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CBS may be planning to get back to business as usual with its slate of TV shows in what remains of 2020, but some of the network's biggest series have been delayed. Shows ranging from NCIS to Young Sheldon to Blue Bloods won't be back until late fall at the earliest, but there is some good news to go with the disappointing delays.
Let's start with that good news before dipping into the bad. Instead of heading into fall season with nothing more than reruns to fill primetime until new content is ready to go, CBS will air no fewer than three shows that have never aired on broadcast television before. Star Trek: Discovery, which launched the Star Trek franchise into a new era on CBS All Access, will make its CBS debut, where it will be joined by the previously cancelled (and then rescued) One Day at a Time and Spectrum's Manhunt: Deadly Games.
These aren't brand new shows with never-before-seen episodes, but they haven't broadcast on CBS or any other major network, so they mean new scripted content to CBS viewers who haven't tried CBS All Access or Spectrum. CBS will also launch a six-part documentary series called The FBI Declassified, narrated by FBI's Alana de la Garza. Star Trek: Discovery and the other new-to-CBS shows join The Amazing Race Season 32, Undercover Boss Season 10, and The Greatest #AtHome Videos.
Manhunt: Deadly Games launches on CBS on Monday, September 21 at 10 p.m. ET. Star Trek: Discovery will make its broadcast debut on Thursday, September 24, and I'm already wondering how CBS is going to handle that Season 1 F-bomb. One Day at a Time debuts on the network on Monday, October 12 at 9 p.m. ET, and The FBI Unclassified on Tuesday, October 13 at 10 p.m. ET. Now, unfortunately, onto the bad news.
The mighty CBS fall lineup that would normally include not one but two shared universes (one of which has even crossed networks thanks to a crossover with NBC) won't be back until close to the end of the year. Based on current production timelines, returning primetime series (and some new ones) "could begin airing in November," according to CBS, which might mean even later in the year. CBS Entertainment President Kelly Kahl commented on the current fall lineup, saying:
This is hardly a traditional fall season, but we are prepared with a strong slate of original content while our regular scripted series begin production. Based on our current timeline, we hope to start rolling out our previously announced fall series as they become available in November.
The CW already debuted the CBS All Access series Tell Me a Story, and DC Universe's Swamp Thing debuts on the network in October. Even a Patrick Dempsey series is coming to The CW, with most of the CW series (including the Arrowverse) not returning until 2021! NBC will also be missing its big shared universe of One Chicago and Law & Order: SVU, but a Canadian drama is coming to the network with Transplant.
If you're looking for more viewing options as the weather starts cooling down, be sure to check out our 2020 fall TV premiere schedule!