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Mondo Mavs extravaganza

The Dallas Mavericks begin fighting for truth, justice and the American way Tuesday night in Game 1 of the NBA Finals against Miami. Get in the mood with a pair of creative strokes on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page. The holiday weekend D-FW Nielsen ratings also are in.
Ed Bark

Gettysburg gives History (channel) a vivid, visceral Memorial Day attraction

Ridley and Tony Scott know how to stage bloody good entertainment. Their collaboration on Gettysburg gives the History cable network a first-rate attraction on Memorial Day night. Our review is right here. Also, the latest D-FW Nielsen ratings are in, with only Fox offering something new to chew on in prime-time while rivals punt with post-May "sweeps" repeats.
Ed Bark

WFAA8 uses old parlor trick to "win" at 10 p.m. while Fox4 gets the most uplift from D-FW's May sweeps newscast races

The May "sweeps" ratings period, which ended Wednesday, returned WFAA8 to the 10 p.m. winners circles. But one could easily call a technical foul and say that CBS11 actually won in both total viewers and 25-to-54-year-olds. There's no debating Fox4's wins or impressive improvements, though. The station upped its year-to-year audiences in all four of the major local news competitions. The complete results, including an up-close look at WFAA8's chicanery, are on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Rookie Rhadigan no longer at bat as Rangers play-by-play voice

Rookie John Rhadigan will be replaced by vet Dave Barnett.

John Rhadigan has popped out as the Texas Rangers' TV play-by-play announcer after less than two months in the booth.

He'll be replaced by veteran Dave Barnett, with Rhadigan returning to his previous anchoring job at Fox Sports Southwest.

Dallas Observer sports reporter/columnist Richie Whitt first reported the news, with the Rangers later confirming it in a press release. The change is effectively immediately.

Rhadigan, who had never done play-by-play before, was tabbed by the Rangers in January to replace Josh Lewin, who was deemed to no longer be a good fit. He struggled to get the hang of it, and viewers of Rangers games are well aware that the affable Rhadigan never quite did. His tagline following Rangers wins -- "There ya go, boys" -- somehow lacked even the minimal majesty of Lewin's "Ball game!" exclamations.

The Rangers also announced that another familiar voice, Steve Busby, will replace Barnett on the team's radio broadcasts. He'll team with Eric Nadel while Barnett joins incumbent Tom Grieve.

"We feel that this restructuring will provide Rangers fans with quality television and radio broadcasts from a pre-game, in-game and post-game perspective," Ranger exec VP for Communications John Blake said. "We have a group of experienced and knowledgeable broadcasters who should work well in these roles."

Rhadigan previously worked as a sports anchor/reporter at Fort Worth-based NBC5 before joining Fox Sports Southwest a decade ago. You win some, you lose some and some are rained out.
Ed Bark

Washed-out Biggest Loser finale re-scheduled; Glee closer returns via web

NBC-owned NBC5 has received permission to re-air the two-hour Biggest Loser: Couples finale after most of it got rubbed out by Tuesday night's storm coverage. Fox-owned Fox4 can't do the same for the Glee season-ender, but your computer can. Details are on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Church is out: Oprah gives a last blessing to her flock before taking on next mission

The seemingly never-ending story of Oprah Winfrey's goodbye at last is past tense. She preached alone to her choir Wednesday after a two-day, star-choked Oprah's Farewell Surprise Spectacular, which she termed "a love intervention on steroids for me." Hoo boy. Our review is on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Look what the winds blew in Tuesday night -- big ratings on a variety of fronts

The Tuesday night D-FW Nielsen ratings are interesting on a number of (weather) fronts. Did CBS11 command the ratings by going with wall-to-wall storm coverage? Hardly. Did WFAA8 pay a ratings penalty for mixing Dancing with the Stars and weathercaster Pete Delkus' frequent live updates during commercial breaks and the show itself? Hardly. All of the numbers -- which you won't find elsewhere -- are on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.

