Monthly Archives: August 2009

Ox Notes: August 27, 2009

CBS revealed the identities of the twenty cast members of Survivor: Samoa today. The network has started running promos for the new season as well.

Meanwhile, Survivor‘s original champ, Richard Hatch, is still locked up in jail after violating the terms of his house arrest.

Bravo has blog posts from Top Chef Las Vegas judges Tom Colicchio and Gail Simmons about last night’s new episode.

EW recently posted a Where Are They Now? gallery of past Top Chef contestants.

MTV plans to devote more of its airtime to original movies, including gems like My Super Psycho Sweet 16.

The Watcher interviewed Supernatural creator Eric Kripke about the show’s fifth season.

TV Guide interviewed Dancing with the Stars 9 contestant Joanna Krupa, while USA Weekend chatted with Melissa Joan Hart.

The best DwtS 9 preview I’ve seen comes courtesy of the humor site Cracked. The post rechristens the show "Dancing with Some People" and says contestant Michael Irvin is "[c]ontinuing the effort to turn the NFL Hall of Fame into the Embarrassing Dance School for Victims of Multiple Concussions."

Ox Notes: August 25, 2009

The celebrity-pro dancer pairings for Dancing with the Stars 9 were formally announced yesterday. EW rated the couples‘ chances for victory, predicting Donny Osmond & Kym Johnson as the likely winners.

Mya talked with TV Guide about the first few days of rehearsals with her DwtS partner, Dmitry Chaplin.

Pure DwtS reports that the new dances being introduced this season are the Charleston, Bolero, Lambada and Two-Step. Seriously, the Lambada? I thought that was so 1990.

The Futon Critic posted trailers for the new seasons of Supernatural and Smallville.

Variety has an article about a company that helps indie artists get their music on TV shows.

HBO’s adaptation of George R. R. Martin’s "Game of Thrones" is getting a lot of publicity. The Chicago Tribune’s The Watcher blog mentioned the latest casting news (here are photos of the new cast members), as well as some other useful sites for news about the pilot, including the blog Winter Is Coming. Be forewarned that Martin’s personal blog is for fans of the book series and contains plot spoilers.

Ox Notes: August 20, 2009

Lifetime is devoting tonight to Project Runway, starting with a two-hour All-Star Challenge at 8 ET, featuring celebrity guest Nicole Kidman. The 10 ET premiere of Season 6 will be followed by a 30-minute episode of Models of the Runway at 11 ET.

The Futon Critic posted an interview with PR producer Sara Rea, and The Trib’s Watcher interviewed Tim Gunn.

ABC is waiting until Monday to officially announce the Dancing with the Stars 9 contestants’ professional partners, but nearly half of the pairings have already leaked (updated, again):

Ashley Hamilton is shaping up to be this season’s funniest contestant. He told TV Guide that he’s working on his "Hamil-tan," and in a video he recorded with Edyta in a Wendy’s parking lot, he joked, "I do love all our castmates; all 147 of them."

Hours after appearing on Today to talk about his stint in prison, Survivor champ Richard Hatch was sent back to jail for failing to get permission to film an interview with Access Hollywood.

Police are searching for Ryan Jenkins, a contestant on VH1’s Megan Wants a Millionaire, in connection with a murder. The network has indefinitely postponed future airings of the show and may not air the already-filmed third season of I Love Money, on which Jenkins was also a contestant.

Jay Leno gave reporters the scoop on his new primetime show. He plans to save classic bits like "Jaywalking" and "Headlines" for the final 15 minutes of each episode.

If you’ve been meaning to catch up on Supernatural but are daunted by the prospect of watching four full seasons of the show, The Trib’s Watcher compiled a list of 15 essential episodes to watch before Season 5 begins.

Ox Notes: August 18, 2009

The new Dancing with the Stars 9 contestants are reacting to yesterday’s big cast reveal. Donny Osmond and DwtS host Tom Bergeron talked to Samantha Harris for The Insider, and Aaron Carter spoke with Entertainment Tonight.

It may be a few days until we know which celebs and pros will be dancing together this season. On Ryan Seacrest’s radio show, Kelly Osbourne said she won’t meet her professional dance partner until Friday.

