By: Aleks Chan
In an effort to fill the news void between May’s season finales and September’s fall premieres comes even more
filler post-Upfront analysis courtesy of our very own Ken Tucker in-training Aleks Chan, who shares his take on this fall’s most promising new shows.
COUGAR TOWN (ABC)
Sure, the whole women-of-a-certain-age bit is a bit played-out, but this one, about a recent divorcé getting back into the dating game in her 40s, is helmed by SCRUBS creator Bill Lawrence and stars an especially game Courteney Cox, who is much better served by slapstick than being icy and bitchy on her short-lived FX series DIRT.
THE SOUP’S Joel McHale plays a smoothly operating lawyer who’s busted for having a fake degree, and is forced to attend a junior college to save his career. McHale looks like he’s breezing through another episode of his E! show, and from the looks of the trailer, the material’s just as funny as him.
FOX has already aired the pilot last week, and it’s leading the pack right now. Crossing my fingers that it’s not a huge case of pilotitus.
THE MIDDLE (ABC)
Patricia Heaton, whom I’ve never been a huge fan of even in her EVERYBODY LOVES RAYMOND years, is finally in a role that truly suits her: the furrow-browed, frumpy wife and mother who’s begging to know what happened to her life. The trailer seemed to be aiming for a MALCOLM IN THE MIDDLE vibe, and it seems like it will mostly work.
MODERN FAMILY (ABC)
The Alphabet net is so confident about this comedy about three different families that it aired the entire pilot during its presentation last week – it might not have been completely kooky to do so: out of all the previews, it garnered the most audible laughs. It’s like a strange combination of THE OFFICE and ABC’s one-season tanker SONS & DAUGHTERS. The clips make me thing it’s more of the former.
A remake of the ‘80s miniseries, it could possibly be the most topical conspiracy/invasion drama ever: aliens come to earth, claiming in peace, and effusively spread their notions of change – but they’re up to something. Looks creepy good, unlike the miniseries, which was mostly corny good. Plus: Juliet!