Sunday, November 15, 2015

TV: The networks forget the viewers

"The only thing," a friend insists, "that I learned is that Jeremy Sisto finally grew out his chest hair -- but did so way too late to be an otter and was still too spotty to be a bear."

And that, apparently, is about all WICKED CITY had to offer.


Despite this fall featuring some of the all time worst new series, despite cratering ratings for 'hits' like SUPERGIRL, ABC's WICKED CITY is not just the first fall offering to be cancelled, it's the only one at this point.

How bad are the fall offerings?

WICKED CITY is a People's Choice Awards nominee for Favorite New TV Drama.

That's how bad things are.

In a more sensible environment, ABC would never have green lighted the show, let alone aired it.

For starters, Steven Baigelman created the show.



20 years of filmography and not a single success.

His work has been muddled at best.

This was true of WICKED CITY as well.

Who the hell thought anyone wanted to see SERIAL KILLERS IN LOVE?

A vice president at ABC tells us that they wanted edgy, they wanted "something like HANNIBAL."

That would be NBC's chronically low rated series which finally got the axe after a second dismal season.

ABC has never been able to do edgy.


And HANNIBAL wasn't edgy, it was just trash.

That's what ABC got with WICKED CITY in which no character was someone you wanted to root for.

The alternative to serial killers?

Cocaine snorting, cheating on their spouses, corrupt cops like Jack Roth played by Jeremy Sisto.

What someone thought was 'gritty' was just repulsive and not all the promotional spots playing up the sex angles could result in ratings success.

Who in the world thought audiences wanted this?

But who -- at CBS -- thought audiences wanted SUPERGIRL?

Was their some heavy clamor for this character from a failed film (1984)?  A character who couldn't even carry her own comic title for any significant length of time?

Supergirl has always been a colorless character -- even for DC.

Batgirl, created for the BATMAN television series, has a real following.

Certainly, Wonder Woman does as well.

In fact, Wonder Woman is a DC comic book star on par with Batman and Superman.

But it's not Wonder Woman CBS wanted to bring to the small screen.

Nor fan favorite Batgirl.

Nor was it the edgy Batwoman.

Or the anti-hero Catwoman.

Or Huntress . . .

Or Black Canary . . .

Or . . .

It's Supergirl.

A bad photocopy of Superman.

A character so bland that there's no significant difference between her in a costume and her in secret identity.

Before watching the show, you could hope that the new series would finally give the character a personality and a purpose.

But episodes quickly revealed that far more characterization was present in Filmation's seventies SHAZAM! series.

There was no intent to craft anything, just a cheap move to toss off the most insulting version of a cartoon.

And the question is why?

It's the same question we ask about WICKED CITY.

Maybe next time the networks will keep in mind the viewers when selecting from various pilots?

Probably not.

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