Et Cetera …

While everyone else was trash talking, credit NBC for being the most self-depreciating network at last week’s upfronts. After falling from first to fourth in the ratings in a single season, that’s probably a sound strategy. At the network’s upfront show, Saturday Night Live’s Tina Fey and Amy Poehler kicked things off by telling a packed house of ad buyers at Radio City Music Hall that high-definition TV will transform the industry. It adds such clarity, said Fey, “that you can see Matt LeBlanc’s panic.” LeBlanc, of course is the star of NBC’s struggling Friends spin-off Joey, which gets a second chance next season. Poehler urged the ad executives in the hall to remain faithful to NBC, because, “out of 100 TV channels, we’re No. 4, and that’s pretty good.” … Andrew Robertson hosted a surprise party at BBDO last week for Allen Rosenshine celebrating his 40th anniversary at the shop. Among the guests: John Wren, Bruce Crawford, Phil Dusenberry, Tom Watson and, of course, Rosenshine’s wife Missy. … Ed Meyer was initially aghast at a trusted friend’s suggestion to go see the new stage musical of Mary Poppins while in London recently. The Grey Global Group CEO says his tastes run more along the lines of Edward Albee and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf. But Meyer, 78, took in the show anyway and was pleasantly surprised. He sat next to a couple and their three kids during the show and proclaimed himself as delighted as they were. “It was a beautifully choreographed, glorious production to watch,” he says. “It’s going to clean up. It’s a totally engaging show. To think after going to the theater for 50 years that I could be bowled over by something geared to children is astonishing. But this is not my second childhood.”