NBC has big plans in store for this season's breakout drama hit This Is Us. Not only has the series been renewed for two more seasons, but the network is shifting it to a key 9 p.m. ET/PT slot on Thursday night and will air it following the Super Bowl on Feb. 4.
The moves are part of a new schedule that will add five dramas and three new comedies, but as with last year, only three fall newcomers: A 12-episode revival of former hit comedy Will & Grace, also on Thursdays; The Brave, a drama about undercover military heroes starring Mike Vogel as a special-ops agent and Anne Heche as a deputy CIA director, which gets the post-Voice slot on Mondays; and Law & Order True Crime: The Menendez Murders, tracking the true story of Los Angeles brothers who killed their parents. Set to follow Will & Grace, Great News and Us on Thursdays, it's part of what NBC Entertainment chief Robert Greenblatt on Sunday called an attempted "return of must-see TV" that night as a promotional hook.
NBC also renewed a remake of feature film Taken, moving to Fridays, and first-year comedies The Good Place and Great News (producer Tina Fey will appear in the newsroom comedy next season). Also back: Timeless, a time-travel fantasy (and the top pick in USA TODAY's Save Our Shows poll), that could return as early as next spring. After canceling the show Thursday, in a rare reversal the network changed its mind on Saturday, thanks to some lobbying by producers.
Cancellations included Grimm, spring comedy Powerless, limited series Emerald City and short-lived spinoff The Blacklist: Redemption. But NBC says there's a chance that comedy Trial & Error and Chicago Justice, the fourth and newest in Dick Wolf's Windy City franchise, could return later. Among other schedule changes, The Blacklist will shift to Wednesdays and Blindspot also will move to Fridays.
Midseason shows include Rise, starring Josh Radnor (How I Met Your Mother) as a high-school drama teacher; Reverie, a virtual-reality themed thriller; and Good Girls, about a trio of suburban women who get into trouble after robbing a store with a toy gun.
For the season (which ends May 24), NBC has held steady, averaging 8.2 million viewers, ranking second behind CBS, and is first among adults ages 18 to 49, its core demographic, where it's down a slight 1% from last year.
NBC's fall schedule (new shows in bold, new time slots in italics; all times ET/PT):
Monday: 8, The Voice; 10, The Brave.
Tuesday: 8, The Voice; 9, Superstore; 9:30, The Good Place; 10, Chicago Fire.
Wednesday: 8, The Blacklist; 9, Law & Order: SVU; 10, Chicago PD
Thursday: 8, Will & Grace; 8:30, Great News; 9, This is Us; 10, Law & Order True Crime: The Menendez Brothers
Friday: 8, Blindspot; 9, Taken; 10, Dateline NBC.
Saturday: 8, Drama repeats; 10, Saturday Night Live repeats.
Sunday: 7, Football Night in America; 8:20, Sunday Night Football.