Yet this year, we do have a decent enough selection of shows to pick from – well, decent at first trailer-glance, anyway, and mostly in the drama rather than comedy section. Here's the rundown:
Betrayal: Two lovers on opposite sides of a court case. James Cromwell, Hannah Ware and Stuart Townsend star.
Killer Women: Tricia Helfer as a Texas Ranger – what could be bad? Also features Michael Trucco and Marc Blucas.
Lucky 7: Remake of BBC1's The Syndicate, in which a bunch of co-workers with exciting back stories win the lottery.
Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.l.E.L.D: Fuck, yeah
Mind Games: A cross between Lie To Me and Mission: Impossible. Christian Slater stars so it'll be cancelled within three episodes
Once Upon A Time In Wonderland: Spin-off from Once Upon A Time set in Wonderland and Victorian England. Stars Sophie Lowe, Michael Socha and John Lithgow.
Resurrection: The dead come back to life in a small town. Stars Omar Epps from House, as well as Kurtwood Smith
Back In The Game: Failed pro softball player Maggie Lawson agrees to coach a team of kids. Also features James Caan and Lenora Crichlow
The Goldbergs: Growing pains 80s nostalgia-fest.
Mixology: Single people meet in a bar and discover how empty and pointless existence is. Who knew Happy Hour was due for a remake?
Super Fun Night: Rebel Wilson paired with Kevin Bishop for a girls' night out. How unusual
Trophy Wife: Reformed party girl Malin Akerman marries Bradley Whitford and has to deal with his family. I'd rather see the adventures of party girl Malin Akerman, myself.
After the jump, full summaries, trailers and a schedule.
A chance meeting between photographer Sara Hadley (Hannah Ware) and Attorney Jack McAllister (Stuart Townsend) leads to an instant and undeniable attraction. Sarah’s husband, Drew (Chris Johnson), is a successful prosecutor with political aspirations, while Jack is married to Elaine (Wendy Moniz), the daughter of his boss, Thacher Karsten (James Cromwell). When Karsten’s brother-in-law Lou is murdered, all evidence points to Karsten’s son, T.J. (Henry Thomas). Jack, the company’s lead counsel, will have to defend him, but for Sara’s prosecutor husband, Drew, this is the kind of high-profile murder case that can secure his political future. Just as Sara and Jack’s affair is starting, the lovers find themselves in an impossible situation — on opposite sides of a murder investigation.
“Betrayal” stars Hannah Ware (“Shame,” “Boss”) as Sara, Stuart Townsend (“The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen”) as Jack, James Cromwell (“Babe,” “American Horror Story”) as Thacher Karsten, Henry Thomas (“E.T.,” “Gangs of New York”) as T.J. Karsten, Chris Johnson (“The Vampire Diaries”) as Drew, Wendy Moniz (“Guiding Light,” “The Guardian”) as Elaine, Elizabeth McLaughlin (“The Clique”) as Val and Braeden Lamasters (“Men of a Certain Age”) as Vic. “Betrayal” was written by David Zabel (“ER”) and directed by Patty Jenkins (“The Killing,” “Monster”) and is executive-produced by David Zabel, Rob Golenberg (“Red Widow”) and Alon Aranya. “Betrayal” is produced by ABC Studios.
Of all the notorious lawmen who have ever patrolled the violent Texas frontier, none are more storied than the Texas Rangers. But being the only female ranger in this elite squad isn’t going to stop ballsy, badass Molly Parker (Tricia Helfer). Molly is committed to finding the truth and seeing justice served. While she’s surrounded by law enforcement colleagues who want to see her fail, including Police Lieutenant Guillermo Salazar (Vic Trevino), the Rangers have her back, led by Company Commander Luis Zea (Alex Fernandez). Molly has also got her brother, Billy (Michael Trucco), and his wife Becca (Marta Milans). On the verge of getting divorced from her smarmy husband, Jake (Jeffrey Nordling), Molly begins an affair with sexy DEA Agent Dan Winston (Marc Blucas).
“Killer Women” stars Tricia Helfer (“Battlestar Galactica”) as Molly Parker, Mark Blucas (“Buffy the Vampire Slayer”) as Dan, Marta Milans (“Shame”) as Becca, Alex Fernandez (“Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen”) as Luis and Michael Trucco (“Battlestar Galactica”) as Billy. “Killer Women” was written by Hannah Shakespeare and is executive-produced by Sofía Vergara (“Modern Family”), Martin Campbell, Ben Silverman, Luis Balaguer, Electus, Latin World Entertainment. The pilot was directed by Larry Trilling. “Killer Women” is produced by ABC Studios.
