Network presidents tasked with counterprogramming American Idol's 37 million viewers (a job further complicated by the Mandatory 'Idol" Viewership Act For Citizens 18-34 just passed by the newly Democrat-controlled Congress under heavy lobbying by News Corp.) find themselves with precious few practical options for combating the Nielsen juggernaut; those brave enough to resist the easy out of simply scheduling two hours of test-patterns in their Idol-opposing timeslot and then splattering their brains on the windows of their corner offices really have only one reliable strategy for surviving their Sisyphean labor: burying their heads in the warm sands of total denial. TV Week's Critical Eye TCA blog notes how NBC's Kevin Reilly is dealing with the Idol problem:
We got to see how it weathers over the course of the year," he says. "Not to be shitty about it, but maybe they'll have a bad run. Nothing burns that bright forever. Some day it will be uncool to watch 'American Idol.'"
Indeed, all competitive shittiness aside, there probably will be a time when Idol's rival-incinerating supernova will burn at a lower temperature; unfortunately for the other networks, in middle of this stetch of total, Simon Cowell-led dominance, it feels like that day will coincide with the extinguishing of our Sun. And in those final eight minutes before the final ray of life-giving warmth provided by our burned-out star arrives and all goes dark, NBC will finally make its big programming move.
- Kevin Reilly, Feeling the Love [Critical Eye]