Fall TV 2015: What I’m Watching (Monday Edition)

GUYS! In case you haven’t noticed yet, FALL TV IS UPON US! Most of our favourite shows are back, alongside a whole slew of newbies vying for our attention. This season, I find myself in a weird place, as I attempt to *gasp* cut back on my TV shows. I’ve said it before but I watch too much TV – I know that. For the past several months, due to work and personal family circumstances, I’ve had to make solid decisions on what I was watching and when. Making the call of what I really needed to watch day-of/live, as opposed to something I can watch later when I have time. Also, cutting shows that just weren’t doing anything for me. That last choice has been in effect for some time now, but as we begin this new TV season, I still question whether or not I still care about some shows. And even for that matter, do I even care enough about some of the new shows coming on the air to give my time to? Anyways, enough introductory babble, and onto my list of what shows I’ll be watching (and maybe watching)

MONDAYS

  • The Voice
  • Dancing With the Stars
  • Blindspot (NEW)
  • Minority Report (NEW)
  • Jane the Virgin
  • Supergirl (NEW)
  • Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (NEW)
  • Gotham?

Honestly, The Voice and Dancing With the Stars has been relegated to commercial status, in that I’ll watch them when the other shows are on commercial break or just clips later. Why? Because one, I don’t even get to vote so why bother watching live? And two, why waste my time watching through the people I don’t like, when I’m just waiting to see my faves? Like this season of DWTS – here for my pro dancers (and their partners): Allison Holker & Andy Grammer, Derek Hough & Bindi Irwin, Sharna Burgess & Nick Carter, Witney Carson & Carlos PenaVega, and Mark Ballas & Alexa PenaVega. As much as I love The Voice and the coaches, even I have to admit that I’m getting a little burned out on too much Voice.

One of my favourite surprises from last season was Jane the Virgin and I am so looking forward to what hilarious/adorable/endearing things they’ll do this season. I mean, Britney Spears will be guest-starring as Rogelio’s nemesis! Like, this cast/crew just speak to me and I want to be friends with Gina Rodriguez because of her sheer awesomeness.

As for the new shows? I absolutely can’t wait for Supergirl to premiere. Yes, I know the pilot already leaked way back in late May, but I’m pretty proud of myself for not actually finding + watching it. Not to mention, Greg Berlanti and Andrew Kreisberg has done so much good with Arrow and The Flash that I just have complete faith in them doing this show. And speaking of Berlanti, the uber-producer/writer who makes everybody else look bad, he’s also got another show on Monday with Blindspot. The premise of a Jane Doe waking up with no recollection of who she is and how she ended up with tattoos covering her body that serve as clues, is an interesting one. It makes me think of the movie Memento, but will probably veer towards a more procedural-style of storytelling. I’m definitely going to check out the pilot and see what they’re doing, but I definitely have my reservations about it.

I saw the first 15 minutes of Minority Report at SDCC and found some elements of it that were really interesting, especially the future tech. To be honest though, it kind of just made me miss Almost Human. Again, I liked what I saw, even if I wasn’t completely sold on any of the characters, but I’m hoping for the best. Another new show I’m a little iffy about is Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, the only new show to premiere this fall on The CW. Something about the previews just didn’t sit with me, so I’m going to wait until I watch the full pilot to see exactly what the tone of it will be and take it from there.

There’s one big question mark on my Monday schedule, and that is, do I want to give Gotham another shot? I so desperately wanted to like it last season. It had its ups and downs in the first half of the season, but when it came back from its winter hiatus, I found myself struggling to keep interest. Word is that this season will be slightly lighter in tone and function better as a collective unit. I just don’t know though. And I love Ben McKenzie and Morena Baccarin, which is why I kind of want to see what happens, but is it enough? I may wait and watch during the weekend or something, definitely not a must-see for me.

The Voice Season 3: Are the Twists Working?

Going into the live playoffs (as it is apparently called now), I’ve been left to wonder how the different changes made to this season has impacted the show. Don’t get me wrong, change is good, keeps things interesting. Whether or not these changes work or well executed, that’s another story. All this pretty much stems from seeing who actually made the live rounds and who didn’t.

