The CW Rises!
two netlets, The WB and UPN, have announced that they are
merging and that from this unholy union will rise The CW.
This is a good idea, as both were bleeding money badly,
but it doesn’t answer what will happen to the shows
that are currently on both networks.
that The CW goes 8pm to 10pm 6 days a week, that means that
both networks will have to lose a number of shows to make
it work. If they had expanded to 8pm to 11 (or even 7 to
10), they may have been able to bring back all the shows
that were performing to acceptable levels, though the thought
is with the new arrangement, those levels will have to increase.
are also some new problems. The new set-up will only reach
about 50% of the US, though there hasn’t been enough
time to judge exactly how many stations will jump on-board
with the new net. (UPDATE: Variety reports that Tribune
and CBS-owned stations -- not CBS stations -- will carry
the network, reaching 95% of the country.)
San Francisco Bay Area (where most of the Fanboy Planet
staff resides), as an example, neither the WB nor the UPN
affiliate have announced that they are picking up the CW
schedule, though it is assumed that one of the two affiliates
of the two networks will pick up the programming, with the
Viacom-owned KBHK-44 being the likely station to do so,
though nothing is decided. (Since writing this article,
Garcia confirms that UPN-44 has been rechristened CW-44
for the Fall of 2006 -- editor.)
are a few unanswered questions that might interest you:
does this mean for the Best Show on TV, Veronica Mars?
Performance ratings-wise will probably be on the top of
everyone’s mind, but it’s also a critical darling.
I’d say the chances of it coming back are 50-50, no
worse than if UPN had to make the choice.
does this mean for SmackDown!? They mentioned it
in the press release that it will play a role in the new
schedule, but they didn’t say if it would still be
two hours or what. The WWE’s contract expires in September
and they need to get a new contract hammered out soon.
will the sched look like? We know that 7th Heaven
will be gone. Likely other cuts are Gillmore Girls
(it’s another expensive show to produce) and the UPN
comedies, with the possible exception of Everybody Hates
Chris and maybe Girlfriends. I wouldn’t
expect Supernatural or Smallville to be
axed, but I’d be worried if I were South Beach
or Charmed, which is probably the most expensive
to produce show that might be cut in the name of one of
the other shows, though it does produce OK ratings. Reba,
a decent performer and not a bad show, will probably stick.
certain to stick around are America’s Next Top
Model and Beauty & The Geek. They have
both done well in the ratings and can be counted on to work
cheap and get young viewers in.
CW doesn’t put the emphasis on younger viewers that
both UPN and especially The WB did, then we might see a
course, Derek's biggest question: Whither Aquaman?)