Television networks determine how much they'll charge for advertising based on the ratings they receive in November and February. The two months are affectionately known as the "sweeps." Traditionally, the month of February includes some of the year's better programming. Here are a few highlights:
The Grammy Awards-- The Grammy is still the award that musicians yearn for. But keep in mind the following artists never won a Grammy: Chuck Berry, The Doors, Janis Joplin, Nina Simone and The Who. CBS, Sunday, Feb. 12, 7 p.m.
Smash--NBC is betting way too much on this musical series becoming a smash hit. It could save or sink the peacock. NBC, Monday, Feb. 13, 9 p.m.
The River--Oren Peli, the writer-director of Paranormal Activity, crafted this supernatural thriller set in the Amazon. ABC, Tuesday, Feb. 24, 8 p.m.
The Simpsons--Homer, Marge, Bart and Lisa celebrate their 500th episode by getting evicted from Springfield. The anniversary show features WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange as a guest voice. Fox, Sunday, Feb. 19, 7 p.m.
Life's Too Short--Ricky Gervais returns to HBO with The Office co-creator Stephen Merchant. Gervais calls the show the best thing he's ever done, and it's already a cult hit on the BBC. HBO, Sunday, Feb. 18, 8:30 p.m.
The Academy Awards--Billy Crystal gets his tux dry cleaned for the ninth time to host the granddaddy of all award shows. But keep in mind the following Hollywood luminaries never won an Oscar: Fred Astaire, Greta Garbo, Judy Garland, Cary Grant and Alfred Hitchcock. ABC, Sunday, Feb. 26, 6:30 p.m.