The teams head to Vienna for dancing and singing
A couple minor ethical and strategic wrinkles entered the game in Sunday (November 3) night's episode of "The Amazing Race," livening up an episode that probably would have been disappointingly flat otherwise.
And you could sense the "Amazing Race" producers feeling the same way, because there's no way this was how this particular Leg was structurally designed to work. Human drama is fine, but trumped up human drama can only go so far to redeem a Leg that featured an anti-climax of a Fast-Forward, a dud of a Detour and a Roadblock in which the local mentors worked hard to upstage the contestants.
I'm not sure I have much to say about the Leg, even with the ethical and strategic wrinkles included, but whatever I have to say is after the break...
Beard enthusiasts share some ribald tales from the road
Last week, best friends and beard enthusiasts Brandon Squyres and Adam Switzer became the second straight team to go from first to eliminated in this unpredictable "Amazing Race" season.
One Leg, they were building a commanding lead in Norway and coasting to victory in a hall of cheering Vikings and the next Leg, Brandon & Adam were struggling with a Double U-Turn in Poland, trying to get locals to give them change for pretending to be a statue.
It was an abrupt reversal of fortune for Brandon & Adam, but they kept smiling and cracking jokes til the end, meaning that just like their first-to-worst predecessors Ephraim & Chester, these two will be missed.
In this week's interview, Brandon & Adam have amusing confusion about this website's name, discuss the circumstances of their "Amazing Race" demise and relate a couple very funny moments we didn't get to see on TV.
Click through for the full conversation.
'Grimm' falls as well, with NBC going to third
Fast National ratings for Friday, November 1, 2013.
"Blue Bloods" kept CBS in its familiar and dominant position atop Friday's overall rankings, while ABC capitalized on a strong "Shark Tank" and drops from NBC's "Grimm" and "Dracula" to regain its Friday crown among young viewers.
While the "Grimm" drop put it in line with the drama's regular Friday performances from last season and beyond, the "Dracula" decline was far steeper, slipping 0.5 in the key demo and nearly 1.8 million viewers. Neither "Dracula" nor "Grimm" was aided by a low-rated "Why We Love Vampires" special courtesy of NBC News.
There weren't many other notables on Friday, though "Last Man Standing" and "The Neighbors" both bounced back to season norms after a week away, while The CW's "The Carrie Diaries" added a few viewers in its second airing, but remained low in the demo.
On to the numbers...
Did Hayden break up with her because she didn't make the Merge?
The first thing you'll probably want to know (and the first thing I'll admit I wanted to know) is that Kat Edorsson and her "Big Brother"-winning boyfriend Hayden Moss are still together.
Much of the opening act of Wednesday night's "Survivor: Blood vs. Water" was dedicated to 23-year-old Kat's concern that Hayden would break up with her over her failure to reach the "Survivor" Merge. The anxiety and tears climaxed in extensive deliberation between Kat and Hayden as to whether or not he should take her place in the Redemption Island Duel, a task that involved Kat's acknowledged nemesis, puzzles.
Other Kat nemeses included Monica, who she worried was over-strategizing, and Tina, with whom she shared her Monica concerns, but who promptly turned on her and instigated her Tribal Council ouster.
In this week's "Survivor" exit interview, Kat discusses her relationship with Hayden, her puzzle handicaps and the particular challenges of this season's twists.
Click through for the full conversation from Thursday (October 31) and to find out what Kat & Hayden dressed as for Halloween…
'Back in the Game,' however, will end after 13 episodes
ABC stirred up a little late-afternoon excitement in the TV world on Friday (November 1), ordering up additional episodes for three of its freshman comedies.
Per ABC's announcement, Tuesday duo "Trophy Wife" and "The Goldbergs" both received full back-nine orders. While "Super Fun Night" wasn't quite as lucky, the Wednesday comedy earned an additional four episodes.
Halloween delivers spookily low 'Vampire Diaries' ratings
Fast National ratings for Thursday, October 31, 2013.
"Its The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" comfortably outdrew ABC's normal 8 p.m. dramas and helped the network lead Thursday night among young viewers. Overall, though, CBS won despite a repeat of "Big Bang Theory" leading to significant drops for both "The Millers" and "Crazy Ones."
While CBS' comedies were down, CBS can be enthusiastic about "Elementary" beating "Scandal" overall for the first time this season, even if "Scandal" still dominated "Elementary" among young viewers.
A "Saturday Night Live" Halloween special gave NBC a big boost in the 8 p.m. hour over the network's usual comedies and helped "Sean Saves The World" outdraw "The Michael J. Fox Show" for the second straight week and also top its 9 p.m. companion among young viewers.
Halloween siphoned a lot of viewers away from "The Vampire Diaries," but The CW can take some solace in flat week-to-week demos for "Reign." ["Vampire Diaries" was preempted in New York City, which may account for some of the decline.]
