After More Than a Year Hiatus… An Entertainment News Blog.

It’s been over a year since I did an entertainment news blog. Much of this is out of date and will probably be lots of obituaries but I’m going to go through the RSS feeds of all my entertainment new sites and try to get caught up before the new TV season starts. Assuming it does start. I hope to find out in writing this what the status is on whether or not production can resume in the face of the pandemic.

I was going to include my usual links to the list of renewed and canceled TV shows but I’m going to do that in a separate blog with my reaction to some of them.

Usually at this point I mentioned movies that I’ve seen recently. But the last movie I went to once “The Joker” which was wonderful. I look forward to getting back to movies sometime soon once the virus runs its course. In the links below here are some articles of interest.

Miscellaneous Entertainment News Bits

  • Kayla Compton who plays Allegra Garcia on “The Flash” has been promoted to series regular for season 7
  • Disney+ is developing a prequel series to “Beauty and the Beast” featuring Josh Gad as LaFou and Luke Evans as Gaston.
  • Televangelist Jim Baker was ordered by the Atty. Gen. of New York to stop something fake coronavirus cures. Why are we not surprised?
  • Led Zeppelin won it’s copyright lawsuit over “Stairway to Heaven”.
  • Disney will release a Peter Jackson documentary about the Beatles currently scheduled for September but who knows?
  • Movie producer and sexual predator Harvey Weinstein was sentenced to 23 years in prison for rape. While in prison he contracted Corona Virus.
  • Disney’s “Song of the South” will not be added to Disney+ even with a disclaimer about its outdated racial stereotypes. I understand why but there are still some really nice things about the film like the song “Zippy Due Da”.
  • Amazon prime has ordered to series “Fernando” a biopic about Formula One champion Fernando Alonso
  • Rosario Dawson has been cast as Jedi apprentice Ahsoka Tano in season 2 of “The Mandalorian”. The character has previously appeared in animated Star Wars: the Clone Wars and Star Wars: Rebels but never in a live-action production until now.
  • Jasika Nicole who plays Dr. Carley on “The Good Doctor” will not be a series regular next season.
  • Christopher Melonli will return as Ellie Stabler in a “Law & Order: SVU” spinoff series for NBC. Series ordered 13 episodes for now.
  • In case you missed it, Disney+ has an eight part documentary about its hit series “The Mandalorian”. Search for “Disney Gallery: Star Wars The Mandalorian”.
  • As expected there will be a film version of “The Hunger Games” prequel “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes”. The book was released May 19, 2020. No word on when the movie will start production or potential release dates.
  • Disney announced “Hercules” will be the next of its animated films be made in a live-action version. This will be directed by Joe and Anthony Russo known for directing Avengers films.
  • There will be a new “Transformers” movie in 2022
  • There will be another Star Trek spinoff series on CBS All Access. Called “Star Trek: Strange New Worlds” it will feature Spock, Capt. Pike and Rebecca Romin as “Number One”.
  • FX sitcom “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” has been renewed for a record-breaking 15th season. It is now officially the longest running live-action comedy in TV history surpassing “Ozzie and Harriet” at 14 seasons. Note this is live-action. “The Simpsons” will begin its 30th season in the fall.
  • FX has ordered new series “American Horror Stories” (note its plural the original AHS is singular). This will be a similar anthology show but each story will only run one episode.
  • “The Bachelor” casts its first African-American bachelor
  • NBC’s provisional fall schedule has only one new show a Law & Order spinoff.
  • After the controversy of Jimmy Fallon wearing black face in a 2000 SNL skit (see link below), Tina Fey has asked streaming platforms to pull several “30 Rock” episodes that had white characters in blackface.
  • “The Simpsons” will no longer use white actors as voices of nonwhite characters. Kristin Bell is withdrawing her voice and animated show where she played a mixed race character.
  • Disney+ version of “Hamilton” has 2 “f-bombs” edited out.
  • Javicia Leslie will be the new “Batwoman” replacing Ruby Rose who left the series at the end of the first season. She will play completely different character takes up the identity of Batwoman.
  • “The Masked Singer” will have a spinoff titled “The Masked Dancer”. No word on when it will begin.
  • Ozzy Osbourne announced in January that he has Parkinson’s disease
  • PS4 videogame “The Last of Us” will be made into a series for HBO
  • Although Netflix previously announced “The Crown” would end in season 5 they have now confirmed it will be extended to season 6
  • Tom Bergeron and Erin Andrews will not return as hosts of “Dancing with the Stars”. No replacement yet named.


