Tuesday, May 16, 2017

2017 Fall Schedule: ABC

Monday

8:00 - Dancing with the Stars
10:00 - The Good Doctor (NEW)

Conviction was the first show since Castle premiered way back in 2009 to air at 10:00 on Mondays... and it bombed. The Good Doctor looks more feel-good and uplifting and should pair well with the lightheartedness of DWTS, but 10:00 is a very unsure time period for ABC.

Tuesday

8:00 - The Middle
8:30 - Fresh Off the Boat (New Timeslot)
9:00 - black-ish (New Timeslot)
9:30 - The Mayor (NEW)
10:00 - The Gospel of Kevin (NEW)

This is quite an ambitious schedule for ABC. Moving black-ish to form a new African American-targeted comedy hour at 9:00 makes sense on paper, but it'll be going head-to-head with at least two other comedy blocks on NBC and Fox. black-ish was also routinely the lowest-rated show in the Wednesday block this past season, so it'll be interesting to see how it holds up as an anchor. The Middle, ever the stalwart, is the only show to remain put. After taking a year off from trying a new show at 10:00, ABC is going back to the drawing board after Agents of SHIELD continued dropping. It's risky to try two new shows back-to-back, especially after the troubles the slot has given ABC in the past.

Wednesday

8:00 - The Goldbergs
8:30 - Speechless
9:00 - Modern Family
9:30 - American Housewife (New Timeslot)
10:00 - Designated Survivor

Mostly staying the way it was this year, only American Housewife, which was a moderate success on Tuesdays at 8:30, moves into the lineup. It shows a kind-of faith in the entire lineup that nothing really needs to change (and with so many holes to fill and fires to put out elsewhere on the schedule, it makes sense), and having Modern Family as a lead-in should ensure American Housewife, at the very least, doesn't fall any further and perhaps even gains some new viewership.

Thursday

8:00 - Grey's Anatomy
9:00 - Scandal
10:00 - How to Get Away with Murder

No changes here for what will be the last season with this particular lineup: Scandal is ending after this year. I would have probably moved it to another night, like Sunday, to help rebuild somewhere that needs it, but I guess there is some strong marketing to be had in advertising the last season of traditional TGIT.

Friday

8:00 - Once Upon a Time (New Timeslot)
9:00 - Marvel's Inhumans (NEW)
10:00 - 20/20

This pairing is shocking to me. With such a high-profile acquisition as Inhumans, which will premiere in IMAX theatres ahead of the pilot's broadcast on ABC, I'm surprised it's landed on a low-profile night like Friday. I assume this is also where Agents of SHIELD will end up when it premieres at midseason.

Sunday

7:00 - America's Funniest Home Videos
8:00 - To Tell the Truth
9:00 - Shark Tank (New Timeslot)
10:00 - Ten Days in the Valley (NEW)

There have been rumors that ABC's revival of American Idol will air on Sunday nights, which makes this schedule make a little more sense: Ten Days in the Valley is a limited season of 10 episodes, and the other reality shows can easily be held for other times to clear Sunday nights for Idol. Going for all-reality in the fall is relatively smart, though, considering how low the scripted series on the night went this spring.

Midseason

ABC will be making big moves at midseason, particularly with its biggest addition to the schedule when American Idol, which ended just a year ago on Fox, comes to the network. Other new shows at midseason include comedies Alex, Inc. and Splitting Up Together; an 8-episode revival of Roseanne; new dramas The Crossing, DeceptionFor the People and an as-yet-untitled firefighter spin-off of Grey's Anatomy; new reality/alternative series Dancing with the Stars Junior (which will likely push Dancing with the Stars back to a single season, airing this fall) and The Bachelor Winter Games; and returning series Agents of SHIELD and Quantico. Special event programming includes ABC's first shot at the live-musical trend, an animation/live-action hybrid production of The Little Mermaid Live! in October and Rolling Stone 50, a celebration of the magazine airing in February.

