Top Five: ‘GCB’ Kicks Up a Fuss in Its First Outing on ABC

We’ll dispense with the usual late-night hijinks for this week’s Top Five, mainly because most of the late-night shows were dark this week — leaving us bereft, of course.

But, to make the proverbial lemonade out of lemons, we’ll turn our attention to some other shows we might not have considered, starting with a series that’s already in hot water for its title and some of its contents.

1) We’re referring, of course, to “GCB”: This is the one in which the perky (and oh-so elfin) Kristin Chenoweth stars as a very strong-willed church-going lady with various axes to grind.

Or, to put it another way, this show is like “Desperate Housewives,” only Sunday worship is involved and it takes place in Dallas, which is where TV shows are set when TV producers want to conjure an environment characterized by tackiness and big hair (which is really unfair to Texans, by the way).

The show’s already being avoided by at least one major advertiser, Kraft, possibly due to its original title, “Good Christian Bitches,” the name of the novel it’s adapted from. ABC changed that to “Good Christian Belles” for a time, and then replaced it with “GCB.” The ratings weren’t what the network hoped for either when it debuted last Sunday. But none of this means you should ignore it. In fact, maybe you ought to check it out, if only to see what all the fuss is about.

Watch the premiere of ABC’s “GCB” here:
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2) Not a “Smash” hit, but you never know: NBC’s “Smash” actually improved on its ratings from a week earlier — something we were pessimistic would ever happen. It’s not that we have anything against “Smash,” it’s just that ratings don’t tend to go up after they’ve been going down for a while. But every once in a while, it happens. Maybe “Smash” will catch on after all.

Why not watch the most recent episode of "Smash"? We have it right here:
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3) Speaking of things that don’t often happen: “Breaking In” was resurrected this week on Fox — a rare case of a show getting cancelled and then getting revived. And if memory serves, Fox is the network that does this the most — weren’t “Family Guy” and “King of the Hill” cancelled at some point in their histories, then revived? Those two animated shows turned into legendary hits for Fox. Will that happen to “Breaking In”? Well, anything’s possible.

Check out this week’s re-premiere of “Breaking In” right here:
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4) Speaking of fairytales: ABC’s “Once Upon a Time” — a fanciful fairytale-based series filled with ogres, dwarves, fairy godmothers and the like — has emerged as the highest-rated scripted series on TV Sunday nights. Yes — drawing bigger audiences even than “The Good Wife” on CBS. This fairytale story is even more amazing when you consider that the other shows on ABC Sunday night — most recently the aging “Desperate Housewives” and the uncertain “GCB” — are not exactly holding up their ends of the bargain, ratings-wise.

We suggest you get on board the fairytale bandwagon with this episode of “Once Upon a Time”:
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5) The late-night exception: It’s fitting somehow that the only late-night show that wasn’t dark this past week — on one of the networks anyway — was Craig Ferguson’s “Late Late Show.” You know, he’s the one guy that’s doing something consistently different in the time period. And that’s risky because the late-night TV format has been pretty much set in stone for decades. However, Craig goes out on his own limb with the most unique monologues in late-night TV. And since we haven’t featured one of these in a while, we’ll finish up the week’s Top Five with Craig Ferguson.

Watch Craig’s monologue from Thursday night’s “Late Late Show” on CBS here:
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The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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