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Another Series Star Tied to Scandalous Headlines -- Do Not Jump to Conclusions, Especially Where Ratings Are Concerned

Written Delivering Another Objective View by Bridger Cunningham


It has been a rough October for the entertainment industry.  In recent weeks, a Hollywood Mogul stood accused by dozens of performers and production staff members of misconduct, sexual harassment and assault allegations, sparking the #Me Too hashtag.  Then yesterday, popular Netflix series House of Cards experienced devastating blows as not only was its marquee star accused of misconduct from an incident in the 80's.  The blow to the cast, production crew and viewers seethed further when show-runners announced production on the 6th and final season was indefinitely and immediately halted, leaving the show's fate ambiguous.  And today, negative headlines and allegations have been attached to Wisdom of the Crowd star Jeremy Piven over an alleged incident from his 2004-11 run on HBO series Entourage.  These accusations are being investigated, and divulging an opinion in these early stages would be speculative and salacious at best.

TV Ratings Guide offers a plethora of articles discussing television ratings, online platforms, series reviews and developments relating to episode orders, renewals and cancellations of series.  This site refrains from commenting beyond declarative statements and works to pass opinions or speculate as to what happened in performers' personal troubles, as these parties are innocent until declared otherwise.  The controversial matters discussed shall be addressed as "scandal," "allegations" and "incidents" rather than feeding the bonfire of the vanities.  Not as a means to shelter or shield performers, but rather from the stance of viewers' tastes in shows should not be affected by negative headlines relating to one of their shows.  If readers wish to perk their curiosity as to what is being referenced by these ambiguous statements, there are a plethora of media outlets which are willing to address the specific nature of these unfortunate headlines, whether by divulging cited statements or speculation.  TVRG seeks to discuss news related to the series viewers love, not the personal woes of its performers.

In Piven's unfortunate headlines, the referenced incident is still under investigation and alleged to have occurred years ago; production is still intact on this CBS series, Wisdom of the Crowd.  Currently, the Freshman series is averaging a 1.06 18-49A Live Viewing average with episodes delivering ratings between 0.7-1.3.  Prior to today's unfortunate headlines, Wisdom of the Crowd has been on the watch list of several ratings websites, including TVByTheNumbers, Spotted Ratings, TV Series Finale, and TVRG's Renew/Cancel article series (http://www.tvratingsguide.com/2017/10/cbs-renewcancel-9jkl-likely-to-be.html).  Television viewing patterns are affected by several factors -- viewer preference, scheduling, seasonal ratings patterns and promotion via broadcast network.  If Wisdom of the Crowd rises or drops following today's headlines, this will likely not be on Piven's shoulders, but rather the overall production.  And CBS is keeping an objective eye on the matter, as stated by Deadline.com: “We are aware of the media reports and are looking into the matter,” a CBS spokesperson said Tuesday.

Bare in mind while TVRG will not foist an opinion or speculation onto readers, and Piven is not the first television star to deal with the obstacle of negative headlines.  Even this country's president, Donald Trump, has battled unfavorable headlines relating to past misconduct allegations.  The incident is still under investigation, and no formal charges have been filed regarding the matter.  Take a critical view of the subject matter and do not let speculative headlines mar the experience of enjoying shows and productions.  Draw on intelligent opinions, and also check the credibility of the media outlet.

Several outlets are eager to take an opportunistic pounce on reporting these matters due to the timing of when a show airs or other factors.  As published by TVRG this week (http://www.tvratingsguide.com/2017/10/another-actor-entangled-in-scandalous.html), several of viewers' favorite stars have found themselves entangled in less than favorable headlines.  These people are human first, performers second and deserve an objective eye before drawing conclusions.  If Wisdom of the Crowd does not perform well, it is not due to this incident.  As valuable of a performer as Piven is, he is not that powerful to sink a show.

Even non-criminal scandals can link to existing shows.  A current CBS performer performs well, and last year had a star entangled in a headline relating to animal neglect and welfare.  The facts remain ambiguous, and perhaps those who knew of this starlet's attachment to the unfavorable headlines may view her differently.  However, this should not stop viewers from enjoying the performances from her dynamic costars, or the crisp writing the premise offers.

The same speculative nature does not discriminate beyond performers, even if no legal allegations are present.  In April 1999, NBC announced it was cancelling 35-year old soap Another World due to dismal ratings.  Devoted fans led a wrathful outcry, vowing never to watch the NBC network again.  And the following 1999-2000 season, NBC slipped into 2nd Place behind ABC.  Take a peek at that year's seasonal ratings:

(http://www.tvratingsguide.com/2017/07/ratings-history-1999-2000-gameshow.html).

Several have accredited this loss due to AW's cancellation, and in the case of several devoted fans, this may have rung true.  However, take an objective look at what was happening at NBC in the late 90's.  Seinfeld, considered the leading sitcom of the 90's and helped propel NBC back into 1st Place from 3rd in the 1993-94 season, came to a ceremonious end in 1998 after 9 seasons.

Following Seinfeld's Thursday departure, the network struggled to regain momentum and strong players to populate its lineup.  ER, Frasier and Friends remained strong players, yet never matched the same heights Seinfeld achieved in the 90's.  In 1999, ABC attained mild Nielsen wealth by acquiring Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, grabbing the top three positions in the season's register.  Accompanied by successful Monday franchise Monday Night Football in 6th Place and burgeoning The Practice in 9th Place, ABC did the math and managed to steal the season from a weakened NBC.  Fans of AW's loss should not be discounted, but their series, which struggled in the Daytime Nielsens since the late 70's, boasted enough viewers to dent the NBC franchise as AW's last season scored a 2.4 Household Rating.  Compared with Friends, Frasier and ER all averaging 13.4-16.9 Household Averages that year, the math doesn't gratify one soap's exit destroying the ratings.

A similar mystery befell ABC in 2012, as the network cancelled longstanding soaps All My Children and One Life to Live the year before after 42 and 44-year runs, respectively.  The network plunged to 4th Place, and several speculated the downfall was due to axing the two beloved sudsers.  However, people also forget this was the season 2000's sensation Desperate Housewives ended its 8-season run.  DH helped catapult ABC fro 4th to 2nd place, as it was joined by a handful of desirable series including Lost and Grey's Anatomy.  After DH left the air, scheduling respectable performers became a challenge for the already troubled network.

Shows' ties to troubled stars hardly warrants speculation of their fates, along with their networks'.  In the case of Kevin Spacey's personal troubles, it halted production on House of Cards, effectively defining an endpoint.  HOC's exit will not directly attribute to troubles with Netflix, just as Wisdom of the Crowd will not be responsible if CBS ratings decline.  Enjoy your shows with an objective eye, and cautiously question eyeball-grabbing headlines depicting unfavorable behaviors.  TVRG will continue to report on developments relating to your shows' fates, not the personal turmoil of its performer.

Sources:

1. http://deadline.com/2017/10/jeremy-piven-denies-groping-accusations-entourage-sexual-assault-ariane-bellamar-1202198959/
2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Another_World_(TV_series)#Cancellation