Television: The Peacock In Shackles

With no oxymoronically named reality TV in its pipeline, NBC casts a ravenous eye at the Dutch Chains of Love

Quality is the DNA of NBC," intoned the network's West Coast president, Scott Sassa, to TV critics in Pasadena, Calif., last week. The issue Sassa was obliquely addressing amounted to this: Why does NBC suddenly look so DOA?

Here is CBS, reaping a summer-ratings bonanza with Survivor (and lesser returns with Big Brother). ABC, which doesn't need much help since it began airing Who Wants to Be a Millionaire 24 hours a day last August, had a quasi-documentary series called Making the Band this spring. But NBC does not have a single example of that oxymoron "reality TV" on the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!