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Ray Romano's return part of emerging TV schedule

The next few months in TV are starting to take vague shape with a fewannouncements from networks, including the return of Ray Romano toprime time in a “dramedy.”

WHAT’S NEXT: The next few months in TV are starting to take vague shape with a few announcements from networks, including the return of Ray Romano to prime time in a “dramedy” exploring the midlife crisis of a group of forty-something buddies.

The show, titled Men Of A Certain Age, was greenlit for an initial 10 episodes by TNT according to a story in the Hollywood Reporter, and will also star Andre Braugher (star of Gideon’s Crossing, a shortlived spin-off of The Practice) and Scott Bakula. Think Bromance with a lot of prostate jokes.

Fox will be bringing back ‘Til Death with a full 22-episode order for next season, a surprise revival of the sitcom that will bring the show’s total to more than 80 episodes – enough to bring it to syndication, according to a TVGuide.com story, though only seven of the current season’s episodes aired when it disappeared from the air in October.

Which reminds us of the rule that the only thing about Fox you can trust is its unpredictability. Cancelling Prison Break at the end of the current season is hardly unexpected, however – the show long ago exhausted its premise, which was never more than miniseries-sized. “The show is just played out," Fox entertainment president Kevin Reilly told the Hollywood Reporter. "Creatively everybody feels enough stories have been told ... we want to finish strong and not just gimp-out next season.”

Reilly did say that a few extra episodes could be shot to pad out the four remaining set to air. The network has a new animated comedy from Arrested Development creator Mitch Hurwitz, Sit Down, Shut Up, ready to take over King Of The Hill’s Sunday evening slot when that show leaves the air in April. There are also high hopes that they can make Friday night a testosterone-friendly one when they pair up Joss Whedon’s troubled Dollhouse with Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles.

It might just work, if Reilly can convince Whedon’s geeky fan base that going out on Friday night is for jocks, or break their TiVos if they insist on having a social life.

 
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