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NBC Sets Fall Schedule, Hopes You Don’t Have Plans in August

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Chris Haston/NBC

Beginning in late July, NBC will air the Olympics, which many, many people will watch. NBC also has to launch a new schedule of shows, whose success is not as certain a matter. To better connect the two, Thursday NBC announced a season-premiere schedule it described as “aggressive” and “staggered,” two words generally used in connection only with belligerent drunks.

The upshot? NBC will be premiering some shows early; previewing others way early—in August, as the Games wrap up—then premiering them in September; and premiering other shows late. New comedies Go On and Animal Practice (a.k.a., That One Show With the Monkey In It) sneak-peek August 8 and 12, while new reality show  Stars Earn Stripes (celebrities take on jobs in the military) debuts and Grimm returns on August 13. Several other shows premiere the second week in September, and the season continues to roll out until Whitney and the Dan Harmon-less Community return October 19.

NBC understandably will encourage buzz about how it’s leveraging the power of the games to give its schedule a strong premiere and begin a comeback, and who knows? But it’s worth remembering that NBC has had the Games for two decades—covering some of its best years, then some of its worst—and has not hesitated to try to use the Olympics as a promotional springboard. In 2004, that did not make smash hits of Hawaii, Father of the Pride or a little show called Joey.

But that’s the thing about Olympic dreams—they never die. The schedule announcement:

Following are the premiere dates for NBC’s Fall 2012 primetime schedule (all times ET; new shows are in upper case):

Wednesday, August 8
“GO ON” (sneak peek following Olympic Games coverage)

Sunday, August 12
“ANIMAL PRACTICE” (sneak peek following Olympic Games Closing Ceremonies)

Monday, August 13
8-10 p.m. “STARS EARN STRIPES” (two-hour premiere)
10-11 p.m. “Grimm”

Wednesday, September 5
7:30-8:30 p.m. “NFL Kickoff Special 2012” (regular season)
8:30-11 p.m. “Sunday Night Football” (regular season)

Sunday, September 9
7-8:15 p.m. “Football Night in America” (regular day and time)
8:15-11 p.m. “Sunday Night Football” (regular day and time)

Monday, September 10
8-10 p.m. “The Voice”

Tuesday, September 11
9-9:30 p.m. “GO ON” (time period premiere)
9:30-10 p.m. “THE NEW NORMAL”
10-11 p.m. “Parenthood”

Wednesday, September 12
10-10:30 p.m. “GUYS WITH KIDS” (sneak peek after penultimate “America’s Got Talent”)

Friday, Sept 14
9-10pm – “Grimm” (time period premiere)

Monday, September 17
10-11 p.m. “REVOLUTION”

Thursday, September 20
8:30-9 p.m. “Up All Night”
9-9:30 p.m. “The Office”
9:30-10 p.m. “Parks and Recreation”

Wednesday, September 26
8-8:30 p.m. “ANIMAL PRACTICE” (time period premiere)
8:30-9 p.m. “GUYS WITH KIDS” (time period premiere)
9-11 p.m. “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” (two-hour premiere)

Thursday, October 4
8-8:30 p.m. “30 Rock”

Wednesday, October 10
10-11 p.m. “CHICAGO FIRE”

Friday, October 19
8-8:30 p.m. “Whitney”
8:30-9 p.m. “Community”

 

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