Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Playing Programmer 2012: ABC

It's the time of the year when the US Broadcast network announce renewals and cancellations along with the new series they will pick up for next season. Next week is what they call the UpFronts which is like the equivalent of the trade shows our local networks do here. It's the time where each network showcases their schedule for the upcoming TV season. Like last year, I will play programmer and try to schedule the networks programming next season.

I'm already done with The CW, FOX and NBC so it's now time for my "schedule" for my favorite Broadcast network, ABC. Last year, I did well by correctly predicting my gutsy Sunday line up composing of 8 new show Once Upon a Time (8 PM), Desperate Housewives (9 PM) and Pan Am (10 PM) , let's see if I could make another shot here :D


7 PM - America's Funniest Home Videos
8 PM - Once Upon a Time
9 PM - Nashville
10 PM - 666 Park Avenue

Once Upon a Time is a hit and I don't see why ABC should change the timeslot as the show is the perfect 8 PM show. With Desperate Housewives gone and the failures of Pan AM and GCB it will leave ABC with two holes in the schedule. ABC's most buzzed pilot is drama about counry music Nashville so I will give it the DH slot since I could see a good viewers flow with family friendly OUAT and while I think it's risky to launch two new shows back to back I thinkABC should take a chance and have the promising supernatural drama 666 Park Avenue on the 10 pm slot. It would be a departure from their usual soaps at 10 PM but there's always room for change right?


8-10 PM - Dancing with The Stars
10 PM - Castle

I thought that this might be the time to finally move Castle but with a fall edition of The Voice coming in challenging DWTS yet again plus a promising new drama Revolution at 10 PM, ABC will likely play it safe with their schedule and keep Castle in the same slot


8 PM - Last Man Standing
8:30 PM - Malibu Country
9 PM - Dancing with The Stars Results
10 PM - Private Practice

Last Man Standing started well then the last five episodes hit lows week to week but I think it will grow and maybe pick up some new audience when summer reruns air and there's no other fitting companion for LMS than Reba McEntire's new sitcom Malibu country. Private Practice proved it can be on its own when it held up well after DWTS this spring so might as well not change it.


8 PM - The Middle
8:30 PM - Suburgatory
9 PM - Modern Family
9:30 PM - How To Live With Your Parents for the Rest of Your Life
10 PM - Revenge

As much as I both like Happy Endings and Don't Trust the B--- in Apartment 23, their ratings while solid, are not maximizing the ratings of Modern Family so I think ABC will use the 9:30 pm slot to launch a new show yet again and I think How To Live with Your Parents might be a good fit to MF since it's a family centric show. I was tempted to move Revenge on Sundays to fill the soap void left by Desperate Housewives but the show is basically an average performer and it solved the Wednesday 10 PM problem they had for so long so why move this show, right?


8 PM - The Last Resort
9 PM - Grey's Anatomy
10 PM - Scandal

The 8 PM block has been a problem for ABC now and I think they will slot one of their most anticipated shows with the Shawn Ryan-produced drama The Last Resort. It's male appealing but ABC successfully launched FlashForward here four years ago (it ultimately flopped by midseason but the show had creative problems that may have been the reason it lost a lot of its premiere audience but I don't think that's enough reason for ABC to be scared of launching another one on this slot.) Scandal is still relatively new and should stay on the same slot after Grey's Anatomy.


8 PM - Shark Tank
9 PM - Neighbors
9:30 PM - Family Tools
10 PM - 20 / 20

Shark Tank did well this season and with ABC ordering a full season this time around there's no doubt that it will be back on the same slot. With the relative strength of Shark Tank I think ABC will try to air scripted program at 9 PM. I read people are suggesting a Last Man Standing-Malibu Country line up here because they "cheap" since they are multi-camera sitcom but I don't think ABC will do that (I don't think the paychecks of Tim Allen and Reba McEntire are cheap) because they are trying to build their Tuesday comedy block. I was torned between the Modern Family castoffs block of Happy Endings-Apartment 23 or a freshmen block of Neighbors-Family Tools but I ultimately went for the latter since those shows have no big stars on it and might not be expensive to produce so it won't be a big risk to launch them on low-viewed night Friday.

Midseason: Body of Proof, Red Widow, Mistresses, Zero Hour, Happy Endings and Don't Trust the B--- in Apartment 23

Body of Proof will likely wait for the spring edition of DWTS to return (Private Practice is expected to end this season). Mistresses is developed for summer programming but could be moved up to spring just like Missing this year. Red Widow and Zero Hour feels like midseason shows and the Modern Family castoffs block of Happy Endings-Apartment 23 could come in after DWTS ends this fall for a four-sitcom comedy block on Tuesdays.

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