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.