This week Ryan Murphy announced that the next season of Glee, the show’s sixth, will be its last. And with the unfortunate death of star Cory Monteith, Murphy and his writing team are forced to come up with a new ending for the musical dramedy.
“The final year of the show, which will be next year, was designed around Rachel and Cory/Finn’s story,” Murphy told the press at a Paley Center event honoring the FX network. “I always knew that, I always knew how it would end. I knew what the last shot was–he was in it. I knew what the last line was–she said it to him. So when a tragedy like that happens you sort of have to pause and figure out what you want to do, so we’re figuring that out now.”
Murphy says he has “a good idea” as to how he plans on properly ending the series. “I’m going to tell the studio and the network how after Cory’s unfortunate passing we can end the show that I think is very satisfactory. And kind of in his honor, which I love.”
When Glee returns with new episodes starting November 7, things get punched back into high gear and high energy; the new episode back is called “A Katy or a Gaga” and “it’s about the kids trying to figure out who they are as artists,” reveals Murphy. Following the Finn tribute episode, Murphy says he “wanted to do something that was maybe a little more inspirational, because that was so hard on the cast,” Murphy explains. “So we did something that [features] a lot of costumes, a lot of great set pieces.” Preview the new episode after the break.
Glee airs Thursdays at 9PM on FOX.
After last Monday’s episode of Sleepy Hollow came to a close, fans of the new supernatural drama were treated to an extended look at what’s coming next. After only five episodes the show has proven to be a wild, engaging ride and things are about to get even better. As previously reported, Fringe‘s John Noble joins the cast as Henry Parrish, a kind and reclusive man who possesses supernatural powers that have the potential to help Crane. The sneak peek embedded above is our first look at a newly coiffed Noble in action. His recurring character enters the fray when Sleepy Hollow returns to FOX with new episodes–starting with “The Sin Eater”–on November 4.
Fall TV updates: ‘Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ picked up for full season, ‘We Are Men’ cancelled
After axing one Tuesday drama in Lucky 7, ABC has commissioned a full season order for their hugely successful superhero drama Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. In typical fashion, the alphabet network is tacking on “the back nine” increasing S.H.I.E.L.D.’s season one episode count from 13 to 22. Joss Whedon’s latest foray into television premiered to a whopping 12.1 million total viewers and a 4.7 rating in the 18-49 demo making the S.H.I.E.L.D. pilot TV’s highest-rated drama debut in almost four years. Though the show slipped in the ratings in week 2, numbers still remain solid and it sees significant DVR gains; in short, Whedon has finally concocted a TV show that will likely remain on the air for years to come (Buffy & Angel join good company).
Over at CBS We Are Men, the comedy starring Jerry O’Connell, Tony Shalhoub, Christopher Nicholas Smith, and Kal Penn, has been cancelled after only two episodes aired. It premiered poorly to 6.4 million total viewers and a 2.0 18-49 demo rating; things went from bad to worse in week 2 when those numbers dropped majorly to 5.4 million and a 1.8, respectively. These ratings simply don’t live up to the Eye’s sitcom standards and so We Are Men is gone for good. Starting next week, Monday’s 2 Broke Girls moves from 9PM to take over Men‘s 8:30PM slot; repeats of The Big Bang Theory will air at 9PM for three weeks and then Mike & Molly comes off the bench to take over the vacant time slot.
FOX is showing support for its new sitcoms by ordering more scripts for a couple of them. As previously reported, the network ordered an undisclosed amount of additional scripts for Brooklyn Nine-Nine and now the same is being done for Seth MacFarlane’s Dads. FOX ordered 6 more scripts for the Seth Green/Giovanni Ribisi comedy, even as its most recent episode amounted to a paltry 1.3 demo rating and 3.1 million total viewers. Though to be fair, FOX’s Tuesday night comedy lineup isn’t performing so well ratings-wise in general. We’ll see where this goes.
In sum, ABC’s Lucky 7 and CBS’ We Are Men are the first two cancellations of the 2013-14 TV season; NBC’s The Blacklist and ABC‘s Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. are the first to get full season orders, and FOX’s Sleepy Hollow is the first to be renewed for a second season. The fate of FOX’s Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Dads hang in the balance leaning towards getting the back nine since additional scripts have been ordered for each.
