Friday, March 09, 2018

Fri-Yay: What Can Sitcoms Do Better Next Year?; New Nick Sitcom Coming Later This Year

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!

A.P. Bio

by Vincent

It's pretty fair, at this point, to say that this was a bust year for new sitcoms. After NBC's AP Bio has gotten off to a slow start both commercially and critically, it becomes the latest in a long line of disappointing network comedies. Is this the end for network comedies? Have streaming and cable finally overtaken the network sitcom we all know and love? Well...maybe not. Every time there's an off year for sitcoms, it seems that armies of people become ready to bury the network sitcom, and yet it always comes back eventually. Still, it'd be nice to have a solid new slate of sitcoms next year. Here are some things I'd like to see from upcoming network sitcoms.

Interesting concepts. The best comedy on network TV right now is The Good Place, and while that show works largely because of its excellent cast and top-notch writing, its truly unique concept certainly helps. The show feels absolutely nothing like anything else on TV, and it's managed to still be a critical and commercial success. I would love to see more of The Good Place's innovation on network television. After all, its success proves that show can be as original and mind-blowing as The Good Place and still pull in a large enough audience to be an easy renewal every year. So what's network TV's excuse?

Ensemble comedies. Over the past few years, the ensemble comedy has sort of fallen by the wayside. The one major exception is NBC's Superstore, another of the few critical and commercially successful comedies left on broadcast TV. A few years ago, ensemble series were all the rage, from Community to The Office to Happy Endings to Cougar Town. I'd love to see them make a comeback. A good ensemble comedy can feel like hanging out with a cherished group of friends week after week.

High quality multi-camera sitcoms. The multi-camera sitcom has experienced a small creative resurgence with shows like The Carmichael Show (rest in peace...), One Day at a Time and Mom, but it still feels like networks aren't really giving them much effort. Even CBS, long the staple of the multi-camera sitcom, is focusing its attention more on its single-cams as of late than its multi-cams. But when done right, a multi-camera sitcom can be something special, broad enough to appeal to a wide audience but specific enough to really appeal to audience its crafted for. It would be great to see a show like One Day at a Time on broadcast television. Perhaps the Roseanne remake will do the trick. Which leads me to...

Less remakes. C'mon, networks - I get that it's tempting, but how long can this remake trend really last? After all, even Will & Grace has come down quite a bit since its big start. Remakes aren't sustainable, but new ideas and new talent is.


Cousins for Life

Nickelodeon announced it has greenlit a new live-action series, Cousins for Life (20 episodes), from veteran creators and executive producers Kevin Kopelow and Heath Seifert (Austin & Ally, All That). The new buddy comedy centers on 12-year-old cousins Stuart (Dallas Young) and Ivy (Scarlet Spencer), best friends who come from very different backgrounds, and learn to navigate life under one roof with their families. Cousins For Life begins production in Los Angeles this summer, and the series is scheduled to air later this year.

After Stuart's mom is deployed overseas, his fun-loving dad Clark (Ishmel Sahid) decides to move the family to Portland to live with his uptight brother Lewis (Ron G.) and his family, which includes Stuart's confident, socially active cousin Ivy and her younger, overly-curious brother Leaf (Micah Abbey). Now living in a brand new city, Stuart embarks on a variety of endeavors with Ivy that lead to hilarious adventures. Although the cousins do not always see eye-to-eye, Ivy and Stuart learn they are better together, and when they team up, they are unstoppable.


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Friday, September 21

Fresh Off the Boat - "King in the North" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Honey plans a relaxing vacation before the baby comes, but Jessica turns the trip into a crazy quest to get Stephen King’s endorsement for her novel. When Grandma Huang decides to move out, Louis panics and does everything he can to make sure she knows how welcome she is. Meanwhile, Eddie, Nicole and their friends plan to wear matching suits to the school dance until a dress code demands that the girls must wear dresses, leading Eddie and Nicole to rebel.

Speechless - "N-O-- NOMINEE" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
JJ travels to a film festival where he’s been nominated for an award but is upset when he learns the real reason he’s being honored. Jimmy stays home and struggles to protect Dylan from the truth about an impending eviction. And Ray takes an unlikely and painful route to basketball stardom in hopes of winning back Taylor.

I Feel Bad - "Pilot" (NBC, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
When Emet starts to worry that her biggest fear is coming true, she makes a concerted effort to be the opposite of her judgmental mother, Maya. Her limits are tested when her daughter, Lily, joins a provocative dance team.

I Feel Bad - "I Get Sick of Being Needed" (NBC, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
When Emet's parents temporarily move in, she becomes overwhelmed and finds a sneaky way to get a much-needed break.

Raven's Home - "Sleevemore Part One: Frozen" (Disney Channel, 8:00PM ET/PT)
When Booker freezes mid-vision, Raven takes him to Dr. Sleevemore, the same doctor who helped her when she was a teen.

The Paynes - "A Payneful Hunch" (OWN, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Curtis and Nyla call a truce.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of September 17)

Friday, September 21

  • Nik Dodani (Atypical) - Watch Nik on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Maya Rudolph (Forever/Up All Night) and Fred Armisen (Forever) - Maya and Fred are guests on a repeat of Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Ray Romano (Everybody Loves Raymond) - Ray appears on a repeat of The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Rami Malek (The War at Home) - Rami is a guest on a repeat of Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Cheryl Hines (Curb Your Enthusiasm/Son of Zorn/Suburgatory) - Cheryl chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Tiffany Haddish (The Last O.G./The Carmichael Show) - Tiffany guest co-hosts LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
  • Wanda Sykes (The New Adventures of Old Christine/Wanda at Large) - Wanda stops by The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Beth Behrs (2 Broke Girls) - Beth appears on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Meagan Good (Cousin Skeeter/Raising Dad) - Meagan is a guest on The Real, so check your local listings.
  • Jay Ellis (Insecure/The Game) - Jay appears on The Real, so check your local listings.
  • Tony Danza (Taxi/Who's the Boss?/Hudson Street/The Tony Danza Show) - Tony talks about his new Netflix show The Good Cop on People Now at 12pm.
  • Rob Lowe (The Grinder/Parks and Recreation) - Rob opens up about his biggest scandals and how he got his health back on The Dr. Oz Show, so check your local listings.
  • Beth Hall (Mom) - Beth appears on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Jane Lynch (Angel from Hell) - Jane will be on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
  • Martha Plimpton (The Real O'Neals/Raising Hope) - Martha is a guest on the BUILD Series at 1pm.
  • Kaley Cuoco (The Big Bang Theory/8 Simple Rules) - Kaley chats on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Sanaa Lathan (Family Guy/The Cleveland Show/LateLine) - Sanaa appears on Access Live, so check your local listings.


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

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

08/07 - Happy Endings - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
08/15 - A.P. Bio - Season One
08/28 - Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Five
08/28 - Man Seeking Woman - The Complete Third 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
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest