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The Parents Television Council is “pleased” and “grateful” that NBC has canceled The Playboy Club.
The TV watchdog had lobbied against the program since NBC ordered it to series in May. It called on its members and others to contact local NBC affiliates, and asked advertisers whether the Playboy brand aligns with their corporate image.
NBC dropped the show Tuesday after three underwhelmingly-rated outings. The drama premiered Sept. 20 to 5 million viewers and a 1.6 rating in the advertiser-coveted adults 18-49 demographic. The second episode of the series from showrunner Chad Hodge and 20th Century Fox Television, tumbled 19 percent, luring only 3.8 million viewers and a 1.3 in the demo. Its most recent episode dropped even more, attracting 3.2 million viewers and a 1.2.
PTC president Tim Winter said Tuesday, “Bringing The Playboy Club to broadcast television was a poor programming decision from the start. We’re pleased that NBC will no longer be airing a program so inherently linked to a pornographic brand that denigrates and sexualizes women.”
The PTC said its campaign against the program was in part, to differentiate what was suitable for broadcast ad cable programming, “Since much of the new NBC leadership comes from the cable industry, we are hopeful those making programming decisions will consider more carefully the difference between the publicly-owned broadcast airwaves and a subscription service like cable. The network’s decision to air this series was a violation of the public trust that comes with the privilege of holding a broadcast license.
“We are grateful to every member of the public who responded to our call to take action against this attempt to mainstream a brand that is synonymous with the pornography industry. We hope other broadcasters heed the important lessons of this programming debacle,” Winter concluded.
Seven companies did not buy ads after the show’s first airing: Kraft, Sprint, Lenovo, UPS Store, Subway, P.F. Chang’s China Bistro and Campbell’s Soup.
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