1 April 2013 6:32 AM, PDT | Huffington Post | See recent Huffington Post news »

New York — Jason Mittell had other things to do last month when ABC aired a two-hour debut of the drama "Red Widow," so he set his digital video recorder to capture it.

Then the Middlebury College professor and Just TV blogger saw the show's disappointing ratings the next day. He deleted the DVR file. If the show already appears to be on thin ice, why bother watching?

Skittish viewers who guard their time are making the already difficult task of establishing new dramas on broadcast television even harder. If the show becomes a hit, technology offers many ways to catch up later. It's just one more advantage for cable networks at a time when they already seem to have the upper hand with dramas.

"Zero Hour," the series that Zack Estrin helped produce for ABC, debuted on Valentine's Day. Starring Anthony Edwards, "Zero Hour" demanded a viewer's attention as it »

- AP

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