Tuesday, 18 April 2017

NBC 2017-18 Season: News & Updates

Gregory's Thoughts

Congratulations NBC! After many years of trying you finally found a hit show with This Is Us!
Even though there were times when people wanted to write you guys off, I never lost faith and always believed you would pull through (and like always, I was right!) Things seem to be going pretty well for NBC thus far, at the very least better than how things were looking a few seasons ago. The network's comedy slate, while still pulling low ratings, has managed to nurture Superstore into becoming a relatively stable Thursday anchor. The Good Place received great reviews from critics and its ratings were quite good. The network has already renewed it for a second season. Powerless was DOA but Trial & Error is on the bubble and could still score a renewal, plus NBC has Great News and Marlon to premiere, things seem to be looking up for NBC's comedy slate.

On the drama side, This Is Us has become not only NBC's breakout show but also this season's Empire and has won the hearts of many American viewers! The Chicago franchise is stable though Chicago Justice and Chicago Med's ratings are fairly low. Despite the ratings, both shows will probably return next season. Taken, Emerald City, The Blacklist: Redemption and Timeless are new additions which have all under-performed and despite the latter having a seemingly large fan base, all three are likely to be cancelled. 

Despite ratings dropping for The Blacklist and Blindspot, both will be back next season. 

Next Season...

NBC has already renewed This Is Us for TWO MORE SEASONS which, believe it or not, is unsurprising. Hopefully they won't move the show from its post-The Voice Tuesday timeslot for the time being.

Order more dramas in the same vein as This Is Us. Not too many though (1-2 for next season) that could pair well with This Is Us and The Voice. Musical high school drama Rise (fka Drama High) and Good Girls sound like safe bets.

Continue to develop and nurture their comedy slate. Hopefully within a few seasons, NBC could mark the return of Must See TV. Whilst Superstore hasn't built on its audience, it is a safe launching pad for other comedies and is fairly stable making it an important fixture on their schedule.

The upcoming season of Will & Grace is the first sitcom to be rebooted for a network. It will be interesting to see how the show performs in the ratings and how this will impact NBC's future development slate. They have already ordered Relatively Happy (a multi-camera comedy pilot from the men behind Will & Grace) which could serve as a companion for Will & Grace.

How will NBC schedule the post-The Voice Monday timeslot next season considering the fact most of the dramas they have scheduled there have fallen dramatically once they are moved?

UPDATE (09/05/2017) NBC has ordered two new dramas Rise and For God and Country (now known as The Brave) and one new sitcom A.P. Bio.

UPDATE (12/05/2017) Two new drama orders for Good Girls from Jenna Bans and virtual reality thriller Reverie

UPDATE (13/05/2017) NBC has ordered their second sitcom, Champions from Mindy Kaling. It looks as though NBC will only be adding two new sitcoms to their schedule next season to join Superstore, The Good Place, Great News and the Will & Grace revival.


NBC has reversed the cancellation of Timeless and have given it a second season! My guess is the show will take the Friday night slot Grimm once occupied.

Pilot Preview:

A.P. Biology: NBC returns to familiar territory with this pilot which is set within the work place. It revolves around a high school teacher and the secondary characters are his fellow teachers and students. This was the first sitcom NBC ordered for next season and I can kind of see why (due to its familiarity... it's safe). There's not much more to say...

Champions: This pilot has my support due to Mindy Kaling being one of the creative forces and guest starring in the pilot. It also stars Anders Holm (aka Pastor Casey) in the lead role. I liked the pilot and enjoyed the dynamics between the three characters and the Indian teenage son is gay which is something we do not see often on television. Like The Mindy Project, the show is filled with pop culture references and has fast-paced dialogue. I hope this works well on screen.

Relatively Happy: NBC ordered this pilot to potentially pair with Will & Grace, which returns next season. It is their only multi-camera comedy pilot and while I don't hold anything against multi-camera comedies, there was not enough to hold my interest for long.

The Sackett Sisters: This show's humour is typical NBC fare, and it is executive produced by Tina Fey (30 Rock). The internet sensation aspect of the plot would be better suited for a movie than a long-running broadcast network show. However, it will probably receive a mid-season order due to the auspices both behind and in front of the camera.

Spaced Out: I loved the concept for this pilot, especially as it deals with class issues in a high-concept, space-themed setting. It is very netdy and at times feels like it is trying to emulate The Big Bang Theory. Take that as you will. 

Untitled Kourtney Kang Project: hails from Nahnatchka Khan, the brains behind Fresh Off The Boat. This pilot is very similar in tone and humour to the latter though it is told from a teenage girl's perspective, as she obsesses over her young male teacher and describes her fondness for erection (yes, this really happens). The show is funny though its humour does not resemble what we are used to seeing on NBC, which may explain why they ordered it - maybe they are trying something new in order to find a hit. Though the project also does not fit with ABC's family comedy slate due to its raunchy humour. I could see Fox possibly airing the show and pairing it with The Simpsons if they were brave enough.

What About Barb? I can see why ABC shopped this pilot elsewhere though I fail to see how this show will work in the long run. It has its funny moments however I feel as though it would benefit from a darker and somewhat more comically sinister tone than the family dynamic aspect it takes...

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