ABC hopes ‘Makeover’ will slap Fox ‘Spouses’

Alphabet changes sked to blunt competish's launch

The battle ain’t over yet: ABC is looking to counterpunch the launch of Fox’s “Trading Spouses: Meet Your New Mommy” on Tuesday.

Alphabet will rush to air an original seg of its popular reality entry “Extreme Makeover,” slotting it opposite the “Trading Spouses” bow that night at 8 p.m.

ABC alerted its stations of the schedule change on Thursday. Net execs were billing it as a battle between “Trading Spouses” and a show that specializes in trading faces.

The “Extreme Makeover” seg features three thirtysomething siblings who call themselves the “Gobble Sisters” — because they believe the skin under their necks make them look like turkeys.

Alphabet net apparently had an extra original seg of “Extreme Makeover” in the hopper; net had been holding it for future purposes.

ABC execs are still fuming over the launch of “Trading Spouses.”

Entertainment prexy Steve McPherson, speaking at the television critics press tour on Monday, accused Fox of stealing the “Trading Spouses” idea from “Wife Swap” and racing to get it on the air first in an attempt to damage ABC.

Fox execs took the stage Thursday, defending “Trading Spouses” and noting that ABC first announced “Wife Swap” last November — giving the Alphabet plenty of time to launch its show first.

The “Extreme Makeover” scheduling was the result of a compromise of sorts within ABC, which had debated for weeks whether to move up the bow of its fall skein “Wife Swap” in order to beat Fox to the punch. Instead, Alphabet execs decided to dust off the “Makeover” seg in an attempt to blunt the launch of “Swap.”

Per of “Trading Spouses” could represent a Catch-22 for ABC. If the Fox show does well, it could potentially overshadow “Wife Swap.” But if it flops, that may signal a lack of interest in the spouse switcheroo genre.

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