This past weekend was Nickelodeon’s annual Kids’ Choice Awards. Kids have weeks to vote online for their favorites in music, movies and TV. As per usual there were lots of celebrities, lots of burping, and lots of slime. And in a perhaps not so surprising twist, iCarly picked up a little orange blimp for Favorite TV show for the 2nd year in a row, beating out three Disney Channel shows (with headliners like Demi Lovato and Selena Gomez, winner for favorite TV actress).
iCarly is basic cable’s most watched show for kids between ages 2-11. It’s scored Nickelodeon it’s biggest ratings ever in its 30 year history. The iCarly soundtrack is still selling, with over 175,000 copies to date. Maybe that’s why Nick just extended iCarly’s life span for another 26 episodes.
The funny thing is most people have never heard of iCarly. If you asked anyone over the age of 30 on the street what iCarly is, which I did today, they’ll look at you with an expression that reads, “is that a new app for my iphone?”
But somehow everyone knows Miley Cyrus (many parents still think Hannah Montana is all the rage ). Is it because Cyrus’ marketing was more in your face? Or was it because Cyrus is often wrapped in controversy and in gossip tabloids, like many a Disney star (Lindsay Lohan, Hilary Duff, Jonas Brothers)? It’s true, Cosgrove is quiet. The 16 year-old is not dating anyone over the age of 18 (cough, cough, Miley! cough, twice!). She hasn’t taken photos in her underwear. And she doesn’t pole dance (or at least we haven’t seen it on TV if it happens).
Though Miranda Cosgrove may not be as big a name as Miley Cyrus, she’s raking in just as much money. And while Hannah Montana has been given the axe after 97 episodes, iCarly is being extended to a total of 96, with Nick hoping for more, and Cosgrove is making 7 figures.
iCarly gets bigger ratings than The Wizards of Waverly Place, The Suite Life on Deck, Sonny with a Chance, Hannah Montana, and even FOX’s 24. Could it be the people over the age of 11 watching the show, such as 15-18 year olds? Maybe, but teens and young adults watch Disney Channel shows too.
Personally I prefer iCarly to anything Disney pushes out because she’s a little more down to earth than a girl who’s secretly a pop star or wizards living in New York. Sure, Carly lives with her brother Spencer, who hangs out with 16 year olds (their Carly’s friends). And yeah, she has a huge online following for her web show.
But is it so farfetched that a girl has an older brother for a legal guardian? Is it so ridiculous in today’s world to imagine a teen making a web show and gaining followers (like a number of teens and adults do with blogs)?
No it’s not.
Do you watch iCarly? Is it because it’s a little more realistic than other tween shows? Is that why Nickelodeon is actually just as successful as Disney (believe it or not)?
iCarly is awesome. Carly’s friend Sam is awesome. And neither of them have to wear weird blonde wigs to keep my attention for more than fifteen minutes.