Each year, one of our only fave aspects of the upfronts—those fancy endless presentations where network executives and the occasional star prostrate themselves in front of advertisers and announce next season's schedule—is Virginia Heffernan's liveblogging of the events for the Times.
Once again, the big Hollywood dudes have come to town—fit and tan and bearing gifts— to tell us how sorry they are, and what jerks they've been, and how it's all going to be different now. Because they've been to a workshop about love and life and nutrition, and it's all clicking now. Yeah, baby, I know "The Apprentice" is weak, and I'm gonna rethink all that, and comedy's tough, but I'm not trying to blame anyone, and "Studio 60" was—aw but baby now you're just hurting me.Then smack the shit out of you, tie you to the bed, and forcibly sodomize you with a broken whiskey bottle.
It's time for a clean slate, right? That's what the upfronts are all about. Beginning with NBC's affair today at 3 p.m. at Radio City Music Hall, the networks will say they misjudged audiences this way and that, and it's time for some changes. They'll get all penitent, admitting they failed to make money or gain viewers. And then they'll make big promises.