CBS Foolishly Blows Drew Carey, Craig Ferguson Cover

Even the most inept April Fool’s prankster knows that broadcasting your plans weeks ahead of the big day is a sure-fire way to dilute the Tom-foolery.


So then… Why would CBS package a video teaser and blast out a March 18 press release that takes 95% of the Showcase surprise out of next week’s daytime/late night swap? Maybe they feared that their older-skewing median viewers would teeter into health-risk territory without proper warning that Craig Ferguson’s Tuesday, April 1 hosting of The Price is Right is not a permanent new deal. From the release:

Ferguson will be just the fourth person ever to host the game show for the network (in addition to Drew Carey, Bob Barker and Dennis James). Ferguson’s robot skeleton sidekick, Geoff Peterson, and pantomime horse, Secretariat, will join him as the gorgeous models.

Carey will interview comedy legend Carl Reiner, Pulitzer Prize-winning writer and fellow Clevelander Connie Schultz and rocker Joan Jett, who will also perform “Any Weather” with The Blackhearts. Announcer George Gray and the iconic models of The Price is Right (Rachel Reynolds, Amber Lancaster and Manuela Arbeláez) will join Carey on The Late Late Show.

CBS PR should have skipped the video announcement and sent out a non-Web posted press release under strict April 1 embargo. If at all. We’re still going to greatly enjoy this stunt; just don’t call it an April Fool’s.

@hollywoodspin Richard Horgan is co-editor of Fishbowl.