Tag Archives: Free Agents

Broadcast Freshmen Grading – How Did I Do With 2011-2012’s New Shows?

Aside from a few midseason debuts and several likely-canceled shows, ABC, CBS, the CW, Fox, and NBC have all made their decisions about which new shows are returning, and which aren’t. How did I do at picking which shows to watch this year?

ABC

Canceled: Charlie’s Angels, GCB, Man Up, Missing, Pan Am, The River, Work It

Renewed: Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23, Last Man Standing, Once Upon a Time, Revenge, Scandal, Suburgatory

I tried out Missing but wasn’t hooked. I fell in love with Once Upon a Time and Suburgatory, and my feelings for the B—- are a little mixed, but generally positive. I would have tried Revenge if I had time, and I planned to preview Scandal but was deterred by less-than-stellar reviews.

I give myself an A+ for ABC.

 

CBS

Canceled: A Gifted Man, How to Be a Gentleman, NYC 22, Rob, Unforgettable

Renewed: 2 Broke Girls, Person of Interest

I watched How to Be a Gentleman since it was the only 1/2 hour show in an empty timeslot. I disliked both Rob and Unforgettable, giving up on episode 2 for both after allowing the pilot a little leeway. I watched 2 Broke Girls and Person of Interest from the start, and liked both (though 2 Broke Girls has degraded some over the year).

I give myself an A+ for CBS.

 

The CW

Canceled: Ringer, The Secret Circle

Renewed: Hart of Dixie

I only watched Ringer, which I wanted to love more than I did. Sarah Michelle Gellar and the unexpected yumminess of Ioan Gruffudd kept me watching through a rough start, but I’m glad I saw the whole thing through till the end. I watched the Hart of Dixie pilot, but medicial + the South wasn’t my cup of tea.

I give myself a C- for the CW.

 

Fox

Canceled: Alcatraz, The Finder, I Hate My Teenage Daughter, Terra Nova

Renewed: New Girl, Touch

I watched two new Fox shows, The Finder and New Girl. Didn’t even try the others. New Girl took a bit to grow on me, but I loved The Finder from the start, and am glad I watched it.

I give myself a C+ for Fox.

 

NBC

Canceled: Are You There, Chelsea?, Awake, Bent, Best Friends Forever, Free Agents, The Playboy Club, Prime Suspect, The Firm

Renewed: Grimm, Smash, Up All Night, Whitney

NBC canceled 8 new shows (of which I watched 3), and renewed 4 (of which I watched 2). I didn’t watch a single episode of the other 7. Grimm and Smash deserved the renewal for being fresh and catchy, something that Awake’s excellent but dour presentation could have used. Cop shows seem to work best with a bit of lightheartedness thrown in, a fact that Grimm realized by bringing in Monroe more. Awake’s twin tragedies prevented all but a slight wry sense of humor. The conspiracy behind Awake’s two realities could have counterbalanced that, but the show’s creators seemed to be saving most of that for future seasons, which ironically prevented future seasons by not hooking viewers. Bent and Free Agents were under-promoted and misrepresented, which almost caused me to miss out on them – how much more a casual TV viewer?

I give myself a C for NBC.

 

What new shows did you watch this year?

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Monday Madness: Favorite New Show

This week on Monday Madness, it’s time to vote for your favorite new TV shows! This poll is for all live-action scripted shows that aired their first US episode between June 1, 2011 and April 30, 2012, and includes both broadcast and cable shows.

This poll will be open for one week, and you can choose up to 10 of your favorite new shows. Be sure to spread the word so your favorites will make it into the top 10!

Even though there are 50 options on this list, I know there are some shows I left out (I think there are only a few canceled shows or lesser-known cable shows left out this week)! As always, you can cast write-in ballots (for new live-action scripted shows only please) by leaving a comment. Want more of a say in what makes it onto the poll each week? Be sure to follow me on Twitter, since I usually ask for nominations for the next Monday Madness the weekend before the new poll.

