Tag Archives: Save Jericho

The Return of Jericho: Reruns, The CW, and the Audacity of Hope

jerichoad.jpgTonight, Jericho returns.

A year and a half ago, this was a revelation. Today, it feels quite different, an odd and unexpected consolation prize for fans who worked so hard to get the show back on the air. Tens of thousands of pounds of peanuts were enough the get the show a second season, but not enough to convince CBS that it should run consistent reruns of the series in every available setting. In other words, the renewal came with a caveat: the fans, who provided such a great grassroots campaign, were responsible for pulling their weight to grow the show’s audience.

But now, in an ironic turn of events, Jericho returns in an unexpected capacity as the lead-off for The CW’s new Sunday nights. After the Media Right Capital deal, which saw the production company program its own lineup to enormously middling results, fell through, The CW had a lot of options of what to program in the slot. Repeats of their struggling comedies could help their audience, the MGM movies are cheap and always decent counter-programming, but then came the kicker: Jericho reruns, starting from episode one of the first season, at 7/6c every Sunday into the foreseeable future.

For fans, this is a sign of hope: a sign that there is an off-chance of the fanbase growing, of the show pulling a Family Guy and making its way back onto the schedule. And while I remain skeptical that this is in the cards, and feel that The CW (And Viacom) have more subtle motives with this particular move, one cannot remain pessimistic in the presence of the fans who changed network television’s definition of cancelled with a whack of peanuts and sheer determination.

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10 Shows to (Hopefully) Watch in 2008 – #1 – Jericho

When it came to selecting which series would be number one on Cultural Learnings’ list of 10 Shows to (Hopefully) Watch in 2008, I had to make a decision that perhaps doesn’t reflect my own personal taste. In terms of shows I’m most looking forward to watching, I can’t possibly rank anything above Lost or Battlestar Galactica, two series I can’t get enough of. However, last summer it became very clear that in covering TV it is important to not just use your own opinions to guide you, but also to recognize shows and fans who go above and beyond, and whose impact on television as a whole is sure to be one of the biggest stories of the year. As a result, here is the number one selection.

A year ago, I had written off Jericho. After losing interest shortly before the series went on hiatus in the fall, I was barely paying attention when the series returned in February only to struggle against tough competition. As its fanbase eroded, and as CBS left it off of its fall schedule, I was amongst those who rationalized its demise – it was never a strong demo performer, CBS can fill the slot with CSI Reruns and get better ratings, and the show never really set the world on fire anyways. And now, half a year later, I believe that Jericho is the most intriguing series to be airing in 2008.

The Nuts for Jericho campaign which emerged last summer was at first charming, and then interesting, and then mindblowing. It transitioned from a small-scale fan initiative to something that has changed the way viewers interact with networks. On one hand, I think that some fan groups have the wrong idea – it isn’t that Jericho fans sent food that made them successful, so the recent Journeyman campaign featuring Rice-A-Roni isn’t quite as effective. It was that the nuts which made their way to CBS headquarters were both intrinsically linked to the series and part of an outpouring of support which was spontaneous and powerful.

While there will be further fan campaigns, there will never be one as surprising and effective as the one to save this CBS drama – fans who had been discounted by the network turned out in large numbers and mobilized in record time. Whether the fans were posting on the CBS Message Boards or starting their own blogs (Such as Jericho Monster, Jericho Junction or Jericho on CBS), ordinary people from across America and across the world were uniting behind a show that they loved. The result was perhaps the greatest comeback story in the last decade of television, and a story that captivated the attention of bloggers everywhere, particularly here at Cultural Learnings.

But if 2007 was the year in which Jericho rose from the ashes, it is in 2008 that it must prove itself. While the show earned a shortened second season of seven episodes thanks to the efforts of fans, the series must rely on those fans to turn out when the show returns to CBS at 10pm on February 12th. While a fantastic story unfolded last year, it is now time to see whether midnight will strike before this Cinderella story can continue. Will Jericho’s return be a final hurrah before the show leaves the airwaves for good, or will this comeback stretch on into 2009 and beyond? Well, it’s kind of hard to tell at this point.

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(Guest) For Your Consideration: Jericho

In opening up part of this site to fans of CBS’ Jericho in order for them to express their love of their show and how it deserves Emmy awards was done for a key reason: I didn’t want to make those readers who visit this site thanks to its coverage of the Save Jericho campaign from being angry with me when I did not feature the show in my extensive For Your Consideration series.

