The networks pay billions of dollars for the rights to air the Super Bowl, so most look to advertisers to make much of that back — 30-second spots during today’s game are going for as much as $3.5 million. Certainly NBC is not bucking that tradition, but it’s put aside a reasonable chunk of airtime for itself and its struggling lineup (“ratings-challenged,” is how Deadline put it). Among the shows getting a boost: the Broadway musical drama Smash, which premieres Monday; a reality show called Fashion Star; and The Tonight Show With Jay Leno (and Madonna, who appears in the promo). The Voice, whose season two premiere is right after the game, gets a spot from actor-director Pete Berg. And last, but never least, NBC’s Thursday comedy lineup gets its own little plug, complete with a Central Asian (?) village crowded around an ancient television tuned to 30 Rock, Parks and Recreation, and The Office, while two sad saps crank a generator outside and hold up an antenna. [Deadline]
SMASH – Pilot – Pictured: Katharine McPhee as Karen – Photo by: Will Hart/NBC Photo: Will Hart/NBCUniversal, Inc.