This week, CHML’s Scott Thompson wanted to know what the dealio was with Community, one of my favourite shows. NBC cut this year’s order and brought the third-year series back last week after a four month hiatus. The good news it returned with season high ratings, both in the States and on City in Canada, boosting its chances for renewal.
This provoked a quick stock taking of mid-season shows so  far. Many have been tried but few have been chosen. Shows such as Smash, The Firm, Alcatraz, The River, Touch, Awake, Luck and many others have had a hard time bursting through the clutter of so many shows on so many schedules. One other I like based on the pilot starts tonight, Amanda Peet’s Bent (9 p.m. on NBC).

David Walton and Amanda Peet get Bent

CBC, I think, was smart getting Arctic Air and Mr. D off the ground so soon after New Year’s. Both found viewers before things got fuzzy.
Fox yesterday cancelled the horrible comedy I Hate My Teenage Daughter. Luck was cancelled after the death of three horses, although the fact HBO had only hooked half a million U.S. viewers a week did not help.
Adding to the clutter, a ton of old favourites are returning or set to return to specialty and cable, including Pawn Stars, Game of Thrones, Girls and, of course, Sunday’s two hour return after 17 months of Mad Men. King is back on Showcase but stumbling badly out of the gate.
The new Ashley Judd international drama Missing opened big on CTV last week, topping 2.4 million in the overnights (thanks to a Big Bang Theory timeslot boost), but TV By The Numbers only rated it as a “toss up” for cancellation on ABC.
Scott also brings up Bell’s takeover of Astral, which was announced last week. That sound you hear is me kicking myself for not buying Astral stock, especially after hearing Astral CEO Ian Greenberg’s boast last September at the TIFF opening gala that the company had enjoyed 60 consecutive quarters of growth. The concentration of media ownership has to be a concern, however, and not just for parents with children in communications or radio and television programs. I don’t see this adding jobs to the industry, and it makes me nervous when there are only so many doors left to knock on in this racket, as Doyle calls it.
You can listen in here.

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