Sports preempting regular programing, and holy fire.

Let me say, first of all, I don’t have anything against organized sports per se (That’s not entirely accurate, but it will help my argument if I say that :wink: ), I’m not a sports fan, and I never have been. But if that’s what someone finds entertaining, who am I to judge? Knock yourself out.

The problem is, some sports, such as Baseball and Football, have the troubling habit of preempting regular TV programming whenever it suits them. Sometimes with no warning at all.

And that, folks, is what bothers me. Well, not so much “bothers” me, as “Fills me with obsessive psychopathic hatred and loathing.” Yes, I REALLY hate it when the TV schedule gets interrupted, ESPECIALLY on Saturday mornings, unless it’s something REALLY important. To give you an idea of what I consider “Really Important,” I still remember angrily wishing the Tienamen Square protesters could have waited until SUNDAY morning, when nothing good was on. I know it’s a silly, very petty, peeve, but it’s MY peeve, and I’m sticking to it!

I’ve had a small, but memorable series of clashes with sports preemptions. First, when I was 11, the preempted the 2nd part of a two-part “Sonic the Hedgehog” episode one Saturday morning. One I had waited quite a long time to see.

Recently, as many others have experienced along with me, Fox has preempted “Futurama” so many times, they have almost a full season of episodes (Including TWO Christmas episodes, as I recall) in backlog, that they haven’t even aired.

Finally, this morning, Fox decided to preempt the “Digimon” season finale. The one-hour season finale. And with the way they reworked the storyline for the current season, this would essentially be a series finale.

Now, pre-empting with a baseball game is bad enough. Printing conflicting TV listings is bad enough. Airing commercials for the much-heralded season finale the week before and then changing your mind is bad enough.

But this morning, they were still airing the commercials for the season finale ALONG WITH the commercials for the baseball game. Sometimes back to back, and each one claiming the exact same time slot for the show it was advertising. But even that wasn’t the worst part…

You see, the final commercial for the Digimon finale aired RIGHT BEFORE the baseball game started. Exactly before. No other commercials were between them. Not even a second of dead air. Nothing.

And the Digimon commercial was one of the “Bumper” commercials, with a different voice track of the announcer, having him say “Stay tuned for an all-new Digimon…starting right now!”

…Then they cut straight to (Though I could have sworn I saw a little video distortion, as If someone had switched from on video source to another, just a little faster than normal) the title screen of the baseball pre-show commentary. With it’s apparent logo, one of those bobby-head baseball player figurines. His head nodding a little. With that stupid grin. That stupid, mindless, LEERING grin. Mocking me.

Hatred. Anguish. Boundless rage. Fury. All fall short of what I feel towards that bobby-head mascot. To say nothing of major-league baseball. Damn them. Damn them both the to dankest level of the darkest HELL! And may their charred bones be used to built monuments to even the briefest moments of airtime tainted by their preempting! A pox upon their houses! A POOOOOX!

There. I’ve got that off my chest. For now.
Ranchoth :mad:

Digimon strikes me as a strange show to get excited about.

If it makes you feel any better, regular programming has pre-empted sports. The Heidi Game comes to mind.


Ummmmm, I don’t know that “pre-empted” is the right term to use. In many cases, the sports game in question has simply run over its time slot. This can happen with baseball where there is not prescribed “time” for the game, it goes as long as it goes.

Nowadays it seems to me that if a game does run over, they still run all of the regular programs, they are all just backed up a bit.

C’mon, Sonice the Hedgehog ? Digimon ?

There are things that are worth getting pissed off about, but sadly cartoons aren’t one of them.

plus I’m sure the shows will be out on video/DVD anytime.

So, just remember to keep breathing. In through the nose, out through the mouth. Very important to breath.

Oh yeah, it’s not like anyone has gone to war over a fucking cartoon. If I recall correctly Nicaragua & Honduras went to war over a fucking soccor game, which just goes to show how truly important sports are in the world we live in.

Or how truly idiotic sports fans are…

good afternoon friends

one evening, while the rest of the country was enjoying sir lawrence olivier as shylock in the hallmark presentation of the merchant of venice, our local station decided we would be more illuminated by the iowa class d girls basketball semi-finals. phillistines!

Futurama isn’t preempted by sports events. Whoever handles the scheduling at FOX went out of their way to make sure that Futurama was on when there wasn’t a sporting event. And actually from what I recall it was the post game show that was on a 7/6 central not the game itself.


WSL: Well, in Japan there is a set time for the maximum length of a baseball game.

Thank God!

hello, program director of a FOX affiliate here.

1- Digimon. The usual “in pattern” schedule for the 4 hour FOX KIDS block on Saturday morning is 8am-12pm ET, 7am-11am PT. This is when FOX feeds it on the network, but local stations can schedule it wherever they want to fit in other programming on saturdays. (at my station, we run it “in pattern” off the network unless there is sports being scheduled, in which case we slide the start time back…like on June 22 when we have to start FOX KIDS at 430am!).

I am curious as to what city you are in, because the weekly FOX baseball games were scheduled at 1pm ET and 4pm ET and I don’t know which game was scheduled. It is also possible that the local affiliate just screwed up - or had a different baseball game to air.