One of the first twists to this season was the inclusion of the “STEAL” in the battle rounds. After a winner has been declared by the coach, the 3 other coaches have the opportunity to steal the losing contestant for their own team, giving that singer a second chance to continue on in the competition. Each coach was allowed 2 steals. The “Steal” offered up an added excitement to the battle round proceedings: Is the losing singer worthy of continuing on? Are the other coaches going to save them? Are they seriously not going to save them? Did they really save that singer?! It’s those last 2 questions that kept bothering me as the battle rounds went on. As exciting as it was to see Adam steal Amanda Brown, when Cee-Lo foolishly put up Amanda with Trevin Hunte, it also became increasingly clear that the use of the steals was going to be a frustrating affair. With only 2 spots for steals, the coaches had to choose wisely who they wanted to save, risking the possibility that after those 2 steals got used, another (probably more deserving) singer would still get cut. The whole purpose of the inclusion of the “steal” was to give those singers who deserved to stay longer that opportunity (think what would’ve happened if the likes of Niki Dawson and Chris Cauley hadn’t been paired up with Vicci Martinez and Tony Lucca, respectively, and got to continue on in the competition). But if a handful of great singers STILL got cut (which obviously happened), then it kind of becomes a little pointless. Michael Slezak, who does the recaps over at TVLine, suggested that the coaches should somehow decide who they want to steal from the losing contestants, after all the battles are done. Great idea, but keyword is ‘somehow’ – that’s clearly something for the show’s producers to think about/come up with.

After the battle rounds, each coach has a team consisting of 10 members, so in order to cut the teams in half, the show introduced the “KNOCKOUT ROUND.” The ‘Knockouts’ are essentially the battle rounds, except that the contestants each get to pick their own songs to sing, and they don’t know who they are paired up against until moments before they perform. It’s another way to weed out the weaker singers, but at the same time, it’s very much dependent on who the coaches pair up and what the coaches decide. Because as we viewers saw, in another example of making the “Steal” twist look rather pointless after the fact, all the coaches except Adam ended up cutting the singers they stole. The most frustrating result was Blake pairing up Julio and Marissa Ann (whom he stole from Christina’s team) for the knockout round, and ending up choosing Julio simply because he had invested more time coaching him, despite the fact that Marissa Ann sang infinitely better than Julio did. I love the coaches, but they have made some VERY questionable choices this season.

This leads to the twists that we’ll see implemented for the live rounds, leading to the finale. Whereas the past two seasons, each coach was guaranteed a spot in the finals, that has gone out the window for this season. For this first week of the live rounds, the top 2 vote-getters from each team will automatically make it to the Top 12, and then each coach gets to save 1 additional singer from their team. Thereafter, adopting the typical reality competition voting standards, all bets are off and whoever gets the lowest number of votes, regardless of team, will get the boot. The good thing about this is that the coaches now don’t have much sway as to who stays and goes, something that as the live rounds progressed last season, got quite irritating to some viewers. Plus, I’m sure I’m not the only one who wished that it was a Team Cee-Lo/Team Adam final, so the possibilities are endless as to what will come of the finals. That being said, the worst thing is that America can often get things wrong and there is a possibility that some of the best singers might not make it very far (I’d like to think higher of The Voice audience, but years of Idol/DWTS/SYTYCD has made me somewhat of a reality TV cynic).

Overall, I must say that at least The Voice is willing to make these constant changes/twists to keep things fresh on the show. I really wouldn’t expect anything less with Mark Burnett being the executive producer. So Voice fans, thoughts on this season’s twists? Anything they could improve on? And more importantly, who are your favourites on the show?

Cover Songs: Love Them, Hate Them, Can’t Get Enough of Them

I love cover songs. I think it is totally awesome when artists sing another artist’s song, especially during concerts because it mixes things up a little bit. On her recent “Stronger” tour, Kelly Clarkson performed at least 3 cover songs at each stop: 2 were part of the setlist (Florence + the Machine’s “Heavy In Your Arms” and Carrie Underwood’s “I Know You Won’t”) plus a fan request. I’ve heard Maroon 5 sing “Ain’t No Sunshine” and “If I Ain’t Got You.” James Morrison and Diane Birch once performed “With A Little Help From My Friends.” John Mayer has sung “Free Fallin” and “Gone.” Justin Timberlake sang “This Love” at one of his benefit concerts (even though he technically performed that with Maroon 5). This is just the tip of the iceberg and I could go on and on with amazing covers.

