NBC is making changes to its midseason schedule. Dramedy Parenthood, which was slated to air 4 episodes in January in its regular Tuesday 10 time period, take a break and then move to the Monday 10 PM berth on March 7, will now remain in its Tuesday slot through the end of the season. Law & Order: Los Angeles, which was scheduled to take over the Tuesday 10 PM slot on Feb. 8, will now be held back, with its return date/slot TBD. The decision comes after two consecutive solid showings for Parenthood (2.3 and 2.2 Live + same day 18-49 rating), which came from winter hiatus 21% higher, as well as an OK premiere for Harry’s Law in the Monday 10 PM slot last night (2.1 demo rating and a time slot-winning audience of 11 million). NBC had planned to air only 6 of the 13 episodes of Harry’s Law on Mondays before Parenthood moved in; now it will extend the run of David E. Kelley’s newest legal drama. The move also won’t break Parenthood‘s current momentum. And last but not least, the decision to hold LOLA will give the Law & Order spinoff some breathing room as it is undergoing major creative changes.
On the unscripted side, NBC is moving series America’s Next Great Restaurant from Wednesdays to Sundays after good early feedback for the new series, including at last week’s TCA. It was supposed to premiere on March 16 in the Wednesday 9 PM slot. Now it will debut on Sunday, March 6, at 8 PM, leading into Celebrity Apprentice. It bumps the return of the Jerry Seinfeld-produced The Marriage Ref, which was scheduled to air in the Sunday 8 PM slot. That show is now put on hold. (It could slide into its original Thursday 10 PM slot should NBC’s 10 PM comedy block experiment not work out.) NBC has Chase airing in the Wednesday 9 PM time period for now. It will be succeed by Law & Order: SVU repeats after the procedural after it ends its shortened freshman season. Still no slot assignments/premiere dates for dramedy anthology Love Bites and comedies Friends with Benefits and The Paul Reiser Show.
NBC has cut the order to midseason dramedy Love Bites from 13 to 9. The anthology series, originally slated for a fall launch in the Thursday 10 PM slot, was pushed to midseason after a series of setbacks, including … Read More »
With its entertainment lineup largely underperforming this fall, NBC is making wholesale changes for midseason with moves on every night, including a rarely-seen on broadcast TV 10-11 PM comedy block for an all-comedy Thursday. Additionally, the network has given one of those Thursday comedies, 30 Rock, an early renewal for next season, the Emmy winning series’ sixth. It also represents a vote of confidence for the series, which is entering uncharted territory with a Thursday 10 PM slot midseason assignment. In addition to a 3-hour comedy block on Thursdays, which will include Community at 8 PM, followed by new series Perfect Couples, The Office, Parks & Recreation, 30 Rock and Outsourced, NBC’s other major scheduling moves for midseason include shifting Parenthood to Mondays, Law & Order: Los Angeles to Tuesdays, Chase to Wednesdays and Law & Order: SVU to 10 PM on Wednesday. “The goal for our mid-season schedule was to keep us in original programming throughout the season and launch several promising new shows, said NBC’s EVP planning and scheduling Mitch Metcalf. “We were looking to add more comedy to our schedule and we believe the best way to do so is to expand our already successful Thursday night.” When NBC gave new Thursday comedy Outsourced a full-season order last month, it became clear that the network wouldn’t be able to contain its half-hours within its established Thursday 8-10 PM block as it also had Parks & Recreation and new entries Perfect Couples and Friends with Benefits on deck for midseason. The network brass explored the possibility of opening a second comedy night but reportedly felt it was not the right time to do so. And, unless it was to go on an assault against CBS’ Monday and ABC’s Wednesday comedy blocks the way CBS did against NBC on Thursday this fall or to bump established Tuesday performer The Biggest Loser, NBC had no real opening for a second comedy night. As for its new all-comedy Thursday, the network already flirted with the idea last spring when it launched comedy reality series The Marriage Ref at 10 PM and in May when it scheduled hourlong comedy Love Bites in the hour. (After a production start delay, the anthology series is now in production for a late spring launch). But airing half-hour comedies at 10 PM on broadcast TV has been very rare and has not fared well so far. However, a 10 PM comedy block is very common on cable TV with such series as HBO’s Entourage and Comedy Central’s South Park. Read More »