This is actually an idea I’m partially swiping directly from THR, but instead of relying on logistics I’ll instead be relying on my own self anointed good taste and common sense. Yes, such things usually lead to cancellations (NBC’s Kings) but also resounding successes (Fox’s Dollhouse. How the fuck did it survive, really?).
With the networks’ fall schedules ironed out, here’s what I think will be the best and worst shows on each night’s primetime slots (8PM – 11 PM). I guess I’ll also throw in my prediction for the show to actually win the ratings each night, to keep up appearances and all that jazz. I’ll also have a word on Leno at the end, if anyone really gives two shits about that show stealing five primetime slots.
Best Shows: With 24 relegated to the new year, Monday’s on fall will pretty much be owned by House. I’m dying to find out the outcome of House’s stint in the derelict looking rehab centre, though I’m positive it won’t lead to a nicer, more empathetic man. There’s a chance Heroes can pick up steam again with Bryan Fuller on board, but I’ll believe it when I see it. And even when I do see it, I’ll wait half a season to accept it. Castle gets a second season to shine, but it sucks that it has to go up against CSI: Miami. It’s going to get demolished in the ratings.
Worst Shows: Never being a fan of rich kids being rich shows, I’m calling Gossip Girl as the Monday night flop. I never understood living vicariously through richer, shallower people. I’d much rather live vicariously through the life of a drugged up doctor any day of the week. Dancing With the Stars will continue to somehow attract viewers to watch has-been G-list stars dance with dancers they’d never heard of before.
Ratings Winner: CSI: Miami. People love the CSI franchise, and especially Horatio “meaningful look” Caine. Though Dancing With the Stars could take it any given Monday.
Best Shows: Man, Tuesdays are delegated to the art of DANCE! As such, I’m sticking with my boy So You Think You Can Dance. Say what you will about it, it won’t affect my affection. This is one of the few reality shows where skill is going to win you a contract. Okay, looking hot works in your favour too but you have to be a good hot dancer. For some reason I have this nagging feeling that I’ll really enjoy ABC’s new Shark Tank. I love shows that involve inventors doing smart and crazy things.
Worst Shows: 90210. Similar to my opinion on Gossip Girl, I can’t conceive of reasons why people eat this shit up like delicious hotcakes. Only made of shit. Also the results show of Dancing With the Stars will be even worse than the regular show.
Ratings Winner: NCIS: Los Angeles. The NCIS brand is so entrenched in redneck, gunslinging, middle aged America that it’s inevitable that, at least for awhile, Los Anglees will get some huge numbers based on the title alone. No offense to rednecks, gunslingers or the old, of course.
Best Shows: Being a procedurals buff, you can’t get much better than Criminal Minds and SVU. Both shows deal with the sickest of human nature and the men and women tasked to stopping them. Love it. Makes me feel pumped up afterwards. Not enough to make a difference in the world, mind you, but definitely enough to at least play Xbox. Parenthood looks promising on the sole fact that I love anything Peter Krause does, from Six Feet Under to Dirty Sexy Money to Lost Room. Glee is the real wild card. I dug the pilot’s musical bits, but pretty much hated everything else about it, from the shallow characters to the hodge podge editing. There’s also that feeling that it just needs a slight tweak and it’ll be the next Ugly Betty – Eccentric and entertaining.
Worst Shows: Hank with Kelsey Grammar looks as formulaic as a sitcom can get, just like every other new sitcom starting on ABC Wednesday nights. It’s like they’re dumping all of the comedies they know will fail here because it’d be stupid to compete with NBC’s godly lineup of sitcoms on Thursdays.
Ratings Winner: This is a toss up between Criminal Minds and CSI:NY. Both shows teeter totter around the 13-14 million mark every week. Not much a fan of NY, but the brand is strong in this one, it is.
