Leno Against Crime
Not only did Jay Leno acknowledge that he'll be up against killer shows when he debuts with his nightly variety hour in the fall, but he predicted that people, weary of all the murders in the 10 00 p.m. hour will gravitate towards his show to escape all the crime dramas on the other networks. In a lengthy video promo prepared for a screening at NBC's upfront presentations in New York Monday (and now posted online), Leno assures his viewers that while his competitors are up to committing more mayhem, he'll be up to the same schtick he has been crafting on the Tonight show for 17 years. After showing the Leno video, NBC sales chief Mike Pilot went on to assure advertisers that Leno is "advertiser friendly" and that "he's not afraid to experiment with live commercials." The network also announced that returning shows next season will include Heroes, Law & Order SVU, Parks & Recreation, Southland, 30 Rock, The Office, The Biggest Loser, Friday Night Lights and a series of half-hour "Weekend Updates" from Saturday Night Live . Among new shows, NBC unveiled Parenthood, based on the 1989 Ron Howard movie, Jerry Seinfeld's The Marriage Ref, hospital dramas Mercy and Trauma, and Community , starring Joel McHale and Chevy Chase. Conspicuous by their omission from the line-up were Medium, Chuck, My Name Is Earl, and Law And Order SVU . Any one of those shows could receive a reprieve, network executives said Monday, when the complete lineup is announced on May 19. The network indicated that it would like to have input from advertisers about shows that are "on the bubble."