Thursday, May 13, 2010

SitcomsOnline.com 2010-11 Upfront Preview: The CW; Network Pick-Ups

The CW continues to struggle, but they found one hit (Vampire Diaries) and a moderate success (Life UneXpected) this past season after many struggles (Melrose Place). And to make things worse, for the second straight year they have zero sitcom pilots in development, so all of their new series pick-ups will be dramas again. They could need a sitcom or two to change things up.
Here is the SitcomsOnline.com The CW 2010-11 preview:

New Series Already Picked-Up: None.
Already Renewed Returning Series: 90210, America's Next Top Model, Gossip Girl, Smallville, Supernatural, and The Vampire Diaries.
Likely Returning Series: One Tree Hill and Life UneXpected.
Likey To Be Canceled or Already Canceled: The Beautiful Life: TBL, Fly Girls, High Society, and Melrose Place.
Likely New Series: Nikita (drama), Hellcats (drama), Betwixt (drama) and Nomads (mid-season drama).

OUR FALL 2010 PREDICTION:

Mondays
8:00PM Gossip Girl
9:00PM Hellcats (NEW!)

Tuesdays
8:00PM Life UneXpected
9:00PM 90210

Wednesdays
8:00PM America's Next Top Model
9:00PM Nikita (NEW!)

Thursdays
8:00PM Vampire Diaries
9:00PM Betwixt (aka Changelings) (NEW!)

Fridays
8:00PM Smallville
9:00PM Supernatural

Comments: The CW only has five nights to program, so that is only 10 hours worth of programming. With zero comedies again, they again are going with all dramas and Top Model. It would have been nice to see a comedy hour somewhere. For Mondays, Gossip Girl could be back to leading off Mondays and they can try new drama Hellcats at 9pm which focuses on cheerleaders. Sounds like a perfect fit out of Gossip Girl.
For Tuesdays, they should start the night off with Life UneXpected at 8 leading into 90210. 90210 needs to do much better and needs all the help it can get. Melrose Place was a dud and should be canned for good. I think 90210 should be also, but The CW renewed it.
Wednesdays will of course have America's Next Top Model leading off the night followed possibly by a drama that could be their top pilot, Nikita, a remake of the TV/movie franchise about a female assassin. That could be the fit The CW was looking for, instead of wasting the timeslot with repeats or duds like Fly Girls/High Society.
For Thursday, that is The CW's biggest night! Highest rated drama The Vampire Diaries will continue to lead off the night at 8pm. They could move Supernatural off to Fridays and try a new drama at 9pm. I think they should go with the drama Betwixt (aka Changelings). That pilot centers around teens who find something strange about themselves in the woods. Could be a good match with The Vampire Diaries.
And finally on Fridays, long-running hit Smallville returns at 8pm for sure. But the 9pm hour will likely not be repeats anymore, with possibly Supernatural moving here, as they already are airing repeats of that in this slot in the summer.
For mid-season, they will have One Tree Hill ready to go (watch your back 90210!). They could pick-up another drama for mid-season such as Nomads, about a group of traveling teens that work for the CIA.
With only two hours to program each night, The CW should start each night with a proven show (Gossip Girl, Life UneXpected, Top Model, Vampire Diaries, Smallville). It still baffles me why they had no sitcoms in development. I think a comedy hour would work on Tuesdays following Life UneXpected, especially if they are in the same vein as something like Reba. It is too bad they are wasting time on 90210, as that has been a bust and still is entering its third season next season.
Discuss your thoughts on our prediction and feel free to make suggestions of your own.

Remember, next Thursday (May 20) is the actual date when we will find out The CW's plans for the 2010-11 season. So, come on back next Thursday and we will let you know the details and you can see how much we were right (or wrong).
And as a reminder, stay tuned starting Sunday evening (through Thursday) for all the final schedules released by all the networks! We will put them up as soon as they are released by the networks, so this will be your home to see them first!


With upfronts next week, the networks are giving some early pick-ups and renewals. NBC has green-lit the new romantic single-camera comedy Perfect Couples for its 2010-11 season. The sitcom joins previously announced dramas Chase, Undercovers, The Event, Love Bites, and fellow comedy Outsourced as the sixth new scripted series currently unveiled for NBC's new season with additional pickups yet to be announced. NBC unveils its schedule on Sunday at 5:15pm ET.
Perfect Couples depicts the misadventures of three engaging couples as they struggle to find out what makes the ideal relationship -- and how to maintain it through humorous trial-and-error. The series explores their heroic journey in search of the perfect relationship without destroying each other in the process.
Dave (Kyle Howard, My Boys) and Julia (Christine Woods, FLASHFORWARD) are the relatable, normal couple, but Julia's hope of remaining the cool, low-maintenance chick is tested by Dave's attempts to keep both his wife and his needy best friend Vance (Dave Walton, NBC's 100 Questions) equally happy. Vance, along with the neurotic Amy (Mary Elizabeth Ellis, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia), are the high-passion, high-drama couple who bring out the best and worst in each other.
The third duo features Rex (Hayes MacArthur, She's Out of My League), a reformed party guy, and, and his wife, Leigh (Olivia Munn, G4's Attack of the Show), who considers herself as the group's mother hen. Believing that they are relationship experts, Rex and Leigh have attended every class and seminar on relationships -- and regard themselves as the "perfect couple."
Meanwhile, NBC is close to canceling Heroes and bringing back Chuck. There is word that Heroes could get a two-hour movie to wrap things up, but there is nothing official yet. Chuck will likely air in the fall and possibly for the full season if it does well enough. Stay with us for updates.

