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'Paranormal 4' has abnormal performance. NBC is on a roll.

October 22, 2012|By Joe Flint
  • "The Voice" is helping to drive NBC's comeback.
"The Voice" is helping to drive NBC's comeback. (NBC )

After the coffee. Before figuring out where my mojo went.

The Skinny: My heart is still broken from the Redskins' loss to the Giants, so go easy on me today. Monday's headlines include a recap of the weekend box office, a look at what commercials are going for this TV season and NBC's surprising start.

Daily Dose: Last week, the season premiere of AMC's "The Walking Dead" had almost 11 million viewers. Now AMC is back on satellite broadcaster Dish, which is in 14 million homes. Don't be surprised if Sunday night's episode adds at least another million or so viewers.

Abnormal performance. As expected, "Paranormal 4" opened at No. 1 at the box office this past weekend. However, the horror flick did far worse than anticipated. Last week, industry observers had "Paranormal 4" taking in $50 million. Instead, it only scared up about $30 million. The thriller "Alex Cross," which stars Tyler Perry, took in almost $12 million. "Argo" had a very good second week, taking in $16.6 million. Box-office results from the Los Angeles Times and Movie City News.

Back on top. About a month into the TV season, NBC finds itself in the unusual position of being in first place in the coveted 18-to-49 demographic. NBC's rise can be attributed in part to the declines at Fox, CBS and ABC. Also, much of NBC's success comes from just a couple of shows — "Sunday Night Football" and "The Voice." The real test will be how well NBC is doing in three months when the football season ends. More on NBC's comeback from the New York Times.

Mad money. Advertising Age has issued its annual report on what commercials cost on television's top-rated shows. Finishing first is NBC's Sunday night football game, which costs advertisers an average of $545,142 per 30-second spot. In second place was Fox's "American Idol." 

New bosses? Tribune Co., parent of the Los Angeles Times (my employer, which means I have to be careful here), is coming out of bankruptcy. Already there is speculation that Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. and other companies are eying the newspapers. Just remember, a Porsche is part of my deal here. More from the Los Angeles Times and Bloomberg.

Inside David Geffen. Next month, PBS premieres a much-anticipated "American Masters" on music and movie mogul David Geffen. Variety columnist Peter Bart offers his take on Geffen. I'm looking forward to the documentary since I never did finish Tom King's Geffen biography "The Operator."

Bad blood. Jennifer Esposito, a costar on the CBS police drama "Blue Bloods" is upset with how the network characterized her taking a leave from the show. Esposito accused CBS of "absolutely shameful behavior" for how it handled her need for time off because of illness. Details from the Hollywood Reporter.

If Romney wins. Broadcasting & Cable magazine takes a look at what a Romney administration would mean for the media and telecommunications industry. Net neutrality may be history and there could be an increase in indecency enforcement efforts.

Inside the Los Angeles Times: Theater critic Charles McNulty on the presidential debates. Bill Maher is on a roll.

Follow me on Twitter for all the twists and turns of big media. @JBFlint.

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