The holiday shopping season just began a couple of hours ago, and already you're probably sick of Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree. Possible solution: XMKids, XM satellite radio's channel for kids, which for the next month will specialize in off-the-beaten-path Christmas music, from the New Birth Brass Band's jazzy Santa's Second Line to the Smithereens' rockabilly version of Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer. And if you're toting the kids home from a long day at the mall at 11 p.m., the Absolutely Mindy variety show has a group interview with Nick at Nite's resident boy band, the Naked Brothers Band.
CNN is rerunning six of its most popular documentaries on Thanksgiving Day, starting at 1 p.m. They include Growing Up Diana, on the childhood of Princess Diana; James Brown -- Say it Proud, on the Godfather of Soul; Fed Up: America’s Killer Diet, on why we keep eating food that's bad for us; Chasing Life, on the longevity industry's various potions and exercise regimens; Larry King -- 50 Years of Pop Culture, a celebration of the network's top host; and Danger: Poisoned Food, on how tainted products enter the food supply.
Another cable channel has teamed up with Amazon Unbox, the service that allows you to rent or buy videos and have them sent directly into your TiVo. Among the Mojo shows now available through Amazon Unbox are Chef Daniel Boulud's cooking program After Hours with Daniel; comedian Dave Hill's hipper-than-thou King of Miami; and Wall Street Warriors, an inside look at the lives of financial wizards.Coming Soon: Test Drive, a high-def show on high-performance cars.
When WFOR-CBS 4's Maggie Rodriguez left Miami for New York and an anchor slot on the weekend version of the CBS early-morning news, it seemed a good bet that her husband Mike, the general manager of WSCV-Telemundo 51 would soon be following. And now he has: He's Telemundo's new vice president for sales. No word yet on who will replace him at WSCV.
Direct TV, the country's biggest satellite-TV provider, looks like it will make good on its pledge to offer 100 high-definition channels by the end of the year. It has just added 15 HD regional sports channels (including 11 from Fox Sports) as well as high-def versions of MTV, VH1, Spike and Nickelodeon. When an HD version of the Bio channel appears later this month, it will give Direct TV 89 high-def channels.The Dish Network, with more than 70 HD channels, isn't doing badly, either.
Walter Cronkite's commentaries on the Retirement Living TV cable channel start November 20. They'll air on Daily Cafe, a live two-hour show based in Washington D.C. and hosted by former CNN anchors Bobbie Batista and Felicia Taylor. On hand to introduce of Cronkite's pieces: Katie Couric.
NBC's Brian Williams took a lot of criticism for hosting Saturday Night Live a couple of weeks ago. But viewers responded. With an average of 9.22 million viewers per newscast last week, the NBC Nightly News had its biggest audience of the past nine months -- and edged out Charlie Gibson's ABC newscast for the first time in several weeks.
Damages, the legal thriller starring Glenn Close, has been renewed for two seasons -- that's a total of 26 episodes -- by FX. Adding in all the multiple airings, the show averaged more than 5 million viewers per episode during its first season.