The twits have taken over TV land.
Twitter, the microblogging service that's exploded in popularity in the past year, rapidly has become an essential tool for anyone trying to keep up with the goings on in the small-screen world.
Just last week, many in Hollywood found out about NBC's stunning decision to dump "Southland" not from a trade paper but via a tweet from Shawn Ryan, the "Lie to Me" showrunner. He got a call from a friend on the "Southland" set and immediately let his 2000 followers in on the news.
And when "Saturday Night Live" newcomer Jenny let slip an errant f-word on her first show last month, the news was all over Twitter long before the mainstream media could react.
While there are plenty of film and music insiders on Twitter, the Twitterverse seems tailor-made for TV types.
The typical movie has a pop culture half-life of two weeks to a month before the world moves on to the next big release. But successful TV shows go on for years, with frequent plot twists, cast changes and ratings ups and downs — all of which provide steady fodder for tweetage.
Of course, just like primetime, the TV Twitterverse can resemble a vast wasteland of inane fan chatter and inaccurate rumors if you don't know which feeds to follow.
That's why TheWrap has assembled this list of 50 TV-centric folks worth checking out on Twitter. Follow this assortment of writers, producers, executives, bloggers — and yes, journalists — and you'll be on your way to being better informed about the state of the small screen.
Just having a well-known name wasn't enough to make this list, by the way. We looked for folks who updated their feeds on a regular basis (sorry, @BarbaraJWalters and @Oprah) and who provided interesting information on their feeds.
And while we wouldn't be presumptuous enough to include ourselves on the list, TheWrap is also on Twitter. Be sure to check out this reporter via @TVMojoe
, our media reporter Dylan Stableford (@stableford
) and the Big Boss Sharon Waxman
.) You can also get links to stories as they break via @theWrap
Did we leave anyone off? Leave your suggestions for TV twits in the comments section.
WRITERS AND PRODUCERS
The man behind "The Shield" and, now, "Lie to Me," is never shy with an opinion or observation about the TV business, pop culture and even politics.
Like his hit FX series "Sons of Anarchy," Sutter (pictured, top right) pulls no punches (on Jeff Zucker
: "a rudderless buffoon") and takes no prisoners (he called CBS's "Three Rivers" "torture porn" and said of Roman Polanski
, "Got a child stoned on quaaludes. F—ed her in the a–. His sentence should be the same … without the ludes.")
The former "Duckman" writer, who's just set up a comedy at Fox with J.J. Abrams
, serves up acerbic asides about politics, showbusiness and reality TV. An unapologetic fan of "Big Brother," which is the reason we love him most.
The "Law & Order: SVU" showrunner proves you don't have to write for a hip Fox or CW show to be an effective Twitterer. He provides plenty of on-set scoop, sometimes via video BubbleTweets.
The producers of "The Vampire Diaries" keep in touch with fans with frequent updates from the set of the CW's young hit. You can feel their pain whenever a deadline for a script looms.
The "Lost" co-showrunner doesn't Tweet much but he tweets enough to make him a must-follow for anyone who is still in denial about the pending final season of TV's coolest show.
The respected TV writer-turned-blogger mostly uses his Twitter feed to pimp his blog. Given the quality of what's on said blog, that's OK.
The "Juno" screenwriter also does TV — specifically, Showtime's "The United States of Tara." Cody is self-deprecating to the extreme and also very funny. The self-loathing over "Jennifer's Body" has got to stop, however.
The co-creator of "The Daily Show" doesn't talk much about TV these days, but her political musings are must-reads for anyone who isn't a fan of Fox News.
The co-creator of "The Big Bang Theory" lives up to his nerdy roots with frequent tweets from behind the scenes at what may end up as TV's No. 1 comedy by season's end.
"Saturday Night Live's" head writer sends shout-outs from the set, as well as more than a few sports-themed observations.
The "Bones" showrunner communicates directly with fans, sounds off on the business and even has Twitter dialogues with famous friends like Adam Levine
, lead singer of Maroon 5.
Want a glimpse at how hard it is to launch a new show? These three young showrunners from "Community," "Cougar Town" and the upcoming "Life Unexpected" offer just that with their tweets.
The creator of "Grey's Anatomy" and "Private Practice" responds to the world around her. That often means responding to the latest made-up rumor about TV's top soap opera (both on- and off-screen).
The "House" producer/director is a must-follow for "House" fans looking for dish on the hit Fox drama. He's also dang funny.
The CBS scheduling guru gives an insider's perspective on the daily grind of the TV business. He's also not afraid to let the Reporters Who Cover Television know when he disagrees with their take on something.