It’s only recently that I’ve realized where I draw the line when it comes to covers. Hearing covers in concert is one thing because I’m watching an artist I’m a fan of so they can’t do much wrong in my books. But over the years, watching so many TV shows where covers abound like Idol, The Voice, X-Factor, and now with Glee + Smash, my reaction to song choices vary from the usual groan and eye-roll when a song that’s been OVERDONE is sung again (11 years of Idol will turn you into a cynic) or total excitement. There has been countless times when we’ve heard female contestants sing songs by Mariah, Whitney, Celine, etc. even though they don’t have the range for it. But then there are a lot of cases where singers do a fantastic job covering the song by either changing up the song to fit their style (Hello David Cook’s version of “Always Be My Baby” and Kris Allen’s “Heartless” that’s STILL on my iPod) or just simply singing the HELL out of the song. Some covers are even better than the original. Glee, in my opinion, does this the best – take an okay song or one that’s entirely overplayed and make it better/worth listening to (i.e. Blame It On the Alcohol, Teenage Dream, We Found Love). For certain songs though, I’ve found that I can’t even like the cover, despite how good it might be.

In the episode of Glee entitled “On My Way”, the Troubletones sang Kelly Clarkson’s “What Doesn’t Kill You (Stronger)”. I was excited to hear it, but at the same time, it was like “Why couldn’t they pick another song?” I think it comes down to the fact that it was a single and I like Glee better when they’re not doing songs that are already on the radio. After I heard it, I felt kind of indifferent about it – it was good but I didn’t really like it. Why? I realized that I’m fiercely protective of when anyone sings Kelly’s songs. I mean I love Kelly Clarkson – she’s one of my favourite artists ever and I love her songs like they are the soundtrack to my life. So for me, I don’t think anyone should ever sing her songs, unless they can do the original justice.  Megan Hilty sang “Breakaway” on a recent episode of Smash and though there’s no denying that she has a great voice, I didn’t feel as though it carried the same weight as Kelly’s original. But again, maybe that’s because “Breakaway” was such a big song for Kelly. Then on Glee, at the end of the episode “Choke”, Lea Michele sang “Cry” off of Kelly’s “All I Ever Wanted” album and I thought she did a fantastic job with the song. It fit nicely with the storyline and worked well with Rachel Berry’s feelings, so it didn’t feel forced. Actually, it was a nice reminder of what Glee was like when it started. Now of course it really is a track-by-track basis, in terms of what I’m willing to accept.

Christina Aguilera is probably one of the best voices in the industry; she’s got a diva voice. We’ve heard people sing “Beautiful” and “The Voice Within” among other Christina songs, and it’s usually met with the same eye-roll and groan. I thought Amber Riley did a good job singing “Beautiful” on Glee, but I definitely was not happy about Darren Criss singing “Fighter” in the episode “Big Brother.” Not that there was anything really wrong with his version, but “Fighter” is one of my all-time favourite songs and no matter how much angst we’re supposed to feel from the storyline, it just can’t match Christina’s sheer power.

Then there’s Adele. Over the span of this past year, I have no idea how many times an Adele song has been covered. Scratch that, over the span of the past 6 months, I have no idea how many times an Adele song has been sung on TV. I’ll admit I liked  Angel Taylor and Mathai’s attempts at singing “Someone Like You” and “Rumour Has It”, respectively, during their blind auditions on The Voice. Before that, Glee did a great mash-up of those 2 songs as well. But now it’s just plain old fatigue of hearing people try to sing Adele. Just stop please.

