Pushing Daisies

Check out the trailer for Pushing Daisies, one of ABC’s new fall shows:

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I can finally see why critics have been so excited about this show. The original teaser made it look pretty straightforward, but this trailer makes it look like it was directed by Tim Burton on Prozac, or, more appropriately, Barry Sonnenfeld at his zaniest. The cinematic look they’re selling is pretty breathtaking, and I hope they can keep it going.

I’m really pumped about this show now, although it looks quirky enough that it probably doesn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of sticking around long, although Matt Roush says it doesn’t have much competition on the night. That’s a good sign, for sure.

TV Upfront Week: Like Christmas for TV Addicts

Michelle Ryan, Bionic WomanAll of the networks ran through their “TV Upfront” presentations this past week. This is the time of year where they all announce next season’s new shows and let us know which of their current shows are on the chopping block.

As far as cancellations go for shows I’ve been watching (or, well, recording and not watching), there weren’t any huge surprises… Studio 60 is officially dead, Veronica Mars is as good as dead (although various pundits and execs keep dangling the vague possibility of hope for that one, I sincerely doubt it), and Jericho is toast.

I suppose I was mildly surprised about Jericho, but it didn’t really affect me because I never ended up watching the second half of the season. The first two eps after it returned were pretty damn awful, and I never worked up the desire to give it another chance.

As for the pick-ups, I was most worried about How I Met Your Mother (I accepted long ago that things were dire for Veronica Mars), but CBS thankfully picked that one up for another season. It’s easily the best traditional (three-camera, laugh track) sitcom on air, and I’d argue that it’s just as good as my favorite single-camera sitcoms on NBC.

Speaking of which, NBC has picked up their entire Thursday night sitcom line up for another year, which makes me plenty happy, as you might imagine. ABC also made an awesome decision and worked out a three-year plan for Lost so that the writers can actually start working towards the ending of their story.

The real treat for me, however, is always the new shows. I love nothing better than priming my DVR to record a bunch of brand-new shows that may or may not stick around. The following are the shows I’m looking forward to:

Of the five networks, NBC and ABC clearly have more shows that I’m interested in, but of the two networks, NBC’s shows look the most interesting. Out of everything coming out next year, I’m most excited about Bionic Woman and Chuck. Bionic Woman is obviously a remake of the 1970s show about a woman who is injured in a terrible accident and has parts of her body replaced with bionic limbs.

I think it’s kind of interesting that NBC has a “re-imagining” of a spin-off show, but the creative team behind the remake are the same folks who modernized Battlestar Galactica, which is one of my most favorite shows on TV right now. They’ve got quite the quality pedigree, and the cheesiness of the source material does not seem to affect how well the modern version turns out. Also, as you can see from the picture above, they’ve picked a gorgeous (British!) actress named Michelle Ryan to play the new Jaime Sommers.

ABC has a lot of shows that seem like they’ll have potential, but could go either way. From what Mike Ausellio says, Pushing Daisies is the next big ABC hit, so I’m looking forward to that the most. All of the other ABC shows look like they could go either way… except for Cavemen. Cavemen looks like a crime against television (if such a thing is possible), and I want to be there to see how things go down.

It’ll be fascinating to see which of these shows make it through the year… It’s a safe bet, however, that FOX will cancel something that will have its fans up in arms. This year it was Drive, which I never even bothered to watch because it was canceled after two weeks.

Well, this makes me happy…

Taken from Dark Horizons:

ABC President Stephen McPherson revealed that next season’s episodes (starting Jan ’05) will once again return to Sydney juggling her dual roles as an international spy and normal twentysomething girl, conceding the complex plot heavy episodes may have turned off some of the more casual viewers of the show – “We got so deep in the Rimbaldi and Covenant [mysteries] that we lost sight of some of the stuff we fell in love with [in the beginning]. J.J. is talking about getting back to some of the joy that she used to have in her personal life early on… while still living in this crazy world”.

Abrams himself, whose been working on the pilot for his upcoming ABC thriller, “Lost”, said the step back from the show during the break has allowed him a whole new perspective – “Going away to do Lost allowed me to look at Alias in a way that I could not have done otherwise ? from the outside, and it was like an incredibly enlightening thing. I suddenly knew in my heart what I wanted and what I didn’t want ? and I saw what was happening. Not that I wasn’t proud of what was there, but I saw some mistakes that I made and I thought, ‘Oh my God'”.

The delay to January which will allow the shows to be aired weekly without interruption was something Abrams was keen on – “I was begging them to do it”. McPherson adds “We’re going to be launching a lot of new dramas in the fall and we wouldn’t have been able to put any money [into promoting Alias]. So we felt the best thing to do was bring it on in January when we’ve got all [20 episodes] and a huge promotion platform with the Academy Awards”.

In good news for fans, McPherson also confirmed that there’s “not a chance” Season 4 could be Alias’ last – “It will be an asset for years”.