‘Harry Potter’ the series is coming — the only question is when?

Hi! It’s another Monday and I’m kinda feeling like this Romanian skier being chased down a run by a bear. DO NOT FALL DOWN:

HBO Max might be making a Harry Potter spinoff series … or maybe they’re not. A bunch of media outlets heard whispers today that multiple writers have been approached about a series, but when HBO Max was asked about it, they released a statement that read: “There are no ‘Harry Potter’ series in development at the studio or on the streaming platform.”

Now, that’s not a definitive no — Harry Potter has long been rumored to be a property Warner wants to develop more, and it only makes sense to create a series set in that universe. Additionally, Warner Bros. just put a new guy in charge of the franchise and Wizarding World brand last week. So it’s possible that while no project is in formal “development,” the studio might be putting feelers out to writers to see what they have to offer, either in ideas for series or just availability to work on something that would certainly be very time-consuming. Bottom line: A Harry Potter series will come down the pike one day — it’s too valuable a property to not develop the way Disney has Star Wars and Marvel — it’s just now a question of whether that is going to happen sooner rather than later. Stay tuned.

Related: The Ringer has a very good piece on the failure of HBO to build its Game of Thrones universe. Something I had not really thought about but it seems like an obvious misstep to me: they did not even start talking to George R.R. Martin about prequels and sequels until 2016 — after season 6 had aired. What on earth took them so long? By 2014 — season four — it was the most popular series on the network EVER. Had they ordered prequels or sequels back in 2014, or 2015, there wouldn’t have been a three-year lag between the end of Game of Thrones and House of Dragons, and — perhaps more importantly — they might have had a series ready for when HBO Max launched, their own Mandalorian. Missed opportunities, guys. 

NBC Sports Network is closing up shop. Live sports will now move to USA and Peacock. Additionally, WWE Network is moving to Peacock to the pay tiers, which is a huge boon for Peacock.

A question for y’all related to that news: It’s clear the media companies — Warner Brothers; ViacomCBS; NBCUniversal; Fox; Disney — they have determined that there is some drop dead date for cable and broadcasting, that there is some day, not too far on the horizon when most people will only be consuming media that is streamed. What do you think that date is?

Tom Brokaw is retiring from NBC News after being with the network for 55 years. Brokaw is 80-years-old and looks pretty good!

Walker‘s premiere was the biggest for The CW in more than four years, and the highest-rated episode of any kind since 2018, which is very interesting and makes me wonder what the network will take away from this. More cop shows? More shows starring Supernatural stars? More cop shows starring Supernatural stars? Our own Whitney is recapping the series, and you can follow along here.

Food Network is pulling the entire 20th season of Worst Cooks in America after its winner was arrested for murdering a child. They have not released any statements about the situation, however.

Yikes: a full 62% of Apple TV+’s viewers are using a free promotional offer and are not subscribers. That’s a problem down the road.

WGN America is dead. Long live NewsNation.

Some Bridgerton fans have very sharp eyes/too much time on their hands.

Here are two very spoilery pieces about Amazon’s The Wilds, if you’re interested. Sounds like filming that show SUCKED. But seriously: those links have super-major-do-not-pass-go spoilers. Do not click unless you’ve finished the first season.

Apparently, Katie Couric might have upset some Jeopardy! producers, and jeopardized (I’m sorry) her chance to host the series when she said this on Bill Maher’s about Trump’s supporters:

“But I also think some of them are believing the garbage that they are being fed 24/7 on the internet, by their constituents, and they bought into this big lie. And the question is how are we going to really almost deprogram these people who have signed up for the cult of Trump.”

Two things about this: 1. She ain’t wrong. 2. Meghan “Bad Faith” McCain went on The View today and bitched about this, claiming Couric said that “Republicans” like her needed to be “deprogrammed” when CLEARLY THAT IS NOT AT ALL WHAT SHE SAID OR WHAT SHE WAS TALKING ABOUT. Guh. That girl.

Have you seen the Cookie Monster rock? You need to see the Cookie Monster rock:

Ahead of tonight’s new episode of The Bachelor, meet the new girls they’re bringing in for no good Goddamned reason except to make dramaz.

The 2021 SCAD aTVfest, is taking place virtually Feb. 4-6, and will feature panels for A Million Little Things, Batwoman, Good Girls, Everything’s Gonna Be Okay, Nancy Drew, Queen Sugar, Good Trouble, Woke, Superstore, Kenan, This is Us and many others.

Congratulations, Jojo Siwa!

Going Viral

More than 25 million Americans have tested positive for COVID-19 as of this weekend, and the number is certainly much higher than that, considering how many are asymptomatic, or never were tested in the early days because testing wasn’t widely available (raises hand). According to Worldometers’ numbers, we should top 430,000 dead Americans today. (Johns Hopkins is about 10,000 behind that number.)

