All Rich wants for Festivus
My second Festivus list! Sure, the aluminum pole is a bit tarnished, and I'm not at my peak stamina to perform the Feats of Strength, but I have plenty of grievances to air. However, since this is a wish list I'll hold off on the grievances until I can shout them in the middle of Rittenhouse Square during the last shopping weekend before Christmas. Come on out before the fine members of the Philadelphia police force take me away.
So, without further verbiage on my part, here are my wishes for this Festivus season.
- End the corporate synergy between the broadcast and cable networks: Really, the networks have to stop using the cable channels that they own to rebroadcast some of their network shows. I mean, do we really need to see The Singing Bee rebroadcast on CNBC (or MSNBC, I get confused), and in a marathon format at that? Sure, re-airing Bionic Woman on SciFi (part of the NBC Universal universe) is logical. But airing episodes of Law & Order:SVU and WWE on the same channel? Come on! Look, if you don't have the time or the money to air enough original programming on these networks just sell them to someone who does.
- Have TV Land make up its mind as to what it is: Is it a network airing classic shows (is Just Shoot Me considered "classic" now?), reality shows, movies or shows about other shows? Is this the rebranding that the network talked about earlier this year? If so, then they aren't doing a good job with it. TV Land used to be one of the networks I could turn to for some "comfort food" when nothing else was on. Now, it's just another channel that I just pass by. And, while we are on the subject of rebranding...
- Have Cartoon Network make up its mind as to what it wants to be: I don't think that it's a surprise to anyone that Cartoon Network is trying to rebrand itself in order to compete with the powerhouses like Disney Channel and Nickelodeon. However, the way they are doing it is way off. By airing tired old live action movies and shows they really aren't doing themselves justice. If they really want to compete then change the name of the network, get some original live-action programming, and rework the schedule to catch the right audience. Otherwise, stop airing episodes of Goosebumps and get back to the job of producing good cartoons. And, while we are on the subject of Cartoon Network...
- Move Adult Swim onto its own channel: Noggin and The N are doing it, so why can't Cartoon Network and Adult Swim do the same thing? Especially now that the nighttime programming is moving into some more live-action types of shows. You could certainly rebrand the network as a hipper version of Comedy Central.
- Resolve the Writers' Strike as quickly and cleanly as possible: While the Writers' Strike is putting a crimp into my viewing and writing habits, it is not my main wish. Frankly, I don't think there is any amount of wishing that can be done to get this resolved. The two sides involved are just way too stubborn. What I can only hope for here is that both sides eventually realize that this strike is changing the face of television, and not for the better on either side. Hopefully, it won't be too late before that happens.
- Some closure during the last seasons of Scrubs and The Shield: I will be very sad when both of these shows end, since they've been part of my viewing lifestyle for so many years. I just hope that the producers of these two shows don't pull a Sopranos on us and decide not to give their fans closure. I say that especially for The Shield. It may just be me, I would really be happy if Vic was able to find some peace in his life for once.
- Give less airtime to American Idol: I know that this, and probably 24, are the big cash cows for FOX during the second half of the season. That being said, though, how many nights of American Idol do we need at the beginning of the season? Do we really need to see three to four nights full of good and bad tryouts? Honestly, I'd rather see new episodes of Bones and House than Simon berating another person who couldn't sing themselves out of a paper bag.
And, finally --
More Donnie & Marie: The second half of 2007 was definitely full of Osmonds. With Marie on Dancing With the Stars, Donny reporting for Entertainment Tonight, and the entire clan of Oprah, this was their comeback year. I say that they continue the momentum and resurrect the Donny & Marie variety program. I want to see the older and more experience brother and sister sing I'm a Little Bit Country, I'm a Little Bit Rock n' Roll; I want a return to skits that make Donnie & Marie laugh break out in laughter mid-scene (they can't be any worse than what's on Saturday Night Live, can they?); I want more Christmas episodes with the entire Osmond family. This could be the return of the variety show that we have all been waiting for!