Turn On The Marquee

Tomorrow, the Marquee Sports Network, the new home of the Cubs, goes live as the team kicks off their slate of games in the 2020 Cactus League.  Unfortunately, for the majority of homes in the Chicagoland area, the network will not be available.

Len Kasper and Jim Deshaies will continue on as the main announcing team for Cubs games.  They will occasionally be joined by one of the roving band of analysts that have been announced to date: Lou Piniella, Rick Sutcliffe, Mark Grace, Carlos Peña, Mark DeRosa, Ryan Dempster, Doug Glanville, Dan Plesac, and Jason Hammel.  Cole Wright, formerly of NFL Network, will be the studio host for pre- and post-game coverage and Taylor McGregor will be the sideline reporter, a role she previously held with the Rockies.

The one thing Marquee doesn’t have is a carriage agreement with Comcast, the dominant cable operator in the Chicago metropolitan area.  Comcast has 1.5 million home subscribers in the area, more than all the other metro area operators combined.  The Cubs hope to avoid the fate of the Dodgers, who created their own network in 2014 and still have not gotten full clearance in the Los Angeles market, after 7 years and 2 World Series appearances.  Tomorrow was a soft deadline to get a deal done.  If nothing happened by March 26, when the Cubs open the season in Milwaukee against the Brewers.

Midseason Review – Fridays

old-tv-set1Our final look back at the new fall season gives us Friday’s amazing slate of shows.

7:00

The Blacklist – The seventh season for the show will deal with the repercussions from the end of season 6, which I haven’t completed as of yet.

I’m about ready to move on, whenever they are.

Hawaii Five-0 – The tenth season promises that someone, whoever took the mysterious bullet that ended last season, will be leaving the show.

The loss of Jorge Garcia has taken away a bit from the levity of the show, but I do enjoy seeing locations from my vacation to Hawaii last year.

9:00

Blue Bloods – Returning guests highlight the tenth season.

Sad to say, but this one has also kind of run it’s course.

In the spring, we can look forward to:

Lincoln Rhyme: Hunt For The Bone Collector – Based on the Jeffery Deaver of the same name, the show looks to create more a lasting impression than the Denzel Washington/Angelina Jolie film did.

Midseason Review – Thursdays

We are on the back half of our look back at the offerings for the new fall season. old-tv-set1Thursday night is traditionally the busiest night of the week for my television viewing habits, but not this year. Here’s what was on the slate for this season.

7:00

Grey’s Anatomy – The medical drama enters its 16th season, picking up moments after the end of last season.  Apparently, the show will be crossing over with spinoff Station 19 every week in the spring, which sounds dreadful.

I’m certainly hopeful that the reports of a weekly crossover with Station 19 are overblown somewhat.

8:00

The Good Place – Eleanor and friends try to prove that humanity is capable of earning their way into the Good Place in their final season.

The show is wrapping up its run and television will be a less interesting medium without it.

9:00

How To Get Away With Murder – The law students and their favorite professor try to get away with one final murder in their final season.

This one I’m ready to say goodbye to.  This much mayhem cannot keep happening to the same group of law students without people noticing.

Now, for new entries that will be hitting the screen this winter:

Brooklyn Nine-Nine – The Nine-Nine continues to impress now that it is on firm ground at NBC.

Katy Keane – The latest entry in the Riverdale-verse, I may end up giving it a shot thanks to star Lucy Hale.

Midseason Review – Wednesdays

old-tv-set1We have reached the half way point of our look back at my thoughts on the offerings for the new fall season.  Here’s what Wednesdays had on tap for the fall.

7:00

Riverdale – The show will address the death of star Luke Perry last spring, and his former 90210 co-star Shannen Doherty will make an appearance to pay tribute to Perry.  Of, course, this is assuming I ever catch up on the last season and a half of the show.

I haven’t caught up, and I don’t know if I ever will.

8:00

Modern Family – Season 11 will be its last, which seems about right.

Yeah, this seems to have run it’s course.

SEAL Team – David Boreanaz returns for a third season of the military procedural.

This is another one of those shows that I will watch as long as it’s on, but I won’t necessarily miss when it goes.

Nancy Drew – Building on the success of Riverdale, the CW takes another beloved property from the early-to-mid 20th century and ramps up the sex appeal for a 21st century audience.

I watched the first episode and never made it back for the second.  Not saying it was bad, but it didn’t necessarily pull me in.

8:30

Single Parents – After a surprisingly entertaining first season, the group of single parents returns for another go around.

Still surprisingly decent.  I think the fact that the kids seem to be talented actors helps a bunch.

9:00

Stumptown – Cobie Smulders returns to the small screen in this adaptation of the graphic novels of the same name from Oni Press.

An enjoyable way to spend an hour.

And now the new entry coming later this spring:

Criminal Minds – The CBS stalwart returns for it’s abbreviated final season.

Midseason Review – Tuesdays

old-tv-set1Continuing our look back at my thoughts on the new fall season, with the offerings that I found myself interested in for Tuesdays.

7:00

The Conners – After a season of nostalgia and a season of curiosity, can the show finally stand on its own two feet? Time will tell.

To be honest, I don’t know how I feel about this show.  I mean, it’s comfortable, like an old robe, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s any good or well worth my time.

The Flash – The gang returns for their sixth season, with Heroes alum Sendhil Ramamurthy onboard as the big bad.

Now that the Flash has survived the Crisis that had been foretold since the earliest days of the series, we’ll see how things change.

