TV Q&A: 'Glee,' Investigation Discovery and 'This Old House'

Friday, 30 March 2012 11:15 AM Written by 
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TV Q&A with Rob Owen


This week's TV Q&A (after the "Read more" jump below) responds to questions about “Glee,” cable channel Investigation Discovery and “This Old House.” As always, thanks for reading, and keep the questions coming.
- Rob Owen, Post-Gazette TV writer
Q: Do you know when “Glee” is coming back on the air and do you know when “Law & Order: SVU” is coming back on the air with new episodes? Thanks!
- Joe, 25, East McKeesport
Rob:
“Glee” is back April 10. NBC does not list new “SVU” episodes yet on its media site but if IMDB.com is accurate, new “SVU” episodes will begin April 11.

Q: Any chance Flynn (Anthony John Denison) and Provenza (G.W. Bailey) from “The Closer” will get their own spinoff? They truly are a great team and their soft comedy episodes are a hoot. I am really going to miss that show when it ends this year.
- Tim, 41, Shadyside
Rob:
They aren’t getting their own spinoff but both characters will transition to “The Closer” spinoff “Major Crimes” when “The Closer” ends and “Major Crimes” begins in August.

Q: In the past month, I have become addicted to the Investigation Discovery (ID) channel. It claims to be "America's fastest-growing network." I am wondering what the ratings are like for this network, and, in particular, the shows "Nothing Personal" and "Scorned: Love Kills."
- Stewart, 38, Greensburg
Rob:
Crime pays.
Broadcasting & Cable reports ratings for ID are indeed up, particularly among the key demo of women 25-54, where the network has moved from 33rd place in daytime two years ago to the Top 4 of cable networks today. “Love Kills” and “Nothing Personal” do quite well by cable standards, averaging a 1.0 rating on ID. “Dark Minds” premiered in January with 2.75 million viewers.
And Stewart is not alone: There’s a website for fans of the network
 
Q: I’ve not been able to find "Cash Cab" on the Discovery Channel for quite some time. Has the show been canceled?
- Susan, 66, Gibsonia
Rob:
No. Cable networks air new episodes in batches. No return date has been set but “Cash Cab” will be back later this spring.
 
Q: How are there an endless supply of commercials even when a program runs longer than expected? For example, when any sports game goes into overtime the commercials just keep on coming. Do the advertisers get these as a free bonus or is it part of their ad purchase that they will pay for extra ads if there is overtime?
- Kate, 46, Greentree
Rob: Advertisers definitely don’t get anything for nothing. That much I’m certain of. I emailed a source in local TV sales who explained that stations and networks have “if” positions for sale, as in, your ad will run “if” the live broadcast goes into overtime.
Other times, big sponsors who already bought multiple spots in a program may get a bonus spot in an overrun of a nominal event, not a big ratings bonanza like, say, the Super Bowl. And for an advertiser who buys a lot of spots that come with audience delivery guarantees, if those guarantees are not met through the course of regular programming, a station/network may air their ad in overtime as a way to meet the guarantee.
Viewers have no way of knowing which situation applies to any particular live programming overrun ad because each situation is unique.
 
Q: Has WQED stopped carrying "The This Old House Hour"? They haven't aired an episode since March 2, and it isn't listed in WQED's schedule for the
foreseeable future.
And if they ever do resume airing it, will they pick it up where they left
off and show the remaining episodes on the current Barrington Project, or
will they skip the missed episodes altogether?
- Mark, Squirrel Hill
Rob:
My guess was it’s simply off the schedule for March pledge, which happens to a lot of programs every year. WQED program director Chris Fennimore confirmed that was indeed the case.
“We air ‘Ask This Old House’ on Saturdays from 3:30 to 4 p.m. and ‘This Old House’ from 4 to 4:30 p.m. The programs have been pre-empted for the last few weeks during our March Membership drive,” Fennimore wrote in an email. “The programs will return to the Saturday schedule on March 31. ‘This Old House’ will pick up where it left off and no episodes will be missed. Also, episodes from that series are available on demand at www.pbs.org.”
 
VOICE MAIL OF THE WEEK

“Yeah ‘Mad Crap’ is coming back on, another unbelievably unentertaining show like ‘The Walking Dead.’ What gets me is how good ‘Breaking Bad’ is compared to that crap. I know everybody has their choices and views on entertainment but, believe me, man, it’s just another crappy soap opera as far as I’m concerned. Never watch the crap. I don’t envy you. You’ve got to write about all this stuff. Unbelievable all the junk that gets on there.
“I wish you could do something, too, about that Turner Classic Movies. Is that a freaking joke, the crap they put on there. You should take a survey and write about how people feel about television. ‘Cause everybody I talk to, a lot of people don’t even watch it anymore.
“Another crappy season of crappy ‘Mad Crap.’ Later.”
-- Little Mr. Sunshine who evidently won’t be watching “Mad Men” this season
 
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