By Tim Cuprisin Media Columnist Published Sep 18, 2009 at 3:30 PM

Channel 58 is moving "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" up an hour, to 2 p.m. weekdays, starting Monday. The move opens up the 3 p.m. hour for Oprah protege "Dr. Oz" and his new show.

Ellen's Monday guest list include  Jennifer Love Hewitt and Kelly Osbourne.

Her daytime talk show won't be affected by word that she's joining the "reality" TV bench as the fourth judge on Fox's "American Idol" in January.

I haven't had a chance to comment on that move and I'll have to say I expected Paula Abdul to come to terms with the "Idol" folks and return to the spot that made the faded pop star a prime-time star. Replacing her with Ellen brings a known commodity to the show. But Paula's instability was one of the many parts of the equation that yielded a long-term "reality" TV success.

Fox has to be a little nervous about Abdul's absence. While she's not as crucial to the show's continuing success as Simon Cowell, she's a close number two.

No, Ellen's not a pop music professional. But she's a proven TV host with a regular audience. She'll work well with the mom contingent of the "Idol" viewing crowd.  And she's likely to be as nicey-nice to the singers as Abdul was.

One of the signs of skill behind "Idol," the top-rated show in television for years, is the ability to keep the program on the public radar through the summer, although the show only airs from January to May.

Tim Cuprisin Media Columnist

Tim Cuprisin is the media columnist for He's been a journalist for 30 years, starting in 1979 as a police reporter at the old City News Bureau of Chicago, a legendary wire service that's the reputed source of the journalistic maxim "if your mother says she loves you, check it out." He spent a couple years in the mean streets of his native Chicago, and then moved on to the Green Bay Press-Gazette and USA Today, before coming to the Milwaukee Journal in 1986.

A general assignment reporter, Cuprisin traveled Eastern Europe on several projects, starting with a look at Poland after five years of martial law, and a tour of six countries in the region after the Berlin Wall opened and Communism fell. He spent six weeks traversing the lands of the former Yugoslavia in 1994, linking Milwaukee Serbs, Croats and Bosnians with their war-torn homeland.

In the fall of 1994, a lifetime of serious television viewing earned him a daily column in the Milwaukee Journal (and, later the Journal Sentinel) focusing on TV and radio. For 15 years, he has chronicled the changes rocking broadcasting, both nationally and in Milwaukee, an effort he continues at

When he's not watching TV, Cuprisin enjoys tending to his vegetable garden in the backyard of his home in Whitefish Bay, cooking and traveling.