7:30

Bless This Mess – After a short run in the spring, Dax Shepard and Lake Bell return for season two, hoping to keep the momentum up for a full season.

I can pretty much take or leave this one, so I guess the decision on whether or not I continue to watch falls on ABC.

8:00

Mixed-ish – Another spinoff of Black-ish, this time focusing on Bow’s adolescence growing up with a white father and a black mother.

Well, I’ve stuck with this longer than I did Grown-ish, but that’s not particularly saying anything.  I think there’s a pretty good show in there somewhere, but I’m not sure anyone, including me, knows how to get it out.

Arrow – The show returns for a short, 10 episode final season, without Emily Bett Rickards.

The Crisis on Infinite Earths is over and, while the multi-verse is safe, Oliver Queen is dead.  If I’m counting right, the show will be wrapping up its run tonight.

This Is Us – The emotionally manipulative hit is back for a fourth season, assuming I ever go back and finish the previous two.

I still haven’t watched since midway through season two.  At what point do I admit that I don’t watch the show and free up some space on the DVR?

8:30

Black-ish – While it is putting spinoffs on the air, I don’t know if moving back to the half hour timeslot is a good sign for a sitcom heading into season 6.

Some weeks, the show still seems like it’s firing on all cylinders.  Others, it seems so tired that you can see all the seams.

Now, let’s see what interesting tidbits are coming this spring:

DC’s Legends Of Tomorrow –  Coming in at the tail end of the Crisis, there will be some additional turnover this year as Brandon Routh and Courtney Ford will be leaving the show this season.

 

Midseason Review – Sundays

With the advent of winter premieres, the start of the premium cable network shows, and with February sweeps around the corner, it’s time to revisit my thoughts from the beginning of the season and look ahead at what’s to come for Sunday nights.

7:00

Batwoman – The Arrowverse expands once again, with this entry coming out of last year’s crossover event.  Ruby Rose puts on the cowl to protect the streets of Gotham.

Outside of the Crisis On Infinite Earths crossover episode, I haven’t actually gotten around to watching this yet, though the episodes are piling up on the DVR.

7:30

God Friended Me – The latest “do-gooder has a direct line from God” returns for a second season after being surprisingly entertaining.

I’m still enjoying this, but I am a little concerned that they’ve already leaned hard into the “keep the obvious couple apart for dubious reasons” trope.

8:00

Supergirl – The fifth season sees the return of Jeremy Jordan and the exit of Mehcad Brooks.

We’ll see how the outcome of the Crisis crossover impacts the show moving forward, as it looks to have a completely new status quo.

9:00

Silicon Valley – The Pied Piper gang returns for their final season.

The show got an honorable wrap up, with the crew finally succeeding, but forced to kill their own creation for the good of the world.

Shameless – Season 10, the first without Emmy Rossum, may be a bit of a stretch.  But, I guess if I’ve watched this long, why stop now?

I am slowly working through the season, which is turning out to be a bit of a slog without Emmy Rossum.  It’s been renewed for an eleventh, and final, season, so I may as well keep going with the finish line in sight.

New entries hitting the screen this winter include:

Doctor Who – Jodie Whitaker returns for her second go-around as the Doctor.

Homeland – The Showtime drama returns for its final season.

Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist – Jane Levy returns as a coder who starts to hear people’s inner musical dialogue.

The Outsider – Based on a Stephen King book, the new HBO drama stars Jason Bateman.

Avenue 5 – A sci-fi comedy from the creators of Veep.

2019 New Fall Season – Fridays

old-tv-set1Our final look at the new fall season gives us Friday’s amazing slate of shows.

7:00

The Blacklist – The seventh season for the show will deal with the repercussions from the end of season 6, which I haven’t completed as of yet.

Hawaii Five-0 – The tenth season promises that someone, whoever took the mysterious bullet that ended last season, will be leaving the show.

9:00

Blue Bloods – Returning guests highlight the tenth season.

2019 New Fall Season – Thursdays

old-tv-set1Thursday night is traditionally the busiest night of the week for my television viewing habits, but not this year. Here’s what’s on the slate for this season.

7:00

Grey’s Anatomy – The medical drama enters its 16th season, picking up moments after the end of last season.  Apparently, the show will be crossing over with spinoff Station 19 every week in the spring, which sounds dreadful.

8:00

The Good Place – Eleanor and friends try to prove that humanity is capable of earning their way into the Good Place in their final season.

9:00

How To Get Away With Murder – The law students and their favorite professor try to get away with one final murder in their final season.

2019 New Fall Season – Wednesdays

old-tv-set1We have reached the half way point of our look at the offerings for the new fall season.  Here’s what Wednesdays have on tap for the fall.

7:00

Riverdale – The show will address the death of star Luke Perry last spring, and his former 90210 co-star Shannen Doherty will make an appearance to pay tribute to Perry.  Of, course, this is assuming I ever catch up on the last season and a half of the show.

8:00

Modern Family – Season 11 will be its last, which seems about right.

SEAL Team – David Boreanaz returns for a third season of the military procedural.

Nancy Drew – Building on the success of Riverdale, the CW takes another beloved property from the early-to-mid 20th century and ramps up the sex appeal for a 21st century audience.

8:30

Single Parents – After a surprisingly entertaining first season, the group of single parents returns for another go around.

9:00

Stumptown – Cobie Smulders returns to the small screen in this adaptation of the graphic novels of the same name from Oni Press.