Tuned In Journal http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com Wed, 04 May 2016 11:24:13 -0400 en-gb Tuned In podcast: 'Games of Thrones,' 'Silicon Valley' and 'Veep' http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40088-tuned-in-podcast-games-of-thrones-silicon-valley-and-veep http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40088-tuned-in-podcast-games-of-thrones-silicon-valley-and-veep

 

tuned in podcast logo

Post-Gazette online features editor Sharon Eberson and media writer Maria Sciullo join me to discuss HBO's "Game of Thrones," "Silicon Valley" and "Veep."

Find the podcast link after the jump. ...

Access the Tuned In podcast on the PG Soundcloud site  or below: 

 

 

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rowen@post-gazette.com (Rob Owen) Tuned In Journal Wed, 04 May 2016 09:56:01 -0400
Top Comcast VOD titles nationally and in Pittsburgh http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40075-top-comcast-vod-titles-nationally-and-in-pittsburgh http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40075-top-comcast-vod-titles-nationally-and-in-pittsburgh

I'm always curious to see how Pittsburgh viewing habits compare to national viewing. Last month Comcast Xfinity sent out a list of the top TV shows on VOD for a 12-month period ending March 31.

See the national list below and the Pittsburgh list after the jump. ...

Top XOD Shows (All Markets) 

1 Game of Thrones (HBO)
2 The Big Bang Theory (CBS)
3 Empire (Fox)
4 Entourage (HBO)
5 Power (Starz)
6 Blue Bloods (CBS)
7 The Walking Dead (AMC)
8 Modern Family (ABC)
9 Homeland (Showtime)
10 Keeping Up with the Kardashians (E!)

And now the Pittsburgh list: 

Pittsburgh

1. Game of Thrones (HBO)

2. The Big Bang Theory (CBS)
3. Entourage (HBO)
4. Blue Bloods (CBS)
5. The Sopranos (HBO)
6. The Walking Dead (AMC)
7. Modern Family (ABC)
8. Shameless (Showtime)
9. Empire (Fox)
10. Chrisley Knows Best (USA)

I'm puzzled by the inclusion of "Entourage," which hasn't produced new episodes in several years. But maybe the series was made more easily available to promote the "Entourage" movie that was released in 2015.

Nice to see Pittsburghers shun the Kardashians but "Chrisley Knows Best" isn't much of an improvement.

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rowen@post-gazette.com (Rob Owen) Tuned In Journal Tue, 03 May 2016 09:23:01 -0400
How did period drama 'Houdini & Doyle' land on Fox? http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40074-how-did-period-drama-houdini-doyle-land-on-fox http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40074-how-did-period-drama-houdini-doyle-land-on-fox

HouDoyle 102-20150721-RV 0404 hires2

 

I wasn't wild about Fox's "Houdini & Doyle" (9 tonight, WPGH) in my review Sunday, but I am curious how a period drama would end up on Fox.

At a Fox press conference in January, executive producer David Shore said the show was a bargain. Or maybe he was kidding.

Read more after the jump. ...

"They said how much. We said it's dirt cheap, and they said we love it. To some extent that's true. I'm being glib," Shore said. "I don't know what's going on behind the scenes, but I can tell you that what sold it in England first. We went over to England. We sold it in England.  We sold it in Canada.  It's a brave new world of TV producing. And then we came here, sold it to Fox. I don't know if that had any effect on their predisposition. It was not a typical sale. There were other entities that were already interested, but it was a very receptive room we went into, and they seemed very interested.   know it's not typical, but they seemed quite keen."

Series co-creator David Hoselton said the period concept was not an issue.

"I think maybe partly 'Downton Abbey' and 'Peaky Blinders' and things like that that have really opened the door for that," he said. "The North American audiences will embrace a period piece in droves, in numbers and make it a success, which is just a fantastic idea, and I think it's sort of an idea that its time has come. I think we're going to see more and more of them."

 

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rowen@post-gazette.com (Rob Owen) Tuned In Journal Mon, 02 May 2016 14:00:01 -0400
TV Q&A: 'Call the Midwife,' 'Hillbilly Blood' and a weathercaster's schedule http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40071-tv-q-a-call-the-midwife-hillbilly-blood-and-a-weathercaster-s-schedule http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40071-tv-q-a-call-the-midwife-hillbilly-blood-and-a-weathercaster-s-schedule

Click here for a link to headlines of recent TV news and views posts.