Best Shows: In my opinion, by far the strongest night of television programming in the fall. It’ll be a hell of a time keeping up with all the quality shows. 30 Rock and The Office are going to continue rocking my funny bone (it’s going to micro fracture at this rate). Fringe is gonna bring the hardcore sci-fi with the alternate realities storyline continuing and hopefully Nimoy is more exciting than in the season 1 finale. Bones, CSI (the original, AKA the good one) and The Mentalist are going to bring the procedural hammer that I love so much. The best show of the night is still undoubtedly the CW’s Supernatural. If you’ve been keeping up with the show (and shame on you and yours if you haven’t) you’re probably as desperate as me to find out what happens now that Lucifer is out of the bag. This show is the current Angel or Buffy of TV, not Dollhouse.
Worst Shows: Vampire Diaries sounds like a stupid, stupid show and I feel confident my unfounded preconceived judgement of a show I haven’t watched yet will prove fruitful. It’s obvious it’s just a half hearted cash grab at the current Twilight fad, and Twilight was bad enough as it is.
Ratings Winner: Grey’s Anatomy is the safest bet, though I wouldn’t be surprised if CSI, despite a recent drop after William Peterson’s departure, manages to bump it from time to time. I still don’t understand the fervour over Grey’s, but after being forced to watch the finale I’ll at least tune in to see what the ultimate outcome of…oh God, I’m getting sucked in aren’t I. Fuck.
Best Shows: With Ugly Betty making the jump to Friday’s, I’m saddened that the already ratings deficient show is going to suffer even more. Still, I’ll at least have one more great season to watch. Law and Order and Numbers will continue to be solid entertainment whenever I bother to catch them. Dollhouse, the horribly rated show that somehow could, will most likely be better than the ho-hum first season. The show only really got it’s bearings by episode nine or ten, but by then the season was practically over.
Worst Shows: Smallville will continue to bring the suck, with show coming back for another unnecessary season. I mean, it doesn’t even take place in Smallville anymore! Clarke’s already a fucking reporter so why isn’t he Superman yet? In the immortal words of Eric Cartman, “tha’ fuck?” Southland I’ll probably continue to avoid like the plague. I really don’t know why. What I’ve seen from it is solid, well made procedural fare but something about it rubs me the wrong way.
Ratings Winner: CBS hopes Medium will bring over its audience after buying the show from NBC. This was one of the stranger off season moves, seeing that Medium was one of NBC’s very few ratings winners for the struggling network. Ghost Whisperer will continue to do well, riding Jennifer Love Hewitt’s, ahem, assets. Numbers rounds out CBS’ absolute dominance of the Friday night death slot.
Nothing is on.
Best Shows: The Amazing Race will continue to be bar none the greatest reality show ever conceived. Unlike the other shows that either demean its contestants or settle on a popularity contest, this one is all about skill and passion. I’m still in love with The Simpsons and I think American Dad gets overshadowed by the vastly inferior Family Guy. Jury’s out on The Cleveland Show, but hopefully it leans closer to American Dad than Family Guy. Cold Case is a lesser procedural, but at times it is surprisingly affecting.
Worst Shows: Whenever Nascar preempts The Simpsons I get angry. I understand football because it’s awesome, but fucking Nascar? Jesus.
Ratings Winner: Desperate Housewives will continue to bulldoze over all the competition.
I can understand NBC doing everything in their power to keep Leno from jumping to another network, but to sacrifice five primetime slots seems a bit drastic. I understand creating a talk show is dirt cheap, but if it gets demolished night in and night out by the likes of CSI: Miami, The Mentalist, CSI: NY, or Numbers (CBS essentially) will it have been worth it? Plus, this entire situation alienates Conan who just earned The Tonight Show. I mean, if you were an A-list star who needed to promote something would you go to Conan at 11:35 or the higher rated Leno at 10:00? The answer’s a given.
Plus, I hate Leno. I never understood his appeal, mainly because I don’t think I’ve ever laughed once during his monologue. I am not kidding. This is no exaggeration. I have literally never laughed while watching Leno. So I kind of hope he does flounder, if only to eventually give back those slots to scripted programming.