Monday, July 6, 2015

POSTED: Thursday, January 29, 2015, 4:43 PM
Temple student Deandra Jefferson on "Who Wants to be a Millionaire" (©Disney-ABC Domestic TV)

When Deandra Jefferson was selected to compete on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, the jaunt up to the studio in Stamford, Conn., became “a family road trip. My parents rented a van and we all went up – my parents, my cousin, my best friend, my little brother and my grandmother.”

As you’ll see on Friday afternoon (2 p.m. on 6ABC), the East Mount Airy native and Temple University senior was pretty relaxed on camera. In part that was because the game show’s host, Terry Crews, put her at ease. “He’s really cool,” says Deandre, 21. “I guess he played football here for awhile [backup linebacker for the Eagles in 1996]. And he was talking about all the places he used to go in Philadelphia when he lived here.”

She doesn’t rattle easily anyway. “I’m a dance major and I’ve been on stage my whole life. Lights and cameras, I’m pretty comfortable with.”

David Hiltbrand @ 4:43 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Thursday, January 22, 2015, 4:13 PM

Nielsen has just released its latest Local Watch Report, which tabulates the differences in how people consume media content in different markets.

Certain facets about Philadelphia stand out. For instance, we spend more time watching live TV on a daily basis (4 hours, 50 mins) than any other major urban area in the country, with the exception of Tampa.

That number is boosted by the African American population in this city who watch an astounding 7 hours 29 minutes of live TV a day, which is greater by far than the black community in any other city.

David Hiltbrand @ 4:13 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Thursday, January 22, 2015, 12:06 PM
Actor Terrence Howard attends the premiere of Fox's 'Empire at ArcLight Cinemas Cinerama Dome on January 6, 2015 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Jason Kempin/Getty Images)

Lee Daniels’ Empire keeps expanding. For the second week in a row, the show’s ratings went up. That’s almost unheard of on TV where shows almost always begin to slip after the premiere.

The soapy soul revue was up another 8 per cent from last week. Its 4.3 rating is the highest for any drama this season and rose a full point from its lead-in, American Idol. . Can you say ‘smash’, boys and girls?

Things were not so rosy elsewhere on the dial. Criminal Minds on CBS was down 14 per cent to a series low 1.9 rating. NBC’s Law & Order: SVU was down the same sizable percentage to a 1.2, another series low.

David Hiltbrand @ 12:06 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Tuesday, January 20, 2015, 12:46 PM

So what were you doing on Monday night, America? Apparently you weren’t watching TV. Several network shows saw steep declines on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

CBS’s NCIS: Los Angeles notched ratings 25 per cent lower than its last original outing. Ouch! The 1.5 rating in the 18-49 demo tied for the worst outing the series has ever had. It notched 9.45 million viewers, a drop-off of more than 2 million from its lead-in, Scorpion, which had a rough night itself (especially compared to its special airing post-NFL on Sunday night).

It was a stormy Monday on Fox as well. Gotham was down 12 per cent in the ratings. It had 6.43 million viewers. It got worse. Sleepy Hollow was down 19 per cent, hitting a series low. The episode drew only 4.16 million viewers.

David Hiltbrand @ 12:46 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Tuesday, January 13, 2015, 1:13 PM
Tim Tebow reads mean tweets on "Kimmel"

Whether you enjoyed Ohio State’s bulldozing of Oregon on Monday night’s inaugural College Football Playoff championship probably depends on your rooting interests.

But everybody could enjoy Jimmy Kimmel’s pregame appearance on ESPN during which he had college football coaches like Notre Dame’s Brian Kelly and well-known announcers like Desmond Howard read some vicious tweets about themselves. (As is usual in Kimmel’s ego-puncturing bit, R.E.M.’s “Everybody Hurts” plays wanly in the background.

Be sure you watch all the way through because the insults climax when we get to Lee Corso, Scott Van Pelt and Kirk Herbsteit.

David Hiltbrand @ 1:13 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Friday, December 19, 2014, 1:14 AM
FILE: "The Colbert Report" ended on Thursday, Dec. 18, 2014, after nine seasons. (AP Photo/Comedy Central, Scott Gries)

And so the red white and blue eagle has flown the coop. Stephen Colbert ended his nine year run of wry demagoguery on Comedy Central Thursday with a finale that started modestly and ended like a Night of a Thousand Stars.

Dressed in an ashy, formal three piece suit, Colbert primed the pump with gags (“If this is your first time tuning in to The Colbert Report, I have some terrible news…’) before going into his signature bit, “The Word”, devoted to his show’s legacy. “If all we achieved over the last 9 years,” he pontificated, “was to come into your home each night and help you make a difficult day a little big better. man, what a waste.”

Then, in the only sketch all night that really didn’t work, he shot dead his old friend Grimmy (the Grim Reaper) and boasted that he was now immortal.

David Hiltbrand @ 1:14 AM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Tuesday, December 9, 2014, 11:48 AM

Warning: This video is strictly for mature -- and twisted—viewers. Of course if South Park isn’t grievously offending polite society, it simply isn’t doing its job.

Take Wednesday’s season finale: It’s a festive holiday special and we can’t even repeat the full title. Let’s just say it involves a team from the NFC East.

Wow, what a roster of stars for this show. Which one surprises you most? We’re going to guess it’s the duo of Southeastern Pennsylvania’s most famous and infamous stars: Taylor Swift and Bill Cosby. What’s in that glass of wine he’s cradling?

David Hiltbrand @ 11:48 AM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Monday, December 8, 2014, 11:59 AM
Saturday Night Live was on fast twitch response to this week’s events and nothing exemplified that nimbleness more than the comedy staple’s parody of the new Star Wars trailer which has fan boys everywhere shaking in their slippers.

But SNL, as you might expect, had a different take on Chapter VII: Just how glamorous would the space opera be if Hans Solo, Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia were light years older? Bang!

This will have you laughing your wookie off.

David Hiltbrand @ 11:59 AM  Permalink | 0 comments
About this blog

A true child of TV, David Hiltbrand has worked as a critic at People and as a columnist and editor at TV Guide.

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