The buzz…Handicapping the new series

Sep 9, 2002  •  Post A Comment

“CBS will improve the most, if their 10 p.m. shows catch on,” said Matt Roush, senior TV critic, TV Guide. “`CSI: Miami’ should be much stiffer competition for [NBC’s] `Crossing Jordan’ than the mediocre `Family Law’ ever was. And `Without a Trace’ looks compatible enough with `CSI’ that it could finally wean some viewers away from the increasingly annoying and depleted `ER.”’ … “The networks never seem to learn,” said Neal Justin, TV critic, Minneapolis Star Tribune. “CBS hits a home run with `CSI,’ so what do they do? Jam-pack their schedules with cop shows this fall. Playing follow the leader has rarely worked in the history of television. History has proven that going off the beaten path and supporting originality is actually less of a risk and has a bigger payoff.” … “Even taking into account the loss of `The X-Files,’ Fox seemed poised for improvements with its new shows, `Fastlane,’ `Firefly,’ `girls club’ and its new comedies,” said Liane Faulder, TV critic, Edmonton (Alberta, Canada) Journal. “Returning programs, such as `Bernie Mac’ and `Boston Public,’ are still gaining ground.” … “`American Dreams’ [on NBC] really has all of the ingredients of a successful show in terms of tapping into where we are as a culture, in that we are nostalgic and are fond of recalling the beauty of simpler things,” said Stacey Lynn Koerner, executive VP and director of audience research for Initiative Media-North America. “All of those things conspire to make a magical combination for this show. It is not going to be a big win, possibly households and adults 18 to 49, but it could be one of NBC’s breakout series.” … “Born as a bad TV movie, ABC’s `Dinotopia’ series is headed for extinction, competing with both CBS’s `Survivor’ and NBC’s `Friends’ for young eyeballs,” said Eric Deggans, TV critic, St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times. “Similarly, NBC’s expecting young viewers to pass up `The Simpsons’ or the last half of the `Wonderful World of Disney’ for a family drama about an aspiring `American Bandstand’ dancer [on `American Dreams’] makes you wonder what they’re smoking over there.” … “Season after season, people speculate that this is finally going to be the year where NBC falls,” said Alan Sepinwall, TV critic, The Star Ledger (Newark, N.J.). “But I’m not seeing it yet, not while `Friends’ is going into its final season, and other important shows like `West Wing,’ `Law & Order,’ `ER’ and `Frasier’ are still around.” … “Likely to drop: NBC. It’s running on hubris and reality show gimmicks,” said Tom Walter, TV critic, Memphis Commercial Appeal. “Likely to improve: ABC. How could it not? This year’s gotta be better than last, just by the law of averages. Besides I adore Bonnie Hunt [in `Life With Bonnie’].”