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<p>&quot;The Mysteries of Laura&quot;</p>

"The Mysteries of Laura"

Credit: NBC

TV Ratings: 'Mysteries of Laura' debut, 'America's Got Talent' finale lead NBC Wednesday

'Red Band Society' draws a young, female, small audience for FOX

Fast National ratings for Wednesday, September 17, 2014.

How can you be a mom *and* draw big ratings? Debra Messing knows!

Despite aggressively negative reviews, "Mysterious of Laura" had a solid debut on Wednesday night, airing following the finale of "America's Got Talent." NBC dominated primetime in all measures.

The "Talent" finale airing in the earlier two-hour block than last year's finale and delivered lower key demo numbers, but a bigger audience.

Although the "Laura" debut posted a decent drop at the half-hour, it still did strong enough numbers for NBC to be optimistic heading into next week's Wednesday 8 p.m. premiere.

On the other side of the equation, FOX can't be overjoyed with the early returns for "Red Band Society." But despite soft figures, "Red Band Society" grew from its "Hell's Kitchen" lead-in overall and didn't drop in the half-hour, staving off panic. Still, "Red Band Society" finished tied with ABC comedy repeats among young viewers, which isn't great.

The night's other semi-notables were on CBS, where "Big Brother" beat "AGT" in the key demo in their head-to-head hour and "Extant" rose week-to-week in its season [series?] finale.

More analysis coming later with Finals, but on to the Fast National numbers...

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Men Women and Children - Ansel Elgrot
Credit: Paramount Pictures

Ansel Elgort is the glue holding new 'Men, Women & Children' trailer together

New spot digs deeper into Jason Reitman's tech-driven ensemble drama.

Similar to the first wave of Telluride reviews for "Labor Day," just a year ago, reactions sprouting out of the Toronto Film Festival for Jason Reitman's "Men, Women & Children" encompassed a full spectrum. Critical opinion from voices on the ground ranged from impressed praise to cries that the film was DOA. A new trailer for "Men ,Women & Children" cuts through the schizophrenic chatter.

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'Ask Drew' tackles Toronto with answers about Anna Kendrick, Black Panther, and Roger Corman
Credit: Universal Pictures

'Ask Drew' tackles Toronto with answers about Anna Kendrick, Black Panther, and Roger Corman

Plus we premiere a new look and ask for your feedback

We're going to consider today an experiment in "Ask Drew," and the results, much like everything else about this show, depend on you.

We managed to schedule an "Ask Drew" to fall right between the Toronto Film Festival and my vacation, which I'm already enjoying in Austin, Texas, where I'm going to attend the tenth anniversary of Fantastic Fest and eat roughly twice my own weight in brisket.

One of the changes we're making to the show involves my appearance. I am aware that this is shot on video and then shown to actual people, but I am, like many writers, not as focused on the external as the internal. I've heard enough feedback, though, that I've decided to try to class it up just a wee bit. So I'm going to ask you… how do you feel about this week's episode?

The questions, of course, are good as always. You guys asked about diversity in upcoming Marvel movies, the new Anna Kendrick musical (which I am kicking myself for not seeing in Toronto), and we played one of the easiest rounds of Movie God so far. What I love about this show and the interaction we've been able to have so far is that I'm learning a lot about what's important to you, and that can only be a good thing. I think of this all as a dialogue, because if it's just a monologue, me shouting opinions into the void, then what's the point? I write what I write so it will be read and so we can use that as a springboard into a larger conversation, and "Ask Drew" has been a lovely way to help crystallize some of those talking points.

I'll be taping the next episode on Tuesday the 29th, so get your questions about Fantastic Fest or anything else you're interested in ready and send them to, and as always, thanks for playing along.

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'SNL' taps Darrell Hammond as its new announcer, succeeding Don Pardo
Credit: NBC

'SNL' taps Darrell Hammond as its new announcer, succeeding Don Pardo

“SNL” taps Darrell Hammond as its new announcer, succeeding Don Pardo
Hammond, who from 1995 to 2009 became the longest-serving cast member in “Saturday Night Live” history, has been named the show's 2nd announcer. Hammond does a dead-on impression of Pardo, and has sometimes filled in for the longtime announcer, who died last month at age 96. In fact, Hammond impersonated Don Pardo hitting on James Van Der Beek in a 1999 "SNL" episode. Lorne Michaels says, though, that Hammond won't be impersonating Pardo: “There were a lot of sweet ideas about carrying on with Don somehow. Because everyone has a Pardo impression. But he had the greatest run and he’s a completely beloved figure. So I thought: Don’t turn this into something else. That period ended.” Meanwhile, Hammond says of returning to "SNL": "When he passed, they wanted me; it felt right for me to be the one to replace him. It's been a very improbable life; I didn't expect something like this, but it feels real good."

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<p>Franka Potente and Diane Kruger in &quot;The Bridge.&quot;</p>

Franka Potente and Diane Kruger in "The Bridge."

Credit: FX

Review: 'The Bridge' - 'Beholder'

Marco goes hunting for Fausto, Eleanor and Sonya meet, and Linder has a close shave

A review of tonight's "The Bridge" coming up just as soon as my beard affords me special powers...

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<p>Debra Messing in &quot;The Mysteries of Laura.&quot;</p>

Debra Messing in "The Mysteries of Laura."

Credit: NBC

Series premiere talkback: 'The Mysteries of Laura' - 'Pilot'

What did everybody think of the new NBC cop drama?

