Dish of Salt: Tuesday TV Round Up (January 26, 2010)

“Big Bang’s” Big Guest Star
On a show that celebrates comic books, who better to make a cameo than the biggest comic legend himself, Marvel’s Stan Lee?! Yesterday I got an exclusive invite to the set of “The Big Bang Theory” as Stan shot his scenes for the show. The story is that Stan is signing autographs down at the comic book store but Sheldon (Jim Parsons) misses meeting his hero because he gets arrested. Yes fans… Sheldon goes to jail and it’s as hilarious as you think it will be. Just wait until you see the suit he rocks in court. Stan told me “The Big Bang Theory” is his favorite show, so when creator Chuck Lorre called he didn’t even have to finish asking him to come on the show before he said, “Yes!”

Of course, Stan’s favorite thing about the show is how they make references to him all the time. It turns out Chuck used to work for Stan back in the 80’s at Marvel Comics and they have remained friendly over the years. So just how big of a deal was it to have Stan Lee in the house? Take it from someone who has been in this business a long time — This was very special for the show. I have been on countless TV sets in the last 14 years waiting to interview guest stars. Production keeps on going and you find a quiet little spot to do your interviews while they continue to shoot the show. On this day, however, production actually stopped down and took a break to allow Stan and I to chat. Not only that… The entire cast and crew stood by actually watching our interview and from the smiles on their faces enjoying every minute of Stan’s charm and wit. This guy is such a character it’s no wonder he created such unique super heroes.

Find out what Spider-Man’s creator thinks of the decision to take the franchise in a younger direction HERE!

So, who is the next big dream guest the show would love to have on? How about Ringo Starr?

Yes, it turns out that Simon Helberg thinks that the Beatles legend would make a perfect papa to his character Howard Wolowitz. “That kind of came to me in a dream and then I kind of started saying it as a joke and then I know people liked it around here,” he told me on the set. “I don’t know if it’s going to happen but I think it would be a hilarious twist to find out I’m the son of a Beatle and that that woman screaming in the background actually managed to sleep with Ringo Starr.” Ringo does have a new album to promote, “Y Not.” He’s in town this weekend for the Grammy Awards. So, I say, ‘Why not ask’?!

Baffled By “The Bachelor”
So, if you were watching “The Bachelor” last night you know that Jake kept Vienna around for another week which sent the other girls into a tizzy. What is it about this girl that they all hate? It was interesting to see Jake call her out on their group date and tell her he thinks she “eggs them on” and acts different around him than he does the girls. It seemed like he was pretty mad at her. Clearly, the producers are not showing us something about their relationship that keeps her around. If you believe the spoiler sites that Vienna is the one he picks in the end, then it makes sense that the producers are playing up the Vienna hatred angle. That way when he picks her at the end it will seem like, “the most dramatic decision in Bachelor history” or some dumb proclamation like Chris Harrison always makes. It’s just like on the Matt Grant season where he wound up picking high maintenance Hollywood girl Shayne Lamas who was clearly wrong for him. It made for good TV (since it was a shocker) but of course their relationship fizzled soon after.

It’s obvious when you watch the show that Jake really wants to find a wife, but when I spoke to Jake two weeks ago and last Thursday I got the feeling that he didn’t wind up finding the love of his life on this show. I posed this question to him: “I have interviewed many many many people that have done this show. I can always kind of get a vibe from them where they’re at and I feel like you of all people — instead of feeling happy and you ‘can’t wait for this all to be over so you can be with your loved one’ — I feel like you’re a little deflated about the whole process?”

I thought he gave me a pretty straightforward answer when he replied, “Let me tell you why. Because it’s very real and I’m having to watch it again and it’s taking me on an emotional roller coaster and it’s tough. Tough to see that I’ve hurt people, decisions that I had to make sometimes on incomplete information. Sending wonderful women home that there’s nothing wrong with but it’s tough to find that one 60 year relationship and it’s hard to watch that.”

I’m still not convinced. Either he’s a really good actor, really well coached or just really good at hiding his feelings. I guess we will see.

“Lost” Special Screening
If anyone has an extra plane ticket to Hawaii they want to send me for this weekend, I’ll take it. Why you ask? Because ABC’s “Lost” makes its return for its final season with a special screening at “Sunset on the Beach” in Waikiki on Saturday, January 30 at approximately 6:30 PM. Thousands of fans will congregate on the sandy beach of Waikiki in Oahu to be the first to see the initial hour of the season premiere episode before it airs February 2. Fans can also catch a special screening of an all-new episode of the hit comedy “Modern Family” immediately following “Lost,” and will also be able to view a marathon of “V” on Sunday, January 31, beginning at approximately 6:30 PM as well. Executive producers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse will be on hand to address fans with a special message. Those attending will also be able to bid on a signed photo of the entire cast, amongst other items, in a special auction at the event. “Lost” premieres Tuesday, February 2 on ABC with an all-night event that begins with a special (8:00-9:00 p.m., ET), followed by the two-hour season premiere (9:00-11:00 p.m., ET).

Martha Moves To Hallmark Channel
“The Martha Stewart Show” is leaving syndication and heading to cable. Starting in Fall 2010 Martha’s show will air exclusively on the Hallmark Channel weekdays from 10 AM to 11 AM. Stewart’s Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia has signed a deal with Hallmark Channel to produce new original series and specials for the network. I wonder if this is a move to try and compete with Oprah Winfrey’s new network OWN which launches in January 2011?

‘HIMYM’ Returns For Sixth Season
It’s good news and bad news coming out of “How I Met Your Mother” land! The goods news is we will get more of the delightful sitcom, which CBS just announced they picked up for the 2010-2011 (their sixth!) TV season. The bad news is that we will have to continue to watch and wait to find out just whom Ted Mosby (Josh Radnor) winds up marrying. Or will we? We are getting closer and closer to finding out how he met the illustrious “mother” in the title. Perhaps a season six exploring their relationship could be nice? Or not. It could also be jumping the shark. I can’t decide. I don’t think they can either.

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