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<p>Thursday&#39;s prom-themed &quot;Big Bang Theory&quot;</p>

Thursday's prom-themed "Big Bang Theory"

Credit: CBS

TV Ratings: 'Murder' rises, 'Men' falls and 'Big Bang Theory' leads Thursday

CBS rules overall, while ABC takes the key demographic

Fast National ratings for Thursday, November 6, 2014.

Up slightly week-to-week, "The Big Bang Theory" was Thursday's top show in all measures and helped CBS win the night overall, but "How To Get Away With Murder" was also up and helped ABC reign among young viewers.

CBS ruled overall despite a big post-premiere drop from "Two and a Half Men" and a smaller drop from "The McCarthys." "Mom" was also down from last week's Fast Nationals, but retained well relative to other recent post-"Big Bang" shows.

There was more positive news for NBC's "Bad Judge" and "A to Z," which rose despite effectively being cancelled last week, while "Parenthood" was also up.

Of course, NBC had the NFL preemption in Cincinnati, while CBS had the game in Cleveland, meaning that any variations for both networks could well be wiped out or minimized.

Let's get to numbers...

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<p>Too Many Cooks</p>

Too Many Cooks

Credit: Adult Swim

Adult Swim's 'Too Many Cooks' a sitcom theme song nightmare

A parody of 'TGIF' title sequences goes (and goes and goes) to some very dark places

Yesterday, a friend sent me a Youtube link along with a brief note saying, "I’m not sure why I’m forwarding this to you except it’s the oddest f---ing thing I’ve seen on TV in a while, and…f---…I don’t know why…try to get through it…"

With that kind of intro, how could I not immediately dive into "Too Many Cooks"?

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<p>The Newsroom</p>

The Newsroom

Credit: HBO

Review: 'The Newsroom' returns for third and final season

Aaron Sorkin keeps tinkering with his fictional TV news show, to mixed results

Early in the third and final season of "The Newsroom" (Sunday at 9 p.m., HBO), TV news producer Maggie (Alison Pill) finds herself explaining to a stranger how her job works... and explaining... and explaining... and explaining some more.

"You're giving a monologue," he tells her.

"Everyone does where I work," Maggie admits.

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Kevin Costner - Black or White
Credit: Relativity

AARP to honor Kevin Costner with Movies For Grownups Awards’ Career Achievement

Plus, Oscar-qualifying news for the actor’s new drama, ’Black or White’

Here’s a bittersweet win for the 59-year-old Kevin Costner: The American Association of Retired Persons will pay tribute to the "Dances with Wolves" and "JFK" actor during their annual Movies for Grownups Awards. He’ll receive the organization’s Career Achievement Award at the noteworthy ceremony, taking place on Feb. 2, 2015 at the Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel.

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<p>Parenthood</p>

Parenthood

Credit: NBC

Review: 'Parenthood' - 'These Are the Times We Live In'

Is the show trying to rewrite history with Joel and Julia's separation?

A quick review of last night's "Parenthood" coming up just as soon as I object to the edited-for-TV version of "Fast Times at Ridgemont High"...

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Jerry Seinfeld: I think I’m on the Autism spectrum
Credit: Crackle

Jerry Seinfeld: I think I’m on the Autism spectrum

Jimmy Kimmel creates a fake 'Idol'-like reality show: 'Do You Have What It Takes?'

Jerry Seinfeld: I think I’m on the Autism spectrum
In an interview with Brian Williams, Seinfeld admitted, “I think, on a very drawn-out scale, I think I’m on the spectrum.” Seinfeld hasn’t been formally diagnosed, but when asked why he thinks he’s on the Autism spectrum, he replied: “You know, never paying attention to the right things. Basic social engagement is really a struggle. I’m very literal, when people talk to me and they use expressions, sometimes I don’t know what they’re saying.” He added: “But I don’t see it as dysfunctional. I just think of it as an alternate mindset.”


Jimmy Kimmel creates a fake “Idol”-like reality show: “Do You Have What It Takes?”
Contestants don't have to do anything on "Do You Have What It Takes?",  featuring judges Kimmel, Chilli from TLC, Malcolm-Jamal Warner, Ali Fedotowsky along with host Kenny Mayne. PLUS: “Scandal’s” Darby Stanchfield reveals what it’s like to be a “Jimmy Kimmel Live” guest.


How to tell if a show is canceled
Rashida Jones insists “A to Z” isn’t canceled, despite NBC declining to order more episodes. Is she right?


