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Cable Channel TNN to Morph Into 'Spike TV'

April 17, 2003

Goodbye Minnie Pearl, hello young dudes.TNN, the cable television channel once known as country-music home The Nashville Network and later as the more mainstream The National Network, on Tuesday said it will re-christen itself "Spike TV" this summer as it shifts to programming for a younger, male audience.

The name change is set to take effect June 16 and will be backed by a multimillion-dollar advertising campaign. In a statement, network president Albie Hecht said Spike TV would be "unapologetically male."

As part of its move to cater to the men's market, the network also unveiled a new slate of programming with a strong bent toward both the loud and the lewd, though the it will also carry daily news briefs on issues like health and finance.

"Guys like money, and girls like guys that have money. Therefore, guys are interested in the financial markets," the network said in previewing a series of daily market reports from CBSMarketWatch.

Men's Health magazine will contribute brief reports, Spike said, as will Stuff magazine, a "lad magazine" known for its scantily clad cover girls.

Joining the network this June, Spike said, will be an animation block featuring "Stan Lee's Stripperella," starring frequent Playboy model Pamela Anderson, as well as new episodes of the series "Ren & Stimpy."

The network also said it will extend the "Uncut" franchise of full-length, unedited versions of films like "The Terminator" and "The Godfather" and air films in the "James Bond" franchise.

The former TNN, available in 86 million homes nationwide, is a unit of MTV Networks, itself a unit of Viacom Inc.