Progress Report: Fall TV Preview and Selection for 2019-2020 Shows (2019)

At this point, the primary TV viewing season is over, the summer viewing season in all its limited glory is wrapping up, and the calendar has struck the month of September…the fall TV season is upon us!  Thus, it’s time to shop for new pilots! Since up-fronts were held in May, new TV offerings by networks and some cable outlets (as well as streaming networks) have been announced. It’s time to examine them closely and choose which will be added to the extremely extended lineup covered by this blog!

Thanks to TVLine for helping a girl out.

*Note: with the expansion of CPU!, these initial thoughts are based upon the CPU! Chief’s assessments.  As with previous seasons, a growing number of CPU! members may find shows initially passed by the CPU! Chief and choose to review them.  CPU! readers will be informed if the show’s status changes regarding coverage as the season progresses through the handy CPU! Progress Reports, and all written reviews will be published!

36th Annual PaleyFest - "Parks and Recreation" 10th Anniversary Reunion, Los Angeles, USA - 21 Mar 2019

9-1-1: LONE STAR, Fox

PREMIERE DATE: Sunday, Jan. 19, following the NFC Championship, and continuing Monday, Jan. 20

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Rob Lowe (Parks and Recreation)

WHAT: In this 9-1-1 spinoff, a sophisticated New York cop relocates to Austin, Texas, with his son. There, he must try to balance saving those who are at their most vulnerable with solving the problems in his own life.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass for Now.  Welcome to the 2019-2020 CPU! network pilot review, always full of snark and real talk about upcoming TV from your friendly neighborhood TV podcast!  We start off with a bit of a by, and really, this comes down to the fact that CPU! initially passed the parent show of this would-be spin-off, 9-1-1, a show that has since been requested (though slowly and in a lukewarm-type fashion) by members of the CPU! corps. Our rule about spin-offs here is that we have to cover the parent show before we watch the spin-off, so there is your answer about whether we pick up or pass. We merely pass for now, without prejudice. But hey, Rob Lowe, what’s shaking?

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All Rise

ALL RISE, CBS

PREMIERE DATE: Sept. 23

TIME SLOT: Mondays at 9/8c

WHO: Simone Missick (Luke Cage), Wilson Bethel (Hart of Dixie), Jessica Camacho (The Flash), Marg Helgenberger (CSI), J. Alex Brinson, Lindsay Mendez, Ruthie Ann Miles

WHAT: A drama that follows the dedicated, chaotic, hopeful, and sometimes absurd lives of judges, prosecutors, and public defenders as they work with bailiffs, clerks, and cops to get justice for the people of Los Angeles amidst a flawed legal system.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or at CBS’ YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Hesitantly Pick Up. As TV lovers like you and I know by now, the TV landscape is awash with legal dramas (or comedy-dramas, in this case), and it would take something special for a new legal drama to set it apart from the rather trope-laden pond of courtroom properties just like it. That’s where your friendly neighborhood Chief CP is hoping that a few superheroes and meta-humans save the genre from floundering in this new entry at the Eye. While the trailer presents yet another trope studded landscape of feisty judge upends the flat and boring world turnings of the legal system, it’s the cast populating this landscape that is going to inspire at least this Couch Potato to take a look-see. And let’s see – you have Misty Knight from Luke Cage, Bullseye from Daredevil, and Gypsy from The Flash. That’s three people from three shows that have been covered heavily here at CPU!, and they’re all very good at their jobs based on what we’ve seen so far – and when the writing services them well. Simone Missick alone packs a lot of charisma into her sass in the brief trailer, and I think it’s worth at least a viewing to see if this new show can really rise to the top of its overplayed cousins. What do you think?

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Not Just Me Fox

ALMOST FAMILY (fka Not Just Me), Fox

PREMIERE DATE: Oct. 2

TIME SLOT: Wednesdays at 9/8c

WHO: Brittany Snow (American Dreams), Emily Osment (Young & Hungry), Megalyn Echikunwoke (Damien, Arrow), Timothy Hutton (The Haunting of Hill House, How to Get Away With Murder), Mo McRae (Empire, Pitch), Victoria Cartagena (Manifest, Gotham), Mustafa Elzein

WHAT: An only child finds her life turned upside down when her father reveals that, over the course of his prize-winning career as a pioneering fertility doctor, he used his own sperm to conceive upwards of a hundred children, including two new sisters. As these three young women slowly embrace their new reality, they will attempt to form an nontraditional bond as sisters, even as they must welcome a tidal wave of new siblings into their rapidly expanding family. 

Trailer available at TVLine.com or at Fox’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. On the one hand, this new drama from Fox gets points for an original premise. Original premises on TV are so rare these days, though I think the revival/reboot trend is starting to correct somewhat. On the other hand, this premise betrays a few problematic foundations that are really going to have to appeal to new viewers in order for the show to be successful in terms of ratings, and upon my viewing of the trailer, I just don’t know if those foundations entice this Couch Potato to do the thing. I anticipate a personal struggle with a concept that asks the viewer to sympathize with Timothy Hutton’s unethical fertility doctor. In addition, the newfound siblings concept provides some human interest but also starts to smack of The Odd Couple meets Charmed without magic. And where can this story go? Will it be something akin to the viewer and the characters meeting a new sibling each week and going on wacky adventures railing against their secretly unethical fertility doctor father? If the show gains steam or recommendations, Couch Potatoes Unite! always reconsiders, but I, personally (notice I’m using a lot of first person pronouns in this review), felt a bit icky watching the trailer and don’t know if I can make the leap to being almost good with watching this. For now, at least.

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Baker and the Beauty ABC

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THE BAKER AND THE BEAUTY, ABC

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Nathalie Kelley (Dynasty), Victor Rasuk (Stalker)

WHAT: Daniel Garcia is working in the family bakery and doing everything that his loving Cuban parents and siblings expect him to do, but on a wild Miami night, he meets Noa Hamilton, an international superstar and fashion mogul, and his life moves into the spotlight. Will this unlikely couple upend their lives to be together and pull their families into a culture clash?

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. This sounds like another trope-filled soap opera, where a lovable and potentially handsome schlub meets a beautiful famous actress, and they fall in love. It’s Notting Hill with a bakery, not a bookstore. Also, the Chief CP is not a fan of Nathalie Kelley, to whom some of our Couch Potatoes were first exposed on The Vampire Diaries (CPU! passed on the Dynasty remake, and I still feel we made the right choice). Again, recommendations tend to change our minds, and there might be some of our cast of Couch Potatoes interested in this type of television, but without a trailer and given the premise and the cast, this is pretty much an all-around get-out-of-dodge pass.

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Batwoman The CW

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BATWOMAN, The CW

PREMIERE DATE: Oct. 6

TIME SLOT: Sundays at 8/7c

WHO: Ruby Rose (Arrowverse “Elseworlds” crossover), Dougray Scott (Snatch, Hemlock Grove), Rachel Skarsten (Reign), Meagan Tandy (Teen Wolf), Camrus Johnson (Marvel’s Luke Cage), Nicole Kang (YOU), Elizabeth Anweis (9-1-1, NCIS: LA)

WHAT: Armed with a passion for social justice and a flair for speaking her mind, Kate Kane soars onto the streets of Gotham as Batwoman, an out lesbian and highly trained street fighter primed to snuff out the failing city’s criminal resurgence – but don’t call her a hero yet. In a city desperate for a savior, Kate must overcome her own demons before embracing the call to be Gotham’s symbol of hope.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or at the CW’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pick Up. Though many of our DCTU panel won’t like it, this is an automatic Pick Up for our CPU! DCTU Series panel, as Batwoman will be an Arrowverse entry, designed to fill the hole left by the flagship series, Arrow, when it takes its series bow at mid-season following the Crisis on Infinite Earths mega-crossover event coming in December. None of our panelists loved the “Batwoman” entry in last year’s Elseworlds crossover, but we didn’t all hate it either. If the show’s writers can do justice to Gotham City and can breathe new life into Kate Kane’s version of the character and member of the Bat-Family, cynicism might sway to positivism. We won’t know until the series premieres in October.

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Image result for bh90210

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BH90210, Fox

PREMIERE DATE: August 7, 2019

TIME SLOT: Wednesdays at 9/8c

WHO: Gabrielle Carteris, Shannen Doherty, Jennie Garth, Brian Austin Green, Jason Priestley, Tori Spelling, Ian Ziering

WHAT: The series will focus on the original cast members of Beverly Hills, 90210 — Jason Priestley, Jennie Garth, Ian Ziering, Gabrielle Carteris, Brian Austin Green, Tori Spelling, and Shannen Doherty — playing heightened, fictionalized versions of themselves. Having parted ways 19 years after the original series ended, they reunite to get a reboot up and running and must reconcile their new lives with the complications of their histories together.

Trailer available here.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Hesitantly Pick Up. On the one hand, this could be a cheeky, fresh experiment in the TV reboot scientific method. On the other hand, this could also be the desperate gambit of 50 year old (plus) former TV stars trying to recapture their glory days and the height of their individual stardom (I’m looking at you, Tori Spelling). The CPU! roster is filled with secret and not-so-secret fans of at least the original Beverly Hills, 90210, and some have already sampled this nothing-more-than-guilty-pleasure fare this summer with somewhat lukewarm results. Is the show as delicious as the food always seemed to be at the Peach Pit? How will it feel without Luke Perry, the popular erstwhile Dylan McKay, who passed away earlier this year (RIP, I’m still heartbroken). Have you watched it? Tell us all about it.

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Bless the Harts Fox

BLESS THE HARTS, Fox

PREMIERE DATE: Sept. 29

TIME SLOT: Sundays at 8:30/7:30c

WHO: The voices of Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Jillian Bell, Ike Barinholtz

WHAT: The animated comedy follows a group of Southerners who are always “broke as a joke” and struggling for the American dream of status and wealth. What they don’t realize is that they’re already rich… in friends, family and laughter.

Sneak peek available at Fox’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. Despite the all-star power voice cast, this new series in Fox’s Sunday Animated line-up feels like King of the Hill without the heart of Texas and Mike Judge to make the show, you know, actually funny. If you think we should change our tune, drop us a line, but we don’t think this new show is blessed enough with originality to entice, particularly following superior entries about dysfunctional families (The Simpsons, Family Guy, and Bob’s Burgers) already filling Fox’s Sunday nights. Biscuits or no biscuits, we move on.

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Bluff City Law NBC

BLUFF CITY LAW, NBC

PREMIERE DATE: Sept. 23

TIME SLOT: Mondays at 10/9c

WHO: Jimmy Smits (NYPD Blue), Caitlin McGee (Grey’s Anatomy, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel), Barry Sloane (Six, Revenge), Michael Luwoye (The Gifted), Stony Blyden (Edge of Seventeen), Jayne Atkinson (House of Cards), Scott Shepherd (True Detective), MaameYaa Boafo

WHAT: This series follows the lawyers of an elite Memphis law firm that specializes in the most controversial landmark civil rights cases. Led by legendary lawyer Elijah Strait and his brilliant daughter, Sydney Keller, they take on the toughest David-and-Goliath cases while navigating their complicated relationship.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or NBC’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. The second legal drama of the list proves to be more trope-filled than the first. This time, instead of a feisty judge, we get to watch a feisty civil rights lawyer change the world with her dad, Jimmy Smits, but with less comedy. For those who love this kind of TV, or for fans of NYPD Blue, this show will no doubt appeal, but for this set of Couch Potatoes, I believe it would be a stretch to get them on board, particularly when the family drama aspect could send this one straight into saccharine/manipulative territory. If buzz or steam gets the request lines hopping, though, we could be persuaded to change our initial stances. No bluffs!

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Bob Hearts ABishola CBS

BOB ❤️ABISHOLA, CBS

PREMIERE DATE: Sept. 23

TIME SLOT: Mondays at 8:30/7:30c

WHO: Billy Gardell (Mike & Molly), Folake Olowofoyeku (Transparent), Christine Ebersole (Madam Secretary), Matt Jones (Mom), Maribeth Monroe (The Good Place, Workaholics), Shola Adewusi, Barry Shabaka Henley, Travis Wolfe, Jr.

WHAT: After having a heart attack, a middle-aged sock businessman from Detroit unexpectedly falls for his cardiac nurse, a Nigerian immigrant, and sets his sights on getting her to give him a chance.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or CBS’ YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Hesitantly Pick Up. Honestly, this trailer won this Couch Potato over by the end of its two minutes. The two leads are surprisingly winning, particularly Folake Olowofoyeku. In addition, the trailer left me wondering what would happen with the earnest sock businessman’s attempts to woo an unassuming Nigerian nurse. Plus, the show is set in Detroit, a mere stone’s throw from our home in Grand Rapids, Michigan. We “heart” some of the original feel of this series, especially since this rom-com throws some of the genre’s more formulaic elements right out the old bus window.

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Broke CBS

BROKE, CBS

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Jaime Camil (Jane the Virgin), Pauley Perrette (NCIS), Natasha Leggero (Another Period), Izzy Diaz (Snowfall), Antonio Corbo

WHAT: When an outrageously wealthy trust fund baby is cut off by his father, he and his wife move into her estranged sister’s Reseda home, forcing the two siblings to reconnect.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or CBS’ YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. It’s a riches to rags story, which this Couch Potato assumes is the Eye’s attempt to capitalize upon the growing success of outgoing Pop! charmer Schitt’s Creek, and while that notion might be noble, the ingredients here don’t mix together well enough to have the charm of the Canadian export that’s become so widely regarded and popular. Pauley Perrette is grating with her brand of “in your face” (allegedly) comedic line delivery, and Jaime Camil, as handsome as he is, is essentially playing a transplanted version of Rogelio from Jane the Virgin. Plus, the audience laughter, whether canned or not, sounded a little too forced to be sincere. Since Broke will not break any molds in this genre, with this type of story conceit, we’ll pass, unless the request lines tell us to give it a chance. You know how to get a hold of us.

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Carol's Second Act CBS

CAROL’S SECOND ACT, CBS

PREMIERE DATE: Sept. 26

TIME SLOT: Thursdays at 9:30/8:30c

WHO: Patricia Heaton (The Middle, Everybody Loves Raymond), Kyle MacLachlan (Twin Peaks), Ashley Tisdale (High School Musical), Ito Aghayere (Elementary), Jean-Luc Bilodeau (Baby Daddy), Sabrina Jalees

WHAT: After raising her two children and retiring from teaching, Carol Chambers embarks on a unique second act: pursuing her dream of becoming a doctor.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or CBS’ YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. As lovable as Patricia Heaton always seems to be, and though this premise shows some small modicum of potential, two conceits undercut this comedy upon first review. First, and clearly, it’s going to focus heavily upon the generational divide between the Baby Boomer intern and her cohort of Millennial/Post-Millennial interns, and that type of humor stands to get old fast, particularly as it is so overdone lately. Second, there’s a cop drama on ABC that is kind of doing the same thing, but in cop-land and with Nathan Fillion at its helm. This comedy, thus, seems somewhat derivative, potential aside, and it would depend upon the balance of the hackneyed and the fresh that could determine this show’s future success. If it’s requested, we would be more apt to change our mind on this one, even, than on some of the other entries on which I’ve said that, especially because, well, Patricia Heaton, but for now, this second act doesn’t wow.

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Council of Dads NBC

COUNCIL OF DADS, NBC

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Clive Standen (Taken), Sarah Wayne Callies (Colony, The Walking Dead), Tom Everett Scott (13 Reasons Why, Southland), J. August Richards (Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.), Michele Weaver (Love Is___), Michael O’Neill (Scandal, Rectify), Steven Silver (13 Reasons Why), Emjay Anthony (Rake), Thalia Tran, Blue Chapman

WHAT: When Scott, a loving father of four, has his entire life’s plan thrown into upheaval by a cancer diagnosis, he calls on a few of his closest allies to step in as back-up dads for every stage of his growing family’s life. Scott assembles a trusted group of role models who agree to devote themselves to supporting and guiding Scott’s amazing family through all the triumphs and challenges life has to offer — just in case he ever can’t be there to do so himself.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. Honestly, a trailer would be helpful for this one. Reading the synopsis, one can glean a certain amount of heart in the premise, but this couch potato worries that the show itself might fall into the Hallmark movie/manipulative drama column, even if the content might be remarkably easy to relate to, given the fact that devastating illness can affect so many families. There are also a few enticing names in the cast. Still, premise alone doesn’t sell it. So, we offer our usual cautionary disclaimer around the ability of buzz and steam to persuade our council’s collective decision otherwise, but, for now, we must be merciless and pass. There are tons of options out there to consider.

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Deputy Fox

DEPUTY, Fox

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Stephen Dorff (True Detective), Yara Martinez (Jane the Virgin), Brian Van Holt (Cougar Town), Bex Taylor-Klaus (Arrow), Mark Moses (Desperate Housewives), Siena Goines (Grey’s Anatomy, Jericho), Shane Paul McGhie (Sacred Lies

WHAT: When the Los Angeles County’s Sheriff dies, an arcane rule forged back in the Wild West thrusts the most unlikely man into the job: a fifth-generation lawman, more comfortable taking down bad guys than navigating a sea of politics. He leads a skilled team of ambitious and complicated human beings who won’t rest until justice is served.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or Fox’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. This CP suspects that this show will find an audience. I do not believe the audience will be Couch Potatoes Unite! participants, listeners, and followers, but it will find an audience. This new program offers a compelling genre-mashing premise where Western meets cop procedural, with a saltier Stephen Dorff playing a lawman who hearkens back to the cowboys of yore and yesteryear. Still, procedural TV has a tough time here at CPU!; not many request or clamor for it, especially as the TV landscape is rife with similar ilk. Still, this series will probably stand out because of its slightly Western motif and because of the acting pedigree of the cast, if this well cut trailer is any indication. CPU! is open to requests, but we pass for now because we don’t expect the interest from people who unite with us. You can tell us we’re wrong – if you’re nice, that is.

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Duncanville Fox

DUNCANVILLE, Fox

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: The voices of Amy Poehler, Ty Burrell, Rashida Jones, Wiz Khalifa, Riki Lindhome

WHAT: The animated comedy revolves around a 15-year-old boy named Duncan and his friends and family — including his mother, Annie, who is constantly trying to prevent her son from ruining his life.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. Again, scant information, no trailer, and a (mostly) lack of interest in talking serial animated comedy leaves this reviewer unmotivated to explore this additional entry in Fox’s animated lineup, despite the presence of perennial CPU! talker and listener fave Amy Poehler. If you think we’re missing out with our snap judgments, you know how to get a hold of us.

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Emergence ABC

EMERGENCE, ABC

PREMIERE DATE: Sept. 24

TIME SLOT: Tuesdays at 10/9c

WHO: Allison Tolman (Fargo), Alexa Swinton (Billions), Donald Faison (Scrubs), Owain Yeoman (The Mentalist), Robert Bailey Jr. (The Night Shift), Zabryna Guevara (New Amsterdam)

WHAT: In this genre thriller, a police chief takes in a young child that she finds near the site of a mysterious accident, only to learn that the child has no memory of what happened. The investigation draws her into a conspiracy larger than she ever imagined, and the child’s identity is at the center of it all.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or ABC’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pick Up. Though the premise draws obvious science fiction and horror comparisons, such as to Firestarter, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, and The X-Files, the intrigue created by the fairly simple premise and a cast of reliably solid performers (some of whom are not listed above), including lead Allison Tolman, the breakout in the first season of the television version of Fargo, make this an early front-runner for CPU!’s growing list of fall pick-ups as well as for possible podcaster and viewer interest. Is it aliens? A government conspiracy? A supernaturally endowed child? The answers might stem from well-worn tropes, but this show could also surprise us all, so it emerges as an entry on the long CPU! list.

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Evil CBS

EVIL, CBS

PREMIERE DATE: Sept. 26

TIME SLOT: Thursdays at 10/9c

WHO: Katja Herbers (Westworld), Mike Colter (Luke Cage), Aasif Mandvi (The Daily Show), Michael Emerson (Person of Interest), Kurt Fuller (Supernatural), Brooklyn Shuck, Skylar Gray, Maddy Crocco, Dalya Knapp

WHAT: A psychological mystery that examines science vs. religion and the origins of evil, the series from The Good Wife creators Robert and Michelle King focuses on a skeptical female forensic psychologist who joins a priest-in-training and a carpenter to investigate and assess the Church’s backlog of supposed miracles, demonic possessions, and unexplained phenomena.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or CBS’ YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Enthusiastically Pick Up. This pure mystery series, a rare genre by itself, offers an intriguing and mostly original premise, even if the undertone definitely reverberates echoes of The Exorcist. Yet, this new program also boasts a compelling cast, including Katja Herbers from Westworld, Mike Colter from Luke Cage, and one of TV’s best character actors, Michael Emerson from Lost and Person of Interest, all of which have been covered by CPU! in the past (except Lost…but it’s on the list), in addition to a producer pedigree that encourages a level of trust in its potential quality. Plus, it does not seem to lack for scares in the psychological thriller department, which would no doubt further appeal to horror buffs, both on and off our team of united couch potatoes. Michael Emerson’s appearance in the trailer alone had this CP shouting “yeah!” to no one in particular, and so the enthusiasm for this Pick Up is legit. Besides, who doesn’t love a good story about demonic possession? Also, mad props to the Eye for taking a risk on a genre show that normally doesn’t appear on that network. This choice feels more good than evil, but we shall see.

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FBI Most Wanted CBS

FBI: MOST WANTED, CBS

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Julian McMahon (Nip/Tuck), Alana De La Garza (Law & Order), Keisha Castle-Hughes (Game of Thrones), Kellan Lutz (Twilight), Roxy Sternberg (Emerald City), Nathaniel Arcand

WHAT: A spin-off of FBI centered on the Fugitive Task Force of the FBI that tracks and captures the notorious criminals on the FBI’s Most Wanted list.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or CBS’ YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. CPU! passed on the parent show of this spin-off, FBI, last year. It’s procedural TV by procedural guru Dick Wolf, best known for the Law & Order franchise of procedural television. FBI is relatively well-rated and popular, but the show has not resonated with our resident potatoes. Additionally, if we passed on the show from whence this series spun, we also feel compelled to pass on that which was spun itself, especially since no one has requested our opinion about said spinning series to date. You can, but we have a feeling we know that it’s not your most wanted.

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Filthy Rich Fox

FILTHY RICH, Fox

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Kim Cattrall (Sex and the City), Gerald McRaney (This Is Us), Aubrey Dollar (Battle Creek), Corey Cott (The Good Fight), Mark L. Young (The Comeback), Steven Pasquale (Rescue Me)

WHAT: When the patriarch of a mega-rich Southern family (famed for creating a wildly successful Christian television network) dies in a plane crash, his wife and family are stunned to learn that he fathered three illegitimate children, all of whom are written into his will.

Trailer available at Fox’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. In the grand tradition of fare like Dallas and Dynasty (the original, to be sure), Fox offers this new sudsy soap with rich people at the forefront mixed with all the scandal and guilty-pleasure inducing backdrop of televangelism and the antebellum lilts of the South, including the requisite homage to Gone with the Wind. Hilariously, the show is created/produced by the makers of Empire and The Help, so there is a small iota of curiosity to entice here. Plus, the presence of an older but no less fabulous Kim Cattrall, the erstwhile Samantha that oozed Sex in her City, leads this pack. Still, the premise sounds very similar to Fox’s Almost Family, also being introduced this season (see above), with the soap angle to propel it forward into Desperate Housewives and the aforementioned Dallas/Dynasty territories, and so it seems like Fox is throwing the idea of illegitimate children around every chance it can get. We passed on the other one and feel it only fair to pass on this one also, but if you think we need to cover more suds and find this candidate suitable to that purpose, drop us a line.

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ABC New Shows 2019

FOR LIFE, ABC

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Nicholas Pinnock (Counterpart), Indira Varma (Game of Thrones), Joy Bryant (Parenthood), Glenn Fleshler (Billions), Dorian Missick (Southland), Tyla Harris (Six), Mary Stuart Masterson (Blindspot), Boris McGiver (House of Cards)

WHAT: A legal drama inspired by the life of Isaac Wright, Jr. about a prisoner who becomes a lawyer, litigating cases for other inmates while fighting to overturn his own life sentence for a crime he didn’t commit. His quest for freedom is driven by his desperate desire to get back to the family he loves and reclaim the life that was stolen from him.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. Though this seems like less of the same-old in legal dramas, it’s still a legal drama in a TV sea well over-saturated by them, this season especially. We might reconsider with the release of a trailer, but for now, it’s hard to be intrigued by yet another courtroom motif. Plus, no member of this cast is by themselves a draw, so we’ll wait for someone to give this one life by recommending it to us. For now, we move on in our own lives.

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The Great North Fox

THE GREAT NORTH, Fox

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: The voices of Nick Offerman, Jenny Slate, Megan Mullally, Paul Rust, Aparna Nancherla, Will Forte, Dulcé Sloan

WHAT: The animated comedy follows the Alaskan adventures of the Tobin family, as single dad Beef does his best to keep his weird bunch of kids close, especially as the artistic dreams of his only daughter, Judy, lead her away from the family fishing boat and into the glamorous world of the local mall.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Hesitantly Pick Up. Fox is also going hog-wild this year with upping its animation game. Still, this animated entry shows more possibility than other new selections, even without a trailer to more fully and thoroughly evaluate it. First, the voice cast contains one of the funniest married couples on the planet in Nick Offerman and Megan Mullaly, who people might know from shows like Parks & Recreation and Will & Grace, respectively. On top of that, the setting is Alaska, and the premise feels a bit more original and fresh, even as it could also be the cartoon version of Northern Exposure. All of the above is enough to warrant a tiny look-see but no promises from the not-so-great north.

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Indebted NBC

INDEBTED, NBC

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Adam Pally (Happy Endings), Abby Elliott (Saturday Night Live), Steven Weber (13 Reasons Why), Fran Drescher (The Nanny)

WHAT: Young parents Dave and Rebecca are ready to reclaim their life after years of diapers and sleepless nights; however, things take an unexpected turn when Dave’s parents show up unannounced and broke.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. Though this CP wants Adam Pally to find some TV success in a vehicle where his brand of comedy can shine a bit more, and even if TV standbys Steven Weber and Fran Drescher have come out to play here, without a trailer, this premise feels wafer thin. Plus, the Peacock is pushing it to mid-season, which means the show would really have to entice to be successful, through cast chemistry, unexpected situations, or performer appeal. It’s hard to imagine any of those possibilities right now with what we know, but if you think we need to cultivate a bit more in the imagination department, we would be indebted to you for your recommendation. Prove our snap judgments wrong!

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Katy Keene The CW

KATY KEENE, The CW

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Lucy Hale (Pretty Little Liars), Ashleigh Murray (Riverdale), Jonny Beauchamp (Penny Dreadful), Julia Chan (Saving Hope), Camille Hyde (American Vandal), Lucien Laviscount (Scream Queens), Zane Holtz (From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series, Make It or Break It), Katherine LaNasa (Imposters, Satisfaction)

WHAT: In a timeless New York City, as enchanting as Riverdale is moody, aspiring fashion designer Katy Keene meets Josie McCoy, fresh off the bus to chase her musical dreams. Their world is populated with kindred-spirit starving artists, including mysterious socialite Pepper Smith and Broadway-bound performer Jorge Lopez — and his drag queen alter ego, Ginger. While their climb to the top is rife with obstacles, this found family will stop at nothing to see their names in lights.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or the CW’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Very Hesitantly Pick Up. Later this fall, CPU! will start ongoing Water Cooler coverage of Riverdale. Since this is a spin-off of said dark and twisty reckoning of the Archie Comics, including the Pussycats’ own Josie as one of the cast of characters, we expect our panel to have at least a passing interest in this new chapter. Alternatively, Riverdale has quite the following in general; will fans of that show be interested enough to watch Lucy Hale’s Katy Keene? Time will tell, so we’ll very hesitantly add it to our burgeoning list of TV tantalizers. Next!

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The Kenan Show NBC

THE KENAN SHOW, NBC

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Kenan Thompson (Saturday Night Live), Andy Garcia (Ocean’s Eleven), Punam Patel, Dani Lockett, Dannah Lockett 

WHAT: In this family comedy, Kenan Thompson strives to be a super dad to his two adorable girls while simultaneously balancing his job and a father-in-law who “helps” in the most inappropriate ways.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. While it is about time that Kenan Thompson returns to scripted TV from his long tenure as sketch comedian on Saturday Night Live, and while he is more than deserving of an eponymous comedy, we are not sure that this is the eponymous comedy that is going to keep his career going, unless his biggest fans are the generators of decent ratings to keep this sitcom afloat. This thin premise rings bells echoing My Wife & Kids, or, depending upon Kenan’s delivery, The Bernie Mac Show, but with a Xennial approach to the parental side of this equation. No trailer makes the selling difficult, but if you’re a Kenan Thompson fan and want us to reconsider, send us the messages.

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KIDS SAY THE DARNDEST THINGS, ABC

PREMIERE DATE: Oct. 6

TIME SLOT: Sundays at 8/7c

WHO: Tiffany Haddish (Host)

WHAT: A new iteration of the classic variety show, featuring a mix of in-studio segments and taped pieces from across the country, all set in front of a live studio audience.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. CPU! does not cover variety shows, but as it’s a new network entry this season, we’ll keep a limited eye on it this year. Bill Cosby hosted the original. Let’s hope Tiffany Haddish can make everyone forget that.

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Lincoln NBC

LINCOLN, NBC

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Russell Hornsby (Grimm), Arielle Kebbel (Midnight, Texas), Michael Imperioli (The Sopranos), Brían F. O’Byrne (Nightflyers), Tate Ellington (Quantico), Courtney Grosbeck (The Bold and the Beautiful), Brooke Lyons (Life Sentence), Ramses Jimenez, Roslyn Ruff

WHAT: Based on Jeffery Deaver’s novel The Bone Collector, this crime drama centers on former NYPD detective and forensic genius Lincoln Rhyme, who was seriously injured by a notorious serial killer. He and young officer Amelia Sachs join forces to crack the city’s most confounding cases while racing to take down the enigmatic Bone Collector who brought them together.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Very Hesitantly Pick Up. Two aspects of the description of this new show present a minimum of intrigue and desire to check it out, despite no teaser or trailer to clinch the sale. First, though this drama stands to be rather procedural in nature, there is an interesting overarching thread in the fact that the main character was injured by a serial killer, meaning there is a larger vendetta/ax-to-grind arc that could present some compelling story twists. Second, Russell Hornsby offered an air of genuineness on erstwhile cult fantasy series Grimm, and has been searching for a series to stick since, so this couch potato, at least, wants to see what he can make of this heady premise. Plus, “Bone Collector” sounds so ominous. The crimes of the week might become rote and boring, but the serial killer angle might give this mystery drama a slight edge in crime/procedural fare, despite airwaves saturation. So, we’ll add it to our collection of new pickups based upon our (mostly) informed TV instincts.

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mixed-ish ABC

MIXED-ISH, ABC

PREMIERE DATE: Sept. 24

TIME SLOT: Tuesdays at 9/8c

WHO: Arica Himmel, Mark-Paul Gosselaar (The Passage, Pitch), Tika Sumpter (The Haves and the Have Nots), Ethan Childress, Mykal-Michelle Harris, Christina Anthony

WHAT: In this black-ish spin-off, a young Rainbow Johnson recounts her experience growing up in a mixed-race family in the ’80s and the constant dilemmas they had to face over whether to assimilate or stay true to themselves. 

Trailer available at ABC’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. CPU! is not currently covering black-ish on the podcast, and it has not been requested in all the years of the show’s existence, which mostly overlap the existence of our podcast. Should the parent show ever be requested for podcast discussion, by listener or by willing participant, we will reevaluate adding its spin-off to a potential series of discussions. For now, we’ll leave this one be, even if we expect the quality and the skewering comedic social commentary to transfer from original to spun series.

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Nancy Drew The CW

NANCY DREW, The CW

PREMIERE DATE: Oct. 9

TIME SLOT: Wednesdays at 9/8c

WHO: Newcomer Kennedy McMann, Scott Wolf (The Night Shift, Party of Five), Leah Lewis (Charmed, The Good Doctor), Tunji Kasim (Nearly Famous), Maddison Jaizani (Into the Badlands), Alex Saxon (The Fosters), Alvina August (Siren, The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina), guest star Pamela Sue Martin (Nancy Drew)

WHAT: Set in the summer after her high school graduation,18-year-old Nancy Drew thought she’d be leaving her hometown for college, but when a family tragedy holds her back another year, she finds herself embroiled in a ghostly murder investigation — and along the way, uncovers secrets that run deeper than she ever imagined.

Trailer available at the CW’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Very Hesitantly Pick Up. Though it’s somewhat amusingly curious that the CW is digging through the well of decades-old fictional properties, such as Archie Comics and now this series of mystery novellas popular with young adult girls the world over, and though the acting is not particularly compelling in the available trailer, and though the cast is relatively unknown, sheer morbid curiosity coupled with the last few seconds of the trailer lead this CP to believe that there might be some slight interest in this show. Whether that interest sustains will depend largely upon how the show mixes Nancy’s mystery-of-the-week motif, which is expected if the show follows the books, with the possibly supernatural spin the CW version seems to be taking with the classic character. Also, how will the heroine be updated for the Millennial and Post-Millennial set, and will the character still work in a modern backdrop? These are worthy questions that merit a deeper look…at least for a few episodes.

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neXt Fox

neXt, Fox

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: John Slattery (Mad Men), Eve Harlow (Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.), Michael Mosley (Sirens), Jason Butler Harner (Ozark), Elizabeth Cappuccino (Jessica Jones), Fernanda Andrade, Aaron Moten, Gerardo Celasco, Evan Whitten

WHAT: A Silicon Valley pioneer discovers that one of his own creations — a powerful A.I. — might spell global catastrophe and teams up with a cyber-crime agent to fight a villain unlike anything we’ve ever seen, one whose greatest weapon against us is ourselves.  

Trailer available at the Fox’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pick Up. Oh sure, science fiction revolving around sentient artificial intelligence has been done before and has been arguably done to death. From The Terminator to Person of Interest, from 2001: A Space Odyssey (and its sequel, 2010) to Westworld, the world will never want for the fear that robots will someday turn against us, as humans attempt to play God by creating them in the first place. What makes this upcoming series potentially compelling TV is that, first, it is being billed as an event (read: limited) series, giving it a theoretically tight number of episodes within which to tell its story. Second, the culprit AI is a clear homage to Amazon’s Alexa product, which should add an element of real-world suspension of disbelief to this science fiction sub-genre. Plus, John Slattery is always a fun guy to watch on the small screen. Amazon’s already taking over the world – why shouldn’t its calming AI Alexa, named Iliza in this series, do the same and then turn on us all? What would happen if it did? Nothing good can come of this, that’s what we know from stories like it, but the premise and devices used here definitely intrigue the mind around this oft-employed story concept, so much so that we want to know what’s neXt.

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Outmatched Fox

OUTMATCHED, Fox

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Maggie Lawson (Psych), Jason Biggs (Orange Is the New Black), Tisha Campbell-Martin (Dr. Ken), Connor Kalopsis, Ashley Boettcher, Jack Stanton, Oakley Bull

WHAT: A family comedy about a blue-collar couple in South Jersey trying to get by and raise four kids, three of whom just happen to be certified geniuses.

Trailer available at Fox’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. When a trailer must rely on canned laughter to convince a potential viewer that the show is funny, chances are, the show is not that funny. This premise raises a thousand questions, many of which stem from a basic understanding of biology and genetics. How does a family with under-achieving parents sire three “certified geniuses?” Why does the fourth child not benefit from this genetic selection? Also, one will necessarily need to find Jason Biggs funny to enjoy this show, and this CP is not one of those ones. He has a very specific comedic delivery that I do not expect will serve to carry this show for long, even if some of the situations of the sitcom peddled here stand to seem marginally unique, with three crazy smart children in the house – none of whom prove to be funny on their own, by the way. We think the show’s execution is outmatched by the ambition of its premise, so we’ll go throw darts at a photo of Albert Einstein in our respective basements and move on.

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Image result for pandora tv show

PANDORA, CW

PREMIERE DATE: July 16, 2019

TIME SLOT: Tuesdays, 8/7c

WHO: Priscilla Quintana, Oliver Dench

WHAT: Set in the year 2199, a resourceful young woman has lost everything but finds a new life at Earth’s Space Training Academy where she and her friends learn to defend the galaxy from threats, both alien and human. When secrets about the nature of her own identity begin to surface, she must uncover the truth about whether she will be humanity’s savior or the instrument of its destruction.

Trailer available at the CW’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Very Hesitantly Pick Up. This is a summer series that has already premiered on the CW, to very little publicity fanfare and to abysmal critical response. Still, it’s science fiction with a CW flare, and so it might be a potential guilty pleasure for nerds, which, of course, several of the resident couch potatoes self-style themselves. It seems cancellation is looming, unless the CW wants to fill a summer slate, but the premise showed some promise, so we’ll add it to the list.

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Perfect Harmony NBC

PERFECT HARMONY, NBC

PREMIERE DATE: Sept. 26

TIME SLOT: Thursdays at 8:30/7:30c

WHO: Bradley Whitford (The West Wing), Anna Camp (Pitch Perfect), Tymberlee Hill (Marry Me), Rizwan Manji (The Magicians), Will Greenberg (Wrecked), Geno Segers (Banshee), newcomer Spencer Allport

WHAT: When former Princeton music professor Arthur Cochran unexpectedly stumbles into choir practice at a small-town church, he finds a group of singers that are out of tune in more ways than one. Despite the ultimate clash of sensibilities, Arthur and his newfound cohorts may just be the perfect mix of individuals to help each other reinvent and rediscover a little happiness, just when they all need it most.

Trailer available at NBC’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Hesitantly Pick Up. Take Mr. Holland’s Opus, add a healthy dose of Sister Act, a splash of True Blood (without the vampires and fantasy), and a sprinkle of Glee, and one might be singing perfect harmony upon listening to the sounds of this new series. Though the comedy feels somewhat hackneyed, the jokes occasionally more flat than sharp, and the premise highly derivative, Bradley Whitford brings a potential snarky wit to the proceedings that could offer some smiles, not to mention some brash scripting, bleeps included, that render this an unusual movement in the network TV suite. NBC has been taking more risks in recent years, so we will reward the Peacock by sampling the sounds of this small-town choir. It could be a lighthearted, easy-to-watch, pleasant comedy drama. It could also be dissonant dreck, but we are willing to risk a bit of our signature time to find out which it becomes in the end.

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Prodigal Son Fox

PRODIGAL SON, Fox

PREMIERE DATE: Sept. 23

TIME SLOT: Mondays at 9/8c

WHO: Tom Payne (The Walking Dead), Michael Sheen (Masters of Sex), Bellamy Young (Scandal), Lou Diamond Phillips (Longmire), Halston Sage (The Orville), Keiko Agena (Gilmore Girls), Aurora Perrineau (Chasing Life), Frank Harts (The Path, Billions

WHAT: Malcolm Bright knows how killers think. Why? His father was one of the best, a notorious serial killer called “The Surgeon.” That’s why Bright is the best criminal psychologist around; murder is the family business. He uses his twisted genius to help the NYPD solve crimes, while dealing with a somewhat manipulative mother, an annoyingly normal sister, a homicidal father still looking to bond with his prodigal son, and his own constantly evolving neuroses.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or Fox’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pick Up. Though there seems to be a fair few copycats around solving serial killer arcs on the networks this season, this entry appears to be of the highest caliber of quality, perhaps more than others like it, owing to the casting of Michael Sheen as one of the serial killers in question. Plus, it has TV uber-producer Greg Berlanti’s stamp on it, who might be single-handedly responsible for most of the CW’s line-up and some of the related entries on Netflix. The intrigue in this drama stems from the relationship between serial killer and son, as the latter attempts to separate himself from his father’s psychoses by working as a criminal psychologist and by possibly struggling against psychoses of his own. The psychological layers of this thriller promise a good mystery yarn, and though the story echoes, in small ways, The Silence of the Lambs, and though it could devolve into crime-of-the-week procedural fare, the central relationship is the enticement to watch here. And watch we prodigally shall.

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Stumptown ABC

STUMPTOWN, ABC

PREMIERE DATE: Sept. 25

TIME SLOT: Wednesdays at 10/9c

WHO: Cobie Smulders (How I Met Your Mother), Jake Johnson (New Girl), Michael Ealy (Secrets and Lies, Almost Human), Camryn Manheim (The Practice), Adrian Martinez (No Activity), Cole Sibus, Tantoo Cardinal

WHAT: Based on the Stumptown graphic novel series, the show follows Dex Parios as a strong, assertive, and sharp-witted army veteran with a complicated love life, gambling debt, and a brother to take care of in Portland, Oregon. Her military intelligence skills make her a great P.I., but her unapologetic style puts her in the firing line of hardcore criminals and not quite in alliance with the police.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or ABC’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Hesitantly Pick Up. This Pick Up represents why trailers can be so important. This new series from the Mouse House/Alphabet Network is based on a graphic novel series (apparently), and though it capitalizes upon the gruff/imperfect cop trope pockmarking the TV landscape, the main character is a) a female and b) played by Cobie Smulders, who has cultivated a diverse resume since her stint on How I Met Your Mother. Her wisecracking ways draw the Pick Up, even if the procedural pattern makes said pick-up the hesitant variety. It’s not much to stump us, really.

