'Friday Night Lights' Over...But Not Out?
Post by: Sal
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It's now or never, Friday Night Lights fans.
Since the drama's second season is being released on DVD in April with (tellingly) only the 15 pre-strike episodes included, it is highly unlikely that the show will return this season. And unless you tune in in droves — and bring friends, strangers and pets to the Nielsen box — tonight's season finale could well serve as the series finale.
At least on NBC.
Although Peacock prez Ben Silverman's dismissive comments in Radar this week imply that he isn't among FNL's supporters, many of his colleagues both at the network and studio still believe in the show in a big way. In fact, my source tells me that execs are working 'round the clock exploring options to keep the show alive. Among them:
• A shared cable window. You know how USA gets first dibs on Law & Order: Criminal Intent originals, with the encores airing on the Peacock? Imagine a similar scenario with FNL and… ESPN, perhaps?
• Cost-cutting. Although how that could be achieved, I can't imagine. Already, FNL is relatively inexpensive to produce, and it's one of the smoothest-running shows on the air — not only did it survive the loss of exec producer Jason Katims to Bionic Woman for an extended period, it got 15 eps in the can pre-strike compared to other shows' 12 or 13.
• An altogether new home. If NBC dumps the show, the studio will likely shop it to other outlets like... ESPN, perhaps? Or maybe CW?
But of course the best-case scenario would be to keep FNL right where it is, operating exactly as it is. And for that to happen, it's going to need you. Heck, in this endeavor, we're all going to need each other. So let's do it: Let's build the audience. A demo rating above a 2.0 would make the show's renewal all but a sure thing. So tell everyone you've ever met (and their brother!) to tune in to tonight's season finale. And if they happen to have a Nielsen box, so much the better. We can do this. We will do this. Now go do this. — Additional reporting by Ben Katner