Wednesday, November 07, 2007

The Writer's Guild Strike

In general, when we hear about things like the WGA strike, we find it a bit laughable. And for right now, it certainly is - seeking a share of digital profits that don't exist yet, fighting to get story editors from reality shows classified as writers so that they can join the picket lines - and it all means that we get stuck with no late night talk shows, no SNL, and a good chance that there'll be long hiatuses on narrative shows later this season. As if the writers for "Heroes" needed help derailing the season.

I've been enjoying the nonsense this week, since it give this whole next year of television a bizarrely fun twist if this drags on a few weeks - how will each show end their season? Will some shows fall completely apart, where they start having those episodes that are so bad that you start calling friends to get them to turn on a TV right then ("Quick! 'Law & Order' just added a talking cat!"). But I got a piece of news from Peracchio that gave me a splash of reality.
My old quasi-roommate (don't ask), Greg Weidman, works for the writers of "NCIS." He's not a Guild member himself, but his boss is, so he's on vaca while all this gets wrapped up. And as of Friday, he might not have a job. And that's sad. Yet I can't stop laughing at this picture.

He's the one who's... y'know, never mind, I'll let you figure it out. Anyway, as much as I hope Greg gets to keep his job and stay out there on the street protesting throughout the break, I do hope the break continues a little longer. I love watching the panic of networks making truly outrageously bad decisions, whether in ill-conceived reality shows ("Come quick! 'Midgets Vs. Meerkats' is doing improv comedy night!") or just generally poor choices ("The cat's developed a cocaine addiction! He's screaming profanities at Sam Waterson!"). It'll be fun.

Wait two weeks from now, when when you start hearing things like "We've decided that, in order to save money, when we get back from the break, we're going to move shooting for 'Gossip Girl' from Upper East Side New York to Oklahoma City," or "'Criminal Minds' is going to be written as more of a one-man show to save cash on salaries until sweeps." You'll see the fun in it, too, I promise.

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