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Sunnyside NBC

SUNNYSIDE, NBC

PREMIERE DATE: Sept. 26

TIME SLOT: Thursdays at 9:30/8:30c

WHO: Kal Penn (Designated Survivor), Diana Maria Riva (Man With a Plan), Joel Kim Booster (Shrill), Kiran Deol (How to Get Away With Murder, The Mindy Project), Poppy Liu (Law & Order: SVU, New Amsterdam), Moses Storm (Arrested Development), Samba Schutte

WHAT: Former New York City Councilman Garrett Modi finds his calling when he is hired by a diverse group of hopefuls who dream of becoming American citizens, giving him a new sense of purpose and a chance for redemption, as long as he remembers where he came from.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or NBC’s YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Hesitantly Pick Up. Michael Schur created this one. Since he also created The Good Place, a CPU! favorite, and Brooklyn Nine-Nine, on the list of CPU! discussion candidates, he earns an attempt at viewing. In addition, the comedy here arises from timely and important social commentary while not taking itself too seriously, and the Chinese members of this motley crew proved to be the most ridiculous and, therefore, the most hilarious in the trailer. Though this CP worries that the show might use stereotypes to fuel the humor, we also trust Schur’s deft and sunny sensibilities to navigate this modern and murky terrain. Serve it up.

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Tommy CBS

TOMMY, CBS

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Edie Falco (Nurse Jackie, The Sopranos), Michael Chernus (Patriot, Orange Is the New Black), Adelaide Clemens (Rectify), Russell G. Jones (The Americans), Joseph Lyle Taylor (Sneaky Pete), Olivia Lucy Phillip

WHAT: When a former high-ranking NYPD officer becomes the first female Chief of Police for Los Angeles, she uses her unflinching honesty and hardball tactics to navigate the social, political, and national security issues that converge with enforcing the law.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or CBS’ YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. Fans of Edie Falco from her prior projects will probably be delighted to see this show and her triumphant return to the small screen. Yet, this is yet another crime show, and we have already commented on the network overflow in this genre. A female police chief of a major metropolitan police force would certainly make for interesting social commentary, but this series could also be manipulative in overplaying that premise, even with Falco’s skilled, no-nonsense delivery and performance. If this show garners buzz, steam, and general water cooler percolation, we will reconsider – especially for Edie’s sake – but for now, we are not ready to take on this series in our expansive force of tubular TV talk.

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The Unicorn CBS

THE UNICORN, CBS

PREMIERE DATE: Sept. 26

TIME SLOT: Thursdays at 8:30/7:30c

WHO: Walton Goggins (Justified, Vice Principals), Rob Corddry (Ballers), Michaela Watkins (Casual), Omar Benson Miller (CSI: Miami), Maya Lynne Robinson (The Conners), Ruby Jay, Makenzie Moss

WHAT: A tight-knit group of friends and family help a widower move on following the most difficult year of his life, which includes being an ill-equipped but devoted single parent to his two daughters, and taking the major step of dating where, to his shock, he’s a hot commodity.

Trailer available at TVLine.com or CBS’ YouTube Channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. The trailer provided some moments of convincing comedy, and the title is magical (though it has very little to do with actual unicorns), but the jokes and the cast chemistry largely fell flat in the teasing two minutes. Also, this premise, while potentially cute, could also wear thin quickly if the comedy spins into a woman-of-the-week set-up that doesn’t resolve after a time, with a clear front-runner emerging for the widower main character. In addition, the show might rely too much on the sass of the lead character’s two daughters to propel the laughs. Nice guys don’t always finish last, but they also don’t often make for enticing TV. If you think our judgment to be too snap and too dismissive of elusive mystical creatures, drop us a line. We’ll reconsider.

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ABC New Shows 2019

UNITED WE FALL, ABC

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Midseason

WHO: Will Sasso (MADtv), Christina Vidal (Code Black), Jane Curtin (Saturday Night Live), newcomer Emma Grace Helton

WHAT: A family sitcom that follows the trials and tribulations of Jo and Bill, parents of two young kids, as they try to make it day-to-day as a functioning family. Bill’s very judgmental live-in mother and Jo’s large Latinx Catholic family will never hesitate to let our couple know they’re seemingly screwing up, but Bill and Jo will always have each other’s backs, united against everyone – other parents, teachers, doctors, specialists, coaches, co-workers and especially their kids.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. Fans of Will Sasso might find this new vehicle of his engaging, and this particular couch potato has boundless love for Jane Curtin, but this sitcom set-up also feels somewhat overly tried and true. Without a trailer to assess if the cast has chemistry and the premise potential, we can’t reasonably find the will to unite for this one. Thus, we remain united against it. Unless you can convince us to switch our uniting ways. At least we’ll always be Couch Potatoes Unite!

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Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist NBC

ZOEY’S EXTRAORDINARY PLAYLIST, NBC

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

TIME SLOT: Sundays at 9/8c at midseason

WHO: Jane Levy (Suburgatory), Skylar Astin (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Ground Floor), Lauren Graham (Parenthood, Gilmore Girls), Alex Newell (Glee), Mary Steenburgen (The Last Man on Earth), Peter Gallagher (The O.C., Covert Affairs), John Clarence Stewart (Luke Cage)

WHAT: Zoey Clarke is a whip-smart computer coder forging her way in San Francisco. After an unusual event she starts to hear the innermost wants and desires of the people around her through songs. At first, she questions her own sanity but soon realizes this unwanted curse may just be an incredibly wonderful gift.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pick Up. With a cast of credible stars and a fresh, original premise dosed by a whiff of fantasy, color us intrigued. Not to mention the potential for personal playlist inspiration – the musical tie to a potentially supernatural motif may render this one of the most original new network entries this season. We hope the potential of this extraordinary idea sounds like sweet music to our ears.

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The following is a link to all premiere dates for shows covered beyond the main networks: 

http://www.metacritic.com/feature/tv-premiere-dates

Non-Broadcast Network Pick-Ups

NOS4A2 (AMC): Zachary Quinto plays a vampire. Though the ratings aren’t promising, how can we resist? (Released June 2, 2019)

Abby Arcane returns home to Marais, Louisiana, to investigate a deadly swamp-borne virus, where she develops a bond with disgraced scientist Alec Holland. After Holland tragically dies, Arcane discovers the mysteries of the swamp, and that Holland may not be dead after all. Yes, that title is pronounced “Nosferatu,” and, yes, it’s based on the 2013 novel by Joe Hill (aka Stephen King’s son). AMC’s latest original series stars Zachary Quinto as an evil vampire who feasts on souls and has a bad habit of abducting children and forcing them to spend their lives in an alternate fantasy universe known as Christmasland. (And that’s not a good thing, regardless of how you feel about Christmas.) The only person who appears to have any chance at stopping him is a young artist (Ashleigh Cummings) with a supernatural ability to find lost things.

Los Espookys (HBO): Fred Armisen creates and directs a Spanish-language show about something to do with a love of horror. It sounds too wacky not to take a look. (Released June 14, 2019)

Fred Armisen’s latest comedy series is different in one major way…it’s a (mostly) Spanish-language show. Armisen co-created the series and produces, though he is just a recurring guest star on screen; the main cast consists of Ana Fabrega, Julio Torres, Cassandra Ciangherotti and Bernardo Velasco, who play a group of friends who “turn their love for horror into a peculiar business” in a stranger, alternate version of present-day Mexico City.

Euphoria (HBO): Trailers suggest a stylized and in-your-face look at today’s youth culture. (Released June 16, 2019)

Adapted from an Israeli series and produced by Drake (among others), this ensemble high school drama comes from writer Sam Levinson and stars Zendaya, rapper Brian Bradley (aka Stro), Maude Apatow, Storm Reid, and Eric Dane.

Years and Years (HBO): Emma Thompson, creator Russell T. Davies, and glowing reviews make this one a curiosity to behold. (Released June 24, 2019)

This six-episode BBC production centers on an extended British family (which includes a politician played by Emma Thompson) in Manchester, beginning with one particularly important night in 2019—and then following the implications of those events into the future over the next 15 years. (Spoiler alert: Trump gets re-elected.) The miniseries comes from Russell T. Davies (A Very English ScandalDoctor WhoQueer as Folk) and also stars Anne Reid, Rory Kinnear, Russell Tovey, and Jessica Hynes (Spaced). 

The Rook (Starz): British supernatural spies! (Released June 30, 2019)

Emma Greenwell, Joely Richardson, Olivia Munn, Adrian Lester, and James D’Arcy star in an adaptation of Daniel O’Malley’s novel about a secret British spy service for people with paranormal abilities.

Veronica Mars – Reboot (Hulu): Kristen Bell returns to where it all began, and we have a few secret marshmallows roaming our couches. (Released July 19, 2019)

The beloved series, which ran from 2004-2007 on UPN and The CW, already received a Kickstarter-funded sequel film in 2014. Now, the series moves to Hulu for a brand-new season (set in the present day) that finds Veronica (Kristen Bell) caught in a new (and darker) murder mystery during spring break in Neptune. Much of the original cast returns in some capacity, including Enrico Colantoni, Ryan Hansen, Jason Dohring, Francis Capra, Percy Daggs, Max Greenfield, and Ken Marino, while new faces include Patton Oswalt, J.K. Simmons, Dawnn Lewis, Mary McDonnell, and Kirby Howell-Baptiste. The writing staff includes Lakers great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. All eight episodes are available to stream today.

Another Life (Netflix): Katee Sackhoff returns to TV science fiction, and BSG fans are all around us. Plus, CW’s most recent Superman, Tyler Hoechlin! (Released July 25, 2019)

Battlestar Galactica‘s Katee Sackhoff returns to outer space as an astronaut in search of alien intelligence in a new series from Killjoys writer Aaron Martin. Selma Blair, Justin Chatwin, Jessica Camacho, and Tyler Hoechlin also star.

The Boys (Amazon Prime): This show has already been requested as a podcast candidate multiple times over! Also, it was created by Eric Kripke, who also created “Supernatural!” (Released July 26, 2019)

Producers Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen bring another one of Preacher creator Garth Ennis’ comic books to the small screen—this time, for Amazon. Supernatural‘s Eric Kripke serves as creator and show-runner for this eight-episode first season, which stars Karl Urban as Billy Butcher, the leader of a group of vigilantes who target corrupt superheroes. Elisabeth Shue, Chace Crawford, Jennifer Esposito, Antony Starr, Erin Moriarty, Dominique McElligott, and Jessie T. Usher fill out the cast, and Simon Pegg will also appear—though not as the character who was originally drawn in the comics to look like him. Amazon has already renewed the series for a second season.

Pennyworth (Epix): It’s billed as a prequel to Fox’s “Gotham,” which we’ve talked at length about around here. Can Alfred make for compelling TV by himself, without Bruce Wayne/Batman? That remains to be seen. (Released July 28, 2019)

Interested in Batman’s butler’s origin story? Then you’ll have to figure out if Epix is included in your cable package. (Also: Do you have cable?) This 10-episode, series (a prequel to Fox’s Gotham) is set in an alternate version of 1960s London and follows former British SAS soldier Alfred Pennyworth (Jack Bannon) as he forms a security company with young billionaire Thomas Wayne (Ben Aldridge). The series comes from Gotham‘s Bruno Heller and Danny Cannon and also stars Paloma Faith, Jason Flemyng, and Polly Walker.

Four Weddings and a Funeral (Hulu): The TV remake of a beloved romantic comedy film has already been requested for podcast chatter. (Released July 31, 2019)

This 10-episode adaptation of the classic 1994 rom-com comes from Mindy Kaling and Matt Warburton (who worked with Kaling on The Mindy Project). Nathalie Emmanuel (replacing the originally cast Jessica Williams) heads a cast that also includes Brandon Mychal Smith, Rebecca Rittenhouse, and John Reynolds, while the original film’s star Andie MacDowell will also appear (in a different role).

Wu Assassins (Netflix): Supernatural assassins using martial arts! It’s the kind of international genre mash-up we like to sample. (Released August 8, 2019)

Iko Uwais (The Raid) heads the cast as a chef turned super-powered assassin in this martial arts fantasy series set in present-day San Francisco.

Why Women Kill (CBS All Access): A three-period piece with a high-powered female cast inspires killer curiosity. Also, Marc Cherry created it, so it’s bound to have a few good twists.(Released August 15, 2019)

Streaming series from Desperate Housewives creator Marc Cherry is another darkly comedic drama that follows three different betrayed wives in three time periods: the 1960s, the ’80s, and the present day. Lucy Liu, Ginnifer Goodwin and Kirby Howell-Baptiste head a cast that also features Jack Davenport, Reid Scott, Sam Jaeger, and Alexandra Daddario.

Carnival Row (Amazon Prime): A world of steampunk/Victorian splendor, populated by faeries, and featuring a cast of film genre favorites like Orlando Bloom and Cara Delevigne, the show has already been compared to “Game of Thrones,” “His Dark Materials,” and a splash of “Dungeons and Dragons.” Plus, we love our fantasy. (Released August 30, 2019)

Eight-episode fantasy series comes from Rene Echevarria (Teen WolfThe 4400) and Travis Beacham (Pacific Rim) and is set in a “neo-Victorian” city inhabited by both humans and mythological creatures, with the latter group having limited rights as immigrants. Orlando Bloom and Cara Delevingne head the cast. Jon Amiel replaces the original director, Paul McGuigan, who departed the project near the start of production.

The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance (Netflix): We have had our eyes on this for awhile, with several of the original “Dark Crystal” film fans on the roster and news of an all-star voice cast. Plus, puppets only – no CGI! (Released August 30, 2019)

The 1982 Jim Henson/Frank Oz film The Dark Crystal serves as the inspiration for this new Netflix series from director Louis Leterrier and The Jim Henson Company. Resistance is a prequel set many years before the original story but once again uses only puppets (and no CGI) to tell a (darker than you might think) fantasy story set on the planet Thra, where races include the elfin Gelflings, the mean Skeksis, and the magical Mystics. The terrific voice cast is led by Taron Egerton, Anya Taylor-Joy, and Nathalie Emmanuel, and also includes Mark Hamill, Andy Samberg, Simon Pegg, Keegan-Michael Key, Helena Bonham Carter, Caitriona Balfe, Eddie Izzard, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Alicia Vikander, and more.

The I-Land (Netflix): It’s basically Netflix’s answer to “Lost” but as a miniseries. We’d like to check for polar bears and smoke monsters. (Releases September 12, 2019)

The latest take on the Lost formula finds 10 people stranded on a tropical island with no memory of who they are or how they got there and facing a challenging path to get back home. The seven-episode series from Neil LaBute stars Kate Bosworth, Alex Pettyfer, and Natalie Martinez.

Undone (Amazon Prime): It’s animated, science fiction, and by the creator of “BoJack Horseman.” And it just sounds neat! (Releases September 13, 2019)

The second adult animated series from BoJack Horseman creator Raphael Bob-Waksberg (co-created with Kate Purdy, a writer on BoJack) is darker and more experimental in nature. Featuring a much more realistic animation style, the series follows Alma (Rosa Salazar), a 28-year-old Texan who nearly dies in a car accident. When she recovers, she realizes that she can experience time in a new way, and she uses that ability to investigate the death of her father (Bob Odenkirk).

Criminal (Netflix): David Tennant! Hearts Hearts Hearts! Also, Netflix experimenting in cop dramas sounds rather interesting! (Releases September 20, 2019)

A bit of an experiment for Netflix, Criminal changes up the typical cop drama in several ways. For one thing: each episode takes place entirely during an interrogation between police investigators and a suspected criminal, and not all of those interrogations will take place in English. The 12-part series will be divided in four parts, with each taking place in a different country (UK, France, Spain, and Germany) and language, utilizing not only different casts but also different writers, directors, and producers. Nicholas Pinnock, David Tennant, and Hayley Atwell head the cast of the UK episodes, while American audiences may be more familiar with the behind-the-scenes talent of the other portions, including The Returned director Frederic Mermoud participating in the France segments, and Downfall director Oliver Hirschbiegel contributing to the German episodes.

Creepshow (Shudder): We don’t know how we’ll watch it, but this horror anthology is getting a fair amount of buzz. (Releases September 26, 2019)

The streaming service’s high-profile newcomer is a horror anthology inspired by the 1982 George Romero film written by Stephen King (and its sequel). Giancarlo Esposito, Tobin Bell, Adrienne Barbeau, Tricia Helfer, Jeffrey Combs, Big Boi, Kid Cudi, Bruce Davison, Dana Gould, David Arquette, and DJ Qualls are among the familiar faces you’ll see. Each of the six episodes will feature two different stories; tonight’s premiere includes an adaptation of the Stephen King story “Gray Matter.”

The Politician (Netflix): Ryan Murphy’s newest outing, also anthology, also featuring an all-star cast, but now on Netflix. The synopsis intrigues, as his shows always seem to do.(Releases September 27, 2019)

Ryan Murphy’s first Netflix original series (which has already been renewed for a 2nd season) is an hour-long dark comedy anthology focusing on a different (fictitious) political race each season, though each one will involve a wealthy and ambitious Santa Barbara resident played by Ben Platt, beginning with his quest to become student body president of his high school. As with any Murphy show, there’s a huge, impressive cast: Gwyneth Paltrow, Jessica Lange, Dylan McDermott, Lucy Boynton, Zoey Deutch, Bette Midler, Judith Light, Bob Balaban, January Jones, and Laura Dreyfuss are just some of the faces you’ll see this year. The series was originally reported to include musical numbers, though that no longer appears to be the case.

Raising Dion (Netflix): The synopsis mentioned supernatural abilities. <shrug> (Releases October 4, 2019)

A single mother raises a young son who begins to demonstrate supernatural abilities in this 10-episode adaptation of Dennis Liu’s comic book. Alisha Wainwright, Ja’Siah Young, Michael B. Jordan, and Jason Ritter star.

Living with Yourself (Netflix): It stars Paul Rudd. Everyone loves Paul Rudd! (Releases October 18, 2019)

Paul Rudd plays dual roles in this eight-episode comedy about a man who undergoes a cutting-edge treatment to become a better person—and winds up literally being replaced by a better version of himself. Former Daily Show writer Timothy Greenberg created the series and wrote all eight episodes, which are directed by the team of Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris (Little Miss Sunshine).

Modern Love (Amazon Prime): The cast impresses, and the details of this anthology series are vague. Color us intrigued. (Releases October 18, 2019)

Based on the New York Times column of the same name, Amazon’s new episodic anthology series comes from writer-director John Carney (Once). Each half-hour episode tells a self-contained story based on a past column, and will feature stars like Anne Hathaway, Tina Fey, John Slattery, Sofia Boutella, Catherine Keener, Gary Carr, Brandon Victor Dixon, Andrew Scott, Cristin Milioti, Shea Whigham, Andy Garcia, and Dev Patel, while directors (aside from Carney) include Sharon Horgan and Emmy Rossum.

Watchmen (HBO): A new “Watchmen” story that we’ve had our eyes on for a long time, it is being created by a “Lost” creator and features a dynamite cast. (Releases October 20, 2019)

Previously adapted into a 2009 feature film, Alan Moore’s comic book series now comes to the small screen in a very loose adaptation (described as a “remix”) from Lost‘s Damon Lindelof that moves the story forward by decades. The series is set in an alternate-history, present-day United States in which superheroes have been outlawed, the internet doesn’t exist, Robert Redford is president (yes, Redford actually appears in the series), and the country is facing major racial unrest. Regina King, Don Johnson, Jeremy Irons, Frances Fisher, Tim Blake Nelson, Jean Smart, Tom Mison, and Louis Gosset Jr. star, while Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross provide the music.

Catherine the Great (HBO): Helen Mirren plays the titular Russian empress in this miniseries. It’s bound to be at least well-acted. (Releases October 21, 2019)

A four-part co-production with the UK’s Sky, this historical drama stars Helen Mirren as the titular Russian empress, who ruled for much of the 18th century. The series focuses on the later years of her reign, marked by her affair with Grigory Potemkin (Jason Clarke). The series comes from Nigel Williams, who previously wrote the Emmy-winning HBO miniseries Elizabeth I (also starring Mirren). Rory Kinnear, Joseph Quinn, Richard Roxburgh, and Gina McKee also star.

Forky Asks a Question (Disney+): Did you even watch “Toy Story 4?” It’s a spork that sounds like Buster from “Arrested Development.” He has very existential questions to ask! (Releases November 12, 2019)

Pixar’s first series for the Disney+ streaming service features Forky, the Tony Hale-voiced character (who is technically a spork) introduced in Toy Story 4.

