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Can I Get Some Originality With My Programming, Please?
October 30

I am getting pretty sick and tired of the TV programming executives out there. Why? Because (for lack of a better word), they wouldn't know an original idea if it bit them on the behind.

Take for example, "The Next Great American Band." - Plot Pitch - American Idol for Bands. The ratings are dreadful. Why? Because we have seen it all before. There is nothing new here. Bands play, cranky British judge, female judge in the middle, we vote, blah blah know the drill. We saw this during this past summer...

Pirate Master - Survivor on a boat.

On The Lot - "American Idol" for films.

Many talent shows are like this....Rock Star, The One, America's Got Talent, even Dancing with the Stars. It's all the same. And all the romance shows are the same too...The Bachelor, Flavor of Love...Rock of Love, I Love New of people go after one person, fights, crying, elimination...boring.

And Game Shows are not immune to the "Me, too" Phenomenon.... When Millionaire became a white hot hit in 1999-2000, we saw all types of Millionaire clones...Winning Lines, Greed, etc. (Although I believe Greed as a show would still be on the air today, if the non-thinking executives at Fox would actually have tried to let it grow a little more.) With the success of Deal or No Deal in 2006, we have seen all types of Deal or No Deal clones....the only with a modicum of success has been Power of 10...and that really doesn't have that much of an originality factor either. And when Temptation premiered in September game show fans saw that not only did they NOT take the formula from Australia...they stole from about 4 or 5 different shows to make their show what it is.

So, how do we solve this situation? In my opinion this is what should happen:

1. Mark Burnett, Simon Cowell and others like them should not have a new show on the air for at least one calendar year. This will allow newer producers with fresher ideas with a shot to get on the schedule.

2. Executives and programmers at all these networks, both on cable and broadcast should be held to account for their lack of originality. That is being shown through the ratings of all these shows that are bombing. But they have to be forced (yes, I said forced) to put at least one new show by one new producer on. Then they will have to look at the recycling they have been doing.

3. The viewers are doing a good job not falling for the recycled garbage. They have to do better. They have to demand more original programming from the executives and the networks.

This should be the start of something big. If we as viewers demand more original programming, maybe - just maybe - the quality of our shows will go up.

And maybe the ratings will as well.

Jason Block spreads the love to any and all who want it at