LAMBERT'S UNRELEASED CD ALREADY A HIT
Demonstrating once again that the mini-industry that has formed around the American Idol TV contest does not depend on first-place winners, season eight's runner-up contestant Adam Lambert's new album has shot to second place on Amazon.com's sales list -- behind Barbra Streisand's new jazz album, Love Is the Answer. But whereas Streisand's album was released on Tuesday of this week, Lambert's isn't scheduled for release until November 24 -- and his label, RCA Records, made no official announcement that the CD could be pre-ordered, suggesting that the Amazon sales were instigated entirely by word-of-mouth. The Lambert CD has moved ahead of new and upcoming CDs from Madonna, the Beatles and Susan Boyle. A single from the album, "Time for Miracles," is expected to be released this month. Meanwhile, American Idol winner Kris Allen's first single, "Live Like We're Dying," has made only a so-so debut; his first album is due to be released on November 17.
GOLDBERG CRITICIZES FOX NEWS ON FOX NEWS
Former CBS newsman Bernard Goldberg, who has accused the mainstream media of liberal bias, has blasted Fox News for its claim to be fair and balanced in its presentation of the news. Moreover, Goldberg's criticism was broadcast on Fox News's Bill O'Reilly program. It came after O'Reilly put this question to Goldberg: "Never in the history of broadcasting in this country has one network, Fox News Channel, been attacked so unrelentingly as this one has. Why?" O'Reilly did not receive the kind of sympathetic response that he presumably expected. After first observing that the attacks came because Fox was conservative, successful and provocative, he went on: "Sometimes Fox brings on the criticism itself. They don't cover rallies and tea parties, they cheerlead for rallies and tea parties, and as a journalist I'm totally against that." He referred to a videotaped incident in which a Fox producer was seen cheerleading protesters at an anti-Obama rally. (The network later said that the producer had been reprimanded.) Goldberg then continued that some unnamed Fox personalities "pretend to be a journalist, and at the same time they're saying, 'I'm not a journalist.' ... They go on the air after they give their opinions, which is fine with me. They then state as facts things that aren't facts at all." Somewhat surprisingly, O'Reilly commented during the exchange: "This is a good discussion."
WHITE HOUSE: FOX "SMEARS THE ADMINISTRATION"
The White House on Wednesday responded to Fox News commentator Glenn Beck's ongoing attack on President Obama's efforts to win the 2016 Olympics for Chicago. In a message posted on the official White House blog, Online Programs Director Jesse Lee accused Fox News in general and Beck in particular of continuing to disregard the facts "in an attempt to smear the administration's efforts to win the Olympics." Lee noted that in the past hosting the Olympics had brought "pride and unity" to the country. However, he said, "Once again Fox News' Glenn Beck program has shown that nothing is worthy of respect if it can be used as part of a partisan attack to boost ratings." Lee questioned a series of facts laid out by Beck on his program -- among them, that "Vancouver lost ... a billion dollars when they had the Olympics." The "reality," Lee responded, is that Vancouver hasn't even hosted the Olympics yet. "Vancouver will host the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Games from February 12-28 and March 12-21 respectively." Lee also referred to a comment by Fox News contributor Pat Caddell, who claimed that "the biggest scandal" would be rewarding a city that "is closing the government several days a week because they cannot afford to be open." Lee said that the fact is that the city had one reduced-service day on August 17 and will have two more on the Friday after Thanksgiving and on Christmas Eve.
ALL MY CHILDREN MOVING TO HOLLYWOOD
In a kind of reversal of runaway production, a 40year-old television show that has always been produced in New York is moving to Hollywood. ABC said that All My Children will end production in New York on December 11, then begin taping in Los Angeles on Jan. 4, a day before its 40th anniversary. Traditionally soap operas -- dating back to the days of radio -- have mostly been taped in New York since they were produced by units of the Madison Avenue-based advertising agencies that represent the principal soap manufacturers (Procter & Gamble, Colgate-Palmolive, and Lever Brothers) that sponsored them. The network said that virtually all of the regular cast of All My Children will be moving to Los Angeles, with the exception of Ray MacDonnell, who is retiring, Thorsten Kaye, who has decided not to relocate, and Alicia Minshew, who will be going on maternity leave.
GLAAD PRAISES TV NETWORKS FOR HANDLING GAY ISSUES
Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender characters have not only been increasing in numbers on network television series, but their stories are growing more complex, according to a study by the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), released today (Thursday). In its annual "Where We Are on TV" survey, GLAAD cited in particular the gay police officer on NBC's Southland ("a rarity for a gritty crime drama," Reuters observed in its report on the survey) and the married gay couple looking to adopt a child on Brothers & Sisters. GLAAD president Jarrett Barrios said that such characters help Americans "come to accept and better understand their LGBT family members and neighbors."