The Mandalorian (Disney+): The “Star Wars” universe comes to TV. We’re not sure, but curiosity will probably kill this cat. (Releases November 12, 2019)

The first-ever live-action series set in the Star Wars universe comes from Jon Favreau, though he won’t direct any of the first season’s eight episodes. (Instead, directors include Taika Waititi, Dave Filoni, Rick Famuyiwa, Deborah Chow, and Bryce Dallas Howard.) Narcos star Pedro Pascal plays the titular character, a lone gunfighter in the outer reaches of the galaxy sometime during the gap between the sixth and seventh Star Wars films. Joining him in the cast are Nick Nolte, Gina Carano, Giancarlo Esposito, Carl Weathers, and filmmaker Werner Herzog (who plays a villain, naturally). Expect a more character-driven, smaller-scope approach rather than constant action and expensive special effects—and prior knowledge of Star Wars is not a prerequisite to following the story. New episodes stream weekly.

Sanditon (PBS): It’s a miniseries adaptation of Jane Austen’s unfinished novel. Who doesn’t like Jane Austen? (Releases January 12, 2020)

Jane Austen’s unfinished final novel set in a seaside village comes to the small screen in an adaptation from Andrew Davies (Les MisérablesMr. Selfridge). Rose Williams, Theo James, Anne Reid, Kris Marshall, and Crystal Clarke star.

Others on radar: The Lord of the Rings series in development at Amazon; The Witcher at Netflix; The Chronicles of Narnia at Netflix; The Wheel of Time at Amazon; His Dark Materials at BBC/HBO; The Watch (BBC); Conan at Amazon; The Dark Tower at Amazon; Cursed at Amazon; Star Trek: Picard (CBS All Access); the Loki and Scarlet Witch properties in development at Disney+.

-*-

There you have it!  We will add Pick Ups to the CPU! Watchlist and cover them in this blog or via our ever growing podcast. For those passed, if you think we should give them another chance, head on over to the comments section and sound off!  If you would like to be a guest blogger about any passed shows, send me a message, and we’ll talk terms!

In any event, I’m excited for the new stories to start.   TV is film with commitment, you know.

In short:

Picked Up

ABC

Emergence
Stumptown (hesitantly)

CBS

All Rise (hesitantly)
Bob ❤ Abishola (hesitantly)
Evil (enthusiastically)

Fox

BH90210 (hesitantly)
The Great North (hesitantly)
neXt
Prodigal Son

NBC

Lincoln (very hesitantly)
Perfect Harmony (hesitantly)
Sunnyside (hesitantly)
Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist

CW

Batwoman
Katy Keene (very hesitantly)
Nancy Drew (very hesitantly)
Pandora (very hesitantly)

Netflix

Another Life
Wu Assassins
The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance
The I-Land
Criminal
The Politician
Raising Dion
Living with Yourself

Amazon Prime

The Boys
Carnival Row
Undone
Modern Love

Hulu

Veronica Mars, reboot
Four Weddings and a Funeral

HBO

Los Espookys
Euphoria
Years and Years
Watchmen
Catherine the Great

AMC

NOS4A2

Starz

The Rook

Epix

Pennyworth

CBS All Access

Why Women Kill

Shudder

Creepshow

Disney+

Forky Asks a Question
The Mandalorian

PBS

Sanditon

Winning Network: Netflix

Passed

ABC

The Baker and the Beauty
For Life
Kids Say the Darndest Things
mixed-ish
United We Fall

CBS

Broke
Carol’s Second Act
FBI: Most Wanted
Tommy
The Unicorn

Fox

9-1-1: Lone Star (for now)
Almost Family
Bless the Harts
Deputy
Duncanville
Filthy Rich
Outmatched

NBC

Bluff City Law
Council of Dads
Indebted
The Kenan Show

Losing Network: Fox

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter (@cpupodcast), Instagram (@couchpotatoesunite), Pinterest (@cpupodcast), or email us at couchpotatoesunitepodcast@gmail.com – or subscribe to this blog, the YouTube channel, our iTunes channel, our Stitcher Radio channel , and/or find us on Google Play to keep track of brand new episodes.  In the meantime, let us know what you think!  Comment or review us in any of the above forums – we’d love your feedback!

Remember, new episodes and blog posts are published weekly! Tomorrow, our DCTU Series returns to the Water Cooler to talk the penultimate seventh season of Arrow in the panel’s annual four-part revisit to the Arrowverse. Stay tuned!

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Progress Report: End of Season Scorecard for Shows Covered By CPU! (Long-Running), 2019

Based on reliable sources, including TVLine, the A.V. Club, and Wikipedia, here are the statuses of shows currently covered by the CPU! Podcast Universe ™.  This list does not include up and coming shows to be reviewed from this past season’s pilots list because we covered that last week!  In fact, this is the second of the Summer Series Progress Reports! 

This particular list comprises the End of Season Scorecard for Long-Running shows covered by and/or requested for coverage by the CPU! Podcast, with current statuses, upcoming premiere dates (if known), and other helpful information.  Shows that ended this year or recently that we have already covered via podcast or blog have been removed from the list, except for any that we missed in our last Progress Report. Also included is a complete list of network renewals and cancellations, some cable, premium, and streaming networks included, at the bottom.  If your show is not being covered by CPU!, and you want it to be, leave a comment or contact us at couchpotatoesunitepodcast@gmail.com (or via Facebook/Twitter).  We would probably find a way to make it happen!

The CPU! “What We’re Currently Watching” List

Supernatural (PODCAST) – CW

Renewed for Season 15, which will be the final season (the heavens will truly break the day of the series finale). Season 15 premieres on October 10, 2019.

Arrow (PODCAST) – CW

Renewed for Season 8, which will be the final season. Season 8 premieres on October 15, 2019.

The Flash  (PODCAST) – CW

Renewed for Season 6, which will premiere on October 8, 2019.

DC’s Legends of Tomorrow (PODCAST) – CW

Renewed for Season 5.

Supergirl (PODCAST) – CW

Renewed for Season 5, which will premiere on October 6, 2019.

Orange is the New Black (PODCAST) – Netflix

Renewed for Season 7, which will be the final season. Season 7 will be released on July 26, 2019.

Gotham (PODCAST) – Fox

Ended. Season 5 is the final season. Goodbye review on the podcast coming soon.

Marvel’s The Punisher (PODCAST) – Netflix

Canceled; Season 2 is the final season. The Marvel’s Defenders Series panel’s review of the final season coming soon on the podcast.

The Good Place (PODCAST) – NBC

Renewed for Season 4, which will be the final season. Season 4 premieres on September 26, 2019.

Grace and Frankie (PODCAST) – Netflix

Renewed for Season 6.

Fuller House (PODCAST) – Netflix

Renewed for Season 5, which will be the final season.

Game of Thrones (PODCAST) – HBO

Ended; Season 8 is the final season. Two-part goodbye miniseries on the podcast coming soon.

Stranger Things (PODCAST) – Netflix

Renewed for Season 3. Season 3 releases on Netflix on July 4, 2019.

iZombie (PODCAST) – CW

Ended; Season 5 is the final season. Goodbye review on the podcast coming soon.

American Horror Story (PODCAST) – FX

Renewed for Seasons 9 AND 10. Season 9 (“1984“) premieres on September 18, 2019.

Marvel’s Jessica Jones (PODCAST) – Netflix

Canceled; Season 3 is the final season. Season 3 released on June 14, 2019. The Marvel’s Defenders Series panel’s review of the final season coming soon on the podcast.

Will & Grace (PODCAST) – NBC

Renewed for Season 11.

Doctor Who (PODCAST) – BBC/BBC America

Renewed for Season 12.

The X-Files (PODCAST) – Fox

Ended for now, and CPU! has already posted its goodbye review, but the messaging has been somewhat confusing…

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D (PODCAST) – ABC

Renewed for Season 7.

Schitt$ Creek (PODCAST) – Pop

Renewed for Season 6, which be will be the final season.

The Crown (PODCAST) – Netflix

Renewed for Season 3.

13 Reasons Why (PODCAST) – Netflix

Renewed for Season 3.

How to Get Away with Murder (PODCAST/Jumped the Shark) – ABC

Renewed for Season 6.  CPU! Jumped the Shark. If you would like us to resume podcast coverage of this show, please contact us via the Guestbook, social media, or at our email address: couchpotatoesunitepodcast@gmail.com.

Sherlock (PODCAST) – PBS

Series 4 aired from January 1-January 15, 2017.  Though possibility of a fifth series is being contemplated, no announcement regarding renewal or cancellation has yet been made.

The 100 (PODCAST/Jumped the Shark) – CW

Renewed for Season 7. CPU! Jumped the Shark. If you would like us to resume podcast coverage of this show, please contact us via the Guestbook, social media, or at our email address: couchpotatoesunitepodcast@gmail.com.

Fargo – FX

Renewed for Season 4.

The Mindy Project – Hulu

Ended 2017. If you would like us to cover this show in a podcast episode, please contact us via the Guestbook, social media, or at our email address (couchpotatoesunitepodcast@gmail.com); review otherwise coming soon.

Sleepy Hollow – Fox

Ended 2017.  Review or podcast to come.

Madam Secretary – CBS

Renewed for Season 6, which will be the final season.

Bones – Fox

Ended 2017.  CPU! will be covering this show in a future “Looking Back” podcast episode. Stay tuned!

Revenge – ABC

Ended 2015.  Review (either blog or podcast) to come.

Reign – CW

Ended 2017. CPU! will be covering this show in a future “Looking Back” podcast episode. Stay tuned!

About a Boy – NBC

Ended 2015.  Review (either blog or podcast) to come.

Network Shows and Other Shows Mentioned by CPU!ers

(does not include this year’s freshman series, currently covered shows, shows we’ve already covered and eliminated, or game and reality shows)

By Popular Demand

ABC

American Housewife (picked up by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 4.

black-ish (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 6.

Bless This Mess*
Renewed for Season 2.
*This show was not listed among season new entries last summer. Upon review of the trailer, critical consensus, and considering the fact that it was co-created by Elizabeth Meriwether (New Girl, Single Parents) and stars Dax Shepard, CPU! is officially picking this comedy up, even if it seems to be a Green Acres update featuring Millennial characters.

Fresh Off the Boat (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 6.

The Goldbergs (added to the CPU! list)
Renewed for Season 7.

The Good Doctor (picked up by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 3.

Grey’s Anatomy (CPU! jumped the shark)
Renewed for Seasons 16 AND 17.

Modern Family (added to the CPU! list)
Renewed for Season 11.  Season 11 is the show’s final season.

Speechless (picked up by CPU!)
Canceled.  Season 3 is the show’s final season.

Splitting Up Together (passed by CPU!)
Canceled. Season 2 is the show’s final season.

Station 19 (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 3.

Take Two*
Canceled. Season 1 is the show’s only season.
*This show was not listed among season new entries last summer. Given the quick cancellation and relatively understated premiere (read: we’ve never heard of this one), CPU! is officially passing on this show (in the most well-timed way, of course).

CBS

The Big Bang Theory (picked up by CPU! late)
Ended. Season 12 is the show’s final season.

Blue Bloods (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 10.

Bull (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 4.

Criminal Minds (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 15. Season 15 is the show’s final season.

Elementary (passed by CPU!)
Canceled. Season 7 is the show’s final season.

The Good Fight (All Access; passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 4.

Hawaii Five-O (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 10.

Life in Pieces (picked up by CPU!)
Canceled. Season 4 is the show’s final season.

MacGyver (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 4.

Man with a Plan (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 4.

Mom (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Seasons 7 AND 8.

NCIS (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 17.

NCIS: Los Angeles (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 11.

NCIS: New Orleans (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 6.

Ransom (passed by CPU!)
The Season 3 finale aired on May 25, 2019. There has been no announcement regarding renewal or cancellation.

Salvation (added to the CPU! list)
Canceled. Season 2 is the show’s final season.

Star Trek: Discovery (All Access; picked up by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 3.

S.W.A.T. (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 3.

Young Sheldon (passed by CPU! for now)
Renewed for Seasons 3 AND 4.

FOX

9-1-1 (added to the CPU! list)
Renewed for Season 3.

Bob’s Burgers (animated)
Renewed for Season 10.

Empire (picked up by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 6. Season 6 is the show’s final season.

Family Guy (animated)
Renewed for Season 18.

The Gifted (picked up by CPU!)
Canceled.  Season 2 is the show’s final season.

Last Man Standing (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 8.

Lethal Weapon (added to the CPU! list)
Canceled. Season 3 is the show’s final season.

The Orville (picked up by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 3.

The Resident (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 3.

The Simpsons (animated)
Renewed for Seasons 31 AND 32.

Star (passed by CPU!)
Canceled. Season 3 is the show’s final season.

NBC

A.P. Bio (added to the CPU! list)
Canceled. Season 2 is the show’s final season.

The Blacklist (added to the CPU! list)
Renewed for Season 7.

Blindspot (picked up by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 5. Season 5 will be the final season.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine (added to the CPU! list)
Renewed for Season 7.

Chicago Fire (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 8.

Chicago Med (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 5.

Chicago P.D. (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 7.

Good Girls (picked up by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 3.

Law and Order: SVU (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 21.

Marlon (passed by CPU!)
Canceled. Season 2 is the show’s final season.

Midnight, Texas (picked up by CPU!)
Canceled. Season 2 is the show’s final season.

Reverie (picked up by CPU!)
Canceled.  Season 1 is the show’s only season.

Superstore (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 5.

This Is Us (picked up by CPU!)
Renewed for Seasons 4, 5, AND 6.

Timeless (picked up by CPU!)
Canceled.  Season 2 is the show’s final season

Trial & Error (passed by CPU!)
Canceled. Season 2 is the show’s final season.

The CW

Black Lightning (picked up by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 3.

Burden of Truth (passed by CPU!…just now)
Renewed for Season 3.

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (picked up by CPU!)
Canceled. Season 4 is the show’s final season.

Dynasty (passed by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 3.

Jane the Virgin (added to the CPU! list)
Canceled. Airing Season 5, the show’s final season.

The Outpost (added to the CPU! list…just now)
Renewed for Season 2.

Riverdale (picked up by CPU!)
Renewed for Season 4.

Current/Ongoing Shows – Cable, Premium, Streaming – Requested
by CPU! Regulars for the Podcast

PBS

Call the Midwife
Renewed for Series 9.

BBC America

Killing Eve
Renewed for Season 3.

FXX

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia
Renewed for Season 14.

FX

Feud
Renewed for Season 2.

Archer
Renewed for Season 10, which premiered on May 29, 2019. No announcement regarding renewal or cancellation has been made.

Netflix

The OA
Season 2 was released on March 22, 2019. No announcement regarding renewal or cancellation has been made.

Peaky Blinders
Renewed for Series 5.

House of Cards
Canceled. Season 6 is the show’s final season.

Anne with an E
Renewed for Season 3.

Master of None
Season 2 premiered on May 12, 2017.  No announcement regarding renewal or cancellation has been made.

GLOW
Renewed for Season 3, which will premiere on August 9, 2019.

Arrested Development
Season 5 was released in two parts; Part 2 was released on March 15, 2019. No announcement regarding renewal or cancellation has been made.

Altered Carbon
Renewed for Season 2.

Mindhunter
Renewed for Season 2.

The End of the F***ing World
Renewed for Season 2.

Santa Clarita Diet
Canceled. Season 3 is the show’s final season.

Black Mirror
Season 5 was released on June 5, 2019. No announcement regarding renewal or cancellation has been made.

BoJack Horseman
Renewed for Season 6.

Designated Survivor
Season 3 was released on June 7, 2019. No announcement regarding renewal or cancellation has been made.

Lucifer
Renewed for Season 5. Season 5 is the show’s final season.

American Vandal
Canceled. Season 2 is the show’s final season.

Insatiable
Renewed for Season 2.

Ozark
Renewed for Season 3.

Travelers
Canceled. Season 3 is the show’s final season.

Big Mouth
Renewed for Season 3.

Frontier
Renewed for Season 3, which premiered on December 7, 2018. No announcement regarding renewal or cancellation has been made.

One Day at a Time
Canceled. Season 3 is the show’s final season.
EDIT: Renewed for Season 4 by cable network Pop!

Derry Girls
Renewed for Season 2.

The Protector
Renewed for Seasons 3 AND 4.

Tales of the City
Miniseries; no renewal is expected.

Bodyguard
Series 1 premiered on August 26, 2018. No announcement regarding renewal or cancellation has been made.

Showtime

Billions
Renewed for Season 5.

Shameless
Renewed for Season 10.

USA

Mr. Robot
Renewed for Season 4. Season 4 is the show’s final season.

Starz

Outlander
Renewed for Seasons 5 and 6!

American Gods
Renewed for Season 3.

Power
Renewed for Season 6, which will premiere on August 25, 2019. Season 6 is the show’s final season.

AMC

Better Call Saul
Renewed for Season 5.

The Walking Dead
Renewed for Season 10.

SyFy

The Magicians
Renewed for Season 5.

Wynonna Earp
Renewed for Season 4.

Van Helsing
Renewed for Season 4.

Channel Zero
Canceled. Season 4 was the show’s final season.

Happy!
Canceled. Season 2 is the show’s final season.

Amazon

The Man in the High Castle
Renewed for Season 4. Season 4 is the show’s final season.

Brittania
Renewed for Season 2.

The Expanse
Canceled by SyFy but renewed by Amazon for Season 4.

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Renewed for Season 3.

Fleabag
Ended. Series 2 is the show’s final season.

Hulu

The Handmaid’s Tale
Renewed for Season 3, which premiered on June 5, 2019. No announcement regarding renewal or cancellation has been made.

Castle Rock
Renewed for Season 2.

Marvel’s Runaways
Renewed for Season 3.

Letterkenny
Renewed for Season 7.

Fosse/Verdon
Miniseries; no expectation of renewal.

HBO

Big Little Lies
Renewed for Season 2, which premiered on June 9, 2019. No announcement regarding renewal or cancellation has been made.

Westworld
Renewed for Season 3.

Curb Your Enthusiasm
Renewed for Season 10.

True Detective
Renewed for Season 3, which premiered on January 13, 2019. No announcement regarding renewal or cancellation has been made.

Disney Channel

Raven’s Home
Renewed for Season 3, which premiered on June 17, 2019.

Cinemax

Strike
Renewed for Series 3.

Cartoon Network

Rick and Morty
Renewed for Season 4.

TV Land

Younger
Renewed for Season 6, which premiered on June 12, 2019.

Freeform

Marvel’s Cloak & Dagger
Renewed for Season 2, which premiered on April 4, 2019. No announcement regarding renewal or cancellation has been made.

Discovery: Family

My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic
Renewed for Season 9. Season 9 is the show’s final season.

YouTube Premium

Cobra Kai
Renewed for Season 3.

DC Universe

Titans
Renewed for Season 2.

History Channel

Vikings
Renewed for Season 6.

That’s it, fellow Couch Potatoes!  Next up in the Progress Report series: the 2019-2020 pilot review, coming in August 2019!  Stay tuned! 

CPU! LIVE! @ Blue Bridge Games – “A Shiny Look Back at Firefly” (MAJOR SPOILERS)


In honor of the tabletop and role playing gaming industry, which respects a good show when it sees it by adapting excellent TV concepts and transforming them into awesome games, CPU! visited our former Grand Rapids Comic Con sponsor, and our current episode sponsor, Blue Bridge Games, a new game store in Grand Rapids, Michigan! There, we took a “Shiny Look Back at Firefly” and also totted out one of our spicy feature formats, “Top 5,” though we had a few false starts, given that some of our panelists were new to the feature and were less than prepared for the spicy constructs contained therein.  Listen as our six resident Browncoats – Chief Couch Potato/Moderator Kylie, Sarah, Spencer, Kelsey, Selene, Christian, and special guest Margaret – enter into a “gorram” reminiscence about one of the greatest “gone too soon” tragedies of television history while attempting to rank our most favorite aspects of said series – when we can finally agree on one of four (more or less) prepared topics to debate.

This podcast was recorded live on March 31, 2019, with associated video; this is the audio recording of the event! As always, if you have not watched any of Firefly, be aware that there are MAJOR SPOILERS! Tell us what you think, and/or if there are other shows you’re interested in CPU! covering, below; email us at couchpotatoesunitepodcast@gmail.com; or check out our Guestbook at the website, our Facebook page, our Twitter (@cpupodcast), or our Instagram (@couchpotatoesunite).  Until next time, until next episode…buh bye!

Executive Producer/Chief Couch Potato: Kylie C. Piette
Associate Producers: Krista Pennington and Selene Rezmer

Audio/Video Editor: Kylie C. Piette
Logo: Rebecca Wallace
Social Media Marketing and Graphics: Krista Pennington

Theme Song:
Written by: Sarah Milbratz
Singers: Sarah Milbratz, Amy McDaniel, Kelsey Sprague
Keyboard: Kelsey Sprague
Bass: Ian McDonough
Guitar: Christian Somerville
Engineer/Production: Kyle Aspinall/Christian Somerville

PODCAST! – Cult TV! Top 5! CPU! LIVE! Blue Bridge Games! – “A Shiny Look(ing) Back at Firefly!” (MAJOR SPOILERS)

THIS EPISODE OF CPU! WAS SPONSORED BY: BLUE BRIDGE GAMES

BBG 2_ Round Logo-1

Moderator: Chief Couch Potato Kylie

THE SPECS:

Who: “Firefly” is an American space Western drama television series that aired on Fox for one abbreviated season of 14 episodes in 2002.