Plus, Sarah Blaskovich of content partner pegasusnews.com has a good primer on where you can watch some of the big shows you might have missed last night. You can go here for that.
Ed Bark

Opining on Oprah -- on cnn.com

Your friendly content provider occasionally branches out when asked. This latest opinion piece for cnn.com reflects on the impact of Oprah Winfrey. You can find it right here.
Ed Bark

D-FW's varied Tuesday night weather approaches speak to the high-powered network programming at hand

Some readers may not buy this, but there was a good reason why CBS11 ended up being the only D-FW television station to wipe out all of its Tuesday night network programming in favor of severe weather coverage. We take a closer look, while also airing some readers' grievances, on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Listen up: Scott Sams now will be a morning drive news anchor on KRLD

Former CBS11 early morning anchor Scott Sams has bounced back again. The details on his latest new news job are on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Survivor/Apprentice producer set to have a religious experience with The Bible

Reality maestro Mark Burnett has signed to produce an extended series on the Bible for the History cable network. It will have scripts and actors, so the Survivor/Apprentice producer isn't likely to feature David vs. Goliath in a night crawler-eating contest or have any of the Apostles fired (save for Judas.). More particulars are on our TV Bulletin Board page.
Ed Bark

Late night inflation spurs miracle Mavs to 2011 playoff ratings high

Everyone loves a winner, and nowhere more so than in D-FW. So when the Dallas Mavericks rose from the dead late Monday night, viewers responded accordingly by flocking to their home screens. All of the ratings details are on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Mavs miracle after shooting blanks most of the night at the OKC corral

I didn't think they had a chance. But the most amazing win in Dallas Mavericks history proved otherwise. Our commentary is on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

World survives The Rapture, plus another onslaught of stupid media stories

All it took was an old crackpot preacher putting up a bunch of billboards to make the alleged end of the world a prominently played story on media outlets big and small. Now there should be hell to pay. Plus, the weekend D-FW Nielsen ratings show another big audience for the Dallas Mavericks, but a continued downspin as well. And MSNBC goes against its grain by hiring a full-time, right-of-center political analyst to pop in for give-and-take with its roster of liberal hosts. Check out our TV Bulletin Board page.
Ed Bark

Follow the money via HBO's Too Big to Fail dramatization of 2008 financial crisis

You get what you pay for. And with HBO, you consistently get your money's worth. Latest sound investment: Too Big to Fail, adapted from the same-name bestseller by Andrew Ross Sorkin. Our review is here.

Plus, Thursday's D-FW Nielsen ratings show the Mavericks were a bit short on viewers as well as points in their Game 2 Western Conference Finals loss to the young gun Thunder.
Ed Bark

Underwhelming end to it all: Couric signs off as CBS Evening News anchor

Katie Couric ended her chores at the CBS Evening News Thursday, opting for a three-day weekend. As farewells go, it was barely a blip on the national consciousness. But we critique it anyway on the Network News & Reviews page.
Ed Bark

Selleck polishes another gem in seventh Jesse Stone film

They really don't make 'em like this anymore, particularly for broadcast television. The made-for-TV movie, once part of the DNA of ABC, CBS and NBC, has gone the way of variety hours and one-hour documentaries. But one actor and one character persist. And Tom Selleck's seventh Jesse Stone movie, premiering on Sunday, May 22nd, again shows why that's a noble and worthy undertaking. Our review is on the Network News & Reviews page.
Ed Bark

The CW re-deploys Gellar in its showiest new show for the fall

Sarah Michelle Gellar hasn't slayed any vampires for the past eight seasons. Nor has she fronted a prime-time series. That'll change in the fall, when Gellar plays twins on the lam in a new fall series for The CW. Details and the other specifics of the mini-network's latest programming plans are on our Network News & Reviews page. While hanging out there, you also can find a few show-and-tell pics from rival networks' "upfront" new season presentations to Madison Avenue advertisers.
Ed Bark

Ding dongs of ABC's Good Christian Belles will be leaving Dallas behind

The pilot episode was filmed in Dallas earlier this spring. But that'll be it for ABC's Good Christian Belles, which will shoot the rest of its episodes in L.A. in preparation for a likely spring 2012 premiere. Dallas Film Commission head Janis Burklund details the reasons behind the move West (on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page) while also updating the commission's quest to land TNT's re-do of Dallas if it gets the go-ahead to become a weekly series. The pilot for that one also was filmed in these parts.
Ed Bark

Mavs amass mega-Nielsen numbers with opening win over Thunder

The Dallas Mavericks ruled Tuesday's prime-time roost once the game began shortly after 8 p.m. We've again got the details you'll find nowhere else -- on our ever-eventful Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

CBS showcases eccentric crimesolving and odd couple comedies in latest fall makeover

The new CBS fall schedule is in place, with the network's execs touting the "dynamic stability" at hand. There are five new series and two notable series shifts to new nights and times. All the details are on our Network News & Reviews page.
Ed Bark

ABC shakes it with new Charlie's Angels, throwback stewardess series

ABC's new fall lineup is out, and the Dallas-set Good Christian Belles isn't on it. Instead it's being saved for next spring, says the network's entertainment head. All the details about the third place network's new season are on our Network News & Reviews page.
Ed Bark

Mavs vs. Thunder: Can Oldsmobiles beat Volts?

