The great ABC scheduling debate has gone on for four years and has yet to be answered conclusively.  What show should ABC air after Lost?  There have been numerous contenders, none of which have performed particularly well.  It’s long been argued that no matter what is placed after Lost, the Lost audience isn’t going to stick around.  Why?  Because Lost is such a interactive, thought-provoking series, that after every episode fans would rather discuss the events and theorize than watch another hour of television.  Perhaps this is a flawed theory, and ABC just hasn’t found the right series to pair with Lost.  We shall see – it was announced today that freshman series Life on Mars will follow Lost on Wednesday nights come mid-season. 

At mid-season, likely in Lost’s second week back, Life on Mars will switch nights and time slots with Private Practice, which will move to Thursdays at 10pm.  Life on Mars will air on Wednesdays at 10pm.  Wednesdays will now be a sci-fi block of shows.  Depending on what ABC decides to, Pushing Daisies could continue to lead Wednesdays off in the 8pm slot.

If any show on the ABC schedule makes sense after Lost, it’s Life on Mars.  They’re both of the sci-fi variety, but after watching Lost, viewers don’t need or want more thought-provoking fare.  Life on Mars doesn’t require much thought, and is mostly just a good time.  ABC is going to have a major schedule overhaul come January.  Lost is joining the team, Life on Mars is moving nights, and they’re going to have to find a place for Scrubs, which has made the jump to ABC for its likely final season.

Lost moving back to Wednesday isn’t a bad move.  Thursdays were already crowded before Lost hit the scene last season, and I’m sure ABC has ratings in mind with the move back to Wednesdays.  However, there will be some periodic American Idol conflicts in that 9pm time slot, though the Idol-Lost audience probably doesn’t have that much crossover (except for inside the BuddyTV office). 

Talking about Lost can get you worked into a lather.  I just want it to come back as soon as possible.  This winter is going to be a lot of work for your avid TV watcher, with the return of Lost, 24 and American Idol heaped onto an already enticing weekly schedule.  I’m going to have to start training during the holidays.

-Oscar Dahl, BuddyTV Senior Writer
Source: The Hollywood Reporter
(Image Courtesy of ABC)

Oscar Dahl

Senior Writer, BuddyTV