Channel Surfing – August 12

Channel Surfing – August 12

All the tube news that’s fit to surf …

– AMC has landed the rights to produce a TV series based on The Walking Dead comic books. Frank Darabont (The Shawshank Redemption) will write, direct and executive produce the series, which follows a group of survivors seeking a safe haven after a zombie apocalypse.

– The New York Times has a detailed breakdown of how the Paula Abdul/American Idol negotiations broke down.

– Abdul, by the way, may be signing on for a guest gig as a new temp on Ugly Betty. One bit of advice for Ms. Abdul: Stay off the Twitter until the contract is signed, m’kay?

– Add LaToya Jackson to the list of celebs reportedly among the contenders on the next season of Dancing With the Stars. Think she would even be considered if the Jackson fam wasn’t so prominently in the news right now? LaToya doesn’t even meet the show’s D-list minimum … Other celebs rumored to be in contention for the new season, which premieres on Sept. 21, include Donny Osmond, Vera Wang and Lou Ferrigno, though‘s wish list line-up is a lot more fun.

USA Today has a fun “where are they now?” feature on how successful the winners of career-related reality TV series have been after their shows.

Heroes lost me after the first season, but things are looking up for season four, with a line-up of new cast members that includes Ray Park (he’ll always be Darth Maul to me), Prison Break‘s Robert Knepper and now, Oz‘s Ernie Hudson.

– Ratings for Comedy Central’s roast of Joan Rivers were down 32 percent from its last roast, of Larry the Cable Guy. Maybe viewers just felt like every joke that could be made about Rivers and her many plastic surgeries had already been made?

– Have you seen the cool new series of U.S. Postal Service stamps honoring classic TV shows? I’m hoping to get a You Bet Your Life Groucho in the mail.

The Washington Post‘s Lisa de Moraes reports that Fox is screening that controversial abortion episode of Family Guy – the one the network is declining to air – for critics and members of the TV Academy tonight in Los Angeles. Have to say, the light-on-details description of the episode don’t make it sound so funny.

Ashton Kutcher had to Tweet his embarrassing skeeball defeat at the hands of Jimmy Fallon on Fallon’s late-night NBC talk show.

– And tonight in primetime:

America’s Got Talent on NBC (8PM ET)
Lauren Conrad tries to win $50K for her fave charity on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire (8PM, ABC)
– People continue to reveal incredibly embarrassing, sometimes life-ruining, personal details as the second season of Moment of Truth premieres (9PM, Fox)
– The Leverage team goes after a tabloid newscaster (9PM, TNT)
Wipeout. 9PM. ABC. Big red balls
– Bear’s huntin’ wild reindeer in the Arctic on Man vs. Wild (9PM, Discovery)
Bill wants to sell the house he and the missus renovated on Giuliana & Bill (9PM, Style Network)
Criss Angel: Mindfreak opens season five with Criss getting buried alive in a clear coffin (10PM, A&E)
– The first season of The Philanthropist wraps on NBC (10PM)
– Season premiere of Hard Knocks: Training Camp with the Cincinnati Bengals (10PM, HBO)
– Carter’s ticked off when the FBI interferes with the team’s mission to save a kidnapping victim on Dark Blue (10PM, TNT)
– The final four have to cook blindfolded on Top Chef: Masters (10PM, Bravo)
– Seventh season premiere of Dinner: Impossible on Food Network involves Chef Robert trying to feed 250 roller derby queens (10PM)
– Jasmine can’t handle her hooch on Real World: Cancun (10PM, MTV)
– The Verminators take on rats and bats (10PM, Discovery)
– Joan’s chatting with the nouveau wealthy on How’d You Get So Rich? (10PM, TV Land)
Adam tries to down a six-pound burrito at the NASCAR Café n Vegas on Man v. Food (10PM, Travel Channel)
– It’s not just a Southern thang – the action on Toddlers & Tiaras moves to the East Coast tonight (10PM, TLC)
– And Michael & Michael Have Issues about a college gig (10:30PM, Comedy Central)

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