Say goodbye to NBC's longstanding Thursday comedy block and Parks and Recreation, which will end after its seventh and 13-episode season.
It's bad news for some and good news for others on NBC next season.
Thanks to The Voice, The Blacklist, The Olympics, Sunday Night Football, and the unexpectedly potent punch of Chicago Fire and Chicago P.D., the network was in a good place for the first time, in a long time, when they announced their 2014-2015 fall schedule.
Despite their status as the last-place network, NBC actually ended the 2013-2014 season in first place among 18-49 for all of the broadcasters. (Let that sink in for a little bit.)
Still, there are some changes. NBC is moving The Biggest Loser to Thursday at 8 p.m., opposite CBS' seemingly unstoppable comedy force The Big Bang Theory. After failing to get traction with a comedy in the opening night spot, NBC seems to realize that it needs to let a time-tested veteran kick off the night and that a two-hour block of comedies on the night just wasn't cutting it, despite the legacy appeal that such a block had for the network.
The other big change to the schedule involves The Blacklist; but it'll hand over that cushy post-Voice spot on Monday nights to State of Affairs, starring Katherine Heigl, beginning Nov. 17. The James Spader vehicle, which was a big hit in its first season, will go on a temporary hiatus, returning Feb. 5 at 9 p.m. on Thursdays.
A few other notable details:
— After protracted negotiations that put the fate of Parenthood in jeopardy, the beloved drama does appear on the fall schedule, sticking with its Thursday night timeslot, at 10 p.m. The Jason Katims drama will wrap up its run with a final season of 13 episodes. When Parenthood ends, Allegiance will take its time lot.
— The Blacklist will launch in the fall and then be on hiatus until the Super Bowl on February 1, 2015. It'll debut part 1 of a two-part episode after the Super Bowl. The second part will debut four days later on its new regular Thursday times lot. NBC Chairman Bob Greenblatt said the goal for the upcoming season is to put the network back in business on Thursday nights with The Blacklist as its anchor. He also cited The Big Bang Theory on CBS and Grey's Anatomy on ABC as other shows on other networks that've dominated Thursday primetime.
— January is the new September. Missing from the fall schedule are returning favorites Parks and Recreation and Hannibal, although Bryan Fuller's serial killer thriller has always been a midseason series (and is likely to premiere in Jan. 2015), while the absence of the Amy Poehler-led comedy indicates it will also premiere in the winter, or fill a comedy hole vacated by an underperforming freshman series. And sadly, it will end after its upcoming seventh season.
— In fact, NBC is leaving a lot of new shows on the bench: seven in total, including Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, from 30 Rock's Tina Fey and Robert Carlock. The Ellie Kemper-comedy was ordered straight to series, and was considered a lock for the fall schedule. (The other freshman series sitting on the bench for now are Allegiance, Aquarius, Odyssey, Mr. Robinson, Mission Control, and One Big Happy.)
— Also absent from the fall schedule are all four event series — David Duchovny's Charles Manson-chasing drama, Aquarius; an updated (read: gritty) reworking of The Wizard of Oz called Emerald City; A.D., a sequel to the insanely popular The Bible (which most expected to premiere around Easter 2015 anyway); and Heroes Reborn, a reboot of NBC's once-popular superhero saga.
— NBC is making Friday night drama genre night with Constantine — an adaptation of the DC Comics supernatural series. It will follow Grimm, which has proven itself in a big way at 9 p.m. "This is a scary show, but it also has a sense of humor," Greenblatt said about the new series.
The full schedule is at the bottom of the story, and the new shows are now arranged in night-of-the-week order.
State of Affairs (Mondays at 10 p.m. beginning Nov. 17)
Marry Me (Tuesdays at 9 p.m.)
The Mysteries Of Laura (Wednesdays at 8 p.m.)
Bad Judge (Thursdays at 9 p.m.)
A to Z (Thursdays at 9:30 p.m.)
Constantine (Fridays at 10 p.m.)
Who's in it? Matt Ryan (Criminal Minds), Lucy Griffiths (True Blood), Harold Perrineau (Lost), and Charles Halford
Who created it? Writer Daniel Cerone (The Mentalist), who executive produces with David S. Goyer (Batman Begins)
What's it about? Based on the hit DC Comics series Hellblazer, Ryan stars as the titular seasoned demon hunter and master of the occult John Constantine. The release from the network says he "specializes in giving hell… hell." (Ba dum tsss!)
First impression? Hellblazer has already had an ill-fated adaptation in the 2005 Keanu Reeves movie, Constantine. But paired with Grimm with its procedural premise built in (sending various demons back to hell), this new Constantine could do well. Grimm has won over the fanboys—from the looks of the trailer, Constantine won't have to work as hard. —Kate Aurthur
One Big Happy (Midseason TBD)
Mission Control (Midseason TBD)
Mr. Robinson (Midseason TBD)
Odyssey (Midseason TBD)
Aquarius (Midseason TBD)
Allegiance (Midseason TBD)
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Midseason TBD)
Emerald City (Midseason TBD)
A.D. (Midseason — will debut on Easter Sunday)
Heroes Reborn (Midseason TBD)
8-10 p.m. — The Voice
10-11 p.m. — The Blacklist / State of Affairs (beginning Nov. 17)
8-9 p.m. — The Voice
9-9:30 p.m. — Marry Me
9:30-10 p.m. — About a Boy
10-11 p.m. — Chicago Fire
8-9 p.m. — The Mysteries of Laura
9-10 p.m. — Law & Order: SVU
10-11 p.m. — Chicago P.D.
8-9 p.m. — The Biggest Loser
9-9:30 p.m. — Bad Judge (The Blacklist beginning Feb. 5)
9:30-10 p.m. — A to Z
10-11 p.m. — Parenthood
8-9 p.m. — Dateline NBC
9-10 p.m. — Grimm
10-11 p.m. — Constantine
8-11 p.m. — Encore programming
7-8:20 p.m. — Football Night in America
8:20-11:30 p.m. — NBC Sunday Night Football
This post has been updated to change language originally taken from a press release.