Monday, October 7, 2013

First Two Weeks, Mom

The CBS Premiere Monday was filled with disappointment, and Chuck Lorre's latest entry Mom was no exception. It averaged an underwhelming 2.5 demo, down three tenths from its 2 Broke Girls lead-in (2.8). Still, it was probably only the third-most disappointing show on the CBS evening. 2BG dropped much more out of How I Met Your Mother, and the 10/9c occupant Hostages (1.8) had a much worse premiere. And the 9:30 competition is extremely fierce these days with NBC airing The Voice (5.6 at 9:30), Fox going with Sleepy Hollow (3.1 at 9:30) and ABC very much on the map with Dancing with the Stars (2.2 at 9:30). Oh, and Monday Night Football (5.6)!

CBS' Monday got even uglier as We Are Men (2.0) launched in the 8:30 half-hour. The depressed lead-in dragged 2 Broke Girls down 14% to a 2.4, and then Mom dropped a slightly-less-than-typical 12% at 9:30 to a 2.2.

This is the toughest one yet. Disappointing as Mom has been, there are two far bigger problems on CBS Monday, and one of those likely gets even worse when week two of We Are Men airs tonight. Those other problems likely mean Mom is almost by default sticking around into the second half of the season. CBS won't want to make another three changes unless they really have to. Beyond that? Hard to tell, but I will say that I have trouble believing Mike and Molly or another midseason comedy would be doing any better than Mom in this spot. With The Voice looming as large as ever and 2 Broke Girls increasingly impotent, CBS Monday is becoming a very shaky proposition in general.

I could defer this, but I'm not really sure what I'd be looking for. I kind of expect Mom (and 2 Broke Girls) to be dragged down again this week by We Are Men, but Mom will remain only a bit behind 2BG (after all, the gap closed by a tenth in week two), and both should stabilize once CBS clears out some of the dead weight. And with HIMYM and maybe Two and a Half Men on the way out, CBS could use reliable non-flops, even if they remove a comedy hour next season. So I'll say Mom barely grinds out a season two Renew. But this is basically a coinflip, so please tell me why this is obviously wrong!

"First Two Weeks" is an ongoing experiment to see how often a new scripted show's fate can be predicted by the very earliest data. Here are the picks and lineups for every show this season.


Spot said...

CBS Mondays are going to be hammered by NBC for almost the whole season. With the exception of January, the Peacock is going to rule the night with The Voice's 2 cycles and the Winter Olympics in February. In a race against We Are Men, Mom is clearly going to win that as Men drops sub-2.0 tonight. But CBS has much more comedy flexibility this season (M&M, Friends with Better Lives, Bad Teacher). I feel Mom's renewal chances hinge on externals: how much of a pass CBS gives Mondays this season, its relationship with Chuck Lorre & WB as they negotiate The Big Bang Theory & the rest of his shows, and how the other new sitcoms do. Because right now I'd argue Mom is a bubble show.

At this point I'd also say renew Mom. But next season, if 2 Broke Girls is still an anchor I'd move Mom away from its dingy "halo."

Spot said...

I'm sure it gets renewed. It just needs a timeslot it could be sampled better at.

Crazy thought: let Monday crater and move the comedy strength to Thursday. 2BG is worthless as an anchor at this point. I would put Mike and Molly Monday @9PM and air 2BG behind TBBT - it would do much better than The Millers will do and thus help The Crazy Ones! Then in winter move 2BG Thursday 9:30, move TAAHM behind HIMYM and premiere the most promising newbie Thursday 8:30.

I know thats a lot of changes and probably hard for people to keep up with, but still - if CBS doesn't experiment, they will be in an even worse shape without HIMYM.

Spot said...

Renew. I think CBS wants to keep comedy at four hours, though one of CBS' midseson comedies needs to hit

Spot said...

Hmm. There's room for changes - not sure that I'd do those ones.

2BG behind TBBT feels like something that should have happened last year. They're reasonably compatible (both hangout comedies, just really different ones), and a TBBT/2BG/2.5 Men/newbie lineup would've been very promising. (If they had... well, any newbie!) Now? It'd feel like too good a slot for 2BG. The Millers is still in the 3s for now. Give it time.

I'd sooner reshuffle to set up a singlecam hour - moving 2.5 Men back to Mondays, probably at 9 with 2BG back in its old 8:30 slot, and going Crazy Ones/Bad Teacher. Only problem is where M&M goes...

Spot said...

CBS Comedy Fall 2014

8- Friends With Better Lives
8:30- New Comedy
9- Two Broke Girls
9:30- New Comedy

8- Big Bang Theory
8:30- The Millers
9- The Crazy Ones
9:30- Two and a Half Men (final season)

Mike & Molly will get a midseason renewal and become the new Rules, while Mom will be edged out by The Millers and Two and a Half Men for the final spot (I expect Friends With Better Lives to be a rather comfortable renewal). I think that CBS will stick with 4 hours of comedies, but I do not know if it should.

Spot said...

I'm sure CBS will be working out a deal with Chuck Lorre to try and keep the show around, if the ratings warrant cancellation. I really think Mom is the show that should have been given the lead in of The Big Bang Theory. Its first two episodes have been hilarious and its a comedy CBS viewers would flock to, if not held back by the horrible 2 Broke Girls.

Spot said...

I think there is a good chance they go to 3 hours.

Spot said...

I don't know what to say. I wanted to say defer but I agree that we will get no information. It's a definite bubble show. It could easily be renewed but I guess (and it is a guess, I cannot defend it properly) cancellation

Spot said...

If they do, they should cut the Monday block to an hour and leave the Thursday block at two.

Spot said...

2BG/Mom on Mondays to keep the female skewing anchor away from Grey's, and then a TBBT/Millers/Crazy Ones/new singlecam block with M&M and a new multicam on the bench?

Spot said...

We don't have to wait until next season - try next week! After the We Are Men cancellation, 2BG has been moved to 8:30 with M&M at 9, although the slot will be kept warm by TBBT reruns for a couple of weeks (presumably so M&M can get promotion).
That creates an obviously compatible 8pm hour with 2BG back where it took off in season 1, and an obviously compatible 9pm hour with two Chuck Lorre shows. I think that's a great move all around.

Spot said...

I read about that this morning. I'm glad that CBS went through with something this drastic even though this is clearly a panic move about fixing the night. 2 Broke Girls was becoming very damaging to Mondays; left alone I would have serious doubts about how the night would look in 2014-2015.

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