Archive for March, 2014

It's official: 'Hawaii Five-0' will return for a fifth season

March 13th, 2014

h50It's official though anticipated: CBS today announced that "Hawaii Five-0" will return for another season — its fifth.

"Five-0" is one of 20 returning series. Its coupling with "Blue Bloods" on Friday nights has proven to be a ratings bonanza, but the pick-up was not a total surprise. "Five-0" producer Peter Lenkov was given a two-year extension recently, alluding to extended life for the Hawaii-based procedural. And the show has a lucrative syndication deal with TNT, the cable channel paying the Eye Network $2 million-plus per episode for syndication.

In a stunning coup, the top-rating  "The Big Bang Theory" was given a rare three-year extension, which would mean 10 years by the end of the latest terms. "Bang" and "Survivor" earlier were tapped for return before the surge of 18 comedies, dramas and reality shows named today.



Fright night rating stats: It’s pretty much status quo

March 8th, 2014



Friday night (March 7) TV ratings at-a-glance, according to the overnight Nielsen survey:

  • CBS’ “Hawaii Five-0” is stable in its 8 p.m. slot (9 p.m. Mainland),  winning its hour in viewership (10.27 million), and 1.4 rating in the 18 to 49 demographics (matching last week’s outing).
  • But in the same hour, ABC’s “Shark Tank” had the best 18 to 49 demo (2.9 rating), but fewer viewers (7.49 million).
  • Same hour, different dial: NBC’s “Grimm” managed to  beat “H50” in the 18 to 49 demo, with a 1.5 rating, though its viewership fell short at 5.64 million.
  • CBS’ “Blue Bloods” posted the most viewers at 9 p.m. (10 p.m. Mainland), with 11.87 million. But it had a 1.45 demo, with ABC’s “20/20” garnering a skosh more, 1.8 rating demo.
  • In the big picture, ABC was No. 1 in adults 18-49  with a 1.6 rating, besting CBS’ 1.4 demo;  but CBS had the most viewers over-all, 9.866 million, compared to ABC’s 6.636 million over-all.

So “H50” on Friday is a sweet match — enabling the island show to attract the numbers it couldn’t garner on Mondays.

The episode, “Hoku Welowelo (Fire in the Sky),” dealt with a mysterious Chinese satellite falling from the sky, creating initial tension: is this an omen with roots in ancient Hawaii, or a conspiracy object with global political implications?


The incident brings back Jerry Ortega (Jorge Garcia), a bear of a man with incredible intuition and savvy, whose presence provides humor, anticipation and some stability — the guy knows his stuff and his physique is enough to maintain your interest.

Mama Clara Williams (Melanie Griffith) lingers, to irritate son Danno Williams (Scott Caan) when she hitches a ride to go crimefighting with Captain Grover (Chi McBride),

certainly a violation of the investigation credo. But aside from the tension she brings along, she evokes humor and helps release stress — and is a much more appealing mom figure than Mama McG (Christine Lahti), who confuses and clouds son Steve McGarrett’s (Alex O’Loughlin) m.o.

There’s more bonding between Grover and McG, to follow last week’s peace pipe exchange of sorts, so yes, there’s another flashback, with McG remembering an incident in North Korea, over a cuppa Joe.

Then there was the Chinese spy Zi Chen (Elaine Tan), who throws out menacing stares but  doesn’t become the dragon lady she could have been. Amid the show’s conventions and clichés, she was never nasty or threatening — but then again, she had her own agenda of discovering the fallen satellite to protect Chinese intelligence.

Good to see Kono (Grace Park) back in the groove with cuz Chin Ho Kelly (Daniel Dae Kim), and since Catherine (Michelle Borth) is now part of  investigative team (ever since Kono was on the lam in Vancouver), she’s along for the ride in case-solving, minus romantic clinches with McG.

Over-all, it was a comfy outing — safe in delivery, not groundbreaking.


