Thursday, May 09, 2013 2013-14 Upfront Preview: CBS; Fox Picks Up Five New Comedies, Four New Dramas for 2013-14


Upfront preview week continues today with CBS. The network continues to be the most consistent network and its shows are mostly Nielsen-proof, as they barely go down. However, some shows did falter this season like 2 Broke Girls and even veterans NCIS and Criminal Minds were way down in mid-season. However, the network continues to thrive with The Big Bang Theory, now the #1 sitcom and scripted series on network TV surpassing last season's leader Modern Family. Will CBS try and move the #1 show to a 9pm anchor position this fall?
Here is the CBS 2013-14 preview:

New Series Already Picked-Up: None.
Already Renewed Returning Series: 2 Broke Girls, The Amazing Race, The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Mike & Molly, Two and a Half Men, NCIS, NCIS: LA, The Mentalist, Person of Interest, The Good Wife, 60 Minutes, Blue Bloods, CSI, Hawaii Five-0, Elementary, Undercover Boss, 48 Hours Mystery, & Survivor.
Likely Returning Series: Criminal Minds.
Likely To Be Canceled or Already Canceled: The Job, Made In Jersey, Partners, Vegas, Golden Boy, CSI: NY & Rules of Engagement.
Likely New Series Pick-Ups: Hostages (drama for fall), Beverly Hills Cop (drama for fall), Crazy Ones (comedy for fall), Ex Men (comedy for fall), Mom (comedy for fall), Greg Garcia Multi-Camera Comedy (comedy for fall), Intelligence (drama for mid-season), NCIS: LA Spin-off (drama for mid-season) and Friends with Better Lives (comedy for mid-season).


8:00PM How I Met Your Mother
8:30PM 2 Broke Girls
9:00PM Crazy Ones (NEW!)
9:30PM Ex Men (NEW!)
10:00PM Beverly Hills Cop (NEW!)

9:00PM NCIS: Los Angeles
10:00PM Hostages (NEW!)

8:00PM Survivor
9:00PM Criminal Minds
10:00PM CSI

8:00PM Two and a Half Men
8:30PM Mom (NEW!)
9:00PM The Big Bang Theory
9:30PM Untitled Greg Garcia Comedy (NEW!)
10:00PM Person of Interest

8:00PM Undercover Boss
9:00PM Hawaii Five-0
10:00PM Blue Bloods

8:00PM Crime Repeats
9:00PM Crime Repeats
10:00PM 48 Hours Mystery

7:00PM 60 Minutes
8:00PM The Amazing Race
9:00PM Elementary
10:00PM The Mentalist

Comments: CBS continues to be the steadiest network but still the most older skewing. One way to fix the old skew is to bring in some comedies, like expanding the Thursday night comedy hour to a full two-hour block. But first, let's go over the full schedule prediction. On CBS Mondays, How I Met Your Mother will continue to lead off the night for its final season but at 8:30pm I think they should move back 2 Broke Girls back to this timeslot. I don't think airing in the 9pm anchor position was the right move after just one season. Last season I even thought it would work, but it didn't pan out so well. CBS has ordered more single-camera comedy pilots than normal and I think two of them will be picked-up. You can't just pick-up one because CBS doesn't have any others. At 9pm, CBS should be aggressive and launch Crazy Ones starring Robin Williams and Sarah Michelle Gellar. It's got a great cast and looks great. Only thing is it is single-camera, so it is risky for CBS but they should try it. At 9:39pm, they should pair it with another single-camera pilot, like Ex Men with a cast that has Tony Shalbhoub. I think Mike & Molly will be on the move to Thursdays, but it might be saved for mid-season. At 10pm, Hawaii Five-0 is struggling and they need to move it to another night. So they should try something new here, like the Beverly Hills Cop remake with Eddie Murphy. Bringing in Robin Williams, Tony Shalbhoub and Eddie Murphy to CBS Mondays is huge.  As for Tuesday, veteran NCIS will of course remain at 8 and that is a no-brainer. I think the 9pm hour will still be NCIS: LA but I could see them moving it to 10pm to launch something new like Hostages with Dylan McDermott. I don't think they will do it though, but that series could work in the troublesome slot of 10pm on Tuesdays for CBS.

