Here's everything you need to know about the world of television for Tuesday, April 28th, 2020. I'm writing this from the Twin Cities, where AllYourScreens HQ is powered by coffee & sugar-free lemon drops.
ESPN TRANSFORMS INTO ESPN 8: THE OCHO
While every network has struggled to come up with new programming during this pandemic, no sector has had more challenges than the many sports networks. Deprived of new live sports, they've scrambled to fill the gap with everything from classic sports reruns to sports movies and lots of talk shows. ESPN announced early Tuesday that its converting its flagship network into the fictional ESPN 8: The Ocho for one-day only on Saturday, May 2nd.
"ESPN 8: The Ocho" will take over ESPN for an 11-hour slate of seldom seen sports highlighted by a world record deadlift attempt by Thor Bjornsson live from Reykjavik, Iceland. Other featured events include Jelle’s Marble Runs, Cherry Pit Spitting and the Stupid Robot Fighting League.
The ESPN 8: The Ocho programming initiative got its start in August 2017, inspired by “Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story” featuring Vince Vaughn, Christine Taylor and Ben Stiller. Since then, The Ocho has taken over ESPNU, ESPN2 and now the flagship ESPN. Line-ups have included everything from Kabaddi and Disc Golf to the Tram Driver Championship and Moxie Games.
HEALTH EXPERTS WARN TOKYO OLYMPICS MIGHT NOT HAPPEN WITHOUT A VACCINE
When Olympic officials reluctantly moved this summer's Tokyo Olympics to next year, it seemed almost certain the event would take place without further delays. But now some health experts are warning that holding the Olympics without a vaccine for COVID-19 in widespread use might not be possible:
Yoshiro Mori, a former prime minister and now president of the organizing committee, told the newspaper Nikkan Sports there would be no more delays if the games can’t be held in 2021.
“No, in that situation, it will be canceled,” he said. “In the past, when there were such problems, like wartime, it has been canceled. This time, we are fighting an invisible enemy.”
Mori added: “This is a gamble for mankind. If the world triumphs over the virus and we can hold the Olympics, then our games will be so many times more valuable than any past Olympics.”
VIRTUAL RATE CUT BRINGS PANIC TO INVESTORS IN 'ANIMAL CROSSING'
This story isn't strictly television related, but it's a fascinating look at how real-life investing techniques (some of them verging on fraud) have impacted life on the popular Nintendo game "Animal Crossing." Even if you're not familiar with the game, this Financial Times story on the controversy is a must read:
Savers at the Bank of Nook are being driven to speculate on turnips and tarantulas, as the most popular video game of the coronavirus era mimics global central bankers by making steep cuts in interest rates.
The estimated 12m players of Nintendo’s cartoon fantasy Animal Crossing: New Horizons were informed last week about the move, in which the Bank of Nook slashed the interest paid on savings from around 0.5 per cent to just 0.05 per cent.
Here is a rundown of the modest number of shows premiering today....
1) Autism: The Sequel (HBO)
In 2006, HBO debuted the 2007 Emmy-winning "Autism: The Musical," a poignant, heartwarming film that followed five children on the autism spectrum as they wrote and performed their own musical. This documentary follows the stars of this musical 12 years later in "Autism: The Sequel" as the original subjects, now in their early 20s, navigate what independence means to them as they manage challenges and triumphs as adults.
2) Chopped: Beat the Judge-Amanda (Food)
This special episode has contestants competing for the chance to go up against Chopped judge Amanda Freitag in the final round.
3) Secrets of the Dead: Building Notre Dame (PBS)
How did the Notre Dame cathedral emerge over the centuries as one of the world’s most celebrated and beloved buildings? Secrets of the Dead: Building Notre Dame takes viewers on a major historical and scientific investigation into the construction of Notre Dame de Paris, which began in the 12th century and was completed several hundred years later. Standing alongside the builders of yesterday and today, uncover the vast architectural, technical, human, financial and political challenges experienced throughout the cathedral’s turbulent history.
For a rundown of all the new episodes of television premiering tonight, click here.
TOO MUCH TV REALLY IS A THING
This newsletter is called "Too Much TV" because....well, it's hard to keep track of all the new television premiering everyday. To help you prioritize your viewing, click here to see our list of more than 400 upcoming television premieres, movies and finales. You'll find listings from more than 70 networks, as well as streaming services and web shows.
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