CBS is the number one network for a reason. Not only do they work hard to keep their current schedule intact, they’re usually forward thinking in selecting pilots that will fill future holes. Even though the slots for the fall season are super limited, they know that shelf life of a few of their aging veterans isn’t good. This year will be the last for How I Met Your Mother, and very possibly Two and A Half Men as well. Midseason utility player Rules of Engagement is gone (still not sure why they don’t make it official). This alone leaves two open comedy slots on Mondays, even if there’s only one for the fall.
Reality show Survivor is really losing steam, and even though CSI will likely go two more years, one has to wonder how much time The Good Wife and The Mentalist have. CBS is keeping all that in mind when it considers such a rich crop of pilots. If one stands out, there’s always midseason to plug holes to test the waters.
There’s also shifting fading shows to Friday. Criminal Minds, Hawaii Five-0, The Good Wife, and The Mentalist are all prime candidates to fill that Friday void at 8 and 9 pm. Survivor too. Suddenly, that opens up a few slots, and creates potential for a newly rebuilt Sunday and/or Wednesday lineup. Tuesdays at 10pm aren’t doing so hot either, so there’s a place for a new high profile show.
There are also rumors that CBS will expand its Thursday comedy lineup to two hours (thus where the single camera selections come in). That will either push Person of Interest to 10 pm, or they get a new night. I really don’t see them pushing one of their major success stories to a new night. I see Elementary being moved to fill other schedule holes instead. That is if CBS has the guts to mess with something that’s working.
It’s all something to think about when going through the following pilot statuses in a nutshell. Keep in mind a lot of this is based on buzz, rumor, speculation, feedback from people who got to see the pilot being shot, or Deadline. It’s still too early to get a big picture, and probably will be for a few more weeks.
A cast was finally found for Untitled Rottenburg/Zuritsky (still listed with the working title of Mother’s Day). Too bad they didn’t find a title yet. There’s a couple notables in here, which is kind of remarkable given how late it is in pilot season. Still, this is CBS. They’ve got some pull.
Cast: Debra Messing, Maggie Elizabeth Jones, Michael Nathanson, Paul Adelstein
Casting is still continuing for the Untitled Tad Quill project, but they’ve also scored some big names. They’re still cutting it very close though.
Cast: Matthew Broderick, Kristin Chenoweth, Phil Lewis, Jennifer Aspen
Otherwise, there isn’t much else. This has been one very smooth pilot season for CBS so far (except for said comedies). It’s actually kind of boring after looking at NBC.
Front Runner: Beverly Hills Cop
Looking Good: The Surgeon General, Intelligence, Backstrom
Serious Contenders For Midseason Pickup: Hostages, NCIS: RED
Has A Shot: The Ordained
Still too early to tell: The Anatomy of Violence, The Advocates, Second Sight, Reckless
Slam dunk, put it on your fall schedule now: Mom
Front Runner: Crazy Ones. This is really encouraging actually, because it’s finally pushing CBS into single camera comedy territory. The all star casting of Robin Williams and Sarah Michelle Gellar is pushing this one above the other good contenders.
Strong, but fighting hard for limited slots: Super Clyde, Bad Teacher, Friends With Better Lives, Untitled Greg Garcia Project, Ex-Men
Too early to tell: Untitled Rottenburg/Zuristsky, Untitled Tad Quill, Jacked Up, Gaffigan
In our next installment for CBS, the fantasy schedule!
Coming up, The CW. Given their limited slate of pilots, I’m going to do my first set of fantasy scheduling with this netlet.