THE GOOD, THE FAD AND THE UGLY OF FALL TV 2015 #TV #COLUMN #THEJUICE

Note: This piece was written by Nikhil Taneja (@tanejamainhoon) in September 2015 for The Juice. An edited version of the piece can be found here: http://goo.gl/i4Utf8


The 30 upcoming new shows that you need to know about (and some, you really don’t)

By the time this issue is out, the greatest mystery in True Detective would finally be revealed: that of the missing plot. So we’d either find out if it was an all-out True Disaster or just a mild True Disappointment (because the time for it to be Truly Dazzling is long gone).

But even with the most buzzed show of the year turning out to be a True Dud (we can’t control ourselves!), it’s still been a good year for television already, with new shows like Agent Carter, Better Call Saul, Daredevil, Fortitude, Mr. Robot, Sense8, Togetherness, and Wayward Pines, among others, proving to be stellar critical successes… and it’s not even fall yet.

And when fall TV season – where networks unveil a blitzkrieg of new programming – finally does arrive September-end, there will be over 30 new shows to sample, and just like in Game of Thrones, they will either win or die.

Since TV-viewing is a sacred and intensely personal activity and we don’t want you to choose the wrong shows and live to regret it, we’ve sorted your to-watch list for the rest of the year. So here’s a handy primer of the good (fresh, unique, original shows), the fad (shows that builds on or starts a trend and can go either way) and the ugly (lazy shows that will be cancelled before you ask ‘Why?’) of upcoming TV shows you need to know about, and some, you really don’t.

THE GOOD

  1. Angel from Hell (Nov. 5): Anything featuring Jane Lynch in supporting roles is worth watching, so a series with her in the lead will probably be awesome too. In Angel from Hell, Lynch stars as a woman’s borderline crazy ‘guardian angel’. Lynch and crazy sounds just about right.
  2. Ash Vs The Evil Dead (Oct. 31): Big laughs. Beautiful Gore. Creator Sam Raimi and star Bruce Campbell. The Evil Dead series is brought to TV in its original glory by the same team, and WE. CAN’T. WAIT.
  3. Blindspot (Sep. 21): A slick trailer promising an action thriller starring filmstars, Jaimie ‘Sif’ Alexander (Thor) as a mysterious naked, tattooed woman with no memory and Sullivan Stapleton (300: Rise of an Empire) as an FBI agent trying to find out why, but on TV!
  4. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (Oct. 19): A musical romcom about a ‘crazy ex-girlfriend’ by the director of (500) Days of Summer, Marc Webb, and the writer of 27 Dresses and Devil Wears Prada, Aline Brosh McKenna. This could be the rom-com of the year.
  5. Colony: Alert: Lost’s Josh ‘Sawyer’ Holloway is back! In a show by Lost co-creator, Carlton Cuse! The show is about a family trying to survive in a colony set in future LA but does that even matter? #SawyerForever
  6. Grandfathered (Sep. 21): Every two years, John Stamos (Full House’s Uncle Jesse), is back with a new show and that old school charm, only to be cancelled. This show could be different: he still plays an eligible bachelor, but this time, finds out he’s got a granddaughter.
  7. Into The Badlands (Nov. 15): The producers of Pulp Fiction and Django Unchained and the writers of Spider-Man 2 and Lethal Weapon 4 bring a martial arts action series about ‘the badlands’ where ‘there is no God’. It had us at ‘Pulp’.
  8. Marvel’s Jessica Jones (Nov. 20): Easily the most awaited show of the rest of the year. After the fantastic Daredevil, Jessica Jones is the second Netflix-Marvel superhero series. Starring Krysten Ritter, it promises to be all kinds of badass.
  9. Master of None (Nov. 6): Stand up sensation Aziz Ansari gets his own fiction show about the life of a 30-year-old New Yorker, Dev, who constantly fails at navigating life. This should be equal parts hilarious and equal parts genius.
  10. Moonbeam City (Sep. 16): The voices of – wait for it – Rob Lowe, Elizabeth Banks, Will Forte and Kate Mara come together in an animated series parodying ‘80s cop shows. Yippee-Ki-Yay!
  11. Narcos (Aug. 28): Bonafide legend, Pedro Pascal, who lived and died as Oberyn Martell in Game of Thrones, is back in a crime drama about drug kingpin Pablo Escobar, created by the Brazilian director behind the Elite Squad series, Jose Padilha.
  12. Quantico (Sep. 27): Priyanka Chopra is the lead in an American TV show! Yes, the trailer of the show about a group of young FBI agents, wasn’t sparkling, but it’s got good buzz, and stars our own, so we’ll be giving it a legit chance.
  13. The Bastard Executioner (Sep. 15): Kurt Stutter, the creator of The Shield and Sons of Anarchy, is back on FX, this time with a series about a, well, ‘bastard executioner, set in 14th century England, and starring True Blood’s Stephen Moyer in lead. This has us salivating already.
  14. The Daily Show with Trevor Noah (Sep. 28): Comedian Jon Stewart hosted The Daily Show for 16 years and made it cult. As Stewart exits this year, all eyes are on 31-year-old South African comedian, Trevor Noah, who will take up his mantle.
  15. The Grinder (Sep. 29): Rob Lowe starred in three TV pilots in 2015, and all three got picked up. He’s been replaced in one, Moonbeam City has his voice, but The Grinder is the show to watch out for. A legal drama co-starring another ‘80s star, Fred Savage (Kevin from The Wonder Years), this is a surefire hit.

