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Conan hunkers down as Big Buzz vanishes

Remember Conan O’Brien? He’s still very gainfully if less visibly employed on TBS cable. And with a contract extension through November 2015, he can afford to be without the Big Buzz that accompanied his every move in 2010. In the latest of our “Press Tour Tales,” O’Brien talks about riding out the highs and then sustaining a show by working long, hard and under the radar when necessary. It’s all on the Network News & Reviews page.
Ed Bark

Cowboys sleep-walk, but not in D-FW ratings

Thursday night’s final Cowboys pre-season game, dominated from start to stop by reserve players, had surprisingly decent ratings on CBS11 despite the 24-6 outcome in favor of Houston. Playing a state rival might have had a little something to do with that, but still . . . All the details are on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

On wings of ego: a look at Olbermann's first three nights

The indispensable desktop computer at unclebarky.com central now has a new interior fan after a trip to the shop for repairs. So it’s time to fire up again, beginning with a lengthy look at how any plusses of Keith Olbermann’s new Olbermann are still dwarfed by one big minus. Our review is here.

Plus, the Monday-Wednesday D-FW Nielsen ratings “snapshot” spotlights the amazing continued popularity of Wheel of Fortune.
Ed Bark

Keepers of the flame: Patrick Duffy and Linda Gray get ready for an elongated Dallas shoot in its namesake city

Just in time for the cooler weather, the cast of TNT’s Dallas returns to the city early this fall for a planned six-month shoot on a 15-episode Season 3. For Patrick Duffy and Linda Gray, it will be their first full season without friend Larry Hagman. Our story, with interviews and pictures from a recent TNT anniversary party, is on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.

Also, Thursday’s D-FW Nielsen ratings are posted.
Ed Bark

Cowboys-Bengals "dress rehearsal" game will be live locally only on CBS11

Telemundo 39’s live Spanish language telecast of last week’s Cowboys-Arizona pre-season game may have been a one-shot deal. The station will only be allowed to air this Saturday’s “dress rehearsal” matchup with Cincinnati on a tape-delayed basis, beginning at 10 p.m. in D-FW. That again leaves CBS11 as the only live option in Time Warner homes where both CBS and sister station TXA21 have been blacked out for the past three weeks. Complete details and the latest news on the CBS-Time Warner standoff are on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.

Also, Wednesday’s D-FW Nielsen ratings are in. They again were paced in prime-time by the first-place Texas Rangers.
Ed Bark

Syfy fo chum: from Sharknado to Ghost Shark

The Syfy network smells blood in the water after the Twitter-crazed success of last month’s Sharknado. So here comes Ghost Shark -- and our review is here.

Also, the Monday/Tuesday D-FW Nielsens are paced by Under the Dome and Rangers-Astros.
Ed Bark

Courtside with Mark Cuban at ABC's red carpeted "All-Star Party"

Mark Cuban, entrenched Shark Tank judge, strode the red carpet at a recent ABC “All-Star Party” promoting the network’s new fall lineup. The first in our “Press Tour Tales” series looks at him from a Hollywood angle. It’s all on the Dallas-Forth Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Austin-set Modern Dads launching as Duck Dynasty companion piece

Featuring a father whose biggest pleasure in life is taking a dump, A&E’s Modern Dads focuses on four child-rearers living in Austin. It premieres on Wednesday, Aug. 21st after ratings juggernaut Duck Dynasty. Our review is here.
Ed Bark

Cowboys up a bit with Game 3 pre-season ratings but still way down from last year

Saturday’s sloppy Dallas Cowboys pre-season defeat at Arizona drew a little better crowd than the previous loss to Oakland. Still, the TV turnouts remain significantly down from last year. Details are on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Cowboys live en espagnol will provide alternative Saturday for blacked-out Time Warner subscribers

D-FW’s Telemundo 39 (KXTX-TV) has received belated permission to carry Saturday afternoon’s Dallas Cowboys-Arizona Cardinals game live. The Spanish language station had to air last week’s Cowboys-Raiders game on tape delay. It provides a viable remedy for D-FW fans afflicted with Time Warner cable’s ongoing blackout of CBS11, which is carrying Saturday’s 3:30 p.m. game. Details on the Dallas-Fort Worth page.

Plus, CBS11 has hired a new reporter, former Dallasite and UT-Austin grad Jennifer Lindgren. More info is here.
Ed Bark

Last call for WFAA8 meteorologist Steve McCauley

For 13 years at WFAA8, meteorologist Steve McCauley wore his weathercasts on his sleeve. His enthusiastic, knowledgeable presentations attracted a considerable fan base over those years, even though McCauley was never the station’s leading man.

His last scheduled forecast is on Sunday, Aug. 18th. A brief salute is on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page, along with video of McCauley at his best.
Ed Bark

Blackout doesn't stop CBS from sweeping D-FW prime-time ratings Thursday

CBS controlled the prime-time ratings from start to finish Thursday despite being blacked out in roughly 400,000 D-FW homes with Time Warner cable. Details are on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Duck Dynasty crows enroute to becoming most-watched program of the week in national Nielsens

Wednesday night’s Season 4 launch of A&E’s Duck Dynasty drew its biggest audience ever. Which is saying something. Ratings weren’t available in D-FW, but our TV Bulletin Board page has the complete national breakdown plus a nice assortment of other tidbits.

