Monday, September 16, 2013

Fall TV Warning: Part 1

That's right, I said "warning," not preview. I am not going to give you a comprehensive report on the new fall network TV shows. My goal is to warn you, because from the sneak peeks and trailers I've been watching, this looks like an atrocious lineup of new shows. September IS National Preparedness Month, so I think you need to be prepared.

I offer the disclaimer that I have read very little if anything about these shows, and I am basing my opinions on the clips I've seen via my cable provider's On Demand offerings. I won't go in any particular order, but I'll mention all that I see.

One general comment I will make is that, man, everybody on TV looks older this season. I don't want to be mean-spirited, so I will try not to make this observation about specific performers, but there are a lot of people on new series who pop out to me as looking flat-out older than I remember. I mean like to the point I'm surprised that the purportedly age-obsessed networks are building shows around them.

DADS: OK, I will make an age-related comment here, and it isn't about Howard Hesseman and Peter Riegert, who play the Dads. My observation is that seeing Seth Green and Giovanni Ribisi (the sons) in this makes ME feel old. They don't look bad for their age or anything, but they just remind me of how long ago it was they were up-and-comers.

Fortunately I won't need to endure that nagging feeling of mortality anymore because the sitcom "from the mind of Seth MacFarlane" looks too awful to watch more than once. Two things about the preview clip tell me it isn't likely to surpass my expectations. It's the kind of show in which Ribisi quotes "The Untouchables" and then he and Green immediately have to cite the source of the quote, which ruins it. It's also the kind of show in which an attractive woman is asked to dress up as an Asian schoolgirl (fortunately, she IS Asian), and when she does so, we are treated to a jacked-up round of hooting and hollering from the audience. Yeah, I'll pass on this one.

DRACULA: I know Jonathan Rhys-Meyers is supposed to be all dark and Eurosexy, but I'm a dude, and I'm not interested, and the preview did nothing to interest me in the show itself. Besides, I'm still a Bela Lugosi guy.

SLEEPY HOLLOW: I have to admit the premise of this series amuses me, and the previews don't look terrible. Hey, look, I'm closing Part 1 on an up note!

There's a lot going on here. Ichabod Crane--who, this being modern network TV, isn't a gangly, awkward-looking gent--is a spy for the Colonial Army who finds himself in the present, where he joins forces with a  cop to combat the Headless Horsemen, who ALSO is in the present. There's apparently stuff about the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse and--uh-oh--an ongoing "mythology" that will either tantalize viewers as the season goes on or will be quickly explained in an episode or two if the ratings tank.

Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, the guys who wrote the Star Trek reboot and at least one or two of the Transformers movies (how many of those are now?) may have something here, and I am oddly intrigued by the presence of a sence of a somber Orlando Jones. But the real reason I want to give this is a shot is the Headless Horseman. When he showed up in the preview, I laughed in a good way, a, "Hey, this is kind of cool" way.

So, yeah, "Hollow" may be half-decent. Come back tomorrow for more of the truly awful-looking new shows.


Lisa said...

I should have passed on Dads too. The laugh track drove me insane. I could have dealt with it if I was laughing too. But I wasn't. Lesson learned: read Cultureshark daily.

Rick Brooks said...

If you get through this AND "The Millers," I will have to nominate you for some kind of medal.