Monday, May 14, 2007

It's looking like 2005 All Over Again....

The network upfronts are happening this week and it's looking like we'll get a lot of new genre shows this year on almost all of the networks. For a full slate of press releases and reports, check out The Futon Critic's UpFront Guide. It's looking like the success of Heroes has gotten the programming execs wanting to give SF/F shows a chance for the new season. It was just two years ago we had six genre shows debut (Surface, Invasion, Threshold, Ghost Whisper, Night Stalker, and Supernatural) in the fall, only two of which made it past the first season. This fall we look to have even more new genre shows.

Here's a rundown with a few comments and links to the Futon Critic's show page.

NBC - They have a lot of holes to fill and are heavy on genre stuff.
Bionic Woman - Half of the creative team of the new Galactic (David Eick) reimagines The Bionic Woman (with Starbuck as part of the series). It will also be repurposed on SciFi like Heroes this year.
Journeyman - "Journeyman" is a romantic mystery-drama about Dan Vasser (Kevin McKidd, "Rome"), a San Francisco newspaper reporter and family man who inexplicably begins to travel through time and change people's lives." Didn't Quantum Leap already do this? No jumping into other peoples bodies or an equivalent to Al, though. NBC hopes this will hang on to some of Heroes audience.
Chuck - A comedic spy thriller about a computer technician who gets a server full of secret data downloaded into his brain. The premise is definitely SF, how much the actual show will be remains to be seen.
Heroes: Origins - A companion/spinoff to Heroes where will will meet new Heroes and fans can vote on one for season three (glad to see NBC is optimistic about the show!)

NBC is also planning lots of online companion stuff to their shows and doing even more with Heroes.

CBS - They have fewer holes to fill, so fewer dramas and only one new genre show.
Moonlight - "a private investigator/vampire who struggles with the repercussions of immortality, his adversaries in the vampire world and the love he feels for a mortal."

ABC - Riding on the crest of Gray's Anatomy, ABC has a couple of genre entries (and still has Masters of Science Fiction gathering dust on their shelf). Looks like the Americanized Life on Mars or the Mr. & Mrs. Smith pilots didn't make the grade (but could have life in mid-season).

Pushing Daisies - Bryan Fuller and Barry Sonnenfeld get together for "an unprecedented blend of romance, crime procedural and high-concept fantasy." Ned discovers he can bring the dead back to life, but if he touches them a second time, his recipient is dead again. Things get complicated when he brings his childhood sweetheart back to live, but he can never touch her again. They are using LOTs of comparisons to other things as in "a fairytale in the spirit of Amelie, Stranger than Fiction, and Chocolat. From the producers of Big Fish comes an equally magical and delightful series that offers a weekly dose of sweet, heartwarming, quirky fun." It might do well depending on where they put it, which hasn't been announced yet.

Eli Stone - "a unique, character-driven drama that explores the very different worlds of law and spirituality in a humorous and heartfelt way. Joining the fantasy and spirituality from "The Ghost Whisperer," sincerity and passion from "The Practice" and quirky humor from "Monk," the show explores whether we can change the course of our lives in midstream". Apparently, Eli is "hallucinating larger-than-life visions of pop stars and his dead relatives". Sounds like a lot in common with Raines as well. Always not a good sign when they cite three other shows that the show is a mixture of.

Cavemen - The premise has some SF/Fantasy mixed in it, but expanding the Geico commercials into a half hour sitcom probably means it will all be jokes as current as It's About Time when the astronauts brought the cavemen back with them.... Maybe someday we'll get a reimaginingg of "My Mother the Car".

FOX - Still looking for some new dramas to fill in when American Idol isn't on or when viewers have gotten tired of House repeats.

The Sarah Connor Chronicles - Are Terminator fans really wanting to know what happened between the second and third movies? Or will this change the timeline so the third one never happened? It does have Summer Glau as a terminatrix (supposedly), so it might be worth checking out for that. The big question is, can they get a cameo by the Governator?

New Amsterdam - An immortal cop living in New York with flashbacks to when it was New Amsterdam. He'll be immortal until he finds his true love. Will we see flashbacks to 1930 when the Daleks were involved with the building of the Empire State Building. Probably not. Will they use Elvis Costello's song on the soundtrack? Probably not. I'll give them points for not saying this show is like three other shows in the press release, even if it is long enough to be the series bible! Might be worth checking out.

The CW - They have renewed Smallville and Supernatural.
Reaper is about a bounty hunter for the devil has been picked up. The pilot was directed by Kevin Smith, so don't expect it to be a serious take on the subject.


1 comment:

Angela/SciFiChick said...

The clips of Chuck look pretty funny. I'll be watching that one.