The CW (Not-So-Quite) Upfronts

Yesterday, the CW became the first network to release their plans for the 2020-2021 season, announcing that they would return with a full slate of new programming in January due to shutdowns from the corona virus.  The late start will not impact the number of episodes, with series still producing seasons of 13 to 22 episodes, depending on the show.  That will stretch the season in to July or August, leading to a very short summer break before the 2021 fall season starts in October.  The final episodes from some shows’ current seasons, which could not finish filming because of the pandemic, will be included in their next seasons.

Monday stays the same, with All American followed by Black Lightning.  Tuesday kicks off with The Flash, followed by the latest installment of the Arrowverse, Superman & LoisRiverdale and Nancy Drew continue to hold down the fort on Wednesdays.

While Supernatural may finally be over, Jared Padalecki returns to Thursdays in Walker, a re-imaging of Walker, Texas Ranger.  The night wraps up with Legacies.  Friday goes all reality, with Penn & Teller: Fool Us followed by back-to-back episodes of Whose Line Is It Anyway?  The Sunday night offerings are Batwoman and the new version of Charmed.

The network is planning a smaller version of its traditional Arrowverse crossover to air either late 1st quarter or early in the 2nd quarter of 2021.

To accommodate Melissa Benoist’s pregnancy, Supergirl gets bumped to mid-season.  Joining it are Dynasty, Roswell, New Mexico, In the Dark, and DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, alongside two new series: Kung Fu and The Republic of SarahSupernatural, which still had two episodes to film in its final season before the shutdown, will air its final seven episodes in the fall, alongside some usual summer and/or streaming fare.

All of this, of course, assumes that the production shutdown due to the corona virus lets up and crews can get back to work.

Midseason Review – Wednesdays

It’s Hump Day. Time to take a look back at my thoughts on the midweek offerings for the fall season.

7:00

Animal Practice – When the best thing about your pilot episode is the monkey that played Annie’s Boobs on Community, that’s a good sign that your show is in trouble. When you keep cutting to the monkey because you know it’s the best thing about your pilot, that’s just sad. There is some promise here with Justin Kirk and JoAnna Garcia, but I don’t plan to stick around in the off chance they find it.

It’s hard to imagine that a show centered around a monkey did not become a huge hit and was instead the first show to be yanked off the air.

Arrow – The CW tries to give the Smallville treatment to Green Arrow. I’m willing to give it a shot and hope for the best.

A decent enough show, but nothing spectacular.  I could see this following the Smallville path and lasting for years, with my interest waning somewhere along the way.

7:30

Guys With Kids – Having watched the first episode, which premiered last week, I can only say that this feels like a comedy that could have been on 20 years ago. And that is not a compliment.

I couldn’t even tell you if this show is still on the air.

The Neighbors – I only saw a brief clip of this show, but it was enough to tell me that I am not the target audience for this show. I’m not even sure who that target audience may be.

So I took one for the team and watched the pilot episode and, as I thought, this was not for me.  Some people actually seem to enjoy this show, so more power to them.

8:00

Criminal Minds – Jeanne Tripplehorn joins the team for season 8, replacing the departing Paget Brewster.

The wrinkles are starting to show more and more.  They’ve tried to introduce something of an arc for this season, but it really hasn’t been done all that well.

Modern Family – The family is expanding, as last season ended with Gloria revealing she is pregnant. This continues to be a consistently funny show.

Still bringing the funny, although most of the news about Modern Family this season has been about off the set drama involving Ariel Winter and her mother.

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