Friday, August 18, 2017

Fri-Yay: Sitcom Reboots; ABC and CBS Set Fall Preview Specials

It's time for another edition of Fri-Yay! That means we will take a look back on some sitcom happenings in recent days or weeks or other fun sitcomy stuff. It's a sitcom lover's paradise! Happy Fri-Yay!

Fuller House

by Vincent

It's no secret that networks have gotten into a little bit of "remake frenzy" over the past couple of years. From Girl Meets World to Fuller House to One Day at a Time to the upcoming relaunches of Will & Grace and Roseanne, networks seem desperate to recapture the hits of yesterday rather than coming up with...well, new hits. Granted, maybe that's not totally fair - there are plenty of beloved modern sitcoms that have found audiences, particularly now that streaming services have entered the mix. And yet, networks currently seem obsessed with the past. Business-wise, it makes sense - a service like Netflix is inviting tons of potential new subscribers by bringing back past favorites with built in fanbases like Full House and Gilmore Girls, and network television would be lucky if even half of the audiences of hits like Will & Grace and Roseanne returned to their reboots. (Of course, that was before alternatives like DVR and streaming services effected ratings, but I digress...). But are these relaunches worth your time? Do they actually have potential, or are they just desperate attempts to relive the past?

The answer is a bit of a mixed bag. Of all of the relaunches, the most successful creatively has been, by far, One Day at a Time. Not coincidentally, One Day at a Time is the remake that is least like its original series - the cast and characters are entirely new, and the only elements that remain are the show's basic structure (a divorced mom raising her kids) and the theme song (which has been given a Cuban flair). Other than that, though, the series is very different, following a Cuban-American family through issues like sexuality, immigration, and post-traumatic stress disorder. One Day at a Time may be a remake, but it feels wholly original, while still retaining the spirit of classic Norman Lear sitcoms.

The other remakes, on the other hand, feel a little bit more like desperate attempts to relive the past. Girl Meets World generally did well as a modern Disney Channel sitcom, but fans expecting it to be a continuation of Boy Meets World may have been disappointed. Fuller House likely appeals quite well to Full House fans, but there's not much else beyond "Full House continued" to make it appealing to anyone else. And while the jury is still out on Will & Grace and Roseanne, it'll be an uphill battle for 15 and 25 (respectively) year old shows to seem relevant in today's television landscape. It's fine if networks want to reach into the past for profit - but hopefully the future is more like One Day at a Time, bringing new ideas to an old premise.


ABC Fall Preview Special



The ABC Fall Preview Special will air Sunday, Sept. 3 at 7:00pm on ABC and will be hosted by the stars of Speechless and American Housewife. Diedrich Bader and Cedric Yarbrough host the special with appearances from the new stars of ABC such as Jason Ritter (Kevin (Probably) Saves the World), Freddie Highmore (The Good Doctor), Brandon Micheal Hall and Lea Michele (The Mayor)! The special has been airing on ABC affiliates already on the weekend. There will be clips and features on all of ABC's new shows, ABC's comedy brand and the final season of Scandal.

CBS Fall Preview

CBS Fall Preview, hosted by new series stars Iain Armitage (Young Sheldon), David Boreanaz (Seal Team), Mark Feuerstein (9JKL), Shemar Moore (S.W.A.T.), Bobby Moynihan (Me, Myself & I) and Jeremy Piven (Wisdom of the Crowd), is a primetime special highlighting the Network's six new fall series. It will be broadcast Monday, Sept. 4 at 8:30PM, ET/PT on the CBS Television Network and CBS All Access, the Network's digital subscription video on demand and live-streaming service.


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Tuesday, June 19

The Middle - "Hecks vs. Glossners: The Final Battle" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
It’s the Orson showdown of the century when the Hecks – along with the Donahues and Bill Norwood – wage a war against the Glossners after they steal Sue’s car.

The Middle - "Thank You for Not Kissing" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
After Dr. Fulton (Dave Foley) calls Frankie and Mike into his office to inform them that Brick and Cindy have been making out all over school, Frankie tasks Mike into having a talk with his son to discuss dating etiquette. Meanwhile, Sue attempts to work up the gumption to give Sean the snow globe and confess how much she likes him; and after discovering a box full of unfinished thank you notes for gifts received over the years, Frankie orders Axl to finish and mail them all out.

black-ish - "Juneteenth" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
The Johnsons go to Jack and Diane’s school play about Columbus Day, and Dre is dismayed by the historically inaccurate way that the holiday is portrayed. He feels like there aren’t enough black holidays, so he enlists Aloe Blacc at work to help him create a catchy song to raise awareness for a holiday worth celebrating, Juneteenth.

black-ish - "Dog Eat Dog World" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
The family is divided over the idea of getting a dog after Dre and Bow promise Jack they can get one after he gets Straight A’s – and he does! Meanwhile, Bow’s brother Johan is in town and he doesn’t get the warm welcome he expects from Ruby.

Younger - "The End of the Tour" (TV Land, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Liza faces complications on the Marriage Vacation book tour. Kelsey and Zane head to D.C. to court a speechwriter’s prospective memoir.

Teachers - "Of Lice and Men" (TV Land, 10:34PM ET/PT)
Ms. Bennigan wrestles with how far she’s willing to go sexually with Hot Dad, while Ms. Cannon learns how to drive in the midst of an apocalyptic lice outbreak at Fillmore.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of June 18)

Tuesday, June 19

  • Martin Short (Mulaney/The Martin Short Show) - Catch Martin on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Whoopi Goldberg (Whoopi/Bagdad Cafe) - Whoopi is a guest on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Michael Ian Black (The Jim Gaffigan Show/Ed) - Michael stops by Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Tracy Morgan (The Last O.G./30 Rock/The Tracy Morgan Show) - Michael visits LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
  • Sarah Jessica Parker (Divorce/Sex and the City/Square Pegs) - Sarah appears on LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
  • Jennifer Lawrence (The Bill Engvall Show) - The Ellen DeGeneres Show has the best moments from the biggest stars in Season 15, so check your local listings.
  • Debra Messing (Will & Grace/Ned & Stacey) - Debra is a guest on a repeat of Harry, so check your local listings.
  • Marlon Wayans (Marlon/The Wayans Bros.) - Marlon drops by Access Live, so check your local listings.
  • Brian Tyree Henry (Atlanta) - Brian is a guest on Access Live, so check your local listings.
  • BD Wong (All-American Girl) - BD talks about the off-Broadway production of The Great Leap on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (June)

Living Single - The Complete Fifth Season Step by Step - The Complete First Season Will & Grace (The Revival) - Season One Perfect Strangers - The Complete Fourth Season Last Man Standing - The Complete Sixth Season

06/05 - Living Single - The Complete Fifth Season
06/05 - New Girl - The Complete Sixth Season
06/05 - South Park - The Complete Twenty-First Season (Blu-ray)
06/12 - Fresh Off the Boat - The Complete Fourth Season
06/12 - Life in Pieces - The Complete Third Season
06/12 - The Office - The Complete Series
06/12 - Speechless - The Complete First Season
06/12 - Speechless - The Complete Second Season
06/12 - Step by Step - The Complete First Season
06/12 - Will & Grace (The Revival) - Season One (Blu-ray)
06/19 - Perfect Strangers - The Complete Fourth Season
06/26 - Last Man Standing - The Complete Fifth Season
06/26 - Last Man Standing - The Complete Sixth Season
06/26 - The Mick - The Complete First Season
06/26 - The Mick - The Complete Second Season
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest