Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Random Foolishness about Renaming TV Networks

NBC -- my favorite network growing up. Home of so many classic 80s and 90s shows, from dramas like ER and The West Wing to comedies like Cheers, Seinfeld, Friends, Frasier and The Office.  Though they've got some great shows even now, they've come on harder times ratings wise.  They could use a little jump start.  

What about renaming it "Tina Fey"?  I know, I know, it's a little strange, naming a network after a person. But she's on the network, and has been for about a decade. Plus, everybody loves her.  Her show 30 Rock is fantastic.  So why not? It even goes with the NBC chimes -- Ti-na-Fey.   Plus --tell me this wouldn't be better than the peacock:

How could anyone turn away from that smile?  

Bravo -- Another network that has had some great hits, particularly in the last 10 years. But we're always looking for the next thing, a new way to stand out and show you're with it.  How about "Brav"?  It's so cool, it doesn't even need two syllables.  

Lifetime -- When I hear that name, I think to myself, movies of the week, aimed almost entirely at women and with a generous amount of soapy. If that's your pleasure, good on ya, but what about that all so important male market?  Could we reach them? Stealing a page from SyFy, how about Lyfetime? It still has that soft, feminine quality but with an opening to a more diverse demographic.  Brav, watch out with your one-syllable bad self, here comes Lyfetime. 

The Cursive: It's like a big sign saying, "Men need not apply."

Sundance also has a very clear target audience. But what if they wanted to try to resist the mass culture's marginalization of all things art house and expand their audience? Slamdance? Sindance? Nah, abandons the brand.  Plus, Cinemax already has that covered. So to speak. 

How about Sunny D? It's... sunny, it's upbeat, suggests no apparent subtitles or deep dark thoughts.  If you want a little more stand-on-your-own-two-feet, it could be The Sunny D.  Might sound a little too O.C. at first, but hey, maybe that's not a bad thing.  It's light, it's for the kids, it's The Sunny D. 

Lastly, what about CNN?  I have to say, I'd like to change the name just to get some truth in advertising.  It's not exactly what one imagines when one hears the word "news".  (And yes, I realize the same could be said much more strongly of MSNBC or FOX.  I don't even take them on, because I don't think even its watchers think of it as news.)  Seriously, a network that spends most of its time on kidnappings, murders, scary weather, scandals, shark attacks, unvetted internet commentary and celebrity deaths -- that is not a news network. It's a collection of the stories your mom told you to get you to do what she wanted.  (Sure, you can take a piece of candy from that neighbor down the street, that's what that girl in Cleveland did, and look what happened to her.)  (For a much punchier analysis of CNN, check out this clip from Jon Stewart.

CNN: All the news no one thinks fit to print. 

One obvious choices is TNN: the Tabloid News Network. But it's a little tame. Personally, I like STBOOYNN -- The Scare-the-Bejeezus-out-of-You Network. It's a lot of letters, I know. But doesn't it look like a fun acronym to say? STBOOYN!  (Those double-Os are gold.)  And it's so much more accurate... 



god googler said...

TNN was the acronym of the former country music network The Nashville Network (which I think became CMT--Country Music Television--much to your point of truth in acronyms).

I have a crush on Tina Fey too. I think NBC should rename the network Tina Fey and unveil the new title by just having her star in a reality show called "Make Out with Tina Fey." Open it to men and women for some risque lowest common denominator ratings. Everyone will watch and it will get great buzz. Even if nobody ever makes out with her the anticipation will be a cliff-hanger. The tagline could be "Make Out with Tina Fey...Wednesday night at 9P only on Tina Fey...you'll watch." Close with Tina winking at the camera a la Sarah Palin.

It can't miss.

Ken said...

Come to think of it, "MSNBC" has a vestigial nature to it, kind of like a tailbone. GIven that Microsoft (the MS) doesn't seem to have a whole heck of a lot to do with the NBC part, shouldn't they call it GENBC or just call it NBCPolitics or something like that.