NBC Announces Their Fall Schedule And It's Cruel. Cruel, Cruel, Cruel.
Of course, I mean, it's going to be cruel to "Community" fans, and I, suppose, fans of "Whitney" if any exist and are willing to cop to it. NBC's season proper won't begin until September 10 with the return of the network's only unqualified success, "The Voice," for two hours on Monday nights. The majority of its Fall schedule will begin airing the rest of that week and continuing into the next, which is when most of last season's Thursday night line-up returns, including the best show of the season "Parks and Recreation," on September 20. But three more shows with previous Apparently-Not-Must-See-TV positioning aren't set to premiere until October, with "30 Rock" replacing "Community" in the 8/7pm timeslot on October 4. Vulture seems to think "30 Rock" is most likely being preempted by the "SNL" election coverage that worked out well for NBC in 2008. That makes perfectly logical sense, which is actually a decent reason to think NBC has something else, something Britta'd up their sleeve. We shall see.
What's clear right now, however, is that the network really does seem to be putting "Community," every Pajiban's favorite sitcom (he said kind of sarcastically), out to pasture wherever that farm was in "Basic Rocket Science." As if being renewed on Friday nights, after "Whitney," and Dan Harmon's shitcanning weren't already signs that the meta-tastic series was on its last cripsy mannequin legs, NBC has placed its return a solid month after the remainder of its schedule. That means all the hype that new and old shows will get during the Olympics, plus whatever the ad wizards cook up for their fall marketing campaign, will be entirely gone and played out by the time "Community" returns for its fourth -- and probably last -- season on October 19. If NBC was really concerned about bringing in a larger audience for its critically adored, fan beloved show, they would absolutely be hyping the hell out of it. But since the reality seems to be that NBC would rather let "Community" slowly bleed out, perhaps this is the best thing the fans could hope for. Killing fan enthusiasm a little bit at time to stifle the Internet's collective outrage as we mourn it piecemeal, like that one T.S. Eliot poem.
Or, they could just be giving the new showrunners time to get up to speed and make something more than haphazard. Anyway, here's the entire roll-out of NBC's Fall schedule, courtesy of Deadline:
Wednesday, August 8 "Go On" (sneak peek following Olympic Games coverage)
Sunday, August 12
"Animal Practice" (sneak peek following Olympic Games Closing Ceremonies)
Monday, August 13
8-10 p.m. "Stars Earn Stripes" (two-hour premiere)
10-11 p.m. "Grimm"
Wednesday, September 5
7:30-8:30 p.m. "NFL Kickoff Special 2012" (regular season)
8:30-11 p.m. "Sunday Night Football" (regular season)
Sunday, September 9
7-8:15 p.m. "Football Night in America" (regular day and time)
8:15-11 p.m. "Sunday Night Football" (regular day and time)
Monday, September 10
8-10 p.m. "The Voice"
Tuesday, September 11
9-9:30 p.m. "Go On" (time period premiere)
9:30-10 p.m. "The New Normal"
10-11 p.m. "Parenthood"
Wednesday, September 12
10-10:30 p.m. "Guys with Kids" (sneak peek after penultimate "America's Got Talent")
Friday, Sept 14
9-10pm - "Grimm" (time period premiere)
Monday, September 17
10-11 p.m. "Revolution"
Thursday, September 20
8:30-9 p.m. "Up All Night"
9-9:30 p.m. "The Office"
9:30-10 p.m. "Parks and Recreation"
Wednesday, September 26
8-8:30 p.m. "Animal Practice" (time period premiere)
8:30-9 p.m. "Guys with Kids" (time period premiere)
9-11 p.m. "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" (two-hour premiere)
Thursday, October 4
8-8:30 p.m. "30 Rock"
Wednesday, October 10
10-11 p.m. "Chicago Fire"
Friday, October 19
8-8:30 p.m. "Whitney"
8:30-9 p.m. "Community"
Rob Payne also writes the comic The Unstoppable Force, tweets on the Twitter @RobOfWar, and his wares can be purchased here and here (if you're into that sort of thing). He still has mixed feelings about season four, even if he still believes in #sixseasonsandamovie.