Time Slot Wars: Sunday
Time Slot Wars:  Sunday
John Kubicek
John Kubicek
Senior Writer, BuddyTV
In BuddyTV's 2007 Fall TV Guide, we assessed each night to see which shows the major networks were pitting against each other, and determined which ones would emerge victorious in the ratings war.

Sunday is quite the boring night for TV. Basically, it's a lot of the same old stuff we've become accustomed to on Sunday nights, and the two new shows are likely to fall through the cracks.

ABC continues targeting women, with Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Desperate Housewives and Brothers and Sisters. NBC targets the men with Sunday Night Footbal. FOX targets the younger viewers with its animation block, held together by The Simpsons and Family Guy. CBS is targeting the older viewers with procedurals Cold Case and Shark. Who's left?

Well, what's left are the two new shows, and the news isn't good for either. For starters, both are airing at 8pm. Also, both are based on hit British shows. And, most troubling, both have gone through some intense scrutiny and overturn, either behind or in front of the camera.

The CW offers Life is Wild, a family drama about a famous veterinarian who suddenly moves his family from New York City to South Africa. If you think this is Everwood meets 7th Heaven, you'd be right. There's nothing wrong with heartwarming, wholesome family dramas, but if you do them, you need to do them right. If there's any sense of irony or false moments, it won't work. Sadly, the kid characters are full of clichéd teenage angst. The daughter is sad to move away from her boyfriend (until she espies some British import hottie). The son is a rebel, as indicated by constant presence of a skateboard in his hands.

Still, the show recast the two parents, bringing in CW and WB vets D.W. Moffett (Hidden Palms) and Stephanie Niznik (Everwood). Viewers hoping to have their heartstrings tugged will more likely tune in to Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, though Life is Wild is not only set in Africa, but filmed there as well. Even if you ignore the story and acting, the scenario is often breathtaking and almost worth watching just for that.

CBS, on the other hand, offers Viva Laughlin, a dramatic murder mystery musical. If you haven't seen the British series Viva Blackpool on which it's based, you may have a difficult time accepting the wildly out there premise of an over-the-top wannabe casino owner singing and dancing. The only main draw would be Hugh Jackman, who not only has a recurring role, but also produces the show and was the man responsible for bringing it to America. But given the ratings the Tony Awards have been receiving, it may be hard for this quirky show to find an audience.

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-John Kubicek, BuddyTV

(Image courtesy of the CW)