Sunday, April 22, 2012

The FIRM, NBC's best show, buried on Saturday Night.

(Edit update: May 14, 2012, 10:27pm)  lol, Harry's Law, the second best rated show on NBC, has also been canceled. Meanwhile, NBC keeps piling on new music based and reality based shows, culminating in reality based music shows. gasp)

A funny thing happened to NBC at the beginning of the 2012 fall season. 30 Rock was not ready to roll at the beginning of the  new season because of Tina Fey's pregnancy and "The Office" no longer had lead actor Steve Carrel anchoring the show.

So CBS swooped in and did two incredibly smart things. First, CBS counter programmed NBC with a new show called Person of Interest at 9 PM on Thursday nights, and the opening scene of the first show was a terrific reincarnation of Clint Eastwood's Sudden Impact "Make my Day" scene.

What's not to like about a grudging super hero who just wants to be left alone, but, if bothered, will make the day memorable for several subway punks who were asking for it. The second thing CBS did was cancel "How to be a Gentleman" after only two episodes."

As an aside, How to be a Gentleman, in AlexLOGIC's opinion, was doomed to failure because Kevin Dillion's character was far too prominent. The promo trailer was just awful as well. What is really so funny about a guy punching another guy in the gut?

Dillion's character should have been more of a shadowy figure who seems to come out of nowhere to make the main character's life, miserable. Instead, the show created an allegedly Funny Bully who actually punches people. 


So CBS did the incredibly intelligent thing and after only two airings of How to be a Gentleman on Thursday nights moved the show to Saturday nights, (where most television shows go to die). Then after one more airing on Saturday, HTBAG went off of their schedule entirely.

CBS then ran consecutive episodes of the Big Bang Theory every Thursday before Person of Interest until more episodes of Rules of Engagement were ready for airing, with Person of Interest coming on at 9:00 PM.  

This entire strategy destroyed NBC's Thursday night's line-up, which suffered not only by not having Third Rock episodes ready because of Tina Fey's pregnancy, but also because Steve Carell was no longer on  The Office.

Which leads us to "The Firm". The Firm was unfairly put on Thursday night's lineup by NBC after CBS had already annihilated what was normally a solid ratings night for NBC.

The Firm's Thursday ratings were apparently so low that NBC moved the show to Saturday Night. 

I'm not alone in liking The Firm, Jay Leno of NBC absolutely loves this show and raved about it on The Tonight Show.

Shows like The Firm should be rebroadcast at 2 or 3 in the morning to hook in people who missed it the first time around and find it to be a nice late night treat. This will over time build viewer loyalty for a second season.  There I go again giving great, unsolicited advice.

NBC will be foolish to not greenlight a second season of The Firm, it's a solid show that mixes interesting court room drama with, action scenes as well. I love that the two male leads are brothers, and I think the casting for this show is fantastic, the music and overall sound mix is spectacular as well.
Sadly, what appears to be missing is a late twenties something female and male co-lead, what I refer to as "tart appeal" to keep the younger crowd interested in a show that is actually about something, but skews to a slightly older crowd.
The Firm reminds me of "Men of a Certain Age" because both shows skew slightly older, and don't seem capable of drawing people under the age of thirty who apparently would rather watch reruns of Jersey Shore and Kimmy Kardashian minutia.

I wish the networks would realize that first time ratings should not dictate what shows they run. A show like The Firm will do spectacularly well in syndication, so can a show like Men of a Certain Age, (Although the dialogue track on MOACA needs to be raised and the music track lowered in volume), and there are creative, new ways to raise overall viewership for shows such as The Firm and MOACA that the networks presently don't practice.

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