Because I needed outside news to cover in the middle of an exhaustive cable day at the Television Critics Association press tour, NBC announced a slew of spring premieres on Friday (January 10). The newly announced premieres clear up most of the network’s remaining programming mysteries for the 2013-2014 season.
The big beneficiaries of the new spring schedule are “Believe” and “About a Boy,” which will both get boosts from the Olympics, “The Voice” or both.
Adapted from Nick Hornby’s book (and, perhaps even moreso, from the successful feature film) by Jason Katims, “About a Boy” will get a special preview on Friday, February 21 at 10:20. That doesn’t sound especially encouraging until you recall that that airing will benefit from canned Olympics coverage from Sochi, Russia. Granted that Olympics promotion and sneaks did little for “Animal Practice” or “Go On” in 2012 (or, in fact, for any TV show in recent years), NBC is trying to expose the comedy to as many eyeballs as possible before it has its regular time period premiere on Tuesday, February 25. Fortunately, the well-received comedy will have plenty of eyeballs then as well, since it’s airing out of “The Voice.”
“About a Boy” will lead into “Growing Up Fisher,” featuring J.K. Simmons and Jenna Elfman, which will also get a post-Olympics tease on Sunday, February 23 before its February 25 premiere.
“Believe,” which was written and directed by Alfonso Cuaron in pilot form (but has gone through extensive behind-the-scenes upheaval subsequently), will have a special preview on Monday, March 10 after an episode of “The Voice,” before moving to its regular time person on Sunday, March 16, airing at 9 p.m.
That March 16 night will also see the premiere of the drama “Crisis,” Dermot Mulroney’s DC-set hostage companion piece to Dylan McDermott’s “Hostages.” The drama, which also features Gillian Anderson and has gone through its own set of creative adjustments, will air in the 10 p.m. hour on Sundays.
The following week, on March 23, NBC will premiere the Nate Berkus-hosted “American Dream Builders” in the Sunday 8 p.m. hour.
NBC previously announced a February 28 premiere date for the second season of “Hannibal,” which spun formerly scheduled midseason drama “Crossbones” off into the “TBD” ether.