Progress Report: End of Season Scorecard, 2015-2016 Pilots

Hey!  CPU! is starting to catch up as we pump out podcasts and rev up with reviews. Catching up means we have a greater ability to stay on top of the TV news.  Just in time, as the networks have mercilessly swung the end of season ax, leaving a bloody mess in their respective wakes.  Thus, it’s time for the End of Season progress report for the new pilots introduced this season (long-running shows covered by this blog will be addressed shortly)! Where are the new shows (that are left), and how are they doing nowadays? Read below to find out!

Oh, and thanks to TVLine for helping a girl out.

American Horror Story: Hotel


WHO | Lady Gaga, Matt Bomer, Sarah Paulson, Kathy Bates, Evan Peters, Angela Bassett, Chloe Sevigny, Wes Bentley, Finn Wittrock, Max Greenfield, Denis O’Hare, Cheyenne Jackson

WHAT | The latest edition of the horror anthology series goes inside a hotel and features a love triangle between Bomer, Gaga and Wittrock’s characters.


VERDICT: Pick-Up.  I haven’t watched Freak Show yet, and I’m more than chagrined that we are down a Jessica Lange and up a Lady Gaga (who frakking gets top billing no less).  Also, Ryan Murphy’s shows suffer late life.  I loved Horror House and Coven and enjoyed Asylum, albeit less than the other seasons.  Of course, it’s still on my watch list. Even if I might regret it like a “Bad Romance.”

STATUS: This season ended on January 13, 2016.  American Horror Story was renewed for a sixth season by F/X in November 2015, which will premiere Fall 2016.

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed, though I did recently watch Freak Show.  And I don’t think it’s as bad as everyone thought, but that’s the subject of a future podcast!



WHEN | Mondays at 10/9c

WHO | Jaimie Alexander (Thor), Sullivan Stapleton (Strike Back), Marianne Jean-Baptiste (Broadchurch), Ashley Johnson (The Killing)

WHAT | A beautiful woman, with no memories of her past, is found naked in Times Square with her body fully covered in intricate tattoos. Her discovery sets off a vast and complex mystery that immediately ignites the attention of the FBI who begin to follow the road map on her body to reveal a larger conspiracy of crime while bringing her closer to discovering the truth about her identity.


(INITIAL) VERDICT: Pass.  I may change my mind if the show gains momentum, but here are my thoughts. While the premise is certainly intriguing, insofar as a random woman in Times Square with tattoos is somewhat interesting, the way the trailer teased the story reminded me of Memento meets The Terminator.  This mystery could be jaw-dropping, or it could fall flat, depending upon what the mystery is.  Yet, neither of the lead actors were likable enough in the trailer to draw me in, and unless this mystery carries with it a DaVinci Code proportioned revelation, I would find myself growing weary of it pretty quickly. Plus, I have so much TV to watch.  Again, if the show gets buzz, critical accolades, or otherwise gains steam, I might change my mind.  I can do that.

STATUS: Officially renewed for season two!  The season one finale aired on May 23, 2016.

CPU! STATUS: The show has buzz and accolades and steam.  It has officially been picked up by CPU! (and added to a very long list, so it’s not yet viewed).


Bordertown, Fox

WHO | Nicholas Gonzalez, Alex Borstein, Missi Pyle, Judah Friedlander, Efren Ramirez

WHAT | A satirical look at the cultural shifts taking place in America. Exploring family, politics and everything in between with a cross-cultural wink, the series centers on two very different families living in a fictional Southwest desert town on the U.S. – Mexico border.


VERDICT: Pass.  As a holdover pilot from last season, my opinion remains the same. A culturally relevant, now animated sitcom will be introduced by Fox.  I don’t really gravitate toward adult cartoons beyond the mainstays like The Simpsons, South Park, and Family Guy, and the constant delays don’t leave me with votes of confidence for this one.  I may be surprised.

STATUS: Officially canceled as of May 12, 2016.  The series finale aired on May 22, 2016.

CPU! STATUS: How can this decision be surprising?  It took forever to get on the schedule, had no buzz, and I actually saw a few minutes of one episode – it was not funny.  Adios, mi amigos.

The Catch


WHO | Mireille Enos (The Killing),Damon Dayoub (NCIS), Bethany Joy Lenz (One Tree Hill), Rose Rollins (The L Word), Alimi Ballard, Jacky Ido, Jay Hayden, Elvy Yost

WHAT | A thriller centered on the strong, successful Alice Martin. She’s a fraud investigator who’s about to be the victim of fraud by her fiancé. Between her cases, she is determined to find him before it ruins her career.


VERDICT: Pass (by CPU! Chief Kylie).  This looks like another Shonda Rimes entry, pitting a con artist against a fraud investigator.  Which is to say, I think the show was created by someone else but is being produced by Shondaland.  I am currently Shonda-free, having jumped the shark on Grey’s Anatomy, and I have not become involved with Scandal or How to Get Away with Murder. I am just starting to feel that there is a definite formula to shows produced by Shondaland, most of which have a steamy, soap opera vibe.  I have occasionally chosen to check out shows of that type, but my interest in this show was not piqued by the trailer, so I pass.

