Because in Hollywood, no idea is ever too good not to try over and over and over again until it’s made the transformation from unique to ubiqutious, rejected pilots are now popping up all over YouTube and other sites like break.com.
As if the set of circumstances that made NBC’s picking up of Nobody’s Watching were, you know, easily duplicated.
It might happen again once or twice — the latest rejected pilot to get a large amount of downloads is called The Adventures of Big Handsome Guy and His Little Friend, which apparently got a quarter of a million downloads from break.com prior to the cease-and-desist — and there will always be perennials like Heat Vision & Jack (which judging from the split reception it got at our household, might not have been a big hit anyways), but the vast majority of these pilots won’t ever get the heat the surrounded Nobody’s Watching.
Why? One reason, of course, is that not every single rejected pilot isn’t comedy gold waiting to be mined, if only they could see the color. Most of them will be like the most of the picked-up pilots: slight re-imaginings of whatever is currently successful. The usual wank. You can tell by the reactions of the networks: take ’em down!!
Which is the wrong reaction, of course: the networks should have not public reaction to all of this, but pay attention to any show that gets a huge buzz, using the YouTube audience as a massive focus group. But they still don’t have the vision to do that, and instead will cite the usual intellectual property and copyright concerns. But that’s only part of it; the networks don’t want to be continually and publicly second-guessed like that.
That’s the other reason: the fact is that Nobody’s Watching was rejected by a defunct network, so there wasn’t really anybody who really bothered to care that it was out there, mocking their rejection.
Eventually, people will figure out that Nobody’s Watching was a special set of circumstances and will upload their pilots not to get a second-chance deal, but to frack with the networks.