NBC execs believe that momentum is finally on their side.
Coming off another difficult year, which ended with the Peacock’s second consecutive fourth-place finish, but with several high-profile new shows and the addition of “Sunday Night Football,” NBC entertainment prexy Kevin Reilly calls his lineup “potent” and says he’s sure the network will see a Nielsen bump this fall.
“I’m not going to make any hard predictions about what our ratings will be or what our ranking will be next season,” Reilly says, “but I will commit to this: Our ratings will definitely be better. We will not be mired in fourth, week after week. We are going to be a challenger in many time periods, and, most importantly, I believe we have new series that will emerge as amongst the best on television.”
Reilly is bullish on new dramas including the Aaron Sorkin entry “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip,” Peter Berg’s “Friday Night Lights” and Tim Kring’s “Heroes” as well as the Tina Fey laffer “30 Rock.”
“All of the shows represent the personal points of view and vision of their creators,” Reilly says.
“These are the kind of shows that audiences get passionate about. Whether or not they find broad audiences, I believe that quality pays dividends.”
Of course, the network still faces an uphill battle. Once a comedy powerhouse, the Peacock enters the fall again with just four laffers. Franchises such as “Law & Order” and “The Apprentice” continue to fade. And the network doesn’t have a returning cult fave in the vein of ABC’s “Lost” or “Desperate Housewives.”