‘CSI’ Franchise Faces Possible Shake-Up, From Vegas to NYC

by | May 10, 2010 at 8:43 AM | CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, CSI: Miami, Fall TV Preview, Fall TV Preview 2010, TV News

'CSI's Marg Helgenberger, 'CSI: Miami's David Caruso and 'CSI: NY's Gary Sinise (CBS)

'CSI's Marg Helgenberger, 'CSI: Miami's David Caruso and 'CSI: NY's Gary Sinise (CBS)

New time slots and the possible exit of at least one familiar face could help breathe new life into CBS’ aging ‘CSI’ franchise as the three series enter the 2010-11 TV season.

Among the people who may be on the move: ‘CSI: Crime Scene Investigation‘ vet Marg Helgenberger told TV Squad that her contract is up this season. As of late April, “I haven’t been asked back,” she shared, “so we’ll see.”

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Helgenberger’s ‘CSI’ is facing perhaps the most critical juncture of the three shows going into the fall, having suffered a 28 percent drop in ratings. Recently CBS experimented by swapping Thursday time slots for ‘CSI’ and ‘The Mentalist,’ though it’s also possible that the network may opt to relocate the 10-year-old procedural to Fridays at 9, says Variety.

Similarly, ‘CSI: Miami‘ is beginning to wane a bit, occasionally losing its time slot to ABC’s surging ‘Castle.’ But since ‘Miami’ seems to be retaining its critical demos and CBS already is likely to reshape its Monday comedy blocks in the fall, the crime drama is likely to stay put.

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CSI: NY‘ is a trickier call. Always the lowest-rated of the three, it has dipped 14 percent in viewership and proven vulnerable to NBC’s ‘Law & Order: SVU,’ which isn’t exactly riding high itself. Since ‘Criminal Minds‘ is a particularly strong table-setter in the fall, the thinking is that CBS may hold ‘NY’ for midseason and enter the new season with something else in the Wednesdays-at-10 spot.

Or, if the original ‘CSI’ gets shuttled to Fridays-at-9, ‘NY’ could air that night at 10 – or claim the likely canceled ‘Cold Case‘s Sundays-at-10 berth.

What do you think, ‘CSI’ fans? Have any of the shows run their course? Which is the strongest? And will you follow your favorite anywhere? Share your thoughts in Comments.