TV Q&A with Rob Owen

Submit a question to TV Q&A by sending an email to rowen@post-gazette.com (include your first name and location) or submitting online at http://old.post-gazette.com/tv/questions/qaform.asp.

This week's TV Q&A (after the "Read more" jump below) responds to questions about “Call the Midwife,” “Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll,” “Hillbilly Blood” and a weathercaster’s schedule. As always, thanks for reading and keep the questions coming.

-- Rob Owen, Post-Gazette TV writer

Q: I know you must have been asked this question before, so I probably missed the answer. We are big fans of the PBS show "Call the Midwife" and cannot fathom how they have the births of the babies look so realistic.

Is it the magic of television or do the producers actually find mothers willing to have their childbirth procedure filmed and included in the show?

Knowing the answer might help when watching as I tend to turn away from the television when the babies are actually being delivered.

Thank you for your time.

-- BARTLEY,  PETERS TWP.

Rob: No one has ever asked this question before but it’s safe to assume the births are simulated, not real. But the show does use a mix of fake and real babies who must be no older than 10 days to play newborns. The actors also got training for working with the fake babies.

According to a British newspaper, the current season makes use of a robotic baby and computer-generated effects for some scenes.

 

Q: What is the renewal status of “Hillbilly Blood” on Destination America?

-- JOE, SOUTH SIDE

Rob: Destination America has gone all paranormal, all the time. My son’s beloved “Real Trains in the Snow” (aka “Railroad Alaska”) got axed and “Hillbilly Blood” won’t be back either -- unless maybe the Hillbillies start hunting ghosts.



Q: I DVR every program I intend to watch and only watch sports live. I fast forward through ads, but sometimes something in the blur catches my eye and I watch.

Recently I got snagged by an ad for either a smartphone, an app or a carrier. The ad featured Cookie Monster, SIRI and baking cookies. There was "baking time" music in the ad -- "Time in a Bottle," the old Jim Croce song.

My question for you is: Is that voice Jim Croce? I've seen him in concert and had the record and it sure sounds like the real deal; if not it is the best imitation I ever heard.

-- STEVEN, MCMURRAY

Rob: The ad (see below) is for an iPhone and according to AdWeek it does feature the Croce recording. 

{youtube}CCbWyYr82BM{/youtube}

 

Q: Is “Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll” coming back to FX? Loved that show!

Also, what about “Switched at Birth”?

-- DONNA, BROOKLINE

Rob: “Switched at Birth” will return for a final season in 2017

“Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll” will be back on FX at 10 p.m. June 30.

 

Q: Why do shows play such loud background music while the characters are talking? One show is “Hawaii Five-0.” Sometimes you can hardly hear what they are saying.
-- ARLENE, FINLEYVILLE

Rob: We revisited this issue in last Friday’s Tuned In column: http://www.post-gazette.com/ae/tv-radio/2016/04/22/No-1-viewer-complaint-Loud-background-music/stories/201604220042

 

Q: Does KDKA chief meteorologist Jeff Verszyla Have a lot of time off? Seems as if he hardly ever puts in a full week’s work.

-- Jim, Brentwood
What happened to Channel 2's Jeff Verszyla?  He's on Monday and Tuesday, then John Burnett the rest of the week. Did his status change as part-time or semi-retired? Did he move to channel 19 for the 10 p.m. news for the rest of the week?  Thanks.

-- JON, LOWER BURRELL 

Rob: These questions surface more for Verszyla than any other weathercaster in town. I don’t know if it’s that he has a sweeter vacation deal than other meteorologists or just more of a following.

He was on vacation last Thursday and Friday and some days the week before he was out of town on a sweeps shoot, according to news director Anne Linabeger. He was back on Monday this week but she also said sometimes during non-ratings periods, Jon Burnett does the weather at 4 p.m. some days.

 

BEST WISHES

My colleague Maria Sciullo wrote about the retirement of KDKA-TV's Harold Hayes this week. I always admired Hayes' down-to-Earth, just-the-facts style. He wasn't flashy. He didn't make the story about him. He was just a consummate reporter and one you could tell didn't suffer fools gladly, whether out in the field or back in the TV station newsroom. We need more reporters like Hayes in local TV news. 

