Spinoffs end up failing as often as any other new show.

Just as "Alice" begat "Flo" and "Cheers" paved the way for "The Tortellis" and "Friends" excreted "Joey," we now have "Schooled" (8:30 p.m., ABC, TV-PG) by way of "The Goldbergs."

I may be partial, having long since filed away "The Goldbergs" somewhere between "meh" and "so-so."

Like its sitcom forebear, "Schooled" uses pop culture references as a crutch. Only we've moved a decade forward.

"Schooled" sees "Goldbergs" character Lainey Lewis (AJ Michalka) all grown up and floundering in the 1990s.

A brief montage shows her failed attempts to make it as a singer and performer.

As soon as you can say "School of Rock," she is hired to become a music teacher at her old school, where she runs into the old Coach Mellor (Bryan Callen) and learns a thing or two about teaching (and life) as he tries to show the value of team-oriented basketball in an age dominated by individual stars, like Michael Jordan.

Like the worst sitcom pilots, Lainey goes from "edgy" to understanding in a mere 15 minutes, as do her more troubled students.

On the plus side, "Schooled" avoids overt cruelty, puts the emphasis on heart and avoids too many cheap shots at the teaching profession.

Tim Meadows makes the most of a thinly drawn character, a high school principal who strives to maintain the institution's stodgy traditions, like a doo-wop night more than three decades past its expiration date.

"Schooled" is not so much a comedy as a collection of contrivances, a rickety vehicle that doesn't deliver many - make that any - actual laughs.

- "I'm Sorry" (10 p.m., TruTV, TV-MA) returns for a second season. Andrea Savage ("Veep," "Episodes") stars as a woman who has not let her role as wife and mother get in the way of letting a thought or impulse go unindulged.

In the style of "Curb Your Enthusiasm," the series stars Tom Everett Scott as her husband and Kathy Baker and Martin Mull as her divorced parents.

Sometimes it's difficult to distinguish "I'm Sorry" from other shows about Los Angeles residents vaguely associated with show business who simply talk way too much about uncomfortable, unmentionable stuff.

Created by Savage, this is also a good example of a series where a talent known as a supporting player takes the central role, with mixed results. In that way, "I'm Sorry" reminded me of recent sitcoms starring Jane Lynch and Whitney Cummings. Sometimes "more" is simply too much.

Tonight's other highlights

- Gunfire on "Chicago Med" (8 p.m., NBC, TV-14).

- "Gordon Ramsay's 24 Hours to Hell and Back" (8 p.m., Fox, TV-14) visits an Allentown, Pennsylvania, restaurant.

- Casey's apartment erupts in flames on "Chicago Fire" (9 p.m., NBC, TV-14).

- A deadly carjacking on "Chicago P.D." (10 p.m., NBC, TV-14).

- A multi-part series profiling 20th-century authoritarians, "The Dictator's Playbook" (10 p.m., PBS, check local listings) premieres with a profile of North Korea's Kim Il-sung.

Series notes

Halloween hijinks on "The Big Bang Theory" (8 p.m., CBS, r, TV-PG) ... Wedding prep on "The Goldbergs" (8 p.m., ABC, TV-PG) ... On two repeats of "All American" (CW, TV-14), homecoming excitement (8 p.m.), gridiron pressure (9 p.m.) ... Feeling bullied on "Young Sheldon" (8:30 p.m., CBS, r, TV-PG).

The not-so-good wife on "SEAL Team" (9 p.m., CBS, TV-14) ... "The Masked Singer" (9 p.m., Fox, TV-14) is inane ... Time to empty the nest on "Modern Family" (9 p.m., ABC, TV-PG) ... Meteorological dreams on "Single Parents" (9:30 p.m., ABC, TV-PG) ... Corn field killers on "Criminal Minds" (10 p.m., CBS, TV-14) ... Alec Baldwin hosts "Match Game" (10 p.m., ABC, TV-14).

Late night

Kevin Hart and Nicole Byer appear on "The Late Show With Stephen Colbert" (11:35 p.m., CBS) ... Jimmy Fallon welcomes Gwyneth Paltrow, Tony Hale and Trippie Redd on "The Tonight Show" (11:35 p.m., NBC).

Andy Samberg, Josh Hutcherson and Charlie Hall visit "Late Night With Seth Meyers" (12:35 a.m., NBC) ... Amy Adams, Tyler Perry and Mekki Leeper appear on "The Late Late Show With James Corden" (12:35 a.m., CBS).

kevin.tvguy@gmail.com