Fall TV season has begun, and I have returned to blogging about it! Right now we’re halfway through premiere week (with Fox getting a jump on other broadcast channels by premiering most of its shows a week early), so I thought it would be a great time to see how the fall season is shaping up so far. Besides, Wednesdays are my “light” TV night, so I have a bit of time to catch up and share!
One of the most-talked about new shows is Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD, and the pilot did not disappoint! To be honest, I love all of Whedon’s TV shows, so the only thing I was a bit nervous about going in was the cast, since most of them are newbies. Still not sold on Chloe Bennet, who plays Skye, and Brett Dalton has a difficult job getting people to relate to his stoic character, Ward (though the Granny bit helped – wish they’d had time to show more of that scene). I think the show unveiling of characters will make the show better, I just hope people won’t get impatient and tune out. For me, as soon as the truth serum shot happened, I knew this was my show.
Brooklyn Nine-Nine’s promo bumped it to my “will watch” list and made it one of my top 3 anticipated comedies of the season, which made the fact that the first two episodes weren’t funny at all that much more disappointing. I could forgive the pilot, since the promo gave away all of the episode, but the second episode was even less funny. I may give the show one more episode to win me over, since it has so much potential, but otherwise, farewell.
Sleepy Hollow was on my to-try list, but recommendations from friends and a high premiere rating made me make checking out the pilot a high priority. So glad I did! After catching up on Grimm, I was in the mood for another spooky/cop show, and I love stories about the American Revolution. Tom Mison is pitch-perfect as the fish-out-of-water Crane, and I’m quickly warming up to the rest of the cast.
As well as marathoning through Grimm, I recently caught up Bones, Castle, The Neighbors, and Suburgatory to prepare for their next seasons. Unfortunately, that meant that I was spoiled about many events in season finales, but at least I don’t have to wait as long for resolution to the cliffhangers.
For shows that have already returned, here’s a few quick thoughts: How I Met Your Mother is poised to deliver an amazing final season, with a likeable and perfect-for-Ted mother. Can’t imagine what NCIS will be like without Ziva, and hated that half of her farewell didn’t even include her. Liking what Bones is doing with the new season, not sure about Castle. New Girl and The Mindy Project feel a touch off, waiting to see what the continued fall out is from major events. NCIS: Los Angeles seems to be back to normal, excluding Deeks, and Person of Interest looks like it will be a ton of fun this year.
What are your thoughts on this season of TV so far?
The schedules are out, the promos are released – now it’s time for me to figure out what I want to watch, what I have time to watch, what I won’t miss, and which new shows I’ll give a chance to wow me. As always, shows that aren’t live-action and scripted are ignored by this site.
New shows are in bold.
Watching: Once Upon a Time
Not watching: Revenge, Betrayal, The Good Wife, The Mentalist
Only one new show is debuting on Sundays, Betrayal, and while the promo was good, the subject matter is meh in my mind.
Watching: Castle, How I Met Your Mother, Bones, Almost Human, Beauty and the Beast
Checking out: We Are Men, Intelligence , Sleepy Hollow
Not watching: 2 Broke Girls, Mom, Hostages, Blacklist, Hart of Dixie
Almost Human’s promo was so excellent, it got bumped right to the watching list. Of course, if it stinks, it’ll get bumped right back down. While Hostages and Blacklist had good promos, they’re just not something I’m interested in watching. Mom looks awful. Sleepy Hollow looks far better than I expected, so I’ll probably watch the pilot out of curiosity’s sake, but I doubt I’ll keep watching due to time constraints. Other than HIMYM, the returning shows that are on Mondays are the ones I fell most behind on (thinking about it now, why Castle and Bones got the short end of the stick was because we usually had a friend over on Tuesdays to watch previous seasons of HIMYM, so I didn’t have time to catch up).
Watching: Marvel’s Agents of Shield, NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles, Person of Interest, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, New Girl, The Mindy Project
Checking out: The Originals
Not watching: The Goldbergs, The Trophy Wife, Lucky 7, Dads, Chicago Fire, Supernatural
The only reason Supernatural is on the not watching list is because I haven’t caught up yet, and since I’m still on season one, I doubt I’ll catch up this summer. I was going to watch Dads because of Seth Green, but the promo was so awful I don’t even plan to watch the pilot (besides, it’s in a horrible time slot so I doubt it will last). I’m behind on The Vampire Diaries, so my “checking out” of The Originals may only consist of watching the planted pilot (not a huge fan of the original siblings or Haley). Agents of Shield went on my to-watch list as soon as it was announced, but I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the promo for Brooklyn Nine-Nine. Unless the first few episodes strike a very different tone, it’ll probably stay on my watch list.
