Home #Hwoodtimes Fall TV Preview: What to Watch (and What’s Not Worth It)

Fall TV Preview: What to Watch (and What’s Not Worth It)

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Programming Insider by Marc Berman

Los Angeles, CA (The Hollywood Times) 9/24/2019 – ON THIS DAY – Series that launched: “The Munsters” (CBS) in 1964; “The Mod Squad” (ABC) and “60 Minutes” (CBS) in 1968; “The Odd Couple” (ABC) in 1970; “The Love Boat” (ABC) in 1977; “Growing Pains” (ABC) in 1985; “A Different World” (NBC) in 1987; “Boy Meets World” (ABC) in 1993; “Dharma & Greg” (ABC) in 1997; and “The Big Bang Theory” on CBS…Celebrity Birthdays: Actress Nia Vardalos (“My Big Fat Greek Wedding”) is 57.

Did You Know?
Both equally eccentric “The Addams Family” and “The Munsters” aired for only two seasons — from 1964 to 1966. But since the norm was a 30+ episode season back then, the pair seemed to last longer…Together Jack Klugman and Tony Randall on “The Odd Couple” dominated the Emmy category of Best Actor in a Comedy Series in 3 of the 5 seasons it ran…Combining his roles on “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and “The Love Boat,” Gavin MacLeod was featured every Saturday in primetime from 1970 to 1986.

RATINGS BOX                                                           
Monday 9/23/19

Household Rating/Share
NBC: 5.3/ 9, ABC: 4.9/ 9, CBS: 4.5/ 8, Fox: 4.2/ 7, CW: 0.6/ 1

Percent Change From the Year-Ago Week:
CW: no change, Fox: – 2, ABC: – 9, NBC: -20, CBS: -29

Ratings Breakdown:
As always, these are the household overnights and only a first look at the initial rating results. There are many additional factors to consider. But what is immediately concerning is the year-to-year erosion for each of the four broadcasters – ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox.

NBC won this first night of the new TV season on the strength of “The Voice,” which led with a 6.3/10 in households from 8-10 p.m. ET. Comparably, “The Voice” bested “Dancing With the Stars” on ABC (#2: 5.0/ 8) by 26 percent. But the lead-in support was wasted on the debut of legal drama “Bluff City Law,” starring Jimmy Smits, which opened third in the Monday 10 p.m. hour with a 3.4/ 7 in the overnight households. Comparably, this was 51 percent below the debut of “Manifest” on the year-ago evening (6.9/12 on 9/24/18). And it trailed the season premiere episodes of competing “The Good Doctor” on ABC (#1: 4.8/ 9) and “Bull” on CBS (#2: 4.7/ 9) by 29 percent and 28 percent, respectively.

For the remainder of the overnight analysis for Monday, September 23, click here

Source: Nielsen Media Research


Fall TV Preview 2019: What to Watch (and What’s Not Worth It)
Overall, the five broadcast networks — ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox and The CW — will be introducing a roster of 17 new primetime television series this fall. The 2019-20 television season officially begins on Monday, September 23, and the breakdown by new series is nine scripted dramas, seven scripted sitcoms, and the non-scripted reboot of “Kids Say the Darndest Things,” hosted by Tiffany Haddish, on ABC.

There will be an additional 20 new series rolled out later in the season -— 12 dramas, seven sitcoms and one realty/competition. That brings the grand total to about 37 new series.

The inherent trends: more revivals, more spin-offs, and a continued emphasis on the hour-long drama format.

While these networks, of course, want you to believe everything new will be a success, attracting an audience in this era of “Peak TV” (where over 500 scripted series vie for eyeballs across all outlets) is more challenging than ever. Most seasons, three out of five new broadcast series do not make it into a second season. And, unfortunately, I do not see this upcoming season as an exception. For a look of each of the 17 new fall series, click here

Viacom Acquires Off-Net Rights to “Seinfeld”
Viacom has announced the acquisition of sitcom “Seinfeld” from Sony Pictures Television, in a deal that features the exclusive cable rights for all 180 episodes of the series. Beginning in October 2021, the full library of “Seinfeld” episodes will air amongst Viacom’s entertainment brands, including Comedy Central, Paramount Network and TV Land. Additionally, catch-up episodes will be available through Viacom brands via authenticated video on demand, websites and apps.