The Western Conference final between the Dallas Mavericks and Oklahoma Thunder is a battle of the ages above all. Not just state vs. state, but pops vs. pups. We play around with it all on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Curses. ABC's Good Christian Belles is blessed with new title but apparently won't be staying in Dallas

ABC's adaptation of the novel Good Christian Bitches, with the B-word now Belles, will be part of the network's new fall lineup when its officially announced Tuesday morning. But according to co-star Kristin Chenoweth, the Dallas-set series will film elsewhere after recently shooting its pilot episode in Dallas. Get the details on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Trump plays media for chump before dumping out of presidential run

The charade known as Donald Trump's possible presidential candidacy officially ended in New York Monday before a group of Madison Avenue advertisers on hand for NBC's presentation of its 2011-12 TV schedule. Details are on our TV Bulletin Board page. Plus, the weekend D-FW Nielsen ratings are in.
Ed Bark

Fox doubles down again by announcing both fall and midseason skeds for next season

Fox unveiled its 2011-'12 season plans Monday morning, with two previously announced Big Tunas occupying three different nights this fall. Get all of the details on our Network News & Reviews page.
Ed Bark

Peacock strikes first by rolling out new season lineup

Buoyed by the late season success of The Voice, NBC announced its plans for fall and beyond Sunday. Our complete look at the Peacock's new playlist is on the Network News & Reviews page.
Ed Bark

Two features worth watching on WFAA8

WFAA8 reporters Janet St. James and David Schechter hit the road -- but stayed within the state of Texas -- for standout feature stories that both aired on the station's Thursday 10 p.m. newscast. I thought you'd like to see exactly what we're talking about. So the videos and a few praiseworthy words can be found on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Two and a Half Men will carry on with Kutcher

Ashton Kutcher has won the Charlie Sheen sweepstakes -- perhaps by default -- and will join the cast of Two and a Half Men next season. Tune to our Network News & Reviews page for all the details.
Ed Bark

Idol dumps Durbin, loses muscle tone

Thursday night's out-of-nowhere vote-off of electric James Durbin ruined what could have been a grand finale for Fox's otherwise rejuvenated American Idol. Out thoughts are here.
Ed Bark

NBC's one-two summer punch likely to make juice pulp of its rivals

The Peacock has big summer plans for The Voice and its already established hot weather hit, America's Got Talent. See what 's up on our TV Bulletin Board page, where other tasty tidbits also await.
Ed Bark

Mid-point of May "sweeps" puts Fox4 and (surprise) NBC5 in demographic drivers' seats

NBC5, at last getting some lead-in help from its network -- The Voice -- is the surprise clubhouse leader at the mid-point of the May "sweeps" in the 10 p.m. news battle for advertiser-favored 25-to-54-year-olds. Get all of the local newscast ratings breakdowns on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page, where you also can find Wednesday's Nielsen ratings "snapshot."

Plus, the new jerryseinfeld.com is a great idea, but needs to be expanded. See what the problem is on our newly revived Web Browser page.
Ed Bark

Lehrer leaving PBS' Newshour behind, save for occasional on-air visits

Jim Lehrer already had made a big name for himself in Dallas -- primarily as anchor of KERA-TV's landmark Newsroom program -- before leaving for PBS in the mid-1970s. Near the age of 77, he's now stepping back from Newshour. Details and quotes from earlier interviews with Lehrer are on our Network News & Reviews page.
Ed Bark

CW33 sports department will be back among the living when former "Ticket" dude arrives from Lubbock

The hirings, the firings. They continue at Dallas-based CW33, which last month reduced its sports department to zero but will be back up to one when Chase Williams reports for work this summer from Lubbock. He also used to work for KTCK "The Ticket." (1310 AM). Find out about him on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.