Checking out: The Tomorrow People
Not watching: The Middle, Back in the Game, Modern Family, Super Fun Night, Nashville, Criminal Minds, CSI, Revolution, Law & Order: SVU, Ironside
Wednesdays are once again my least-watched weekday. Aside from the Amell cousins’ projects, I’m passing on the entire night. Back in the Game and Super Fun Night look awful. Ironside looks excellent, but I watch so many other excellent crime dramas that new ones need a fun sci-fi twist (like Almost Human) or to cast one of my favorite actors.
Watching: Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, The Big Bang Theory, The Crazy Ones, Elementary, The Vampire Diaries
Checking out: Reign
Not watching: Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, The Millers, Two and a Half Men, Glee, Parks and Recreation, Welcome to the Family, Sean Saves the World, The Michael J. Fox Show, Parenthood
It used to be that I mainly watched NBC comedies; now I’m just waiting for Community to come back. CBS’s The Crazy Ones pairs Mork and Buffy, which pushed it onto my short list, and the behind-the-scenes promo was as hilarious as most regular trailers. Wonderland’s preview is amazing, and Reign has an interesting premise and enough actors I know for me to give it a try.
Watching: The Neighbors, Bones (once it moves), Enlisted, Grimm
Checking out: Dracula
Not watching: Last Man Standing, Hawaii Five-O, Blue Bloods, Raising Hope, The Carrie Diaries
Enlisted was one of my most anticipated series contenders thanks to a great cast, and the promo shows that it’ll be funny as well. I probably won’t watch Dracula, but I do want to see where they’re going with the story, so I should preview the pilot.
That gives me 22 shows that I plan to watch (8 comedies and 14 dramas for 18 hours total) and 7 that I want to check out (1 comedy and 6 dramas for 6.5 hours total).
What shows are you watching next fall? Vote below and spread the word!
What broadcast shows do you plan to watch during fall 2013?
Networks have cleaned house, and their cancellations means more time for me to watch other shows. But as I don’t have time to watch my current shows, and there are a bunch of new shows debuting next season, which ones will have priority?
I’m holding off on most decisions for new shows until we get a bumper crop of promos during this week’s upfronts. And since I did a decent job at choosing shows this past year, I’m not going to gain many extra hours. I didn’t lose any shows from CBS and the CW, and only one from Fox (Ben & Kate). NBC freed up some sitcom time by canceling 4 new comedies I enjoyed and ending The Office; they also got rid of Smash, but since I’ve only made time for an episode or two this season, it doesn’t really help. ABC got rid of two comedies I liked and a drama I abandoned early on. So in reality, with shows canceled early and ones I fell behind on, I’m only gaining about 2 hours of TV time to put toward new shows, and one of those is already devoted to Agents of SHIELD.
Fall 2013 is going to be very, very busy.
Below is a rough categorization of which shows I will be keeping up with more stringently and which I will be letting slide. A lot of factors are going into this, so it’s not just which shows I like best. CBS and NBC are the only two networks I get on my main TV, so those are more likely to be watched live. Live TV brings promos for other shows on the network, so to avoid spoilers, I want to stay caught up with all shows on a network. I’m more likely to watch CBS shows live since they’re not on Hulu and I hate CBS’s player. Also, crime shows and comedies are less likely to include spoilers in promos and/or online post-airing. I also took into account what it was like to fall behind on many of these shows this season, and how that effected my viewing. A few of these shows I watch live with my sister when we can, and others are talked about in the office where I work, so I like to stay current with those.
Shows to watch immediately:
The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Arrow
Shows to watch within the week:
Once Upon a Time, Elementary, NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles, Person of Interest, Community, The Vampire Diaries
Shows to watch when I can:
Castle, Suburgatory, The Mindy Project, New Girl
Shows to watch eventually:
Bones, Grimm, Nikita
Shows I may abandon:
The Neighbors, Beauty and the Beast
That equals (adding in previous tiers as I go): 2 hours of immediate viewing, 8 1/2 hours within a week, 11 hours when I can, 14 hours eventually, and 15 1/2 hours of renewed television available for me to watch on broadcast networks every week.
So far, I have 66 1/2 hours’ worth of these shows to catch up with from this season, not to mention 27 hours of canceled ones. Let’s say each has aired 10 original episodes since I started my job in January. Adding back in the 2 hours of canceled shows, and we have 175 hours of original broadcast TV airing. I’ve fallen behind by close to half. And cable is even worse – I only watch Doctor Who consistently. Yes, I will probably have time to catch up this summer amid cable shows, but next fall?
Aside from Hannibal, ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC, and the CW have made their decisions about which shows are returning next season. How did I do this year on picking which new shows to watch?