And oh no: we have another mutation. In response, President Biden has put a travel ban from countries with new mutations. This is a good start — but the truth is, it’s not going to prevent these mutations from coming here (some already are here). Someone with, say, the Brazil strain might travel here from Argentina or Paris, how would we know?

President Biden is trying to treat getting the vaccines out like a “wartime effort” but Republicans are whining that it is going to cost too much money.

President Biden has also fired that doctor who lied about Trump’s condition during his time at Walter Reed.

Dr. Birx reveals that someone at the White House was censoring real COVID data:

“I saw the president presenting graphs that I never made,” Dr. Birx said. “So, I know that someone — or someone out there or someone inside was creating a parallel set of data and graphics that were shown to the president. I know what I sent up and I know that what was in his hands was different from that. You can’t do that. You have to use the entire database.”

Who, exactly, was doing that — or why — remains a mystery to her.

“To this day I don’t know,” Dr. Birx said. “I know now by watching some of the tapes that certainly Scott Atlas (an advisor on the White House Coronavirus Task Force) brought in parallel data streams. I don’t know who else was part of it, but I think when the record goes back and people see what I was writing on a daily basis that was sent up to White House leadership, that they will see that I was highly specific on what I was seeing and what needed to be done.”

Dr. Fauci was receiving death threats and once a letter containing a powder arrived at his house and he was contaminated. Hey, remember that time Steve Bannon threatened his life?

AND GOING BACK TO MEGHAN MCCAIN FOR ONE HOT SECOND, Dr. Fauci never lied to you, you dumb bobblehead.

He was very clear from the beginning that they were trying to save masks for frontline workers:

 A reminder: Tucker Carlson is a stupid lying liar:

HBO Max, Netflix, and Bravo were rated the best network partners for reality show productions during the pandemic.

Anheuser-Busch has announced that they are not going to run ads for Budweiser during the Superbowl, and instead will give the money they would have spent to the Ad Council to raise awareness about the benefits of receiving the vaccine.

A bunch of movies is pushing back their release dates again: A Quiet Place Part II is now being pushed to September; The King’s Man is being moved to August; Antlers is moving to October; and Joe Bell has been removed from the calendar and will be rescheduled later.

And Christopher Nolan is making noises about leaving Warner Brothers after the whole HBO Max thing. Good luck, Chris!

Vaccines are the new hotttttness.


In Development

Casting News

Mark Your Calendar

  • Godzilla vs. Kong will debut on HBO Max on March 26.
  • Invincible will premiere on Amazon on March 26.
  • The Snoopy Show will premiere on Apple TV+ on February 5.
  • Black Lightning will return on The CW on February 8.
  • Behind Every Man will return on OWN on January 30.
  • The Murders will debut on Sundance Now on February 4.


Larry King, Iconic broadcaster and interviewer who helped put CNN on the map. Some of his most hilarious moments below and more famous ones at this link:

Some tributes:

And here are 8 times Saturday Night Live lovingly spoofed him.

Gregory Sierra, Barney Miller, and Sanford and Son actor

Perry Botkin Jr., Grammy-winning composer of theme songs for Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley, Mork & Mindy, The Smothers Brothers Show, but won his Grammy for The Young and the Restless theme song

Walter Bernstein, Blacklisted screenwriter

Bob Avian, Broadway producer and choreographer

Song Yoo-jung, South Korean actress

James White, Owner of the Broken Spoke in Austin


Snowpiercer: Mr. Wilford has arrived in the second season premiere. 9 p.m., TNT

The Bachelor: They’re bringing in more women because that’s what this show needed: more women. 7 p.m., ABC

The Big Lebowski: “You’re out of your element, Donnie.” 8:35 p.m., The Movie Channel Xtra

Late Night:

  • Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon: Jared Leto, Jane Lynch, Jade Bird
  • Late Night with Seth Meyers: Gillian Anderson, Kate Flannery, Bartees Strange
  • The Late Show with Stephen Colbert: Serena Williams
  • The Late Late Show with James Corden: Halsey, Penn & Teller
  • Jimmy Kimmel Live: Dax Shepard, John Wilson, I Don’t Know How But They Found Me
  • The Daily Show: The Daily Social Distancing Show
  • Conan: Nicole Byer
  • Watch What Happens Live: XXX
  • A Little Late with Lily Singh: Mike Colter

MON. 7:00 7:30 8:00 8:30 9:00 9:30
ABC The Bachelor
The Good Doctor
CBS The Neighborhood
Bob ♥ Abishola
All Rise
CW All American
FOX 9-1-1
9-1-1: Lone Star
NBC Ellen’s Game of Games
The Wall
Weakest Link

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