Adequate. There will always be shows that not everyone loves but has enough of an audience (or management’s support) to see it through its run. Good enough is near enough. Many may suggest that most primetime schedules are full of this kind of slot-filler but no Network intentionally goes out to make lukewarm product. At least I hope not. What sort of horrible creative meeting would that be?!
This list chronicles but some of the new programming the Networks are touting and where I think it’ll fall down. In my experience, what makes some shows Hmms can be simply that the Network doesn’t know how to pitch it to find the audience for it (good luck for any shows that suffer this fate in 2013). It can’t be as bad as all this, can it?…
The Doctor Blake Mysteries – Craig McLachlan delivers his best acting chops as Dr Lucien Blake in this drama series set in 1950’s country Australia. It looks incredible and will be a great series… except for the Friday 8:30pm timeslot which will likely work against it (though it could mimic the success of Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries and pleasantly surprise us all).
The Time Of Our Lives – Three generations of the modern Australian family, delivered by Claudia Karvan, Justine Clarke, Shane Jacobson, William McInnes and Stephen Curry, that may yet connect with us in the compelling fashion it needs to. But don’t hold your breath.
Making Couples Happy – Four couples in the midst of the breakdown of their relationships go through relationship ‘rehab’ to see if they can fix it. It’ll be uncomfortable to watch.
Please Like Me – It’ll be funny, crass, and challenging, and Josh Thomas wouldn’t want it any other way. He just wants you to like him (but is an ABC audience ready to do that?).
Redesign My Brain – Todd Sampson from the Gruen team gets a brain ‘makeover’. That’s all we know, and it doesn’t sound comforting. Will it be accessible?
Who Do You Think You Are (AU) S05 – A strong cast of Aussies opening themselves up to this genealogy series including Asher Keddie, Adam Hills & Rove McManus, but will SBS make enough noise about it? They haven’t in the past and a lot of the gold has gone unappreciated.
Packed To The Rafters S05 – The kids moved home; the kids left; the kids move home again. It’s time for the Rafters to “move to Queensland” or have some more kids, ’cause this schtick is starting to get tired.
The Mole: Culture Clash – The Mole returning = good. The Mole returning with the cast hand-picked to be people with polar opposite opinions = Hmm. I *so* want this to be good but this premise fills me with nothing but dread. No word on Grant Bowler hosting (he should do).
Zero Hour – The publisher of a paranormal ‘enthusiast’ magazine is drawn into intrigue when his wife is kidnapped and her rescue takes him around the world and across the ages. I didn’t make any of that up.
Last Resort – An excellent story about a submarine crew who go rogue after receiving orders to launch nuclear missles and refusing to that didn’t make it past season one in the US. But it’s still Ch7’s next big thing.
Mrs Biggs – A five-part drama looking at the wife of Great Train Robber Ronald Biggs and how she and their family survived on the run while he was on the run, including their extended stay in Australia. Bet it doesn’t mention he worked at Ch9 Melbourne as a stage hand.
Mr Selfridge – The story of the rise and fall of the American retail magnate in London, set in the early part of the 20th century. Nostalgia overload?
The Great Australian Bake Off – Baking as a competitive sport for amateurs. Excellent cast of judges (Kerry Vincent, Dan Lepard); yet to be convinced by the hosts (Anna Gare, Shane Jacobsen).
Big Brother S02 – If it stays in PG-land as it did in 2012, it’s just not going to last.
Return To Eden – A six hour mini-series remaking the original series of the 80’s. TV starts to eat itself.
The Taste – Blind Tasting! 16 amateurs! Four professionals! Nigella Lawson! Anthony Bourdain! Too much already!
Nine News Now – Live news networked out of Sydney, but delayed into markets not running AEDT. It also precedes the 4:30pm news by an hour and a half. Can’t Nine just create a 24/7 News channel and be done with it?
Recipe To Riches – Step 1: Cook something. Step 2: ???. Step 3: Recipe to Riches!
Wonderland – Ch10’s tilt at a Packed To The Rafters style drama just makes you think “Why wouldn’t I be watching Packed To The Rafters then?”.
Shock Of The Now – Tom Ballard hosting a program that’s described as “a smart, unpredictable live show that explains our connected world”. It could work really well, or be a spectacular mess of YouTube clips. Given it’s from CJZ it’s unlikely to be the latter, but you can never be sure.
The Truth Is – The truth is Ch10 had to do something to keep Hamish Macdonald interested, and the Ten Late News was never going to be enough.
Ripper Street – Definitely not a story about one woman’s journey to be an Eta margarine magnate.
The Americans – “Keri Russell (Felicity) and Matthew Rhys (Brothers & Sisters) star as Russian spies living in the US during the 1980s.” What could possibly go wrong?
My blog, my opinion. I’m likely wrong anyway. These predictions are made (in most cases) sight unseen/only having seen a promo/read the premise from a press release. What do YOU think will be a hit in 2013?
Sounds like there is some quality local shows coming Aussie TV this year.
I wish they would stop promoting cancelled series as somethign Big to get involved in. Last Resort had potential but its been cancelled, perhaps they should advertise it as a mini series.
re: The Mole: Culture Clash – sounds suspiciously like Big Brother (a whole lot of people that are polar opposites that need to work together to solve the problem..)
re: The Great Australian Bake Off – I fear you are right. Assume this is based on the Great British Bake Off. The first season went gangbusters when I was in the UK. Totally addictive and the British viewing public re-discovered Mary Berry. 2nd or 3rd season was said to have ‘defined the best’ of British TV in 2012. Hope it does well but somehow think making some lamos in a hot ten on a school oval for the fete will not have quite the same charm as making sponges for the church fair. Still, Dan Lepard writes well so maybe he’s a winner on tele…..
You date yourself with that Ripper St comment but oh how I laughed.
Looking forward to some drama series such as Dr Blake. If they put as much effort into it as Miss Fisher, then it should be worth watching. (especially on a channel with no ads). The only good thing ever about the original Mole show was watching Grant Bowler. He was always trying to be tough and stern, but never really succeeded in not being kind. Very interesting to observe. (He was good in True Blood too)
We have seen some eps of The Americans and it is AMAZING. Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys are outstanding in the roles as KGB sleeper agents, I can see why there are some in the US who are conflicted about this show, it is hard to root for a couple who are in actual fact your mortal enemy. The battle they have reconciling their relationship with the Motherland, their mission and the KGB arranged marriage they have found themselves in and the issues of being a regular mum and dad of two children living in the 80’s in the US after being married for 15(ish) years.
This and the Following are my pics for the best things on telly this year… and I hated Felicity (although I did watch Brothers and Sisters it was only for Rob Lowe and Sally Field I swear)