Coming at midseason
The following shows are expected to debut between November 2012 and May 2013:
Body of Proof
When the Dana Delany drama returns for a third season in early 2013, it will be with a retooled cast; Nicholas Bishop, John Carrol Lynch, and Sonja Sohn are gone, and two new characters played by Mark Valley (Fringe) and Elyes Gabel (Game of Thrones) will join the mix.
The Family Tools Watch trailer
Airing Tuesdays at 8:30p beginning in January, new sitcom The Family Tools is based on the BBC series White Van Man, which was briefly a hit before quickly tanking in its second season. The American version (which changes the van color to red to show just how different it is) finds star Kyle Bornheimer (Perfect Couples) taking over the family handyman business from his father (J.K. Simmons) even though everyone expects him to fail. There was little for critics to laugh at in the pilot, but there's always hope for a rewrite prior to January.
How to Live With Your Parents (for the Rest of Your Life) Watch trailer
ABC likes to abbreviate its show titles, so how does HTLWYPFTROYL sound? Sarah Chalke (Scrubs) will presumably be departing from Cougar Town, her current gig, since she's the star of this new comedy that finds her playing a recently divorced single mom who moves back in with her eccentric parents (Elizabeth Perkins of Weeds and Brad Garrett, the former Everybody Loves Raymond co-star who returns to TV for the first time since 'Til Death); Stephanie Hunt (Friday Night Lights) also stars. The series launches in January, when it will air Tuesdays at 8p. Critics didn't love the pilot, but they did love the cast.
Mistresses Watch trailer
This primetime soap is based on the British series of the same name, which almost became a Lifetime series a few years ago. Adapted for the U.S. by Gossip Girl's K.J. Steinberg, Mistresses revolves around the personal and professional lives of four female friends played by Alyssa Milano (Charmed), Yunjin Kim (Lost), Rochelle Aytes (Detroit 1-8-7, The Forgotten), and relative newcomer Jes Macallan, while Penelope Ann Miller will also have a recurring role. The series will likely be held until next May, when it will be paired on Mondays throughout the summer with The Bachelor(ette).
Red Widow Watch trailer
This midseason drama is yet another adaptation of a foreign show—in this case, the Dutch series Penoza. Radha Mitchell (Silent Hill, The Crazies) stars as a Northern California housewife who is drawn into the world of organized crime to protect her three children after her gangster husband is murdered. The American series comes from Melissa Rosenberg, best known for writing the Twilight films but also a TV veteran (Dexter, The O.C.). Critics had a mixed reaction to the pilot, but casting additions—including ER's Goran Visnjic—are in the works.
The name might change, but this midseason cooking competition will be hosted by Anthony Bourdain and Nigella Lawson.
This is a show that exists, and it will continue existing at an unspecified date and time in early 2013.
Zero Hour Watch trailer
Anthony Edwards returns to a regular TV role for the first time since ER as the professional debunker and longtime editor of Modern Skeptic magazine (no, there isn't really such a thing ... or is there?) who becomes caught in a real conspiracy when his wife is kidnapped. We're skeptical ourselves, but perhaps Edwards can make it work. Michael Nyqvist (Sweden's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) and Jacinda Barrett (Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason) also star for series creator Paul Scheuring (Prison Break). The drama will debut at midseason on a night and time to be determined. Critics found approximately zero reasons to stay awake through the ponderous first hour.
Christopher Mintz-Plasse (you know him better as McLovin) and Nicholas Braun (10 Things I Hate About You) star as two 20-something friends from the Midwest who move to L.A. to take new jobs. While one is happy to chat with his old Indiana buddies on the computer, the other is desperate for new friends, and posts an ad on a coffee house bulletin board. Sounds like a perfect pairing with Big Bang Theory.
Created by Nick Wootton (NYPD Blue, Chuck), and produced by Greg Berlanti (Brothers & Sisters), Golden Boy traces the rise of an ambitious cop who goes on to become the youngest police commissioner in NYPD history. Though that role was originally targeted for Ryan Phillippe, it will now be played by the lesser-known Theo James (Underworld Awakening); he'll be joined by Chi McBride (Human Target), Kevin Alejandro (True Blood), Holt McCallany (Lights Out), and Bonnie Somerville (NYPD Blue).