Canceled: 666 Park Avenue, The Family Tools, How to Live with Your Parents, Last Resort, Malibu Country, Red Widow, Zero Hour
Renewed: The Neighbors
I watched more of ABC’s pilots than I typically would for a network since their media site allowed me to preview several shows weeks or even months before they aired. I didn’t like 666 Park Avenue. I thought The Family Tools and How to Live with Your Parents were decent, but by the time they finally started airing I didn’t have time to watch. I loved the pilot of Last Resort, but subsequent episodes lacked the same polish, so I bailed after episode 3, always saying I’d get back to the show, but never actually doing so. The Neighbors was far better than I was expecting, and I watched through the mid-season break, and plan to catch up this summer.
Canceled: Golden Boy, Made in Jersey, Partners, Vegas
I watched not a single full episode of any of the canceled shows, and I loved Elementary right from the start, and it remains one of my favorite new shows.
Canceled: Ben & Kate, The Mob Doctor
Renewed: The Following, The Mindy Project
I watched the two new comedies on Fox with a nervous eye toward the ratings. While Ben & Kate was cute, The Mindy Project was far more funny. The drama premises interested me not at all.
Canceled: 1600 Penn, Animal Practice, Deception, Do No Harm, Go On, Guys With Kids, The New Normal
Renewed: Chicago Fire, Revolution
I passed on all of NBC’s new dramas, though I did give Revolution two episodes to convince me it was must-see-TV (it failed to), but I was far more willing to try out comedies. The New Normal proved its awfulness in one episode, and I moderately enjoyed Animal Practice while it lasted. I enjoyed 1600 Penn, Go On, and Guys With Kids, but fell multiple episodes behind with each of them quite frequently.
Canceled: Cult, Emily Owens, MD
Renewed: Arrow, Beauty and the Beast, The Carrie Diaries
I was going to give Cult a chance because of Matt Davis, but the previews turned me off, and I never planned to watch Emily Owens. Arrow is tied with Elementary for my favorite new drama of the year, and I enjoyed Beauty and the Beast but fell behind because of my new job. Initially I didn’t like the idea of The Carrie Diaries at all, but cute promos and a Doctor Who alum has pushed the show into “maybe I’ll check it out someday” territory.
ABC has picked up S.H.I.E.L.D., and the cast photo reminded me so strongly of Torchwood, I couldn’t resist matching up the characters! Coulson is of course Jack, since he can’t die (apparently), and since I don’t know the other characters, I went by looks. And how odd is it that both casts are entirely brunette? Also, there are two Brits in the cast, and now that aliens are obviously part of this universe after Avengers, who’s to say they won’t be investigating everything from invasions to alien tech?
None of ABC’s new comedies is sticking out as must-watch, so I’ll wait for trailers before considering them. Super Fun Night does sound somewhat promising if they do it right, and Back in the Game sounds the most boring (Maggie Lawson better not be leaving Psych for a show as lame as this sounds, and Psych better not be ending). The summaries for Trophy Wife, Mixology, and The Goldbergs interest me not at all, and none have cast I really care about, so previews will have to blow me away.
For the other dramas, Mind Games tops my list, with a unique premise and casting Steve Zahn. Resurrection sounds interesting, but I need a better idea of where they’re going with the show, and of the cast, Omar Epps is the only one I know. Killer Women has an awesome cast, but a lone female Texas Ranger amid all the male ones sounds boring (and didn’t Prime Suspect already try something similar?). Lucky 7 and Betrayal have neither cool casts or cool premises, so they’re an easy pass.
Also, while not a regular series, ABC has picked up Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, a limited series that will bridge Once Upon a Time’s winter hiatus. I definitely plan to watch.
The CW announced series orders for four pilots today, for a total of five new shows (including The Vampire Diaries’ spinoff The Originals) to debut in the 2013-2014 season. The Carrie Diaries was renewed, as well as Nikita, for a shortened season.
Which of these shows will I watch next season? If I have time and the trailers look good, I’ll probably try to check out the pilots for all four new shows. I still need to catch up on The Vampire Diaries to watch the planted pilot for The Originals, but I’m leaning toward not watching the spinoff. Nikita I will watch till the end, and I probably would have at least given a shot to The Carrie Diaries (especially since it includes Doctor Who’s Freema Agyeman) if I had more time when it started airing.
Tomorrow People has an impressive line-up of executive producers (from Chuck, Arrow, The Vampire Diaries, and Nikita) and features genre favorite Mark Pellegrino as well as Robbie Amell (Arrow’s Stephen Amell’s cousin – who will play a character named Stephen). People around the world gaining superpowers isn’t new (see Heroes, Alphas, and more), but can be excellent if done right.
Star-Crossed (formerly Oxygen) has a human girl falling in love with an alien boy after he and 8 other alien teens are integrated into a high school ten years after their people landed on Earth. I’m not familiar with many of the actors, so I’m counting on previews to tell me why this intriguing premise is must-see TV.
