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For webs, it’s hit or myth

Midseason shows seize the day for tube touts

After walking the straight and narrow during the fall, network hypesters have come down with another case of FHS: False Hit Syndrome.

Like movie studios fond of touting pics as the “No. 1 Family Comedy with Talking Animals,” webheads love nothing more than declaring a show a success via loud on-air promos. Execs privately admitted things had gotten out of hand about a year ago, recognizing such claims were silly. They vowed to cut back on the hot air, and this fall most nets seemed to be cautious about calling shows a hit.

In recent weeks, however, the nets have fallen off the wagon.

NBC, encouraged by early numbers for “Committed,” waited barely a week before declaring the new comedy a success. The show did perform well in its first few outings, when its lead-in was reality hit “Biggest Loser” or Thursday night’s “Joey.”

But as soon as “Committed” settled into its regular slot behind “Scrubs,” its numbers took a dive — and the show seems far from a hit.

Fox, meanwhile, is still calling “Point Pleasant” a hit, even though its only winning perf was a preview episode following “American Idol.” Its next three airings showed ratings declines each time.

And over at CBS, the superlatives seem to increase as a show’s ratings decline.

“Numbers” did very well in its first two outings, prompting CBS to immediately declare the drama a hit. The third episode took a big Nielsen hit, causing the Eye to remove the hit label.

How did the net describe “Numbers” last week? According to promos, it’s now a smash hit.

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