As is par for the course, these season previews have gotten later and later into the season every year I’ve done a preview. At this point, most of the shows have already debuted or returned, so this is less of a preview (despite my having selected those shows prior to watching any of them). In any case, here are the previous years’ previews:
10. The Good Place (NBC) Sep 19
I think it’s a pretty safe bet to say that anything starring Kristen Bell, I’ll at least give a few episodes on my DVR to. I actually have finished the first two episodes of this series and it’s a safe bet to remain on my DVR list for the rest of the season. It’s reminiscent of Toys (1992) and Eli Stone (2008-2009). Ted Danson of Cheers fame returns to a television series that’s perfectly placed for him to find success again. The Good Place is basically a fantasy tale about the afterlife and ties in enough mystery & comedy with a light hand to keep this series squarely in the place of situational comedy, which we always need more of every television season given all the failures in the comedy space. Based on just the first two episodes, if you were a fan of Pushing Daisies or
Eli Stone or even Wonderfalls, I highly recommend this series to you.
9. Designated Survivor (ABC) Sep 21
Having watched the first two episodes already, I’d already say that Designated Survivor is a safe bet to be renewed. And indeed, it already has picked up a full season so we’ll at least get a full season’s worth of episodes out of the newest Kiefer Sutherland drama. There will be 22 episodes, so that’s at least 20 more episodes of this series remaining for this season. Watch the first two episodes – you won’t be disappointed in just those. It’s also a series that brings the spotlight onto current issues in today’s world. They might not be the exact same issues, but the allegories and symbolism are fully intact.
8. This is Us (NBC) Sep 20
I won’t spoil the premise of the series, but this is more of the vignette-style interweaved storytelling that Modern Family made so successful. Touching and striking, I would be fully surprised not to see this series get renewed. I’m predicting roughly a 3 to 5 year run, especially with so many different storylines for the writers to explore. Be warned though, it’s not always sunshine and roses. Nor is life.
7. Scream Queens (FOX) Sep 20
It’s just not fall without some sort of horror mixed in amongst the television offerings. After season 1’s success, Scream Queens continues where it left off. We’ll get more thrills and chills, and of course, some laughs again with season 2. The
6. Time After Time (ABC) Midseason, TBD 2017
Time After Time is the second-most-likely to be a bust from this entire list of television series. It’s supposed to center on the the adventures of a young H.G. Wells and his time machine. I’m always a sucker for time travel television shows (as might be well evident by some of my previous show reviews and my favorite television series / movies). Midseason debuts are always dicey, but it is also an election year – so it may work out for Time After Time. We just have to wait for more details, but it’s still on my short list of television series that will entertain me the most.
5. Legends of Tomorrow (CW) Oct 13
The surprise hit of last season’s television season returns for season 2. DC’s Legends of Tomorrow combines minor superheroes (including my favorite superhero of all time, Firestorm) and time travel. It probably was a foregone conclusion that I would immensely enjoy this series – and season 1 accomplished just that. Season 2 will likely feature a single “bad guy” with an overarching story across the entire year, especially since Vandal Savage (the season 1 “baddie”) got defeated during the first season. If that’s the case, expect the series to experiment with multi-story arcs for new “sub-boss” baddies with glimpses at the season’s “final boss” throughout the year.
4. No Tomorrow (CW) Oct 4
I’ll just keep this short – guy believes the end of the world is coming soon. Girl becomes involved with “prepper”. Bucket list of things is involved. Can they complete the entire bucket list prior to when the guy believes the world is ending? Such an absurd premise, but it promises some sort of comedy. We’ll see if said comedy is done well – but I honestly can’t see this series lasting more than a couple of seasons at most.
3. Emerald City (NBC) Jan 6, 2017
I’ve said it before – but The Wizard of Oz is one of my favorite movies ever. It’s based on the first book of the Oz books by L. Frank Baum. There’s even a Return to Oz film made by Disney, but in general there hasn’t been much of an effort to adapt the rest of the Oz books to the screen, either small or big. NBC’s Emerald City has quite the saga behind it. It was originally slated for 2015, with filming starting in 2014. The entire project got scuttled due to creative differences. The project got revived, there are 10 episodes shot. These episodes will comprise season 1 and if hopefully all goes well, we’ll get more seasons.
2. Quantico (ABC) Sep 25
Another surprise hit from last season, Quantico returns with a vengeance. Alex Parrish (Priyanka Chopra) is no longer with the FBI, but has become a CIA agent. There’s another season of training, missions, and of course a conspiracy that will unravel over the entire season. Basically, if you enjoyed the first season, here’s a second helping!
1. Timeless (NBC) Oct 3
There’s plenty of time travel centric shows, and yes, the most anticipated show for Cinematically is yet another time travel show. Timeless is allegedly just rollicking good fun, which is always a winner for a television show. The concept centers around a bad guy stealing a time machine and traveling back to various points in American history to change the course of time. Of course some heroes have to band together to find and stop history from being changed for the worse. With all of this time travelling, one would expect at least a couple of those shows to survive this season. I can only hope for the best.