FOX’s 2016-17 season has been one to forget for the youngest of the Big 4 networks. While Lethal Weapon, Star, and The Mick have all shown promise, it hasn’t been enough to make up for the meltdowns of Scream Queens and Rosewood or the poor ratings for critically praised newbie Pitch, which was pushed to the fall after being left off the network’s initial schedule. If that wasn’t enough, the 24 reboot underperformed after getting a Super Bowl launch, the network’s live-action comedies took noticeable steps back (partially thanks to poor scheduling), and Empire faced declines that showed it to be mortal after all. Though their cupboards aren’t totally bare, FOX is going into 2017-18 with some middling assets, ancient animated comedies, and an Empire that, while still very big, is on the downside of its trajectory. So what will their schedule end up looking like?
That’s where KSiteTV’s Editor-in-Chief Craig Byrne and Contributing Editor Shilo Adams come in, as they’ve spent the past five seasons attempting to do the impossible – figure out what each broadcast network will be doing the following season. Though neither claims to be an expert, nor does either have access to insider information, they’ve watched enough TV, read enough of the trades, and paid enough attention to schedules to be able to provide an informed fantasy schedule meant to be an amalgamation of what we think could, should, and will happen. If you don’t see a show you like mentioned, or a show you like gets mentioned disparagingly, take note that we don’t mean anything by it. We’re just trying to figure these schedules out. And, as always, there will be shows on this schedule that might not even have a series order or a renewal, so be aware this is all pure speculation.
SHILO: 7:00 The OT; 7:30 Bob’s Burgers; 8:00 The Simpsons; 8:30 Ghosted; 9:00 Family Guy; 9:30 The Last Man on Earth
CRAIG: 7:00 The OT; 7:30 Bob’s Burgers; 8:00 The Simpsons; 8:30 Ghosted; 9:00 Family Guy; 9:30 The Last Man on Earth
SHILO: FOX’s Sundays still have the best branding of any night on their schedule and the fall is particularly kind to them, so I think there’ll be a new show at 8:30. It’s arguably the best comedy launchpad on the network with The Simpsons still a good lead-in and the football halo quite helpful when it comes to sampling; the only question is what goes there this season. My best guess is Ghosted, a paranormal investigator comedy starring Craig Robinson (The Office) and Adam Scott (Parks and Recreation) whose logline sounds like a comedic X-Files. It’s the type of show that both the regular FOX Sunday audience and casual football viewers would eat up (genre, male-skewing) and features two figures that they’d likely be familiar with in Robinson and Scott, so I think it would find a nice home at 8:30. Where the 9:00 hour is still in the heart of football and The Walking Dead territory, it makes more sense (to me) to stand pat for at least one more season with Family Guy and The Last Man on Earth and give the 8:30 comedy the bulk of the promotional attention.
CRAIG: Can’t argue with you on any of this. Ghosted sounds like it may be the buzziest FOX comedy pilot, so it would make sense to go into the comfortable Sunday. Ultimately I’d love to see something stronger in the 9:30 slot, but I do think Last Man on Earth will stick around, if only to stay in the Lord & Miller business for a while longer.