.

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