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Denette Wilford

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Fall TV 2012: Shows I Really, Really Wanted to Like, But...

Posted: 09/10/2012 3:55 pm

Of all the new TV shows this fall, there aren't too many to nitpick about. There's creepy stuff ("666 Park Avenue"), the try-hards ("Revolution"), and the been there, done that ("Chicago Fire") -- all of which I didn't mind, if you must know -- and there are a few that I had high hopes for ... but, sadly, they disappointed.

"Partners"
"Will & Grace" is one of my all-time favourite shows, so coming from its creators, I had huge expectations for "Partners." But instead of being a newer, updated version of "W&G," "Partners" only comes across as a sub-par copycat. The cast just doesn't jibe. Michael Urie overacts here (at least on "Ugly Betty," it suited Marc St. James); David Krumholtz is embarrassingly unfunny (though even after "Numb3rs," his long-ago "ER" episode still haunts); and Brandon Routh needs to stick to action (sigh, "Chuck," how I miss you). Sophia Bush, however, was the show's one bright light (she always brought the funny to "One Tree Hill"), but the girl can only do so much.

"Partners" is cut from the same cloth as "2 Broke Girls" (which I absolutely detest for its predictable writing and ba-dum-bum delivery) -- but since it's part of CBS's Monday night money lineup, it'll probably be the first series to receive a full-season order. Sigh.

Debuts: Monday, Sept. 24 at 8:30 p.m. ET on Citytv/CBS

"The Mob Doctor"
I know it's uncool to like hospital dramas and crime procedurals, but I'm still religious aout "CSI," "Criminal Minds" and "Grey's Anatomy," and I'm always game to add more to my viewing schedule. But "The Mob Doctor" won't be one of them. Its premise -- a ballsy cardiothoracic resident (Jordana Spiro) indebted to a mob boss after striking a deal to clear her brother of his mafia ties -- is original, but it truly is just another medical drama. Now, if the hospital component was removed and it was just the mob stuff, that would have been original; executive producers Josh Berman and Rob Wright ("Drop Dead Diva") really missed out on an original opportunity by playing it safe.

Debuts: Sunday, Sept. 16 at 9 p.m. ET on CTV, Monday, Sept. 17 on Fox

"Animal Practice"
Justin Kirk, Tyler Labine, Joanna Garcia Swisher and Bobby Lee have the chops to make a show funny, but when a lab coat-wearing monkey is the best part, I had to do a little takesies-backsies. How anyone thought this show would work while past comedies like "Perfect Couples" and "Bent" got thrown to the wolves (yes, I'm still bitter) is beyond me. I mean, it's leading off the night. What is NBC thinking?! Ugh, the cast -- and viewers -- deserve better.

Debuts: Wednesday, Sept. 26 at 8 p.m. ET on NBC, Sunday Sept. 30 at 7 p.m. ET on Global

"The Neighbors"
Hijinks are supposed to ensue when a family moves into a neighbourhood populated by aliens (space, not illegal), but creator Dan Fogelman is asking for a miracle if he thinks laughs will happen. "The Neighbors" is supposed to fit in with "Modern Family," but it's more like a "Coneheads" rip-off (you know, because that's what we need on television right now). It actually reminded me of the ABC from a few years back, the network that once featured the likes of "Cavemen" and "Carpoolers." Shudder. Surprisingly, though, I didn't roll my eyes as much as I thought I would, but one would have to be a super-skilled hunter to spot a compliment in that forest of backhand.

Debuts: Wednesday, Sept. 26 at 9:30 p.m. ET on CTV, Saturday, Sept. 29 at 10 p.m. ET on CTV, Monday, Sept. 17 on Fox

"Vegas"
Dennis Quaid, Michael Chiklis, Carrie-Anne Moss and Jason O'Mara ... how could it go wrong? And to be honest, there's nothing awful about it, per se, but there's also nothing exciting about it. In fact, it's the total opposite. ("Vegas" is brought to you by the letter, zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.) Perhaps "Mad Men" has the market cornered on period shows, or perhaps networks can't seem to figure out how to make them work (ahem, "Playboy Club," "Pan Am"), but "Vegas" is a bore. The writers try to make '60s Las Vegas as glitzy and glamorous as it is in modern day, but it's just not.

