- The Washington Times - Monday, September 17, 2007

New faces aid ‘View’

Whoopi Goldberg’s first week as a full-time panelist on ABC’s “The View” captured an average of 3.5 million viewers, about 70,000 more than tuned in for Rosie O’Donnell’s first week a year ago, says Contactmusic.com, citing data from Nielsen Media Research.

It marked the biggest season-opening week in the show’s history.

Last Monday, “The View” pulled in even more viewers with the debut of new co-host Sherri Shepherd, posting 3.9 million viewers — 800,000 more than the number who watched the second Monday of “The View” at the beginning of last year’s season.

Big Easy, post-Katrina

Associated Press says the best thing about the new Fox drama “K-Ville,” debuting tonight at 9, is its cast.

The show centers around a pair of New Orleans cops who are trying to restore order to both to their city and their lives.

As Detective Marlin Boulet, Anthony Anderson is cuddly and cocky but ferocious in his devotion to his troubled city. He stays even when his wife and daughter decamp to Atlanta. His new partner is Trevor Cobb (Cole Hauser), a straight shooter who nonetheless has a mysterious past.

Even those two don’t eclipse the show’s third star, New Orleans itself. “K-Ville” is vividly shot on location there.

AP notes that the pilot is pretty much standard-issue cop fare. Nonetheless, the series arrives at just the right moment. As a crime show that deals not only with criminal justice, but the wider issues surrounding the rebuilding of the city, there could be a lot of drama brewing in episodes to come.

“K-Ville” follows the third-season premiere of “Prison Break,” which bows at 8.

Nutty behavior

There’s something a little nutty about the way CBS Home Entertainment is marketing next month’s DVD release of “Jericho,” Variety notes.

Usually, studios like to overhype a series’ performance in order to sell the DVD, bragging about its status as, say, the No. 1 show among left-handed women aged 18 to 24. In this case, though, the network has decided to embrace “Jericho’s” recent near-death experience.

A print ad campaign, scheduled to start Oct. 2, will urge consumers to “Save It Again … on DVD” — a not-so-subtle reference to the fact that fan support helped rescue the show from cancellation.

Ken Ross, president of CBS Home Entertainment, says the tag line (which he devised) has a double meaning.

“It speaks directly to those fans that sent thousands of pounds of peanuts to try to save the show and acknowledges what they did,” he says. “And saying, ‘Save it on DVD’ is like saying, ‘Own it on DVD.’ It works on two levels.”

Speaking to hard-core “Jericho” fans with ad copy make sense, Mr. Ross says, because die-hard viewers are most likely to run out to a store to buy a full season of a show on DVD.

Another aspect of the “Jericho” marketing campaign also plays on the fan effort to save the show: CBS Home Entertainment has sent hundreds of video retailers, buyers and journalists small bags of peanuts.

A CBS rep confirmed that the studio bought new nuts and didn’t just recycle the bags sent in by fans, Variety says.

Compiled by Kelly Jane Torrance and Robyn-Denise Yourse from staff, Web and wire reports

DVD releases of note

Hetty Wainthropp Investigates: The Complete Collection: Patricia Routledge, the adored British actress best known as middle-class striver Hyacinth on “Keeping Up Appearances” — a staple of Maryland Public Television’s Afternoon Tea British block — plays a woman who stumbles into crime-solving after her 60th birthday. Miss Routledge’s character is amusingly fearless when it comes to confronting young punks. Dominic Monaghan (“Lost” and “Lord of the Rings”) had his first breakout role as her unlikely assistant. (Acorn Media, 13 discs, $149.99)

Dexter: The First Season: If you missed it the first time around, you can still catch the premiere season of Showtime’s darkly funny series about a vigilante serial killer (played by Michael C. Hall of “Six Feet Under” fame) before the second season premieres Sept. 30. (Showtime/Paramount, four discs, $39.98)

Compiled by Kelly Jane Torrance and Robyn-Denise Yourse from staff, Web and wire reports

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