Seven advertisers dropped out after the series premiere — but are low ratings or political pressure to blame?
Is the Parents Television Council succeeding in its efforts to shutter NBC's "The Playboy Club"? Or have the show's ratings done the group's job for it?
The conservative media-watchdog group, which has called for a boycott of the series, issued a release Wednesday crowing that seven advertisers have pulled out of the series since its premiere last week.
In the announcement, the PTC also said that it "is calling for the immediate cancellation of 'The Playboy Club' on NBC."
Of course, advertisers could also be moving their ads due to the series' disappointing ratings. The series' second episode Monday dropped off 19 percent versus its premiere, posting a mere 1.3 rating/3 share in the all-important adults 18-49 demographic and 3.9 million total viewers.
NBC did not immediately respond to TheWrap's requests for comment on this story.
The PTC says the exit of seven of the premiere-episode sponsors before the second episode is a sign that it is winning the culture war — okay, skirmish — over the new series.
Also read: Gloria Steinem: Boycott "The Playboy Club"
"What has been clear to everyone outside of NBC must now be clear even to those inside NBC: 'The Playboy Club' is a commercial disaster and must be removed from the airwaves," PTC president Tim Winter said in the announcement. "We call for the network to cancel this degrading and sexualizing program immediately."
The PTC is calling on members to contact remaining sponsors Capital One, Samsung and Chrysler in an effort to sway them to drop their advertising.
The series has been under fire from different factions virtually since the show was announced. Early on, Salt Lake City, Utah NBC affiliate KSL-TV decided not to run the series, though it was subsequently picked up by My Network TV affiliate KMYU. Feminist pioneer and former Playboy bunny Gloria Steinem has also urged a boycott of the series, arguing that the show "is just not telling the truth" about the Playboy Club in the '60s, where the show is set.