Have you ever wanted to watch someone's job interview? A new reality show produced by Mark Burnett (Survivor), midseason series The Job will allow you to do just that, offering contestants a chance to win their dream jobs if they can get through "several rounds of the most intense interviews of their lives." Along the way, they will be tempted by lesser job offers from rival companies. (Because nothing says "reality" like watching ordinary Americans receive multiple job offers in the current economic climate.)
Rules of Engagement
The show that just can't get canceled, Rules will return with 13 new episodes at some point in early 2013.
That new guy at the office? The one with the camera crew following his every move? He might just be your boss.
Your memory is correct; it was canceled at the end of its freshman season in May. But a last-minute pardon means the Poppy Montgomery-led procedural will return for a shortened second season next summer.
The Carrie Diaries
Based on Candace Bushnell's novel, The Carrie Diaries is a prequel to HBO's long-running comedy Sex and the City that centers on a young Carrie Bradshaw as a high school student in 1980s New York City. Unlike the HBO show—which was a frothy comedy—this one will be an hour-long drama. AnnaSophia Robb (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Soul Surfer) stars as the young Carrie. The series will air on Mondays at 9p beginning in January. Critics have already seen the pilot, and the consensus seems to be that while the show isn't great, it's better than many expected it to be.
Created by TV sci-fi veteran Rockne S. O'Bannon (Farscape) and in development for over five years—long enough ago that it was originally set to air on the WB—this midseason drama centers on an investigative reporter who begins researching a popular TV show about cults (also called Cult) that itself may be inspiring some cult-like behavior, and could be related to the mysterious disappearance of his own brother. Matt Davis (The Vampire Diaries), Jessica Lucas (Melrose Place) and Robert Knepper (Prison Break) star. After watching the pilot, a few critics felt that it was theoretically possible a decent show could emerge somewhere down the line, though others simply found it ridiculous.
Note that the network also has a Hunger Games-esque drama called The Selection in development, but there is no guarantee it will get ordered to series. If it doesn't, the CW might move ahead with an adaptation of Battle Royale, which is effectively the ultraviolent Japanese precursor to The Hunger Games. (Basically, the network really, really wants a Hunger Games TV show.)
Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler will not be part of the fading singing competition when it returns in January, but Mariah Carey has been enlisted to fill one of the open judge seats. Joining her as a new judge will likely be rapper Nicki Minaj, who is reportedly close to finalizing a deal, while country singer Keith Urban seems to be the frontrunner for the third chair (earlier rumors that Kanye West would get the job look unlikely to pan out). Randy Jackson, the sole remaining original judge, could also be back, though his return has not yet been finalized.
The Following Watch trailer
Fox's most high-profile new show won't arrive until the winter, but once it does it will run for 15 consecutive Monday nights without interruption. Created by Kevin Williamson (Scream, The Vampire Diaries), The Following marks the first regular series television role for Kevin Bacon, starring as former FBI agent Ryan Hardy, who is reluctantly drawn back into duty when a notorious serial killer (Rome's James Purefoy) escapes from death row and begins a new killing spree nine years after Hardy originally caught him. Natalie Zea (Justified) also stars as the escaped killer's ex-wife. Though the show is extremely dark, critics raved about the pilot episode, so pencil this one on your watch list for early 2013.
The Goodwin Games Watch trailer
One of three estranged adult siblings—Scott Foley (Felicity), Becki Newton (Ugly Betty), and comedian T. J. Miller—stands to inherit their late father's $20 million estate, but only if they adhere to a few minor conditions indicated in his will. Minor conditions? Make that a series of absurd and/or trivial challenges pitting the siblings against each other, doled out one per episode. The single-camera comedy from the executive producers of How I Met Your Mother will debut at midseason, when it will displace an existing member of Fox's Tuesday night comedy block.
Note that Fox will likely add one or more additional shows (to be determined later) to its midseason schedule, while a Saturday late-night (11p-12:30a) animated comedy block—under the banner of Animation Domination HD—will also debut at some point in 2013, as will a new version of the astronomy series Cosmos, to be produced by Seth MacFarlane and hosted by Neil deGrasse Tyson.