The new season of 24 is being billed as a “thrilling international adventure” as it will take place and shoot on-location in London. Star and executive producer Kiefer Sutherland and EPs Evan Katz and Manny Coto commented on the exciting news and at the same time dropped some intel on the upcoming 12-episode event series.
“24 has always had such a global sensibility,” said Sutherland. “But to be able to tell this intense 24-style story with the beauty of Europe’s history and architecture as the backdrop is going to be fascinating. Hopefully, by the time you’re finished watching an episode, you’ll feel like you’ve been there…on the edge of your seat.”
“We wanted the show’s return to be an event, and part of that was putting Jack in a very different context,” added Katz. “Four years ago, we left Jack a fugitive from justice and we’re going to pick him up four years later in London.”
“Jack is soon back on the run and it takes us into the streets of London and in places that break new ground for the show,” continued Coto. “We’ve shot in New York, Washington, Los Angeles and Cape Town — but now we’re in London and Jack’s loose on the streets of Europe, hunted by and hunting bad guys.”
And who will be joining Jack in London when 24 returns next year? Of course Mary Lynn Rajskub will reprise her role as Jack’s CTU confidante Chloe O’Brien and in some surprise casting news Kim Raver and William Devane are also coming back. Raver played Audrey Raines, a former love interest for Jack, and Devane was Audrey’s father and once United States Secretary of Defense. These two were last seen at the end of season six; Raines was in a catatonic state after her captivity with the Chinese and Heller threatens Jack that he cannot see his daughter ever again. Well, things are about to get interesting.
24: Live Another Day premieres in Spring 2014 on FOX. As previously reported, the new season will still take place over a 24-hour period but it will skip hours to make for a shorter but even more exciting ride.
We are more than a few weeks into the new fall season of television and this is the time when networks typically announce “back nine” pickups and cancellations. This year, however, marks a unique occasion. Instead of increasing Sleepy Hollow‘s 13-episode count by nine for a “full season pickup,” FOX is limiting its run to 13 installments and renewing it for a second season already. The supernatural drama scored big the ratings when its pilot aired days before official premiere week; 10.1 million tuned in and it landed a solid 3.5 rating in the adults 18-49 demo. And if you include DVR gains following the three days after the pilot aired, 13.6 million viewers ended up watching the series premiere and the 18-49 rating jumped to a 5.0. These impressive numbers make Sleepy Hollow FOX’s most successful fall drama premiere since the debut of 24 in November 2001. “The show has proven to be a risk well worth taking – it’s a conceptual blast unlike anything else on television and it all holds together with inventive writing and a fantastic cast,” said FOX head Kevin Reilly in a statement. “I can’t wait for fans to experience what else is in store for this fall and even more of this wild ride into Season Two.” Sleepy Hollow airs Mondays at 9PM on FOX.
This week FOX also renewed The Simpsons for a remarkable 26th season. “For more than a quarter of a century, The Simpsons has captured the hearts and minds of fans in a way that transcends ages, languages and cultures,” said Reilly. “This groundbreaking series is not only the longest-running scripted show in television history, it’s one of the greatest sitcoms of our time, and I’m looking forward to yet another landmark season.” The Simpsons airs Sundays at 8PM on FOX.
Though FOX’s critically-adored cop comedy Brooklyn Nine-Nine isn’t faring so well in the ratings (it debuted to 6 million total viewers and a 2.5 demo rating before falling to 1.4 million viewers and a 1.4 in its most recent episode), TVLine reports that the network has ordered an undisclosed amount of additional scripts. A full-season pickup might be around the corner.
Elsewhere, NBC decided to go the traditional route with its breakout new drama The Blacklist by giving the James Spader vehicle a full season pickup increasing its season one episode count to 22. Across its first two episodes the series averages 12 million total viewers with a 3.6 demo rating in adults 18-49. It’s the fall’s most-watched new drama in terms of total viewers. “The many layers of Red Reddington and his mysterious reasons for getting into bed with the FBI seem to be fascinating to fans of this show,” said NBC exec Jennifer Salke said in a statement. “With great talent like James Spader and Megan Boone on board, as well our stellar executive producers and the whole cast and crew, we believe this outstanding series will continue to make NBC a big destination on Monday nights.” The Blacklist airs Mondays at 10PM on NBC.
