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John Kiesewetter on the world of local and national TV

Senior Entertainment Reporter John Kiesewetter has been covering TV and media issues for 20 years. After joining the Cincinnati Enquirer in 1975 as a summer intern, he worked as a county government and suburban reporter; assistant city editor and suburban editor; and features editor supervising the Life section. He has a B.S. in journalism from Ohio University.

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Monday, May 14, 2007

NBC Fall Lineup Announced

First the good news: Fourth-placed NBC has rewnewed "Friday Night Lights," all three "Law & Order" shows and the entire Thursday lineup, including "Scrubs." That should make a lot of people happy.

More good news: NBC ordered 30 episodes of "The Office," and 25 of "My Name Is Earl," instead of usual 22. More shows, fewer reruns. Smart.

Gone are "Crossing Jordan," "Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip," "The Black Donnellys," "Andy Barker PI," "20 Good Years," "Kidnapped" and "Raines." Also not mentioned in NBC's 2007-08 season release is "The Apprentice," so we'll have to see if Trump is done at NBC.

NBC announced five new dramas and no new sitcoms for fall.

Midseason replacement shows include "The IT Crowd," with Cincinnati native Rocky Carroll ("The Agency," "Chicago Hope"), based on the British comedy about quirky IT guys, and the "Lipstick Jungle," adapted from Candace Bushnell's ("Sex and the City") novel by Lakota HS grad DeAnn Heline and her writing partner, Eileen Heisler. It premieres in January after NBC's Sunday night football at 10 p.m. Sunday, against ABC's "Brothers & Sisters."

The new shows:
--"Heroes: Origins," a spin-off of "Heroes" introducing a new character, one of whom will be chosen by viewers to become a regular cast member in fall 2008. NBC ordered a combined 30 episodes for "Heroes" and "Heroes: Origins." My guess is that there will be about eight "Origins," airing once a month, to cut down on "Heroes" reruns.

--"Bionic Woman," a remake of the 1976-78 series starring Michelle Ryan ("EastEnders") as a bartender with super powers after a car accident.

--"Journeyman," a San Francisco newspaper reporter (Kevin McKidd, "Rome") travels through time and change people’s lives.

--"Chuck," a computer geek (Zachary Levi, "Less Than Perfect") becomes a government spy after accidentally downloading government secrets into his brain.

--"Life," a detective (Damian Lewis, "Band of Brothers") wrongly imprisoned returns to the police force to work under a demanding boss (Adam Arkin, "Chicago Hope").

NBC has scheduled only one new reality series for fall:

--"The Singing Bee," a karaoke showdown in which contestants must accurately sing lyrics to popular songs, even after the music stops.

Three midseason series are:

--"The IT Crowd" with Rocky Carroll ("Chicago Hope," "Roc," "The Agency"). No scheduled premiere date.

--“Lipstick Jungle,” NBC calls this a dramedy from Helene and Heisler ("How I Met Your Mother," "Murphy Brown") about a movie executive (Brooke Shields, "Suddenly Susan"), a designer (Lindsay Price, "Beverly Hills 90210") and a fashion magazine editor (Kim Raver, "24").

--"World Moves," with dance teams demonstrating their athleticism and creativity in a reality show from "American Idol" judge Randy Jackson and the World Hip Hop Championship creators.

ABC announces its fall lineup Tuesday, CBS goes Wednesday and Fox & CW announce Thursday.


at 5/14/2007 2:10 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Regarding Friday Night Lights, it certainly is good news, but the bad news is that they are moving it to Friday night at 10pm. Definitely the kiss of death. Hard to imagine that we'll get a full season. This move seems less about cultivating an excellent product and more about pacifying critics.

at 5/14/2007 5:21 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

It seems the audiece they're looking for on Friday nights will have to record it, because they'll be at football games. Duh.

at 5/14/2007 7:16 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

As long as NBC continues to troll the bottom of the water for scavengers, series like "Studio 60" won't have a chance. Perhaps Grant Tinker can join the "Heroes" cast as the one who saves great series and saves the world.

at 5/15/2007 10:18 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have to agree about the Friday Night Lights comments... Friday night "at home whatching a tv show about being at a friday night football game, or being in the stands at Colrane, Elder, Moller, or Walnut Hills (gotta plug the sursum ad sumum- best 0 and 20 team in the nation)

Good to see Rocky Caroll back on T.V.

Any information about how the local show runners are doing--- Theresa Rebeck or anybody else?

at 5/15/2007 1:07 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw ABC's lineup on Monday and I'm so happy to see that The Women's Murder Club was picked up. I love the James Patterson book series and just finished reading his latest release The 6th Target. I hope the show's writing is as good as the book's.

at 5/15/2007 5:56 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

They can cancel the entire schedule. I'll watch a test pattern for 23.5 hours------just keep The Office coming!!!

at 5/16/2007 12:21 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

the Bionic Woman?? two weeks, 3 max. Chuck? Implanted in his brain???? probably won't be implanted in the viewers' brains. Lobotomy after week 2.
NBC, why not pick up Jericho, which the buffoons at CBS have cast onto the scrap heap? That would make a good team up with Heroes.
And note to ALL NETWORKS: Could we please stop the American Idle cloning? One show for people with IQ's south of 20 is plenty.

at 5/20/2007 12:08 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't believe they canceled Raines. I really like that show it was pretty good. But they keep giving the flop Friday Night Lights a chance I really don't understand!

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