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Scheduling and Ratings Issues: Beating the Spread


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#1

Glark

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Posted Aug 22, 2006 @ 7:35 AM

Ratingsy!

Remember -- Friday Night Lights is in fact not on Friday.

#2

StickyKeys

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Posted Aug 22, 2006 @ 9:22 AM

Alright, so when does this show start and who's a recappin? Football and twop seems like it could be a fun combination.

#3

paulvdb

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Posted Aug 22, 2006 @ 9:29 AM

According to the announcement in the announcements forum Drunken Bee will recap. And TVRage.Com says that it starts October 3rd.

#4

HungryHippo2004

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Posted Aug 22, 2006 @ 9:30 AM

Drunken Bee is recapping and it debuts Tuesday, October 3rd on NBC.

Aaaand paulvdb beat me to it!

Edited by HungryHippo2004, Aug 22, 2006 @ 9:30 AM.


#5

seffina

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Posted Aug 22, 2006 @ 9:39 AM

It's in the Gilmore Girls timeslot and I'll happily watch this! It also premiers the same days as VM so that will be a fun Tuesday... even though I've already seen the pilot episode.

#6

jayseyfield

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Posted Aug 22, 2006 @ 1:05 PM

The Competition

Standoff/MLB Playoffs
American Idol (due Jan)
NCIS
Dancing with the Stars
Gilmore Girls

I talked about this a lot in the old thread but basically I'm focusing on MLB baseball as the main competition before American Idol comes back. NCIS and Gilmore Girls don't worry me that much. I'm mildly concerned about DWTS.

#7

jayseyfield

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Posted Aug 23, 2006 @ 9:50 PM

ITV acquires rights to Friday Night Lights.

The deals were brokered by ITV's director of acquisitions Jay Kandola, adding to her previous Screenings spree of US dramas Six Degrees from Buena Vista; NBC Universal's The Black Donnellys, Raines and Friday Night Lights; Jehrico from CBS Paramount; and Warner Bros' Smith.


Rest easy UK, you can now watch the new NBC show about football!

But unfortunatley not the kind of football you guys like.

Edited by jayseyfield, Aug 23, 2006 @ 9:53 PM.


#8

monkeylove

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Posted Aug 24, 2006 @ 6:07 AM

Egads, that show's gonna bomb so badly over here. They should at least have figured out to do an English remake using our football.

#9

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Posted Aug 27, 2006 @ 7:13 AM

I don't think it'll do so badly. It's a show about people. I'm in the UK, no idea about US football, I'd already planned to download it. Hopefully if they put it on ITV2, I'll get to see it and I won't need to D/L.

If it goes on ITV1, Scots viewers will be screwed. They never showed Supernatural up here or Karen Sisco while the rest of the network got them. I really hope that desn't happen to FNL.

So UK viewers, email ITV for them to put it on Freeview!

#10

jayseyfield

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Posted Aug 27, 2006 @ 3:16 PM

It seems the general consensus by tv critics and experts is that the show itself is very good but they think it'll have a hard time catching on and will struggle against the competition.

They do make some valid points but I'm still sticking to my prediction that the show will be the sleeper hit of the year. Now I don't think the first episode will get monster numbers but I think by episode five there will have been enough word of mouth for it to get some big ratings.

NBC really doesen't care about overall viewers so I'm solely concentrating on the 18-49 demo.

My Official Prediction: By the fifth episode FNL will average about 13 million viewers with a 13 share in viewers 18-49.

I think that the tv critics & experts are thinking way too much by the statistics and numbers and are not seeing the intangible factors that make certain tv shows very popular.
  • While shows about sports are nothing new fictional sports dramas are rare enough to have a certain exotic quality.
  • The cast is really good. Especially the younger actors and I'm lose my breath when I think about the three actresses (Palicki, Kelly and Teegarden) who might be the one of the best looking female trios on a tv show that I've ever seen and they're all so attractive, but in their own ways. The actors look great and seem really in tune with their characters. Kyle Chandler and Connie Britton solidify the adults roles. The 5-3-2 (5 guys, 3 gals, 2 adults) has no weaknesses.
  • One of my methods to telling whether a tv shows is going to be a question is this; Is the show parodyable? Let me tell you, FNL is emminently parodyable.

