Some Midseason Scheduling Ideas: SCANDAL, NYC22, BFF/BENT and more:

I watched the first 3 eps of Scandal and I think it has potential to be a hit. I think Shonda Rhimes makes very good TV and she definitely knows what captivates the ABC audience. This is a different show from her about crisis management based on real life crisis manager, Judy Smith. I hope this show makes Kerry Washington the mega star she should already be. There’s a “case of the week”, but the real intrigue comes from the overall political mystery that evolves over every ep with twists and turns. I assume it will polarize many critics like all Shonda shows do, (plus it’s not on cable, and for many critics points are deducted just for that), but count me as a fan. It feels like one of those short British mini series like “State Of Play”. (Interesting Note: Henry Ian Cusick is now doing his regular Scottish accent or at least a Bristish one (I wasn’t sure) as opposed to the American one he was doing in the first edit of the pilot. Guess he redid his dialogue for the pilot and they dubbed it over/looped it).

I assume ABC will fill in their few mid-season scheduling blanks shortly, at the very latest at TCA in a few weeks, but it made me think how they might schedule it. Obviously there is an 8 week spot open Tue 10 after DWTS results. This show has 7 eps so it would fit nicely there. Could also see ABC benching Private Practice for a few weeks and using Grey’s as a lead in. But then I stared to think something else. The Bachelor finale is Monday, March 12th. Usually ABC airs “After The Final Rose” at 10. What if they moved that to Tue at 10p and used the big finale audience to premiere Missing which is scheduled to premiere Thu at 8p, 3 days later. It’s scheduled vs. Idol (and TBBT, although not for its first 2 weeks which is March Madness) and this might give it a heads up (plus in addition to the competition, premiering a show at 8p after Daylight Savings Time returns gives it an extra hurdle to overcome).

OR maybe ABC could use it to launch Scandal which would then continue for the next 6 weeks Wednesday at 10. Follow my logic here: At present time, Revenge has 22 eps (unless ABC has added to the order and just not announced it yet). At the end of sweeps, 17 eps will have aired, leaving just 5. Since it’s such a serialized show it probably doesn’t benefit for ABC to run 6 weeks of reruns. If Scandal premiered Monday night after The Bachelor finale and then aired Wed 10p for the next 6 weeks, it would finish Apr 19th. Then Revenge could return the week before May sweeps begins (Apr 26th) and run their last 5 eps, consecutively. This way ABC Wed 10p is virtually rerun free most of the season and with Scandal facing many reruns of SVU and CSI, it might be a good chance for it to break out. Either way, I think ABC should use The Bachelor finale to get one of their new midseason dramas sampled. (Another added bonus for ABC moving “After The Final Rose to Tue March 13th, it might take away some attention from NBCs Fashion Starwhich is premiering that night).

Speaking of NBC: 30 Rock and The Firm each have 22 eps so they will be rerun free from Jan all the way thru May. If The Firm manages to break out that’s a very nice thing to have – 22 uninterrupted weeks of new eps. It made me think that NBCs 2 new midseason sitcoms, BFF and Bent might find their 6 episode orders scheduled on Thu in March/May in lieu of Parks and Rec and Up All Night reruns. If The Office has 26 eps (like last year), the entire NBC Thursday night would essentially be rerun free the rest of the season (save for a few weeks of Office reruns). This might be a possibility for how NBC might schedule those shows.

Now that CBS has locked up Fridays for the rest of the season, it seems most likely that NYC22 will be scheduled Tue 10p come March or April. At this point Unforgettable only has 20 eps ordered (plus 2 extra scripts) but by the end of Feb Sweeps, 17-18 eps will have aired. Seems like NYC22, being a young police drama, would be a good fit with the NCIS twins, plus with NBC going the reality route it will give CBS one less drama to contend with there. CBS could wait til Unforgettable finishes airing their last few eps and then premiere NYC22 in April (after NCIS and spinoff air reruns in March making way for new eps for all 3 series most of April and May). They could also possibly air the last few Unforgettable eps on Sunday at 10 after The Good Wife. Either way, I would not be surprised to see NYC22 scheduled Tuesdays at 10p.

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