Two more years for Peter Lenkov — and his 'Hawaii Five-0'

March 7th, 2014




Though CBS TV has yet to formally give the island-based “Hawaii Five-0” the green light to proceed for a fifth season, the online site  reports that the eye network has struck a deal with producer Peter Lenkov to continue for two more seasons.

The show, now in its fourth year, moved to the 8 p.m. (9 p.m. Mainland) slot on Fridays, where it regularly has led the viewership with a weekly average of 11.6 million — a comfort zone compared to the competition-heavy 9 p.m. (10 p.m. Mainland) Mondays, where it struggled to battle the popular ABC’s “Castle.”

Though “Five-0” has not dominated the coveted 18 to 49 adult demographics this year, viewership is up 3 per cent compared to Mondays and up 6 per cent in the demographics.

Two more years of production— and it could be longer, since the cast apparently had signed on for seven seasons — would fuel the network’s deal with TNT, where “Five-0” is in syndication. The cable network is paying CBS $2 million-plus per episode where the show so far has had a stronger international appeal than domestic.

In addition, the CBS deal enables Lenkov to develop new series for the network and for cable syndication.

This year, Lenkov reunited with his “Five-0” reboot collaborators Alex Kurtzman and Bob Orci to mine the new drama, “Salvation,” which CBS acquired.

Oscars 2014 : Who dipped, who slipped, who tripped...

March 3rd, 2014

Ellen DeGeneres dipped, Jennifer Lawrence slipped, John Travolta tripped.

So last night’s Oscarcast is over and Monday morning quarterbacking —reactions and reflections — are de rigueur. ellen

Host DeGeneres had her moments, some good, some bad — but lacked sparkle over-all, spending far too much time schmoozing with the audience, filling time by cradling a guitar, and looked wide-eyed in wonderment if she was clicking with the viewers.

Um, not always.  She went overboard in put-down comments to Liza Minnelli (once) who had blue-streaked hair, and Jonah Hill (twice) for his exposure in “The Wolf  of Wall Street.”

Actress Lawrence, again radiant in red, had another fall at the ball, as she exited a limo, before her red carpet stroll. Remembering Lawrence’s trek and slip  when she went to pick up her Best Actress Oscar, DeGeneres said that perhaps if she won last night, the statuette should be delivered to her seat. Bad karma — Lawrence lost to Cate Blanchett.

Saying he loved musicals, John Travolta introduced Idina Menzel who performed what would become the Best Song winner, “Let It Go” from “Frozen.”  But he mangled her name, uttering something like “Adela Dazeem,” and she was a Tony winner who was a “Wicked-ly” Elphaba.”

Shameful. What was he smoking?

The evening lacked a spectacular opening number; after all, this was the crown jewel of the awards show, and aside from performances of the four  Best Song nominees, there wasn’t that “aha” moment with song and dance.

Paging Neil Patrick Harris, paging Neil Patrick Harris: He hosted the Tonys and will do so again this year; his brand of summarizing the slate of nominees and shows in tuneful reflection was first-rate; and at the end credits, he did a similar chore recapping the winners before sign-off, a task that required swift writing as the show was unveiling, and incredible delivery of raw material.

There were two guest singing spots: Pink’s Judy Garland/“Wizard of Oz” tribute and Bette Midler’s vocal of her hit “Wind Beneath My Wings” hit, with the former representing the now generation, the latter reflecting the past though the Hawaii-born Divine Miss M still has Magic. Pink sparkled like Dorothy’s glass slippers, in her red gown; Midler earned a standing ovation for her bit, which was a strange tack-on to the usual awards memorial to those who have passed on, which should have been integrated into the tributes. Midler’s performance brought tears to Julia Roberts’ eyes.


Some moments to love or hate:


Happy-ness: Pharrell Williams, complete with his trademark hat, made his Oscar-nominated “Happy” song a danceathon with A-list movements from Lupito Nuyong’o, Meryl Streep and Amy Adams. Probably spontaneous rather than staged — and precisely the kind of surprise the show needed.

