ABC Sets 'Lost' Return Date

"Lost" is coming back after its hiatus, and we now know when. The same can't be said for "Extreme Makeover," whose return to ABC turned out to be extremely brief.

The network has yanked the better-living-through-surgery show after just one airing last Friday, in which it pulled down fairly weak ratings. Reruns of "Grey's Anatomy," which had been airing in the timeslot, will move back there staring Friday, Nov. 3 (the Halloween special "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" fills the hour this week).

ABC made a couple other scheduling moves Tuesday, setting a February return date for "Lost" -- which will then run uninterrupted through the end of the season -- and giving "Boston Legal" a one-time-only airing in its old Sunday timeslot next month.

"Lost" will return to the schedule on Wednesday, Feb. 7, almost exactly three months after its final fall episode airs Nov. 8. The scheduling strategy is an effort by ABC to avoid repeats of the heavily serialized show; it has three more episodes to go in its initial run this fall and will have 16 weeks of uninterrupted episodes when it returns.

Another serial drama, "Day Break," will take its place starting Nov. 15.

"Boston Legal," meanwhile, will get the post-"Desperate Housewives" berth -- where it began its life in 2004 -- for the first half of a two-part episode on Sunday, Nov. 26. The episode will find Alan Shore (James Spader) helping his friend Jerry Espenson (Christian Clemenson) argue a murder case and Shirley Schmidt (Candice Bergen) in jeopardy. The second half of the story will air in the show's regular Tuesday timeslot on Nov. 28.

As for "Extreme Makeover," the show drew only 4.8 million viewers to its premiere Friday and an equally small 1.5 rating among adults 18-49. The "Grey's" repeats, while hardly world-beaters, have drawn about 900,000 more viewers and averaged a 1.9 in the 18-49 demographic so far this year. They've also been a better lead-in for the dramedy "Men in Trees," which fell more than a million viewers below its season average last week.

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