NBC officially abandoned it’s “Must See” Thursday comedy line-up this year, although they have been weaning themselves from that “brand” of comedy for several years now. Shows like Whitney and Animal Practice (both of which have been canceled) helped to usher in their “broader is better” strategy, a strategy that has mostly amounted to one cancellation after another. Seriously, since 2009’s Parks and Rec and Community, there hasn’t been a SINGLE comedy developed on NBC that’s made it to a third season.
So how’s that strategy working out for you, NBC?
Ironically, despite moving away from the brand of comedy that made Thursday nights Must See on NBC, the network has continued to try and recycle the talent from their glory years by putting their old stars in new, broad sitcoms, from Michael J. Fox to Sean Hayes to Bill Cosby (their attempt to resurrect Cosby, obviously, was derailed). Now NBC plans to take three stars (Rob Lowe, Jenna Fischer, and Megan Mullally) from three of their previous hits and throw them into a new, apocalyptic comedy, via TVLine:
Set against a backdrop of apocalyptic chaos, Apocalypse follows an extended family whose lives start to intersect in the29th Annual Lucille Lortel Awards – Arrivals most unexpected ways after news breaks that a comet is on a collision course with Earth.
Characters include a foul-mouthed priest (to be played by Lowe), an unhinged white supremacist, a meek bank manager, a germ-phobic cyber-terrorist, a five-star general and a child who (possibly) rose from the dead.
This will probably play out in one of two ways: Either the comedy is broad and lame, and it gets cancelled after one season on NBC, or it’s funny and original and NBC abandons it and gives it to Netflix, like they did with the Tina Fey/Ellie Kemper series.
I’m hoping for the latter, and then we can at least thank NBC again for using its resources to develop sitcoms for Netflix.