5:45pm PT by Michael O'Connell
CBS Sends 'Training Day' to Saturdays, 'Amazing Race' Returning Early
Training Day will now be schooling viewers on another night.
CBS has decided to shift the struggling freshman drama from its choice Thursday time slot to the low-pressure Saturday on the heels of low ratings. It's another decisive move for the network, which canceled Katherine Heigl starrer Doubt in February after just two episodes.
Training Day's narrative has been a particularly sad one. Almost as soon as it premiered, star Bill Paxton died of a stroke during surgery. The 61-year-old actor left behind an incredibly rich body of work, including roles on HBO drama Big Love and in blockbusters Aliens, True Lies, Apollo 13 and Twister.
But the show has not found much of a crowd on Thursdays, a night that starts as strong as any on broadcast for CBS with The Big Bang Theory anchoring 8 p.m. Live-plus-3 averages give Training Day just a 1.0 rating among adults 18-49 and a little more than 5 million weekly viewers. The remaining episodes, of which there are seven, will start airing on Saturday, April 8, at 9 p.m. (Any future beyond that is unlikely.) The show will have a lead-in from new Saturday effort Ransom, as CBS looks to drop more originals on a night that's often a broadcast afterthought.
The series was already due for a break, with NCAA basketball returning to CBS for March Madness. Once that has wrapped, the 29th season The Amazing Race moves to Thursdays on March 30. (Previously scheduled to return to Fridays, the competition show's slot will now go to Undercover Boss starting Friday, April 28.)
The Amazing Race could be good news for the troubled time slot. Thursdays at 10 o'clock hasn't been particularly kind for any network recently — see ABC's The Catch and NBC's The Blacklist: Redemption — but CBS has had the roughest time with it this season. Training Day predecessor Pure Genius was essentially dead on arrival and left the spot earlier than originally planned.