Apple TV gives us Peanuts

Debuting today on Apple TV+ is a new Peanuts special for Halloween. It is one of three holiday-themed specials for Halloween, Thanksgiving (US), and Christmas.

It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown is available for subscribers today, but will also be available free for everyone for two days starting Oct 30.

Source: The Verge

Apple launch a channel that sounds just like MTV

Apple Music TV is a “free 24-hour curated livestream of popular music videos that will also include exclusive new music videos and premiers, special curated music video blocks, and live shows and events as well as chart countdowns and guests.”

The new music channel launched with a countdown of the top 100 all-time most-streamed songs in the US (on Apple Music) and this Thursday will run a Bruce Springsteen takeover with nothing but Bruce videos all day. It’s an extension of the Apple Music streaming radio channels.

The channel is available free (like Apple Music 1) via the Apple Music app and at, however I assume this is, for the moment, US-only as it isn’t appearing in my local app.

Source: Variety

Die Hard is back… to sell batteries

Want to watch a really trite, charmless effort to sell you a Die Hard branded battery? I’m glad Mr Takagi never had to see this.

First look at Railroad

The Colson Whitehead novel The Underground Railroad has been adapted into a 9-episode series for Amazon by director Barry Jenkins (who I believe is helming every episode). Today he revealed this first-look teaser:

A high profile case of Zoom Dick

CNN contributor, legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin has taken leave from CNN and has been suspended by the New Yorker. Apparently he exposed himself during a Zoom call between staff of the New Yorker and radio station WNYC.

In a statement:

“I made an embarrassingly stupid mistake, believing I was off-camera. I apologize to my wife, family, friends and co-workers.”

“I believed I was not visible on Zoom. I thought no one on the Zoom call could see me. I thought I had muted the Zoom video,” he added.

Source: Vice Motherboard

New head at Warner Bros Television

This isn’t a surprise as it has been rumoured for a few weeks now, but Channing Dungey has been appointed Chairperson of Warner Bros Television Group. She had been an exec at Netflix for the past 20 months, but prior to that she was President of Entertainment at ABC.

Source: Deadline

Channing Dungey

From the desk of Ken Levine

Former Cheers writer Ken Levine penned a new blog entry today about former Cheers and Look Who’s Talking Now star Kirstie Alley.

A little "out there" but still, easy and fun to work with.  

Since then she's become a Scientologist, gained and lost and gained and lost lots of weight.  Frankly, she's become a little loony.  But I've still been fond of her, and it was nice to see her at the CHEERS 30 year reunion several years ago.  

But then she tweeted that she was all for Donald Trump, listing the reasons MAGA idiots usually list.  

I no longer am fond of Kirstie Alley.

Oh, and apparently the Beach Boys played a Trump fundraiser yesterday too.

Read: By Ken Levine

Dave speaks

It’s a time of promo for his Netflix TV show, so Dave Letterman has stepped out of what I assume is a cabin in Montana to grant an interview to the New York Times.

While hardly its most devastating casualty, the coronavirus also nearly put a halt to Letterman’s Netflix interview show, “My Next Guest Needs No Introduction,” which returns on Wednesday. He had recorded two episodes, with Kim Kardashian West and with Robert Downey Jr., before the pandemic, and believed the season — if not the series — was finished.

Instead, he was able to produce two more episodes over the summer, under substantially different circumstances: one with Dave Chappelle, which was recorded at an outdoor pavilion in Yellow Springs, Ohio; and one with Lizzo, at her home studio in Los Angeles, which had no audience at all.

For Letterman, each of these episodes offered him a further education in the evolution of entertainment and deeper insights as an interviewer and observer of human nature. Even so, he found himself yearning for what he called “the carefree days of nonsense” when he could “bring people into a theater and talk to them for an hour, and when we were done I would go out into the crowd and shake hands, and everybody would want to tongue-kiss me.”

Read: NYT

Letterman sometimes feels self-conscious about being decades older than some of his guests, he said, but “there’s always a conduit for mutual experience.”

TeeVee Snacks

  • Dark Side of The Ring has been commissioned for a third season by Vice TV. Source: Deadline
  • Netflix head of comedy Jane Wiseman is out. Source: THR
  • Ben Smith’s column this week reads like an obit for Mark Burnett’s career. Good. Read: NYT
  • ABC iView are expected to introduce a mandatory sign-in from mid next year. Read: SMH
The ABC is planning to make it compulsory for viewers to register their personal detail to watch Bluey online.

Trailer Park

Film Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom debuts on Netflix on Dec 18.

Tensions rise when trailblazing blues singer Ma Rainey and her band gather at a recording studio in Chicago in 1927.

What’s next?