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More series debuts Sept. 22: Undercovers, Better with You, The Whole Truth

In television on 09/22/2010 at 6:18 am

What’s an “unreview”? It means I haven’t seen a preview of the pilot, but am undeterred from passing judgment. I figure if millionaire network execs can base whole careers on crossed-fingers guesswork about what shows people will like – and then routinely kill off most of their new schedule by the end of the first season – I might as well give it a try.

New on TV tonight are three shows. Here’s my best guesses.

Series name
Undercovers

Debuts
Wednesday, Sept. 22, 2010 at 8 p.m. ET on NBC

Regularly airs
Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on NBC

Premise
Loving couple run a successful catering business. Until, like Michael Corleone, they get pulled back in. In the case of the Blooms, they’re being pulled back into the spy game, from which they retired five years before. They didn’t realize how much they missed their old lives.

Primary cast and crew
Boris Kodjoe (Resident Evil: Afterlife, Second Time Around) is Steven Bloom, who looks pretty damn buff for a caterer. Likes it when his wife coins new words.

Gugu Mbatha-Raw (MI-5, Doctor Who, Bonekickers) is Samantha Bloom, also pretty cute. Bickers. Coins word “sexspionage.

Gerald McRaney (Women’s Murder Club. Jericho, Deadwood) is Carlton Shaw, their spy boss.

Buzz buzz
New project from J.J. Abrams (Alias, Lost, Fringe). Guaranteed audience, devoted audience.

The unreview: After NOT having seen the pilot I predict…
Love, love, love the trailer. Chemistry bubbling over. Fun. Action-packed. Only risk I can see right now: cuteness overload. I’ll risk it.

Real reviews
Seven review son Metacritic.com, average rating of 60 out of 100

Series name
Better with You

Debuts
Wednesday, Sept. 22 at 8:30 p.m. ET on ABC

Regularly airs
Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC

Premise
Maddie and Ben have been together for nine years. Who cares about getting married? Except what’s the deal with baby sister Mia and Casey, getting married and deciding to have a baby after dating for just a few weeks? Their parents, married 35 years, are … married for 35 years. Three couples. Together for different lengths of time. Huh.

Primary cast and crew
JoAnna Garcia (Gossip Girl, Privileged) is Mia. Ain’t love grand?

Jennifer Finnigan (Close to Home, Committed, Crossing Jordan) is Maddie. She’s not an old maid. Dammit.

Josh Cooke (I Love You Man, Young People F—ing) is Ben, who is trying to show Casey the ropes.

Jake Lacy is Casey, new boyfriend, who’s trying really hard to fit in.

Kurt Fuller (Supernatural) is Joel, dad.

Debra Jo Rupp (That 70s Show) is Vicky, mom.

The unreview: After NOT having seen the pilot I predict…
Thin premise, but strong characters could make this work. Maybe. Debra Jo Rupp is definitely a plus, having been so great on That 70s Show. Plus Jennifer Finnigan is a Montrealer, so let’s all give it a chance, right?

Real reviews
Seven reviews on Metacritic.com, average rating of 60 out of 100.

Series name
The Whole Truth

Debuts
Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET on ABC and Citytv

Regularly airs
Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET on ABC and Citytv

Premise
Here’s a line right out of the show’s trailer: “The defence. The Prosecution. Let the battle begin … to uncover the whole truth.” So, trials with equal dramatic weight and time given to both sides of the case, as opposed to most legal shows which focus on one side.

Primary cast and crew
Rob Morrow (Numb3rs, Northern Exposure) is Jimmy Brogan, the defence.

Maura Tierney (News Radio, ER, Rescue Me) is Kathryn Peale, the prosecution.

Eamonn Walker (Kings, Justice, Oz) is  Sr. ADA Terrence “Edge” Edgecomb, who works with Kathryn.

Anthony Ruivivar (Third Watch, Tropic Thunder) is Alejo Salazar

Christine Adams (Pushing Daisies, Nip/Tuck, Home Again) is Lena Boudreaux

Sean Wing (You Again, South of Nowhere) is Chad Griffin

Buzz buzz
Hello again Jerry Bruckheimer! Must you have a show on every night?

The unreview: After NOT having seen the pilot I predict…
Love Maura Tierney. Can’t look away from Eamonn Walker. Still mourning the loss of Rob Morrow’s mojo (Numb3rs? Did you see even an episode? Holy joyless exercise in overacting.). Tiring of Jerry Bruckheimer’s slick promise that leaves you wanting to watch anything else 10 minutes after the show starts (see: new show Chase, Monday nights).

Real reviews
Metacritic.com has six reviews, with an average rating of 54.

Wondering when the other new series and returning series are kicking off?
Click here for my select list of fall 2010 premieres and other important dates. Who am I to tell you what to do, but you could consider bookmarking it…

— Denise Duguay

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