The 2012 season will soon be upon us, the week of Sept 9th to be exact. The networks spend lots of money figuring out what we want to watch and what advertisers will buy. I have been doing a little research, looking at the data based on the focus groups, seen some of the pilots, and read what the critics have said so far. Here is what I think will either earn “Revenge’s” title for break out hit or replace “The Playboy Club“, as the biggest flop.
Just because a show got renewed doesn’t mean it will survive season 2, it may have been renewed because it’s 3 million viewers was a better bet than one of the pilots. Let’s also look at some of those returning shows and see who is primed for a sophomore slump, or homecoming queen.
Revenge: Clearly the breakout hit of the 2011 season. This show has the potential to continue to build its audience and solidify it’s place as the catalyst for the nighttime soap rebirth. OR The creators could meddle with the formula and get in over their heads, too many changes and diversions could spell ratings disaster. Hope you dug two graves, one could be for this show. BTW note to ABC, I don’t think moving it to Sunday night was a good move, the first half of the season will constantly be interrupted because of football. And you are forcing your viewers to DVR it if they are bigger fans of The Good Wife.
Scandal: It started slow, but the finale was the highest rated, and based on reviews and fan discussions it built a solid following who want to see what Olivia Pope and her gang of merry folk will be up to this season. Shonda shouldn’t have parted company with Henry Ian Cusick, he made Olivia’s preachy/teachy scenes more tolerable. Private Practice is on its way out, Shonda may need to keep the brand alive by giving this show all her attention which could be a good thing for viewers. I predict a shaky second season and time slot juggling.
The Good Wife: This is a well written show with great acting that consistently turns in solid episodes filled with twists and turns balanced with the right amount of human story every week. It’s ratings are weak, and this year it goes up against Revenge and the first half of the season being interrupted by football. Why does CBS hate The Good Wife. It will hang in, but don’t expect to know if this show will be renewed until the last possible second. Enjoy it today for we may not have tomorrow.
2 Broke Girls: Like Revenge this was a big break out hit last year. Sure critics complained about the crass humor, but the people watched the ongoing antics of waitress/cupcake queens Max and Caroline and kept watching. I am interested in seeing what tweaks they make, I for one hope they don’t change a thing. This show is really good just the way it is.
Suburgatory: Another break out hit, ABC obviously sees a lot of potential, this season is nestled safely between Modern Family and the much anticipated The Neighbors on Wednesday night.
Nashville: Top Notch Cast- check, classic All About Eve story – check, catchy soundtrack – check (iTunes tie in moneymaker – bonus). ABC Wednesday night comedy block lead in – check. What could go wrong. If this show isn’t the next big thing, I will personally walk up and down Ventura Blvd singing the entire Tammy Wynette catalog.
Revolution: I love Billy Burke and want him to have a hit, the kind of TV hit that buys you houses, bankrolls your retirement and gets you development deals with the network. But, alas I don’t think Revolution is it. The premise is tight, but not sustainable, think Flash Forward or The Event. I predict the power will be back on mid-season.
Chicago Fire: Pretty Pretty boys, not much else, besides its up against CSI and Nashville. Time slot change then cancellation.
Vegas: Like Blue Bloods, this show is going to kill in overall viewers, but not the key 18-49 demo. This show is going to be a break out hit for the older set. Michael Chiklis has a strong following from his days on The Shield and The Commish, and Dennis Quaid, well he’s Dennis Quaid, he was the Matt Damon of his generation. He could make any movie better.
Elementary: Going in this show has too many things working against it, Robert Downey Jr‘s Holmes is too fresh in our minds, the success of the British reboot currently airing on Masterpiece Mystery and do we really need another police procedural where the detective isnt’ a cop but some sort of savant (see The Mentalist and Perception) The best ever ” a little off” on a cop show Goren on Law and Order CI). Elementary is this year’s Prime Suspect.
Animal Practice: I don’t know why, but this show really appealed to me. It could have been the animals, it could have been Justin Kirk, there was just something about that I liked. But I am not getting attached, it didn’t do well with the focus groups. It is not long for this world.
The Mindy Kaling Project: This show didn’t do well with the groups either, and the pilot was far from perfect. But Kaling has a distinctive style, read her book to see what I mean. I will be surprised if it gets a second season, but then again I was wrong about New Girl.
The Neighbors: The pilot will have Modern Family’s lead in, then settle into the 8:30 Wednesday time slot. A typical American family moves into the gated community of Hidden Hills, little do they know all their neighbors are aliens. So its the alien’s next door story in reverse, the problem is the fish out of water, double take humor will get old fast and so will the show. That’s ok, because when they cancel it they can bring Happy Endings back to Wednesday’s where it belongs.
What do you think will be the break out hits? Or the big misses this season? Head on down to the comments.