Couldn’t happen to a nicer genre.
Audiences are starting to prove they are SMARTER THAN A FIFTH GRADER (which has lost half of it’s coveted 18-49 demographic) and the verdict is NO DEAL (down 29%). SURVIVOR EDITION 382: CATALINA is off 10% and even DANCING WITH THE FRINGE OR GERIATRIC STARS is down 9% (but at least Cloris Leachman didn’t break a hip). Across the board, reality shows are slumping. Maybe if the craze hadn’t gotten so far out of hand that there’s now an Emmy category for best Reality Show Host that wouldn’t be the case, but still – America has voted… and they want the genre off the island.
So what shows are doing well instead. Scripted shows. And more to the point –
Hold off reading sitcoms their rites. TWO AND A HALF MEN kicks ass, 30 ROCK is up 23% (even though this is far from their best year so far), HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER and BIG BANG THEORY are making dramatic gains as well. There’d be even more success stories if there were more than six comedies.
And you can sell those shows into syndication and make a handsome profit long into the future. What is NBC going to do with four seasons of THE APPRENTICE now that we all know the outcomes, the challenges are dated and musty, and half the contestants are currently serving time for insider trading?
Media analysts are quick to explain this phenomenon. There’s a glut of reality shows, people need escape from the collapsed economy, and Misty May-Treanor is not a great dancer.
But the bottom line is this: SITUATION COMEDIES are back even though they never went away.
Get going on that spec OFFICE and original pilot about USC film students trying to break into Hollywood.
Sitcoms (in some form) will still be around long after all the Bachelors and Bachelorettes have been divorced and Ryan Seacrest has come out.
We all have a lot to be thankful for this year.