1600 Penn Watch trailers and interviews
Think of it as just your ordinary dysfunctional family comedy, but set in the White House. Bill Pullman stars as the president (as he did in the film Independence Day, though that wasn't technically a comedy), while Jenna Elfman is the first lady and stepmother to his kids. The eldest of those kids is The Book of Mormon's Josh Gad, who co-created the series with former Obama speechwriter Jon Lovett, while Modern Family producer and director Jason Winer takes on those duties here. Critics did not endorse the pilot episode, complaining about virtually every aspect of the half hour.
A late addition to NBC's 2012-13 lineup (it was ordered straight to series without a pilot), this midseason drama is an adaptation of Colin Woodard's book The Republic of Pirates, about the legendary 18th century pirate Blackbeard. Casting has yet to be announced, but the show comes from Luther creator Neil Cross, and 10 episodes have been ordered.
Do No Harm Watch trailers and interviews
That title suggests medical drama, and Do No Harm (Sundays at 10p starting in 2013) is indeed that, but with a major Jekyll & Hyde twist. Rescue Me's Steven Pasquale stars as talented and successful neurosurgeon Dr. Jason Cole who has an alternate personality (helpfully named Ian) who emerges every night to wreak havoc on Jason's personal and professional lives after being suppressed for years with an experimental drug. The cast also includes former Cosby Show star Phylicia Rashad and John Carroll Lynch (Body of Proof), while David Schulner (Desperate Housewives, The Event) is the creator. Reviewers who watched the pilot found Pasquale miscast and the hour a disappointment.
Jonathan Rhys Meyers will star as the titular vampire in this latest take on Bram Stoker's classic story. A co-production between NBC and UK channel Sky Living, the 10-episode series shares producers with the hit Downton Abbey, and will be set in Victorian-era London. Like Crossbones, this was a very late addition to NBC's already overambitious (at least in terms of quantity) 2012-13 schedule, and no casting details (other than Rhys Meyers) have been announced.
NBC's Project Runway knockoff will return for a retooled second season that will see a new, yet-to-be-determined host replace Elle Macpherson.
NBC has high hopes for this midseason drama, which follows the early "career" of Dr. Hannibal Lecter, the psychiatrist-turned-serial killer from Thomas Harris' novels and films like Silence of the Lambs. The series comes from Pushing Daisies creator Bryan Fuller, who is using a five-page description of Lecter's back story from the novel Red Dragon as the basis for at least the first few seasons (though NBC has only committed to the first season—of 13 episodes—so far). Mads Mikkelsen (Casino Royale) becomes the latest actor to play the iconic Dr. Lecter, while Hugh Dancy stars as an FBI profiler who consults with the good doctor on his toughest cases but doesn't know that Lecter himself is a criminal. Laurence Fishburne will co-star as an FBI boss, while Caroline Dhavernas (Wonderfalls) will play another FBI consultant. Even if the show does turn out to be as promising as that casting suggests, it will have strong competition from Fox's similarly themed The Following, which will likely premiere first.
Howie Mandel's White Elephant
Imagine your Christmas white elephant gift exchange turned into a game show hosted by Howie Mandel. Congratulations: now you're an NBC executive.
Infamous Watch trailers and interviews
NBC's answer to ABC's hit Revenge is a soapy drama centering on an undercover detective (Meagan Good) who infiltrates an extremely wealthy pharmaceutical family to investigate the suspicious death of a woman who was her childhood friend. The cast also includes Tate Donovan (Damages), Victor Garber (also Damages), and Laz Alonso (Avatar). Reviewers found the pilot much less engaging and fun than, say, Revenge.
Next Caller Watch trailers and interviews
Dane Cook gets to do his best Howard Stern impression in this midseason comedy about a crude satellite radio shock jock who, against his will, is given a new producer and co-host: a feminist straight from NPR (Collette Wolfe, Young Adult). (It's like oil and water! Or like Dane Cook and someone funny). Jeffrey Tambor and Joy Osmanski also star, and the series is created by Stephen Falk (Weeds). Only six episodes were ordered, so even the network doesn't have high expectations for this one; that might be a good thing, because reviewers absolutely detested the pilot episode (though many were surprised to discover that Cook wasn't even the worst thing about the show).
