Sunday, December 25, 2016

McPaper looks at the genre

As a faux tweet noted, USA Today did a once-over-lightly on our little genre.

Starting from The Wall, the story looked backward - including a feather-light allusion to the rigging scandals - and forward in game show history. The most colorful newspaper (do they even sell the dead-tree format any more?) seems to think that game shows are alive and well. The story does note the genre's perennial drawback, the dreaded old skew in Nielsen's demos.

But at least several game shows are holding and sometimes building their audiences. It's hard to say that about other TV shows, even the mighty NFL. The secret of such success? "Game shows can make a big, spectacular moment for a regular person." And regular people like to watch those moments.

Any TV genre is only as good as its latest numbers from the Nielsen Company. But for now game shows are keeping their heads above water...or their carcasses ahead of the cancellation bear. Except for Celebrity Name Game, anyway.

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