Thursday, May 26, 2011

What You Should Have Watched #10


With the end of the regular 2010-2011 television season coming to a close, the networks are announcing their line-ups for the 2011-2012 season. This time of year makes me a bit nervous. I’ll find out which of the season finales I just watched turn out to be series finales, which shows are coming back, and which rumored shows are or aren’t happening.

Here’s a quick rundown. (Sources include Warming Glow, Vulture,, InsideTV)

ABC’s Cancellations

Brothers & Sisters, V, No Ordinary Family, Off the Map, Detroit 1-8-7, Mr. Sunshine, Better with You.

I have no thoughts about B&S, Off the Map or Detroit 1-8-7. I watched the first episode of Better with You and gave up quickly. I stayed for about four episodes of V, but I lost interest pretty quickly after they killed off Alan Tudyk’s character. And as much as I like to support actors who at one point have worked with Joss Whedon, the inclusion of Morena Baccarin did nothing to keep me around.

I’m disappointed that Mr. Sunshine and NOF are gone. As much as I wanted to like Sunshine, it didn’t do enough for me each week. Well, until the last episode. I felt like with that episode, all the actors (who were all great, by the way) really gelled and started to feel like a unified cast. I’ve since heard that Matthew Perry checked himself into a rehab facility again, and I hope he’s able to get some help. He’s a great actor that I’d love to see on TV some more. I’m also hoping that the supporting actors find gainful employment. I think almost each one was on an earlier show that I thoroughly enjoyed (West Wing, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, Las Vegas, Better Off Ted).

I was really hoping that No Ordinary Family would make it. It’s a wonderful family show, and I’m always a sucker for characters with powers. Hell, I’ve stuck with Smallville this long and I haven’t liked it for at least five years. But this show had great characters portrayed by talented actors, and while the episodes might not have been all that original, they were executed well, and I always felt good when they were over. If ABC proper won’t keep the show, I think it could flourish on ABC Family.

I won’t list ABC’s new shows. There are 12 of them, and I’ve only heard of one, the Charlie’s Angels reboot. I won’t be watching it. Despite my love for Minka Kelly, there is nothing about this show that makes me want to watch it.

Fox’s Cancellations

Human Target, Breaking In, The Chicago Code, Lie to Me, Traffic Light

I didn’t watch any of these shows. I tried Human Target because of my irrational fixation on anything that has to do with comic books, and I DID enjoy the episodes I saw, but I didn’t enjoy them enough to catch up when I got a little behind. I wanted to watch Breaking In because I like Bret Harrison. He was great in Grounded for Life and Reaper. I forgot about it, though, and now it’s already gone. I’ve also read that Michael Rosenbaum was pretty good in it. He was one of the only things I liked about Smallville. The only other show that I might have watched was The Chicago Code because it was created by Shawn Ryan, the guy who created The Shield and Terriers. I got sick of police shows, though, so this didn’t make my cut.

The only two shows I’ve heard of before now that I’m looking forward to are J.J. Abrams’ Alcatraz and The Finder. I’ll always give an Abrams show a try. Regardless of how they end, his shows usually start well (Alias, Lost, Fringe). I’m going to give The Finder a try regardless of the back-door pilot that Fox used to get it out to us. I show up for an episode of Bones, and I’m “forced” to watch this new show. It was underhanded, but I did enjoy it, despite Saffron Burrows’ awful accent. I liked Geoff Stutts’ and Michael Clarke Duncan’s characters, and I’ll definitely tune in for an episode or two.

I was horribly, horribly, horribly disappointed that the great comic book by Joe Hill Locke & Key did not even get a pilot. Month in and month out, this comic continues to be extremely well written and illustrated. AMC did well with the adaption of The Walking Dead, so I was hoping we’d be able to see a faithful representation of this wonderful book. Not so. Sadface.

NBC’s Cancellations

Law & Order: Los Angeles, The Event, Outsourced

L&O: LA fell victim to my crime drama culling. Last year I stopped watching all Law & Order shows, all CSI shows, and just about anything that was a run-of-the-mill police procedural. I kept quirky shows like Castle and Justified. The Event was kind of like Human Target for me: I liked it but quickly fell behind on it because I was trying to stay current with other shows. I recently had to make space on my DVR, so I got rid of the last seven episodes of the show. I fully intend to finish the show on Hulu, but I guess I don’t have much of an incentive to get it done quickly.

Out of the 12 new shows that NBC announced, there isn’t a single one that I’ve heard any buzz about. Wonder Woman was shelved, but I didn’t have high hopes for it anyways.

CBS’s Cancellations

Shit My Dad Says, The Defenders, Mad Love

I watched Mad Love not because of Jason Biggs and Sarah Chalke (well, maybe a bit for Sarah Chalke, although she was my least favorite regular cast member of Scrubs) but despite them. I have enjoyed Judy Greer in Arrested Development and Archer and Tyler Labine in Reaper and Tucker and Dale vs. Evil, and they were definitely the best things about this show. It’s just too bad (for their careers, I guess) that they weren’t quite good enough to keep the show going. Chalke and Biggs’ characters were just awful, and all of the stories had been done to death in countless other shows. I hope this cancellation will allow Greer and Labine to go on to bigger and better things.

As with NBC, I haven’t heard of any of CBS’s new shows. I could read the descriptions, but it’s a long time until August and things might change.


I’ll be doing a post similar to this in the fall right before the next season starts. By then I’m sure the networks will have pretty good previews of all of their new shows, and I can get a pretty good idea of what I will or won’t want to try.


Kate said...

Grimm on NBC! I'm excited for this and trying to find out if it's going to air over here. It's one of the Buffy & Angel long-term producers (Grenwald? I'm making that up, but something like that) and the concept is of a modern crime drama but wherein the main character is descended from a long line of "grimms" who can see the reality of the fairy-tale villains who are hiding in the modern world. I watched a 3-odd minute trailer and wasn't blown away, but have a bit of faith in the creators and an **extreme** amount of interest in the premise.

Rob Rosenblatt said...

I'll definitely be checking out Grimm.

The only other previews I saw were for Zoey Deschanel's new show (has Damon Wayans Jr. from Happy Ending in it, so I'm sure the pilot will either have to be reshot or they'll get a new black guy); Ringer, Sarah Michelle Gellar's new show that looks awful; and James Van Der Beek's new show, which might be good for a few laughs.

Kate said...

Try NPR's Monkey See blog - they did a rundown on new shows (the main writer is a tv person) and I think with links to trailers if available:
They have a few different posts on it but at least two are still on the front page (as of right now.)