Five’s plans for a new channel are in even bigger trouble

Everyone’s fifth-favourite channel, Five, unveiled its multi-channel digital strategy a little while ago. One of the main elements of the strategy was to have a channel called Five US dedicated to US imports. It wasn’t long before Hallmark threw a spanner in the works by refusing Five US access to some of the most popular imports, such as House and Law and Order.

Well, it looks like Hallmark – in conjunction with the Beeb and ITV, which is busily trying to expand its US import roster – has done it again. It’s just acquired four new US shows:

  1. Smith, starring Ray Liotta and Jonny-Lee Miller as genius tacticians who plan and execute multi-million dollar robberies (hasn’t started yet in the US)
  2. Jericho, a drama about the chaos that ensues in a small town in the wake of a nuclear disaster (hasn’t aired yet)
  3. Psych, starring James Roday as a fake psychic (starts on the USA Network next week) and
  4. Saved, about a paramedic who’s a compulsive gambler (Airs on TNT. I’ve already reviewed this. Twice).

With ITV already having picked up the forthcoming Six Degrees (by Lost and Alias‘ creator JJ Abrams), Raines and The Black Donnellys, I’m guessing that Five US isn’t going to be the best network for US programming we’ll ever see.