This is a crazy schedule. A lot of it makes sense (black-ish with The Mayor, reality Sundays) but a lot of it is head-scratching (Fridays, Tuesdays at 10:00, reviving American Idol so soon). ABC will need to do a good deal of rebuilding, with Scandal ending after this season, Once Upon a Time completely rebooting its story, and losing its long-standing Friday night sitcom Last Man Standing, among other things. But is it really wise to hedge bets on Idol, which was awfully rated in its final few seasons (the final season on Fox reportedly lost the network $60 million) and hasn't been gone long enough to incite the nostalgia factor? I don't know. That'll also leave a huge chunk of ABC's schedule full of reality competitions with both Idol and DWTS Junior potentially airing at the same time. Then you add in low-rated returning shows like SHIELD and Quantico, and you have to wonder how exactly this new year is going to turn things around for the network. They have a clever bit of counter-programming to the Olympics with this new Bachelor Winter Games series, but if American Idol doesn't take off the way ABC is hoping, I don't see this being a successful year for them.

Click after the jump for descriptions of ABC's new 2017-2018 series.

Comedy

Alex, Inc. - Based on the podcast StartUp, Alex Schuman (Zach Braff, Scrubs) is a brilliant radio journalist, husband and father of two who is about to do something crazy – quit his job and start his own company. He quickly discovers it’s going to be a lot harder than he thought. Zach Braff stars, directs and is executive producer with Matt Tarses (Scrubs) and Davis Entertainment (Dr. Ken, The Blacklist). Matt Tarses is writer and executive producer. Zach Braff is director and executive producer. John Davis and John Fox are executive producers of the series, from Davis Entertainment, as are Alex Blumberg, Chris Gilberti and Matt Lieber (Gimlet Media) in association with Sony Pictures Television and ABC Studios.

The Mayor - Young rapper Courtney Rose (Brandon Micheal Hall) needs his big break. For years he’s toiled away in a small inner-city apartment, making music in his junk-filled bedroom closet. Tired of waiting for opportunity, Courtney cooks up the publicity stunt of the century – running for mayor of his hometown in California to generate buzz for his music career. Unfortunately for Courtney, his master plan goes wildly awry, ending in the most terrifying of outcomes: an election victory. With the help of his mother (Yvette Nicole Brown, Community) and friends, including Valentina (Glee's Lea Michele), Courtney will have to overcome his hubris if he wants to transform the struggling city he loves. The series stars Brandon Micheal Hall as Courtney Rose, Lea Michele as Valentina, Bernard David Jones as Jermaine Hardaway, Marcel Spears as TK and Yvette Nicole Brown as Dina. From executive producer Daveed Diggs (Tony winner for Broadway’s Hamilton), writer/executive producer Jeremy Bronson (Speechless, The Mindy Project, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon) and executive producer Jamie Tarses (Happy Endings), the series is from ABC Studios. The pilot is directed by executive producer James Griffiths (black-ish).

Splitting Up Together - Based on the Danish series, Splitting Up Together is the story of a couple (Jenna Fischer, The Office,  Oliver Hudson, Scream Queens) whose marriage is reignited by their divorce. Emily Kapnek (Suburgatory) writes and serves as executive producer of this new comedy, along with Ellen DeGeneres. The series stars Jenna Fischer as Lena, Oliver Hudson as Martin, Bobby Lee as Arthur, Diane Farr as Maya, Lindsay Price as Camille, Olivia Keville as Mae, Van Crosby as Mason and Sander Thomas as Milo. Jeff Kleeman, Mette Heeno, Mie Andreasen and Hella Joof are also executive producers of Splitting Up Together, which is based on the original series created by Heeno. It is produced by A Very Good Production and Piece of Pie Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television. Dean Holland directed the pilot.

Drama

The Crossing - Refugees from a war-torn country seek asylum in a small American fishing town, only the country these people are from is America – and the war they are fleeing hasn’t happened yet. As the government tries to uncover the truth behind this mysterious migration only one thing is certain: The lives of the people here — both the townspeople and these newcomers — will never be the same. Writers Dan Dworkin & Jay Beattie executive produce with Jason Reed. The Crossing stars Steve Zahn as Jude Miller, Natalie Martinez as Reece, Sandrine Holt as Emma Ren, Rick Gomez as Nestor, Jay Karnes as Craig Lindauer, Marcuis Harris as Caleb, Simone Kessel as Rebecca, Kelly Missal as Hannah, Rob Campbell as Paul, Grant Harvey as Roy, Bailey Skodje as Leah, Jon D’Leo as Will, Luc Roderique as Bryce and Tommy Bastow as Marshall. The pilot is directed by Rob Bowman. The series is from ABC Studios.

