Archive for November, 2014

Glen Larson dies; was creator of 'Magnum P.I."

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November 15th, 2014



  Glen A. Larson, an iconic show biz figure whose love for Hawaii was overshadowed by his grand success in producing hit TV series, died Thursday of esophageal cancer at the UCLA Medical Center in Santa Monica. He was 77. I remember him from the era when he was a member of the Four Preps, a harmonic pop music ensemble of “26 Miles (Santa Catalina)” and “Down by the Station” fame, when the group appeared at the then-named Honolulu International Center Arena, now the Blaisdell Center Arena, in the late 1950s. Larson quickly became enamored of Hawaii and his producing credits included CBS’ hit series, “Magnum P.I.,” which he created with Donald Bellisario, with whom he had partnered in launching “Battlestar Galactica.” “Magnum” ­— following the success of the Jack Lord original “Hawaii Five-0” — gave Hawaii a major boost when Larson, who did the script, sought Tom Selleck to portray the titular Ferrari-driving mustachioed and aloha shirt-wearing crimefighter in the filmed-in-Hawaii CBS series that ran for 162 episodes from 1980 to 1988.

“He had beach homes in Portlock and near Waimanalo and he loved the Kahala (Hilton),” said entrepreneur Tom Moffatt, who had secured the Four Preps early on for a live concert. That initial gig became a life-long friendship between Moffatt and Larson.

Moffatt flew to California a few days ago  before Larson passed on.

Audy Kimura, the prolific island singer, guitarist, and composer, performed at Larson’s wedding celebration in Hawaii in 2009. He said they became fast friends and “he used to come, directly from his light with suitcases, to see me at Hy’s,” said Kimura. “Just before his death, he had called and asked if I could perform ‘Lovers & Friends’ on the phone, for the last time.” Larson had a hand in number of hit dramas all over the TV dial, in a wildly challenging range of genres, including the CSI-style “Quincy, M.E.,”  the sci-fi fave “Battleship Gallactica,” the crime drama “It Takes a Thief,” the tongue-in-cheek “Knight Rider,” the adventurous “Fall Guy” about a bounty hunter, the caper about “The Six Million Dollar Man,”  two diverse westerns, “B.J. and the Bear” and “Alias Smith and Jones,” and more. Survivors include his wife Jeannie, brother Kenneth, and nine children from former wives Carol Gourley and Janet Curtis. A son, James, said a memorial service is pending.       Photo credit: REX USA   larson

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'Five-0' at its 100th milestone: Future is right on the fence

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November 8th, 2014



 

 

“Hawaii Five-0,” which just showed its milestone 100th episode Friday night (Nov. 7), deserves congratulations for the Big 1-0-0 achievement.

5-Oh

Yep, it’s been a ride.

The island-filmed show, in its repositioned Friday night slot on CBS  (8 p.m. here, 9 p.m. Mainland), has been a blessing in disguise. This is where fading shows are traditionally sent, but this is also where “Five-0” has earned its survival stripes and a new lease on life.

If the show remained in its Monday night nook, it would have been disasterville with stiff competition. Its challenge this season, for instance, would have been opposite NBC’s “The Black List” and ABC’s “Castle,” darlings among viewers.  CBS put “NCIS: Los Angeles” in the previous “Five-0” spot. And remember, the Monday airtime was at 9 p.m. (10 p.m. Mainland).

In Season 5, however, “Five-0” — with reruns already in syndication on TNT — still is in jeopardy of cancellation. But it is good company, since among the  CBS shows in the same boat are  “Blue Bloods,” “The Good Wife,” “CSI” and “Madam Secretary,” according to TV by the Numbers.

According to analysts, the aforementioned shows are right on the fence of renewals or cancellations by next May 15, when networks shine the green-for-go light, or red-for-retirement signals.

The likeliest to get another green light: “Blue Bloods,” because of its rating power on Friday night, following “Five-0.” And “Elementary,” “NCIS,” “NCIS: Los Angeles”  and
“NCIS: New Orleans” are among the dramas certainties to be renewed.

“Five-0” this season is drawing the most viewers in its time slot, but it has been second in the preferred barometer of adults 18 to 14, generally behind ABC’s “Shark Tank.” This is the category, not the viewer numbers,  that determine ad revenues for the network.

According to the Nielsen ratings, here’s how “Five-0” has performed this season:

 

Air date                18 to 49 demos           Viewer in millions

9/26                            1.20                                  8.99

10/3                            1.30                                  8.33

10/10                          1.20                                 9.19

10/17                          1.20                                 9.17

10/24                          1.10                                 8.92

10/31                          1.10                                 9.47

11/7                             1.20                                 8.91

 

Fridays have been generally steady, with CBS attracting the most viewers (8.81 million this week) and ABC posting the best adult 18 to 49 demo numbers (1.6 this week).

Friday’s most-viewed series generally is “Blue Bloods”  (11.41 million this week) and the top adult demo leader has been “Shark Tank” (1.9 this week).

Certainly, a procedural in its fifth season maintains a loyal following, but if you’ve not yet become part of the viewing ohana, it’s a bit late to join in. Numbers often fade, rather than grow, over time.

Regarding “Ina Puha (If Perhaps),” the 100th episode, it was an invention/reflection of things and themes past and present, with McGarrett and Company in dual/alternate reality/fantasy sequences.  Wo Fat kidnaps and tortures McG. Dad McG is alive;  and other key players are assembled in before/now mode.

If you’ve been a follower, it’s flashback with a twist; if you’re a newbie, it’s formidable overload. Yes? No?
One great element: “All for One,” the special original tune composed expressly for “Five-0” by John Ondrasik, the leader of  the group Five for Fighting who yielded such hit tunes as “Superman (It’s Not Easy),” “100 Years” and “Riddle (You and I).”  It was a splendid idea pitched by “Five-0” producer Peter Lenkov to the composer — and show aired the entire tune, which characterized the flavor of the special episode.

Yet the show has had its moment of glory, in Season 1, when “Five-0” made the Guinesss World Records in 2012 for the “Highest-Rated New Show in the U.S.,” with a record 19.34 million viewers for “Kai e’e,” its Jan. 23 2011 episode.

Hana hou?

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