I hope you didn’t invest too much into ABC’s lotto drama Lucky 7 because that show just became the first to get axed this fall. After airing only two episodes the alphabet net has cancelled Lucky 7 and pulled it from the schedule effective immediately (repeats of Scandal will fill the Tuesday at 10PM void for now). The show debuted to 4.4 million viewers and a 1.3 demo rating and dropped significantly in week two which stuck a 0.7 rating; oh, the irony. Who will join the not-so Lucky 7 in the cancellation bucket next? My money’s on another ABC drama Betrayal. Keep it here to find out.
The Kevin Bacon/James Purefoy serial killer thriller The Following doesn’t return to FOX until January but until then you can theorize what’s to come in season 2 with two brand new teasers (the other’s after the break). The famous Edgar Allen Poe mask melts; should fans expect a new big bad to enter the scene or does Joe Carroll emerge from the ashes with a new obsession in mind? Sound off. (Click here for more…)
Normally I wouldn’t report on casting updates, but this one’s real special. Actor John Noble, who famously and delicately portrayed the mad scientist licorice lover Walter Bishop for five seasons on Fringe, is boarding the new FOX drama Sleepy Hollow. On Monday the show about Ichabod Crane and the fight against the evil four horsemen of the apocalypse premiered to big ratings; 10.1 million people tuned in making it FOX’s most-watched fall drama debut in seven years. News of Noble entering the mix will surely stir the pot some more and attract more eyeballs.
Here’s what we know. Noble will appear later in the season as Henry Parrish, a kind and reclusive man who possesses supernatural powers that have the potential to help Crane. If there’s anything we know about Noble it’s that he can most certainly play “reclusive” and “kind.”
Noble joins the cast of Sleepy Hollow as a recurring guest-starring role (which will hopefully turn into a series regular part) and this occasion marks a creative reunion–Sleepy Hollow executive producers Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci, and Heather Kadin all worked on Fringe as well.
Sleepy Hollow airs Monday nights at 9PM on FOX.
FOX is getting a jump on the other big broadcasters by premiering the majority of its show one week before the official premiere week of September 23. The X Factor and Masterchef already started on Wednesday, September 11. And this Monday, Sleepy Hollow gets its big debut at 9PM following Bones (the Emily Deschanel/David Boreanaz crime dramedy relocates to Fridays at 8 starting November 8). The net’s Tuesday night comedy lineup premieres September 17 with Seth MacFarlane’s Dads, the fall’s buzziest new comedy Brooklyn Nine-Nine with Andy Samberg and Andre Braugher, New Girl, and The Mindy Project. Glee enters the scene with a tribute to The Beatles the following week on Thursday, September 26 at 9PM and Masterchef Junior sees its series premiere on Friday the 27th at 8. Starting Sunday, September 29 FOX’s Animation Domination lineup premieres with The Simpsons, Bob’s Burgers, Family Guy, and American Dad. J.H. Wyman’s new sci-fi crime drama Almost Human is being held until Monday, November 4 (it will take Bones‘ place at 8PM) and Greg Garcia’s sitcom Raising Hope comes to the schedule Friday, November 8 at 9PM. Rookie army comedy Enlisted was supposed to debut that Friday too, but FOX has pushed it to midseason.
Click here to preview the new shows. Browse the gallery below for key art.
Jump after the break to view the full fall schedule.
When Glee returns this fall it will do so without one of its biggest stars, Cory Monteith. The actor who played Finn Hudson on the FOX musical dramedy passed away last month due to a drug overdose. As Gleeks worldwide continue to mourn the young actor’s death, the producers behind the mega-successful series are hard at work on making a special episode that will address the character’s death. In an interview with Deadline, series executive producer Ryan Murphy shed some light on what viewers can expect. Following a Beatles tribute that spans across the season four premiere and second episode, Glee will say goodbye to Finn in the season’s third hour that will play as “a celebration of that character’s life,” says Murphy. Finn, in fact, will not die of a drug overdose in the show, and viewers may not even be privy to how he ends up passing away. Jump after the break to read the EP’s take on the upcoming tribute episode.
Glee returns September 26 on FOX. (Click here for more…)
It’s full steam ahead for FOX’s Family Guy which returns this fall for its 12th season. Here’s a five minute preview of the upcoming season.
