Today I'm unveiling an abridged version of what will be a column devoted to TV and related entertainment programming, media, and events. I've been a member of the Television Critics Association for 3 years and have been writing about TV and media for 6 years, mostly at LAist.com, BostonMagazine.com and now here at KPCC. Although I'll be referencing plenty of pop culture I tend to be a cheerleader for non-broadcast TV shows as those shows already have plenty of viewers and column-inches devoted to them every day, with the exception of comedies. This column will not be a regurgitation of the PBS programming schedule; this column will not include recaps although it may occasionally include "spoilers" which will always be precluded by a bold-italicized Spoiler Alert warning; this column will not be covering "reality" or "contest" shows unless to reference them in terms of the business of television; this column will attempt to include humor at every turn and a love of comedy will permeate the column to a ratio not-reflective of television as a whole.
DVR This: This segment will alert readers to upcoming premieres, finales, special talk-show guests, and episodes of note. Through this Sunday keep an eye out for: Tonight - an all new set of episodes for NBC's comedy block including "30 Rock," "Parks and Recreation;" New "Archer" on FX; and new "Inside Comedy" on Showtime at 8pm with guest Larry David; Late Night: Malin Akerman on Ferguson, Joel McHale /Justin Theroux / Die Antwoord on Kimmel. Friday - New episode of KCET's "SoCal Connected" (Ghost Clinic, Kickstarter, Your Turn to Care), new "Portlandia" (Feminist Bookstore 10th Anniversary); Late Night: Filmmaker John Waters / actress Jennifer Carpenter on Ferguson, Paul Rudd on Fallon. Saturday - On IFC the 2012 Film Independent Spirit Awards. Sunday - Starting at 5:30pm on ABC is The 84th Academy Awards, new "The Walking Dead" on AMC, new "Luck" and "Eastbound & Down" on HBO.
Radio: Into the Academy Awards? Tonight at 7pm on KCRW's "The Treatment," Elvis Mitchell and Kim Masters discuss what might happen on Sunday.
Podcasts of Note: While there is no new "Real Time With Bill Maher" this Friday night, you can hear an intimate interview with Maher on Marc Maron's WTFpod. ABC's "Cougar Town" has been reintroduced after a disruptive hiatus and it is struggling a bit to regain its audience, if you're a fan of the show check out series creator Bill Lawrence on the podcasted "The Treatment," Bill Lawrence on Marc Maron's WTFpod, and several cast members on Greg Fitzsimmons' FitzDogRadio. Also, don't miss the season finale episode of The Long Shot Podcast with "Conan" writer Brendon Walsh, as well as Joe Matarese's Fixing Joe podcast with "Chelsea Lately" regular and NY Times Best-Selling author Sarah Colonna.
Events: It's a standup comedy show but it features Emmy winning comedians or feature TV players like Bill Burr, Greg Fitzsimmons, Kevin Nealon, and more - it's the Laugh For Sight charity show, tickets on sale now for the March 6th event. SXSW has released their list of comedy performers and it's substantial - if you're heading to that deathmarch, there are some shows that will make the whole trip worth it. Waterbrains Improv performs most Fridays at 9pm at the Westside Comedy Theatre, it's manned by seasoned comedy hands and TV writers like Matt Knudsen, this Friday is no exception (but they're on hiatus on March 3rd). Tickets are going fast for the Paley Center for Media's PaleyFest2012 with it's amazing lineup of shows including American Horror Story, Community,Once Upon A Time, New Girl, The Office, Sons of Anarchy, Bones,Castle, The Vampire Diaries,Revenge, Two and a Half Men, Mad Men, Modern Family - if you are a fan of any of these shows, opportunities to see episodes in advance or to ask questions directly to cast and creators come by very rarely.
Releases: Eagle Rock-based comedian Bobbie Oliver has released an album on iTunes that is free (for the time being), give it a listen and a review. Rooftop Comedy has released an album by drawling Texan Billy Wayne Davis and they're providing a couple of the 24 tracks for free here.