 

TUNED IN PODCAST

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rowen@post-gazette.com (Rob Owen) Tuned In Journal Fri, 29 Apr 2016 17:03:01 -0400
Tuned In podcast: 'Lemonade,' 'The Night Manager' and 'Scandal' http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40067-tuned-in-podcast-lemonade-the-night-manager-and-scandal http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40067-tuned-in-podcast-lemonade-the-night-manager-and-scandal

  tuned in podcast logo

Post-Gazette online features editor Sharon Eberson joins me to discuss Beyonce's "Lemonade," AMC's "The Night Manager" and ABC's "Scandal."

Find the podcast link after the jump. ...

Access the Tuned In podcast on the PG Soundcloud site  or below: 

 

 

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rowen@post-gazette.com (Rob Owen) Tuned In Journal Thu, 28 Apr 2016 09:35:01 -0400
AMC's 'Turn' returns http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40046-amc-s-turn-returns http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40046-amc-s-turn-returns

turn blog

AMC's Revolutionary War drama "Turn: Washington's Spies" (10 tonight) is one of those shows I found intriguing in premise but kind of dull as a weekly viewing exercise. So I hadn't really watched it much since season one.

Read more after the jump. ...

I did watch tonight's third season premiere and was surprised by the turn of events at the end of the episode, both that they hadn't happened sooner and because a betrayal gives "Turn" a newfound sense of urgency.

I'm not saying this plot twist will get me on board but it certainly made me more curious about what comes next than the series ever did in its earliest episodes. 

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rowen@post-gazette.com (Rob Owen) Tuned In Journal Mon, 25 Apr 2016 00:00:01 -0400
TV Q&A: 'Blue Bloods,' 'Jesse Stone' and news anchor jewelry http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40057-tv-q-a-blue-bloods-jesse-stone-and-news-anchor-jewelry http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40057-tv-q-a-blue-bloods-jesse-stone-and-news-anchor-jewelry

Click here for a link to headlines of recent TV news and views posts.

TV Q&A with Rob Owen

Submit a question to TV Q&A by sending an email to rowen@post-gazette.com (include your first name and location) or submitting online at http://old.post-gazette.com/tv/questions/qaform.asp.

This week's TV Q&A (after the "Read more" jump below) responds to questions about “Blue Bloods,” “Jesse Stone” and news anchor jewelry. As always, thanks for reading and keep the questions coming.

-- Rob Owen, Post-Gazette TV writer

Q: I've now seen the finales for "Shades of Blue" and "Second Chance." What are the chances (no pun intended) for either of them having a second season?

-- Karen, Orange County, Calif.

Rob: NBC renewed “Shades of Blue” in February. Fox has not renewed “Second Chance” and I suspect it will be canceled. We’ll know for sure in mid-May.

 

Q: Any word on what has become of NBC's “Superstore” and “Telenovela”? Dead? Life support? Sweeps surprise? Thanks.

-- Jay, Pittsburgh

Rob: No word on “Telenovela” – we’ll know for sure in May but my guess is it won’t be back – but “Superstore” was renewed for a second season in February

 

Q: Any idea when the next “Jesse Stone” episode (2016) will be aired? I understand it's to be shown on the Hallmark Channel and would like to DVR when it's scheduled.
-- Frances, Vandergrift

Rob: Hallmark has an option for a 10th “Jesse Stone” movie to air on one of its channels but a new “Jesse Stone” is not scheduled for 2016.

 

Q: In the very first show, who played Nikky on “Blue Bloods”? The girl looked so different. 

-- Joanne, Fombell

Rob: Sami Gayle plays the part now and I wasn’t aware of any recasting but according to IMDB, actress Marlene Lawston played Nicky in 2010 in the show’s pilot episode. 

 

Q: What is up with all the sparkling jewelry that ALL the news anchors are wearing on WTAE?
Since it is everyone I have to assume that it is a station policy. It is more appropriate for a cocktail party than a serious newscast and is just distracting.

-- Maggie, Sewickley

Rob: Hmmm, I wondered if there was a deal between WTAE and a local jewelry for costuming anchors in exchange for “promotional consideration,” but WTAE general manager Charles Wolfertz said it’s “complete happenstance” that anchors are choosing to wear the jewelry Maggie describes.

