Nellie Andreeva

Fox’s Kevin Reilly And Mike Darnell On ‘Idol’ & ‘Fringe’ Moves; No Back Orders For ‘Running Wilde’ & ‘Good Guys’

After mulling such a move for several years, Fox is finally doing it this season: reality veteran American Idol will change its airing pattern to Wednesday and Thursday night in what is clearly Fox’s most serious attempt to date to become a force on Thursday night. This is the second major assault at 8 PM  on Thursday this season after CBS’ successful move this fall to open a comedy block there anchored by The Big Bang Theory. Airing against Idol will certainly put pressure on the hit comedy but, just like fellow CBS series NCIS, which has been airing against Idol for years, it will get dinged up but probably not by much. It is the shows that don’t have strong following that tend to get steamrolled by Idol, so NBC has got to be very worried about its 8 PM comedies. (CBS’ freshman $#*! My Dad Says is vulnerable too but at least it has the cushion of a Big Bang lead-in.) And this certainly makes ABC’s decision what to put in the slot, which has been vacant since the cancellation of My Generation, a lot tougher as launching a new show against Idol is a daunting proposition.

The move will take pressure off Idol as it will eliminate ratings comparisons to last season and justify expected declines. Also probably factoring in the decision was the great showing from Glee in the Tuesday 8 PM slot where Idol traditionally aired. Originally, Fox was planning to move Glee behind Idol on Wednesdays in midseason. But with the musical dramedy doing so well as a self-starter at 8 PM on Tuesday night, the network has opted to keep it there. In fact, Fox’s Tuesday lineup remains almost intact, with new comedy Mixed Signals replacing low-rated Running Wilde at 9:30 PM. (The Tuesday lineup will take a month-long break in January when Fox will air new reality game show Million Dollar Money Drop following Glee reruns.) Hours after it landed a seven-episode midseason order, comedy Breaking In got more great news: It is getting the plum Wednesday 9:30 PM slot following the American Idol performance edition. Also great news for Fox’s utility player Bones, which has performed solidly wherever it has been dispatched. Now, it will have an American Idol lead-in on Thursday as it takes on Grey’s Anatomy and CSI at 9 PM. Not so good news for Bones‘ current Thursday companion Fringe, which is being bumped to Friday nights to make room for Idol on Thursday. The rest of the schedule is as previously announced, including new Shawn Ryan drama The Chicago Code airing on Mondays after House and Kitchen Nightmares running on Fridays. (Full schedule after the break)

FOX 2010-2011 MIDSEASON SCHEDULE

MONDAY

Monday, Jan. 10:

8:00-10:00 PM            LIE TO ME (Two-Hour Episode)

Mondays, beginning Jan. 17:

8:00-9:00 PM              HOUSE (All-New Episodes)

9:00-10:00 PM            LIE TO ME (All-New Episodes)

Mondays, beginning Feb. 7

8:00-9:00 PM              HOUSE (All-New Episodes)

9:00-10:00 PM            THE CHICAGO CODE (Series Premiere)

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TUESDAY

Tuesdays, beginning Jan. 4:

8:00-9:00 PM              GLEE (Encore Episodes)

9:00-10:00 PM            MILLION DOLLAR MONEY DROP (All-New Episodes)

Tuesdays, beginning Feb. 8:

8:00-9:00 PM              GLEE (All-New Episodes)

9:00-9:30 PM              RAISING HOPE (All-New Episodes)

9:30-10:00 PM MIXED SIGNALS (Series Premiere)

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WEDNESDAY

Wednesday, Jan. 5 and 12:

8:00-10:00 PM            HUMAN TARGET (All-New, Two-Hour Episodes)

Wednesday, Jan. 19:

8:00-10:00 PM            AMERICAN IDOL (Two-Hour Season Premiere, Part One)

Wednesdays, beginning Jan. 26:

8:00-9:00 PM              AMERICAN IDOL

9:00-10:00 PM            HUMAN TARGET (All-New Episodes)

Wednesdays, beginning Feb. 16:

8:00-10:00 PM            AMERICAN IDOL (Two-Hour Episodes)

Wednesdays, beginning April 6:

8:00-9:30 PM              AMERICAN IDOL (90-Minute Episodes)

9:30-10:00 PM            BREAKING IN (Series Premiere)

***************************

THURSDAY

Thursdays, beginning Jan. 6:

8:00-9:00 PM              MILLION DOLLAR MONEY DROP (All-New Episodes)

9:00-10:00 PM            BONES (Encore Episodes)

Thursdays, beginning Jan. 20:

8:00-9:00 PM              AMERICAN IDOL (Season Premiere, Part Two)

9:00-10:00 PM            BONES (Time Period Premiere)

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FRIDAY

Friday, Jan. 7:

8:00 PM-CC ET          AT&T COTTON BOWL (Live)

Friday, Jan. 21:

8:00-9:00 PM              KITCHEN NIGHTMARES (Season Premiere)

9:00-10:00 PM            KITCHEN NIGHTMARES (Encore)

Fridays, beginning Jan. 28:

8:00-9:00 PM              KITCHEN NIGHTMARES (All-New Episodes)

9:00-10:00 PM            FRINGE (Time Period Premiere)

**************************

SATURDAY

Saturday, Jan. 15:

8:00 PM-CC ET          NFC DIVISION PLAYOFFS (Live)

Saturdays, beginning Jan. 22 (no change to lineup):

8:00-8:30 PM              COPS (All-New Episodes)

8:30-9:00 PM              COPS (Encore Episodes)

9:00-10:00 PM            AMERICA’S MOST WANTED (All-New Episodes)

**************************

SUNDAY

Sunday, Jan. 9:

8:00-8:30 PM              THE SIMPSONS (All-New Episode)

8:30-9:00 PM              BOB’S BURGERS (Series Premiere)

9:00-9:30 PM              FAMILY GUY (All-New Episode)

9:30-10:00 PM THE CLEVELAND SHOW (Time Period Premiere/All-New Episode)

Sunday, Jan. 16 and 23:

7:00-7:30 PM              THE SIMPSONS (Encore Episodes)

7:30-8:00 PM              AMERICAN DAD (Time Period Premiere)

8:00-8:30 PM              THE SIMPSONS (All-New Episodes)

8:30-9:00 PM BOB’S BURGERS (All-New Episodes)

9:00-9:30 PM FAMILY GUY (All-New Episodes)

9:30-10:00 PM THE CLEVELAND SHOW (All-New Episodes)

Sunday, Jan. 30:

7:00 PM-CC ET          NFC PRO BOWL (Live)

Sunday, Feb. 6:

6:00 PM-CC ET          SUPER BOWL XLV (Live)

10:30 PM ET/7:30 PT GLEE (All-New Special Episode; Approximate Start Time)

Sundays, beginning Feb. 13 (no change to lineup):

7:00-7:30 PM              THE SIMPSONS

7:30-8:00 PM              AMERICAN DAD

8:00-8:30 PM              THE SIMPSONS

8:30-9:00 PM BOB’S BURGERS

9:00-9:30 PM FAMILY GUY

9:30-10:00 PM THE CLEVELAND SHOW

TV Editor Nellie Andreeva - tip her here.

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