At Family Guy‘s Comic Con panel it was revealed that one member of the Griffin family will be killed off and replaced with a new character this season. “It could be anyone, any one of our six main cast,” said showrunner Steve Callaghan. I was sitting in the Ballroom 20 crowd and like everyone else around me I wasn’t sure if he was joking or not but in retrospect I don’t think he was. What else? Season 12 guest stars include Adam Levine, Bryan Cranston, Tony Sirico, Jeff Daniels, Liam Neeson, Conan O’Brien, and Ashton Kutcher. As The Cleveland Show is MIA this season, Cleveland is moving back to Spooner Street and he’s bringing his new family with him! The Family Guy / Simpsons crossover episode will likely be a one-hour event and may feature a five-minute chicken fight between Peter and Homer, but don’t expect it to air until season 13. And yes, a Family Guy movie is in the works but a timeline has yet to be discussed.
After the break watch a nearly six minute preview of the 10th season of Seth MacFarlane’s other animated comedy American Dad. This marks the final season on FOX as AD will continue to air new episodes on TBS when season 11 premieres in fall 2014. “It’s going to be the same American Dad, just in a different place,” promised co-creator Mike Barker. What else? Upcoming guest stars include Zooey Deschanel, Alison Brie, Ellie Kemper, Stanley Tucci, Mae Whitman, Mariah Carey, T.J. Miller, and Olivia Wilde. There’s also an American Dad movie idea where fans will finally travel to Roger’s home planet. (Click here for more…)
FOX is rebooting Carl Sagan’s Cosmos: A Personal Voyage (a 13-part TV series that aired in 1980 on PBS) with Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey hosted by astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson.
Sagan’s original creative collaborators, namely writer/executive producer Ann Druyan and astronomer Steven Soter, along with executive producer Seth MacFarline (yes, of Family Guy fame) have teamed together to continue where Sagan left off.
The series will explore how we discovered the laws of nature and found our coordinates in space and time. It will bring to life never-before-told stories of the heroic quest for knowledge and transport viewers to new worlds and across the universe for a vision of the cosmos on the grandest scale. Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey will invent new modes of scientific storytelling to reveal the grandeur of the universe and re-invent celebrated elements of the legendary original series, including the Cosmic Calendar and the Ship of the Imagination. The most profound scientific concepts will be presented with stunning clarity, uniting skepticism and wonder, and weaving rigorous science with the emotional and spiritual into a transcendent experience.
When asked why do a reboot, Sagan’s wife Ann Druyan explained, “Well, it’s a very big universe, and in the first series we covered a lot of territory. But there’s so much left. We have new stories that have yet to be told.” She promises it “is as accessible as the first one and contains information that’s at times arcane, that at other times is as less complicated. But it’s for everyone.”
Interested in exploring the mysteries of space? Then the 13-part docu-series Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey–premiering in 2014 on FOX–is a can’t miss TV event. See how cool science can be in the teaser trailer posted after the break. (Click here for more…)
The upcoming tenth season of animated comedy American Dad will be its last on FOX. But don’t fret, AD fans; the Seth MacFarlane-produced series is not being cancelled. It is relocating to cable’s TBS. Fifteen episodes have been ordered for AD‘s eleventh season which will premiere on TBS in late 2014. Sister network Adult Swim will air encores of each episode after initial airings on TBS.
“American Dad! is a great fit for TBS, a favorite of comedy fans who like smart, irreverent humor with ample doses of biting wit and skewering satire,” said TBS head Michael Wright. We look forward to welcoming Seth MacFarlane and the rest of his team as they bring this iconic show to TBS.”
“American Dad! is a brilliantly inventive series, and TBS’s desire to platform new episodes demonstrates the enduring power of great and compelling content,” added 20th Century Fox TV chairmen Gary Newman and Dana Walden. “Seth, Mike and Matt have created an incredibly rich world of unique characters, and we couldn’t be happier that they will be able to continue to tell their trademark brand of subversive, hilarious stories to their millions of fans.”
This is an interesting move on FOX’s part. Though the network did not disclose its rationale behind the relocation, one can ponder that it’s making room for a fresh new series in its Sunday night “Animation Domination” block. With The Cleveland Show MIA this fall and American Dad moving after this season, the network will have at least a couple vacancies to fill next year. Time will tell which new shows will join up-and-comer Bob’s Burgers and veterans Family Guy and The Simpsons on Sunday nights.
The Smiths, Rodger the alien, and Klaus the German-tongued goldfish return to Fox this fall for their final run on the net.
