Happy Passover to those who observe Passover, or at least are invited to a Passover dinner. This is one of the Jewish holidays where you do eat. Meanwhile, here are this week’s Friday Questions for followers of all religions.
ELS starts us off:
Ken, you noted that Supergirl's ratings aren't so good... but that's on CBS. How would they compare if the show were on the CW? I keep thinking that CBS might bail on "Supergirl" and the CW would take it to complete their "DC superheroes - every night!" (or some such.) I know some shows have jumped networks... any idea if this is viable? (Yes, I definitely like "Supergirl" - I'm the one - and would like to see it remain on the air.)
Last year when CBS was putting together its schedule there was a lot of talk about putting SUPERGIRL on the CW – for the reasons you mentioned. My understanding was that the production budget would be too high to justify for a CW show. There was also the element of SUPERGIRL’S theme (empowering women) that CBS really responded to.
Look, SUPERGIRL got a huge sampling. The fact that ratings have continued to slip clearly suggests fans are not liking the storylines and direction of the show. My guess is that should SUPERGIRL get picked up for a second season there will be a major overhaul in the writing staff and creative direction of the show. I wouldn’t be surprised if Warner Brothers (the studio that produces the show) has to make a big presentation to CBS explaining just how they would fix it before the network gives them a pick-up.
I too hope it comes back, but not in its present form.
The TV Guy has a CHEERS question.
I've always wondered why Shelley Long didn't return to CHEERS until the 1993 finale, 6 years after her departure? Was she invited? Seems like it would've been organic enough for her to pop in during the 6th, 7th, or 8th season. Why the long absence?
I have to say personally, that although I loved the Rebecca years, and Kirstie was a hoot, to me the Diane years were special. Having Shelley back for the final hurrah just made that last episode feel right. What do you guys all think?
Could you discuss what a writing staff goes through this time of year, when series that have been renewed plan the next season's story arc (as "Mom" now is planning to do for season 4, though that show almost certainly was to have been brought back). I would think most series have long-range plans, both for the season arc and for individual episodes that aren't tied to an arc but can be shown at nearly any time during the season. And for a show that's renewed by the skin of its teeth, with writers making contingency plans, I'm sure the staff doesn't have its collective mind focused on future seasons.
Knowing you’re already picked up for next year is a real luxury. Some shows handle it differently. A few will begin planning the overall arc and a few stories for the upcoming season. They may even assign script assignments to the staff during the hiatus. That way when they return the show has five or six scripts already.
The most organized show I ever saw was EVERYBODY LOVES RAYMOND. Phil Rosenthal was a master showrunner. When ELR would wrap for the year, Phil had half of next season’s scripts ready to go. He was always a half a season ahead. I’m in awe.
In most cases, showrunners and staffs are so fried by the end of the season they just set it aside and go off on hiatus. They’ll worry about next year when they return. I’ve even seen shows that end with a cliffhanger and the showrunner has no idea how he’s going to resolve it. He’ll figure something out after the break.
For most of the long-running shows I’ve been on, we tabled any discussion of the following year until we reconvened after the hiatus. We were much likely to come up with good ideas when we were refreshed than plotting out a new season on fumes.
A friend of mine is working on a production for BBC radio of 50 year-old+ scripts by Ray Galton and Alan Simpson of Steptoe (US Sanford) and Son, and Hancock's Half Hour using, obviously, actors unassociated with these iconic characters. How do you think would you feel (assuming the money was right) about a similar thing happening with yours and David's classic scripts? Are there certain actors you might prefer - or not?
I think it would be interesting. It was great recently seeing different actors play the parts in my play, A OR B? Why not allow new actors to see what they can bring to various roles? It also makes it easier to go along with this if the money is right.
What’s your Friday Question?