The 100 refers to a group of juvenile delinquents who are sent to a nuclear-war-ravaged Earth to see if it’s habitable again. The cast includes a few actors I know from their reoccurring guest spots on other shows. It’s based on an upcoming book series – which I think would be a dream come true: being able to write such a great novel that it’s made into a TV show before it even releases.
Reign focuses on 15-year-old Mary, Queen of Scots, and her closest friends, three of her ladies-in-waiting, amid the secrets of the French court. I usually don’t watch historical shows, but I may give this one a try as it stars Megan Follows (aka Anne Shirley) and Anna Popplewell (aka Queen Susan of Narnia).
Gone are the days of the CW being the teen girl channel. Nearly all of their scripted programming now has a supernatural/sci-fi/action hero bent (4 out of 5 new programs, 5 out of 7 renewed programs), and the remaining ones have distinctive settings (deep South, 80s New York, 16th century France). And out of their 12 scripted shows for next year, I am currently watching four, want to catch up with Supernatural, would have given The Carrie Diaries a try, and will probably watch all five new pilots. That leaves the lone show I care nothing about, Hart of Dixie (ironic since my last name is also Hart), of which I watched the pilot. I didn’t expect to like it, though, since medical shows I like are few and Southern accents bug me.
So next fall, the CW may go from my least-watched channel (the first show I watched was Nikita when it premiered) to the channel with the highest concentration of shows I watch. And with so many genre shows, perhaps it’s more deserving of the Syfy name than the Syfy channel itself!
TV news for next season is starting to heat up, and I’m back to blogging about it as I try to make sense of what’s going on, share the joy of new projects seeing the light of day, and rant about pilots not picked up.
TNT ordered 10 episodes of two new series I’ve been excited about for a while, thanks to one key role and a decent premise. Adam Baldwin’s The Last Ship features a previously-isolated crew racing to find a cure for a global pandemic. Sean Bean’s Legends has the CIA’s top chameleon operative suffering a break with reality amid his many covers.
I watched both trailers for the new shows (which the above loglines are based on), and both seem slightly different from their original premises. I’m not sure if it’s that, or the fact that my TV watching time has been drastically cut, but I’m less excited about these projects than I was initially. Both are going into my “wait and see the reviews/ratings” box for now, and I imagine they’ll stay there for a while. Now that Leverage is over, the only veteran show I’m watching on TNT is last year’s Perception, which was unique and well done enough to stay on my “to watch” list. (I should really make these into real lists and share them – perhaps after upfronts?)
Fox has ordered 4 dramas and 4 comedies (to add to the already-picked-up Dads, which got expanded from 6 to 13 episodes), quite a lot for a channel that doesn’t program anything from 10-11.
Out of the eight, I’m most excited about Enlisted, a military comedy starring Geoff Stults, Chris Lowell, and Parker Young (who play three brothers). Stults won me over completely in The Finder and I also enjoyed his reoccurring role on Ben & Kate, so I’d be at least previewing almost any new show he would be cast in. I’m sad to see that Young will be leaving Suburgatory, since I love his character on that show, but I’m glad he’ll have more of a starring role in this project. Lowell I know mainly as Piz from Veronica Mars, so I’ll have to get a new opinion of his acting now that he won’t be getting in the way of one of my favorite TV couples.
For the other comedies, Us & Them seems the one I’m most likely to watch, with Gilmore Girls’ Alexis Bledel returning to TV and a fun premise: a long-distance relationship with family and friends butting in. Brooklyn Nine-Nine puts a comedy spin on a cop show, and Surviving Jack stars Christopher Meloni. Dads may also warrant a preview, as Seth Green (Oz from Buffy the Vampire Slayer) plays one of the two guys whose fathers move in with them.
I’m disappointed Delirium didn’t get picked up to series. While the sci-fi premise was a bit hokey (a procedure to remove love?), it reminded me of Ted Dekker and Tosca Lee’s novel Forbidden. And I enjoy Emma Roberts’ acting.
I doubt I will watch any of Fox’s new dramas. I may check out Almost Human (an android/human buddy cop show) if the trailer leans more toward sci-fi than cop drama. Rake has Greg Kinnear, but I’m not piqued by a law drama take on House. The story of Sleepy Hollow never interested me, and Gang Related just seems like another cop show with a conflicted loyalties twist (and medical drama with a conflicted loyalties twist worked out so well for The Mob Doctor).
So last Sunday, while I was watching the latest episode of The Walking Dead, I was watching the Governor escape death while he was cornered by zombies in a warehouse (no thanks to Andrea.) At this precise moment I began to think, It seems that there are a lot of characters on The Walking Dead that manage to escape death, that realistically shouldn’t have.
Now I understand that if a character died every time they faced a difficult situation, The Walking Dead probably wouldn’t have made it past Season 1. However for the sake of argument, I have assembled a list of five characters that should have died earlier than they did, or should be dead now.
