According to the Hollywood Reporter, this is the full ABC Fall Schedule with new shows in ALL CAPS.
Friday, September 14
8:00-9:00 p.m. Shark Tank
9:00-10:00 p.m. What Would You Do?
10:00-11:00 p.m. 20/20
Since The WB’s merge with UPN in 2006, The CW has not fared very well. Some of its solid hits remain, such as Supernatural, but many of the shows that have premiered since the merger are gone. Now, the network has a strong presence online. Of all the networks, The CW seems the least reliable. Maybe it’ll get lucky this fall.
This Action/Adventure drama revolves around billionaire Oliver Queen. Queen returns to his hometown of Starling City after having been stranded on an island for five years and presumed dead. After struggling to mend the relationships of those he left behind, Queen creates the persona of Arrow, a vigilante committed to protecting the city. I am really not sure what to make of this show. Character development will be a must. If it is simply Arrow saving the citizens of Starling City multiple times, it could get boring. Aside from that, the premise and casting of this show seems poorly executed. Oliver Queen was already a main character on Smallville. Justin Hartley’s portrayal was brilliant. This show’s continuity will be reworked and Queen is now being played by Stephen Arnell. I do not understand why this is not a direct Smallville spinoff. I’ve seen The Green Arrow before. Arnell isn’t as good as Hartley. I don’t think this show is going to last too long.
Lately, ABC tends heavily on its existing lineup. The network may struggle now that Desperate Housewives is gone and Grey’s Anatomy seems past its prime. Recently, ABC’s new shows have caused many midseason replacements to be placed on the schedule early in the season. Many of the replacements were also unsuccessful. The network has added 10 shows to its lineup with 5 debuting in the fall. The other 5 shows will be midseason replacements.
The Neighbors is a “comedy” that revolves around a suburban family moving into a gated community that turns out to be inhabited by aliens. The show sounds absurd and profoundly stupid to the point that I refuse to believe it is real. No viewer will be able to identify with it and the acting seems sub-par.
There’s a lot of risk in creating new television. The months or sometimes years invested may go unappreciated or completely unnoticed. Fox has taken those risks. It is the youngest broadcast television station, having only been in operation since April 1987, and its hits have been groundbreaking .
In the very beginning, Fox broke in with Married…With Children and it lasted 11 seasons. For all its inappropriate humor, it made the standard sitcom family a dysfunctional one and that point of view is not going anywhere. Fox’s next hit was The Simpsons, which debuted in December 1989 and ushered in a new generation of primetime animation. It is still as strong as ever to this day.
Fox’s has not been so lucky in the drama department. FOX seems to be a lighthearted network. With House on its way out and 24 still missed by its millions of fans, the network has to take risks again by going out of their comfort zone. Serious dramas are a bigger gamble as there is no way to really “love to hate” them. They have to be genuinely good. FOX knows its challenges. They’ve come to expect a struggle finding a new hit show.
Fox only has one new drama premiering in the fall, so they are leaving themselves a lot of breathing room for midseason. Now that one of their few hit dramas is gone, they have to have some faith in their new shows.
FOX is notorious for shows with incredibly short tenures. Whether it was reality shows with absurd premises or just really bad sitcoms, a lot of its shows over the past decade lasted less than a season. In some ways, I almost anticipate most of their shows getting cancelled, even if I tend to like them. I know what’s done well and I know what’s not. I just don’t always like what’s done well. The fact is, network television is a rare and coveted entity.
New television excites me, though. It’s a new opportunity for a critical eye, whether my sentiment is “I like this,”, “I hate this,” or “I love to hate this.” The variables of FOX will most likely make this season very enjoyable.
The Mindy Project
I like Mindy Kaling and I don’t really have a concrete reason why. Her character type seems somewhat simple. She said in behind the scenes segments of The Office to basically be an exaggerated version of herself. The character of Kelly Kapoor is a caricature. She’s very over dramatic, immature, and lacking emotional development. Despite all this, she’s still charming to watch. Kelly went from an auxiliary background character to one worthy of an episode’s focus. She made me laugh, especially concerning her relationship “drama” over the course of the show. When I heard about The Mindy Project, I knew that I would have to give it a chance.
Kaling stars as Mindy Lahiri, an OB-GYN, who while a very competent doctor, has a lot of trouble with friendships and dating. The trailer was interesting and made me laugh, but I couldn’t tell much about the show’s premise. Lahiri seems to have a lot of the same mannerisms as Kapoor, especially concerning her fixation on men. The trailer also detailed her being charged with public intoxication. Her complaints about men and her struggle with alcohol could get old, but it might not matter so much if the episodes are funny.
Regardless, the show’s premise isn’t very much established in the trailer and self-contained shows do not impress me as much as shows with recurring arcs. Either way, I’m not sure what kind of show this is going to be. If The Mindy Project becomes a show about various neuroses Lahiri has to endure with her “guy of the week,” I don’t know if it can sustain itself. If it becomes a show about the delicate balances between her career and the discoveries of what (and whom) she really needs out of life, that seems a bit more promising. I just couldn’t tell. However, out of loyalty to Kaling, I would have checked this out regardless of what the trailer told me and I will watch at least a few episodes. I just hope it shows Kaling’s potential, even though I will miss her on The Office.
Every year, countless writers work sleepless nights, most likely putting themselves virtually under house arrest for several months, just for the outside chance of getting their pilot produced for television. Even six shows greenlit for NBC seems like a lot for the upcoming fall season. As discussed in Part 1, considering the network’s limited success producing long-running shows in recent years, the very deliberate effort to introduce new shows concerns me a bit. New shows do tend to interest me, though. I’m relatively young, and there have not been many chances for me to say I was a regular viewer of a really quality, long running television series from start to finish. This year could be my shot.
Animal Practice revolves around Dr. George Coleman, a veterinarian at Crane Animal Hospital in New York City. The premise is relatively simple: he’s a prestigious veterinarian because of his kindness and care toward animals, but just doesn’t have the same kindness toward people. With that brief description, one might be inclined to chuckle in somewhat of a forced way. “He would be so likable if he cared about people that much, but he doesn’t! How amusing!” Upon watching the trailer, however, it becomes clear that this sentiment is nothing more than a misguided hope in the minds of the show’s creators. Dr. Coleman’s lack of sympathy and utter disinterest for anything human dominates the trailer. From the get-go, after Coleman, with no emotion, explains to a customer that he thinks her cat tried to commit suicide. At that moment, I knew the rest was not going to be promising. As it progresses, his boss calls him a lousy director so he says, “My system may not be perfect, but I help a lot of animals and I meet a lot of girls.” After a beat, he says excitedly, “My system is perfect!” The unsympathetic comedy protagonist has proven successful in past shows, but those kind of characters should be at least somewhat enjoyable. Most importantly, the characters and their surrounding situations should be funny and the attempt at humor seems very forced. Basically, I really don’t see Animal Practice lasting.