What TV Shows Not To Watch This Fall
Why waste your valuable time, right? So, the good folks at AOL have put together a list of the least promising new television shows. These are the shows not worth watching or feel free to check them out yourself for your groaning pleasure.
’Charlie’s Angels’ (ABC)
The premise: The ’70s show gets updated for the modern era, on the assumption that, decades later, people still like to watch attractive women in high heels chase bad guys.
Why it didn’t really work: Was the clunky script for ‘Charlie’s Angels’ also dug up from some ’70s vault? It contains more than a few leaden lines, and any show that expects you to accept Minka Kelly (Lyla from ‘Friday Night Lights’) as an orphan who grew up to be a tough car thief is asking too much.
The premise: A young detective becomes aware of nasty critters that most people can’t see, and a dangerous family legacy promises to make his life more complicated.
Why it didn’t really work: Wooden lead actor David Giuntoli, who plays cop David Burkhardt, adds nothing to the proceedings; he has an almost comical lack of range. There were several points at which ‘Grimm’ drained its own suspense away by having a plot development revolve around a convenient ability that a character happened to have.
‘Hart of Dixie’ (CW)
The premise: High-powered Manhattan doctor Zoe Hart (Rachel Bilson) goes to a small Southern town to practice family medicine and learn life lessons from regular folks.
Why it didn’t really work: This is one of the strangest misfires of the fall, given its solid pedigree (‘OC’/'Gossip Girl’/'Chuck’ titan Josh Schwartz is among the executive producers and ‘OC’ veteran Bilson is the star) and given the durability of the fish-out-of-water premise, which worked for everything from ‘Northern Exposure’ to ‘The OC.’ But Bilson proves herself to be too brittle to carry the lead of a show like this and the town is filled with boring, one-dimensional stereotypes. Little about this plays to Bilson’s strengths: She’s good at light comedy and mild rage and works best as part of an ensemble, but here, Zoe’s emotional moments don’t really land as they should.
’How to Be a Gentleman’ (CBS)
The premise: Andrew (David Hornsby), a magazine columnist who writes about the proper conduct of a gentlemen, begins to take life lessons about how to be a manly man from his new trainer, Bert (Kevin Dillon).
Why it didn’t really work: This contrived comedy wasn’t particularly funny or inspired and it didn’t give a compelling reason to return to it, despite the presence of some stellar actors in the cast (Dave Foley of ‘NewsRadio,’ Mary Lynn Rajskub of ’24,’ Rhys Darby of ‘Flight of the Conchords’ and Dillon, who was often the best thing about ‘Entourage’). This predictable, defanged version of ‘Wilfred’ wasn’t terrible, but Hornsby and Dillon didn’t really click as an odd couple.
’I Hate My Teenage Daughter’ (Fox)
The premise: Two moms bond over the fact that they’ve raised selfish, thoughtless and condescending daughters. Hijinks ensue!
Why it didn’t really work: The screechiness of this sitcom may cause lasting brain and/or ear and/or soul damage. Jaime Pressley is strangely miscast as a low-self-esteem mom with a nerdy past, the pilot was full of lame, unfunny jokes, and the whole thing just felt mean-spirited and forced.
’Last Man Standing’ (ABC)
The premise: Tim Allen returns to sitcoms as Mike, a befuddled dad, marketing manager and outdoorsman. From an ABC press release: “Today it’s a woman’s world, and this man’s man is on a mission to get men back to their rightful place in society
Why it didn’t really work: If you like manly man jokes, this show’s for you. There are also lots of “I don’t understand the womenfolk” humor and an offensive gay joke as well.
The show: ‘Man Up!’ (ABC)
The premise: Three friends — a dad, a guy trying to get over a breakup, and a divorced dude — try to get in touch with their inner manly men.
Why it didn’t really work: This comedy uses the single-camera format to tell jokes that feel only slightly less dated and questionable as the ones in the creaky Tim Allen vehicle.
‘The Playboy Club’ ( NBC)
The premise: Maureen (Amber Heard) is a new Bunny and Nick Dalton (Eddie Cibrian) is a smooth, handsome Chicago lawyer and a member of the Playboy Club, where the city’s elite parties and the Bunnies are always smiling — when they’re working, that is. Behind the scenes, there’s intrigue! Drama! Murder!
Why it didn’t really work: It’s certainly possible to construct a great drama out of the changing gender roles and the cultural shifts of the ’60s — ‘Mad Men’s’ been doing just that for four seasons But ‘The Playboy Club’ ignores most of what’s interesting about its setting and time frame and shoehorns a melodramatic murder-mystery plot into its pilot. Not much about this show works, aside from Laura Benanti as the toughest Bunny in the club.
’Suburgatory’ ( ABC)
The premise: George (Jeremy Sisto), a single dad, moves his teen daughter, Tessa (Jane Levy), from New York City to the suburbs when he thinks she’s growing up too fast.
Why it didn’t really work: This comedy wasn’t outright horrible, but Jeremy Sisto was miscast in this show. His presence is just too dour, the show’s tone veers all over the place (from cynical to broad and sitcom-y) and the talented Cheryl Hines is forced to play a preposterous McMansion stereotype.
The premise: Poppy Montgomery plays an investigator who can remember the details of every single day of her life.
Why it didn’t really work: Everything about this police procedural felt tired and uninspired. It’s particularly ironic that there’s nothing memorable about a show that depicts the life of a woman who can remember everything. Having the gift of being able to remember all of one’s life isn’t a bad premise for a TV show, but the execution is extremely unpromising.