TV Espresso: News Items for Thursday, December 1, 2011

Looney TunesHoliday specials from Syfy, the return of Sylvester and Tweety, some TV trends, a new old project from Jim Henson and some dates in TV history. Here are your morning’s tidbits of television:

Eureka, Warehouse 13, and Haven
Syfy has announced that their special holiday episodes — all stand-alone installments — will air on December 6th. The cable channel will also once again be running their annual Twilight Zone marathon on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.

Looney Tunes
Happy Feet Two may be bombing at the box office but there’s a little incentive to see it (or at least sneak in to see the previews). There’s a new Looney Tunes short. You may recall that we talked about it here. “I Tawt I Taw a Puddy Tat” is the first of three shorts and features the voice of the late Mel Blanc (recorded many years ago) and living legend June Foray. You can see a little clip and images here.

Do you have a television?
For the first time since Nielsen has been tracking TV ownership (1970), the number of US homes with televisions is going down. In 2011, there are an estimated 115.9 million US households with TV sets. In 2012, Nielsen is estimating that there will be only 114.7 million, a decline of almost 1%. Why? Well, the economy is likely a factor, as well as the fact that many more people have started to watch programs on their computers. Meanwhile, the amount of time we spend in front of the boob-tube has grown, to an average of 59 hours and 28 minutes per household.

The cable channel for kids is having some serious problems these days. After dominating children’s television for 16 years, Nickelodeon is seeing a significant and sudden ratings slide. In November, viewership of kids ages two and older fell by 19% year-to-year. In October, they were down by 13%. The company is working with Nielsen to try to figure out the cause for the sudden drop as they believe it’s due to a flaw in the company’s sampling. One Wall Street analyst downgraded his rating of Viacom stock as a result of the ratings decline.

Jim Henson
Back in 1965, the creator of the Muppets worked on a short animated film. In 2009, Alexander the Grape was rediscovered by the Henson Company and partially reconstructed. It’s a strange little tale but worth watching if you’re a fan of the Muppet maestro’s work.


2005: Neela Rasgotra and Michael Gallant were married on ER.

2004: NBC anchor Tom Brokaw made his final appearance as anchor of NBC Nightly News.

1999: Mimi Bobeck and Steve Carey were married on The Drew Carey Show.

1998: Westinghouse Electric changed its name to CBS Corp. They had owned CBS since November 1995.

1994: The Game Show Network was launched.

1978: The 100th episode of The Rockford Files aired on NBC.

1975: The Edge of Night became the first serial in television history to switch networks.

What do you think? Will you be watching any of the Syfy holiday shows? Do you still have TV sets? Why do you think Nickelodeon’s seeing such a big drop in viewership?

Canceled and renewed TV show

5 Comments · Read them below or add one

  1. Kat says

    The holiday episode of Eureka will be bittersweet, considering the cancellation news, but it’s still cool that Syfy’s doing this for three of their big shows. And thanks for Alexander the Grape; that was definitely odd, heh.

  2. says

    The reason that Nickelodeon’s ratings suck is because they have bad shows. Nick was the # 1 kids channel in the 90s’ then sponge bob was made at that is when the channel went to pot.

    • Kat says

      Agreed – Spongebob was the beginning of the end! “The company is working with Nielsen to try to figure out the cause for the sudden drop as they believe it’s due to a flaw in the company’s sampling.” Is that code for “your shows suck now” …?

      • says

        Kat » If there had been a decline over time, that would be one thing. From the sounds of it, the ratings were going along quite well and then, in one month, they just dropped.

  3. Bethany says

    Thanks so very much. I have not missed an episode of either Warehouse 13 or Haven yet, and I almost missed those holiday episodes. I have been dying to see them since both shows ended their recent seasons. I just love the holiday shows, they always find a way to make the regular (and very fun) shows so much more fun to watch.

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