Top 13 Upcoming TV Series Fall 2010

Posted by Grey Thursday, September 9, 2010

Yes. With the passing of auspicious August as we enter solemn September, Summer is indeed behind us. Which is also the time to armed yourself appropriately with your DVR with the Fall TV season upon us.

With an onslaught of new and returning TV series heading our way, the classic predicament begets: Too many shows, too little time, despite the much-appreciated service of the most purposive DVR?

We here at The Daily Zombies are here to help. From bikers, coppers, Jedi, mafia, sexy spies, superheroes to our personal favorite walking dead, let us sort through this bloody mess for your peculiar experiences with the idiot box.


With a massive cancellation of TV series of a scale unseen (or perhaps, unnoticed) before, this Fall's TV season has got a tremendous numbers of new TV series hopefuls rushing in to fill in the void.

24. Cold Case. Dollhouse. FlashForward. Ghost Whisperer. Heroes. Law and Order. Lost. Numb3rs. Scrubs. Ugly Betty.

All long-running TV series that catered to various distinctly different demographics. Can the new shows fill in the gigantic shoes of their respective predecessors, or even survive their virgin ride?

Our list of Top 13 upcoming TV series comprised of shows both returning and new ones premiering this Fall. And needless to say, we could not be covering all noteworthy shows that we have been constantly following

Without further ado, let's hop along for the ride. Though the list is in no particular order, we have slapped a "Brain-Licking Potential Meter" to indicate our level of anticipation.

13. NEW: Boardwalk Empire
Network: HBO
Series Premiere: September 19th, 2010
Airs: Sundays at 9pm ET/PT
Created By: Terence Winter

HBO. Martin Scorsese. Prohibition-Era Gangland Epic. And there you got a winner.

Adapted from Nelson Johnson's book, Boardwalk Empire: The Birth, High Times, and Corruption of Atlantic City by Emmy award-winning screenwriter and producer Terence Winter of The Sopranos, Boardwalk Empire is set in Atlantic City, New Jersey during the Prohibition era in the 1920s. Steve Buscemi plays Enoch "Nucky" Thompson, an Atlantic City politician banking heavily on the prohibition towards the path of absolute control over the city. Also featured prominently would be Stephan Graham as a young Al Capone and Michael Stuhlbarg as Arnold Rothstein.

Legendary filmmaker Scorsese will be making his debut in TV, directing the pilot episode while executive producing the series. For those who enjoyed "The Sopranos" and have lamented its demise ever since, this could be something to look forward to.



Brain-Licking Potential Meter:
OutstandingOutstandingOutstandingOutstanding


12. RETURNING: Chuck
Network: NBC
Series Premiere: September 20th, 2010
Airs: Mondays at 8pm ET/PT
Created By: Josh Schwartz, Chris Fedak

It is almost a small miracle in itself when you consider how the cult spy-action-comedy, Chuck, have managed to pull through the strong tides of cancellations all this while as it enters Season Four. With a strong stunt-casting strategy in full swing, coupled with the original "Sarah Connor" Linda Hamilton joining the cast as Chuck's mysterious mom, Mary Elizabeth Bartowski, can we lived to see Season Five of Chuck? All we can say is, enjoy it while it lasts.

With severe ramlifications coming out of last season's finale (for starters, Buy More being blown apart, the tragic demise of Chuck's dad, and Chuck swearing off the life of a spy forever), the plot retains its signature intrigue as Chuck is now on a mission to search for his mother. Buy More will also be reopened, though it is now fully run by the CIA while Operation Bartowsk continues.

The role of the CIA handler, Greta, will also be ever-changing, rotating between numerous guest stars from G4TV's Olivia Munn, former NFL wide receiver Isaiah Mustafa to former WWE Diva Stacy Kiebler (isn't that a little too many "formers" there?). And that's not all. For the first seven episodes, there will be a heavy dosage of other guest stars, from Dolph Lundgren, Lou Ferrigno, Nicole Richie, Batista, Eric Roberts, Joel Moore, Stone Cold Steve Austin to Timothy Dalton.



Brain-Licking Potential Meter:
OutstandingOutstandingOutstandingOutstanding

11. RETURNING: Dexter
Network: NBC
Series Premiere: September 26th, 2010
Airs: Sundays at 9pm ET/PT
Developed By: James Manos, Jr.

