- Previously, I gave my opinion on the few new shows being offered by Fox this fall. Now it’s time for me to do the same for CBS.
Shows with Potential
Unfortunately, I don’t see much potential in any of these shows. If I had to pick one that I think may last the longest, I would go with Cane.
- The Big Bang Theory – Well, for starters, I don’t like the name of the show. Also not instilling much confidence in the show’s potential to be interesting (at least to me) is that it is from the creators of Two and a Half Men, a show whose humor and appeal I have never understood. Finally, if the 30 second clip on cbs.com was the best sampling of the show they could come up with, I fear (or maybe hope?) that this show won’t last long. One last word about the premise – there are only so many jokes that can be made about two nerdy guys before it seems cruel or at least stale. For me, making fun of people is not my idea of quality humor, so I won’t be laughing along with the sure-to-be overused laugh track on this one.
- Cane – This show features some established actors, including Jimmy Smits, Hector Elizondo, and Rita Moreno. And as far as my memory serves, this is the first all-Hispanic cast primetime soap to air on network television. Before now, the Hispanic shows have been relegated to comedies like George Lopez. This is a show about a family and their sugar cane and rum empire. Hmm… Brothers & Sisters is a show about a family and their food and wine company. Perhaps this is CBS’ answer to the success of that family drama last season, but as is usually the case, there is usually only room for so many similar shows. Another show coming out this fall that may have more widespread appeal is Dirty Sexy Money, so I am guessing that Cane will not be able to build an audience, even though it will probably be a well done show. I may watch the pilot just to see what it is like, but Friday Night Lights is the only family drama that I will be giving my undivided attention to this season.
- Viva Laughlin – I really wanted this show to be good, and who knows? Maybe it will surprise me. But it seems like the critics have given up on it before it has begun, which is never a good sign. The premise sounds fun – a drama/thriller/musical about a man and his family pursuing the American dream. Problem #1: Most Americans are not going to watch a show that is described in any way as a musical. Problem #2: The casino setting may be too similar to Las Vegas and CSI. What I do like about the show is that it is kind of like Moulin Rouge for television, and it has a great cast. Even if Hugh Jackman is only a recurring star, it will be fun to see him sing. And I have been a fan of Madchen Amick since Twin Peaks, and D.B. Woodside since his first season on 24. Melanie Griffith also seems like a good fit for this type of show. With all this in mind, I will watch the pilot with low expectations, and see what happens from there. I don’t see this one hanging around for long, though.
Bad Ideas That I Won’t Even Consider Watching
- Kid Nation – Networks are running low (they will never run completely out) of new ideas for reality shows, so they are opening up a new market now: kid reality. This seems like a case of child exploitation to me, in terms of putting them through difficult situations to entertain the viewing public. When reality show producers manipulate and humiliate adult contestants, those adults knew what they were getting into. Maybe the blame here should fall on the parents who agreed to let their children appear on the show. The sensational nature of this show will most likely result in it being marginally popular, but hopefully we won’t have to see a second season.
- Moonlight – I categorize this show as a “bad idea” not so much because it’s about a vampire. I usually like vampire shows. The problem is that CBS is trying to market a vampire show, and they are trying to give it a clever, light tone (just watch the 30 second clip on cbs.com to see what I mean). This premise has been done, and done better (without the artificial cheerfulness), at least once. Remember that other show about a vampire PI who battled creatures of the night while also fighting his attraction to a mortal woman? It was called Angel, I enjoyed it for five seasons, and it was a nice fit for what was at the time a wide variety of niche programming on the WB. I guess my main problem with the show is that it is too clean. If you’re going to create a show about vampires and things that go bump in the night, don’t try to mask the dark aspects to make it appeal to the typical CBS viewer. That simply won’t work. My guess is that this one won’t make it into November.
The only CBS show I watch is How I Met Your Mother, and based on the sub par new offerings, I think it will stay that way. Next up in my Fall Preview 2007: ABC.