These obituaries are not in any particular order. They are really an order I discovered them my RSS feeds and because of a weird glitch they are not always chronological even though I keep my feed allegedly sorted by date. When the feed gets really full it sometimes gets out of order.

  • Roscoe Born soap opera star from “The Young and the Restless” and “All My Children” age 69.
  • Nicholas Tucci who started in Syfy Channel’s “Channel Zero” age 38 of cancer
  • Danny Tidwell was a finalist on “So You Think You Can Dance” age 35 auto accident
  • Mark Crowley playwright of “Boys in the Band” age 84
  • Max Von Sydow known for “The Exorcist” and as Emperor Ming in “Flash Gordon” and as the original Three Eyed Raven in “Game of Thrones”. Age 90
  • Comic book artist Allen Bellman who did early versions of Capt. America age 95
  • Lorenzo Brino child star will who appeared in CW’s “7th Heaven” age 21 auto accident
  • Country Music Icon Kenny Rogers age 81
  • Terrence McNally Tony award-winning playwright. Age 81 Covid 19
  • The pet dog from “Modern Family” and one of the Inuit Husky dogs that appeared as a Direwolf in “Game of Thrones”
  • John Callahan soap opera star of “All My Children” and “Santa Barbara” age 66 of a stroke
  • Krzystof Penderecki modernist composer whose work appeared in the soundtrack of “The Exorcist” and “The Shining” age 86
  • Country music star Joe Diffie age 61 Covid 19
  • David Schramm best known for playing Roy Biggins in the TV series “Wings” age 73 no cause listed
  • Songwriter Alan Merrill who wrote “I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll” age 69 Covid 19
  • Andrew Jack dialect coach and actor who appeared in 2 Star Wars films age 79 Covid 19
  • Grammy-winning soul singer/songwriter Bill Withers age 81 heart disease
  • 16-year-old actor Nolan Williams played the young version of “The Flash” in 8 episodes of the CW series. Fentanyl overdose.
  • Rebecca Ramsey produced visual effects on Watchmen, Spider-Man 3 and others age 54 complications of a fall.
  • Tom Dempsey NFL placekicker who held the field-goal record for 43 years age 73
  • Actress Shirley Douglas mother of Kiefer Sutherland age 86 pneumonia
  • Honor Blackman played “Pussy Galore” in the James Bond film “Goldfinger” age 94 natural causes
  • James Drury of the NBC long-running question series “The Virginian” age 85
  • John Prine country folk singer/songwriter age 73
  • Hal Willner music producer for SNL age 64 Covid 19
  • Danny Goldman the voice of Brainy Smurf and actor in “Young Frankenstein” age 80
  • Brian Dennehy — Tony and Golden Globe winning Emmy nominated actor age 81 natural causes
  • Allen Daviau cinematographer for “ET: The Extraterrestrial” age 77 Covid 19
  • Matthew Seligman bass player for David Bowie and member of the group “Camera Club” age 64 Covid 19
  • Jerry Stiller comedian, actor, Seinfeld star and father of Ben Stiller age 92.
  • Frank Bielic Designer for TLC’s “Trading Spaces” age 77
  • Fred Willard comedian and frequent costar on a variety of sitcoms as well as the comedy series “Fernwood 2 Night” age 86
  • Phyllis George former Miss America, NFL sportscaster, TV host age 70
  • Ken Osmond who played Eddie Haskell on “Leave It to Beaver” age 76
  • Jimmy Cobb legendary jazz drummer age 91
  • Character actor Richard Herd roles included Mr. Wilhelm on “Seinfeld” and a number of Star Trek characters in various series. Age 87.
  • Larry Kramer playwright and AIDS activist age 84
  • Dennis O’Neill comic book writer for both Marble and DC age 81
  • Joel Schumacher director of “St. Elmo’s Fire” and 2 “Batman” movies age 80
