‘2 Broke Girls’ trumps ‘Two and a Half Men’

Posted: May 17, 2012

NEW YORK — CBS did the math.

And when it was done calculating, it decided to move “2 Broke Girls,” the season’s No. 1 new show among the 18- to 49-year-olds advertisers target, into the 9 p.m. slot long held by the network’s longest-running sitcom, “Two and a Half Men.”

The still successful “Men” — and shouldn’t we be acknowledging there are three of them by now? -- will move to 8:30 p.m. Thursdays, after “The Big Bang Theory,” to create a stronger lead-in for “Person of Interest” (and most likely a nightmare for ABC, which will be trying to launch its new Shawn Ryan drama “Last Resort” in what was already a tough slot).

Math aside, it’s a big vote of confidence in “2 Broke Girls,” which stars Bryn Mawr’s Kat Dennings and Lancaster’s Beth Behrs as odd-couple roommates working as waitresses while trying to launch a cupcake business.

“Funny is great, but one of the things that people talk about with ‘Broke Girls’ is that these girls care about each other, and we care about them,’” said CBS entertainment president Nina Tassler at a press breakfast Monday morning at which she and CBS scheduling chief Kelly Kahl unveiled the network’s 2012-13 schedule.

(Another thing they talk about is the boundaries pushed by showrunner Michael Patrick King, the “Sex and the City” writer who’s clearly not been tamed by CBS. Though it’s hard to imagine anyone who’s been watching “Two and a Half Men” all these years noticing much of a difference, other than the shape of some of the body parts under discussion.)

Also on the move: “The Mentalist,” which will follow “The Good Wife” to Sundays, replacing “CSI: Miami” at 10 p.m. (or as close to it as the football overruns allow) and “CSI: NY,” which will move to 8 p.m. Fridays.

After canceling a number of shows, most notably “CSI: Miami” and “Unforgettable,” to make room for more, the network added just four new series for fall, one comedy and three dramas to the lineup it was presenting to advertisers Wednesday afternoon at New York’s Carnegie Hall.

New dramas include “Elementary,” a modern-day take on Sherlock Holmes starring Jonny Lee Miller (“Eli Stone”) as Holmes and Lucy Liu as Dr. (Joan) Watson; “Vegas,” a set-in-the-’60s show inspired by former Las Vegas Sheriff Ralph Lamb that stars Dennis Quaid and Michael Chiklis; and “Made in Jersey,” a lawyer show about a working-class woman who moves from Trenton to Manhattan.

(If “Elementary” strikes “Sherlock” fans as sounding familiar, imagine the conversations that might have taken place between “Sherlock’s” Benedict Cumberbatch and Miller, who until earlier this month were starring together — and swapping lead roles — in a London theater production of “Frankenstein.”)

The new comedy “Partners,” is from “Will & Grace” creators David Kohan and Max Mutchnick and it’s supposedly based on their own experience as longtime friends and writing partners, one gay (Michael Urie) and straight (David Krumholtz).

Returning: “Blue Bloods,” “The Good Wife,” “The Mentalist,” “Hawaii Five-0,” “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” “NCIS,” “NCIS: Los Angeles,” “Person of Interest,” “Criminal Minds,” “Mike & Molly,” “How I Met Your Mother,” “2 Broke Girls,” “The Big Bang Theory,” “Two and a Half Men,”

Outta here: “How to Be a Gentleman,” “CSI: Miami,” “A Gifted Man,” “NYC 22,” “Unforgettable” and “Rob.”

Not yet canceled or renewed: “Rules of Engagement.”

Contact Ellen Gray at 215-854-5950 or graye@phillynews.comor follow on Twitter @elgray.Read her blog at EllenGray.tv.

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