Edited by jayseyfield, Aug 27, 2006 @ 3:27 PM.


#11

Drew T.

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Posted Aug 27, 2006 @ 8:24 PM

13 million viewers is a lot to predict for an early show, particularly since very few, if any, other NBC shows are doing that well. Even My Name is Earl and The Office aren't doing that well.

#12

jayseyfield

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Posted Aug 27, 2006 @ 8:39 PM

13 million viewers is a lot to predict for an early show, particularly since very few, if any, other NBC shows are doing that well. Even My Name is Earl and The Office aren't doing that well.

I know, and I didn't choose those numbers randomly (I did research). I think NBC is due for a big hit and I think that show will be Friday Night Lights.

I really don't think 16 million viewers would matter if the viewers were older than 49. NBC wants young viewers so the 18-49 share is more important than overall viewers. A 13 share is about what My Name is Earl gets so I choose that.

Also My Name is Earl and The Office are solid shows but they're not megahits, I think FNL will appeal a lot more towards the mainstream tv viewers than those shows.

And yeah I know it's a longshot but I really think FNL has the compenents to be a big hit. All I ask is that no quick conclusions be drawn until about five, maybe even four episodes have aired and the ratings tallied.

Edited by jayseyfield, Aug 27, 2006 @ 8:42 PM.


#13

Imogen

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Posted Aug 28, 2006 @ 7:33 AM

I always thought that FNL would make its way over the Atlantic, but I'm surprised that it got picked up by ITV. I would have expected Channel 4 to pick it up, and put it in the T4 early-morning Teen!Drama! slot.

I don't think the show will go down very well over here. People interested in football won't understand American football, and teens might not watch it because of all the football scenes, and not enough 'hawtness'.

#14

Captain Black

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Posted Aug 28, 2006 @ 7:49 AM

I'm a Brit and having watched seen the pilot am very much looking forward to this (although I am a big 'American' Football fan - last time I use that term, I promise).

Given the choice, I thought (UK channel) Five would have acquired the rights, as they broadcast the NFL regular season over here and also rely more on the US imports (unlike ITV, who rely on reality shows). I thought it would make a good lead-in, but prime time scheduling is out of the question given the subject matter. ITV will no doubt broadcast on one of their digital channels (probably ITV2), where expectations will be lower.

#15

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Posted Aug 28, 2006 @ 8:35 AM

I'm fervently hoping that this will be the case. I might actually see it then.

I haven't seen the pilot, but I watch shows about people and what happens to them. That's exactly what this sounds like. And it's not a sodding procedural!

Just editing quickly to add that ITV is trying to catch up to Five, after it got roundly slagged in the press for its programming. Five's had nothing but praise for its US programming. ITV wants a piece of that.

Edited by hakirby, Aug 28, 2006 @ 8:38 AM.


#16

Preciosa

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Posted Aug 28, 2006 @ 9:50 AM

I actually think that 13 million is a little optimistic for a new series. In fact a lot optimistic.

FNL is a football drama. It has the potential to scare away viewers intrested in the football but turned off by the teen angst and then there are those who want to see all the drama but will be completely bored by the football.

Add that to the fact that FNL is competing against House, GG and Dancing with the Stars? This will be lucky to not be cancelled mid season.

#17

minneapple

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Posted Aug 28, 2006 @ 10:26 AM

Don't forget American Idol when it returns in January. By then House will have moved to the 9 p.m. timeslot, but AI makes it even tougher competition.

