ABC's announced schedule for Fall 2008 adds only 2 new shows to its lineup. That's similar to the few changes announced by NBC, but the difference between the two being that ABC's Fall 2007 schedule was somewhat successful, unlike NBC's.
ABC's two new shows for Fall 2008 are Opportunity Knocks (an Ashton Kutcher produced game show) and Life on Mars (a science fiction/crime drama about a 21st century cop transported into the 70's, Journeyman meets New Amsterdam)
Of the eight shows ABC introduced in the Fall of 2007, four will be returning (Samantha Who?, Pushing Daisies,and Dirty Sexy Money). ABC is keeping their Wednesday night block of sophomore drama shows intact.
Last Fall ABC introduced 6.5 hours of new programming, the most among the top 4 networks, but next fall will see only 2 new hours of shows added to the schedule. As with NBC, the writers strike may have pushed back some changes to mid-season.
In Fall 2007, ABC had 9.5 hours of unscripted programming in its 22 hour primetime schedule. Fall 2008 will increase that total to 11 hours. I'm sure the writers who walked the picket lines for 100 days are disappointed to see 1.5 hours of scripted programming removed from ABC's schedule. ABC has gone to an entirely unscripted Friday night lineup next fall.
Unlike NBC, who's failure in Fall 2007 seems likely to be repeated in Fall 2008, I like ABC to show ratings improvement. It had the best turnout of new shows in 2007 and they're coming back, and it's disasters (Cavemen, Carpoolers), should be easy to improve upon by Opportunity Knocks. Big Shots set a somewhat higher bar in failure, so Life on Mars may not be much of an improvement.
ABC Fall 2007 Schedule Shows vs. Fall 2008 Schedule Shows
|9:30-10p||Samantha Who?||Samantha Who?|
|8-8:30p||Cavemen||Opportunity Knocks (8-9p)|
|10-11p||Boston Legal||Eli Stone|
|8-9p||Pushing Daisies||Pushing Daisies|
|10-11p||Dirty Sexy Money||Dirty Sexy Money|
|8-9p||Ugly Betty||Ugly Betty|
|10-11p||Big Shots||Life on Mars|
|9-10p||Women's Murder Club|
|10-11p||Men In Trees|
|10-11p||Brothers & Sisters||Brothers & Sisters|
Shows in BOLD are/were new, shows in italics are unscripted, 2007 shows in strikethrough did not return for Fall 2008, but some may later in the year.
Shows that will enter the ABC lineup later in the 2008-9 year include: Scrubs, Lost, The Goode Family,, Untitled Ashton Kutcher/Tyra Banks Project, According to Jim, and Primetime: ?.
I don't think it was worthwhile to compare the announced Winter 2009 and future schedules to this years for two reasons. One, this years Winter and Spring schedules were somewhat cobbled together in response to the writers strike. Two, schedules announced so far in advance have a habit of changing.
7/16 Update: ABC has announced its fall premiere schedule.
10-11 p.m. " "
Monday, Sept. 22
8-10 p.m. "Dancing With the Stars" (special two-hour performance show premiere)
10-11 p.m. "Boston Legal"
Tuesday, Sept. 23
8-9 p.m. "Opportunity Knocks" (new series debut)
9-11 p.m. "Dancing With the Stars" (special performance show)
Wednesday, Sept. 24
8-9 p.m. "Dancing With the Stars Results Show Special" (special day and time)
9-11 p.m. "David Blaine Special"
Thursday, Sept. 25
8-9 p.m. "Ugly Betty"
9-11 p.m. " 's " (special two-hour season premiere)
Sunday, Sept. 28
7-9 p.m. " : " (two-hour season premiere)
9-10 p.m. " "
10-11 p.m. "Brothers & Sisters"
Tuesday, Sept. 30
9:10 p.m. "Dancing With the Stars Result Show" (regular day and time period premiere)
Wednesday, Oct. 1
8-9 p.m. "Pushing Daisies"
9-10 p.m. " "
10-11 p.m. "Dirty Sexy Money"
Friday, Oct. 3
8-9 p.m. "Wife Swap"
9-10 p.m. " "
Sunday, Oct. 5
7-8 p.m. "America's "
8-9 p.m. " : " (regular time period premiere)
Monday, Oct. 6
9:30-10 p.m. "Samantha Who?"
Thursday, Oct. 9
9:10 p.m. " 's " (regular time period premiere)
10-11 p.m. "Life on Mars" (new series debut)
Tuesday, Oct. 14
10-11 p.m. "Eli Stone"