My reasoning for this is simple: I never found the show’s acting to be all that good in the amount I watched, and even what late season stuff I saw could never overtake the other candidates I had in mind. Basically, I’m not a huge fan of the show, but I know that others are. And, expectedly, what has poured in has been people who enjoy the show explaining why. Do I agree with all of them? Of course not, and that’s the nature of different tastes and all that jazz. But I think that it is important that these different views be heard. Because, whether we agree or not, there is something to be said for passion.

Now, admittedly, I am always skeptical of this level of fan support. And, when some of the praise has come in for Jericho, I’ve questioned it slightly (I’m only human, and only overly a critical human at that). However, when Rebecca Smith sent in this piece, I found that I had nothing to really criticize. While I can’t say I agree with her overall assessment of the series, she even admits that I and many others might not. It is a wholly rational, observational, analytical approach to why she, and so many others, dig this little drama that could.

As fans of Jericho face the tough task of turning angry activism into positive action, I think they need to take the approach that Rebecca has taken. I might never become a true fan of the series (I’ll be watching the reruns this summer to see if it is possible), but I know that after reading Rebecca’s piece I’m much more likely to be open to the idea. While all of the submitted pieces have been well-written, I think Rebecca’s stands in a league of its own. And, for that reason, I share it with you here.

For Your Consideration: Jericho

Submitted by Rebecca Smith

According to Roger Ebert in his 1999 review of “It’s a Wonderful Life,” a film student asked Frank Capra back in the 1970s “if there were still a way to make movies about the kinds of values and ideals found in the Capra films.” Capra’s response?

“Well, if there isn’t,” he said, “we might as well give up.”

What does this have to do with a little television show called Jericho? Well, it seems that the cynicism that Capra treated in much of his work, is alive and flourishing in 2007. The show’s detractors would compare Jericho to Frank Capra’s work, saying that small town values have limited relevance in the wider world. Most people just aren’t interested in the classic portrayal of heroism anymore. We’re geometric snobs, and square is no longer art. On the contrary, I think if he were alive, Frank Capra would most vehemently disagree.

Likewise, Peter C. Rollins, Regents Professor of English, Oklahoma State University writes:

“Our heritage is rich in uplifting role models and we could be inspired by them if we took the time to reflect. To convey this message, Capra has Longfellow Deeds (played by Gary Cooper) visit Grant’s Tomb during a tour of New York City. His guide, a cynical reporter named Babe Bennett (played by Jean Arthur), looks at the grim edifice and observes that most New Yorkers think of it as a ‘disappointment, a washout.’

Longfellow Deeds sees something quite different–indeed, the sight inspires him:

‘It’s wonderful. I see a small, Ohio farm boy becoming a great soldier. I see thousands of marching men. I see General Lee, with a broken heart, surrendering. And I can see the beginning of a new nation, like Abraham Lincoln said. And I can see that Ohio boy being inaugurated President. Things like that can only happen in America.'”

The question is, does Capra’s answer still ring true today? Can the things that moved our grandparents still move us today, or are we too jaded as a society to embrace “Capracorn” in all its delightful optimism? Is the cross-cultural populist vibe that Jericho telegraphs passé? It seems that mass culture is caught up in a love affair with the grim and morose for the moment. The unprincipled anti-hero is the new pink. Apparently, we have reached a level of so-called sophistication wherein a classic loses its universal appeal. Or have we? Isn’t the classic portrayal timeless by definition?

If the response to Jericho is any indication, the same things do still speak to the hearts of people everywhere. Indeed, it indicates a longing for them. We still hope that dignity and nobility exist in our fellow man. It’s not that we want to turn a blind eye to reality, but for a few minutes, or an hour here and there, we’d like to believe that a person can make a difference. We’d like to believe that a group of people unified can make all the difference in the world. The magic of Frank Capra’s body of work is not that he painted pretty pictures of the world, but that he helped us to face what was harsh in it with the hope that principled individuals working together could triumph over disaster. It’s the kind of magic that Jericho seems to have tapped, stirring passions in its audience that provided the impetus for an online filibuster that the fictional Mr. Smith (of “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington” fame) would surely have approved. Call it corny. Call it self-indulgent. But I want to believe.

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The Return of ‘Jericho’ Gets CBS Ad Attention during ‘The Price is Right’

Bob Barker’s final episode of The Price is Right was a classy affair that, despite being just another episode on the surface, felt representative of everything the show stood for. However, as we say goodbye to Bob Barker, it was hard to ignore the push that CBS is giving one of the shows it said goodbye to in May before reconsidering. That show is ‘Jericho’.

The advertisement is everything that CBS should be doing to promote the show (It is also being placed at the end of some CBS Innertube viewings). Starting with various scenes from the end of the show’s first season, it reminds viewers that only once in a long while is there a show that fans will fight to keep on the air. And that show is…Jericho.