Ready for Love Watch trailers
How does this Eva Longoria-produced dating competition differ from The Bachelor? Well, there are three times as many (i.e., three) eligible bachelors in a single season, and the show also features an early mass audition round in which the contestants are screened by professional matchmakers (correction; "the three best matchmakers in the world"). Otherwise, it sounds pretty much like ABC's hit. Bill and Giuliana Rancic (Giuliana and Bill) serve as hosts.
Save Me Watch trailers and interviews
One of the odder entries in NBC's midseason lineup, comedy Save Me stars Anne Heche as an ordinary suburban housewife who nearly chokes to death on a sandwich and recovers to find out that she can talk to god. At least, that's what she says, and while her husband (Michael Landes) and friends are skeptical, events start to suggest that she might be telling the truth. Critics didn't quite know what to make of the pilot—a few compared it to HBO's Enlightened, a bad sign given that nobody watches the latter—but most were pretty sure that they didn't enjoy it.
Though not the smash hit it looked like it could be at the beginning of the year, NBC's uneven first-year musical drama performed just well enough to earn an encore in early 2013. The second season will bring Jennifer Hudson (Dreamgirls) and Sean Hayes (Will & Grace) in multi-episode guest arcs, while Jeremy Jordan, a Tony nominee for Newsies, is one of three new cast members. There will be changes behind the scenes, too, with Joshua Safran (Gossip Girl) taking over as showrunner for the departed Theresa Rebeck.
Surprise with Jenny McCarthy
Jenny McCarthy will surprise people in a variety of ways at midseason; count us surprised if anybody watches.
The Winner Is
It's hard to believe that the market for singing competitions isn't already oversaturated, but here's yet another one, which comes from the producers of The Voice and features contestants engaged in head-to-head battles. There's also a bit more of a game show element than usual, with competitors having multiple opportunities to decide whether they want to take a smaller cash prize and quit, or take their chances on pursuing a bigger jackpot.
As if the above list weren't lengthy enough, the network has one more high profile series in development for the 2012-13 season, though it hasn't been greenlit quite yet: Mockingbird Lane is a reboot of The Munsters from Pushing Daisies creator Bryan Fuller and director Bryan Singer that would star Jerry O'Connell, Eddie Izzard, Portia de Rossi, and Cheyenne Jackson.
Downton Abbey Starts January 6, 2013 Watch trailer #1 Watch trailer #2
Shirley MacLaine joins the cast as Cora's American mother for the third season of the hit drama, which will be set in 1920 and 1921.
Part of Masterpiece's 2013 slate, this new miniseries from Andrew Davies (Bleak House) stars Jeremy Piven (Entourage) as the American founder of the London department store Selfridge's in the early 20th century.
Cable and streaming
The Childrens' Hospital spinoff Newsreaders (based on the fake newsmagazine show glimpsed during a few episodes of the former) should arrive in 2013 under the guidance of former Daily Show producer Jim Margolis ... Bizarre Southern soap The Heart, She Holler will be back for a second season, with Patton Oswalt returning as star.
A sixth season of Mad Men should kick off in the spring, though an exact date has not been announced ... The reality show counterpart to Mad Men, The Pitch will return for a second season of chronicling the work of real-life advertising agencies, also in the spring. ... The network will also launch two new reality programs in early 2013; one of the still-untitled shows centers on the "world famous" Venice Beach Freakshow "museum," while the other is a taxidermy competition. ... The network could also greenlight at least one of several shows still in development for the upcoming season, with a remake of the British miniseries Low Winter Sun perhaps the most promising of the bunch.
Orphan Black is an original sci-fi series set in a clone-filled future ... Wild Things with Dominic Monaghan finds the Lost actor exploring the world for "the biggest, scariest and weirdest insects on the planet" (better him than us) ... The third season of Luther will, like last season, consist of four hour-long episodes ... Being Human will also return for a fifth season, likely to air in early 2013.
