Chris Russo joins Sirius XM

In the “Wow, that’s a big surprise” department, Chris “Mad Dog” Russo, late of the Mike & The Mad Dog show on WFAN-AM in New York City has joined Sirius XM and is getting his own channel titled “Mad Dog Radio”. Russo left CBS-owned WFAN last week. Russo will do a live show from 1-6 p.m. (Central Time) titled The […]

A change is afoot for "Millionaire"

With added competition from new freshman game show strips Trivial Pursuit: America Plays and the new weekday version of Deal or No Deal, Disney/ABC’s long running game show Who Wants To Be A Millionaire is getting a facelift for its seventh season in syndication, which begins on September 8. Among the changes: Time’s Up. In order to speed up the […]

Did "Clone Wars" make "Star Wars" jump the shark?

This has been a tough 31st year for Star Wars, and it seems this franchise’s soul has been left in a galaxy far, far away. First, it was the all-Star Wars edition of Deal or No Deal last spring that was the wake. Now comes the burial: Star Wars: The Clone Wars movie – which is to set up the […]

Phelps powers NBC

Michael Phelps set a record winning his eighth gold medal in the swimming relay at the Olympics, and it brought a boatload of viewers to NBC on a night where the tube is considered an afterthought. NBC drew 31.1 million viewers for its Olympic coverage on Saturday night, with a peak 40 million at 10 p.m. Central Time. The last […]

T Dog’s Groovy Grab Bag – 08/16/08

But not-so-groovy: A couple of exits to report… – Ed Sherman is out at the Tribune. The golf and sometimes media writer has accepted a buyout from the Trib and is expected to do freelance and co-author a book with Dan McNeil regarding the best and worst of Chicago sports. Best wishes to Mr. Sherman. The move comes as 30 […]

Disney: Our stations are NOT for sale

Disney has denied a report from investment research firm Caris & Co. that it planned to sell its ten ABC O&Os, and would focus on distributing content. Disney owns TV stations in the largest markets, including WLS-TV in Chicago. All three major networks have sold stations in the past year, although in smaller markets such as Milwaukee, St. Louis, Kansas […]

WCIU plans Bernie Mac tribute (updated)

Independent WCIU-TV here in Chicago plans a tribute to the late Bernie Mac this Saturday from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. (second item.) The station airs a local tribute at 5 p.m., followed by two episodes of The Bernie Mac Show at 6 p.m., and his special appearance with Rich Koz on Stooge-a-Palooza in 2006 at 7 p.m. WCIU has […]

FavreWatch: WFRV to air Jets games

CBS affiliate WFRV in Green Bay (which was up to a year ago was owned by CBS) has said it will air up to eight New York Jets games on Sunday afternoons featuring former Green Bay Packer Brett Favre at quarterback. The Liberty Media-owned station’s first game airs on September 7 at noon against the Miami Dolphins. Keep in mind […]

Chicago PPM July numbers

Remember, these are only in the pre-currency stage and the Portable People Meters go live in October, so here are the partial rankings among adults 25-54 and 18-34, according to All Access: Adults 25-54 1. WDRV-FM (The Drive) 2. WTMX-FM (The Mix) 3. WUSN-FM (US 99) 4. WXRT-FM 5. WLEY-FM6. WVAZ-FM (V103)7. WOJO-FM8. WLUP-FM (The Loop)9. WLS-FM (True Oldies Channel)10. […]

Off-network sitcoms on rebound… or are they?

Is the off-network sitcom drought about to come to an end in syndication? It very well may be. But stations may have other ideas. This story from TVNewsday reports on the off-network sitcom drought this coming season and the number of sitcoms coming down the pike in September 2009. For the first time in recent memory, there are no fresh […]

T Dog’s Groovy Grab Bag

Some Chicago-related media news: – One coming from Oregon, one going to Oregon: Clear Channel has upped Tony Coles as vice president and operations of the company’s six-station radio cluster here in Chicago. Coles comes via Portland, Ore. where he was regional vice president of programming at Clear Channel’s Northwest cluster. He replaces Darren Davis, who was promoted to senior […]

Who’s in your four?

It’s been dreary around here lately, so let’s lighten the mood a little bit with a new feature: Introducing T Dog’s “Who’s in your four?” T Dog’s Fab Four – The Olympics ratings. Friday’s opening ceremonies rocked, scoring higher ratings than any other non-U.S. opening ceremony. The games are dominating prime-time, with high numbers for Saturday, Sunday, and Monday – […]

R.I.P. Bernie Brillstein

With the sudden deaths of Isaac Hayes and Bernie Mac this weekend, I also want to mention the passing of another Bernie – Bernie Brillstein, a Hollywood manager, producer, and power broker who was behind numerous TV series including Hee Haw, The Muppet Show, ALF, and Saturday Night Live. Brillstein passed away on Thursday in Los Angeles from chronic pulmonary […]

Remembering Isaac Hayes

Though TV fans knew Isaac Hayes as the voice of Chef on South Park, he was much more than someone behind a cartoon character. Isaac Hayes was a Grammy-Award winning artist who composed the score in the movie Shaft, and his groundbreaking soul music paved the way for the “smooth era” in soul music, which helped launch the careers of […]