And, finally, an "X Factor" clip show drew no interest at all for FOX, which had been hoping this would be a night dominated by Game 7 of the World Series.
On to the numbers... Keep in mind that TV usage is appreciably lower on Halloween night.
Ellie Kemper, Tina Fey and Robert Carlock will all be back at NBC
NBC is ready to get back into business with both "30 Rock" producers Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, as well as "The Office" co-star Ellie Kemper.
The network announced on Thursday (October 31) that it has given a 13-episode series order to an untitled single-cam comedy from Fey and Carlock, with Kemper set to star. The project will premiere on NBC in fall 2014.
'Arrow,' 'Criminal Minds' and 'Nashville' all dip
Fast National ratings for Wednesday, October 30, 2013.
The Boston Red Sox closed out their third World Series title in nine years with a 6-1 win over the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday night, with the clinching game delivering FOX's best numbers of this postseason and helping the network dominate primetime in all measures.
The World Series did decent ratings for FOX -- this was the most watched game since Game 6 of the 2011 World Series, even if it came in three million below that game -- but it continued to have only a slight impact on the competition. While a couple shows, including "Criminal Minds," "Arrow" and "Nashville," were down, an equal number of shows weren't bothered, including "The Middle," "Revolution" and "Tomorrow People."
The night's biggest week-to-week decline, a solid 0.4 in the key demo rating, came from ABC's "Super Fun Night," but that was less a product of going against baseball and more a product of not having its "Modern Family" lead-in for the first time. Similarly, the drop for the "CSI" mothership was more attributable to last week's slightly boosted 300th episode than anything else.
On to the numbers…
How do Offman's axe skills compare to those of Ron Swanson and Axe Cop?
Hollywood is full of busy people, but Nick Offerman has a sacred place in the upper tier of entertainment industry workaholics.
Earlier this month, the "Parks and Recreation" star released his memoir, titled "Paddle Your Own Canoe." He continues to tour the country with the comedy show "American Ham." In the past year, his motion picture releases have included "Paradise," "We're the Millers," "In a World" and "The Kings of Summer." Next spring, he's heading Off Broadway to reteam with wife Megan Mullally on "Annapurna," a play they did earlier this year in Los Angeles. He continues to run the Offerman Woodshop, described appropriately as "a small collective of woodworkers and makers based out of Nick Offerman’s kick-ass wood shop in East Los Angeles."
And in his free time, Offerman fights crime and wields a mean axe as the lead voice and executive producer for "Axe Cop." Based on the web comic by brothers Ethan and Malachai Nicole, 29 and 5 when the series began, "Axe Cop" was one of the first entries in Animation Domination HD programming block, which premiered in July. If Nick Offerman is a slightly elevated human being and Ron Swanson is a slightly elevated Nick Offerman, Axe Cop is a slightly elevated Ron Swanson, a perfect union of animated character and vocal talent that nearly went uncredited in the summer amidst a minor kerfuffle with NBC.
Offerman and "Axe Cop" return to ADHD this Saturday (November 2) -- or, if you're impatient, you can watch the episode now by downloading the Animation Domination High-Def ap -- so I got on the phone with the veteran character actor, storyteller and axeman to talk about... everything on his plate. We discussed "Axe Cop" and Malachai's particular view of heroism and crime-fighting. We talked about recently shooting the 100th episode of "Parks and Recreation," their feeling about that show's future and his return to directing this winter. We discussed whether or not he still has time for carpentry.
And Nick Offerman, to his credit, humored my admittedly dumb question comparing his own axe skills to those of his alter egos.
Click through for the full chat.
Will Hayden break up with Kat for not making the Merge?
Pre-credit sequence. When we left "Survivor," Kat had signed her own execution papers and she was heading to Redemption. We begin on Night 16, as Kat is praising herself for not crying. "Apparently we had an issue with trust," Kat says, crediting Vytas for swooping in for the kill. In the Redemption shelter, Kat places the blame on everybody else for her ouster. She's worried, though, that Hayden will be disappointed with her. "No one wants to date someone who didn't make the Merge. He's gonna dump me," she laments. The next morning, she's finally crying. Now she's worried that Hayden will feel embarrassed and upset and ashamed of her. "We're like a team. He's my best friend," she explains. She's hoping that Hayden will still be on her side after the Duel.
Will you still love me tomorrow? The two tribes arrive at Redemption Island Arena. Hayden looks pensive at Kat's absence. She arrives and he looks pensive. She cries and begs him to come down and hug her. She apologizes repeatedly. Hayden says it's OK and shakes his head when she suggests he might be disappointed. "That's not the case. Our relationship is going to be fine," Hayden tells her, adding that his relationship with her is more important than the game. At this point, Jeff Probst leers suggestively and offers Hayden the chance to swap in. And we go to credits.