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Actor Jim Belushi poses with a cake at the According To Jim 100th episode celebration in February 2005 in Studio City, Calif.


BEHOLD THE STINKING MAW OF HELL: After being tacitly consigned to the boneyard during upfronts, According To Jim has been renewed by ABC as an 18-episode mid-season replacement to begin airing when the network’s new shows have begun nosing into the dirt like Baja dirt bikes with their brake lines cut.

“How do you think ABC will justify saving a show that most people I know were begging them to cancel?” wrote TV Guide’s Michael Ausiello. “My theory? Someone high up at the Alphabet net took another look at Cavemen.”

I don’t think I’ve ever wanted a show about Stone Age holdouts to succeed so badly since they started those rumours that Rescue Me was being cancelled.

Speaking of cavemen, owners of grey-market satellite dishes and other kinda illegal broadcast hardware can enjoy a Flintstones marathon on Boomerang, the Cartoon Network’s version of TV Land, starting today at 6 a.m. EST. All 166 episodes of the Hanna-Barbera animated show will air without commercials in chronological order, starting with the pilot, which was called The Flagstones. Well, at least we know what the potheads will be doing on the Fourth of July.

Because summer holiday weekends basically turn me into a bored 10-year-old again, I found myself surfing the Cracked magazine web site, where I found an article on The 13 Most Ridiculous TV Shows To Ever Get Green-Lit. Big surprise, this baker’s dozen were on the air during the ‘80s – or more accurately, from around 1977 to 1991, or what I call the Long Eighties.

It was also a period when, due to a combination of poverty and the one instinct I’ve acted on that worked out for me, I didn’t watch TV, so I missed shows like Automan and B.J. And The Bear and Misfits Of Science. Too busy doing drugs and getting into fights, I guess – time well spent, it would seem.

Did you know that Out Of This World, which was apparently about a teenage girl who was half-alien and used her awesome powers to cover up zits or something, actually lasted four seasons? That’s exactly three and a half more than Freaks And Geeks. And did you know that something called Quark, which looks like Red Dwarf done by the people who made The Starlost, got an Emmy nomination. Well, perhaps that’s not so surprising – we are talking about the Emmys (also known as the low-self-esteem Oscars.)

The winner, by the way, was something called The 100 Lives of Black Jack Savage, which ran on NBC for one season, and featured a cursed pirate immortal who teams up with a Wall Street con man to save lives using their high tech speedboat. Sounds like Michael Bay needs to know what his next movie`s gonna be.