The commercial goes on to inform viewers that the show will begin reruns on July 6th, and on the whole really makes the show out to be something that people should pay attention to. And let me tell you, the commercial is effective: it features the emotion of the show’s characters and doesn’t try to bog viewers down in the conspiracies seen throughout the show’s first season.

Now, while the show wasn’t peppered with the ads or anything, I think it shows that CBS is willing to spread the word about this series in what might well be one of the highest rated specials of the summer season (We’ll get final ratings tomorrow). For now, fans of the series can finally believe that the network will be in their corner, and can hope for more coverage this evening during the Daytime Emmy Awards.


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CBS Finalizes Schedule for ‘Jericho’ Reruns – Fridays at 9pm

When CBS announced that it planned to air reruns of Jericho this summer in anticipation of the show’s upcoming midseason return, I had personally thought that they would re-air all of the season’s episodes starting at some point in June, perhaps doubling up on certain weeks in an attempt to fit in all 22 episodes before September came around. Well, CBS seems to think differently, and their official schedule features only 13 episodes from Jericho’s first season. And, well, I think it’s a good schedule.

The Jericho Summer Rerun Schedule

Friday July 6th

9pm EDTEpisode 1 – “Pilot”

Friday July 13th

8pm EDT Jericho Recap Show (Eps. 1-11)

9pm EDTEpisode 12 – “The Day Before”

Friday July 20th – September

9pm EDTRemaining Episodes of Jericho’s First Season

Firstly, this schedule will currently take them until September 21st, which would mean the final repeat would air after the official start of the fall season. As a result, a two-hour event here or there might well take place.

After learning this news, I first felt it was a bit of a copout. However, I’ve since decided that it is strong plan that makes a lot of sense for a variety of reasons.

Emphasize Your Strongest Features

The pre-hiatus Jericho was a slow-moving, never-ending post nuclear society struggling with food shortages and your regular post-disaster scenarios. The interest parts (Hawkins’ behaviour, the conspiracy rumblings) can be covered in the recap special, and the show can move into its strong post-hiatus period creatively.

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‘For Your Consideration: Jericho’ Page Now Open

Just a heads up to my regular blog readers: I’ve officially opened the For Your Consideration: Jericho page I have alluded to in far too many previous posts (I’m a whore for the email link recently, apparently).

For Your Consideration: Jericho

If you want to submit something, or think that another show might deserve a similar page, send me off an email…well, I won’t post it again, but it’s in the upper right hand corner for those interested.

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Nina Confirms: Seven Episodes of Jericho at Midseason

In an official statement to fans of Jericho, Nina Tassler (President of CBS) has publicly announced the midseason order that has been rumoured for the past 24 hours. Here is that statement:

To the Fans of Jericho:


Over the past few weeks you have put forth an impressive and probably unprecedented display of passion in support of a prime time television series. You got our attention; your emails and collective voice have been heard.

As a result, CBS has ordered seven episodes of “Jericho” for mid-season next year. In success, there is the potential for more. But, for there to be more “Jericho,” we will need more viewers.

A loyal and passionate community has clearly formed around the show. But that community needs to grow. It needs to grow on the CBS Television Network, as well as on the many digital platforms where we make the show available.

We will count on you to rally around the show, to recruit new viewers with the same grass-roots energy, intensity and volume you have displayed in recent weeks.

At this time, I cannot tell you the specific date or time period that “Jericho” will return to our schedule. However, in the interim, we are working on several initiatives to help introduce the show to new audiences. This includes re-broadcasting “Jericho” on CBS this summer, streaming episodes and clips from these episodes across the CBS Audience Network (online), releasing the first season DVD on September 25 and continuing the story of Jericho in the digital world until the new episodes return. We will let you know specifics when we have them so you can pass them on.

On behalf of everyone at CBS, thank you for expressing your support of “Jericho” in such an extraordinary manner. Your protest was creative, sustained and very thoughtful and respectful in tone. You made a difference.


Nina Tassler
President, CBS Entertainment

P.S. Please stop sending us nuts 🙂

Whether or not fans despise her for her earlier decisions, this statement could not be more true. She, and rightly so, is calling on fans to make good on the promise that they set forward. And, in order to do this, fans need to find ways to turn this into ratings momentum. As a result, this campaign cannot die off now, and hopefully further good can come from this movement. The power of many cannot be refuted, in this instance, and in 8 months or do fans will have their chance to make their voices heard when Jericho returns to network television.

In preparation for this, you can send off an email as to why Jericho deserves Emmy Award recognition to cultural.learnings @ gmail.com, and it will be included in the growing database of comments from fans regarding the show’s future.