I agree that 13 million is a little optimistic, but I think Friday Night Lights could be a sleeper this season, especially if it's more than a primetime soap with football. Americans love football, but how many TV series have there been about the sport? Playmakers comes to mind (and it was a pretty popular show for cable), but the NFL forced ESPN to put the kibosh on that.

Edited by minneapple, Aug 28, 2006 @ 10:28 AM.


#18

jayseyfield

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Posted Aug 28, 2006 @ 2:39 PM

Add that to the fact that FNL is competing against House, GG and Dancing with the Stars? This will be lucky to not be cancelled mid season.

Actually it's never going to go head-to-head against House. FNL is premiering on Oct 3 which by that time FOX will start broadcasting the MLB Playoffs. Then I think Standoff and House will switch places so Standoff will be at 8 then in January it'll go up against American Idol.

In regards to Dancing with the Stars I'd like to quote what Demian said in the Jericho ratings thread;

A lot of people who watch TV don't define themselves by "fanbases," either. A lot of people just watch TV, and among those people, I don't think the ones who are going to watch Dancing with the Stars would ever watch Jericho. And I really don't think any of those who watch George Lopez and According to Jim would watch Jericho, either. In fact, if this show does manage to pull in an audience, I'd say its scheduling was a damn good example of counter-programming, as it's a Lost-like serial up against a stand-alone-episode procedural, a couple of NBC yuppie sitcoms, and a reality show/blue-collar sitcom mix.


I think he's right and even though he was talking about Jericho this argument makes sense with this show. While DwtS has high ratings I don't think they're will be a lot of conflict with FNL, they're completley different demos.

Yeah I know my prediction may seem a bit out there but I'm sticking to it. I'm glad at least one person shares my view.

The Other Half keeps pointing out all the negative reviews about this show and how advertisers are staying away. I say these are advertisers in NYC and Chicago. Not the heart of the country where this show will positively blow up. Seriously. Mark my words now, “Friday Night Lights” will be the break-out show of the season. Not because the EW’s of the world love it, but because the heartland will love it. And they’ll be right.



Is it cutting edge? No. Is it daring? No. Does it fit weekly TV for a broad audience? Absolutely.



#19

jayseyfield

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Posted Sep 4, 2006 @ 4:35 PM

If this show does well when it premieres here are some of the kinds of headlines I want to see;

NBC blitzes competition with Friday Night Lights

"Friday" lights up Tuesday night ratings.

Friday Night Lights tackles Gilmore Girls


I'm so glad the Red Sox are practically out of the playoff race now FOX's MLB playoff coverage won't have great ratings.

Edited by jayseyfield, Sep 4, 2006 @ 4:35 PM.


#20

jayseyfield

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Posted Sep 8, 2006 @ 3:45 AM

I've given this a lot of thought and here's are my thoughts;

-According to one of the articles I linked to in the media thread, NBC is going to decide whether to re-up and give FNL an additional 9 episode order (the initial order was 12 so a full season pickup would be 21 episodes) in November. So if this is correct, American Idol will have no effect on whether this show will get a full season since AI doesen't come on until Jan.

-I think despite the fact the talk that it's crucial for women to watch this show the core fanbase of this show is going to be men. The reason for this is because when the show goes up against it's apocalyptic showdown with American Idol I just cannot see the female fans of Idol (especially the teen girls) sticking around for this show. American Idol has become not only a tv show but this big cultural thing. I'm guessing most people watch AI as a group.

-The reason men are so important is because FNL can be a strong counter-program to AI along gender lines. The biggest thing going for FNL is that while it has teens, and a certain amount of teen drama it's still about football. While most guys would be a little reluctant to say they are fans of Dawson's Creek or The OC I think they would not have trouble not only admitting but being outright fans of FNL. It has a certain amount of credibility thanks to the movie and the book. And sorry for the massive generalizations but I think they apply in the big picture POV.

