Happy 15th to Hallmark Channel: When One Network Cares Enough To Send the Very Best
While the liberal media keeps throwing praise at raunchy shows like ABC’s Scandal, the TBS series Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, and Amazon.com’s Transparent, Hallmark Channel has a series of highly-rated family dramas and feel-good movies that the press gives little-to-no attention or respect. Their annual Countdown to Christmas event has become a tradition at the network, while the original series When Calls the Heart is a top performers on Sunday nights. You won’t see producer Michael Landon Jr. or stars Erin Krakow, Daniel Lissing, and Laurie Loughlin at the Emmys anytime soon. Their most recent show, Chesapeake Shores, also became the #1 show among general audiences, and among adults 25-54, and they did it without the gratuitous sex and violence seen in most other television shows.
It is worth noting that the network, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hallmark Cards (no bastion of conservatism, but still makes wonderful products, especially for special occasions), has at all odds been a tremendous success. When the channel launched in 2001 as a replacement for the Odyssey Network – then a joint venture between Hallmark Entertainment (now Sonar Entertainment) and The Jim Henson Company, they simply were not that well known, despite the Hallmark insignia and logo (long a staple on greeting cards) being on the network – and many movies from the famed Hallmark Hall of Fame franchise airing on there, and were beaten by other general entertainment channels like TBS and TNT, both owned by TimeWarner.
But over their 15 years in existence, they have persevered, and now have become the #2 network in total viewers behind ESPN. The reason is two-fold. First, Hallmark Channel is the rare national TV network nowadays that caters to a general family audience rather than just children, and that appeals to many social conservatives and those who long to go back to a time when television was meant for escapism. This is an audience that wants their ideas of programming respected, not sneered at by arrogant Hollywood elitists. You fill in the name of anybody working in the TV industry today.
The second reason they have succeeded is the people who put out the shows that air on there. They’re simply better than the opposition. The programming has higher quality, pretty much a throwback to TV shows of the past.
Let me give you a vivid example of that. As you may know, most of Hollywood despises Christianity being presented in a positive light. Nowadays, it is painted as a generally bigoted, homophobic, and xenophobic mindset in most movies and television shows. But all Christianity really wants is a place where all people are welcome. In When Calls the Heart, there are great examples of Christianity being represented in a positive way. Why would any American hate Christianity? They can disagree with certain aspects of Catholicism for example, and I have on certain occasions, but why the contempt for Christians?
On the other side of the spectrum, liberal Hollywood loves gay marriage and abortion, even though a large number of Americans disagreed with how the Supreme Court handled both issues. If you disagree with Hollywood on both of these issues and others, you’re branded a “bigot” by people like Samantha Bee and Shonda Rhimes. Simply put, they want to shove their mindset down our throats under the guise of entertainment.
Trust me when I tell you that few in the entertainment industry and in the media would give up their existence to give certain audiences what they want. There is a huge audience that is sick and tired of the garbage being passed as entertainment today by mainstream Hollywood and their media sympathizers. Sex might sell, but real love – love of family, faith and country, sells too.
The network gets little respect by the liberal press, but they have a lot of wholesome content that is lacking in most of today’s entertainment. And that’s why Hallmark Channel prospers after 15 years on the air.