5. Merle Dixon
Let’s be honest, during the zombie apocalypse, there are not an abundance of doctors at your disposal. It would be foolish for one to think that someone could cut their arm off, on the roof of a building, surrounded by zombies; and survive. Now this may be a credit to Merle’s character, but our favorite racist would have died for sure.
4. The Governor
Almost everyone that watches The Walking Dead hates this creep, he kept heads in a jar in some room, he chained his zombie daughter up in his closet, and he plotted to kill everyone at the prison. Outside of being some closet tyrant, we have seen this dude get stabbed in the face with a sword, and fight off a ridiculous amount of zombies while chasing after Andrea. Let’s be honest, the Governors time is coming to an end, however he should have died awhile ago.
Shane, Shane, Shane, the macho lunatic that let the walkers out of the barn. Not only did Shane have an affair with Rick’s wife Lorie, but he began to claim Rick’s family as his own. Shane had a cold personality and he was willing to kill Rick to secure himself as the leader of the group and to become a family man. Let’s be honest, outside of all the times he avoided death by zombie, Rick should have killed Shane a long time ago.
Ahh Hershel, I wasn’t a huge fan of him at first, but he has grown on me. This unfortunately happens to be another case of, lose a limb = you should be dead. Let’s not forget, doctors are few and far between during the zombie apocalypse, so the odds of an amputation going well doesn’t seem possible, and the odds of an amputation going well and not getting infected is even more unlikely. Let’s be honest, Hershel would have died when he was bitten, he would have lost too much blood when his leg was cut off, or his leg would have became infected and he would of died a slow, painful, diseased death.
Carl is my number one character that should not be alive in The Walking Dead. It’s not that I don’t like children in the zombie apocalypse, however, Carl got shot in the chest with a high powered rifle. Most people would not survive getting shot in the chest with a high powered rifle if we were in a world where you can receive proper medical attention, let alone the zombie apocalypse. I know I sound like a broken record, but no medical attention + getting shot in the chest with a high powered rifle = death.
Thanks for checking out my list of the five people that should be dead, or should have died earlier than they did in The Walking Dead.
You may have noticed a horrendous lack of posts on this blog over the past weeks. The main reason is my new job. Since I’m now working fulltime, I have only about 4 hours every evening to do EVERYTHING. Probably a third or more of those evenings we have people here at my house, or we’re out visiting friends/family (and I’ve turned down a few of those get-togethers). You can see how many TV shows I watch by seeing which ones I’ve blogged about a lot in the past, and sadly, I’ve fallen behind on nearly every single one. The few spare bits of time left I fill with things like laundry, cooking, reading, checking out a few TV news sites (while dodging spoilers), pinning some Doctor Who stuff on Pinterest, and IMing/texting friends. Weekends rarely help, as those tend to be either filled to the brim with friends and activities, or spent in bed trying to get over a cold or catch up on sleep.
It’s not going to get any better, either, as I’ll be working overtime the next three weeks. So my four evening hours will become two. You can see why I need a TARDIS.
Speaking of Doctor Who, my love for the show only continues to grow. Series 7 resumes in just 10 days! My sister Abbi is trying to catch up before then, so I had her over this past weekend and we watched 21 episodes, finishing series 4 and the specials, and watching all of series 5. Unbeknownst to us, our sister Becky was using her time home alone to try out more of the show since she’d enjoyed “Rose,” and she’d started series 2 by the time we picked her up Sunday to see The Hobbit at the dollar theater.
I’ve been very bad about posting updates this month (still luxuriating in the aftermath of my Doctor Who marathon), but here’s some TV news from the month of January!
Doctor Who alum Alex Kingston (River Song) will appear on multiple episodes of Arrow as Laurel Lance’s mother, Dinah. Fans of the Green Arrow comic books know she’s the original Black Canary, so it’s possible she and Oliver Queen may come to blows. Might she also share a scene with fellow Who alum John Barrowman?
Series 7 of Doctor Who resumes March 30th on both BBC1 and BBC America. I’m so glad they’re not making us wait for the episodes after they air in Great Britain!
Bones secured an early renewal for another season, and showrunner Hart Hanson has a pilot order with CBS for an additional show. Unfortunately, the premise doesn’t interest me in the least, but he did amazing with The Finder, so who knows?
Speaking of The Finder, its lead actor Geoff Stults has been reoccurring on Ben and Kate, but FOX has pulled that from the schedule. At least he showed up in the last-episode-before-likely-cancellation-burnoff, though it was in a manner that indicated he won’t return. I really hope Stults finds an awesome pilot this season, though I’m thinking he might want to avoid FOX. I know I’ve become a bit wary of any shows airing on that network. If bubble show The Mindy Project doesn’t make it, I’ll only have two returning shows to watch on FOX this fall: Bones and New Girl.
