Ray Richmond is contributing to Deadline’s TCA coverage.
There was a lot of head-scratching among the media when the three-day cable schedule for TCA was released a few days ago, and something called gmc (all letters lower case) was among the networks with a 45-minute panel session. What exactly is gmc? (Hint: It has nothing to do with General Motors Corporation.) Turns out that it’s the new handle of what was once the Gospel Music Channel, having launched in 17,000 homes in 2004 and now closing in on 50 million — with guarantees to finish the year at 55 million. Its slogan: “Uplift Someone.” The network’s Wednesday late-afternoon session was surprisingly well attended in promoting gmc’s first-ever original movies. Its vice chairman Brad Siegel announced that the network will be airing a new world premiere movie each month into the foreseeable future. But the network seems to be operating on a bit of a shoestring in that one of its original film stars, Dean Cain, was unable to make it and forced to appear on the big screen via herky-jerky, washed-out Skype. But the real joke today was that the spiritually inclined gmc’s session was going to be leading into an evening TCA event at that renowned den of sin, the Playboy Mansion.