Plus, NBC's The Voice continues to make a big noise in the prime-time ratings, giving the Peacock something to cheer about after a long drought. Check out the local numbers for The Voice in our latest "Local Nielsen ratings snapshot." And on my home away from home, locatetv.com, I've penned a discourse on American Idol's resurgence without former drink-stirrer Simon Cowell.
Ed Bark

Colin Hanks gets neat post-Good Guys gig while another reality series will call Texas home

Fox's Dallas-made The Good Guys is gone, but co-star Colin Hanks will be movin' on up. And WE TV will be the latest cable network to likely make Texas look bad in the "reality" series realm. All the details on our TV Bulletin Board page. The latest D-FW Nielsen ratings also are in.
Ed Bark

Rather/Cuban alliance again pays off with stellar documentary on HDNet

Defending Dan Rather and his post-CBS work in some ways has never been easier. Yeah, right. But whether you've ever seen it or not, his weekly Dan Rather Reports on Mark Cuban's HDNet is some of the best television journalism around. And his latest effort, a superb two-hour documentary on Detroit's decrepit public school system, is a cautionary tale for us all. Our extended review, of both Rather and the program, is on the Network News & Reviews page.
Ed Bark

NBC5 adds two new reporters, including its first full-time investigator in a long while (plus, those rumors about the Fort Worth-based station possibly moving to new offices for first time ever)

Fort Worth-based NBC5 is in a hiring mood of late. Its two newcomers, both due in June, both have Dallas ties but currently are working out of state. For more details on Amanda Guerra, click here. And the scoop on Kimberly King is here. Plus, the rumors keep building over NBC5 possibly moving to a new building. The station has been tucked away on Barnett Street in Fort Worth since its late 1940s sign-on as WBAP-TV. A few more specifics are located at the bottom of the Kimberly King post.
Ed Bark

Mavs ratings raise roof in D-FW (and Mr. Peppermint on CBS11 does OK, too)

In a "very special" edition of our Local Nielsen Ratings Snapshot feature, we tally up the D-FW numbers for the Dallas Mavericks' concluding two kill shots against the Los Angeles Lakers. Also look for a little sidetrip tied to CBS11's latest profile on another former WFAA8 star, namely good ol' Jerry "Mr. Peppermint" Haynes. It's all on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Abdul back in Fox fold -- with her old Idol antagonist

Fox slipped in a little announcement late Sunday afternoon -- directly opposite the Dallas Mavericks' ongoing playoff series sweep of the Los Angeles Lakers. Paula Abdul and Simon Cowell will be judging contestants -- and each other -- on Fox's The X Factor this fall. Get the details on our Network News & Reviews page.
Ed Bark

CBS11 getting that old-time WFAA8 religion again -- this time with a feature on Jerry "Mr. Peppermint" Haynes

CBS11's Friday, 10 p.m. newscast will include a profile on former WFAA8 mainstay Jerry "Mr. Peppermint" Haynes. It's not coincidental that this is the May "sweeps" ratings period. Or that CBS11 did quite all right in the February "sweeps" with a two-part reunion and revisit starring anchor Tracy Rowlett and weathercaster Troy Dungan, both of whom also came to stardom on WFAA8. For further details, go to our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.

Also, WFAA8 traffic reporter Alexa Conomos was a classical gas this week while promoting Fort Worth's Mayfest. Video of her classic gaffe is here.
Ed Bark

Mark Cuban's final guest investor appearance on Shark Tank is on a night when there's a little somethin' else goin' on, too

ABC's Shark Tank has its final Mark Cuban-infused episode on Friday, May 6th. He talks about it on our Network News & Reviews page while resisting any impulse to mix it up with Lakers coach Phil Jackson, whose defending NBA champs just happen to be in Dallas Friday night for Game 3 of their playoff series against the Mavs.
Ed Bark

Age-old "electronic age" question: Can David Kunkle become Dallas' next mayor without airing a single TV ad?

Former Dallas police chief David Kunkle plans to go the distance to the May 14th mayoral election without airing any TV ads while his main opponent, Mike Rawlings, continues to load up. Is that a winning strategy? Will Kunkle's built-in name recognition be enough? We take a deeper look on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Mavs soar in Wednesday's Nielsens, outdrawing even Idol locally

Misery loves company, but it's lots more fun when you're winning -- particularly against the vaunted Lakers.