A network insider who prefers to keep his identity officially hidden, he tweets regularly about the ratings and the media's coverage thereof.
THE REPORTERS WHO COVER TELEVISION
The Queen of TV Twitterers, Ryan is particularly plugged in on the sci-fi front with the latest news on geek-friendly fare such as "Dollhouse," "Supernatural" and the "Battlestar Galactica" universe. She also is an obsessive re-Tweeter, and clearly never sleeps.
Before you ask why the "American Idol" host is listed under journalists, remember this: News of Ben Silverman
's exit from NBC broke on Seacrest's Twitter feed. The man is plugged in, and he's not afraid to share news when he hears it.
The New York Times' young turk of TV, Stelter (who created TV Newser while still in college) is hardwired into the Twitterverse, tweeting even more often than Ryan many days. Focuses on the big TV stories of the day, but also isn't afraid to share details of his private and professional life.
The L.A. Times Showtracker blogger is a great source for retweets of interesting TV features (hers and other folks'), reality TV gossip and the latest breaking news about popular shows. She's also a must-follow for anyone who's a fan of "Glee" or "Top Chef."
The L.A. Times Company Town blogger keeps up with the business side of television, often with a heavy dose of snark. Bonus: Late-night poetry and weekend sports updates
The best way to keep up with one of the nation's most-respected TV critics.
A relative newcomer to Twitter, the dean of west coast TV criticism is bringing the wit big-time. A must-follow for TV executives who want to know what nasty things he's thinking about them.
Scoop! From guest stars to plot twists, he's the reason the phrase "spoiler alert" was invented. Actors: If Ausiello didn't break the news of your casting, you might want to double check with your agent to make sure you really got the part.
Time magazine's TV critic, who also writes the TunedIn blog for Time.com, shows newsweeklies can still be relevant. Some of the smartest TV tweets on the web.
Early morning ratings alerts, regular news updates, some fanboy analysis and a heavy dose of very dry humor. A particular must-follow during "American Idol" season.
The ex-L.A. Times TV editor, now at the Daily Beast, loves a good reality show, a good soap opera and intelligent writing. Plus, long walks on the beach.
A New York reporter at Broadcasting & Cable, Weprin is a prolific retweeter who also isn't afraid to offer his own take on the state of the TV business (especially new media and tech matters).
Mediaite's New York-based TV editor keeps tabs on the cable news world, among other things.
BLOGGERS AND SUPERFANS
He's been keeping a close eye on the unscripted business since the dawn of "Survivor." His Twitter feed is essential for anyone trying to keep up with the twists and turns of the genre.
Myles A. McNutt
The Twitter voice of the Canadian behind the very smart TV blog Cultural Learnings.
The writer behind NPR's pop culture blog shows that even public-radio types can appreciate a good episode of "The Brady Bunch."
The writer of the well-respected Surf Report e-mail brings her TV love to the Twitterverse, with retweets of breaking news and smart observations about the state of the small screen (both on-screen and behind the scenes).
The former TV Week writer is now blogging and tweeting full-time, bringing a twentysomething's voice to Twitter's never-ending TV conversation.
Smart, industry-savvy wisdom about the TV business from someone who's not in Hollywood or New York. Yes, it exists.
A one-time TV development executive and avowed Anglophile, the man behind the Televisionary blog is never shy with a sharp opinion on the latest TV news or last night's episode of "Mad Men." He's also the best-fed TV type on Twitter, regularly sharing details of his latest amazing meal.
The AV Club's resident TV sage is a hyperprolific dispenser of random observations about the medium, as well as a chronicler of the coolest quotes from various TV shows.
JUST DAMN FUNNY
The stars of NBC's Thursday comedies offer radically different kinds of tweets, but they all have one thing in common
: Guaranteed laughs.
The Comedy Central star brings her offbeat wit to the Twitterverse with observations such as, "I feel pretty lucky. Thousands of people die every day and it's never me."
The former Defamer writer, now at Movieline.com, writes about much more than just TV. Few people on Twitter are more consistently funny.
Variety's TV editor tweets his own stories and breaking news. But the real reason to follow him is for his snarky one-liners. Sample snarkiness: "NBC cancels 'Southland.' But in a twist, viewers had already canceled NBC."
A reality junkie whose photo-driven recaps of hit reality shows are often far more enjoyable than the shows themselves. And definitely funnier.
Really, your Twitter list wouldn't be complete without the wit and wisdom of America's favorite animated TV dad.