News Briefs: Super Bowl XVIII Was the Most-Watched Telecast In History

By Tim Surette

Feb 04, 2014

ARE YOU READY FOR SOME RATINGS?

... America's obsession with commercials that cost millions of dollars continued again this Super Bowl Sunday, when Fox's broadcast of Super Bowl XVIII drew 111.5 million viewers to earn the title of the most-watched telecast in U.S. TV history. The game topped 2012's football championship for the honor, besting that broadcast by 200,000 viewers (at least according to Nielsen's ratings data, which is accurate to a degree of +/- 100 million viewers). After the Superb Owl, Fox aired a new episode of New Girl, and 25.6 million viewers stuck around to watch Prince guest-star, resulting in an 11.1 rating among 18-49-year olds. Brooklyn Nine-Nine followed that with 14.8 million viewers and a 6.7 rating. [Variety


BUSINESS TIME

... More Super Bowl! Budweiser's ad about a dumb dog and a stupid horse being lame friends won USA Today's Ad Meter poll (check out Kaitlin's favorites and least-favorites here). I have no heart, so I hated this commercial and especially that song. You wanna see the real winner of the Super Bowl ad-splosion? This EPIC throwdown from a lawyer in Georgia, which only aired in regional markets:


NBC, hurry up and give this guy a series! [USA Today]

... CBS has long been somewhat stingy with regard to making its shows available for online streaming, but the network's programming is slowly finding its way to some on-demand services. The latest series to enter the digital age is Elementary, which is on its way to Hulu Plus. If CBS's press release had told me when the show would make its Hulu debut, I'd pass that information on to you, but since it didn't, let's all take a guess and say it will be "soon." [CBS via press release]

... The WGA Awards took place over the weekend to honor excellence in writting righting writing (GAH I will never win that award), and Breaking Bad took home a couple trophies—for Best Drama and Best Dramatic Episode—because its writers are really good at writing. Veep and 30 Rock both won new hardware in the comedy categories, The Simpsons took home an animation trophy, and House of Cards won the title of Best New Series. [WGA]

... TV Land is getting back together with The Exes for a fourth season. The comedy, which stars Donald Faison and Wayne Knight, is currently winding down its third season and will return for a 12-episode fourth season this summer. [TV Land via press release]

... Disney Channel has renewed Dog With a Blog because Dog With a Blog rules. Stan's third season of being a talking and blogging dog will air this fall, and I can't wait to see Avery come up with new plans to impress the cute boy at school! [THR]



CASTING NEWS

... Laura Prepon might be staying in jail a little longer than expected. Despite previous reports that Prepon's Orange Is the New Black character Alex would only be around for a handful of episodes in Season 2, series creator Jenji Johan has said she'd be around for "most of" the season. Orange Is the New Black returns to Netflix later this year. [US Weekly]

... Scott Bakula has just won the lottery! The Quantum Leap and Men of a Certain Age star has landed the lead in CBS's proposed NCIS offshoot NCIS: New Orleans. He'll play Agent Pride (yes, for real), head of the NCIS N'Awlins office and a man who "embodies New Orleans." So he's full of butter and spends a lot of time underwater? [Deadline Hollywood]

... Also heading to NCIS: NO is former Dirty Sexy Money star Zoe McLellan. She'll play Special Agent Brody, an NCIS agent from the Midwest who is totally like "OMG I'm in New Orleans!" [THR]

... Jack Davenport (Smash, the U.K.'s Coupling) will star opposite Jennifer Carpenter in ABC's drama pilot Sea of Fire. The show centers on a murder mystery in a small town, and Davenport and Carpenter play the two detectives who are sent in to investigate it. Sounds just like every other show these days. [TV Line]

... Alan Tudyk (Firefly, Suburgatory) is the new host for Adult Swim's comedy and Childrens Hospital spin-off Newsreaders. Tudyk replaces Mather Zickel, and I love Tudyk, but what was wrong with Zickel? [Adult Swim via press release]

... David Schwimmer (everyone's sixth-favorite Friend) might be returning to television! He'll star in the ABC comedy pilot Irreversible as the male half of a self-absorbed couple. Irreversible is based on an Israeli series, because America's supply of original ideas has been outsourced. [TV Line]


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  • silversurfersgp Jun 08, 2014

    Oh dear, the typo is still up after 4 months - it's Super Bowl XLVIII, not XVIII.

  • JT_Kirk Feb 06, 2014

    Wow, thanks New Girl for shedding another 11 million in audience and half the key demo! Way to take lemonade and make moldy lemon rinds out of it.

    You are right that Alan Tudyk is great but there was nothing wrong with Mather Zickel as Louis LaFonda on Newsreaders.

    Ha ha, NCIS New Orleans, right, like you'd have me believe that's a real thing. ... what? It's a real thing? Oh god. Scott Bakula is really bad casting there too, he plays everything kinda the same, and while that works for Quantum Leap and Men of a Certain Age, it failed miserably for Star Trek Enterprise because his acting is "lightly warmed white bread" and is about the furthest thing from embodying New Orleans OR ANYWHERE FOR THAT MATTER. But I suspect this will be like Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior or NCIS:LA:RED, more toilet than toilet water, so it doesn't matter anyway.

    I actually liked Ross on Friends, but yeah, he was the 6th best one, maybe 5th in some seasons when Phoebe got too much or Joey got too stupid. I could see watching his show, but I wouldn't start leasing any new cars just yet, Schwimmer.

  • MelodyByard Feb 04, 2014

    Ok when I first heard that they where going to make an NCIS NO I was on the I might watch it fence if there is nothing else on. However, now that I know that Scott Bakula will be on it I might actually watch it no matter what is on. :) LUV U SCOTT

  • Loooooooooooost Feb 04, 2014

    Heeey, what is wrong with Zickel??

  • JohnMessenger Feb 04, 2014

    I hope CBS moves all their shows somewhere...Their Player is awful.
    They really are not very good at streaming their own shows on their website.

  • Llostris Feb 04, 2014

    Yay for more Alex!!! I hope she and Piper will get back together in season 2 :)

  • kanniballl Feb 04, 2014

    I wouldn't call it winning the lottery... the last NCIS spin-off attempt failed.

    I'm torn. I LOVE Scott Bakula... but I really don't see myself getting into another NCIS spin-off (which was a JAG spin-off already, but I digress).

    I don't really watch much of NCIS: LA and I didn't like the attempted spin-off from that.

    BUT... it has Scott Bakula. I might have to give it a try based on that alone.

  • safibwana Feb 04, 2014

    Okay, I finally watched it. That puppy thing was the worst.

  • stiffler_17 Feb 04, 2014

    RIP Louis Lafonda.

  • WavSlave Feb 04, 2014

    I'm also a big fan of Tudyk but Zickel was practically perfect as the host of Newsreaders. I can't see Tudyk doing anywhere near as well in that role and find this news disappointing.

  • JT_Kirk Feb 06, 2014

    Tudyk would make a great weatherman or something, but yeah, not as good as Louis LaFonda at first blush. But Tudyk is great, so maybe he'll be good too.

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