Product placements, news and repeats. That's all that's left on the last Friday night of the 2012-13 network television season.
We have the summer to anticipate the new (or newish) shows that will appear on Fridays next season. Let's glance back at the Friday shows we've lost this season. TV's boot hill has quite a few new gravesites.
To be fair, getting scheduled on Friday night is not a sign of confidence. With the exception of "Blue Bloods" on CBS (returning next year), nearly every show on the last night of the week is reality, soft news, filler, "encores" (the fancy new name for repeats), shows that barely made the cut, and/or series in their final season.
Fox made the most of the last episodes of "Fringe," treating its last season like a valedictory lap.
You didn't get the same feeling for "CSI: NY," finally put out of its misery by CBS. You know we've turned some kind of TV corner when next season brings us only one show in the "CSI" franchise and just one "Law & Order" -- in this case, "Special Victims Unit."
Friday nights saw the television season's first casualty: CBS' "Made in Jersey" didn't make it to its third week.
This night was paradoxical for the networks.
CBS, with the most stable schedule, had the weakest Fridays, while cellar-dwelling NBC saw the least volatility on this weakest of weeknights. The network's schedule of soft news, encores, "Grimm" and "Fashion Star" survived the ax. In contrast, CBS had "Jersey" as well as "The Job," a quickly canceled reality show about the difficulty of looking for work that audiences found depressing and dull. Friday nights were also where CBS sent "Vegas" out into the desert to die.
ABC's attempts to use Fridays for a comedy block did not exactly thrive. Reba McEntire's "Malibu Country" was just canceled, as was "Happy End ings." ABC viewers seem to prefer "Shark Tank." But the dated Tim Allen vehicle "Last Man Standing" will return.
The CW used Friday nights to terminate "Cult," a convoluted series that never developed a following. Fox viewers never got a feel for "Touch," and it followed "Fringe" into forced retirement. Oddly enough, "Touch" star Kiefer Sutherland will take Jack Bauer out of mothballs for a revived "24," arriving in the summer of 2014. That gives us a whole year to anticipate the relative wisdom of that decision.
---Veteran news anchors Jim Lehrer and Robert MacNeil reunite on a "PBS News Hour" (7 p.m.) special, "Covering Watergate." This marks the 40th anniversary of the Senate Watergate hearings, which PBS covered for more than 250 hours during the summer of 1973.
---Previously featured bosses discuss their stints on "Undercover Boss" (8 p.m., CBS, TV-PG). A repeat (9 p.m.) follows.
---On two helpings of "Shark Tank" (ABC, TV-PG): military-themed jewelry (8 p.m.); a language-translating application for smartphones (9 p.m.).
---Amanda sets her plans in motion on "Nikita" (8 p.m., CW, TV-14).
---Ramsay takes a failing Greek restaurant under his wing on "Kitchen Nightmares" (8 p.m., Fox, r, TV-14).
---A cynical press agent (Kirk Douglas) turns a routine rescue into a life-or-death drama and media circus in director Billy Wilder's 1951 satire "Ace in the Hole" (8 p.m., TCM).
---Home video captures the hours after a giant creature attacks New York in the clever 2008 shocker "Cloverfield" (8 p.m., Fox Movie Channel).
---Booth goes undercover at a comedy club on "Bones" (9 p.m., Fox, r, TV-14).
---Leonardo has a brush with Vlad the Impaler on "Da Vinci's Demons" (9 p.m., Starz, TV-MA).
---Salmon spawn, but Hans can't find a girl on "Wild West Alaska" (10 p.m., Discovery, r, TV-14).
Jeff Bridges and Bruce Boxleitner star in the 1982 video game fantasy "Tron" (8 p.m., BBC America, TV-PG). Considered far ahead of its time, "Tron" inspired a cult following and a lukewarm sequel in 2010. It was the last notable hit for the old Disney studio before its revival under Michael Eisner, Frank Wells and Jeffrey Katzenberg in the mid- to late-1980s.
---Two hours of "Dateline NBC" (8 p.m.).
---Fighting the Demon King on "Supernatural" (9 p.m., CW, r, TV-14).
---Edie Falco, Bobby Lee, Loni Love and Mo Mandel appear on "Chelsea Lately" (11 p.m., E!, r).
---Will Arnett and Kurt Vile appear on "Late Show With David Letterman" (11:35 p.m., CBS).
---Jay Leno welcomes Mitt Romney and the winner of "Ameri can Idol" on "The Tonight Show" (11:35 p.m., NBC).
---Adam Levine, Alice Eve and Bad Rabbits appear on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" (11:35 p.m., ABC).
---Zoe Saldana, Chris O'Dowd and De La Soul visit "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon" (12:35 a.m., NBC).
---Craig Ferguson hosts William Shatner on "The Late Late Show" (12:35 a.m., CBS).
Kevin McDonough can be reached at email@example.com.