HANDICAPPING THE NEW NBC FALL SERIES
“SEAN SAVES THE WORLD” – Thursday 9 p.m.
Former “Will & Grace” star Sean Hayes stars as a perfectionist and divorced gay father whose 14-year-old daughter moves in with him full time while dealing temperamental new at boss, throwing his life into upheaval. Linda Lavin (“Alice”) and Megan Hilty (“Smash”) co-stars.
-Lead-in: “Welcome to the Family”
-Competition: “Grey’s Anatomy” (ABC), “The Crazy Ones” (CBS), “Glee” (Fox), “Reign” (CW)
Given its star, it is no surprise that one of the first questions focused on “Will & Grace.” “I think, of course, it was impactful,” said Hayes. “But to say that having been on it, I don’t want to sound egotistical. To remove myself from “Will & Grace,” I would like to believe that it had a great influence on the gay movement in America. According to Joe Biden, it did. Thankfully gay is an afterthought like any minority now — it’s normal to everybody. Which is how it should be. It’s sad it’s even a question.”
“For this show, which I consider a post-gay show in that there’s a gay man in the center of it but it’s not about being gay,” added executive producer Victor Fresco said. “I think without “Will and Grace,” we wouldn’t be possible.”
No, “Sean Saves the World” will not “save” NBC. Nor will the two other new Thursday night comedies on the network (“Welcome to the Family,” which leads into “Sean Saves the World,” and “The Michael J. Fox Show,” which leads out of it). But given how present time period occupant “The Office” deteriorated this season, the bar of comparison is low. And unproven sitcom “The Crazy Ones” with Robin Williams on CBS, which is replacing crime solver “Person of Interest,” could open the door to some sampling.
If “Sean Saves the World” can maintain the recent adult 18-49 audience base from “The Office” (or, better yet, build from it), NBC could have a modest success on its hands. While this won’t be “Will & Grace,” or even close to it, three new comedies on Thursday could certainly be beneficial to NBC. And “Sean Saves the World” is certainly one of them.
-Odds of Survival for “Sean Saves the World”: 3-1
Official site: http://www.nbc.com/sean-saves-the-world/