2-Futurama. During NFL season, doubleheader Sundays are scheduled to last until 730pm ET. As a result, on these days primetime starts with the 730pm show (King of the hill etc.) - on the west coast, where football ends at 430pm PT, the network provides a “west coast only” version of Futurama (a rerun) with no commercials - the station can fill it with local spots). On Singleheader days, primetime starts at 7pm ET/PT, EXCEPT for those stations who have late games, in which case they will join prime in progress, EXCEPT for those stations defined as “POP-UP MARKETS” which as those stations in areas with a local NFL franchise within 75 miles of a sold out away game, in which case they rejoin football coverage at 7pm ET.

Suffice it to say, the “Heidi” game completely rewrote the rules by which networks handle runover and emergency contingencies. Sometimes programs are “jip’d” (joined in progress). Sometimes programs “slide” in their entirety. And sometimes programs “collapse” (NBC does this a lot, especially Sunday nights - if a game runs long, say until 724pm, they will do “Dateline NBC” from 724pm-8pm instead of the regularly scheduled 7pm-8pm).
My advice? Check your local listings (stations have to have their program schedules to TV guide, the cable companies etc. etc. 6 weeks before air) - or better yet call the station during office hours and verify with the program director when a certain show will air.

Lovable Rogue


I feel for you. Truly.

IMO, if a game runs long, it should be cut and the regularly scheduled program shown. They can show game highlights and a final score later. Baseball/football etc is NOT more important than the stuff the rest of us want to watch.

I don’t think you realize what a cash cow sports programs are for the networks. In that respect they are much more important then most other shows.


Opal, please tell me you are being sarcastic.

Marc, you do realize that the NFL contract is actually a money-loser for FOX, right? The last NFL contract cost FOX and the other networks $17.6 billion. FOX Entertainment’s Q2 2002 net income was $108 million. And NFL ratings are in pretty regular decline, partly because there are simply so many other sports choices on television.

Networks buy the major league sports contracts (many of them) at a loss these days because of the prestige of carrying the programming. Cash cow? Anything but.

Whoops, forgot to include a cite:

Opal, major league sports broadcast contracts with the nets may often include a stipulation that they cannot cut away from a game, especially one in its final moments, unless it is for emergency programming. The NFL isn’t going to tell FOX that they can dump out of a game in progress to run “Futurama.” And if the net isn’t feeding the program yet, the affiliates can’t run it anyway.

This used to be the rule beforethe Heidi game.

Lovable Rogue

Not a sports fan? OK. Different strokes and all. Can’t understand how a live, once-in-a-lifetime sporting event is entertaining to more viewers than rehashed pseudo-anime? Hmm, tis passing strange. Are you a pod person using TV to train yourself to live among the humans? Don’t worry, Pinocchio. Someday you’ll be a real boy.

I agree with Opal here 100%. Of course, I realize that this is never, ever, not in a thousand years ever going to actually happen, as most people wouldn’t stand for not being able to cheer their favorite celebrity felon while he plays catch, an earth-shattering endeavor for which he is paid enough money to buy himself a private subcontinent.

Not that I’m bitter about it or anything.

Well, ignoring the subtle assholery in this post suggesting that people who don’t like sports aren’t “real” people, I honestly don’t understand why someone would prefer watching a sporting event over rehashed pseudo-anime. Or, for that matter, why someone would watch sports over, say, the weather channel, or an infomercial, or a test pattern. My disconnect with sports fandom is so total I can only vaguely guess at the entertainment value of spectator sports. Does that make me a pod person, too?

Well, I think the point he’s making (or the point I would like to think he’s making, heh), is that sports shows are live and are hardly ever played again in their entirety (unless you have ESPN Classic). Compare this to a show or a movie broadcasted on television; the show almost certainly will be (or at least can be) rerun again with no major loss, and movies can not only be rebroadcast, but most people have vcr’s or dvd players and can rent most of the movies that are broadcast on the networks that broadcast sports. Contrast this with sports events where everything is happening RIGHT THEN, are often not replayed, and the endings of which can catch you completely by surprise, and I can see the difference between the two.

I don’t even know if what I just said made complete sense.

Me personally, I would love for football, basketball, and baseball to be cut off at the end of the hour. But since I’d go into a flying rage if they did that to any hockey game, I won’t say they should. :wink:

C’mon, man. Don’t let your hatred of sports cloud your mind. I said the opposite in the first two sentences. And calling me subtle is just plain harsh.

Erm, yes? You’ll have to show me that you have a navel to convince me otherwise.

Anyway, I only wanted to mock the OP, getting up early on Saturday, padding to the kitchen in feety-pajamas, pouring a big bowl of Super Sugar Bombs, and parking in front of the chattering Cyclops. And following the adventures of a yellow mouse who shoots lightning out of his ass. For four hours. Sorry you got stung.

Following the on-field heroics of millionaire genetic freaks in tight uniforms for four hours while gluttonously ingesting beer and snacks, now that, that’s a Saturday well spent!