On Monday, I posted my review of NBC's "The Mysteries of Laura." Now it's your turn. For those who tuned in tonight, what did you think? Did you find it funny or grating? Do you have any idea yet how Debra Messing can possibly be both a cop and a mom? Were you engaged by the mystery, or too busy wondering why NYPD detectives were so busy investigating a case in Westchester? Do you have an impulse to go shopping at Laura's preferred big box store? And will you watch again? Or would you just rather listen to Linda Holmes' "CopMom MomCop" theme song?

Have at it.

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Series premiere talkback: 'Red Band Society' - 'Pilot'
Credit: FOX

Series premiere talkback: 'Red Band Society' - 'Pilot'

What did everybody think of FOX's new teen hospital drama?

I've already published my review of "Red Band Society." Now it's your turn. For those who tuned in tonight, what did you think? Too much "Glee" in a hospital, or not enough? Did you like the narration, or did you want Coma Boy to pipe down? Did any of the characters pop for you? Did your prior feelings for Coldplay enhance or detract from the final sequence? And will you watch again?

Have at it.

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<p>Derrick of &quot;Big Brother&quot;</p>

Derrick of "Big Brother"

Credit: CBS

Recap: 'Big Brother' Wednesday - Eviction reveals the Final 3

Did Victoria, Beast Mode or Cody join Julie Chen on Wednesday?

As much as I hated the BB Rewind twist, I was perfectly content with the way things went down on Tuesday night's "Big Brother," with both the elimination and with the results of the Head of Household competition. 

It may not have been a great "Big Brother" season, but surely it's all coming around to a satisfying end, right?

Click through and follow along in case things somehow go pear-shaped because this is "Big Brother" and ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN.

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Aaron Sorkin didn’t know how 'The Newsroom' would end when he began writing the final season
Credit: HBO

Aaron Sorkin didn’t know how 'The Newsroom' would end when he began writing the final season

'Godzilla' movie has a 'Breaking Bad' easter egg

Aaron Sorkin didn’t know how “The Newsroom” would end when he began writing the final season
"For most of the time, I didn’t know how the show was going to end,” he says. "I would have small images of what I wanted to see. But the closer I got to the end of the season in terms of writing, the more I was able to see the end of the season finale. Once we got there, it happened more easily than I thought it was going to.”

“Godzilla” movie has a “Breaking Bad” easter egg
For a split second in the opening credits, you can see Walter White’s name. PLUS: Retired 84-year-olds take a “Breaking Bad” tour.

“Glee” bringing back NeNe Leakes for the final season
Coach Roz Washington will return to McKinley High.

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<p>Orlando Jones</p>

Orlando Jones

'Sleepy Hollow' star Orlando Jones on Captain Irving's legal woes and interacting with fans

How has this season's added work load changed things for 'Sleepy Hollow'?

I don't want to jinx anything, but HitFix's video studio is becoming like the West Coast Campus for "Sleepy Hollow." 

In June, Tom Mison and Nicole Beharie stopped by our offices for a look back at the first season of their FOX hit and a tease of the early start for production on Season 2.

This past week, we hosted Orlando Jones, who plays Captain Frank Irving on the history-tweaking, supernatural-fueled action-dramedy.

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<p>The &quot;New Girl&quot; Season 4 premiere</p>

The "New Girl" Season 4 premiere

Credit: FOX

Ratings Analysis: 'New Girl' up from spring, 'Mindy Project' flat

Does the 'Utopia' bump mean anything for FOX?

As TV audiences become more and more fragmented, it's always amusing to go back and look at perceived failures from two or three years ago and muse on how grateful the networks work be to have those numbers now. 

It's a bit less common to go back only a year and look at the numbers a show was doing and go, "GOOD LORD. WHAT HAPPENED?!?" But it occurs.

Case in point: More than a few ratings observers have glanced at this morning's premiere ratings for "New Girl" and then looked back at last year's premiere ratings and gone, "GOOD LORD. WHAT HAPPENED?!?"

Last September, "New Girl" premiered with a 2.9 rating among adults 18-49 and 5.53 million viewers. By its finale in May, "New Girl" was down to under 2.4 million viewers and a 1.2 rating among adults 18-49.

Before going any further, it always has to be repeated: Few shows on TV get a larger Live+3 and Live+7 DVR bump than "New Girl." There. Acknowledged. 

And last year's "New Girl" premiere was also a reasonably big bump from where the numbers ended the spring before. 

But still... Mere justifications like "Well, the Nick-Jess relationship really wasn't clicking" don't quite do that sort of in-season viewer attrition justice.

We've already reported on Tuesday's (September 16) Fast National numbers for the "New Girl" premiere, but now let's look a bit deeper...

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Aubrey Plaza to voice Grumpy Cat for Lifetime
Credit: NBC

Aubrey Plaza to voice Grumpy Cat for Lifetime

Les Moonves: There’s a 'very strong possibility' Showtime will be offered to non-cable subscribers

Aubrey Plaza to voice Grumpy Cat for Lifetime
In a match made in heaven, the deadpan “Parks and Rec” star has been tapped for "Grumpy Cat's Worst Christmas Ever” after Jane Lynch reportedly backed out after winning an Emmy.

Les Moonves: There’s a “very strong possibility” Showtime will be offered to non-cable subscribers
“And possibly with CBS as well,” the CBS chief, who oversees Showtime, told investors today.

“Friday Night Lights” alum Zach Gilford to play Jennifer Carpenter’s love interest on USA’s “Stanistan”
He’ll play an infrastructure manager for USAID in the drama about an American compound in the Middle Eastern country of Stanistan.

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