Don’t Trust the B in Apartment 23 has also been pulled from the schedule, effectively canceling the show, and instead viewers will get a double dose of bubble show Happy Endings. I still don’t know why ABC, FOX, and NBC all scheduled a comedy block for Tuesdays at 9, but clearly, ABC lost that battle. A pity, since I enjoy both shows, but the writing’s been on the wall for a while.
Another blow was the cancellation of Syfy’s Alphas, particularly galling since season two ended with a cliffhanger. One of the best-acted shows around, its powers-with-limitations approach worked very well. I’ll be keeping an eye out for these actors in the future (especially Ryan Cartwright, who led me to the show from Bones). Poor Summer Glau, even reoccurring on a show still brings the curse.
Broadcast networks have ordered a flurry of pilots, but since most of what we know about them is a paragraph description, it’s hard to tell which ones I’ll be checking out if they make it to series. The CW is giving The Selection another go after sending the first pilot back for retooling, and The Vampire Diaries may be getting a spinoff – The Originals (featuring Klaus, Elijah, and Haley from TVD). FOX is looking at Delirium, based on a YA trilogy about a world where love has been eradicated by a special procedure people get at age 18.
Arrow’s Huntress, Jessica De Gouw, has been cast opposite Jonathan Rhys Meyers in NBC’s Dracula.
Doctor Who stars David Tennant (the Doctor in series 2-4) and Arthur Darvill (who appeared in series 5-7) will both appear in the eight-part British drama Broadchurch. Deadline shares: “Broadchurch explores what happens to a small community when it suddenly becomes the focus of a major murder investigation and is subjected to the full glare of the media spotlight.”
ITV will air the show this spring, and BBC America will broadcast it later this year.
Since I just caught up on Doctor Who, it’s awesome that two of my favorite actors from the show, who never appeared in an episode together, will both star in this drama!
2012 was a great year for me in regard to uncovering awesome TV shows. It may even top 2011, when I got pulled into Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Bones, Warehouse 13, Eureka, and Veronica Mars, not to mention enjoyed great new fall shows like Once Upon a Time, Grimm, Suburgatory, and Person of Interest.
My top eight new shows for 2012 are also a mix of brand new and new-to-me shows. Like with the list above, this year wasn’t always my first exposure to the shows in question, but 2012 was the year they hooked me. I’m listing the shows in roughly chronological order of getting sucked in.
This short-lived Fox drama (so many awesome shows can say the same thing) caught my attention as a companion show to Bones – not quite a proper spinoff as none of the main characters from Bones joined the new show. But with a planted pilot, same showrunner, and guest appearances by Bones cast, the tie was definitely there. Geoff Stults (as Walter) and Michael Clarke Duncan (as Leo) hit it out of the park on day one, but the ratings didn’t match the show’s awesomeness. Fox also aired the episodes out of order, threw in a month-long hiatus in March, and moved the show to the Friday death slot – starting Easter weekend!
From the beginning, the show felt like it should have been airing on USA Network – it had the same breezy, pop-culture-riddled sensibilities as Psych, and would have been a perfect fit for their “Characters Welcome” brand. But in the end, the cancellation of the show was moot, as Michael Clarke Duncan, who as Leo was the heart of the show, passed away over the summer.
I’m still waiting for the DVD set to become available, but at least The Finder introduced me to the amazingness of actor Geoff Stults, who I’m currently enjoying as a reoccurring cast member on Ben and Kate. Sadly, that show also airs on Fox, and I’ve learned not to get attached to anything airing on that network now.
Buffy and Being Human showed me that shows about vampires are cool. So to feed my bloodlust, I decided to try out this buzzy HBO show, not really expecting to like it – keeping things PG-13 is more my style, and I’m not a fan of the deep south. But checking out episode one led swiftly to two, and three, as each twisty cliffhanger glamoured me into watching more. Short season meant catching up in time for season 5, and while this show is fairly low on my list of vampire TV shows, it’s addicting enough that I’ll keep coming back.
There’s a dearth of good comedy over summers, so I decided to give this recommended show a try in late August, and quickly grew to love the quirky group.
The Vampire Diaries
After catching up on True Blood, I decided to try out the last major vampire show currently airing that I hadn’t seen. Plus, I was looking at writing a book with a high school setting and vampires trying to control their urges, and I wanted to make sure it was different enough from this show. The pilot bored me, but I heard later that the rest of the show was a vast improvement, so I dove in during September, and caught up on all three seasons within 3 weeks, just in time for the season 4 premiere.
Like True Blood, the fast-paced storylines made the show insanely addictive, but in this case, the characters and relationships became an even bigger draw. Damon’s struggle with what sort of person to become, Elena’s compassion without weakness, Stefan’s dual nature, Caroline’s ditziness turned to strength, Alaric’s unlikely allies becoming the family he always wanted, and more.
