Does cable TV’s business-news leader CNBC have what it takes to make it in prime time?
We'll find out on Tuesday night when the network, known for attracting millions of affluent, educated viewers during the day with its minute-by-minute live coverage of Wall Street and the financial sector, ventures into uncharted territory with a new prime-time reality programming block.
Dubbed “CNBC Prime,” the two-hour unscripted block will begin at 9 p.m. with “Treasure Detectives,” in which art and antiques expert Curtis Dowling investigates the authenticity of high-value collectibles such as a mug said to have belonged to John Lennon. (The network describes it as “‘Antiques Roadshow’ meets 'C.S.I.'”) It will be followed at 10 p.m. by “The Car Chasers,” about a pair of Texas men who buy, fix and flip rare automobiles.
Both shows take on subjects that have proved extremely popular elsewhere in the cable-TV landscape but, this being CNBC, they are viewed through the lens of business. “These programs turn on value, turn on money, turn on transaction,” said Mark Hoffman, president of CNBC.