TV Guide posted a poll after the cast announcement, and Donny Osmond is the early favorite to win DwtS 9.

I was a little surprised that Paula Abdul wasn’t a DwtS contestant this season, but, according to Reality Blurred, talks with ABC didn’t go well and now Abdul won’t appear on Ugly Betty as planned either. Her chances of returning to American Idol look slim after the show announced Shania Twain as the upcoming season’s fourth guest judge.

DwtS pro Cheryl Burke told E! that having guest judges like on So You Think You Can Dance would make DwtS "more exciting," adding that she’d love to see Paula Abdul in that role on DwtS.

Kelly Choi, host of Top Chef Masters — which wraps up Wednesday night at 10 ET on Bravo — told OK! that her favorite healthy snack is carrots and Korean hot sauce.

The Torch Online posted a fall fantasy/sci-fi TV preview.

How exactly does one earn the title "extreme pet trainer"?

DwtS 9 Cast Announcement

ABC announced the identities of the Dancing with the Stars 9 celebrity contestants this morning. They are:

Aaron Carter
Ashley Hamilton
Chuck Liddell
Debi Mazar
Joanna Krupa
Kathy Ireland
Kelly Osbourne
Louie Vito
Macy Gray
Mark Dacascos
Melissa Joan Hart
Michael Irvin
Donny Osmond
Natalie Coughlin
Tom DeLay

Looks like ABC is trying to one up NBC by casting Tom DeLay. NBC was only able to get the wife of a disgraced politician for I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!. ABC got an actual disgraced politician!

I’ll update the list when the celebrity-pro dancer pairings are posted. On Good Morning America, Tom Bergeron said that the new season will feature new dance styles and will debut with a three-night premiere.

I’ve at least heard of all but one of these celebs, so that’s a better ratio than seasons past. Are you excited to watch the new season based on this cast? Is there an early favorite?

Ox Notes: August 13, 2009

In an effort to prevent injuries, Dancing with the Stars producers instituted new rules to limit the amount of time Season 9 contestants spend in rehearsals. It’s about time.

LaToya Jackson is the latest celebrity rumored to be joining the DwtS 9 cast.

It didn’t take the Emmys long to scrap plans to pre-record several awards presentations and play edited versions of the acceptance speeches during the primetime broadcast.

Top Chef: Las Vegas debuts next week, inspiring EW to post a slideshow of the Best TV Shows for Foodies. Bravo announced the names of the companies sponsoring the new season, in addition to the ever-present "Glad Family of Products."

Top Chef host Padma Lakshmi admitted to The New York Times that she "keeps two dress sizes on the set" in order to accommodate the 10-15 pounds she gains over the course of each season.

Speaking of wardrobe issues, actress Mayim Bialik wrote about addressing her religious views regarding modesty with the crew of What Not to Wear: "When the show aired, I saw that my qualifications and explanations did not survive the cutting room."

AMC is developing a TV show about surviving a zombie apocalypse. Woo hoo!

I’ve got less than 48 hours until the start of the English Premier League football season; gotta go tweak my fantasy team. Here’s info on where you can watch games on United States cable channels.

Ox Notes: August 11, 2009

With less than a week until the cast of Dancing with the Stars 9 is revealed, show producer Conrad Green confirmed that the new cast will include 16 celebrities, with double eliminations occurring around mid-season. He said that Paula Abdul can have a spot in the cast if she wants it.

Green also mentioned that the new season will feature more athletes, including some from sports that haven’t been represented on the show before. In my mind, that all but confirms that Jeremy Roenick, who retired from pro hockey last week, will be on the show. Looks like his fans want that, too.

*In related but totally unsubstantiated speculation, my husband suspects that former soccer star and ESPN commentator Alexi Lalas could also join the DwtS 9 cast. Greg has no proof, he just wants to be on record in case he’s right.*

DwtS pre-season rumors wouldn’t be complete without perennial contestant-to-be Aaron Carter. And Tori Spelling’s husband, Dean McDermott, is campaigning for a spot on Season 9.

Bachelor host Chris Harrison predicts that the show will be responsible for three weddings this year. Meanwhile, The Root wonders why there hasn’t been a black Bachelor or Bachelorette yet.

