Friday, May 17, 2013

Upfronts 2013: Kanye Rants, "Psych" Dances, Robin Williams Quips and Much, Much More

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Every year the TV networks fly to New York and present their new fare wares to the nation's media buyers. It's called the upfronts, and although everyone grumbles that it's an outdated and expensive practice, there are still reasons to do it (as Joe Adalian explains here). This year the networks announced nearly 60 new shows -- and by Friday, it's hard to remember everyone and everything we've seen. But it will be hard to forget some of the other highlights of the week -- including Adult Swim's upfront party. Kanye West was the featured performer, and he definitely brought the crazy, in the form of a mid-concert tirade about... well, I'm still not sure. The media? The world? Celebrity culture? Whatever it was, it was fun. (Not so fun: Kanye's painful new track "Awesome," about you-know-who.) Kanye performed his entire show inside a mesh-covered pyramid (the Kanyeramid -- trademark pending), but briefly ran out to say hi to the crowd -- which is when I snapped this blurry pic. Meanwhile, other highlights included Passion Pit performing a few hits at the USA Network upfront; Icona Pop performing "I Love It" at the CW upfront; and attending the "Saturday Night Live" dress rehearsal featuring guest host Kristin Wiig. Some pics from my week in NYC:

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Kanye performs inside his Kanyeramid (trademark pending).

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Icona Pop at CW upfront.

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Passion Pit at the USA upfront.

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More of Passion Pit at the USA upfront.

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Cousins Robbie and Stephen Amell, now stars of their own respective CW series. The CW breeding program is a success!

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The pretty people of the CW.

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The cast of "Psych" performs "Psych: The Musical" at the USA Network upfront.

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"New Girl's" Max Greenfield cracks wise and shows off his guns on the Fox upfront stage (at the Beacon Theatre).

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Rising star Rebel Wilson gives a deadpan speech on stage at the ABC upfront (at Lincoln Center).

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The cast of hot ABC drama "Scandal" on stage at the network's upfronts.

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"Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." on the ABC stage.

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Robin Williams at the CBS upfront.

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Congrats to Paul Hewitt for getting this "#dropthemic" reference all the way through and on screen at the CBS upfront (at Carnegie Hall). Sadly, Leslie Moonves is not really on Twitter.

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When David Letterman walked on stage for his first upfront in several years, we all started to brace for a potential retirement announcement. He hugged Moonves and started talking fondly about CBS. "This could be it," I thought to myself. And then it wasn't. Thank goodness. That would have turned our afternoon upside down.

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