Following on from NBC, I decided to review ABC’s promos. ABC has focused very heavily on comedy this year which have made their promos very fun to watch. However there are also some hard hitting dramas in there too. ABC also has what could be the most talked about new show this year- a comedy musical fairy tale. Yes you read that right. More on that later. Let’s get started with the promos:
American Crime– A brutal attack on young couple which leaves the husband dead leads to an investigation centred on race and background.
This promo wasn’t the easiest to watch but I believe that’s what makes it interesting. The promo immediately lets us know that this show will be dark and sometimes distressing; it is not a show for everyone. However the raw emotion displayed is nothing less than sensational, particularly the scene between a father and son at the end of promo, and gives us a preview of the strong performances we will no doubt see from the cast. This is further supported by the casting of brilliant actors Felicity Huffman and Timothy Hutton. This show will try to tackle some very sensitive issues, particularly in regards to race, which should draw a lot of attention. Hopefully they will execute this well.
Excitement factor- 3.5/5
Black-ish– Follows an upper middle-class black man who is trying to raise his children with a sense of their cultural identity.
With ABC premiering a lot of comedies this year, they need to be top notch in order to stand out. Unfortunately this one doesn’t measure up when compared to other, more funny offerings like Cristela and Fresh Off the Boat. While the promo has a few funny one liners it fails to deliver a high level of comedy. However, both Anthony Anderson and Laurence Fishburne are starring and producing which definitely increases the show’s chances of success. It will be interesting to see what the pilot for this show will offer.
Excitement factor- 2.5/5
Cristela– Comedy centred on a Mexican- American law student trying to navigate her way through life while coping with her old fashioned family’s views.
When I first started watching the promo I thought that the lead was perhaps a little over the top, but by the end I loved her larger than life personality. It is reminiscent of The Mindy Project, which I am a huge fan of. The supporting characters also add to the laughs. There are plenty of humorous one liners as well as physical comedy. The show obviously doesn’t take itself too seriously which makes it more watchable. While some of ABC’s new comedies feel a bit lacking, this one certainly rises to the challenge and could be a real winner for the network.
Excitement factor- 4.5/5
Forever– Follows a medical examiner who helps a detective solve the city’s cases. He also happens to be immortal.
With crime shows making up a large part of television schedules these days, new ones hoping to survive need their own quirk or individual twist. Enter Forever, which centres on Henry, an ME who can’t die. From the promo it looks as if he will pair up with a tough female detective, who is reminiscent of Castle’s Kate Beckett. Henry’s immortality is what really makes this show interesting, it will surely impact on the storylines and his relationships with other characters and viewers will be itching to know how his inability to die is possible. The chemistry between the two leads is evident in the promo as well as the potential of the supporting cast. With Ioan Gruffudd headlining, this could be the new hit crime show of the fall.
Excitement factor- 4/5
Fresh Off the Boat– Set in the 90s, this show follows 12 year old Eddie and his Taiwanese family as they move to Orlando to set up a steak restaurant.
Why do I love this promo so much? Simply put, because I laughed all the way through it. While it may play to (arguably) false stereotypes and use politically incorrect humour, it does so in such a way that it does not offend. The matriarch of the family stands out in the promo, her sarcasm and one liners launch this show into the comedy stratosphere and consistently keeps us laughing. With ABC premiering so many comedies it is hard to distinguish between them all. However this show climbs to the top and clinches the title for ABC’s best new comedy promo.
Excitement factor- 5/5
How to Get Away with Murder– A brilliant criminal defence professor and her ambitious students get entangled in a murder plot.
Shonda Rhimes is a pro at penning successful shows and this one looks to be no different. Further boosted by the excellent casting of Viola Davis as the charismatic defence lawyer the promo definitely sets the pace for what could be one of fall’s most exciting shows. Murder, sex, intrigue, blackmail, the show seems to have it all. The only criticism I have of the promo is the lack of explanation as to how the students become involved in a murder themselves. However this will be surely be made clear in the pilot, which I am very much looking forward to.