For Wednesdays, CBS will likely remain with Survivor leading into Criminal Minds at 9pm. Even though the latter has lagged, it will be back even if the series is having problems securing deals for some of its stars. At 10pm, CSI has done solid since its move to this slot a few years ago. It's not the great ratings it used to do, but consistent and good enough. CBS could use new drama Intelligence on this night at some point. Maybe as a replacement to Criminal Minds if something goes wrong with that show? CBS Thursdays I think will now have Two and a Half Men leading off, instead of Big Bang. At 8:30pm, they should go with either Mike & Molly or new comedy Mom also from Chuck Lorre. They could make this a full Chuck Lorre comedy night, but I think they will do three at most. Anyway, at 9pm The Big Bang Theory should anchor the night. It could be even stronger in a later hour but it does have more competition, so it might not be up much, if at all. At 9:30pm, CBS could go with new comedies Mom or Untitled Greg Garcia Comedy. I think they go with the latter and have Mike & Molly come in mid-season somewhere on this night. Person of Interest is probably going to move to a later slot of 10pm, with Elementary likely on the move to another night, like Sundays. Fridays will probably start off with Undercover Boss at 8pm, as does solid in this slot usually winning or coming in second place. At 9pm, CSI: NY will likely be canceled, so they could try Hawaii Five-0 on a new night and time. It could work and do well.  Blue Bloods should remain at 10pm to close the night off.

Saturdays would still have crime repeats and 48 Hours Mystery at 10pm. No surprises here I think because CBS doesn't seem to be trying for any other options here. And as for Sundays, CBS reality series Amazing Race at 8pm should remain out of 60 Minutes. Perhaps at 9pm they can move Elementary to this night to try and do better than the faltering The Good Wife, which should be benched until mid-season and air repeat free somewhere on the schedule. At 10pm, The Mentalist will likely remain. In conclusion, CBS should make Mondays and Thursdays their priority. Mondays have declined and needs some retooling, while Thursdays start strong but the ratings go down each half-hour. They can fix that by moving Big Bang to anchor the night at 9 and air four comedies instead of two. CBS is usually not aggressive and plays it safe, so no one knows what will happen...but one thing is for sure, Mondays will be different next season. I can feel it. Chances of a Thursday comedy block of two-hours is 50/50 and I think they do it this time.

Remember, next Wednesday (May 15) is the actual date when we will find out CBS's plans for the 2013-14 season. So, come on back next Wednesday and we will let you know the details and you can see how much we were right (or wrong). Stay tuned tomorrow for our last preview, a preview on The CW's upfront.
Discuss your thoughts on our prediction and feel free to make suggestions of your own!

In pre-upfront pick-up news, Fox has picked-up probably its full slate of new series for next season and we guessed nearly all of them in our preview earlier this week. They won't announce their schedule until Monday, but Fox has announced it has picked-up nine new series for 2013-14, way up from last season's five new series. Comedy wise, they have picked-up Dads (multi-camera sitcom), which already had a 6 episode commitment, but now it has been ordered for 13 episodes. The series from Seth MacFarlane stars Emmy Award winner Seth Green and Emmy Award nominee Giovanni Ribisi as two successful guys -- and childhood best friends -- whose lives get turned upside down when their pain-in-the-neck patriarchs (Martin Mull and Academy Award and Emmy Award nominee Peter Riegert) move in. Other new comedy pick-ups are: Brooklyn Nine-Nine starring Andy Samberg and Andre Braugher, a single-camera ensemble comedy about what happens when a detective who doesn't take anything seriously gets a new "by-the-book" boss who wants him to grow up and respect the badge; Enlisted, an irreverent and heartfelt military-set single-camera family comedy starring Geoff Stults that follows three brothers getting to know each other again on a small Florida Army base and the group of misfits who surround them; Surviving Jack (aka I Suck At Girls), a new single-camera ensemble comedy based on best-selling author Justin Halpern's semi-autobiographical book set in 1990s Southern California, Emmy Award nominee Christopher Meloni stars as a man becoming a dad, as his son is becoming a man, in a time before "coming of age" was something you could Google; and Us & Them (aka Friends & Family), starring Emmy Award nominee Jason Ritter and Alexis Bledel, this is an ensemble single-camera comedy about a young couple, whose path to happily-ever-after is complicated by the screwed-up circus of people closest to them.

Drama wise, Fox has picked-up four dramas. The first one is Almost Human, from Emmy Award-winning executive producer J.J. Abrams and creator/executive producer J.H. Wyman and starring Karl Urban, Michael Ealy and Emmy Award nominee Lili Taylor, the series is an action-packed police drama set 35 years in the future, when police officers are partnered with highly evolved human-like androids. An unlikely connection is forged when a cop with an aversion to robots and a robot with unexpected emotional responses investigate cases in a brave new world. The second drama is Rake starring Academy Award nominee and Emmy Award winner Greg Kinnear, who makes his broadcast television series debut with this bold new legal drama from executive producer Peter Tolan and creator/executive producer Peter Duncan, who created the hit Australian series of the same name. Then we have Gang Related, a gritty new action drama, follows Ryan Lopez (Ramon Rodriguez), a rising star in Los Angeles' elite Gang Task Force -- led by Sam Chapel (Emmy Award winner Terry O'Quinn) -- who teams up with longtime Task Force member to take on three of the city's most dangerous gangs, including one he has ties to. And finally, Fox has picked-up Sleepy Hollow, a modern-day retelling of Washington Irving's classic. Ichabod Crane (Tom Mison) is resurrected and pulled two and a half centuries through time to find that the world is on the brink of destruction and that he is humanity's last hope, forcing him to team up with a contemporary police officer (Nicole Beharie) to unravel a mystery that dates all the way back to the founding fathers. Will Fox order anything more than these nine new series? Likely no, but stay with us. Now we just need to see where these will be scheduled and which will be held for mid-season. Come on back Monday bright and early in the morning to find out!

