Just when you think the idiots who run broadcast network television couldn’t get any stupider, here comes this piece of news: NBC aired a promo Saturday night – yes, Saturday night during the Winter Olympics for the debut next year of a hot new series… Heroes.
What the what?
And here’s the kicker: the person helming this revival of Heroes: Reborn (as its officially called) is none other than the person who created – and later destroyed it, Tim Kring.
So let me get this straight – NBC is reviving a show whose first season was great, and tanked the rest of the way? And the person who screwed this up is back in charge? Are you f’-ing kidding me?
Only in network television.
Yes, NBC has green lighted thirteen episodes of a “reboot” of the 2006-10 sci-fi drama. No other details were available about the show, or if the original cast would reunite.
Reaction to the news on social media has ranged from “Is this a joke?” to the hashtag #NBCReboots, with people joking NBC should revive Pink Lady & Jeff next (personally, I thought Deal Or No Deal would return before Heroes.)
And in the “that was fast department”, they’ve already booked a panel for Comic-Con in July, so only the few die-hard Heroes fans left on Earth can get to see their dear leader Kring.
As you recall, Heroes was the biggest freshman hit of the 2006-07 season, with critical acclaim to boot. The phrase (Save The Cheerleader, Save The World) became a national catch phrase. But the big battle the show was promising midway through the first season was a letdown, as they fought the evil forces – in a shopping mall parking lot (with the highlight being Peter clubbing Sylar with a parking meter.)
Soon afterward, Heroes became a hot mess, exacerbated by the 2007-08 Writer’s Strike amid sloppy writing, with Entertainment Weekly describing the show as “myriad worldwide locals that all look like the backlot of M*A*S*H” and “mediocre special effects”. Through no fault of their own, executive producers Jeph Loeb (now head of Marvel Television) and Jesse Alexander were fired early in the third season, apparently the fall guys after a poor start. Former TV Week columnist Josef Adalian, aka TV MoJoe (now at Vulture) ranked Heroes’ decline as the top TV story of 2008, with some very good points.
If you read the T Dog Media Blog between 2007 and 2010, yours truly bashed Heroes and Kring on a regular basis. When Kring criticized his fanbase in 2008, yours truly hit back in a T Dog Media Turkey Awards article:
“The biggest turkey of 2008 is this current season of Heroes and features the worst storytelling I’ve seen anywhere in recent memory (and I’ve seen Barbershop 2.) Too many characters, unbelievably dumb plots (Hiro thinks he’s ten?), abandoning storylines without closure, and horrible, horrible, writing and acting. The result? Ratings are down by 40 percent this year compared to last.
And then there’s Heroes creator Tim Kring, while at a recent screenwriting expo, called his fans “saps” and “dipshits” for watching the series live as it airs and not figuring out how to watch the program in a more superior way, i.e. DVR and DVDs (He has since apologized.) Hey “dipshit”, I have one word to call you and your stupid show- asinine. You’ve lost this viewer. How about a pumpkin pie to the face, you sniveling jackass?”
In a recent post, yours truly joked about Kring working at Wal-Mart – obviously the place where idiots in the media business should be banished to.
After getting demolished by Dancing With The Stars and How I Met Your Mother head-to-head in the ratings during the 2009-10 season, it was over for Heroes, without any storylines wrapped up. And by that time, no cared. Kring went on to create other disasters, such as Fox’s failed drama Touch.
Which poses this question – how do these people keep getting work? Tim Kring getting another shot with Heroes reminds me of when Randy Michaels resurfaced as CEO of Merlin Media three years ago after he and Sam Zell nearly destroyed the Tribune Co. and dumped a successful alternative format on 101.1 in Chicago to launch FM News. By golly, how did that turn out?
Continuing to hire morons like Kring and Michaels just goes to show you how traditional media just doesn’t get it. Take a look at the success of The Walking Dead and House Of Cards and Orange Is The New Black and Game Of Thrones…need I say anything more? While some cable networks, Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon are churning out innovative programming, the best the broadcast networks can do is serve up stale crap like Heroes and NAB talking points, whose president and CEO is a former out-of-touch political idiot who could care less what WE the audience want. Talk about the “power of broadcasting” all you want when Super Bowl numbers come out, but a single day of large viewership is just a drop in the bucket – you also have to program the 364 other days.
Look, viewers know where to go for fresh and innovative programming. The Heroes: Reborn announcement just further drives the point home – it ain’t NBC or any other broadcast network.
So while Netflix or Amazon announces its next big budget innovative drama or comedy, NBC’s next project is a reboot of Sanford & Son since network television executives are run by a lot of “big dummies” – because they keep hiring dipshits like Tim Kring.
And there’s no better place to hold the premiere viewing party for his precious Heroes: Reborn than at the place where there’s less innovation than even at the broadcast networks… Wal-Mart.