NBC topper Bob Greenblatt raised a few eyebrows with his comments during NBC’s executive session on Saturday that “at this point in our business, flat is the new up” in broadcast ratings and that “broadcast now is the bastard child” of television as he suggested that broadcast series don’t get the respect they deserve. “I don’t necessarily agree with (the ‘flat is the new up’ assessment), but every network has their own point of view about it,” CBS Corp. CEO Les Moonves said at TCA today. “We’re confident we’re going to be up this year. We were up last year. Yes, we had the Super Bowl, but I don’t necessarily agree with that statement. I also don’t think we’re the bastard child of the entertainment business.”
He later did list arguments in support of Greenblatt’s complaint that network shows don’t get much respect. “I know what he meant. He meant when it comes to the Emmys, the networks don’t get respect in terms of — look, they’re competing against some phenomenal programs. It’s hard to put The Good Wife up against Game Of Thrones. Game Of Thrones probably cost three times as much and takes three times as long to shoot. And it’s a brilliant good show. I love it as much as anybody. But there are some terrific shows on network that do get passed over, and the competition from cable in terms of that has become pretty extreme. And so the cable shows get a lot more attention for a lot fewer numbers. That’s okay. Once again, as I said, I’m really proud to be the home of NCIS, but also the home of Homeland and Ray Donovan and Dexter. (CBS Corp. owns both CBS and Showtime.) There are different strokes for different folks, and I think what Bob’s point was that… a show like Parenthood, which also is a wonderful show that doesn’t maybe get the recognition that he feels it deserves. I think that’s what that meant.”
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