6:16am PT by Michael O'Connell
CBS Fall Schedule: 'Big Bang' Returns to Monday During Football
With such an overwhelming majority of its 2013-14 roster returning for the upcoming season, the only real uncertainty going into Wednesday's schedule announcement was which shows would be benched for fall's seven-week Thursday Night Football introduction.
As expected, The Big Bang Theory is not being delayed by the NFL. Instead, it will move back to Mondays, airing at 8 p.m. in an attempt to open the night on a strong note, as How I Met Your Mother once did. 2 Broke Girls returns to the slot once Big Bang can move into its normal Thursday spot.
There are more significant changes to the Monday lineup as well. After being the network's only two-hour comedy block (since 1986!) until last year's Thursday expansion, it's been cut down to one hour. CBS' aggressive drama renewals and new series orders made it almost inevitable that one hour of comedy would go. In its place is newcomer Scorpion, with NCIS: Los Angeles moving into the troubled 10 p.m. hour, which was the home of saw CBS' lone drama failures of the past season.
Thursday, already CBS' top-performing night in the key demo, will remain largely intact after the Sept. 11-Oct. 23 run of Thursday Night Football. Two and a Half Men, confirmed for a final season, will lead into the only new addition, The McCarthys, at 9:30 p.m. That lineup resumes on Oct. 30.
The lone tweak to Tuesday seems like a given. NCIS, anchored at 8 p.m, will lead into its New Orleans spinoff in the old Los Angeles time slot. And there is a similarly small adjustment to Wednesday. Kevin Williamson drama Stalker moves into CSI's time slot -- as the latter is now migrating to Sunday at 10 p.m. It will run there until spinoff Cyber picks up in the time slot later in the season. That split, like the NFL delay of the Thursday block, will help to eliminate any repeats over the course of the season.
"It just enables us to have more originals throughout the entire year," CBS Corp. chairman and CEO Leslie Moonves told reporters. "You're going to see periods that have no repeats all year."
Speaking of Sundays, the network is returning to a block of three dramas following 60 Minutes. Madame Secretary will debut at 8 p.m., leading into The Good Wife. CBS Entertainment chief Nina Tassler and scheduler and senior executive vp primetime Kelly Kahl joked that the Tea Leoni political drama is a hybrid of its lead-in and lead-out.
On deck for midseason are The Mentalist, Mike & Molly, Undercover Boss, Battle Creek and The Odd Couple.
CBS' Complete Fall 2014-15 Schedule
8-8:30 p.m. -- The Big Bang Theory/2 Broke Girls
8:30-9 p.m. -- Mom
9-10 p.m. -- Scorpion
10-11 p.m. -- NCIS: Los Angeles
8-9 p.m. -- NCIS
9-10 p.m. -- NCIS: New Orleans
10-11 p.m. -- Person of Interest
8-9 p.m. -- Survivor
9-10 p.m. -- Criminal Minds
10-11 p.m. -- Stalker
8 p.m. -- Thursday Night Football
Thursday (after NFL)
8-8:30 p.m. -- The Big Bang Theory
8:30-9 p.m. -- The Millers
9-9:30 p.m. -- Two and a Half Men
9:30-10 p.m. -- The McCarthys
10-11 p.m. -- Elementary
8-9 p.m. -- The Amazing Race
9-10 p.m. -- Hawaii Five-0
10-11 p.m. -- Blue Bloods
8-11 p.m. -- Crimetime Saturday/48 Hours
7-8 p.m. -- 60 Minutes
8-9 p.m. -- Madame Secretary
9-10 p.m. -- The Good Wife
10-11 p.m. -- CSI/CSI: Cyber