Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Toys Of Summer (and CBC's Fall)...

From Televisionary, here's a nice breakdown of mostly U.S. television shows (new and returning) to watch over the next several months...though I can't agree with plugging Pirate Master. Puhleazzze...this show is a step back to the glut of 'reality/adventure' drivel that swamped the airwaves several years ago (and was supposedly the beginning of the end of the trend).

And I counted 7 (seven!) ads for it over the course an hour of watching Canada's Comedy Network last night (the CBS show is being simulcast on CTV, who in turn owns Comedy Network...you get the picture)...make it stop!

And Canuck pub broadcaster CBC announced its fall programming slate...no real surprises (although I suppose officially renewing Intelligence could be one)...much ado about international buys/co-pros The Tudors and Torchwood (don't you UK readers hate this show?), Little Mosque, lots of sports and lots of reality: No Opportunity Wasted, Triple Sensation, and more Test The Nation and Dragon's Den.

CBC-TV's Executive Director Kristine Layfield puts it like this:

Layfield admitted the schedule is an attempt to attract younger audiences (but) wants to draw all viewers who want more than the "typical American programming that they're going to get on our competition. Television is about trying and risk and experimentation. It's also about doing it in as measured a way as you can," Layfield said.

"We have to try things that are different. We can't just make Canadian versions of American shows. We have to make things that are truly our own."

So, there you go...and while Variety reported the announcements as "light in homegrown drama", the Globe & Mail's coverage of the same event saw CBC head honcho Richard Stursberg promise "a new direction" and he went on to say "they are gunning for their best ratings in ten years."

But as 2006 proved (Stursberg setting a goal no less than 1 million viewers per primetime program and falling woefully short), false promises seem to mean piss all in relation to keeping your job at the Canadian nets (as opposed to say... Kevin Reilly at NBC)...cuz up here, if you fail, you just get to try again the next year.

4 comments:

CAROLINE said...

No secret that I am not a huge fan of Stursburg, but the place was broken long before he got there, and there are still a lot of unresolved issues, some his and some inherited.

I think Kirstine is trying her best, I think that bringing Fred Fuchs in is a huge step in the right direction, but it takes a good amount of time to right a behemoth that size when it is off course and sinking.

Kelly J. Compeau said...

I was hoping Fred would have made a bigger impact on the Ceeb by now. He's been there since, what, last July?

blueglow said...

really? so after all this talk on various blogs about the importance of showrunners etc it's a good idea to hand over the running of a network to a line producer?

just asking.

wcdixon said...

You need to navigate the paperwork and play the bureaucracy game in order to survive making television in this country...showrunners and key creatives have always played second fiddle. So if you've got a line producer with even one creative bone in their body, well...aces!

Especially if this has become your new measuring stick for "success".

Just saying...