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Archive for Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Fox takes second chance on ‘Family’ life

August 18, 2004

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How often do cancelled shows get a second chance at network exposure? "Family Guy" (Fox) was launched with much fanfare in the late 1990s, but never found a big enough audience to stick around. Like "Futurama," it ended up in Cartoon Network's Adult Swim block. By late-night cable standards, "Guy" became a hit, and helped win Adult Swim a steady audience of young viewers. "Family Guy" DVD sales have also been strong.

Given its cult success, Fox invites "Family Guy" back for a four-episode mini-marathon. Best-known for its cruel and crude humor, the "wit" in "Family Guy" depends almost entirely on references to old TV shows. It also features a lot of cameo voiceovers, including Patrick Warburton, Tony Danza and Valerie Bertinelli (7 p.m.), AJ Benza and Adam West (7:30 p.m.), Sam Waterston (8 p.m.) and Andy Dick, Jon Favreau and Gene Simmons (8:30 p.m.).

  • Hey, you undecided voters! Come out, come out, wherever you are. Paula Zahn hosts a Town Hall Meeting (7 p.m., CNN) in Canton, Ohio, to discuss the issues that concern the voters who have not made up their minds between President George Bush and Sen. John Kerry.
  • The ABC News Special "The Reunion" (9 p.m., ABC) documents a meeting of members of a 1960 kindergarten class from Shaker Heights, Ohio. As youngsters, these students were at the center of a bitter battle to integrate the school system. Now in their late 40s, they reflect on the experience and how their old school and community has changed in the past four decades.

Tonight's other highlights

  • Scheduled on "60 Minutes II" (7 p.m., CBS): how matchmaking has become a billion-dollar industry.
  • Scheduled primetime Olympics coverage includes men's gymnastics, men's swimming, women's swimming, men's cycling and men's track and field.
  • Jessica goes on tour, but can't sing, on the season finale of "Newlyweds" (9 p.m., MTV).
  • Tommy comes to grips with his family's breakup on "Rescue Me" (9 p.m., FX).

Late night

Sharon Stone and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs share couch time on "Late Show with David Letterman" (10:35 p.m., CBS) ... Paul Sorvino and Blanchard Ryan appear on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" (11:05 p.m., ABC) ... Tommy Stinson appears on "The Late, Late Show with Craig Kilborn" (11:37 p.m., CBS).

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