Advanced Television

Web to TV show flops

February 29, 2008

The highly touted web-based drama series “quarterlife” proved a network television flop in its NBC debut, drawing the network’s worst ratings for its time slot in at least 20 years, Nielsen Media Research reported.

NBC had high hopes for the made-for-Internet series, a show about young adults designed to appeal to the very audience group – viewers aged 18 to 49 – desired most by television advertisers. But the show’s dismal performance in its prime-time network launch on Tuesday threw its immediate future into doubt at the General Electric-owned network, where a source said the series could end up cancelled before its next airing.

“Quarterlife”, dramatising the urban lives of six young artists, was originally created for the social-networking site by Marshall Herskovitz and Ed Zwick, Emmy-winning producers of “thirtysomething” and “My So-Called Life”.Consisting of 36 eight-minute “webisodes”, the series began running on MySpace.TVcom and in November, with two new segments appearing online each week.

NBC made headlines when it announced in the midst of the Hollywood writers strike it was picking up the series as a mid-season replacement show, and has heavily promoted the drama in the run-up to its prime-time launch.

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