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Dr. Pepper's Summer Physical - September 8

I think that as members of a nation that constantly tries to be healthier, we need to always come in for routine physicals and checkups. As Dr. Pepper, let's consider this a routine physical for the upcoming fall shows and figure out if we can get a diagnosis...

Patient: Deal Or No Deal
Monday at 8pm ET on NBC
Competitors: Wife Swap, How I Met Your Mother/The Class, Prison Break, 7th Heaven, Desire: Table for Three.
Diagnosis: Very very healthy. There is nothing here that would seriously threaten DOND, and even if they oversaturate themselves, the other competing shows are so lightweight that they still couldn't catch up.

Patient: The Bachelor
Monday at 9pm on ABC
Competitors: Two and a Half Men/The New Adventures of Old Christine, Heroes, Vanished, Runaway, Fashion House
Diagnosis: With a lot of new shows here, The Bachelor has a 50/50 shot of sticking around. The bad news is that it probably loses to Two and a Half Men, and it could face stiff competition from Heroes, who will be getting the audience from DOND delivered right to them.

Patient: Dancing With the Stars
Tuesday at 8pm on ABC
Wednesday at 8pm on ABC
Competitors: NCIS, Friday Night Lights, House, Gilmore Girls, Desire: Table for Three
Diagnosis: Healthier than last season, when it had to deal with Survivor. If anything, this is an easier schedule for them, and the Tuesday Night audience who wants to vote will not be disappointed. This is a perfect placement by ABC.

Patient: America's Next Top Model
Wednesday at 8pm on the CW
Competitors: Dancing With the Stars Results, Jericho, 20 Good Years/30 Rock, Bones, Desire: Table for Three
Diagnosis: This may be the highest rated series for Top Model ever. Not just because of it's popularity, but because there are no major superhits here to contend with. Only Bones, a show with a completely different demographic, threatens to take away viewers. Tyramania!

Patient: The Biggest Loser
Wednesday at 9pm on NBC
Competitors: Lost, Criminal Minds, Justice, One Tree Hill, Fashion House
Diagnosis: Not very good. This is the first game show that's up against some powerhouses. Lost, Criminal Minds and One Tree Hill all have power bases, and the move to Wednesday from Tuesday may not be paying dividends. If NBC is only looking for something to hold it's own, then TBL has a shot. If they are looking for the same ratings that the show has gotten in the past, they aren't going to get them here.

Patient: Survivor: Cook Islands
Thursdays at 8pm on CBS
Competitors: Ugly Betty, My Name is Earl/The Office, 'Til Death, Smallville, Desire: Table for Three
Diagnosis: You're already going to get eyeballs watching it due to it's controversial theme. The fact that only Earl is here with a lot of new shows and a declining Smallville could very well signal a resurgence for the veteran show... something that Mark Burnett will take credit for.

Patient: Deal Or No Deal
Thursdays at 9pm on NBC
Competitors: Grey's Anatomy, CSI, Celebrity Duets, Supernatural, Fashion House
Diagnosis: You have been able to have 2, even 3 powerhouse shows survive in this time slot. You will not have 4. One of the casualties, I think, will be Grey's Anatomy, but DOND, with it's requirement to watch twice a week, will take a hit here. I think it's still going to get decent ratings, but I think that it would have been much happier on Friday night.

Patient: Celebrity Duets
Thursdays at 9pm on FOX
Fridays at 9pm on FOX
Competitors: Grey's Anatomy, CSI, Deal or No Deal, Supernatural, Fashion House
Diagnosis: Remember when I said that you're not going to have 4 hit shows in the Thursday 9pm slot? I think this will be another casualty that may need some artificial respiration. It's a good thing that this show has had a four-week head start, but I think that it will get crushed come September 21, when all of the big boys come to kick the little kids out of the sandbox.

Patient: The Amazing Race
Sundays at 8pm on CBS
Competitors: Extreme Makeover, Sunday Night Football, The Simpsons/American Dad, Girlfriends/The Game
Diagnosis: The good news is that they are right out of 60 Minutes. They will need every last viewer, because the bad news - Football, the Simpsons and Extreme Makeover - is going to be ugly. You better be supporting the show this year, because if you don't, this is the last Race you'll be seeing.

So those are the patients for this season. Tune in for the three month checkup. Maybe they will have a clean bill of health...or maybe they will need some massive reconstruction surgery.

Dr. Pepper is not an actual doctor, but does get us thinking of 23 all of a sudden. E-mail him at


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