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Will ABC Resuscitate "Scrubs"? Not if NBC Has Its Way

Poor, poor Scrubs.

The struggling NBC sitcom is at the heart of a battle between the Peacock and ABC Television Studios, which produces the series. ABC is said to be in talks to pick up 18 episodes of the comedy for the 2008-09 season. One little problem: NBC isn't letting go.

Their relationship over the years involving Scrubs has always been fraught with complication; it didn't help that many believed NBC treated Scrubs like its bastard step-child, shifting the series through no less than 17 timeslot changes over the last seven years.

This was widely believed to be Scrubs' final season. However, following the production shut-down brought on by the WGA strike, the episodic order for Scrubs this season was cut back to 12 episodes (down from 18) and Scrubs still has five episodes in the can.

NBC hasn't yet made a decision about whether to order additional as-yet-unproduced episodes and air them, order a final original episode (to serve as the series finale), or shoot the remaining episodes and dump all or some of them onto DVD, a rather unceremonious ending to a comedy that has earned several kudos in its day.

NBC claims that they have the first right of refusal in the matter and have the option to (A) renew the series or (B) cancel it before ABC Television Studios can shop the series elsewhere. If ABC is actually in talks with the studio regarding Scrubs, then they are in breach of contract.

"NBC has a license agreement with ABC Studios, which includes a right of first negotiation and first refusal to extend the series term beyond this season," NBC Entertainment C0-Chairman Marc Graboff told Variety. "We're living under the terms of this license agreement, and we expect ABC Studios to do the same."

Which places the series in limbo at the moment: NBC seems unwilling to commit to an additional season (or, indeed, additional on-air episodes) and ABC would rather like the series as it is in desperate need of half-hour comedies (as evidenced by its willingness to explore another season of According to Jim).

In the meantime, Scrubs returns to NBC's lineup on April 10th.

What's On Tonight

8 pm: Price is Right (CBS); Amnesia (NBC); Friday Night SmackDown (CW; 8-10 pm); Grey's Anatomy (ABC); Bones
(FOX)

9 pm: Ghost Whisperer (CBS); Dateline (NBC; 9-11 pm); 20/20 (ABC);
House (FOX)

10 pm: NUMB3RS (CBS);
Dateline (NBC); 20/20 (ABC)

What I'll Be Watching

8-11 pm: BBC America.

If you happen to be staying in after a long work week, why not do it in true Anglophile style with back-to-back episodes of Coupling and new sketch comedy series That Mitchell and Webb Look, from the stars of Peep Show?

Comments

As much as I like the show, I think it might be time to put Scrubs out of its misery.
Anonymous said…
shut your mouth whore! i'll put you out of your misery.

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