Fox Drops the ‘American Idol’ Bomb on ‘Modern Family’

The network’s moving the “Idol” results show to 9 p.m. Wednesdays, taking direct aim at ABC’s nascent comedy hit

Fox has decided to aim a missile directly at heart of ABC’s young comedy hit "Modern Family."

The network Friday confirmed that it will move new drama "Human Target" from its originally announced 9 p.m. Wednesday time slot to 8 p.m. Wednesdays. Its replacement: The "American Idol" results show, which had been set to air at 8 p.m. Wednesdays.

"Target" will still get some exposure behind "Idol" for one week, with the Jan. 20 episode airing at 9. But starting Jan. 27, it’ll be "Target" at 8 and "Idol" at 9.

The move isn’t really a surprise. Fox has often played with the "Idol" results show scheduling, sometimes airing it at 8 and sometimes at 9. What’s more, "Target" is a broad-skewing show and could be able to open the night opposite relatively weak competition.

Still, the shift could make it tougher for "Modern Family" — which is produced by Fox sibling 20th Century Fox TV– to gain momentum in the winter. The same is true for ABC’s "Cougar Town," which now must also face off against the "Idol" behemoth.