Next week’s poll will focus on favorite season and series finales. Please nominate your favorite finales by leaving a comment! In your comment, be sure to note the show, season, episode title, and not-too-spoilery descriptive phrase (think of what a promo for that episode would say). For example: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, season 2, “Becoming, Part Two.” Aided by an unlikely ally, Buffy must face Angel to save the world.

Without further ado, here’s the poll for this week’s Monday Madness! Voting ends around 1AM May 7th.

UPDATE: This poll has closed. You can view the top ten list here.

This poll sponsored by Nannerbug Designs. Contact me if you would like to sponsor next week’s poll!

What's your favorite new show? (Choose up to 10!)

  • Once Upon a Time (10%, 168 Votes)
  • Person of Interest (9%, 144 Votes)
  • Grimm (9%, 144 Votes)
  • The Finder (7%, 111 Votes)
  • Bent (5%, 78 Votes)
  • New Girl (4%, 70 Votes)
  • Alphas (3%, 55 Votes)
  • 2 Broke Girls (3%, 48 Votes)
  • Falling Skies (3%, 48 Votes)
  • Revenge (2%, 41 Votes)
  • Suburgatory (2%, 40 Votes)
  • Alcatraz (2%, 39 Votes)
  • GCB (2%, 39 Votes)
  • Touch (2%, 38 Votes)
  • Awake (2%, 36 Votes)
  • The Secret Circle (2%, 36 Votes)
  • Terra Nova (2%, 35 Votes)
  • Smash (2%, 34 Votes)
  • Ringer (2%, 33 Votes)
  • Hart of Dixie (2%, 33 Votes)
  • Scandal (2%, 32 Votes)
  • Suits (2%, 30 Votes)
  • American Horror Story (2%, 29 Votes)
  • Last Man Standing (2%, 26 Votes)
  • Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23 (1%, 25 Votes)
  • Franklin & Bash (1%, 25 Votes)
  • Switched at Birth (1%, 23 Votes)
  • Homeland (1%, 21 Votes)
  • Pan Am (1%, 21 Votes)
  • Unforgettable (1%, 19 Votes)
  • Up All Night (1%, 18 Votes)
  • Necessary Roughness (1%, 17 Votes)
  • Missing (1%, 17 Votes)
  • A Gifted Man (1%, 16 Votes)
  • The River (1%, 16 Votes)
  • Spartacus: Vengence (1%, 13 Votes)
  • Whitney (1%, 12 Votes)
  • Prime Suspect (1%, 9 Votes)
  • NYC 22 (0%, 8 Votes)
  • House of Lies (0%, 8 Votes)
  • Are You There, Chelsea? (0%, 8 Votes)
  • The Firm (0%, 7 Votes)
  • Best Friends Forever (0%, 7 Votes)
  • I Hate My Teenage Daughter (0%, 6 Votes)
  • Rob (0%, 2 Votes)
  • Boss (0%, 2 Votes)
  • Charlie's Angels (0%, 2 Votes)
  • How to Be a Gentleman (0%, 1 Votes)
  • Free Agents (0%, 1 Votes)
  • Man Up (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 568

Loading ... Loading ...

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Bent – Hilarious and Underpromoted

I think I first heard something about NBC’s Bent almost a year ago when the 2011-2012 season pick-ups were announced. I didn’t recognize any of the actors on the show, and the premise sounded bland. An uptight lawyer falling for her contractor? Yawn.

I didn’t come across another word about the show until my brother asked my opinion on it. Surprised that there was a broadcast scripted show I knew nothing about, I looked up a preview trailer. And liked it. The two leads had great chemistry, there was an excellent supporting cast, and there was a perfect balance of wit and situational comedy. And then I got mad.

NBC had utterly failed this show when it came to promotion. If I, someone who kept up with dozens of shows and looked for all the latest news on TV, barely knew this show existed, how would everyone else know? That meant the premiere episodes would rate low. And by airing back-to-back episodes every week, Bent’s abbreviated 6-episode season would only have 2 weeks to build word-of-mouth. The show was doomed before it aired its first episode.

And I was right. The show was everything I hoped it would be – heartfelt, hilarious, zany. The contractor’s father and crew, along with the lawyer’s daughter and sister, rounded out the cast in unexpected ways, creating a “family of misfits” vibe right from the start. Fortunately for me, the show aired at a time when I didn’t have other plans, so I was able to watch every episode live.

