If your favorite television show is on the cancellation bubble, this is the week that matters. General Electric's
The two networks have gone through a bit of a role reversal this time around. In recent years, NBC was riding high and ABC was scrambling to catch up, but that's not the case this time. After losing hit sitcoms like Friends, Seinfeld, and Frasier, NBC languished in the ratings book this season. In a bold move to mix it up, the company is bumping staples like Fear Factor and Scrubs from the fall calendar. (They may return as mid-season replacements.) ABC, on the other hand, is doing so well with hit hour-long shows like Lost, Grey's Anatomy, and Desperate Housewives that it is canceling 8 Simple Rules -- the show Disney once thought would help turn its fate around just a few years ago.
That leaves Viacom's
What about the new shows? It's a tall order to predict the winners and ferret out the losers at this point. The only one that seems like a shoo-in for high ratings early on is NBC's spinoff of The Apprentice with Martha Stewart. Curiosity should pack in the viewing audiences, and that's good news for both General Electric and shareholders of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia
If those shows don't pan out, just watch how quickly their next plot twist becomes figuring out how the ratings -- and their shows -- disappeared.
More related televised Foolishness:
- NBC finds itself praying for ratings.
- Not many may have been tuning in to see The Office, but I thought it was brilliant.
- The network is also banking on Martha Stewart to fire up the ratings by firing job applicants.
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz didn't even know there were four different Law & Order shows until NBC decided to cut one out of the mix. He owns shares in Disney. The Foolhas a disclosure policy. He is also part of theRule Breakersnewsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early.