Concerned that their current programming of investigative dramas isn’t reaching the Franklins and Bashes of tomorrow, Time Warner executives have set out to give TNT a makeover, aimed at attracting a younger, edgier, “noisier” audience to the cable network. To that end, it’s begun adding all-new, slightly different kinds of investigative dramas: Murder In The First, from NYPD Blue’s Steven Bochco, where Taye Diggs investigates a crime that’s traced from its commitment through its trial; Public Morals, where Ed Burns investigates corruption the 1960s; and Proof, where Jennifer Beals and Matthew Modine investigate the afterlife. But as a means of luring young people, even these slightly reworked versions of procedural tropes featuring the biggest stars of the ’80s and ’90s pale in comparison to TNT’s new, extremely noisy tagline: “TNT Drama. Boom.”
As you can tell by the way you just unconsciously ducked, your heart pounding in your throat, “TNT Drama. Boom” is meant to convey that—as the network’s head of programming Michael Wright puts it—“If you’re in the mood for drama that thrills, turn to TNT.” And if you’re not, well, stay the fuck out the Boom.
After all, Wright says the word “Boom,” by its very nature, “makes a promise to our audience about the kind of emotional, intense, exciting, funny, shocking, sexy and thrilling drama they should expect from TNT.” And kids, Boom wouldn’t lie to you. Boom lives for the moment. Note that Boom doesn’t even have an exclamation point after it. That’s because, much like you young people, Boom is just doing try to do Boom.
Setting the countdown to Boom, “TNT Drama. Boom” is expected to begin booming out next week, replacing TNT’s older, equally matter-of-fact tagline, “TNT. We Know Drama.” (Does TNT still know drama? Let me answer that with a Boom.) It’s also believed that, eventually, some connection could be made to the fact that the network shares its name with an explosive chemical compound, and maybe there’s something to be done with that. Metaphorical allusions. Boom.