Friday, September 01, 2017

Fri-Yay: Returning Fall Sitcoms; The 2017 NBC Primetime Preview

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!

Supeerstore

by Vincent

It's been a long summer for sitcom fans. Granted, summer isn't as desolate as it used to be, and we had great shows like Insecure and Rick & Morty to entertain us over the hot summer days, but it'll still be a relief when the fall season arrives and we have a handful of our favorite shows back. Here's a short list of returning shows that I'm particularly excited about this fall that I'd recommend catching up on if you haven't checked them out yet! If you're planning on watching any of these shows but haven't yet, be warned there may be mild spoilers for some of them below.

You're the Worst - This sardonic romantic comedy series returns for its fourth season on September 6. You're the Worst has done an excellent job through-out its three seasons of taking down romantic comedy tropes and satirizing them while still keeping us invested in in its highly flawed lead couple. The show's fourth season will supposedly revolve around the couple's break up and aftermath, so it should be interested to see how the series deals with common break-up tropes and applies them to its zany world.

Bojack Horseman - This dark animated comedy returns with its entire fourth season on Netflix on Friday, September 8. Bojack Horseman has been one of TV's consistently funniest and most engaging comedies (it was actually my #1 favorite show of 2016), so I'm incredibly eager to see the show's latest batch of episodes. The third season ended on a heartbreaking note, with BoJack losing his former TV co-star Sarah Lynn and alienating nearly all of his friends and colleagues. Given how deep the show has gotten with BoJack's loneliness before, and how it still manages to weave in fun and silly jokes and gags about its strange human-animal world, the fourth season should certainly prove to be a hilarious and heartbreaking ride.

The Good Place - Last season, The Good Place became one of the most successful and funniest high-concept network TV sitcoms in years, revolving around a woman named Eleanor who has died and accidentally been sent to heaven (or "the good place") when she really belongs in hell ("the bad place."). The show then created a warm and winning portrayal of the afterlife with a Parks and Rec-ian array of supporting characters (it was created by Mike Schur, who also created Parks and Rec), but what really made The Good Place especially special was the way it weaved an intricate, well thought out plot-line that consistently bended and turned in unexpected ways, the likes of which haven't been seen on network TV since LOST. The show returns on September 20, and while I won't spoil the first season's final twist, let's just say I've been eagerly anticipating the show's next move since the moment it ended its season.

Superstore - The Good Place's timeslot companion Superstore may not be quite as high-concept, but its low-concept workplace vibe has quietly become one of TV's most consistently rewarding half-hours. Superstore picks right up where previous NBC workplace comedies like The Office and 30 Rock left off in creating a warm and funny world of characters with their own quirks and personalities that clash in interesting ways. Season 2 saw the show experimenting with relationships and character pairings in ways that paid off really well emotionally, so the show's third season should hopefully pick up right where it left off - although if you've seen the second season finale, you know that might be easier said than done given the events that went down.

"ABC Funny" sitcoms - It's hard to spotlight just one ABC family sitcom that deserves your attention, because nearly all of them have been doing great work, from the constant boundary pushing and racial examinations of black-ish to the combination of refreshing immigrant stories with surreal humor of Fresh Off the Boat to the always heartfelt and interesting look into lower middle class life on The Middle. The Middle in particular is a show I'll be really interested in watching this year, as the series is finally coming to an end after nine consistently strong seasons. But at this point, ABC can basically do no wrong with their family sitcoms - sure, maybe Modern Family is getting a little long in the tooth, but ABC has really crafted together a line-up for the ages over its now two nights of family-friendly comedy.


NBC is unwrapping its fall lineup with The 2017 NBC Primetime Preview, which will be hosted by the cast of Great News and includes a special appearance by nine-time Emmy Award winner Tina Fey. The half-hour show will begin its run on Sept. 1 and continue through Oct. 8. It is expected to air more than 300 times across a wide horizon of NBCUniversal media platforms and on over 240 participating NBC broadcast affiliates and owned television stations. In addition, the special will run on many stations' D2 channels, NBCU cable channels, NBC.com, station websites and social media pages, as well as sales and marketing events across the country.

NBC

The 2017 NBC Primetime Preview will take a peek at the network's new fall offerings, including the return of the landmark comedy series Will & Grace (premiering Sept. 28 at 9 p.m.), producer Dick Wolf's event series Law & Order True Crime: The Menendez Murders (premiering Sept. 26 at 10 p.m.) and the powerful new drama The Brave (premiering Sept. 25 at 10 p.m.), which focuses on America's elite undercover military heroes. Other series to be featured in the special include last season's #1 new series, This Is Us, which earned 10 Emmy Award nominations, including Outstanding Drama Series; The Voice, featuring coaches Jennifer Hudson, Miley Cyrus, Adam Levine and Blake Shelton for the upcoming season; Superstore, the popular workplace comedy entering its third season; The Good Place, one of last season's most critically acclaimed new comedies; Great News, the hot second-year comedy from executive producers Tracey Wigfield, Tina Fey and Robert Carlock; and Sunday Night Football, the #1-rated show on broadcast television.


