Thoughts On Some Of The New Shows

Posted on October 25, 2012 

Not surprisingly, CBS announced this week it was ordering full-season pickups on "Vegas" and "Elementary" (CBS, 10 p.m.), the two highest-rated new dramas of the season.

It's been the usual mixed bag of new entries for the season: some shows have been pleasant surprises, while other shows that were hyped up are close to tanking. Here's my thoughts so far: (Note: I'm only listing the new shows I've seen).

ABC

"Nashville" -- Dear NBC, this is what "Smash" should have been. I like the music a lot, and I normally don't care for country music. Grade: A-

"The Neighbors" -- I don't know if this will last the season, but for some reason, this show about aliens living in New Jersey makes me laugh. This is not the sort of edgy comedy you might find in "Louie," but as long as it keeps amusing me, I'll keep checking in. Grade: B-

"Last Resort" -- This was probably the show I had the highest expectations for, but through tonight's (ABC, 8 p.m.) episode, the show has been pretty inconsistent. I'm still checking in, but viewers have been checking out. Grade: C+

"666 Park Ave." -- I liked parts of the pilot, the ones with Terry O'Quinn and Vanessa Williams, but I couldn't really get into the rest of it. The ratings haven't been that good. Grade: C-

NBC

"Go On" -- The highest-rated new sitcom of the season, it's been a nice return for Matthew Perry. Again, not the world's most sophisticated sitcom, but it keeps the laughs thanks to a very good supporting cast. Grade: B+

"Revolution" -- Another show I had high hopes for but has been frustratingly inconsistent. I can't stand any of the teen characters, especially Katniss or whatever her name is. But the story shows tons of potential, and Giancarlo Esposito and Billy Burke have been terrific. The always-great Elizabeth Mitchell has been underused to this point. Grade: B

"The New Normal" -- I really tried to give this show a chance, but it got too annoying after three episodes. It's been picked up for the season, and Ellen Barkin has created TV's best bigot since Archie Bunker, but it's not enough to keep me watching. Grade: C-

"Animal Practice" -- One of the most heavily hyped shows of the season, it's already been cancelled, and no one will miss it. Grade: F

"Chicago Fire" -- Predictable and plodding, all the pilot did for me was make me miss "Rescue Me" that much more. Grade: D

CBS

"Elementary" -- One of the best new shows of the season, and probably the most pleasant surprise. Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu have almost perfect chemistry, and the characters and stories are smartly written. This is what "The Mentalist" should have been. Grade: A-

"Vegas" --  My criticism of the show is the same as most people's -- it's a little too tame because it's on a network rather than cable. It comes off as a little formulaic. Someone wrote somewhere a couple of weeks ago that this could have been a real "Justified"-type of show, but it's nowhere near that level. Still, it's got a great cast and is building some momentum dramatically. Grade: B-

"Partners" -- Probably my least-favorite new sitcom of the season, and that includes "Animal Practice." I don't expect it to last much longer. Grade: F

"Made In Jersey" -- My least favorite drama of the new season, and it's already been yanked. Grade: F

FOX

"Ben & Kate" -- The pilot, about a single-mom and her manchild brother, didn't impress me enough to stick around. Grade: D+

"The Mindy Project" -- Despite my love for Mindy Kaling's comedic talents, this has been one of the season's bigger projects. I'm this close to giving up on it. Grade: C-

THE CW

"Arrow" -- The only new CW show I've watched, and it's been very engaging. It's already earned a full-season pickup. Grade: B+

What are your favorite new shows of the season?

THURSDAY'S BEST BETS: "Elementary" anchors "The Big Bang Theory," "Two and a Half Me" and "Person of Interest" on CBS.

"Last Resort" is followed by "Grey's Anatomy" and "Scandal" on ABC, while NBC's sitcoms, '30 Rock," "Up All Night," "The Office," and "Parks & Recreation" are all new. The CW has new installments of "Vampire Diaries" and "Beauty and the Beast" from 8-10 p.m.

Fox airs Game 2 of the World Series.

On cable, there are new episodes of "It's Always Sunny" and the hilarious "The League" from 10-11 p.m. on FX.

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