What difference a season make. Last season started with Dexter being a happily married husband, with his wife Rita given birth to a baby boy, Harrison. This season, he's a guilt-ridden single dad with Rita being brutally murdered by the "Trinity Killer". Can things get any worse. Hell, yes it does.

Dexter inevitably became the principal suspect in Rita's murder with Quinn in the old Doakes role as his hunter. In between his struggle to satisfy the Dark Passenger and his role as a single father, Dexter had to deal with a whole new "Big Bad" he never deal with all his life: Guilt. Ultimately, Dexter had tried to live a normal life but had tragically failed in his attempt. There will be hell to pay.

Expect plenty of development, and plentiful of guest stars like Julia Stiles, Jonny Lee Miller, Chris Vance and Peter Weller.



Brain-Licking Potential Meter:
OutstandingOutstandingOutstandingOutstanding


10. NEW: The Event
Network: NBC
Series Premiere: September 20th, 2010
Airs: Mondays at 9 p.m. ET/PT
Created By: Nick Wauters

Event? What Event? That, would be the integral question of the upcoming new TV series from NBC.

With the absence of 24, Lost, and FlashForward, the TV scene is desperately seeking the next conspiracy thriller drama, and The Event might just fit the bill with its unique mixture of outlandish mystery, political intrigue, with some explosive action sequence thrown in. It's 24, Lost and FlashForward all in one.

The official plot synopsis: The Event is an emotional, high-octane conspiracy thriller that follows Sean Walker (Jason Ritter, "The Class"), an everyman who investigates the mysterious disappearance of his would-be fiancée Leila (Sarah Roemer, "Disturbia"), and unwittingly begins to expose the biggest cover-up in U.S. history.

Sean's quest will send ripples through the lives of an eclectic band of strangers, including newly elected U.S. President Elias Martinez (Golden Globe nominee Blair Underwood, "In Treatment"); Sophia Maguire (Emmy Award nominee Laura Innes, "ER"), who is the leader of a mysterious group of detainees; and Leila's shadowy father (Scott Patterson, "Gilmore Girls"). Their futures are on a collision course in a global conspiracy that could ultimately change the fate of mankind.


But as we all know, TV series based on a one-note mystery might not be able to sustain its initial interest, thereby further emphasizing the importance of tight plotting which might proved to be a bane for many shows. While Lost managed to sit through that infuriatingly painful stage, not many TV series have had that good fortune.



Brain-Licking Potential Meter:
DecentDecentDecent


9. RETURNING: Fringe
Network: FOX
Series Premiere: September 23rd, 2010
Airs: Thursdays at 9pm ET/PT
Created By: J. J. Abrams, Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci

Talk about a cliffhanger finale. Last season we saw more focus on the alternate universe, ending in a explosive finale where the alternate Olivia ("Bolivia") successfully passing off as the real deal in the present universe, while the real Olivia got stranded in the alternate universe, held captive by the evil alternate Walter ("Walternate"), who is the U.S. Secretary of Defense that led a more powerful Fringe division.

The latest season would reportedly alternate between both universe on a weekly basis, so for fans of Joshua Jackson (Peter Bishop), be prepared for a lesser role from him. But don't expect this status quo to remain, as we are pretty sure Olivia would definitely fight her way back to our universe, kicking and screaming, not to mentioned guns ablazing.



Brain-Licking Potential Meter:
OutstandingOutstandingOutstandingOutstanding


8. RETURNING: House
Network: FOX
Series Premiere: September 20th, 2010
Airs: Mondays at 8pm ET/PT
Created By: David Shore

Dr. Gregory House and his team of expert diagnosticians return for an intriguing Season Seven. That, in itself is TV nirvana. And with the shocking yet reasonable developments in last season's finale, "Help Me", Season 7 is indeed in very delicate position.

The much-talked about "Huddy" (House + Cuddy) angle finally move on to the next level with Producer Katie Jacobs stepping in to confirm that the kiss was not a hallucination. Can an actual relationship between the odd couple work? Can a happy House still be the uniquely intriguing curmudgeon that he always has been? Meanwhile, with Olivia Wilde's Hollywood career in full bloom (with her roles in upcoming high profile films like Disney's Tron: Legacy and Cowboys & Aliens), her character, Remy "Thirteen" Hadley, has reportedly taken an extended leave of absence, and will be temporarily replaced by a new character played by Amber Tamblyn (Joan of Arcadia).



