Believe it or not, mid-season will be kicking off at the very beginning of January as several sci fi / fantasy shows resume with new episodes over the first few weeks of the year along with a number of premieres for new and returning genre entries. So it is time to roll out the mid-season schedule of sci fi and fantasy shows which lets you know when they will air and what days they resume with new episodes or kick off their new seasons. The full schedule as it currently stand is available at this link. And what a schedule it is! Currently, there are 31(!!) new and returning genre shows on the schedule for mid-season and that does not include several more that should be showing up at some point over the next few months (check back frequently for schedule updates). It also does not include the two shows that wrapped up in Fall (Haven and Nikita). So those out there complaining that there are no sci fi or fantasy shows to watch on television these days should take note of the selection they really have available to them!
There are now genre shows on the schedule every night of the week and the most crowded evening will by Mondays where ten shows (!!) are currently scheduled with no less than eight of those running concurrently. If you happen to be interested in all of the Monday night shows, your DVR will be busy and your spare time will be limited. Heck, I remember a time (not so long ago) when having ten sci fi shows on television throughout an entire season was considered a lot. Monday will definitely be a competitive night and The CW’s new entry Star-Crossed looks to be the biggest loser there. That network has barely had a pulse on that night of late and tossing a new series with little in the way of name recognition in the mix seems like a sign that they have already given up on that one. And moving the currently struggling The Tomorrow People to that night (beginning in March) smells of a burn-off run as well. I’m thinking that the new CBS series Intelligence–which stars Lost alum Josh Holloway–will do well on that night in the 10 PM EST hour which will be a less competitive slot, especially for the currently most-watched network. The rest of the shows will just have to battle it out for the ratings left-overs that will be dolled out among all the genre entries.
The series receiving the most favorable scheduling this mid-season is the Hunger Game-ish new entry The 100 from The CW. That gets the post-Arrow timeslot when The Tomorrow People vacates that hour in March to head over to Mondays. Arrow came on strong toward the end of Fall and should provide a good lead-in to the new series. However, The CW has had a hard time of late taking advantage of lead-out slots, so we will have to see how that pans out.
I’m neutral at this point on Syfy’s scheduling of new Ronald Moore series Helix on Friday nights. That has not been a particularly great night of late for genre shows since the network has given it mostly over to wrestling. Haven flew low in that hour all of Fall, and it now finds itself on the bubble. Helix should draw plenty of attention early from curious onlookers, but we will have to see if people will stick around for that one on Friday nights.
NBC’s Hannibal will be returning on February 28th on Fridays at 10 PM EST. That’s the post-Grimm timeslot that I have been saying they should move the show to since last season, but then Dracula has not fared too well there this year, so maybe the lead-in is not as strong as I thought. Still, that’s probably as good of an hour as any for the show at this point, and expectations will not be high for this one, so maybe it can slip by.
Most of the rest of the schedule remains unchanged from Fall with Monday having the most new entries and schedule juggling. Once Upon A Time in Wonderland does now have a return date (March 6th) to its Thursday night timeslot, which was previously in doubt. But you can consider that pretty much just a burn-off run as ABC will almost certainly not extend it beyond its current episode order. And it’s always possible that they could change their minds and kick this one to Summer to air out its episodes.
One additional note: I have not included FOX’s The Following or A&E’s Bate Motel here nor will I be tracking their ratings this year because neither of them had much in the way of genre elements during their first seasons so I am thinking they are not of much interest to sci fi fans.
You can see the full schedule at this link and check back there frequently for updates. And stay tuned to CancelledSciFi.com and the Cancelled Sci Fi Twitter Site for the latest ratings results as well as the analysis of those numbers and predictions on which shows will get renewed or cancelled. I will also be kicking off mid-season with my new Power Rankings which ranks the returning shows from strongest to weakest based on their likelihood for survival. And I will be taking a separate look at the new shows and offering my early predictions on which of those will survive. So keep an eye on this site for these and my regular columns and hopefully your favorite genre shows will survive the expected blood bath that will occur at the end of the season as the networks send in their executioners to deal with their under-performing shows.