The analysis on these pickups usually come in September, but why not start laying the morning lines on which ones will be canceled first. So if you’re sitting in your office full of people who could do it better and write the next big TV show that no one has thought of yet, why not spend the meantime bashing those who have actually tried?
So here are the early odds, based on which shows look the worst, on which will be the first show to be canceled in the 2009-2010 TV season
A quick note that it should be mentioned that 1) I’m just some film school kid who doesn’t know anything. 2) These are just the comedies and “comedic dramas.” All medical, legal, cop and crime evidence shows are the same to me. 3) I have only read the scripts and seen the previews. But this reverts back to number one.
THE “COUPLING” WORST OF THE PACK:
2-1 Cougar Town. My odds-on favorite, this show looks not only as atrocious as it sounds, but also as bad as every single post-Friends cast member sitcom that have all tried and failed. Except now they know that they fail and don’t have to keep it around forever to prove their point, ala Joey. Shows should not be developed by word of the day on UrbanDictionary.
7-2 Hank. Combine the originality of Back to You with the laugh track from Do Not Disturb. Then mix a little Friends rule (see above) applied to ex-Frasier stars and you get Hank. The whole thing of the snooty rich folks coming back down to Earth loses its edge when they come back down to Earth and still see themselves as better than everyone.
5-1 Accidentally On Purpose. It’s Knocked Up, but from the girl’s perspective and toned down to be a CBS multi-cam. Admittedly some of it looked decent, like it has the girl who played Maggie in Extras, but maybe I’m pining for the bubble to burst on cleaned up versions of almost-risque jokes that STILL HAVE A LAUGH TRACK. The only reason it’s not higher up is because these kinds of awful sitcoms do pretty well on CBS. See the entire rest of their comedy schedule.
8-1 Brothers. What says comedy more than the single-season sacks record holder, ex-defensive linesman turned NFL on Fox halftime analyst? See if you can notice the subtle gap-in-the teeth references (there’s a scant dozen of them in the three-minute preview).
9-1 The Good Wife. Some of these female-led dramas sit around on Friday nights for years (I think Sally Fields currently stars in four different shows all airing on the same time on Fridays), or they become Commander in Chief.
THE “MALCOLM IN THE MIDDLE” MIDDLING DIVISION:
10-1 The entire CW Network.
15-1 Deep End. It all depends on how it’s executed. This seems like the exact kind of show that would be perfect for the three-minute teaser that is on ABC.com. It can have the fun that made Grey’s a great show for the first couple years, but it can also be a hodgepodge of stuff desperate to find their next Grey’s
15-1 The Middle. This is one of those shows that will get good reviews and everyone will hope it does well, and it will probably be around for a while, but no one will really watch it. Malcolm in the Middle (which is what it looks like to a T), King of the Hill and Studio 60 all fall into this category. Doesn’t look too expensive to make, so maybe it’ll stick around for a bit. Maybe I’ll finally catch an episode in syndication in a few years.
16-1 Sons of Tucson. More of a clever show than a funny comedy, if it plays up the characters – which it looks like it’s doing – then it’ll last. Easy to turn into the lazy-oaf-turned-responsible archetype (see every Jason Segal movie), but looks fresh.
20-1 Glee. Nothing to say about this show, except I know I’ll hate it and I know it will succeed.
THE “30 ROCK” SHOWS THAT COULD BE AS GREAT AS 30 ROCK:
25-1 Community. Personally rooting for this because an old classmate at NYU and Improv troupes, Donald Glover, landed a role in it, but this show looks really good. Isn’t the Chevy Chase comeback reason enough? He’s Chevy Chase and you’re not. He compares himself with other golfers by height. It has to rock.
28-1 Modern Family. Ed O’Neill barely ekes out Chevy Chase as the actor I’m most looking forward to this Fall. Show looks hilarious. Apparently they aired the entire pilot at the upfronts and it slayed the room. I think it was written by Steve Levitan and it just looks solid.