  • Charlie Webb author of the novel “The Graduate” age 81
  • Nick Cordero a Tony nominated actor age 41 Covid 19
  • Carol Lynley actors who played ship singer in “Poseidon Adventure” age 77
  • Cokie Roberts journalist and political commentator age 75 breast cancer
  • Robert Evans producer of “Chinatown” and “Godfather” age 89
  • Brian Tarantina who played Jackie in The Marvelous Mrs. Maeisel age 60
  • Ron Leibman who played Rachel’s father in “Friends” age 82
  • Caroll Spinney “Big Bird” and “Oscar the Grouch” puppeteer age 85
  • Danny Aiello character actor age 86
  • Chuy Bravo sidekick to Chelsea Handler on her talkshow age 63
  • Don Imus controversial talk radio host. Age 79
  • Syd Mead futuristic artist that gave the “Blade Runner” movies their distinctive look. Age 86
  • Jack Sheldon jazz singer famous for “Schoolhouse Rock”. Age 88
  • Buck Henry comedian, cocreator of “Get Smart” and frequent SNL appearances. Age 89
  • Neil Peart drummer and lyricist for the rock group “Rush”. Age 67
  • Terry Jones of “Monty Python”. Age 77
  • Jean Reynolds cocreated “MASH” and “Lou Grant”. Age 96
  • Kirk Douglas legendary actor. Age 103
  • Orson Bean actor, comedian, raconteur and frequent guest of Johnny Carson. Age 91
  • Robert Conrad star of “The Wild Wild West” and “Black Sheep Squadron”. Age 84
  • John Singleton director of “Boyz N The Hood”. Age 51. Stroke.
  • Doris Day legendary actress. Age 97
  • Tim Conway comedian and regular on Carol Burnett show. Age 85
  • Max Wright who played Willie Tanner on “ALF”. Age 75
  • Rip Torn Emmy-winning character actor. Age 88
  • Lynn Cohen who played Magda on “Sex and the City”. Age 86
  • Ja’net DuBois who played Willona Woods on “Good Times”. Age 74
  • Lee Philip Bell cocreator of soap operas “Y&R” and “B&B”. Age 91
  • James Lipton host of “Inside the Actors Studio”. Age 93
  • Naya Rivera former star of “Glee”. Age 33. Drowning
  • Ronald L. Schwar Oscar-winning producer of “Ordinary People”. Age 76
  • Benjamin Kerough son of Lisa Marie Presley and grandson of Elvis. Age 27
  • Kelly Preston actress and wife of John Travolta. Age 57. Cancer
  • Grant Imahara for more MythBusters star. Age 41. Brain aneurysm
  • Regis Philbin iconic TV host. Age 88
  • Olivia de Havilland golden age actress appeared in “Gone with the Wind”. Age 104
  • Malik B. Founding member of “The Roots”. Age 47
  • Maurice “Reese” Schonfeld founder of CNN and “The Food Network”. Age 88.

Pandemic Delays and Cancellations

An incomplete list of shows, films and events canceled or postponed due to the pandemic.

  • Link to an article at TV Line listing TV shows that have been suspended or delayed because of the virus pandemic.
    Also this article
    Note that these may not have been updated with the most current information. We will mention other items as we discovered them.
  • Survivor has indefinitely delayed production on season 41 and 42. Although survivor seasons premier six months apart, they are actually filmed with only about a month off in between.
  • Various entertainment festivals such as SXSW and PaleyFest and CinemaCon and TCM Classic Film Festival
  • “A Quiet Place II” release delayed
  • Ridley Scott film “The Last Dual” production delayed before it started.
  • Disney films “Little Mermaid”, “Home Alone”, “Nightmare Alley” and others as well as TV pilots production indefinitely postponed
  • Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall Of Fame induction ceremony for 2020. Rescheduled for November.
  • Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune will resume filming with safety measures in place
  • The 2020 Primetime Emmys will be a virtual event.

