Nexstar and The CW: Where things stand now

  CW cancellations fuel speculation of deal forthcoming Five months ago, The CW – the joint venture between Warner Media (now Discovery Warner Bros.) and ViacomCBS (now Paramount Global), created by the merger of UPN and The  WB in 2006 was up for sale, with Irving, Tex.-based Nexstar the leading suitor.  So where does things stand now?  A glimpse of […]

Remembering John Madden

Hall of Famer and video game innovator leaves marks on sports and media John Madden didn’t invent the game of football, but he sure helped contribute to it. The pigskin icon, who was a coach and broadcaster died Tuesday in his Bay Area home at the age of 85. Madden was an innovator in sports broadcasting, injecting enthusiasm and his […]

Rewinding media in 2021: You just can’t explain it

  Popularity isn’t exactly overrated as 2021 ends a wild year in media Like mystery of the sphinx or crop circles, you just can’t explain the continued popularity of certain things despite questionable changes. After the firing of Mark Giangreco and seemingly public disdain for one of her former co-anchors, ABC 7 remains on top of local Chicago news ratings, […]

Bears-Lions a surprisingly strong draw on Turkey Day…why?

Two bad teams equals good ratings for the NFL…somehow  You’d think given the horrid records of two of the worst teams in football playing against each other, people would eschew this matchup to find something else better to do right?  Well, that theory was tested on Thanksgiving Day when the 3-7 Chicago Bears took on the 0-9-1 Detroit Lions – […]

The Media Notepad: Bears, NFL score ratings wins

Also: Don’t Bet Your Life; Bids made for Tegna; Johnny B to host RHOF ceremony The NFL continues to rack up impressive numbers at a time when viewers are abandoning linear TV in droves. Case in point: The Bears game on Sunday against the Bengals drew a household 22.9 rating and 60 share for Fox-owned WFLD-TV Chicago Sunday, easily making […]

New Bears season, same Bears prime-time result

Same old Sunday Night Football story for Bears I’m not going to bore you whining about why the Chicago Bears keep getting national prime-time TV appearances; I’ve covered the topic aplenty over the years, most recently here and here. But the decision to keep Matt Nagy and Ryan Pace around for another year is one of those “Chicago Way” type […]

“Field Of Dreams” game scores for Fox – and baseball

Featuring the White Sox and Yankees in Iowa was the highest-rated regular season game since 2005 If you build it, they will come. Well, they came all right – and proved to be a boon for Major League Baseball. The inaugural Field Of Dreams game – set in Dyersville, Iowa (located in the Cedar Rapids-Waterloo-Dubuque market) in a newly-built ballfield […]

What’s new in primetime this fall (if you still care)

Fewer new shows reflect today’s reality of network television With television viewership shifting to streaming preferences, it seems a “fall schedule” for linear TV networks seems antiquated, especially when viewers are watching shows on their own schedules. Plus, the pandemic has all but canned the in-person upfronts experience. But old habits are hard to break, and despite plunging ratings, the […]

Media Notepad: Chicago radio personality Greg Brown to retire

Also: remembering Dick Kay; Broadcast networks makes moves Longtime Chicago radio personality Greg Brown is calling it a career this week after five decades on the city’s airwaves, as first reported Friday by Radio Insight. The current WLS-FM personality started his Chicago radio career in 1970. His longest tenures were thirteen years at WKQX-FM (during its CHR/Hot AC era); eleven […]

The Mountain Of Entertainment unveiled: Paramount + is here

36 original series; changes to subscription structure from CBS All Access [Editor’s Note: This story was updated on March 5. – T. H]  ViacomCBS officially jumped into the streaming wars this week with their three-hour upfront-like Paramount + presentation Wednesday afternoon, unveiling a slog of programming with a whopping 36 original series and tons of specials all set to launch […]

Super Dud: Bowl numbers fall

Tom Brady’s seventh SB victory doesn’t help ratings Super Bowl LV wasn’t exactly the ratings bonanza CBS and the NFL hoped it would be.  The Tampa Bay Buccaneers played the big game at their home at Raymond James Stadium, who were awarded the rights years ago. But the team landed a big-name free agent during the offseason to be their […]

Bears back into playoffs and back right out as ratings drop

Game draws fewer viewers than last playoff run two years ago Nickelodeon simulcast draws praise If it weren’t for Nickelodeon’s family-oriented simulcast of the Chicago Bears-New Orleans Saints game Sunday, this matchup wouldn’t be worth watching. But for once, the “slime” mentioned – and seen – didn’t refer to Mitch Trubisky, Ryan Pace, or Matt Nagy. The Chicago NFL Lakefront […]

Dear NFL…Stop putting the Bears in prime-time

The league deserves its ratings losses from dumb scheduling decisions I’m trying to figure out who the hell runs the NFL. Is it Rob Manfred or Roger Goodell? It’s hard to tell these days given both are as popular as a bag of brussels sprouts.  But I imagine the league – who decided to plow through the regular season during […]

Media Notepad: WLIT now in Christmas music mode

Also: Fox News wins election night; NBA season to start Dec. 22 IHeartMedia’s WLIT launched its Holly Jolly format (or Christmas music as everyone else calls it) starting at 4 p.m. Friday, and is likely to last through the end of the year. This is the 20th year WLIT has turned its playlist to a Christmas Jukebox, playing Mariah Carey’s […]