Snap Judgments: ARROW, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, THE CARRIE DIARIES, CULT and EMILY OWENS M.D.

ARROW
According to the Official CW Description: After a violent shipwreck, billionaire playboy Oliver Queen was missing and presumed dead for five years before being discovered alive on a remote island in the Pacific. When he returns home to Starling City, his devoted mother Moira, much-beloved sister Thea, and best friend Tommy welcome him home, but they sense Oliver has been changed by his ordeal on the island. While Oliver hides the truth about the man he’s become, he desperately wants to make amends for the actions he took as the boy he was. Most particularly, he seeks reconciliation with his former girlfriend, Laurel Lance. As Oliver reconnects with those closest to him, he secretly creates the persona of Arrow – a vigilante – to right the wrongs of his family, fight the ills of society, and restore Starling City to its former glory. By day, Oliver plays the role of a wealthy, carefree and careless philanderer he used to be – flanked by his devoted chauffeur/bodyguard, John Diggle – while carefully concealing the secret identity he turns to under cover of darkness. However, Laurel’s father, Detective Quentin Lance, is determined to arrest the vigilante operating in his city. Meanwhile, Oliver’s own mother, Moira, knows much more about the deadly shipwreck than she has let on – and is more ruthless than he could ever imagine.

Why We’re Excited: The CW (formerly WB) knows a thing or two about adapting DC properties for television (See: SMALLVILLE’s decade long run). More exciting still, star Stephen Amell’s fantastic first impression already has us asking Hartley who?

Why We Probably Shouldn’t Let Our Excitement Get the Better of Us: Hero-wise, Green Arrow isn’t quite in the same league as Superman. What’s more, when Tom Welling first swooped onto the small screen, he didn’t have to compete with the likes of what Christopher Nolan (Dark Knight Trilogy) and Joss Whedon (Avengers) were bringing to the big one.

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BEAUTY AND THE BEAST
According to the Official CW Description: Detective Catherine Chandler is a smart, no-nonsense homicide detective. Several years earlier, Catherine witnessed the murder of her mother at the hands of two gunmen. Catherine would have been killed too, but someone – or something – saved her. No one has ever believed her, but she knows it wasn’t an animal that attacked the assassins…it was human. Years have passed, and Catherine is a strong, confident, capable police officer, working alongside her equally talented partner, Tess. While investigating a murder, Catherine discovers a clue that leads her to a handsome doctor named Vincent Keller, who was reportedly killed by enemy fire while serving in Afghanistan in 2002. Catherine learns that Vincent is actually still alive and that it was he who saved her many years before. For mysterious reasons that have forced him to live outside of traditional society, Vincent has been in hiding for the past 10 years to guard his secret – when he is enraged, he becomes a terrifying beast, unable to control his super-strength and heightened senses. Catherine agrees to protect his identity in return for any insight he may have into her mother’s murder. Thus begins a complex relationship between Catherine and Vincent, who are powerfully drawn to each other yet understand that their connection is extremely dangerous for both of them.

Why We’re Excited: Simply put, we just realized that the titular Beast is The CW’s way of side-stepping the inevitable lawsuit that comes smashing down on them by green-lighting their very own version of The Hulk!

Why We Probably Shouldn’t Let Our Excitement Get the Better of Us: Lana Lang was the reason we stopped watching SMALLVILLE.

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THE CARRIE DIARIES
According to the Official CW Description: It’s 1984, and life isn’t easy for 16-year-old Carrie Bradshaw.  Since their mother passed away, Carrie’s younger sister Dorritt is more rebellious than ever, and their father Tom is overwhelmed with the responsibility of suddenly having to care for two teenage girls on his own.  Carrie’s friends – sweet, geeky Mouse, sarcastic and self-assured Maggie and sensitive Walt – make life bearable, but a suburban life in Connecticut isn’t doing much to take her mind off her troubles.  And even though the arrival of a sexy new transfer student named Sebastian brings some excitement to Carrie’s world, she is struggling to move on from her grief.  So when Tom offers Carrie the chance to intern at a law firm in Manhattan, she leaps at the chance.  Carrie’s eyes are opened wide at the glamour and grit of New York City – and when she meets Larissa, the style editor for Interview magazine, she’s inspired by the club culture and unique individuals that make up Larissa’s world.  Carrie’s friends and family may have a big place in her heart, but she’s fallen in love for the first time with the most important man in her life – Manhattan.

