WKYC Airs ‘Matlock’ Movie Instead of NBC Prime-Time Shows

By Kevin Eck 

Last Thursday night, WKYC, the Gannett owned NBC affiliate for Cleveland, let everyone’s favorite gentleman lawyer from the 1980s live again.

The station pre-empted re-runs of “The Office,” “Law and Order: SVU,” and an original episode of “1600 Penn” with a two-hour “Matlock: The Legacy” starring Andy Griffith.

WKYC president and general manager Brooke Spectorsky told The Hollywood Reporter the move was made for two reasons: He said viewers still like “Matlock” and he felt the need to right what he saw as a wrong committed during the most recent Oscar show.

“The Academy did snub¬†Andy Griffith,” says Spectorsky. “We¬†thought it would be a nice tribute.”

Griffith was not included in the show’s “In Memoriam” video honoring actors who passed during the year.

As a ratings note, The Hollywood Reporter said “Matlock: The Legacy” averaged a 1.12 rating with men 25-54, matching what they said are ratings for the shows WKYC pre-empted.

The Reporter said WKYC also plans to air “Matlock: The Heist” this Thursday.