“Young Sheldon” is CBS’ centerpiece for 2017-18 season

“Young Sheldon”. ©2017 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

CBS announces new schedule in front of buyers

CBS held its 2017-18 upfront presentation Wednesday and announced its new schedule in front of ad buyers, and made a case for why the network is the “most watched in America”. CBS CEO Les Moonves addressed attendees at an upfronts breakfast Wednesday morning, subbing in for network president Glenn Geller, who is on medical leave. Joining him was Kelly Kahl, senior executive of primetime. We’ll have more on that later.

But first, here’s what CBS has on tap for the 2017-18 season:

– We’ll start with Tuesday first – and the night remains unchanged with NCIS, Bull, and NCIS: New Orleans. Wednesdays has Criminal Minds sliding over an hour later for new drama Seal Team, about….. Survivor stays pat and takes on Empire and The Blacklist. Fridays also remain pat with MacGyver, Hawaii Five-O and Blue Bloods, with 48 Hours remaining on Saturdays.

– Sundays has new drama Wisdom Of The Crowd leading out of 60 Minutes, followed by NCIS: Los Angeles and a relocated Madam Secretary.

– Now we discuss Mondays and Thursdays, which are difficult to dissect because of Thursday Night Football. The Big Bang Theory once again relocates to Monday nights due to Football on Thursdays. CBS’ new Young Sheldon, a BBT prequel, premieres on Sept. 25 as a special “preview”. The following week, 9JKL premieres. followed by Kevin Can Wait, new comedy Me Myself and I and Scorpion.

After football, Big Bang shifts back to Thursday with Young Sheldon moving into is regular night and time beginning Oct. 30. This is followed by Mom, Life In Pieces, and the new drama SWAT, which is actually not a reboot of the 1970’s ABC series, but of the movie based on the series.

When Big Bang moves back to Thursday, Kevin Can Wait takes over its spot on Mondays, followed by 9JKL, new comedy Me Myself and I, and the return of Superior Donuts. Scorpion remains pat.

Being held for midseason are Man With a Plan, Code Black, and Elementary (among others), with the latter a last-minute pickup. Canceled are Training Day, Hunted, and Ransom.

Moonves addressed the crowd during the executive session, and he acknowledged NBC’s return of “Must-See TV” moniker, stating his network is the real Must-See TV giving the large number of viewers they attract. Moonves also noted ABC’s acquisition of American Idol, saying the logistics for CBS to buy the show didn’t make financial sense. Moonves also noted what he said about Trump (“he may be good for CBS”, etc.) was a joke, but the way things are going, it’s one he may have regretted making.

As for CBS’ schedule, this isn’t too much to criticize here; after all, they are the number one network (in total viewers, at least.) while their shows don’t seem to have the same buzz as other networks, the networks goes by the late Oakland Raiders Al Davis’ slogan… “Just win, baby!”

One noticeable element of CBS’ fall schedule is the departure from multi-cam comedies, which the network has relied on in the past. 9JKL is the only new show which is multi-cam; the others, Young Sheldon included, are single-cam ones. CBS is betting a lot on how Sheldon Cooper became “The Genius. The Wonder. The Legend.” as a weekly series. But this has a Malcolm In The Middle feel to it – genius kid putting up with a dysfunctional family, and so on – not a bad thing, but it feels like it’s been done before.

CBS’ new Seal Team is a standard military drama, so if you’re into this type of stuff, you won’t be disappointed. Some say 9JKL is similar to the network’s long-running hit Everyone Loves Raymond… kind of a similar theme regarding their new shows.

Overall, not a bad schedule for CBS for next season – given ABC and Fox (especially Fox) are still in a rebuilding phase, staying the course seems to be the best bet. For all the ribbing I give “The Church Of Tisch” over a lot of things, they’ve done a good job running primetime.

To see the fall schedule and read detailed descriptions of each show, including the complete list of midseason entries, click here.