Deception - When his career is ruined by scandal, superstar magician Cameron Black has only one place to turn to practice his art of deception, influence and illusion — the FBI. Using every trick in the book and inventing new ones, he will help the government catch the world’s most elusive criminals while staging the biggest illusions of his career. The series is from writer/executive producer Chris Fedak (Chuck) and executive producers Greg Berlanti, Martin Gero and Sarah Schechter. Illusionist David Kwong (Now You See Me) will co-produce. Deception stars Jack Cutmore-Scott as Cameron Black/Jonathan Black, Ilfenesh Hadera as Kay Daniels, Lenora Crichlow as Dina Clark, Amaury Nolasco as Mike Alvarez, Justin Chon as Jordan Kwon, Laila Robins as Special Agent Deakins and Vinnie Jones as Gunter Gustafsen The series is from Berlanti Productions and Quinn’s House in association with Warner Bros. Television. Deception is directed by David Nutter, who is also executive producer.

For the People - Set in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, aka “The Mother Court,” this new Shondaland drama follows brand-new lawyers working for both the defense and the prosecution handling the most high-profile and high-stakes federal cases in the country – all as their lives intersect in and out of the courtroom. The series is created by Shondaland’s Paul William Davies and is executive produced by Shonda Rhimes and Betsy Beers.
The series, from ABC Studios, stars Ben Rappaport as Seth Oliver, Susannah Flood as Kate Littlejohn, Wesam Keesh as Jay Simmons, Regé-Jean Page as Leonard Knox, Ben Shenkman as Roger Gunn, Hope Davis as Jill Carlan, Vondie Curtis-Hall as Judge Nicholas Byrne and Anna Deavere Smith as Tina Krissman.

The Good Doctor - Shaun Murphy (Freddie Highmore, Bates Motel), a young surgeon with autism and savant syndrome, relocates from a quiet country life to join a prestigious hospital’s surgical unit. Alone in the world and unable to personally connect with those around him, Shaun uses his extraordinary medical gifts to save lives and challenge the skepticism of his colleagues. The series is from David Shore (House), and Lost and Hawaii Five-O star Daniel Dae Kim. The series stars Freddie Highmore as Dr. Shaun Murphy, Antonia Thomas as Dr. Claire Brown, Nicholas Gonzalez as Dr. Neal Melendez, Chuku Modu as Dr. Jared Kalu, Beau Garrett as Jessica Preston, Hill Harper as Dr. Marcus Andrews and Richard Schiff as Dr. Aaron Glassman. The series is from Sony Pictures Television and ABC Studios. David Shore is writer and executive producer. Daniel Dae Kim, David Kim and Sebastian Lee are also executive producers. Seth Gordon directed the pilot and is also an executive producer.

The Gospel of Kevin - Kevin Finn (Jason Ritter, Parenthood), a cluelessly self-serving person, is on a dangerous path to despair. In a downward spiral, Kevin returns home to stay with his widowed twin sister (JoAnna Garcia Swisher, Once Upon a Time) and niece. On his first night there, an unlikely celestial being named Yvette appears to him and presents him with a mission – to save the world. A light drama from executive producers Michele Fazekas & Tara Butters (Marvel’s Agent Carter, Resurrection, Reaper). The Gospel of Kevin stars Jason Ritter as Kevin Finn, JoAnna Garcia Swisher as Amy, J. August Richards as Nate, Chloe East as Reese, Dustin Ybarra as Tyler and India de Beaufort as Kristin. The pilot is directed by Paul McGuigan. The series is from ABC Studios.

Marvel's Inhumans - Marvel’s Inhumans explores the never-before-told epic adventure of the royal family including Black Bolt, the enigmatic, commanding King of the Inhumans, with a voice so powerful that the slightest whisper can destroy a city. After the Royal Family of Inhumans is splintered by a military coup, they barely escape to Hawaii where their surprising interactions with the lush world and humanity around them may prove to not only save them, but Earth itself. The legendary comic book series will be brought to life in a way that has never been done before, as a version of the first two episodes will be shown globally in IMAX theaters for a two-week period beginning September 1, 2017. ABC will then air the entirety of the series on the network, with additional exclusive content that can only been seen on ABC. “Marvel’s Inhumans” stars Anson Mount as Black Bolt, Iwan Rheon as Maximus, Serinda Swan as Medusa, Eme Ikwuakor as Gorgon, Isabelle Cornish as Crystal, Ken Leung as Karnak, Ellen Woglom as an undisclosed character, Sonya Balmores as Auran and Mike Moh as Triton. The series is executive produced by Scott Buck, along with Marvel’s Jeph Loeb and Jim Chory with Buck serving as showrunner. Roel ReinĂ© will direct the first two episodes. This series is a Marvel and IMAX project and is co-produced by Marvel Television and ABC Studios.

