UPDATE: Back in May when the networks released their fall schedules, such as they were, most seemed to be at least slightly optimistic that the nascent writers’ strike would end long before filming would need to begin on the scripted fall shows. ABC was the only network that took a more pessimistic approach, filling their schedule with game shows and reruns. And now, almost two months to the day, the other networks seem to be realizing that the strikes aren’t ending anytime soon, and making adjustments to a fall schedule that is set to launch in September.
As you’ll see below, CBS has completely thrown out their previous schedule and replaced it with one that is a little more creative than some of the other networks. They’ve added Yellowstone, their sister network’s biggest hit, some other shows from Paramount+, some reruns, a foreign rerun in the form of the original Ghosts, and of course reality shows and game shows. Please find their fall schedule and premiere dates below.
There is no such thing as a traditional Upfront season anymore. Last year, very briefly, it felt like the Upfronts — the events when the networks announce their upcoming fall schedules and new series — were back following the pandemic and the steady decline of network television in general. But now with a writers’ strike that could very well stretch through the summer, and potential strikes by the Directors Guild of America and the Screen Actors Guild on the horizon, the networks are having to play the upcoming fall season entirely by ear. With some networks, this looks like loading up on reality content; with others, it looks like they are moving forward with their scripted material and hoping for the best.
CBS is taking a bit of a mixed approach. The most popular network clearly hopes that the strike(s) will be over before production has to begin for the fall season, as all of their scripted hits are on the schedule. That said, they’ve super-sized Survivor and The Amazing Race, eliminating the need for at least one hour of prime-time programming. Not sure that will do the trick, but I suppose you have to start somewhere.
CBS has also added two new dramas to their fall schedule — a spinoff of one of their popular franchises, and a gender-swapped reimagining of a television classic. Let’s hope we don’t have to wait long for them to premiere.