Friday, April 14, 2006

NBC's "Joey" Actually Has a Fan!

My apologies, but this is truly how I feel: If you think Jay Leno is a particularly funny comedian or that NBC's "Joey" is a hoot, we probably won't see eye to eye on a number of things besides comedy stylings.

So, I can't stop laughing over this: The latest Entertainment Weekly has a letter from one Sean Patterson of Los Angeles, defending "Joey". The letter reads:

"Your story about "Joey" possibly facing cancellation due to bad ratings has nothing to do with cast, direction, or writers. It has to do with networks moving shows around or taking them off the air for weeks at a time, thinking viewers have nothing better to do that search for the shows we love. Note to TV execs: Put it on, leave it on, and if you move it, let us know. If you have no faith in your shows, why should we?"
I'm really sorta hoping this is a member of the show's crew or an NBC executive trying to spin away on a show that is -- from every angle -- a failure to what their expectations were. (By the by, I've attempted to watch "Joey" and found it horrendous.)

EW got it right in its story-- particuarly that the writing was lazy. And that impacted the ratings, particularly those that expected "Friends"-level humor. Simply, the ratings necessitated the move from Thursday to Tuesdays and a second hiatus-- in its last airing on March 7 it drew only 4 million viewers. The only bad move NBC has made -- at least this season -- was bringing it back for a second season, that's how bad their schedule is (and it also has to do with penalties the network would have to pay had it not reached a second season). NBC realized it had a dog on its hands that was destroying the Thursday schedule and took action. Why put any advertising dollars behind a floundering show, when it could be spent to prop other series that are doing far better in the ratings or new shows trying to establish themselves? This "Joey" ship has sailed and, with castmembers bailing to do other shows this fall, this will not be coming back this fall.

NBC has a giant problem in its hands right now with its fall schedule ("The West Wing" and "Will & Grace" are two highly-regarded and -rated series that are not coming back), even though the network is regaining football. That they're even considering airing two different shows focusing on the backstage shenanigans on a late night comedy show tells us they're struggling.

But "Joey" was an easy call to make, in terms of that getting the shaft. Just like "Arrested Development" (I can't believe I'm writing this), fans of "Joey" should be happy it survived this long.

1 comment:

rel said...

Regardless of what you think of the shows, Mr. Patterson voiced what I have been complaining about for several seasons now. NBC, in particular, seems to change their line-up every other week or so. I absolutely love 'Scrubs', but during last season, it jumped around from Tuesday to Thursday (and maybe other nites, too) so much, as well as time slot changes, as well as weeks that it wasn't on at all, that I totally gave up on watching it. If I caught it on, then great, if not, oh,well. I do think that networks that shuffle line-ups constantly and go for weeks at a time without new shows in the middle of a season are hurting themselves.