UPDATED with midseason info: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. After a very successful 2014-15 season, ABC is taking a very conservative approach to its schedule, not moving a single returning show to a new slot, with all scheduling changes a result of attrition as new series fill the void left by cancellations. The network is returning intact half of its 6 nights of original programming, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday. Here is ABC’s fall schedule, followed by details about the network’s midseason scheduling plans and descriptions of all new series.
ABC FALL 2015-16 SCHEDULE
(New programs in UPPER CASE; all times ET)
8 PM — Dancing with the Stars
10 PM — Castle
8 PM — THE MUPPETS
8:30 PM — Fresh Off the Boat
9 PM — Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
10 PM — QUANTICO
8 PM — The Middle
8:30 PM — The Goldbergs
9 PM — Modern Family”
9:30 PM — black-ish
10 PM — Nashville
8 PM — Grey’s Anatomy
9 PM — Scandal
10 PM — How to Get Away with Murder
8 PM — Last Man Standing
8:30 PM — DR. KEN
9 PM — Shark Tank
10 PM –20/20
8 PM — Saturday Night Football
7 PM — America’s Funniest Home Videos
8 PM — Once Upon a Time
9 PM — OIL
10 PM — OF KINGS AND PROPHETS
ABC is launching five new series in the fall, comedies The Muppets and Dr. Ken, and dramas Quantico, Oil (formerly Boom) and Of Kings And Prophets. As usual, the network is holding back some of its highest-profile new entries, including new thriller dramas The Family and the Shondaland-produced The Catch.
With sophomore How To Get Away With Murder slated for a shorter season per star Viola Davis’ contract, The Catch will slip into the Thursday 10 PM slot later in the season to keep the Shondaland branding of the night intact.
Despite being described as an adult take on the famous puppets, The Muppets, which mocks mockumentary-style comedies, is said to be family friendly, so no surprise that ABC is using the self-starter as a new Tuesday 8 PM anchor. Family comedy Fresh Off The Boat, which did a very respectable business with no lead-in in the challenging time period this past midseason, will now slide to 8:30 PM. When Muppets ends its limited run, Fresh will return to 8 PM to launch new comedy The O’Neals, about a family with a gay teenage son.
The scheduling of the other new ABC comedy, the Ken Jeong starrer Dr. Ken, also was a no-brainer. The network’s only newly picked multi-camera comedy series is paired with ABC’s only returning multi-camera series, Last Man Standing on Friday.
On Tuesday, ABC is subbing cancelled Forever, with new thriller Quantico. In between its fall and potential spring run, the network will air new crime anthology Wicked City.
ABC is going for big-canvas, sprawling dramas on Sunday, with the soapy Oil and biblical tale Of Kings And Prophets filling the spots held last fall by recently departed Resurrection and Revenge. In midseason, Of Kings And Prophets, picked up for a limited run, will be succeeded by new thriller The Family. Given the cachet of the show’s star, Academy Award-nominated Joan Allen, the series will likely launch shortly after ABC’s Oscar telecast.
Medieval comedy extravaganza Galavant will once again bridge the two sub-seasons of Once. Ditto for Marvel’s Agent Carter, once again connecting the fall and spring runs Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. And the second installment of crime thriller Secrets And Lies, with Juliette Lewis returning as the lead, will fill the gap between the fall and spring installments of Nashville on Wednesday.
Also on tap for midseason is a second installment of ABC’s other midseason anthology series, American Crime, which will feature some of the actors from Season 1 in new roles in the mold of FX’s American Horror Story. On the comedy side, ABC also has the single-camera Uncle Buck remake starring Mike Epps. Neither have been assigned time slots yet.
2015-16 SERIES DESCRIPTIONS
DR. KEN – Doctor-turned-actor/comedian Ken Jeong (“Community,” “The Hangover”), plays Dr. Ken, a brilliant physician with no bedside manner. He is always trying to be a good doctor as well as a good husband and dad to his two kids. However, these good intentions have a way of driving everyone crazy at work and at home. Luckily, his therapist wife, Allison, is just the right partner to keep things sane. “Dr. Ken” stars Ken Jeong as Dr. Ken, Suzy Nakamura as Allison, Tisha Campbell-Martin as Damona, Dave Foley as Pat, Jonathan Slavin as Clark, Albert Tsai as Dave and Krista Marie Yu as Molly. “Dr. Ken was written by Jared Stern, Ken Jeong, and Mike O’Connell. Executive producers are Jared Stern, Ken Jeong, John Davis, John Fox and Mike Sikowitz, with Mike O’Connell as co-executive producer. “Dr. Ken” is produced by Sony Pictures Television and ABC Studios.
THE MUPPETS – The Muppets return to primetime with a contemporary, documentary-style show. For the first time ever, a series will explore the Muppets’ personal lives and relationships, both at home and at work, as well as romances, breakups, achievements, disappointments, wants and desires. This is a more adult Muppet show, for “kids” of all ages. Bill Prady (“The Big Bang Theory”) and Bob Kushell (“Anger Management”) are co-writers and executive producers. Randall Einhorn (“Wilfred”), Bill Barretta, Debbie McClellan and Kyle Laughlin are also executive producers. “The Muppets” is produced by ABC Studios and The Muppets Studio.
THE REAL O’NEALS – A fresh take on a seemingly perfect Catholic family whose lives take an unexpected turn when surprising truths are revealed. Instead of ruining their family, the honesty triggers a new, messier chapter where everyone stops pretending to be perfect and actually starts being real. “The Real O’Neals” stars Martha Plimpton as Eileen, Jay R. Ferguson as Pat, Noah Galvin as Kenny, Matthew Shively as Jimmy, Bebe Wood as Shannon and Mary Hollis Inboden as Jodi. “The Real O’Neals” was written by David Windsor and Casey Johnson. Executive producers are David Windsor, Casey Johnson, Brian Pines, Dan McDermott, Stacy Traub and Dan Savage. “The Real O’Neals” is produced by ABC Studios.
