What’s in and out for fall TV
With the broadcast networks announcing their fall schedules this week, here’s a handy guide to what’s been cancelled and what’s new on ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC.
ABC was most brutal to its freshman shows: Zach Braff’s “Alex, Inc,” Kyra Sedgwick’s “Ten Days in the Valley,” sci-fi show “The Crossing,” magician FBI procedural “Deception,” political sitcom “The Mayor” and “Kevin (Probably) Saves The World” were all axed in their first season. The two big cancellations were the Kiefer Sutherland-starring “Designated Survivor,” which lasted two seasons, and FBI thriller “Quantico,” which lasted 3 seasons .
“A Million Little Things”: Remember that 1980s movie “The Big Chill,” where a bunch of white friends were reunited after the suicide of one of their clique? In this ensemble drama, a group of Boston friends examine their life choice when one of their own unexpectedly leaves the planet. Fall.
“The Fix”: No one ever said Marcia Clark wasn’t clever. After seeing Ryan Murphy tell her story in “The People v. O.J. Simpson,” she is now going to tell her own version, thinly disguised. Robin Tunney plays a hot-shot D.A. whose career craters when prosecuting an A-list actor for double murder. After an eight-year retreat to the Pacific Northwest, the D.A. is lured back to her old stomping grounds when the same actor is a murder suspect. Midseason.
“Grand Hotel”: It’s “Upstairs/Downstairs” set in a posh Miami hotel. Oscar nominee Demian Bichir (“The Bridge”) plays hotel owner Santiago Mendoza, who tries to keep the lid on rising debt and scorching scandals as his wealthy guests swan about in the Florida sun. Co-starring Roselyn Sanchez. Midseason.
“The Rookie”: Popular “Castle” star Nathan Fillion returns to the Disney fold and goes to the LA police academy after a midlife crisis. Needless to say, his age makes him a risky hire. Fall.
“Whiskey Cavalier”: “Scandal” star Scott Foley survives the Gladiators to play FBI agent Will Chase, whose code name is Whisky Cavalier. Mr. Whiskey is assigned to work with truculent CIA operative Frankie Trowbridge (Lauren Cohan), whose code name is Fiery Tribune. What’s with all the nicknames? Anyway, these two flirt and fight crime, and the sexual tension builds until you can’t take it anymore. In short, it’s a Shonda Rhimes show without Shonda. Fall.
“The Kids Are Alright”: A 1970s comedy about a very large Irish Catholic family (please, not another “Real O’Neals”). The Clearys have eight kids — all boys — and the eldest son drops out of the seminary to save the world. This is one show with a guardian angel — “Roseanne” is the lead-in on Tuesdays. Fall.
“Schooled”: This “ The Goldbergs” spin-off follows the teachers of William Penn Academy whose students regard them as heroes. Starring Tim Meadows. Midseason.
“Single Parents”: The plight of single parents is the premise for this trendy comedy about a support group of immature adults wondering why they’re stuck raising 7-year-olds when they would rather be out partying. Fall.
After 2 seasons, CBS cancelled Kevin James’ “Kevin Can Wait” and “Superior Doughnuts.” It also gave the axe to “Scorpion” after four seasons, and “Living Biblically,” “9JKL” and “Wisdom of the Crowd” after just one season apiece.
“The Neighborhood”: Cedric the Entertainer and Max Greenfield star in this new sitcom about a family that relocates from the Midwest to a sketchy neighborhood in LA.
“Untitled Damon Wayans Jr. comedy”: Can a happy marriage survive the arrival of a capricious pop star on the couple’s front door? Damon Wayans Jr., the most in-demand actor of the fall season, stars in a new family comedy.
“Magnum P.I.”: In this reboot of the Tom Selleck hit, Latino actor Jay Fernandez plays Thomas Magnum, but this time he’s an ex-Navy SEAL who has served in Afghanistan.
“Fam”: Nina Dobrev, the star of “The Vampire Diaries,” heads up this comedy about a young woman whose best-laid plans run off the track when her sister (Odessa Adlon), a disaster waiting to happen, moves in with her and her fiance (Tone Bell).
“FBI”: TV legend Dick Wolf examines the inner workings of the New York office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Starring Missy Peregrym of “Rookie Blue” fame.
“Murphy Brown”: Candice Bergen’s politically edgy comedy was all the rage when it was on the first time, in the 1990s. Now veteran newswoman Murphy is trying to keep her head afloat in the world of social media and a wildly different political climate. The series welcomes back the original cast.
“The Red Line”: When a white cop accidentally shoots and kills a black doctor, three families’ lives are forever changed. Starring Noah Wyle .
