If you’re like me, reality shows might be some of the last thing you’d ever want to watch. But we’re about to get a big wave of them.
It’s that time of year when the broadcast networks reveal their fall schedules. With a writers strike underway, there are no writers to produce scripted shows. When you don’t have scripted shows, you end up with a glut of reality shows.
CBS, NBC, ABC and Fox have all made their presentations for the fall. But as TVLine reported, it’s ABC’s schedule that’s a jawdropper:
In what can only be viewed as a foreboding sign about the potential duration of the current writers’ strike, the network’s fall schedule is comprised entirely of unscripted fare (save for a pair of Abbott Elementary reruns on Wednesday).
ABC plans to launch its scripted shows — the dramas and comedies fans love — midseason. But that means some shows won’t get a “full” season because of the strike.
In the meantime, ABC is relying on game shows like Celebrity Jeopardy!, Celebrity Wheel of Fortune, Press Your Luck, and The $100,000 Pyramid.
I’m a big fan of game shows, but this makes ABC almost look like Game Show Network. But in addition to the traditional games, there are other competition shows like Dancing with the Stars, Bachelor in Paradise and Shark Tank.
ABC will also introduce The Golden Bachelor, a dating show for — you guessed it — senior citizens. I don’t know how well adults 25-54, the traditional demo advertisers like to attract, will respond to an elderly dating show.
ABC may have the most, but everyone else has reality shows planned
Granted, NBC and CBS don’t have a fall schedule loaded down with non-scripted shows. Then again, if the writers strike continues long enough, the other networks may be forced to move non-scripted shows to the front.
NBC plans two nights of The Voice. (I think that’s two too many.)
They also have The Wall, a game show, for Fridays. Their Saturday and Sunday night lineups are sports-only programming. Viewers can watch Big Ten Saturday Night on Saturdays and Football Night in America and NBC Sunday Night Football on Sundays.
The network lists a few more as “held for midseason,” although that could change. They include a second season of Password, an untitled America’s Got Talent spinoff, and Deal or No Deal Island.
Wait, what? Deal or No Deal Island? Oh, yes. It’s apparently a combination of the traditional Deal or No Deal and a take on Survivor. Teams compete to accumulate briefcases which they then use in ‘DOND’ gameplay.
CBS will supersize its long-running reality shows Survivor and The Amazing Race to 90 minutes, which will fill up Wednesday nights.
For two of the three hours of prime time on Saturday nights and for the 10 p.m. hour on Sunday nights, CBS plans reruns of its popular dramas. Well, when you can’t produce new episodes, reruns will just have to do.
Fox, meanwhile, hasn’t released its official fall schedule. But it has released a list of primetime series, of which 13 are scripted and 12 are unscripted. The Hollywood Reporter says their unscripted shows include Farmer Wants a Wife and game shows Snake Oil, We Are Family and Beat Shazam. I can See Your Voice and Kitchen Nightmares are also set to come back.