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January 2011 Archives


(7 p.m., WLS-Channel 7): And I am telling you . . . to revisit Jennifer Hudson's supreme performance. Beyonce who?

"Pit Boss" (9 p.m., Animal Planet): New season! Shorty tries to rescue three it bulls trapped in a house. My money's on Shorty.

"Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby"
(9 p.m., TBS): Oscar-nominated Amy Adams co-stars in this 2006 classic, in which Will Ferrell prays to the baby Jesus.

"Saturday Night Life" (10:35 p.m., WMAQ-Channel 5): Oscar-nominated Jesse Eisenberg makes funny, with Nicki Minaj as the musical guest. The big question: Will Andy Samberg give Rahm Emanuel some well-timed publicity with his foul-mouthed impersonation?


"Celebration of Gospel" (7 p.m., BET): Steve Harvey hosts, with performances by Keith David and El DeBarge, among others.

"Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" (7 p.m., WLS-Channel 7): Justin Bieber alert! He appears on an episode with a family affected by texting-and-driving.

"The Lost Valentine" (8 p.m., WBBM-Channel 2): Betty White alert! She plays a World War II widow profiled by TV reporter Jennifer Love Hewitt. Tissues required.

(8 p.m., E!): Crestwood's Allyson Donovan is in the finale, competing against Jennessa for the honor of extensive cosmetic surgery and a happy ending.

"Kennedys' Home Movies" (8 p.m., TLC): Three generations of private videos that are not to be missed. There's footage of JFK on crutches, older siblings Joseph and Kick, little John-John, and even those famous touch-football games.

"Holly's World" (9:30 p.m., E!): In an episode titled "The Way We Weren't," the woman scorned confronts Hef about his new engagement.

Last year, Eric Ferguson spent his birthday in the hospital, being treated for an irregular heartbeat. This year he was sitting in Regis Philbin's seat, co-hosting "Live! With Regis & Kelly" as one of the five winners of the show's "Men of Radio" contest.

The morning man on WTMX-FM (101.9) managed not to roll his eyes as all the New Yorkers whined about a little snow. He looked as comfortable on TV as he is on The Mix, as he sipped coffee, got hit in the face by a Gelman-propelled beachball, and described the "horn convention" they were holding at his hotel. (At first I thought he said "whore," which might have made for more colorful anecdotes.)

Ferguson got his best material from his wife, telling viewers about the raw vegan diet she's forced on the family. One night he stumbled on her, hunched over in her car. She was "elbow deep into two bags of Taco Bell," Ferguson said. "There's chalupa everywhere."

(Fun fact: His wife is my former dentist.)

Chicago got a few more plugs on "Live!," too. Kelly gushed about the final contestant on last night's "American Idol" Milwaukee auditions, Chris Medina, whose fiancée suffered a brain injury in a car crash just two months before their wedding. "This man, quite frankly restored my faith in humanity last night," she said.

The first guest was Broadway star (and Real Househusband) Kelsey Grammer, who mentioned that he will be starring in the upcoming Starz series "Boss," which is a fictionalized story about a Chicago mayor with a secret degerative mental condition. Gus Van Sant is directing, and as luck would have it, "Boss" was sold to Starz by WME, the Hollywood firm run by Rahm Emanuel's brother Ari.

The only missed opportunity: Ferguson had the class not to ask Grammer the question of the day - Is he, as his soon-to-be-ex-wife has repeatedly hinted, a cross dresser? That's still a mystery, although Grammer does appear to be a cross-trainer. He wore a pair of New Balance sneakers with his dress clothes.

My source on this is TMZ, which I say counts. They report:

"One source connected with the show says they've already lined up some of Vinny's Italian relatives to host the 'Jersey' crew for an authentic Guadagnino dinner. And we're told ... two months ago execs began working on getting visas for the cast and crew."

My main worry is that this will lead to war. My secondary worry is that J-Woww might fall in love with the culture and never come home. That girl is a national treasure. I bet Italy worships her like a goddess.


"Buffy the Vampire Slayer" marathon (8 a.m., Oxygen): Aw, remember when Seth Green played Oz? Don't miss the 9 a.m. episode, when Sarah Michelle Gellar and Charisma Carpenter go head-to-head for homecoming queen.

Winter "Wipeout" (7 p.m., WLS-Channel 7): Believe it or not, contestants include a rocket scientist and a river guide with an extreme fear of beavers.

"Blades of Glory" (8 p.m., WLS-Channel 7): Will Ferrell and Jon Heder in tight spangly clothes. Sample Ferrell line: "If we went to a Halloween party dressed as Batman and Robin, I'd go as Robin. That's how much you mean to me."

"Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (9 p.m., WMAQ-Channel 5): I love when Benson and Stabler go undercover.


"The Simpsons" (7 p.m., WFLD-Channel 32): Homer learns how to be a good dad from an '80s sitcom. Guest voices include James Lipton and David Mamet. Classy!

"Mean Girls 2" (7 p.m., ABC Family): A new student (Meaghan Martin) commits the social sin of befriending an outcast (Jennifer Stone). Fun fact: It was directed by "Thirtysomething's" Melanie Mayron. If you really like it, you can watch it again at 9 p.m., or buy it on DVD Feb. 1.

"Food Network Challenge" (7 p.m., Food): Four top pastry chefs create "comedic cakes" to be presented at a comedy club. Sounds like a stretch, but hey.

"My 40 Year Old Child" (8 p.m., TLC): Australian Nicky Freeman is middle-aged but trapped in a child's body. Followed at 9 p.m. with "Extreme Births."

(9 p.m., MTV): If you missed the premiere of this Americanized British series about naughty teens, you should watch the repeat. You'll either be appalled or hooked.


"Beverly Hils, 90210" marathon (noon, Soapnet): Your afternoon of overprivileged drama begins with guest star David Arquette hassling Brandon (Jason Priestley).

"Miss America Pageant" (8 p.m., WLS-Channel 7): After years of being banished to cable, the celebration of wholesome young womanhood returns to network TV. Chris Harrison and Brooke Burke host.

"Behemoth" (8 p.m., SyFy): In this new movie, scientists discover that a gigantic monster is under the earth, wrapped around the entire planet - and he wakes up all grumpy. Here I wasn't even worrying about that.

"God, the Devil and Bob" (9 p.m., Cartoon Network): Enjoy the vocal stylings of Alan Cumming, James Garner, Laurie Metcalf, French Stewart and Nancy Cartwright.

"Extreme Couponing" (9 p.m., TLC): It couldn't hurt.


"American Dad!"
(6:30 p.m., WFLD-Channel 32): The toon settles into its new timeslot with an episode titled "Fart-break Hotel."

"Golden Globes Awards" (7 p.m., WMAQ-Channel 5): Ricky Gervais hosts the Hollywood Foreign Press Association extravaganza, with Robert De Niro receiving the Cecil B. DeMille Award.

"Big Love" (8 p.m., HBO): The fifth and final season starts with Bill the brand-new state senator, who has introduced all three wives to his constituency.

"Hogs Gone Wild" (9 p.m., Discovery): In this new reality series, feral hogs menace a deer ranch in Texas and a preschool in Florida. Preceded by "Pig Bomb" at 7 p.m. and "Wild Animal Repo" at 8. Now that's how you program a channel.

"Denis Leary & Friends" (9 p.m., Comedy): Whitney Cummings, Lenny Clarke and Adam Ferrara join Leary at New York City's Town Hall.


About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from January 2011 listed from newest to oldest.

December 2010 is the previous archive.

February 2011 is the next archive.

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