Analysis: Media buyers weigh in on fall TV primetime winners: Friday nights

This is the last in a five-part series (Part one: MIC June 30/05) that asks broadcast pundits' opinions on who's in, who's out and who doesn't stand a chance during the most coveted - and competitive - weeknight timeslots of 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. Go to www.mediaincanada.com and click on 'TV Programming Grids' for visual aids. Next up: 'The Word on Fall in Montreal,' a two-part series coming next week.

Sheila Malanchuk, media strategy manager at OMD Vancouver, has lots of opinions about the 8 p.m. timeslot. 'Ghost Whisperer [on CTV] has gotten some bad feedback. It's not the best replacement for Joan of Arcadia. I don't see the old Joan audience wanting to see Ghost Whisperer. It's more like a Medium but not as well done. I just don't see a lot of potential with that show,' she says about the new Jennifer Love Hewitt entry.

This is the last in a five-part series (Part one: MIC June 30/05) that asks broadcast pundits’ opinions on who’s in, who’s out and who doesn’t stand a chance during the most coveted – and competitive – weeknight timeslots of 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. Go to www.mediaincanada.com and click on ‘TV Programming Grids’ for visual aids. Next up: ‘The Word on Fall in Montreal,’ a two-part series coming next week.

Sheila Malanchuk, media strategy manager at OMD Vancouver, has lots of opinions about the 8 p.m. timeslot. ‘Ghost Whisperer [on CTV] has gotten some bad feedback. It’s not the best replacement for Joan of Arcadia. I don’t see the old Joan audience wanting to see Ghost Whisperer. It’s more like a Medium but not as well done. I just don’t see a lot of potential with that show,’ she says about the new Jennifer Love Hewitt entry.

Three Wishes [on Citytv] is that reality show where Amy Grant travels around North America and grants three wishes to someone. I don’t see a lot of eyeballs there,’ Malanchuk continues. ‘Supernanny is running in that timeslot [on A Channel] and I think that will be the clear winner. By a whisper, maybe Three Wishes. [Global's] Malcolm in the Middle isn’t strong anymore and Air Farce [on CBC] has its standard audience.’

Toronto’s Sherry O’Neil of OMD certainly knows what she doesn’t like. Of Three Wishes, she says: ‘It’s gross…. It’s like Extreme Makeover: House Edition without the secondary interest angle.’

She did, however, have kinder words to say about Jennifer Love’s new vehicle. ‘The kids here liked it. I don’t mind Jennifer Love Hewitt. And because it’s on on Fridays at 8 p.m., I think by default it will do okay.’

Her 9 p.m. pick? ‘I think Nip/Tuck [on CTV] is pretty risqué,’ she says. ‘It’s racy and it’s something to watch if you’re stuck home on Friday night.’

Malanchuk agrees. ‘I think Nip/Tuck will win that slot though that audience is not necessarily the one that stays in on Friday nights. Threshold [on Global,] will get buried but coming out of Malcolm, it might get some trial viewing.’

‘I think Ghost Whisperer and then Threshold is a better flow. This is what’s happening in the U.S.,’ O’Neil pipes in.

With the 10 p.m. entry of new property Inconceivable on CTV, Malanchuk says: ‘It’s going to get a very female audience and it frankly doesn’t make a lot of sense coming out of Nip/Tuck.’

Her final opinion?

‘I think this lineup is too all over the place.’

‘The lead is obnoxious in Inconceivable,’ opines O’Neil. ‘It’s a pretty soft entry.’