Reacting to the continually worsening economic situation, television networks have unveiled dozens of new recession-themed shows that will replace struggling series mid-season.
Among the new entries to the winter lineup are comedies such as “Everybody Loves Ramen,” “30Cents,” and “My Social Security Number is 078-05-1120.”
“Americans don’t want to dwell on their numerous and devastating problems such as lost jobs and foreclosed homes,” said CBS Chief Executive Les Moonves. “They want to laugh at them.”
Of course, comedies aren’t the only genre that network execs will utilize to exploit the economic crisis. Planned programming for the 2008-2009 mid-season includes “DOLL3RS,” a financial crimes thriller on CBS, “Foreclosing with the Stars,” a reality program on ABC, and “Are You Smarter Than an Unemployment Official?,” and “Job or No Job,” game shows planned by FOX and NBC.
“Focus groups have shown that the TV-viewing public reacts best to shows they can relate to,” said Moonves. “It’s really no surprise then that this is the direction we at CBS—and other networks—have decided to take.”
The new programming comes at the perfect time for entertainment-starved Americans, who—following the conclusion of non-stop election coverage—were very nearly forced to deal with the grim reality of their finances and personal lives.
“Personally, I can’t wait,” said Joe Langford, a Seattle-area financial analyst and self-proclaimed television enthusiast. “I can only take so much of these bizarre escapist shows like Heroes and House, M.D., you know? It will be nice to have some programming that’s a little more relatable.”
Not immune to the economic crunch themselves, the networks are hopeful that new programming lineups will give the television industry a much-needed shot in the arm.
“I’ll be honest, in the past twelve months, we have lost something like sixty million dollars,” explained Moonves. “Was investing all our profits in 2007 in banking stocks the smartest thing we could have done? Probably not. But we’re optimistic that these new programs are just what we need to turn things around.”
Story Tip: Pete Newland of GameBrainSpew – Thanks, Pete!