The talk about a possible Screen Actors’ Guild strike if no contract is reached by the June 30 expiration is turning more serious. Reuters reports that the SAG may vote to authorize a strike if the contract expires, and adds that the networks “are quietly considering a postponement of the traditional September launch of the next broadcast season as a ‘last resort’ should a strike materialize.”
Um, pretty ingenious plan. Considering that should a strike materialize, they would not have a broadcast season to air. In that event, yeah, a postponement might be something you’d want to look at.
Actually, it does appear the networks would have a handful of episodes in the can. Says Reuters, about half their shows are in production already, a surprising fact since they usually wait until late July or August. The networks say that’s not because of a possible strike, but because of eagerness to get back to work. After the last strike.
I’m making no predictions how this plays out. I just hope we’re not looking at a situation where the studios, rather than work to settle the dispute, blithely shrug off another fall season as a “do-over.” 2007—do-over. 2008—do-over. Look at the fall-off in viewership after shows returned this spring: if they repeat that, they may as well call the medium of TV a “do over” and start again with the next medium to be invented—say, telepathy. Maybe they’ll bring back Dirty Sexy Money for that too.