Links to Articles of Interest

Follow-up On Previous Reviews and Looking Ahead

Those of you who know me, know how addicted I am to TV. I have a list of entertainment websites that I frequent to get caught up on all the latest entertainment news. For a long time every time I would see an interesting article I would email a link to my friends but pretty soon I was sending lots of emails. I changed my policy and started putting together longer emails with lots of links and lots of other entertainment news items that were a sentence or two long and not really worth a link. I was sending it perhaps once a month to about eight or nine people. Finally I decided in February 2012 to open this entertainment blog and then post the link to Facebook where more people could read it. I also periodically post my reviews of new TV shows and last year I made a serious attempt to review every new show but I wasn’t able to keep up.

I just looked at my last entertainment news update blog was in March 2019 over a year ago. I have posted quite a few reviews since that time and even added a new section of YouTube channel reviews. You can expect more YouTube reviews sometime soon.

I’m going to try to get caught up on some entertainment news and post a blog. It’s probably going to take days to go through my RSS feeds of all my websites. My RSS reader only saves about 8000 articles and I’m sure it has overflowed several times in more than a year. So much of the “news” will be old news. It will probably consists of lots of obituaries. But I would like to get caught up while everything is on hiatus because of the pandemic. When TV production finally does start anew then I will be caught up and ready to go.

As I was scrolling back to previous articles I thought perhaps I would take a quick moment to give you an update on all of the shows that I previously reviewed. The big entertainment news article will probably take me a week or more to prepare. Here’s a follow-up on all of the reviews I’ve written in the past year and a half.

“Gone” Will Be Gone Soon but Plot Twists Save It from Being Just Another Police Consultant Show

I really liked this short series. It’s a shame they didn’t make more of them. In my review I said it was a one and done and it was.

“Witches” Should Be Left Undiscovered

Apparently this BBC America series “A Discovery of Witches” was more well received by the audience then it was me. According to IMDb it was renewed for seasons 2 and 3 although neither one has premiered yet or has a premiere date. I still say it’s a hard pass.

New “Twilight Zone” Might Make CBS All Access Worth It

The Jordan Peele reboot of “The Twilight Zone” had a rather uneven first season. Some of the episodes I thought were brilliant while others were just so-so. It was fun to try to spot all of the Easter eggs in each episode. There were YouTube videos that helps you spot them. Season 2 has already premiered but I haven’t had a chance to watch it yet. It’s high on my to-do list.

Bob Hearts is a Weak Reboot of Mike without Molly

Apparently the audience ❤s “Bob ❤s Abishola” better than I did. It was a reasonably big hit for CBS and has been renewed for season 2.

“All Rise” has Potential to Give Shondaland Competition

CBS legal drama “All Rise” was okay and I rated it “recommended watchable” but I never did watch anything beyond the first couple of episodes. I decided I liked the Jimmy Smits legal drama “Bluff City Law”. Sadly Bluff didn’t get renewed but “All Rise” will be back next season. I doubt I will pick it up.

“Mixed-ish” is Funny and More Poignant than Its Parent “Black-ish”

“mixed-ish” did really well and was extended for a full season of 23 episodes and has been renewed for next season. Sadly I did not have time to watch more than a couple of the first episodes but I intend to go back and binge sometime. I still recommend it as the only new sitcom worth watching in the past year.

“Emergence” Might Emerge On Top of a Overdone Premise

I really liked this take on an old concept that I described as “overdone”. I managed to watch almost half of the episodes and I do plan to finish it someday. Unfortunately it is a one and done with only 13 episodes made. I don’t know how much of a cliffhanger they might have left or if they resolved the story but it did not get renewed.

