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Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Fretting over network decisions

May 25, 2005

The world has gone mad.

Think I’m exaggerating? Then explain to me how silly shows such as The Bachelor, Blue Collar TV, and Pamela Anderson’s Stacked can be renewed for another season, but quality dramas like Joan of Arcadia, Judging Amy, and American Dreams are canned.

It’s madness, people. There is no other explanation.

Last week, the network honchos announced their fall schedules. This week, I’m on the verge of firing off nasty letters to network executives.

The cancellation that hurts most is the compelling Jack & Bobby. Why the WB cancelled this critically acclaimed new drama, but renewed the tired Charmed for an eighth season, is puzzling. I’m convinced those Charmed Halliwell ladies really are witches with magical powers. It would explain how their show remains on the network year after year, while other fresh shows such as Angel and the aforementioned piece of perfection are shown the door.

Other cancellations include the unique Tim Daly drama Eyes and Taye Diggs’ much-hyped Kevin Hill. I guess we’ll never see Kevin regain custody of poor little Sarah.

Even more troubling than the cancellations, was the news that television’s best sitcom, and my personal favorite, Scrubs wasn’t even on NBC’s fall lineup. Supposedly, is being saved for midseason, executives claim. If these wacky doctors don’t see the light of day again, you will find me in a fetal position crying for my mama.

Arrested Development fans, breathe easy. The Bluths will live to see another season. Although ratings aren’t what the network had hoped for, the show will go on this fall. It moves to 8 p.m. on Mondays.

If you’re planning on taking a class this fall or working late on Thursday’s, think again, unless you have TiVo. The coveted 8 p.m. Thursday timeslot will once again be the year’s most competitive hour of television. Alias, Survivor, The O.C., Smallville, and Joey all go head to head.

Here are some other noteworthy time changes: Boston Legal moves to Tuesday at 10 p.m. on ABC. Grey’s Anatomy will keep the 10 p.m. Sunday slot, post Desperate Housewives. Lost moves to 9 p.m. on Wednesdays. And The West Wing changes nights this fall, moving to Sundays at 8 p.m. on NBC.

Although UPN renewed my favorite spunky detective Veronica Mars, the new timeslot may seal her fate. Veronica will be going up against ratings juggernaut Lost at 9 p.m. on Wednesdays.
There is some good news, believe it or not. Angel star David Boreanaz is returning to television. He’s been cast in the new FOX crime drama Bones. Boreanaz plays a former Army special-ops soldier who teams up with a female forensic anthropologist and novelist to solve crimes. The show is scheduled for 8 p.m. on Tuesdays.

Just so you don’t think I’m being too harsh on the networks for their programming choices, I offer this evidence. NBC is debuting a new reality show this summer to keep us entertained: I Want To Be A Hilton, as in “that’s hot” socialite Paris Hilton. Her mother is taking 14 young men and women and teaching them how to be socialites in New York City.

I know. It’s enough to make you fire off a letter, too.

Originally published 5/25/05 in The Exponent Telegram newspaper.


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