Nightline Primetime Loses ‘Nightline’ Branding, Now Called ‘ABC’s The Lookout’

By Alex Weprin Comment

ABC’s upcoming primetime editions of “Nightline” will no longer feature the “Nightline” name. They will instead be called “ABC’s The Lookout,” a reference to their consumer-centric focus. The programs had originally been titled “Nightline: Two Truths and a Lie.”

The primetime “Nightline” shows were a make-good on the part of ABC after it pushed the late night show from 11:35 PM to 12:35 AM. As we reported at the time, ABC promised the show a full season commitment. For now, the show has a relatively safe slot on the lineup through the Summer, although had it debuted in March as originally planned, it would have had roughly the equivalent of a full season’s worth of episodes. The show’s future beyond Summer is unclear.

“Like any show on the network, our success on the air will determine the future,” an ABC News spokesperson says.

While it will not have the “Nightline” name, it will be produced by the staff of the late-night news program.

“Nightline” has had a rougher time at 12:35 than it did at 11:35, although much of it was expected. It now has fewer than half as many viewers as it did when it was on an hour earlier, although ABC is quick to point out that it often (though not always) does better than the second half of “Jimmy Kimmel Live” did in that timeslot. It also used to regularly topped CBS NBC and CBS in total and demo viewers. Now, such a clear ratings win is a relative rarity.