TV executives must have been happy to put a fork in the 2012-13 season. Ratings dropped across the board for broadcast networks due to fading reality franchises and the failure to launch any major new scripted hits. Cable also slumped, with audience levels flat compared with the previous season. And with the number of viewers who time-shift growing, the path to success is more treacherous than ever. Here are the shows that navigated the bumps — and the ones that became ratings road kill.
Let us now praise...
There's a reason why they call Mike Darnell the "dark prince" of reality TV. Darnell, who on Friday announced his exit as the president of alternative entertainment at Fox, is still best known for his in-your-face fare like Joe Millionaire, Alien Autopsy: Fact or Fiction, The Swan, When Animals Attack and Man vs. Beast.
Some of those shows, like Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire and Temptation Island, led to juicy TV scandals. (It's why the New York Times once billed him as TV's "point man for perversity.") But Darnell also oversaw the biggest TV phenomenon of the past decade: American Idol, a show that was unbeatable in its prime...
Fox's longtime head of alternative programming Mike Darnell, who helped launch American Idol and Joe Millionaire, is leaving his post after 18 years, he announced Friday.
Sharon Osbourne is on the top of the world, thanks to her husband's sobriety and a new job on the UK's The X Factor.
The X Factor's judging panel is getting a shot of girl power. Fox confirms former Destiny's Child member Kelly Rowland and Latin superstar Paulina Rubio will join returning mentors Simon Cowell and Demi Lovato for the third season of the reality competition.