NBC Takes an Ax to 'Enemy' and Wipes Off 'Lipstick'

By Lisa de Moraes
Friday, November 14, 2008

NBC has whacked both its Christian-Slater-as-Walter-Mitty-2.0 drama, "My Own Worst Enemy," as well as its Brooke-Shields-couldn't-be-more-annoying-soap "Lipstick Jungle," which can only mean that it's time for NBC's programming chief, Ben "Teflon" Silverman, to get (a) a contract renewal or (b) a promotion.

Meanwhile, ABC isn't confirming that it has plowed under its struggling Wednesday forensic fairy tale, "Pushing Daisies," but the writers are being shopped around Hollywood by their agents, which is never a good sign.

And Fox may have ordered two more episodes of "Prison Break" so that the show can tie up the loose ends and call it a day.

It's that most wonderful time of the year when broadcast network shows that have reached the end of their first production cycle need to know whether they're getting more episodes.

Network suits have three options. They can (a) pick up more episodes, (b) cancel the show or (c) pay a fairly hefty fee to keep the stages and sets while they think about it.

NBC recently moved "Lipstick Jungle," a one-hour chick-cliche drama about three 30-something women -- a fashion designer, a fashion mag editor and a movie studio suit -- to death-by-time-slot Friday, where it -- died. Which is to say that the series, in which Shields played a movie producer, attracted only about 3 million viewers -- a fine CW network number.

This past Monday, only about 4 million people bothered to watch "My Own Worst Enemy," in which Slater played a suburban soccer dad who, much to his surprise, is also a secret agent. But what sealed this show's fate was getting beat by William Shatner for the first time among the 18-to-49-year-old viewers NBC sells to advertisers.

Neither NBC series is being pulled off the air. They will have long-ish death scenes, as NBC burns off their remaining episodes.

"Daisies," ABC's sweet, color-saturated fantasy about a hunky piemaker who can bring things back from the dead, may have been done in by Barack Obama. Last week's Tuesday election night coverage forced ABC to postpone that week's "Dancing With the Stars" finale until 8 p.m. Wednesday. It copped nearly 16 million viewers in the same slot where "Daisies" has struggled to hang on to its loyal audience of about 7 million.

"Prison Break" is down to about 5 million viewers. And besides, it's about these brothers who keep winding up in prison. How much more of that can we take?

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CBS newsmag "60 Minutes" has landed the first TV interview with President-elect Barack Obama.

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