Monday, October 10, 2011

Schedule Five-Spot, WE 10/9/11, Good News - New Girl, Up All Night, Whitney, 2 Broke Girls, Fox renewals

I wanted to bring back the full complement of weekly Five-Spots last week or a couple weeks ago. But there was very little scheduling news until last week, when it all flew in at once. So I'm kicking off a new season of Schedule Five-Spots with a double dose today. This is the "good news" edition looking at the full season pickups to date and some other renewals from this week. "Bad news" went up about an hour ago.

New Girl - For the second straight year, the first full-season pickup went to a show airing on Tuesday at 9/8c on Fox. Last year, Raising Hope. This year, Zooey Deschanel's New Girl, which has done far better even than Hope (and was picked up a week earlier). It broke out with a 4.8 demo on premiere Tuesday and has remained well above a 4.0 in its two subsequent airings, and this has come despite major declines from Glee at 8:00.

Up All Night - NBC's Wednesday comedy block of Up All Night and Free Agents was supposed to be dead on arrival, or at least that's what I expected. The latter's already gone, so I guess we were half right. But Up All Night, while a modest player in the greater primetime scheme, has at least defied its low expectations and scored a full season. It got a 3.7 demo in its post-America's Got Talent premiere, then it's settled in the low 2's at 8/7c since. Not bad.

Whitney - Most back nines awarded thus far have been absolute no-brainers. The only one that was at all "marginal" was the one awarded to Whitney, which has posted mediocre retention out of The Office in its three airings. The full season was awarded before this happened, but Up All Night actually tied Whitney in 18-49 this week despite a much tougher situation. The main reason for Whitney's quick pickup is the massive carnage elsewhere on NBC.

2 Broke Girls - A lot of history was made on CBS' premiere Monday thanks to the Two and a Half Men explosion. Perhaps the biggest beneficiary was 2 Broke Girls, which had the biggest demo series premiere since 2008 and the most-viewed comedy premiere since 2001. It's since moved to 8:30 and thrived there too, posting a whooping 4.6 and 4.5 demo the last couple weeks. Going forward, the question is whether this can anchor a fourth hour of CBS comedy.

Fox renewals - A few miscellaneous shows also got renewed in the last week. The one making biggest news was The Simpsons, which struck a deal for two more years (through the show's 25th season!) after some rather public negotiations with the voice actors. Fox also renewed their summer staples MasterChef and So You Think You Can Dance for another year, as SYTYCD ekes out another season despite its big drops in recent years.

The Five-Spots are my recaps of what aired, what got renewed/cancelled and what rated well or poorly last week in TV. For more Five-Spots, see the Index.

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