Upfronts continue! Today ABC unveiled their fall schedule which fit into the general trends of the year: investing in comedies on Tuesday and opening up Fridays for scripted fare. Even though ABC has some big shows, with legit hits Modern Family and Once Upon A Time, the buzzy Revenge, and the still strong Grey's Anatomy, they have a lot of holes to fill and are trotting out seven new shows either in the fall or a little later. Which will be winners? Which will suck worse than Work It? Let's take a gander.
Timeslot: Tuesday 9.30 pm
Synopsis: A normal American family moves to the suburbs and learns that their neighbors are aliens. Real aliens from outer space.
Over/Under for Cancellation: 3 episodes. This literally couldn't look worse. Well, I guess the renderings of the aliens in their native form could look worse but that's about it. Also, I get really annoyed at a show that must constantly invent reasons to keep its characters in precarious situations. If the aliens freak you out so much, just move, end of story.
Timeslot: Tuesday 10 pm.
Synopsis: Connie Britton plays an aging country music superstar forced to figure out how to stay relevant as a young rival seeks to dethrone her. Basically it's Country Strong without the drastic ending.
Over/Under for Cancellation: 13 episodes. This seems really on trend for 2007, doesn't it? When Nascar was considered a real sport and people thought Julianne Hough was gonna be a star. It has a lot of stuff going on: country music, intense rivalry, an overbearing daddy, a husband with ulterior motives, the one who got away and that should amount to soapy fun. But, if it were really all that good wouldn't ABC have given it the plumb Sunday 9 pm slot recently vacated by Desperate Housewives instead of sticking it mid-week in the slot that Revenge floundered in? Makes a person wonder.
Timeslot: Thursday 8 pm
Synopsis: A nuclear sub is given is orders to fire upon Pakistan and, because those orders are shady in origin, the captain of the sub decides not to fire. Some nefarious part of the US government then orders an attack on our heroes who end up taking control of a small island nation and declaring themselves a new country. It is Crimson Tide meets the Rock.
Over/Under for Cancellation: This is another show with a lot going for it: creator Shawn Ryan has worked on some really great stuff, the Shield and Terriers especially, and star Andre Braugher never met a monologue he couldn't kick the shit out of. But something about the trailer left me cold. Even though every TV critic I follow on Twitter is already in love with the show, there's something about it that doesn't click for me. How will they drive tension each episode? Are we seriously supposed to believe that rebels with guns are going to act like the Others in Lost? Another show about a government conspiracy that goes all the way to the top? Obviously this is all speculation and Ryan could deliver an incredible show but I'm not setting the season pass just yet.
666 Park Avenue
Timeslot: Sunday 10 pm
Synopsis: A young hot couple move into an amazing apartment in New York City. The only catch is that the landlord is the devil. Which might remind you of your life, except he is the actual devil. It's the Devil's Advocate at the Dakota instead of a law firm.
Over/Under for Cancellation: 12 episodes. I love when a show says something that implies an episode count, like FOX's Alcatraz constantly mentioning the number of escaped convicts the team has to catch or this one mentioning that there are eighty residents in the building. It's so aspirational and optimistic. And completely out of reach. Maybe this gets a full season run but more likely it's gone by January and Terry O'Quinn is guest starring on Person of Interest by March sweeps.
How To Live With Your Parents For The Rest Of Your Life
Timeslot: Tuesdays in January
Synopsis: Sarah Chalke moves home to live with her insane mother played by Elizabeth Perkins and her boyfriend (?), Brad Garrett.
Over/Under for Cancellation: 3 episodes. Couldn't look worse.
The Family Tools
Timeslot: Tuesdays in January
Synopsis: A guy who is a total screw up moves home to take over his family's home repair business.
Over/Under for Cancellation: 3 episodes. Not only is this trailer without a single laugh but it stars Kyle Bornheimer who is allergic to successful shows.
Timeslot: Fridays in November
Synopsis: Reba McEntire plays an aging country singer who has recently left her cheating husband who is famous so there's press conference about his cheating. Like the Good Wife but without all the interesting stuff.
Over/Under for Cancellation: 3 episodes. I can't believe ABC's comedy development is so bad. Actually, they aired two episodes of Work It so I guess I can believe it. But I don't want to.