Friday, May 31, 2019

Fri-Yay: NBC Cancels AP Bio Just As It Was Finding Its Stride; Showtime Orders Work in Progress

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!

AP Bio

by Vincent

Upfronts ended a few weeks ago, but there's still some renewal and cancellations that networks have yet to figure out. One of those was AP Bio, until NBC announced they decided to cancel the series this week. It's a decision that doesn't come with much surprise. AP Bio had a mediocre-rated first season, but NBC decided to give the show a second chance, as they've done before with shows that had slow starts like 30 Rock, Parks and Recreation and Community. While those shows wound up running for years, AP Bio's ratings actually dropped drastically in its second season, so NBC pulling the plug is not a surprise. However, it is a shame. AP Bio wasn't necessarily a great sitcom, but it was a very enjoyable one that was perhaps on the way to finding its greatness.

AP Bio started off seeming like a too-mean spin off of Community, a show that wanted to have a cable comedy-esque streak of dark comedy but didn't have the talent to pull it off. However, over the course of the first and especially into the much improved second season, the series began to find its direction by strengthening the personalities of its students out of stereotypes and pinning down into humor sense. The show, like Community, also found some heart, without feeling too preachy, and was becoming a delightfully absurdist network sitcom that actually made you care about the characters...even though the humor could sometimes be dark or even borderline mean, the show did a much better job of tiptoeing that line in its second season. It will be a shame to see it go, and that it will never take off into the great sitcom it had the potential to be.


Work in Progress

Showtime has ordered an eight-episode season of the new half-hour comedy series Work in Progress, created by Abby McEnany and Tim Mason. McEnany stars in the series, expected to premiere later this year. Mason directed the pilot. Lilly Wachowski (The Matrix, Sense8) will co-write the first season and executive produce with McEnany and Mason. Showtime acquired the project after its premiere at this year's Sundance Film Festival, where it was an official selection of the Indie Episodic program. A funny and uniquely human comedy, Work in Progress features McEnany as a 45-year-old self-identified fat, queer dyke from Chicago whose misfortune and despair unexpectedly lead her to a vibrantly transformative relationship. Chicago-based performers Theo Germaine and Karin Anglin co-star alongside Celeste Pechous, with Julia Sweeney (Saturday Night Live, Shrill) appearing in a crucial role as herself.


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Monday, May 23

The Neighborhood - "Welcome to the Ring" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT)
As Marty prepares to propose to his girlfriend, Calvin and Tina work with party planner Chika (Gina Yashere) to throw a celebration that properly honors their future daughter-in-law’s Nigerian heritage.

Bob Hearts Abishola - "Beard in Her Pulpit" (CBS, 8:30PM ET/PT)
When a new charismatic pastor joins their congregation, Abishola is thrilled that Bob has renewed interest in church, but less so when her mother takes a new interest in the pastor. Also, when Dottie gives out bonuses to upper management, Bob must make sure he doesn’t lose his best employee.

Breeders - "No Body" (FX, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Ally and Paul learn the truth about a thing that has been terrifying them; for Ally, her job and for Paul, his MRI result; Ava and Luke both feel frozen out by the people they care most about.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of May 23)

Monday, May 23

  • D'Arcy Carden (Barry/The Good Place) - Watch D'Arcy on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Billy Crystal (The Comedians/Soap) - Billy appears on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Kaley Cuoco (The Big Bang Theory/8 Simples Rules/Ladies Man) - Kaley is a guest on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Glen Powell (Scream Queens) - Glen will be on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Max Greenfield (The Neighborhood/New Girl/Modern Men) - Max appears on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Howie Mandel (Good Grief) - Howie is a guest on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Jennifer Lawrence (The Bill Engvall Show) - Jennifer will be on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Sherri Shepherd (Mr. Iglesias/Trial & Error/Sherri/Less Than Perfect/Suddenly Susan) - Sherri guest hosts The Wendy Williams Show, so check your local listings.
  • Paul Rudd (Living with Yourself/Wild Oats) - Paul appears on The Kelly Clarkson Show, so check your local listings.
  • Jean Smart (Hacks/Samantha Who?/Center of the Universe/In-Laws/Style & Substance/Designing Women) - Jean is a guest on The Kelly Clarkson Show, so check your local listings.
  • Carl Clemons-Hopkins (Hacks) - Carl will be on Tamron Hall, so check your local listings.
  • Jennifer Aniston (Friends/Muddling Through/Ferris Bueller/Molloy) - Jennifer appears on a repeat of The Drew Barrymore Show, so check your local listings.
  • Susan Kelechi Watson (Louie) - Susan talks about This Is Us on Access Daily, so check your local listings.
  • Jay Ellis (Insecure/The Game) - Jay talks about Top Gun: Maverick on ABC's GMA 3: What You Need to Know at 1pm. NBC's Today catches up with Jay in the 9am hour.
  • Ron Howard (Arrested Development/Happy Days/The Andy Griffith Show) - Ron talks about We Feed People on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (February-May)

ALT= Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. - The Complete Series (2022 Release) Brooklyn Nine-Nine - The Complete Series (Blu-ray) Head of the Class - The Complete Fourth Season Becker - The Complete Series (2022 Release)

02/08 - Last Man Standing - The Complete Ninth Season
02/22 - Everybody Hates Chris - The Complete Series (2022 Release)
02/22 - Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. - The Complete Series (2022 Release)
03/08 - Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Eight
03/08 - Brooklyn Nine-Nine - The Complete Series (Blu-ray) (DVD)
03/15 - Head of the Class - The Complete Fourth Season
03/15 - The Proud Family - The Complete Original Series - Anniversary Collection
03/22 - The Honeymooners Specials - The Complete Collection
03/29 - Rick and Morty - The Complete Seasons 1-5 (Blu-ray) (DVD)
03/29 - Young Rock - Season One
04/05 - Up All Night - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
04/26 - The Danny Thomas Show (aka Make Room for Daddy) - The Complete Fourth Season
04/26 - Jackie Gleason TV Treasures - 70th Anniversary Collection (including Honeymooners Rarities)
05/03 - No Activity - Season Three
05/31 - Becker - The Complete Series (2022 Release)
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


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05/18 - CBS Upfront 2022-23: Fall 2022 Schedule; Turner Upfront Updates
05/17 - ABC Upfront 2022-23: Fall 2022 Schedule; Pete Davidson Comedy Adds Edie Falco
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05/15 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of May 16, 2022)
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04/29 - Fri-Yay: Netflix's Struggles Create Question for the Future of Television; Hulu Acquires Schitt's Creek
04/28 - Starz Comedy Run the World Returns with More Stars; HBO Max Orders Spin-off of Harley Quinn Animated Comedy Series
04/27 - Freeform Orders Single Drunk Female Season 2 & New Series While You Were Breeding; Peacock Brings Back Wolf Like Me
04/26 - The Orville Returns for Season 3 After 3 Year Hiatus; Fox Announces More Stars for Fantasy Island Season 2
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