Pass/Fail: Part 2 - June
time we visited this subject, it was May. I think.
THE APPRENTICE (NBC):
The Donald has had his say... twice... and both times
were met with underwhelming results. The thought was
that Deal or No Deal could provide a bit of heft to the
struggling franchise, but viewers were smarter than
Let's go back to
December. From Mediaweek: The Apprentice 4 concluded
with a 9.7/15 in the overnights (#2), 12.85 million
viewers (#2) and a 5.7/15 among adults 18-49 (#1) from
9-11p. On the comparable year-ago evening, the
three-hour conclusion of The Apprentice 2 netted a
considerably heftier (and first-place) 13.2/20 in the
overnights, 16.93 million viewers and a 7.8/21 from
"Apprentice" finale shrunk even further with a 90-minute
Trumpathon, yielding this result: 8.0/13 in the
overnights, 11.19 million viewers, and a 4.4/12 among
adults 18-49 from 9:30p, all first. Donald called this
one of the best shows of that week, but we at the
Numbers Game are all about truth. And the truth is, this
and Deal or No Deal were the only shows that were still
hanging around from the season, so of course they're
going to be the highest. They're the ones that most
people will gravitate toward, especially since they're
WHO WANTS TO BE A
MILLIONAIRE (Syndication): Not that bad a show,
really, but consider that all syndicated games are down
and that we haven't had a million dollar winner in a
while now. Hopefully BVTV will not resort to sinking to
any drastic measures to boost the numbers. After all, it
has a multi-year deal, and the numbers only went from a
high 3 to a low- to mid-3. Not cause for concern yet,
especially since all year they managed to pretty much
play the game straight.
(Syndication): Something must be rotten in the state
of Denmark if Richard Karn is on his way out. That will
come at a later rant. But the Feud presents your classic
syndication conundrum. It isn't a breakout hit by any
means, but at the same time, the numbers, which have
been in the window of low- to mid-2s, don't warrant
cancellation yet. This will be one to watch as John
O'Hurley becomes host #5 in 30 years of the Feud.
And historically, "Family
Feud" only lasted around eight to nine years in
syndication. This will be one to watch.
The best thing that could possibly happen to this
show... the show before it. Earlier, I wrote, and the
numbers seemed to agree...
(Nielsen ratings) do
not rate a particular show from start to finish. They
only rate a particular time frame, usually the half
hour. That basically means that instead of rating
whatever program is on from the moment it starts,
ratings will measure an audience to whatever is
broadcast over the network's airwaves from 9:30p to 10p.
Because the powers that be believe that this sort of
thing is sloppy enough without going to make it even
Sure the show managed to win its time slot every week,
but retention fell big time to 43 percent. Even with the
season finale, it still had to draw in from big brother
American Idol. Er go...
Final grading... No
matter what Fox may tell you...
SHOWDOWN (NBC): The less said about this show, the
better. Yanked after three last place showings...
FAIL BIG TIME.
AMERICA'S NEXT TOP
MODEL (UPN): Admit it... You can't name a single Top
Model winner after Naima Mora. Well... I can't, anyway.
But is America burning out of Tyra-mania? The last
season scored in the 4 range for UPN, good for fifth
place most of the time. Previously, the show scored a
But still, it's a
good-enough hit to warrant reruns on VH1 and (I'll never
get this) the CW Sundays.
Oh, NICOLE! That's who I
was trying to remember.
THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER
(Spike): Hard to gauge on cable, but not impossible
if you're the most popular show on the network, as we've
seen audiences nearly double between season 2 and season
PASS BIG TIME.
TOP CHEF (Bravo):
A record that no one at Bravo will stop crowing about.
(ABC): Simon Cowell's tribute to the American dream,
while promising, faded as soon as it started, it seemed.
The finale barely registered a 5 for third place (thanks
to competition from CBS). That's down from the premiere
showing a 9.7/15 opposite March Madness.
The show may be good, but
throw it against the wolves and it's breakfast.
And reruns didn't help
BEAUTY AND THE GEEK
(THE WB): the finale scored a fifth-place 2.9/4,
delivering 3.76 million viewers. The finale of the
initial summer run yielded 4.06 million. Not bad
considering the competition.
Seems like if the CW
wants to put life into this show, which it deserves,
it's going to have to go back to its simple summertime
Final grading... Can we
give this one a D? If not, then
FAIL, with one shot at
Now to the summertime
- Game Show Marathon is
getting better, as it continues to fall into the
not-bad-just-not-good file with a showing of "Card
Sharks" posting thusly: 4.7/8 overnight, and 6.76
million viewers, both first. While down from last week,
a positive is its showing with viewers aged 25-54, the
audience that remembers mostly the good of "Card Sharks"
when it first aired.
Next up, the more
familiar "Match Game". Hopefully the familiarity will
breed a breakout.
- Fear Factor's farewell
tour of duty is posting the kind of numbers that it
should've been showing this entire season. It tied for
third in the overnights with a 4.1/7, translating into
5.77 million viewers. Last week, 4.3/7 in the
overnights, 7.01 million viewers for second.
- Meanwhile, Last Comic
Standing (Overnights: #3, 5.3/8; Viewers: #3, 7.45
million) continues to build off of it. Hopefully we'll
see some big things from the franchise as we work to the
But please... Give
someone else a shot. Lord knows Bil has enough work
- Hell's Kitchen. Last
week, 5.4/9 and total viewers of 6.68 million, both
first. This week... 5.8/ 9 in the overnights, a tie for
first, and 7.38 million viewers, good for second.
So we have some success
stories (and one failure), but no real breakout hit...
The Weekly Rant, or to
paraphrase Rich Jeffries, due to a misunderstanding of a
story posted by myself on Monday, said story was deleted
and the program edited. Because that's our way here.
Mess up, fess up, dress up.
"Big Brother All-Stars:
America's Vote" aired last night, with a retrospective
of the past six years in the Big Brother House, located
at CBS Studio Center in Studio City (a GSNN Extra is
forthcoming). But I have to take a bit of issue with the
selection committee of the all-star season.
You mean to tell me that
of the 10 people who played Big Brother 1, only Chicken
George got a mention? What's up with that?
Granted, it was a
different game back then, something akin to a popularity
contest, but still, there were some memorable characters
from that season, characters that could've made for an
interesting conflict were they allowed to control their
Remember Eddie McGee, the
one-legged wonder who went on to win the whole thing?
Remember Will Mega, the
Black Panther who called the white ladies in the house
Remember Brittany Petros,
she of the multi-hued hair? She was Nakomis before
Nakomis was Nakomis.
Remember Josh Souza? The
Remember Curtis Kin, who
was the first person to go on a Big Brother field trip?
You mean to tell me that
only Chicken George was available to come back? Again,
granted at least one of the first houseguests (Jamie
Kern) parlayed her fame into a REAL job, but come on.
give the season more credit than that.
I guess you know who I'll
be voting for. Come on, George!
If you agree with
Chico Alexander's endorsement of Chicken George for Big
Brother All Star, e-mail him at
firstname.lastname@example.org. Or e-mail with your own
picks from the also-rans that CBS left out.