New Show Hit/Miss Fall 2017 - CBS Comedy

This time on new show hit/miss, we are taking on the three new comedies set to air on CBS this fall. They are Young Sheldon, a single-camera prequel spin-off of The Big Bang Theory, which premieres on Monday, September 25th at 8:30 following the season premiere of The Big Bang Theory, then airs regularly on Thursdays at 8:30 beginning on November 2nd, where it will follow The Big Bang Theory, Me, Myself & I, a single-camera multi-generational comedy which will premiere on Monday, September 25th at 9:30 following Kevin Can Wait, air at 9:30 for five weeks, then move to 9:00, and 9JKL, a multi-camera comedy which premieres on Monday, September 2nd at 8:30 following The Big Bang Theory, which it airs after for four weeks, following which it will air after Kevin Can Wait.

Young Sheldon

What May Cause Young Sheldon to be a Hit?

We'll start with the most obvious: it's a spin-off of The Big Bang Theory, the highest-rated entertainment program on broadcast. And, it's not a spin-off focusing on some obscure character that no one cares about. Instead, it is a prequel focusing on the main character of the show, with narrations from Jim Parsons, who plays present-day Sheldon.

In addition, CBS is giving Young Sheldon a lot of support from its mother show. Not only will it regularly air after The Big Bang Theory, but it gets to premiere after the season premiere of The Big Bang Theory. CBS opted to use what will most likely be their highest-rated scripted original of the season on the premiere of Young Sheldon.

If that wasn't enough, there definitely seems to be interest online. While it would be expected that Young Sheldon would do well in trailer views and social media attention compared to Me, Myself & I and 9JKL due to familiarity, the difference is still impressive. 2.589 million views on its official trailer puts it at around 18 times what the other two shows have, and on Twitter (6,990 followers at the time of writing this article) Young Sheldon has around 12 times as many followers as Me, Myself & I and 16 times as many as 9JKL. The difference is even greater on Facebook, with the 164K likes being over 50 times what the other shows have.

What May Cause Young Sheldon to be a Miss for CBS?

Despite being a spin-off of The Big Bang Theory, Young Sheldon is very different from The Big Bang Theory. The original show is a multi-camera hangout comedy set in the present day. The spin-off is a single-camera family comedy, centering on a child, set in 1989. As someone who has seen scenes from and promos for both shows, I found that the trailer of Young Sheldon felt a lot more like ABC's The Goldbergs than The Big Bang Theory. The shows are dissimilar, which could be a major issue.

While the numbers are high compared to the CBS comedies, Young Sheldon's trailer views and Facebook likes fall being ABC's The Good Doctor. Comparing across networks is certainly not ideal, but I believe that the spin-off of a hugely popular show should have more pre-premiere attention than a completely new show. When I checked The Good Doctor's numbers last week, it had 3.7 million trailer views and 284K Facebook likes. Young Sheldon is at 2.6 million and 164K. That's a big difference. Another poor sign for Young Sheldon is how people responded to the trailer, with only 70% of those who reacted liking it.

Me, Myself & I

What May Cause Me, Myself & I to be a Hit?

Most of CBS's attempts at single-camera comedies have failed. One worked: Life in Pieces. Me, Myself & I has the potential to be the next Life in Pieces, as both are comedies with family elements, but not totally ABC (Life in Pieces's humor tends to be a bit more grown up) and both with things that make their structure unique (four stories presented separately in Life in Pieces, three timelines in Me, Myself & I). If Life in Pieces worked, shouldn't Me, Myself & I?

The show has one more thing going in its favor. The reactions to the official trailer is much more positive than the reactions to the other two new comedies on CBS this fall. 93% of people who reacted to the trailer for Me, Myself & I liked it, compared to 70% for both Young Sheldon and 9JKL.

What May Cause Me, Myself & I to be a Miss for CBS?

Life in Pieces is just one show that worked. Every other off-brand show on CBS failed (We Are Men, The Crazy Ones, Bad Teacher, Angel from Hell). Me, Myself & I succeeding would be going against the trend. Plus, it is fairly high-concept, which generally doesn't work on broadcast television. In addition, it has an incredibly incompatible lead-in during its first few weeks in Kevin Can Wait.

When it comes to trailer views and social media, Me, Myself & I ranks beneath Young Sheldon and all of the CBS dramas (except Wisdom of the Crowd when it comes to trailer views). It has 147K trailer views, 3,276 Facebook likes, and 562 Twitter followers. It's not much higher than 9JKL, and very far from Young Sheldon.


What May Cause 9JKL to be a Hit?

The show feels like a typical CBS comedy. Off-brand things have really struggled on the network, with Life in Pieces being the only exception. It's a multi-camera comedy centering on a middle-aged white male. Not only does it fit well on the network in general, but it fits well with what will be its lead-in beyond the first few episodes: Kevin Can Wait. For the first few weeks, 9JKL will get the network's strongest lead-in, The Big Bang Theory. It also won't be going up against any comedies, so it won't have to fight any shows going up against that similar of an audience.

What May Cause 9JKL to be a Miss for CBS?

Trailer views and social media are not promising for the show. At 138K views, it ranks the lowest out of the new comedy trailers, and a very low 70% of people who reacted to the trailer liked it. It also ranks last in Facebook likes (2,798) and Twitter followers (440). There seems to be little interest in the show, and people are not liking what they are seeing.

What to Expect from CBS's Fall Comedies

I am by far the most confident in Young Sheldon here, at least when it comes to season one ratings. I could totally see this fail when moved away from The Big Bang Theory though. If CBS decides to give two of these shows full seasons, I am going with 9JKL as more likely than Me, Myself & I to get a full season. If Me, Myself & I had been paired with Life in Pieces, maybe I would be more optimistic about its chances. CBS will likely be looking to ditch one of these new comedies relatively quickly so they can get Man with a Plan back on the schedule, so don't be surprised if Me, Myself & I doesn't make it to the move to 9:00.

What do you expect from Young Sheldon, Me, Myself & I, and 9JKL? And what factors do you think will contribute most in making them a hit or a miss? Leave your thoughts in the comments!

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