Tuesday, May 13, 2014

2014 Fall Schedule: ABC


8:00 - Dancing with the Stars
10:00 - Castle

This is never going to change. I'm convinced the world will end first.


8:00 - Selfie (NEW)
8:30 - Manhattan Love Story (NEW)
9:00 - Marvel's Agents of SHIELD (New Timeslot)
10:00 - Forever (NEW)

Dear ABC: This didn't work for you last season, so why are you doing it again? You need an established show to put on Tuesdays at 10:00. Also, Selfie and Manhattan Love Story seem tonally disparate, so why are they paired? The only good thing about this move is that ABC's comedies won't be facing Fox's and NBC's comedies anymore... but they will be facing The Voice.


8:00 - The Middle
8:30 - The Goldbergs (New Timeslot)
9:00 - Modern Family
9:30 - Black-ish (NEW)
10:00 - Nashville

Well, at least The Goldbergs is finally in the slot it should have been in for the past year. Black-ish must be pretty strong to be getting the Modern Family lead-out rather than Selfie (which looks more appropriate for the tone of the comedy block), but I guess they could be going for an hour of non-traditional family sitcoms. And I just wish Nashville would be moved, just to see how it would do on a different night, perhaps with a drama lead-in. I don't see most of Black-ish's audience sticking around for a country music show.


8:00 - Grey's Anatomy (New Timeslot)
9:00 - Scandal (New Timeslot)
10:00 - How to Get Away with Murder (NEW)

This was the most obvious move ABC needed to make. They have struggled for years with this 8:00 timeslot, so Grey's should strengthen it. Plus, moving Scandal up then provides a new drama with a big lead-in and it counter-programs CBS's new Thursday Night Football games. It'll be interesting to see how both Scandal and The Blacklist do when they go head-to-head in February.


8:00 - Last Man Standing
8:30 - Cristela (NEW)
9:00 - Shark Tank
10:00 - 20/20

ABC's only new multi-camera comedy gets paired with its only existing multi-camera comedy. Sounds good to me. Plus, Cristela has history with Last Man Standing: it had no budget to shoot the pilot, so they used the Last Man Standing set and crew to film on a shoestring. Shark Tank probably could have boosted a timeslot on another night, but I suppose ABC is content with how well it does on Fridays and doesn't want to jinx things by playing with it.


8:00 - Once Upon a Time
9:00 - Resurrection
10:00 - Revenge

I'm surprised Resurrection is returning in the fall. The writers have stated that they do not want to do a traditional full season, so I just assumed ABC would hold it until midseason again. But it did have a nice momentum going this spring, so I guess airing it in the fall rather than holding it for spring 2015 will ensure the buzz doesn't completely die out.


Agent Carter will serve as a fill-in between Agents of SHIELD's fall and spring airings (so it will probably be 10 episodes or less). Galavant, the half-hour musical comedy, will air Sundays at 8:00 (with an unknown half-hour partner) while Once Upon a Time is on winter hiatus. American Crime will assume Resurrection's timeslot (Sunday 9:00) in the spring, and Secrets & Lies is currently scheduled to air in March in the Thursday 10:00 slot for its ten episodes. Also coming midseason are drama  The Whispers and comedy Fresh Off the Boat. The Taste was also renewed for a third season to air at midseason, as well as a December return for The Great Christmas Light Fight. ABC previously picked up The Club from David O. Russell & Susannah Grant, but recent word is that they were reconsidering its order since Russell departed the project... and it wasn't announced as part of their new dramas. So we'll see what happens with that one. Also supposedly set for midseason was this summer's The Astronaut Wives Club, which may be pushed even further to next summer, as no mention is made of it in ABC's press release.

A lot of what Paul Lee did here is expected, which is precisely why I don't think it will be terribly effective. The Thursday line-up should help the network out (and here's to hoping How to Get Away with Murder is a hit, because ABC needs it), but Tuesdays still seem DOA to me. I would have put Castle in the 10:00 slot on Tuesdays and debuted something new on Monday, if only for the fall as a trial. I will, however, commend ABC for their commitment to diversity. This season has a comedy about a Latina family, a black family, and an Asian family, plus a drama about racial tension in America.

Read after the jump for full descriptions of ABC's new series.

New Dramas

American Crime - All over the news are reports about a young couple in Modesto, California, who were attacked in their home. Matt Skokie, a war vet, was killed, and his wife, Lily, is unconscious, barely hanging on. Both sets of parents are at her bedside hoping for a miracle while four suspects are about to be arrested. The case sends shock waves into the community stirring up tensions across racial lines in this gritty drama—from the point of view of the victims. American Crime stars Felicity Huffman as Barb, Timothy Hutton as Russ, W. Earl Brown as Tom, Richard Cabral as Hector Tonz, Caitlin Gerard as Aubry, Benito Martinez as Alonzo Gutierrez, Penelope Ann Miller as Eve, Elvis Nolasco as Carter and Johnny Ortiz as Tony Gutierrez. American Crime was written, directed and produced by John Ridley (12 Years a Slave).

