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A Buffalo fan target, Hall of Famer Dierdorf to retire from CBS

By Alan Pergament

Buffalo Bills fans won't have CBS analyst Dan Dierdorf to kick around anymore after this season.

The Pro Football Hall of Famer announced today that he is retiring after this season because "it has been a challenge for me to travel to different NFL cities every week, so it's time to step aside."

A NFL analyst for 30 years -- longer than anyone else today -- Dierdorf has been a target of local Twitter followers this season when he called a couple of Buffalo Bills games alongside play-by-play Greg Gumbel.

Continue reading "A Buffalo fan target, Hall of Famer Dierdorf to retire from CBS " »

TWC's Showtime deal was targeted; Oliver joins "Daily Show" alumni

By Alan Pergament

Inquiring minds wanted to know: Just who is able to get Time Warner Cable's deal to get Showtime for $3 a month for 12 months under a recent promotion?

A spokesman for TWC cleared up some confusion with an email that explained who got a deal that I've called crazier than Claire Danes' character, Carrie Mathison, is on "Homeland" sometimes.

Continue reading "TWC's Showtime deal was targeted; Oliver joins "Daily Show" alumni" »

Patriots are a big draw here; "The Voice" overplayed

By Alan Pergament

Western New Yorkers love to hate quarterback Tom Brady and the New England Patriots.

The Pats' 24-20 loss to the Carolina Panthers  had a 12.0 rating here Monday on ESPN, which made it is the highest-rated game on Monday Night Football here since Philadelphia defeated Washington (14.8) in the MNF season opener.

The Pats-Panthers rating was about 40 percent higher here than the previous four MNF games and about 20 percent higher than the season average. The season average is about 10, primarily because  the first four games had double-digit ratings. Monday's game was the first one in seven weeks to hit double digits here.  

I could almost hear the applause across WNY Monday night when the referee picked up the flag for a pass inference call against the Panthers on the last play of the game even though Pats' tight end Rob Gronkowski was clearly being held in the back of the end zone.

That's the kind of thing that usually happens to the Bills.

Continue reading "Patriots are a big draw here; "The Voice" overplayed " »

Some of my favorite things, TV and radio edition

By Alan Pergament

Like most columnists, I am often accused of being too negative.

My response usually is, "No, I'm not."

I started to think about this complaint again after seeing a NBC promo for its Dec. 5 live special of "Sound of Music" with Carrie Underwood.

So in the spirit of the holidays, here are 10 of my favorite things about TV, radio and writing this blog.

Continue reading "Some of my favorite things, TV and radio edition " »

Sabres get big TV boost from Nolan hire; Bills big TV draw

By Alan Pergament

This is what I'm thinking, mid-morning edition:

As expected, the return of Ted Nolan behind the Buffalo Sabres bench also brought a return to strong TV ratings for the National Hockey League team.

The Sabres' home victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs Friday night had a 10.3 rating on MSG, which was about 65 percent higher than the 6.1 rating the team has been averaging this season.

Continue reading "Sabres get big TV boost from Nolan hire; Bills big TV draw" »

Bills TV charade, O'Neill's mildly successful weather debut and more

By Alan Pergament

This is what I'm thinking, early Monday morning edition:

I hope you enjoyed the Buffalo Bills' 37-14 victory over the New York Jets in your living room Sunday because it might be the last game from the Ralph you will see that way this season unless the threat of blackouts is really a charade this National Football League season.

I wasn't surprised that Bills Owner Ralph Wilson came to the rescue and bought the remaining 3,500 or so tickets so the game wouldn't become the first NFL contest this season to be blacked out.

The Bills and the league may deny it, but the NFL appears to be reacting to the FCC's threat of changing a blackout rule that has helped set the league's voluntarily blackout policy by carrying games on TV in multiple markets with plenty of empty seats. 

As I wrote last week, the blackout threat this season in Buffalo has appeared to be a bit of a charade as games with Carolina, Cincinnati and New York all appeared to be in jeopardy of being blacked out before they were saved for armchair fans.

Continue reading "Bills TV charade, O'Neill's mildly successful weather debut and more" »

"Homeland" is must-see TV tonight; More on TWC's Showtime deal

By Alan Pergament

If you're a regular reader of this blog, you know that I've been more than a little disappointed in the third season of Showtime's "Homeland."

Other than the episode that revealed a major twist dealing with the relationship between CIA agent Carrie Mathison (Claire Danes) and CIA director Saul Berenson (Mandy Patinkin, "Homeland" hasn't been as compelling as it has been in its first two seasons.

There has been too little of Nicholas Brody (Damien Lewis) and his wife Jessica (Morena Baccarin) and too much of their teenage daughter Dana (Morgan Saylor), who has psychological damage from discovering her father is a domestic terrorist. Saylor is a terrific young actress, but this sub-plot is sub-par.

But tonight's episode is must-see TV. It airs at 9 p.m. on the pay-cable channel.

Continue reading ""Homeland" is must-see TV tonight; More on TWC's Showtime deal" »

Ken Brown explains his departure from WBEN garden show

 By Alan Pergament

Ken Brown was surprised to read that he left the Saturday morning Home Garden Show on WBEN-AM after 24 years because of the workload.

Tim Wenger, the operations manager of all Entercom radio stations including WBEN, had given that explanation for Brown’s departure in an email.

 "Ken resigned," wrote Wenger. "Just said it was getting to be too much for one hour a week."

Brown, a Christmas tree farmer for 30 years, implied that was a bit of a tall tale.

Continue reading "Ken Brown explains his departure from WBEN garden show" »

Time Warner announces crazy Showtime deal

By Alan Pergament

Heard about Showtime's "Homeland" but still haven't seen Claire Danes' emotional act as Carrie Mathison?

Heard about "Masters of Sex," widely considered by critics to be one of the hot new shows of the fall?

Heard about "Ray Donovan"?

Well, Time Warner Cable gave subscribers an offer today that will be difficult to refuse even if "Homeland" is having a down year.

Continue reading "Time Warner announces crazy Showtime deal" »

Ch.2 gets boost from Sabres coverage

By Alan Pergament

Channel 2 appears to have gotten a slight ratings boost from its decision to be the only network affiliate to air the Buffalo Sabres press conference Wednesday live on TV and empty its newsroom to cover the story on its early evening newscasts.

The station's viewership rose from a 4.9 rating at 10:30 a.m. to a 5.6 at 10:45 a.m., which was about the start time of the press conference announcing the hiring of Pat LaFontaine as president of hockey operations and Ted Nolan as interim coach and the firing of General Manager Darcy Regier and Coach Ron Rolston.

The station still had a higher-than-normal rating of 4.2 for the start of its 11 a.m. news, where it continued to carry the press conference.

Continue reading "Ch.2 gets boost from Sabres coverage" »

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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 |