It’s not just songs by these artists with big voices being covered that have me  up in arms. I have deliberately  sort of avoided American Idol this past season because it got tiring, with the theme weeks and the judges making no sense. But there was the one week where the theme was songs from this decade (so, the past three years in music). Seeing what the set list was ahead of time, I found it to be an interesting line-up, so I actually attempted to watch the show that week (in between my regular television shows of course). I only came out disappointed, feeling like it was a slap in the face because they not only ruined 2 Kelly Clarkson songs, but also a Maroon 5 song. I know, one should not compare a contestant’s rendition to the original, but let’s be real, it’s inevitable and you can’t help it. The contestant in question, Phillip Phillips, re-arranged Maroon 5’s “Give A Little More”. I’ll embed both versions below and judge for yourself. But while the original has a sexy quality to it (what Adam Levine does seamlessly), Phillip re-arranged it somehow to make it cheesy (Saxophone? Really?). This also doesn’t mean The Voice gets off scott-free either because I was REALLY not impressed with RaeLynn singing “Wake Up Call”. Sure the song can be made country but not by RaeLynn, sorry Blake. And I know Adam seemed to like it, but as a fan, I was not having any of it.

Those are the artists, who in recent weeks/months have been covered that I’ve had problems with. On the flip side, I always love a good Britney Spears cover. I love Britney, and to me, she’s pure pop royalty. People can say what they want about Britney, but damn does she not have some great catchy pop songs? I love it when people cover Britney because her songs aren’t obvious choices. When people hear Britney, they just hear the music because she’s never really been known as a vocalist (which she isn’t and we all know that). So hearing someone sing a Britney song, gives a somewhat cool factor. Naturally, when Tony Lucca sang “…Baby One More Time” on The Voice, I flipped out because the whole thing was just PURE GENIUS. Same song, different show – Marty Casey was absolutely brilliant with his version on Rock Star INXS back in 2005. In concert, I’ve heard Kate Voegele sing “Till the World Ends” and again, I geeked out.

Consider this me ranting about song choices on TV shows (reality or otherwise). Also, a justifiable excuse for me to post videos of some cool/awesome (and I guess one not-so-great) covers. Enjoy!

Taking “The Voice” Worldwide: How Does Each Version Stack Up?

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I’ll be honest, I don’t usually watch reality TV shows from other countries. For one thing, I watch more than enough TV as it is, so why would I watch shows from other countries? I know American Idol started as Pop Idol in the UK, but I never watched the original. I watched clips of the original X-Factor after I heard about Shayne Ward and Leona Lewis, and subsequently tried to somewhat keep up with the show for a few seasons, but I can’t say I was deeply invested. Though I did watch enough to keep track of favourites and knew of One Direction before they invaded all forms of media. This was before. Lately, I’ve found myself not only watching The Voice that we know and love on NBC, but I’ve also been watching versions of The Voice from the UK and Australia. Like I have been putting in the time and effort to be keeping up with these shows, even trying to find ways of getting the song downloads. At one point in April, I distinctly remember commenting on GetGlue how I couldn’t believe that I was watching 3 iterations of the same show and yet I still love it.

[Note: I know that NBC got the idea from The Voice of Holland, but for all intents and purposes, I’m using the U.S. version as the base of comparison. Like American Idol, the concept really took off after the Americans did it so there’s that.]

One of the biggest things for me is that I find The Voice so fascinating. I’ve said it before, but The Voice is just so much more entertaining and satisfying as a fan of music and television than Idol and X-Factor these days. Don’t get me wrong, Voice has had some frustrating moments of its own over its first two seasons and there’s still room for improvement as far as the voting system, but overall, it’s still a better show in my opinion. A lot of it has to do with the talent and the fact that it’s a free-for-all in terms of song choices. However, the coaches are a big selling point of the show as well, which is exactly why I decided to watch the UK and Australian versions in the first place (and be honest, it’s why we started watching the US version too). So how do the UK and Australia compare to the US version? Let’s take a look.