Late Saturday night news broke that Glee star Cory Monteith was found dead in a Vancouver hotel room; he was 31 years old. Vancouver police say there were no indications of foul play at the scene, and we won’t know further details until the autopsy is released Monday. [Update: According to the British Columbia coroner’s office, he died of a “mixed drug toxicity, involving heroin and alcohol."] Monteith, who played Finn Hudson on FOX’s Glee and broke out as one of the series’ biggest stars, had checked himself into rehab earlier this year to address substance addiction. He was expected to make a full recovery and return in the fifth season of the musical dramedy.
On Sunday the network FOX, the studio 20th Century Fox Television, and Glee producers released a joint statement: “We are deeply saddened by this tragic news. Cory was an exceptional talent and an even more exceptional person. He was a true joy to work with and we will all miss him tremendously. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and loved ones.”
As a self-processed Gleek, news of Monteith’s passing is shocking and incredibly sad. He contributed so much energy, enthusiasm, and emotion to the show’s grade-A pilot and quickly became a standout fan-favorite. Last we saw his character, Finn left McKinley High to pursue a teaching degree; I was hoping to see Finn eventually return to teach at the high school and run the Glee club when Mr. Shue was ready to move on. Also, Finn always had an undeniable connection with Lea Michele’s Rachel Berry and Gleeks around the world had been anticipating the two to get back together and
sing ride off into the sunset come series end.
However the producers address Cory’s passing, I’m sure it will be heartfelt and enduring. RIP Cory Monteith.
FOX followed NBC at the 2013 Upfronts on Monday, unveiling 11 new series coming to the network next season: six comedies, four dramas, and one reality show. Jump after the break to get more information about all of the new shows including synopses, cast and creator/executive producer listings, clips, and initial reactions.
Significant changes to the schedule include: Monday night is genre night for FOX; in the fall Bones is paired with Sleepy Hollow from Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, and in late fall J.J. Abrams and J.H. Wyman’s Almost Human will lead into new episodes of Sleepy Hollow and then The Following when midseason rolls around… Joining New Girl and The Mindy Project on Tuesday nights is multi-cam comedy from Seth MacFarlane Dads and single-cam sitcom starring Andy Samberg and Andre Braugher Brooklyn Nine-Nine; the network opens a second comedy block in late fall with Raising Hope and Enlisted with Geoff Stults on Friday nights… Bones is also relocating from to Friday starting in late fall where it will lead into the aforementioned second comedy block… When Glee goes off the air in midseason, Greg Kinnear drama Rake will take over the Thursday at 9PM slot; Glee will return in late spring and finish its fifth cycle in June.
Elsewhere: For next season FOX is focused on introducing new programming all year round by staggering premieres in fall, late fall, midseason, and in the summer. The network is looking to “reinvent the miniseries” with “limited event series.” Two major event series were announced at their upfronts presentation: Wayward Pines (10 episodes) from M. Night Shyamalan (starring Matt Dillon) and the return of 24 (subtitled Live Another Day, 12 episodes) with Kiefer Sutherland back the iconic role of Jack Bauer. These shows are slated to debut in 2014… Following the Super Bowl on February 2, the network will air a new episode of New Girl and pair it with a new half-hour comedy still TBD… Also coming in 2014 is Seth MacFarlane’s reboot of Carl Sagan’s Cosmos with astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson on board to host the 13-episode journey through our universe… The Cleveland Show‘s fate is still up in the air… Gang Related, Surviving Jack, Us & Them, and the animated Murder Police are being held for midseason.
Programs not returning next season: Ben and Kate, The Mob Doctor, Fringe, and Touch. (Click here for more…)
What a year it has been for fans of groundbreaking television returning to their former glory. Seven years after it aired its final episode due to low ratings and forced cancellation, Arrested Development is returning with 15 new installments in under two weeks time. 24 bowed out after eight seasons on air, and rumors of a feature film had been swirling since it ended. Following Arrested‘s lead, the creative heads behind the suspenseful drama ultimately decided to opt out of a movie and instead bring the series back in episodic form. Are you getting this? 24 is coming back for more!
