Friday, May 20, 2005

Fall Lineup Frenzy: CBS

Let me say this from the get go: I don't watch CBS for any primetime programming. I would sometimes catch Everybody Loves Raymond or Two and A Half Men (those two are actually pretty funny) but the only thing you might see me watch on CBS would be NFL Football or David Letterman. Alas, I'm still going to take a look at their new lineup. Info from The Futon Critic at this link specificially.


9:00-9:30 PM TWO AND A HALF MEN (NT)
9:30-10:00 PM OUT OF PRACTICE (N)
10:00-11:00 PM CSI: MIAMI

HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER (Monday, 8:30 PM) is a comedy about Ted (Josh Radnor) and how he fell in love. It all started when Ted's best friend, Marshall (Jason Segel, "Freaks and Geeks"), drops the bombshell that he's going to propose to his long-time girlfriend, Lily (Alyson Hannigan, "American Pie"), a kindergarten teacher. At that moment, Ted realizes that he had better get a move on if he hopes to find true love, too. Helping him in his quest is Barney (Neil Patrick Harris, "Doogie Howser, M.D."), a friend with endless, sometimes outrageous, opinions, a penchant for suits and a fool-proof way to meet women. When Ted meets Robin (Cobie Smulders, "Veritas: The Quest"), he's sure it's love at first sight, but destiny may have something else in store. With voice-over by Bob Saget ("Full House"), the show is told through flashbacks from the future. Carter Bays & Craig Thomas ("Late Show with David Letterman") are executive producers for Twentieth Century Fox Television.

OUT OF PRACTICE (Monday, 9:30 PM) is a comedy about a family of physicians who share the same profession but have little else in common. Ben Chase (Christopher Gorham, "Felicity") is an earnest young couples' counselor whose family doesn't consider him to be a "real" doctor because he doesn't have "M.D." after his name. But despite their lofty credentials, Ben might be the best prescription for the future of this family. Stockard Channing ("The West Wing"), Henry Winkler ("Happy Days"), Ty Burrell, ("In Good Company") and Paula Marshall ("Spin City") also star. Joe Keenan ("Frasier") and Christopher Lloyd ("Frasier") are executive producers for Paramount Network Television. Multiple Emmy Award winner Kelsey Grammer ("Frasier") directed the pilot.

My Thoughts: Two And A Half Men deserves the Raymond slot. The two new comedies on this night sound interesting but feel a little like retreads. How I Met Your Mother takes that sitcom classic (the episode where we find out how the main couple met) and turns it into a show. And I wonder if Scrubs and Arrested Development started a new trend of comedies being narrated (Everybody Hates Chris on UPN will be narrated by Chris Rock). Out Of Practice sounds just like what you'd expect from the people behind Frasier. Both of these shows have potential (they have good casts) but some of the worst shows have great people behind them somewhere.


8:00-9:00 PM NCIS
10:00-11:00 PM CLOSE TO HOME (N)

CLOSE TO HOME (Tuesday, 10:00 PM) stars Jennifer Finnigan ("The Bold and the Beautiful") in a legal drama that tears away the facade of suburbia to reveal that sometimes quiet and tranquil streets can hide the darkest of crimes. Annabeth Chase (Finnigan) is a young, aggressive prosecutor with a perfect conviction record who tries the cases that take place in her own backyard. Returning to work after having her first child, Annabeth is ready to take on the most difficult cases, fueled by her passion to protect her community and her family. Kimberly Elise ("Diary of a Mad Black Woman"), John Carroll Lynch ("The Drew Carey Show") and Christian Kane ("Friday Night Lights") also star. Jerry Bruckheimer ("CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," "Without A Trace"), Jonathan Littman ("Cold Case," "The Amazing Race"), Jim Leonard ("Thieves") and Simon West ("Lara Croft: Tomb Raider") are executive producers for Jerry Bruckheimer Television in association with Warner Bros. Television.

My Thoughts: This is the reason why I don't watch CBS. Too much of a reliance on crime/legal dramas. (BAD JOKE ALERT) I think CBS stands for Crime Broadcasting System. (/BAD JOKE ALERT) Close To Home has a pretty decent cast (Kimberly Elise is a wonderful actress) but I will probably be avoiding this night like the plague. At the very least, I might finally take a look at The Amazing Race...that's it.