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rowen@post-gazette.com (Rob Owen) Tuned In Journal Fri, 22 Apr 2016 09:00:01 -0400
'Outsiders' wraps its first season, review/recap of Episode 13 http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40040-outsiders-wraps-its-first-season-review-recap-of-episode-13 http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40040-outsiders-wraps-its-first-season-review-recap-of-episode-13

outsiders ep 13

I'm not entirely sure what to make of the first-season finale of "Outsiders" other than to be happy I finally know how to spell the name of the Farrells' leader thanks to the episode title, "Long Live the Bren'in."

Spoilers and recap after the jump. ...

So I was correct when I predicted last week that Asa was not dead. And I'm doubly annoyed that in the season finale, written by series creator Peter Mattei, he uses the same trick by refusing to kill off Big Foster (David Morse) after everyone thinks the resurrected Asa killed Big. Enough with the near-death experiences! Let one of them stick!

I was thoroughly baffled by Gwin's weird about-face with regards to Asa's attempt to kill Big. She begs Asa to do the dirty deed and then when it appears he has, she throws him under the bus, ordering him back to the box and declaring, "The circle will decide his fate." Huh? I don't understand her motivation here unless she didn't actually tell Asa to kill Big and it was Asa's hallucination.

A few other big surprises included the role the supernatural ends up playing in the show. It's been hinted at previously but with such a light touch it would be easy to write prior incidents off as superstition. But in this episode, a GPS device proves flawed on the moutain. And then in the penultimate scene as Wade faces down Gwin (the new Bren'in, it appears) the sky fills with lightning just as it did when his father died on the moutain years earlier. Also, it appears the mountain can bring the dead back to life -- so maybe my complaints about the near-death fake-outs are pointless -- with Big's youngest son suddenly wandering through the woods.

Also, there were more Farrells than we've ever seen shambling out of the woods, zombie-like. Where have they all been hiding? It looked like there were hundreds of them and to this point "Outsiders" has suggested their numbers are more on the order of dozens. Or were they part of a mass hallucination on the part of Wade and the whole police force?

Perhaps viewers were learn more in season two, which begins filming in Pittsburgh this spring for a 2017 on-air return.

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rowen@post-gazette.com (Rob Owen) Tuned In Journal Wed, 20 Apr 2016 14:30:00 -0400
Break out the santizer: The CW unleashes 'Containment' http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/39988-break-out-the-santizer-the-cw-unleashes-containment http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/39988-break-out-the-santizer-the-cw-unleashes-containment

containment

The CW takes a page from the AMC playbook with "Containment" (9 p.m. Tuesday, WPCW), a "Fear the Walking Dead"-like thriller about a killer virus that's basically "Walking Dead" without the zombies.

But the show does reference zombies in each of its first two episodes.

Read more after the jump. ...

A multi-character drama, "Containment" is fine but unexceptional. Come for the virus-spawned mayhem, stay for the relationships. Or not.

"Containment" is pretty paint-by-number for viewers accustomed to the heightened stakes and less predictable drama of "The Walking Dead." Sure, characters who contract the virus bleed out of seemingly every orifice -- and flashforward to day 13 of the crisis shows utter chaos -- but "Containment" moves at a slower pace than "Fear the Walking Dead." In some ways that seems good -- "Fear" seemed to jump through its premise too quickly -- but it also makes for a less urgent show.

Tuesday's pilot introduces an Atlanta cop, Lex (David Gyasi), who's having relationship issues with his commitment-phobe girlfriend, Jana (Christina Moses). She has a past with his cop buddy, Jake (Chris Wod), who gets quarantined in an Atlanta hospital with a single mom teacher (Kristen Gutoski), who picked the wrong day to take her calss to the hospital on a field trip.

The Feds swoop in, embodied by HHS administrator Sabine (Claudia Black, "Farscape"), who tries to enlist Lex in her service, which doesn't sit right with him. A conspiracy-minded blogger, Leo Green (Trevor St. John), runs hot and cold on Lex and what his involvement with the Feds could mean.  The Feds suggest the virus is a bio-weapon but Leo says even ISIS disavows it. So how did a Syrian kid bring the virus into the country?

