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There's no debating what was more important to Western New Yorkers Saturday night between NFL playoff football and presidential debates. Football won in a landslide here. Jacksonville's wild-card upset of Pittsburgh on NBC (14.9) outdrew the debates on ABC featuring Republican and Democratic candidates by about a 3-1 margin here. The Republican debate among John McCain, …

Baseball pitching great Roger Clemens probably is right -- his appearance with Mike Wallace on CBS' "60 Minutes" probably won't change anyone's mind about his alleged use of steroids. But no one can accuse Wallace -- who was portrayed as a fan of the New York Yankees and Clemens before the interview -- of throwing softballs at Clemens. Wallace, 89, did his job …

After the November tornado episode, "Desperate Housewives" had a tough act to follow. Sunday night's resolution was a little anti-climactic but had its endearing, funny and ironic moments. Predictably, the writers played it safe by allowing Lynette Scavo's (Felicity Huffman) husband Tom (Doug Savant) and children to survive. For a brief moment, I thought the wr…

Well, there certainly were some surprises Wednesday night when the late night network talk shows returned. David Letterman and Conan O'Brien sported beards. More surprising, Jay Leno sported a "Tonight Show" monologue after all. It was believed he would have to without one. Not surprisingly, the all said they support the striking Writers Guild. Letterman's supp…

Ohmygod. You have to wonder why people like the Guastaferros of Williamsville agree to humiliate themselves on reality shows like ABC's "Wife Swap." Even when you factor in how reality shows exaggerate things in shows like this to promote the tension, the Guastaferros came across very badly. It is hard to see which member of the family -- sexist and obnoxious d…

Don't blame us. That's the response of an NBC spokesperson over speculation that the network's desire to sign off the Ice Bowl quickly was behind the reason that the Zamboni wasn't used to clear the ice before the shootout in Pittsburgh's 2-1 victory over the Buffalo Sabres. "It was the NHL's decision," said an NBC spokesperson. "We would have happily stay…

My 23-year-old son went to Tuesday's Winter Classic and told me watching Pittsburgh's 2-1 victory over the Buffalo Sabres in Ralph Wilson Stadium was an incredbile experience. Unfortunately, NBC's coverage of the game didn't attempt to document the depth of the fans' experience beyond several crowd shots. There were no interviews with any of the 73,000 in attendance bat…

A week after landing in the bottom two, Western New York's "Tomboy Queens" were eliminated last week from the CW reality series, "Crowned." It is not as if we couldn't see the exit of Pam Galante and her daughter, Felicia Patterson, coming. It was an achievement for the so-called "diamonds in the rough" to make it to the show's third episode.…

There have been a few long-awaited returns of "Late Show with David Letterman" over the years. There was his first show on CBS after his recovery from a heart attack. There was his first show after 9-11. Add Wednesday's program, which will be his first original show since the writers' strike began. Letterman won't be alone at 11:35 p.m. Wednesday. NBC has been p…

The local morning TV wars will become a little more interesting on Monday when Channel 4 loses its popular hybrid hour of local and national news at 7 a.m. to the latest version of CBS' "The Early Show." It means Channel 4's "Wake Up" program co-anchored by Lisa Scott and Victoria Hong now will only air from 5 a.m. to 7 a.m., where it will go head-to-h…

The Tomboy Queens from Tonawanda probably weren't the only ones crying after they barely survived Wednesday night's second episode of the CW reality series, "Crowned: The Mother of All Pageants." I'm guessing there might have been tears from Western New Yorkers who were rooting for them to advance or rooting for them to be ousted so they could stop watching. Th…

The Buffalo Bills may have been eliminated from the NFL playoffs Sunday, but at least they made some local TV history. According to Channel 4 researcher Bob Gallivan, the Bills' 8-0 loss in Cleveland Sunday to the Browns was the highest-rated Bills game recorded since meters came to the Buffalo market in 2000 and the highest-rated program since then here besides Super Bow…

After further review, it is too close to call whether the Buffalo Bills game with the New York Giants on Dec. 23 will be flexed from Sunday afternoon to NBC's Sunday Night Football. The Bills (7-6)  Giants (9-4) did their part Sunday afternoon. Both won and each currently has a winning record. However, there is a 50-50 chance that the NFL, which makes the flex decis…

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Don Rickles was at Melody Fair getting dressed to go on. I was on a couch in his trailer peppering him with bright-eyed, marginally relevant questions. The only other man in the room was Rickles' man Harry Goins -- valet, personal assistant, keeper of the surprisingly delicate Rickles psyche -- who handed him a scotch as we talked. Rickles turned to Harry and asked tes…

     A postcard arrived on my desk a few weeks ago, asking, "If you only had a minute, what would you write?" It stopped me cold on a busy day. What an amazing question. I wasn't sure why I only had a minute, but if that were the case, what would I write and to whom? The flip side of the postcard showed that it was an ad for the Hallmark Channel o…