Boo! NBC has pulled what was the last scheduled episode of cancelled freshman comedy Animal Practice, slated to air tomorrow night, Halloween. NBC was to keep Animal Practice on until Whitney takes over the Wednesday 8 PM slot next week. But a Sandy-related string of NBC pre-emptions included repeating the storm-impacted Monday edition of The Voice on Thursday, pre-empting NBC’s 8-10 PM comedy block. 30 Rock’s episode this week is election-themed, so it didn’t make sense to air it after next Tuesday’s election. Plus, the comedy is on a tight schedule to end its 13-episode final season before Community rejoins the lineup Feb. 7. So we’ve probably seen the last of Crystal the monkey’s hijinks as Animal Practice‘s run ends at 6 episodes.
That 1.0 adults 18-49 rating last night didn’t do flailing new NBC comedy Animal Practice any favors. The network just announced that Animal Practice will be replaced by Whitney, whose second season will premiere November 14. Animal Practice will remain on the air until then.
It has been a fast fall from grace for Animal Practice, whose pilot was previewed during NBC’s coverage of the Summer Olympics’ Closing Ceremony. But the comedy starring Justin Kirk and Crystal the monkey never found traction when it launched last month. Meanwhile, NBC signaled that it may have other plans in store for returning comedies Whitney and Community last week when it pushed back the shows’ scheduled Friday debut. Whitney and Guys With Kids are the only multi-camera comedies on NBC, and now they will run together. The move brings Whitney to the Wednesday 8 PM slot where it aired for the second half of last season. Will Community re-join NBC’s Thursday night next?
Accurate ratings for the night’s top attraction, the first Presidential Debate between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, won’t be available until later in the day. If the non-time zone adjusted fast nationals are any indication, the broadcast networks ran neck-in-neck in their coverage of the debate, with NBC in the …
Diane Haithman contributes to Deadline’s TV coverage.
Will NBC be able to get the monkey off its back at these TCAs? If the fact that today’s panel on the new comedy series Animal Practice featured a live monkey “doctor” wearing tiny scrubs and driving a miniature ambulance is any indication, the answer is a resounding no. The driver was Crystal, the female capuchin monkey who portrays the show’s Dr. Rizzo, sidekick to veterinarian George Coleman (Justin Kirk). Crystal’s credits include The Hangover Part II and the Night At The Museum movies. She cruised onto the stage the near the end of the panel, her mini-ambulance siren blaring and lights flashing, and waved her little hand.
During this morning’s executive session, NBC entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt lauded his beleaguered network for being “No. 3” (that is, not rock-bottom at No. 4) among adults 18-49. But the executive also admitted (with understatement) that NBC is “in a transition with our comedy programming” and said that new comedies, including Animal Practice, are aimed at broadening the comedy audience beyond that of its critically acclaimed but low-rated comedies including Community and Parks And Recreation. But both for Greenblatt and the producers of Animal Practice, today’s question has been: How broad is too broad? (Greenblatt had enough of a sense of humor to take the podium again to quote some of today’s mocking TCA tweets, including: “We’re proud to be No. 3, and we have a monkey!”)
NEW COMEDIES & DRAMAS FOR 2012-13 NBC PRIMETIME SCHEDULE
Sitcoms expand to four nights this fall including Tuesday and Friday nights. New dramas from Dick Wolf and JJ Abrams. Here’s your first look:
NBC’s Save Me - Comedy
Produced by Sony Pictures Television and Original Film. Novelist John Scott Shepherd is executive producer/creator along with executive producer/director Scott Winant and executive producers Neal H. Moritz, Vivian Cannon, and Alexa Junge:
NBC’s 1600 Penn - Comedy
Produced by 20th Century Fox. From executive producer/director Jason Winer. The executive producers are Winer (who also directed the pilot), Gad and former White House speechwriter Jon Lovett: