Good Wife, Bad Time Slot: CBS Tweaks Alert System for Sunday Delays

The Good Wife

Until the future brings us a reality in which there are, like, TV channels dedicated solely to sports, CBS will endeavor to keep fans of The Good Wife and its other Sunday programs alerted to football-related delays.

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New for the coming TV Season, the “CBS Eye-lert” system is inviting TV-philes to download the CBS App for iOS, to set up mobile push notifications about Sunday delays. Also at the CBS Eye-lert website, you can click to follow the network’s Facebook and/or Twitter feeds, which also report on start time delays.

CBS will continue to “aggressively” provide updates via on-air graphics as well as a ticker on the CBS.com homepage. (Text and email alerts, however, have been dropped from the CBS Eye-lert system.)

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Additionally, start times for the programs airing on “NFL doubleheader Sundays” will officially and proactively be pushed back a half hour for Eastern and Central time zones (on Sept. 14 and 21, Oct. 5 and 26, Nov. 2, 23 and 30, and Dec. 21 and 28).

CBS’ Sunday line-up this fall opens with 60 Minutes at 7/6c, followed by the new Tea Leoni drama Madam Secretary, The Good Wife and a relocated CSI.

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115 Comments
  1. Tran says:

    I only live in the West Coast which is a good thing but East Coast viewers still aren’t happy. CSI move to Sundays could possibly be the end for the long running procedural series since 2000.

    • bj says:

      True. if the games run really late then the last show often gets bumped. What does that say for the future of CS!?

      • HAP says:

        Actually, just a few weeks ago, CBS yanked both Unforgettable and Reckless when a golf tournament ran late.

      • TV Gord says:

        The Mentalist was only bumped once because it would have aired mostly outside of the prime time schedule and it was sweeps, so CBS didn’t want to waste a new episode.

    • Jenna says:

      I don’t think the show’s profit is dependent that much on its ratings here; it’s more about the worldwide distribution, which I suspect is dwindling as well. It’s way past time for CSI to end. The show has become laughable, and a caricature of itself. Sad, since it was once groundbreaking and must see TV.
      I am looking forward to CSI:Cyber, tho. And that, I’m sure by design, won’t be affected by football overruns.

  2. kid says:

    Love the picture of Julianna Margulies you chose! Alicia looks PISSED!

  3. Espn? says:

    Like you said- DEDIXATED CHANNELS FOR SPORTS. Why does original programming get pushed aside??

    • torimelching says:

      In most cases not everyone gets the dedicated sports channels. But the main reason is sports in this case football brings in WAY more viewers and WAY more money.

      • TV Gord says:

        I love The Good Wife and I’m not a sports fan at all, but you’re absolutely right, and it’s hard to argue with that logic.

      • sarahliz says:

        I can’t understand why we have repeats on Saturday night with no chance of a show being bumped whatsoever and original programming going up on a Sunday night where it always gets bumped. I suppose people “go out” on Saturday nights, but with the invention of the DVR, does that even matter anymore? People are much more angry about their DVR not catching the show than it not airing at the appropriate time. Or why not put it up on the website and ondemand on Sunday night at the end of the hour when it was supposed to air, so if it is pushed back people can still plan to watch it that night and aren’t wholly inconvenienced or playing a guessing game with both the airtime and their DVR? My livingroom TV is oldschool– the little banner that pops up doesn’t show on a non-wide screen TV because it doesn’t come up far enough, so we have to guess. Surely CBS could come up with a better way to deal with this.

        • torimelching says:

          Saturday night is a wasteland it really is. College Football has night games that do very very well. I imagine that is a big reason. For some reason the “date night” is still an excuse. I know CBS shows new episodes of 48 hours on Saturday sometime 1 hour sometime 2 hours. I don’t see Saturday ever becoming a new programming day though.

  4. Sarah T. says:

    This is what consistently ticks me off about CBS. There are in fact, stations dedicated solely to sports but because they’re a huge draw, they’ll always be around (and ruining other original programing). When CBS moved the Mentalist to Sunday nights, the ratings took a huge hit. Though these alerts might prove helpful to long time viewers (who bother to sign up), I doubt very much that it will prove helpful to new viewers. Seriously CBS, I LOATHE you!

  5. ScorpionGlow says:

    This annoyed me so badly last year. There were many weeks I only caught parts of The Good Wife and The Mentalist because football ran over and you never knew with any certainty when a show was truly going to start. It would be excellent if they could send programming updates to DVR’s so that no one has to miss something and then hope to catch it in re-runs. CBS is not great at offering their shows OnDemand.

  6. wdwnnad says:

    No matter to me. Although I like football, I resent its taking precedence over other programming, and refuse to watch The Good Wife because we never know when it will start in the Eastern time zone. DVR’ing must follow this network through until the wee hours of the morning to be sure to catch entire episodes of favorite programs. Madam Secretary looks intriguing, but reluctant to start watching because of anticipated football delays. Give us and your excellent programs a break, CBS, and figure out some network sharing solutions to tide us over until after the Super Bowl!

    • Becky says:

      All due respect, but it seems like you’re missing some great shows for a little inconvenience. I’d rather not have to keep up with it either, but it really doesn’t require that much effort.

    • greg says:

      Waah! Waah! Poor you on one night. What about those outside the precious East Coast who watch most stuff on delay. And if something “naughty” happens, those of us on the West Coast get the edited version.

    • Steve Stocker says:

      Last night the CBS programming started about 45 minutes late due to football. Not good.

  7. Nat D says:

    I have a sinking feeling that the app mentioned will only be available in the States, guess we international viewers will have to use our psychic powers.

    Luckily some of the shows also air on local stations that aren’t affected by possible delays.

  8. John NYC says:

    Until they can inform DVRs automatically the problem will remain. Getting al alert when I’m not home doesn’t help under these circumstances.

    Thus I pad all CBS Sunday shows by an extra hour, but that gulls dvr storage many won’t have…

    • sheri says:

      This. Why doesn’t CBS “aggressively work with” the cable companies? Why doesn’t my DVR start recording the show WHEN THE SHOW STARTS?

  9. kam says:

    Starting the shows at 7:30 will help absorb some (but not all) delays…but they should make it every Sunday – not just the double-header days.
    How about a post-game show from 7-8 that only runs as long as it needs to until 8pm? Then start regular programming at 8pm during football Season. Isn’t that what Fox usually does? I don’t watch Fox on Sunday nights so I am not sure. But I thought they ran repeats (partial if necessary) until 8pm when they had a 4:30 game.

    • Katherine215 says:

      I think so, plus they use that show, The OT as a built in buffer. The Fox guys have a half hour to recap the games (shorter if the games run longer), and I think it keeps their shows on time then. I’m not sure why CBS doesn’t do the same thing, or at least use a half hour rerun of something old to fill the gap.

    • Anne says:

      CBS doesn’t do this because they have 60 Minutes. And they’re not going to short that show when football runs over.

      • Matt Ceccato says:

        Sad to say, that is the case. I do wish CBS would move “60 Minutes” to 8 PM and sacrifice one of those prime time shows to another night. Until the networks realize that the DVR is their friend and not their enemy…

  10. Ray says:

    So glad the one and only CBS show I watch–The Amazing Race–will no longer be subjected to the vagaries of Sunday football scheduling.

    • dsm says:

      I’m glad TAR is moving to Sundays as well….however I just binge-watched the first five seasons of The Good Wife, am hooked, and now have to dutifully try and catch it on Sundays between all of this football mess.

  11. Kendall says:

    This makes me laugh. The only people who complain about this are people who record the show. The whole reason you’ll never see football leave the networks without a tremendous fight is because it’s the last thing that people still mostly watch live.

    • Maryann says:

      I don’t watch CBS Sunday night dramas live only because of the unpredictable delays, so you are wrong there. The Good Wife is of no interest, but CSI and Madam Secretary are on my list. But with football delays? I will get around to them when I get around to them, online or on demand. I wonder how many people with Nielsen boxes feel the same?

  12. Sue says:

    I never bothered to watch TV on Sunday on CBS because of the delays. Now because of the Good Wife I watch; however, 95% of my watching is on the computer because of the delays. It’s ridiculous that CBS does this to their shows. They have to decide if they are are a sports station or what. Now they’re screwing Thursday. There are millions of people who hate sports so why do they do this?

  13. iiifrogs says:

    Excuse me while I cry little crocodile tears. Not. Sincerely, fan of The Mentalist which consistently out-performed Good Wife in CBS’s worse time slot for years. Payback time.

  14. Tony Lang says:

    Eye don’t care about the Eye-lert, Eye’ll watch it on Global in Canada!

    • BW says:

      And now you’ll have a delay in Canada – I lost the last 35 minutes thanks to Global showing simulcast with CBS…we too are screwed..the little messages that pop up on the screen only help if I’m already watching Global or CBS.

  15. torimelching says:

    I watch one show on CBS so I as of right now don’t have to worry about this. However why don’t you just DVR the show and then DVR the 2 shows behind it? My aunt just now got a DVR and I told her if a show is following something live always record at least one more show. I don’t see why this is so difficult.

  16. Dani says:

    No! My DVR isn’t smart enough to record delays. If they keep doing this, CBS shouldn’t blame The Good Wife or the new secretary show for its ratings. Sundays are hard enough for network scripted shows considering most of cables’ best shows air in this time slot.

  17. SW says:

    1) What about their viewers who have an Android device? 2) I always make sure I set my DVR to record TGW and everything after it up to 2 hours if there’s a game on, because I know it always runs late.

  18. Janet says:

    Unfortunately, if I am out for the evening and set my DVR, it is challenging to reset it. Seems like football should be done by 8 pm or at least one program is not shown that evening.

  19. Steven says:

    My DVR cut off so may episodes of The Good Wife last year that I’ve decided to just record from 8pm to 11:30pm and just fast forward until I find the episode. Annoying, but it words most of the time.

  20. girlwonder77 says:

    And what about the android users? I still watch The Good Wife, but mostly on the internet now unless it’s on time. That’s the nice thing about January-May, predictability in scheduling.

  21. Geo says:

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again– when CBS runs over for sports, they should cut a segment or two from 60 Minutes. Not every segment on that show is particularly earth-shatteringly urgent, and those that aren’t linked to some major ongoing news situation could be postponed. 60 Minutes isn’t a serialized show, like the Good Wife, and there’s no reason (other than some misguided insistence that the show has to always air an actual 60 minutes). CBS news and sports divisions are closely linked, so they should take the brunt of any over-run, and cut their entertainment division– and its viewers– a break for once.

    • MP says:

      I agree with that, but it will never happen because 60 Minutes is in the Top 10 programs ratings wise each week. I always say if football runs over it should be moved to a public access channel! Lol!

  22. Not really necessary for me. I have been setting my DVR to record until midnight every Sunday for the past two years. I noticed that eight out of ten Sundays had delayed programming due to CBS sports and football. What bugged me more than anything, was when I was watching the football game, which was going to run over by a few minutes….and the announcer would say that “60 minutes” would be shown immediately following this game. Not too bad to have a ten minute delay…. I thought. But then, when the game ended, CBS would switch to another game in progress…for another twenty minutes! I was disgusted. I now DVR every CBS show that I watch. Can’t remember the last time I watched a commercial on CBS. I know they don’t care, but it’s a shame.

  23. Arguably the most famous regular season NFL game ever was the notorious Heidi Game in 1968. So a simple solution would be for CBS to make history every week by giving us one each Sunday.

  24. Patrick says:

    Here’s a news flash for everybody complaining — If you have a VCR, DVR, or TiVO there is no such thing as a bad time slot anymore. Just record it and watch it at your leisure.

  25. jab says:

    No droid app though…grrr

  26. Vi says:

    I love the Good Wife and hate the delays. I try to DVR it but that doesn’t always work depending on all my other shows. Usually watch the Walking Dead and DVR the Good Wife. My DVR will only record 2 shows at a time. If it doesn’t record, I will try online, the CBS app or on demand. I do think CBS should offer their shows sooner. Sometimes you can’t watch that way for up to a week.

  27. Jason says:

    Alerts do nothing for those of us who time shift. I shouldn’t have to record 2 hours of garbage to get the show I actually want to watch.

  28. mrsfoxxe says:

    No big lost! Good Wife could go!

  29. Tina Mahan says:

    So people who do not want to watch borrrrrring football are subjected to this annoyance every Sunday. The whole damn game can be shortened to 15 mtes cos most of the time the players are standing around. At least the shows have action all throughout and these overpaid people all they do is throw a ball around and run with it. This why no other country is interested in playing this so called game. Why should our programs be scheduled around this sham!!!!

    • Fran says:

      They are scheduled around this “sham” because football games bring in more ratings than any scripted show does. You may not like the sport but its incredibly popular in the US. CBS is a business and its all about the ratings. Trust me, I find it annoying too when you never know what time a show will start, but its obviously not going to change anytime soon. So we all just have to adapt to it as best we can.

  30. Lizo says:

    I’m in Canada so I don’t have this issue, but I sympathize with Americans that do. The app sounds like a great idea. I’d get it. Good on CBS for trying to accommodate both sports fans and good wife fans.

    • BW says:

      Nope, we no longer can rely on Global not being delayed as you’ve probably discovered. They are simulcasting with the US and so we are losing out too.

  31. H.Houston says:

    I learned my lesson from the football mess before – set the start time to it’s usual time and then have the recording go for three hours. It DVRs everything I want and I don’t have to worry about it

  32. Nancy says:

    I watch football so it doesn’t really matter to me.

  33. Sondra says:

    I get so mad on Sunday nites because of those damned football games I could scream! I really love TGW and CSI is another of my favorites, which means I will be up WAY past midnight to see them! CBS – get off your butts and think about your viewers instead of the $$$$$. You are taking away our choices by forcing us to watch the end of some stupid football game in order to see out favorites!

  34. Biya says:

    When there is a football game on before any of the programs I like, I manually go and add at least one hour to the recording time. That way, I don’t miss any of the program. For the Good Wife, I recorded the Mentalist after that and added a couple of the programs after so I could see all of the episodes. You just have to remember to go in and manually do it yourself.

  35. Kitten says:

    I find it is easiest to record both the show you want to watch and the show that comes after, that way you do not miss any of your show which was delayed by football game..

  36. Cbs has two channels 3 & 12 and on the nights football pushes shows back just have one channel keep showing football and the other have the shows on @ the normal time

  37. G. says:

    Thank god I live in L.A.

  38. So was the season premiere of the Good Wife cut off. I extended the recording for 90 minutes and it still did not get to the end of the program it cut off at 11:00

  39. I have solved the problem. I just ignore CBS on Sunday night :-) If they can’t get their schedule ironed out I’ll just find other shows.

  40. mrsfoxxe says:

    NO great lost Good Wife boring. Secertary not much better!

  41. Marilyn says:

    I missed the whole The Good Wife season premier and 30 minutes of the season finale of Unforgettable because of programming overlap from sports shows. I don’t watch sports so I am not going to be watching your channel to find out the shows have a delayed start time. I tape the shows I want to see in case I’m not home. There is nothing you can do to fix the problem for people who tape but put the shows on a different night that will not have delays. Now I have to see if I can find a place to watch complete episodes online. YUK! Makes me not want to get hooked on any new shows you come out with.

  42. Kathie says:

    And why is it they never bump 60 minutes

  43. CBS better get with it. It was my favorite channel to watch, but with stupid football all over the place, one cannot relax and plan their evening with the shows they enjoy. This is a forever thing with The Good Wife and it doesn’t make for enjoyable TV watching.

  44. Lynn says:

    Those of us without ‘smart’ phones, apps, etc., just a plain old dvr, have added 2 hours to the end of the show recording. Then ff through the junk til the show actually comes on. Not perfect, but it works.

    • M says:

      Agree – so now what we do is start taping at the “regularly scheduled” time of the show, and add 3 hours. That way it covers longer delays and you still get the show you wanted to watch. Inconvenient? Of course, but do-able :-)

  45. jacio says:

    I am so sick of football screwing up the tv line up. When 7 minutes on the clock turns into 45minutes of tv it really ticks me off. All the recording I have set up is messed up. Instead of 1/2 extra they need to do an hour. Sick of this every Sunday

  46. M says:

    I otally agree – we have been Sunday night TV watchers for a very long time. I realize that with the dawn of DVR shows can be taped, but then try to find a night to watch it before the next week’s episode airs. Why can’t delayed shows be pushed out to perhaps Saturday night when there are few if any regularly scheduled shows. As one person commented, it’s a “wasteland” night where re-runs of shows from the past week are shown. Why show it again on Saturday when that time-slot can be filled with sports-delayed programming? VERY disappointing that regularly scheduled shows will be delayed past January ….

  47. Natalie says:

    So sick and tired of planning to watch a show and having it either delayed or eliminated completely for some stupid sports program. Aren’t there enough sports channels to accommodate this mindless crap?

  48. Jane says:

    Can’t we do without 60 Minutes on football Sundays? I’m sorry but some of those story hosts are such antiques and the makeup/hair is so bad that I can’t bear to watch them.

  49. Rosalee Rawlinson says:

    I think the good wife should be in another time slot earlier. It seems like football games just take over everything you really want to see. I wish they would put them on one channel so you could see something else.

  50. Peggy says:

    I don’t understand why they put good shows against football.
    I get so frustrated when my shows don’t start on time. Sometimes 1 to 1 and a half hours late.