FOX is labeling the return of 24 as an “event series,” meaning it will come in a smaller, yet still impactful package. 24: Live Another Day will retain the 24 DNA by telling a season-long story that takes place over the course of one day in Jack Bauer’s life, however this time around the trek will be truncated into 12 episodes instead of the usual 24. FOX chairmen Kevin Reilly spilled the following: “It will go chronologically over the day, but it will skip hours. It will be dictated by the plot…The spine of the original 24 episodes was about 12 hours. Those were when the big events occurred, and then there were little events and connective tissue in between. So [we're] taking the best 12 [of the 24].” He added, “A lot of who’s who in Hollywood wanted to participate in this,” so fans can expect some surprise special guests to pop up over the course of the season in addition to fan favorites (Chloe must return!). No plot details have surfaced yet, but the official PR states the new season will find Jack “several years following the events of the final season.”
Wondering why the movie never came to fruition? Reilly confessed that the producers realized that “24 compressed into two hours is not 24.” It’s that simple.
Will this limited event series mark the real end of 24? Reilly wouldn’t say, but he did acknowledge the series’ “franchise-ability;” he won’t promise a new season of 24 every year, but depending on how the upcoming 12 new episodes perform in the ratings he is leaving a door open for a potential sequel of sorts.
24: Live Another Day is slated to premiere May 2014 and serve as a summer series for FOX. It is a production of 20th Century Fox Television in association with Teakwood Lane Productions. Howard Gordon, Brian Grazer, and Kiefer Sutherland will executive produce, along with an additional team to be announced.
On April 8, A&E renewed Bates Motel for a second season. Same order as before–10 new episodes will premiere in 2014.
A&E president Bob DeBitetto: “Bates Motel has garnered critical acclaim and a loyal audience in its first few weeks. With superb writing and exceptional acting, led by the critically acclaimed performances of Vera Farmiga and Freddie Highmore, we’re incredibly excited to see where Carlton and Kerry take Norma and Norman Bates next.”
On April 26, NBC renewed five dramas including freshmen Revolution and Chicago Fire, Law & Order: SVU (for a fifteenth season), Parenthood (for a fifth season), and Grimm (for a third season).
NBC entertainment president Jennifer Salke: “On the verge of our 2013 fall scheduling decisions, we’re pleased to renew five drama series that will be important to our new season line-up. We’re proud and very appreciative of all of the actors, producers, writers and directors who work so hard to deliver such high-quality work week in and week out. These complex shows represent a broad range of genres and tones, and all of them stand out for us in a television landscape now filled with one-hour series. We’re especially pleased to be renewing Revolution and Chicago Fire — two first-season successes — and there will be more returning series announcements made in the next couple of weeks.”
For more renewal news, jump after the break. (Click here for more…)
Do you watch The Mindy Project? If so, it is pretty much guaranteed that you will thoroughly enjoy the sitcom’s web series centered on the show’s breakout star Ike Barinholtz. It’s called The Morgan Project. Need I say more? Watch all three installments after the break, and keep tabs on the show’s official site for more.
The Mindy Project airs Tuesday nights at 9:30PM on FOX. (Click here for more…)
Good news for fans of FOX programming this week. The “edgy” network renewed four of its shows on Monday including its current Tuesday night comedy lineup Raising Hope, New Girl, and The Mindy Project for a fourth, third, and second season, respectively; also coming back for a second season is the Monday night serial killer thriller from Kevin Williamson starring Kevin Bacon and James Purefoy The Following. When The Following returns next year it will play out over the course of 15 episodes (same as season 1), and uninterrupted if FOX brass decide to save it for midseason again.
Though ratings are relatively low for all three FOX comedies, it was expected that Greg Garcia’s Raising Hope and Liz Meriwether’s New Girl would be back for more; it’s Mindy Kaling’s The Mindy Project whose renewal surprises the most as its ratings were on the bubble of renewal and cancellation averaging 4 million total viewers and a 2.1 rating in the 18-49 demo. While FOX was quick to axe Ben And Kate earlier this season, the network is giving Mindy some more time to grow creatively. As for The Following, this show is rapidly evolving into must-see television as its dark plot twists and solid acting and bold storytelling captivate a sizable audience; the drama is averaging 11.7 million total viewers and a 4.0 rating. (And if you’re wondering, Raising Hope averages 4.5 million viewers and a 2.0 rating this season and New Girl is seeing 6.4 million viewers and a 3.5 rating.)
