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Monday Notebook

By admin Published: April 14, 2008

"I got a hit, Schumacher, and Ruddy doesn't count any more."*

-- Since I was the guy who asked NBC's Ben Silverman to explain how "My Name Is Earl" and "30 Rock" qualified as family-hour shows, it was with great amusement that I read a New York Times piece with an NBC executive admitting that the 8-9 p.m. slot isn't all that family on Thursdays. The exec told the Times that:

... the family-hour designation should be seen as offering "direction for program development," not "black-and-white expectations" for the audience.

"'It was not to be construed as a return to a strictly defined family hour," he said, featuring wholesome shows like “Little House on the Prairie,” a hit on NBC in the late 1970s and early ’80s.

By the way, the Times story managed to discuss the "MILF Island" episode without ever using the acronym "MILF." Although it did offer an explanation of the term: "referring to a teenager’s crude designation of someone’s sexy mother."

-- "American Idol" has announced the finalists in its songwriting contest. The details are after the jump, but just looking at the song titles makes me think I've heard enough before I've heard anything. Examples: "Believe," "You Believe in Me," "You Believed in Me" (because past tense makes all the difference), "All You Will Need," "You Can Do Anything," "Dream Big."

-- Is it just me, or was "Saturday Night Live" a humongous snore on Saturday? I'm usually willing to at least sit through sketches, but I found myself muttering "well, I can see where this is going" and hitting fast-forward.

-- CBS has announced that the next season of "Survivor" will be shot in high-definition. Oh, goodie. Extra clarity for bug bites, skin tight over ribs and, of course, the pixels needed when swimsuits slip.

*I know, it's not from "30 Rock." It's from "Network," and it seemed to go nicely with this pic and with the "MILF Island" episode generally.

Here's the "Idol" song list:

Simon Fuller has announced the Top 20 finalists for the AMERICAN IDOL Songwriting Competition. Fans can listen to each submission and their cast their vote for the next AMERICAN IDOL hit single at

Thousands of online entrants were narrowed down to 20, and fans of the mega-hit Fox show can vote for their favorite until April 23. The winning song will be performed live on the AMERICAN IDOL finale stage for millions of fans worldwide. The Top 20 finalists are:

ALIGN – Written by James Smithson
ALL YOU WILL NEED – Written by Lauren Dion and Phil Minardi
BELIEVE – Written by John Buchanan
DREAM BIG – Written by Emily Shackelton
FAITH – Written by Zach Ziskin
FLY ME AWAY – Written by Scott Sheets
HERE I AM – Written by Tom Kitt, Matt Zarley, and Andy Zulla
IN THIS MOMENT – Written by Ryan Gillmor
NO TURNING BACK – Written by Luke Ebbin and Curt Schneider
ONLY LOVE – Written by Ken Stacey, Windy Wagner and David Walsh
OVERCOME – Written by Mark Holman
SOMETHING LIKE HEAVEN – Written by Aaron Sidwell
STRONGER – Written by Jason Phelps and Mendy Shaw
THANK YOU WHATEVER COMES – Written by Fran Lucci, Danny Powers and Dara Stewart
THE TIME OF MY LIFE – Written by Regie Hamm
WE’RE GONNA MAKE IT – Writen by Noel Cohen, Hugh Colocott and Amber Rhodes
WHEN YOU COME FROM NOTHING – Written by Will Hopkins
YOU BELIEVE IN ME – Written by David Barrett, Kurt Schreitmueller and Dan Yessian
YOU BELIEVED IN ME – Written by Perry Smith
YOU CAN DO ANYTHING – Written by Gail Farrell, Mark Gasbarro and Larry Kenton

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