The Discovery Channel is enjoying a successful run and it continued this past year with primetime ratings up 12% from the previous year. The network will return the staples that have gotten them this successful run and shows will include the favorite Shark Week. Also coming back to help secure the loyal fan base will be Naked and Afraid, Deadliest Catch, Bering Sea Gold, and Gold Rush. This should keep the network right around where it has been in recent years, but in order to move up and garner higher viewership, Discovery is bringing in several interesting new shows this coming year. First up will be a mini-series that will be as American as apple pie and baseball, when Harley-Davidson premieres. The show will tell the real-life story of the iconic motorcycle and national brand that began in Milwaukee with two 19-year-olds (William S. Harley and Arthur Davidson) and developed into what we now know: an iconic symbol. Taking a cue from Deadliest Catch, Discovery will scale it way down and debut Pacific Warriors in the new year. Warriors will follow the only commercial fishermen who go at it alone in this series. Taking place in Hawaii and using only their kayaks, the men and women must battle some of the biggest fish in the world to make a living. If the fish/kayak battles are not enough, enjoy the territory rivalries and great back stories of each Warrior. Finally, Discovery will dip into the real life crime bug that seems to have bitten the country and Killing Fields will take shape in 2016. Fields will explore real-life crimes that are largely undetected and unsolved, mostly due to the location of where the crime took place.
The E! network has ridden the Kardashians and pre-award show red carpet specials to nice success over the past several years, so why change a good thing? Well, they won’t, so there is no need to worry about that. Of course a version of Keeping Up With the Kardashians will return along with those red-carpet awards shows, but E! is also bringing back the very popular Botched, #RichKids of Beverly Hills, and House of DVF. As mentioned previously, the network will “dance with the one who brung ya” on their new programming and stay with a celebrity-rich theme. The highly anticipated eight-part documentary of Bruce Jenner transitioning and living life as a woman began in late July. I Am Cait will show Jenner’s day-to-day life and give viewers an in depth look at the world of someone who is in a gender transition. Staying with the Kardashian theme, E! will also debut Dash Dolls in the fall. Dolls won’t be focusing on Kim, Khloe, or Kourtney, but instead will center around the women that work at the Kardashians’ store, Dash. The show will definitely suck in viewers with the occasional celebrity cameo that will come with working at one of the nation’s most recognizable stores. If that’s not enough to show you the life that the rich and fabulous lead in Los Angeles, just tune into the network’s new show, Stewarts & Hamiltons. The show will feature a number of kids produced by Rod and Alana Stewart, as well as Alana and her ex-husband George Hamilton, as they all try and carve out their own place in life and get out of their famous parents’ shadows. It kicked off in late July.
The culinary network king has seen a dip in ratings over the last several years and is looking to stabilize the downward trend. The network will bring back some of the more reliable shows in the coming year. Back will be Chopped, Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives, Food Network Star, and Worst Cooks in America. The network hopes to combine those staple shows along with some interesting new ones in the late summer and fall to get their audience back in the kitchen. Crazy Kitchen will pit amateur competitors against each other in fast and fun games to test their knowledge of the food industry. In the fall, the network will then tempt America’s fascination with fried foods by debuting Great American Food Finds. The show is exactly what you would expect from the title, where the network will travel coast to coast to find the best and most mouth-watering food in the U.S.A. Finally, in 2016, Food will join the fitness craze and use one of their biggest names to push it with Bobby Flay Fit. Fit will have Flay share all he knows to provide viewers with the tools they need to maintain a healthy lifestyle. He won’t just show how to cook healthy food, but he will also go into menu planning, exercise, and moderation to help out the audience.
HGTV has maintained a healthy audience for several years as America continues to be thrilled with getting any edge they can in the real estate industry. The network has stayed in the top ten for a number of years now in primetime and is coming off of its highest rated year ever in 2014. The first part of 2015 has seen HGTV hit its highest-ever ratings in Adults 25-54. The network is not going to mess around with the formula that has been working, so they have renewed the following shows: Ellen’s Designer Challenge, Property Brothers, Flip or Flop, Love It or List It, and Rehab Addict. As of this writing, the fall and winter schedule has yet to be finalized, but several new shows are airing currently. This will explain why you are tuning into HGTV and not recognizing the shows. Flip or Flop Follow-Up is exactly as it sounds as the network will take you behind the cameras of some of the crews’ most interesting Flip or Flop houses they have had on the show. The show debuted in late July and looks at the biggest flops to find out what happened to the houses they aired which did not sell. Also airing right now is the new program America’s Most Desperate Kitchens. Cousins Anthony Carrino and John Colaneri have combed through tons of tape to see who has submitted the most desperate situation with their kitchen area in their homes. They have selected their targets and will surprise the homeowners with unreal kitchen upgrades that the owners never thought were possible. Finally, Beach Flip is now running on HGTV as well and the network feels this show could stick around for a while. Beach will allow four teams to compete in renovation challenges to transform a beach property that is screaming for a touch up. The winner will receive $50,000 at the end of the show in cash to help them continue to transform their property.
The Lifetime network is looking to bounce back a little from first quarter of 2015, where their prime viewership was down by more than 10% compared to the previous year. They will bring back such solid winners as Devious Maids, Hoarders, and Dance Moms. Moms has been rumored to be making a change to the show, but many feel it will be back in some form or another. Those shows should help the network rebound from the decline in the prime arena for the remainder of the year, but the network is also going to rely on some new programming. As mentioned in the A&E portion of this article, Lifetime will be part of a simulcast with them and History, when they run the miniseries War & Peace. Paul Dano, Lily James, and Jim Broadbent will star in this 2016 simulcast event, which is based on the Russian novel. On a lighter side of prime shows, Lifetime will also debut Sing It! Sing will premiere in late summer or into the fall on the network and feature two cross-town a cappella rivals. Taking place in New Jersey, the two groups will go head to head in competitions with the help of some of the best coaches in the singing world with Deke Sharon (Pitch Perfect) and Diana Preisler (SingStrong’s Acaldol). Finally, Lifetime will debut a show based on a six-book series called The Clan of the Cave Bear. The show will feature British actress Millie Brady as the lead. The show takes place in the first stages of modern history and shows a girl (Brady) fighting for survival.