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FROM THIS EPISODE

The broadcast TV networks -- most notably ABC -- have added several new shows starring African-American characters and created by African-American writer/producers. For a long time statistics have shown that African Americans watch more TV than other ethnic groups, so why are the networks only now embracing diversity on screen? Also, new comedies were picked up for series at the upfronts this year. Why so few, and why are the ones on the air not big hits? Finally, riffing off of a Salon.com article, we consider why TV stars -- like Jon Hamm -- can’t launch a hit film.

End of show Downloads:

Lacey: Can Maya Rudolph’s Variety Show on NBC work and maybe even usher in a new era of variety shows?

Joe: The How I Met Your Dad pilot, starring indie film actress Greta Gerwig, did not get a series order from CBS. Joe argues that, although he hasn't seen the pilot, he believes the show deserves a chance since there's a built in audience.

Mike: Dodgers on TV. Mike sends a message that people should stand their ground and not give in to Time Warner Cable. The new regional sports channel is too expensive and unnecessary.

 
Diversity Is Up, Comedy Is Down; TV Stars on Film

Hosted by TV journalists Michael Schneider and Joe Adalian, KCRW's The Spin-off is the podcast that takes you inside the television industry. Twice a month we feature in-depth conversations with people who are changing what and how we watch. You'll hear from showrunners, writers, actors, executives and other TV journalists tackling the latest news and evolutions in television.

More:
TV Networks Double Down on Diversity This Fall
Why the Golden Age of TV Isn't Producing More Movie Stars

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