An Open Letter to NBC
Look, guys, I know you can’t help but screw up, but you’ve pretty much put the icing on the cake now. It’s not very surprising, though. You made Heroes suck for two seasons after a mind-blowing premier and making “save the cheerleader” a popular meme, ABC stole Scrubs right out from under you and ended up with an amazing season 8 finale, and you just about canceled The Office, now one of your most popular shows, until someone clued you in about a little thing called iTunes. Heck, all any of the people I know can talk about is Chuck and you seem hell-bent on sending that one into the garbage can as well.
I guess I should know better after you fumbled your late-night lineup almost 18 years ago. The Tonight Show was run by a living legend, Johnny Carson. I remember staying up until entirely irresponsible hours on Friday nights and all during the summer just to catch his hilarious sketches and monologues. Meanwhile, David Letterman was being just as funny in the time slot right after and would have been a natural fit. Even Johnny Carson thought Letterman would be the best replacement. But no, you instead get that giant sack of unfunny chin, Jay Leno, to take over, losing Letterman to CBS in the process. About the only saving grace is that you had the good sense to grab Conan O’Brien and gave him a few seasons to find his own.
It almost looked like you were on the way to making some good choices. You put O’Brien in charge of The Tonight Show and he’s been on fire. A week doesn’t go by that some major website doesn’t link his sketches. He’s an Internet sensation in an age when that means something. All the same, you had to counter that good idea with the lame-brain idea that Leno should have his own prime time show, and we know how that’s been working out for you. You should have just sent that horse to the glue factory.
Now you realize that keeping The Chin on staff wasn’t a terribly good idea, but you’re about to “fix” that mistake by making an even bigger one. I mean, you’re seriously going to not only let him keep a show, but slap your best decision in the face to do it? Do you remember at all what happened when you did that to Letterman, or is your memory just that short?
You’re about to take your best late-night asset and chase him off to another network, splitting that coveted late night audience even further. NBC, pull your collective heads out of your collective rear ends and realize you’re about to goof up big time yet again.