The latest drama series from producer Alan Ball (True Blood, Six Feet Under), Banshee (debuting in January) finds an ex-con assuming the identity of a small-town sheriff.
With the news business not working out so well for the struggling network, CNN will venture into semi-original reality programming in April, with a 30 Days-ish documentary series from Morgan Spurlock called Inside Man and a new No Reservations-esque show from Anthony Bourdain.
The Kroll Show is a sketch series from The League star Nick Kroll; some of the material will be based on Kroll's web shorts such as "Rich Dicks."
Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys are KGB spies living undercover as married parents in a D.C. suburb in the early 1980s in The Americans, produced by Justified's Graham Yost ... Arriving in January, Legit focuses on the life of a stand-up comedian; Australian comic Jim Jefferies stars along with Dan Bakkedahl and D.J. Qualls ... The 13-episode fourth season of Archer—which has grown to become one of TV's top comedies—will include a crossover episode with Fox's Bob's Burgers that has star H. Jon Benjamin portraying his titular characters from each show ... Though details for season 4 of Justified are still being sorted out, there is a chance that Modern Family's Eric Stonestreet will guest star ... Charlie Sheen sitcom Anger Management has been renewed for 90 additional episodes (no, that's not a typo), with the first new batch set to arrive in January.
Family Tree is a new documentary-style comedy from the man who pioneered the format, Christopher Guest. He and co-creator Jim Piddock will join star Chris O'Dowd (Bridesmaids) in the cast; O'Dowd plays a man who, with free time after losing his job, begins to investigate his family heritage ... Game of Thrones returns on March 31, 2013 with a 10-episode third season that adds—among many, many others—Dame Diana Rigg (TV's original Emma Peel), Ciarán Hinds (Rome), and Mackenzie Crook (UK version of The Office) to the cast as Olenna Redwyne, Mance Rayder, and Orell, respectively ... Though Curb Your Enthusiasm won't return this season, Larry David is creating and starring in a Curb-like, semi-improvised though still untitled movie for HBO that will also star Jon Hamm and Michael Keaton and be directed by Greg Mottola (Superbad) ... Michael Douglas stars as Liberace in the biopic Behind the Candelabra, from director Steven Soderbergh; Matt Damon will also star, with the late Marvin Hamlisch providing his final score ... David Mamet will also direct an HBO biopic: Phil Spector depicts the murder trial of the legendary record producer, played by Al Pacino ... Director Phillip Noyce helms the HBO original film Mary and Martha, starring Hilary Swank and Brenda Blethyn as mothers who lose children to malaria ... Bob Balaban will play Lena Dunham's psychiatrist in the second season of her acclaimed comedy Girls, which returns in January; Patrick Wilson and Donald Glover will also appear during the new season ... Joining that show in January will be the delayed second season of the Laura Dern comedy Enlightened ... Though it was originally expected to end last year, Eastbound and Down will resurface for a fourth season in 2013 ... Julia Louis-Dreyfus will spend a second year awaiting the president's phone call in Veep, which will return for 10 new episodes in 2013.
Sketch comedy hit Portlandia will return for a third season in January with guests Chloe Sevigny and—reprising his role as mayor—Kyle MacLachlan; before that, an all-new holiday special will air at the end of this year ... Another batch of Trapped in the Closet episodes will emerge from the mind of singer R. Kelly later this year or early next year ... An untitled Marc Maron comedy should arrive in 2013 (though possibly not until later in the year); it will find the comedian/podcaster starring as a thinly veiled version of himself ... The animated coming-of-age comedy series Out There comes from the longtime animation director of South Park.
