Network grants full seasons to shows
A day after granting an extended life to three freshman series, NBC has gone the back-order route again with “Chuck” and “Chase.”In addition, the Peacock asked for four additional scripts of “Undercovers.” Peacock, looking for stability in its lineup prior to the impending Comcast merger, didn’t feel confident enough in the ratings-shy Wednesday-night drama to give it an additional 13-episode commitment, as it did with five other series, but didn’t want to completely dismiss it either after showing love for those other shows. “‘Chase’ has introduced an appealing new star to television audiences in Kelli Giddish, and we think it has potential to grow,” said primetime entertainment president Angela Bromstad. “We also are glad that ‘Chuck’ will be with us for a full season delivering its loyal, passionate audience.” The pickups were well received on the Warner Bros. lot, as all three series are from the studio. “Chase,” from the Jerry Bruckheimer stable, is averaging a 2.0 rating in the 18-49 demo and 6.5 million overall viewers. When live-plus-seven DVR numbers are factored in, the series earns a 23% increase in its total audience. “Chuck” has been on the ratings bubble for several seasons at the Peacock, but has performed well enough — 2.2 rating with 5.9 million viewers — to earn it a full-season commitment from the network. “Undercovers” is averaging only a 1.8 rating in the demo and 7.5 million overall viewers, disappointing numbers considering exec producer J.J. Abrams’ pedigree. On the bright side, the show has remained steady the past two weeks and doesn’t seem to be slipping. With its fall lineup now squared away — only show to be officially axed was Jimmy Smits court drama “Outlaw” — NBC’s next programming decisions will center around its midseason shows. First to crack the primetime lineup may be “Parks and Recreation,” which was pushed back because of star Amy Poehler’s pregnancy. Sitcom could land in any number of timeslots, possibly even 10 p.m. Thursday to further expand the night’s comedy block. Also looking to make their mark are creators Jon Pollack and Scott Silveri with sitcom “Perfect Couples,” from Universal Media Studios. Series examines three couples at various stages of their relationships. There are a handful of hourlong dramas currently on the sidelines and awaiting word. Legal drama “Harry’s Law,” from Warner Bros. Television and creator David E. Kelley, stars Kathy Bates as a recently fired patent lawyer who forms her own firm. UMS skein “Love Bites” was originally supposed to be on the fall sked, but the Peacock had to push it back when Cindy Chupack asked to be relieved of her showrunning duties. Also, co-star Becki Newton, who was playing a virgin, had to be recast because she was pregnant. The last-minute change forced the net to put in “The Apprentice” at 10 p.m. Thursday. There’s also BermanBraun’s superhero skein “The Cape,” with former “ER” thesp David Lyons in the title role of comicbook hero who comes to life. On the development front, NBC committed to a new comedy from “The New Adventures of Old Christine” creator Kari Lizer and Warner Bros. TV. Also Tuesday, Fox ordered six more scripts for midseason toon “Bob’s Burgers” and eight more scripts for “American Dad.”
Want Entertainment News First? Sign up for Variety Alerts and Newsletters!