No, it’s not Sherlock, but it doesn’t have to be – I love both shows, and Jonny Lee Miller makes an amazing Holmes. Making Watson female, setting the show in NYC, and coming up with new stories instead of revamping the classics all help differentiate this show. And with us getting only 4 1/2 hours of Sherlock every 18 months or so, there’s plenty of room for a fun, quirky drama like this. I enjoy the recovering addict twist, and Joan Watson’s slower progression to teaming up with her client.
Aside from Alphas, TV has been sorely missing a good superhero show, and in the wake of The Avengers’ popularity, the Batman trilogy’s gritty conclusion, and America’s obsession with bow-toting heroes, Arrow is exactly what was wanted. While there are still a few rough edges on this new drama (dialogue could use some help), great ratings will give it time to truly soar.
I always knew I would eventually watch this show. I purchased digital editions of series 1 and 3 back in 2010, and watched a few episodes here and there, but didn’t get hooked. I watched a couple more earlier this year, and in November started liking the show more and more. In December, I started marathoning through Doctor Who in earnest, as most shows were going on hiatus and I had more time. I rewatched season 1 with my sister (and liked it a whole lot more the second time) around Christmas, and caught up with the whole show (excluding classic Who) a few days after the New Year.
I bought the first two series of Torchwood in 2010 also, and despite some misgivings about the show’s adult content, I liked the character of Jack Harkness from Doctor Who enough to give the show a try (and keep all the crossovers in their proper places). As a result of watching the two together, it’s hard to separate Torchwood as a distinct show in my mind. It’s the only show on this list I’m not current with, as I still have 6 episodes left of the Miracle Day mini-series. It’s definitely a more serious show (during various episodes I found myself longing for the more lighthearted Who), morality is a bit grayer, and quite often there isn’t a happy ending. But it definitely grows on you, and there are quite a few exceptional episodes.
No, we didn’t get the end of the world in 2012, but it was the end for several story worlds we’ve grown to love. Which of these dearly departed shows are your favorites?
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I know I’m missing a few shows that ended in 2012, so feel free to nominate other shows on our Facebook page, tweeting me at @waterfallbooks, or by leaving a comment below. (Be sure to stick with live-action, scripted shows.) Also, there are several shows that have been canceled, but will air their final episodes in 2013, and are therefore not included below (Fringe, Last Resort, The Office, etc.).
Without further ado, vote for up to five of the shows below! Poll will close Monday night, December 31st, so spread the word quickly!
What's your favorite show we said farewell to in 2012? (Choose up to 5!)
Both good news and bad news popped on the radar last night. For the good, How I Met Your Mother was renewed for a ninth season! Jason Segel had decided to not to do another season, but at the last moment he changed his mind. I’m kind of hoping the show reveals the mother at the end of this season, and we get to see her and Ted’s relationship in the ninth season, but who knows what the show’s creators have up their sleeves?
Sad news for Leverage fans, though – the show has been canceled, and Christmas Day’s season five finale will be the series finale. Executive producer Dean Devlin had stated that they “decided to end this season with the episode we had planned to make to end the series, way back when we shot the pilot. So, the episode that will air on Christmas is, in fact, the series finale we had always envisioned.” Leverage’s “The Ho Ho Ho Job” is currently winning our poll for favorite Christmas episode. While I still love the show, I have to admit that a few of the later episodes haven’t been as compelling (though the finale looks like it’s going to be awesome!). I’ll be kind of sad if the show ends without us finding out Sophie’s real name, or without Eliot finding someone (poor dude has been the odd man out now that Nate and Sophie and Hardison and Parker are together). And I look forward to seeing where the actors end up next year!
Also renewed – Psych! It’s been given a season 8 before season 7 has even begun to air. It’s only an 8-episode season, though (a shorter season sometimes indicates a final season, but they haven’t stated it’s the final one). That may be to get the show on a different schedule, as what used to be a summer show was pushed back to a fall, and now a late winter, start.
Other news: the final main actor (Chloe Bennet) for the S.H.I.E.L.D. pilot has been cast, and she’s another newbie to the Whedonverse, making Clark Gregg (Phil Coulson) the only Whedonverse actor to have a regular role in the show. Speaking of the ‘Verse, Jewel Staite’s show The L.A. Complex has been canceled by the CW (it was previously canceled on its original Canadian broadcast channel, but it’s dismal US ratings made it unlikely to be saved by the CW).
The CW seems to be moving away from glitz and glamour and toward grittier drama with an archery bent (and who wouldn’t, after Arrow’s success?). The network has just ordered a script for Sherwood, a period drama about a noblewoman who joins up with Robin Hood and his merry men as she tries to find and free her serf boyfriend.
