CBS went bold this week with its series pickups — but will its schedule be as adventurous?
That’s the question industry insiders were asking Wednesday, as the Eye prepared to unwrap its fall 2007 lineup. Net will confirm details at a 9 a.m. ET Wednesday meeting with reporters.
Top of the speculation heap: Jimmy Smits drama “Cane,” which has been rumored to land in the plum post-“CSI” slot on Thursdays at 10 p.m. (where James Woods’ “Shark” currently swims). Smits is no stranger to the slot, having shot to stardom there on “L.A. Law” in the 1980s.
CBS could look to its soap opera past in scheduling the show. Net historically had luck with “Knots Landing” Thursdays at 10 p.m. and with “Dallas” on Fridays at 9.
Key to this decision is how risky CBS is feeling. Eye is known for craving stability, and with so many newcomers on other nights, net may want to play a pat hand and keep “Shark” in its current slot.
But if “Shark” does splash elsewhere, options for the series include Tuesdays at 10.
That 10 p.m. Tuesday slot is one of three currently searching for a new occupant, along with Wednesdays at 8 (where “Jericho” blew up) and Fridays at 9 (where “Close to Home” was evicted).
Vampire drama “Moonlight” would seem to make a great fit between “Ghost Whisperer” and “Numbers,” given its spooky procedural premise.
That leaves Eye’s two biggest drama gambits of the year, musical “Viva Laughlin” and sexy drama “Swingtown.”
Given its subject matter, “Swingtown” may have to wait for a 10 p.m. slot — either in the fall on Tuesdays, or later in the season when another time period opens up.
“Laughlin,” on the other hand, could also take that Tuesday slot — or find a home Wednesdays at 8 or Sundays at 8 as well.
Meanwhile, unless CBS is playing coy, it appears that rumors of another comedy night in the offing won’t pan out. Instead, Eye will stick with a Monday 2-hour block, anchored by returning skeins “How I Met Your Mother” at 8 and “Two and a Half Men” at 9. Newcomer “The Big Bang Theory,” from “Two and a Half Men’s” Chuck Lorre, and returning midseason entry “Rules of Engagement” will inhabit the hammock slots.
On Sundays, “The Amazing Race” has been greenlit for another cycle, but it’s not clear if it will be back for fall or midseason. Eye has other reality prospects in the hopper that could work in this timeslot, or “Viva Laughlin” could always end up Sundays at 8 as well — potentially pushing a reality show to Wednesdays at 8.
With four new dramas and just three open hourlong slots, at least one new or returning show will have to wait it out for midseason.