An opinionated look at what's ahead
By Mark Lasswell -- Broadcasting & Cable, 10/24/2004 8:00:00 PM
Monday, Oct. 25
Today, ABC execs will get up as they have every Monday morning: Tie their shoes precisely the same way, take the same route to work and buy a danish from the same vendor—all in an effort to keep the magic alive as they wait to see if the overnights will show Desperate Housewives pulled 20 million viewers for the fourth week in a row.
We, on the other hand, bolt out of bed stricken with remorse at having forgotten to TiVo or live-watch last night's episode of The Surreal Life's Halloween special (though that's a bit redundant). We were so looking forward to Charo, Brigitte Nielsen, Flavor Flav & Co. in "Haunted Hospital"—haunted, presumably, by the ghosts of second chins, eye-pouches and cellulite past. Vow to make do with tonight's scary viewing: Late Show with David Letterman's musical guest, Duran Duran.
Tuesday, Oct. 26
Do the bylaws require that it has to be just a short cab ride for Rupert Murdoch? The satellite industry descends on New York City today and tomorrow for SatCon, a merry-go-round of exhibitors hawking their wares and smarty-pants insiders making presentations on topics dear to dish owners (even if they don't know it), such as high-def TV, Internet Protocol and satellite newsgathering. Good thing the Javits Convention Center over by the Hudson River has a good view of the southwestern sky.
Wednesday, Oct. 27
Plenty of people watch Comcast's cable offerings, but today, lots of investors will eyeball the company itself when it posts third-quarter earnings. Last time around, CEO Brian Roberts promised they'd reduce subscriber churn. Well? Cox Communications also announces earnings today, and it will not conduct a conference call to discuss results. It doesn't have to—the Cox family is taking the company private. (See page 6.) From now on, you can just wonder how they're doing. Yet another financial performance unburdening that bears watching: Sirius Satellite Radio. Have they continued to lose sirius money? The bigger question: will they start a little "Countdown to Howard Stern" logo at the bottom of their reports? Here's a novelty: News about Jack Kennedy, Robert Kennedy and swapping—and it doesn't involve Marilyn Monroe. The WB's pre-Camelot, pseudo-Kennedy drama Jack & Bobby clearly wasn't going to find one brief, shining moment on Sunday nights, despite critical huzzahs. So it's moving to a nicer 9 p.m. slot on Wednesdays, starting tonight. And now The Mountain will be walking through the valley of darkness on Sundays. (See page 12.)
Thusday, Oct. 28
America's Funniest Video host Tom Bergeron is accustomed to working a room populated by people who've happily disgraced themselves on national TV and hope to make a little cash for their trouble. But today, he'll be hosting a crowd that could never be described that way: the Hollywood Radio and Television Society and its Network Entertainment Presidents Newsmaker Luncheon at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. The entertainment chiefs slated for the panel: Gail Berman (Fox Broadcasting Company); David Janollari (The WB); Stephen McPherson (ABC); Dawn Ostroff (UPN); Kevin Reilly (NBC); Nina Tassler (CBS). When they convene this afternoon to try to breathe a little life into the subject of IMT-2000 and 2.5 GHz Sharing Issues—they'll be dressed like Casual Friday losers. Besides, it's Thursday.
Friday, Oct. 29
It's Day Two of the Audio Engineering Society convention in San Francisco, when attendees get a little itchy late in the afternoon, eager to do something other than jawbone with some of the 400 exhibitors at the Moscone Center. But they're here on business, dammit, and there's a field trip to George Lucas' Skywalker Sound audio facility, so pipe down. And these guys have a device that can detect your muttering at a distance of 200 yards. To do list for weekend: catch Halloween repeat of that Surreal Life episode. Hey, Charo: Boo! And we mean that in a good way.
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