The Futon Critic interviewed Regis Philbin about the return of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, which debuted with just okay ratings on Sunday night.

In other game show news, Wayne Brady will host a daytime revival of Let’s Make a Deal, debuting on CBS on October 5.

The Watcher reports that Paris Hilton will play a "demonic creature" on the upcoming season of Supernatural.

Gordon Ramsay’s record for successful makeovers isn’t good; 8 of 13 New York area restaurants featured on Kitchen Nightmares have since closed.

Lucky folks in Hollywood will get to see The Pee-wee Herman Show on stage starting November 8. I wonder if Laurence Fishburne will reprise his role as Cowboy Curtis?

Ox Notes: August 6, 2009

The summer season of So You Think You Can Dance wraps up tonight on FOX at 8 ET. EW compiled a list of the 15 Greatest SYTYCD Routines, while show creator Nigel Lythgoe spoke about his desire to have Paula Abdul appear on the upcoming fall season.

SYTYCD vets Pasha Kovalev & Anya Garnis will join the Broadway cast of Burn the Floor on August 18.

In Dancing with the Stars alumnae news, Lisa Rinna is working on a novel, Marie Osmond’s talk show has been canceled and Heather Mills got a Kate Gosselin haircut.

Chris Kattan is starring in a new mini-series called Bollywood Hero that premieres tonight on IFC. It sounds right up my alley.

To promote the new season of Project Runway, Tim Gunn will call your friends with a prerecorded, personalized message. I can’t wait to prank my brother with this.

At the Movies is ditching Ben Lyons and Ben Mankiewicz in favor of newspaper film critics A.O. Scott and Michael Phillips. Variety’s Brian Lowry considers the move an admission by Disney that their attempt to "go younger" failed.

Survivor: Africa winner Ethan Zohn should become the celebrity spokesman for American health insurance reform. He told People that each of the six chemotherapy treatments he needs to treat his Stage 2 Hodgkin’s Disease costs about $23,000. His insurance only pays 80% of the cost.

Variety highlighted some of the food shows nominated for Emmys.

In a lengthy but thought provoking New York Times article, author Michael Pollan explores how our increased interest in TV shows about food coincides with a decrease in the amount of time we spend cooking for ourselves, resulting in higher obesity levels. As if that wasn’t bad enough, watching TV raises kids’ blood pressure.

Ox Notes: August 4, 2009

The Emmys are stirring up controversy with a decision to pre-record eight of the award presentations for writing, and then showing edited portions of those presentations during the live ceremony. Host Neil Patrick Harris defended the move, saying the editing will only remove things like the recipients walking to the podium.

The Writers Guild of America issued a letter of protest. The Chicago Tribune’s TV critic Maureen Ryan isn’t happy about the move either.

Emmy Awards producer Don Mischer says it’s part of an effort to keep the ceremony relevant. TV’s most popular shows are notoriously underrepresented in the nominations every year, giving people less incentive to tune in to ceremony.

Is the alternative keeping the award show format the same, but moving the broadcast from a major network to a cable channel? Since it seems like most of the nominations are for cable shows anyway, it might make sense.

The Television Critics Awards were handed out over the weekend. The only network show among the winners was The Big Bang Theory.

In Dancing with the Stars news, it sounds as if Lou Ferrigno is as close to a lock for Season 9 as you can get (or at least as close to a lock as Vera Wang is). Pro wrestler Kurt Angle is the latest celebrity to join the list of rumored contestants for the new season.

Good news, Futurama fans. The original voice cast has signed on for the new season.

The New York Times has an article about the long work days, sleep deprivation, and booze that reality show producers use to keep contestants on edge.

Taking the torture of reality show contestants one step further is E!’s new show, Reality Hell. Each week a new contestant will be tricked into believing he or she is on a new, legitimate reality show, kind of like Spike’s Joe Schmo.

In non-TV news, go see the Bollywood movie Love Aaj Kal if it’s playing at a theater near you. It’s a great summer romance and a terrific introduction to Indian films, if you’ve never seen one before.

Also, watch this Special Comment about health insurance reform from last night’s episode of Countdown. It explains why the reforms the majority of Americans want are being held up in Congress (hint: it’s about money):

Visit for Breaking News, World News, and News about the Economy