Info tidbits from around the dial
Are They Trying to Kill Me?—In case you haven’t heard, Kate Gosselin (who still hasn’t managed to get kicked off “Dancing With the Stars” somehow) is getting handed not one but two new reality shows this year. First up is TLC’s “Twist of Kate,” a positively disastrous-sounding 12-part summer series in which the 35-year-old occasional mother of eight will answer fan mail and give “parenting advice” to her legions of worshippers. (Which is who, exactly?) Also on tap is a string of “Kate Plus 8” specials—a continuation of her previous TLC show with ex-husband Jon’s name scrubbed off the title. Sounds awesome—assuming Jon doesn’t succeed in his current bid to have her stripped of child custody. I truly wish these hateful, wretched people would go away, but they aren’t. So, I guess we’d better just get used to it.
TBS Gets Toon—With “adult” cartoons now saturating the Idiot Box, TBS has decided to get in on the action. “Neighbors from Hell” is an animated comedy about a family who, well, happens to be from hell. Fox TV Animation and DreamWorks Animation SKG are behind the half-hour sitcom. Pam Brady (“South Park”) and Mireille Soria (Madagascar) are executive producing alongside DreamWorks honcho Jeffrey Katzenberg. (He’s the K in SKG, don’t ya know.) At the very least, it should look slick. The show is set to preview Friday, June 4.
Ice Cube Meets Boob Tube—Depressingly, TBS has also announced plans to spin a TV series off of the slapstick Ice Cube road movie Are We There Yet? I guess it involves Cube driving cute but unruly kids somewhere each week. According to a press release, Mr. Cube will executive produce and will be a recurring character, but the starring role will be turned over to Terry Crews, who will play the brother of Ice Cube’s character. (Who I guess is saddled with the job of driving cute but unruly kids from point A to point B every week.) Given that the show will be bookended by “Tyler Perry’s House of Payne” and “Tyler Perry’s Meet the Browns,” I sense a big hit for the network. It premieres Wednesday, June 2.
Spielberg Shapes Our Future—Getting back to DreamWorks Animation SKG, Discovery Channel is teaming up with it and Steven Spielberg (he’s the S in SKG, don’t ya know) to create “Future Earth.” Described as an “epic mini-series,” the show will use computer animation to pre-create (as opposed to re-create) our planet as it will look in 25, 50 and 100 years. Leading futurists, scholars and great minds will contribute to the trippy vision of our future life. (Please be flying cars, please be flying cars.) A premiere date has not been set.