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ABC's new lineup doesn't earn many trophies

By Alan Pergament

The new ABC series getting the most attention is "Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D," who investigate super-human people and extraordinary world events and "protect the ordinary from the extraordinary."

I've only seen brief clips of the pilot, which airs at 8 p.m. Tuesday on Channel 7.

That’s because ABC only showed it at the Television Critics Association press tour in Los Angeles and hasn’t made it available to critics via streaming as it has done with every other new series.

This makes me a little suspicious.


Continue reading "ABC's new lineup doesn't earn many trophies" »

Despite A-list stars, the list of strong NBC series isn't very long

By Alan Pergament

It seems like NBC hasn’t had a good season since the last time the Buffalo Bills made the playoffs.

But due to the success of "The Voice," and last year's hits “Revolution” and “Chicago Fire,” things are looking up for the Peacock network for a change.

Now it seems to be borrowing from CBS' playbook -- hiring veteran TV stars to front their new freshman series.

Let’s take a quick look at the new series: 

Continue reading "Despite A-list stars, the list of strong NBC series isn't very long " »

Murphy ranks "stupid" mistake on Bills winning kick "near the top"

By Alan Pergament

Buffalo Bills radio play-by-play man John Murphy doesn't make many mistakes, but he admits he made a classic fumble at the end of the team's 24-23 victory over the Carolina Panthers Sunday.

After the Bills' Dan Carpenter kicked the game-winning extra point with two seconds left, Murphy said the score was tied for a few seconds before correcting himself with the aid of some co-workers in the booth.

He is a stand-up guy and owned up to the error.

Continue reading "Murphy ranks "stupid" mistake on Bills winning kick "near the top"" »

It is hard to go really "Crazy" about new CBS series

By Alan Pergament

Under the leadership of president and chief executive officer Les Moonves, CBS has been the smartest network by far in recent years.

It has the best sense of what viewers expect from network TV and it has the good sense not to introduce too many shows in the fall that can get lost in the shuffle.

The network, which is carried by affiliate Channel 4, is especially popular in Western New York because many of its shows appeal to the area's older demographics and viewers here watch broadcast networks at a higher rate than they do in many markets.

Channel 4 usually has the great majority of Top 25 shows here, led by CBS' megahits "The Big Bang Theory" and "NCIS."

Going into this season, CBS is premiering the fewest new series and still has two of the most talked about – the drama "Hostages" and the Robin Williams comedy "The Crazy Ones."

Here's a brief summary of all of CBS' new shows and the chances of success.

Continue reading "It is hard to go really "Crazy" about new CBS series " »

By George, Fox's "Sleepy Hollow" is coolest show of the fall

By Alan Pergament

I had to laugh when I saw a critic for a national publication had to list the Top 10 new fall shows of the season.


Are you kidding me?

I couldn’t find five.

That's how slim the pickings are for this season, which unofficially begins this week and officially begins the week of Sept. 23.

Continue reading "By George, Fox's "Sleepy Hollow" is coolest show of the fall" »

Ch.2, Ch. 7 fumble Marrone's emotional postgame interview

By Alan Pergament

If you ask me, the two 6 p.m. newscasts I watched after the Buffalo Bills' exciting 24-23 victory today over the Carolina Panthers fumbled what is bound to be one of the most-talked about post-game moments on Monday.

Anyone who left The Ralph Sunday and listened to the WGR-AM post-game show heard Bills Coach Doug Marrone's emotional start to the press conference when he sounded like he was holding back tears.

He wasn't getting emotional or crying for the same reason that quarterback EJ Manuel was moved to tears. It had little to do with the the last-second victory.

Marrone was crying because his immediate thought after the game was about the sudden death Saturday of a close friend of his from his days at Syracuse University -- Rob Edson. Edson, 45, who left Syracuse after more than 20 years to become the athletic director at Onondago Community College, died while mowing his lawn, according to the Syracuse Post-Standard.

Continue reading "Ch.2, Ch. 7 fumble Marrone's emotional postgame interview " »

"2 Sides" suspended; Genero to host revamped "Healthy Zone"

 By Alan Pergament 

Channel 2's political debate show "2 Sides" has been suspended until after the November election, its "Healthy Zone" is being revamped and the station is adding an arts and entertainment segment on newscasts Friday and Saturday.

That’s the word this morning from Channel 2 General Manager Jim Toellner.

He had previously pulled last Sunday's scheduled episode of "2 Sides" after conflict of interest complaints about co-host Kristy Mazurek's involvement in a political action committee or PAC.

Continue reading ""2 Sides" suspended; Genero to host revamped "Healthy Zone" " »

Bills game to air locally; Blackout would have been bad business

By Alan Pergament

You have questions, I have answers:

Will the Buffalo Bills game with Carolina be carried on WUTV this Sunday?

The Bills just announced it is a sell-out and it will be carried on the local Fox affiliate.

It would have been extremely shocking if it hadn't been televised after the Bills said only 1,600 tickets remained on Wednesday.