FOX entertainment chairman Kevin Reilly on the renewals: “From the very beginning, we felt Kevin Williamson and Marcos Siega had created a high-quality, edge-of-your-seat drama that could break from the pack, and it is exciting to see the audience responding. Kevin Bacon and James Purefoy have given us two of the most compelling characters on television and the entire cast is incredible. I’m delighted to have this thrill ride continue on Fox for another season.” On the coming-back comedies he said, “these shows are creatively vibrant, they have established a loyal and passionate audience and they will continue to define and grow the Fox comedy brand next season and beyond.”
After spending so many years as Jack Bauer on 24, Kiefer Sutherland has landed a softer, more philosophical role in FOX’s Touch from Heroes creator Tim Kring. Season 1 played like a symphony about human interconnectedness as each installment told a myriad of interesting stories from all around our tiny world. And at the end of each one, as much as the ball of red yarn twisted and stretched it found equilibrium and all wrongs were made right. Sutherland’s Martin Bohm has a gifted son named Jake (played incredibly by the silent narrator David Mazouz) and he can see the fractures in the universe and he uses his father as a source of might to restore balance to it. Though the first season introduced some serialized material when an unseen power wanted to tap into Jake’s gift for unknown purposes, what the show did best was offer exciting, visually stirring, emotional stories with a beginning, middle, and end each week.
Fans will notice some changes in season 2. First, the story picks up right where we left off. Fate has brought Martin and Jake to Lucy (Maria Bello) and together they will search for her gifted daughter Amelia. Kring promises a faster-paced, jolting journey for our characters, and answers. The Amelia Sequence and its ramifications on the nature of things is the more compelling serialized part of the series, after all. “[Lucy] only felt that her daughter was alive — like a mother’s intuition. So [Martin and Jake] absolutely reaffirm it,” says Kring. “The second season is very much about the search for Amelia and the fact that Maria Bello and Kiefer Sutherland’s characters are now joined together – two people who are searching for answers together.”
Maria Bello has been promoted to a series regular in season 2, but social worker and Martin’s partner-in-crime Clea Hopkins (Gugu Mbatha-Raw) will not be returning. Lucas Haas, a 24 alum (he played Andrew Paige in season 4), joins the cast as Calvin Norburg, a genius Aster Corps employee with special knowledge who will cross paths with our title characters.
If you missed out on the first season of Touch, don’t fret. Due to its typically procedural nature I’m sure the season 2 premiere will make it easy for first time viewers to jump right in. Kring has created a captiviating world here so don’t miss out. Touch premieres tonight (2/8) at 8PM on FOX with back-to-back episodes “Event Horizon” and “Closer.” Starting next week and for the remainder of the 13-episode season, it will air in its regular slot Friday at 9. Check out the official season 2 poster after the break. (Click here for more…)
FOX orders futuristic drama from J.H. Wyman & J.J. Abrams [Update: Another Abrams pilot a-go at NBC]
With Fringe in his rearview mirror, showrunner and sometimes writer and director J.H. Wyman has a new drama at FOX to work on. Today FOX ordered to pilot an hourlong drama from Wyman and J.J. Abrams, the same auspices that brought us Walter Bishop and the rest of the Fringe family. The untitled project is being produced by Abrams’ production company Bad Robot in collaboration with Warner Bros. TV. It’s being described as “an action-packed buddy cop show set in a near future when all LAPD officers are partnered with highly evolved humanlike androids.” Yeah, count me in. Wyman is writing the script and serving as executive producer, a title he shares with Abrams, Bryan Burk, and Kathy Lingg. After the script is locked in and casting choices are made, the pilot will be made and if all goes well we’ll have another Abrams/Wyman futuristic drama on the air in the fall.
Update: Mere moments after wrapping this post news broke that another pilot headlined by J.J. Abrams was ordered by NBC. (After landing the Star Wars directing gig and two pilots at two of the major broadcast networks, somebody is having the best week ever.) This project also falls under the Bad Robot/Warner Bros. TV banners and Abrams is working closely with Alfonso Cuarón (director of Harry Potter and the Prison of Azkaban). It’s working title is Believe and the script is currently being penned by Cuarón and Mark Friedman (Home of the Brave, The Forgotten). Believe is about “the unlikely relationship between a young girl in possession of a great gift/powers — which will come into their own in seven years — and a man sprung from prison who has been tasked with protecting her from the evil elements that hunt her power.” Abrams, Cuarón, Friedman, and Bryan Burk are executive producing. Cuarón is on tap to direct.