‘Ugly Betty’ Being Shelved – Say wha?

I know, shocking news really. Blogs are debating the merits of the show and whether this is a wise decision on ABC’s part. Apparently, the show will end the season’s run in late March, replaced by Samantha Who? and a new program to be tested in Betty’s spot.

I have been fascinated by the blogs and postings on this subject. Even more surprised by my own posting on one of the blogs that shared pure frustration over network programming, and how the schedule is put together these days.

I remember a time when a season ran from January through the end of the school year, keeping pace with our lives as much as we kept pace with the lives of the characters of favorite shows.

Yet, I see now the appeal of on-demand television programming. In moments when I have not had cable, and been forced exclusively back to the networks for my “free” entertainment, I feel rising frustration with old reruns, broken storylines cut with rescheduling and the same old characters time again. I get a sense that the studios pretty much believe because their executives are on vacation that everyone else is away from their sets. Network television programming during the hiatus season becomes last resort entertainment, not because no audience exists, but, in my opinion, because audiences are not cultivated.

When one is homebound for whatever reason, sometimes, it can feel quite insulting to find that everyone in television land is out on vacation, and you’re still stuck at home. A perfect example are Sundays – when sports programming dominates all three networks – like someone sat down and decided to make Sunday national mens’ day to sit in front of the television – what about non-sports people?

I hope that Ugly Betty continues on, I am a fan. I wish Ugly Betty had more internal network support, instead of breaking up the storyline, cultivate the program.

I am a fan of Betty La Fea, the first version I saw, when I was living in Mexico, and years later, back in the U.S. An interesting twist in the storyline of the version I saw was the character transformation of Betty’s boss, who finds himself, over time, falling for Betty. The prince and la Fea join together on common ground as individuals, fallible and all, love going beyond the outer to inner beauty.

I wonder if Ugly Betty would ever develop in that way as a show – that Daniel might fall for the quirky and down-to-earth Betty instead of the models and blond girls. Probably Not. More realistic? Probably.

I really hope that ABC keeps Ugly Betty, but more importantly, I hope ABC programs with its audiences in mind. How does a recently top-rated program lose its steam in the dramatic fashion that bloggers point to as reason Ugly Betty just has to go? How many more cop detective stories do I have to watch? How about a bit of diversity in plot line for a change?

Ugly Betty

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