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‘TV’s Top 5’: Disney-Charter Winners and Losers; Plus the Latest Strike Updates

Welcome to the 230th episode of TV’s Top 5, The Hollywood Reporter’s TV podcast.

Every week, hosts Lesley Goldberg (West Coast TV editor) and Daniel Fienberg (chief TV critic) break down the latest TV news with context from the business and critical sides, welcome showrunners, executives and other guests, and provide a critical guide of what to watch (or skip, as the case may be).

This week, we’re joined by THR media and business reporter Alex Weprin for a deep dive into the future of cable television. Here’s how this week’s show breaks down:

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1. Mailbag

What shows are on our “list of shame”? Should Apple be promoting itself as a content hub for all streamers? Will ad-free plans vanish? Thoughts on those and more as we field questions from listeners.

2. Talk shows return

The Drew Barrymore Show, The View, The Talk, Sherri, Live, Tamron Hall and Bill Maher’s Real Time have all returned to production — sans writers. This segment looks at the why behind their returns and why Barrymore finds herself on the hot seat.

3. Strike Zone

We return to the Strike Zone for the latest updates as more top showrunners have seen their overall deals suspended while others are set to meet with writers guild officials.

4. Disney v. Charter, explained

Weprin joins us for an informative conversation about how the Disney-Charter carriage dispute could have long-term impacts on the future of cable networks like Freeform and Disney Junior, among other niche channels. Plus is this the beginning of the streaming bundle? All that and an explainer on why this story may be more important than the strikes.

5. Critic’s Corner

As usual, we end with Dan’s thoughts on this week’s new and returning series. In this episode, he weighs in on The Morning Show, Wilderness and Wrestlers.

Hear it all now on TV’s Top 5. Be sure to subscribe to the podcast to never miss an episode. (Reviews welcome!) You can also email us with any topics or Mailbag questions you’d like addressed in future episodes at

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