The pressure is on for Suburgatory this coming season. On-screen, the family comedy is preparing to introduce the long-gone mom of Tessa (Jane Levy) as well as finally put will-they-or-won’t-they couple George (Jeremy Sisto) and Dallas (Cheryl Hines) together. Off-screen, the family comedy is in the hot seat (in a good way) after a last-minute bump on the fall schedule from 8:30/7:30c to the coveted post-Modern Family spot of 9:30/8:30c.
“I’m still trying to figure out what I should send [ABC Entertainment President] Paul Lee as a thank you gift,” creator and executive producer Emily Kapnek says. “It’s not just a huge opportunity, but a good fit. We were a little bit edgy at times for 8:30.”
When Suburgatory returns for its second season on Wednesday, Oct. 17, months will have passed since George’s girlfriend, Eden (Alicia Silverstone), went into labor with Noah’s baby and Tessa came face-to-face with her maternal grandmother. Since then, George has been dumped and Tessa has been spending quality time with her grandma in the Big Apple — a new development that will have big repercussions.
“We get to see in flashbacks her out in the clubs and getting that New York experience. She comes off the train and realizes that she has this renewed interest in her mom, and George tries to be respectful of that,” Kapnek says. “George reaches the realization like, ‘I’ve got to step back. She’s almost 17. … And at the same time, I think he’s very self-conscious about what the grandmother’s version of what happened is.”
Jokes Kapnek: “It’s really nice, complicated stuff for a half-hour comedy.”