“Medium” creator Glenn Gordon Caron is questioning NBC’s decision to stick with “Chuck,” even as the network failed to make a deal to renew his series.
Appearing on next week’s edition of KCRW’s “The Business,” Caron tells host Kim Masters that he suspects “Chuck” was picked up as a favor to Warner Bros. Television, which produces a number of shows for NBC.
“’Chuck’ is a very good show, but …they’ve tried to launch it vigorously, twice. They’ve spent an enormous amount of money, and twice they’ve been unable to wrangle an audience for it. So one has to stop and say, ‘OK, now why would you elect to do that a third time?’ Is it simply because people are eating subway sandwiches?”
Caron suggests it’s because of NBC’s relationship with Warners.
“’Southland’ is a show from WB. ‘ER’ was a show from WB. There were a number of pilots that Warners made for NBC this past year. Some of them did not work out and carried very, very heavy penalties that were attached to those… in the event that they were not picked up.”
Caron was likely referring to a WBTV-produced project from David E. Kelley, which NBC opted against ordering to series. Warners executives have denied linkage between the “Chuck” renewal and the Kelley project, according to published reports.
While Caron says there “are a lot of people at NBC that I like a lot,” he seems happy that NBC is out of his life. "Medium" is moving to CBS next fall.
“They do seem to be in this kind of extraordinary chaos,” Caron says of the Peacock network. “And they don’t seem terribly interested in getting out of it because they keep replicating the things that got them there. But you know, hindsight is 20/20. And I’m not a programmer. That¹s not my job. But I won’t lie to you. The honeymoon and CBS has been fantastic.”
Caron’s tweaking of NBC extends to the network’s decision to strip Jay Leno at 10 p.m. next fall.
“If it works, it’s going to change everything,” he says. “If, as I suspect, it only works for the network, but not for the viewer, and not necessarily for all the affiliates, then we’re going to see another dynamic at work. And that’s going to be fascinating.”
“The Business” airs Mondays at 2:30 p.m. on KCRW and Sundays at 8:30 p.m. on WNYC in New York.