THE VOICE UK

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For coaches, the UK got will.i.am (from the Black Eyed Peas), Danny O’Donaghue (from The Script), Jessie J, and Sir Tom Jones. With the inclusion of Tom Jones, the UK got themselves quite an interesting lineup. In comparison to our coach lineup of Christina, Adam, Blake, and Cee Lo, we can see some similarities but also some differences. Danny is sort of like Adam in that he can get the crowd going and brings the funny. Jessie’s the sole female and holds her own amongst the boys, but she is different from Christina. You always see Jessie singing along to the song and really enjoying herself. will.i.am is like Cee-Lo only in the sense of the name-dropping but you see Will taking the artistic approach when it came to convincing singers to join his team because of his skills as a producer. That leaves Tom as Blake, but they aren’t similar at all in their coaching. I suppose due to the age difference between him and the other 3, Tom sort of takes a backseat, particularly during the blind auditions. Tom says very little and even when trying to convince singers to join his team, he’s very professional and easy going about it – he let’s the others fight it out. Occasionally, he’ll do some name dropping on his own to match, if not beat will.i.am, but he definitely brings his decades of experience. As a collective, the 4 don’t bicker like our coaches. It’s a different type of teasing that they have going on. During the blinds, you often saw them talking to each other and trying to get the others to turn their chair around. One thing I must say about these 4 as coaches is that they really are taking their position seriously, particularly in their critiques (not that this is a slight to the others, just an observation). It does cause some tension between the coaches, but for the better part of things, it is all in trying to help the contestants. Then during the live shows, actually the results show, when the contestants are doing group numbers, if they are really feeling it, the coaches will get up out of their chairs and dance + have some fun.

As far as overall production, the UK managed to finish the battle rounds in 2 episodes. I’m watching the show online after the fact so I’m not entirely sure about commercials, but it came out to be 10 battles in roughly 2 hours, which for TV is a lot because of all the stuff they fit into the pre-package. Due to the fact that they do put a lot in the pre-package, this felt a little rushed at times. As for the live shows, the results are given in roughly 30 minutes (again, not sure about commercials). They’ve had the contestants sing as a group and then one guest performer, with results in between – moves along very nicely.

At the time of this posting, the UK is preparing for the finale performance show, with the final 4 contestants: Bo Bruce (Team Danny), Tyler James (Team Will), Vince Kidd (Team Jessie), and Leanne Mitchell (Team Tom). All 4 bring a little something different to the table, so it’s really nice to see such stylistic diversity. I know this is for the UK, but of the 4, I’d really like to see Bo win – she’s such a unique voice and though I’m not entirely sure, I think she has the potential to be a great crossover artist and make it in North America. But that’s just my thoughts.

THE VOICE AUSTRALIA

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In Australia, Keith Urban, Delta Goodrem, Seal, and Joel Madden (from Good Charlotte) get a seat in the awesome spinning red chairs. When I first heard of the lineup, I thought it was pretty awesome, almost as good as the US. Now having watched it, I’m changing my opinion to that they are on par with the US coaches. Not that it’s a diss to the UK because all 3 sets of coaches have a dynamic that works and are entertaining in their own ways. But there’s something about the coaches from Australia (technically only Keith and Delta are Australian) that’s fun to watch, and it’s in a different way from watching the US. What I said before about Jessie J singing along to what the contestants were singing? Here, all 4 of the coaches are singing along to practically every song and are totally having fun and completely into it. This singing along has been going well into the live rounds as well, with Keith Urban doing it the most, even singing along to a One Direction song. When they are fighting to get the singers on their team, you don’t see them name dropping or really bad mouthing each other. They really are about helping and nurturing the artists to be better and convincing the singers of what they as coaches can do for them – this is about the only way that they try to one-up the other. One of the funniest things coming out of the blinds is seeing Seal’s attempts at luring singers to his team and not in the sense that he’s bad at it, he’s actually quite good. In the US, you see Christina always complaining about Adam’s salesman pitch; well, Seal does that at a higher level, but he’s so laid back in his delivery of persuasion that sometimes you don’t even realize what he’s doing. Delta’s a very nurturing coach and to me at least, I think that stems from who she is as a person. She doesn’t have a diva personality, but you can tell when she’s coaching and critiquing  how important music is to her. [Sidenote: I have no idea why Delta is not a bigger artist outside of Australia. She is just such a great singer/songwriter and I’ve been a fan since she released her first album, “Innocent Eyes.”] The biggest surprise for me was Joel. I was never really a big fan of Good Charlotte, so I didn’t quite know what to expect from him. For one thing, it turns out Joel was quite the popular pick early on during the blind auditions. More importantly though, he’s shown to be quite insightful as a coach.

