Friday, August 23, 2019

Fri-Yay: Fall Sitcom Slate Check-In: ABC; Antenna TV Acquires The Facts of Life, Diff'rent Strokes, Who's the Boss? and More

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!

mixed-ish

by Vincent

ABC is next up in our check-in of returning sitcom slates. ABC has been a big center of family comedies in recent years, and that mostly continues in 2019-2020. Let's jump into their line-up:

Returning sitcoms: ABC's solid block of family sitcoms are all returning, from Modern Family to The Goldbergs to The Conners to black-ish to Fresh Off the Boat. The big change, though, will be coming after this TV season, as the upcoming 11th season will be the final season of Modern Family. Just as CBS is scrambling to find its Big Bang replacement, ABC is likely doing the same thing with Modern Family - with the big caveat that ABC does have The Conners, which actually rated higher than Modern last season and is returning as the network's biggest ratings hit. Whether The Conners will be able to keep its strong Season 1 numbers now that we're fairly far removed from the Roseanne situation and hype is certainly a question, but even if it can maintain half of its Season 1 audience, it'll be a big hit for the network. Otherwise, except more of the same from the anchor sitcoms - The Goldbergs and black-ish continue to be strong tentpoles, Fresh Off the Boat is holding down the fort on Fridays, and promising sophomores Bless This Mess, Single Parents and Schooled are also back on the line-up hoping to build on their respectable Season 1 showings. The only real downgrade is American Housewife, which gets bumped to Fridays after just a so-so rated third season last year.

New sitcoms: There's only one new sitcom on ABC's fall schedule, the black-ish spin off mixed-ish, which follows Rainbow's upbringing. First spinoff grown-ish has been a fairly strong hit for Freeform, so it makes sense that ABC is continuing to build off the solid black-ish brand. Still, it's somewhat surprising to not see more new comedies, but I guess ABC is thinking "if it's not broke, don't fix it." Though ABC does have multi-camera sitcom United We Fall waiting in the wings for mid-season that could be a potential companion for The Conners.

The bottom line: ABC is probably in the best place sitcom-wise of all four networks. They have a really strong core of anchors and enough solid performers to fill two and a half entire blocks and not have any real weak spots. It says a lot that ABC felt they could essentially bring back their entire slate last season and not have to add many new pieces. Yes, there are some questions - will The Conners be as big in Season 2 as Season 1? Is anything being set up to take over for Modern Family? Can the modest sophomore hits like Bless This Mess, Single Parents and Schooled step up and become anchors in their second season the way shows like The Goldbergs and black-ish were eventually able to? Those are questions that will eventually have to be answered, but for now, things are good in sitcom land at ABC.


Antenna TV

Antenna TV, Tribune Broadcasting's multicast network, announced the addition of five classic series to the network's 2020 lineup, with four sitcoms starting in January 2020 and one in Fall 2020. Antenna TV, which airs in 136 TV markets across the U.S. reaching 89% of TV households, continues to aggressively invest in programming acquisitions. Beginning in January 2020, Antenna TV will add The Facts of Life, Diff'rent Strokes, Designing Women and NewsRadio. In Fall 2020, Who's the Boss? will join the lineup. All five series come from Sony Pictures Television and originally aired in the late '70s through late '90s. Diff'rent Strokes and NewsRadio are returning to Antenna TV in new deals, while The Facts of Life, Designing Women and Who's the Boss? are brand new to Antenna TV! Both Diff'rent Strokes and The Facts of Life are currently airing on MeTV, but will migrate over to Antenna TV by Jan. 2020. Designing Women was last seen on getTV, while NewsRadio hasn't aired since Antenna TV last aired it and Who's the Boss? is coming to a multicast network for the first time.


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Wednesday, January 20

The Conners - "Young Love, Old Lions and Middle-Aged Hyenas" (ABC, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Harris brings home her new friend, Josh, leaving the family questioning his intentions. Meanwhile, Becky and Ben’s attempt to build a closet stirs up family drama.

Call Your Mother - "Distressed Jean" (ABC, 10:30PM ET/PT)
Jean attempts to hang out with her kids but quickly realizes they have jobs and lives of their own. She soon finds herself lost navigating the streets of Los Angeles and discovers a new friend along the way.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of January 18)

Wednesday, January 20

  • Dakota Johnson (Ben and Kate) - Watch Dakota on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Max Greenfield (The Neighborhood/New Girl/Modern Men) - Max appears on Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Thomas Middleditch (B Positive/Silicon Valley) - Thomas is a guest on a repeat of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Cheryl Hines (Curb Your Enthusiasm/Son of Zorn/Suburgatory) - Cheryl appears on a repeat of The Kelly Clarkson Show, so check your local listings.
  • Michelle Buteau (Enlisted) - Michelle is a guest on a repeat of The Kelly Clarkson Show, so check your local listings.
  • Phoebe Dynevor (Younger) - Phoebe talks about Netflix's Brigerton 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

More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


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01/13 - NBC Orders 3 New Series for 2021-22 Season; Lifetime Slates Winter 2021 Original Movie Slate, Including 400th Original Movie
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