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Tuning in to TV: MTV says upcoming season is last for ‘Jersey Shore’

- - Thursday, August 30, 2012

MTV gave the last call for "Jersey Shore" on Thursday, saying the raucous reality show will conclude after its upcoming sixth season, which begins Oct. 4.

The series, whose roots lay in a party house in Seaside Heights, N.J., has given rise to Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi and Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino, just two from a cast of characters who were over-tanned, overloud and always pumped up. It popularized the terms "guido" and "guidette" and the mantra "gym, tan, laundry" while trying the patience of local residents with its party-hearty antics.

"Jersey Shore" became a pop-culture sensation and one of MTV's biggest hits with its premiere in December 2009. It drew as many as 8 million viewers while spawning the spinoffs "Snooki & JWoww" and "The Pauly D Project," but ratings have eroded in recent seasons.

The show strayed from New Jersey during its run. In season two, the housemates fled winter for Miami Beach. The fourth season took them to Italy.

But you could never take the Jersey out of "Jersey Shore" — or at least a certain Jersey stereotype the show made sport of riotously.

Meanwhile, certain Jersey locals made no secret of their disdain for the show.

Two years ago, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie called it "negative for New Jersey," telling a TV interviewer the show "takes a bunch of New Yorkers, drops them at the Jersey Shore and tries to make America feel like this is New Jersey."

Most of the cast members are from New York.

On Sept. 6, MTV will launch its season-spanning cavalcade of farewell "Jersey" fare with a retrospective special, "Gym, Tan, Look Back." The party isn't over yet.

Giuliana and Bill Rancic welcome baby boy

Giuliana and Bill Rancic have welcomed son Edward Duke to their family.

Edward was born in Denver by a gestational surrogate Wednesday night. He weighed 7 pounds and 4 ounces.

The couple were in the delivery room for the four-hour labor and birth.

Mrs. Rancic is a red-carpet fixture and host of E! News. Mr. Rancic, who cut the baby's umbilical cord, is an entrepreneur and motivational speaker. He was the first-season winner on TV's "The Apprentice." The couple star in the Style Network reality show "Giuliana & Bill" that dealt with their fertility issues.

Mrs. Rancic told E! News that she and her husband are "so in love with the little guy already."

Edward arrived just in time for his parents' fifth wedding anniversary on Saturday.

Robin Roberts gets emotional 'GMA' send-off

Robin Roberts said goodbye Thursday to her "Good Morning America" co-workers and audience. But only for a while.

"See you later. See you soon. I'll get back as soon as I can," she promised at the close of her emotional send-off from the show.

The "GMA" anchor was making her final appearance before starting medical leave for a bone-marrow transplant. Her departure originally had been set for Friday, but in a last-minute change of plans she chose to exit a day early to visit her ailing mother in Mississippi, she told viewers.

During her absence, a number of famous faces will be subbing for her, including previously announced fellow ABC News colleagues Katie Couric, Barbara Walters, Diane Sawyer and Elizabeth Vargas.

In addition, Ms. Roberts announced that Oprah Winfrey, Chris Rock and Rob Lowe will be among the stand-ins, as well as the cast of the ABC comedy "Modern Family."

In June, Ms. Roberts first disclosed that she has MDS, a blood and bone marrow disease. She will be hospitalized next week to prepare for the transplant. The donor will be her older sister, Sally-Ann Roberts, who was on hand for Thursday's broadcast.

But two of Ms. Roberts' on-air colleagues couldn't be there, thanks to the demands of breaking news.

From New Orleans, weather anchor Sam Champion voiced warm wishes, as did co-anchor George Stephanopoulos from the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla. He had left behind a gift for Ms. Roberts: a tap bell.

"Whatever you need, whenever you need it, ring that bell," he said.

With her and news anchor Josh Elliott in the studio, lifestyle anchor Lara Spencer presented Ms. Roberts with monogrammed matching pajamas for her and her sister.

"We're not crying tears of sadness," she told Ms. Roberts. "We're crying because we wish we could take this on for you."

Ms. Roberts, who has put a brave and usually smiling face on the challenges that await her, shared with viewers an inspirational quote: "Life provides losses and heartbreak for all of us. But the greatest tragedy is to have the experience, and miss the meaning."

Said Ms. Roberts, "I am determined not to miss that meaning."

As the program neared its end, the entire "GMA" crew gathered around the anchors' couch, displaying bracelets of support and bearing signs that promoted the "teamrobin" Twitter account.

Then Ms. Roberts' friend, country star Martina McBride, performed her Grammy-nominated song "I'm Gonna Love You Through It," an inspirational song about battling breast cancer. Looking on, Roberts mouthed the lyrics as her eyes welled with tears.

Compiled from Web and wire reports.