Error: Twitter did not respond. Please wait a few minutes and refresh this page.
It’s looking like MTV’s TRL is on the way out. The means the major outlet for music videos on the network that “killed the radio star,” the bastard grandchild of Where the Action Is and Zacherle’s Disco-O-Teen, is being killed off by Reality.
Not Reality TV– the reality that no one’s watching.
Word leaks from the MTV offices only days after the announcement that MTV’s president and CEO Michael J. Wolf (we bet he gets a lot of jokes about that) is out after only 15 months and a double-digit drop in primetime Nielsen viewership for MTV, Spike and Nick. TRL has carried on Mondays through Thursdays with a simple formula: playing the Top 10 videos of the day, as requested by viewers who vote online for their favorite. The countdown starts with #10 and works its way up. There are also live appearances from music stars and the occasional memorable live TV embarrassments (see above).
Since its debut on September 14, 1998, the show has become MTV’s unofficial flagship, a beacon of musical relevance and a roots reminder amid a rising swamp of reality shows. It premiered from the MTV Studios in Times Square as an offshoot and combination of Total Request, a studio-based show with Carson Daly, and MTV Live, a show that was ripped from Canada’s MuchMusic. It quickly gained a cult following, added a studio audience in 1999, and reached its peak in the spring of 2000.
Carson Daly left the show in 2003. Current hosts include Damien Fahey, Vanessa Minnillo, Susie Castillo, La La Vasquez and, on occasion, former Laguna Beach boy Stephen Coletti.
Our Gatecrashing pal, Ben Widdicombe at the NY Daily News, says recent Nielsen numbers show TRL‘s viewership is around 393,000– an all-time-low. Near 600,000 were watching in 2001. The show, a source inside MTV says, will be “cancelled and rebranded.”