Friday, January 13, 2006


Mediaweek reports from the Television Critics Association’s annual winter convention, where NBC's panel included the announcement that Monk has been renewed for seasons five and six. On hand at the press conference was actor Tony Shalhoub, who fielded some questions.

Another TCA member wondered whether viewers ever confused the actor with the character, to which he quipped, “I do get offered a lot of Handi Wipes. And I can tell you, after four hundred times, it’s a little hard to, you know, laugh, as if it’s the first time it’s ever happened. But people just think that is so funny.”

USA Network and Sci Fi Channel president Bonnie Hammer defended the network's unusual approach to scheduling (two half-seasons, instead of one season at a time):

"You really have to take a look at what makes sense for the show, build up your audience, keep them, but not throw in repeat episodes, and hope they’re going to come back or remember that after three repeat episodes, there will be a brand new episode."

See the whole story (including other USA and Sci-Fi announcements) here.

Related links:

Wednesday, January 4, 2006


Even as TV-on-DVD becomes a major force in the entertainment marketplace, studios find that licensing music for older programs is as pricey as obtaining tunes for new series. According to Reuters, the issue is forcing studios to make "radical changes."

... skyrocketing music-clearance fees are becoming major stumbling blocks for DVD reissues, often delaying or even completely derailing releases. Take "WKRP in Cincinnati," for example: The 1970s sitcom used so much classic rock that it would cost 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment a mint to clear the tracks. Fox has suggested that it still is considering releasing "WKRP," but others are not optimistic that the comedy and similar shows of its kind will ever make it into the market.

Reuters says TV-on-DVD business accounted last year for more than $2 billion in sales; reports suggest the figure could reach $3.9 billion by 2008.

Monday, January 2, 2006


My wife and I have been watching Season Two of of the excellent detective series Monk. (Since we do not have cable, we have to enjoy them on DVD.) We are just amazed at how funny and wonderful these stories are.

Tomorrow, the first original Monk tie-in novel hits shelves, Mr. Monk Goes to the Firehouse (Signet). The book is written by TV writer and novelist Lee Goldberg, co-writer of the Monk episode "Mr. Monk Goes to Mexico" (which we just watched, and it was AWESOME).

The Monk Fun Page interviewed Mr. Goldberg about his adventures writing for television (including Monk and Diagnosis Murder ) and writing the first official Monk novels.

The USA Network has launched an official website devoted to the Monk books, which includes an excerpt and a video interview with the author. (You can also check out downloads and an exclusive Monk mini-webisode created exclusively for the Internet.)

Related link: Mr. Monk Goes To The Firehouse

Crime TV on DVD