MyNetworkTV overhauls schedule

TV Arts

David
from broadcasting and cable

MyNetworkTV Unveils Spring Schedule
By Jim Benson 

New MyNetworkTV President Greg Meidel Thursday unveiled a new spring
schedule starting March 8, which includes sports, movies, two nights
of telenovelas—down from six—and one special, to help the
ratings-challenged netlet gain some traction.

The line-up will include the anticipated debut of International Fight
League’s Total Impact, as well as two nights of back to back
telenovela-inspired episodes from the third 13-week installment. The
new dramas, American Heiress and Saints & Sinners, are already in
production.

Meidel has scrapped telenovela recaps on Saturdays in favor of Total
Impact reruns.

The changes will follow the additions of Thursday and Friday MyMovie
nights, which will also debut on March 8 with The Rundown,” starring
The Rock. Rocky IV is also on the schedule.

In making the announcement, Meidel said, “The face of MyNetworkTV is
changing and this new lineup is filled with a variety of choices that
allows us to expand our programming to a wider audience and generate
momentum and excitement for the network.” 

It was also announced that The World Music Awards will be presented on
Saturday, March 10.

Here is the schedule (all times are Eastern). 

Mondays 

8-10 p.m. --- International Fight League’s Total Impact


Tuesdays

8-10 p.m. --- American Heiress 

Wednesdays

8-10 p.m. --- Saints & Sinners

Thursdays

8-10 p.m. --- My Thursday Night Movie 


Fridays

8-10 p.m. --- My Friday Night Movie 

Saturdays

8-10 p.m. --- Encore presentation of International Fight League’s
Total Impact
                                            
Obveeus
The CW network should be thanking its lucky stars that MyNetwork TV decided 
not to run its Fight League on Friday Night.
                                            
Jax
Heh...they've already written off Friday nights.  That's why Smackdown
is there in the first place...
                                            
David
For the year "Smackdown" is CW's 2nd highest-rated show.
                                            
Zombie
Which is the real reason that Smackdown was originally moved to Friday
nights. UPN originally moved it from Thursday to Friday because they
believed that Smackdown's audience was would follow it while anything
else they put on Friday nights would die a quick death. History has
appeared to have proven them right.
                                            
Rob
I was thinking the exact opposite.  The one right decision that any
programmer has made at MyNetwork so far is to NOT schedule the Fight
League thingie against Smackdown.  Smackdown's viewers obviously don't
give a shit that it's all fake, so it's not as if they have any
motivation to switch over to anything else when Skiffy is in reruns on
Friday nights.

  -- Rob
                                            
Obveeus
So, how does that qualify as your 'thinking the exact opposite'?
                                            
Rob
That MyNetwork should be thanking its lucky stars that no one within
its own heirarchy was dumb enough to schedule its fake fight show
against the CW's fake fight show.  IMO, the CW had nothing to fear and
MyNet had *everything* to fear from such a showdown.  So the exact
opposite of your thinking in this instance is twofold:  1) the CW
didn't nead to thank its lucky stars for anything re: MyNet's pathetic
scheduling and 2) MyNet needs to congratulate itself for doing the
sensible thing rather than do the dumbass thing of going head-to-head
in a ratings contest that it would absoulutely, undeniably lose -- and
not just lose, but lose in a spectacularly embarrassnig way.

And FTR, IMO, MyNet should just go the ultra-cheap route and bring
American Gladiators back.  Same difference, no one's gonna watch it
anyway.

  -- Rob
                                            
Obveeus
Ah, I see.  I'm not sure I agree with your opinion that wrestling viewers 
are all too lazy to change the channel, though.  I tend to believe that they 
will ultimately gravitate towards whatever show has the most blood and 
boobs.  As someone else noted, MyNetworkTV avoided going head to head with 
CW, but is going head to head with some other wrestling (SpikeTV?).


That actually sounds like something more expensive to produce than Fight 
Night.  American Gladiators was very close to Fear Factor except that half 
the players were regulars.
                                            
Zombie
That was me. SpikeTV shows TNA Wrestling on Thursday. It also has
Ultimate Fighting Championship on Wednesdays which from the
description in the original post, probably resembles the MNTV fight
show more than TNA Wrestling will. Now there seems to be a
misconception here. While wrestling is "fake" in the sense that the
outcome predetermined and partially scripted, ultimate fighting is
not. UFC's fights are real (basically it's a mix of kick-boxing, mat
wrestling and various martial arts styles which is why it's sometimes
also called "mixed martial arts"). While the audiences for wrestling
and UFC tend to overlap, they are not identical. The description for
MNTV's new fighting show would make it seem like a UFC clone. 

You will see very little blood and boobs on UFC since it strives to
present itself as a legitimate sport. In any case, it will be hard for
current shows to top WWE in either category. TNA routinely bleeps out
even fairly mild epithets, has few women on its roster (although they
are beginning to add more), and tries to be somewhat family friendly.
UFC is deliberately designed to resemble a boxing show and the MNTV
show will likely resemble UFC more than it resembles either WWE or
TNA. 

Finally, more blood and boobs doesn't always guarantee success. ECW in
its heyday would routinely put on shows that made just about anything
WWE has ever done look tame by comparison. But ECW still failed in
part because its reputation for violence and mature storylines made it
hard for it to get a television contract after TNN (which eventually
became Spike) dropped it and picked up WWE Raw.
Speaking as a somebody who was a fan of American Gladiators as a teen,
I disagree. AG had an arena with fanciful looking event areas and
about a half dozen male and female "gladiators." Amateur athletes
would compete against the gladiators in various events every week and
the best would come back week after week until a champion was crowned
in the season finale. I always thought of AG as more like the Olympics
as imagined by kids. 

Ultimate fighting has become more popular in recent years and there is
some cross-over between it and wrestling. As a result, the best
ultimate fighters are able to command surprisingly high salaries. With
a new American Gladiators, you would have the cost of the arena which
would be a one-time expenditure, the salaries of the gladiators who
could be unknown athletes, and the million dollar prize. Any new
fighting show which MNTV could put on would have to attract at least
one or two well-known ultimate fighters in order to have a chance at
succeeding. That alone would make it more expensive than a new
American Gladiators and it could never match the sheer campy fun of
watching two grown men trying to beat each other up with giant q-tips.
                                            
David
I don't think it'd be beneficial to either one and it's a wonder why
they scheduled it against the first hour of wrestling on USA.
Thursdays would've made more sense (and I'm sure MNTV affiliates are
climaxing all over themselves at the thought of getting rights to
"Rocky IV").
                                            
Zombie
Not really since SpikeTV also has wrestling and mixed martial arts
fights on Thursdays.
                                            
David
Well there's always Tuesday or Wednesday. In any case, WWE is likely
the strongest competition (and oddly USA's wrestling gets more viewers
than CW's wrestling so even Friday may have made more sense than
Monday).
                                            
Zombie
I think that's because of the CW's smaller coverage area. IIRC, the
numbers were more even when Smackdown was on UPN.

Also, Scifi Channel has wrestling (WWE's version of ECW) on Tuesdays.
And didn't MTV get a new wrestling show too? I don't recall the day
but wrestling is having something of a resurgence in popularity which
is ironic considering how bad WWE has gotten. (Or maybe that's exactly
why there are more wrestling/fighting shows, because there is more
room for competition as the most popular wrestling product waters
itself down by distributing its talent across three different shows
airing on three different nights.)
                                            
Obveeus
'Rocky' has enough episodes to go into syndication, right?  ;-)