THE FAD

  1. Best Time Ever with Neil Patrick Harris (Sep. 15): A variety show that probably came out of the question, ‘Can we make a show where everything Neil Patrick Harris does separately, he will do all at once?’ This one should be a crowd pleaser.
  2. Dr. Ken (Oct. 2): Ken Jeong or Mr. Chow of The Hangover series, gets his own sitcom, where he plays… a physician. Another one in an assembly line of dysfunctional family sitcoms, this comes equipped with a laugh track and may just need it.
  3. Heroes Reborn (Sep. 24): When it first launched, Heroes was a one of its kind show, with heavy VFX and lots of superpowers, but today, there are superheroes being born everywhere. Jack Coleman, Masi Oka and Sendhil Ramamurthy return, and Zachary ‘Chuck’ Levi (not Quinto) star. Like the heroes at its helm, can the show survive?
  4. Life in Pieces (Nov. 5): A show about a large family where every episode tackles stories of the sub-families. Yes, this is exactly like Modern Family, but with a twist: everyone is white and straight. The only thing unique here is an interesting cast led by Colin Hanks.
  5. Limitless (Sep. 22): The slickest looking trailer of all upcoming shows is the TV adaptation of the 2011 Bradley Cooper movie, with Cooper guest starring and exec. producing too. As long as the show doesn’t fall into the trap of a procedural, this could be huge.
  6. Minority Report (Sep. 21): Another adaptation of another sci-fi action thriller, with Steven Spielberg is exec. producing and Godzilla writer Max Borenstein is developing, there is cause to be excited. The procedural trap looms large again.
  7. Scream Queens (Sep. 22): Full marks to Ryan Murphy for the sheer genius that is the concept of the show. Murphy, the creator of hits Glee and American Horror Story, has mashed up the two as Scream Queens, a teen horror comedy. Starring a *very* impressive cast in Emma Roberts, Jamie Lee Curtis, Lea Michele, Nick Jonas, Ariana Grande and more, this is a certain smash hit.
  8. Supergirl (Oct. 26): Two men are at the center of the DC Comics’ TV universe: Greg Berlanti and Andrew Kreisberg, the duo behind Arrow, Flash and now, Supergirl. The trailer of the show was mocked because a Saturday Night Sketch had previously predicted a female superhero film/series to be a chick flick, but a leaked first episode proves it’s not all kryptonite yet.
  9. The Muppets (Sep. 22): 17 years after they last appeared on TV, The Muppets are back with The Big Bang Theory co-creator Bill Prady behind it. The two hit Muppet movies over the last few years definitely helped too, and the show format – a mockumentary – promises old fun in the perfect new way.
  10. The Player (Sep. 24): The producers of The Blacklist bring another crime thriller with another former movie star (Wesley Snipes) as a smart and powerful antagonist stopping crimes every episode. Another potential hit? Maybe.

THE UGLY

  1. Chicago Med (Sep. 30) – A spinoff of Chicago Fire, this is another show about a group of doctors trying to save the day, but in Chicago.
  2. Code Black (Sep. 30) – An adaptation of a documentary, this is another show about a group of doctors trying to save the day, but in Los Angeles.
  3. Rosewood ­(Sep. 23)­– An original show, this is a show about a group of law enforcement officers trying to save the day, by collaborating with a genius doctor.
  4. Truth be Told ­(Oct. 16) – From DJ Nash, the writer behind Traffic Light, Bent, Up All Night, Guys with Kids and Growing Up Fischer – all shows that were cancelled in one season, comes a show about two married couples that will probably suffer the same fate.
  5. The Carmichael Show (Aug. 5) – Last year, a failed sitcom, Mulaney, fictionalized the life of stand-up comic John Mulaney. This year, a sitcom, The Carmichael Show, fictionalizes the life of stand-up comic Jerrod Carmichael. Doomed to fail?

BONUS: Must-Watch Returning Shows

Most of the new shows launch September-end, so here are fantastic one-season old shows to catch up on as they return with fresh programming:

  1. Empire – Hip Hop ‘gangsta’ family drama (Sep 23).
  2. Fargo – Anthology crime drama (Oct 12).
  3. Jane The Virgin – Spanish telenovela romcom satire (Oct 19).
  4. Gotham – Batman prequel crime drama (Sep 21).
  5. Manhattan – Atomic bomb creation period drama (Oct 13).
  6. The Affair – Romantic mystery drama (Oct 4).
  7. The Flash – Origin story of DC Comic’s The Flash (Oct 6).
  8. The Last Man on Earth – End of the world apocalypse comedy (Sep 27).
  9. The Leftovers – Lost creator’s mystery drama (Oct 4).
  10. You’re The Worst – Anti romcom comedy (Sep 9).

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Liked/disliked the piece? Think there are more shows like Entourage that I’ve not covered? Leave your comments below 🙂
Note: This piece first appeared in The Juice in the August 2015 issue.
Link: http://www.jabong.com/magazine/#mybook/54
Picture courtesy: Google. None of the pictures are owned by the author all rights belong to the original owner(s) and photographer(s).
© Copyright belongs to the author, Nikhil Taneja. The article may not be reproduced without permission. A link to the URL, instead, would be appreciated.

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