Fall TV Preview: Five Trends of the Season

FALL TV PREVIEW 2011

As we summarize the new shows the networks have cooked up for audiences this fall, we find their endeavors falling into distinct categories.

  • Quirky Women. Females aren’t just starring in new shows, they’re also writing them. Not just Whitney Cummings (a trend unto her self), but the women behind “New Girl” and “Up All Night,” the other two strong comedies of the season.
  • 60s Dress Up – “Mad Men” is such an esteemed costume drama, why not raid the costume department for their own vintage dress up from the Kennedy area.  The results are the pretty bad “Playboy Club” and the not so promising “Pan Am.”
  • All About Whitney. She was just a vile comedienne who hosted the MTV Awards a year too early. Now Whitney Cummings is the toast of networks having two new sitcoms, “2 Broke Girls” and “Whitney” starting this season. So now she’s trying to channel Lucy.
  • Remakes “Charlie’s Angels” is one of the more high profile remakes this season, but “Free Agents” is an adaptation of a UK series, whose opening had the exact line. “Prime Suspect” treads on the respected Helen Mirren series. And what is “The X Factor” but “Idol?
  • Casting Sparks. How to spice up a show late into its run? Innovative casting. So James Spader is in at “The Office,” Ted Danson has joined the cast of CSI.” And Ashton Kutcher set a record for his first show replacing Charlie Sheen on “Two and a Half Men.”
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