Tuesday, February 23, 2010
NBC On Top
A trustworthy NBC source describes the mood inside the peacock proud network these days as "euphoric".
As it should be.
For the last few years NBC has been mired in fourth place. The network just got over the expensive folly of moving Jay Leno out of late nights and into weeknights at 10.
Leno bombed and is going back to the Tonight Show.
Then NBC so riled the normally affable Conan O'Brien that he asked to be released from his contract --NBC had to pay him off with something like $45 million in loose change.
But all that has changed after 10 nights of Olympics coverage. Or 26 million viewers a day.
Now NBC is temporarily ratings king.ABC is now fourth.
But can NBC's leadership last when the Olympics are a mere memory?
NBC says it just might. The network has been promoting Leno's return to Toight and there is hope he'll quickly dethrone Letterman from number one position.
NBC says it has a new 10 p.m. drama series The Parenthood that may click mightily.
And there's a new reality comedy thing called The Marriage Ref.
But NBC knows from experience promoting stinkers during the Beijing Olympics failed to help such series as My Own Worst Enemy gain audience acceptance.
Still the Olympics are such a big thing ratings wise that the cumulative totals might push NBC into an ocverall third place finish for the season.
But I'm one who remembers when NBC was first back in the days when the network had such roaring hits as Seinfeld, ER and Friends.