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Catching Up

By Rich Heldenfels Published: April 22, 2013

As I mentioned in a previous post, I have been away from the office for several days because of a family gathering. A fair amount of gathering time included the TV being on for Boston updates, but beyond that I let the emails pile up and regular TV go unwatched. So here's some of what has accumulated in my absence.

You may have seen my interview with John Lithgow before he came back to Akron recently. While here, he revisited the area with Mary Beth Breckenridge. Her fine story about tha tour is here, and video from his stop at Stan Hywet Hall is here:

The information-gathering resources for many TV critics, including myself, have shrunk dramatically. TV Tattle has ended. The aggregation site was especially good at compiling multiple columns or reviews on the same topic in one place, but it was also useful because its editor was a great collector of info and oddities that I more than once ended up tweeting, posting on Facebook or linking here. A big loss.

Three Cleveland Browns will be competing on GSN's "American Bible Challenge." The official word:

A team of three Cleveland area residents will compete on Season Two of the highest-rated show in GSN’s history, THE AMERICAN BIBLE CHALLENGE, hosted by comedian Jeff Foxworthy, currently airing each Thursday at 9:00 pm ET/PT.  First & Faith will be competing for a total purse of $140,000, and are playing to benefit One More, which was created to spread the love and hope of Christ to One More soul through charitable initiatives and partnerships.

First & Faith includes three members of the Cleveland Browns, including Benjamin Watson, tight end; Reggie Hodges, punter; and Robert Brookes, team chaplain. All of them love football and love the Lord! Watson founded this charity to help the community and share his faith. “Since its inception our desire has been for One More to be a vehicle to carry the hope and love of Christ to those in our community who need it most, while understanding that the best and most efficient way to reach people’s hearts is by first meeting their physical needs. Our mission is to simply be a blessing to those around us wherever we are, whether that’s supporting existing charities or initiating programs of our own.”

The adoption documentary "Stuck" will get a showing at the Cedar Lee at 7 p.m. on May 2 as part of a promotional bus tour. More about the film, from the makers:

STUCK is a new, award-winning documentary film that reveals the personal, real-life stories of children and parents navigating a rollercoaster of bureaucracy on their journeys through the international adoption system, each filled with hope, elation - and sometimes heartbreak.

Craig Juntunen, Executive Producer of STUCK and President and Founder of Both Ends Burning, the non profit organization dedicated to furthering international adoption and reducing the current roadblocks and red tape in the system, will launch a 60 city bus tour in 80 days on February 28, 2013 in Washington, D.C. with a kick-off event featuring remarks by Senator Mary Landrieu.  Additional speakers will include Juntunen, Executive Director of the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute Kathleen Strottman and Members of Congress.  The tour bus then rolls into Richmond, VA for the first of 60 nationwide screenings.  The film will screen in each city for a special, one night engagement followed by a Q&A with Craig Juntunen and members of the adoption community.

Executive Producer Craig Juntunen said:  "The purpose of the tour and film is to help the average person understand the steep decline in and issues surrounding International Adoption and create a movement that will ultimately put pressure on U.S. and foreign officials to focus on the children and reach agreement on a more supportive and compassionate attitude toward International Adoptions.  The average adoption takes nearly 896 days and costs more than $28,000 and we want to help change that."

To view the trailer, learn more about the bus tour, cities and dates and/or to purchase tickets to a screening, please visit:<>
STUCK follows Tihun from Ethiopia, Nate from Vietnam, and Erickson and Therline from Haiti on their individual voyages from orphanages in their native countries to their homes with families in the United States. Filmmaker Thaddaeus Scheel tracks the chapters in the lives of these four children, and the families seeking to parent them, revealing along the way the intense hope and disappointment they experience on the odyssey to unite as families. Some stories are heartwarming, showing incredible examples of kids who blossom after joining their families, while others offer insight into the emotional and physical impact institutional life can have on these kids.


With the swift demise of "Ready for Love," NBC is moving "Grimm" to Tuesdays. That official word:

NBC is moving its drama “Grimm” to Tuesdays (10-11 p.m. ET) beginning April 30, behind a previously scheduled two-hour episode of “The Voice.” “Grimm” will remain in that 10 p.m. Tuesday timeslot through May 21.

“Dateline” will replace “Grimm” at 9 p.m. Fridays, beginning April 26.

It has not yet been determined when or where remaining episodes of “Ready for Love” will be aired.

I have noted my dismay at what "Glee" has become. Fox has a different view, ordering fifth and sixth seasons of the show. As said here:

FOX has ordered two more seasons of the genre-defying musical sensation GLEE, it was announced today by Kevin Reilly, Chairman of Entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company. 

“GLEE debuted as the first and only successful musical comedy series on television, and more than four years later, it continues to defy genres, break new ground and have a significant impact on popular culture,” said Reilly. “Week in and week out, Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, Ian Brennan, Dante DiLoreto and the entire GLEE team deliver a series that not only delights and surprises fans, but also inspires them to talk about, share, debate and engage with the show – and I’m absolutely thrilled to have them on board for another two seasons.”

“GLEE has been a signature series for the studio since its launch four years ago and we couldn’t be happier that FOX has ordered two more seasons,” commented Twentieth Century Fox Television Chairmen Dana Walden and Gary Newman. “Ryan, Brad, Ian and Dante have created something that is far larger than a television show; it’s a global entertainment brand which continues to touch millions around the world. From its chart-topping musical numbers to its inventive storytelling and rich, complex characters, GLEE rewrote the rules of what network television could be, and we are enormously proud to be the studio behind it.”

“I am very grateful to Kevin, Dana and Gary for their incredible support of this series from the beginning,” added Murphy. “But I also want to thank our loyal audience, whose passion and enthusiasm continue to amaze and inspire us.”

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