CBS Daytime: Less Soap, More Yapping, And The Oprah Factor
There'll be more talk, less romance -- and no Oprah -- associated with CBS next year.
CBS is ready to start up a "View"-like talker featuring Julie Chen, veteran TV news journalist currently on "The Early Show" and "Big Brother" -- as well as actors/personalities Sara Gilbert, Sharon Osbourne, Holly Robinson Peete, Leah Remini, and Marissa Jaret Winokur.
All this is to replace the long-time CBS soap opera "As the World Turns." Gilbert developed the format for the new show, and will be its executive producer as well as a co-host.
The daytime afternoon is littered with lots of talk already -- syndication talkfests and those from cable networks add to the bunch. Syndication programming talk shows elicit their usual high-flying diversity of issues; cable talkers, right now, offer up plenty of news programming content.
But while everyone seems to be focusing on the demise of a longtime soap, there doesn't seem much discussion about the loss of a large number of gross ratings points as of September 2011. We speak of "The Oprah Winfrey Show," of course.
Perhaps one needs to add CBS' part in all of this. CBS' syndication division, CBS Television Distribution, was one of the key companies losing out on Winfrey's departure, as the show's distributor.
Syndication and network are still two different things to industry executive, but viewers don't really know the difference.
Here's another little difference between the two TV platforms, especially among top-flight daytime programming: the cost per thousand viewers (CPMs) to advertisers. "Oprah," as a syndicated show, got top-level pricing.
The new Chen-led CBS show looks to get mostly afternoon time slots -- generally assumed to get higher pricing than morning shows.
The CBS show probably won't compete exactly head-to-head with "The View," though some stations will ask for exceptions, hoping to free up some of the more-valuable later-afternoon time slots for their own wares. Still, critics will look to find ways to build drama and tension between the two similar network shows.
Good move for CBS? Oh, yeah -- and it probably didn't require much talking to come to a decision.