Following up on my post earlier this week – Conan O’Brien tells NBC to suck it. Now I will admit to loving drama, hating NBC (they cancelled Life!), and never liking Jay Leno; so I love this. NBC is getting exactly what they deserve. You might be seeing the move that turns NBC into a cable network. Conan goes to Fox at 11 PM, cleans Leno’s clock, so now both primetime and late night are a shambles at NBC.
It’s what TV has become , that they couldn’t give Leno or O’Brien time for his show to build – the way Late Night with Conan O’Brien did. If you look at the shows that wouldn’t exist if they couldn’t wait – Seinfeld, The Office, 30 Rock, X-Files, etc. Not every show is Lost or ER – a smash hit out the gate. And for every Lost we have 3 Heroes – a show that looks good early, but can’t keep it up.
A few months ago when the Philadelphia Eagles signed convicted dog killer/fighter and quarterback Michael Vick, it opened a firestorm of controversy. After Roman Polanksi was arrested in Switzerland, I wondered where was the same outrage. Among the arguments we heard about Michael Vick were as follows:
Animals are defenseless – Polanski’s victim was a 13 year-old girl who he plied with alcohol and quaaludes
Michael Vick didn’t serve enough time – Polanski hasn’t served any. Instead he’s been living high on the hog in France, making movies, winning Oscars, and making money
Michael Vick doesn’t deserve a job like NFL quarterback – again, Polanski has been making major motion pictures for the past 31 years
Michael Vick’s crimes were especially heinous – according to testimony and interviews from the victim, we know this “despite her protests, he performed oral sex, intercourse and sodomy on her”. She said no repeatedly and Polanski raped her over and over again
Vick apologists will say that he grew up in an environment where dog fighting was accepted; that argument is appropriately denied. Anyone who dismisses Polanski’s crime as not real rape, or as Whoopi Goldberg stated “rape-rape” should be ashamed of themselves
“Come on, man, she’s 13. Thirteen! I’ve seen some hot 16-year-olds that look 18, 17[-year-olds] that look 18…Thirteen is 13. Nobody gets away with having sex with a 13-year-old.” Chris Rock
One wonders why Polanski has scores of defenders and Vick none. It’s something that always bothered me about the Vick outrage was that it was disproportionate with the crime in relation to reaction to other crimes. The reaction to Vick was part in response to his stature and visibility as an NFL quarterback, but I believe also a response to the person. Poor, not highly educated, black – none of these things work in his favor.
“In the United States, we want to capture Osama Bin Laden and murder him. We’re not gonna rape him. That would be barbaric!” Chris Rock
If anything deserves your outrage, it’s the Polanski crime and the support he has received since being arrested. Thank goodness for the common sense responses by Chris Rock, Jay Leno, and Kirstie Alley.
It was all but dead, but yesterday NBC made it official and cancelled Life. A shame. Life deserved better than it got. Inconsistent scheduling; Poor or no advertising; writers strike at the beginning of it’s first season; and worst of all being on the worst network in NBC. It’s amazing that NBC can have critically acclaimed shows like 30 Rock, The Office, Friday Night Lights, Chuck, and Life but can get no one to watch their network.
Part of me understood Life not doing well – it was to say the least quirky. Damian Lewis’ Charlie Crews had more ticks than Yosemite. He was a cop framed for a murder he didn’t commit, released from prison, given millions of dollars in settlement, and a job as a detective. Life probably would have been better off on the USA Network where offbeat series such as Monk, Psych, In Plain Sight, and Burn Notice have thrived under less of a microscope. It’s great for Life fans that the producers wrapped all loose ends in the series finale.
Within the next few weeks the verdict is due Chuck. I’m cautiously optimistic that Chuck will be back. Unlike Life, Chuck has had a steady spot on Monday nights and has had pretty decent advertising support. It’s just another quirky show – and on a network who’s big series next year is Jay Leno 5 nights a week at 10, quirky isn’t good.