Brain-Licking Potential Meter:
EpicEpicEpicEpicEpic


7. NEW: Nikita
Network: The CW
Series Premiere: September 9th, 2010
Airs: Thursdays at 9pm ET/PT
Executive Produced By: Craig Silverstein, Danny Cannon, McG, Peter Johnson

The name "Nikita" is almost synonymous with the stereotypical sexy, ass-kicking spy babe. Since Luc Besson's 1990 French cult action thriller, Nikita (unbeknown to many, it was only released in the U.S. as La Femme Nikita) where French actress Anne Parillaud first portrayed the efficient yet vulnerable death row convict-turned-secret agent, the role has been passed on to quite few actresses. In 1993, Bridget Fonda took on the role in Point of No Return, a direct remake of Luc Besson's original. In 1997, La Femme Nikita, a Canadian production based on the original French film starring Peta Wilson as the eponymous role surprised everyone by becoming a runaway hit in US, eventually lasting a critically acclaimed screening of five seasons.

So here we are, here in 2010, with Maggie Q as the "Nikita" of our time. In this fourth iteration, Nikita went through the similar death row convict-to-secret agent process by a shady black ops unit, "Division", and have has gone rogue before the beginning of the series. And she's back with a vengeance now to ensure that there's hell to pay, while the Division continue to draft new recruits (inclusive of KickAss's Lyndsy Fonseca) to mold them into the next generation of hot babe assassins.

While the sole existence of Maggie Q in a syndicated TV series is probably enough reasons for many folks to tune in to the series, let's keep our fingers crossed that this might just turned out to be something near the level of J.J. Abrams's "Alias", which thread on similar themes.



Brain-Licking Potential Meter:
DecentDecentDecent


6. NEW: No Ordinary Family
Network: ABC
Series Premiere: September 7th, 2010
Airs: Tuesdays at 8pm ET/PT
Executive Produced By: Greg Berlanti and Jon Harmon Feldman

The Shield's Vic Mackey and Dexter's Rita Morgan officially go all family-friendy with this new super-powered dramedy from ABC. Michael Chiklis (The Shield, and more famously as "The Thing" in the two installments of Fantastic Four) plays Jim Powell, a police sketch artist who's also a dad going through the rough patch when kids are growing up and apart from the family. Julie Benz (Dexter, and perhaps more famously as Darla on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel) plays his wife and family matriarch Stephanie Powell, a workaholic scientist. Feeling the need for more family bonding time, Jim brought the entire family to join Stephanice on her business trip to Sout h America. Everything changes when the family trip ended when their plane crash lands into the Amazon River.

While walking away unscathed, the Powells soon realize that they have each gain unique and distinct super powers. Dad can now leap tall buildings in a single bound while Mom is the world's fastest human, Elder Sister cn now read minds while Little Brother is now imbued with superhuman intellect.

Welcome to the live-action Incredibles. If only it can be half as good.



Brain-Licking Potential Meter:
DecentDecent


5. RETURNING: Smallville
Network: The CW
Series Premiere: September 24th, 2010
Airs: Fridays at 8pm ET/PT
Developed By: Alfred Gough and Miles Millar

It's the end of the beginning.

Looking back, who would have thought that a TV series chronicling the formative years of the Man of Steel could last ten seasons (beating the Guinness World Record for longest consecutive running United States science fiction television show—currently held by Stargate SG-1), outmaneuvering countless time slot changes and even the demise of its original network?

And now here we are, the final season, as the series get wrapped up and delivered the scene everybody have been waiting for: Tom Welling, in full red-and-blue Superman outfit, flying off before the fade-to-black. The producers have reportedly acquired the Superman costume worn by Brandon Routh in Superman Returns for this parting scene. And with the coming of Darkseid himself being the main focus of this season, expect the Apokolips minions of Darkseid, everyone from Granny Goodness, Desaad, to Glorious Godfrey, to show up before the lord of Apokolips appear until near the end.

And what other way to close off the series with the return of its notable casts? While Jonathan Kent (John Schneider), Lionel Luthor (John Glover), James Marsters (Brainiac, but returning as Brainiac 5 for this season), Kara/Supergirl (Laura Vandervoort) and the entire Justice Society are slated to appear for guest appearances, Welling has stated at San Diego Comic-Con that Michael Rosenbaum (Lex Luthor) has acknowledged the importance of Lex in the series and wants to return in some degree for the show's final season, but needs to iron details out. Kristin Kreuk (Lana Lang) is also likely to return for a closure.



