[As is my recent tradition, over the next six days, I'm going to be glancing, night-by-night, at how the primetime schedules have changed after the network announcements at upfronts. I'll be looking at how the various changes will impact the ratings races on each night, as well as my own DVRing habits. Readers can chime in on how their own DVRs will be impacted. And yes, this brief series assumes that anybody still watches TV on their TVs. I'm old-fashioned. It also assumes that you/I only have a dual tuner DVR (plus occasional access to a Slingbox on ET. Check out last year's DVR Gridlock installments and the DVR Gridlock segments for 2012.]
ABC: “Selfie,” “Manhattan Love Story”
The CW: “The Flash”
NBC: “The Voice”
ABC: “Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.”
CBS: “NCIS: New Orleans”
The CW: “Supernatural”
FOX: “New Girl,” “The Mindy Project”
NBC: “Marry Me,” “About a Boy”
CBS: “Person of Interest”
NBC: “Chicago Fire”
What's Changed: Few nights have been more overhauled, as everybody has something new. Amazingly, NBC is the most stable network, with only “Marry Me” (and a time shift for “About a Boy”) changing from the network's successful spring. After premiering four new shows on Tuesday last year, ABC is only going with three — “Selfie,” “Manhattan Love Story” and “Forever” — this time around, shifting “S.H.I.E.L.D.” to 9 p.m. where it will be able to avoid the “NCIS” mothership. Instead, it'll face “NCIS: New Orleans,” CBS' only new show between returning hits “NCIS” and “Person of Interest.” FOX's big reality gamble “Utopia” gets one of its two weekly airings in the 8 p.m. hour leading into NBC's well-regarded, low-rated 9 p.m. comedy block. And, for the second straight year, The CW will have a new spinoff — “The Flash” taking over for “The Originals” — leading into the astoundingly resilient “Supernatural.”
How the Ratings Race Is Impacted: Despite all the movement, it's unlikely that anything's going to change dramatically. Even if “NCIS: New Orleans” doesn't come close to doing what “NCIS: Los Angeles” did in the 9 p.m. hour for the past few seasons, CBS will still dominate the night overall. Assuming there isn't too much attrition in the latest season of “The Voice,” which could always theoretically suffer a ratings drop if Gwen Stefani and Pharrell don't pan out, NBC should still either win or keep things close in the 18-49 demo, with “Chicago Fire” regularly challenging “Person of Interest” for the key demo crown, especially if “NCIS: NO” is soft. I wouldn't expect much from any of ABC's new shows and “Forever” could be a candidate for the first show cancelled, given ABC's struggles in the Tuesday 10 p.m. hour last year. Meanwhile, I'd bet “The Flash” brings “Originals”-level ratings, which will keep “Supernatural” steady and keep Tuesday as one of The CW's better nights. And why on Earth is FOX so confident in “Utopia” that the reality series has been slated to kick off two nights? I don't know. If “Utopia” tanks on Friday, it hurts nothing. If “Utopia” tanks on Tuesday, FOX could finish below The CW for the night until FOX decides which of myriad midseason options will be available to save the hour.
My Predicted DVR: Tuesday is a light-ish night for me. In the 8 p.m. hour, I'll definitely watch “The Flash.” I think if FOX were only airing one “Utopia” hour per week, I might be curious enough to commit to it — I watched every second of “Forever Eden,” which was basically “Utopia” with a higher chance of gonorrhea — but there's no chance I'm wasting two hours on it unless it's fantastic, which could lead me to give “Selfie” and possibly (but less likely) “Manhattan Love Story” an extended DVR audition. “Selfie” is full of people I like, but the clip reel did nothing for me and the “Selfie” clips looked fantastic compared to “Manhattan Love Story,” which I may give a few episodes if only because of my conviction that Analeigh Tipton is a star. “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” and the FOX comedies will get DVR slots at 9 p.m. and I'll watch “Marry Me” OnDemand if it turns out to be any good. I continue to watch (and regularly be behind) on “Person of Interest” and that won't change. I dropped “Chicago Fire” this year because I couldn't commit to both “Chicago Fire” and “Chicago PD” and it seemed like they kept having too many crossovers for me to feel like keeping up. With the free DVR slot, maybe I'll watch a few episodes of “Forever” if the pilot is OK, but the clips didn't leave me with that much enthusiasm.
How have the new schedules impacted your Tuesday?