Can 'The Bible' save NBC?

The Peacock Network has agreed to broadcast the sequel to the hit miniseries.

By Jonathan Berr Jul 2, 2013 4:30PM
This publicity image released by History shows Diogo Morcaldo as Jesus, center, being baptized by Daniel Percival, as John, in a scene from Though the Lord works in mysterious ways, Comcast Corp. (CMCSA) is betting that he will lead viewers to NBC's prime time schedule.

The Peacock Network Tuesday announced plans to show the sequel to "The Bible", the History Channel's hit miniseries from producer Mark Burnett, the brains behind "The Apprentice" and "The Voice."

NBC signed "A.D.: Beyond the Bible" the day after the premiere of "The Bible" was viewed by 13 million people, said Bob Greenblatt, the chairman of NBC Entertainment, in a press release.

"A.D." begins after the betrayal and death of Jesus Christ. Burnett's wife, Roma Downey, will star in the miniseries, which Greenblatt predicted would be "attention-getting in every way."

"The Bible," the most viewed miniseries ever, also set records for DVD sales. As noted, only two NBC shows generated higher viewership than the miniseries' debut during the recent television season: "Sunday Night Football" and both nights of "The Voice." Part of that success is due to Burnett's creative marketing of "The Bible", which included screenings at megachurches.

Unfortunately for investors, NBC has expected manna from heaven from other hyped shows, such as "Smash," "Go On," "Whitney" and "1600 Penn," that never materialized. Further complicating the picture for NBC is the gaping hole in its schedule left by the endings of "30 Rock" and "The Office."

NBC Entertainment president Jennifer Salke was recently quoted as saying that the network's new management team had two years turn to around its prime-time schedule. That's a big challenge. Earlier this year, NBC slumped to fifth place, even losing out to the Spanish language channel Univision.

No wonder the network is hoping for divine intervention.

--Jonathan Berr does not own shares of the listed stocks. Follow him on Twitter @jdberr.

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Jul 2, 2013 7:25PM
I look forward to the show and will watch it to see how well they do, as for NBC I have a suggestion stop putting out such crappy shows

Jul 2, 2013 8:10PM
Just remember the Bible is the Number one best selling book from back before any of were even alive. The sad part about the Bible movies is that it did not follow the teachings of God words as it were written in the Bible, some yes but not all of the stories were correct. I wish they were told in the way the word is written but any time Hollywood or another man tries to make a movie/T.V. show about God's word, it some how is done in the way the person making the movie thinks it should be not the way God wrote the Bible. I know pastors that preach from the Bible and go from one verse in the Bible skip to another and read from that passage and this one and make something from that to mean what the pastor wants the Church to except as God's wording, yet most of those Pastors will never read where God say's, No one shall add to or take away from my word. And follow threw with what God says will happen if anyone does that. There are many false pastors, and there are those that believe it is ok to sin all week and just wait for Sunday to be forgiven. That is the Preachers in the Church that have thought that way of thinking. To truly believe in God's word, is to live it and believe it to ones best ability. I feel it is better than the rest of the trash on T.V., to have a Bible show on, but I would say read the passages that the move's show the stories from, and know the truth, not mans way of thinking. Hear is a good point to show how Christians have been led astray. If you ask most Christians today, about Adam and eve, and how Adam ate the apple, you will find most Christians believe, it was Eve in the Garden with the Snake, he talked her in to eating the apple and she took it to Adam. That is not true! If you read the Bible, you will note Adam was right there with Eve when the snake spoke to Eve. She picked it and gave some to Adam to eat. Also there is no mention of a apple either, we have no ideal what kind of fruit it was. So I say just be careful what you watch and hear, and if you are a parent, go over with your children and talk about what the Bible says when watching these shows. Besides family time as a Christian family is loosing out to computers and games, to people just turning off the T.V. and talking as a family. Maybe this also will open people to the ideal to open a Bible and read it, So I hope NBC, will do this I just hope that Christians will also decern the WORD of God, not the words of man. Amen God bless..
Jul 2, 2013 9:21PM
The book is better than the show, which was "loosely" based on the Bible.
Jul 2, 2013 9:18PM
Had to shut most of it off... could not watch it!  Was SO inaccurate from a Biblical standpoint... for example, John the Baptist was a HEBREW; not an African with dreadlocks! Many other errors and irregularities were presented in a such a way as to render this miniseries closer to FICTION than truth... BUT WAIT!!   I FORGOT!!   This was NBC!!  "NO BASIC CREDIBILITY"!   - Pastor John
Jul 3, 2013 7:26AM
Start reporting the news, not be a "Cheerleader" for a Socialist President, and people will start watching again. 
Jul 2, 2013 8:00PM
Good movie, I'm glad to see more shows about GOD and what happened in the bible are coming out !..... I don't  watch anything secular anymore...too crude and full of filth
Jul 3, 2013 12:32AM
"Can the Bible save NBC?" Only if NBC takes Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Did I say that right?
Jul 2, 2013 7:46PM
Jul 2, 2013 10:13PM

