Listen: Firewall & Iceberg Podcast No. 258

Dan and Alan review Grumpy Cat and 'Toy Story' holiday specials and more

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Happy Wednesday, Boys & Girls!

If you're heading over the river and through the woods this Thanksgiving, here's a new installment of The Firewall & Iceberg Podcast to help you pass the time. 

In this week's installment, we reviewed Lifetime's Grumpy Cat Christmas movie, Pixar's "Toy Story" holiday special and, just in case we don't get to podcast by next Tuesday, Bravo's "Girlfriends' Guide To Divorce."

We also talked extensively about The State of TV Comedy and about "How To Get Away With Murder" in the aftermath of its fall finale thing. 

Here's today's breakdown:
"Grumpy Cat's Worst Christmas Ever" (00:01:30 - 00:09:15)
"Toy Story That Time Forgot" (00:09:20 - 00:15:10)
"Girlfriends' Guide to Divorce" (00:15:10 - 00:24:10)
Listener Mail: State of TV Comedy (00:24:35 - 00:48:10)
Listener Mail: The Correct Number of Cooks (00:48:15 - 01:01:40)
Listener Mail: "How To Get Away With Murder" (01:01:50 - 01:13:05)

As always, you can subscribe to The Firewall & Iceberg Podcast over at the iTunes Store, where you can also rate us and comment on us. [Or you can always follow our RSS Feed or subscribe on IHeartRadio.] 

 

And as always, feel free to e-mail us questions for the podcast.

<p>Your &quot;Dancing with the Stars&quot; winners</p>

Your "Dancing with the Stars" winners

Credit: ABC

TV Ratings: Big 'Dancing' finale leads ABC past 'NCIS'-led CBS on Tuesday

'Marry Me' and 'About a Boy' plummet against competition

Fast National ratings for Tuesday, November 25, 2014.

The latest season finale of "Dancing with the Stars" -- Somebody knows who won, we're sure -- helped ABC outpace "NCIS" and "NCIS: New Orleans"-led CBS on Tuesday night.

ABC is calling these the best "Dancing" finale numbers in four seasons, since November 2012.

The "Dancing" finale competition sent "The Voice" down and also took a big bite out of NBC's "Marry Me," "About a Boy" and "Chicago Fire."

With pre-holiday factors also probably playing a role, most of Tuesday's offerings were down, though  The CW's "The Flash" managed a 0.1 bump in the key demo, for whatever that's worth.

On to the numbers...

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<p>Monday&#39;s &quot;Scorpion&quot;</p>

Monday's "Scorpion"

Credit: CBS

TV Ratings: 'Scorpion' rises, 'State of Affairs' droops on NFL-skewed Monday

NFL coverage plus Ferguson-based preemptions make a mess of ratings

Fast National ratings for Monday, November 24, 2014.

"Dancing with the Stars" led ABC to an easy Monday win overall, while "The Voice" helped NBC still win primetime in the key demographic despite a Week 2 dip for "State of Affairs."

On the surface, Monday's biggest non-winning winner was CBS, which replaced "The Millers" with a "Big Bang Theory" repeat and got improved numbers from both "2 Broke Girls" and "Scorpion," but with two NFL games on Monday, that means lots of preemptions.

To be more specific, CBS was preempted for Bills-Jets coverage in New York and a bit of Pennsylvania, while NBC was preempted in Baltimore and New Orleans for Ravens-Saints coverage.

In addition, coverage of events in Ferguson, Missouri also probably caused at least some preemptions in some markets in Monday.

And lots of preemptions means the inevitability of lots of changes for Monday when things shake out in Finals.

But for now, here are the preliminary numbers...

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<p>&quot;Constantine&quot;</p>

"Constantine"

Credit: NBC

NBC caps 'Constantine' Season 1 at 13 episodes

Network insists a second season is still possible

"Constantine" has become the first of the fall's new DC Comics adaptations not to get a full-season order from its respective network.

NBC sources confirmed on Monday (November 24) that Season 1 of "Constantine" will be capped at 13 episodes. 

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<p>Peter Jackson</p>

Peter Jackson

Credit: Evan Agostini/AP

'Hobbit' Set Visit: Peter Jackson stares down The Battle of the Five Armies

Oscar-winning director discusses CGI battles and the importance of pick-ups

WELLINGTON, NZ. On many films, directors build in a certain amount of time to do pick-ups after production is completed, a few weeks to return come back and lock down a few shots or even a few scenes that either didn't go perfectly originally or that they realized were integral to telling the story.

Peter Jackson doesn't do things the way normal directors do. Since he has generated billions of dollars for his studio partners and basically constructed a production empire of his own down in New Zealand, he gets to create his own definition for "pick-ups," which most filmmakers would probably call "basically making the darned movie."

It's early June 2013 on the set of what will come to be known as "The Battle of the Five Armies," the third film in Jackson's adaptation of "The Hobbit." A group of reporters is on-set for what everybody is calling "pick-ups," but that's a term Jackson needs to clarify.

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<p>Ian McKellen in the third &quot;Hobbit&quot; film</p>

Ian McKellen in the third "Hobbit" film

Credit: Warner Bros.

