NBC’s Wednesday lineup change is a good thing for Quantum Leap

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NBC has changed its Wednesday night lineup. Quantum Leap will now kick off the night, and this should be a good thing for the show.

When NBC initially announced its fall schedule after the SAG-AFTRA strike was declared, One Chicago reruns were going to start Wednesday nights. As much as One Chicago shows are popular, the idea of starting a night with reruns was going to be a bad idea.

It looks like NBC has realized that. The latest schedule change sees Quantum Leap kick off the night instead. New episodes of Magnum PI will then air in the hour afterward, with One Chicago reruns taking over the last timeslot of the night.

Why this is good for Quantum Leap

When networks plan out a schedule, they want a strong show to start the night. Those who watch a show at 8 p.m. ET/PT are likely to stick around for the show in the next hour. After all, the shows run into each other after the trailers for the next episodes.

It can also work the other way. People will tune in for a 9 p.m. ET/PT show a little early, catching the tale end of the previous show. This can lead to people getting an idea of what that show is about and tune in earlier. With reruns to kick off the night, this was going to be a little pointless as One Chicago is already the most popular franchise on the network.

So, Quantum Leap needed to benefit from a strong timeslot. After a rerun isn’t a good timeslot. People don’t tune in for reruns all that much when there are new episodes of other shows on other networks. NBC wants to give people a reason to tune into the network right away, and having new episodes of a series is a way to do that.

This is also a good thing for Magnum PI. People who watch the time travel series are more likely to stick around for Magnum PI. Plus, those who do tune in for Magnum PI will get the tail end of QL to gain more interest in that.

We actually saw NBC attempt to lead into new episodes with reruns earlier this year. Sunday nights were messy with random reruns before Magnum PI. This led to a lack of people tuning in for Magnum PI and the viewership wasn’t as strong as it could have been. This arguably led to the cancellation of the show. We don’t want to see that again for another show!

MORE: How is Quantum Leap Season 2 ready for fall 2023?

Quantum Leap* and Magnum PI premiere their new seasons on Wednesday, Oct. 4 starting at 8/7c on NBC.