This list has been copiously worked on and poured over, thanks to TV Guide's guidance. We truly distanced ourselves from the material. Our goal was to be as objective as possible so that we could truly help you realize what to avoid. Some people might think that it's unfair to say a show is going to tank before it has even aired. Our thinking is that we are saving everybody heartache in the long run.
First and foremost, we are thinking about the viewers. Yes, you know who you are. That oft-forgotten lot that seems to be given what they need and not what they want. This list firmly gives that notion the middle finger. In a nutshell, we are telling the powers that be to be honest about the wares they are peddling. And since they most likely won't be that transparent than we will be.
You might be asking yourself, isn't a list like this also telling people what to do? Sort of. However, we aren't the ones constructing the content, as well as the dates and times of where to consume this content. We are merely trying to help separate the wheat from the chaff. At the same time, we are helping TV executives see what works and what doesn't. This way when they create content they will have a better idea of what the viewers (you know, the people that allow the TV stations to stay in business) want to see. Lists like this are a win win all around.
So, you're welcome. This list of all the new fall shows most likely to bomb is here to help you organize your life a little bit more. We are saving you space on your DVR, to either make you more productive in your life, or more productive as a TV consumer. Either way, you're getting more time and in the end isn't time truly the greatest gift of all?
9JKL (CBS, October 2)
This show stars Mark Feuerstein in a family comedy inspired by his real life. He plays Josh Roberts. This character is a new divorcé and actor between projects who moves home to New York to regroup, living in an apartment sandwiched between his doting, meddlesome parents on one side and his competitive brother, sister-in-law and their new baby on the other. The reality is that we've seen this show a million times. Do we really need another family this messed up on TV? This isn't to say they shouldn't be on the airwaves. I am merely saying that in today's Golden Age of Television, content needs to wow and impress viewers. 9JKL might do that but this show seems more likely headed for the chopping block than the awards stage.
The Brave (NBC, September 25)
So we have Anne Heche as Patricia Campbell. She is Deputy Director of the D.I.A. She heads an advanced team of surveillance operatives. She also coordinates with Adam Dalton (Mike Dalton) who heads up the Special Ops unit. They take on bad guys from every corner of the world, usually wrapping the show up in a nice little bow in the course of 45 minutes or less. The biggest issue that The Brave is going to have is that it seems to be too big for TV. Anne Heche is a really solid actress. It is great to see her on TV and getting her props from NBC. The problem is that the issues and the things her team have to deal with can't be contained this easily. As a result we get a show that ultimately feels like it is missing something. A police procedural like Hawaii Five-0 can tie everything up cleanly inside of 40 minutes. The Brave gets a little too brave and that is what will ultimately get it knocked out of the TV line up.
The Gospel of Kevin (ABC, October)
Can Jason Ritter ever get a break? With stints on shows like Girls and Joan of Arcadia among others, Ritter might best be known for being in Freddy vs. Jason. On this show he plays Kevin Finn, a cluelessly self-serving person, who is on a dangerous path to despair. Kevin returns home to stay with his widowed twin sister (JoAnna Garcia Swisher) and niece. On his first night there, an unlikely celestial being named Yvette appears to him and presents him with a mission -- to save the world. It isn't that The Gospel of Kevin can't succeed. It's just that the chances of viewers hanging around long enough to see if he accomplishes his goal might just take an act of God.
Seal Team (CBS, September 27)
David Boreanaz headlines this military drama that follows the professional and personal lives of the most elite unit of Navy SEALs as they train, plan and execute the most dangerous, high stakes missions our country can ask of them. Alright, how many procedural shows like this can viewers really be expected to watch? There is a familiarity with Seal Team that seems stagnant. Make no mistake about it, this show does have an audience. However, look at the film Act of Valor, did viewers really flock to the the theaters to see that? What about Zero Dark Thirty? The ultimate Navy Seal film. The reality is that we love the Navy Seals. We like knowing that they are there and we truly appreciate how much they do for our country. However, as a TV show construct, week in and week out, this show just seems to feel a bit too familiar.
Dynasty (The CW, October 11)
An argument could be made that with today's political climate Dynasty has never been more topical and timely. However, in the age of the Kardashians, Iggy Azalea, and Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor, this show seems very tame. Lets be honest... do American's really care about wealthy families fighting over their wealth? A show like Empire works because it has the music business to prop up its plots. As much as it might seem like the 1980s have returned, it doesn't seem like they've returned enough to make a new version of Dynasty very plausible. This isn't to say that this show couldn't be exceptional. It just appears like in this time of very smart television, Dynasty might be a few steps behind.