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Review: Jessica Chastain and Oscar Isaac anchor peculiar and powerful 'A Most Violent Year'
Credit: A24

Review: Jessica Chastain and Oscar Isaac anchor peculiar and powerful 'A Most Violent Year'

Oscar Isaac has been edging towards his movie star moment for a while

New York CIty, 1981, is a blasted moral hellscape against which a very primal struggle for survival unfolds in a very tense thirty days, all for the right to supply homes with heating oil.

J. C. Chandor's "A Most Violent Year" is a powerfully told story, a thrilling surprise, and both Oscar Isaac and Jessica Chastain do remarkable work as a couple trying to close a deal that will turn their heating oil company into a much larger overall business, the deal they've been working their whole lives to prepare. This one particular month starts with them confident, convinced they're going to take things to the next level, and it unfolds with them increasingly unsure that they're going to pull it off. It is a movie about an entire city conspiring to test a marriage, and the way this one particular couple fights their way through.

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<p>Michael James Shaw of &quot;Constantine&quot;</p>

Michael James Shaw of "Constantine"

Credit: NBC

Interview: 'Constantine' guest star Michael James Shaw on bringing Papa Midnite to TV

What is the newcomer's personal connection to the voodoo-practicing boss?

Some of the biggest, baddest figures in DC Comics lore have been making their way to the small screen lately.

We just got Ra's al Ghul on "Arrow," Captain Cold on "The Flash" and Victor Zsasz joining the already bursting rogues gallery on "Gotham."

On Friday (November 7), NBC's "Constantine" gets in on the action, introducing immortal mob boss and voodoo aficionado Papa Midnite in an episode titled "The Devil’s Vinyl."

Debuting in the first "Hellblazer" comic, Papa Midnite has had a varied relationship with John Constantine over the years, sometimes providing begrudging assistance and sometimes getting in Constantine's way.

Playing Papa Midnite in this recurring incarnation is Michael James Shaw, such a relative newcomer that NBC and WBTV eschew prior credits to call him merely "a recent graduate of Julliard." 

I got on the phone with Shaw this week and learned about his unexpected personal connection to the source of Papa Midnite's powers, as well the genius costume designer who helped him tap into the character. 

We also discussed Shaw's highest profile prior credit, namely a stint as an extra on a little show called "The Wire."

Check out the full Q&A below.

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<p>Matt Davis on &quot;The Vampire Diaries&quot;</p>

Matt Davis on "The Vampire Diaries"

Credit: The CW

Recap: 'The Vampire Diaries' - 'The More You Ignore Me, The Closer I Get'

The Delena reunion goes down as expected and Alaric is thrown a twist.

If the Delena fans out there are thinking of forming a support group, well, they would definitely be justified. Thursday night’s episode of “The Vampire Diaries” could have been a hot and heavy reunion episode for the masses to gif for the near foreseeable future; instead it became a source of frustration for anyone tuning in. 

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First trailer for Martin Luther King biopic 'Selma' is a fist-pumping call to arms
Credit: Paramount Pictures

First trailer for Martin Luther King biopic 'Selma' is a fist-pumping call to arms

Can Oprah Winfrey garner a Supporting Actress Oscar nod after last year's snub?

Well, this is effective.

The first trailer for Paramount's Martin Luther King Jr. sorta-biopic "Selma" has arrived, and it's an invigorating 2 1/2 minutes that excellently encapsulates the film's major focus: the tumultuous civil rights marches between Selma and Montgomery that led to the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

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Fox reviving 'Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?'
Credit: Fox

Fox reviving 'Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?'

Watch 'The Simpsons'-'Fururama' crossover couch gag

Fox reviving “Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?”
Jeff Foxworthy will return to as host of the game show, which debuted in 2007.


“SVU” books Harry Hamlin
The “Mad Men” star will play Kelli Giddish’s former boss.


Watch “The Simpsons”-“Fururama” crossover couch gag
Who is that giving Homer a massage?


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<p>Jeff Foxworthy of &quot;Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?&quot;</p>

Jeff Foxworthy of "Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?"

Credit: FOX

FOX resurrects 'Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?'

Can 'Utopia Junior' and 'American Juniors 2' be far behind?

FOX believes the children are the future.

Fresh off the successful return of "MasterChef Junior" and the swift cancellation of "Utopia," FOX has learned a valuable lesson.

FOX announced on Thursday (November 6) afternoon that "Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?" will be making a triumphant return to the network. 

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