In Astoria, Queens, a group of seven gas station employees have been chipping into a lottery pool for months, never thinking they’d actually win. Money could solve problems for each of them: Matt (Matt Long) could get his girlfriend and two kids out of his mother’s house; Matt’s brother, Nicky (Stephen Louis Grush), an ex-con, could pay off a dangerous debt; Samira (Summer Bishil), a second-generation Pakistani immigrant, could afford to go to Juilliard; Denise (Lorraine Bruce), a plucky cashier, could focus on rebuilding her crumbling marriage; Leanne (Anastasia Phillips), a young mother, could help her daughter realize her dreams; Bob (Isiah Whitlock, Jr.), the store’s manager, could finally retire; and Antonio (Luis Antonio Ramos) could give his wife and kids a whole new life.
“Lucky 7” stars Isiah Whitlock, Jr. (“The Wire”) as Bob Harris, Matt Long (“Private Practice”) as Matt Korzak, Stephen Louis Grush (“Detroit 1-8-7”) as Nicky Korzak, Lorraine Bruce (“Eden Lake”) as Denise, Anastasia Phillips (“Stoked”) as Leanne, Summer Bishil (“Towelhead”) as Samira Rajpur, Luis Antonio Ramos (“The Ruins”) as Antonio Clemente and Christine Evangelista (“The Joneses”) as Mary. Written by David Zabel (“ER”) and Jason Richman (“Detroit 1-8-7”), “Lucky 7” is executive-produced by Steven Spielberg, Darryl Frank, Justin Falvey, David Zabel and Jason Richman. The pilot was directed by Paul McGuigan. “Lucky 7” is produced by ABC Studios and Amblin Television.
Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.l.E.L.D.
Clark Gregg reprises his role of Agent Phil Coulson from Marvel’s feature films, as he assembles a small, highly select group of Agents from the worldwide law-enforcement organization known as S.H.I.E.L.D. Together they investigate the new, the strange and the unknown around the globe, protecting the ordinary from the extraordinary. Coulson’s team consists of Agent Grant Ward (Brett Dalton), highly trained in combat and espionage; Agent Melinda May (Ming-Na Wen), expert pilot and martial artist; Agent Leo Fitz (Iain De Caestecker), brilliant engineer; and Agent Jemma Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge), genius bio-chemist. Joining them on their journey into mystery is new recruit and computer hacker Skye (Chloe Bennet).
“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” Marvel’s first television series, is from executive producers Joss Whedon (“Marvel’s The Avengers,” “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”), Jed Whedon & Maurissa Tancharoen, who co-wrote the pilot (“Dollhouse,” “Dr.Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog”). Jeffrey Bell (“Angel,” “Alias”) and Jeph Loeb (“Smallville,” “Lost,” “Heroes”) also serve as executive producers. “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” is produced by ABC Studios and Marvel Television.
Clark (Steve Zahn) and Ross (Christian Slater) Edwards are brothers and partners in a unique agency committed to solving clients’ problems using the hard science of psychological manipulation. Clark is a former professor and a world-renowned expert in the field of human behavior. But he has a checkered history due to bipolar disorder, which sometimes results in quirky, manic episodes. Older brother Ross is a slick con man who has spent time in prison. Each in their own way knows what makes people tick. Drawing from the most cutting edge research in psychology, they can a tailor a plan to influence any situation. It’s a little bit science, a little bit con artistry, plus a smattering of Jedi mind tricks. The brothers, along with their team of master manipulators, are offering clients an alternative to fate.
“Mind Games” stars Steve Zahn (“Treme”) as Clark, Christian Slater (“True Romance”) as Ross, Megalyn Echikunwoke (“CSI: Miami”) as Megan, Cedric Sanders (“The Social Network”) as Latrell, Gregory Marcel (“The Good Shepherd”) as Miles and Wynn Everett (“The Newsroom”) as Claire. Written and executive-produced by Kyle Killen, the series is also executive-produced by Keith Redman. “Mind Games” is a 20th Century Fox Television production. Miguel Sapochnik directed the pilot.
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I'm Rob Buckley, a freelance journalist who writes for UK media magazines that most people have never heard of, although you might have heard me on Radio 5 Live's Saturday Edition or Afternoon Edition. I've edited Dreamwatch, Sprocket and Cambridge Film Festival Daily; been technical editor for trade magazine Televisual; reviewed films for the short-lived newspaper Cambridge Insider and the equally short-lived Death Ray and Filmstar magazines; written features for the even shorter-lived newspaper Soho Independent; and was regularly sarcastic about television on the blink-and-you-missed-it "web site for urban hedonists" The Tribe. I'm freelance now and have contributed to the likes of Broadcast, Total Content + Media, Action TV, Off The Telly, Action Network and TV Scoop.