8:30-9:00 PM YES, DEAR (NT)
9:00-10:00 PM CRIMINAL MINDS (N)
10:00-11:00 PM CSI: NY

CRIMINAL MINDS (Wednesday, 9:00 PM) stars Emmy and Tony Award winner Mandy Patinkin ("Chicago Hope"), Thomas Gibson ("Dharma & Greg") and Daytime Emmy Award winner Shemar Moore ("The Young and the Restless") in a suspense thriller about an elite squad of FBI profilers who analyze the country's most twisted criminal minds, anticipating their next move before they strike again. Each member of the team brings their own area of expertise to the table as they pinpoint predators' motivations and identify their emotional triggers in order to stop them. Matthew Gubler ("The Life Aquatic") and Lola Glaudini ("The Sopranos") also star. Mark Gordon ("The Day After Tomorrow," "Grey's Anatomy") and Ed Bernero ("Third Watch") are executive producers, and Jeff Davis and Deborah Spera ("Fathers and Sons") are co-executive producers for Touchstone Television in association with Paramount Network Television.

My Thoughts: I know this lineup will probably get good ratings's!! Why is Yes, Dear Still Standing?? And another $#% damn crime show?? I guess they think that they can do this because Shemar Moore is in it. If there is one universal truth it is that Shemar Moore's fans follow him wherever he may go, from The Young and The Restless to Diary Of A Mad Black Woman. Criminal Minds, from its premise to its name, sounds uninspired. Something has got to give, people, something has got to give.


10:00-11:00 PM WITHOUT A TRACE

My Thoughts: What works works for them, I guess. Meanwhile I'll be scrambling to watch and record stuff on The WB, FOX, and UPN.


9:00-10:00 PM THRESHOLD (N)
10:00-11:00 PM NUMB3RS

GHOST WHISPERER (Friday, 8:00 PM) stars Jennifer Love Hewitt ("Party of Five") in a drama, inspired by the work of famed medium James Van Praagh, about Melinda Gordon (Hewitt), a young newlywed with the unique ability to communicate with the earthbound spirits of people who have died and who seek her help. Melinda uses her gift to relay significant messages and important information to the living, but sometimes the messages she receives are intense and confusing. As a result, she is often met with questions and skepticism by the survivors. But when Melinda is able to help both the lost souls who contact her and those who are still alive, she knows that her unique talent is an asset and not a liability. David Conrad ("Profiler") and Aisha Tyler ("CSI: Crime Scene Investigation") also star. John Gray ("Helter Skelter," "Martin & Lewis"), Ian Sander and Kim Moses ("Profiler") are executive producers for Touchstone Television in association with Paramount Network Television.

THRESHOLD (Friday, 9:00 PM) stars Carla Gugino ("Sin City"), Charles S. Dutton ("Something the Lord Made"), Brian Van Holt ("House of Wax"), Robert Patrick Benedict ("Felicity") and Brent Spiner ("The Aviator") in a suspenseful drama about a team of experts who are assembled when the U.S. Navy makes a chilling discovery: an extra terrestrial craft has landed in the mid-Atlantic Ocean. Dr. Molly Anne Caffrey (Gugino) is a government contingency analyst whose job is to devise response plans for worst-case scenarios. When her plan called THRESHOLD is activated upon the news of the UFO, she and her hand-picked team of eclectic specialists get to work deciphering the intention of the craft and preparing for the possibility of a crisis situation -- an alien invasion. Brannon Braga ("Enterprise"), David Heyman ("Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban") and David Goyer ("Blade: Trinity") are executive producers for Paramount Network Television.

My Thoughts: Ghost Whisperer is Medium without the crime, thank goodness. I think it's going to be hard to convince audiences that Jennifer Love Hewitt can be dramatic again. Meanwhile, Threshold is what you get when you combine Fathom (from NBC) with Invasion (from ABC). It's almost a shame that CBS can get such good casts for shows that are not even remotely creative or different.


10:00-11:00 PM 48 HOURS MYSTERY

My Thoughts: Cops. America's Most Wanted. Saturday belongs to them and them alone.


7:00-8:00 PM 60 MINUTES
8:00-9:00 PM COLD CASE

My Thoughts: See my comments for Thursday.

Overall Thoughts: I guess CBS knows their audience...and I'm not it. As someone who doesn't watch crime dramas, I can say there is little at CBS for me to enjoy. 11 hours of CBS's schedule belongs to crime or legal dramas. 11 out of 22 hours of primetime television. That's half of their schedule. I guess it's working for them so it makes sense that they'd try to build a little bit on that. But if they think that by cancelling shows like Judging Amy and putting Jennifer Love Hewitt and Shemar Moore on "been there, done that" shows will draw younger audiences, they are in for a rude awakening.

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