On the network’s Beauty and the Beast, Sendhil Ramamurthy (Covert Affairs, Heroes) will reoccur as an ambitious assistant district attorney determined to find the vigilante (aka Vincent) who’s been stalking the streets.
AMC has renewed The Walking Dead for season 4 (big surprise), but Glen Mazzara is stepping down as showrunner.
Brian Klugman is joining Bones as a new squintern, as some of that weird, brillant group will possibly depart for other projects.
It’s hard to believe Christmas will be here in about a week! One of my favorite parts of the season are the awesome holiday episodes shows put out, and now it’s your turn to vote for your favorites! I purposely saved this poll for right before Christmas so I could add in some of 2012′s holiday episodes.
Fans have used Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, forums, Reddit, Pinterest, blogs, and chatboxes to get the word out about past polls. Our toolbar at the bottom of the page has lots of quick links to help you share this post, or you can mouse over the image above!
I know I’m missing some of your favorite Christmas episodes, so feel free to nominate more episodes on our Facebook page, tweeting me at @waterfallbooks, or by leaving a comment below. Please include both the show and episode name, and yes, you can nominate this year’s holiday episodes! (Be sure to stick with live-action, scripted shows, though it’s fine if just this one episode has some animation, like with a certain Community episode.) Please only nominate Christmas episodes that are part of a regular show, not one-off specials like “A Charlie Brown Christmas” or movie-related specials like “Shrek the Halls.”
Without further ado, vote for up to fifteen of the episodes below! Poll will close Sunday night, December 23rd, giving you one week to spread the word!
What's your favorite Christmas episode? (Choose up to 15!)
Leverage - The Ho Ho Ho Job (56%, 154 Votes)
Supernatural - A Very Supernatural Christmas (28%, 76 Votes)
Doctor Who - The Christmas Invasion (16%, 43 Votes)
Doctor Who - Voyage of the Damned (13%, 35 Votes)
Doctor Who - A Christmas Carol (13%, 35 Votes)
Doctor Who - The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe (12%, 34 Votes)
The Big Bang Theory - The Bath Gift Item Hypothesis (11%, 31 Votes)
Psych - Gus's Dad May Have Killed an Old Guy (9%, 26 Votes)
Bones - The Man in the Fallout Shelter (9%, 24 Votes)
Buffy the Vampire Slayer - Amends (9%, 24 Votes)
How I Met Your Mother - How Lily Stole Christmas (8%, 23 Votes)
The Big Bang Theory - The Santa Simulation (8%, 22 Votes)
Castle - Secret Santa (8%, 21 Votes)
NCIS - Faith (7%, 20 Votes)
NCIS - Newborn King (7%, 19 Votes)
Bones - The Santa in the Slush (7%, 19 Votes)
Friends - The One With the Holiday Armadillo (7%, 18 Votes)
NCIS - Silent Night (6%, 17 Votes)
Psych - Christmas Joy (6%, 17 Votes)
How I Met Your Mother - Symphony of Illumination (6%, 16 Votes)
The Vampire Diaries - O Come, All Ye Faithful (5%, 15 Votes)
Community - Abed's Uncontrollable Christmas (5%, 14 Votes)
New Girl - Santa (5%, 14 Votes)
Psych - The Polarizing Express (5%, 14 Votes)
Community - Regional Holiday Music (5%, 13 Votes)
Community - Comparative Religion (5%, 13 Votes)
Eureka - O Little Town (4%, 12 Votes)
Warehouse 13 - Secret Santa (4%, 12 Votes)
Eureka - Do You See What I See (4%, 12 Votes)
Warehouse 13 - The Greatest Gift (4%, 12 Votes)
Arrow - Year's End (4%, 11 Votes)
Chuck - Chuck vs Santa Claus (4%, 11 Votes)
Veronica Mars - An Echolls Family Christmas (4%, 10 Votes)
House - It's a Wonderful Lie (4%, 10 Votes)
The OC - The Best Chrismukkah Ever (3%, 9 Votes)
Glee - A Very Glee Christmas (3%, 9 Votes)
The X-Files - How the Ghosts Stole Christmas (3%, 8 Votes)
M*A*S*H - Death Takes a Holiday (3%, 8 Votes)
The West Wing - In Excelsis Deo (2%, 6 Votes)
Seinfeld - Festivus (2%, 5 Votes)
The Office - Dwight Christmas (2%, 5 Votes)
The Office - A Benihana Christmas (1%, 4 Votes)
Go On - The World Ain't Over 'Til It's Over (1%, 4 Votes)
The Office - Christmas Wishes (1%, 4 Votes)
Monk - Mr. Monk and the Man Who Shot Santa (1%, 4 Votes)
The Mindy Project - Josh and Mindy's Christmas Party (1%, 3 Votes)