Thus far, the production of the show has been pretty good. 6 episodes for the blind auditions might have been a little much, but I think that was moreso them trying to show the auditions of all the singers that made it through. The battle rounds clock in at 3 episodes, which is just the right amount – doesn’t feel rushed like the UK but also doesn’t feel dragged out like the US. One aspect about the battle round that Australia added in that I quite liked was the time-out. Last season on The Voice US, we saw the mentors sit beside the coaches during battle rounds and give their input; this season, with each of the coaches having 2 mentors, we didn’t see them sit in on the actual battles. In Australia, the mentors sit behind the coaches and if the coaches are having a tough time deciding who to take through to the live rounds, they can take a “time-out” to talk to the mentor. When using the time-out, the coach presses their red button to turn their chair around and quickly discuss with the mentor (so the spinning red chairs still get put to use!)

As far as the talent goes, I have to say I have been incredibly impressed by these singers in Australia. They are all so good, so talented and each brings a little something different that I can’t even decide on a frontrunner. They are just simply THAT good. Extra dancers and whatnot have been kept to a minimum, so as to really focus on the contestants and essentially, their voice, which is something I do appreciate.

So at the end of the day, which version comes out on top? Well, none and all of them. Each iteration has its own merits and are all fun to watch. If anything, I’d say it depends on how much you like the coaches and the talent on the show – personal preference. But will that change with the news that NBC will be airing 2 seasons of The Voice a year? Quite possibly. 2 seasons in one year seems a little like overkill. Add to that, there’s no way all 4 of the current coaches will be staying for both runs; they do have actual careers going on, which includes promotion and touring. So they are going to have to find other artists to basically replace whichever coach won’t be able to come back. This is beyond the point of this post. What it comes down to is, regardless of which version of the show you watch, whether it be the U.S., the U.K., Australia, or whichever other country, it is awfully fun to watch. At the very least, you can marvel in the talent from other countries and if they become big stars, you can say you heard them before the rest of your friends.

Upfronts 2012: NBC Reveals Its Schedule for Next Season

It’s Upfronts time, folks! Over the past week, the major broadcast networks have slowly announced which shows they are renewing or cancelling, and which new pilots have been picked up for next season. Today, NBC was the first of the networks to reveal what its schedule will look like come Fall 2012, and of course it came with some surprises. Below are my thoughts on the new shows NBC has picked up and where they land on the schedule (as always, this is completely based on the description of the show and the cast involved).