Excitement factor- 4.5/5
Manhattan Love Story– A romantic comedy that centres on a guy and girl’s inner most thoughts on each other and life.
One word to describe this promo…..cute! But in the best possible way. In that way, where it just made me smile throughout. The use of the character’s ongoing thoughts as a narrative to this love story puts a fresh spin on the romantic comedy genre. It gives a more realistic view of the world of dating and how men and women really view each other and the world. Both leads are obviously capable of comedy; Analeigh Tipton who proved how funny she is in Crazy, Stupid, Love and Jake McDorman who starred in the hilarious teen series, Greek. This could be the best romantic comedy promo I’ve seen this year.
Excitement factor- 4/5
Secrets and Lies– A man who finds the body of a young boy becomes the prime suspect and therefore must try to find the real killer to try and clear his name.
Based on an Australian series of the same name Secrets and Lies is a mystery that has the audience wondering if the lead character actually committed the murder central to the plot. This will surely face heavy competition from Fox’s Gracepoint due to the strong similarities between the two. Both are remakes involving the death of a child and how the community and authorities handle the aftermath. It is too early to tell which will win the ratings game. While Gracepoint seems to be receiving more hype, the promo for Secrets and Lies is just as enthralling and exciting as its counterpart. It also has a stellar cast lead by Ryan Phillippe and Juliette Lewis, who will no doubt put in strong performances. It will be interesting to see how the pilots for these two shows fare against each other.
Excitement factor- 3/5
Selfie– A modern retelling of My Fair Lady, a woman who is obsessed with becoming famous suffers a public humiliation and decided to hire a marketing expert to recreate her image.
So this is my official guilty pleasure of promo week. When I read the synopsis of the show I thought it sounded ridiculous and betted that I would hate the promo. Ashamedly I loved it. Perhaps, because it is not too far from reality, we live in a world obsessed with “selfies” and “likes” and this programme is showcasing the most exaggerated version of that. Now don’t get me wrong, this show will probably not win any awards for moving and emotional performances or serious and hard hitting writing but it’s a satirical comedy so let’s not judge it too harshly. The point is, it made me smile and laugh, multiple times, and surely that’s the point of comedy. The fact that it has Karen Gillan and John Cho, both of who I personally think are brilliant, only adds to my love for this show.
Excitement factor- 4.5/5
The Whispers– An alien race tries to take over the Earth by using children.
The opening 30 seconds of this promo instantly had me hooked. The idea of an alien race using children to undertake an invasion is an interesting concept as no one would suspect a child’s imaginary friend would be plotting such terror. Also the fact that the villains of this show will be one that adults can’t see and therefore can’t fight heightens the drama. The promo is actually quite haunting, sending a chill down my spine, which only further draws me in. I appreciate shows that can make you think, “What if this actually happened?”, and this promo definitely does that. This show could be an epic drama.
Excitement factor- 4/5
And ABC’s best promo and garnering the most excitement is….
Galavant– A musical fairytale that centres on the adventures of the handsome, noble Prince Galavant.
When I first read about this show I laughed, I didn’t think that ABC was seriously making it. A comedy musical fairytale. It sounds absolutely ridiculous. How could this show possibly work? And yet as I watched the promo I found myself loving it. I tried not to, I mean the whole idea is absurd but I couldn’t help it. Like Selfie it falls into the realms of a guility pleasure show, a show that is so bad that it is absolutely brilliant. There’s sword fights, dastardly villains, beautiful princesses and of course, singing and dancing. It even has Vinnie Jones as a henchman. It’s completely cheesy, almost like pantomime humour, but also loveable and hilarious. From the writer of Crazy, Stupid, Love and Oscar winning composer Alan Menken, this show will sure to have everyone talking about it.
Excitement factor: Off the scale!