Oh Grow Up Article

USA Today May 28, 1999

Original show titles getting tough to create 'Again' and 'Again'

TV's name game is getting a bit redundant.

Two of ABC's new fall shows have titles that are oddly similar to series picked up by other networks. While ABC has Once and Again, about two divorced parents dating, CBS plans Now & Again, about a salesman who becomes a secret agent. On title alone, ABC's Oh, Grow Up, centering on three roommates in their 30s, could be mistaken for UPN's The Grown Ups, a comedy vehicle for Jaleel White.

"It can present a marketing challenge," CBS spokesman Chris Ender says. "However, once you've introduced a show to advertisers and media, you do have a certain brand equity, and it is tough to make a change."

Differences in style and content should help prevent confusion, he says. "It's not like it's an ER and Chicago Hope -- two medical dramas in Chicago hospitals."

ABC isn't planning to switch names because of the similarities. "It's just coincidental," ABC spokesman Kevin Brockman says. "If there is any thought of changing a title, it wouldn't be because of these other shows."

UPN is just happy that the overlap applies to only a few shows, "Fortunately for us, ABC has yet to name one of their shows Shasta McNasty," spokesman Paul McGuire says about another new UPN series.

--Josh Chetwynd

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