STATUS: Officially renewed for season 2!  The first season finale aired on May 19, 2016.

CPU! STATUS: This show is likely to be covered by CPU! moderator and panelist Kristen. Stay tuned to CPU! for future developments.

Chicago Med


WHEN | Tuesdays at 9/8

WHO | S. Epatha Merkerson (Law & Order), Laurie Holden (The Walking Dead), Yaya DaCosta (Ugly Betty), Nick Gehlfuss (Shameless), Oliver Platt (Fargo)

WHAT | The Chicago Fire spinoff follows the day-to-day chaos of the city’s most bustling hospital and the courageous team of doctors who hold it together. They will tackle unique new cases inspired by topical events, forging fiery relationships in the pulse-pounding pandemonium of the emergency room, and through it all, familiar faces from the ChicagoP.D. and Fire departments will intertwine as this third team of Windy City heroes hits the ground running.


VERDICT: Pass.  Another medical drama?  Another Chicago Fire spin off?  While there is no trailer, I’m getting definite E.R. and Chicago Hope deja vu.  Maybe it will work for some, but it’s not original enough to entice me.  I had to be talked into watching Grey’s Anatomy.  Maybe someone will talk me into watching this.  Or not.

STATUS: Officially renewed for season two by the Peacock.  The season one finale aired on May 18, 2016.

CPU! STATUS: No change.  It’s still a medical drama, and no one’s tried to talk me into watching it…

Code Black


WHEN | Wednesdays at 10/9c

WHO | Marcia Gay Harden (Trophy Wife), Bonnie Somerville (Cashmere Mafia), Raza Jaffrey (Smash), Luis Guzman (How to Make It in America), Melanie Kannokada, Harry M. Ford, Ben Hollingsworth (Cult, The Tomorrow People), William Allen Young

WHAT | Inspired by the festival award-winning documentary of the same name, this medical drama is set in the busiest and most notorious ER in the nation – L.A. County Hospital – where the extraordinary staff struggle in the face of a broken system to protect their ideals and the patients who need them the most.


VERDICT: Pass.  Yet another medical drama, CBS-style.  I didn’t watch this trailer…because medical drama.  Talk me into it.

STATUS: Officially renewed for season 2!  The first season finale aired on February 24, 2016.

CPU! STATUS: The same.  Again, no one’s trying to talk me into it…



WHO | Chris Wood (The Vampire Diaries), Claudia Black (The Originals, Farscape), David Gyasi (Interstellar), Christina Moses (Starship: Apocalypse), Kristen Gutoskie (Beaver Falls), George Young (Casualty), Hanna Mangan Lawrence (Spartacus: War of the Damned) and Trevor St. John (One Life to Live)

WHAT | When a mysterious and deadly epidemic breaks out in Atlanta, a vast urban quarantine is quickly enforced, forcing those stuck on the inside to fight for their lives while local and federal officials desperately search for a cure.


VERDICT: Hesitantly Pick Up.  While this new show looks like a TV version of Outbreak for the 2010s, it is created and produced by Julie Plec, the CW’s darling who created The Vampire Diaries, The Originals, and The Tomorrow People.  There were also some fairly compelling performances in the short teaser that made me think this program would be an intense thrill ride. Because I trust the producer, I will check it out.

STATUS: Officially canceled as of May 12, 2016, though it is still in season and will likely be allowed to finish airing.

CPU! STATUS: Because it was touted as a limited series from the beginning (with the possibility and/or room to do more, should the opportunity arise), I will still look into it and see if it holds my interest.

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend


WHEN | Mondays at 8/7

WHO | Rachel Bloom (Robot Chicken)

WHAT | Bloom stars as Rebecca, a successful, driven and possibly crazy young woman who impulsively gives up everything — her partnership at a prestigious law firm and her upscale apartment in Manhattan, included — in a desperate attempt to find love and happiness in that exotic hotbed of romance and adventure: West Covina, Calif.


VERDICT: Pick Up.  On the strength of the trailer alone, I choose to pick up this show. The premise sounds very close to other rom-com fair, such as Sleepless in Seattle, or even Felicity with an extremely charismatic lead actress and comedic vs. dramatic pastiche – though, in this situation, it would be like what would happen if Felicity dated Ben in high school first, broke up with him, and then followed him to New York.  Except that this woman is following her ex-beau to California.

Look – if there are musical numbers like there are in the trailer, I will love this to the ends of time. In fact, that better be a thing.  There are not enough musical romantic comedies about crazy lovesick women on TV.  Plus, Rachel Bloom proved herself to be infinitely watchable in this five minute teaser.  And I really liked her outfits.  Excellent trailing, CW.

Seriously, I really hope the musical numbers are included.

STATUS: Officially renewed for season 2!  The first season finale aired on April 18, 2016.

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed but extremely happy I will have the chance.  Those who have watched it extol its virtues quite highly.

Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders


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