UNCLE BUCK – Based on the hit movie of the same name, Uncle Buck (Mike Epps) is a fun-loving but irresponsible guy who needs a job and a place to stay. By happy coincidence, his nieces’ and nephew’s nanny has just quit and his brother and sister-in-law need his help. His unconventional personality may just make him the right fit for the family and they may be the answer to his problems, too. “Uncle Buck” stars Mike Epps as Buck, Nia Long as Alexis, James Lesure as Will, Iman Benson as Tia, Sayeed Shahidi as Miles and Aalyrah Caldwell as Maizy. “Uncle Buck” was written by Steven Cragg and Brian Bradley. Executive producers are Steven Cragg, Brian Bradley and Will Packer. Co-executive producers are Korin Huggins and Phil Traill. “Uncle Buck” is produced by Universal Television and ABC Studios.
THE CATCH – From Shondaland’s Shonda Rhimes and Betsy Beers, “The Catch” is a new thriller centered on the strong, successful Alice Martin (Mireille Enos). She’s a fraud investigator who’s about to be the victim of fraud herself by her fiancé. Between her cases, she is determined to find him before it ruins her career. “The Catch” stars Mireille Enos as Alice, Alimi Ballard as Evan, Damon Dayoub as Kieran, Jay Hayden as James, Jacky Ido as Emil, Bethany Joy Lenz as Zoe, Rose Rollins as Andie and Elvy Yost as Maria. “The Catch” was written by Jennifer Schuur. Executive producers are Jennifer Schuur, Shonda Rhimes, Betsy Beers and Julie Anne Robinson. “The Catch” is produced by ABC Studios.
THE FAMILY – This thriller follows the return of a politician’s young son who was presumed dead after disappearing over a decade earlier. As the mysterious young man is welcomed back into his family, suspicions emerge — is he really who he says he is? “The Family” stars Joan Allen as Claire, Alison Pill as Willa, Margot Bingham as Sergeant Nina Meyer, Zach Gilford as Danny, Liam James as Adam, Floriana Lima as Bridey, Madeleine Arthur as Young Willa, Rarmian Newton as Young Danny, Rupert Graves as John and Andrew McCarthy as Hank. “The Family” was written by Jenna Bans. Executive producers are Jenna Bans and Mandeville Television’s Todd Lieberman, David Hoberman and Laurie Zaks. “The Family” is produced by ABC Studios.
OF KINGS AND PROPHETS – An epic Biblical saga of faith, ambition and betrayal as told through the eyes of a battle-weary king, a powerful and resentful prophet and a resourceful young shepherd on a collision course with destiny. “Of Kings and Prophets” stars Ray Winstone as King Saul, Haaz Sleiman as Jonathan, Maisie Richardson-Sellers as Michal, Oliver Rix as David, Simone Kessell as Ahinoam, James Floyd as Ish-Boseth, Mohammad Bakri as Samuel and Tomer Kapon as Joab. “Of Kings and Prophets” was written by Adam Cooper & Bill Collage. Executive producers are Adam Cooper, Bill Collage, Jason Reed, Reza Aslan and Mahyad Tousi. “Of Kings and Prophets” is produced by ABC Studios.
OIL – Billy and Cody Lefever dream of a new life beyond their working class roots and move to “The Bakken” in North Dakota, booming after the biggest oil discovery in American history. They’re soon pitted against a ruthless tycoon who forces them to bet big and put everything on the line, including their marriage. “Oil” stars Don Johnson as Hap, Chace Crawford as Billy, Rebecca Rittenhouse as Cody, Delroy Lindo as Tip, Amber Valletta as Carla, Scott Michael Foster as Wick, India de Beaufort as Jules, Yani Gellman as AJ and Caitlin Carver as Lacey. “Oil” was written by Josh Pate and Rodes Fishburne. Executive producers are Tony Krantz, Josh Pate, Rodes Fishburne, Drew Comins and Don Johnson. “Oil” is produced by ABC Signature.
QUANTICO – A diverse group of recruits has arrived at the FBI Quantico Base for training. They are the best, the brightest and the most vetted, so it seems impossible that one of them is suspected of masterminding the biggest attack on New York City since 9/11. “Quantico” stars Priyanka Chopra as Alex, Dougray Scott as Liam, Jake McLaughlin as Ryan, Aunjanue Ellis as Miranda, Yasmine Al Massri as Nimah, Johanna Braddy as Shelby, Tate Ellington as Simon and Graham Rogers as Caleb. “Quantico” was written by Josh Safran. Executive producers are Josh Safran, Mark Gordon and Nick Pepper. “Quantico” is produced by ABC Studios.
WICKED CITY – “Wicked City” follows a unique case set in a noteworthy era of L.A. history, starting with a murder case from 1982 centered on the rock ’n’ roll, cocaine-infused revelry of the Sunset Strip. Alliances are formed between detectives, reporters, drug dealers and club-goers to solve a serial murder case. “Wicked City” stars Ed Westwick as Kent, Erika Christensen as Betty, Adam Rothenberg as Jack, Taissa Farmiga as Karen, Gabriel Luna as Paco, Karolina Wydra as Dianne, Holley Fain as Trish, Darrell Britt-Gibson as Diver and Anne Winters as Vicki. “Wicked City” was written by Steven Baigelman. Executive producers are Steven Baigelman and Mandeville Television’s Todd Lieberman, David Hoberman and Laurie Zaks. “Wicked City” is produced by ABC Studios.