10 New Fall Shows Guaranteed to Make it to Season 2

by Corey Chapman @chapmanrunner

Anyone that has listened to the UnderScoopFire Podcast knows how I am cautious about watching new television shows: I don’t want to invest my time in a new series that won’t be around the follow fall (I am looking right at you, Studio 60). I tend to wait until the show I have interest in gets picked up for season two.

After researching (ie. wasting time at work), I have come up with MY best bets for new shows that will still be on the air come September 2014. There was some math involved: I factored the cast, producers, networks, time slots, and plot summaries. Then I used good old-fashioned common sense and here is what I got. (Let’s check back in June to see how poorly I did!)

Summaries of series are provided by tvguide.com, because a) the networks wouldn’t send me screeners b) if the networks sent me screeners, I probably wouldn’t watch them. My comments are in bold.


About a Boy (NBC)
Based on the Nick Hornsby novel and Hugh Grant film, a loutish bachelor (David Walton) finds his priorities in life shifting after he befriends an awkward young neighbor (Benjamin Stockham). Parenthood‘s Jason Katims will write and executive-produce with original Boy producers Robert DeNiroTim BevanEric Fellner and Jane RosenthalJon Favreau will helm the pilot.

I don’t know why I am starting with this one. The movie wasn’t a hit, Hugh Grant is NOT on the show. Yet I have a good feeling “From the Producers of Parenthood” will bring in enough folks to watch it. Plus, with Jon Favreau directing the pilot, we might get a post credits scene with Nick Fury. Okay, maybe not.

Renewal Confidence Level 68%


Almost Human (Fox)
This action-packed buddy cop show is set in a future in which LAPD officers like John Kennex (Karl Urban) are partnered with highly evolved human-like androids like Dorian (Michael Ealy). Fringe‘s J.H. Wyman, who will write, will reteam with Lost‘s J.J. Abrams andBryan Burk as executive producers.

When I first saw the trailer for this, I thought it was a feature film. Its Star Trek’s Karl Urban plus buddy cop plus androids! The key here is that it’s Fox, which tends to have more patience with its hour long series.

Renewal Confidence level 80%


The Blacklist (NBC) 
The world’s most wanted criminal (James Spader) mysteriously turns himself in and offers to give up everyone he has ever worked with. His only condition: He will only work with a newly minted FBI agent (Megan Boone) with whom he appears to have no connection. Perfect Stranger‘s Jon Bokenkamp will write and executive-produce with Alias‘ John Eisendrath.

This show screams “From the network that brought you Hannibal!” and I think its brilliant. Spader (Ultron!) is always good, and this could be the Silence of the Lambs type serial that network TV should have cashed in on 20 years ago.

**Note** Jon Bokencamp wrote the movie Perfect Stranger starring Halle Berry and Bruce Willis, not the sitcom with Balki & Cousin Larry. Just wanted to clear that up.

Renewal Confidence Level 85%


Brooklyn Nine-Nine (Fox)
A group of detectives — including Saturday Night Live alum Andy SambergAndre Braugher, Terry CrewsJoe Lo Truglio and Melissa Fumero — form an odd family in a police precinct in the outermost neighborhood of New York City. Parks and Recreation‘s Mike Schur and Dan Goor will write and executive-produce with 30 Rock‘s David Miner.

This is my pick for the season’s top new sitcom. From all the previews, it looks like Samberg & Braugher have great chemistry, and when you add a solid (and funny) supporting cast including Crews and Lo Truglio, this should be a hit.

Renewal Confidence Level: 80%


The Crazy Ones (CBS)
A single-camera, half-hour workplace comedy about a father-and-daughter team in the world of advertising. (Oscar winner Robin Williams plays the dad, while Sarah Michelle Gellar is the daughter.) Ally McBeal‘s David E. Kelley will write the pilot and executive-produce with Arrested Development‘s Dean Lorey and McBeal‘s Bill D’EliaJames WolkAmanda Setton and Hamish Linklater will also star.

