The WB & UPN Premiere Promo Week Starts Tomorrow

Writing about the 20th anniversaries of defunct television networks The WB (January 11th) and UPN (January 16th) got me interested in the early days of both networks.

I started thinking about how the networks initially promoted themselves. I was aware of The WB’s use of Michigan J. Frog as a mascot and its studio backlot theme but not as familiar with UPN’s early on-air promotion other than the original look of the UPN logo. So, I dug out DVDs of various premiere nights for both networks and starting tomorrow I’ll be posting a promo a day for a series premiere on either The WB or UPN.

Included will be promos for shows like Marker (UPN), Pig Sty (UPN), Muscle (The WB), and The Parent ‘Hood (The WB). Check back tomorrow around noon and every day for the next week to see promos for (mostly) forgotten TV shows from (potentially) forgotten networks.


4 Comments

  • DuMont says:

    Looking back at the ratings for The WB and UPN, they were really pretty level over their 12 years of operation up to their ill-advised merger into The CW which has consistently faltered in the Nielsens. When you factor that in the fall of 2006, The CW carried forward a combined 4.2/6% 2.6 A18-49 which has been frittered away to the 1.3/2% 0.8 A18-49 average it currently sports.

    It is most interesting to note that the ‘Star Trek: Voyager’-plumped first season of UPN averaged a 2.8 A18-49, which bests current top broadcaster NBC’s 2014-15 average of 2.7 A18-49…back 20 years ago, who’d ever have thought broadcast could fall off so dramatically?

    Regular Season Averages (Sep-Apr/May)
    Weblet HH/% A18-49
    1994-95 WB 1.8/3% 1.1 UPN 4.0/6% 2.8
    1995-96 WB 2.4/4% 1.2 UPN 3.1/5% 1.9
    1996-97 WB 2.6/4% 1.3 UPN 3.2/5% 1.9
    1997-98 WB 3.1/5% 1.6 UPN 2.8/4% 1.6
    1998-99 WB 3.9/5% 1.8 UPN 2.0/3% 1.1
    1999-00 WB 2.6/4% 1.4 UPN 2.7/4% 1.6
    2000-01 WB 2.5/4% 1.6 UPN 2.4/4% 1.6
    2001-02 WB 2.5/4% 1.6 UPN 2.7/4% 1.8
    2002-03 WB 2.6/4% 1.8 UPN 2.3/4% 1.5
    2003-04 WB 2.5/4% 1.5 UPN 2.3/4% 1.4
    2004-05 WB 2.2/4% 1.4 UPN 2.3/4% 1.4
    2005-06 WB 2.1/3% 1.3 UPN 2.1/3% 1.3

  • terrence says:

    People point to fragmentation, but the broadcast networks, in their ridiculous attempt to continually target younger viewers at the expense of older viewers, are just as much the cause for their own dramatic fall-off.

    As for the CW, I look forward to that network ceasing operations and either becoming a programming service, a cabler or just turning that time back to affiliates to function as independents subscribing to their programming service.

    I have aught with the CW for not picking up “Everwood” (opting instead for a second final season of “7th Heaven”) and prematurelyn cancelling “Everybody Hates

  • terrence says:

    I have had aaught with the CW since its inception for not picking up “Everwood”, but instead opting for a second final season of “7th Heaven”. And then three years later they prematurely cancelled “Everybody Hates Chris”.

    At one point they were trying to be an inferior junior version of FOX in the 90s with reboots of “Beverly Hills, 90210″ and Melrose Place”. I was waiting for “Ally McBeal Returns”.

    Then they focused on young women – which should be verboten for a BROADcast network. Now they’re jumping on the superhero/comic book bandwagon and actively going after young men.

    Like its predecessors WB and UPN, the CW doesn’t know what it wants to be. It should just become a programming service or a cabler so that affiliates can go back to being independents.

    On another note, I just discovered this site a few weeks ago and it’s a TV history fanboy’s dream.

  • Bob says:

    The CW’s major mistake was dropping every comedy from both UPN and WB especially comedies that were rating highly in African-American homes such as “Girlfriends” & “The Game.” The channel has become MTV lite.

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