Friday, May 14, 2010
Early TV Pick-Ups Announced, Surprise No One
It's May in TV-land and that can only mean one thing: pilot pick ups and series orders. While there hasn't been much in the way of news to this point yet, a slow trickle has officially begun with the recent axing of Law & Order, Heroes, and Flash Forward (my Flash Forward was seeing Flash Forward get canceled - an event that came to be! Spooky!). And as those of us who work in television wait to see which shows get a green light, two early announcements have just been made that may change the face of TV as we know it. Fuck it. It WILL change the face of TV as we know it.
TBS also surprised many with the announcement of the multi-camera Queen Latifah vehicle "Yo, Mama!" about a retired rapper mom and her three rambunctious kids. While Lala had originally planned to stay away from television, she said TBS's new "urban allure" drew her back. One can hardly argue with her judgement. Between Ice Cube's newest incantation of his popular film franchise "Are We There Yet?," and Tyler Perry's veritable monopoly on the "no comedy-comedy" market, the time couldn't be better for the former "Living Single" to come back. Plus it would help TBS fill that last half hour between "Tyler Perry's: Meet The Browns," and George Lopez.
The pilot episode opens with JJ (for short) sitting down with LL Cool J for coffee. LL, as himself, reminisces about when LL and JJ ruled the streets of the lower east side...of Cleveland. As bland as watching a freshly painted fence post dry, the scene carries them back home where we meet JJ's kids. After each is introduced, and given time to "floss," she instructs them to do their homework. They promptly walk out the front door much to the studio audience's delight.
Though several other scenes were slated to be shot, no one on set could manage to get this group of super stars to put their egos aside and finish the episode. TBS has high hopes they get it done though. As does Conan O'Brien, who owns 80% of the network after his ball smashing new deal.*
While these two pick-ups stand out as obvious shows that deserve our attention this fall, one can't help but wonder who will win the big TV lottery next. Will it be the new Top Chef franchise, Top Chef: Bastards? A kitchen full of bastard chefs could really light things up. Perhaps it will be the new Fred Savage reality show Month-To-Month where Fred tries his luck one moth at a time in an apartment building that offers the first month free. While he be able to pick himself back up and get his career back? Or will A&E once again deny us the right to see a former star completely deteriorate on TV and do absolutely nothing to stop it? It's all up in the air for now!