'Common Law' awaits its fate

  • Article by: ROB OWEN , Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
  • Updated: September 21, 2012 - 4:01 PM

Also: Doing the Sunday night DVR dance.

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"Common Law," with Michael Ealy, left, and Warren Cole averaged 2.1 million viewers.

Photo: Hilary Bronwyn Gayle, USA Network

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Q Please tell me USA is renewing "Common Law," or is this my new "Moonlight"?

A My understanding is that although "Common Law" improved on its lead-in, overall low ratings for Friday night have not helped the show's cause. It's probably a 50-50 proposition on whether the show will be renewed.

A publicist for USA Network said no decision has been made about the future of "Common Law," which averaged about 2.1 million viewers during its run.

Meanwhile, the show's executive producer, Craig Sweeny, is writing for CBS' new Sherlock Holmes crime drama, "Elementary," while he awaits word of "Common Law's" fate.

 

The demise of 'The Killing'

Q I enjoyed the series "The Killing" on AMC. I could not retrieve any information that the series would be returning from AMC.

A AMC canceled "The Killing" this summer.

 

Sunday night's DVR dance

Q Now that the late-afternoon games for the NFL will be starting even later, is CBS planning to schedule "60 Minutes" and the rest of its Sunday lineup to start later? Maybe I will no longer have to keep messing with my DVR schedule each Sunday night since the games never were over by 7 p.m.

A Sorry, but you'll probably need to keep messing with your DVR.

I've reported on this issue before, but let's revisit it. CBS initially said it would not change its schedule to something more convenient for viewers because the way it works now is most convenient to CBS in terms of driving up ratings.

"For us, having NFL overruns [is] great," CBS Entertainment President Nina Tassler said in July. "I mean, all of our numbers are up on Sunday night as a result of it."

But the Eye network has blinked. On the remaining Sundays with an NFL doubleheader -- Oct. 7 and 21, Nov. 4 and 18, Dec. 2, 16 and 30 -- CBS will reschedule the start of its prime-time shows with "60 Minutes" at 6:30 p.m. and continuing through to "The Mentalist" at 9:30 p.m. rather than the traditional on-the-hour start time that inevitably gets delayed by football overruns.

This may alleviate the problem of viewers trying to find the start times for shows delayed by NFL coverage, but it won't necessarily eliminate the problem altogether if games run beyond 6:30 p.m. Viewers would still be wise to set their DVRs to record longer than an hour and sign up for CBS alerts (www.cbs.com/eye-lerts), which now offer the ability to sign up for SMS texts, Twitter tweets and Facebook updates.

Send TV questions to owenr@shns.com.

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