Tuned In will be spending this week at the upfronts — the week, once every year, when the broadcast networks rent out Manhattan venues like Radio City Music Hall and Lincoln Center to unveil their fall schedules to their advertisers. There are musical numbers, skits and plenty of song-and-dance, at least the variety that involves telling media buyers your new sitcom with a former Wings or Who’s the Boss? star is a guaranteed hit. Once upon a time, theater became television; now, once a year, television becomes theater.
NBC kicks off the festival of overpromising on Monday, followed by ABC, CBS, the new CW and Fox. I’ll be giving you the rundown on new shows (which we see only trailers of, not whole episodes), who got cancelled and renewed and who unloaded the largest baloney truck on stage in front of the money men. Upfronts is a magical time, when every new show is a work of genius and every network executive a programming wizard.
Enjoy this week, because it all goes downhill for next 51.