After only two episodes, Fox has cancelled Lone Star, making it the official first casualty of the fall 2010 season. It's a sad, but unsurprising move on Fox's part, considering the obvious fact that Lone Star -- a slow, more-intelligent-than-Glee (not that there's anything wrong with Glee) adult drama -- belonged anywhere but on network television. But let's buck up and move on to the important question: who should be next? What else is just so terrible, or so poorly scheduled, or just plain misplaced that it should be put out of its misery next? In ascending order, here are the new shows that most need to be cancelled, and the alternate networks where they could have lived long, happy, minimum-ratings-pressure lives.
ABC's annual presentation is usually the highlight of upfront week for one reason alone: year after year, Jimmy Kimmel appears on stage and absolutely kills with a series of rapier-sharp riffs about the TV industry. This year was no exception. After dry, but typical, business speak from ABC execs, clips from several new dramas (more on them later), a dull montage of Lost cast members reflecting on their series and Matthew Fox on stage trying hard to look awake, Kimmel came out firing. Regarding NBC: "I read in The Times this morning that Jeff Zucker is building a 40-ton containment dome that they hope to lower down on to the fall schedule." Regarding Law & Order's cancellation and L&O: L.A.'s pickup: "The last time NBC took a show from New York and moved it to L.A., it ended up as the lead-in to George Lopez on TBS." On Fox's decision to give Glee the post-Super Bowl spot: "[They are trying] for a record of 40-year-old drunk guys saying, 'What the fuck is this' all at the same time." On the limited longevity of CBS's Undercover Boss: "If your new bus boy shows up and speaks English, he is probably the president of Fuddruckers." On Charlie Sheen's massive CBS deal after his Christmas incident: "Tiger Woods must feel like a real dumbass right now."
Kimmel's own network didn't escape unscathed, either: "We're looking for shows that break the mold and then [ABC's president of entertainment] introduced another medical drama from Shonda Rhimes." And then he closed with an off-hand comment that made me giggle: "I have not missed a single episode of Five since the lizard aliens landed on Earth. Oh, V?" Granted, he also had some lines about "fluxing" and how at least broadcast TV is more popular than newspapers, but I'm trying to focus on the funny, which is more can be said for ABC's new slate of comedies. Good thing the network's new batch of dramas might make up for them. Here's our first take on all nine brand-new series:
Another legal show. Just what we needed. Honestly, nearly every fall season there is some sort of show about lawyers either defending the little guy or prosecuting big baddies, and sometimes there are even several of them. This year is no exception, with The Defenders, Outlaw and now The Whole Truth. Is it worth watching? I've examined the evidence -- well, the pilot at least -- to figure out where this show stacks up in the court of TV law.