Forever - Doctor Henry Morgan (Ioan Gruffudd), New York City’s star medical examiner, has a secret. He doesn’t just study the dead to solve criminal cases, he does it to solve the mystery that has eluded him for 200 years—the answer to his own inexplicable immortality. This long life has given Henry remarkable observation skills which impresses his new partner, Detective Jo Martinez (Alana De La Garza). Each week, a new case and their budding friendship will reveal layers of Henry’s long and colorful past. Only his best friend and confidant, Abe (Judd Hirsch) knows Henry’s secret. Forever stars Ioan Gruffudd as Henry, Alana De La Garza as Det. Jo Martinez, Barbara Eve Harris as Lt. Marcia Roark, Donnie Keshawarz as Detective Hanson, Joel David Moore as Lucas, and Judd Hirsch as Abe. Forever was written and executive-produced by Matt Miller (Chuck, Las Vegas) and directed by Brad Anderson.

How to Get Away with Murder - The brilliant, charismatic and seductive Professor Annalise Keating (Viola Davis) gets entangled with four law students from her class, “How to Get Away with Murder." Little do they know that they will have to apply what they learned to real life, in this masterful, sexy, suspense-driven legal thriller from Shonda Rhimes and Betsy Beers, executive producers of Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal. How to Get Away with Murder stars Viola Davis as Professor Annalise Keating, Billy Brown as Nate, Alfred Enoch as Wes, Jack Falahee as Conner, Katie Findlay as Rebecca, Aja Naomi King as Michaela, Matt McGorry as Asher, Karla Souza as Laurel, Charlie Weber as Frank and Liza Weil as Bonnie. Written by executive producer Peter Nowalk, How to Get Away with Murder is executive-produced by Shonda Rhimes and Betsy Beers and directed by Michael Offer.

Marvel's Agent Carter - Marvel’s Agent Carter, starring Captain America's Hayley Atwell, follows the story of Peggy Carter. It’s 1946, and peace has dealt Peggy Carter a serious blow as she finds herself marginalized when the men return home from fighting abroad. Working for the covert SSR (Strategic Scientific Reserve), Peggy must balance doing administrative work and going on secret missions for Howard Stark all while trying to navigate life as a single woman in America, in the wake of losing the love of her life – Steve Rogers. Inspired by the feature films Captain America: The First Avenger and Captain America: The Winter Soldier, along with the short Marvel One-Shot: Agent Carter. Starring Hayley Atwell as Agent Peggy Carter, Marvel’s Agent Carter was written by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely. Executive producers are Tara Butters, Michele Fazekas, Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely, Chris Dingess, Kevin Feige, Louis D’Esposito, Alan Fine, Joe Quesada, Stan Lee and Jeph Loeb.

Secrets & Lies - Ben Garner (Ryan Phillippe) is about to go from Good Samaritan to murder suspect, after he discovers the body of his neighbor’s young son in the woods. As Detective Andrea Cornell (Juliette Lewis) digs for the truth, the secrets and lies of this town come to the surface and no one is above suspicion. Ben’s family’s life will be turned upside down as he sets out on a complicated journey to prove his innocence in this thriller mystery from Barbie Kligman (Private Practice) based on the original Australian series of the same name. Secrets and Lies stars Ryan Phillippe as Ben, KaDee Strickland as Christy, Natalie Martinez as Jess, Clifton Collins, Jr. as Dave, Indiana Evans as Natalie, Belle Shouse as Abby and Juliette Lewis as Detective Cornell. Secrets and Lies was written by Barbie Kligman and directed by Charles McDougall.

The Whispers - Aliens have invaded Earth by using our most unlikely resource to achieve world domination—our children. As the kids unwittingly help these unseen enemies, the clock counts down in this suspenseful race to save humanity. The Whispers stars Lily Rabe as Claire Bennigan, Barry Sloane as Wes Lawrence, Milo Ventimiglia as John Doe/Drew Bennigan, Derek Webster as Jessup Rollins, Brianna Brown as Lena Lawrence, Catalina Denis as Dr. Maria Benavidez, Kylie Rogers as Minx Lawrence and Kyle Harrison Breitkopf as Henry. The Whispers was written and co-executive-produced by Soo Hugh, with Amblin TV co-producing. Executive producers are Steven Spielberg, Justin Falvey, Darryl Frank and Dawn Olmstead. The Whispers was directed by Mark Romanek.

