Drama at 10

Well, even after opting out of producing a high-cost drama at 10pm – NBC still found a way to give us drama. news-leno

With viewership down 5% and ad rates about 1/3 of what they should be, NBC pulled the plug on Jay. Affiliates took it on the chin the most not realizing any cost savings the network did, but eating the ratings decline for 11pm news lead in.

I don’t know what the crew at 333 Dexter is thinking about this, but if they’re like most of the other NBC affiliates around the country – they’re relieved and hoping NBC can fix the late night mess and find something to resurrect 10pm.

Michael Fiorile, an old acquaintance of mine, who now serves as the mouthpiece for the NBC affiliates around the country put out a reassuring statement about the changes, but apparently – a number of NBC affils have been getting pretty aggressive with the net resulting in a series of threats and counter-threats that didn’t help the increasingly deteriorating relationship between the two camps.

Conan has apparently been in talks with Fox – which has their affiliates carping already. Counter programming affiliate news or late night with syndicated hits is a money maker they’re not going to just give away without a fight.

What’s interesting though is that if you signed-up to be a Fox affiliate, you also agreed to clear time for a network late show if it ever came to be.

It would be interesting to look at KING’s numbers pre, during and post-Leno. Since I haven’t seen them on a slick billboard or handout, my guess is that it wasn’t good news.