Saturday, July 17, 2010

Ratings Remain Strong Here for T.O. Show

This is what I’m thinking:

* Terrell Owens is gone but not forgotten in Buffalo.

The second season premiere, “Bye Bye, Buffalo,” of VH-1’s “The T.O. Show” had a 2.1 rating here last Sunday. That’s about a third lower than the series premiere last season but a 2.1 still beat the average ratings for ABC’s new Sunday scripted series.

However, you do have to wonder if Western New Yorkers will continue to watch Owens’ show now that he has left Buffalo.

ESPN's cameras spotted Owens in the crowd during Wednesday evening’s telecast of the ESPYs, which was surprisingly very entertaining for a change.

Much of the credit has to go to host Seth Meyers of “Saturday Night Live,” who managed to be funny without being too raunchy.

He did near the line a few times, including when he defined the ESPYs as when sports and entertainment come together.

“It is like a Kardashian sister’s bedroom,” cracked Meyers.

Then the cameras found Reggie Bush in the audience and he was laughing. Of course, he dated one of the Kardashians -- Kim. According to recent reports, she has moved on to another NFL player.

Almost all the funny bits worked, except when Tracy Morgan was involved.

But the emotional highlight was the tribute to Ed Thomas, the legendary Iowa high school football coach who was tragically killed by a mentally ill former player.

* Happy talk moment of the week: On a Thursday sportscast, Channel 4's John Murphy noted that one golfer at the British Open (it was Tom Watson) said of the St. Andrews course: "The old lady had no clothes on today." To which Murphy added that it sounded like ideal conditions for Tiger Woods. Good line that also illustrated how much the line has moved on local TV. His co-anchors either didn't seem to get it, enjoy it or know how to react to it.

* If you can’t get to the Empire State Games, Time Warner Cable will bring them to its viewers. It is carrying Wednesday’s opening ceremonies at 7 p.m. and a nightly highlights show at 10 p.m. from Thursday through Sunday.

* Not surprisingly, America’s Pastime got beat Tuesday by “America’s Got Talent” locally. The NBC reality show, which featured a Buffalo singer, averaged a 10.4 rating on Tuesday on Channel 2. The National League’s win in the All-Star game had a 6.5 rating on Channel 29, which actually was higher than the 6.2 the game had a year ago here. Nationally, the All-Star game had a 7.5 fast national rating, making it the lowest-rated in history.

For me, the All-Star game highlight was hearing the taped introduction of New York Yankee great Derek Jeter by the late Yankee public address announcer Bob Sheppard.

* Finally, Time Warner cable subscribers have more reason to sweat now that ESPN is running advertisements that suggest its channels may be pulled by the cable giant in September. We've heard that song before. The ESPN channels are among the most expensive in cable. However, they also are among the most popular. If TWC drops ESPN during the football season, there will be a national revolt. The decision will be made at a corporate level and not in Buffalo. Look for an 11th-hour settlement similar to the one that TWC made with Fox before the college bowl season ended in January.

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