So now the Godless whores over at NBC are turning to the Bible for salvation?


Pathetic scoundrels; they should just double down on their support of the Queers and marriage corruption.

Jul 2, 2013 9:21PM
About 30 years ago there was a mini series call A.D. which I think went over well.  But that was a different time.  However, done well, this could be worth watching as long as they do not simply portray "virtuous good Christians", "cruel ruthless without virtue Romans" and people of the Hebrew faith who rejected the teachings of Jesus as "evil betrayers".  Flesh out the people and make them real. 
Jul 2, 2013 7:47PM
Most viewed ever? Um, maybe on cable but not network TV. Roots? Winds of War? Lonesome Dove? NBC rep is stretching the truth. 
Jul 3, 2013 7:13AM
Read alot of comments about this. Some from pastors and alot of you good Christians complaining about what color the actors are and how inaccurate their version is compared to yours and this and that. I have one thing to say about this show. IT TOOK GODS word to MILLIONS at one time. It was the most watched and in this day and time that is AWSOME!!!!! Who cares the color of the actor and if he was in a garden instead of a field. THE IMPORTANT THING it taught and got the word of GOD TO MILLIONS and I hope that MORE watch this new one and get to learn more and hear the word of god as well.  I am not even a church going person I go fishing on sundays. But I have a great relationship with MY god and I know he would be proud to see so many hearing his word at one time. Rather it be a black,white,hispanic or other person telling it. In a field or garden or rooftop. But thats just my opinion Im sure YOU EXPERTS out there know more than I.........
Jul 3, 2013 8:51AM

A good start for NBC would be to stop sucking the current administrations "nads" and begin reporting both sides of the issues and start telling the truth.

Oh yeah, pandering to the majority of the American citizens instead of the fringe leftist constantly would be nice too.

Jul 2, 2013 8:45PM
You know what makes a network suck?     NARRATIVE, ACTING, FILM TECHNIQUE ( a lack of)
You know what makes a network rock?      NARRATIVE, ACTING, FILM TECHNIQUE  (really good)

When NBC gets some programming that tells an excellent story, shows some imagination and originality, and makes some daring choices (like CBS has, for instance) then and only then will those people meters and ratings soar. 
Jul 2, 2013 9:24PM
will followers of the quran and torah want equal time? What about the Church of the SubGenius? Who wrote the Book of Love?
Jul 3, 2013 2:51AM
Football, reality tv, religion: in that order.  America is a funny place.

This is an all-time low for NBC this network needs to just close up shop if this is the only thing they can offer on television. I would rather watch ants crawl across a sidewalk than the crap this network puts out for viewers.  Wonder if I can get a cable deal that excludes NBC that would be a package deal I would certainly buy!

Jul 3, 2013 6:01AM
How does an mega progressive/liberal network make the Bible work for them when the network endorses everything the Bible says is a sin? Just asking.
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