NBC Promotes Christian-Themed Show; NY Times Disparages Its Potential Audience

September 17th, 2005 6:24 PM
NBC is doing something that you just don't see on network TV these days - promoting a TV show with a Christian theme. The peacock network is making a full-court promotional effort for the show with churches and Christian radio stations (from Newsmax):

An upcoming TV series featuring Christian pop singer Amy Grant will make its debut next Friday, and NBC is pulling out all the stops to promote it.

In "Three Wishes," Amy Grant will visit a different town every week, where, in a gesture of Christian charity, she will seek to fulfill the wishes of needy families and community groups, according to the New York Times.

The show, which Amy Grant describes as "faith in action," is being heavily promoted by NBC, which, the Times reports, has sent more than 7,000 DVDs of the show's first episode to ministers and other clergy members, along with a recorded message to their congregants from Amy Grant.

NBC also has scheduled Grant, who recently released an album of hymns titled "Rock of Ages," for interviews on Christian radio and taken out advertising in small-town newspapers.

The New York Times, which clearly does not understand the Christian market (you know, those religious nuts who made "The Passion of the Christ" one of the biggest movies of all time), and is not afraid to disparage the show's potential audience:

The Times, widely noted for its dismissive attitude toward anything that smacks of Christianity, was unable to resist commenting that the network's promotion of the series is "evocative of a red-state presidential campaign," which "bears scant resemblance to any NBC has crafted before."

To the Times, "red state" means an area of lowbrow superstition offensive to the elite circles in which the newspaper travels.

"Three Wishes," Times reporter Jacques Steinberg noted, "is aimed, in no small part, at a churchgoing rural and suburban audience" – you know, the sort of intellectually backward types who inhabit red states.

The Times may be in for a surprise when this show takes off with an audience which is desperate for good, heartwarming stories, and not just another moronic sitcom or dramatic series involving a bunch of morally-challenged housewives.