Q I love "Parenthood," and at the end of every season, I'm always hoping NBC will bring it back for another year. I read in your column that "Smash" will be premiering during the "Parenthood" time slot at midseason. Does this mean that "Parenthood" is being canceled, or are they moving it to a new time?
A Neither. "Parenthood" will wrap its season on Jan. 22. Then we'll likely have to wait until May (again) to see if the show gets renewed. Ratings have been ticking up some this season, so there is reason to be optimistic that it will be back.Fishing for answers
Q I loved the Discovery Channel's reality show "Deadliest Catch." Are there any plans to air reruns of it in syndication on any other channel?
A "Deadliest Catch" has not been canceled -- it's just between seasons. It returns in April.The quirks of Hulu
Q I recently signed up for Hulu Plus and I'm not totally happy about it. First off, I pay for the service, so why do I still have to watch commercials? Also, some of my favorite shows -- "30 Rock," "Happy Endings" and "60 Minutes" -- aren't even offered. Why not?
A There should be no expectation that "60 Minutes" would be offered since it's not on regular Hulu (Hulu does not have a deal with CBS for its shows to appear on the site). But it is surprising that "30 Rock" and "Happy Endings," which are on regular Hulu, don't show up on Hulu Plus.
Here's my understanding: Due to content-rights issues, not all of the Hulu.com content is available on the devices that Hulu Plus plays on. It's a device issue, and some content providers don't want their shows viewable on mobile platforms. That's why Hulu.com content is different from that offered on the Hulu Plus subscription service.More commercials, less theme song
Q TBS airs "Friends" daily in the late afternoon. I've noticed that on some episodes the theme music is played in its entirety -- vocal track as well as music track -- over the opening and closing credits. On other episodes, it seems as though the vocal track has been eliminated and only the music track is being played. I'm wondering why this is.
A A TBS publicist says a shortened theme song is sometimes used if episodes run longer in their original form than the running time of half-hour shows today. It's about getting more commercials into the half-hour.
"'Friends' originally aired at a time when commercial breaks were shorter than they are in the current television environment," the TBS publicist said.
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