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Take Five: Shows to Look Forward to Next Year

Posted by Andrew Unterberger on May 27, 2007

It’s been what, a week since the last one already?

(Picture Not Accurate Representation of 2007 TV Schedule, Sorry All of Us fans)

The majors recently revealed their schedules for the upcoming TV season, giving primetime obsessives something to fantasize about while they grit their teeth through House reruns and the third season of So You Think You Can Dance. Most of the big guns are around for at least another year (including Friday Night Lights and 30 Rock, the only shows whose possible cancellation was a genuine threat), but as always, there’s a spate of new shows coming out as well. Some of them are sure to be horrific–nerds + hot chick comedy The Big Bang Theory, Grey’s Anatomy spin-off Private Practice and my personal favorite, law drama Dirty Sexy Money–but a couple look like they might be worth at least 22 (or 42, depending) minutes of your time. Unfortuantely, pretty much all of them are on Tuesdays. That said:

Cane

  • Channel: CBS
  • When: Tuesday, 10:00-11:00
  • The Pitch: “Cane, a drama about a wealthy Cuban-American family torn by fratricidal tensions as its sugar and rum businesses are passed down to the next generation, is part of the new fall schedule released by CBS on Wednesday. Set in Miami, the show has a powerhouse Latino cast—including Jimmy Smits, Rita Moreno, Hector Elizondo, Nestor Carbonell and Miami resident Paola Turbay—and executive producer Jonathan Prince promises scripts to match. ‘It’s like The Godfather if Vito Corleone had passed the family business to Michael, but Sonny and Fredo were still alive and pissed off about it,’ Prince told The Miami Herald.”
  • Why It’s Promising: Godfather comparisons? Emmy winners Smits, Moreno and Elizondo? A show on CBS without cops, nerds or Charlie Sheen? Genuine ambition in the TV medium? Yeah, just a little promising.
  • What Could Go Wrong: Admittedly my TV history is a little shaky here, but I don’t know if there’s precedent for a show about big family business and feuding that didn’t quickly fold into cheap Dallas or Dynasty-style melodrama.

Reaper
  • Channel: CW
  • When: Tuesday, 9:00-10:00
  • The Pitch: (From EW.com) “It’s about a young guy who finds out his parents sold his soul to the devil and has to pay back Mr. Satan by being a bounty hunter.”
  • Why It’s Promising: Reaper looks to be a quirky off-the-beaten-path comedy/drama in the style of previous CW/WB successes Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Veronica Mars, and is already attracting big buzz for the trailer to the pilot, directed by one Kevin Smith (who compares it to Shaun of the Dead). Plus, Ray Wise (Laura Palmer’s creepy Twin Peaks dad) as Satan–hard to go wrong with that.
  • What Could Go Wrong: Star Bret Harrison’s previous show The Loop didn’t make too many waves before getting axed from last year’s FOX schedule, and once Kevin Smith’s involvement with the show is complete, might be hard to maintain the hype.

Chuck
  • Channel: NBC
  • When: Tuesday, 9:00-10:00
  • The Pitch: (From NBC Site) “Chuck Bartowski is just your average computer-whiz-next-door. He spends his days working for Buy-More with his band of nerdy cohorts, longing to find a woman who can appreciate him. But when an old friend, who happens to be a CIA agent, sends Chuck a mysterious encoded email, the world’s greatest spy secrets are embedded into his brain. He never asked to become the government’s most powerful weapon, but the fate of the country suddenly lies in his unlikely hands. Hopefully, this won’t take away from his video game time! International terrorist plots, sexy spies and cold pizza – it’s all in a day’s work for our trusty hero…Chuck”
  • Why It’s Promising: No, it doesn’t actually star Chuck Norris, but it is executive produced by The O.C. masterminds Josh Schwartz and McG, who always seemed like they had more potential for doing action then they were able to demonstrate with Seth and Ryan. And here for the party is Full Metal Jacket and Firefly/Serenity tough guy Adam Baldwin, sure to lend some much-needed testosterone to the proceedings.
  • What Could Go Wrong: Accidental spy formulas may work for movies, but for TV they can get stretched pretty thin pretty quickly. And I don’t know anything about star Zachary Levi (If Less Than Perfect ran for a half decade, how come this is the first time I’ve even heard of it?) but his Wiki picture makes him look like kind of a tool.


Viva Laughlin

  • Channel: CBS
  • When: Sunday, 8:00-9:00
  • The Pitch: (From Zap2It.com) “Based on the BBC format “Viva Blackpool,” a man’s dream of opening a casino in Laughlin, Nevada is compromised by his family, his rivals and his involvement in a murder investigation. Musical numbers unexpectedly ensue.”
  • Why It’s Promising: Well, it looks different, to say the least. Not to mention the BBC series it’s based on was fairly well-acclaimed, and Wolverine / Tony-winner Hugh Jackman is on board as both executive producer and recurring guest star, joining TV vets Madchen Amick (Shelley Johnson on Twin Peaks) and DB Woodside (Wayne Palmer on 24) as well as some guy named Lloyd Owen.
  • What Could Go Wrong: Cop Rock, anyone?

Cavemen
  • Channel: ABC
  • When: Tuesday, 8:00-8:30
  • The Pitch: (From TV.com) “Cavemen revolves around Joel, his younger brother Jamie and best friend Nick. Joel is engaged to Kate. Even though he has some problems with her conservative parents accepting him, he is happy with his life and pursuing the American Dream. The pilot is based on the Geico commercials that claim their service is so easy, “Even a caveman can do it”.”
  • Why It’s Promising: Well…promising might not exactly be the best word for it. Despite being based on arguably the best (and almost certainly the most memorable) advertising campaign of the 21st century and being written by the same scribes as the commercials, it seems sort of unlikely that this spin-off is a good idea. Nonetheless, it’s sure to go down in pop culture history for the sheer weirdness of its inception. And I’m sure it’ll be funny for at least five seconds or so.
  • What Could Go Wrong: I’m just hoping it makes it to its premiere before someone at ABC has a “My God, what have I done?” epiphany.
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2 Responses to “Take Five: Shows to Look Forward to Next Year”

  1. Sonja said

    Um, you completely left out How I Met Your Mother which is way more important than say, Cavemen.

  2. Freida Feltcher said

    ohh I’m already excited now for the fall TV season! sooo happy Jimmy Smits is returning to TV, and in a godfather-esque drama, nonetheless…that sounds amaaazing.

    Viva Laughlin is gonna have musical numbers?!?! Ummm I can’t wait.

    and lol on the Cavemen series, I love those Geico commercials, that should be hysterical.

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