Tuesday, June 5, 2007

David Bauder Looks at Fall's Network Serial Plans

From the Associated Press' David Bauder:

There were two lessons from this season that television executives clearly didn’t forget: Don’t overdo the serial dramas with complex story lines that require a serious viewer commitment, and keep interruptions for successful ones to a minimum.

More dramas — and network TV is primarily in the drama business these days — will tell stories that won’t baffle the viewer who happened to miss last week’s episode.Three successful serials were particularly hurt this season by long intervals with reruns. That was fatal to CBS’ “Jericho,” which was canceled. The other two, ABC’s “Lost” and NBC’s “Heroes,” will run their new episodes uninterrupted next season, following the model of Fox’s “24.” So will the CW’s “One Tree Hill.” CBS will try the same thing with “Swing Town,” one of its most promising newcomers.

“I don’t know if we know the ideal model yet for each of them,” said Kelly Kahl, chief of scheduling at CBS. “We’re looking, experimenting, trying to find the best way to do it.”

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