PASADENA, Calif. -- The president of CBS Entertainment tossed around a lot of theories about the ratings decline for "CSI" last season.
Nina Tassler, the president, noted some obvious things. The death of Warrick Brown in the season opener led to the departure of actor Gary Dourdan. There also was the midseason departure of William Petersen, the series lead as Gil Grissom. Jorja Fox, who played investigator Sara Sidle, Grissom's love interest, also left the program. The back problems that George Eads (Nick Stokes) had at the end of the season hurt, too.
Tassler wouldn't put much blame on Laurence Fishburne, who came aboard as Dr. Raymond Langston after Petersen left and was "gradually" introduced and appeared to be "an outsider." But she suggested Langston's wardrobe might have been a problem and added things should be better next season when Langston becomes "more settled in his role."
"He's in more of leadership capacity," explained Tassler. "He's well versed or more well versed in the language of 'CSI.' He's had a little bit of a wardobe makeover."
"Our research and our fans said they really love Fishburne. They just wanted to see him sort of more comfortable in his clothes."
Fishburne's clothes won't be the only change next season. Tassler added that Catherine Willows (Marg Helgenberger) promotes Nick and Fox is back as Sara for the season's first five episodes.
What did you think of Fishburne and his wardrobe last season?
-- Alan Pergament