Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Do petitions to save TV shows work?

You see it a lot in TV fandom. A devoted fan base for a television show with low ratings starts a petition to convince network suits to save a beloved show from cancelation.
Right now, you’re seeing online campaigns to save “Chuck,” “Dollhouse,” “Reaper” and other shows on the bubble.
Do these petitions work? They can’t hurt, particularly if a show could go either way between renewal and cancelation.
Ultimately it depends on whether a network thinks it can do better with another show. If its options are limited, it’s more likely to stick with the known quantity and hope the fans can build ratings through word of mouth.
“Jericho” (2006-08) is perhaps the best recent example of a show brought back for another season because of fan support.
Fan support for the CW’s “Supernatural” may have helped that horror-fantasy drama get two more seasons to finish telling its story. It’s expected to end its run next year after five seasons.
At the suggestion of a reader, I recently signed an online petition to save the CW’s “Reaper.” I encourage other fans to do the same. It’s a gem of a show.

1 comment:

catko said...

Thanks for these musings on petitios. I have the same question and the same answer as I doggedly sign them. Hooray for Reaper! I love this show, and thanks for promoting it. If you want to talk more about it, check out reaperdmv.com--we have a little fansite going there, and try to stay on top of all the news.