ABC has announced its fall schedule, saying that it “is leaning into its incomparable unscripted slate,” i.e. scheduling almost entirely reality TV and game shows in prime-time.
They’ve apparently given up on the hope that any scripted TV will be produced this summer because of the WGA strike, which followed the AMPTP’s refusal to even negotiate on certain issues.
This is probably more realistic and honest than the schedules other networks have been releasing. On the May 11 episode of the podcast Happier in Hollywood, TV writers Liz Craft and Sarah Fain talked with WGA Negotiating Committee member Nicole Yorkin, who predicted a three- to five-month-long strike, and said “it depends on how much pain we can cause these companies.”
ABC’s scheduled shows include Dancing with the Stars’ return to ABC (though it’ll also still stream on Disney+) and Shark Tank.
Also in the mix: Celebrity Jeopardy!, which does have writers who are members of the WGA and are now on strike, so this is not a schedule free of writing.
ABC will also finally produce the old-person version of The Bachelor that was first announced before the pandemic began. It’s titled The Golden Bachelor, and I’m sure that it’ll be produced with all the thoughtfulness and care that the main show is, and not just became an endless parade of Viagra references.
It’s also bringing its obnoxious ABC News-produced hidden-camera show What Would You Do?, on which people are manipulated into reacting to fake scenarios and then either chastised or heralded as progressive heroes.
Elsewhere, CBS’s fall schedule is mostly dramas and comedies, but it has expanded Survivor and The Amazing Race to fill one evening between them.
Fox renewed eight of its unscripted shows—Farmer Wants a Wife (season 2), Hell’s Kitchen (season 22), I Can See Your Voice (season 3), LEGO Masters (season 4), The Masked Singer (season 10), Name That Tune (season 3), Next Level Chef (season 3) and Special Forces: World’s Toughest Test (season 2)—but did not announce a fall schedule, so it’s unclear when we’ll see any of those shows.
NBC did announce a fall schedule, but its only reality TV is The Voice on Mondays and Tuesdays, as always, and The Wall on Friday nights.
Based on all of this, it seems like ABC’s schedule is the most pragmatic and most-likely to stay intact.
ABC’s fall schedule
Here’s ABC’s fall schedule announced May 16, 2023, which has a lot of unscripted television and no new scripted TV, just repeats of the terrific Abbott Elementary.
- 8 p.m. Dancing with the Stars (two hours)
- 10 p.m. The Golden Bachelor
- 8 p.m. Celebrity Jeopardy!
- 9 p.m. Bachelor in Paradise (two hours)
- 8 p.m. Judge Steve Harvey
- 9 p.m. Abbott Elementary (Encore)
- 9:30 p.m. Abbott Elementary (Encore)
- 10 p.m. What Would You Do?
- 8 p.m. Celebrity Wheel of Fortune
- 9 p.m. Press Your Luck
- 10 p.m. The $100,000 Pyramid
- 8 p.m. Shark Tank
- 9:01 p.m. 20/20 (two hours)
- 7:30 p.m. College Football
- 7 p.m. America’s Funniest Home Videos
- 8 p.m. The Wonderful World of Disney (three hours)