DAVID BIANCULLI

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ABC Rescues NBC's "Scrubs," While NBC Launches First Fall Promo and NBC NY Anchor Drops the 'F' Bomb
May 13, 2008  | By David Bianculli
 

Today I'm diving into New York's upfronts, and will report later from ABC's presentation late this afternoon, so please check back for updates and first impressions of the new series. Meanwhile, among ABC's morning announcements to the press are two very welcome returns by veteran series -- while, last night on NBC, two promos broadcast during NBC's telecast of Medium definitely got my attention, for very different reasons.

Scrubs-JD-Bear.jpg

The best early news out of ABC is this: One, the network has picked up NBC's Scrubs, a wonderful sitcom that still has lots of life in it. Two, ABC renewed Boston Legal, the David E. Kelley series that is one of the most outrageous, and certainly is the most topical, shows on network prime time today. And among ABC's new lineup is Kelley's adaptation of the British series Life on Mars. Good news all around.

Now for the NBC promo news.

my-own-worst-enemy-nbc-prom.jpg

The nationally televised promo was for Christian Slater's My Own Worst Enemy, a new series scheduled to premiere on NBC in the fall. It may be the first new show promoted on air by any broadcast network, so give NBC credit, at least, for trying to build buzz early. The networks all would be wise to follow suit: Audience levels have fallen so much this season because of the strike, the networks should start promoting the concept of a big fall launch before viewers vanish for the summer.

The other promo worth noting was local, an on-air ad for the upcoming 11 p.m. ET newscast -- but since WNBC-Ch 4 is the East Coast satellite NBC affiliate for DirecTV, millions of other viewers, outside the New York area, also got a chance to see it. And to hear it, which, in this case, was a lot more significant.

sue-simmons-f-bomb.jpg

Channel 4 co-anchor Sue Simmons was promoting a consumer story about food prices, and saving money on grocery bills, when the on-air image shifted from grocery items to a ferry boat. Simmons clearly -- VERY clearly -- could be heard saying, "What the F... are you doing?" Except her expletive wasn't deleted.

Simmons apologized, during the 11 p.m. newscast, for the "unfortunate incident." Call it a "dialogue malfunction" -- and wait for the FCC to be all over this one. If even one complaint is filed -- and, in this case, it should be -- Simmons' angry outburst could cost WNBC a lot of money in FCC fines, and could cost Simmons a lot, too, by tarnishing her station's "happy news team" reputation.

My Own Worst Enemy, indeed...

 

2 Comments

 

Carter said:

Wasn't the NBC show Ed heavily promoted on air by the network weeks if not months before it first aired? I know David Letterman had a hand in its creation or production. Should we be giving him credit for this "advancement?" (Early promotion of fall series in May is nothing new -- but this year, given the strike, I thought it was worth noting that NBC has started the ball rolling... especially since NBC doesn't even have footage shot yet on most of its new shows. -- David B.)

Comment posted on May 13, 2008 9:51 AM


maringuy said:

Here's a link to the f-bomb on youtube... nice work sue.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O3elN2fHWGU

Comment posted on May 13, 2008 2:26 PM

 
 
 
 
 
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