Monday, May 04, 2009

NBC's faux fall schedule announcement - Sepinwall on TV

Okay, my story on the NBC infront is now up at NJ.com, including a few quotes from Ben Silverman on the state of things (though I didn't get to use all of the lines from my Twitter feed). Feel free to discuss it more here, or to vent more frustration in the post directly below this.

32 comments:

Robert said...

Given the way NBC treats shows (and their audience) what possible motivation would I have to give a new program on their network a try? (That's ignoring the fact that the stuff they picked up is recycled dreck at best.) What incentive is there for a potential audience member to invest in caring about a new show? If it's any good, it gets cut; if it's crap it stays. Nobody's watching what they're airing anyway...why not at least give it a try with creative and interesting instead of derivative and boring?

Is NBC making so much money on the Weather Channel that they just don't care about the network anymore?

And by the way, 4th place isn't the bottom anymore. They can still go down from here...and I hope they do!

Anonymous said...

NBC seems stuck where ABC was in the early 00s - completely without a rudder, no hallmark shows aside from a few aging ones which have lost their fastball, and a refusal to actually try anything interesting. ABC actually made a commitment to 2 shows in 2004 and it completely turned them around. And the way NBC talks about its shows, I don't see that happening for them anytime soon.

Frankly, Chuck deserves a better network.

Matt said...

It was three shows that turned ABC around in 2004--Desperate Housewives, Lost, and (at mid-season) Grey's Anatomy. None of the shows NBC has greenlit seems to be of that sort of level.

Anonymous said...

Grey's Anatomy debuted in 2005. It was a midseason replacement. I suppose it had the same "rookie season" as Lost and Desparate Housewives, but I remember those 2 shows made a huge splash when they aired and were paired as the 2 shows which turned the network around. Rightfully so (for Lost at least, I've never seen DH).

-DamnYankees

LA said...

Conflicted. I hate to give NBC any of my viewing (other than Thursday night comedies), but Parenthood is calling my name. That pretty much guarantees its failure with the peacock.

Anonymous said...

You know, I skipped "100 Questions" this year when it was known as "The Ex-List." Wonder why NBC thinks I'll like it now?

Chris

Memphizmike said...

Wow Alan I can not belive this they are really a bunch of idiots over at NBC first they shoot themselves in the foot by giving Leno another talk show kicking off 3 hours of that then they decide to recycle old concepts that did not work the first time they tried it and on top of that they now say that in order to keep their one good show Chuck that they will have to settle for half of a season of episodes that is just stupid I think we as Nerd Herders must demand that Chuck get moved to a better network maybe one of the big Cable networks can take it and give it the chance it needs to grow the possiblities for this show are endless sure we worked hard on the save chuck campaign but NBC is so not the right network for this genius of a show Nerd Herd 4 Life!!!!!!

Matt said...

"Parenthood" seems like a slam dunk for the Monday leadoff slot, which is its death, given how nasty that slot already is, unless Fox reshuffles House again.

AppleJill said...

"psychographic compatibility studies"
This was my favorite Tweet from the coverage. Ha!

"That "Chuck" isn't on the fall schedule..."
Does this mean that Chuck isn't yet on the fall schedule, or it is for sure, or even most likely, not going to be on the fall schedule?

Also, Does Heroes on Monday translate to Monday in the fall or could it possibly return after the Olympics?

Did you get any sense of the stories of the possibly returning shows overshadowing the unveiling of the new shows?

7s Tim said...

Alan, your twitter just revealed something amazing to me! NBC, in their "in front" not only failed to renew Chuck, but they somehow have the power to make FOX renew Fringe?

or am i just being an ass about a typo?

Chris said...

"Day One" sounds interesting. Have you heard much about it? Or have you seen anything?

It sounds like that "Invasion" show that ABC did the season after Lost was such a hit. Is that a show worth checking out on DVD?

I have to say though, I hope shorter seasons become the rule. These 22 episode seasons really stretch the creativity of even the best shows.

Alan Sepinwall said...

It was a typo. I leave the assitude up to you to determine.

Matt said...

A kind of bizarro possibility for "Day One"--Leno has a set period of vacation time each year. What if they stripped the show at 10 PM five nights a week for three weeks during his vacation, like a miniseries, or what they're doing with season 3 of "Torchwood" over in the UK?

7s Tim said...

so...yes. i am an ass.

Andrew said...

How badly would Leno have to tank in the ratings for NBC to consider dropping his show?

Matt's idea of 5-nights a week at 10 during Leno's vacation week is certainly intriguing for a show or mini-series.

Is SNL Thursday Update on the schedule because it did so well in the election year, or because it's so cheap to produce?

Alanna said...

While NBC's executive branch is a mess, I still have a soft spot for it because I find myself watching more shows there than on any other network. The L&O franchise, Chuck, Thursday nights, Friday Night Lights. I adored Life, but I can't really fault them for canceling it with those ratings. In the past, it seemed like the network that took the most risks, but this new schedule is disheartening.

