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CBS has given votes of confidence to all five of its fall first-year series.
The network has renewed the drama Evil for a second season and extended the runs of the drama All Rise and the comedies Bob Hearts Abishola, Carol’s Second Act and The Unicorn. CBS didn’t provide episode counts but said the latter four shows all have full-season orders — which in the current landscape can mean anything from 16 to 24 episodes.
“These terrific new series have attracted a passionate base of viewers and consistent ratings while delivering entertaining, inclusive and relevant storytelling every week,” CBS Entertainment president Kelly Kahl said Tuesday in a statement. “They’re off to strong starts and are still being discovered on the many catch-up and playback options available to our viewers today. We’re proud of this freshman class and excited about their potential to tell more great stories and further expand their audiences.”
Evil will run for 13 episodes this season, as creators Robert and Michelle King (The Good Fight) wanted a shorter order to the season. (They held out the possibility of adding two episodes to the initial order before the season began.) The CBS TV Studios drama is the second rookie series to earn a renewal for 2020-21, joining Fox’s animated comedy Bless the Harts.
The remaining CBS quartet join Fox’s Prodigal Son, which earned a back-nine order earlier this month.
Through three weeks of delayed-viewing ratings, CBS’ rookies rank first (All Rise), third (Carol’s Second Act), fourth (The Unicorn), sixth (Evil) and eighth (Bob Hearts Abishola) among the 16 new fall scripted shows in total viewers. All five average at least 7 million viewers.
Evil stars Katja Herbers, Mike Colter and Aasif Mandvi as, respectively, a psychologist, a priest in training and a carpenter tasked with investigating the Catholic Church’s backlog of unexplained mysteries, including supposed miracles, demonic possessions and hauntings. The Kings executive produce with Liz Glotzer, president of their King Size Productions.
The courtroom drama All Rise, from Warner Bros. TV, stars Simone Missick as a newly appointed judge in Los Angeles; Wilson Bethel and Marg Helgenberger also star. Greg Spottiswood, Len Goldstein, Michael Robin and Sunil Nayar executive produce.
Bob Hearts Abishola comes from comedy kingpin Chuck Lorre and fellow EP Al Higgins; Gina Yashere (who’s also a member of the cast) is a co-creator, writer and producer. The Warner Bros. TV effort stars Billy Gardell (Lorre’s Mike & Molly) as a man who suffers a heart attack and falls for the Nigerian nurse (Folake Olowofoyeku) caring for him.
Carol’s Second Act stars Patricia Heaton as a retired teacher who, after a divorce, pursues her lifelong dream of becoming a doctor. The CBS TV Studios comedy was created by Emily Halpern and Sarah Haskins (Trophy Wife), who exec produce with Heaton, Adam Griffin, David Hunt, Rebecca Stay, Aaron Kaplan and Dana Honor.
The single-camera comedy The Unicorn stars Walton Goggins as a widower still adjusting to life a year after his wife’s death, while his friends and daughters urge him to enter the dating world, where he’s surprised to realize he’s a hot commodity. Bill Martin and Mike Schiff created the CBS TV Studios show and executive produce with Aaron Kaplan, Dana Honor, Wendi Trilling, Peyton Reed and John Hamburg.
In addition to the five fall newcomers, CBS has the FBI spinoff FBI: Most Wanted, the Edie Falco-led drama Tommy and the comedy Broke, starring NCIS favorite Pauley Perrette, on tap for later in the season. Premiere dates for those three series have yet to be announced.
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