Peacock rekindling ‘Passions’ soaper

New order comes despite aud troubles

CANNES — Killing rumors of a possible early death, NBC has renewed first-year sudser “Passions” for a second season.

The daytime drama, which featured a life-size talking doll and a slew of other — wacky even for the soaps — storylines, bowed in July. New order is expected to keep the skein on the air through July 2001.

Despite a strong promo push from NBC, and a near-record number of clearances by Peacock affils, “Passions” has had trouble finding an aud with femmes 18-49, the demo group most in demand with daytime ad buyers.

Still, show’s bizzaro elements and youngish cast have made it a success with very young women and teen girls 12-17. In the latter category, “Passions” ranks second only to NBC’s “Days of Our Lives.”

The fact that NBC owns “Passions” no doubt made the renewal decision easier. Should Nielsens start trending downward, it wouldn’t be impossible for NBC to end “Passions” before the end of its second season.

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