Fox TV Upfronts News - May 18, 2009
Fox was up first today revealing their plans for the upcoming TV season at the upfronts presentation. Most of the news of what they were doing was already known and the last was really the word over the weekend about Dollhouse's renewal. We did learn the fate of The Sarah Connor Chronicles. It will not be back and Fox executive, Kevin Reilly, made it clear that even if the new Terminator movie does really well, it will not make them rethink the decision. He pointed out that the show had done better ratings on Monday nights but the show had tumbled since moving to Friday nights. Again, no kidding!!! Friday night is a terrible TV viewing night if you are wanting viewers. I always get kind of annoyed with networks complaining about numbers for shows on Friday nights. The DVR numbers for Sarah Connor Chronicles were good but not good enough apparently for Fox. It was announced that Bones has been renewed for two seasons. The eighth season of 24 will premiere on January 17, 2010.
Returning Shows: House, The Simpsons, Family Guy, American Dad, Bones, Fringe, 'Til Death, Dollhouse, Cops, America's Most Wanted, 24, American Idol, Lie To Me, So You Think You Can Dance. Hope that I didn’t leave anything out here.
New Shows: The Cleveland Show (spinoff of Family Guy), Brothers (comedy starring Michael Strahan about a retired football player coming back to live with his family), Glee (premieres this week and is a comedy/drama about a teacher helping to bring the glee club back to its old glory), Human Target (drama about a private contractor who uses himself as a human target to protect his clients), Past Life (drama about a team including a psychologist who work to find out about the past lives of their clients), Sons Of Tuscon (comedy about kids hiring a guy to play the role of their dad while their real father is in prison), The Wanda Sykes Show (late night series hosted by of course Wanda Sykes),
What about Dollhouse? Dollhouse seems to be the biggest topic among people looking at the Fox upfronts. On the conference call with reporters, Kevin Reilly said that bringing back Dollhouse was "a bet on Joss Whedon. We looked at the profile of that show's - he has an unbelievably loyal fan base. It was consistent in the ratings and consistently [improved] as one of the biggest time-shifted shows on the air. So we're placing a bet on Joss that he'll keep it going next year." He did make a comment saying that if Joss’ show had been canceled that he would have received a ton of emails this morning complaining about it. Yeah, no doubt about that. Peter Rice, the chairman of Fox Entertainment, had this quote saying "The show became much stronger creatively over the course of the season, and Joss feels really energized about it. We believe in him as a creator and had a lot of success with him in the past. We feel we can build this show, that it can grow in the new season." Dollhouse will remain on Friday nights and be paired with two comedies, 'Til Death and Brothers. Yeah, I am not seeing this as doing Dollhouse any favors. I just hope that Fox keeps looking at those DVR and online streaming numbers. People are likely going to be watching the show in those methods. I'm thrilled that Dollhouse will be coming back.
Overall Thoughts: Fox will keep doing what they're doing and be successful. They have their ratings juggernauts in American Idol, 24, The Simpsons, and others. They have a lot of solid shows that perform very well for them. Like I always say with Fox, I won't be watching any of their new shows. I've learned my lesson many times with them promoting a show to the maximum and then I get interested in checking it out. I watch it, like it, and then Fox cancels it after two episodes. I've been caught too many times on that. I expect The Cleveland Show to do well as it will grab the Family Guy audience. Lots of hype on Glee so it will be interesting to see how it performs. Bottom line from me with Fox is that Dollhouse is renewed!!