Why We’re Excited: Judging from the surprisingly stellar first look trailer, the proverbial powers that be have done a bang-up job when it comes to surrounding stars AnnaSophia Robb and Austin Butler with a slew of fresh faces resulting in an exciting energy to an otherwise stale idea.

Why We Probably Shouldn’t Let Our Excitement Get the Better of Us: If our utter lack of interest in both GOSSIP GIRL and 90210 has taught us anything this season it’s that our television tastes may have evolved past watching genetically blessed high schoolers make incredibly poor life decisions.

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CULT
According to the Official CW Description: Investigative journalist Jeff Sefton has learned to laugh off his brother Nate’s relentless string of obsessions, especially his latest rant that a hit TV show intends to harm him.  However, when his brother mysteriously disappears, Jeff takes Nate’s paranoia seriously, and in the process uncovers the dark underworld of the TV show “Cult” and its rabid fans.  The only person who seems willing to help Jeff with his investigation is Skye, a young research assistant for “Cult,” who has also started to grow suspicious of the increasingly dark happenings surrounding the show.  The fictitious show, centered on the cat-and-mouse game between charismatic cult leader Billy Grimm and LAPD detective Kelly Collins, has become an obsession for its viewers – and now some of its devotees seem to be taking their fixation to deadly extremes in the real world.  As Jeff and Skye dig deeper into the fan world, they discover that the gruesome plot twists on television are much more than fantasy for some very unfortunate people.  The hardcore fans of “Cult” would kill to see what happens next…

Why We’re Excited: Despite their lack of success with last season’s RINGER, this Matt Davis (THE VAMPIRE DIARIES) Robert Knepper (PRISON BREAK) cat-and-mouse game is proof positive that The CW hasn’t given up on broadening their audience.

Why We Probably Shouldn’t Let Our Excitement Get the Better of Us: History would indicate that your average television viewer isn’t nearly as sophisticated enough to grasp the show-within-a-show concept. Just ask the stars of the the brilliant-but-cancelled GROSSE POINTE and THE COMEBACK.

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EMILY OWENS M.D.
According to the Official CW Description: At long last, Emily Owens feels like she is an actual grown-up. She can finally put her high school days as the geeky-girl-with-flop-sweats behind her; she’s graduated from medical school and is now a first-year intern at Denver Memorial Hospital, where she’ll have the chance to work with world-famous cardiologist Dr. Gina Beckett – and where, not-so-coincidentally, her med-school crush Will Rider is also an intern. So why does everyone keep warning her that the hospital is just like high school? Emily soon finds out the hard way – her high school nemesis, the gorgeous, popular Cassandra Kopelson, is also just starting out at Denver Memorial, and it seems like they’re rivals all over again – not only as surgical interns, but for Will’s attention. Fellow intern Tyra Granger warns Emily that the cliques at Denver Memorial are all too familiar: the jocks have become orthopedic surgeons; the mean girls are in plastics; the rebels are in the ER, and Tyra has her own awkward place as the principal’s kid – her father is the chief resident. Emily’s the new kid all over again, and it’s just as awkward as high school. Only this time around, Emily will have to balance the personal and emotional turmoil of social politics with the high-stakes world of life-and-death medical decisions. At least she has fellow intern Tyra and nerdy-but-cute resident Micah, to count on as friends. Emily is growing to realize that although she may be a geek, she may also grow to be a great doctor, flop sweats and all.

Why We’re Excited: Head-turning stints on THE GOOD WIFE and OFF THE MAP seems to have paid off for the immensely likeable Mamie Gummer with a much-deserved role top-lining what looks to be a delightful new CW series. Also, nice to see that [Justin] Hartley guy land on his his feet!

Why We Probably Shouldn’t Let Our Excitement Get the Better of Us: Gummer will have to really step up her game and possibly channel mother Meryl Streep if she expects us to fall head-over-heels for a character — that on the surface — looks to be what happens when television writers grow up on a steady stream of GREY’S ANATOMY’s Meredith Grey, SCRUBS’ John Dorian and Ally McBeal.

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