Want More Variety in Your TV Shows?

   By drodriguez  Nov 24, 2008

Reality shows may soon be taking a backseat to a new wave in television entertainment.  With many of today’s reality shows focusing on the lives of the rich and overindulged, TV executives may fear that this type of program will lose its popularity during an economy slump. 

A few networks may manage to bring in more viewers over the next few days by hosting variety shows featuring 3 famous comedians.  Variety shows have not been on primetime U.S. networks since the 1970’s, but in its time shows like “The Carroll Burnett Show” and “The Ed Sullivan Show” were extremely popular with many age groups. 

Rosie O’Donnell is one of the comedians set to air her NBC variety show special called Rosie Live on November 26th.   O’Donnell recently told a reporter for Reuters about why she thinks her show will be a success.  She said, “The timing is right, I think the economy has made it so people are staying home more and sadly unable to go out.  One hour to get around the TV with everyone in your family and laugh, that to me I think is needed now.” 

Both Stephen Colbert and Ellen DeGeneres are also slated to host their own variety shows in upcoming days.  DeGeneres told Reuters that she wanted to bring back the variety show because she watched it a lot while growing up and felt that it was fun.

Not everyone is as optimistic about the variety show format as the networks and comedians hosting them.  A retired talent agent and dean at the school of cinematic arts at the University of Southern California, Larry Auerbach is not so sure viewers will want to tune in.  Auerbach said, “Maybe some day it might come back, but I think it’s a different time today.  People, if they’re old enough to remember anything, will consider it old fashioned.”

What do you think of the variety show format making a comeback on primetime television?

Will you be tuning in to any of the upcoming variety shows with your friends and family this week?


Make a Comment

littleme by littleme | MARBURY, AL
Dec 03, 2008

I would love to see more Variety on tv.To me the reality shows are just to much these days. A few is fine but now there is so darn many. It would be nice to have some family shows back on tv. Like little house on the prairie or some others that use to be on.

Sanjabay by Sanjabay | Albuquerque, NM
Dec 03, 2008

Rosie's variety show was painful, I actually watched it because I was cooking at the time and needed something on in the background. I loved Rosie's talk show and I still like her, but that show was not well thought out and was all over the place. I think it's hard to do a variety show nowadays. Colbert's was good, but unlike Rosie, he's relevant as is his material.

msfriendly by msfriendly | MONROE, WI
Dec 03, 2008

I agree with some of the other comments. I can no longer stand the sight of Rosie. I like Ellen a lot though. Sometimes she reminds me of Lucille Ball!

ladylisette by ladylisette | Kansas City, MO
Dec 03, 2008

Much to the dismay of the kids I love to learn something while watching tv. When it's my turn to have the remote I love the Discovery group of channels. I have a passion for ancient archeology.

Salemsw by Salemsw | Millbury, MA
Dec 03, 2008

I used to love rosie but no longer and I think oh a whole most people feel that way about her... I do love Ellen and try to watch her when I can..

slm2722 by slm2722 | AFFTON, MO
Dec 02, 2008

I'd love to see a variety show w/ Steven Colbert. I'd probably at least try something Ellen did but I have absolutely NO interest in seeing anything Rosie does. The woman is confrontational and obnoxious just for the sake of being that way. No thank you!

OverTheMoon421 by OverTheMoon421 | Brooklyn, NY
Dec 01, 2008

I'm not sure...there are edgier, more interesting things to watch on network TV, and better comedy on cable. I did used to like Rosie's am show, mostly because she always made sure to include theater and theater performers on the show. But I thought her recent Rosie Live! foray fell a little flat.

Libra981 by Libra981 | Orange Park, FL
Nov 30, 2008

I would love to watch an Ellen variety show, but I am definitely not a fan of Rosie's so that one won't be watched. I am not sure about Steven Colbert - I might take a glance at it. I liked him when better when he was on Jon Stewart's show.

LongStoryShort by LongStoryShort | Irvine, CA
Nov 29, 2008

I love Ellen and would love to see her host a variety show.

meowmix by meowmix | peach bottom, PA
Nov 28, 2008

I AGREE! Reality shows are annoying. I like to watch a show that is complete in one episode and not have to keep coming back to keep up. I don't always remember or have time to keep up. Law shows are also getting annoying. We need different kinds of shows now. No more cops or competitions. I LOVED Art Linkletter and when Bill Cosby did a remake it was awsome. That would be cute to see again!

am_i_lost by am_i_lost | Centralia, IL
Nov 28, 2008

I'm not a fan of Rosie at all but I do like Ellen very much!! I think that if it is approached properly it can happen! In my opinion; all of these "So called REALITTY SHOWS" are so fake & the biggest load of crap I've ever seen!!! I can make myself sit threw an entire program no matter which one it is. TV needs some REAL change for the better!!! It's like CBS will come up with a show that's a hit so then ABC & NBC will try to do the exact same show with a different name; the same goes for some of the cable channels also. All the missbehaving dog and childeren shows programs with the different hosts, titles and channels?? Anyway, I hope that Ellen's show is a big hit she is a very funny & talented women!

meowmix by meowmix | peach bottom, PA
Nov 26, 2008

Carol Burnett can never be outdone! I LOVE her.

MaurChclt by MaurChclt | Cattaraugus, NY
Nov 25, 2008

I'm tired of the reality shows, but think the variey shows have seen their day. I'm not really sure what the next trend will be, but I'm waiting, I watch a lot of TV, probably much more than I should.

meowmix by meowmix | peach bottom, PA
Nov 25, 2008

I am sorry, but Rosie just annoys me so much with her big mouth that I cannot get past that to watch her show. Why are all these gay stars doing all the public stuff?

haveitoldyoulately by haveitoldyoulately | BROOKLYN, NY
Nov 24, 2008

I always loved variety shows, and miss them. I do enjoy Ellen's show...reminds me of the old Mike Douglas or Merv Griffith format.