What: “A Shiny Look Back at Firefly,” a live podcast event held at sponsor Blue Bridge Games‘ Grand Rapids, Michigan, store, the newest home of tabletop and role-playing gaming (and jigsaw puzzles!) in Grand Rapids, located at 954 E. Fulton.

SYNOPSIS

Created by writer and director Joss Whedon, Firefly is set in the year 2517, after the arrival of humans in a new star system, and follows the adventures of the renegade crew of Serenity, a “Firefly-class” spaceship. The ensemble cast portrays the nine characters who live on Serenity. The show explores the lives of a group of people, some of whom fought on the losing side of a civil war, who make a living on the fringes of society as part of the pioneer culture of their star system. In this future, the only two surviving superpowers, the United States and China, combined to form the central federal government, called the Alliance, resulting in the fusion of the two cultures. The series stars Nathan Fillion, Gina Torres, Alan Tudyk, Morena Baccarin, Adam Baldwin, Jewel Staite, Sean Maher, Summer Glau, and Ron Glass.

When: CPU! went LIVE! at Blue Bridge Games on March 31, 2019! We talked about Firefly, which aired from September 20 to December 20, 2002, on Fox.

Where: CPU! went live at Blue Bridge Games in Cool City Grand Rapids, Michigan. Firefly is set in a fictional star system beyond Earth’s (the Earth-that-was) own and primarily aboard the Serenity as the crew pilots the ship through space.

Why:  Because we like you!  Because we’re all hams!  Because we’re all nerds!  Because there’s a lot of love for Firefly!  Because there’s a lot of love for Blue Bridge Games! And because, if you didn’t already know, we enjoy a good Look Back and a good spicy debate (keep reading)!

How – as in How’d It Go?

In honor of the tabletop and role playing gaming industry, which respects a good show when it sees it by adapting excellent TV concepts and transforming them into awesome games, CPU! visited our former Grand Rapids Comic Con sponsor, Blue Bridge Games, a new game store in Grand Rapids, Michigan! There, we took a “Shiny Look Back at Firefly” and also totted out one of our spicy feature formats, “Top 5,” though we had a few false starts, given that some of our panelists were new to the feature and were less than prepared for the spicy constructs contained therein.  Watch as our six resident Browncoats (well, except for the guy with blue gloves) enter into a “gorram” reminiscence about one of the greatest “gone too soon” tragedies of television history while attempting to rank our most favorite aspects of said series – when we can finally agree on one of four (more or less) prepared topics to debate, that is.

If you are new to CPU!’s Top 5 concept, this feature channels panel members’ best Rob Gordons by asking them to come up with their own Top 5 TV shows or TV-related items around a painstakingly chosen theme or set of themes, though this panel also includes film, given the existence of Serenity, the series’ unofficial official finale.  Then, as a group, the panelists are required to come up with a consensus list, using their individual lists as starting points, that represents the panel at large.  The consensus Top 5 is presented below, which is kind of a big spoiler, but then you’re here to listen to the podcast episode and all of the meaty, juicy discussion (and potential arguments)….right?

We had a great in-person group and a wonderful response online!  How’d we fare?  Take a listen or a gander (this time)!  This podcast was recorded live on March 31, 2019, and is embedded here and uploaded to our Facebook page and YouTube channel (the latter coming soon).

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter (@cpupodcast), Instagram (@couchpotatoesunite), Pinterest (@cpupodcast), or email us at couchpotatoesunitepodcast@gmail.com – or subscribe to this blog, the YouTube channel, our iTunes channel, our Stitcher Radio channel , and/or find us on Google Play to keep track of brand new episodes.  In the meantime, let us know what you think!  Comment or review us in any of the above forums – we’d love your feedback!

Remember, new episodes and blog posts are published weekly!  Next Wednesday, our Orange is the New Black panel returns to the Water Cooler to process their “maximum” reactions, though belated, to the sixth – and, now, penultimate – season of the long-running Netflix prison comedy-drama.  Stay tuned!

*This is a our temporary video. A recorded/non-streamed version will be uploaded to YouTube later this week*
The recorded video! It will have less audio/video stuttering!

CPU!S TOP 5 FAVORITE FIREFLY CHARACTERS!

  1. Malcolm “Mal” Reynolds (Fillion) & Kaywinnet Lee “Kaylee” Frye (Staite) – TIE
  2. (none)
  3. Zoe Alleyne Washburn (Torres)
  4. Hoban “Wash” Washburne (Tudyk)
  5. The Villains/Evil People, including the Alliance, the Reavers, the Job Lords (Patience, Niska, Badger), and Saffron

RECOMMENDATION

Firefly – if you somehow haven’t already watched it – is recommended to anyone who loves nerdy, cult science fiction and fantasy (and/or horror and/or western) series, when one’s preferences might favor the sensibility of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and the pastiche of Star Wars. In fact, if one loves Joss Whedon’s various pursuits and has not somehow seen this gone-too-soon series, one is unmistakably missing out, not only on a great concept invented by Joss but on the roller coaster of emotion that is associated with one’s eternal love for such a short-lived series, doomed to its short life forever more. The panel also notes that if a potential viewer needs something different to watch, something with quality that does not present too much commitment, Firefly is the show to choose. Despite its 16 years of existence, the program holds up in ways few do, given its future setting, its unique milieu, its tight and engaging ensemble cast, and the artfully rendered visual effects, for which the series won an Emmy at the time. In fact, if not for the continued work in which the cast members of this long-gone series frequently find themselves, one could regard Firefly as ageless in addition to being timeless. This show has a bit of everything, and, if you love solid, quality television – excellent television, in fact – and you have somehow missed this series, you should make time for Firefly, which, as panelist Sarah notes, is the smallest commitment to a Whedon show one can make. You will not be disappointed in the overall journey and entertainment value that this well written, well performed series provides, even if the journey is wistfully, painfully, too short in the end.

The entire Firefly series is available to stream at only Hulu, currently, while the film Serenity is available on Netflix. Watch it: you won’t regret it – in theory, that is, given the inevitable moment when a potential viewer realizes that there is no more of the series or related to enjoy, at which point said intrepid viewers will only feel the crushing disappointment that comes when confronting the dispassionate cancellation of this gem by a short-sighted network president of years past. At least, there are many Firefly games to play! Find some at Blue Bridge Games in Grand Rapids, Michigan!

NEXT CPU! LIVE!

CPU! is working on its next live opportunity!  Details coming soon!

We’re also planning to host a local TV Trivia Night! Details coming soon!

If you would like us to appear, contact us at couchpotatoesunitepodcast@gmail.com, via our Guestbook here at the website, via our Facebook page, Twitter (@cpupodcast), or Instagram (@couchpotatoesunite).  Hope to see you soon!

CREDITS!

Executive Producer/Chief Couch Potato: Kylie C. Piette
Associate Producers: Krista Pennington and Selene Rezmer

Audio/Video Editor: Kylie C. Piette
Logo: Rebecca Wallace
Social Media Marketing and Graphics: Krista Pennington

Theme Song:
Written by: Sarah Milbratz
Singers: Sarah Milbratz, Amy McDaniel, Kelsey Sprague
Keyboard: Kelsey Sprague
Bass: Ian McDonough
Guitar: Christian Somerville
Engineer/Production: Kyle Aspinall/Christian Somerville

Looking Back at “Arrested Development,” Seasons 1-3: The Development Arrested Series, Episode 1 (MAJOR SPOILERS)

CPU! final-01

A new podcast episode of Couch Potatoes Unite!, which is based on a blog of the same name hosted at couchpotatoesunite.wordpress.com. In this episode, recorded in February 2019, our panel of loose seals and mother-boys – moderator Kylie, Nick, Sarah, Amy, and new panelists Christian and Matt – gathered together around the CPU! Water Cooler to Look Back at the first three seasons of CPU! favorite Arrested Development.  This is the first part of a three part CPU! podcast miniseries in which our panelists find their Development Arrested as they consider Arrested Development’s not-so-peculiar-nowadays airing history. As always, if you have not watched any of Arrested Development, be aware that there are, most definitely, MAJOR SPOILERS! Tell us what you think, and/or if there are other shows you’re interested in CPU! covering, below; email us at couchpotatoesunitepodcast@gmail.com; or check out our Guestbook at the website, our Facebook page, our Twitter (@cpupodcast), or our Instagram (@couchpotatoesunite).  Until next time, until next episode…buh bye!

Stay tuned for Episode 2 of our Development Arrested series, in which we cover Season 4!

Editor: Kylie C. Piette
Logo: Rebecca Wallace
Marketing Graphic Artist: Krista Pennington

PODCAST! – Cult TV! & Best Of! & Looking Back at “Arrested Development,” Seasons 1-3: The Development Arrested Series, Episode 1 (MAJOR SPOILERS) + Best Written TV (#16)

Moderator: Chief Couch Potato Kylie

THE SPECS:

Who: “Arrested Development,” a cult sitcom that originally aired on the Fox network from 2003 to 2006 until streaming giant Netflix commissioned new episodes, which begin airing in 2013.

What: “Arrested Development” follows the Bluth family, a formerly wealthy, dysfunctional family. It is presented in a serialized format, incorporating handheld camera work, voice-over narration, archival photos, and historical footage. The show also maintains numerous running gags and catchphrases. Ron Howard serves as both an executive producer and the omniscient narrator; in later seasons, he appears in the show portraying a fictionalized version of himself

SYNOPSIS

Arrested Development revolves around the members of the formerly wealthy Bluth family, who continue to lead extravagant lifestyles despite their changed circumstances and who often find themselves drawn into interactions with incestuous undertones. At the center of the show is Michael Bluth (Jason Bateman), the show’s straight man, who strives to do the right thing and to keep his family together, despite their materialism, selfishness, and manipulative natures. His teenage son, George Michael (Michael Cera), has the same qualities of decency but feels a constant pressure to live up to his father’s expectations and is often reluctant to follow his father’s plans.

Michael’s father, George Bluth, Sr. (Jeffrey Tambor), is the patriarch of the family and a corrupt real estate developer who is arrested in the first episode. George goes to considerable lengths to manipulate and to control his family in spite of his imprisonment, and he makes numerous efforts to evade justice. His wife, and Michael’s mother, Lucille (Jessica Walter), is ruthlessly manipulative, materialistic, and hypercritical of every member of her family, despite the fact that she, herself, perpetually drinks alcohol. Her grip is tightest on her youngest son, Byron “Buster” Bluth (Tony Hale), an over-educated (yet still under-educated) mother’s boy who has dependency issues and is prone to panic attacks.

Michael’s older brother is George Oscar Bluth II (Will Arnett), known by the acronym “GOB,” an unsuccessful professional magician whose business and personal schemes usually fail or become tiresome and are quickly abandoned. GOB is competitive with Michael over women and bullies Buster. Michael’s twin sister Lindsay (Portia de Rossi) is spoiled and materialistic, continually seeking the center of attention and leaping on various social causes for the sake of vanity. She is married to Tobias Fünke (David Cross), a discredited psychiatrist-turned-aspiring actor. Tobias is a self-diagnosed “never-nude,” whose language and behavior have heavily homosexual overtones, to which he seems completely oblivious and which are the center of much tongue-in-cheek comedy throughout the series. Their daughter is Mae or “Maeby” (Alia Shawkat), a rebellious teen with an opportunistic streak, who seeks to defy her parents for the sake of attention and who otherwise pursues boys and power.

When: The show’s first three seasons aired on Fox from 2003 to 2006. Season 1 is comprised of 22 episodes, Season 2 contains 18, and Season 3 includes 13 episodes.

Where: The show is set primarily in Newport Beach, California.

Why: Listen to the podcast episode for the panelists’ individual stories on how they found Arrested Development.  No touching.

How – as in How Much Do We Love this Show?!

By popular request – in fact, this show proves to be one of CPU!’s most popularly requested panels of all time – Arrested Development has, as of this publication, become a new show panel at the CPU! Water Cooler!  Featured panelists include Nick, our panel silver medalist who likes to meditate in CPU!’s “nerdy” and “funny” realms; his wife Sarah, who joins him for talks about lots of shows as long as they are not comic book adaptations; and Amy, who appeared twice before around the Water Cooler to laugh at Schitt’s Creek and to Look Back at Ally McBeal. In addition, along for this wacky ride are two brand new panelists, who are introduced in this episode!

Our panel, with the Chief CP as moderator, gathered “Around the Water Cooler” to take a “Look Back” at the first three seasons of this acclaimed yet quirky comedy in the first of a three-part podcast series, during which we will cover all available seasons of Arrested: the Fox years as well as the Netflix seasons. In this first episode of CPU!’s “Development Arrested” series, we discuss our favorite and least favorite situations, quotes, and characters, as well as our general impressions of the success of the show’s original run.

Plus, Arrested Development constitutes another entry in our “Best Of!” series. To wit, herein be the list of Arrested Development’s Best Of!:

  • #18 on Empire‘s “50 Greatest TV Shows of All Time” in 2008 and #43 in 2016
  • #16 on The Hollywood Reporter‘s “Hollywood’s 100 Favorite TV Shows”
  • Time magazine’s “100 Best TV Shows of All-Time
  • #27 on Rolling Stone’s list of 100 Greatest TV Shows of All Time

In addition, Arrested Development ranks at #3 on Entertainment Weekly’s 2014 Top Cult TV list.  Plus, Arrested was ranked #16 on the Writer’s Guild of America’s Best Written TV list in 2013, as it is also considered one of the best written (scripted) television series of all time.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter (@cpupodcast), Instagram (@couchpotatoesunite), Pinterest (@cpupodcast), or email us at couchpotatoesunitepodcast@gmail.com – or subscribe to this blog, the YouTube channel, our iTunes channel, our Stitcher Radio channel , and/or find us on Google Play to keep track of brand new episodes.  In the meantime, let us know what you think!  Comment or review us in any of the above forums – we’d love your feedback!

Remember, new episodes and blog posts are published weekly! Next Wednesday, our “Development Arrested” panel consumes some maca root and returns to the Water Cooler to celebrate Cinco de Cuatro and to continue our three-part Arrested Development series. In Part Two of this series, we consider whether the show-runners and producers “made a huge mistake” by reviving the cult comedy as they originally did in Season 4, only to later “remix” it in 2018, just prior to the release of the first part of Season 5. Stay tuned!

RECOMMENDATION

Arrested Development is recommended universally by our panel to anyone who loves quirky, intelligent comedies – such as Schitt’s Creek, 30 Rock, and Community, which were directly influenced by this show – or “in your face,” borderline offensive comedies, such as South Park and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. As we discuss in the podcast episode, this program broke ground for so many other sitcoms to come through the use of serialized jokes, callbacks, sight gags, and more than a little tongue-in-cheek thematic comedy around incest. To that end, our panel cautions that if you are a sensitive viewer who cannot appreciate either jokes with potentially insensitive satirical leanings, or, you know, more than the usual amount of meta references to incest, this show will likely not be for you. On the other hand, if you love comedy that pushes boundaries without pandering to the lowest common denominator, and if you have somehow missed this series, you should make time for Arrested. You will not want for laughter, even if it’s “delightedly uncomfortable” laughter at that.

Every episode of Arrested Development is currently available to stream only on Netflix, as the streaming giant bought the rights to stream the original three seasons as well as the ability to commission additional episodes. Our “Development Arrested” panel will quickly return to the Water Cooler next week to talk Season 4, Remix and otherwise. Stay tuned!

A sampling of the band that laid claim to all the uses of the phrase “Arrested Development”

Progress Report: Mid-Season Report Card for 2018-2019 Pilots

It’s that time of year!  Call it CPU!’s Holiday Present to you!  Or a New Year present! Time to check in on the progress of shows and see which shows are surviving this season and beyond on the major networks.  Is your show on the list? Did it survive cancellation? Read below.

Thanks to TVLine and other sources for helping a girl out.

*Note: with the expansion of CPU!, these initial thoughts are based upon the CPU! Chief’s assessments.  As with last season, a growing number of CPU! members may find shows initially passed by the CPU! Chief and choose to review them.  CPU! readers will be informed if the show’s status changes regarding coverage as the season progresses through the handy CPU! Progress Reports, and all written reviews will be published!

Also, in another noteworthy TV year, the networks have proven slow to cancel, while the streamers, particularly Netflix, have been quite merciless with some of the cuts.  Let’s see how it all shakes out in the wash.

A Million Little Things

A MILLION LITTLE THINGS, ABC

WHEN: Wednesdays at 10/9c

WHO: James Roday (Psych), David Giuntoli (Grimm), Romany Malco (Weeds), Ron Livingston (Sex and the City), Christina Moses (The Originals), Christina Ochoa (Valor, Blood Drive), Allison Miller (Incorporated, Go On), Stephanie Szostak (Satisfaction), Lizzy Greene (Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn), Grace Park (Hawaii Five-0)

WHAT: They say friendship isn’t one big thing, it’s a million little things; and that’s true for a group of friends from Boston who bonded under unexpected circumstances. Some have achieved success, others are struggling in their careers and relationships, but all of them feel stuck in life. After one of them dies unexpectedly, it’s just the wake-up call the others need to finally start living. Along the way they discover that friends may be the one thing to save them from themselves.

__

PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pick Up.  Welcome to the 2018-2019 CPU! network pilot review!  We start off on a strong note, with a pick up for this drama from ABC, but also with a guilty admission by your Chief CP (author of these annual reviews).  Honestly, I’m personally most interested in David Giuntoli and everything about him – outside of a Grimm context, that is – more than I am interested in the basic premise of this plot.  I think this is the Alphabet’s attempt at an answer to ratings juggernaut and NBC success This Is Us; on the other hand, the cast seems strong.  Watching these two minutes also inspires some The Big Chill nostalgia with a modern, Millennial set of characters at the forefront, dealing with the evolution and metamorphosis of friendships into adulthood.  That idea, punctuated by the suicide that starts the series off, connects strongly with this viewer, and I can see some of our other Couch Potatoes also finding some interest in and connection to it.  The trailer left me feeling hopeful for the series, at any rate, so let’s give this one a try, our first pick up for the year.  Hooray for good signs and strong starts!

STATUS: On October 26, 2018, the network ordered a full season of 17 episodes, of which 10 have aired as of the publication date of this post. The pundits think renewal is a “safe bet” or “very likely” as a result of this show of support and modestly decent ratings.

CPU! STATUS: The podcast has received at least one request for coverage of this program, so this pick up is definite and permanent.  Not yet viewed.

Abby's

ABBY’S, NBC

PREMIERE DATE: Spring 2019

WHO: Natalie Morales (Parks and Recreation), Neil Flynn (The Middle), Nelson Franklin (Veep), Jessica Chaffin (Search Party), Leonard Ouzts (Master of None), Kimia Behpoornia (Modern Family, Adam Ruins Everything)

WHAT: Set in the best bar in San Diego, home to good prices, great company and, of course, Abby. This unlicensed, makeshift bar nestled in her backyard is the opposite of everything annoying about today’s party scene. As the oddball cast of regulars will tell you, hanging out at Abby’s is a coveted honor. But once you’re in, you’re family.

__

PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Hesitantly Pick Up.  Without a trailer, this viewer is reluctant to get enthusiastically on board, but two things convinced me to take a look: it’s produced by Michael Schur – creator of The Good Place and Mose Schrute on The Office – and it’s filmed entirely outside.  Though it feels very Cheers-esque, with a female barkeep knowing everyone’s name, early upfront reviews seemed hopeful, so it’s worth a look.  A quick one, anyway.

The Alec Baldwin Show

THE ALEC BALDWIN SHOW, ABC

WHEN: Sundays at 10/9c

WHAT: The one-hour talker will showcase Baldwin’s in-depth conversations with compelling personalities.

__

PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  The CPU! podcast does not talk about talk shows.  How do you feel about Alec Baldwin at the helm of a prime time talk show?

STATUS: In March 2018, the network ordered nine episodes, of which eight have aired as of the publication date of this post. The pundits believe renewal is a “long shot” or “very unlikely,” particularly given some legal troubles that titular talker Alec Baldwin has faced in recent months.

CPU! STATUS: It’s still a talk show, right?  We’ll cover it for this season in this Progress Report format only, however.

All American

ALL AMERICAN, The CW

WHEN: Wednesdays at 9/8c

WHO: Daniel Ezra (The Missing), Taye Diggs (Private Practice), Cody Christian (Teen Wolf), Samantha Logan (13 Reasons Why), Monet Mazur (Castle), Karimah Westbrook (Shameless, Aquarius), Michael Evans Behling

WHAT: When a rising high school football player from South L.A. is recruited to play for Beverly Hills High, the wins, losses and struggles of two families from vastly different worlds — Crenshaw and Beverly Hills — begin to collide. Inspired by the life of pro football player Spencer Paysinger.

