Forget Claire and her indestructibility, the real superhero (or is it super-villain?) over at 30 Rock is apparently NBC Universal Overlord Jeff Zucker. This weekend, Deadline Hollywood is reporting that Zucker is set to fire NBC Entertainment President Kevin Reilly (talk about a happy Memorial Day weekend) and replace him with wunderkid producer Ben Silverman in yet another sad attempt to shift the focus from his crumbling empire and total lack of success since taking the reigns of NBC back in 2005.
Now don’t get me wrong, Silverman certainly is deserving of the job, having spent the last six years producing such notable hits as THE OFFICE, UGLY BETTY and THE BIGGEST LOSER. But the fact of the matter is that Kevin Reilly is the man responsible for bringing MUST SEE TV, and more importantly respectability back to the Peacock network.
Reilly stuck by THE OFFICE, gave us a second season of FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS and told THE DONALD “You’re Fired!”. He’s kept SCRUBS on the air, renewed 30 ROCK for a second season and green-lite some of the fall’s most promising new dramas (BIONIC WOMEN and CHUCK to name a few). All in all, Kevin Reilly’s been a champion of quality television, which I think we can all agree on is a quality so rarely found in a network executive.
Needless to say, if anyone deserves a little loyalty and a chance to watch his hard work pay off, it’s Kevin Reilly. Here’s hoping that Deadline Hollywood is mistaken and that Reilly gets one more season to watch America finally realize what they’re missing over on NBC.