Wednesday, May 17, 2006

CBS: We Rock So Bad (Written by Jon)

How badly do they rock? So badly they only had to pick up four new shows for next season, with their biggest shift being the break-up of TV's biggest night, CBS Thursday. Yes, CBS took a risk. They appear to realize that Crime Procedural Fatigue (Hereby referred to as CPF) will probably begin its slow descent next fall, and of the three dramas they picked up, only one is crime-centered, and that takes place on the bad side of the law. The schedule:

MONDAY
8:00-8:30 PM HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER (NT)
8:30-9:00 PM THE CLASS (N)
9:00-9:30 PM TWO AND A HALF MEN
9:30-10:00 PM THE NEW ADVENTURES OF OLD CHRISTINE
10:00-11:00 PM CSI: MIAMI

TUESDAY
8:00-9:00 PM NCIS
9:00-10:00 PM THE UNIT
10:00-11:00 PM SMITH (N)

WEDNESDAY
8:00-9:00 PM JERICHO (N)
9:00-10:00 PM CRIMINAL MINDS
10:00-11:00 PM CSI: NY

THURSDAY
8:00-9:00 PM SURVIVOR
9:00-10:00 PM CSI: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION
10:00-11:00 PM SHARK (N)

FRIDAY
8:00-9:00 PM GHOST WHISPERER
9:00-10:00 PM CLOSE TO HOME
10:00-11:00 PM NUMB3RS

SATURDAY
8:00-9:00 PM CRIMETIME SATURDAY
9:00-10:00 PM CRIMETIME SATURDAY
10:00-11:00 PM 48 HOURS: MYSTERY

SUNDAY
7:00-8:00 PM 60 MINUTES
8:00-9:00 PM THE AMAZING RACE (NT)
9:00-10:00 PM COLD CASE (NT)
10:00-11:00 PM WITHOUT A TRACE (NT)

Monday: As the only night on all of television with a successful comedy block, it stayed that way with the only change being the absence of the aging King of Queens kicking off the night. Instead, sophomore sitcom How I Met Your Mother will take that slot, leading into new sitcom The Class, about a group of twentysomething friends that took third grade together. Otherwise, the night is the same way it was left off this season.
Predictions: HIMYM draws a young audience that could flow well into The Class, while the other three shows should probably stay the same, unless Charlie Sheen turns off more viewers with his off-screen antics and CPF takes over Miami.

Tuesday: Unexplainable hit NCIS remains at 8 for the old fogies and patriotic folk, while The Unit hopes to continue holding said old fogies and patriotic folk like it successfully did this midseason. CBS is then hoping said old fogies and patriotic folk can dip into their bad side with Smith, the only crime-themed new show on the schedule about a group of career criminals led by Ray Liotta.
Predictions: Dancing with the Stars could tap into the older audience that keeps NCIS afloat during Idol season, but it should still perform well along with The Unit. Smith will be tricky though. Are people willing to watch criminals get away with their crimes after two hours of successfully crime-solving and terrorist busting? It probably won't hold a lot of those shows' audience, but it could do well enough among 18-49ers (A group the first two shows lack in) to be considered a success.

Wednesday: Another night with a new drama that otherwise stays the same. Jericho is probably the biggest gamble CBS is taking this fall, as it has virtually no companion show (It's a dark genre show about a small Kansas town post-apocalypse), and will most certainly turn off CBS's main audience (Older people). Again, though, if younger audiences can find it, it could do well. This then leads into last season's oddest hit Criminal Minds and CSI: NY.
Predictions: CBS's main intent with Jericho seems to be to bring the young audience, and if it can do that in a big way, that'll be enough to please them. As for CM and NY, I think both'll suffer slight falls, as they are the kinds of procedurals that audiences will probably begin to suffer from CPF first, due to the shows' young age.

Thursday: TV's biggest night year-round (FOX Tuesday doesn't do too well with only House in the Fall) just got a shake-up. Fading Survivor and foresnics drama CSI remain where they are, but new drama Shark will air after CSI, which, judging by the description from CBS, sounds like House, Esq. (And the pilot is directed by Spike Lee!).
Predictions: Going into edition 13, Survivor is bound to go down again this season, but should remain dominant unless Fox moves Idol here, while CSI will take a hit from Grey's Anatomy and CPF, but should still stay on top among total viewers (an 18-49 win is unlikely though). How Shark will perform will be interesting to see. Lawyer shows aren't too hot right now (the only one currently on is the kooky Boston Legal), but medical dramas were hardly the thing when House premiered. I think it should still win the hour though simply from the power of CSI, unless Six Degrees hits it big airing out of Grey's.

Fridays: The only night on the schedule to stay the same. Ho hum.
Predictions: All three shows are successful in their own way and usually win the night, and I don't see that changing this season.

Saturdays: Oh right, this night too. Ho hum.
Predictions: Again, they usually win this night, and unless College Football breaks out on ABC, that won't change.

Sunday: After the old-old-faithful 60 Minutes at 7, its an all-new night. The Amazing Race hopes to cut into Extreme Makeover: Home Edition's audience with Edition 10 (heh), leading into Cold Case (A smart move, as the show usually did well there when Football pushed it back in the fall), and Without a Trace will finally see whether it has an audience on its own as it goes up against Football and Calista Flockhart.
Predictions: For the first half of the season, this schedule is usually pushed back by Football (Sometimes by as much as an hour), which could be rough for appointment TV like The Amazing Race and then completely mess up the next two hours. Post-Football though, things should get back on track.

Tomorrow: The CW finally releases its official schedule (Though pretty much everyone has probably pinned it down already), while Fox tries once again to show it can survive Pre-Idol (Ha!).

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