Thursday, May 28, 2009

Where's The Beef, NBC

I want my...I want my NBC (no, not MTV), but you get my drift. What has happened to one of my favorite networks. I was a huge fan of so many NBC shows, Cosby, Friends, Seinfeld, Hill Street Blues, LA Law, St. Elsewhere, Cheers, the list goes on and on...until now. It's primetime programming is in a shambles. The Must See TV Thursdays franchise is long gone, and cost decisions are now more important than creative ones. And so, "NBC set a low-water mark of historic proportions for TV viewership last week" according to Nielsen.

It's most valuable property today is the NFL on Sunday nights. And NBC is riding its weekday future on The Jay Leno Show, Monday through Friday at 10 pm. You can blame cable, you can blame the internet, but perhaps the harder truth is that NBC has no one to blame but themselves. Instead of creativity we get old shows in new clothes - Knight Rider and Bionic Women. And where are they now - off the air very quickly! We get shows that are past their prime and we get reality shows that are simply inane like I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here!

The solution is clear; cost management does not make a successful show. Creativity, quality, promotion, strong writing and talent are missing. Without them, all you get are shows that highlight what was once great with TV. And why NBC is left to airing shows on the 50 Most Memorable TV Lines, highlighting other networks great TV shows. You need scripted shows to make great lines and build viewer buzz. It's time for a turnaround NBC.