__

PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  Despite the presence of always gorgeous Taye Diggs, this sports-ball drama feels incredibly trope-y, including hashed and rehashed concepts of several TV and film properties past: poor, urban kid of color finding himself in a rich, largely white district; the story about a kid who has nothing but talent, heart, and a bit of luck with the offer to test his prowess on a suburban high school football team; and so on.  The trailer does not “wow” in its presentation of these recycled story concepts, and none of the actors apart from Diggs inspire confidence that this property will offer stellar production value beyond the typical good looks of a made-for-the-CW cast.  Plus, our current roster of Couch Potatoes has currently and definitely shied away from TV about sports.  Seriously, way more nerd types and way less jock types populate our own ever-growing cast.  If you want to change that, though, please drop us a line.

STATUS: The network, in a cautious fashion, ordered a full season of 16 episodes, of which 8 have aired as of the publication date of this post. The pundits give 50/50 odds to the possibility of renewal.

CPU! STATUS: We have heard zero buzz about this loosely-biographical sports-ball program.  Are you buzzing in an “All-American” way – or is it just Taye Diggs’ abs?  Let us know.  For now, we stay in the passing lane.

Charmed

CHARMED, The CW

WHEN: Sundays at 9/8c

WHO: Sarah Jeffery (Shades of Blue), Melonie Diaz (The Breaks), Madeleine Mantock (The Tomorrow People), Rupert Evans (Man in the High Castle), Ser’Darius Blain (Survivor’s Remorse, Jane by Design), Charlie Gillespie (Degrassi: Next Class), Ellen Tamaki

WHAT: After the tragic death of their mother, three sisters in a college town are stunned to discover they are witches. Soon this powerful threesome must stand together to fight the everyday and supernatural battles that all modern witches must face: from vanquishing powerful demons to toppling the patriarchy.

__

PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Very Hesitantly Pick Up.  Networks: “What do we want?” Answering themselves: “More reboots!” “When do we want them?” “Now! Because we literally have no other ideas!”  Charmed, the original starring Shannen Doherty, Holly Marie Combs, Alyssa Milano, and later Rose McGowan, was a WB staple for eight seasons, now airs frequently in syndication, and enjoys a healthy streaming afterlife.  Charmed has already been requested as a possible “Looking Back” candidate for the podcast because its loyal fan base endures to this day.  Charmed was a show that this viewer watched voraciously and enthusiastically in its original run.  It was a bit cheesy at times and occasionally suffered from the mismatch of acting talent among the women playing the Halliwell/Matthews sisters, but it was reliable, interesting, and sort of kooky in an entertaining way for a long time.  Like all the other major networks and some streaming outlets, WB offspring The CW could not wait to look into past properties for its own go at a rebooted show from an earlier success, so here, we have Charmed Redux with a new set of sisters exercising a new era of The Power of Three.  I can’t help feeling that this reboot is near blasphemy at its core, given that the original was pretty well loved and still enjoys a loyal, continuing fan devotion.  Plus, the actresses playing the sisters are nowhere near equal to the four who played the Halliwells/Matthews, even if the original four could not be described as amazing performers themselves.  This reboot also seems to be an even darker take, with mom’s death being characterized as outright murder from the jump.  Still, sheer morbid curiosity, a love of fantasy (and supernatural fantasy to boot), and a “can’t look away” feeling propel me to say that CPU! has little choice but to pick this up.  Though you better bet that this will be a “Look Back to Look Forward” setup, and that the two versions of the series will be hotly compared and contrasted by feisty and spicy Couch Potatoes.  Mark my words, gentle reader: the Power of Three may not set you free.

STATUS: On November 8, 2018, the network ordered a full season of 22 episodes, of which 9 have aired as of the publication date of this post. The pundits think renewal chances hover at 50 percent, however.

CPU! STATUS: The podcast has received requests from Viewers Like You as well as some of our resident panelists to cover Charmed in a “Look Back to Look Forward” series, as I expected would likely happen.  Expect a CPU! trademark look at Charmed and its varied and sorted history in the spring or summer of 2019.  Otherwise, not yet viewed.

The Code

THE CODE, CBS

PREMIERE DATE: TBA

WHEN: Midseason

WHO: Anna Wood (Falling Water, Reckless), Ato Essandoh (Chicago Med), Phillipa Soo (Broadway’sHamilton), Raffi Barsoumian (The Vampire Diaries)

WHAT: The military’s brightest minds take on our country’s toughest challenges, inside the courtroom and out, where each attorney is trained as a prosecutor, a defense lawyer, an investigator — and a Marine.

__

PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  There is no trailer, and there is scant information available for this drama, which, mind you, is a military drama and a seeming holdover from the rash of military dramas that debuted last season on the networks, most of which were ultimately canceled.  Plus, Mira Sorvino was attached to this program as its lead for awhile before leaving the role, which is not typically a great sign, and there is very little to be excited about when reviewing the cast list or plot synopsis, so we’ll leave this code non-cracked this season.

The Conners

THE CONNERS, ABC

WHEN: Tuesdays at 8/7c

WHO: John Goodman, Laurie Metcalf, Sara Gilbert, Lecy Goranson, Michael Fishman

WHAT: In the Roseanne spinoff, the Conners are forced to face the daily struggles of life in Lanford in a way they never have before after a sudden turn of events. The iconic family — Dan, Jackie, Darlene, Becky and D.J. — grapples with parenthood, dating, an unexpected pregnancy, financial pressures, aging and in-laws in working-class America. Through it all, the fights, the coupon cutting, the hand-me-downs, the breakdowns — with love, humor and perseverance, the family prevails.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Very Hesitantly Pick Up. Last season, CPU! picked up the Roseanne revival based on the fact that several of our Couch Potatoes, the Chief among them, enjoyed the original series, more or less, and were curious to see how this particular family would weather the reboot/revival treatment.  Though many of us have not yet watched, the ratings seemed to speak for themselves – but then so did Roseanne Barr via her Twitter account.  All politics aside, Roseanne has always been an “x” factor, erratic and sometimes harmful to the public in how she has chosen to wield her influence, but no one can deny that Roseanne would not have been what it was without her.  Now, in a move that sounds, smells, and tastes a bit like “cash grab,” notwithstanding the advocacy for the jobs of those that would otherwise not have had them without Roseanne’s poor life choices (and prejudicial views) mucking up the works, the Alphabet is moving forward with what would ultimately be a spin-off, sans the titular matriarch.  On the one hand, it could be compelling: the rest of the cast are no slouches, especially Laurie Metcalf, and the character of Darlene, particularly, has always served as an interesting focal point for the show.  On the other hand, if the writers don’t hit this one out of the park straight from the dugout, it will not survive all of this melee and ado and will become a truly unfortunate, if not tragic footnote in entertainment history.  The real question is: would this footnote be any more unfortunate or tragic than the original ending, including Dan’s purported death following the family winning the lottery?  CPU! is willing to bet probably not, and we believe the network sees this whole game playing out the same way, so, in the end, we’re left asking “why not?”  Again, it could also be sheer morbid curiosity.  Time, and the rest of the Conners, will tell.

STATUS: The network ordered a season of 11 episodes, of which 8 have aired as of the publication date of this post. The pundits think renewal is a “sure thing” or “all but guaranteed,” as it was widely reported that ABC has entered into renewal negotiations with the show’s producers as of October 2018, and as the spin-off/sequel enjoys the network’s second highest ratings after Grey’s Anatomy.

CPU! STATUS: The interest in the various iterations of Roseanne and her family has been mild, but there is interest.  CPU! will cover all iterations at some point, though it may be later rather than sooner.  Otherwise, not yet viewed.

The Cool Kids

THE COOL KIDS, Fox

WHEN: Fridays at 8:30/7:30c

WHO: Vicki Lawrence (Great News, Mama’s Family), David Alan Grier (The Carmichael Show), Leslie Jordan (Will & Grace), Martin Mull (Roseanne)

WHAT: Three guy friends in a retirement community are the top dogs until they’re blown out of the water by the newest member of the community, a female rebel whose ready to challenge their place.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Very Hesitantly Pick Up. To cut to the chase, if it wasn’t for this cast, I am not willing to bet that either this viewer or fellow potential panelists would find this sitcom premise potentially amusing.  Most of us are not in the target audience, and there are some very flat moments in this trailer that should have offered more and better laughs with the players in this cast.  But, holy wow, look at this cast!  Vicki Lawrence! Leslie Jordan! David Alan Grier! And the erstwhile Colonel Mustard himself, Martin Mull!  They’re charming, they’re funny, they’re veterans – but do they have chemistry, and can a sitcom about residents of a retirement community be potentially appealing to the average and/or typical listeners of podcasts?  The conundrum we face here is why we are so hesitant to be as totally cool as these alleged kids.

STATUS: On October 19, 2018, the network ordered a full season of 22 episodes, of which 9 have aired as of the publication date of this post. The pundits think there is a “safe bet” that the show will be renewed.

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

Dancing With the Stars: Juniors

DANCING WITH THE STARS: JUNIORS, ABC

WHAT: The offshoot will pair celebrity kids with professional junior ballroom dancers to perform choreographed routines, which will be judged by a panel that will include renowned ballroom experts.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  CPU! does not dance along with reality competition shows on our podcast, at least for now.  But, this one’s new this year, so we list it.  Godspeed, DWTS fans!

STATUS: The Season 1 finale aired on December 9, 2018, after a total of 9 episodes.  There is no word yet as to whether this DTWS offshoot will be renewed, but the pundits say “long shot” or “very unlikely.”

CPU! STATUS: It’s still a reality competition show, right?  Still, we’ll track it for its first year.  It’s what we do. (Also, how many reality game shows do we really need?)

The Enemy Within

THE ENEMY WITHIN, NBC

PREMIERE DATE: February 25, 2019

WHO: Jennifer Carpenter (Dexter), Morris Chestnut (Rosewood), Raza Jaffrey (Code Black), Kelli Garner (Pan Am)

WHAT: In spy-hunting thriller, Erica Shepherd is a brilliant former CIA operative, now known as the most notorious traitor in American history serving life in a Supermax prison. Against every fiber of his being but with nowhere else to turn, FBI Agent Will Keaton enlists Shepherd to help track down a fiercely dangerous and elusive criminal she knows all too well.

Watch trailer here.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  Despite the presence of gorgeous Morris Chestnut, and even with a trailer, this particular mid-season thriller feels very hackneyed in terms of its premise, all around, and the snapshot of performances seen here falls sadly flat.  Some early reviews compare this show to Homeland or The Blacklist: Espionage, neither of which resemble current CPU! discussion subjects or ones requested by our panelists and potential panelists.  Really, it’s a show that I can see several of us wanting to like – because we’ve liked something like it before – but not being able to go the distance because it will not be as good as similar properties from which it is heavily borrowing its influence and tone.  If buzz or steam picks up around this mid-season entry, we’ll be open to reviewing our high standards, but for now, we pass.

Fam

FAM, CBS

PREMIERE DATE: January 10, 2019

WHO: Nina Dobrev (The Vampire Diaries), Odessa Adlon (Nashville), Tone Bell (Disjointed), Brian Stokes Mitchell (Mr. Robot), Sheryl Lee Ralph (One Mississippi, Instant Mom)

WHAT: A woman’s dreams of an upstanding life with her new fiancé and his upstanding family are dashed when her younger train wreck half-sister comes to live with her to escape their train wreck of a father.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  There is no trailer for this show and very little information to go on to determine whether or not this program is worth a watch; not even TV pundits with connections have been given a glimpse, but then again, it’s CBS, and they’ve become kind of idiosyncratic as far as the major networks go – and not in a good way.  A few of us at CPU! just spent the last few seasons of The Vampire Diaries NOT watching Nina Dobrev, so she certainly would not be the primary draw here, but as the situational premise of this situation comedy is pretty thin, I am not convinced that it would be enticing to most of the potatoes I know.  If they start talking about it positively, though, we can always rethink the logic.

FBI

FBI, CBS

WHEN: Tuesdays at 9/8c

WHO: Missy Peregrym (Rookie Blue), Jeremy Sisto (Law & Order), Zeeko Zaki (Valor, 24: Legacy), Ebonée Noel (Still Star-Crossed), Sela Ward (CSI: NY)

WHAT: The Dick Wolf-produced drama explores the inner workings of the New York office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  Despite a decently packaged trailer and a potentially unusual and compelling turn by Missy Peregrym in the lead role, if Dick Wolf has his stamp on this, it will likely be a crime-of-the-week, neatly wrapped up in an episode (or two) procedural show, this time exploring the inner workings of one of the federal law enforcement agencies.  We are not covering procedural TV (much) here at CPU!, and when we do, we’ll have to recruit a reviewer or moderator to do it because this Chief CP likely won’t be watching, at least not without an interesting gimmick to make it seem different from others of its genre.  I can’t imagine this to be something entirely different than Law & Order and its franchise of shows, even if this series is, also, not entirely the same.  CPU! will pass for now.

STATUS: On October 11, 2018, the network ordered a full season of an unknown number of episodes, though it will be greater than the initial order of 13 episodes, of which 10 have aired as of the publication date of this post. The pundits think there is a “safe bet” or a “very likely” chance of renewal.

CPU! STATUS: The talk lines are silent.  Maybe our podcaster roster and/or listeners don’t want to be wiretapped?  Bad joke.  Procedural TV does not fare well in our corner currently.  If you want to change that, drop us a line.

The Fix

THE FIX, ABC

PREMIERE DATE: March 18, 2019

WHO: Robin Tunney (The Mentalist), Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (Ten Days in the Valley, Lost), Mouzam Makkar (The Exorcist), Breckin Meyer (Franklin & Bash), Merrin Dungey (Big Little Lies, The Resident), Scott Cohen (Gilmore Girls), Marc Blucas (Underground, Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Adam Rayner (Tyrant), Alex Saxon (The Fosters)

WHAT: Follows an L.A. district attorney who suffers a devastating defeat when prosecuting an A-list actor for double murder. With her high-profile career derailed, she flees for a quieter life in Washington. Eight years later when this same celebrity is under suspicion for another murder, Maya Travis is lured back to the DA’s office for another chance at justice.

Trailer available at ABC’s YouTube channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  Though this cast is teeming with familiar faces from large and small screen (was that Robin Givens in the trailer?), this show seems (un)remarkably like a romanticized version of the O.J. Simpson criminal trial given a fantasy makeover, wherein the put-upon district attorney who failed her job the first time gets a second chance to re-try the case, with a different fact pattern in which to dig her bared teeth.  Since the executive producer is Marcia Clark, one of the DA’s who lost the criminal trial of the disgraced ex-NFL star and, therefore, probably felt like she failed at life for many decades to come, the premise of this show, still more, smacks of the playing out of her own revenge fantasy, one in which she can finally take down the elusive defendant who broke her career and her spirit.  OJ was probably guilty, but hey, I guess the glove didn’t fit or something.  I lived through the debacle that was that trial, when it created and fueled the news glut we still enjoy today (without so much internet) and which divided the nation again/still by race and by class.  While the trial itself inspired a critical examination of the judicial system, I, frankly, do not need to live through a fantasized version of the same story, this time delving into an “It’s a Wonderful Life” concept of do-overs to redeem the poor, put-upon, plucky, but intelligent DA who couldn’t get her conviction in the end.  I also worry that the character played by the erstwhile Mr. Eko from Lost could become a caricature quickly if not handled properly and with sympathy, given the obvious parallel to real life that he presents.  All in all, suspension of disbelief would certainly be difficult for this particular potato’s personal palate, but if you watch and disagree, let us know.  My curiosity simply isn’t morbid enough to need this fix.

God Friended Me

GOD FRIENDED ME, CBS

WHEN: Sundays at 8/7c (beginning Oct. 7)

WHO: Brandon Micheal Hall (The Mayor), Joe Morton (Scandal), Violett Beane (The Flash), Javicia Leslie (MacGyver), Suraj Sharma (Homeland)

WHAT: Questions of faith, existence and science are explored in this dramedy about an outspoken atheist whose life is turned upside down when he is “friended” by God on social media. Unwittingly, he becomes an agent of change in the lives and destinies of others around him.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pick Up.  Now, maybe I’m feeling really vulnerable right now, but I teared up at the trailer, which means this one got to me in 3-4 minutes, and that’s not something to sneeze at when doing the quick math here.  Properties with pure religious motifs have not fared well on prime time network television in recent years, but perhaps what makes this one a bit different is that the show will attempt to explore the tough but meaningful subject of faith and the spiritual through more of a focused dialogue, beginning with the main character who runs a podcast about atheism.  Adding in the social media spin for today’s modern audiences, this premise teases something potentially fresh and original without becoming too preachy.  In fact, the show may become the kind of feel-good comedy – and discussion of hope – that today’s audiences crave in these testy times of geopolitical conflict.  Plus, I found the main characters to be largely winning – one of them is the sometime Jessie Quick from CPU! fave The Flash – so, all in all, it feels like this program deserves a leap of faith.  Friend request accepted.

STATUS: On October 19, 2018, the network ordered a full season of an unknown number of episodes; 11 have aired as of the publication date of this post.  The pundits give this series’ renewal chances 50/50 odds.

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

Grand Hotel

GRAND HOTEL, ABC

PREMIERE DATE: June 17, 2019

WHO: Roselyn Sanchez (Devious Maids), Demian Bichir (The Bridge), Chris Warren (The Fosters), Wendy Raquel Robinson (The Game), Shalim Ortiz (Heroes), Denyse Tontz (The Fosters), Bryan Craig (General Hospital), Lincoln Younes (Home and Away), Justina Adorno (Seven Seconds), Anne Winters (13 Reasons Why), Feliz Ramirez

WHAT: Set in the last family-owned hotel in multicultural Miami Beach. Charismatic Santiago Mendoza owns the hotel, while his glamorous second wife, Gigi, and their adult children enjoy the spoils of success. Wealthy and beautiful guests bask in luxury, but scandals, escalating debt and explosive secrets hide beneath the picture-perfect exterior.

Trailer available at ABC’s YouTube channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  Produced by former Desperate Housewife Eva Longoria, this new sudsy soap screams telenovela for the now, with sex, sex, sex oozing from its Miami infused pores, a regular scandal (no, not that Scandal) in the making for the Disney-owned Alphabet network.  This will probably be a guilty, or not so guilty, pleasure for quite a few viewers, with an attractive cast, a colorful backdrop, and shocking secrets regularly revealed to appalled but enthralled gasps, but unless requested otherwise, CPU! will back away slowly, since soaps we cover are few and far between.  We will instead remember that the real Grand Hotel is on Mackinac Island in Michigan.  Granted, the clientele is probably very different all around.  All jokes aside, though, this show honestly has potential for success but is not the typical fare that appeals to too many of the CPU! Couch Potatoes.  Maybe they will surprise me, though.  You can request our coverage too, though, viewer – and did you know that you, too, could become one of our panelists?  Sign our guestbook to inquire as to how.

Happy Together

HAPPY TOGETHER, CBS

WHEN: Mondays at 8:30/7:30c

WHO: Damon Wayans Jr. (New Girl, Happy Endings), Amber Stevens West (Ghosted, The Carmichael Show), Felix Mallard (Neighbours), Stephnie Weir (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend), Chris Parnell (Grown-ish, SNL), Victor Williams (The King of Queens)

WHAT: A 30-something couple, tired of their mundane life, start to reconnect with their younger, cooler selves when a young pop star who is drawn to their super normal suburban life, moves in.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  Canned laughter.  Pauses for the canned laughter.  Pregnant pauses.  Dozing.  That last one was me; I’m the one dozing.  This new sitcom seems like a one-note joke that cannot possibly sustain over 22 episodes, much less several additional seasons, and will probably get old in one.  It’s clear that this new program wants to rely on Damon Wayans, Jr.’s considerable charm and comedic timing, but he simply doesn’t have THAT much charm and comedic timing to overcome the ham and cheese on rye flavoring this bland soupy sauce of a sitcom is serving up.  Sure, we all want to be young and hip again, but how tired is the “we’re boring, so this cool rock star will make us cool too” trope?  I did not laugh once watching the trailer, and with such a recycled and rehashed premise, I don’t see anyone at CPU! (or beyond) requesting our in-depth discussion about this show.  Look, Damon’s dad had to try a few times to get a sitcom that lasted too.  Genetics or something, right?

STATUS: The network ordered 13 episodes and declined to order more as of November 2018; 11 have aired as of the publication date of this post.  The pundits believe this series’ renewal chances hover at “long shot” or “unlikely,” given the network’s reticence to order more episodes.

CPU! STATUS: Frankly, I am surprised that this show has a shot at all.  No one has watched a first episode around here, but the preview kind of said it all, and, most notably, no one is talking about it.  Anywhere.

