Jeff Zucker's job in danger?

By Colin Mahan

Jul 11, 2006

NBC head honcho Jeff Zucker "must see" a pink slip.

At least, that's the opinion of one man's blog. The blog, appropriately dubbed "Fire Jeff Zucker," chronicles the NBC network and TV in general, emphasizing the namesake's shortcomings.

Chicago sports writer David Thomas started the blog in June, during the time CBS was wooing Katie Couric away from NBC's Today Show. In an open letter to Zucker, Thomas lists the reasons he thinks Zucker should be axed.

During Zucker's tenure, the network has tumbled from first place to fourth place among the Big Four networks (ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC). In addition to letting Katie Couric get away, NBC hasn't created new shows to replace the glory days of "must see TV," when NBC featured Friends, Seinfeld, and Frasier. Now, it has too many reality shows and isn't nurturing a sitcom like Scrubs.

At the same time, Zucker was promoted from president of NBC News, Entertainment, and Cable Group to head of NBC Universal Television Group. NBC Uni is owned by General Electric.

In an interview last month with Media Life magazine, Thomas said he didn't think his blog would put Zucker's job in peril.

"Well, as has been pointed out a few times since we started, the industry often rewards mediocrity. So maybe he won't get fired," Thomas quipped.

Showbiz fortunes change on a dime, and networks have often had comebacks after down years. ABC was a perennial third place until Lost and Desperate Housewives helped them rocket forward to within striking distance of CBS's ratings crown for overall viewers in the 2005-2006 season.

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  • lilkunta Nov 09, 2006

    I agree. He cancelled the wonderful 3rd watch & now reruns are not on AE anymore.

  • 5eren1ty Oct 23, 2006

    And may anyone who presides over a network that cancels shows like Boomtown be cast into eternal damnation...
    or forced to sit through NBC's "designed for morons" reality TV.
    Anyone can join the race to the bottom, it takes a skilled marketer to do something different, and Zucker's not the guy.

  • SailorCallie Sep 06, 2006

    Get rid of Jeff Zucker and give Dick Ebersol the job because Zucker's no Brandon Tartikoff.

  • ZachDresch Jul 16, 2006

    They should have kept Four Kings. That show had potential.

  • insinity Jul 13, 2006

    "Now, it has too many reality shows and isn't nurturing a sitcom like Scrubs."
    That about sums it up. The just don't give due respect nor cherish the one series that could be their basis for a nice grid.
    Also, they keep "not liking" the best ideas Bill has which invariably become public's favs. They clearly don't know what people want.

  • railley Jul 12, 2006

    I think he should be beaten to death by angry ninjas armed with used dildos.

    And I also think the man who wrote the blog should be fired for wasting his time writing crappy blogs no ones wants to read.

  • pgsuperfan Jul 11, 2006

    the glory days are over

  • IllyriaRules Jul 11, 2006

    The Office is better than Friends ever was!

  • allsummerlong Jul 11, 2006

    He's definitely been a commercial disaster, but there's more good shows on NBC (three - Scrubs, Earl and Office) than any other network. His biggest problem was putting too much faith in old hits (letting Apprentice have a spinoff and continue, the Friends spinoff, Will and Grace, West Wing, etc....) If a show starts failing, you'll pull it and try something more creative, rather than simply let it continue with weaker and weaker turnout.

  • Mad_Buck Jul 11, 2006

    What NBC really needs is another reality show with Donald Trump.

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