ABC played it safe on some nights (Sunday and Monday), took risks on others (Tuesday), and went big on Thursday. Will ABC be able to dig itself out of fourth place next season? Let’s take a look at the schedule and see where they are headed.
7 – America’s Funniest Home Videos
8 – Once Upon a Time
9 – Resurrection
10 – Revenge
Analysis: ABC stuck with its midseason lineup in the fall. The first three hours of the lineup are solid, but we still don’t know if Resurrection has it hits bottom yet. In addition, we don’t know how many episodes the show has been ordered for in its second season. Revenge returns to its 10 o’clock timeslot, for what will likely be its final season.
8 – Dancing with the Stars
10 – Castle
Analysis: Castle is one lucky series! Yet again it will remain in the 10pm timeslot, leading out of Dancing with the Stars. I don’t know how I feel about leaving the series in the timeslot, especially since ABC is trying yet another new drama in the Tuesday 10pm timeslot (yes, again).
8 – Selfie (new comedy)
830 – Manhattan Love Story (new comedy)
9 – Agents of SHIELD (new time)
10 – Forever (new drama)
Analysis: With FOX and NBC sticking with comedies in the 9pm hour, ABC is abandoning its plans for comedy there. Instead, they will shift to 8pm. Two new comedies kicking off the night is unlikely to result in much traction, especially with a name like Selfie. ABC will probably have to find a new 8pm occupant by midseason. Agents of SHIELD bumps an hour later, which many expected to happen (but not me). That should at least give somewhat of a lead in to the new drama, Forever. Still, I think the Tuesday 10 o’clock curse will continue yet again this season. So while ABC may have fixed some of its Tuesday lineup, it is still a mess.
8 – The Middle
830 – The Goldbergs (new night and time)
9 – Modern Family
930 – Black-ish (new comedy)
10 – Nashville
Analysis: The Goldbergs gets prime Wednesday real estate, between two established hits in The Middle and Modern Family. If it could do 1.5-1.7’s on Tuesday nights, no doubt it should be able to build upon that in this new timeslot. ABC will try another new comedy in the post-Modern Family timeslot. At least this time they are going with a family comedy, and not another adult comedy that will be canned in a few weeks. Nashville retains its timeslot.
8 – Grey’s Anatomy (new time)
9 – Scandal (new time)
10 – How to Get Away with Murder (new drama)
Analysis: Well, they actually did it. ABC is gambling big time with this lineup, giving Shonda full control of the night. Grey’s Anatomy moves into the long-troubled 8 o’clock timeslot, with buzzy Scandal shifting to the tentpole hour. If Scandal suffers a major season four collapse, ABC is in trouble. New drama How to Get Away with Murder will have a solid lead in, and should perform well, but not as well as Scandal in the timeslot.
8 – Last Man Standing
830 – Cristela (new comedy)
9 – Shark Tank
10 – 20/20
Analysis: Thankfully ABC left Shark Tank where it belongs. Other than new comedy Cristela filling in the 830 timeslot, there isn’t any change here. And unlike last season, at least ABC is programming a full multi-camera block at 8pm.
Overall grade: B-