The people running NBC/Universal already have an unfortunate record when it comes to handling talent/programming, but they’re really aiming to outdo themselves with this “13 episode season” strategy.
A quick attempt to figure out what these guys are thinking: Wouldn’t it be great if you were dating a girl who you weren’t all that sure that you wished to marry, but you enjoyed the sex, so you told her that you intended to break up in 13 weeks but until then it would be business as usual. That works out for everyone, right?
The Office is easily the least admired among the current group of long-running Thursday comedies (I’d personally rank it third) and yet that’s the one got a full-season pickup. Oh, and can you imagine how its production deal has scaled in 8 years? It’s also easily the most expensive. It’s the Leno of the lineup.
On the plus side, broadcasters have finally figured out a English football-like relegation and promotion system that works. You can send shit off to TBS and TNT, USA, and maybe even Netflix when you’re about to bump a stable, well-appreciated show off the air in favor of some really bad unproven idea! So it’s not all tragic.
But I do have to laugh at the whole “let’s cancel these shows slowly” idea.