New Comedies

Black-ish - Andre ‘Dre’ Johnson (Anthony Anderson) has a great job, a beautiful wife, Rainbow (Tracee Ellis Ross), four kids, and a colonial home in the ‘burbs. But has success brought too much assimilation for this black family? With a little help from his dad (Laurence Fishburne), Dre sets out to establish a sense of cultural identity for his family that honors their past while embracing the future. Black-ish stars Anthony Anderson as Dre, Tracee Ellis Ross as Rainbow, Yara Shahidi as Zoey, Marcus Scribner as Andre Jr., Miles Brown as Jack, Marsai Martin as Diane and Laurence Fishburne as Pops. Black-ish was written by Kenya Barris, who also serves as executive producer. Executive producers are Larry Wilmore, Anthony Anderson, Laurence Fishburne, Helen Sugland, Tom Russo, Brian Dobbins, Peter Principato, Paul Young and James Griffiths, who directed the pilot.

Cristela - In her sixth year of law school, Cristela (Cristela Alonzo) is finally on the brink of landing her first big (unpaid) internship at a prestigious law firm. The only problem is that her pursuit of success is more ambitious than her traditional Mexican-American family thinks is appropriate. She’s stuck straddling the old culture she’s trying to modernize at home with her working-class family and the modern world she’s trying to embrace in her professional career. Breakout comedian Cristela Alonzo stars in this hilarious comedy about laughing your way down the path to the new American dream. Cristela stars Cristela Alonzo as Cristela, Carlos Ponce as Felix, Terri Hoyos as Natalia, Andrew Leeds as Josh and Sam McMurray as Trent. Cristela was written by Cristela Alonzo and Kevin Hench. Executive producers are Kevin Hench, Marty Adelstein, Becky Clements and Shawn Levy.

Fresh Off the Boat - It’s the 90s and 11 year old, hip-hop loving Eddie (Hudson Yang) just moved to suburban Orlando from DC’s Chinatown with his parents (Randall Park and Constance Wu). It’s culture shock for his immigrant family in this comedy about pursuing the American Dream. Fresh Off the Boat is based on Chef Eddie Huang’s memoir. Fresh Off the Boat stars Randall Park as Louis, Constance Wu as Jessica, Hudson Yang as Eddie, Forrest Wheeler as Emery and Ian Chen as Evan. Fresh Off the Boat was written by Nahnatchka Khan, who also serves as executive producer. Jake Kasdan and Melvin Mar are executive producers, and Eddie Huang is producer.

Galavant - Screenwriter/executive producer Dan Fogelman (The Neighbors, Tangled, Cars) teams up with Broadway and Hollywood award-winning musical team—composer Alan Menken (The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast) and lyricist Glenn Slater (The Little Mermaid, Tangled)—for a musical comedy fairytale of epic proportions. Once upon a time, the dashing hero, Galavant (Joshua Sasse), lost the love of his life, Madalena (Mallory Jansen), to the evil King Richard (Timothy Omundson). Now, our fallen hero is ready to take revenge and restore his “happily ever after.” But it won’t be without a few twists and turns along the way. Galavant stars Joshua Sasse as Galavant, Timothy Omundson as King Richard, Vinnie Jones as Gareth, Mallory Jansen as Madalena, Karen David as Isabella and Luke Youngblood as Sid. Galavant was written by Dan Fogelman, who also serves as executive producer. Executive producers are Alan Menken, Glenn Slater and Chris Koch. Galavant was directed by Chris Koch.

Manhattan Love Story - Have you ever wondered what your date was thinking? This romantic comedy exposes the differences between men and women through the unfiltered thoughts, and often contradictory actions, of a new couple who have just begun dating. Manhattan Love Story stars Analeigh Tipton as Dana, Jake McDorman as Peter, Nicolas Wright as David, Jade Catta-Preta as Amy, Chloe Wepper as Chloe and Kurt Fuller as William. Manhattan Love Story was written by Jeff Lowell (Drew Carey Show, Spin City). Michael Fresco directed the pilot.

Selfie - “Instafamous” Eliza Dooley (Karen Gillan) has 263,000 followers who hang on to her every post, tweet and selfie. But one lonely day, she has a revelation: being friended is not the same as having actual friends. She asks marketing guru Henry (John Cho) to ‘rebrand’ her self-obsessed reputation and teach her how to connect with people in the real world. Loosely based on My Fair Lady, Selfie explores the modern struggles of Eliza and Henry, as he tries to teach her how to live life offline—whether she ‘likes’ it or not. Selfie stars Karen Gillan as Eliza, John Cho as Henry, Tim Peper as Ethan, Da’Vine Joy Randolph as Charmonique, Allyn Rachel as Bryn and David Harewood as Sam. Selfie was written by Emily Kapnek and directed by Julie Anne Robinson, who also serve as executive producers.

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