With the resolution of the SAG-AFTRA and WGA Strikes, CBS is the first network to reveal return dates for its slate of scripted series.
The network’s game plan is to roll out most of its returning series beginning in February 2024.
The good news? We should be in for uninterrupted 10-13 episode seasons.
Yes, these episode orders are a far cry from what we’re accustomed to, but given the circumstances, it’s a miracle any of these shows will have episodes in the bank to go early next year.
CBS will use the Super Bowl to promote its 2024 slate, which is a good move.
Tracker, starring Justin Hartley, will kick things off on Sunday, February 11, 2024, airing out of the Super Bowl LVIII.
The episode is set to air in the 10 p.m. slot, but if previous Super Bowl telecasts are any indication, that time will be delayed.
Tracker settles into the 9 p.m. slot one week later, sandwiched between The Equalizer and CSI: Vegas.
It’s not a bad Sunday slate because we’re sure there will be an audience crossover between The Equalizer and Tracker.
They both have their action-oriented storylines.
CSI: Vegas, meanwhile, has been a resilient performer and tends to overperform in delayed viewing, so the idea is probably to give its prior slot to a newer show.
On Monday, February 12, 2024, The Neighborhood, Bob Hearts Abishola, NCIS, and NCIS: Hawai’i return.
This night is unchanged, with the same schedule as the previous season.
Stability is critical to keeping viewers tuned in in this climate.
Tuesday, February 13, 2024, will bring FBI, FBI: International, and FBI: Most Wanted off the bench.
It’s unclear whether we’ll get any crossovers, but we’ll be happy having our favorite agents back on the air.
Young Sheldon, Ghosts, and So Help Me Todd will return on Thursday, February 15, 2024.
One week later, The Good Wife spinoff, Elsbeth, joins the slate in the 10 p.m. slot.
Friday, February 16, 2024, marks the returns of S.W.A.T., Fire Country, and Blue Bloods.
As previously reported, S.W.A.T. will be airing its seventh and final season.
Fire Country, meanwhile, is prepping two spinoffs so that franchise will continue burning brightly.
The next cycle of Survivor kicks off on Wednesday, March 6, 2024, with the season premiere of The Amazing Race kicking off one week later.
Like in the fall, both series will continue with 90-minute episodes.
With so many returning series on deck for midseason due to the strike-related delays, CBS is also pushing some shows to the fall.
Matlock and Poppa’s House have been pushed to the 2024-25 TV season.
The decision is driven by more shows than planned on the fall schedule, but hey, at least they’re both keeping their planned series orders.
ABC has already announced its delaying freshman drama High Potential, starring Kaitlin Olson, to next season.
Other networks could follow suit. CBS, though, seems like it’s proceeding with all of the shows it picked up during the 2022-23 TV season.
ABC recently nixed The Rookie Feds and The Good Lawyer.
There will be a lot of interest in the broadcast networks early next year, but after spending so many months without regularly scheduled programming, there’s always that risk that viewers will have gone elsewhere.
All told, check out the complete list of premiere dates below.
SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 11 (following Super Bowl LVIII)
~10 pm TRACKER (series premiere)
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 12
8 pm The Neighborhood Season 6
8:30 pm Bob Hearts Abishola Season 5
9 pm NCIS Season 21
10 pm NCIS: Hawai’i Season 3
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 13
8 pm FBI Season 6
9 pm FBI: International Season 3
10 pm FBI: Most Wanted Season 5
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 15
9 pm Young Sheldon Season 7
8:30 pm Ghosts Season 3
9 pm So Help Me Todd Season 2
10 pm TRACKER (series premiere repeat)
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 16
8 pm S.W.A.T. Season 7 (final)
10 pm Blue Bloods Season 14
SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 18
7 pm 60 Minutes
8 pm The Equalizer Season 4
9 pm TRACKER (regular time slot premiere)
10 pm CSI: Vegas Season 3 (new night)
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 28
8 pm Survivor Season 46 (2-hour premiere)
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 29
10 pm ELSBETH (series premiere)
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 6
8 pm Survivor (2-hour episode)
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 13
8 pm Survivor (return to 90-minute episodes)
9:30 pm The Amazing Race Season 36 (90-minute episodes)
The CBS schedule marks a return to normalcy for the broadcast networks following the dual strikes.
At one point, it seemed like returning scripted series wouldn’t be part of the networks’ current seasons.
With the strike resolution, more networks will likely announce their plans in the coming days.
The idea, we hear, is for shows to film back-to-back seasons, which means we should expect earlier than usual renewal/cancellation decisions.
That means we could hear about renewals for our favorite shows in the coming weeks.
For now, we can be excited about all of the returning shows because it’s been a LONG time without them.
What are your thoughts on these premiere dates?
Are you surprised episodes will be good to go from February?
Hit the comments.
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on X.