Alan, did you see Marc Bernardin's post on EW last week asking why sci-fi movies do well, yet sci-fi television shows struggle to get an audience? If you caught it, any thoughts?

Matt said...

It's a huge deal with Leno, so they're not going to dump him readily, unless it's part of giving the Tonight Show back to him, which would be a complete debacle all around. And who knows? There might well be an audience for comedy at 10, rather than CBS's slate of endless Bruckheimer retreads or ABC's female-driven stuff.

Anonymous said...

Alan, do you get the sense that we're all just missing the boat here? Is NBC actually happy with what Silverman and Zucker are doing? Has Silverman convinced them that "psychographic compatibility studies" is some real thing that they should be looking at to justify what is going on? I come here mad about the lineup and find people like you and your readers who agree with my feelings about Chuck and Leno and Heroes and what not, but maybe we're not NBC's target audience anymore. Have you ever met and spoken with someone other than Silverman or Zucker to give you (even off the record) some indication of what the rest of the company feels about the direction Silverman is leading them?

Nicole said...

I don't think Leno's Tonight Show has ever been considered comedy unless you love "Headlines". And it's not much of a talk show, not compared to what Tom Snyder used to do or what Charlie Rose still does. (To be fair, Letterman and the rest don't have much talk content either)

It is another 5 hours for stars to promote their next project and not say much of anything. And I suspect it's much cheaper than any comedy or drama, so it will be kept on for as long as Leno wants, barring nuclear disaster ratings.

--Deb said...

Friday Night Lights (thank you DirectTV) and Chuck are the only shows I watch on NBC, other than the Today show. I hate reality shows, and frankly nothing else appeals. (Though, I suppose, Medium isn't terrible, but it's been around a while and I wouldn't miss it.) And, truly, I've never found Jay Leno all that funny.

I truly just can't understand why they haven't renewed Chuck. I know, it's in a lousy timeslot. I know, it's not one of "their" shows. But ... sheesh! With the kind of media frenzy its gotten lately, how can they NOT? I could understand their not announcing anything until after last week's finale, to get as much free publicity as possible, but ... why not now?

I think they hate me. (grin)

JenJen said...

"Day One" sounds almost exactly like "Jericho," from what I'm reading elsewhere.

Ingrid said...

I may check out Parenthood (because I have a soft spot for Peter Krause) and Community (because I think Joel McHale is funny), but everything else seems so insipid.

With the time constraints they have, what fool decided to greenlight two medical-related dramas?

Anonymous said...

I know that last year NBC's "In-Front" was designed to show off how they were breaking out of the standard network tv mold, a plan which they immediately kiboshed, but what is the benefit of doing this little dog and pony show two weeks early? If memory serves, NBC used to always have the first day of Upfront Week, so are they really getting any jump on the competition by unveiling some of the elements of their theoretical lineup? What is the advantage of this dog and pony show?

Fran L said...

Hi I'm from Britain. What does bubble series mean? Thank you.

Baylink said...

> on top of that they now say that in order to keep their one good show Chuck that they will have to settle for half of a season of episodes

Huh?

That's the first thing I've seen anyone say anywhere that suggests that NBCs even considering a short-pickup; where did you get that?

Alan?

(and "on-the-bubble" is industry slang for a series where it's entirely unclear whether the network will renew it or now; think "carpenter's level")

Fran L said...

Thanks Baylink.

Joe said...

NBC has a preview of the upcoming season on Hulu - why not go over to Hulu and comment - let the network know that we're unhappy with how they're handling primetime?

Robin said...

One thing that Alan's article said gives me some hope -- NBC said they were talking to their advertisers about the bubble shows. If that is true, MAYBE the concentrated blitz of Subway buying last Monday may help our beloved Chuck.

It's the thought I shall comfort myself with tonight anyway.

Anonymous said...

"Day One" sounds almost exactly like "Jericho," from what I'm reading elsewhere.Actually, it sounds alot like Glenn Becks wet dream.

Matt said...

Finke is now suggesting that "Chuck" is tied up with "Legally Mad." There was a $2M penalty to be paid to WB for not picking up "Legally Mad." NBC wants to try and play the "drop the penalty and we'll pick up Chuck" game.

Of course, WB could get the last laugh and try and shop "Legally Mad" elsewhere--IIRC, the script was the subject of a bidding war.

Tom said...

'...and "on-the-bubble" is industry slang for a series where it's entirely unclear whether the network will renew it or now; think "carpenter's level"...'

I think "soap bubble" or "bubblegum bubble" or "housing bubble."

But then I'm a pessimist

Tracey said...

Parenthood? Seriously? Because remaking failed '90s series worked so well for ABC?

Psychographic compatibility studies? Pairing shows in a holistic manner? What's next, feng shui?

But I admit, I'd watch anything with Joel McHale. Love some of his old sketch comedy from Almost Live. See him sing about vegetable rights (as opposed to animal rights). Mushrooms are murder!