But just as I predicted, the ratings were terrible, even by NBC’s standards. This was Free Agents all over again – a badly promoted show with a premise that sounded terrible and gave no hint of the show’s true nature. At least Bent was able to air all its filmed episodes, and the season (and almost certainly series) finale wrapped up a few loose ends to give the show a bit of closure.

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Dan’s Media Digest: ELEMENTARY, dear Jonny

I’ve heard bits about Elementary, an American modern take on Sherlock Holmes (as opposed to the British modern take, Sherlock) for months, but they finally have cast the detective himself. Jonny Lee Miller (who I know from his playing the leading man in several Jane Austen adaptions) will be bringing the distinctly British legend to New York.

Some people are claiming it’s a blatant rip-off of Sherlock. I think that it may be inspired by the show, but I’m kind of glad it’s not a direct remake. Those type of shows (Being Human, The Office) usually take a season before they start being their own show. And two recent American remakes of British shows haven’t succeeded very well (Free Agents, Prime Suspect).

For another thing, a modern reimagining of Sherlock Holmes has already been gracing US TV for 8 years. House turned the detective into an antisocial doctor fascinated by medical mysteries. It seems fitting that Elementary should get its chance as House is ending.

I’m not delusional in thinking that Elementary will live up to the greatness of Sherlock. But given that it takes a full year or more to get three 90-minute episodes of the British show, I think there’s room for a show that explores Holmes’ brilliance and idiosyncrasies on a more frequent basis. Plus Elementary will have a unique fish-out-of-water aspect if Holmes is a recent transplant to America.

Thanks to Ruth Anderson for the link!

Dan’s Media Digest: ELEMENTARY, dear Jonny.

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Farewell to 2011

2011 has been a year of big changes for this blog. At the start of this year, I only had 3 posts and hadn’t even begun sharing the link. Now, I’m working on post 124 and get thousands of views every month.

As you can see, I’m also ending the year with a big change – a new layout. As much as I loved the look of the old layout, it was confusing for some and also probably hurting my chances of being found by search engines (with no text other than categories on the home page). I do plan to keep the same “wall of TV pics” look as my Twitter background, though. I’m still working through some of the kinks (like having to set images as featured images and adding read more links in ALL my old posts), so please let me know if you come across something that’s not working!

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Fall 2011 Comedy Verdicts

 

I just made a list of all the shows I’m behind on (it’s getting to be quite a few), but I quickly realized there is one type of show I haven’t put off watching – comedies! Of course, their usual 20-minute length makes them a bit more compatible with a busy schedule than a 45-minute show, but I believe it’s also because I’ve been in the mood to laugh.

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New Fall 2011 Comedies

The litmus test for a comedy is simple: does it make you laugh? This fall I’ve tried out 5 new comedies: Free Agents, 2 Broke Girls, Suburgatory, How to Be a Gentleman, and New Girl. Here’s a quick rundown on what the shows are like and whether they’re worth watching.

 

New Girl

Laugh rating: A smirk here and there

Fox’s ultra-cutesy comedy about a clueless young woman (Zooey Deschanel) who moves in with three guys after she finds her boyfriend cheating on her. I almost didn’t watch a second episode after I cringed through most of the pilot. Deschanel’s usual quirkiness is pushed way over the top, and her character’s habit of randomly singing quickly became the most annoying thing about the show. Fortunately Jess dials back the singing a bit in episode 2, which was more enjoyable but didn’t put the show on my “will watch” list. I may try a third episode if I’m in the mood for something lighthearted, but the Hallmark movie moments at the end of the episodes tip the scales toward likely not. But if you’re into silly, heartwarming comedies, you might want to give New Girl a try. The three roommates (one who previously played Leo on Veronica Mars) and their frustration with and big brother attitudes toward Jess, are easily the best part of the show.

