Friday, August 24, 2018

Fri-Yay: The Big Bang Theory Is Ending - Is the Concept of a Megahit Sitcom Going With It?; Norm Macdonald Has a Show Guests Revealed

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!

The Big Bang Theory

by Vincent

This week, CBS announced that the upcoming season of The Big Bang Theory will be its last. The show, entering its 12th season, will bow out in spring of 2019 after spending nearly the entirety of the 2010s as a ratings dominant sitcom not seen on television since, arguably, the likes of Friends and Seinfeld in the 1990s. It's not a huge surprise that Big Bang is ending - 12 seasons is a long time for a sitcom, and the amount of shows that have surpassed that mark are extremely small. Despite the fact that it continues to enjoy high ratings (it's still the highest-rated sitcom and TV, give or take a Roseanne reboot, and one of the few shows still capable of drawing in over 10 million live viewers weekly) it does create an interesting question for sitcom fans - will The Big Bang Theory be the last "huge" sitcom of our time?

Truthfully, there hasn't been a real heir apparent to Big Bang's throne as sitcom megahit. That's not to say there haven't been hit sitcoms - there have been plenty, from ABC's stable of solid family sitcoms to CBS's consistently strong pieces like Mom and Life in Pieces and even to strong cable and streamer hits like Broad City and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt - but The Big Bang Theory's pure ratings could actually stand up to shows like Friends, Seinfeld and Cheers at their peak, particularly when taking into account the decline of live viewing. Whether or not you feel Big Bang's cultural impact matches those shows, there's no doubt it was a massive, massive hit, and there's going to be quite a gap in CBS's sitcom line-up and network television in general after it leaves. The Roseanne reboot obviously seemed to have potential to fill its shoes, but that's gone now and there's no telling if The Conners will see similarly big ratings. Some might peg the Big Bang spin-off Young Sheldon as a possible strong follow-up - it had a really big debut season - but it'll be interesting to see if it can hold up with its mothership off the air. And even though Big Bang enjoyed huge ratings, one could even argue that its cultural impact has been outshined by less huge but buzzier shows this decade like Parks and Recreation or Modern Family. Nevertheless, Big Bang ending feels like a big moment for sitcoms, and we'll just have to see if anything's capable of taking over its dominance.


Norm Macdonald Has a Show

Norm Macdonald Has a Show features host Norm Macdonald along with his trusty sidekick, Adam Eget, as they dive into hilarious and unexpected conversations with celebrity guests. The premiere season of the talk series welcomes Drew Barrymore, David Spade, Judge Judy, David Letterman, Jane Fonda, Chevy Chase, M. Night Shyamalan, Michael Keaton, Billy Joe Shaver and Lorne Michaels. Norm Macdonald Has a Show premieres Friday, September 14 on Netflix. David Letterman serves as location scout. Filmed on location at Sunset Bronson Studios in Los Angeles, Norm Macdonald Has a Show is produced under Norm's production banner, Anchor Spud Productions, along with Pygmy Wolf Productions in association with Lionsgate Television. 10 half-hour episodes have been ordered and all episodes debut all at once.


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Sunday, January 24

The Simpsons - "Podcast News" (Fox, 7:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Grampa is accused of a crime; Kent Brockman questions his career.

Bob's Burgers - "Bob Belcher and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Kids" (Fox, 7:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
The family must figure out how to keep the restaurant open after Bob's flattop breaks on the morning of the Ocean Avenue Business Association's Ocean Fest on Ocean Avenue.

The Simpsons - "Three Dreams Denied" (Fox, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Bart becomes a voice-over actor; Comic Book Guy is humiliated at Comic-Con; Lisa is set up for a fall.

Bob's Burgers - "Diarrhea of a Poopy Kid" (Fox, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
When Gene can't eat Thanksgiving dinner because of a stomach flu, the family tries to cheer him up.

Bob's Burgers - "The Terminalator II: Terminals of Endearment" (Fox, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
When Linda's parents have a layover at an airport nearby, Bob and Linda attempt to turn it into their annual visit.

Family Guy - "Boys & Squirrels" (Fox, 9:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Peter injures himself and a family of squirrels in a chainsaw accident; Chris and Stewie try to nurse one of the injured rodents back to health; a chiropractor fixes Peter's injury by realigning his spine -- and restoring him to his "true height."

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of January 18)

Friday, January 22

  • Bryan Cranston (Malcolm in the Middle) - Watch Bryan on a repeat of Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Daveed Diggs (Central Park/black-ish) - Daveed is a guest on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:35pm on NBC.
  • Bill Hader (Barry) - Bill appears on a repeat of Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • George Lopez (Lopez/Saint George/George Lopez) - George chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Morris Chestnut (Out All Night) - Morris talks about The Resident on Couch Surfing at 8am.
  • Jason Segel (How I Met Your Mother) - Jason talks about Our Friend on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
  • Isaiah Crews (Side Hustle) - Isaiah talks about Side Hustle on Access Daily, so check your local listings.


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

Young Sheldon - The Complete Third Season Mom - The Complete Seventh Season The Flintstones - The Complete Series (Blu-ray) Head of the Class - The Complete Second Season The Office - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)

09/01 - It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia - Season 14
09/01 - What We Do in the Shadows - The Complete Second Season
09/01 - Young Sheldon - The Complete Third Season (Blu-ray)
09/15 - Mom - The Complete Seventh Season
09/15 - South Side - Season 1
09/22 - Brockmire - The Complete Second Season
09/22 - Brockmire - The Complete Third Season
09/22 - Brockmire - The Complete Fourth Season
09/22 - Man with a Plan - Season Three
09/29 - The Bob Newhart Show - The Complete Series (2020 Release)
10/13 - The Jetsons - The Complete Series (Diamond Collection)
10/13 - Our Cartoon President - Season Two
10/23 - Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em - The Complete Collection
10/27 - The Flintstones - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
10/27 - Head of the Class - The Complete Second Season (WBShop.com)
11/10 - Letterkenny - Seasons 5 & 6
11/10 - The Office - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
11/10 - Schitt's Creek - The Complete Collection
11/17 - Carol's Second Act - The Complete Series
11/17 - Robbie - Season 1
11/24 - Corporate - Season 1
11/26 - Man with a Plan - Season Four
12/01 - The Neighborhood - Season Two
12/15 - Avenue 5 - The Complete First Season

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