It didn’t work with Christian Slater (poor guy can’t catch a break on TV), but Fox is hoping Kevin Bacon with Kevin Williamson (The Vampire Diaries) can draw viewers in this fall, announcing the order of five new shows for the 2012 fall lineup the same day they canceled four poor performers. Here’s a quick rundown of the new shows, which include three sitcoms:
The Following (formerly Mastermind)
Not to be confused with the early Christopher Nolan film, Williamson’s new serial killer drama features Bacon as a retired FBI profiler who is lured out of retirement when a psychopath played by crowd-pleaser, James Purefoy (HBO’s Rome, John Carter) whose character creates a cult of fellow murderers through modern technology. This will not be Bacon’s first recurring TV role, as he did a six-episode stint on Guiding Light many, many, many moons ago, but this is the first series that he will carry on his own. He can take notes from his wife, Kyra Sedgewick who enjoyed a six-year run on The Closer. Justified’s Natalie Zea also co-stars but it’s not clear on if she plays a victim or a recurring roll. Her role on Justified will evolve, playing the pregnant ex-wife of the lead character so she may have time to moonlight between the two series if she’s a regular cast member on The Following. Zea has also been known to bounce around during Justified’s off season, appearing in the Person of Interest pilot, Royal Pains, Franklin and Bash this past season. Maggie Grace (Lost, Taken) is also starring as the lone surviving victim of Purefoy’s murderer.
It’s Messy (formerly Mindy)
Also carrying a series for the first time is Mindy Kaling who many will know as Kelly Kapoor from The Office. Kaling will write, executive produce and star in It’s Messy as a young OB-GYN. Fox will see if America is ready to embrace Kaling like they did with Zoey Deschanel in New Girl. Her character will be balancing her personal and professional lives in a Bridget Jones-style presentation. Chris Messina, Ed Weeks, Zoe Jarmon, Anna Camp and Dana Delorenzo are also on board as series regulars and look for Bill Hader, Ed Helms and Richard Schiff to guest star in the pilot.
The Goodwin Games
How I Met Your Mother producers Carter Bays, Chris Harris, and Criag Thomas came up with this single-camera family comedy about three siblings played by Becki Newton (Ugly Betty), Scott Foley (Grey’s Anatomy) and Jake Lacy, who must repair burned bridges between them to inherit their deceased father’s endowment.
Ben & Kate (formerly Ned Fox Is My Manny)
The last of the new sitcoms is a single-camera comedy about an uptight mother, played by Dakota Johnson (21 Jump Street, The Social Network), who gets some much needed help from her brother, Ned played by Nat Faxon (The Cleveland Show), to help raise her daughter. Maggie Jones, Echo Kellum and Lucy Punch also co-star.
As a side note, Punch appeared in the yet-decided Powers pilot for Fox’s cable sibling FX. She has since moved on once it was decided the super-powered drama needed revisions and the cast contracts expired in the delays. If Powers is able to work (additional scripts have been ordered to be written and a recent meeting with FX and Sony has given the series new hope), they’ll first have to recast the co-lead role of Deena Pilgrim (Alcatraz’s Sarah Jones is now available) and find a way to re-shoot Punch’s scenes.
The Mob Doctor
The description says it all as Jordana Spiro (My Boys) stars as a doctor working for the Chicago mafia.
Do any of these shows interest you and are you penciling any of them into your fall TV schedule? Do you think Kevin Bacon can have a successful run on television? Do any of these sitcom sound funny? Wish Lucy Punch would still be available to do Powers? Share your thoughts below.