Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The End of Knight Rider and other musings about how smart I am

At long last we've reached the final Knight Rider. When the show launched last Fall, I predicted it would last four episodes before getting the hook. I'm sure many of you remember the "Knight Rider Cancellation Countdown." Well, I was wrong.

Young Ben Silverman and his gang of Merry Morons at NBC knew something we didn't when they ordered a full 22 episodes of the talking car show. Of course, they later changed their minds and trimmed it to 17, presumably because they were looking at the ratings report upside down. But still, it made it 13 episodes longer than I thought.

But this made me wonder. How smart am I at predicting a show's chance for success? So I went back to my guesses after last year's Upfronts (Part 1, Part 2) and checked my progress. If I was giving me a grade, I'd say a good solid A-.

But enough about me. What do you think of me?


LIFE ON MARS (ABC) -- A REMAKE of a BBC series about some cop who travels back in time to the 1970s.
PREDICTED FATE: Will last longer (but not by much) than Journeyman, last season's show about some time traveling guy.

WHAT REALLY HAPPENED: Canceled after 17 episodes, or 4 episodes longer than Journeyman.

ELEVENTH HOUR (CBS) -- It's something about science, crime and government agencies. Sounds like Numb3rs if you ask me. Surprise, it's another Jerry Bruckheimer show on CBS.
Expect success and spin offs - Eleventh Hour: Miami and Eleventh Hour: New York.
WHAT REALLY HAPPENED: A Top-20 show. As for the spin-offs, CBS has to finish the NCIS spawn first.

OPPORTUNITY KNOCKS (ABC) -- Ashton Kutcher is at it again. He's come up with a game show that already exists, given it a new name and sold it to ABC.
3 episodes. No one watching ABC cares about Ashton Kutcher. Marketing 101: Know your audience.

SCRUBS (ABC) -- The only reason ABC picked it up is because they also produce it and know they've got guaranteed money from syndicating it.
I'll let you guess.

WHAT REALLY HAPPENED: They dragged it out, picked up some syndication dollars. Now Zach Braff wants out. Series will likely die after this season.


GARY UN-MARRIED (CBS) -- In the same mold of the "Fat Guy and Hot Wife" shows that have saturated TV over the last 10 years, except this guy is divorced and his ex-wife is (former Abercrombie and Fitch model) Jamie King.
: 6 seasons plus syndication.
WHAT REALLY HAPPENED: Jay Mohr got fatter and balder than I remember. Probably a result of CBS placing his show opposite American Idol. In spite of that, the show has pulled decent ratings and will likely get renewed.

LATE NIGHT WITH JIMMY FALLON (NBC) -- Temp X doesn't care because he never stays up past 9:30 p.m. except when Lost is on.
PREDICTED FATE: Craig Ferguson's ratings will double. The rest of America will sleep. But that won't stop NBC.
WHAT REALLY HAPPENED: Debuted on Monday and by Tuesday, he was already using killer material in his monologue, "It's brutal out there, the Dow is 30 below zero." Zing?!

CLASS DISMISSED (Fox) -- A REMAKE of an Australian animated series Sit Down, Shut Up. Really funny pilot script from the guy who did Arrested Development.
PREDICTED FATE: Critically Acclaimed.
WHAT REALLY HAPPENED: Launch delayed until April. But TV critics are already blowing smoke up Hurwitz ass.


BEVERLY HILLS 90210 (CW) -- Yep. The most famous ZIP code in America is back.
Because of email, ZIP codes are not really necessary any more. The same can be said for this show.
WHAT REALLY HAPPENED: I'm clearly out of touch with the "vapid teen" demographic. 90210 got an early renewal and they're also doing a remake of the spin-off Melrose Place.

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