-I don't think Gilmore Girls, NCIS and Dancing with the Stars will be much competition. Gilmore Girls might have a dedicated fanbase but their numbers are a non-factor in Nielsen terms. NCIS attracts primarily an older audience and while "Stars" might draw big numbers I don't think there's much crossover between that show and FNL. The two shows are mutally exclusive in terms of viewership. The primarily competition will be from FOX, from the MLB Playoffs and American Idol. FOX is all that matters.

Finally there is one piece of advice that I would like to give to NBC; stop screwing around with your FNL promos so much. The original cut of the "Remember the Name" trailer was perfect. You shouldn't have made 10 different promos that weren't as good. Sometimes less is more.

Edited by jayseyfield, Sep 8, 2006 @ 3:54 AM.


#21

dso

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Posted Sep 10, 2006 @ 6:33 PM

I think FNL will be a sleeper hit with somewhat of a cult following. I doubt that following will be like VM fans, but more like the adamancy of Boston Legal fans.

#22

jayseyfield

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Posted Sep 10, 2006 @ 6:57 PM

I think FNL will be a sleeper hit with somewhat of a cult following. I doubt that following will be like VM fans, but more like the adamancy of Boston Legal fans.

I actually think it'll have pretty large diehard fanbase eventually. I'm don't think it'll be like the VM fanbase, BL, I wouldn't know because I'm not familiar with that fanbase.

But considering this show doesen't really have big name actors with existing fanbases or a big name producer like Joss Whedon or JJ Abrams I think it's developed a fair amount of interest before it airs.

I'm positive it'll attract a bunch of new fans (who either know little or nothing about the show now) who will get hooked after seeing the pilot.

I think sports fans are an untapped audience in the scripted tv landscape, but there hasn't been a decent tv show about sports for them to get into the past couple of decades. I full expect FNL to be the one. I think the show will be very popular, especiall in the heartland.

Edited by jayseyfield, Sep 10, 2006 @ 6:59 PM.


#23

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Posted Sep 12, 2006 @ 9:53 PM

This is a Media Life article on a game on BrilliantButCancelled.com where people vote for which show they think will get cancelled the quickest.

CBS and NBC fare the best, each with just one show in the deadly 10: CBS with "Jericho" at No. 8 at 36:1 and NBC's "Friday Night Lights at No. 9 and at 37:1

So in a nutshell they rate FNL as 9th in the most likely to be cancelled list.

ETA: I noticed my first prediction wasn't very clear in regards to the "13 share", so I'm going to re-phrase it.

My prediction: 13 million viewers overall, 5.0/13 in viewers 18-49

Edited by jayseyfield, Sep 19, 2006 @ 1:50 AM.


#24

Chipper730

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Posted Sep 15, 2006 @ 8:53 PM

Given the boffo ratings of both Dancing with the Stars and House, that's not surprising. Even a show like this needs to pull in numbers, even on NBC.

#25

dc222

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Posted Sep 16, 2006 @ 3:41 AM

NBC obviously has a huge opportunity for endlessly promoting FNL on Sundays... commercials as well as John Madden and Al Michaels talking the show up before plays as commentators do during all football games.

#26

jayseyfield

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Posted Sep 20, 2006 @ 2:33 AM

There are two more Sunday Night Football games before FNL premieres. Patriots-Broncos (Go Broncos!) and Bears-Seahawks (Go Bears!)

I suspect the Patriots-Broncos game will be bombarded with commercials for Heroes since Heroes is debuting the day after that game. Now logically that would mean there would be a ton of FNL commercials the week after that game during the Bears-Seahawks game which airs on Oct 1. At least I would hope so.

#27

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Posted Sep 20, 2006 @ 2:38 PM

I saw the movie and think Peter Berg is all sorts of brilliant, so I'm definitely going to be watching -- but it's going to be tough. I watch DWTS and my baseball team has all but clinched their division. So the playoffs come first (and hopefully the WS as well), and "Dancing...." I can probably get the clips on the web... which leaves me to figuring out a way to tape FNL. Especially if it has the EW "seal of approval".

