After underperforming on Thursdays, Kal Penn's "Sunnyside" will shift to the NBC app and NBC.com, rather than just being pulled off the air outright.
While it was originally slated to premiere in 2020, an early casualty in the NBC lineup has made room for the Peacock to kick off the final season of "Will & Grace" nearly three months early ... and it comes with a huge surprise!
Thanks to poor returns for freshman sitcom "Sunnyside," NBC is looking to "Will & Grace" to bolster its Thursday-night lineup as soon as October 24, where it takes over "Sunnyside's" 9:30 p.m. ET timeslot.
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But "Sunnyside" fans need not fear, as apparently cancellations in this streaming world don't mean what they used to. Rather than just throw the remaining episodes of the Kal Penn-led comedy on the shelf where they can sit and die (or see the light of day during the summer lull), NBC is shifting broadcast to its streaming platforms on the NBC app and NBC.com.
They even went ahead and ordered an additional episode, giving the series a total of 11 episodes. Now, that might not seem like a big deal, but if the gesture is as simple as allowing the creators to craft a series finale at the 11th hour -- such as it is -- this is a huge improvement to the usual network model.
Fans have long been wary of jumping on board a new series for this very reason. "Sunnyside" will only air four episodes on NBC. In the past, it would be four and gone and frustrated fans. Now those fans have the chance to still catch the show without it hitting NBC's bottom line as hard, and perhaps even a chance at a proper ending for a cancelled series.
This could be a monumental shift in how new series are treated, if other networks follow suit onto their own streaming platforms, and would be a huge building block in regaining trust from viewers that they won't have the rug pulled out from under them in the middle of a story when the cancellation axe drops.
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Will & Grace & ... ?
As soon as the announcement was made that "Will & Grace" would be hitting the airwaves sooner than anticipated, NBC dropped a bombshell in the form of a teaser for the first new episode with a major reveal for what this final season will be grappling with: Grace is pregnant.
The jokes come hot and fast in this teaser, as everyone in the cast gets their jabs in as Grace struggles to accept her new condition. And yes, she is aware that she's older than most expectant mothers, which is where both humor and tension are sure to come in these final episodes.
What wasn't made clear, however, is who the father of her child is. Logic would dictate it's one of her more recent lovers, David Schwimmer's Noah or Reid Scott's Marcus ... but the show could have yet another twist up its sleeves.
"Will & Grace" joins NBC's Thursday night lineup for the final time, beginning October 24 at 9:30 p.m. ET.
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