View Full Version : AV, questions about ABC line-up
10-09-2002, 11:18 PM
I was reading some of the ratings for ABC's primetime TV and think the shows that have been developed for this season are doing fairly well. Life with Bonnie, Less than Perfect, and 8 Rules... all broke into the top 50 with 8 Rules raking in 13M viewers and the other two pulling in btw 10M-11M. Isn't that considered good ratings? Personally I think this is the right direction to take ABC programing and think that before cutting a show they should at least give it half a season to settle in so that viewers can become accustomed to the time slot. I think it was you(or maybe somone else) who has said Bonnie has already been given walking papers. What kind of numbers do you have to pull to not be cancelled on ABC? Am I missing something?
10-10-2002, 12:40 AM
First – the rumors. The biggest is that ‘Push, Nevada’ should become the first show cancelled this season. The ax is rumored to fall later Thursday or Friday. Most of the creative staff of ‘Life with Bonnie’ has been fired and the producers have been given another chance at fixing the show before it’s pulled. Others rumored to be nearing their limit are ‘That Was Then’ and ‘MDs’.
All this and we’re still three weeks from sweeps.
While getting 13 million viewers for a new show might sound good in isolation, you have to look at how the shows compare against everyone else. For the week of Sept. 30 – Oct. 6, ‘CSI: Miami’ pulled in 20 million viewers, ‘Still Standing’ pulled in over 18, and even a rotten show like ‘Good Morning Miami’ pulled over 16 million.
And ‘8 Simple Rules’ – Disney’s big ticket, premier, ubermarketed tent pole show* still trailed behind the likes of ‘Judging Amy’, ‘JAG’, Without a Trace’, ‘Yes, Dear’ and ‘The Guardian’; none of those shows are exactly the hot topic at the water cooler the morning after. That’s not exactly the smashing start Eisner had demanded from ABC. Nor were they expecting ‘Amazing Race 3’ to pull well over twice the audience of their other “breakout show” of ‘Push’.
Overall ABC only had one show in the Top 20, which was ‘Monday Night Football’. It’s highest rated series was ‘My Wife and Kids’ at #23 with roughly 13.7 million viewers. For comparison, NBC had 10 of the top twenty shows and CBS had 9. NBC’s top rated show was ‘Friends’ who found 29 million people with nothing better to do. And the top rate for CBS was ‘CSI’ with 29.5 million. On the other end Fox’s best show was an NFL postgame show #48 with 10 million viewers; WB had ‘7th Heaven’ at #60 with 8.5 million and UPN ends up as a punchline to a lot of inside Hollywood jokes by having ‘WWE Smackdown’ #81 with 6 million children desperately in need of adult supervision.
Eisner has been going around the last couple weeks telling everyone that it take several years to pull ABC out of its hole. A lot of people are calling that optimistic.
The real numbers won’t be out until later in November when viewing patterns are more established. It’s too late to write ABC’s season off at the moment, but it time to say there is no “one hit will turn things around” that people were hoping for.
* a tent pole show is one that pulls in such tremendous ratings that it pulls all the shows that fall it up too. The current example is ‘Friends’ that pulls all the shows on Thursday nights to much higher ratings than would otherwise receive. It’s generally considered that a network needs one or two of those to be profitable.
10-10-2002, 09:33 AM
That was Then and Push have been canceled. Too bad, I kinda liked That was Then, but it did do pretty dismal as far as ratings go.
Not sure if replacing it with America's Funniest Home Videos is the way to go, though...
10-10-2002, 09:41 AM
Originally posted by Another Voice
Most of the creative staff of ‘Life with Bonnie’ has been fired and the producers have been given another chance at fixing the show before it’s pulled.
The writing staff was fired, that is true. However Hunt never wanted a writing staff as they were doing all the writing themselves. All the shows thus far haven't used plots from the writing staff, thus no loss. I don't see this as a bad thing. The show is on solid footing and has decent gains over the same slot last season.
10-10-2002, 12:33 PM
“I want to do my own writing” falls somewhere in between “scheduling conflicts” and “creative differences” in Hollywood’s List of Publicity Lies.
ABC management has some hopes for the show which is why it’s being given a chance. I think it can work, but they still haven’t figured out the premise of the show yet. It was being billed as a show about a struggling working mother that every women could relate to – but the main character hosts a television show, her husband is a top surgeon, she lives an expensive home and she has a live-in maid. Those aren’t exactly the concerns of your average working gal, are they?
Latest rumor is that ‘MDs’ may be yanked once the latest overnights are reviewed. The pruning continues.
10-10-2002, 05:54 PM
I understand that ABC's shows may not be ranking #1 in their slots in total viewers, but several of them are in the 18-49 bracket. "Frasier's" ratings are down this year. Could it not be because "Bonnie" is pulling away some of that audience?
Anyway, as an aside, I think Bonnie Hunt is a wonderful writer/director/actress, and I would watch her in anything. I'm happy that she and Don Lake are picking up the writing aspect of their show. Her show and her humor may not be edgy, but I have laughed so hard that I cried twice during her show...and I can't remember the last time I did that. But, then again, if I'm the only one laughing while everyone else is watching "Frasier" then there's no reason to keep it on. Oh, well, enough of my rave of Bonnie Hunt.
P.S. If you like Bonnie Hunt, rent "Return to Me" on video or DVD. A sweet, funny romantic comedy with Hunt, Minnie Driver, and David Duchovny.
10-10-2002, 11:13 PM
"Bonnie" just doesn't do it for me. That pilot episode just made her look like an irresponsible parent, not a frazzled one. And I'm just way too sensitive to bad parenting. She automatically got a failing grade.
"Push" cancelled? That is terrible! I love this show. There hasn't been anything this quirky and/or deep since Twin Peaks! I think that might be part of the problem. They don't pitch enough of the show, they mainly pitch the overall concept and the fact that there's money to be won. "Push" will be right up there with "Millennium" as one of the best prematurely cancelled shows.
10-11-2002, 01:35 PM
Bonnie, 8 Rules, and Less than Perfect were picked up for the whole season according to the papers this morning. Guess they "fixed" Bonnie enough to stick it out.
Jeff in BigD
10-12-2002, 05:28 AM
AV - are they more concerned with rankings, numbers or both?
It seems like ABC is always eager to yank a show at the first sign of trouble. Do they take into account things like cable shows, internet & other entertainment venues?
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