T Dog’s Groovy Grab Bag

ABC pickups; Millionaire returns to prime-time; Caprica is here; B96’s new hires.

– ABC has picked up twelve veteran series for the 2009-2010 season, despite the fact some have eroded in the ratings. Renewals include Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice, Supernanny, Wife Swap, and Ugly Betty. Betty, who returns on April 30 at 7 p.m. (CT) will likely keep its time period, despite ratings down 20 percent from a year ago (and the show still exhibits some strength among key female demos.)

Believe it or not, ABC is tied with NBC for third place season-to-date among adults 18-49. With these renewals of aging shows- and unless one of ABC’s new fall shows really clicks – their position is unlikely to improve.

Is that your final answer?: In other ABC news…. to celebrate the series’ tenth anniversary, ABC is bringing back Who Wants To Be A Millionaire this August with a two-week nightly event, airing Sundays through Thursday with Regis Phillbin as host. Millionaire debuted as a ten-night event in 1999 and was so successful it began airing three nights a week in 2000. But when ABC expanded it to four and five nights a week, viewers quickly got tired of the show and was dropped as a regular series in June 2002, only coming back as occasional specials until 2004.

Since September 2002, Millionaire has been airing as a syndicated strip distributed by Disney-ABC Domestic Television, with Meredith Vierra as host. The program airs weekdays at 5 p.m. locally on WGN-TV.

– Here’s a review of the new Battlestar Galactica prequel Caprica by Tribune’s Mo Ryan. This is basically a backdoor pilot for the new series scheduled to premiere on Sci Fi next year. The best part about this is – you can go to your local video store and pick Caprica up for viewing today – its a direct-to-DVD release.

Battlestar Galactica concluded its run last month by drawing 2.5 million viewers for its final episode.

– WBBM-FM (B96) has named Nikki its new midday host. Her last stint was at WPWX-FM (Power 92), but was best known as a midday personality at WKSC-FM (Kiss 103.5). Also, part-timer Jerzy is now a full-timer at B96. The former Stylz & Roman prodcuer and current club DJ can now be heard on evenings on the Rhytmic station.

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