New on DVD/Blu-ray (September)

The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Ninth Season Newhart - The Complete Sixth Season 2 Broke Girls - The Complete Fifth Season Family Matters - The Complete Eighth Season Modern Family - The Complete Season 7

09/06 - Coach - Season One (Mill Creek) / Season Two / Seasons One and Two
09/06 - South Park - The Complete Ninteenth Season (Blu-ray)
09/13 - The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Ninth Season (Blu-ray)
09/13 - Newhart - The Complete Sixth Season
09/20 - 2 Broke Girls - The Complete Fifth Season
09/20 - Family Matters - The Complete Eighth Season
09/20 - Modern Family - The Complete Season 7
09/20 - Veep - Season 5
09/27 - The Wonder Years - Season Six
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest

Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Thursday, October 27

The Big Bang Theory - "The Fetal Kick Catalyst" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Penny is surprised to learn she has fans of her performance in “Serial Ape-ist” when she attends Van Nuys Comic Con with Leonard. Also, Amy hosts a Sheldon-style brunch at Penny’s apartment, and Wolowitz makes an impulsive purchase when he starts stressing out about the baby on the way.

The Great Indoors - "Pilot" (CBS, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Joel McHale stars as Jack, a renowned adventure reporter for an outdoor magazine who must adapt to the times when he becomes the new desk-bound boss to a group of millennials in the digital department of the publication.

Mom - "High-Tops and Brown Jacket" (CBS, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Bonnie and Adam’s relationship is tested when he moves in with her and Christy for a few weeks. Also, Christy learns the hard way that it may be a mistake to try and meet men with Jill.

Life in Pieces - "Annulled Roommate Pill Shower" (CBS, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Heather and Tim enlist Clementine’s unusual parents, Mary-Lynn (Megan Mullally) and Spencer (Nick Offerman), to help convince Clementine and Tyler to annul their unexpected marriage. Also, Tommy moves in with Colleen, to the chagrin of her roommate, Dougie (Fortune Feimster); John and Joan run into “complications” after John takes the wrong dose of his daily pill; and Jen and Greg keep a secret from the family.

Superstore - "Halloween Theft" (NBC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Dina (Lauren Ash) throws a wrench in everyone's Halloween plans when something goes missing from the store and declares that no employee can leave until someone confesses to stealing. Amy (America Ferrera) is determined to find out who is responsible because she doesn't want to miss trick-or-treating with her daughter and Mateo (Nico Santos) prepares for his secret date with Jeff (recurring guest star Michael Bunin). Meanwhile, Jonah (Ben Feldman) and Cheyenne (Nichole Bloom) struggle to bond until they discover they have more in common than they thought. Garrett (Colton Dunn) has a difficult time defending himself during the store-wide investigation.

The Good Place - "Most Improved Player" (NBC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Michael (Ted Danson) has a private meeting with Eleanor (Kristen Bell). Meanwhile, Chidi (William Jackson Harper), who has been harboring a secret, contemplates what to do.

Better Things - "Scary Fun" (FX, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Sam makes a point.

Complete TV Listings

Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of October 24)

Thursday, October 27

  • Martin Short (Mulaney/The Martin Short Show) - Catch Martin on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Mary-Louise Parker (Weeds) - Mary-Louise visits The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • January Jones (The Last Man on Earth) - January appears on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Lauren Lapkus (Clipped/Are You There, Chelsea?) - Lauren is a guest on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • Abbi Jacobson (Broad City) - Abbi visits Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Ron Howard (Happy Days/The Andy Griffith Show) - Ron appears on Chelsea on Netflix. He also talks about Inferno on NBC's Today in the 10am hour and on the AOL Build Show at 2:30pm.
  • Nathan Lane (Modern Family/Charlie Lawrence/Encore! Encore!), John Goodman (Roseanne/Normal, Ohio) and John Slattery (Maggie) - They talk about Broadway's The Front Page on The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Joel McHale (The Great Indoors/Community) - Joel guest co-hosts LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • Miley Cyrus (Hannah Montana) - Miley is a guest on LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • Eva Longoria (Telenovela) - Eva appears on The Wendy Williams Show, so check your local listings.
  • Angelique Cabral (Life in Pieces/Enlisted) - Angelique talks about Life in Pieces on the AOL Build Show at 11am.