FX took pride in its early adoption of the internet to interact with viewers (broadcasting hours of live programming from an apartment/studio in New York- including Tom Bergeron as the co-host of Breakfast Time, a Transatlantic Equivalent to The Big Breakfast), but otherwise spent the 1990s running old movies and television shows (primarily Fox-owned, natch). Its first foray into original scripted programming was The Shield in 2002, which turned out to be a critical and commercial hit, winning a number of Emmys, Golden Globes, and other awards.
FX is notable for being led by executives who are actual television lovers, who give notes that can actually make the show better. It is also famous for mostly producing comedies and dramas that revolve around anti-heroes. This became such a prominent theme that then-network president Kevin Reilly once turned down a new show because it featured yet another anti-hero,note although they appear to have given up that fight.
On March 20th, 2019, Disney would acquire FX Networks as part of a broader deal to purchase the majority of 21st Century Fox's media assets (excluding the Fox network, Fox Sports and a few others) thus making the networks a sister branch to ABC. Reactions to this have been divided. Some fear that Disney might slowly let FX rot itself to irrelevance as they focus their attention to their streaming platforms, Disney+ and Hulu, the latter of which Disney now has the majority stake and operational control of.note Others, including network head John Landgraf, believe the Disney purchase will give FX more resources and allow its programming to better compete with Netflix on a level playing field via Hulu. Indeed, Disney CEO Bob Iger announced in November 2019 that Hulu would be the new home for FX programming, streaming programming from the network immediately after broadcast.
Additionally, under Disney management, the networks have begun investing more in original content, cutting back on the number of repeats of older programs and movies that dominate most of their schedules. In January 2020, FX chose not to renew their first-run cable output deal with Universal Pictures, the latter of whom was launching the Peacock streaming platform around the same time.
FX's siblings are the younger-skewing, comedy-oriented FXX, the all-movie channel FXM, and the soon-to-be-launched Hulu channel FX on Hulu. The Disney acquisition has also re-united the FX Networks with the former Fox Family Channel, of which they share growing syndication rights to 20th Century Fox Television's primetime animated comedies.
Shows on FX Networks with their own pages:
- American Crime Story
- American Horror Story
- The Americans
- Anger Management
- Archer (Premiered on FX; moved to FXX from season 8 onward)
- Axe Cop (Originally aired on FOX; moved to FXX for season 2)
- The Bastard Executioner
- Better Things
- Brand X With Russell Brand
- The Bridge (US)
- The Comedians
- Family Guy (reruns of season 16 onwards on FXX; shared with Freeformnote )
- Grand Hotel
- It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia (Premiered on FX; moved to FXX from season 9 onward)
- The League (Premiered on FX; moved to FXX for seasons 5-7)
- Legit (Premiered on FX; moved to FXX for season 2)
- Lights Out
- Major Lazer (Premiered on FXX)
- Man Seeking Woman (Premiered on FXX)
- Mayans M.C.
- Mr Inbetween
- Rescue Me
- The Riches
- The Shield
- Son of the Beach
- Sons of Anarchy
- Stone Quackers (Premiered on FXX)
- The Strain
- The Simpsons (Airs in reruns on FXX; to be shared with Freeform beginning September 2019)
- The Titan Games (Aired on FX in South America)
- What We Do in the Shadows
- Wilfred (Premiered on FX; moved to FXX for its final season)
- You're the Worst (Premiered on FX; moved to FXX from season 2 onward)
Tropes associated with this network:
- Artifact Title: The channel's initials are derived from the Fox network, which it split from after Disney took over.
- Early Installment Weirdness: The channel now is unrecognizable from the "interactive" and "Fox Gone Cable" eras; no more live shows (minus the occasional sports telecast), old Fox-sourced reruns (from both the TCF library and non-TCF programs aired on Fox), etc. Even as the network evolved, there were still odd things here and there- like sharing baseball coverage that had moved from Fox SportsNet with what was then Fox Family (after they were bought by Disney, that coverage moved to ESPN, with occasional ABC Family telecasts).
- Production Posse: FX often collaborates with creators Shawn Ryan and Kurt Sutter, and has actually given notes in order to put Walton Goggins and Margo Martindale on new shows.
- Stillborn Franchise: FXX airs only a smattering of original programming. Save for Its Always Sunnyin Philadelphia, The League, Wilfred (which was already ending), and Archer, almost every other comedy that moved to the network from FX has since been cancelled. Its planned expansion into adult animation, outside of reruns of The Simpsons, never manifested as none of the shows from its Thursday night Animation Domination block were renewed and Cassius and Clay and a planned Deadpool series were both scrapped. FXX even briefly drifted into Network Decay when they aired a 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup game due to program conflicts with FS 1 and FS 2 and the low distribution of the latter network (marking the first sports program to air on FXX since the network replaced Fox Soccer). At the very least, You're the Worst was a critical success and managed to complete its five-season run.
- Typecasting: Rare channel example, but FX is well known for their dramas featuring complicated Anti-Heroes. They even turned down Breaking Bad in an attempt to avert this.