Why Do New TV Shows Start in the Fall?

Why Do New TV Shows Start in the Fall?

With the COVID-19 pandemic delaying TV filming for a number of months, the typical Fall TV season goes to look slightly completely different this yr. How did the custom of latest TV seasons popping out in the fall even begin in the first place? Because it seems, it is all about the advert {dollars}.

In line with a 2014 New York Instances article, fall TV was initially linked to automobile mannequin years and promoting from these automobile corporations. In North America, mannequin years historically start in early fall of the earlier yr (so, for example, a 2000 mannequin of a automobile would have been launched in August or September of 1999). As a result of TV was an important avenue for promoting, it was necessary that automobile commercial spots — which have been very profitable for networks to promote — would attain the most eyeballs doable, for example, when a buzzy new season was simply getting began. In consequence, the TV and auto industries developed one thing of a synergistic relationship, since the auto trade relied on TV viewership, and TV networks relied on the large promoting {dollars} from automobile producers.

In some methods, the “conventional” TV season — September to Might — is sensible for different causes. That is additionally the conventional college schedule, that means it is the time of yr when households are more likely to have a set routine, not journey an excessive amount of, and search for one thing to do at house on weeknights. It is sensible that fewer folks would possibly watch TV recurrently throughout the Summer time, when faculties are out and schedules are steadily shifting round, so it’s very cheap for conventional networks to avoid wasting up their greatest titles for the interval when there’s the finest likelihood of the most individuals tuning in.

Nonetheless, issues have been altering, lengthy earlier than the coronavirus pandemic threw the whole trade — and the whole world — into disarray. With the conventional TV networks now not dominating the TV panorama, cable and streaming corporations have unfold out their new reveals throughout all 52 weeks of the yr. There’s additionally the new(ish) custom of “midseason” reveals, which grew out of the shortened episode counts on most fashionable reveals. Now, there’s virtually two “seasons” of TV: the fall slate, beginning round September, and the winter or midseason reveals, which generally begin their seasons someday between January and March (with a 3rd, “summer season” season usually consisting of low-priority first seasons, low-rated returning reveals, and actuality reveals).

For the upcoming season, not less than one community (The CW) has introduced it is shifting every part again by one season, so its “fall” season will not truly begin till January 2021, their typical “midseason” will arrive in late spring/early summer season, and so forth. Might this mark a everlasting change in TV schedules? By itself, it is unlikely, however mixed with pre-existing shifts, and we would begin seeing extra reveals mark out non-traditional season premiere dates in the close to future.


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