I knew it was only a matter of time before Robin Williams stopped chasing that dream of being a movie star and returned to his television roots! This might not have the manic pace or laugh track that were staples of Mork & Mindy, but it has a great cast (Mad Men’s Bob Benson!) and great producers. Williams on CBS is a perfect match- his target demographic has grown old with him. This should be a big hit for them.

Renewal Confidence Level: 100%


Gang Related (Fox) 
A gang member (Ramon Rodriguez) sent in to infiltrate the San Francisco Police Department and rise through its ranks must balance his obligations to his crime family with an increasing sense of loyalty to his new “family”: the SFPD’s Gang Task Force. Fast Five scribe Chris Morgan will write and executive-produce with V‘s Scott Rosenbaum and Brian GrazerJay HernandezTerry O’QuinnCliff CurtisSung KangRZAShantel VanSanten and Inbar Lavi will also star.

John Locke AND RZA? Let me set my DVR now.

Renewal Confidence Level: 70%


Ironside (NBC)
In a remake of the 1960s drama, an acerbic police detective (Blair Underwood) who uses a wheelchair pushes and prods his hand-picked team to solve the most difficult cases in the city. The Sopranos‘ Michael Caleo will write and executive-produce with American Horror Story‘s David Semel.

Every season, there is always one show that comes along where I say to myself, “This show was made for my mother!” And when I saw that NBC was bringing back the Raymond Burr classic, I knew this was it. I don’t know much about Caleo and Semel, but I do know that middle age American women will be watching.

Renewal Confidence Level: 90%


Marvel’s Agents S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC)
Based on Marvel Universe’s fictional and secret law-enforcement agency. Avengers‘ Joss Whedon, Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen will write and executive-produce. Clark Gregg will reprise his Avengers role, joined by Ming-Na, Brett Dalton, Elizabeth Henstridge, Ian De Caestecker and Chloe Bennet.

Lock this show in for a renewal now. I wouldn’t be surprised if ABC pulled an HBO/Showtime and announce plans for season two right after the rating for the premiere come in. As I discussed on episode 71 of the podcast, its going to be a hit out of the gate. My concern was sustaining an audience of non-geeks who tune in early in hopes of seeing The Hulk or Thor, or hell, Nick Fury! The hard core fans will watch it, but will it be able to hold onto a general audience in a year (or two) from now? Time will tell.

Renewal Confidence Level: 100%


The Michael J. Fox Show (NBC)
Michael J. Fox returns to TV as Mike, a former New York news anchor who goes back to work but still manages to find time to drive his wife (Betsy Brandt) and three kids crazy. The show is executive-produced with Fox by Sam Laybourne and Will Gluck and also stars Conor Romero, Juliette Goglia, Jack Gore, Kate Finneran and Wendell Pierce.

You don’t bet against Michael J. Fox. Period. And it doesn’t hurt that Marie from Breaking Bad is playing his wife.

Renewal Confidence Level: 95%


Once Upon a Time in Wonderland (ABC) 
The Wonderland-set Once Upon a Time spin-off is told through the eyes of Alice (Sophie Lowe), who has a generous heart, but carries the scars of a long and hard life. Once producers Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz will write and executive-produce alongside Jane EspensonZack Estrin and Steve Pearlman. Emma Rigby, Michael Socha, Peter Gadiot and Paul Reubens will also star.

I have never watched an episode of Once Upon a Time, but I know it has a loyal following. I am sure they will watch this show as well. Instead of following the original show on Sundays, Wonderland is scheduled for Thursday nights. That might worry me if I hadn’t read that ABC bumped it from 13 episodes to an “undisclosed” amount. Sounds like we could have a franchise here…

Renewal Confidence Level: 90%


Stay tuned- tomorrow I will be back with 10 shows that are guaranteed to be gone by Christmas!


Mr. Serious (@chapmanrunner) has been selling his whole life, nowadays he actually gets paid to do it. His long term goal is to retire young and spend his days watching old episodes of Saturday Night Live and tweeting about “the good old days”. He produces and edits the UnderScoopFire podcast.


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