Daily News Article on Campaign and Tabasco Sauce!

Series Fans Speak Out
They’re making things hot
for WB in ‘Roswell’ save bid

Daily News Staff Writer


There’s no shortage of Tabasco sauce around the offices of the Warner Bros. network these days. As part of a fan-fueled write-in campaign to get the WB to renew the cult series “Roswell,” viewers have been sending in Tabasco sauce. Get it? “Roswell” is hot.

There are hundreds of bottles of the stuff clogging the WB offices.

The outcry of support for “Roswell” is an example of what happens when a series with a small but loyal following finds itself on the verge of cancellation. Fans of the series have flooded network Web sites with messages and written nearly 100 letters to the Daily News in response to stories mentioning the show wasn’t faring well in the Nielsen ratings.

“Roswell” isn’t the only show that has a vocal fan base behind it. There’s also a movement to keep NBC’s “Freaks and Geeks” alive. Whether the campaigns work is another question altogether.

“Yeah, it matters when the public speaks,” said Karey Burke, NBC’s executive vice president of comedy programs. She said a strong core audience is not to be overlooked.

But can it save a series?

“On its own? No,” Burke said. “The network has to believe that the show can grow into a longterm asset.”

“In our case it does,” said Jordan Levin, executive vice president of programming for the WB, referring to fan campaigns. The network backed “Seventh Heaven” when it was the WB’s lowest-rated series and has also supported “Jack and Jill” this season because of fan loyalty.

“When you get a passionate response on a show like ‘Roswell,’ it’s very encouraging for us,” Levin said.

“I think if the perception is created, not only within the network, but within popular culture, that there is a fan base for a show that is extremely loyal and extremely passionate, I think that can make a signficant difference,” Levin said.

“This is the time of the year that shows are on the bubble and momentum is important,” he said. Roswell moves from Wednesdays at 9 p.m. to Mondays at 9 on April 10.

Although write-in campaigns generally fail to save series, there have been some notable exceptions.