Wednesday's late night Dallas Mavericks spanking of the defending NBA champs blew past the half-million viewer mark for the first time this season and even outpointed American Idol locally. All the details are on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

New NBC5 digital channel gives anchor Jane McGarry a newscast of her own (plus her holdover gig at 5 p.m.)

DFW Nonstop quietly started Wednesday, with NBC5 spilling some specifics Thursday on its digital channel 5.2 news/lifestyle onslaught. Key development: Longtime anchor Jane McGarry will preside over a weeknight 6:30 p.m. newscast while also remaining co-anchor of mothership NBC5's 5 p.m. editions. Plus, the 24/7 DFW Nonstop will be on major area cable systems, too, including the newly added Verizon Fios. Get all the details about this major initiative on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Another 60 Minutes exclusive: White House will not release pictures of dead bin Laden

The entire interview won't air until Sunday's 60 Minutes. But CBS wasn't about to keep a lid on some major news Wednesday from President Obama. Again choosing reporter Steve Kroft for a "one and only" exclusive interview, Obama said that the White House will not release any photo or photos to prove that Osama bin Laden is dead. CBS news quickly sent an excerpt from the interview to TV writers and also will air the president's comments on Wednesday's CBS Evening News. Further details and our comment are here.

Also, NBC might well have its first widespread ratings hit in a long while with The Voice. Its second two-hour episode did big business in D-FW and nationally. Get more info. on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

TV innovator Ernie Kovacs at last has a full-bodied DVD set

Shout! Factory, prime curator of TV's lost and found, has another worthy endeavor in The Ernie Kovacs Collection. Its a six-disc salute to the crazed small-screen pathfinder, who died long before the Dallas Video Festival named its most prestigious award in his honor. Our closer look is here.
Ed Bark

Send in the reinforcements: staff-starved CW 33 news has five new reporters on board

All of them have suddenly popped up on Dallas-based CW33's "News Team" page, with details otherwise very sketchy on all but one of the five on-air additions. But yes, unclebarky.com gets back to you with further details so you'll at least have some idea of where these guys came from. It's all on our Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

Mavs score big on TNT with nail-biting comeback win over Lakers

The Dallas Mavericks dominated Monday's late night ratings and were the day's most popular attraction in D-FW among advertiser-craved 18-to-49-year-olds, ahead of even Dancing with the Stars. Our dissection is here.

Plus, Uncle Barky takes a girlyman journey to namby pamby land with a brief discourse on -- and video of -- CBS11's interview of the wedding planner for Dallas Cowboys QB Tony Romo and his fiancee, former CW33 sports reporter Candice Crawford.
Ed Bark

Pelley gets the call: former D-FW reporter will be next anchor of the CBS Evening News

After a CBS News career that dates to 1989, former KXAS/WFAA reporter Scott Pelley is finally getting "The Chair." He'll be replacing Katie Couric, whose five-year tenure could not lift the network's flagship newscast out of third place. Get all the details on our Network News & Reviews page.
Ed Bark

News of bin Laden's death ignites late night ratings in D-FW

The tail ends of Sunday night's 9 p.m. entertainment series gave way to the welcome news that Osama bin Laden at last had been found and killed by U.S. forces. Our detailed look at how the local ratings played out is on the Dallas-Fort Worth TV page.
Ed Bark

WFAA8's post-Oprah plans for now won't be news-worthy (but should they be?)

The Oprah Winfrey Show has been a fixture on Dallas-based WFAA8 since the 1980s. Now the station at last has a chance to reboot. Unclebarky.com makes the argument for inserting a local newscast while also detailing what WFAA8 in fact plans to do.

Plus, Friday's royal wedding coverage had big national ratings, particularly for the highlights and replays. We have the numbers on our Network News & Reviews page.

Also, on my home away from home, locatetv.com, your friendly content provider takes a look at what series will stay in place and which ones are either officially dead or endangered as the network's prepare to announce their new fall schedules in mid-May. Click here for ABC, here for CBS, here for Fox and here for NBC.

Finally, it's another new month, with some pages already in the April archives following May 1st posts. It's also again time to remind readers who enjoy this site to register your approval by first clicking on one of the Amazon ads on unclebarky.com before making any purchases. Four percent of each sale then will go to yours truly. Every penny helps to keep this site going. So once again, thanks for any help.
Ed Bark