Ian McKellen spends his last day as Gandalf on the 'Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies' set

Oscar nominee reflects on his journey to Tolkien/'X Men' franchise star

WELLINGTON, NZ. Perhaps it's the blustery winterish weather outside and the relative warmth and stillness inside the vast, canvas-covered tent/structure that give Sir Ian McKellen comfort.

Maybe it's the lure of craft services dessert that give him cause to stay.

Or maybe the venerable thespian is just in an introspective mood.

Whatever the cause, as wind howls outside and various members of the "Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies" crew scurry in and out of the door, accompanied by chilly gusts and intruding drizzle, McKellen holds court with a small group of reporters for nearly 45 minutes. Some of that time is spent on The State of Gandalf and the events that may or may not be on-tap for the third installment of Peter Jackson's second Tolkien-based trilogy, but far more of the interview is dedicated to deep reflection, delivered in the same authoritative and sonorous tone McKellen might use to repel orcs or deliver Shakespeare. 

It's early June 2013 on the New Zealand sound stages housing the "Hobbit" movies, but it's not just another day for the actor. He's come to set just to talk with us, but he's one day away from something more momentous: Tomorrow will be Sir Ian McKellen's last day shooting on "The Battle of the Five Armies" and, thus, it will be his last day of production as Gandalf the Grey.

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<p>Cowboys QB Tony Romo</p>

Cowboys QB Tony Romo

Credit: AP

TV Ratings: NBC's Cowboys-Giants game outpaces ABC's AMAs on Sunday

NFL overrun boosts CBS to high numbers as well

Fast National ratings for Sunday, November 23, 2014.

NBC's Sunday Night Football coverage of the game between the Cowboys and Giants easily controlled primetime in all measures, while NFL overrun pushed CBS to second overall and the American Music Awards telecast put ABC in second in the key demographic.

CBS' numbers include 30 minutes of NFL overrun, but the overrun was actually closer to 40 minutes for much of the country, so expect plenty of shifting when Finals come in.

Meanwhile, without any sort of NFL boost FOX had a sluggish Sunday including a predictably weak time period premiere for the first 7:30 installment of "Mulaney."

On to the numbers...

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<p>Jeremy Collins</p>

Jeremy Collins

Credit: CBS

Interview: Jeremy Collins talks 'Survivor: San Juan del Sur'

Another alliance-leader went home on this week's show

Two weeks ago, it looks like "Survivor: San Juan Del Sur" was coming down to a pair of solid alliances, one masterminded by Josh Canfield and the other led by Jeremy Collins. While "Survivor" history has taught us that we should never expect alliance leaders to run the table, we've only occasionally seen two post-Merge alliances so swiftly stripped of their leaders.

First, Jeremy seemed like he was heading toward elimination, but he won Individual Immunity and was able to steer power duo Jon & Jaclyn against Josh, seemingly leaving that alliance in a weak minority position.

But the following week, after Jeremy pushed Jon a bit too hard to reveal his Hidden Immunity Idol, the former college football player decided that the need to get rid of Jeremy had gone from "eventually" to "immediately."

Viewers saw Jon make his pitch to Jeremy's ally Missy and saw her hesitation. We never saw how Jon brought his alliance together or how Reed became a part of it. Perhaps that's why Jeremy also was confused for a little while.

In this week's exit interview, Jeremy discusses his roller-coaster ride from seemingly in charge to joining Josh on the jury and the mistakes he may or may not have made along the way.

Check out the full Q&A...

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<p>Carol Burnett guested on CBS&#39; &quot;Hawaii Five-0&quot;</p>

Carol Burnett guested on CBS' "Hawaii Five-0"

Credit: CBS

TV Ratings: 'Hawaii Five-0,' 'Shark Tank' season highs lead Friday split

'Grimm' and 'Constantine' are up a little for NBC

Fast National ratings for Friday, November 21, 2014.

Both "Shark Tank" and "Blue Bloods" drew big numbers on Friday as CBS won its regular overall victory and ABC controlled things in the key demographic.

CBS also got a boost from the biggest "Hawaii Five-0" audience since March. We'll pretend it's The Carol Burnett Effect.

It was also a season high in viewers for "Shark Tank," which tied its season high in the key demo, despite the absence of a Carol Burnett guest appearance.

Among other Friday notables, it was an up week for "Grimm" and "Constantine," while ABC's "Last Man Standing" and "Cristela" were down a hair.

On to the numbers...

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<p>Misti and Jim in Friday&#39;s &quot;The Amazing Race&quot;</p>

Misti and Jim in Friday's "The Amazing Race"

Credit: CBS

Recap: 'The Amazing Race' - 'Hot Sexy Knights'

The teams are off to Malta where a challenging Detour yields a tight finish

Say this for "The Amazing Race": I went into Friday's episode tweeting that I didn't remember a thing that was happening this season after a week away for CBS to air a failed awards show and by the end of the episode, 55 minutes later, I was yelling at my screen and getting really anxious about the pending result.

No, I didn't get what I wanted when it came to the episode's elimination.

And no, it wasn't even all that great an episode, though it had great moments.

But when they want to, the "Amazing Race" editors can orchestrate a thrilling climax pitting ostensible heroes against clear villains and they can still make me care.

Let's talk about Friday's (November 21) night's "Amazing Race" episode and its exciting ending after the break...

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