Perhaps "Containment" will answer that question in its first season. Or maybe not. And that's another problem with the show structurally: Find a cure and end the outbreak and the show is over. Granted, "The Walking Dead" has managed to sustain the premise, but the first two episodes of "Containment" don't offer a lot of confidence that this CW series can do the same. 

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rowen@post-gazette.com (Rob Owen) Tuned In Journal Mon, 18 Apr 2016 00:00:01 -0400
TV Q&A: 'Poldark,' WQED-TV and local weather forecasts http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40047-tv-q-a-poldark-wqed-tv-and-local-weather-forecasts http://communityvoices.post-gazette.com/arts-entertainment-living/tuned-in/item/40047-tv-q-a-poldark-wqed-tv-and-local-weather-forecasts

Click here for a link to headlines of recent TV news and views posts.

TV Q&A with Rob Owen

Submit a question to TV Q&A by sending an email to rowen@post-gazette.com (include your first name and location) or submitting online at http://old.post-gazette.com/tv/questions/qaform.asp.

This week's TV Q&A (after the "Read more" jump below) responds to questions about “Poldark,” WQED-TV and local weather forecasts. As always, thanks for reading and keep the questions coming.

-- Rob Owen, Post-Gazette TV writer

Q: Wondering if PBS will be offering Season 2 of “Poldark.” Do you have any information to share with us on this series? 

-- CAROL, WEST MIFFLIN

Rob: “Poldark” will return to “Masterpiece” for a second season but a premiere date has not been set. It is expected to be back sometime this fall.

 

Q: I turned on the TV at6:30 a.m.recently and found that CNN has put up a countdown clock counting off by seconds the momentous news that "The Eighties" premieres in.... at7:15 a.m.it’s still there. Are they nuts or am I? This is worthy of a supposed major national news organization?  

-- DON, MORNINGSIDE

Rob: CNN is using its own air to promote one of its shows. It may be annoying to see a countdown to something that’s essentially inconsequential, but I understand why they use it from a business perspective. I also understand why it frustrates Don.

But I suspect this sort of practice is more likely to draw viewers, who otherwise would not know the show was airing, than drive them away in annoyance.

 

Q: It used to be that we got schedules from [WQED] in Pittsburgh Magazine and also in the newspaper, so we could plan our viewing.  Now the schedule in the Sunday TV section is mostly “Members’ favorites.”  It used to be that we got a lot more British mysteries and dramas and quality comedy shows. Now we don’t even know when “Doc Martin” is on. I used to contribute to them, but I am so annoyed at the way they keep us in the dark that I haven’t given in several years. And why can’t we have reruns of “Last of the Summer Wine?”  My friends in Minnesota get those and we don’t even get “Hyacinth Bucket”? Has the government stopped supporting our PBS stations? I can’t count the number of times that I missed a show that I would have watched in its entirety had I known it was on in advance. I also subscribe to TV Guide Magazine and it’s easy to see that there is a lot of good stuff on elsewhere that we aren’t getting here. Or, if we are, it comes unheralded and unwatched. 

-- MARY, PITTSBURGH  

Rob: WQED sold Pittsburgh Magazine, which is why the WQED listings are no longer carried there. As for “members’ favorites,” that appears in the listings only during pledge periods, like there was in March. “Doc Martin” is listed in TV Week listings.

March was a membership drive month, so the listings are usually labeled “Member Favorites” because the programming schedule during a pledge period can change based on viewer response to particular programs,” explained WQED spokesman George Hazimanolis. “It gives us the flexibility to air more shows that are most popular with members.

“ ‘Doc Martin’ has consistently aired on Saturdays at 8 p.m. and will continue to do so, even during Saturday pledge in May. The British sitcoms ran for many, many years on WQED. They have been out of production for a long time, so we replaced them with a new lineup that includes ‘Doc Martin’ and ‘Filmmakers Corner.’ British programs like ‘Downton Abbey,’ ‘Mr. Selfridge’ and other ‘Masterpiece’ programs have been very popular on Sunday nights.

“There are hundreds of programs available from PBS and other independent distributors, and we try and offer as wide a variety as possible to appeal to our diverse audiences. 

“Schedules for all WQED channels (WQED-HD; WQED Create; WQED World; and WQED Showcase) are available on our website at wqed.org  and on cable and satellite on-air viewer guides.”

