Monday, 11 April 2011

US PILOTS 2011: NBC

I'm not a big NBC fan - along with CBS (which I never watch) - this is the channel that I tend to gloss over when it comes to pilot season, mainly because it's choc full of POLICE COPS. But things seem to be different this year. Yes, the same amount of rubbish is ever present, but there's a few interesting shows in there too, which - shock horror! - may get me watching the channel that I avoid. So what's changing things around at NBC?

Grimm
Tell me more: two detectives attempt to solve crimes in a fantasy world where characters from the Brothers' Grimm fairy tales exist.
And who's in it: David Giuntoli, Kate Burton, Silas Weir Mitchell
Should I care?: it's the other 'fairy tale' pilot of the season (along with ABC's Once Upon A Time), although this one looks like it's going to be much darker and grittier. All because it's a cop drama, with y'know, POLICE COPS in it. But police cops investigating big bad wolves, and trolls, so that could work... it depends on how much they want to ground it in a certain reality. This has also been compared to Fables, and I'll be tuning in for my love of all things Grimm.

Playboy
Tell me more: drama focusing on the bunnies of the Playboy mansion in the 1960s.
And who's in it: Amber Heard (Hidden Palms), Jenna Dewan (Melrose Place 2.0), David Krumholtz (Numb3rs), Eddie Cibrian (Sunset Beach!), Naturi Naughton (some bad films)
Should I care?: will you be tuning in for the nudity, is probably a better question (we're all grown ups here, yeah?). This is yet another 60s period drama that's been inspired by the success of Mad Men (ABC's Pan Am is t'other) and this has the risque factor to boot. Will it be classy and interesting or just gratuitous and shallow? From looking at the cast I don't think this is going to be winning Emmy's anytime soon, but perhaps it'll prove me wrong. Onto the long list it goes.

R.E.M.
Tell me more: a man called Michael Stipe and his friends... loljoke! It's actually about a man who wakes up after an accident to discover he is living in two different realities.
And who's in it: Jason Isaacs will be playing the man with the messy head, alongside Laura Allen, Cherry Jones, Wilmer Valderrama, Steve Harris
Should I care?: it's being billed as the Inception style TV show, and to be fair, sounds very NBC. But after he discovers he is living in two separate realities, then what? What tone will the show take? Drama, sci fi, POLICE COPS? Depending on where it's heading and the turns it takes to get there will decide whether I'm along for the ride or not. It's on a lot of critics 'pilots they want to watch NAO' lists, so it's got a lot of people clapping their hands. I'm not so fussed.

Smash
Tell me more: a group of people come together to put on a Broadway musical about the life of Marilyn Monroe.
And who's in it: who isn't! Debra Messing, Jack Davenport, Katherine McPhee... Anjelica Houston!
Should I care?: this could become your guilty pleasure of the new season (discounting any shows on the CW, of course). Not only is the cast a bunch of well-known faces, but the idea comes from Steven Spielberg and will feature genuine musical theatre and Broadway talent. It's already being compared to Glee, but hopefully won't become a chore to watch after four episodes leading to me turning off for good. It's a bit of a cheesy, girly one and for me I'll only be sticking around if the humour's lollingtons.

17th Precinct
Tell me more: similar to Grimm in actual fact: centring on a police team in a world called Excelsior where magic rules over science.
And who's in it: Battlestar Galactica alumni time: Tricia Helfer, Jamie Bamber, James Callis, Esai Morales plus Kristin Kruek and Stockard Channing.
Should I care?: it's not something I'll be watching but is gathering a lot of attention because it's Ronald D. Moore's new project (he of Battlestar Galactica and ill-fated Caprica) - so thought I'd mention it here. A lot of people are still missing BG from their life, and are understandably getting excited about the reunion going on here for 17th Precinct. It will be intelligent and geeky - but will it survive?



Wednesday it's the combined forces of CBS (ugh!) and the CW (gah!).


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