 

Free Agents

Laugh rating: Laughing out loud

This isn’t the type of show that would normally catch my interest, but I checked it out solely because of Anthony Stewart Head (Giles on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and King Uther on Merlin). I’m so glad I did! The pilot was more raunchy than I would have liked, but the second episode toned it down some, and the third episode was just about perfect. The acting on this show is just superb. The two leads (Hank Azaria and Kathryn Hahn) say more with their faces in one scene than many shows do in entire episodes (Person of Interest – I’m looking at you!). I’ve heard complaints that the writing in the pilot isn’t so great, but the following episodes stepped things up. (Besides, I think this cast could make reading a cereal box funny.) The side characters are a bit stereotypical, but the show knows that and has fun with it.

The third episode, “Dr. Hu,” made me laugh more than this season’s first 3 episodes of The Big Bang Theory (which I previously considered my favorite currently-airing network comedy) combined. First, they made a lovely Doctor Who joke out of the therapist’s name. Second, watching the irrepressible Emma take over the umbrella ad campaign was hilarious, and I loved her going crazy at the idea of having to pitch. Third, Tony Head made a joke about American sports (which made me flash back to Giles making fun of football – “strap on forty pounds of protective gear just in order to play rugby”). Fourth, Alex and Helen’s individual arguments with Dr. Hu were fun, but nothing compared to their joint meltdown in front of him at the restaurant. And I love that they went from yelling at each other to blaming him, and then settled down to a normal “date.” Fifth, the security guard demonstrating how dangerous an umbrella can be added the perfect closing note to the episode.

 

How to Be a Gentleman

Laugh rating: A few smiles

Unlike the previous shows, I’ve only gotten to see the pilot of this show, most of which was spoiled by the promos. So I may change my mind about it. This show works best when contrasting the two main characters, uptight etiquette columnist Andrew, and gym rat and former bully Bert. I hope Bert’s efforts to bring Andrew into modern times doesn’t ruin their Odd Couple charm. My favorite part of the show is Andrew’s voiceovers about how a gentleman should behave. I’m not too fond of Bert, or sold on Andrew’s family, and the jokes got a little raunchy for my taste, but I’m going to give it at least another episode.

Wow, while checking names for this post I just realized the actor who plays Andrew, David Hornsby, is married to Emily Deschanel (Bones). But seriously, Henry Hornsby? How could they do that to a kid?

 

Suburgatory

Laugh rating: Some snickering

Like Free Agents (with which it shares a time slot), I checked out this “out of my normal type” of show because of a Whedonverse alum, this time Alan Tudyk (Firefly, Dollhouse). He plays a friend of the dad, and I’ve only seen the pilot of this as well, so I’m not sure how much of a role he’ll have in the show. The premise of the show is fun – a motherless teenager from the heart of the city moves to the suburbs with her dad, and enters a world of overly cheerful, plastic, stay-at-home moms and their mall-trotting daughters. At the end of the pilot she seems to be more okay with her new life, but I hope the show doesn’t lose its fish-out-of-water edge. I’ll definitely be watching the next episode, but most likely online. (Though if I want to help out Free Agents, whose ratings are low, it’s probably better that I watch on Hulu where they can track my viewing than on TV, where they won’t.)

 

2 Broke Girls

Laugh rating: Chuckling

Just as How to Be a Gentleman brings reminders of The Odd Couple, 2 Broke Girls seems to reimagine another classic show about two working girls who share an apartment – Laverne and Shirley. While Shirley was never rich, her prim and proper ways match Caroline’s very well, and Max’s no-nonsense ways seem very Laverne-esque. The show isn’t all that unique, and neither are the characters and the setting, but for some reason the over-the-top acting just works, and the show manages to feel fresh and relatable at the same time. Caroline may be ditzy, and Max may have a tough exterior, but they both have enough heart to make their unlikely friendship believable. I also love the gimmick of having their earnings toward the cupcake shop add up at the end of each episode.

 

My verdict: I’m definitely going to keep watching Free Agents and 2 Broke Girls. It’s highly likely that Suburgatory will make it on my list too, but I have to see more than one episode to know for sure. I”ll probably give New Girl and How to Be a Gentleman one more episode to prove themselves to me, but I’m quite likely to drop them as I run out of time to watch shows.