If 1,000 had remained by today's 1 p.m. deadline, the local Fox affiliate surely would have spent the $20,000-$30,000 it might cost (I'm guessing that is in the ball park) to make $100,000 in advertising during the game. Do the math. Who wouldn't spend $20,000 to make $100,000?

It was a no-brainer.

The Bills were just being smart to enlist the local media to warn of a potential blackout to help sell every ticket they could to reduce the number Channel 29, Bills Owner Ralph Wilson or someone else might have had to buy to make the game a sellout.  

What happened to the second half of CBS' "Face the Nation" last Sunday on Channel 4 when the discussion was on the Syria situation?

Channel 4 General Manager Rene LaSpina explained that it was a one-shot preemption caused by programming requirements that resulted from CBS’ carriage of so much U.S. Open Tennis coverage over the weekend.

In other words, the full hour of "Face" will be back on Channel 4 this Sunday morning.

Some readers also were wondering why they haven't been able to find syndicated episodes of “Modern Family” on WNYO-TV just yet. The episodes begin running at 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 23.

I've also been asked wherever I go out in public if there are any good new network shows coming up this fall.

I plan to carry a fall season premiere next week, but before I do I'll tease you with what my colleagues in the Television Critics Association poll are saying.

In the first-ever poll by the national group of 220 critics, ABC's "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." was selected as the most promising new series of the fall. Showtime’s "Masters of Sex," which is getting some promos in movie theaters, was No. 2 and NBC's "Blacklist"with James Spader was No. 3.

Among comedies, Fox’'s "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" starring "Saturday Night Live's" Andy Samberg and Andre Braugher of "Homicide" was the top choice.

I haven't seen more than clips of "S.H.I.E.L.D" and "Masters of Sex" but did enjoy the suspenseful "Blacklist," primarily because I enjoy Spader in just about anything (except "The Office"). The pilot of "Brooklyn Nine-Nine," was passable and has "Barney Miller" potential.

But it reminded me of an overlong "SNL" sketch and seemed better than it is because almost all of this year’s other comedies are so lame.

Speaking of lame, this week ESPN's Paul Finebaum called beleaguered USC Coach Lane Kiffin "the Lady Gaga of college football because he has no talent and captures our attention." The quote captured my attention. But someone should tell Finebaum that Gaga has a lot of talent. But I digress.

I'm surprised nobody has asked me about Channel 4's new uplifting promo celebrating all the positive construction developments in downtown Buffalo.  The first time I saw a construction worker talk about all the positive things going on I thought I was watching a political ad for Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown. If I were Republican challenger Sergio Rodriquez, I certainly wouldn't be happy about those promos.

Finally, there is the question of whether I have seen anything like this morning's New Year's-like celebration of Channel 2's "Daybreak" team of Melissa Holmes, John Beard, Andy Parker and behind-the-scenes personnel for hitting 100,000 likes on Facebook.  OK, it happened an hour or so ago and I really haven't been asked yet. But I haven't seen anything like it. Channel 2's morning team happiness and occasional over-the-top fun is a big contrast to Channel 4"s more serious, revamped "Wake Up!" with Teresa Weakley, Jordan Williams and Todd Santos.


Morning news race becomes more interesting; Levin gets new deal

By Alan Pergament

This is what I’m thinking;

It is very early and Western New Yorkers are still sampling shows, but it looks like the morning news race between Channel 2 and Channel 4 may have tightened.

In the first full week since Teresa Weakley made her debut as the new "Wake Up!" co-anchor alongside Jordan Williams, Channel 4 defeated Channel 2’s normally first place "Daybreak" with John Beard and Melissa Holmes at 6 a.m.

Channel 4's first week win was aided by a big advantage it had for viewership of Weakley’s premiere.  It also should be noted that Channel 2 was back on top at 6 a.m. this past Monday and by a bigger margin Tuesday. The first week's numbers also didn’t measure demographics, which are key to advertisers.

Continue reading "Morning news race becomes more interesting; Levin gets new deal" »

KB switch to sports is bonus to World Series, Cowherd fans

By Alan Pergament

Over the years, some area baseball fans have been angrier in the fall at local radio than New York Yankees Manager Joe Girardi and Baltimore manager Buck Showalter were with each other Monday night.

The fans have been angry because it has been difficult sometimes to find some World Series games on local radio despite having a high-profile sports station in what is supposedly a sports crazy town.

Now that WWKB-AM 1520 has switched formats from liberal political talk to become ESPN Buffalo or ESPN 1520 (I've heard it called both), that will no longer be a problem.

Continue reading "KB switch to sports is bonus to World Series, Cowherd fans" »

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About Talkin' TV

Alan Pergament

Alan Pergament

Alan Pergament has continued to blog about television topics since retiring in 2010 as The News' television writer after 28 years on the beat. From local on-air personalities to ratings to the latest on network and cable programming, he keeps you informed.

@StillTalkinTV |