Ten Days in the Valley - Ten Days in the Valley stars Kyra Sedgwick as Jane Sadler, an overworked television producer and single mother in the middle of a separation whose life is turned upside down when her young daughter goes missing in the middle of the night. Just like her controversial police TV show, everything is a mystery, everyone has a secret and no one can be trusted. Ten Days in the Valley stars Kyra Sedgwick as Jane Sadler, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as John Bird, Kick Gurry as Pete Greene, Erika Christensen as Ali Petrovich, Felix Solis as David Gomez, Josh Randall as Tom Petrovich, Malcolm-Jamal Warner as Matt Abigail Pniowsky as Lake and Francois Battiste as Gus. Ten Days in the Valley is from Skydance Television. It is created and written by Tassie Cameron. Executive producers are Tassie Cameron, Kyra Sedgwick, Jill Littman, Dana Goldberg, David Ellison and Marcy Ross.

Alternative

American Idol ABC is bringing back American Idol. The network, along with producers FremantleMedia North America and 19 Entertainment, a division of CORE Media Group, will revive television’s most successful and recognized music competition series for the 2017-2018 season, bringing back the fan-favorite and making more dreams come true. A host and judges will be announced at a later time. American Idol's profound effect on the music industry is far-reaching and continually growing, launching the careers of superstars Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson, Katharine McPhee, Adam Lambert and Chris Daughtry, among many others. American Idol contestants have sold more than 60 million albums, resulting in more than 80 Platinum records and 95 Gold records. Its participants have generated more than 450 Billboard No. 1 hits and sold more than 260 million digital downloads. American Idol is produced by FremantleMedia North America and 19 Entertainment, a division of CORE Media Group. Executive producers include FremantleMedia North America’s Trish Kinane and Jennifer Mullin. FremantleMedia International distributes the series worldwide.

The Bachelor Winter Games - America’s favorite participants from past seasons of The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, from arch rivals to villains, will take competitive dating to a chilling new level. In an ode to the Winter Olympic Games and slated to premiere in February 2018, The Bachelor Winter Games will reunite the all-stars at a luxurious winter resort, where they will go head-to-head in winter-themed athletic challenges, including the toughest sport of all – love. The Bachelor Winter Games is a production of Next Entertainment in association with Warner Horizon Unscripted Television. Mike Fleiss and Martin Hilton to executive produce.

Dancing with the Stars Junior - A fresh new take on an established favorite, Dancing with the Stars Junior will pair celebrity kids and kids of celebrities with professional junior ballroom dancers to perform choreographed routines, which will be judged by a panel of renowned ballroom experts, to be announced at a later date. Slated to debut in Spring 2018, Dancing with the Stars Junior is produced by BBC Worldwide Productions

Specials

The Wonderful World of Disney: The Little Mermaid Live! - In a two-hour special event, ABC will take the iconic The Little Mermaid animated feature film and intertwine it with show stopping live musical performances via cutting edge technology for an explosive evening honoring one of Walt Disney's most celebrated classics. Fans of The Little Mermaid and Alan Menken and Howard Ashman's Oscar-winning songs will enjoy this never-before-seen live action/animation hybrid television experience featuring a soon-to-be announced roster of some of their favorite celebrity artists, whose performances will weave seamlessly throughout the original animated film. The Wonderful World of Disney: The Little Mermaid Live! is set to premiere on Tuesday, October 3. The special is produced by Done + Dusted with Hamish Hamilton, Ian Stewart, David Jammy, Katy Mullan, and Richard Kraft, of Kraft-Engel Productions, serving as executive producers.

Rolling Stone 50 - For half a century, Rolling Stone has remained an iconic and important voice in American music, culture and politics. Now, the people who have told their stories through the Rolling Stone lens are coming together to reflect on the last 50 years. Rolling Stone 50 will pay homage to the brand's influence and impact through a curated journey of its most seminal moments. Live from New York City, the three-hour special television event, set to debut Wednesday, February 7, 2018, will showcase live performances, short films, iconic on-stage moments, never-before-seen musical pairings, and celebrities that have shaped pop culture, music and politics.

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