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Fall 2011 TV Shows Anticipations

Fall TV is about to start for 2011! Here are some things I’m anticipating about the shows I plan to watch, in the order of their season premiere dates.

September 13

“Ringer”

I’m hoping this show will be as in-depth and multi-layered as Veronica Mars. I don’t think  the show will make me laugh, but as skilled as many of the cast are with dramatic moments, it may make me cry. Previews gave away maybe a little too much of the pilot, but with 3 seasons planned of twists and turns, I expect to be surprised quite often. It has stiff competition in its Tuesday 9PM slot, but I foresee an early renewal.

September 14

“Free Agents”

Previews show this to lean toward the bawdy type of workplace comedy I usually avoid, but I love Anthony Stewart Head’s acting, so I’ll probably give this show at least two episodes to prove itself to me. And since The Office has flourished with its UK to US transfer, I’d say the odds for renewal are slightly greater than 50/50.

September 19

“How I Met Your Mother”

A great cast and hilarious hijinks make a few off episodes bearable, and I’m pretty content with not having met the mother yet, since that means the show can continue longer. The twist of another wedding should add interest for long-time viewers and keep them watching.

“2 Broke Girls”

As the only half hour show in its time slot, and paired with the popular “HIMYM,” this show should do well by default. I’m not expecting much from it, just a few laughs, but I would love to be pleasantly surprised.

“Castle”

I’m positive Beckett’s not dead, as the premise of this show would fall apart without her, but I hope the events of the final moments of last season will have far-reaching effects on this one. I am not looking forward to the new chief. The absence of station politics is one thing I enjoyed about the show, so rumors I’ve heard worry me. But it would take a lot more than that to make me stop watching this show. Hoping for some more Whedonverse guest stars and Firefly references this season.

September 20

“NCIS”

Can’t wait to hang out with the gang again. With the start of season nine, this show is the longest-running one I watch, and it’s stronger than ever. Starting out with emotional turmoil for DiNozzo sounds like a great way to begin the season.

“NCIS: Los Angeles”

Unlike its sister show, NCIS: LA is picking up right when the last season ended. The only thing I ask for season 3? Don’t get rid of Hetty. If I had one other wish, I’d love to see Nate back as a regular part of the team.

“The New Girl”

With two shows already competing for my Tuesday 9PM viewing, I wasn’t even going to look at this show, but with the other Deschanel sister not coming back until November, I probably will check out at least the pilot online. But with strong competition on every other broadcast channel, the ratings will probably be terrible enough to make a renewal unlikely. It’s one saving grace is that it’s the only comedy in its timeslot.

September 22

“The Big Bang Theory”

This show makes me laugh more than any other. And it’s one of those shows that while you know the two of the characters belong together, you don’t really care how many detours they take along the way, because it adds new dimensions to the show.

“Community”

I’m still mad at the networks for making this and the previous show compete. It’s a little sad to think that cast will be juniors this year, so the show is most likely halfway over. It was left up in the air whether Chevy Chase would return to the group, but if any of the main 7 characters had to go, I’d prefer him.

“The Office”

The show proved it could survive without Michael Scott at the end of last season, so I plan to keep watching. While not every episode tickles my funny bone, I love (some of) the characters enough to tuning into their workdays for as long as they’ll let me.

“Person of Interest”

An intriguing premise and Jim Caviezel are enough to put this show on my to-watch list for at least the first several episodes. With Bones starting late, this show has the potential to grab a few extra viewers. Most of my action shows tend to be summer ones, so I’m hoping this will be good. Need to know more before predicting renewal, though.

September 23

“Nikita”

The new season brings a twist to the dynamics of this show, with characters switching sides, but I’m confident Nikita will make it work. My one fear is Lyndsy Fonseca looking like a powder-puff villain next to Melinda Clarke. And the show has a month to establish some viewers before Chuck comes in to try and woo them away.

“Blue Bloods”

This show has a great cast and interesting episodes, but doesn’t have the compulsive watching quality many other crime dramas do. I hope the second season starts off with a bang and adds a layer of intrigue.

