TV: A glimpse of what’s to come: Fall TV schedules and pickups announced

By Meryl Gottlieb| mg986611@ohiou.edu| @buzzlightmeryl

enhanced-30974-1399601497-18The entertainment world has been abuzz lately with the constant influx of information from the networks about their decisions for the upcoming season. The renewals and cancellations of already on-the-air shows have already been announced, but with those decisions also come the decisions for the networks’ future programs, all 50 of them.

The biggest shocker is the absence of a certain title on CBS’ list: How I Met Your Dad. It was announced Wednesday the spinoff of How I Met Your Mother “didn’t work out” for the network. It was probably one of the most anticipated shows for the fall, and it’s not even being picked up.

“We have an extraordinary track record of retooling shows,” said CBS chief Nina Tassler, referring to The Big Bang Theory, which originally featured two female leads. “We tried to reach out and engage them about redoing the pilot, but that it’s just not happening. You run into these kinds of issues. You hope they can resolve themselves. They haven’t. … I’m heartsick. It wasn’t what they wanted to do.”

I had more doubts about the reboot than hopes, but I was at least looking forward to seeing a finished product and critiquing it. This news doesn’t mean the show is canned for good. There is always the possibility it will be tweaked and presented to the network, or a different one, again. FX Networks does have syndication rights for the original. But who knows? At least HIMYM’s memory can live on for at least a year in peace — or however you feel after that terrible finale.

CBS has only ordered two new comedies this season: The Odd Couple featuring Matthew Perry and The McCarthys featuring Laurie Metcalf. Here’s hoping The Odd Couple reboot will work better for Perry than Go On. The rest of the new CBS shows don’t seem too appealing. There’s another CSI and NCIS spinoff and two more dramas about law enforcement. The only thing I have to look forward on the CBS side is Madam Secretary because Broadway favorite Patina Miller and also Bebe Neuwirth are in it.

On the other hand, ABC has at least one show in particular that I’m highly anticipating: Shonda Rhimes’ How To Get Away With Murder, starring Viola Davis and Dean Thomas Alfie Enoch. Personal favorite Davis stars as a professor whose Criminology 101 lessons may prove useful in hers and her students’ real lives. Watch the amazing trailer here. Thursday will be “ShondaNight,” according to Buzzfeed, as all three of Rhimes’ shows will air back-to-back. It’s sure to be an anxiety provoking evening.

There are also other dramas to keep an eye out for: Secrets and Lies starring Ryan Phillippe (held for midseason), Forever starring Ioan Gruffudd, and American Crime (held for midseason). Marvel’s Agent Carter is sure to garner up some attention, though I could do without another Marvel element in my life. And I have to mention the return of Doctor Who alum Karen Gillan to the small screen in ABC’s comedy Selfie, a revamp of My Fair Lady. I will give this show credit for creatively reimagining a classic, but I’m not sure how successful this will be. I love Gillan; I really do, but I have my doubts about that trailer.

A to ZOver at NBC, there’s another personal favorite making me excited for the fall season: Crisitin Milioti. The Mother is starring in the Rashida Jones produced comedy A to Z, which is all about love and relationships. I doubt nothing the phenomenal Milioti does, so I’m super excited to see her shine on my screen yet again. It feels like HIMYM but this time Ted is played by Ben Feldman. Other favorite Casey Wilson is also returning with Marry Me, whose trailer is like that of many comedies’ trailers: probably not the best insight as to whether or not you should watch it. I know I’m going to give it a shot. However, I’m actually hesitant about Tina Fey’s new show Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, starring Ellie Kemper. Kemper stars as Kimmy who has to start her life over in NYC after escaping from a cult. It seems a little too ridiculous but with the comic genius of Fey behind it, I’m sure I’ll give it a try.

Fox has also managed to pick up a show or two that peaked my interests, whether they be good or bad. The anticipated Gotham will premiere in the fall and star Benjamin McKenzie as a young Detective Gordon who has to handle a pre-Batman Gotham. Finally, we might have a superhero TV show that will actually deliver. Another DC hero will be on the small screen this fall as well: The CW is airing The Flash in the fall. I’m not a fan of CW shows, and I think even a Batman-less Gotham will be more interesting than following a guy who can run fast.

Another Doctor Who alum is also making his way over to the American TV business: David Tennant is rebooting his role on the BBC’s Broadchurch in the American version called Gracepoint. I binged and LOVED the BBC crime drama about the tragic death of a young boy in a small town. However, I’m pretty sure the American version will get nowhere near the emotional depths the BBC version triumphed. Many times, translating British shows to the American audience does not work, and I’m certain this will be another example. Tennant’s American accent makes him less brooding. For me, all I did the entire time as I watched the trailer was compare the American actors to the British cast, and it’s in the Brits’ favor.

Also notable is Mulaney, focusing on SNL alum John Mulaney as he attempts to take his comedy career to a new level. Why is this worth mentioning? Because it’s an NBC show on Fox. This show stars a Saturday Night Live alum, and Lorne Michaels has a hand it along with several 30 Rock people. Typically, SNL alum take their shows to NBC, see 30 Rock and Parks and Recreation. I’m interested that it’s on a different network and curious if any talks had happened between Mulaney and NBC. It also seems very Seinfeld-esque, so that only furthers my argument.

Fox’s Empire also seems worth checking out. Buzzfeed described it as “Nashville for the rap world,” and it stars the amazing Taraji P. Henson so I could definitely see thing garnering up its own Nashville-like cult fandom.

Here is a full list of all the new pickups for each network. Click the network name for a list with a description of each show, and also check out TV Line‘s listing here:

ABC 
American Crime
The Astronaut Wives Club
Black-Ish — Laurence Fishburne, please just stick with Hannibal
The Club
Cristela — a comedy about Mexican Americans. George Lopez tired me out on that idea. No thanks.
Forever
Fresh Off the Boat — Danny Chung from Veep? No thanks
Galavant — looks terrible
How to Get Away with Murder
Manhattan Love Story
Marvel’s Agent Carter
Members Only
Secrets and Lies
Selfie
The Whispers

CBS
Battle Creek
CSI: Cyber
Madam Secretary
The McCarthys
NCIS: New Orleans — do we really need another NCIS?
The Odd Couple
Scorpion
Stalker

Fox 
Backstrom
Bordertown — it’s an animated comedy that isn’t The Simpsons or from Seth MacFarlane, so it’s a jump for the network
Empire
Gotham
Gracepoint
Hieroglyph
Last Man on Earth
Mulaney
Red Band Society
Utopia
Wayward Pines
Weird Loners

NBC 
A to Z
A.D.
Allegiance
Aquarius — This is the dawning of the age of Aquarius! Just kidding, it’s not Hair
Bad Judge
Constantine
Emerald City — another twist on The Wizard of Oz. My obsession for that film is making me want to watch
Gracepoint
Heroes Reborn
Marry Me
Mission Control — I’ll be keeping my eye out for this
Mr. Robinson
The Mysteries of Laura — two thumbs down to Debra Messing’s other return to NBC
Odyssey
One Big Happy
State of Affairs
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

The CW
The Flash
Jane the Virgin
The Messengers
iZombie

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