Alphabet skeins swap shifts
HOLLYWOOD — With much-hyped Stephen King drama “Kingdom Hospital” bleeding viewers at a disturbing rate, ABC has decided to give its Wednesday night lineup an “Extreme Makeover.”Meanwhile, NBC laffer “Come to Papa” is coming off the Peacock’s midseason roster, with the net delaying the skein until summer. As for ABC, net has decided to sound the death bell for “Hospital,” moving the show from its current 10 p.m. Wednesday slot to 9 p.m. Thursdays, where it will do battle with two of TV’s biggest hits: “The Apprentice” and “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.” “Hospital” will make its final Wednesday appearance this week, then shift to Thursdays on April 1. “Extreme Makeover” replaces “Hospital” Wednesdays at 10. “Makeover,” which has been bravely struggling to help ABC keep the lights on Thursday nights most of this season, moves into its new slot April 14, a week after “The Bachelor” has its two-hour season premiere. ABC made a huge financial investment in “Kingdom Hospital,” which the net hoped would usher in a new paradigm of limited dramas that could help eliminate the number of repeats on its sked. Skein got off to a promising start but took a dramatic dive its second week — and continued losing viewers in subsequent weeks. By contrast, “Makeover” has demonstrated the ability to attract sizable auds when given a halfway decent timeslot. A home redecorating edition of the franchise has also done well on Sunday nights. Over at NBC, net had said it would launch “Come to Papa” this spring but has since changed its mind. Skein now won’t bow until summer at the earliest, the net confirmed Friday. Buzz surrounding “Papa” hasn’t been particularly strong, and one of the show’s regulars — Steve Carell — is already attached to NBC comedy contender “The Office.” But NBC execs also realized that given the current climate for new scripted shows this midseason — i.e., they’re all failing– it made little sense to devote precious promo time to a new comedy. Peacock still has some holes on its lineup, most notably Wednesdays at 8 p.m. and, once “American Dreams” wraps its season next month, Sundays at 8 p.m. Two-hour editions of “Dateline” will fill the Sunday gap through season’s end, while specials will largely take care of Wednesdays. There’s still no word yet on when (or if) NBC will give critically admired frosh drama “Miss Match” another shot to find its audience.
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