ABC's new fall schedule deletes Flash Forward, brings back Tampa's JoAnna Garcia, Matthew Perry and Dana Delaney
As expected, ABC kicked wacky experiments such as Flash Forward and Happy Town to the curb in its schedule for the 2010-11 TV season -- offering a sale of new shows that, on the surface, seems to play it safe.
On Tuesdays, with Lost gone and V floundering, the network offers No Ordinary Family, an adventure series about a typical family suddenly imbued with superpowers starring the guy who played the Thing in the Fantastic Four movies, Michael Chiklis. At 10 p.m., Sopranos alum Michael Imperioli reminds us of the cops he played on Law & Order and Life on Mars, this time playing a Motor City cop in Detroit 1-8-7.
Tampa native JoAnna Garcia gets another crack at series TV with the comedy Better Together, featuring the tribulations of three different couples struggling with relationships. The show airs just before ABC's hit series about three groups in an extended families struggling with family issues, Modern Family.
Toss in a legal drama from CSI producer Jerry Bruckheimer (The Whole Truth), a crime drama with former Desperate Housewives co-star Dana Delaney as a surgeon-turned-medical examiner (Body of Proof), a heartwarming unscripted show about wealthy people volunteering Undercover Boss-style to help the less fortunate (Secret Millionaire) and a midseason medical drama from Grey's Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes (Off the Map).
Also in mid-season, Friends alum Matthew Perry as a heartless arena manager in Mr. Sunshine.
What you get is a schedule which looks awfully, um, familiar -- especially compared to the network which gave us Flash Forward, V, Happy Town and Eastwick all in one season last year.
The list of shows wrapped up or canceled include Romantically Challenged, Scrubs, Better Off Ted, Ugly Betty, Lost, Happy Town, Flash Forward, Hank, Eastwick and the Forgotten (nearly forgot about that one myself -- rimshot!)
Cynics will accuse the network of bending to popular will and laying off the creative leaps after two seasons where their most innovative efforts brought stillborn shows (Pushing Daisies, FlashForward, Happy Town).
But we won't know for sure how safe this lineup is until we actually see the pilot episodes (comic book geek that I am, I'm salivating for No Ordinary Family -- especially since NBC axed Heroes)
Here's how the schedule stack up night by night:
MONDAY: 8:00 p.m. “Dancing with the Stars”10:00 p.m. “Castle”
TUESDAY: 8:00 p.m. “No Ordinary Family”
9:00 p.m. “Dancing with the Stars the Results Show”
10:00 p.m. “Detroit 1-8-7”
WEDNESDAY: 8:00 p.m. “The Middle”
8:30 p.m. “Better Together”
9:00 p.m. “Modern Family”
9:30 p.m. “Cougar Town”
10:00 p.m. “The Whole Truth”
THURSDAY: 8:00 p.m. “My Generation”
9:00 p.m. “Grey’s Anatomy”
10:00 p.m. “Private Practice”
FRIDAY: 8:00 p.m. “Secret Millionaire”
9:00 p.m. “Body of Proof”
10:00 p.m. “20/20”
SATURDAY: 8:00 p.m. “Saturday Night College Football”
SUNDAY: 7:00 p.m. “America’s Funniest Home Videos”
8:00 p.m. “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition”
9:00 p.m. “Desperate Housewives”
10:00 p.m. “Brothers & Sisters”