I Feel Bad

I FEEL BAD, NBC

WHO: Sarayu Blue (No Tomorrow), Paul Adelstein (Private Practice), Zach Cherry (Crashing, Search Party), James Buckley (The Inbetweeners), Johnny Pemberton (Superstore), Aisling Bea

WHAT: Emet is a mom, boss, wife, friend and daughter who is just figuring it out like the rest of us. Sure, she feels bad when she has a sexy dream about someone other than her husband, or when she pretends not to know her kids when they misbehave in public, or when she uses her staff to help solve personal problems. But that’s OK, right? Nobody can have it all and do it perfectly.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pick Up.  First, the executive producer is Amy Poehler.  Win.  Second, sure the situations in this comedy probably have been done (and done, and done) elsewhere, but how many times have they been done honestly, with the kind of in-your-face humor that resonates?  Also win.  The Peacock has really made a comeback recently, at least in the comedy department, by choosing smart comedies with familiar premises but fresh elements developing those premises to something better than they might otherwise be.  Sarayu Blue and Paul Adelstein have clear chemistry; her parents will no doubt be the comic underdogs; and the social commentary will be relevant and up to date, unlike the last sitcom we reviewed in this pilot entry.  Perhaps, this “pick up” is somewhat inspired by a trailer that made me laugh, as opposed to the one that just failed at that basic task, but isn’t that what a sitcom should be – a show that makes the viewer laugh?  It’s worth a look, at least, because I can tell that this show already has a better chance of sustaining beyond one season than most in its genre.

STATUS: The Season 1 finale aired on December 27, 2018, after a total of 13 episodes.  The pundits think this series’ renewal chances are a “long shot” or “unlikely.”

CPU! STATUS: Frankly, I am surprised that this show doesn’t have a better shot.  There has been some modest positive feedback from the CPU! inner circles, and while the show has been labeled “not as funny as some,” the general reaction is that it is still funny.  The Peacock indicated that it would make a decision at a later date regarding renewal, which means it all comes down to money and potential next season pilots.  Otherwise, not yet viewed.

In the Dark

IN THE DARK, The CW

PREMIERE DATE: January 24, 2019

WHO: Perry Mattfeld (Shameless), Rich Sommer (Mad Men), Kathleen York (The Client List, The West Wing), Derek Webster (NCIS: New Orleans), Brooke Markham (Foursome), Keston John (My Kitchen Rules)

WHAT: A blind woman is the only “witness” to the murder of her drug-dealing friend. After the police dismiss her story, she sets out with her dog, Pretzel, to find the killer while also managing her colorful dating life and the job she hates at the guide dog school owned by her overprotective parents.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  The trailer was apparently only screened at up-fronts, but this not-so-connected viewer needs a trailer to make an unbiased assessment of this show.  Without one, and given the above premise description, it sounds like a schmaltzy hodgepodge of lovable dog, inspiring tale of rising to meet the challenges of adversity, and murder-mystery procedural rolled into a saccharine goo.  Plus, there is no one in the cast that offers a draw, and it’s on the CW, which struggles outside of the fantasy/science fiction genre sometimes.  If buzz, accolades, or steam say this dark show is full of unexpected light, we might reconsider, but right now, this viewer offers a solid “meh,” and we unitedly move on.

The InBetwen

THE INBETWEEN, NBC

PREMIERE DATE: Some reports say January 2019; others say Spring 2019

WHEN: Midseason

WHO: Harriet Dyer (Australia’s Love Child), Paul Blackthorne (Arrow), Anne-Marie Johnson (In the Heat of the Night), Cindy Luna (The Last Ship), Chad James Buchanan (Star)

WHAT: Cassie Bishop can see and communicate with the dead, helping them with their unresolved problems, whether she likes it or not. When her longtime friend Det. Tom Hackett and his new partner, former FBI Agent Damien Asante, need help solving a darkly puzzling murder, Cassie agrees to use her abilities. Despite her reluctance, she may have found a way to keep her demons at bay, all while solving some of the city’s most challenging cases.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pick Up.  This new drama sounds like a cross between The Sixth Sense and garden variety procedural crime/murder mystery television, but new fantasy appears to be rather limited this season, and that’s what the CP’s live for around here (this Chief CP does, anyway).  Plus, Paul Blackthorne left CPU! covered Arrow to come be on this show, so we’ll give it a chance.  If the bend is more procedural than serial drama, though, we might lose interest, but we’ll see how this one shakes out in the end.

The Kids Are Alright

THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHT, ABC

WHEN: Tuesdays at 8:30/7:30c

WHO: Michael Cudlitz (The Walking Dead), Mary McCormack (In Plain Sight), Caleb Foote (American Crime Story: The Assassination of Giani Versace), Christopher Paul Richards (Me, Myself & I), Jack Gore (Electric Dreams), Sawyer Barth (Public Morals), Sam Straley, Andy Walken, Santino Barnard

WHAT: Set in the 1970s, the ensemble comedy follows a traditional Irish-Catholic family as they navigate big and small changes during one of America’s most turbulent decades. In a working-class neighborhood outside Los Angeles, Mike and Peggy raise eight boisterous boys who live out their days with little supervision. The household is turned upside down when oldest son Lawrence returns home and announces he’s quitting the seminary to go off and “save the world.”

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  The Wonder Years meets That 70s Show with a dash of Modern Family and maybe All in the Family as well as Eight is Enough thrown into the mix to become The Kids Are Alright, which, incidentally, was the working title of That 70s Show. Though I wanted to like what this teaser trailer was serving, this new sitcom boasts much in the way of ham-fisted nostalgia, in spades, coupled with forced parallelism to our modern times, while depending on what seems to be a lackluster cast of mostly unknown quantities trying, hard, to elicit laughs.  It even has voice-over narration in the way Daniel Stern’s Kevin Arnold talked over the younger Fred Savage version of the character’s antics in The Wonder Years.  Perhaps, there is potential to appeal to viewers hungry for this type of on-the-nose comedy, and if there is something we’re missing here, you can always tell us, but again, nothing struck as particularly funny as much as “all been done before” while watching the trailer, so we’re not willing to say this one’s alright, at least for now.

STATUS: The network ordered 22 episodes and ordered an additional episode in December 2018; 8 have aired as of the publication date of this post.  The pundits think renewal is a “safe bet” or “very likely,” given the network’s confidence so far in the series.

CPU! STATUS: There is tons of TV to watch right now, and no one has talked about it, requested podcast coverage, or otherwise made mention.  I don’t know if these kids are alright are not, but I have not been convinced to pass the “pass.”  There are several opportunities, though…feel free to take one yourself by commenting on this post.

Legacies

LEGACIES, The CW

WHEN: Thursdays at 9/8c

WHO: Matt Davis (The Vampire Diaries), Danielle Rose Russell (The Originals), Quincy Fouse (The Goldbergs), Kaylee Bryant (Santa Clarita Diet), Jenny Boyd

WHAT: The Vampire Diaries and Originals spinoff follows the next generation of supernatural beings at The Salvatore School for the Young and Gifted, including Klaus Mikaelson’s daughter, 17-year-old Hope Mikaelson; Alaric Saltzman’s twins, Lizzie and Josie Saltzman; and other young adults come of age in the most unconventional way possible, nurtured to be their best selves in spite of their worst impulses. Will these young witches, vampires and werewolves become the heroes they want to be — or the villains they were born to be?

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pick Up.  CPU! includes fans who talked for several episodes about The Vampire Diaries and another panel will be finishing up ongoing water cooler coverage of The Originals in the very near future, now that the series has recently ended.  I imagine, therefore, that a chunk of us will want to check out this spin-off of the Vampire Diaries universe, if for no other reason than that any one of us might have a tough time letting said universe go for good.  Still, it would be a tall order to imagine that any of these characters, or their portraying actors, will be as interesting as the leading casts of either TVD or The Originals, but since the theme of the season seems to be morbid curiosity, we’ll just carry that with us as we give this new entry in the annals of vampire/supernatural fantasy fiction a try (and even if Alaric’s school is the supernatural Hogwarts).  Plus, we might see guest appearances by anyone from either of the two casts, so, morbid curiosity for the win!

STATUS: The network cautiously and in a staggered fashion ordered a full season of 16 episodes; 7 have aired as of the publication date of this post.  The pundits give renewal odds in the 50/50 category, though the show is faring better than its parent spin-off, The Originals, did in its final season…

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed, primarily because our fans of The Vampire Diaries universe expressed in the last related podcast episode that they felt somewhat burnt out by this corner of their various fandoms. Still, after time passes…who knows?

Magnum P.I.

MAGNUM P.I., CBS

WHEN: Mondays at 9/8c

WHO: Jay Hernandez (Scandal, Last Resort), Perdita Weeks (Penny Dreadful), Zachary Knighton (Happy Endings), Stephen Hill (Luke Cage, Boardwalk Empire)

WHAT: An update of the classic television series set in Hawaii, the show follows Thomas Magnum, a decorated ex-Navy SEAL who, upon returning home from Afghanistan, repurposes his military skills to become a private investigator.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  Do you see Tom Selleck anywhere?  Do you?!?!  The answer to this question is the same answer to the question, “Will you be watching this latest reboot?” From the network that also brought us reboots of Hawaii Five-O and MacGyver – and, hell, of the entire 1980s – we now have a reboot of Magnum PI. Rebooted theme song included.  I didn’t watch much of the original and can’t imagine watching a less awesome actor than Tom Selleck taking on the part of the titular Magnum.  Call me crotchety, but this reboot madness is, well, madness.  Of course, wait until you read just a bit further.

We pass, by the way.

STATUS: The network ordered a full season of an unknown number of episodes on October 19, 2018; 10 have aired as of the publication date of this post.  The pundits think renewal chances are squarely at fifty percent.

CPU! STATUS: We have had one request to talk about this show, which may later spark a “Look Back to Look Forward” series about this latest reboot/remake.  There is no clamoring currently, but Jay Hernandez seems to leave viewers weak in the knees. Still, with this request, that means we must change the status to “very hesitantly pick up, not yet viewed.”  We are a podcast by the people, for the people, after all. 

Manifest

MANIFEST, NBC

WHEN: Mondays at 10/9c

WHO: Josh Dallas (Once Upon a Time), Melissa Roxburgh (Valor), J.R. Ramirez (Jessica Jones, Power), Athena Karkanis (Zoo), Parveen Kaur (Beyond), Luna Blaise (Fresh Off the Boat), Jack Messina

WHAT: When Montego Air Flight 828 landed safely after a turbulent but routine flight, the crew and passengers were relieved. Yet in the span of those few hours, the world had aged five years and their friends, families and colleagues, after mourning their loss, had given up hope and moved on. Now, faced with the impossible, they’re all given a second chance. But as their new realities become clear, a deeper mystery unfolds and some of the returned passengers soon realize they may be meant for something greater than they ever thought possible.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pick Up.  Though the Peacock network may yet be trying for its next Lost, like so many other networks, ABC included, have tried before it, and though the trailer was not the best packaged presentation to tease the mystery being offered here, this new drama does offer some areas of interest, though this viewer’s immediate question was: “Did they fly over the Bermuda Triangle?”  Our Once Upon a Time panelists might be interested in the quick return of top-billed Josh Dallas, the once upon a time Prince Charming from the recently ended ABC fantasy.  Our Marvel’s Defenders panel may recognize J.R. Ramirez from the second season of Jessica Jones.  Ultimately, though, the core mystery is intriguing: where did the plane go, and why didn’t they age?  Though my vote is Bermuda Triangle voodoo, or maybe alien kidnapping, I’m intrigued enough to want to watch to learn the answers.

STATUS: On October 18, 2018, the network ordered additional episodes, bringing the first full season grand total to 16; 9 have aired as of the publication date of this post.  The pundits believe it is a safe bet that the show will be renewed (and, to the extent that we wear the pundit mantle, we agree).

CPU! STATUS: Manifest has been requested as a podcast candidate, and there has been some fairly emphatic buzz about this show – not Lost level buzz but unmistakable buzz, nonetheless.  Expect to see a Manifest podcast panel in the future.

Murphy Brown

MURPHY BROWN, CBS

WHO: Original stars Candice Bergen, Faith Ford, Joe Regalbuto and Grant Shaud, plus Tyne Daly (Cagney & Lacey), Jake McDorman (Limitless, Greek), Nik Dodani (Atypical)

WHAT: Bergen reprises her role as the investigative journalist, who returns to a world of cable news, social media, fake news, and a very different political and cultural climate.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pick Up.  It’s madness, I tell you!  But, hey, do you see Candice Bergen?  Do you?!?!  Well…that is the question, you got your answer, and so on, etc. que sera, fin. Of all the reboots to reboot, this one couldn’t be more appropriate or timely for today’s geopolitical circus, which, frankly, depresses this CP regardless of on which side of the aisle you prefer to hang your hat.  Back in the day, Murphy Brown was a hard-hitting situation comedy that challenged the tenets passing for the conservatism heading the country and the bumbling silence of the liberal answer, all while also holding the media complex, then far less complex, accountable for their contribution to the insanity.  Now, the world is a lot more insane, and, frankly, I could use Murphy’s brand of loyalty to the truth and skewering sarcasm to make me feel better about the state of things.  Though the reboot moves on without the inimitable Charles Kimbrough and the now deceased Robert Pastorelli, two ingredients we might end up missing more than we think, I believe the world is more ready for an older, sassier Murphy than they are for a Magnum PI who is not Tom Selleck.  Dan Quayle, eat your heart out!  Mike Pence: brace yourself!

STATUS: The Season 1 finale aired on December 20, 2018, after a total of 13 episodes.  Though the network has gone on record to indicate that the Eye is considering renewal, chances are not good (“long shot,” “unlikely”).  The ratings have been erratic, and the political platform of this program, though well placed in the George HW Bush era, might not land as deftly in the Trumpian era of American politics and media, particularly given the public’s widely varying regard for the press, currently.

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

The Neighborhood

THE NEIGHBORHOOD, CBS

WHEN: Mondays at 8/7c

WHO: Cedric the Entertainer (The Soul Man), Max Greenfield (New Girl), Beth Behrs (2 Broke Girls), Sheaun McKinney (Great News), Marcel Spears (The Mayor), Tichina Arnold (Survivor’s Remorse), Hank Greenspan

WHAT: The nicest guy in the Midwest moves his family into a tough neighborhood in L.A. where not everyone appreciates his extreme neighborliness.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Very Hesitantly Pick Up.  With only a 30 second teaser available to assess this new comedy, this viewer is not particularly hopeful or confident that things will be all that good in this neighborhood.  Still, Cedric the Entertainer is reliably funny, and Max Greenfield’s sense of comedic timing (the erstwhile Schmidt on recently ended New Girl, of course) could be the winning ingredient, while lightly poking fun at some sociological phenomena of this day and age that will cross some important social and cultural boundaries.  Or, it could just be a hot mess, since Max was a last minute recasting, particularly if it relies on a traditional sitcom format, laugh track included, to elicit viewer laughs.  Still, we’ve given other pick ups to shows with less going for them, so why not?

STATUS: On October 19, 2018, the Eye ordered the “back 9” and brought the program’s full first season episode total to 22; 11 have aired as of the publication date of this post.  The pundits say renewal is likely.

CPU! STATUS: The CPU! Podcast received a request to cover this show in podcast format, so this pick up is definite and permanent.  Otherwise, not yet viewed.

New Amsterdam

NEW AMSTERDAM, NBC

WHEN: Tuesdays at 10/9c

WHO: Ryan Eggold (The Blacklist), Janet Montgomery (Salem), Freema Agyeman (Sense8, Doctor Who), Anupam Kher (Sense8), Tyler Labine (Reaper), Jocko Sims (The Last Ship)

WHAT: Inspired by Bellevue, the oldest public hospital in America, the medical drama follows the brilliant and charming Dr. Max Goodwin, the institution’s newest medical director who sets out to tear up the bureaucracy and provide exceptional care.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Hesitantly Pick Up.  Okay, I’ll grant you: it’s another medical drama, which CPU! doesn’t cover much, and there are few genres that rely so heavily on formulaic tropes as the medical drama (outside of procedural TV).  Yet, there’s something a bit different about this medical drama, at least given what was presented in the trailer.  And NBC is on fire this coming season with some intriguing pilots and orders to season that sort of break mold – so why shouldn’t their selection for a medical drama be different, even if they might be looking to find their next ER, which was a tent pole staple of evening TV on this very network for nearly two decades.  The doctor in the lead has cancer, is appointed director of medicine at the oldest hospital in the nation, and wants to disrupt the system enough to get the hospital to return focus to actual medicine and not upon speedy service and expensive billing.  And really – isn’t that what we all want? Sure, this one could descend rapidly into schmaltz, but I don’t know.  There’s something a bit bolder here than the normal medical drama, and I think I’m here for it.  Let’s see if other Couch Potatoes feel the same.

STATUS: On October 10, 2018, the Peacock ordered the “back 9” of this drama, marking a full season of 22 episodes; 9 have aired as of the publication date of this post.  Yet, there is no consensus about predictions related to chances of renewal.

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

The Passage

THE PASSAGE, Fox

PREMIERE DATE: January 14, 2019

WHO: Mark-Paul Gosselaar (Pitch), Vincent Piazza (Boardwalk Empire), Brianne Howey (The Exorcist), Emmanuelle Chriqui (Entourage), Saniyya Sidney (American Horror Story: Roanoke), Jamie McShane (Bloodline), Caroline Chikezie (The Shannara Chronicles)

WHAT: Based on author Justin Cronin’s best‐selling trilogy of the same name, the drama centers around a secret government medical facility experimenting with a dangerous virus that could either cure all disease or cause the downfall of the human race. The series focuses on a 10‐year‐old girl named Amy Bellafonte, who is chosen to be a test subject for this experiment and Brad Wolgast, the Federal agent who becomes her surrogate father as he tries to protect her.

Trailer available at Fox’s YouTube channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pick Up. Though this CP thinks she might actually want to read these books first after watching the trailer, I am all sorts of intrigued by the story – which feels very movie-like, by the way, in terms of tension and mystery – being presented by The Passage.  First, I think Zach Morris is no longer the worst, for reals, though.  Mark-Paul Gosselaar seems to be putting forth a compelling effort in the lead character role for this show and more of a compelling effort than I’ve seen him put forth recently.  Second, what a tangled web of moral ambiguity we’re about to watch!  No wonder these books were bestsellers.  This show presents a heck of a lot of science fiction fueled potential, and that’s what we love here at CPU!, so pick this one up we shall – seems like easy passage to me.

Proven Innocent

PROVEN INNOCENT, Fox

PREMIERE DATE: February 15, 2019

WHO: Rachelle Lefevre (Under the Dome), Russell Hornsby (Grimm), Kelsey Grammer (Boss), Vincent Kartheiser (Mad Men), Riley Smith (Frequency, Nashville), Nikki M. James (BrainDead), Clare O’Connor (Easy)

WHAT: A legal drama set in an wrongful conviction firm. Led by a fierce and fearless female lawyer with a hunger for justice, the team reopens investigations, putting their own lives in danger to exonerate the innocent that were “proven” guilty.

Trailer available at Fox’s YouTube channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Very Hesitantly Pick Up. There are medical dramas, and then there are legal dramas.  No TV season can be without 20 of each.  Though the trailer here presented a premise that promises to be manipulative and somewhat force-fed, this viewer is drawn to cast members this time out, particularly Russell Hornsby, who we loved on Grimm; Kelsey Grammer, who is more than a mere Boss; and Vincent Kartheiser, married to Alexis Bledel and sometime supporting star of Mad Men and Angel.  I will give this one a try for them, but if this drama falls into a nebulous sticky goo of manipulative feel-good lawyer-type stuff, it won’t last – for us or for the viewing public, at least not in an entertainment complex saturated with vehicles just like it.

The Red Line

THE RED LINE, CBS

PREMIERE DATE: Spring 2019

WHEN: Midseason

WHO: Noah Wyle (ER), Noel Fisher (Shameless), Michael Patrick Thornton (Private Practice), Emayatzy Corinealdi (Ballers, Hand of God), Vinny Chhibber (NoTomorrow), Aliyah Royale, Howard Charles (The Musketeers), Elizabeth Laidlaw (Boss)

WHAT: After a white cop in Chicago mistakenly shoots and kills a black doctor, we follow three vastly different families that all have connections with the case as the story is told from each perspective.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. There is no trailer available to watch for the TV pundits, so judging from the scant synopsis offered above, this particular new vehicle has the potential to be Crash, the TV show.  Or, perhaps it’s another go at Shots Fired, a limited series that aired on Fox and was canceled after one season of low ratings.  As easy on the eyes as Noah Wyle is, and as happy as we are to see him back on TV, there simply isn’t enough to go on to establish a connection beyond what seems visibly recycled.  If buzz, accolades, or steam start steaming up the joint, we’ll happily reconsider.  We’re really quite flexible around here.  There’s nothing preventing us from doing our yoga while we couch potato, you know.

