Thursday, January 6, 2011

Promise of a New Day!

Social Networking: The 21st Century Way to Find New Clients

Happy New Year!

A New Day ... A New Decade ... Welcome 2011!

A new television network begins, OWN, the Oprah Winfrey Network takes it's place in history. 

(OWN Network)

New toys will come into the marketplace, like the Janet Jackson doll below.  

(Janet Jackson Doll - L.I.M.E.)

Desktop Marketing for Success, Independence and Income

Page-turning books from undiscovered authors will be published and new television shows will soar, while others don't make it off the landing strip. 

(MTV's Jersey Shore Star - New Author)

Like life, there's a time for television shows to be born and a time for them to die... sad, but true.  What marks a sitcom's or episodic's untimely demise?  It all comes down to timing and television ratings.

A bad time slot can be bad for a show's health.  Jay Leno experienced this when he tried launching a show in a different format at the 10 p.m. hour -- a time slot where crime drama shows and hospital dramas run supreme.  

Viewers just weren't ready to hear variety show jabber a hour and half earlier.   On the same token, Conan O'Brien couldn't hold the ratings together either in his predecessor's time slot. 

So, one would assume that the style of show has to also mesh with the time slot, the network's programming and viewer demographics. 

Are Average Joans and Joes mostly watching?  Or do we have a mix of the latter with the Beverly Hills House Wives and Donald Trump CEO types?  

There's no way around it, a drop in ratings can infect a television show.  What's a network to do, but to play follow the bouncing show?  They change the show's time slot and/or day in hopes of resuscitating it.   If they detect a weak pulse, they'll add new characters, tweak story lines, re-design the set, etc.  

The network powers that be, may even take the show in a new direction with this shot of heparin that it prays will stop it from clotting the ratings and bring in more viewers.   But let's say, nothing works ... our XYZ show continues to decline and the show's prognosis ... terminal.

Enters a popular cable network, this notorious champion of terminal shows decides this family comedy warrants heroic efforts and offers life support until the ailing show breathes on its own.  If it hangs on for another year or so, especially if it ran a few years on prime-time network, it can survive on syndication reruns for a few more years after it ends.   Hope springs eternal ... even in television land.


Here's the other side.  A television show could be in good health, but the main star wants to call it quits.  Not exactly suicide, but it has that same suicidal feel when it's your favorite television show.


1. Monk
Actually both scenarios happened to this Average Joan's favorite show just a month short of 2010, "Monk," lovingly known as the "defective detective."  I mourned and moaned over the unexpected end of Adrian Monk. First airing on NBC, it didn't have the anticipated ratings' success until it slid into the number one spot on the USA Network.  

Immediately, it began breathing on it's own and struck an appealing chord with viewers, winning an Emmy, Golden Globe and Screen Actor's Guild awards.

Adrian Monk isn't exactly your Average Joe, but his obsessive-compulsive tendencies didn't stop him from brilliance and turning the ordinary into the extraordinary.  His weaknesses were many, but he used them to crack unsolvable cases to the naked eye.  

"Here's what happened," he'd say right before unraveling a murderer's evil web of deception ... and of course, after a lot of towel wipes.  

He hated a crooked line.  His food couldn't touch each other.  And he'd freak over a baker's dozen.  Everything had to be in perfect order and symmetry.  Sadly, Monk said goodbye after 8 seasons and 125 episodes.

2. Ugly Betty
I still wonder if the show would've hung on longer if Betty had stayed "so-called ugly" with her infamous braces, poncho and furry eyebrows.

(Ugly Betty) 

But no ... during the last two seasons she peaked into a Prada-wearing fashionista wielding an associate editor laptop ... no longer the ugly duckling.  But at least we were gifted a satisfying (IMHO - In My Humble Opinion) series finale when she and Daniel ended up in Paris with an "It Was You All Along" hint of a happily-ever-after ending for this most unlikely couple.

(Law & Order)
3. Law & Order
You'd have to be from another planet if you don't know the Law & Order television franchise:  "Law & Order," "Law & Order:  SVU," "Law & Order:  Criminal Intent," "Law & Order:  UK" and the latest, "Law & Order:  Los Angeles." 

Let's see, there was the mother who drowned her children in a car, the mistress accused of murdering the married professional basketball player, the rap artist killed by a rival rap artist ... and so forth.  Stories plucked from today's headlines and molded for the crime show screen.

 (Law & Order 2009)

Each one, pretty much, kept the same formula.  In the first half, detectives investigate the murder, then ADAs prosecute the crime in court hopefully carting the scumbag off to prison.

(Law & Order 2009)

Gone But, Far from Forgotten

Even though we had to bid adieu to the original "Law & Order" (1990 to 2009) -- one year short of surpassing "Gun Smoke" 
(1955 to 1975) as the longest running prime-time drama in U.S. History -- we can still tune into the popular "Law & Order: SVU" and the newest:  "Law & Order:  Los Angeles." 

Last Spring, NBC gave the last rites to the original "Law & Order" and Law & Order: Criminal Intent.  Fortunately for us, we'll get to say goobye to "Criminal Intent's" original detectives who made the show, Detectives Robert Goren and Alex Eames, in Spring 2011 for the Series Finale episode.  

(Law & Order: SVU)

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit - The Twelfth Year 

Here's the scoop on Law & Order I found on Wikipedia.

"Law & Order" premiered on September 13, 1990, and completed its 20th and final season on May 24, 2010. At the time of its cancellation, "Law & Order" was the longest-running crime drama on American prime-time television, and tied for longest running American drama series of all time with "Gunsmoke;" both are the second longest-running scripted series with ongoing characters after "The Simpsons."

(The Simpsons)

So put away those tissues ... "SVU" and "Law & Order:  Los Angeles" are riding the television air waves with startling finesse.

(Law & Order:  Los Angeles)

  "SVU" spices up its stories with guest-starring celebrities like:  Jennifer Love Hewitt, ("Ghost Whisperer") Tracey Pollan, Joan Cusack and Maria Bello ...   Debbie Messing  ("Will & Grace") will guest star on an episode in the Spring.  It pays to guest star on SVU.  Guest-starring celebrities have snagged 16 Emmy Nominations over the years.

(Jennifer Love Hewitt) 

Our fearless captain of this television flotilla, Executive Producer and Creator Dick Wolf, also navigated over the "seas in 2009 and landed on:  "Law & Order:  UK."   Don't worry, you'll be saying, "sod off," and calling your friends mates in no time ... while the Brits smile with pride.

Okay, you can bring out your tissues again.
Here's a short rundown of shows canceled in the

As the World Turns (CBS) - after 54 years
Cold Case (CBS)
Guiding Light (CBS) - after 57 years
Lincoln Heights (ABC Family)
Lost (ABC)

Monk: Season Eight 

Ravensburger The Simpsons - 240 Piece puzzleball 

Ugly Betty: The Complete Fourth and Final Season 

Law & Order Criminal Intent - The Second Year 

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