Why does E.R. start at 9:59?

Apologies if this has been asked already. After several weeks of my TiVo failing to record E.R., I checked the schedule more closely. E.R. is scheduled to start at 9:59, which gives it a one minute overlap with CSI, therefore my TiVo doesn’t record it.

Is this possibly why E.R. starts at such a strange time - as an anti-TiVo measure?

This bugs me, too. There must be a few other shows that do it as well. I think it’s because they want to spend time on recaps.

If vivalostwages is correct and the first minute is recaps then (if you don’t care about the recaps) you could use the “Record by Time and Channel” function to tell it to record that channel from 10:00 to 11:00 on the proper night. The drawback with this is that if they moved it to a completely different time or night it wouldn’t be recorded unless you noticed the change and rescheduled it. But even with that drawback you’d still be better off than the current situation where it’s never recorded.

It could be to squeeze in 60 more seconds of commercial time.

It’s annoying. I can’t watch the previews on CSI. And even switching chanels the second CSI ends, I sometimes miss a bit of E.R.

I never watch previews (they invariably give too much away) and would love to be able to set my TiVo to stop recording one minute early. It allows you to schedule programs to record an extra amount, which is good for sporting events that tend to overrun, but not to stop the recording short.

I could do as davidm suggests and record by time and channel. If I leave my regular season pass, that will pick up ER if it moves. Recording by time and channel will record re-runs, though, which I normally set it not to do. Still, I guess I can live with that.

amarone - If you go to your Season Pass Manager and to the options for the individual programs, there’s something that says you’ve set things to start “on time” and to end “on time.” You can change it to end early, if I recall my TiVo functions correctly.

You can set it to start early or end late but, at least on my model (series 1), you can’t start late or end early. It’s possible that the later models allow that, I wouldn’t know.

That is correct. I’ve just had my TiVo repaired an upgraded, so I suspect I have the latest software. Plus it downloads new versions anyway.

I just had another thought. I’ve never used the manual record feature and I’m not sure how it interacts with the season pass manager but this might work. (I won’t guarantee it!) Keep your ER season pass but also set up a repeating manual recording for 10:00 to 11:00 for the proper night and channel. Put this manual recording immediately above ER in the Season Pass Manager. Then, when ER is on at it’s regular time, the manual recording will take precedence and record from 10:00 to 11:00. If one week ER moves, the Season Pass will record it at the newly scheduled time (provided there are no other conflicts of course). You will also, of course, get 1 hour of whatever was in ER’s usual slot but you can just delete that (or watch it if it’s something interesting).

Check out Saturday Night Live, it ends at 1:01 AM (EST). That’s right, it’s 91 minutes long.

I suspect an anti-TiVo plot.

Those bastards.

They answer this question in next week’s TVguide, actually. Quoth the experts:

Q. Is it just me or does NBC start ER early on some Thursdays? My VCR is on a timer and it misses the first two minutes when it switches from CSI to ER.

A. Apparently so. Our source at NBC tells us that it’s a programing stragegy that they hope makes viewers flow from one NBC show to the next. They call it “seamless viewing.” We just call it annoying.


It must work too, or they wouldn’t have been doing it for the past couple of seasons. I think I’d be more annoyed by it if I watched anything from 9 to 10 on Thursdays.

moriah called it as I know it. A friend of mine works in the industry, and he told me the major networks are varying the start times of their shows to screw up TiVo.

Because, when people TiVo shows they don’t watch the commercials, which are how the networks get paid.

ER was already starting a couple minutes early five years ago, so Tivo isn’t the only reason. Note that Friends often ends late as well. The common factor is that these shows command a high price for commercials, much greater than do the shows between them. So NBC extends the time to insert more higher-priced commercials.

Time to write TiVo and request “end earlier” and “start later” features.

The war escalates.