Monday, May 18, 2015

CBS: Winning

While I did not in fact see the series finale of "Two And a Half Men," I did hear about it, and while producer Chuck Lorre's nasty tweaking of Charlie Sheen - having Sheen's character Charlie Harper come back to life (when everyone thought he was dead) with a body double, not a cameo appearance from Sheen himself, and then dropping a piano on Charlie Harper's head and then coming out to recite Sheen's "Winning!" catchphrase  - was nasty, it's obvious that Lorre and CBS are winning.  "The Lorre-produced Big Bang Theory" is guaranteed to last two more seasons even as his other show, "Mom," is also coming back, and CBS itself remains - let's all sing it together - America's most watched network.
And the Big Eye has many new shows on tap for the 2015-16 season, some of which will debut in the fall and then be shuffled around with the old ones once its Thursday night football broadcasts for the coming NFL season are done, while several new shows debut and several old ones (including, alas, "2 Broke Girls") return at mid-season.  One show that will be back only once is "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," the two-hour series finale of which airs on September 27 and brings back original cast members William Petersen and Marg Helgenberger, among others.  It comes to an end after fifteen seasons.  And after that, "CSI'"s Ted Danson, who just keeps on trucking, joins the cast of "CSI: Cyber," the last show in the CSI franchise.  "CSI: Cyber" will airs at 10 PM Eastern on Sundays, following "60 Minutes," "Madam Secretary" (which continues even as NBC's obvious copycat "State of  Affairs," starring the considerably discredited Katherine Heigl, has bitten the dust), and "The Good Wife."
Among the new shows are "Life In Pieces," a comedy in which members of a family offer separate perspectives on the family at large and starring Dianne Wiest and James Brolin; "Angel From Hell," starring Jane Lynch as a guardian angel (not a Guardian Angel, a New York citizen police officer) who does more harm than good, and . . . a TV series based on Supergirl, perhaps the least known DC Comics superheroine?  I mean, the 1984 movie with Helen Slater in the title role wasn't exactly a blockbuster (but I'm led to understand that it was better than 1987's Superman IV: The Quest For Peace). 
Also, a new "Criminal Minds" series, Criminal Minds: "Beyond Borders," and a TV series version of the Jackie Chan/Chris Tucker movie Rush Hour come on at mid-season.  The addition of the latter series seems somewhat ironic, given that marital-arts actor Sammo Hung starred in a CBS police drama called "Martial Law" at  the turn of the millennium and Arsenio Hall was later added to that show to capitalize on the success of Rush Hour. (It didn't work.)
CBS's programming may not be all that imaginative, but it knows how to stay on top.  And it has Stephen Colbert replacing David Letterman, who ends his 33-year late-night talk-show career this Wednesday.
Here's the CBS 2015-16 lineup (all times are Eastern, new shows in boldface):

Fall 2015


8:00 PM - "The Big Bang Theory / "Supergirl" (starting in November)
8:30PM  - "Life in Pieces"
9:00 PM - "Scorpion"
10:00PM - "NCIS: Los Angeles"


8:00PM - "NCIS"
9:00PM - "NCIS: New Orleans"
10:00PM - "Limitless"


8:00PM - "Survivor"
9:00PM - "Criminal Minds"
10:00PM - "Code Black"


8:00PM - "NFL Thursday Night Football" (premieres September 17) / "The Big Bang Theory" (starting in November)

8:30PM - "Life in Pieces" (starting in November)
9:00PM - "Mom" (starting in November)
9:30PM - "Angel From Hell" (starting in November)
10:00PM - "Elementary" (starting in November)


8:00PM - "The Amazing Race"
9:00PM - "Hawaii Five-0"
10:00PM - "Blue Bloods"


8:00PM - "Crimetime Saturday" (encores)
9:00PM - "Crimetime Saturday" (encores)
10:00PM - "48 Hours"


7:00PM - "60 Minutes"
8:00PM - "Madam Secretary"
9:00PM - "The Good Wife"
10:00PM - "CSI: Cyber"

Unscheduled Mid-Season 2016:

COMEDY: "2 Broke Girls," "Mike & Molly," "The Odd Couple"

DRAMA: "Rush Hour," "Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders," "Person of Interest"
REALITY: "Undercover Boss" 

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