Finke/LA Weekly: Ugly Fall TV Season

My latest lalogo.gif column, It’s Ugly Out There, is about the networks throwing mad money at this season’s primetime schedule, but catching only two beauties. This wrapped before The CW cancelled Runaway which was dead last in ratings. Here’s how it begins:

“No one could ever have predicted that a Japanese geek (Masi Oka, a Brown University grad in math and computer sciences who wasn’t even in the initial script) and a homely Latina (America Ferrera, who’s actually a babe under all those fashion faux pas) would be the hotties of the new network schedule. While Oka has emerged as the hero of NBC’s Heroes, advertisers and critics thought cast member Milo Ventimiglia from Gilmore Girls and this fall’s Rocky Balboa (yes, that Rocky Balboa, coming back again, apparently from the crypt this time) looked to be the breakout star. Meanwhile, NBC rejected Ugly Betty as a half-hour comedy; it took bringing on Salma Hayek (who’s appearing in early episodes) as a producer and making it an hour dramedy before Mark Pedowitz, the president of Touchstone Television, saw the beauty in Ugly. Usually, network TV is bad news 24/7, for which I’m continually thankful, since it’s no fun to write about network hits. Then folks would get the misconception that network suits know what they’re doing, which they don’t…” Continued

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