September 28

“Suburgatory”

Alan Tudyk is the only reason I’m checking this show out. The fact that it’s unlike most of the other shows I watch may help it stay on my list. But it’s kind of funny that the only Wednesday night shows I’m interested in air at the same time and pit Whedonverse actors against each other.

September 29

“How to Be a Gentleman”

I hated the first preview for this show, but the second was a little better, so I’ll still watch the pilot. I have my doubts about this one being a keeper, though.

October 2

“Homeland”

This will be the first Showtime TV show I’ve ever tried out. But with Damian Lewis (Life), Claire Danes, and Morena Baccarin (Firefly), how could I resist?

October 3

“House”

I’m curious who the show will bring in to replace Cuddy, and how House will get his job back. I almost feel like the show’s starting to wind down, which is a shame, but it’s had a good run. Of course, this next season could surprise me and pick up momentum again.

October 12

“Psych”

It’s been way too long of a hiatus for Shawn and Gus, so I’m really looking forward to the return of my favorite fake psychic, and the boatload of special episodes he brings with him.

October 21

“Chuck”

Back for a truncated 5th season, it’s nice that the show will have the chance to say goodbye. I’m looking forward to a hilarious season with Morgan’s new role.

“Grimm”

I love the idea of this show. But with cult favorites Supernatual and Fringe vying for the same slot with a month-long lead, the ratings will likely be terrible. (Whose bright idea was it to stack three speculative shows against each other?) The reviews for the pilot haven’t been great. No big-name actors or even geek favorites. And Friday nights are usually the death slot. The plus side is that it’s created by some guys responsible for much of Angel, and has a great lead-in show with Chuck. Since I didn’t catch up on Supernatural and Fringe this summer like I wanted to, I’ll definitely be watching this. I just hope the studio will focus on day+7 and online views when deciding how long to let it run.

October 23

“Once Upon a Time”

I’ve watched the preview for this show more than any other. I just hope it lives up to the beauty and intrigue that glimpse conveyed, and there are enough twists and turns to spawn multiple seasons.

November 3

“Bones”

Having caught up on this show, I’m excited to be finally watching it in “real” time, without spoilers to mess up my expectations. I’m hoping the baby mania won’t overtake the show, but I trust that it will be an awesome season.

 

November also brings the return of split season shows like Covert Affairs, Burn Notice, and Leverage.

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What I Will Watch in Fall 2011

Now that CBS has finally posted its fall 2011 schedule, I have a good idea what I’ll be watching come September. Most of the time, of course, I will watch shows online the day after they air, but if I get a chance to watch them live, this will be my schedule.

 

Sunday

8PM – Once Upon a Time – ABC

This fairy tale meets modern life sounds like it has promise, and I love the promos.

 

Monday

8PM – How I Met Your Mother – CBS

8:30PM – Two Broke Girls – CBS

9PM – House – Fox

10PM – Castle – ABC

Chuck’s move to Fridays and House’s move to 9 finally makes my Mondays conflict-free (though I imagine Chuck’s ratings would have greatly improved with House’s move – seriously, is it any wonder the show wasn’t doing well against BOTH House and HIMYM?). Two Broke Girls sounds interesting, and will nicely fit in my half-hour gap.

 

Tuesday

8PM – NCIS – CBS

9PM – NCIS: Los Angeles – CBS

9PM – Ringer – The CW

CBS was smart not to mess with its Tuesday domination. Both shows had awesome finales Tuesday night, and NCIS: LA was finally renewed yesterday. I was a bit worried that they were going to off Jimmy Palmer in the NCIS finale, but Los Angeles ended with the more dramatic cliffhanger, making me anxious for season 3. I will have a hard time deciding what to watch at 9, but the CW’s terrible online viewing experience may tip the scale toward Sarah Michelle Gellar’s Ringer.

 

Wednesday

8:30PM – Suburgatory – ABC

8:30PM – Free Agents – NBC

I will be checking out these two shows solely for their Whedonverse alums: Suburgatory features Alan Tudyk (Firefly and Dollhouse), while Free Agents stars Anthony Stewart Head (Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Merlin).