“Carol’s Second Act” Can’t Compete with her Previous Work

As predicted “Carol” isn’t going to get a third act. It made it to 18 episodes but did not get renewed.

“Prodigal Son” is a Hannibal Ripoff but it Works

I highly recommended “Prodigal Son” after just one episode and it did not disappoint in the remaining 19 episodes. Although IMDb doesn’t show it is renewed, TV Line says it has been and I’m really looking forward to more. A good one to binge on demand.

“Stumptown” is Mildly Entertaining but Nothing Special

Although I only watched a couple of episodes, I kind of liked it but never did get around to finishing it. Maybe I will binge it before season 2 starts.

“Almost Family” is Almost Worthless

Apparently I was right. 13 episodes with no renewal. This was really a stinker.

“Sunnyside” Celebrates Incompetent Politicians

I called this correctly also. 13 and done with no renewal.

“Batwoman” is a Worthy Edition to the Arrowverse

I didn’t get to watch much of this but what I saw I liked and I will definitely finish it off eventually. Much to everyone’s surprise, at the end of the successful first season, the title star actress Ruby Rose decided to quit. Next season there will be a new actress playing a new character who will take up the mantle of Batwoman. While some people say on-set injuries played a part in her decision, she insists she just didn’t want to play the role anymore. No controversy but lots of speculation.

“The Unicorn” Verifies Walton Goggins Can Do Anything

I gave this a “Recommended Watchable” which means I thought it was pretty good but would not watching it myself. That was true. I never went beyond the opening couple of episodes but the audience liked all 18 enough that it will be back next year.

“Deputy” is Nothing Special

The audience agreed. 13 and done with no renewal.

“For All Mankind” is almost worth subscribing to Apple TV+

I loved every episode of this and cannot wait for its return. HIGHLY recommended even if you aren’t a sci-fi fan. It’s a really richly drawn alternate history of the space program.

Fans of Dystopian Action Should See “See”

I really like this new series although it did fizzle a little bit towards the end I am looking forward to a new season. Not worth subscribing to Apple TV+ but if you have it, and are in need of some post-apocalyptic fun action then my recommendation persists “See See”.

“The Mandalorian” Is the Best Star Wars Since “The Empire Strikes Back”

I stand by my original assessment and the audience agrees. It was a huge hit and the fans went nuts over the “Baby Yoda” character. EVERYONE is highly anticipating its return. One confession however… I’ve never seen a bad Star Wars movie or series. I liked all nine of the movies in the Skywalker series even the final three. I also liked Solo which didn’t do well at the box office. But I think I’m in the majority on liking this one. By the way there are rumors that Lucas/Disney is considering disowning the final three Star Wars movies saying they are not officially part of canon and would be relegated to the noncanonical “Legends” series. More if I hear anything. Disney+ remains the best value in streaming.

Would You Recognize Jesus If He Arrived Today? “Messiah” on Netflix Seeks the Answer.

This was definitely intended as a one season miniseries. If you’ve not seen it, definitely check it out. I’m surprised there wasn’t more hype or even controversy about it. Apparently the religious right never discovered it.

“The Morning Show” Best New Drama of the Year — Says Me

I stand by my glowing review of this highly nominated series. It will be back and I can’t wait to see what they do next.

“Star Trek: Picard” Shows Great Promise

The first episode was wonderful. The next five or so were real yawners. But it finished very strong. If you gave up on this one after a couple of episodes, give it another try. It will be back for a second season.

“Devs” is a Creepy Reflection on the Nature of Reality.

This one kept me on the edge of my seat for the full 8 episodes. However it finished kind of flat. I wasn’t satisfied with the ending but it was a fun ride while it lasted. A very thought-provoking series about the nature of reality and free will. This was definitely a one-shot miniseries and will not be back.

After that review back in March any blogs since then have been about my favorite YouTube channels. I had hoped to post more of those perhaps on a weekly basis but I got tied up with different maker projects (which pay me and this doesn’t) so I got away from that. Look for a big wrapup entertainment news here and about a week and more YouTube reviews soon after that.

