Tuesday, May 17, 2005

ABC's Fall 2005

ABC today announced their Fall 2005 lineup and the shows that have been cancelled. (List and grid originally provided by The Futon Critic)

Cancelled: The Benefactor, Complete Savages, Life As We Know It (long ago), Blind Justice, Eight Simple Rules, Extreme Makeover, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition - How'd The Do That, Eyes, My Wife And Kids, The Wonderful World Of Disney plus NYPD Blue which ended its run voluntarily at the end of February.

Retained: Monday Night Football, Primetime Live, Hope & Faith, 20/20, America's Funniest Home Videos, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Desperate Housewives, Grey's Anatomy.

Moved: Wife Swap, The Bachelor, Jake In Progress, According to Jim, Rodney, Boston Legal, George Lopez, Lost, Alias, Supernanny.

New: Emily's Reasons Why Not, What About Brian, Commander-in-Chief, Invasion, The Night Stalker, Hot Properties

Complete Schedule ( New Series in Capitals)

8:00 p.m. Wife Swap (through January. New night and time)
9:00 p.m. Monday Night Football (through January)

(the following will premiere after MNF)
8:00 p.m. The Bachelor (new time)
9:30 p.m. Jake in Progress (new night and time)

8:00 p.m. According to Jim (new time)
8:30 p.m. Rodney (new time)
10:00 p.m. Boston Legal (new night)

8:00 p.m. George Lopez (new night and time)
8:30 p.m. FREDDIE
9:00 p.m. Lost (new time)
10:00 p.m. INVASION

8:00 p.m. Alias (new night and time)
10:00 p.m. Primetime Live

8:00 p.m. Supernanny (new night and time)
9:00 p.m. Hope & Faith
10:00 p.m. 20/20

8:00 p.m. ABC Movie of the Week

700 p.m. America's Funniest Home Videos
8:00 p.m. Extreme Makeover: Home Edition
9:00 p.m. Desperate Housewives
10:00 p.m. Greys Anatomy

In addition to the shows listed to replace Monday Night Football in January, ABC also has six shows listed as due for mid-season.

ABC was a bit more forthcoming than NBC on summaries of the new series. Futon Critic has complete summaries but here are some brief summaries for the series debuting in September:

Commander-in-Chief: Geena Davis plays the Vice President of the United States who decides to keep her job despite the wishes of the dying President (and most of her own party) that she step down to be replaced by someone "more suitable". With the President's death she becomes the first woman President. A strong cast including Donald Sutherland and Kyle Secor (from Homicide: Life on the Streets.

Freddie: Freddie Prinze Jr. plays a bachelor New York chef who foolishly takes in his sister, sister-in-law and grandmother after his brother dies. The ABC news release says "The creative forces behind “The Drew Carey Show” and “George Lopez” serve up a comedic dish based on the raucous femme-filled real life of star Freddie Prinze, Jr."

Hot Properties: A group of four women working in a Manhattan real estate office try to balance career with frequently chaotic personal lives.

Invasion: A Shaun Cassidy/Tommy Schlamme offering, the show focusses on a small Florida town where a hurricane reveals that there may be aliens among us and recent natural disasters have been a cover for sinister goings on.

The Night Stalker: A remake of the cult classic from 1974, Stuart Townshend (Dorian Grey in League of Extraordinary Gentlemen) takes on Darrin McGavin's role as Carl Kolchak, investigating the supernatural in a world that doesn't believe in things like vampires and werewolves.

The most obvious thing to comment on is that ABC has been rearranging the deck chairs by moving a lot of series to different times and different nights. At first glance I think the effect is rather good, with the moves plugging several holes in the lineup. Most of the cancellations don't surprise me, the big exception being that My Wife and Kids was cancelled while George Lopez was retained. Neither one was doing particularly well and some weeks were 5th in the overnight ratings. Also somewhat surprising is that Jake In Progress will be back, albeit in January once Monday Night Football ends. The show was getting hammered in the Thursday night slots where it had been placed in what looked like a burn-off situation, but apparently someone thought enough of the series to put it opposite the CBS comedy lineup.

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