I just hope they promo the hell out if it on NBC during SNF. All they've been showing so far are those "Heroes" promos and that show just looks bad.

#28

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Posted Sep 20, 2006 @ 3:16 PM

I suspect the Patriots-Broncos game will be bombarded with commercials for Heroes since Heroes is debuting the day after that game. Now logically that would mean there would be a ton of FNL commercials the week after that game during the Bears-Seahawks game which airs on Oct 1. At least I would hope so.


I would hope so, and I think that they wouldn't miss an opportunity like that to promote the show, especially if they want to attract more male viewers!

#29

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Posted Sep 20, 2006 @ 6:36 PM

I think sports fans are an untapped audience in the scripted tv landscape, but there hasn't been a decent tv show about sports for them to get into the past couple of decades. I full expect FNL to be the one. I think the show will be very popular, especiall in the heartland.


But wouldn't a sports fan rather watch an actual game, instead of having to wade through the teen drama to get their football fix? ESPN is just a few clicks of the remote away...

This is a Media Life article on a game on BrilliantButCancelled.com where people vote for which show they think will get cancelled the quickest.

CBS and NBC fare the best, each with just one show in the deadly 10: CBS with "Jericho" at No. 8 at 36:1 and NBC's "Friday Night Lights at No. 9 and at 37:1So in a nutshell they rate FNL as 9th in the most likely to be cancelled list.


Agenda much? That is an NBC owned website, touting an NBC owned network (Bravo). I hold little credence to any of the predictions listed there, except possibly the first one on the list. Yes, the viewers are voting, but they are NBC viewers, so of course they are going to trend against it's competitors.

I do think it stands a chance of holding it's spot on the network for the season, but beyond that I'm not sure.

ETA: Don't count out Dancing with the Stars either, because Emmitt Smith is one of the dance competitors this season. I'm sure there are many a male sports fan that would get a kick, or a laugh out of seeing him dance on tv.

Edited by Micha, Sep 20, 2006 @ 6:41 PM.


#30

jayseyfield

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Posted Sep 20, 2006 @ 11:54 PM

But wouldn't a sports fan rather watch an actual game, instead of having to wade through the teen drama to get their football fix? ESPN is just a few clicks of the remote away...

But just because you're a sports fan doesen't mean you want to watch sports 24/7. A little variety is always a good thing so sometimes you don't want to watch a 20-1 blowout win by the Yankees, you might want to watch Hoosiers, or The Bad News Bears or in this case Friday Night Lights. Watching sports is not neccesarily better than watching a scripted drama about sports, both have their strengths and weaknesses. For example while the highs that real sports gives you is unmatched they only come so often. I mean for every ESPN Classic game you might see you have to sit through 99 boring games of blowouts, snoozefests, etc.

While scripted sports drama will never match the thrill of real sports, it's more consistent and when done right they always have one or two "chill scenes". I've never seen it so I have no idea but I've heard "Field of Dreams" has a lot of "chill scenes".

Also if they're anything like me their team sucks, rooting for a bad team like the Browns or the Devil Rays and would be thrilled to watch some fictionalized sports.

Agenda much? That is an NBC owned website, touting an NBC owned network (Bravo). I hold little credence to any of the predictions listed there, except possibly the first one on the list. Yes, the viewers are voting, but they are NBC viewers, so of course they are going to trend against it's competitors.

That poll said Friday Night Lights is the ninth most likely show to be cancelled so I'm not quite getting your point. I'd be afraid what FNL would've been ranked if it wasn't owned by NBC.

Don't count out Dancing with the Stars either, because Emmitt Smith is one of the dance competitors this season. I'm sure there are many a male sports fan that would get a kick, or a laugh out of seeing him dance on tv.

I'm doubt beyond one or two episodes, any football, or Cowboy fans will watch DWTS just to see Emmitt Smith.

Edited by jayseyfield, Sep 21, 2006 @ 12:01 AM.