Fox also has announced five series pick-ups. Single-camera comedy pilots Traffic Light, Keep Hope Alive and Running Wilde, as well as dramas Ride-Along and Lone Star (aka Midland). And on the bubble series, Lie To Me and Human Target both are being renewed for 13 episodes. Maybe they share a slot this season, with Human Target airing in the fall and Lie To Me in mid-season (since it is airing this summer)? Fox hasn't issued a press release on any of this yet, so we don't have descriptions for the new series.

And finally ABC has picked up the drama No Ordinary Family for the fall. The drama is about a typical American family whose members - mom Stephanie (Julie Benz), dad Jim (Michael Chiklis), daughter Daphne (Kay Panabaker), son JJ (Jimmy Bennett) - discover they have special abilities. Tate Donovan, Autumn Reeser, Christina Chang and Romany Malco also star.
Look for more ABC early pick-ups soon, as single-camera comedy pilots Mr. Sunshine, Happy Endings, and multi-camera sitcom pilot That Couple are hot right now. Drama pilots Generation Y and Off the Map are also looking good. Nothing official on these yet, so stay with us.

Stay with us for updates this weekend and of course during the week next week for the schedules!


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Thursday, October 19

Superstore - "Workplace Bullying" (NBC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Tensions arise among the employees after an attempted robbery, pitting Dina (Lauren Ash) against Jonah (Ben Feldman). Meanwhile, Glenn (Mark McKinney) has a tough time firing the store security guard, and Amy (America Ferrera) discovers that her coworkers have been hanging out without her.

The Good Place - "The Trolley Problem" (NBC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Chidi (William Jackson Harper) and Eleanor (Kristen Bell) tackle a famous ethical dilemma, leading to a conflict with Michael (Ted Danson). Meanwhile, Tahani (Jameela Jamil) harbors a secret and confides in Janet (D'Arcy Carden).

Will & Grace - "Grandpa Jack" (NBC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Jack (Sean Hayes) is stunned to learn that his estranged son, Elliot (guest star Michael Angarano) has a son of his own, Skip (guest star Jet Jurgensmeyer). Moreover, Skip needs the kind of help only Will (Eric McCormack) and Jack can provide. Grace (Debra Messing) and Karen (Megan Mullally) behave badly with the hot new guy at work.

Great News - "Award Show" (NBC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
For the first time in years, "The Breakdown" has been nominated for an American Journalism Award. Katie (Briga Heelan) is looking forward to spending the night as a peer with the very reporters she has admired her whole life. Fearing her mother will ruin it, Katie tries to stop Carol (Andrea Martin) from attending but is unsuccessful when Carol secures a position as a seat-filler. Katie is stuck babysitting her mom all night but gets distracted by Jeremy (guest star Reid Scott), a handsome New York Times reporter who looks down on cable news. Chuck (John Michael Higgins) is excited to reunite with all of his old anchormen friends, especially Len Archer (guest star Christopher McDonald), an idol of Chuck's who is receiving a lifetime achievement award.

Better Things - "Eulogy" (FX, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Sam demands satisfaction.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of October 16)

Thursday, October 19

  • Tracy Morgan (30 Rock/The Tracy Morgan Show) - Catch Tracy on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Paul Shaffer (A Year at the Top) - Paul sits in with Cleto and The Cletones on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory) - Jim is a guest on a repeat of Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Michael Keaton (Working Stiffs/All's Fair) - Michael appears on a repeat of The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Amy Landecker (Transparent) - Amy is a guest on a repeat of Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Carl Reinder (The Dick Van Dyke Show) - Carl appears on a repeat of Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Garcelle Beauvais (The Jamie Foxx Show) - Garcelle guest co-hosts The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Cedric Yarbrough (Speechless/Reno 911!) - Cedric is a guest on Steve, so check your local listings.
  • Angela Kinsey (Haters Back Off/Your Family or Mine/The Office) - Angela talks about the new season of her Netflix show Haters Back Off on the People Now at 8:30am.
  • Jeff Garlin (The Goldbergs/Curb Your Enthusiasm) - Jeff appears on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.
  • Henry Winkler (Happy Days/Out of Practice) - Henry is a guest on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Hayley Orrantia (The Goldbergs) - Hayley appears on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Joanna Garcia Swisher (Reba/Better with You) - Joanna teams up with Michael Symon in the kitchen, giving the scoop on her new show and whipping up a tasty dish on ABC's The Chew at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT. She also talks about Kevin (Probably) Saves the World on the AOL Build Show at 11am.
  • Redman (Method & Red) - Redman appears on the AOL Build Show at 3pm.
  • Debra Messing and Eric McCormack (Will & Grace) - Debra and Eric are guests on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (June/July/August)

Father Knows Best - Season Six Diff'rent Strokes - The Complete Sixth Season Alice - The Complete Fifth Season Rhoda - Season Four Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Four

06/13 - The Andy Griffith Show - Return to Mayberry
06/13 - That's My Mama - The Complete Series
06/20 - Workaholics - The Final (Seventh) Season
06/20 - Workaholics - The Complete Series
06/27 - The Jamie Foxx Show - The Complete Third Season
07/04 - Superstore - Season Two
07/18 - Father Knows Best - Season Six
07/25 - Diff'ernt Strokes - The Complete Sixth Season
07/25 - Girls - The Final (Sixth) Season (Blu-ray)
08/01 - Alice - The Complete Fifth Season (WBShop.com)
08/01 - Crashing - The Complete First Season (Blu-ray)
08/15 - Rhoda - Season Four
08/22 - Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Four
08/29 - Will & Grace - Season One (Universal)
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest