What you doing Saturday? Wanna be in TV?
The state of network television on Saturday nights has become so dire that ABC has essentially put a prime-time slot up for auction to anyone who has a compelling idea -- as long as it's done very cheaply.Hey, ABC! Over here! Got a great concept for you. All filmed on webcams. See, it's an ensemble kind of thing, like Cheers or Hill Street Blues, only it's LIVE. Filmed entirely on location at this wacky New Age Store. Cast will include Young Snarky Sales Personnel with complicated personal lives, psychic readers who constantly predict wonderful things while the world falls apart around them, the idiocyncratic Regulars who, like the barflies at Cheers, seem to have no home, and of course, the perpetually beleagered, yet valiant, owners, just trying to make a living peddling Aquarian Peace, Light and Love in an increasingly hostile world.
ABC has put the word out to Hollywood producers that a Saturday night home is available to a program that can be made for no more than $500,000 an episode, which is about a quarter of what the traditional comedy or drama costs.
Working title: New Age! No, wait. The Bearable Lightness of Being. You hate it? Okay, we're not married to it. How 'bout Gettin' Metaphysical? Well, we can work on it. I can produce this show for a measly $100,000/week. ABC, call me. We'll talk.