Thank God It’s Thursday— TGIT for short— is ABC’s biggest day for primetime television. But fans of shows like “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Scandal,” and “How to Get Away with Murder” had to wait even longer for the winter season premieres.
This legendary lineup of iconic shows was pushed back in favor of what you ask? A pre-inauguration 20/20 special on President Trump and his family entitled, “America’s New First Family: The Trumps Go to Washington,” aired from 10 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Thursday Jan. 19. Now, all of the new TGIT Winter premieres were officially pushed back to Jan. 26, despite ads for weeks claiming they would return all together on Jan. 19.
The switch was quite a bold move for a network known to be more than less liberal than others in the aftermath of such a controversial election, so Valley decided to dig into the program delay.
President of ABC’s Entertainment Group, Channing Dungey, defended the network’s decision by saying, “It was a very hard call. Believe me. Nobody else has been waiting for it bigger than me.”
She further explained the switch by saying there had been an “ongoing conversation” with ABC News about a possible special airing the night before the inauguration. Eventually, the network decided it wanted to keep all three shows together. “We felt like it was better to move all of #TGIT to the following week, and have it all come out at once,” said Dungey.
So the network felt like this was an important enough event that it could move something it had been promoting for weeks. It was regarding our nation’s President after all— but what about the fact that ABC News aired no sort of similar pre-inauguration special eight years ago? Dungey simply claimed that after the recent election, America has faced a “more difficult” transition process and that, “there’s a lot to be said and the news is anxious to be saying it.”
TGIT’s creator, Shonda Rhimes, reacted to the delay by saying, “I’m not in charge of scheduling. I’m fine with whatever they want to do. It has nothing to do with my job. I stay in my lane.” Yet she went on to say, “I am not going to comment on conversations I’ve had with my bosses, because I like my job.”
Emily Moyer, a freshman at Penn State, expressed her distaste for the situation.
“Exchanging three of the most feminist shows on network television right now to cover a man who has clearly gone against every feminist ideal is shocking,” says Moyer. “I cleared my schedule on Thursday because I was waiting for this for months.”
Fans of the show have been quite vocal about the program delay, taking to Twitter and other social media platforms to express their feelings.
Although fans have had to wait to a little longer for their favorite shows, premiere day is finally here. Valley can’t wait until TGIT tonight! How about you?