While Netflix executives have had ample opportunity to say "I've made a huge mistake" over the past year, bringing back Arrested Development from the grave was not one of them; 10-13 new episodes of one of TV's all-time funniest comedies (last seen on Fox in 2006) will air exclusively on Netflix's streaming service in spring 2013, with the entire cast back for the ride along with newcomers like Mad Men's John Slattery ... Also debuting on the streaming service in 2013 is Hemlock Grove, a horror series from producers Eli Roth and Brian McGreevy (who wrote the novel upon which the series is based) and starring Famke Janssen, Bill Skarsgard, and Lili Taylor ... The $100 million House of Cards is a political thriller from director/producer David Fincher and writer Beau Willimon (The Ides of March), with Kevin Spacey starring alongside Robin Wright; though it has been delayed a bit, Netflix's highest-profile new series should arrive at some point in 2013 for the first half of its 26 episodes.
The cable network has two intriguing new dramas targeted for midseason, the first of which is Masters of Sex, which stars Michael Sheen (The Queen, Frost/Nixon) and Lizzy Caplan (Party Down) as famed sex researchers William Masters and Virginia Johnson in a 1960s-era drama based on Thomas Maier's book of the same name ... Also sounding promising on paper is Ray Donovan, an L.A.-set dramedy which finds Liev Schreiber as a professional fixer to the rich and famous who can solve any problem but his own; Jon Voight, Elliot Gould, Steven Bauer, Peter Jacobson, and Paula Malcomson also star ... Rocker Marilyn Manson, Maggie Grace, and Jorge Garcia will be among the guests on the next season of Californication when it arrives in early 2013; the season will find Hank (David Duchovny) hanging out with the Bowie-esque rock star (played by Tim Minchin) who is writing the music for a Broadway show based on one of Hank's books ... The Borgias will return for the third of a planned four seasons ... The Don Cheadle/Kristen Bell-starring House of Lies will return for a second season next year ... Nurse Jackie's fifth season will find the dramedy with a new showrunner (Clyde Phillips, who held the same position for the first four seasons of Dexter) ... Lori Petty will guest on the third season of Shameless when it returns early next year ... Four one-hour episodes will conclude The Big C in 2013 ... David Steinberg will sit down with comedians such as Will Ferrell, Carol Burnett, Judd Apatow, Ben Stiller, Tina Fey, Albert Brooks, and Jim Carrey in a second season of Inside Comedy.
A third and final season of Spartacus, subtitled War of the Damned, will launch in January ... British actor Tom Riley will play a young Leonardo da Vinci in the drama series Da Vinci's Demons, from creator David S. Goyer (FlashForward).
Co-directed and co-written by Academy Award winner Jane Campion (The Piano), Top of the Lake is a seven-part mystery miniseries set in a remote New Zealand village; Holly Hunter (who hasn't worked with Campion since The Piano) and Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men) head the cast.
Launching in April, Defiance will be an unusual hybrid of MMO and TV drama, with the storyline (set in a dramatically transformed future Earth populated by alien races) crossing over from videogame to series; the ensemble cast includes Brittany Allen, Mia Kirshner, Julie Benz, and Fionnula Flanagan.
After the cult hit comedy Cougar Town was canceled by ABC, TBS stepped in to continue production on the show, meaning that 15 brand new episodes will begin airing on the cable network in early 2013; however, those episodes will be under the guidance of a new showrunner, with series creators Bill Lawrence and Kevin Biegel departing to work on new projects ... Also arriving in early 2013, King of the Nerds is a pop culture reality competition hosted by Revenge of the Nerds stars Robert Carradine and Curtis Armstrong.
A fifth season of Southland will arrive in February ... Though it hasn't officially been picked up, the in-development LA Noir has a ton of buzz behind it; created and directed by Frank Darabont (The Walking Dead, The Shawshank Redemption), the period crime drama would star Neal McDonough, Jon Bernthal, Milo Ventimiglia, and possibly Thomas Jane, with Simon Pegg guesting in the pilot.
You wouldn't guess it from the title, but Graceland is set in a Southern California beach house, which serves as home base for a group of undercover federal agents; the drama comes from White Collar creator Jeff Eastin ... The Moment is a new reality show hosted by former NFL quarterback Kurt Warner in which normal people will have a chance to live out their dreams under the guidance of experts ... January will bring the start of eight new episodes of the legal drama Suits.
What do you think?
Which shows are you most looking forward to this fall? Let us know in the comments section below, and don't forget to check out our Fall TV Premiere Calendar for start dates for all new and returning series this fall.