When you return as many franchise series as CBS did this year, you don’t change the schedule so much as shift the tiles around like a giant Rubik’s Cube.
The top-rated broadcast network today announced a few major shifts in the structure of its prime-time lineup, slotting two new comedies and a drama on Monday nights and expanding its Thursday night sitcom block to a full two hours.
Leading out of How I Met Your Mother in the Monday 8:30 p.m. slot, the Rob Greenberg (Frasier, HIMYM) comedy We Are Men stars Tony Shalhoub, Kal Penn and Jerry O’Connell as a trio of divorced bros who live in the same apartment complex. At 9:30 p.m., Chuck Lorre’s Mom features Allison Janney and Anna Faris as an estranged mother-daughter battery.
Bumping Hawaii Five-O from the 10 p.m. slot is the new drama Hostages. Produced by Jeff Nachmanoff (Homeland) and Jerry Bruckheimer, the taut thriller stars Toni Collette as a surgeon who, along with her family, is being held captive by a rogue federale (Dylan McDermott). The twist? The FBI agent will free the lot of them if Collette’s character agrees to kill the president.
Person of Interest begins its third season in the Tuesday 10 p.m. slot once occupied by the canceled Vegas and Golden Boy, while Wednesday remains untouched.
On Thursday nights, The Big Bang Theory and Two and a Half Men will bookend the newcomers The Millers and The Crazy Ones, while sophomore hit Elementary holds onto its legacy slot at 10 p.m.
The Millers, from Greg Garcia, features the talents of Will Arnett and Margo Martindale (The Americans, Justified), while The Crazy Ones marks Robin Williams’ return to series television for the first time since Mork and Mindy said “Nanu-Nanu” for the last time in 1982. Sarah Michelle Gellar plays Williams’ ad executive daughter.
Midseason entries include the dramas Intelligence (Josh Holloway) and Reckless (Anna Wood), as well as the new comedy Friends With Better Lives. Mike & Molly returns for its fourth season at a later date.
CBS will walk buyers through its entire 2013-14 schedule this afternoon at Carnegie Hall. The fall campaign is spelled out below; new shows are in bold.
8-8:30 p.m. — How I Met Your Mother
8:30-9 p.m. — We Are Men
9-9:30 p.m. — Two Broke Girls
9:30 p.m. — Mom
10-11 p.m. — Hostages
8-9 p.m. — NCIS
9-10 p.m. — NCIS: Los Angeles
10-11 p.m. — Person of Interest
8-9 p.m. — Survivor
9-10 p.m. — Criminal Minds
10-11 p.m. — CSI
8-8:30 p.m. — The Big Bang Theory
8:30-9 p.m. — The Millers
9-9:30 p.m. — The Crazy Ones
9:30-10 p.m. — Two and a Half Men
10-11 p.m. — Elementary
8-9 p.m. — Undercover Boss
9-10 p.m. — Hawaii Five-O
10-11 p.m. — Blue Bloods
8-8:30 p.m. — Comedytime Saturday
8:30-9 p.m. — Comedytime Saturday
9-10 p.m. — Crimetime Saturday
10-11 p.m. — 48 Hours
7-8 p.m. — 60 Minutes
8-9 p.m. — The Amazing Race
9-10 p.m. — The Good Wife
10-11 p.m. — The Mentalist
MIDSEASON (Slots TBA):
Intelligence, Reckless, Friends With Better Lives, Mike & Molly