“God Friended Me”: Brandon Micheal Hall’s ABC show “The Mayor” was yanked, but his natural charisma did not go unnoticed. Hall gets a second chance at TV stardom in this drama about an outspoken atheist who’s “friended” by God on Facebook.
“The Code”: CBS liked the premise of this military courtroom drama where the Marines can also serve as lawyers, but have already jettisoned the stars — Dave Annable and Mira Sorvino — from the pilot. So don’t expect miracles.
Fox has a brutal cancellation streak this year, axing a host of shows that had modest but vocal fan bases. Supernatural police procedural “Lucifer” was cancelled after four seasons, horror show “The Exorcist” after two seasons, Kaitlin Olson’s sitcom “The Mick” after two, and the Will Forte-starring post-apocalyptic comedy “Last Man on Earth” after four. Fox also cancelled police comedy “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” after five seasons — but NBC stepped in to save it after fans flooded social media with their outrage.
“The Cool Kids”: Call this comedy, set in a retirement community, “Three Golden Guys and a Girl.” David Alan Grier, Martin Mull and Leslie Jordan are the codgers who raise hell and make room in their Rat Pack for Vicki Lawrence as the Shirley MacLaine of the piece. Fall.
“Rel”: “Get Out” scene-stealer Lil Rel Howery stars in this comedy about a Chicago guy whose wife leaves him for his — now this is low — barber. Word gets out, and soon Rel is the No. 1 topic in his hood. Fall.
“The Passage”: Based on the Justin Cronin bestseller, this genre show is set in a secret medical facility where scientists experiment with a virus that holds the potential to cure all known ills or — and you knew this was coming — wipe out the human race. Mark-Paul Gosselaar stars in his umpteenth TV show as a federal agent protecting a young vulnerable female test subject. Midseason.
“Proven Innocent”: A legal show with a twist. Criminal defense attorney Madeline Scott (Rachelle Lefevre) was once convicted of a murder that made her a household name. Her partner in the courtroom is the very lawyer (Russell Hornsby) who got her out of prison. Midseason.
“Last Man Standing”: Finally, the reboot you were praying for. Tim Allen brings his singular brand of fuddy-duddy humor back to Friday nights, which is where this show played when it was on ABC. Original cast included. Fall.
High school musical drama “Rise” starring Josh Radnor (“How I Met Your Mother”) fell after just one season, as did military drama “The Brave” starring Anne Heche. The Tina-Fey produced “Great News” was cancelled after two seasons, the Jennifer Lopez-starring “Shades of Blue” after three seasons and medical drama “The Night Shift” after four. And after two seasons, audiences were still not taken with “Taken,” the TV prequel to the Liam Neeson action films.
“New Amsterdam”: NBC learned well from “This Is Us” that having a sick/dead/dying person is a good hook for launching a new series. This new medical drama centers on an uncompromising medical director (Ryan Eggold of “The Blacklist”) who wants to blast through the hospital red tape and actually treat patients. What makes him think he can actually get away with such a brazen scheme? He has cancer and doesn’t care about the consequences. Fall.
“The Enemy Within”: Think “The Blacklist,” with a gender switch. Erica Shepherd (Jennifer Carpenter) is the most notorious traitor in American history. She’s also a former CIA operative who is persuaded by FBI agent Will Keaton (Morris Chestnut, as the second FBI agent named Will this season) to track down a dangerous criminal. No nicknames on this show. Sexual tension? Let’s see how it plays out. Fall.
“The Village”: The interwoven lives of Brooklyn apartment building tenants form the backbone of this ensemble drama starring Frankie Faison as the building’s super and Lorraine Toussaint as his wife, who will have a visit to the doctor’s office that will probably elicit tears. Midseason.
“Abby’s”: A new comedy with a weird premise. A young woman (Natalie Morales) opens a makeshift bar with cheap prices and lots of good vibes in her back yard. An al fresco “Cheers.” Midseason.
“I Feel Bad”: Another stressed-out parent comedy, this one from Amy Poehler. Sarayu Blue is the mom who can barely hold it together. Paul Adelstein is her unshaven, Chris Pratt-esque mate. Fall.
“Manifest”: It sounds like an old “Twilight Zone” episode or maybe a ripoff of “Lost.” After quite a bit of turbulence, Montego Air Flight 828 finally lands and the passengers discover that five years have passed and their loved ones thought they were … DEAD. Fall.
“The In Between”: It’s “Medium” for millennials. Carrie Bishop (Harriet Dyer) can communicate with the dead, helping their survivors solve ongoing life problems. Of course Carrie has a detective friend who needs help solving a murder and she agrees to help him. Does she get a police department pension? Midseason.