Congratulations, folks. I shall eat some peanut butter in your honour.

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In Review: ‘Save Jericho’ In Retrospect

For people who haven’t been following this story, or perhaps want to revisit what Cultural Learnings has had to say in the past, I’d like to bring attention to a few past stories that still have some resonance considering today’s news regarding the show’s imminent midseason pickup.

For Your Consideration: Jericho and the Emmys In Retrospect

Now, more than ever, this plan is the best step forward for this movement. With the priority now being building buzz around this show, garnering an Emmy nomination or two for the series is definitely the right tactic and something that everyone should be involved in. I’ll likely be posting the initial FYC page for the series at some point over the next few days using the fan input I’ve received thus far (To send your own, email it to cultural.learnings @ gmail.com).

A Word of Warning to ‘Save Jericho’In Retrospect

This article, the 2nd I wrote on the subject, has proven to be just as relevant as it was when I posted it. At the time, my general tone was that a 2nd season would not be brought back without changes, and that this could mean the loss of some of the show’s key elements. And, according to sources, this might just happen.

While CBS has contract options on most of the show’s leads, the reduced order would also probably include a reduced budget and, in turn, a reduced regular cast. In addition, many of the show’s writers have already migrated to other shows, including season one showrunner Carol Barbee, now serving in a similar capacity on another CBS midseason drama, “Swingtown.

These types of changes were to be expected. However, what effect will they really have? A smaller regular cast makes sense, but it also changes where producers may have been going with core storylines. This won’t make too much difference, of course, when you consider that many of the producers might well have, like Barbee, headed off to different shows. It is going to be a balancing act, and Jericho fans need to hope for the best as to its outcome.

If Jericho is Renewed, What Timeslot is Best?In Retrospect

Well, it appears it is going to be renewed and will arrive at some point in midseason (Could be earlier if another show bombs, but then it would need to go on hiatus during Christmas). So, where do we put it? Suggestions at the time seemed to be fairly certain that 9pm would be best, but there is no certainty as to what night would be preferable. This is one issue that won’t be resolved for a while, but one that will be incredibly important for the show’s future.

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Report: ‘Jericho’ to Return for 7-8 Episodes at Midseason

Leave it to Michael Ausiello to break some news about the possibility, a good possibility, of Jericho receiving a 7-8 episode order at midseason. TV Guide Online reports the following:

Multiple sources are telling me that CBS is this close to sealing a deal to bring Jericho back for at least eight episodes, possibly at mid-season.

My spies caution that this is in no way official, but it certainly sounds like it could be by day’s end. It’s now just a matter of signing the actors to new deals and, according to one insider, finding a new soundstage to house the show’s sets.

To say this would be a huge victory for crazy TV fans everywhere would be the understatement of the frakkin’ millennium.

Now, let’s consider this for just a second. Personally, I think this is a fantastic win for the movement, a powerful statement of financial and programming commitment from a network willing to cast the show aside three weeks ago. And that, if anything, this moment could be a positive turning point for this movement from negative attacks to positive development. However, I’m not one of the Jericho rangers, and this is important. Why? Because, well…

It’s not what Jericho fans wanted.

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‘Save Jericho’: Why the Emmy Awards Could Be a Turning Point

Over the past few days, and over the next month and a half, Cultural Learnings will be spending some time letting it be known which actors, actresses and series deserve the attention of Emmy Voters as they prepare to make their decisions for the 59th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards to be held in September (You can find the first two installments in Supporting Actors Here and Here). An Emmy nomination is often a way for a series to gain credibility, and for a network to gain a certain level of prestige with that particular program. As a result, each studio sends out a deluge of “For Your Consideration” materials for the performers and series that they want to consider giving awards attention to. And, despite canceling the show, CBS is doing so for Jericho.

TheGreenCampaign.com – CBS Emmy Nominations

The above website presents full episodes from each show that CBS is entering for consideration, and amongst them is Jericho. With fans rallying behind the show, its mindshare is perhaps at its greatest level yet; whether this translates to more voters, however, we can’t say for sure. However, I would suggest that the ‘Save Jericho’ movement has a real opportunity here. With the Emmy Awards comes a lot of press, and a lot of opportunities to prove CBS wrong. Sure, the Emmys are as much of a sham as the Nielsen ratings, but they’re still a prime opportunity for fans of the series to show CBS that they made a terrible error. If, on July 19th, someone from Jericho makes it onto the Emmy nominations list, it will either show CBS they made a mistake, or perhaps even reaffirm their decision to renew the show.

So, my suggestion is that the ‘Nuts for Jericho’ campaign come together in an attempt to build support for the series and its stars on the internet. There are multiple ways this can be achieved:

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