Brain-Licking Potential Meter:
OutstandingOutstandingOutstandingOutstanding


4. RETURNING: Star Wars: The Clone Wars
Network: Cartoon Network
Series Premiere: September 17th, 2010
Airs: Fridays at 9pm ET/PT
Created By: George Lucas

The unexpectedly cool animated series chronicling the entire Clone Wars that was moronically left out of the prequel trilogy continues into the third season. And yes, the disturbing apprentice of Anakin Skywalker, Ahsoka Tano, survived for yet another season! What a feat. We shall see how far can she go as she starts having nightmarish premonitions.

Continuing the trend of hilariously named characters after Count Dooku, the show will be introducing Darth Maul's brother, the farcically named Savage Oppress while Asajj Ventress gets into some sticky situation with Count Dooku as Darth Sidious orders him to eliminate her.

For more of the preview, check out the trailer for the new season:



Brain-Licking Potential Meter:
DecentDecentDecent


3. NEW: Undercovers
Network: NBC
Series Premiere: September 22nd, 2010
Airs: Wednesdays at 8pm ET/PT
Created By: J. J. Abrams and Josh Reims

Co-created by J.J. Abrams, the mind behind Lost, Alias and the director behind last year's reboot of Star Trek, comes this new sexy spy series that seems to be nowhere near the much-beloved Jennifer Garner series, Alias, when its tones are concerned. More dramedy that an actual drama, the show featured a married couple who retired from the CIA and are now living the normal suburb life that they always have wanted. Or do they? With their respective passion dampened by the regular folk's lifestyle, both of them jumped at the opportunity back at the spy game and "sexpionage". And "voila", their marriage got that rekindled with fire.

Boris Kodjoe and Gugu Mbatha-Raw play Steven and Samantha Bloom in this sexy, action-packed series with quite an innovative casting choice. Expect some Mr. and Mrs. Smith sexiness combined with the cheekiness of "Hart to Hart" with a dash of Abram coolness.



Brain-Licking Potential Meter:
DecentDecentDecent


2. NEW: Sherlock
Network: PBS
Series Premiere: October 24th, 2010
Airs: Sundays on Masterpiece Mystery (check your local listings for times)
Created By: Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat

Call me a Sherlock Holmes aficionado anytime of the day. Matter of fact, I'm still rereading his classics lately. Which is the reason why this British television series caught my eye.

A contemporary update of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's classic Sherlock Holmes detective tales, the three-episode TV series transformed the eccentric sleuth into a 21st century detective, informed by modern criminology and the internet.

Benedict Cumberbatch plays the part of the Great Detective, joined by Martin Freeman as Dr. John Watson, a war veteran returning from the Afghanistan War, and became Holmes's roommate at 221 Baker Street.



Brain-Licking Potential Meter:
OutstandingOutstandingOutstandingOutstanding


1. NEW: The Walking Dead
Network: AMC
Series Premiere: October 31st, 2010
Airs: Sundays at 10pm ET/PT
Created By: Frank Darabont, Robert Kirkman (Comic) and Tony Moore (Comic)

Our most anticipated TV series premiering this Fall. And that's not because we are The Daily Zombies here. We have earlier discussed at lengths in our coverage on the progress of TThe Walking Dead, here, and here. And this is indeed one to look out for.

An adaptation of Robert Kirkman's landmark zombie comic book series, "The Walking Dead", that will be written, directed and executive produced by Frank Darabont (Director of The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile), the AMC series will be consisting six episodes of zombie-filled entertainment.



Brain-Licking Potential Meter:
EpicEpicEpicEpicEpic


A recap of the list:


13. NEW: Boardwalk Empire

12. RETURNING: Chuck

11. RETURNING: Dexter

10. NEW: The Event

9. RETURNING: Fringe

8. RETURNING: House

7. NEW: Nikita

6. NEW: No Ordinary Family

5. RETURNING: Smallville

4. RETURNING: Star Wars: The Clone Wars

3. NEW: Undercovers

2. NEW: Sherlock

1. NEW: The Walking Dead

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