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Channel Surfing: FOX Issues Reprieve for "Sarah Connor," "Lost" Movie Unlikely, "Chuck," and More

Welcome to your Monday morning television briefing. Quite a lot of good telly on last night, including new episodes of Skins, Mad Men, Amazing Race, and Little Britain USA, not to mention another installment of Masterpiece Contemporary's The Last Enemy. Whew.

FOX has issued a reprieve for ratings-starved sci-fi action drama Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. The series has been given a full season order for its second season, which averaged a 2.3/6 in adults 18-49 in its last original airing. Many insiders had pegged the series as a goner, proving that there's obviously still some life in the Terminator franchise yet. (Variety)

Zeljko Ivanek (Damages) has been cast in Season Three of Heroes, where he'll appear in a multiple-episode story arc playing a character known as the Hunter in Volume Four of the series, which is subtitled "Fugitives" and is set to kick off in January or February of 2009. (E! Online's Watch with Kristin)

Entertainment Weekly's Marc Bernardin says that Chuck's Yvonne Strahovski is "TV's most underrated actress [or] she's definitely in the top five." Do we think that the Aussie native who plays Chuck's CIA handler Sarah Walker is unduely underrated? Or do we instead think of her as one of telly's greatest secrets? (Entertainment Weekly's PopWatch)

In its second outing, ABC's Life on Mars lost about 30 percent of its premiere numbers and finished behind CBS' Eleventh Hour in the 10 pm timeslot on Thursday. The second episode of Life on Mars managed to grab only a 2.5/7 in adults 18-49 and 8.22 million viewers overall (vs. its original 3.7/10 and 11.33 million viewers) and only retained 42 percent of its lead-in from Grey's Anatomy. One doesn't need to be a time-traveling detective to see that this is not good. (Variety)

J.J. Abrams teases MTV with the possibility of a feature film version of ABC's Lost but admits that it's probably unlikely that the castaways will grace the silver screen. "There’s a chance," said Abrams in an interview, "but my gut is it would never happen.” (I have to say that, as much as I love Lost with a fiery passion, I hope it stays on television where it belongs.) (MTV)

Hope Davis (Six Degrees) and John Mahoney (Frasier) have been cast in Season Two of HBO's drama In Treatment. Davis will play high-powered, childless malpractice lawyer Mira while Mahoney will play Bill, a super-confident CEO who feels that his life has slipped away. Elsewhere, Jeffrey Nordling (24) has signed on to star opposite Jada Pinkett Smith in TNT's drama pilot Time Heals; he'll play Tom Wakefield, the hospital's director of medicine. (Hollywood Reporter)

CBS Paramount Network Television has signed a talent holding deal with Rob Riggle (The Daily Show with Jon Stewart), under which he will create and star in a half-hour comedy on CBS. (Variety)

Jeff Probst, Mark Burnett, and Extreme Makeover: Home Edition executive producer Denise Cramsey have sold a pilot to CBS called Live Like You're Dying, which will feature a person with a terminal illness who will receive a chance to go "on the last adventure of their life,” which will include reunions with lost friends or estranged family members and living out their personal dreams. (Entertainment Weekly's Hollywood Insider)

In other CBS news, the network's interactive division is launching a new online feature that is has dubbed "social viewing rooms," which combines the social networking aspects of a chat room with video streaming, allowing fans to interact whilst watching the network's online content. (Hollywood Reporter)

Stay tuned.


Unknown said…
Yay! Maybe it's just me, but I've been enjoying The Sarah Connor Chronicles as one of my guilty pleasures--those shows you don't necessarily talk about but watch/like anyway.

I'm glad someone's paying attention to Ms. Strahovski. She's beautiful, of course, but I also think she's really nailing the part with a level of nuance and commitment one wouldn't necessarily expect.
rockauteur said…
Heard that Zeljko Ivanek is returning to Damages too... I guess in flashbacks?
Anonymous said…
"...Live Like You're Dying, which will feature a person with a terminal illness who will receive a chance to go "on the last adventure of their life.."

This is disturbing.
Unknown said…
Wow. I totally missed that entry. Maybe CBS is trying to compete with FOX's show--I forget the name--the one that shows videos of people being killed in car accidents, plane crashes, etc. Seconds to Live or something like that.

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