Channel Surfing with C.T.

You know what? I’m thinking it’s time for us — the viewers — to go on strike. Our list of demands?

1) Original programming year round.

2) No more of those damn banner ads running along the bottom of the screen telling us what’s on next, or tomorrow or next week. Make good shows and we’ll tune in without the reminder.

3) A limited number of hour of reality shows per network per week.

4) A promise that any new show you put on will have at least 13 episodes in which to win us over. If you won’t commit, why should we?

5) A return to the days when soaps told stories built around romance, family and relationships as opposed to mobsters, building collapses and children in jeopardy.

6) An end to show-stopping product placements. There’s a place for advertisements… it’s called the commercial break.

7) Programming that starts and stops on the hour. Monday night’s ABC line-up had SAMANTHA WHO airing at 9:45 and THE BACHELOR following at 10:08. Seriously? 10:08? That’s the month and year a credit card expires, not a start time.

Those are my demands. Any you’d like to add?

Speaking of THE BACHELOR… when will this season be over? If Brad — who gives himbo’s a bad name — doesn’t pick Jenni, I’ll eat my hat. He’s been besotted with her from the very beginning and, let’s face it, she sealed the deal in more ways than one by bringing their dinner in Cabo to a screeching halt and practically racing the horny hunk to the “fantasy suite.” And how hysterical is it that those notes Brad is given — you know, the ones suggesting he and (insert desperate woman’s name here) trade their individual rooms for the aforementioned fantasy suite — are signed “Chris”, as if the host personally arranged this set-up. Then again, Brad — like every other bachelor before him — talks about the various dates as if he, and not a team of producers, set them up, so it seems only fair. (Oh, and by the way, if anyone at ABC insists that odd start times like 10:08 p.m. help in the ratings, may I point out that on Monday night, DANCING WITH THE STARS brought 21 million viewers to the screen, SAMANTHA WHO kept 18 million of them and, with it’s 10:08 start time, THE BACHELOR fell to 10.8 million. Where’d the missing folks go? Well, apparently missing the first seven minutes of CSI:MIAMI was no big whoop, because that show brought in 14.1 million, up 3 million from its sitcom lead-in.)

I’m practically giddy with the news that Rosie O’Donnell might soon have a show on MSNBC. Not because I think she’s a natural for a topical program in the post-COUNTDOWN timeslot, but rather because it will obviously send Bill O’Reilly into conniption fits. The only thing that would make it better? If Rosie’s show wound up airing opposite THE O’REILLY FACTOR and trounced Bill-O in the ratings.

I’m a creature of contradiction, as y’all know. Which is why I can bash reality with one hand and lovingly stroke it with the other, as was evidenced all summer long by my rants and raves on BIG BROTHER 8. Well, word came down yesterday that CBS is seriously considering doing another edition of the show in February as a way of helping deal with the impact of the writer’s strike. How serious are they? Rumor has it casting already has begun. Let’s hope that unlike this past summer’s house of hatred, CBS remembers that a house filled with villains (ala the father/daughter Donato mess of this summer) doesn’t give America someone to root for.

Just when I was ready to give up on LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT, which has been pedestrian at best in recent weeks, they came up with last night’s chilling creepfest.The plot was twisty and a tad unbelievable, and yet it was a compelling hour, thanks in large part to the cult-like following of the serial-killer/artist around whom much of the story revolved. Network execs who think they can replace this kind of drama with yet another tired reality show might want to think twice.

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  • EKI

    Man, if you complain about the SMALL delay on ABC, you would directly commit suicide if you were exposed to tv networks in spain.
    To them 9:30PM means 9:55PM.
    9:45 PM is 10:20PM.
    And 10:00PM is 10:45 to 10:50 PM.

    TV in Spain is absolutely not taken seriously by the networks themselves.

  • I definitely support ALL those demands! Banner ads and the end of shows getting cut off needs to go!

  • Aileen

    I honestly don’t mind product placements, as long as they don’t interfere with the show itself. Claire getting a new car? Obvious product placement. But, whatever, it didn’t take away from the show overall.

    Plus, if it funds good TV and cuts down on commercials (which I hate way more than product placement), it’s okay in my book.

  • Patty

    Where do I sign?

  • Not having shows run past their end time by a minute or two (or seven) since it screws up recording the next show on TiVo because it can only start recording early, not late.