With the new fall TV season just a few days away keep it here for a special week-long look at all the potential hits, misses and rising stars of the upcoming 2012-2013 season.
Every year a handful of pilots make all of the critic’s best of lists for the new fall season, but for every hit there’s nearly two times as many misses! So while “Last Resort,” “Ben & Kate” and “Elementary” are burning up the must-see lists it’s time to also take a look at the show’s that somehow earned a spot on your dial; whether the network’s realized how bad they really were or not!
Leading the pack is The CW’s “Beauty and the Beast” (Thursday’s at 9 p.m.)! With the wealth of imagination from today’s writers you really don’t need to reinvent the wheel and that’s what makes “Beauty & The Beast’ so infuriating. Yes, producers modernized the plot and tweaked the circumstances for how the title characters meet, but the acting is as clunky as the script. Granted the two are inter-twined but the point is that this remake didn’t need to get made and no matter strong its lead-in is (“The Vampire Diaries”) this series probably won’t have a fairy tale ending.
Now while “Beauty and the Beast” is topping many miss lists, ABC’s “The Neighbors” (Wednesday’s at 8:30 p.m.) is giving it a real run for its money. The only reason it’s number two on this particular countdown is because at least it’s original. While it’s true you can only have so many “guy meets girl” comedies, the simple truth is they work for a reason! In fact after watching “The Neighbors,” you may quickly decide “guy meets girls” comedies aren’t so bad. Yes, there is something to be said about high concept comedies, but this may be a little (pardon the pun) out of this world. The series follows a family who moves to the suburbs and learns their neighbors are aliens. However since they are “peace-loving aliens” (as the promos point out), they decide to stay. The simple fact is that at least ten people sat in a room and said “yes, let’s make this a series” and that is mind blowing. While you have to commend ABC topper Paul Lee for taking a chance on “quirky” series, you also have to remember this is the same guy who though “Work It” was a good idea.
Another seemingly “good idea” was to move “Hart of Dixie” to Tuesdays and pair with a similarly themed medical series. Although “Hart Of Dixie” just barely scraped by with a renewal so putting a show just like it on as its lead-in may not net the network the viewers it was hoping for. While Mamie Gummer proved on “The Good Wife” she is a very talented actress and one of the industry’s rising stars, “Emily Owens M.D.” (Tuesday’s at 9 p.m.) isn’t going to be the vehicle that helps her break through to the mainstream. The series is like “Grey’s Anatomy” for teenagers and that’s not compliment. Despite a likable cast and the benefit of being paired with the equally syrupy “Hart Of Dixie,” the series is going to be fighting for its network life.
Just as Gummer is expected to be the next big thing, many suspect “Made In Jersey’s” (Friday’s at 9 p.m.) lead actress Janet Montgomery could be breath of fresh air to primetime TV. Yet a television star is only as good as the series they are in; just look at Alex O’Loughlin. “Jersey” is not going to be the number one new series of the fall by any stretch of the imagination, but if it can hold its viewers from week to week it will have a chance of success. While its Friday timeslot isn’t ideal, it is the smart move as CBS knows it needed to find a series to plug into its very few openings and “Jersey” fits in well with its surroundings; it just doesn’t look that enjoyable to watch.
Lastly, you’d think that Terry O’Quinn playing the owner of New York luxury apartment building who may or may not be the devil would be an easy sell. Unfortunately it doesn’t translate well to the screen and that’s a shame given the popularity of O’Quinn and co-stars Vanessa Williams, Dave Annable and Rachael Taylor. While “666 Park Avenue” (Sunday’s at 10 p.m.) will have the benefits of a strong lead-in (“Revenge”) that also centers on a upper-crust cast of characters, the drama may have a problem hooking an audience as the previews make it look very predictable. Then again it’s also possible that as the pilot suggests….looks can be deceiving.
So what’s your take New York? Do any of the above series sound like something you’ll be checking out this fall? Are the critics right with their predictions? Hit the comments and let us know. Remember to also subscribe to this column for all the latest information about the launch of the 2012-2013 TV season.
2012 Fall Preview Week Coverage
-Most Promising Comedies (9/17)
-Most Promising Dramas (9/18)
-Least Promising Series (9/19)
-Celebrities To Watch (9/20)