T.V. – A Look Ahead At New U.S. Shows

TV

This past year has seen quite a few fan favourite’s given the chop or ended – Lie To Me, Human Target, Stargate Universe, No Ordinary Family, The Cape, Smallville, The Defenders, The Chicago Code, Mr Sunshine, V, The Event, and a lucky few that were ‘on the bubble’ with dissapointing ratings, will return in September or later in the year, but may not be back for the year after – Fringe, Supernatural, Nikita, Chuck, CSI.

So what’s coming in their place? Quite a few interesting looking projects, and a some not so much, with some pretty big names in front and behind the cameras. See previews of the ones I’m interested in-

Each year the major U.S. networks make a (usually varying) range of TV shows and air the majority of them from September to May, mainly motivated by profit from advertising during the commercial breaks, those that fail to bring in enough viewers ultimately being cancelled with a few episodes unaired, religated to the DVD boxset shelf with the label ‘The Complete Series’ written across them to entice the few that did watch it and those who didn’t. Occasionally this even happens with the best of shows, which then go on to attain a cult status (Previous examples being Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip, Firefly, Journeyman, and Space: Above & Beyond).

Which of these do you think will join them?

The Best (looking)
Alcatraz

From executive producer – JJ Abrams (Lost, Fringe) A team is put together to investigate the mystery surrounding 100 inmates and officers who dissapeared in the 1960’s when they start reappearing in the present day. Starring Sam Neill (Jurassic Park), Parminder Nagra (E.R.), and Jorge Garcia (Lost).

Person Of Interest

Also executively produced by Abrams, this is a mystery thriller written by Jonathan Nolan (Writer of The Dark Knight) about a CIA hitman who has given up, until he is offered a chance to prevent crimes before they happen. Stars Michael Emerson (Lost), and James Caviezel (Frequency).

Terra Nova

From executive producer Stephen Spielberg comes a series about a group of survivors who escape an inhospitable earth of the future by travelling back millions of years to the time of the dinosaurs. Stars Jason O’Mara (Life On Mars – US), and Stephen Lang (Avatar).

Falling Skies

Also produced by Spielberg, a sci-fi thriller following a resistance movement fighting off an alien force that has already successfully taken over the planet. Stars Noah Wylie (E.R.), and Moon Bloodgood (Terminator Salvation).

Alphas

An action thriller series about an group of advanced humans, each with an extraordinary ability, working as an elite team to solve crimes. Stars David Strathairn (The Bourne Ultimatum) as the team’s leader. Looks kind of like a 24 meets X-men, though without a lot of over the top fantastical super powers, so fairly grounded in reality.

Awake

Hello to Jason Isaacs!

Ahem, now that’t out of the way. A series which has been referenced to as Inception-like, about a man that following a car accident, finds himself swtching between two worlds, one in which his wife died in the accident, and the other in which his son died, and continuing to live his live in both worlds, unable to tell which of them is real. Stars Jason Isaacs (The Harry Potter movies), and Laura Allen (The 4400).

Grimm

Taking the story of The Brother’s Grimm and setting it present day, about a man whose family legacy allows him to see the creatures and monsters that inhabit the world around him that everyone else is oblivious to. Looks like another kind of Buffy the Vampire Slayer clone, but might be fun and looks to have decent production values.

The Finder

Spin off from the series Bones, about a man who has the ability to find anything.

And the rest (in peace?)

Ringer – Thriller in which Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) returns to the screen playing a woman who takes her twin sister’s identity when she commits suicide. There’s a trailer out there on the web, looks like a decent idea for a movie, but just don’t see it lasting a whole year, let alone several.

The River – From director Oren Peli (Paranormal Activity) and with Stephen Spielberg producing, has a group that sets out searching for a team (including Bruce Greenwood) in the amazon six months after they dissapeared when their emergency beacon activates. Again, as with Ringer, a trailer that looks like a good movie idea, but will it last a season?

Charlie’s Angels – Yes, a remake. Are you really surprised? Firstly that it’s being made? Secondly that it features in ‘the rest’ section of the feature? I’m gonna guess No, and No.

Once Upon A Time – From writers who worked on Lost, comes a twist on fairy tales, with a woman played by Jennifer Morrison (House M.D.) arriving at a town where everyone there has been plucked from a fairytale story. Looks very, very strange, in a Tim Burton on acid kinda way, and not a good way. Also stars Robert Carlyle (Stargate Universe).

The Playboy Club – A drama set at the gentlemen’s clubs of the 60’s, following the wheeling and dealings of those involved. No thanks.

Pan Am – A story set in the golden age of air travel, following the stewardesses of Pan Am airlines. Potential for a good drama, but honestly, do we need another reincarnation of Desperate Housewives?

A Gifted Man – A romantic drama with a supernatural twist starring Patrick Wilson (Watchmen), who bumps into an old friend, then discovers that she had died two weeks earlier. Sounds like someone in TV land is missing Ghost Whisperer.

Smash – Again, produced by Stephen Spielberg, a musical drama set in the world of the broadway musical. Stars Anjelica Houston, Debra Messing, Jack Davenport and  Katherine Mcphee.

Free Agents – Comedy drama about a divorcee trying to find his place in live following his divorce. Stars Hank Azaria, Anthony Head. Remake of the U.K. series of the same name.

Prime Suspect – Remake of the U.K. series with Maria Bello in the role made famous by Helen Mirren.

Up All Night – A comedy drama about a parenthood following a couple raising their newborn child. Starring Will Arnett and Christina Applegate.

Apartment 23 – Comedy drama about two roomates who don’t exactly get along. Also stars James Van Der Beek in a role playing… James Van Der Beek. Yeah, this should be… interesting.

Last Man Standing – New Sitcome starring Tim Allen and Nancy Travis. May be good, but given the sit-coms that have come out recently, not holding my breath.

Scandal – Political thriller series following a group of fixers, dealing with political scandal and damage control.

Unforgettable – Procedural police drama about a cop (Poppy Montgomery) with Hyperthymesia – the ability to remember anything.

Napolean Dynamite – Animated version of the movie, with the original stars lending their voices to the characters.

Bent – Romantic comedy starring Amanda Peet.

New Girl – Comedy drama about a woman who finds herself as the new roommate after she walks in on her boyfriend cheating. Stars Zooey Deschanel.

The Secret Circle – Supernatural drama about a woman who finds out she is a witch. From writer Kevin Williamson (Scream).

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2 thoughts on “T.V. – A Look Ahead At New U.S. Shows

  1. I’m very excited by the potential of The River… if the trailer can be expanded into a full season or two I think it could be brilliant. Falling Skies also…

  2. I was kinda interested at the start of The River trailer, but lost interest once it descended into another ‘fake documentary’ styled show, with a lot of the unmanned camera shots left running in ominous angles.
    I’m actually most hyped about Alphas, like the look of it being more grounded abilities and not so extraordinary super powers like flying.
    I like the look of Falling Skies, but it looks like it may struggle at some points as it’s on a smaller cable channel so has a more limited budget for special effects.
    I really want to see Person of interest aswell, as a fan of caviezel, i think he’ll be great in it, the trailer also makes his character look like a not so nice good guy, which will be a nice change from the usual main character of a show.

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