TV Wasteland: Selection Process Biased Against The Good Ones
Why is cable TV such a wasteland? The selection process is a major culprit. It is extremely biased against thoughtful programming.
Did you know that when a show creator is trying to sell the show to the producers he does not even get to show them a full pilot episode? Even the five minute "sizzle" piece above is far more time than producers today are normally willing to give a proposed program before they decide whether to pursue it or not. Two minutes is all they usually allow. Doesn't that explain a lot of what you see on TV? A deeply flawed and superficial selection process is biased against thoughtful programming. Some things take more than 120 seconds to show their value.
The irony is that the kind of people who would be attracted to a program like the one above are a demographic that advertisers crave to attract: Educated, hip people under 50 who likely have high incomes. Such types are abandoning television altogether these days. No wonder. The selection process is set up in such a way that it will, by formula, exclude just the sort of shows they would be interested in.
Take away its star-studded cast, and I wonder if the brilliant 30 Rock! would have even made it onto television.