Listen Up, CW Fans: There's News for the Few of You

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By Lisa de Moraes
Tuesday, March 4, 2008

The CW announced early pickups of six series for next season but, of course, the real news is that there is going to be a CW network next season. The network is averaging only about 2.6 million viewers this season, down about 20 percent from last season at the same time, and a mere 750,000 viewers -- and no, that's not a typo -- in the 18-to-34 age bracket the network targets, a plunge of about 25 percent year to year.

Anyway, if you're a fan of "America's Next Top Model," it will come back next season for its 11th and 12th editions, but you weren't really worried because it's the network's most watched program.

"Gossip Girl" is the only freshman series mentioned in the announcement.

"Supernatural" is coming back for its fourth season, "One Tree Hill" for season No. 6 and "Smallville" for -- who'd have believed it -- Season 8.

CW noted that "Gossip Girl" and "One Tree Hill," like "Top Model," are the top-ranked television shows in terms of concentration of 18-to-34-year-old women. Loosely translated, "concentration" means that while, hypothetically, only 25 people may be watching a series, 24 of them are chicks between 18 and 34.

"Everybody Hates Chris" is the only comedy on the list of early pickups CW unveiled yesterday, which may explain why the network yesterday laid off its comedy department, according to trade paper the Hollywood Reporter.

If you're a fan of freshman series "Reaper" or "Aliens in America," we've got nothing for you -- the network was mum on their fate.

If it's "Reaper" you love, we suggest you drum up some more viewers for the five episodes that will air starting April 22.

But if you adore "Aliens in America," which has finished airing its 18-episode order, your only hope is one of those mail-in-useless-stuff- to-network- suits campaigns -- preferably something CW parent CBS can use in a "Big Brother" episode -- like those "Jericho" peanuts that got that show brought back from the dead. Dirt Devils, maybe?

If you're mad about "Life Is Wild," "Online Nation" or "CW Now," all we can say is -- really? Anyway, all three are dead.

Last month, CW said it would not renew its faux-wrestling series, "Friday Night SmackDown." Last week World Wrestling Entertainment announced the franchise was moving to MyNetworkTV -- a consortium of stations, including some that aired "SmackDown" when they were part of the UPN network, which lost that affiliation when UPN and WB merged to create CW.

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