Thursday, November 01, 2007

One Short Hour In The Emerald City

One Short Hour In The Emerald City

Last month, Legally Blonde landed in its entirety on MTV recently and caught the attention of 1.27 million viewers during its initial broadcast alone. While it didn't experience any significant upward bump at the box office -- yet -- it certainly counts as an ingenious way of reaching out to a potent new (read: young) audience.

But that remarkable cross promotion may be eclipsed tonight as ABC's popular "Ugly Betty" features the über-popular Wicked within its storyline in an episode entitled, "Something Wicked This Way Comes." The hour-long weekly comedy attracts audiences of over 14 million viewers, including a substantial number in the target audience.

According to Access Hollywood:

In Thursday’s episode, Betty Suarez, played by America Ferrera, heads out to the hugely popular musical with her beau Henry, played by Christopher Gorham.

“This is a date, or what is supposed to be a date between Henry and Betty to come and see Wicked,” Gorham explained of the episode. “Of course, things end up going awry and Henry and Betty end up on stage, so it’s amazing.”

Tonight's episode features Eden Espinosa (Elphaba), Megan Hilty (Glinda) and Kristoffer Cusick (Fiyero) from the current Los Angeles sitdown production of Wicked. The LA production opened in February.

While I'm the furthest thing to any of these show's much sought-after demographic, you can bet I'll be tuning in. Nevertheless, my hunch is that ticket sales for each of the Wicked productions will spike after tonight's broadcast among the age groups they're seeking.

This is Steve On Broadway (SOB).

Click here for Wicked Broadway tickets.
Click here for Wicked Chicago tickets.
Click here for Wicked London tickets.
Click here for Wicked Los Angeles tickets.
Click here for Wicked U.S. Tour ticket information.
Related Stories:
One Short Day, In Universal's Emerald City (June 26, 2007)
Wicked To Finally Land In Oz During 2008 (May 16, 2007)
Wicked (The SOB Revisit) - London (April 17, 2007)
Theatre For A New Age (April 8, 2007)
Wicked World (March 19, 2007)
For Good: Wicked Wins LA Critical Praise (March 1, 2007)
Hollywood Becomes Wicked (February 27, 2007)
Were London Critics Mourning West End Wicked? (September 28, 2006)
West End Wicked Opens Tonight (September 27, 2006)
Wicked Witch of the West End Takes Flight Tonight (September 7, 2006)
Jaaku or Neikan? Wicked Set for Japanese Translation (July 24, 2006)
Five Times More Wicked (July 17, 2006)
Wicked's West End Witches Update (May 17, 2006)
Worldwide Wicked Casting News (May 5, 2006)
Encore: Spotlight Week Ending April 30, 2006 (April 30, 2006)

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At 01 November, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe Wicked ticket sales for each of its North American productions are already at 90%+ capacity, so Wicked doesn't really need the free publicity.

Unfortunately, the characters of Betty and Henry are seen texting during a performance of WICKED and there's a lot of talking during the show. I realize the show is a satire but this is all we need - a TV show that shows characters talking during the show....


At 02 November, 2007, Blogger Mark G. said...

I love Wicked and I love Ugly Betty, but last night's episode (especially the second half) felt like one big commercial for Wicked. As an Ugly Betty fan, I felt cheated.

At 02 November, 2007, Blogger Steve On Broadway (SOB) said...

Michael, While Wicked is still enjoying a near sold-out run, I'm sure its producers are looking to build on their advance sales -- and surely between the initial showing of "Ugly Betty" and the reruns to follow, as well as inevitable DVD sales and syndication and D, the tuner will forever be immortalized reminding viewers of it long after ticket sales might normally have waned.

I do wholeheartedly agree with you on the texting between Betty and Henry (see my current post here). I believe they showed bad behavior without consequences (the only behavior that got the duo thrown out was their on-stage performance.

At 02 November, 2007, Blogger Steve On Broadway (SOB) said...

Mark, I guess if I were a regular viewer, I might have felt cheated, too.

As a non-"Ugly Betty" fan, its showcasing of Wicked inspired me to tune in (I normally watch "30 Rock"). I wonder how many others did the same.


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