Last year, when NBC, ABC, CBS, Fox and the CW announced their fall shows, I did two things:
- I wrote a long (German) feature about female characters, domesticity and “pretty girls” for the Berlin Tagesspiegel (Link).
- And I picked my favorite promos of the 2011/2012 season: “Awake”, “Ringer”, “The New Girl”, “Don’t trust the Bitch in Apartment 23” etc. Full list: HERE (Link)
This year, here are another 8, 9 shows that look solid and, potentially, interesting.
Scroll down to see my favorite, Fox’s The Goodwin Games!
1) Go on, NBC:
…a quirky, diverse group of grown-ups who hangs out together and has fun.
Matthew Perry’s ensemble dramedy “Go on” uses a convoluted, Nick-Hornbyesque scenario (a rogue, sportcasting-inspired self-help grief counselling group?)…
…to create ANOTHER one of these shows: quirky, fast-paced, optimistic and snarky. It doesn’t reinvent the wheel. But it should work just fine:
2) Revolution, NBC:
“The Hunger Games” meets “Lost”: I don’t like Quests (Link) and adventures that feature a lot of walking / exploring in the wilderness… but this is the first big-budget, mainstream TV show by “Supernatural” creator Eric Kripke (Link)…
…and with all the martial arts and snarky swashbuckling in the trailer’s second half, there’s a distinct Joss Whedon vibe, too. If “Revolution” doesn’t take itself too seriously… it could be fun, dramatic escapism:
3) Ben and Kate, Fox:
An overgrown man-child, a hapless single mom and lots of heartwarming family hijinks? This won’t be high-brow, dramatic TV. But while most comedies skew towards ONE gender… this looks like a show that can appeal to men and women. So… yay for non-segregation!
(I hope the main characters don’t hook up, though. No incestuous shipping!)
4) The Following, FOX:
Before Kevin Williamson (Link) created “Dawson’s Creek” and “The Vampire Diaries”, he wrote “Scream”. It’s been too long since there was a genuinely scary crime drama on TV. Plus: Kevin Bacon! Let’s hope this finds an audience:
5) Arrow, CW:
“The Dark Knight”… on a CW budget? “Green Arrow” Oliver Queen is one of my favorite DC Comic super-heroes, and as a supporting player in “Smallville”, Justin Hartley has proven that the character works just fine in a weekly show.
Also: Black Canary! Deathstroke! A female big bad! Let’s see if this still looks as good, energetic and engaging after David Nutter (Link), director of the pilot, has moved on:
6) 666 Park Avenue, ABC:
Robert Buckley (“One Tree Hill”), Vanessa Williams (“Ugly Betty”), Terry O’Quinn (“Lost”)… some of my favorite TV faces, in a trashy, campy, overly dramatic genre drama about a posh apartment building… ruled by demonic forces? I’m sceptical. But I love these actors:
I’m still amazed that Ryan Murphy’s “American Horror Story” (Link) turned out to be a critically successfull, well-liked show. Contrast and compare:
7) Nashville, ABC:
I’m not INTERESTED in this dramedy about aging, female friendship, showbiz and country music… but it would be nice to have something (better-written) to show the writers at “Smash” (NBC) and say “Look: THIS is how it’s done!”
Still: I suspect this will be cancelled quickly. The trailer has no energy.
8a) and 8b) Next Caller, NBC & The Mindy Project, FOX:
Another two shows that seem to miss their mark and might need retooling / more work.
“Next Caller” is a modern-day screwball comedy… with a “30 Rock” look:
My favorite trailer? A quirky, Wes-Anderson-like family drama about siblings reuiniting after their father’s death, Fox’s “THE GOODWIN GAMES”.