TV Upfront

Are These the 10 New TV Comedies Most Likely to Succeed?

Part 2 of Our Look Into the Watchlist Magic Ball

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Yesterday we told you which new dramas were most intriguing users of's Watchlist, a customizable entertainment guide that lets users make a list of their favorite shows, actors, etc. Today we've got comedies for you.

We're interested in Watchlist because of its predictive powers; the Watchlist community (with more than 1.1 million people signed up, according to, up from half a million when we first wrote about it) serves as a massive focus group of informed and committed TV viewers. If Watchlisters are excited about a show, that, historically speaking, has typically translated into respectable viewership.

The chart shown here lists the 10 most-added new comedies announced during the upfronts. As Editor-in-Chief Mickey O'Connor explained yesterday, "Before viewers are able to learn every nuance of every new show, they latch on to the familiar -- whether it be an actor, the source material or even the production company. That's what we're seeing at this stage of the game on the list of new fall shows most added to Watchlists."

The most conspicuous sitcom trend this year, notes O'Connor, is the return of established comedy stars. "CBS is bringing lovable spaz -- and Oscar winner! -- Robin Williams back to TV with 'The Crazy Ones.' NBC's 'The Michael J. Fox Show' puts the star's even-keeled struggle with Parkinson's front and center. And Fox's 'Brooklyn Nine-Nine' gives us 'SNL' goofball Andy Samberg as a wisecracking cop." Thanks to all that comedic star power, those three shows have a lock on the top three spots on our chart.

Looking for more insight regarding the upfronts? Here you go:

  • Check out the archive of our comprehensive upfronts coverage.
  • Read my colleague Jeanine Poggi's rundown of the upfront's best and most awkward moments -- and worst hashtag.
  • Finally, please visit our poll and vote on which new broadcast comedy will get canceled first. Once you vote, you can see the current results. As of this writing, NBC's "Sean Saves The World" -- conspicuously absent from our Watchlist Top 10 -- is the reader, uh, favorite for most likely to get the swift boot.

Simon Dumenco is the "Media Guy" media columnist for Advertising Age. Follow him on Twitter @simondumenco.

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