Upfronts: ABC Introduces a New Housewife, Talking Dog, and Designated Survivor


ABC’s upfront presentation started with a song and dance number by Quantico‘s Priyanka Chopra, featured Jimmy Kimmel skewering everyone, and ended with a talking dog. With a focus on storytelling, ABC is introducing three new dramas and two comedies for the fall.

ABC Fall Lineup

Weekly Schedule

Monday night starts off with Dancing With The Stars and then leads into Conviction, a new series starring Hayley Atwell (who bounced back from the cancellation of her prior ABC series, Agent Carter). Atwell is a former misbehaved first daughter who is blackmailed into heading up a Conviction Integrity Unit, investigating possible wrongful convictions.

Tuesday and Wednesday nights both have two-hour blocks of comedies, putting freshman comedies in the 8:30pm time spot behind strong anchor shows (The Middle and The Goldbergs, respectively). The Tuesday comedy slate also includes Fresh off the Boat and The Real O’Neals and introduces American Housewife, starring Katie Otto as “the second fattest housewife in Westport” raising her kids in a picture perfect town. Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. moves to the later 10 p.m. timeslot to give Marvel more creative license in developing the show’s storylines and characters.

Wednesday night includes veterans Modern Family and black-ish, and brings Speechless, a new comedy starring Minnie Driver as a dedicated mom who uproots her family to provide full-time care and find a voice for her special needs son.

Rounding out Wednesday night is new Kiefer Sutherland (not-24) drama Designated Survivor, in which a lower cabinet member must become president after a devasting attack during the State of the Union wipes out the entire executive office.

Thursday nights, traditionally dominated by Shondaland with Grey’s Anatomy and How to Get Away With Murder, welcomes new drama Notorious, starring Piper Perabo, based on real events in the sexy and dangerous world when criminal law and live cable news mix. Shondaland’s Scandal and The Catch return mid-season.

Friday — with Last Man Standing, Dr. Ken, Shark Tank, and 20/20 — and Saturday night (football) remain largely the same.

Sunday nights feature America’s Funniest Home Videos, Once Upon a Time, Secrets and Lies, and Quantico heading into Seasons 26, 6, 2, and 2, respectively. Time after Time joins mid-season and is a time travel series with H.G. Wells transporting to modern day Manhattan in pursuit of Jack the Ripper.

Other Mid-Season Additions

Still Star-Crossed

A new Shondaland (who else?) series takes on Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet and the feud between the Montagues and Capulets after the young lovers’ deaths.

Imaginary Mary

Jenna Elfman is a woman who starts seriously dating a single father of three, which triggers her imaginary and commitment phobic imaginary childhood friend to reappear.

Downward Dog

And here’s your talking dog show. The life and struggles of millennial Nan (Allison Tolman) are told from the perspective of her dog Martin, mockumentary (dogumentary?) style.


Castle, Nashville, Agent Carter,  and single season shows The Family and The Muppets.

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