Another Summer To Forget For The Broadcast Networks

Nellie Andreeva

What do American Idol, Dancing With the Stars, Survivor, Who Wants To Be a Millionaire, Hell’s Kitchen, Big Brother, So You Think You Can Dance, America’s Got Talent and Wipeout have in common? They are broadcast TV’s biggest reality franchises of the past decade. And they all launched in the summer. Summer used to be a time for the networks to try out innovative reality formats that had never been done on the Big 4 broadcast nets (ballroom dancing or singing competitions, shows about castaways on an island or strangers locked in a house) or had been gone from primetime for a long time (game shows). Now the broadcast networks are throwing on retreads of over-exposed formats from June through August, so it’s no surprise that nothing has stuck since Wipeout launched on ABC in June 2008. A slew of newcomers came and went over the past three months: ABC’s Expedition Impossible, Take the Money & Run, Karaoke Battle USA and 101 Ways To Leave a Game Show; CBS’ Same Name, NBC’s Love In the Wild and the similar It’s Worth What?; and Buried Treasure on Fox. The only new offering on broadcast to show a pulse this summer was ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition, helped by a solid lead-in and the fact that it is an offshoot of a popular franchise. Things looked as bleak on the scripted side, with ABC’s Combat Hospital, Fox’s sketch comedy In the Flow With Affion Crockett and NBC’s burnoff Love Bites barely registering. Read More »

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Ratings Rat Race: ‘MasterChef’ & ‘Kitchen’ Inch Up, ‘Talent’ & ‘It’s Worth What?’ Drop

Nellie Andreeva

With Fox’s and NBC’s unscripted lineups heading in opposite direction — Fox’s Hell’s Kitchen and Masterchef rising and NBC’s It’s Worth What? and America’s Got Talent tumbling — Fox tied NBC for the top spot Tuesday night among adults 18-49 … Read More »

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RATINGS RAT RACE: Slow Start For ABC’s ‘Wipeout’, ’101 Ways’ And ‘Combat Hospital’

Nellie Andreeva

Sorry for the delay, Nielsen had processing issues this morning. ABC probably didn’t mind as it delayed the bad news about the premiere performance of the network’s summer Tuesday lineup. At 8 PM, Wipeout (1.7/6) was down a whopping 45% … Read More »

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ABC Shifts Summer Premiere Dates

The summer premiere of ABC’s 101 Ways to Leave a Game Show is shifting to Tuesday, June 21 at 9 PM, the network announced today. It also said that the series premiere of Expedition Impossible and the Season 2 premiere … Read More »

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