Moonlight fans have been fuming over this subject for a long time. Why isn't CBS rerunning the show? Especially, rebroadcasting the episodes in the week leading up to the four new episodes airing.... so that new fans can get their bearings. A great fan asked TV Guide's Matt Roush that question in regard to Moonlight & a few other shows.
Why is there a trend these days for TV series to go off the air completely until a new batch of episodes are ready? Wouldn't it make more sense to air repeats for new viewers to discover the show and veteran viewers to watch the episodes they missed? In other words, why aren't reruns of Life, Pushing Daisies, Moonlight and Chuck currently on the air? Doesn't this network tactic lessen momentum and viewer interest? — Tony R.
Matt Roush :
Simple answer for a complicated issue. With few exceptions (hit comedies and procedural crime dramas), most shows don't repeat well. Especially serialized shows. In fact, ratings for repeats tend to suck, dragging the networks' levels down below acceptable levels. That's why the networks clog the summer schedule with silly reality shows that might at least give them a temporary lift. The argument to keep a show in the public eye is a good one, but that's why the networks are making more of their shows available on streaming video, in download form and eventually on DVD. In some cases, including in this strike-altered season when so few originals were produced, it might actually hurt some shows more for their repeats to air continually, bringing their average number down. The challenge for the networks is how to relaunch these shows after a long absence from the schedule.
Moonlight was also mentioned briefly by a reader discussing what they would like to see happen with the CBS lineup.
I was just reading your responses to two different questions: one about The Unit not being on CBS' schedule and another about airing repeats of Supernatural on CBS, and I just wanted to respond. I actually think a better fit with NCIS would be Numbers. I know Numbers consistently wins its time slot, but it is on Friday nights at 10 pm/ET. I think the show has mass appeal and would benefit after a show like NCIS because it has the same feel. Finding a show to pair with The Unit is much harder. I think The Unit would do better on Sundays. As for Supernatural, I think it could be a great Friday-night companion to Ghost Whisperer and Moonlight. By putting it on at 10 pm/ET, they could make it even grittier and get it out to a larger audience. Plus being on Friday, they wouldn't have to expect huge numbers. — Adam
Matt Roush :
Isn't it fun to play junior programmer? My thoughts: CBS isn't going to mess with success. Numbers holds down a tricky Friday night slot very well, and even if CBS is otherwise supernatural for the night, the network knows its strength is in smart procedurals. Yes, Numbers would be a good fit with NCIS, but so would a handful of other CBS crime dramas. I still think the NCIS-Unit pairing works well on Tuesdays because of their shared military themes and because the tone evolves to darker action from the first to second hour. I suppose The Unit could work on Sundays at 10 pm/ET, but it's probably better off hammocked between other shows. This of course assumes that CBS is bringing The Unit back in the fall and not mulling a checkerboard with new titles in the equation. Supernatural, as previously noted, is staying put on the CW where it belongs.