  • REVOLUTION [Drama – Mondays @ 8]: A new show from J.J. Abrams and Eric Kripke, the show is an adventure thriller featuring a world where all forms of technology have blacked out. Another season, another Abrams show. You’d think after last season, I would give up on Abrams (Alcatraz was a bust, Person of Interest probably deserves a second chance from me) but I still believe in the man who brought us Felicity and Alias. Not to mention he is joined by Kripke as an executive producer, who was responsible for giving us the world of Supernatural. For me, the cast doesn’t even matter on this one – two imaginative producers with an interesting set-up, is more than enough for me to give this show a try.
  • GO ON [Comedy – Tuesdays @ 9]: Matthew Perry returns to NBC in this new show about a recently widowed sportscaster attempting to move on with his life, while forced to attend group therapy sessions. It’s Matthew Perry, on NBC, why wouldn’t I give this show a shot? If Courtney Cox’s Jules Cobb on Cougar Town is like the next level of Monica Gellar, I have a feeling this is going to be the next level of Chandler Bing for Perry.
  • THE NEW NORMAL [Comedy – Tuesdays @ 9:30]: Consider this Modern Family, if it only focused on Cam & Mitch and they had followed through with that surrogacy plot from this past season. That’s what I take from it anyways. The show stars Justin Bartha (from The Hangover movies) and Andrew Rannells (from Broadway’s The Book of Mormon)  and is brought to us by the producers of Glee (seems appropriate that Murphy and Co. are in charge of this show). More than likely that I’ll watch it, but at the very least will give it a shot.
  • ANIMAL PRACTICE [Comedy – Wednesdays @ 8]: Centers on the antics at a veterinarian’s office, with a vet who loves animals, but hates people. This is one of those “you’ll never know” shows, meaning you can’t really tell if it’s going to be good or bad until you watch it. So I guess I’m going to have to await judgment until I watch the show (or at least watch previews for it).
  • GUYS WITH KIDS [Comedy – Wednesdays @ 8:30]: Jimmy Fallon executive produces this show about three thirty-something guys trying to hold on to their youth, while raising their newborn kids. I feel like this could be really funny, especially with Fallon as exec. producer.
  • CHICAGO FIRE [Drama – Wednesdays @ 10]: A show that revolves around the firefighters, rescue squad, and paramedics of Chicago, and stars Taylor Kinney and Jesse Spencer. Forgive me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t there a show like this some years ago? I think it was called Third Watch? It doesn’t strike me as anything particularly original, so I’m not so sure about it.
  • DO NO HARM [Drama – Midseason]: Sort of a Jekyll/Hyde drama featuring a neurosurgeon. Alter egos are always an interesting thing, which certainly gets me intrigued. Only thing I’m worried about is that they are planning for this to air midseason on Sundays (after football is over) and it will be the only scripted show that night (following Fashion Star and Celebrity Apprentice). It’s one thing to have an established show follow some reality shows, but how does the network expect to launch a new show following two reality shows that aren’t doing that well in the ratings anyways?
  • SAVE ME [Comedy – Midseason]: Stars Anne Heche as a woman, who after having a near-death experience, discovers she has become a prophet…yeah…At the very least, this is a comedy and they’re not making some serious stuff out of it, but I still don’t think this sounds entirely promising.
  • 1600 PENN [Comedy – Midseason]: It’s a family show that is set in the White House. There’s really no other way to describe it, and yet I do think it is worth a look. What surprises me though is that they are not putting this on in the fall, especially with it being election time (or maybe that is especially why they decided against it).
  • NEXT CALLER [Comedy – Midseason]: The show is set at a satellite radio station featuring a foulmouthed DJ (played by Dane Cook) who now has to contend with a young feminist for a co-host. Another we’ll see about this.
  • INFAMOUS [Drama – Midseason]: It was bound to happen. With the success of Revenge over on ABC, NBC is attempting to its own murder mystery drama. This one stars Meagan Good as a detective tasked with uncovering the murder of a wealthy socialite, who was once her best friend when she lived as the daughter of the family housekeeper. Murder, mystery, intrigue…count me in! Not to mention Victor Garber (Jack Bristow!) and Tate Donovan (Jimmy Cooper!)? Sold.
  • HANNIBAL [Drama – Midseason]: Consider this the origins of Hannibal Lecter, before he became the man we knew from The Silence of the Lambs. Should be interesting, but I can’t help but wonder if this might be a better fit for the cable networks.

Other notable points in the schedule:

  • Looks like NBC is going forward with having The Voice on twice a year. Don’t get me wrong, you know I love the show but once a year is MORE than enough. Too much of a good thing is going to be a bad thing; it’s called over-saturation. NBC must be really desperate or don’t have enough faith in their pilots if they are going with this route. Also, does this mean they are going to have different coaches each season? Because there is definitely no way Adam, Blake, Cee-Lo, (maybe) Christina will agree to do this twice a year. Hello, they are successful music artists with careers! They’ve got touring and promo to do!
  • Community is moving to Fridays @ 8:30, following Whitney @ 8 (I still don’t understand how Whitney got renewed). Happy that Community got renewed, not so happy about this timeslot.
  • Rock Center with Brian Williams follows the Thursday night comedy line-up of 30 Rock, Up All Night, The Office + Parks and Recreation. I also don’t understand how Rock Center is still on and it gets that slot @ 10? What a waste! I still contend that they should’ve done a 3 hour comedy night, moving the 2 Friday comedies, move Grimm to 8 on Fridays, and then follow that up with Rock Center.
  • Smash is being held off until midseason, which I must say is probably for the best, giving it more time to develop itself after its uneven first season.
  • Officially Cancelled: Are You There Chelsea, Awake, Bent, Best Friends Forever, Harry’s Law, The Firm

For a complete look at the new shows and how the schedule is going to look, head on over to Deadline.com

Tomorrow morning, it’s Fox’s turn.