Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Great minds and all that

And here I thought I had an original idea.

Having read somewhere that Arrested Development has such a large DVD audience that certain bits were filmed exclusively for the DVD crowd, and knowing that despite its "poor" ratings, the show has a huge DVD audience, it seemed obvious to me that AD should embrace its divorce from TV and continue production on a direct-to-consumer basis. I was going to e-mail the producers earlier today about that but didn't have time to do it.

Then this evening, I read an article in Slate in which Andy Bowers suggests that West Wing (and AD) continue production in just that way. Bowers suggests iTunes as the delivery system:

This model would have been absurd a year ago. Now it's completely possible, although admittedly improbable [for West Wing, Arrested Development, etc]. In the near future, I guarantee it will be happening regularly. Once we realize that we can overrule the lowest-common-denominator decisions of network honchos with a few bucks a week, I think it'll become a habit.
I've never believed the Nielsen ratings; I've always thought its system had too many built-in flaws. When ratings are determined by consumer dollars rather than surveys, then we'll see what gets canceled and what doesn't.

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