Here's your Scheduling Five-Spot for the week ending May 1, 2011:
Tyler Perry on TBS - First, TBS announced the end of House of Payne, his first show with the net which will ultimately air a whooping 222 episodes in a run of just five to six calendar years. Buta third Perry comedy will take its place, the singlecam For Better Or Worse. Ten eps are ordered, probably just a formality before another they pick up 90 more so the show can hit the fast track to syndication (a model used with the other Perry shows). TBS has had many other originals during the Perry era, but the Perry shows have pretty consistently outshone them all ratings-wise.
CW Renewals - The CW picked up half of its schedule for next season: dramas Gossip Girl, 90210, The Vampire Diaries and Supernatural plus unscripted America's Next Top Model (which will get its first ever all-star edition). None of those are surprising. The question now becomes how this network fills out the rest of the schedule as newbies Hellcats and Nikita fade into oblivion down the stretch. At least one probably returns anyway. Throw in yet another One Tree Hill renewal, most likely, and then... three new shows? We'll see.
The Voice - On the heels of a huge premiere rating for The Voice, NBC's already started tinkering with the scheduling. After another two-hour episode this Tuesday, NBC will then move the next three one-hour editions from 8/7c to 10/9c. Then the show may well be moving back to 8/7c in the summer to lead into America's Got Talent. I tend to think it should just air at 8:00, but it would have to face the American Idol performance finale on one of those evenings. Tough call. I tend to think the net should really find a way to squeeze more than an hour a week out of this thing if it holds up.
Happy Endings - One of the most micromanaged shows of the season is getting one more scheduling tweak. On the heels of an impressive week three uptick, Happy Endings will return to airing back-to-back originals in the 10:00 hour. They'll hope for better results than the 1.6 demo they got out of Modern Family at 10:30 on Wednesday. If Happy Endings can hold around the 2.1 it got last week at 10:00, that improvement seems likely. Meanwhile, Happy Endings will now get through a lot more of its order during the regular season; 12 of 13 now scheduled.
Love Bites - It all comes full circle, or something philosophical. Almost a calendar year ago, NBC announced at its upfront that new romance anthology Love Bites would air Thursday at 10/9c. Starting June 5, they'll finally keep their promise. The show was derailed by behind-the-scenes issues and ultimately shelved in favor of an original-recipe version of The Apprentice (which had ratings so awful you wonder if they should've just gone with Love Bites in spite of it all). Don't expect anything ratings-wise, but at least more originals make summer ratings a little more interesting.