Cute: DeGeneres ordering pizza, collecting bucks from the likes of Harrison Ford. Well, you do get hungry and the show ran 3 ½ hours and the grinds were waiting at the after-parties.

All right, all right, all right: Matthew  McConaughey’s spontaneity, speech and sizzle — he waited long but obviously believed his time was now.

Touching: Jared Leto’s savvy and sincere acceptance speech, saluting his mom who was an inspiration for his success.

Dreams come true: The “it” girl of the awards circuit, Lupita Nyong’o, said in her acceptance speech, dreams are valid; and she expressed gratitude to the real-life figure who inspired her and enabled her to snag the statuette.

American nightmare: It was 0-for-10 for “American Hustle,” with an A-list roster of nominees and a prolific director; it was a complete wipeout for the film.

bestpicSplit hits: The buzz before the Oscars was that this was a season of close races; not so. The anticipated winners won; the occasional split between Best Picture and Best Director was also predictable, as Academy Award voters spread the wealth around — “12 Years a Slave” copping the big prize, but “Gravity” director Alfonso Cuaron reeling in the director’s trophy.

The Gap: Did you notice the divisive and distant relationship between “12 Years” adapted screenplay winner John Ridley, and the film’s director Steve McQueen, who didn’t win?


Share your observations, if you have a moment you loved or hated.





Who’s got a secret? Many do on 'Hawaii Five-0'

March 1st, 2014




“Hawaii Five-0,” featuring Melanie Griffith as the mother of Scott Caan’s character Danny “Danno” Williams, still leads its 8 p.m. (9 p.m. Mainland) time slot on Friday, but the preliminary overnight Nielsen TV ratings number indicate that the island-filmed show dropped a skosh in the coveted 18 to 49 age demographics.griffth

That’s not to blame Griffith in the first of what looks like  recurring appearances; her introduction marks the show’s continuing reach into the past of its principal players. Mama (her name is Clara) Williams brought news that she’s leaving Papa Williams, stunning sonny boy. He didn’t take the news well.

‘Pale‘ia (Buried Secrets),” as the segment was entitled, played out this way in the numbers: the CBS show still draws the most viewers among competitors, luring 10.44 million on Friday (March 1). But its 18 to 49 demos had 1.4 rating (tied with NBC’s “Grimm,” with 5.19 million viewers), which marked a four-tenths drop from a month ago when the last new episode was aired before Friday’s. The demo winner in the 8 p.m. hour was ABC’s “Shark Tank,” with 2.1 (up four tenths from last week) and 7.83 million viewers.  The competish included Fox’s “Enlisted,” with 1.84 million viewers and a 0.6 demo and a repeat of CW’s “Star-Crossed,” with  0.55 million viewers and a 0.2 demo.

Overall, CBS had the most viewers Friday; ABC had the best 18 to 49 demo. Most-watched Friday show was CBS’ “Blue Bloods,” with 11.80 million viewers with a 1.4 demo.

*    *    *

Regarding the episode , there were several secrets — one personal, two buried between the walls of a home, another from the Chicago past that haunts a member of the “Five-0” force now — that played out quite nicely.

Mama Williams’ surprise pop was early and swift; as soon as she appeared from baggage claim, she told Danno that she and her dad are going separate ways.  After the opening credits, the first of two bodies are found in a home, the second late in the show; and Captain Grover’s unknown pilikia in Chicago was played out in black-and-white flashback.  Oh, I guess Teilor Grubbs as Danno’s daughter Gracie (and Mama Williams’ granddaughter) also had a hidden truth: playing hooky from school.

There was a little surprise — a fish out of water, so to speak — when Daryl Hannah, still remembered as a mermaid in “Splash,”  appeared as a realtor. Knew she had filmed an episode recently.

There also was a rare bond of trust and faith — and a hint of future cooperation — when Steve McGarrett (Alex O’Loughlin) pledged his kokua and support of his till-now arch enemy on the same team, Captain Grover.

Peace in paradise — at last?  Or have they secretly been liking each other — but pretended not to?








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