Speculation has already begun that low-rated new series "The Playboy Club" and "Free Agents" will soon be canceled by NBC, but NBC Chairman Bob Greenblatt wants to give the shows more time, reports Deadline.com.
This isn’t the usual strategy for broadcast networks. Last season Fox’s "Lone Star" and ABC’s "My Generation" were scrapped after just two episodes each, the piece points out. In those cases, the shows drew a 1.0 and a 1.1 rating, respectively, in the 18-49 demo before they were canceled. This week NBC’s "Free Agents" drew a 1.0 and "The Playboy Club" had a 1.3, the story adds.
"Word is that Greenblatt wants to send a message to the creative community that he will give their shows on NBC every possible chance to succeed," the story says.
"But since viewers are still sampling shows and tweaking their viewing patterns for the new season, NBC is willing to wait for that process to settle before sacking the biggest underachievers," the article adds.
NBC’s new show "Prime Suspect" is also at risk of cancellation, the story points out.
Another factor may also be at work here. TVWeek remembers asking a top Fox braodcasting executive some years ago why the network was hanging on to some very low-rated shows. His reply, "Well, we really don’t have anything ready to replace them with in the pipeline that we’re sure would do better."