The end of February and beginning of March brings a big week to the broadcast networks. A couple of new series are debuting, several other shows are returning from long breaks, and every network has something to prove.
Right now, though, there are only a bunch of questions about how things will play out. Let’s look at some of the big questions that will start to be answered in the week ahead?
Can ‘Blindspot’ keep rolling after three months off?
The top-rated rookie series of the season returns to NBC Monday night, following the premiere of a new “Voice” season. Its last episode was the only one of the season so far to fall below a 2.0 same-day rating in adults 18-49. With spring coming, chances are it won’t be the last.
That said, the odds are probably decent that at least Monday’s episode will match or better its final one of the fall. After that, the already-renewed show just needs to keep from crashing.
Will ‘Lucifer’ hold up without an ‘X-Files’ lead-in?
“Gotham” also returns Monday, and while FOX has been promoting the heck out of it, it’s unlikely to break much above the mid-1s it has earned all season. So how will that affect its companion show, “Lucifer”?
Through its first four weeks, “Lucifer” roughly paralleled the ratings of lead-in “The X-Files,” with both dipping a little each week. Then “The X-Files” improved for its finale last week, and “Lucifer” declined a little bit more. That’s not a great sign.
Will ‘The Real O’Neals’ be able to duplicate ‘Fresh Off the Boat’s’ start?
Last season, ABC debuted “Fresh Off the Boat” with two episodes on a Wednesday before moving it to Tuesdays for the remainder of its run. It worked out pretty well, so the network is doing the same thing with “The Real O’Neals” this season.
“FOTB” scored a 2.5 and 2.3 for its two Wednesday episodes, from lead-ins of 2.3 (“The Middle”) and 3.4 (“Modern Family”). It’s not realistic to expect “The Real O’Neals” to match those numbers, but anything in the range of what “The Goldbergs” (2.1) and “Black-ish” (1.9) usually do would send the new show to Tuesday nights with some decent momentum.
What are ‘Rosewood’s’ prospects when it’s not ‘Empire’-adjacent?
Barring a complete crash, the 20th Century Fox-owned “Rosewood” is likely safe to return next season, especially considering the amount of programming FOX will need to replace “American Idol.” The next few weeks, however, will be a test of the show’s strength to stand on its own. If it comes close to keeping its 1.6 average from the fall, it will be a lock for renewal.
How will ‘CSI: Cyber’ do in its Wednesday tryout?
When it aired on Wednesday last season, “Cyber” averaged a 1.4 rating. This season it’s only been above 1.0 in five of its 14 episodes. Sunday is a softer night overall for CBS, but there’s not much indication that “Cyber’s” ceiling is much higher, even with a bigger lead-in.
Who’s going to watch ‘The Family’?
ABC is giving its new drama a prime launchpad on Thursday following “Grey’s Anatomy,” but that won’t be its regular home. After the preview Thursday, it moves to Sundays at 9.
Outside of TGIT and the decent run for “Secrets and Lies” last season, ABC dramas have had a hard time getting off the ground the past couple years. “The Family” doesn’t seem like a terribly good fit with “Once Upon a Time,” but it should at least be an improvement over “Blood & Oil.” Or so ABC hopes.
Will people remember ‘Quantico’ is back?
“Quantico” started well, then faded later in the fall. It has had strong delayed viewing numbers all season. So, when it returns Sunday, will people make an appointment again, or will they let their season passes do all the work? Chances are it will stay in the low 1s to start.