 

Q: I'm curious as to why when the meteorologists broadcast the weather it never comes to be especially when they forecast rain and snow for two days and it never arrives. Stephen Cropper gets very dramatic when he does his forecasts, putting people in a frame of mind that a weather disaster is coming and it doesn't. His forecasts are off a lot of times. Where does he receive his weather info from?

-- RAY, PITTSBURGH

Rob: What we hear on TV is a forecast, not a guarantee. It’s a prediction and not all predictions turn out to be correct.

Here’s Cropper’s response: “Thank you for your note and for watching WPXI Channel 11 News. Without making excuses -- know that weather is not an exact science. 

“Predictions or forecasts are applied in all walks of life -- and often they are wrong. Politics, sports and even doctors make predictions. It just so happens in my business, the main ingredient (weather) is something we all care about. It impacts almost everything we do and, it is something scientists are still learning about. 

“When I put to gather a forecast, I spend time analyzing what's going on now, then I look at what's coming next. 

“The ‘next’ part of the forecasting process involves gathering data, looking at what is influencing the weather coming our way, reviewing what has happened in the past in similar situations and using what I know about the topography and the local influences. I've been forecasting in this market for more than 20 years and the regional differences are pretty amazing. 

“After I've spent time putting together my own forecast, I also use mathematical modeling. 

“​The mathematical modeling of the forecast is often one of the most difficult, especially in winter. The equations for weather forecasting use variables like wind, temperature, topography and other features and there are many things even the models can't figure out. I use this as a guide, and while the modeling has improved, the uncertainties are still many. 

“That's why I often say in my forecasts ‘this will change, you'll need to check back often’ or ‘here is what I see now, but we are still several days out from the storm and we'll be getting new information every hour.’ That's also why you might end up shoveling several inches of ‘partly cloudy’ off your driveway when the forecast gets off track!

“And, it may be the reason you find my delivery ‘dramatic.’ 

“My approach to forecasting is that even rain has an impact or a disruption, even if it doesn't rise to the level of ‘severe’ that you might agree with. In fact, as I write this, it is pouring down rain, ‘disrupting’ my plans to plant grass seed!

“So, in the end, know that I do my best to interpret what I see, what is coming and how it might impact viewers like you. We live in a very unique part of the world with many different weather impacts. In fact, my mentor, Joe DeNardo, taught me that it's one of the most complicated areas to forecast. 

And please understand, I am making an educated ‘guess’ based on what I see in front of me at that time. 

“Thanks again for watching, please feel free to drop me a note anytime.” 

 

Q: Could you find out what is happening with TCM not being available on Comcast On Demand? It is missing again.
I'm also curious, who chooses the movies for the On Demand feature? Does TCM make the decision on what is available, or does Comcast choose?  In the past, typically there would be two pages of movies to choose from at any given time.

 

The last two weeks, at times there are only three movies to choose from. Today, there are none.
-Judy, Bridgeville
Rob: TCM is having a rough time the past couple of weeks with its on demand service. Comcast said the issue was with TCM and by mid-day Wednesday, a TCM publicist said, "This was a technical issue which has now been fixed and content will be going back up."
As for who picks the movies, Comcast has nothing to do with that; TCM programs its on demand channel.

 

BEST WISHES AND THANKS

Five stars (out of four) to my colleague and friend movie editor/critic Barbara Vancheri, who has taken a buyout from the Post-Gazette and is moving on to the next reel in life.

When I arrived at the Post-Gazette in 1998, Barb was splitting her time between movies and TV and she was gracious and helpful in showing me the ropes of the TV beat. Over the years she has become a valued colleague, a great sounding board and a loyal-to-a-fault friend.

So while that friendship won’t fade, like many Post-Gazette readers, I’ll miss reading her reviews and features and listening to her PG movies podcast.

Cheers also to Post-Gazette radio/online entertainment writer/podcast producer Adrian McCoy, who has also departed but will continue to contribute stories, including one that ran this week.

Adrian was so helpful as the Tuned In podcast producer for many years and I loved her curiosity and interest in online entertainment. Best wishes, Adrian!

 

TUNED IN PODCAST

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rowen@post-gazette.com (Rob Owen) Tuned In Journal Fri, 15 Apr 2016 14:50:00 -0400