The deal was closed by Barbara Zaneri, EVP, Viacom Global Program Acquisitions, and Flory Bramnick, EVP, US Distribution, for an undisclosed sum.

“Friends” at 25
On September 22, 1994, NBC debuted one of its new Thursday night sitcoms entitled “Friends” about six friends — portrayed by Courteney Cox (Monica), Jennifer Aniston (Rachel), Lisa Kudrow (Phoebe), Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry (Chandler) and David Schwimmer (Ross) — living in New York City. It initially aired at 8:30 p.m. ET, sandwiched in between “Mad About You” and “Seinfeld.”

The show’s original title was “Insomnia Cafe,” which was then retitled “Friends Like Us” before it finalized as “Friends” upon its launch. It later took over the post-“Seinfeld” 9:30 p.m. slot in February 1995 once Dabney Coleman’s “Madman of the People” (NBC’s other Thursday sitcom introduced in the fall of ’94) faltered.

For a look at the notable promotional advertisements for the Thursday night sitcom, click here

2019 Emmy Awards: And the Winners Were… Click here

Best of the Worst: The History of Bad TV in 10 Shows – Click here

Predict the Outcomes of the “Big Brother 21” Finale – Click here

The Top 25 TV Shows of the 1970s, click here


“Walker Texas Ranger” Reboot in the Works
“Walker Texas Ranger” with “Supernatural” star Jared Padalecki is the latest series that could be rebooted. The original series starred Chick Norris and aired on CBS from 1993 to 2001. The proposed series, which is written/executive produced by Anna Fricke (“Valor”) and executive produced by Dan Lin (“Lethal Weapon)” and Dan Spilo (“Sunnyside”), is being shopped to various outlets by CBS TV Studios.

Padalecki will take over the role of Cordell Walker, who’s described as “a man finding his way back to his family while investigating crime in the state’s most elite unit. Our broken widower and father of two returns home to Austin after being undercover for two years for a high profile case – only to discover that there’s even more work to be done at home. In a nod to the original series, Walker and his new partner — one of the only women in Texas Rangers’ history — are the modern day heroes our world needs, following their own moral code to fight for what’s right, regardless of the rules.”


Nat Geo Wild will open season seven of “Dr. Oakley, Yukon Vet,” featuring Dr. Michelle Oakley, on Saturday, Sept. 28. The scroop: Dr. Oakley continues to make house calls across thousands of square miles in the isolated regions of the Yukon in northern Canada and throughout Alaska, where she’s responding to some of the most unique and challenging cases of her career. From moving bears with tractors and horses with helicopters to castrating angry boars and capturing wild bison, she’ll have to use every trick she knows to save these animals.

“Frontline” will kickoff its 38th season premiere on PBS on Tuesday, Oct. 1 with a two-hour documentary called “The Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia.”  Airing on the eve of the anniversary of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi’s murder, veteran “Frontline” filmmaker Martin Smith investigates Mohammed bin Salman, his vision for the future, his handling of dissent, and the murder of Khashoggi.

Series premieres: “Mixed-ish” and “Emergence” on ABC…Season premieres: “The Conners, “Bless This House” on “black-ish” on ABC; “NCIS, “FBI” and “NCIS: New Orleans” on CBS; “This Is Us” and “New Amsterdam” on NBC; “The Resident” and “Empire” on Fox; “Life Below Zero” on Nat Geo…Season finales: “60 Days In” on A+E; “Flipping Exes” on Bravo; “Ink Master” on Paramount; “Undercover Billionaire” on USA…For the listing of available programs for Tuesday, September 24, click here