Wisdom of the Crowd (CBS, October 1)
Supposedly inspired by the notion that a million minds are better than one, Jeremy Piven is Silicon Valley mogul Jeffrey Tanner. He creates "Sophe," an online platform for publicly shared information. He recruits Detective Tommy Cavanaugh (Richard T. Jones), who searched for Tanner's daughter's killer, to work with him on this project. As you can guess, Tanner's creation is met with a great deal of success. Okay, the idea that you could logically pull off crowd sourcing as a way to solve crimes is laughable. The internet is many things. At its best is an excellent place to find information that is helpful. At it's worse... it is Facebook. In this time of supposed fake news, there would simply be no way to trust the information gleaned from "Sophe". Even if the intel was actually good, you'd have almost no way of knowing because there would be so many other pieces of information to contradict it. This show is a good idea, it just errors in believing that collective information is useful for anything other than movie and restaurant reviews.
Grey's Anatomy Spinoff (ABC, Midseason)
Alright, Shonda Rhimes is back with yet ANOTHER show. That fact that it is a spin-off from the show that made her (Grey's Anatomy), says a lot. There isn't much known about this new show other than that it tracks the lives of firefighters. The big question for Rhimes at this point in her career is why go backwards? Grey's Anatomy started in 2005 and it's still going. At twelve years old, why get into the spin-off game now? With people still loving Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder and all of Rhimes' other offerings, why in the world would she feel the need to do anything more with Grey's Anatomy? While the odds of this show bombing are probably a lot lower then for the other shows on this list, something tells us that Rhimes and Co. will be very surprised that people are fine with just having Grey's Anatomy. And only Grey's Anatomy.
Alex, Inc (ABC, Midseason)
Zach Braff is at a career crossroads. He was riding high on Scrubs, he makes the generation defining Garden State, and things kinda plateaued. He did stints on Cougar Town, Community, Undateable and now we have him here in Alex, Inc.. This show sees Braff as a guy who quits his successful career in radio and starts his own company. In many ways this seems like the perfect vehicle for Braff. In many other ways this seems like a 2017 updating of Everybody Loves Raymond. This isn't a diss on either show. The reality is that Zach Braff is a smart guy. He knows what he's doing both in front of and behind the camera. He's probably looking at Alex, Inc. as something of a resurgence. The reality is that Braff will have to turn to himself (like he did with Garden State) to make that happen.
Instinct (CBS, Midseason)
Alan Cumming was great on The Good Wife. He's was great as Nightcrawler in X-Men 2. The man has solid acting chops. Cumming has seemed to dip very seamlessly into the worlds of big budget and low budget movies. Which is why playing a former CIA operative in Instinct seems like an odd career move. Sure, there's the intrigue of playing against type. At the same time, there's also the issue of playing against yourself. TV is a different animal. Procedural shows about serial killers just don't appear to be Cumming's wheelhouse. This isn't to say that it can't be (in fact, of all the shows that seem like they are going to land with a splash, Instinct just might be the show to explode in popularity), but the odds on this show's success look extremely long. Mainstream TV audiences seem to want something new AFTER it has been made palatable for them. CBS isn't AMC. Something tells us that Cumming knows that this show is doomed, but he's such a consummate professional he knows he couldn't turn down the opportunity.
Good Girls (NBC, Midseason)
The biggest problem with Good Girls is not the cast. Rather its the plot of the show. Essentially, three suburban moms are having a tough time paying their bills. So they decide to rob a local supermarket with a toy gun. The only problem is that they get "made" by the manager and now their plan doesn't seem so smart. Okay, as a television movie this could be gang busters. As a TV show, week in and week out, it is sort of hard to see how it can go passed more than a few episodes. Now, suburban housewives are a huge market for NBC to go after. A show about them getting into all manner of laughable hi-jinks would be huge. However, Good Girls sort of seems like a one trick pony. Ask yourself, how long can they seriously tease the storyline of a store manager having the goods on the bad mommas after a robbery?
Champions (NBC, Midseason)
Vince is a gym owner who lives the single life with careless abandon. He is with different ladies every night and his roommate is his simple-living brother. This all changes when a high school fling (Mindy Kaling) drops of a 15 year old child that Vince sired with her years ago. Okay, having a comedic talent like Mindy Kaling involved certainly helps this show's chances. That said, Champions sadly has that "been there/done that" feeling. It will probably start off strong with some out of the box humor. However, Two and a Half Men this is not. There is a lot of humor to be had with a teenager in the center. The fact that the teens dad isn't even prepared to be a dad will certainly help this show's cause. At the same time, how long can that keep this show afloat? Also, chances are the young person will have more wisdom than the supposed adults, but even that construct won't be funny for more than a few episode. Here's hoping Kaling and Co. surprise us with a truly championship effort!