Rel

REL, Fox

WHEN: Sundays at 9:30/8:30c (beginning Sept. 30)

WHO: Lil Rel Howery (Get Out), Sinbad (A Different World, The Sinbad Show), Jordan L. Jones, Jessica “Jess Hilarious” Moore

WHAT: Lil Rel, a prideful, self-made success who lives by the code to “always believe in yourself and great things will come,” finds that attitude put to the test when he learns his wife is having an affair with his own barber. He tries to rebuild his life post-divorce as a long-distance single father on the South Side of Chicago who’s on a quest for love, respect and a new barber.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass. Holy crap!  It’s Sinbad!  Sinbad aside, though, Lil Rel feels a tad, a smidge, a smudge, a whit, an iota….you get the drift….just like a wannabe Tyler Perry or maybe an Eddie Murphy, the one of Nutty Professor days, without actually being all that funny.  I might not be in the target audience for this comedy, which I can respect, but this viewer also thinks that this new comedy might be trying too hard for laughs like some other new sitcoms on this list.  Anyway, I only laughed once at the trailer – at Sinbad – and just don’t feel that this show’s worth the look, but if you can convince us otherwise, by all means.  Give it a go.

STATUS: It looks as though Fox initially ordered 13 episodes; 10 have aired as of the publication date of this post.  The pundits think renewal is a long shot.

CPU! STATUS: The critics have not been kind to this sitcom, and the ratings have been altogether poor.  No one is talking about this comedy around the united couch potatoes, so we think we made the correct initial call.  Feel free to talk us out of it – if you can.

The Rookie

THE ROOKIE, ABC

WHEN: Tuesdays at 10/9c

WHO: Nathan Fillion (Castle), Melissa O’Neil (Dark Matter), Eric Winter (Rosewood, Witches of East End), Richard T. Jones (Wisdom of the Crowd), Mercedes Mason (Fear the Walking Dead), Afton Williamson (The Night Of, Banshee), Titus Makin (The Path, Pretty Little Liars), Alyssa Diaz (Ray Donovan, Zoo)

WHAT: Starting over isn’t easy, especially for small town guy John Nolan who, after a life-altering incident, is pursuing his dream of being an LAPD officer. As the force’s oldest rookie, he’s met with skepticism from some higher-ups who see him as just a walking midlife crisis. If he can’t keep up with the young cops and the criminals, he’ll be risking lives including his own. But if he can use his life experience, determination and sense of humor to give him an edge, he may just become a success in this new chapter of his life.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  As much as a return of Nathan Fillion to prime-time TV is a sight for sore eyes no matter how you slice and dice this particular puree, unfortunately, he’s returning in a cop drama.  And while it is a cop drama with a twist, where he plays an older rookie being judged by younger members of the police force (and command), the trailer seems to indicate that, ultimately, it’s still a cop drama.  I think people will watch this show for him – this viewer momentarily contemplated it – and it might even do well.  Unfortunately, apart from the erstwhile Captain Mal, the erstwhile Captain Hammer, and the erstwhile Castle, not a captain, there is very little that connects for this particular potato, and I’m pretty doubtful the current CPU! panelist lineup will fare much better.  With all that said, we wish Mr. Fillion all the best and may be influenced to change our minds with the right amount of water cooler buzz.  Or, just contact us!  We like that.

STATUS: In November 2018, the Alphabet network ordered a full season, bring the first season’s episode total to 20; 8 episodes have aired as of the publication date of this post.  The pundits think renewal is likely.

CPU! STATUS: No one’s requested or talked about this show yet.  We want to watch Nathan Fillion most of the time.  Give us reasons why this time should be no exception, cop show or no cop show.

Roswell New Mexico

ROSWELL, NEW MEXICO, The CW

PREMIERE DATE: January 15, 2019

WHO: Jeanine Mason (Grey’s Anatomy), Nathan Parsons (The Originals), Tyler Blackburn (Pretty Little Liars), Michael Trevino (The Vampire Diaries), Heather Hemmens (Hellcats), Lily Cowles (BrainDead), Michael Vlamis (New Girl), Trevor St. John (Containment), Karan Oberoi (Notorious, NCIS)

WHAT: After reluctantly returning to her tourist-trap hometown of Roswell, New Mexico, the daughter of undocumented immigrants discovers a shocking truth about her teenage crush who is now a police officer: he’s an alien who has kept his unearthly abilities hidden his entire life. She protects his secret as the two reconnect and begin to investigate his origins, but when a violent attack and long-standing government cover-up point to a greater alien presence on Earth, the politics of fear and hatred threaten to expose him and destroy their deepening romance.

Trailer available at TVLine’s YouTube channel (here).

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Very Hesitantly Pick Up.  Oh, hey, CW, I see you.  You’re beefing up, not one, but two of the WB’s oldest, most cult-adored properties for this coming season, eh?  Even though you’ve traditionally done better than your big brother networks at aiming for the original and then sticking with it until you’ve bled it dry?  Unlike Charmed, Roswell has more of a cult following even than some of the WB’s – and the CW’s – most cult-y audience favorites.  It lasted for only a few seasons in its original run, but those that are in the Roswell fan club speak highly of it.  While I never caught that one, though I can’t say why for sure, as Roswell is the kind of vehicle typically up this viewer’s normal alley of weird and wacky sci-fi TV, and considering that this potato and CPU! in its early days gave Star-Crossed, a very Roswell-like science fiction romance that was canceled quickly by the CW, a chance, I do know that a few of our resident Couch Potatoes are big fans of the first version of this alien love story.  Will they be of this reboot?  Well, we will very hesitantly pick this one up and have what will, no doubt, be another judgmental look back to look forward series.  We may even talk about the Charmed reboot and this one in succession.  I will say that what this reboot has going for it more than anything else: Nathan Parsons.  He has romantic lead potential not fully tapped or explored so far, typically because his characters are short-lived, and he has acted in other popular genre entries like True Blood and The Originals.  So, the show is worth a wary look.  A very wary look.

Schooled

SCHOOLED, ABC

PREMIERE DATE: January 9, 2019

WHO: AJ Michalka, Tim Meadows and Bryan Callen (The Goldbergs)

WHAT: Set in 1990-something, the Goldbergs spinoff follows the hilarious teachers of William Penn Academy, who, despite their eccentricities and crazy personal lives, are heroes to their students.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass For Now.  CPU! is not currently covering The Goldbergs, either on the podcast or in blog format, so before we consider even looking into a spin-off of said flashback comedy, which propels us from 80s to 90s, no less, we would want to take a look at the comedy that “schooled” this one into being.  We’ll keep an eye on it, though, given its spin-off status, and see how it fares.

Single Parents

SINGLE PARENTS, ABC

WHEN: Wednesdays at 9:30/8:30c

WHO: Taran Killam (SNL), Leighton Meester (Gossip Girl), Brad Garrett (Everybody Loves Raymond), Kimrie Lewis (Scandal), Jake Choi (Hawaii Five-O, Younger), Marlow Barkley, Tyler Wladis, Devin Trey Campbell, Grace Hazelett, Sadie Hazelett

WHAT: Follows a group of single parents as they lean on each other to help raise their 7-year-old kids and maintain some kind of personal lives outside of parenthood.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  Though this sitcom actually has some solid potential to sustain, and more than some of the other new sitcom entries on the season, given some welcome use of sarcasm and irony to tell the jokes, the people who will find this funniest will, no doubt, be in the group referenced by the title, or at least parents in general, which this potato cannot currently claim to be.  If any parental panelist sprung forward, though, and said that they would like to talk about this one, I would probably quickly change my mind about this “pass.”  Honestly, the funniest characters may be everyone but Taran Killam’s, but there were some sincere laughs in the trailer, and that bodes well for these single parents all around – just think what 22 minutes might bring.  This is not a hard pass; it’s merely a practical one, that a little peer pressure could probably turn around.  Are you picking up what I’m putting down, potatoes?

STATUS: On October 17, 2018, ABC ordered a back ten, bringing the first season episode total to 23; 10 episodes have aired as of the publication date of this post.  The pundits think renewal possibilities are a safe bet.

CPU! STATUS: One CPU! panelist has offered an almost glowing recommendation (and request) to talk Elizabeth Merriwether’s new show on the podcast, and in the wake of the vacuum left by a departed New Girl, we cannot fight the logic.  Changing this status to “Pick Up.”

The Village

THE VILLAGE, NBC

PREMIERE DATE: March 12, 2019

WHO: LorraineToussaint (Rosewood), Michaela McManus (Seal Team), Warren Christie (The Resident, Chicago Fire), Moran Atias (The Resident, Tyrant), Daren Kagasoff (The Secret Life of the American Teenager), Grace Van Dien (Greenhouse Academy), Dominic Chianese (The Sopranos), Jerod Haynes (Southside With You), Frankie Faison (Banshee, The Wire)

WHAT: Follows the residents of a Brooklyn apartment building who have built a bonded family of friends and neighbors. Sarah’s a nurse and single mom raising a creative teen; Gabe’s a young law student who got a much older and unexpected roommate; Ava must secure the future of her young, U.S.-born son when ICE comes knocking; Nick’s a veteran who’s returned from war; and the heart and soul of the building, Ron and Patricia, have captivating tales all their own.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Pass.  With no trailer publicly available, we of the lowly Michigan-based podcast have to rely on early reviews of the trailer – which are decidedly mixed.  What also seems decidedly true is that the Peacock might be searching for its next This Is Us, which would be great, if This Is Us wasn’t still on the air.  Honestly, maybe there are some feel-good or just feeling stories told well in this new drama, but, to this viewer and based on synopsis alone, it has the potential for saccharine, predictable storytelling that could descend into manipulative melodrama quickly.  If I am wrong, tell me.  I’m okay to be wrong.  We have to be ruthless with our choices around here, though, so unless buzz and water-cooler steam percolates from the hotness of this show, we will detour away from this village.

Whiskey Cavalier

WHISKEY CAVALIER, ABC

PREMIERE DATE: February 27, 2019

WHO: Scott Foley (Scandal), Lauren Cohan (The Walking Dead), Ana Ortiz (Devious Maids, Ugly Betty), Tyler James Williams (The Walking Dead), Vir Das (Go Goa Gone)

WHAT: Follows the adventures of tough but tender FBI super-agent Will Chase (codename: “Whiskey Cavalier”). Following an emotional break-up, Chase is assigned to work with badass CIA operative Francesca “Frankie” Trowbridge (codename: “Fiery Tribune”). Together, they lead an inter-agency team of flawed, funny and heroic spies who periodically save the world (and each other) while navigating the rocky roads of friendship, romance and office politics.

Trailer available at ABC’s YouTube channel.

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PICK UP OR PASS?

VERDICT: Hesitantly Pick Up.  I did not want to like this.  I did NOT want to like this.  It started off with some definite ham and cheese on rye with the overly fuzzy and tender-hearted main character who moonlights by day as an agent of the FBI – and oh my, how Scott Foley has aged (*fans self at the thirty second mark of the trailer*) – but as I continued to watch said trailer, I found that the presentation navigated into territory previously tread by, say, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Alias, Castle, and a pinch of The X-Files but in a way that felt fresh and new.  Plus, this show and Scott’s character have a catchy code name; it’s rare that the title charms, but charms it has done.  By the end of the trailer, I found myself ensconced in the witty repartee of the two main characters, who have real chemistry, even though I wasn’t expecting a high-octane government agent premise to be pockmarked with some sardonic romantic comedy.  It is because of this unexpected wit and twisty working that I find myself wanting to see more.  Go watch the few minutes worth of a sample, and tell me you don’t agree.  Is Mr. Foley married, though?

The following is a link to all premiere dates for shows covered beyond the main networks: http://www.metacritic.com/feature/tv-premiere-dates

Non-Broadcast Network Pick-Ups

Disenchantment (Netflix) – They had me at “Futurama but for fantasy rather than sci-fi.”

The latest animated series from The Simpsons creator Matt Groening is basically Futurama but for fantasy rather than sci-fi. Abbi Jacobson, Nat Faxon, and Eric Andre head a vocal cast that also includes Futurama vets Billy West, John DiMaggio, Maurice LaMarche, and Tress MacNeille.

STATUS: The streaming giant ordered a full season of 22 episodes, 10 were released on August 17, 2018, with the remaining 12 slated for some time in 2019.  Netflix has already renewed this program for Season 2!

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

The Innocents (Netflix) – “British,” “supernatural,” and “teen drama” are all pretty much up the podcast’s alley.

Guy Pearce stars in this British supernatural teen drama.

STATUS: The first season of 8 episodes was released on August 24, 2018.  There has been no word regarding the potential of renewal for additional seasons.

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

Jack Ryan (Amazon Prime) – All I saw was “The Office’s John Krasinski,” but I do enjoy a good Jack Ryan story.

In the first TV series based on Tom Clancy’s books, The Office‘s John Krasinski plays a modern-day version of the titular CIA analyst—previously portrayed on screen by Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford, Ben Affleck, and Chris Pine—as he embarks on his first field assignment that finds him attempting to thwart a terrorist attack. Lost vets Carlton Cuse and Graham Roland created and produce the eight-episode series, which also stars Wendell Pierce and Abbie Cornish. Morten Tyldum (The Imitation Game) directs the opening episode, while others are helmed by Dan Sackheim (The Americans). The series has already been renewed for a 2nd season.

STATUS: The first season of 8 episodes was released on August 31, 2018.  Amazon renewed this series for a Season 2!

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed, but this series was requested for podcast coverage, and with John Krasinski starring in it, how can I resist?  This pick-up is definite and permanent.

Mayans M.C. (FX): The original “Sons of Anarchy” has been a recommended panel for some time, now, so we’ll keep an eye on this spin-off and see if our resident “Sons” fans feel as passionate about it.

Sons of Anarchy spinoff stars JD Pardo, Edward James Olmos, Clayton Cardenas, Sarah Bolger, Michael Irby, and Richard Cabral.

STATUS: The Season 1 finale aired on November 6, 2018, after a total of 10 episodes.  FX renewed the Sons of Anarchy spin-off for a Season 2!

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

The Purge (USA): Though we should probably make sure we’ve watched all of the movie franchise first…

Yes, it’s a series adaptation of the Purge movie franchise set within the same universe, where all crime is legal for a 12-hour period each year.

STATUS: The Season 1 finale aired on November 6, 2018, after a total of 10 episodes.  USA renewed this series for Season 2!

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

Kidding (Showtime): The Chief CP is a huge fan of Michel Gondry and has seen a few early teasers for this show.  I’m sold on all of the elements, from director to cast to premise.

It’s the first TV show from quirky film/video director Michel Gondry, who reunites with his Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind star Jim Carrey (himself returning to TV as a regular in a scripted, non-sketch TV series for the first time since 1984’s The Duck Factory). Carrey plays Mr. Pickles, the increasingly troubled host of a beloved children’s television series that looks like a cross between Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood and The Muppet Show. The terrific cast also includes Catherine Keener, Judy Greer, Frank Langella, and Justin Kirk. Gondry is a producer and directs multiple episodes of the series—you’ll definitely notice his handiwork in the trailer—which was created by Weeds writer Dave Holstein.

STATUS: The Season 1 finale aired on November 11, 2018, after a total of 10 episodes.  Showtime renewed this Michel Gondry vehicle for Season 2!

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

The First (Hulu): Solid potential between premise and cast, and we like science fiction around here.

A co-production between Hulu and the UK’s Channel 4, the latest series from House of Cards creator Beau Willimon takes place in the near future as it follows the development of the first human space mission to Mars. Sean Penn (in his first regular TV role) and Natascha McElhone head a cast that also features James Ransone, Oded Fehr, Hannah Ware, and Lisa Gay Hamilton.

STATUS: The first season of 8 episodes was released on September 14, 2018.  There has been no word regarding renewal or cancellation possibilities.

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

Forever (Amazon Prime): Fred Armisen and Maya Rudolph were two of the most solid SNL character players.  That reminds me, I need to catch up on “Portlandia.”

Fred Armisen and Maya Rudolph star as a married couple attempting to break out of their boring, suburban rut in a new Amazon comedy series from Master of None co-creator Alan Yang and 30 Rock‘s Matt Hubbard. Catherine Keener and Noah Robbins also star.

STATUS: The first season of 8 episodes was released on September 14, 2018.  There has been no word regarding renewal or cancellation possibilities.

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

Camping (HBO): All I saw was “David Tennant.”  Hearts hearts hearts.  I don’t even care what it’s about. (I hope it doesn’t suck).  Though Jennifer Garner was Sydney Bristow, and that’s pretty good too.

This adaptation of the British comedy series about a group of old friends on a back-to-nature group holiday at a lackluster campsite comes from the team behind HBO’s Girls, including creator Lena Dunham and producer Jenni Konner. Jennifer Garner (in her first regular TV role since Alias) and David Tennant lead a cast that also includes Juliette Lewis, Arturo Del Puerto, Brett Gelman, Ione Skye, and Bridget Everett.

STATUS: The Season 1 finale aired on December 2, 2018, after a total of 8 episodes.  HBO has not discussed the future of this series.

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (Netflix): It’s the “Sabrina the Teenage Witch” reboot, so there will probably be a look back to look forward series.  Plus, it’s got an early renewal.  That’s some brass, Netflix.

Mad Men‘s Kiernan Shipka stars as Archie Comics character Sabrina Spellman (aka Sabrina the Teenage Witch) in this Greg Berlanti-produced series that was originally developed as a spinoff from Riverdale for that show’s network, The CW. (Both shows were developed by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa.) Miranda Otto, Lucy Davis, Bronson Pinchot, and Ross Lynch also star. Netflix has already renewed the show for a second season.

STATUS: Season 1 was released on October 26, 2018, with a total of 10 episodes. Netflix subsequently released a holiday special for this show on December 14, 2018.  In addition, Netflix renewed this wildly popular new take on the Sabrina Spellman character for a Season 2, expected to release on April 5, 2019, and, as of December 18, 2018, for Seasons 3 and 4 as well!

CPU! STATUS: In our December 19, 2018, publication of CPU!, an episode devoted to A Series of Unfortunate Events, Season 2, it was announced that CPU! will officially be embarking upon a series devoted to one of the premiere Water Cooler shows of the year, coming soon (likely to be recorded spring or summer, 2019). It is my hope that the podcast series will a) be a “Look Back to Look Forward” affair, including the fluffier Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and that b) there will some cross-over potential with our, also, newly announced panel for Riverdale, which has been confirmed to be set in the same universe, both in the comics and on screen.  Stay tuned for all this nerdy, darkly comic goodness!

Homecoming (Amazon Prime): This has got a crazy good cast and stellar producer cred; plus, we’ll check out this podcast in solidarity.

Based on the hit Gimlet Media fiction podcast of the same name, this psychological thriller comes from Mr. Robot creator Sam Esmail and stars Julia Roberts, Sissy Spacek, Bobby Cannavale, Shea Whigham, Dermot Mulroney, Stephan James, and Alex Karpovsky. A second season will stream next year.

STATUS: The first season of 10 episodes was released on November 2, 2018.  Since Amazon ordered two seasons off the bat, this show was automatically renewed for Season 2!

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

The Kominsky Method (Netflix): Though Chuck Lorre needs to work on his overall sense of humor, at least for this couch potato’s edification, I think Michael Douglas and Alan Arkin earn a look.

The latest series from producer Chuck Lorre (who previously developed the short-lived Disjointed for the streaming service) is a single-camera comedy starring Michael Douglas as a Hollywood acting coach. Alan Arkin co-stars as his longtime agent and friend, while Nancy Travis plays a divorcée who enrolls in his acting class. Lisa Edelstein will also have a recurring guest role.

STATUS: The first season of 8 episodes was released on November 16, 2018.  There has been no word regarding renewal or cancellation possibilities.

CPU! STATUS: Not yet viewed.

Added to the List!

Haunting of Hill House (Netflix) 

STATUS: The “limited” season of 10 episodes was released on October 12, 2018.  There has been no word regarding renewal or cancellation possibilities, since it has been labeled a “limited series.”

CPU! STATUS: This other premiere Water Cooler series has also been highly requested at the podcast.  Stay tuned!

Others on radar: Good Omens and The Lord of the Rings series in development at Amazon; a “Narnia” series at Netflix; The Dark Crystal: the Age of Resistance at Netflix; Watership Down at Netflix; The Witcher at Netflix; The Chronicles of Narnia at Netflix; The Wheel of Time at Amazon; His Dark Materials at BBC/HBO; The Watch (BBC); Conan at Amazon; The Dark Tower at Amazon; Cursed at Amazon.

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Remember, new episodes and blog posts are published weekly!  Next week, Couch Potatoes Unite! with start the New Year 2019 with our first ever non-live “Vs.” discussion, pitting The Tudors v. Wolf Hall. Stay tuned for the royal madness and spicy-ethness!