Tuned In: Resurgent NBC shuffles schedule

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With its ratings on the rebound, NBC announced a 2014-15 prime-time schedule Sunday that abandons the two-hour Thursday comedy block and enlists hit "The Blacklist" in re-establishing the network's Thursday lineup come midseason.

NBC, which languished in the ratings for the past decade, is poised to finish the 2013-14 TV season as No. 1 in the advertiser-coveted age 18-49 demographic. (CBS is No.1 in total viewers.)

For fall the peacock network will add six new series -- three dramas, three comedies -- with a fully-stocked bench of midseason backup shows.

NBC canceled first-year series "Dracula," "Ironside," "Welcome to the Family," "Sean Saves the World," "The Michael J. Fox Show," "Growing Up Fisher," "Crisis" and "Believe" and the established series "Community" and "Revolution."

Here's NBC's fall schedule, with new series in bold:

Sunday

7 p.m.: "Football Night in America."

8:20 p.m.: "NBC Sunday Night Football."

Monday

8 p.m.: "The Voice."

10 p.m.: "The Blacklist"/ "State of Affairs" (beginning Nov. 17): CIA analyst Charleston Tucker (Katherine Heigl, "Grey's Anatomy") assembles the President's Daily Briefing on security issues. Leslie Odom Jr., a 2003 graduate of Carnegie Mellon University, also stars.

Tuesday

8 p.m.: "The Voice."

9 p.m.: "Marry Me": Annie (Casey Wilson, "Happy Endings") and Jake (Ken Marino, "Eastbound & Down") have been a couple for six years and Annie expected an engagement ring on an island vacation and loses it when she doesn't get one.

9:30 p.m.: "About a Boy."

10 p.m.: "Chicago Fire."

Wednesday

8 p.m.: "The Mysteries of Laura": A New York homicide detective (Debra Messing, "Smash") has a hot mess of a personal life involving her soon-to-be-ex-husband (Josh Lucas).

9 p.m.: "Law & Order: SVU."

10 p.m.: "Chicago P.D."

Thursday

8 p.m.: "The Biggest Loser."

9 p.m.: "Bad Judge": Kate Walsh ("Private Practice") stars as an unorthodox Los Angeles judge who is irresponsible in her private affairs until an 8-year-old boy enters her life.

9:30 p.m.: "A to Z": Andrew (Ben Feldman, "Mad Men") believes in fate and Zelda (Cristin Milioti, "How I Met Your Mother") hews toward chance when the two meet cute.

10 p.m.: "Parenthood."

Friday

8 p.m.: "Dateline NBC."

9 p.m.: "Grimm."

10 p.m.: "Constantine": Based on the DC Comics series "Hellblazer," this drama follows demon hunter John Constantine (Matt Ryan) who teams with supernaturally gifted Liv (Lucy Griffiths, "True Blood") to slay demons who threaten our world.

Saturday

8-11 p.m.: Reruns.

Midseason on NBC

NBC will hold the seventh and final season of "Parks and Recreation" for midseason. "Hannibal" is also on the bench along with reality series "Celebrity Apprentice" and "Hollywood Game Night."

Thursday drama "Parenthood" will end its run after its upcoming sixth season. In February "The Blacklist" moves to 9 p.m. Thursday following the broadcast of a post-Super Bowl episode on Feb. 1. "A.D.," the sequel to "The Bible" miniseries, will launch on Easter in 2015.

New midseason dramas include:

"Allegiance" (10 p.m. Thursday, February): Borrowing from FX's "The Americans," a CIA analyst (Gavin Stenhouse) learns his wealthy parents (Scott Cohen, Hope Davis) are deactivated Russian spies who have been re-activated to perpetrate a terrorist operation inside the U.S.

"Odyssey": Conspiracy drama about a U.S. corporation funding Jihadists in North Africa.

New midseason comedies include:

"Mission Control": An aerospace engineer (Krysten Ritter, "Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23") leads a team of sexist NASA scientists in the 1960s.

"Mr. Robinson": A rock band keyboardist (Craig Robinson, "The Office") works as a substitute teacher and butts heads with the school principal (Jean Smart, "Designing Women").

"One Big Happy": Lesbian Lizzy (Elisha Cuthbert, "Happy Endings") and straight best friend Luke (Nick Zano, "2 Broke Girls") are romantically unattached and decide to form a family of their own until Luke meets Prudence (Kelly Brook) and marries her.

"Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt": Tina Fey ("30 Rock") executive produces this series about a woman (Ellie Kemper, "The Office") who escapes a cult and starts her life over in New York with a gay, wannabe actor roommate.

More cancellations

Broadcast networks will continue to announce their new fall schedules through Thursday; network announcements will post to Tuned In Journal blog each morning at post-gazette.com/tv.

On-the-bubble shows began receiving cancellation notices late last week and the casualties so far are "The Crazy Ones," "Friends with Better Lives," "Bad Teacher" and "Intelligence" on CBS ("The Mentalist" was renewed); "Trophy Wife," "Super Fun Night," "Mixology," "The Neighbors" and "Suburgatory" on ABC and "The Carrie Diaries," "Star-Crossed" and "The Tomorrow People" on The CW.

On cable, TBS renewed "Cougar Town" for a sixth and final season but canceled "Men at Work."


TV writer Rob Owen: rowen@post-gazette.com or 412-263-2582. Read the Tuned In Journal blog at post-gazette.com/tv. Follow RobOwenTV on Twitter or Facebook.

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