New, good TV? 2012’s most promising shows!

Last year, when NBC, ABC, CBS, Fox and the CW announced their fall shows, I did two things:

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:

Despite their basic plots and high-concept scenarios, both “Cougar Town” (Link) and “Community” (Link) are energetic shows about…

…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:

“The Mindy Project” is the lovechild of “Bridget Jones” and “Grey’s Anatomy”:


My favorite trailer? A quirky, Wes-Anderson-like family drama about siblings reuiniting after their father’s death, Fox’s “THE GOODWIN GAMES”.

It’s “Gilmore Girls”, “The Royal Tenenbaums”, “Arrested Development” and, most of all, “The Westing Game”, and looks surprisingly funny:


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New, good TV? 2011’s most promising Shows.

So far, I’m not very impressed with the TV shows that will premiere this fall on US network TV: Lots and lots of sitcoms, priviledged white people, bitchy and shrill female idiots and domestic, cookie-cutter premises.

Here are 8 shows that look solid and a little bit more interesting.

Scroll down to see my favourite, NBC’s Awake!


1) The New Girl, FOX:

‎’Dirty Dancing’, an overdependence on guys, male attention and romance and LOTS of traits of a stereotypical ‘Manic Pixie Dream Girl’… but still: Zooey Dechanel’s fluffy new series ‘THE NEW GIRL’ looks like a fun way to spend 30 minutes:

Bonus: Feminist Frequency’s awesome video about ‘Manic Pixie Dream Girls’:


2) Terra Nova, FOX:

Why do we have 8 shows about crime scene investigators, but only ONE show about people running from evil dinosaurs? Steven Spielberg’s “TERRA NOVA” looks a lot like Steven Spielberg’s “Earth 2” and Steven Spielberg’s “Jurassic Park”… but when it comes to dinosaur action, I’ll take what I can get:


3) Scandal, ABC:

Shonda Rhimes, the black, feminist producer of ‘GREYS ANATOMY’ does a TV show about a Washington, DC PR firm with a competent, black, intelligent female protagonist. ABC’s ‘SCANDAL’ could still be a pretty conservative / sensationalistic show… but I’m happy that this concept garnered enough mainstream attention for a TV show


4) Alcatraz, FOX:

I’m not very interested in J.J. Abram’s new FOX mystery thriller about time-travelling criminals – but it’ll be fun to see ‘LOST’s Jorge Garcia play a (serious) San Francisco detective:


5) Apartment 23, ABC:

Evil, sex-crazed, bitter people, ‘Californication’– and Bret-Easton-Ellis-style: “DON’T TRUST THE BITCH IN APARTMENT 23” has two crazy, feuding women… and James Van Der Beek (‘Dawson’s Creek’) playing a jackass version of himself.


6) Free Agents, NBC:

Neurotic, middle-aged accountants and ad execs, too clueless for romance? NBC’s ‘FREE AGENTS’ looks silly… but with excellent actors and an interesting tone. (Ah: It’s the remake of a British show. That explains the tone!)


7) RINGER, the CW

Here’s Sarah Michelle Gellar (“Buffy”) playing criminal twin sisters in a ‘Damages’-like psychological thriller on the CW, ‘RINGER’.


My favourite trailer? A drama about a mourning detective living in two different, parallel realities, NBC’s “AWAKE”. Story sounds clichèd… but the acting, writing and editing look mature and intelligent:


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