 

Thursday

8PM – The Big Bang Theory – CBS

8PM – Community – NBC

8:30PM – How to Be a Gentleman – CBS

9PM – The Office – NBC

9PM – Bones – Fox

9PM – Person of Interest – CBS

Thursdays are still full of conflict. As usual, I probably will watch The Big Bang Theory live and Community on Hulu when both are airing new episodes. How to Be a Gentleman sounds promising, and I probably would have checked the show out anyway even if it didn’t perfectly fill a half-hour gap (the promo, however leaves a bit to be desired). Watching Bones will depend on if I catch up on back seasons of the show over the summer. The Office’s penultimate episode of season 7 proved that the show can still be hilarious without Michael Scott, so I plan to keep watching. Jim Caviezel (The Count of Monte Cristo, The Passion of the Christ) stars in Person of Interest, and the sneak peek was excellent.

 

Friday

8PM – Nikita – The CW

8PM – Chuck – NBC

9PM – Grimm – NBC

10PM – Blue Bloods – CBS

It seems a bit odd, having such a solid line-up of shows for a Friday night. Blue Bloods has proved it can hold its own on the evening, but its family vibe makes it a more likely choice for those who stay in Friday nights. I suspect the young-adult-aimed Chuck won’t do as well, but since it’s the final season of the show the numbers aren’t as important. And it’s pitted against fellow action show Nikita, which also doesn’t seem like a good Friday night fit. Grimm has a tough shot against both a cop show and TWO speculative fan favorites, Fringe and Supernatural (which even I may be watching instead if I have time to check them out this summer).

 

USA’s Psych typically counts as a summer show, it doesn’t sound like it will be starting until August or September this year (since it’s cable, I won’t be watching it live, though). There are a few other shows on the major networks and some mid-season pickups I also plan to check out if I have time.

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NBC’s Fall 2011 Lineup

So after the grim news of last week’s cancellations, NBC looks toward the future by announcing its fall lineup. Out of the new shows, The Playboy Club, Whitney, and Up All Night don’t interest me at all based on just the descriptions. I watch so many crime dramas a show needs to offer something unique to catch my attention, and Prime Suspects’ hook about a woman trying to break into the boys’ club of a police precinct makes me yawn.

Grimm, on the other hand, offers a storybook twist – bringing fairy tale villains to the world of crime scenes and witness statements. Does this plug sound at all familiar: “The last of a long line of chosen ones must fight legendary creatures few others know exist while maintaining a normal life and keeping the presence of the creatures a secret”? My mind instantly drew parallels to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and it’s not surprising that two of the show’s creators helped produce Buffy and Angel. The cast doesn’t have any big names to draw viewers, but hopefully they will bring in some geekdom guest stars. It’s also in the Friday night death slot, but has a decent lead-in show with Chuck. This year’s cancelled supernatural show meets cop drama, The Cape, also followed Chuck. Here’s hoping Grimm will do far better than The Cape (though I’m trying not to get my hopes up, since The Cape had Summer Glau and Monday nights, while Grimm does not). I also would love it if Grimm got a taste of Buffy-inspired humor.

NBC’s other new show, Free Agents, didn’t catch my attention with its premise as a comedy about two coworkers, one recently divorced and the other who lost her fiance, and their fumbling attempts to get back into dating. But their boss is Anthony Stewart Head (Giles from Buffy the Vampire Slayer and King Uther from Merlin)! The previews confirmed that he keeps his accent, and there was even a brief mention of Sarah Michelle Gellar in one, which tipped the show into “definitely watch the pilot” territory. And since I lost one NBC workplace comedy with the cancellation of Outsourced, it seems only fitting that NBC should provide another.

The unscheduled pickup, Awake, also looks good. Jason Isaacs plays a man caught between two alternate realities. In one, his wife died in a car accident. In the other, it was his son who died in the accident.

In addition to dumping Chuck and Grimm onto Friday nights, NBC made another schedule error by keeping Thursday nights annoying and choppy. They kept Community at 8, which will conflict with The Big Bang Theory if CBS keeps it at the same time, and then plunked Parks and Recreation between it and The Office. I hate half-hour gaps of shows I don’t like between shows I like. But at least they’re providing some worthy substitutes for the shows they axed.

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