OnMedia: No labor = more TV
The weather forecast calls for an outdoor weekend, but by the time Monday rolls around, you may want to plant yourself in front of the TV and celebrate Labor Day with mindless viewing.
Television, especially the cable channels, learned years ago to meet that need with rerun marathons and this year is no exception.
Leading my rerun marathon list is Monday's airing on TBS of 20 episodes of "The Office" starting at 9 a.m., with the very funny Larry Wilmore helping Michael through "Diversity Day." Episodes air until 7 p.m.
If you think the show has seen better days, these would be the better days you're talking about.
Here are 10 of the more noteworthy Monday marathons:
- "No Reservations" -- Travel Channel, from 8 a.m. until 2 a.m., with new episodes at at 8 and 9 p.m.
- "Hoarders" -- A&E, from 7 a.m.to 10 p.m., and then from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m. Tuesday.
- "Two and a Half Men" -- FX, from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
- "Bones" -- TNT from 11 a.m. until 7 p.m.
- "House Hunters International" -- HGTV, from 5:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.
- "Little People, Big World" -- TLC, from 5 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- "Dirty Jobs" -- Discovery, from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m. Tuesday
- "Murder She Wrote" -- Hallmark Movie Channel from 7 a.m. to 3 a.m. Tuesday
- "I Love Lucy" -- Hallmark Channel from 7 a.m. until 3 a.m. Tuesday
- "The Secret Life of the American Teenager" -- ABC Family Channel, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Remembering "The March of Time": Turner Classic Movies marks the 75th anniversary of "The March of Time" with installments of the newsreel series from 7 to 10 p.m. Sunday.
"The March of Time" told the events of the day by mixing actual newsreel footage with recreations. Episodes were produced from 1935 through 1951. Here is the complete schedule of episodes airing Sunday night.
Channel 12 replaces Lyra O'Brien: Channel 12 has added Luke Sampe to its weather team starting Oct. 4. He replaces Lyra O'Brien, who's been freelancing for the ABC station since she left in July.
Sampe is currently chief meteorologist at WJFW-TV, the NBC station in Wausau/Rhinelander. The UW-Milwaukee grad is a native of Two Rivers, Minn.
Journal Broadcast Group's election plan: Journal Broadcast Group, which includes Channel 4 and WTMJ-AM (620) in Milwaukee, has outlined its plans for covering the upcoming election season, including a minimum of five minutes of election news coverage daily, Monday through Friday, in the 30 days before the general election.
That coverage will air on afternoon and late evening newscasts on Channel 4 and "high listener" periods on WTMJ.
The stations will run public service announcements urging people to vote and debates will be aired "where appropriate."
It was a technical problem: Viewers of Wednesday night's Brewers-Reds game on WMLW-TV (Channel 41 over the air, Channel 7 and 982 on Time Warner, and other locations on other TV services) reported problems with the picture.
General manager Jim Hall investigated and traced the problem to a piece of equipment the encodes the digital signal off the satellite feed. A setting had changed, producing a darker than normal picture.
"It was remedied earlier today," he told me late Thursday afternoon.
A Labor Day TV tradition: "The 45th Annual Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon" kicks off at 7 p.m. on WMLW, with sister channel 58 picking it up from 10 p.m. Sunday until 7 p.m. Monday.
Among the performers on the telethon will be 33 dancers from the Trinity Academy of Irish Dance, scheduled to perform sometime between 8 and 8:40 a.m. Among those dancers, 19 are from Wisconsin.
As long as we're talking about the telethon, here's the classic reunion of Lewis and his old partner, Dean Martin, on the 1976 telethon, thanks to Frank Sinatra.
Viewers might be better off watching the digital signal than watching it through their cable/satelite provider?
Regular viewers of the Brewers on Channel 41 say that Wednesday's picture was worse than normal. I saw the complaints on Twitter. Yesterday morning, I called Jim Hall, who had received a number of emails about that specific game, and he was already looking into the problem. He called me later Thursday with the details. I wouldn't call that "making excuses." As to the general quality of Channel 41, that may depend on how you watch it, whether over the air of on cable.
Jim Hall may be making excuses for Channel 41's picture on Wednesday. However, every single time the Brewers are on 41 the picture is terrible. And it's not just me that notices it. Every single one of my friends says the same thing and there are threads on Facebook and elsewhere that say the same thing.
WMLW-TV is the worst place to watch a Brewers game. The picture and sound quality is usually always poor.
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