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John Kiesewetter on the world of local and national TV

Senior Entertainment Reporter John Kiesewetter has been covering TV and media issues for 20 years. After joining the Cincinnati Enquirer in 1975 as a summer intern, he worked as a county government and suburban reporter; assistant city editor and suburban editor; and features editor supervising the Life section. He has a B.S. in journalism from Ohio University.

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Friday, September 30, 2005


Good news for HDTV owners. CET starts 24/7 HDTV programming on Saturday. The growing number of HDTV set owners know to find CET's HDTV on Time Warner Channel 948, Insight's 769, Adelphia's 706 and over-the-air (if they have a digital receiver) on Channel 34.1.

End of the season
Marty Brennaman signed off the WLW-AM's weekday "Brennaman and Jones on Baseball" for the season at 7:55 a.m. Friday by questioning whether he wants to resume the show with former Red Tracy Jones next spring. I'm guess he did it for radio theatrics -- but as a Reds fan, I'm tired of the show being more about Jones than the team. If it comes back next year, should they call it "Brennaman and Jones on Tracy?"

Around the dial
"Malcolm In The Middle" returns for a new season in a horrible time slot, 8:30 p.m. Friday (Chs 19, 45) with Lois (Jane Kaczmarek) discovering the joys of hemp in Nevada's Black Rock desert...
Good news for fans of "The 4000." USA Networks has ordered 13 more one-hour shows to air next summer.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Two for the "Price"

John Fisher, a retired Colerain Township plumber, appears on "The Price is Right" today (11 a.m., Ch. 12). He's a huge fan who taped the show in August while on vacation in Los Angeles.
CBS also has announced that another Greater Cincinnati resident, Ronny Edwards Jr., gets a chance to win money and prizes next Thursday, Oct. 6.

Busy TV night
It's another TiVo night: "Alias" returns with a pregnant Jennifer Garner (8 p.m., ABC), against "Will & Grace" kicking off its last season with a live episode (8:30 p.m., NBC), the second episode of "Everybody Hates Chris" (8 p.m., UPN), and, of course, "The O.C.," "Survivor" and "Smallville." And CET has "Rock n Roll Forever: Ed Sullivan's Greatest Hits" (8 p.m., Ch 48).

At 10 p.m., George Clooney gives Diane Sawyer and "Primtime" viewers a tour of his Italian villa (10 p.m., ABC).

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Tour Clooney's Villa

Ever wanted to peek inside George Clooney's villa in Como, Italy? You get the chance on ABC's "Primteime" Thursday (10 p.m., Ch 9). He gives Diane Sawyer and viewers a tour of his estate, in a PR appearance to promote his new "Good Night, and Good Luck" movie about 1950s CBS TV newsman Edward R. Murrow.

Racing Through Cincinnati
"The Amazing Race" host Phil Keoghan has a marathon day Thursday in Cincinnati, before signing "TAR" DVDs at the West Chester Township Wal-Mart:
--7:20 a.m. : WEBN-FM phone interview
--7:40 a.m.: Channel 12's "Good Morning Cincinnati"
--8:10 a.m.: WUBE-FM
--8:30 a.m.: WKRQ-FM
--9 a.m.: WGRR-FM
--11 a.m.: Taping Channel 12's "The Dish" with chef Jean-Robert de Cavel.
--3-5 p.m.: At Wal-Mart, 8288 Cincinnati-Dayton Road, just north of I-75, in West Chester.

Get Lost
Why is ABC rerunning last week's "Lost" premiere at 8 p.m. today, right before the second episode airs at 9? My guess is that it has less to do with "Lost" fans, and everything to do with trying to cripple NBC's ratings for "The Apprentice: Martha Stewart." In other words, Martha get lost!

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Who Dey!

Who Dey? Who Dey think gonna beat them Linzes? The four Linz kids from Anderson Township -- Nick, 24, Alex, 23, Mega, 21 and Bone (Tommy), 19 -- all huge Bengals fans who call themselves the Who Dey team -- wear their orange Who Dey shirts when they begin competing on "The Amazing Race: Family Edition" premiere today (9-11 pm, Chs 12, 7).

