The broadcast networks (ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX and the CW) recently unveiled their fall schedules with the typical ballyhoo — and nothing worth bally or hooing about.
But for a part of the industry that is so concerned about declining ratings and competition from basic cable, premium cable and streaming outlets, they’re not exactly putting up much of a fight.
They continue to focus on an outdated demo for which only 33 out of 142 shows this just-concluded season averaged a 2.0 or above in L+7 — which means that it took those 33 shows an entire week to even reach 2% of the available audience. And in total viewers, only 25 out of 142 shows averaged at least 10 million in that same metric for that same time period.
So instead of developing programming with mass audience appeal that could possibly stem these tides, they turn their focus on the backend. They develop programming that will sell well internationally to offset the resultant decline in advertising revenue. They primarily buy shows that they own through their studios or co-own with other studios in order to profit off the syndication sales. They revive, reboot and/or remake 10, 20, 30 and 40 year old shows from their archives. And they focus more on what the advertisers might want to buy as opposed to what the eyeballs the advertisers are clamoring for will want to see.
Below is the result: very little to get excited about by way of new programs (with the possible exception of Me, Myself and I and Young Sheldon on CBS), unwarranted cancellations (Last Man Standing on ABC, Rosewood on FOX, Pure Genius on CBS and Chicago Justice on NBC) and questionable scheduling decisions (pretty much across the board, but most notably ABC).