Monday, August 16, 2010

The Foot: Looking At News Shows on ABC & CBS

The 2010-2011 network television season begins sooner than anyone would think. Series and season premieres are usually an exciting time of the year. It's always fun to wonder, with a returning show, whether or not quality will remain or the downward spiral is about to begin or will continue. Allright, it was only fun wondering how much more terrible Heroes would get.

This season there is a fresh crop of television shows that I hope captures my imagination, creative verse and has a weekly word count between 2,000 and 3,000 but a show would have to be downright LOSTian for such a word count honor. Ideally, I'd like to review shows that aren't reviewed by the majority of critics and blogs. I won't review an existing television show because every show I watch is already well-reviewed by smart critics and discussed online by intelligent fans. It is due time for The Foot to review something from the beginning until its ending. Of course, when I begin watching a show, I rarely leave the show mid-run. Whatever shows I choose to review will be reviewed regardless of possible diminishing qualities.

For the next few days, I'll list the possible shows to review along with some thoughts about each one. Today, we'll begin with ABC and CBS.


Detroit 187

Creator: Jason Richman

Premise: What does it take to be a detective in one of America's toughest cities? Follow one homicide unit as Detroit's finest unearth the crisis and revelation, heartbreak and heroism of these inner city cops in this series shot entirely in Detroit, Michigan. (ABC Press Release)

Thoughts: I'm not the biggest fan of cop shows. The trailer for the show is intriguing though. Early reviews from critics such as Alan Sepinwall and Dan Fienberg have been favorable. I'll admit there are certain shows that I've decided to review without seeing a single episode for reasons that will eventually be explained. The identity of those shows will be revealed in time. Detroit 187 is something I'd need to watch before making a decision on whether to write about it. The characters seem like archetypes rather than fully developed characters but all I have is what the ABC press release says about the characters. Michael Imperioli plays Louie Fitch, the most respected cop in homicide but, of course, he's the most misunderstood. The show has the rookie cop who throws up at crime scenes as well as the "young, sexy, edgy and beautiful" Ariana Sanchez who emerged from a rough background to become a rising star in the apartment. I'll check out the pilot and see what happens. The trailer's intriguing.

Chance Of Weekly Review: 50%

My Generation

Creator: Noah Hawley

Premise: What a difference ten years can make. In 2000, a documentary crew follows a disparate group of high schoolers from Greenbelt High School in Austin, TX as they prepare for graduation, then revisits these former classmates ten years later as they return home to rediscover that just because they're not where they planned doesn't mean they're not right where they need to be. (ABC Press Release)

Thoughts: The scope of the narrative seems very large. I gather that the show is about how the aughts shaped the lives of these characters and that the creator, Noah Hawley, wants to deal with the tremendous amount of history that happened in the last 10 years through these nine characters. The show is an ensemble with nine regulars. Firefly succeeded with such a large cast but I wonder if My Generation can accomplish everything they want to.

Chance Of Weekly Review: 24%

No Ordinary Family

Creators: Greg Berlanti & Jon Harmon Feldman

Premise: (from ABC's press release, May 2010) The Powells are about to go from ordinary to extraordinary. After 16 years of marriage, Jim and Stephanie's relationship lacks the spark it once had, and their family life now consists of balancing work and their two children, leaving little time for family bonding. During a family vacation set up by Jim in an attempt to reconnect, their plane crashes into the Amazon River. But this is where the fun starts for the Powells, as they soon discover that something's not quite right. Each of them now possesses unique and distinct superpowers. But saving and savoring their family life will be equally important, as they try to find purpose for their new powers and embark on a journey to find out what defines and unifies them. The Powells are a totally relatable family who happen to be a little bit amazing.

Thoughts: I love Julie Benz. I'm forever a fan of hers because of her role as Darla on Buffy and ANGEL. The series co-creator is Greg Berlanti. He created Everwood, one of my favorite dramas of all-time. I was intrigued by the premise since I heard about in May during Upfronts. I trust Berlanti, Feldman and their writers can avoid the problems that Heroes had. I don't think the series will tap into its potential until the second or third episode. The pilot should be a great foundation for the show to build on. Critics responded favorably to the pilot. I have high hopes for the series and yes, this is one of the shows I determined I'd review quite awhile ago.

Chance Of Weekly Review: 100%


Blue Bloods

Creator: Mitch Burgess

Premise: A drama about a multi-generational family of cops dedicated to New York City law enforcement. (From CBS Press Release)

Thoughts: There's more to the premise than that, obviously. It seems like Will Estes' character, Jamie (the youngest son), will be the central character as Jamie's life takes an abrupt turn when he's asked to be part of a "clandestine police investigation" that his father, Fran Reagan (Tom Selleck) knows nothing about. I don't have any interest in Blue Boods. The story's built around a world of law enforcement, courts and lawyers and I have no interest in entering that world weekly. I included Blue Bloods because readers might have interest in a show like this.

Chance Of Weekly Review: 0%

The Defenders

Creators: Kevin Kennedy & Niels Mueller

Premise: (From CBS Press Release) Jim Belushi and Jerry O' Connell star in a comedic drama about two colorful Las Vegas defense attorneys who go all-in when it comes to representing their clients. Leading the law firm of Morelli & Kaczmarek are Nick Morelli (Belushi), an earnest, hard-charging attorney who represents his clients to the best of his ability, no matter how big or small the case, and his partner, Pete Kaczmarek (O'Connell), whose passion for the law is matched only by his love of fast cars, beautiful women and expensive clothes. Joining them in their growing law practice is new associate Lisa Tyler (Jurnee Smollett), an enthusiastic young attorney looking to put her exotic dancing days behind her; and their young assistant, Sophie (Tanya Fischer), a spunky and sweet ingenue who is eager to please her bosses. As Lady Luck shines on their legal careers, the partners have their hands full when it comes to their personal lives. While Pete is busy cruising the Vegas Strip for his latest romantic conquest, Nick is focused on repairing his fractured marriage to his estranged wife, Jessica (Gillian Vigman), while remaining present in the life of their young son.

Thoughts: No. No way. NO.

Chance Of Weekly Review: 0%

Hawaii Five-O

Creators: Alex Kurtzman & Peter Lenkrov & Roberto Orci

Premise: HAWAII FIVE-0 is a contemporary take on the classic series about a new elite federalized task force whose mission is to wipe out the crime that washes up on the Islands' sun-drenched beaches.

Thoughts: Critics liked the pilot a lot. I never watched the original series. Paul Zybszewski is a co-executive producer on the show. He worked on LOST for the last two years so I'm encouraged by his involvement on the show. Daniel Dae Kim also works for the show. A LOST presence, though small, still exists in Hawaii. The show looks fun and the cast seems likeable. I will certainly watch the pilot and, perhaps, a few more episodes.

Chances of Weekly Review: 15%


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About The Foot

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Originally, I titled the blog Jacob's Foot after the giant foot that Jacob inhabited in LOST. That ended. It became TV With The Foot in 2010. I wrote about a lot of TV.