Billy Bob!
Actor-turned-country singer Billy Bob Thornton chats with Chris Comer and Rob Ervin on "The Chris & Rob Talk Show" 10 p.m. today on WAIF-FM (88.3).

A TiVo Night, For Sure
Tuesday at 9 p.m. has become the big Fall TV battleground. "The Amazing Race" airs against "House," ABC's new "Commander in Chief," NBC's new "My Name Is Earl," and WB's new "Supernatural." Plus PBS airs the second half of "Bob Dylan: No Direction Home" on "American Masters."
And don't forget the season premiere of "Boston Legal" with guest stars Heather Lockear and Betty White. Stars William Shatner and James Spader each won Emmys last week for their roles.

Monday, September 26, 2005

"Lost" found again

ABC is doing all it can to hype second season for "Lost." Last week's season premiere repeats at 8 p.m. Wednesday, right before the second episode (Ch 9).

Clooney tune in
George Clooney alert: Diana Sawyer visits him at his Italian villa on "PrimeTime Live" Thursday (10 p.m., Ch 9).

Kiese watching
"American Masters" profiles the early career of Bob Dylan with "Bob Dylan: No Direction Home." Catch it 9-11 p.m. today and Tuesday on PBS (Chs 48, 16, 54), or buy it on DVD. It was released last Tuesday.
Charlize Theron plays Jason Bateman's love interest on "Arrested Development" at 8 p.m. on Fox (Chs 19, 45).
Should be fun to hear and see so much about the Bengals on ESPN's "Monday Night Countdown," "SportsCenter" and halftime highlights on ABC's "Monday Night Football."

Friday, September 23, 2005


Fox hasn't wasted any time dropping a bomb.... Chris O'Donnell's "Head Cases" was yanked after only two telecasts. "Nanny 911" will fill 9 p.m. Wednesday until baseball playoffs. "Trading Spouses" returns on Nov. 2, after baseball.

Fast Forward
Big TV night on Sunday: "The West Wing" moves into a new night (8 p.m. NBC); "Desperate Housewives" and "Grey's Anatomy" return (9 p.m. & 10 p.m., ABC), the new "Simpsons" is great (I peeked!) (8 p.m., Fox); Cybill Shepherd stars as Martha Stewart in "Martha Behind Bars" (9 p.m., CBS); and "Curb Your Enthusiasm" starts new episodes (10 p.m., HBO).

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Everybody Won't Hate Chris

"Everybody Hates Chris," the fall's best new comedy, premieres tonight on TV's least-watched broadcast network (8 p.m., UPN, Channel 38). Chris Rock has turned his childhood memories about attending an all-white high school into a funny and sweet (believe that!) "Wonder Years"-style comedy about an African-American family in the early 1980s. The writing is great, and so is the acting. On any other network, this would be a Top 20 hit. But not any other broadcast network would let this show use the "N" word?

New tonight
One to watch, and one to skip: Mandy Patinkin stars in "Criminal Minds, another police procedural on CBS (10 p.m., Channel 12). But don't bother with "Love, Inc." an unwatchable dating service comedy on UPN (9:30 p.m., Channel 38).

Back tonight are "CSI," a one-hour "Joey," "The Apprentice," "ER" and "Cuts."

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

"You're -----?????"

More new shows premiere tonight, starting with "The Apprentice: Martha Stewart" (8 p.m., NBC, Channel 5). What will her catch phrase be for dismissing contestants? When Martha was released from jail in March, Enquirer readers suggested:
--"Your goose is cooked"
--"You're canned"
--"You're busted"
--"You're not a good thing"

My favorite
"Invasion, " my favorite of the new sci-fi shows, debuts after "Lost" at 10 p.m. (ABC, Channel 9). It's definitely fiction, because in this show -- unlike New Orleans -- the National Guard arrives to rescue people within hours of a major storm hitting south Florida.

