December 30, 2012 |
WENCHI, Ethiopia - The children in this village wear filthy, ragged clothes. They sleep beside cows and sheep in huts made of sticks and mud. They have no school. Yet they all can chant the English alphabet, and some can make words. The key to their success: 20 tablet computers dropped off in their village in February by a U.S. group called One Laptop Per Child. The goal is to find out whether kids using today's technology can teach themselves to read in places where no schools or teachers exist.
December 8, 2012 |
Well, the networks are off on a well-deserved winter break. Not a creature is stirring, except Willie Geist. Time once again for our midseason report card. Let's not beat around the bush. This freshman class, which was pretty small to begin with, is failing. Having canceled Animal Practice and Guys With Kids , NBC is heading into the next semester with only four new shows surviving. And that puts it atop the heap. Obviously, we're marking on a steep curve here. Grade: B minus Fox launched only three series, all comedies.
October 2, 2012 |
CRAVING SOME intel on ABC's action-thriller "Last Resort," (8 p.m. Thursdays, ABC) we sought out Andre Braugher on the North Shore of Oahu for some answers: Q: What's the best and worst thing about working in Hawaii? A: The best thing is that it's paradise and that it's infused with a fascinating spirit. The worst thing is that it's 5,000 miles away from the people I love. . . . but opportunities to work on potentially groundbreaking shows cannot be overlooked. Q: Why were you attracted to this role?
July 10, 2012 |
CONGRATULATIONS TO 6ABC sports anchor Jamie Apody and her husband, Paul Coleman, who welcomed a baby boy, Tanner Andrew Coleman, on Saturday morning. Little dude weighed in at 8 pounds, 6 ounces, and mom and baby are doing great. Apody was in great spirits leading up to her labor, joking with her Twitter followers who wished her a safe and speedy delivery. Out and about in A.C. Kim Kardashian spent the weekend at Revel in Atlantic City with boyfriend Kanye West, who performed two sold-out shows at the newest Atlantic City resort.
June 14, 2012
Not many know much about the guy who dominated Game 1 of the NBA Finals other than that he's pretty good. Kevin Durant is a mystery even to some of the players trying to beat him. "It's one of those things where I respect his game, but I don't know him, either. I know probably just as much as you guys know," Miami's Dwyane Wade said Wednesday. That's just the way Durant likes it. He doesn't seek the spotlight and it seldom comes to Oklahoma looking for him. He rarely makes much news and wouldn't read it anyway, preferring the quiet life LeBron James gave up any hope of when he went to Miami and promised all those championships at that big welcoming party two summers ago. Durant instead committed to remaining in Oklahoma City that same month, bypassing a big announcement by revealing on Twitter he had agreed to a contract extension.
June 12, 2012 |
BUNHEADS. 9 p.m. Monday, ABC Family. I ONCE LISTENED as an executive from the old WB moaned about how shows on the youth-oriented network never got any love from Emmy voters. They were all just too old, he figured. Having seen new shows occasionally work their way into the winner's circle through supporting casts, I asked if they'd considered a campaign for Kelly Bishop. "Who's Kelly Bishop?" he asked. I'd like to think any "Gilmore Girls" fan could have filled him in, Bishop having played patrician grandmother Emily Gilmore to near-perfection for seven seasons, six on the WB. But the question of who Bishop is probably comes closer to an answer Monday, as "Gilmore Girls" creator Amy Sherman-Palladino's new series "Bunheads" premieres on ABC Family.
May 21, 2012 |
In an annual rite known as Upfront Week, NBC, Fox, ABC, CBS, and the CW just presented their lineups for the 2012-13 TV season to advertisers in New York. The ceremonies took place in some of the city's most august concert Halls (Carnegie, Avery Fisher, Radio City Music) over four days. The broadcast companies introduced only 20 new series for the fall (down from 27 last season). NBC led the pack with six new shows. Fox and the CW had half that many. Like it or not, an awful lot of familiar faces will be returning in the fall.
May 19, 2012
For TV lovers, this is the best time of the year, right after the networks have trotted out all their programming for next fall to entice the advertising agencies in New York. Everything has that new-show smell. All the pilots are beautiful, and hope springs eternal. By all means, enjoy this honeymoon period. Just don't get carried away. What look like gems in May often get raked away with the leaves in November. As a reminder of how unreliable first impressions can be in television, let us travel in the way-back machine, Mr. Peabody, to this exact time a year ago. There was one universally acknowledged "sure thing": The X Factor was going to be the season's biggest hit. Not only had the format already proved enormously successful in Britain, but Simon Cowell, the bloody Pied Piper of singing contests, was at the helm besides.
May 16, 2012 |
Looking at the fall schedules announced so far by the networks, you may well be wondering: Where have all the dramas gone? ABC has them, adding three strong ones in September, with three more waiting in the wings. In other news, Dancing with the Stars will for the first time feature an all-star edition, with fan favorites from the previous 14 rounds returning. The network will roll out only one new sitcom in September, one in November, and two more in January. ABC lost Desperate Housewives to age and pulled the plug on GCB, Missing, The River, and Cougar Town (which will gain a second life on TBS)
May 14, 2012 |
GET READY GHOULS, ABC is prepping a show for next month in which you'll be able to wait breathlessly for three hours to see if a daredevil plunges to his death. The alphabet network is turning Nik Wallenda's attempted tightrope walk through the mist and wind over Niagara Falls into a prime-time TV event on June 15. As a tie-in, if Nik needs a doctor, the cast of "Grey's Anatomy" will appear. Wallenda is a seventh-generation member of the famous Wallenda daredevil family, whose history as a traveling circus troupe dates to 1780.