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Arts and Entertainment

TV Junkie: Running Away from 'Running Wilde'; IFC's 'Dead Set' = 'Big Brother' + '28 Days Later'

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A menacing flesh-eating zombie from IFC's "Dead Set" which premieres on October 25 at Midnight - don't miss it!

A menacing flesh-eating zombie from IFC's "Dead Set" which premieres on October 25 at Midnight - don't miss it!
We love Will Arnett, David Cross, and Mitch Hurwitz but we can't believe what a mess "Running Wilde" is - thankfully this interview with Hurwitz sheds some light on the kind of interference he gets from Fox. It sounds like he's getting a lot of "notes" from network jackholes, to the extent that it's taking up the majority of his time, resulting in a show that can't get out from underneath the corporate thumb. We never expected an "Arrested Development: Part II" but last night's episode with the obnoxious KFC product placement was too much of a fail. When "30 Rock" did a number of product placements last year, they were upfront and snarky enough about it so they were actually funny. As soon as "Running Wilde" cut to the KFC commercial break, a collective groan issued forth from our viewing room and we had to change the channel. If you want more David Cross, watch "The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret" on IFC, Friday's at 10pm.
Speaking of IFC, we just watched their new zombie mini-series "Dead Set" which begins airing at midnight on October 25. What a blast! What happens when 28 Days Later hits "Big Brother"? The answer, "Dead Set", should satisfy both the fans of reality competition shows as well as those who have loved the paranormal likes of "True Blood" and related shows. It's both very funny and incredibly gory - with extremely well-done special effects. While we're fans of "Doctor Who" and "Torchwood", we always have had to cut those shows some slack when it came to the effects but in the case of "Dead Set" there was no need to apologize for them. In a Britain where flesh-eating zombies have taken over, the safest place to be is the quarantined set of "Big Brother" where the object of the game switches from who can stay on TV the longest to who will be able to survive the onslaught of the undead. The result is a well-done show that brings humor and dread together perfectly, you can't ask for more in the days running up to Halloween. ["Dead Set" premieres at midnight on October 25 with a Halloween marathon on October 31, from 8-11pm.]
More on Dish dropping Fox Network channels: Once we clarified yesterday's story that Fox itself won't be dropped until November 1st, several readers confirmed that FX and Fox Sports channels have already been dropped. Sure, we know that is a website set up by the Fox Network, but there isn't an easier way to look up your zip code to see what Dish has dropped. We understand that Fox wants to get more cash from Dish per subscriber and Dish is refusing, but if Dish is dropping Fox channels, shouldn't Dish subscribers see a reduction in their rates? Otherwise that seems like theft to us. Again, we apologize for alarming anyone by straight reporting what we'd read on a reliable news source (even though it turned out to be accurate) but it's not like we reported that the LAPD spent $1 billion on jetpacks.
October will feature a handful of premieres, primarily those on basic cable, including "Storm Chasers" on October 13 at 10pm on Discovery (see promo vid at end of post).
Tonight we're going to try to learn a little about American entertainment history with Michael Feinstein (PBS/KCET @ 8pm) before another great episode of "Modern Family" (9pm on ABC) featuring Nathan Lane; "Terriers" continues its passage of greatness (FX at 10pm - sorry Dish subscribers) and then it's off to late night, particularly Craig Ferguson who will speak to the genteel Adhir Kalyan of "Rules of Engagement" (whom we spoke to about a month ago).
The TV Junkie Plan: "Michael Feinstein's American Songbook", "Modern Family", "Terriers", Letterman (John Malkovich), Ferguson (Debra Winger, Adhir Kalyan)

8:00pm Undercovers NBC - An informant claims to have information about a device that would compromise the identities of all CIA agents

8:00pm Michael Feinstein's American Songbook PBS/KCET - The 1950s and 1960s are infused with new music forms such as rock 'n' roll and rhythm and blues.

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9:00pm Modern Family ABC - When an earthquake hits, Claire gets stuck in the bathroom with the plumber; Manny experiences an existential crisis while out with Jay; Mitchell and Cameron use the quake as an excuse to get out of a party thrown by a friend (Nathan Lane).

9:00pm MythBusters Discovery - The Mythbusters test out two shaggy-dog tales that put both of their crime-fighting canines to the ultimate test.

9:00pm Great Performances PBS/KCET - Patrick Stewart earned a Tony Award nomination for the Broadway run of Shakespeare's "Macbeth."

10:00pm Terriers FX - Hank and Britt deal with the widening scope of the Lindus conspiracy as they try to avoid the rap for a murder they didn't commit.

10:00pm South Park Comedy Central - Season Premiere.

10:00pm Law & Order: Los Angeles NBC - Winters and Jaruszalski question multiple suspects when a murderous cult member is stabbed to death; the case hits close to home for Winters when his wife (Teri Polo), a former detective, is questioned.

10:30pm Ugly Americans Comedy Central - Follow Mark Lilly, social worker at the Department of Integration as he helps new citizens both human and other adapt to hectic life in the Big Apple.

11:00pm Chelsea Lately E! - Musician Kelly Osbourne.

11:35pm Late Show With David Letterman CBS - Actor John Malkovich; talk-show host Julie Chen.

11:35pm The Tonight Show With Jay Leno NBC - Professional snowboarder Shaun White; actress Florence Henderson; Toby Keith performs.

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12:35am The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson CBS - Actress Debra Winger; actor Adhir Kalyan; Julie Gribble performs.

12:35am Late Night With Jimmy Fallon NBC - Actress Diane Lane; radio hosts Peter Sagal and Carl Kasell; Fistful of Mercy performs.

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