Thursday, December 01, 2005

Goodbye, Trio

Image hosted by

(image via idahocable)

Trio, in a sense, never had a chance. Okay, it did, but it wasn't handled right. The budgetary constraints, for example, were too great. The channel, while not without its moments -- as the instance when shady media types were allowed to program the channel for a day; I, Claudius was inspired programming -- eventually, though, it fell into the boring routine of show business documentaries, Egg: The Arts Show (Averted Gaze), and, most unfortunately, "Brilliant, But Cancelled," which seemed more like a way for Trio's programmers to make the most of meager budgetary scraps than, as advertised, an ironic look into overlooked small screen classics. (Exaggerated cough suggesting feigned detachment)

We have blogged massively about Trio TV, which we used to love, going so far as to outright ask Laura Zalaznick to let us program the channel for a day. They declined our picks of the epic "Stoned," starring Scott Baio (This epitomizes the 1970s for me), the British cult classic -- read: cheaply acquired -- "Poldark," Fame the tv series, and The Richard Pryor Show.

Trio, if you don't already know, is dying a broadband death. According to the Los Angeles Daily News:

"NBC Universal is shutting down Trio, but will keep the cheeky pop-culture television network alive as a broadband offering.

"Trio, perhaps best-known for show-business documentaries and its 'Brilliant, but Cancelled' series resurrecting short-lived TV shows, is currently available in only 9 million of the nation's 110 million television homes. It will sign off at the end of the year, NBC said Monday.

"Its fate was effectively sealed last year when it was bought by NBC Universal, which also owns the similar and more widely distributed Bravo. Trio was subsequently dropped by DirecTV, taking away more than half of its distribution, and prospects for going wider were dim.

"But it will relaunch on Jan. 1 as a broadband network under the banner, a prospect that would have been laughable only months ago but now is a serious business prospect. MTV, VH1, Comedy Central and Nickelodeon have all recently started their own online networks."

So, while not laughable outright, it surely cannot be construed as a promotion. And since artsy sites don't make much in the way of ad revenue, here's hoping some young, ambitious person takes hold of the site and does edgy things with it.

Trio will be remembered by its gay longtime companion, Bravo TV.

RIP, Trio.

No comments: