NBC Universal is continuing to repurpose its cable and network content in order to beef up its post-strike schedule. Episodes of the USA Network shows Monk and Psych will be rebroadcast on NBC starting in March of next year. Six new episodes the popular series will premiere on USA starting Jan. 11, and then will be repeated over on NBC Sunday nights starting March 2.
NBC also may air older episodes from previous seasons of the shows. Because of the stand-alone nature of both shows, they can easily be broadcast out of order, as opposed to starting at the beginning of the season. This marks the second time Monk has gotten a network run: repeats of the series previously aired on ABC starting back in 2002.
Although the decision certainly seems like a response to the writers strike, NBC Entertainment Co-Chair Ben Silverman claims otherwise. “A lot of this we would be doing anyway,” he said. “The strike is pointing a flashlight on it.”
There was no mention yet of repurposing USA’s new hit Burn Notice, which averaged higher ratings last summer in the 18 to 49 demo than either Monk or Psych. Burn Notice is produced by Fox Television Studios (whereas Monk and Psych are produced in-house at Universal Media Studios) so a separate deal would have to be negotiated to bring the show to NBC.
It’s possible all this repurposing will open the door for other cable series to make the jump. Could Sci Fi’s Battlestar Galactica, which returns for its fourth season in March (and is also produced by Universal Media Studios), enjoy rebroadcast on NBC, finally bringing the high-quality show to the attention of a wider audience? Perhaps, if the strike lingers on and things get truly desperate, although it’s likely the heavily serialized nature of the series will work against it.