What does NBC's revolutionary, 52-week programming schedule mean for you, the couchbound summer viewer with no interest in interacting with your children or lowering your cholesterol? Lots of really long, really crappy reality TV! Marketed under the tagline "All-American Summer," many of your TV-wasteland favorites are returning in super-sized, 90-minute episodes (presumably because it was really hard to follow the action of America's Got Talent when it was confined to the hour-format).
That means the whir of the air conditioner and distant laughter of children skipping through an open fire hydrant will accompany 90-minute episodes of Talent, American Gladiators, Last Comic Standing, USA-import Nashville Star, and the greatly anticipated return to the famous-people -under- the-big -tent genre,
Flying Z-Listers Celebrity Circus—the last of which is all but guaranteed to become yet another peacock feather in the cap of perfect '80s-plundering storm Ben Silverman. (That is, until a freak accident involving human cannonball Joanie Laurer launches the former Ninth Wonder of the World out the roof of their Burbank studio and into oncoming Ventura Blvd. traffic.)