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"Downton" Loses Another Regular, Neil Gaiman's Upcoming Movie, and 7 More Things You Absolutely Must Know Going Into the Weekend

By Dustin Rowles | Industry | March 1, 2013 |

By Dustin Rowles | Industry | March 1, 2013 |

  • I think that “New Girl” turned its first corner into a great sitcom during Lizzy Caplan’s guest arc, but it was Dermot Mulroney’s arc that solidified its place among television’s three best sitcoms. Good news: He’s coming back later this season, perhaps to stand between Nick and Jess’ slow-burning love. I just hope they don’t bring True American back, again. The first time was amazing, the encore was brilliant. But they oughtn’t trot it out again until the 5th season doldrums.

  • “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” is coming back, and at least Colin Mochrie among the original American participants will be involved (I hope they throw a line to Wayne Brady, too; save that poor man from “The Gong Show”).

  • This is what “Scandal” and Django Unchained star, Kerry Washington, looks like inside of Ebony magazine this month. You’re welcome. She should be in more of the things, as long as it doesn’t take her away from “Scandal,” at least until season four’s doldrums, when Shonda Rhimes has to crack out True American.


  • “Downton Abbey” continues to shed cast members. After losing Dan Stevens and Jessica Brown-Findlay, and amid reports that Dame Maggie Smith will likely leave soon, as well, Siobhan Finneran — who plays the wicked main Sarah O’Brien — is also departing. I think it’s time to shoot it in the head, Julian Fellowes. Put it out to pasture. Here’s what Finneran looks like outside of 1920s England.


  • Oh noes: Bonnie Franklin, who played the single mom in “One Day at a Time” has passed at the age of 69. She died of complications from pancreatic cancer. She was 69.


  • Things have been going dreadfully for NBC. After finished in fifth place behind Univision during the February sweeps, after canceling “Do No Harm” following the worst ratings for a premiere in the history of the Big Four, and after Cleveland preempted NBC’s Thursday night lineup with a rerun of MATLOCK last night, we now know that last night, a first-run episode of “Community” got absolutely trounced by a rerun of “Big Bang Theory,” 10.6 million viewers to 2.7 million viewers. In fact, if you add up the viewers for all four NBC Thursday night sitcoms, it’s still less than the viewers for “Big Bang Theory.”

  • Speaking of NBC, it’s not been good for the one dominant “The Today Show” since the unceremonious dumping of Ann Curry, either, as it’s now being trounced by “Good Morning America,” and in fact was beaten by a NYC affilate morning program in February. Now, rumors are swirling that Matt Lauer may get the hatchet. Viewers blame him for Curry’s ouster, and it’s been a PR nightmare for him since last summer.

  • Our boy Neil Gaiman has a book coming out in June called The Ocean at the End of the Lane, and Joe Wright (Anna Karenina, Atonement) has already signed on to adapt it for the screen. The synopsis via Vulture:

    “It began for our narrator forty years ago when the family lodger stole their car and committed suicide in it, stirring up ancient powers best left undisturbed. Dark creatures from beyond the world are on the loose, and it will take everything our narrator has just to stay alive: there is primal horror here, and menace unleashed — within his family and from the forces that have gathered to destroy it. His only defense is three women, on a farm at the end of the lane. The youngest of them claims that her duckpond is an ocean. The oldest can remember the Big Bang.”

  • Finally, I leave you with the episode titles for season three of Game of Thrones, which stars on March 31, 2013.

    Ep. 301 - Valar Dohaeris
    Ep. 302 - Dark Wings, Dark Words
    Ep. 303 - Walk of Punishment
    Ep. 304 - And Now His Watch is Ended
    Ep. 305 - Kissed by Fire
    Ep. 306 - to be determined
    Ep. 307 - The Bear and the Maiden Fair
    Ep. 308 - to be determined
    Ep. 309 - The Rains of Castamere
    Ep. 310 - Mhysa


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    Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.