Here's everything you need to know about the world of television for Tuesday, August 4th, 2020. I'm writing this from the Twin Cities suburbs, where AllYourScreens HQ is powered by coffee and hot pockets.
MORE DETAILS ON THE CBS ALL-ACCESS REFRESH
Decider's Scott Porch has a really fascinating interview with ViacomCBS chief digital officer Marc Debevoise. It' a must-read if you're interested in what the future holds for that service.
There are a bunch of takeaways, including that while CBSAA will have plenty of content from Viacom's various cable networks, they won't have any stacking rights. So while programs airing on CBS will be available for next-day viewing, any of the shows from the various cable networks will only be from previous seasons.
Other highlights: there will be BET-branded content on CBSAA, but it won't be anything that is available on BET or BET+; the company has not yet decided whether to end the Comedy Central Now, MTV Hits and Nick Hits channels on Apple TV and Amazon Channels that are now effectively part of CBS All Access; and while news reports have said the new movie "The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The Run" will go directly to CBSAA, in reality it will have a PVOD release before it moves to streaming.
Of all the Viacom streaming plays, I'm most fascinated by BET+ and how they see their programming approach and place in the market. There are a lot of under-reported parts in play there, from the Tyler Perry partnership to just how it differentiates itself from the linear network. There are several other African-American oriented streamers. But none with the visibility or budget of BET+.
AMC REPORTS 2Q EARNINGS, SVOD SERVICES DO WELL
AMC Networks, the cable networks company that operates AMC, IFC, WE tv, BBC America and SundanceTV, on Tuesday reported lower second-quarter earnings and said U.S. advertising revenue fell 14.6 percent, less than previously estimated. The company blamed a lack of new content due to production shutdowns and an advertising slump in travel, leisure and entertainment categories.
For me, the most interesting tidbit came from CEO Josh Sapan, who touted the relative success of AMC's four SVOD services:
AMC Networks in its first-quarter earnings report had said it expects to reach 3.5 million to 4.0 million paid subscribers in aggregate for its four niche streaming services, namely Acorn TV, Shudder, Sundance Now and UMC, by the end of 2020, "a full two years ahead of the company’s original target of year-end 2022." Sapan said Tuesday that his team was comfortable that it would end the end on the "higher end" of the subscriber target range.
"We have made particular progress during this COVID period with strong growth across our targeted SVOD services ... as consumers increasingly subscribe to both our targeted offerings in addition to general entertainment SVOD services," he said, highlighting particularly strong momentum for March through June, with Shudder having had its strongest quarter ever in terms of trials, paid subscribers and amount of time spent on the service. "We are not competitive with the large [streaming] services, we are compatible with them."
COO Ed Carroll said that the company's streaming business was running "significantly" ahead of its previously shared 2024 year-end target for revenue of $500 million-plus and 5 million-7 million subscribers.
AMC doesn't seem to be giving much guidance of what they are spending for content on any of their SVOD channels, but from the outside, it appears they have definitely increased their spend on original content for their horror-based streaming service Shudder. That service is regularly rolling out low-budget original movies and specials, most recently last Friday's quarantine-centric movie "Host."
Here is a rundown of the new television programs premiering today:
1) A Go! Go! Cory Carson Summer Camp (Netflix)
Cory's spending the summer at Camp Friendship with his best friend, Freddie. But jealousy flares when Freddie brings his cousin Rosie along for the ride.
2) Almost Perfect Crimes Season Two Premiere (MHzChoice)
Using a combination of archival images, reenactments and expert interviews, "Almost Perfect Crimes" is a fascinating investigation into some of the most notorious, infamous and terrifying crimes in French history. Each episode examines the historical, political and social circumstances that shaped a specific crime or series of crimes – and, using the investigative techniques of the time, follows the clues that lead to the perpetrators' capture.
3) Backyard Envy Season Two Premiere (Bravo)
James, Garrett and Mel—the Manscapers— are back, and business is blooming! They’ve expanded the clientele of their boutique landscaping company, and have more projects than they can handle.
4) Chopped Sweets Season Premiere (Food)
Host Scott Conant challenges the competitors to make mashup masterpieces of two desserts. They discover a nutty version of a doughnut in the round one basket, and a hyped-up hybrid meat appears in round two.
5) Extreme Unboxing Series Premiere (A&E)
"This new series follows a group of larger-than-life personalities from across the country as they buy liquidated merchandise for pennies on the dollar and unbox it with hopes for big profits. Risking their own money to bid on and win the best boxes at the best prices, pallets are delivered to their homes for the big reveal. Each group digs through hundreds, sometimes thousands, of items on the hunt for retail gold. Whether it is one box or an entire truckload, these savvy super-flippers scour the Internet searching for their next big money score. With items ranging from everyday store stock to the weird and wacky, this modern-day treasure hunt is filled with surprises as no one, including the buyers themselves, have any idea what will be inside."
6) Malibu Rescue: The Next Wave (Netflix)
As summer returns to Malibu, Team Flounder takes to the beach to host — and unexpectedly compete in — the International Beachmaster Competition.
7) Mystery Lab (Netflix)
Factual television series which explores topics related to science and history, hosted by Felipe Castanhari.
8) Sam Jay: 3 In The Morning (Netflix)
Following her Netflix debut on The Comedy Lineup Part 1, Emmy Award-nominated Saturday Night Live writer Sam Jay is back with her first hour-long Netflix original comedy special, 3 In The Morning. Filmed at The Masquerade in Atlanta, Georgia, Sam Jay delivers the witty, candid and raw brand of comedy that earned her recognition as a standout comic.
9) The Swamp (HBO)
This documentary provides a look behind the curtain of Washington politics by following three renegade Republican Congressmen as they bring libertarian and conservative zeal to champion the President’s call to “drain the swamp,” while facing demands to raise money for their re-election campaigns and the Republican national party.
10) What's It Worth? Series Premiere (A&E)
"Comedian and collector Jeff Foxworthy will scour the country in search of hidden treasures held by everyday people who are hoping to strike it big. From the comfort of their homes, Foxworthy and a team of experts may visit your state, town or even someone you know to examine a variety of heirlooms, trinkets and treasures to help people determine if they are sitting on a gold mine, or if they are just holding on to items for sentimental value. With objects ranging from pop-culture keepsakes to historical relics and odd mementos, viewers will be surprised by what is uncovered as they hear the personal stories behind these hidden treasures, some of which are equally as impressive as the dollar value that’s revealed."
For a rundown of all the new episodes of television premiering tonight, click here.
TOO MUCH TV REALLY IS A THING
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