ABC Puts 'Ugly Betty' In An Ugly Timeslot


While the shows ABC picked up for its fall schedule were fairly well known before this morning’s unveiling, the schedule itself was somewhat surprising.

ABC’s shifted longtime Thursday night comedy Ugly Betty to Fridays at 9 p.m. where it will face off against Dollhouse and no doubt lose viewers. After fans were reassured when the network announced Ugly Betty‘s renewal a few weeks ago, the network seems to have sentenced the show, ratings for which have already dropped, to a death sentence with its timeslot.

Taking Ugly Betty‘s old slot is Flash Forward, which doesn’t seem like it would fit very well with Thursday’s estrogen-friendly lineup of Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice. Perhaps when Lost comes back in the winter, ABC will move the show to before or after its similar mystery. It’s also risky to think that a new show can kick off Thursday nights.

ABC’s Wednesday night lineup is also a risk, as it consists entirely of new shows.

The only other surprise was the inclusion of entrepreneur-embarrassing reality show Shark Tank, which will debut over the summer and extend into the fall. Perhaps if the economy improves it won’t be so soul-crushing to watch entrepreneurs plea for their last shot at capital on national TV.

ABC also picked up a drama not on experts’ short lists, The Deep End, which still has no premiere date, and has yet to announce premiere/return dates for V, Happy Town and True Beauty.

Here’s ABC’s press release and full fall schedule (show descriptions can be found here):


New Series Include “Cougar Town,” “The Deep End,” “Eastwick,”

“Flash Forward,” “The Forgotten,” “Hank,” “Happy Town,” “The Middle,”

“Modern Family,” “Shark Tank” and “V”

“Better Off Ted,” “Castle,” “Scrubs” and “True Beauty”

Join Previously Announced Returning Series “America’s Funniest Home Videos,”

“The Bachelor,” “Brothers & Sisters,” “Dancing with the Stars,” “Desperate Housewives,”

“Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Lost,” “Private Practice,”

“Supernanny,” “Ugly Betty,” “Wife Swap” and “20/20″

Stephen McPherson, president, ABC Entertainment Group, today outlined ABC’s plans for next season and unveiled the network’s 2009-10 fall schedule before the advertising and media communities at Lincoln centre’s Avery Fisher Hall.

New fall and midseason series include “Cougar Town,” “The Deep End,” “Eastwick,” “Flash Forward,” “The Forgotten,” “Hank,” “Happy Town,” “The Middle,” “Modern Family,” “Shark Tank” and “V.”

“Better Off Ted,” “Castle,” “Scrubs” and “True Beauty” join previously announced returning series “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” “The Bachelor,” “Brothers & Sisters,” “Dancing with the Stars,” “Desperate Housewives,” “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Lost,” “Private Practice,” “Supernanny,” “Ugly Betty,” “Wife Swap” and “20/20.” “Saturday Night College Football” will also return.

“Our focus is always on delivering the best stories with the most memorable characters on TV, whether that’s established audience favourites or innovative new shows,” said McPherson. “This year we’ve got the best of both. We’re headed into the season with a strong slate of returning series as well as great new shows from one of our best development seasons ever.”

For the 2008-09 TV season, ABC claims four of the top 10 highest-rated TV series in Adults 18-49, including the top two scripted shows with “Desperate Housewives” and “Grey’s Anatomy.” For the fourth straight season, the Network remains a top destination for upscale viewers, delivering five of the top 15 highest-rated TV series and three of the top four scripted shows among Adults 18-49 in homes w/$100K+ annual income. During the fall, the Net finished No. 1 in the November Sweep among Adults 18-49 for the fourth year in a row. ABC’s audience is growing in 2009, delivering across-the-board gains over the same point last year: Total Viewers +2%, Adults 18-34 +14%, Adults 18-49 +4% and Adults 25-54 +3%.

Fall premiere dates will be announced at a later time. However “Shark Tank” will premiere over the summer following the special 10th anniversary primetime return of “Who Wants to be a Millionaire,” and will then move to Tuesday nights at 8:00 p.m. Please note shows picked up but not listed on the schedule will debut later in the 2009-10 season.

ABC’s fall primetime schedule is as follows (all times listed are Eastern):



8:00 p.m.                     “Dancing with the Stars” (two-hours)

10:00 p.m.                   “Castle”


8:00 p.m.                     “Shark Tank”

9:00 p.m.                     “Dancing with the Stars the Results Show”

10:00 p.m.                   “The Forgotten”


8:00 p.m.                     “Hank”

8:30 p.m.                     “The Middle”

9:00 p.m.                     “Modern Family”

9:30 p.m.                     “Cougar Town”

10:00 p.m.                   “Eastwick”


8:00 p.m.                     “Flash Forward”

9:00 p.m.                     “Grey’s Anatomy”

10:00 p.m.                   “Private Practice”


8:00 p.m.                     “Supernanny”

9:00 p.m. “Ugly Betty”

10:00 p.m.                   “20/20″


8:00 p.m.                     “Saturday Night College Football”


7:00 p.m.                     “America’s Funniest Home Videos”

8:00 p.m.                     “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition”

9:00 p.m.                     “Desperate Housewives”

10:00 p.m.                   “Brothers & Sisters”

“The Bachelor” will air Monday nights from 8:00-10:00 p.m. following the run of “Dancing with the Stars,” and “Scrubs” and “Better Off Ted” will air at 9:00 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., respectively, following the run of “Dancing with the Stars The Results Show.”

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