Also, the Texas Rangers ran strong in the Tuesday/Wednesday D-FW Nielsen ratings despite a pair of rain delays and a non-marquee opponent in the last-place Milwaukee Brewers. Numbers are on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

All resistance is futile: Duck Dynasty is back bigger than ever

AMC has Breaking Bad. A&E has Duck Dynasty. Both have become major buzz shows for their respective networks. And a special one-hour Season 4 launch of DD almost assuredly won’t disappoint the 9.6 million fans who watched April’s Season 3 finale. Our review is here.
Ed Bark

Little KTXD muscles up to get broadcast rights to late season Cowboys-Bears game

The Dec. 9th game against the Chicago Bears could be a big one in terms of the Dallas Cowboys’ playoff hopes. On the national stage, it’s set for ESPN’s Monday Night Football. The NFL mandates that the game also be available for “free” in the two teams’ home markets. And in D-FW, the first-time player will be the still little-known but growing KTXD-TV (Ch. 47). More details are on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

D: The Broadcast in final stages but the show otherwise will go on as part of big KTXD-TV expansion plans

We like to sort out all of the moving parts here at unclebarky.com before giving you a bigger picture. And so here’s a fuller story on D Magazine’s decision to drop its partnership with KTXD-TV. Perhaps it might surprise you, for instance, to read that the Dallas-based station says it paid all of the expenses and also collected any and all revenues from D: The Broadcast. Which by the way, is only subtracting the D from its title as it otherwise moves into expansion mode. The daily two-hour program also supposedly is already profitable. Hmm. All the details are on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.

Plus, the ongoing Time Warner blackout didn’t stop CBS’ Under the Dome from being a dominant force in Monday’s D-FW Nielsen ratings.
Ed Bark

Cowboys in ratings tailspin while Rangers hold own on two blackout-afflicted D-FW stations

Friday night’s D-FW sports menu was bounteous, with the Dallas Cowboys playing their second pre-season game on CBS11 while the first-place Texas Rangers faced the Astros in Houston on TXA21.

The viewing area’s Time Warner cable subscribers were blacked out on both fronts. And some very interesting Nielsen numbers emerged. We examine all the nooks and crannies on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page. (Also included are Sunday night’s very strong numbers for the return of AMC’s Breaking Bad.)

CBS vs. Time Warner -- who holds the cards?

We’re now in the second week of the CBS-Time Warner stalemate. And from this perspective, it’s no contest who holds the upper hand. Our analysis is here.

Also, Big Brother was Thursday’s top prime-time draw in D-FW despite the blackout. And see the just-released trailer for Season 3 of Homeland on the Network News & Reviews page.
Ed Bark

AMC's Breaking Bad returns with a vengeance

It’s nearly here -- the start of the final eight-episode arc of AMC’s Breaking Bad. Our look at Sunday’s last re-start is on the Network News & Reviews page.
Ed Bark

A bleak Low Winter Sun sets on AMC

AMC’s followup act to Breaking Bad Sunday night is the corrupt cop drama Low Winter Sun, set in Detroit. But it’s still always sunny in Philadelphia. Our review is here.

Plus, the Texas Rangers drew the biggest peak audience in Wednesday’s D-FW Nielsen ratings.
Ed Bark

An initially camouflaged Larry David still can't help playing himself in HBO's Clear History

Larry David supposedly still hasn’t decided whether to do another season of Curb Your Enthusiasm. In that context, his new HBO movie, Clear History, doubles as a place-holder. Our review is here.
Ed Bark

Blackouts loom for Friday's Cowboys game, PGA championship

A big sports weekend is coming soon, with CBS11 carrying both Friday’s Dallas Cowboys pre-season game against Oakland and the final two rounds of the PGA championship.

The D-FW viewing area’s roughly 400,000 Time Warner cable homes will have to find alternative ways of watching if the cable giant and CBS don’t settle their blackout impasse by then. More details are on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page at the end of Tuesday’s local Nielsen ratings “snapshot.”
Ed Bark

While I was away . . . a lot of stuff happened in D-FW television news

There were numerous arrivals and departures in D-FW during my time out West at the annual Television Critics Association summer “press tour.” All were tweeted from afar, but now the collected works (with more details) are on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.

Plus, the first Dallas Cowboys pre-season game of the 2013 season of course dominated the weekend D-FW Nielsen ratings. But how did it do compared to last year’s opener. Details are here.
Ed Bark

BBC America has a must-see murder mystery in Broadchurch

Murder in a small town is hardly a novel TV or movie proposition. Broadchurch is a spellbinder, nonetheless. Its eight episodes begin unwinding on Wednesday, Aug. 7th, when BBC America launches the U.S. debut of the United Kingdom’s “most tweeted drama.” Our review is here.
Ed Bark