Not so Lost?
The ratings hit tonight will be the second season premiere of "Lost" (9 p.m., ABC, Channel 9). What's inside the tunnel? ABC Entertainment President Stephen McPherson promises "to answer some big questions... right away" this season.

Clooney tunes
This will be fun: George Clooney visits David Letterman's "Late Show" tonight (11:35 p.m., CBS, Channel 12). He's promoting his new Edward R. Murrow film. Also scheduled: Steve Martin.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Best of Show

Best of Show
Finally! Here comes "Earl."
After two months of NBC promos, you'll finally see the wonderfully subversive new comedy, "My Name Is Earl" (9 p.m. today, Channel 5). Jason Lee is terrific as the small-town thief who decides to change his evil ways -- after winning $100,000 in the lottery, and hearing Carson Daly talk about karma.
"My life sucks because I've been a bad person," he says. So he makes a list of 259 bad things he had done -- such as "stole a car from a one-legged gal" -- and wants to rectify. "Earl," as with all good sitcoms, delights because it is so unpredictable, and has likeable characters. (Call it karma.) If NBC can maintain the quality week after week, it will have a new hit comedy. (Finally!)
One question: Why isn't "Earl" paired with "Scrubs?" (which has been held for midseason).

Local TV sightings
Shannon Stewart, the Warren County woman who refused to pose nude on Tyra Banks' "America's Next Top Model" two years ago, reunites with Banks and other "Top Model" participants on the "Tyra Banks Show" Wednesday (9 a.m., Channel 19). Stewart, 21, a 2002 Franklin High School graduate, proudly tells Banks: "I am still a virgin till my wedding day"...

Ann Rusin, 40, of Green Township, gets her shot at winning $1-million on the daytime "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire" Thursday and Friday (9 a.m., Channel 12). If she wins any cash, she will start a college fund for her daughter, Sophie, 3-1/2, and may spend $1,000 to have a tattoo removed. She had volunteered to get a tattoo on camera for a documentary filmmaker 20 years ago, and shoe she's "sick of looking like a biker chick."

Monday, September 19, 2005

Welcome To My World

Welcome to my world! The start of the fall TV season tonight seems like a good time to start my TV blog, so here goes....

Channel 12 News

Look for a change in the weather at Channel 12. Jude Redfield, weekend evening meteorological for 3 years, is going to WTHR-TV (Channel 13) in Indianapolis. His departure is a bit of a surprise, considering he's a Fort Wright native and '95 Covington Catholic grad. He had interned at Channel 12 in 1997, then was hired in 2002 from a station in Norfolk, Va. His last day is Sept. 29.


Did you watch the Emmys? I found them fairly entertaining, and I agreed with awards for "Everybody Loves Raymond" (show and cast) and "Lost." I figured that one of the "Desperate Housewives" would win best comedy actress, but giving it to Felicity Huffman puzzled me. Not my choice.
I like Ellen Degeneres, but they gave her some dumb time-wasting things to do (chatting with bartender, taking TV set into the women's restroom). Could have used that time to air more clips. But Jon Stewart (deserving double winner) was terrific, and so was S. Epatha Merkerson's wardrobe malfuction that kept her from reaching her prepared remarks. A priceless, spontaneous, hilarious moment...

New TV tonight

Looking forward to the fall TV season starting tonight. Too bad the best two new comedies air at 8:30 pm against each other -- "How I Met Your Mother" on CBS (Ch 9) and "Kitchen Confidential" on Fox (Ch 19). Those without TiVo stuck chosing just one, take "How I Met Your Mother" and forgive CBS for the soon-to-be-tired Bob Saget voiceover. Personally, I'm most geeked about new "Two And A Half Men," the best sitcom now on TV.
Of all the new sci-fi shows, "Surface" was to me the least impressive (8 pm, NBC, Channel 5)
And don't forget to catch Martha Stewart tonight on Letterman.

Jim Borgman
Today at the Forum
Paul Daugherty
Politics Extra
N. Ky. Politics
Pop culture review
Who's News
Roller Derby Diva
CinStages Buzz....
The Foodie Report
Classical music
John Fay's Reds Insider
High school sports
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