‘Mike & Molly’ takes over for ‘The Millers’ in December

The nice thing about having an established show on the bench for midseason is that you can use it to fill a scheduling hole with only limited promotion.

Just days after confirming the somewhat abrupt cancellation of “The Millers,” CBS has scheduled a December premiere for the Emmy-winning comedy “Mike & Molly.”

“Mike & Molly,” which continues to star Billy Gardell and Melissa McCarthy, will premiere its fifth season on December 8 at 8:30 p.m., sandwiched between new episodes of “2 Broke Girls” and “Scorpion.”

Much of the promotional push for the new season will be done the previous week, as CBS has set a four-episode “Mike & Molly” mini-marathon for December 1, airing from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. followed by a “Scorpion” repeat.

“The Millers,” which received its cancellation notice on Friday afternoon, will air its last episode tonight (November 17). The second year comedy was shuffled from a protected Thursday slot to Monday nights and, after a so-so start after “Big Bang Theory,” “The Millers” flopped with “2 Broke Girls” as its lead-in. CBS didn't hesitate to pull the Will Arnett vehicle in order to protect freshman drama “Scorpion.”

CBS has yet to announce plans for the time period next week.

“Mike & Molly” has aired in a number of different Monday time periods during its run, making it the easy and logical choice to replace “The Millers.” In fact, if you're nostalgic, you may recall that CBS did nearly the exact same thing last year, picking “Mike & Molly” up for midseason and then rushing it back in the fall (November last time) after the speedy failure of “We Are Men.”

CBS still has Matthew Perry's remake of “The Odd Couple” on tap for midseason, though it'd be hard to imagine it going anywhere other than Thursday nights with “The McCarthys” struggling out of the box.