Looking Ahead to This Fall's TV Lineup
Looking Ahead to This Fall's TV Lineup
Looking Ahead to This Fall’s TV Lineup

Take an extended breath, then brace yourself for an explosive second half of 2013. Quite a ride is in store for anyone involved in the television world, starting and ending with viewers. Here’s a roundup of what you can expect:

***Every broadcast network entering this season at a pivot point. CBS, number one in total viewership for years, could easily swerve into second place, depending on how viewers react to its Monday night shakeup (three new series, two of them sitcoms) and new Thursday night 9-10 p.m. comedy hour. Fox’s goal: reverse the fortunes of The X Factor and launch at least one new series. At NBC, the goal is to show there’s more to this channel than Sunday Night Football and The Voice in the fall. ABC could go up or down, depending on making Dancing With The Stars Monday night-only, an all-new Tuesday lineup and rebounds for returnees like Revenge or Nashville. Can newbies The Tomorrow People and Reign carry The CW over its audience flatline?

***More new or remodeled networks launching than at any time in recent years. Chalk up one already with One America News, which at presstime was all set to debut July 4. Up to three more coming next month in millennials-targeted Pivot, Fox Sports 1 and Al Jazeera America. Another pair — FXX and Esquire Network — debut in September. Yet to pop launch dates: El Rey Network, Fusion from ABC News/Univision, Sean Combs’ Revolt channel, multicast entry Soul of the South and a few other multicast/Spanish-language services.

***More channels entering the scripted TV world. Hallmark Channel begins the second half action with Cedar Cove, starring Andie McDowell, later this month. Bravo chimes in with a series this fall, most likely Rita. Scripted work will be part of FXX and El Rey’s debut lineups, with Pivot close to launching Will, its mod young Shakespeare take from Moulin Rouge/The Great Gatsby writer Craig Pearce.

***The first round of ultra high-definition sets enter the marketplace. Sony, already at retail with its ultra sets (and a stylish ad campaign), will be joined by Sharp, Toshiba, LG, Samsung, Vizio and other key TV makers. Consumers will have a range of set sizes and prices to select from… if they want to embrace this new level of picture clarity early. Upstart maker to watch: Asia-based Seiki, with a set priced at $1,500.

***Smart TVs will get even smarter, thanks to more Web sites running on them, original interactive apps and the ability to control what’s viewed by voice, smartphone/tablet remote capabilities and body language. Those new ultra HD sets from Sharp and Toshiba come with the ability to browse any Web site on them, and Sharp’s screen offers the ability to view a Web site and TV show side-by-side.

***Wild cards in play: Intel and Amazon offering new set-top services, Xbox launching both a cable-applicable version and original series such as Halo from Steven Spielberg, Amazon’s new set of original comedies and children’s shows, equity crowdfunding for TV projects under new Securities & Exchange Commission guidelines, and jusssst maybe that Apple TV set.

Of course, we haven’t factored the unexpected yet. All you can say about that is — expect some of that before the end of this year arrives. Believe it.

Until the next time, stay well and stay tuned!

About Simon Applebaum

Simon Applebaum hosts and produces Tomorrow Will Be Televised, the radio program all about TV. The program runs live Mondays and Fridays at 3 p.m. Eastern time, noon Pacific on BlogTalk Radio (www.blogtalkradio.com), with replays at www.blogtalkradio.com/televised.



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