One of the biggest debates in the television industry currently is over the large amount of programming available to consumers.
Eric Berger, general manager for Sony’s digital network Crackle, argues that there couldn’t be too much TV.
“I kind of look at it like books,” Berger recently told Business Insider. “No one ever said there’s too many good books in the world, and it takes a while to digest, and enjoy a good book, just like it does to binge a show, and you’re going to pick and choose, and see the ones that you want to see. You’re not going to suddenly be subjected to lower quality.”
FX Networks President John Landgraf has been waving the red flag when it comes to the growing amount of TV shows for years now in a theory he refers to as “peak TV.”
By FX’s count, there were 454 scripted TV shows in 2016, a new record. Among the detrimental effects of so much programming, Landgraf argues, are viewers’ inability to actually watch the good shows and a drop in quality as more and more content providers enter the ring, especially digital companies like Netflix, Amazon, Crackle, and soon, Apple. According to the FX executive’s theory, the amount of shows will reach a peak and then begin to shed its numbers by late 2017 or in 2018.
It’s easy to see why Berger would be opposed to Landgraf’s theory.
Though it just lost Emmy-nominated Jerry Seinfeld series “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee” to Netflix, Crackle has been ramping up its original series offerings, such as Emmy-nominated stop-motion comedy “SuperMansion,” with Bryan Cranston and Keegan-Michael Key among its voice actors; tech drama “Startup,” starring Martin Freeman and Adam Brody; “The Art of More,” a drama set in the world of art trading, with Dennis Quaid and Kate Bosworth; and the upcoming drama “Snatch,” adapted from the heist movie of the same name and featuring “Harry Potter” star Rupert Grint.
“As a consumer, you’ll watch what you want to watch,” Berger told us. “So I think it’s a great time to be producing, and for us at Crackle, we’re producing things that we feel our audience really enjoys. We understand our audience. The biggest concentration of our users is on game consoles. These are young men. They like comedy, and they like action, and drama, and all of the thrills and crime, and we’re producing for that audience, and it seems to be working.”