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April 24, 2014

Leno says he's not destroying the TV drama

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 21st 2009 8:03AM
LenoLeno has heard all of the complaints (many of them from YOU, the one reading this right now) about how he is taking away the 10PM slot that could go to one-hour dramas, and he doesn't want to hear about it anymore.

The comic and Jay Leno Show host says that he is not only employing 22 Writers Guild members on his show, he says that if he didn't do this show then there's no guarantee that NBC would put dramas in that slot because most of them fail and they could just put in reality shows like The Biggest Loser or news shows like Dateline in the slot.

It's interesting how Leno is straddling the fence (albeit with humor) about his new show. It seems like he's working hard on the show and wants it to succeed. At the same time, he's not afraid to be very upfront about his time at the Tonight Show and his new gig, saying that it's not his fault that NBC is in fourth place. "I was happy where I was," he says.

As for the criticism and shaky ratings (Letterman's repeats beat Conan again last week) that Conan O'Brien is getting, Leno says that is a "rite of passage" for every host of Tonight.

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nick

..." there's no guarantee that NBC would put dramas in that slot because most of them fail and they could just put in reality shows like The Biggest Loser or news shows like Dateline in the slot"

Which is exactly the reason why NBC is in last place and continues to decline. They pioneered the concept of running the same show multiple times a week. They've publically stated that running reality is cheaper than scripted and would favor reality. And they've given up the 10pm slot for an entire week.

I really can't see how anything good will come of this, other than improve the ratings for the competition, and weaken NBCs other late night talk shows.

August 21 2009 at 12:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
bruce

Well, it is true that NBC would likely just put another stupid reality show on instead of a scripted drama. "Celebrity Bubblegum Bubble Blowing" (can Jerry Seinfeld's wife's sister blow a bigger bubble than Vanilla Ice's mother's housekeeper?! Tune in to NBC at 10pm ET to find out!) has a better chance than any drama.

Even if NBC were to go nuts and put on a drama, it would be another cop procedural. At the end of the day, NBC should either fire its management or just kill itself.

It would be nice if NBC could get some of the shows Fox puts on solely to sabotage and cancel. Since nobody watches NBC anyway, they could take shows like TSCC and let them grow for 2-3 years, after which time they might find that such shows have gained large, loyal audiences.

But no... Jay Leno it is.

August 21 2009 at 9:18 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Brian

I think it is idiotic for Leno to defend his show like this, as if he could actually be so important and powerful to bring about any significant change single-handedly. The Jay Leno Show is a reflection of changes in how and why people watch television, NOT the other way around.

August 21 2009 at 8:59 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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