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Tuesday, October 23

The Conners - "Tangled Up in Blue'" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Darlene is in for one surprise after another when David introduces his girlfriend, Blue (Juliette Lewis), at a parent-teacher conference and mentions that Mark and Harris will be spending the weekend with them. Dan hires Becky to help out at work, but they both come to learn that she might need more help than she can offer.

The Kids Are Alright - "Timmy's Poem" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
To Peggy’s dismay, Timmy decides to enter a poetry contest to win the money he needs to repair his ventriloquist dummy. Stumped, he decides to plagiarize a poem and soon realizes he’s not the only one who passed it off as his own. Meanwhile, Mike and Lawrence continue to butt heads when Lawrence complains that there are no fresh vegetables in the family’s diet.

black-ish - "Don't You Be My Neighbor" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
The neighbors decide to rent their house out for homestays and it’s causing problems for the Johnsons. Dre develops a newfound joy of calling the cops over petty neighborhood issues but begins to question the example he is setting for Jack. Meanwhile, Diane develops her first crush and Bow wants to help but lets Zoey take the lead.

Splitting Up Together - "Asking for a Friend" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Afraid that the answer could ruin his chances with Lena, Martin finds every way he can to avoid asking Lisa Apple if she is pregnant, while the potential pregnancy makes Lena more and more distant. At the same time, Lena worries Mason is changing himself to please his new girlfriend and finds parallels to her own relationship with Martin. Elsewhere, Maya tells Frank a pretend story about her “friend” who is dating someone new and pregnant to gauge what his honest reaction will be.

The Guest Book - "Finding Reality" (TBS, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Vivian and Eddie leave Mt. Trace to make a fresh start in a small beachside town, where they meet Nikki and Tommy, the engaged couple running Emmy Lou's Grill and vacation home Barefeet Retreat, and Bodhi, the local handyman.

The Guest Book - "Under Cover" (TBS, 10:27PM ET/PT)
Rob and Shelley rent Barefeet Retreat to lure in their next mark, a woman named Angel who is abusing every substance that can be abused; Vivian develops a crush on Bodhi; Nikki goes into labor.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of October 22)

Tuesday, October 23

  • Oliver Hudson (Splitting Up Together/Rules of Engagement/My Guide to Becoming a Rock Star) - Catch Oliver on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Wanda Sykes (The New Adventures of Old Christine/Wanda at Large) - Wanda visits Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • David Cross (Arrested Development/Running Wilde) - David stops by Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Tyler Alvarez (Every Witch Way) - Tyler appears on Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Scott Bakula (Murphy Brown/Eisenhower and Lutz/Gung Ho) - Scott will be on LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
  • Juliette Lewis (Camping/A Family for Joe/I Married Dora) - Juliette is a guest on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo. She also talks about Camping on LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
  • Brenda Song (Dads/The Suite Life on Deck/The Suite Life of Zack & Cody/100 Deeds for Eddie McDowd) - Brenda guest co-hosts The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Marla Gibbs (The Jeffersons/Checking In/227) - Marla appears on The Real, so check your local listings.
  • Mike Epps (Uncle Buck/Survivor's Remorse) - Mike is a guest on The Real, so check your local listings.
  • Cedric Yarbrough (Speechless/Reno 911!) - Cedric will be on ABC's GMA Day at 1pm.
  • Alfonso Ribeiro (The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air/In the House/Silver Spoons) - Alfonso appears on Chatter on PeopleTV at 8pm.
  • Cedric Yarbrough (Speechless/Reno 911!) - Cedric talks about Speechless on the BUILD Series at 2pm.
  • Nik Dodani (Murphy Brown/Atypical) - Nik talks about Murphy Brown on the BUILD Series at 4pm.
  • Brandon Micheal Hall (The Mayor/Search Party) - Brandon talks about God Friended Me on the BUILD Series at 5pm.
  • Malcolm-Jamal Warner (The Cosby Show/Here and Now/Malcolm and Eddie/Listen Up!/Reed Between the Lines) - Malcolm-Jamal talks about The Resident on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.
  • Mary McCormack (The Kids Are Alright/Welcome to the Family) - Mary talks about The Kids Are Alright on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (September/October)

The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Eleventh Season The Middle - The Complete Ninth Season Modern Family - The Complete Ninth Season Step by Step - The Complete Second Season Perfect Strangers - The Complete Fifth Season

09/04 - It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia - The Complete Season 12
09/04 - Mom - The Complete Fifth Season
09/04 - Silicon Valley - The Complete Fifth Season
09/04 - Superstore - Season Three
09/04 - Young Sheldon - The Complete First Season
09/11 - The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Eleventh Season (Blu-ray)
09/11 - The Middle - The Complete Ninth Season
09/11 - Modern Family - The Complete Ninth Season
09/11 - People of Earth - The Complete Second Season
09/18 - Community - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
09/18 - Step by Step - The Complete Second Season
09/18 - You're the Worst - The Complete Fourth Season
09/25 - Blondie - The Complete 1957 Television Series
09/25 - Perfect Strangers - The Complete Fifth Season
10/02 - The Beverly Hillbillies - The Official Fifth Season
10/02 - The Love Boat - Season Four - Volume One / Volume Two
10/02 - Saved by the Bell - The Complete Collection
10/16 - Police Squad! - TV and Movie Collection
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