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Maybe we all need to face reality

Sunday night’s preem of “American Gladiators” on NBC bowed to big numbers. (Curse you, Ben Silverman!). According to Variety‘s ratings guru and Season Pass panelist Rick Kissell:

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“American Gladiators” averaged a 5.9 rating/14 share in adults 18-49 and 12 million viewers overall, winning its 9-11 p.m. slot in key demos and becoming the highest-rated series preem of the season on any net in 18-49. It’s also the best non-sports result in the time period for NBC in three years.

ABC didn’t fare so well with its new scripted series “Cashmere Mafia”:

“Cashmere Mafia” garnered a 3.8 rating/9 share in 18-49 and 10.7 million viewers overall for its preview in the 10 o’clock hour, retaining a little more than half its demo lead-in from an original episode of slot-leading “Desperate Housewives” at 9 (prelim 7.2/16, 19.8 million).

And although “Mafia” won its time period among women 18-49, it was beaten out among women 18-34 by “Gladiators.”   

Cashmere_3So my question is this: If the networks can get better ratings by shoving crappy reality down our throats than they do with the crappy scripted shows they’re offering, what motivation, exactly, do they have to make a deal with the WGA to end the strike and get scripted shows back into production?

Just asking.

— Kathy Lyford