Is Broadcast TV Dead? — Part 3 the 2020 Emmy Nominations

Last year I posted 2 blogs asking the question “Is Broadcast TV Dead”. I looked at the fact that little or no broadcast TV shows were nominated for other Golden Globes or Screen Actors Guild Awards.

Is Broadcast TV Dead?

Is Broadcast TV Dead? Part 2.

Today the Emmy nominations were announced. Here are the results.

Streaming 66 nominations. Premium Cable 30 nominations. Basic Cable 20 nominations. Broadcast TV 30 nominations.

Although that looks better than the Golden Globe Awards or the Screen Actors Guild Awards for which I previously reported, the Emmy awards have many more categories including guest actors and actresses as well as reality shows. Broadcast TV earned 18 of its 30 nominations in those categories. Keep in mind that streaming and premium services generally do not produce reality or competition shows. Broadcast TV was completely shut out from Made-For-TV Movies and Limited Series.

Broadcast shows were led by SNL 8, The Good Place 5, This Is Us 3, black-ish 2, How to Get Away with Murder 1, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Modern Family 1, other reality competition shows 4, variety shows 2.

NBC crushed the competition with 20 nominations, ABC had 6 and CBS and Fox had one each.

Showtime got a nomination for Don Cheadle as Lead Actor in a Comedy for “Black Monday” however all 31 other premium cable nominations went to HBO. Cinemax no longer produces original programming. Starz, The Movie Channel, and Epix were shut out.

Netflix crushed streaming competition with 36 out of 66 nominations. Hulu had 13. Amazon Prime had 10, eight of which were for “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”. Disney+ add 2 for “The Mandalorian”. Apple TV+ had 5 for “The Morning Show”.

On basic cable, Pop TV had 5 nominations for Canadian produced show “Schitt’s Creek”. BBC America had 3 all for “Killing Eve”. FX 2, Bravo 3, VH1 had 2, Comedy Central 2, TBS 1.

I counted at least 4 series which were nominated in their final year: “The Good Place”, “Modern Family”, “Schitt’s Creek”, and “How to Get Away with Murder”.

TV ratings and award nominations do not seem to show any correlation. For example hit reality series “America’s Got Talent” did not get nominated. On the other hand most of you have ever heard of Pop TV and “Schitt’s Creek” yet it got 5 nominations.

Here is a link to the complete list of nominees provided by TV Line.

Here is a table I created summarizing the breakdown between streaming, premium cable, basic cable, and broadcast TV

Category Streaming Premium Basic Broadcast
Outstanding Drama 5 1 2 0
Lead Actor Drama 2 2 1 1
Lead Actress Drama 3 2 1 0
Supporting Actress Drama 3 3 1 0
Supporting Actor Drama 3 4 1 0
Guest Actress Drama 2 2 0 2
Guess Actor Drama 4 1 0 1
Outstanding Comedy 3 2 2 1
Lead Actress Comedy 3 1 1 1
Lead Actor Comedy 2 1 1 2
Supporting Actress Comedy 3 1 1 3
Supporting Actor Comedy 4 0 1 3
Guest Actress Comedy 2 1 0 3
Guess Actor Comedy 2 0 0 4
Limited Series 4 1 0 0
Made-For-TV Movie 4 1 0 0
Lead Actress Limited Series or Movie 4 1 0 0
Lead Actor Limited Series or Movie 3 2 0 0
Supporting Actress Limited Series or Movie 5 1 0 0
Supporting Actor Limited Series or Movie 3 3 0 0
Reality Show Host 1 0 3 2
Reality Competition Show 1 0 2 2
Variety Sketch Series 0 1 1 1
Variety Talk Series 0 1 2 2
Totals 66 32 20 28

So we ask again “Is broadcast dead?” The answer is “Probably not but it’s not looking good.” HBO and Netflix continue to broaden their nominations with Netflix surpassing HBO for the first time 36-31. If you want to watch the top award-winning TV shows you are going to have to pay for it.