Debuts: Tuesday, Sept. 25 at 10 p.m. ET on Global/CBS

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  • 30 Rock

  • Betty White's Off Their Rockers

  • The Biggest Loser

  • Community

  • Fashion Star

  • Law & Order: SVU

  • Grimm

  • Parks And Recreation

  • Parenthood

  • Smash

  • The Office

  • The Voice

  • Up All Night

  • Whitney

  • 1600 Penn

    Benjamin Stockham as Xander, Martha MacIsaac as Becca (seated), Bill Pullman as President Dale Gilchrist (seated), Amara Miller as Marigold, Josh Gad as Skip, Jenna Elfman as Emily Gilchrist (seated), Andre Holland as Marshall Malloy

  • 1600 Penn

    Amara Miller as Marigold; Jenna Elfman as First Lady Emily Gilchrist; Bill Pullman as President Dale Gilchrist; Martha MacIsaac as Becca; Josh Gad as Skip; Benjamin Stockham as Xander

  • Go On

    Allison Miller as Carrie, Khary Payton as Don, Suzy Nakamura as Yolanda, Matthew Perry as Ryan, Laura Benanti as Lauren, Julie White as Anne

  • Go On

    Matthew Perry as Ryan King

  • Revolution

    Tracy Spiridakos as Charlie, Anna Lise Phillips as Maggie , Zak Orth as Aaron

  • Revolution

    JD Pardo as Nate, Tracy Spiridakos as Charlie, Zak Orth as Aaron, Anna Lise Phillips as Maggie

  • Revolution

    Billy Burke as Miles

  • Revolution

    Anna Lise Phillips as Maggie, Graham Rogers as Danny, Tim Guiee as Ben, David Lyons as Bass Monroe, Billy Burke as Miles, Tracy Spiridakos as Charlie, Andrea Roth as Rachel, Maria Howell as Grace, JD Pardo as Nate, Zak Orth as Aaron, Giancarlo Esposito as Lt. Neville

  • The New Normal

    Ellen Barkin as Jane, Andrew Rannells as Bryan, Georgia King as Goldie, Bebe Wood as Shania, Justin Bartha as David

  • The New Normal

    Bebe Wood as Shania; Andrew Rannells as Bryan; Justin Bartha as David; Georgia King as Goldie

  • The New Normal

    Andrew Rannells as Bryan, Ellen Barkin as Jane, Nene Leakes as Rocky

  • Save Me

    Anne Heche as Beth

  • Save Me

    Anne Heche as Beth Waring

  • Save Me

    Heather Burns as Jenna, Alexandra Breckenridge as Carly, Michael Landes as Tom Waring, Anne Heche as Beth Waring, Madison Davenport as Emily Waring, Lamman Rucker as John

  • Chicago Fire

    Teri Reeves as Hallie, David Eigenberg as Christopher Hermann, Charlie Barnett as Peter Mills, Lauren German as Leslie Shay, Monica Raymund as Gabriella Dawson, Taylor Kinney as Kelly Severide, Jesse Spencer as Matthew Casey, Eamonn Walker as Battalion Chief Walter Boden and Merle Dandridge as Kay Fitori

  • Do No Harm

    Steven Pasquale as Dr. Jeffery Kohl/Ian Price

  • Do No Harm

    Steven Pasquale as Dr. Jeffery Kohl/Ian Price

  • Do No Harm

    Steven Pasquale as Dr. Jeffery Kohl/Ian Price

  • Deception

    Meagan Good as Joanna Locasto

  • Deception

    Meagan Good as Joanna Locasto

  • Deception

    Meagan Good as Joanna Locasto, Victor Garber as Robert Bowers

  • Deception

    Victor Garber as Robert Bowers, Meagan Good as Joanna Locasto, Katherine LaNasa as Sofia Bowers, Tate Donovan as Edward Bowers, Laz Alonso as Will Moreno

  • Next Caller

    Jeffrey Tambor as Jefferson Mingus

  • Guys With Kids

    Anthony Anderson as Gary, Tempestt Bledsoe as Marny

  • Guys With Kids

    Anthony Anderson as Gary, Jesse Bradford as Chris, Zach Cregger as Nick

  • Guys With Kids

    Jamie Lynn Sigler as Emily, Zach Cregger as Nick, Tempestt Bledsoe as Marny, Anthony Anderson as Gary, Sara Rue as Sheila, Jesse Bradford as Chris

 

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