The Upfronts: CBS

Looks like CBS had a pretty good run last year, it has the most returning shows of any of the networks and the fewest cancellations (bar The CW). Unfortunately that means there is precious little space on the schedule for new shows, and it therefore also has a slimmest pickings for potential new hits.

What’s out
Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior proved that just rehashing a popular current show didn’t automatically create success, I thought it was a bad idea from the start so I feel faintly smug that it’s been disappeared. I don’t think anyone will really be crying over the cancellation of Bleep/&*$£ My Dad Says either, not least to the people who could never work out how to deal with its name.

Medium was wrapped up after seven seasons, I never watched it though so I have no idea whether that’s sad or not. Also off are Chaos, which I’ll admit I never even heard of but was apparently a comedy drama about rogue CIA spies and was pulled from the schedules after three episodes. The Defenders and Mad Love also didn’t make it beyond their first seasons.

What’s back
CBS is home of the procedural and the spin off and all the usual suspects are in the returning slots. Coming back are both NCISs, all three CSIs (including the slightly unexpected CSI:NY which may be a season too much for me), Blue Bloods (with Tom Selleck’s mustache returns), Criminal Minds: Original Flavour (with JJ returning, yay!) Hawaii Five-O (mindless action in the sun) and The Mentalist (I gave up a couple of seasons back). Rounding out the dramas is the massively successful and rather brilliant The Good Wife.

Also back are a load of comedies (Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Mike & Molly and Rules of Engagement) although the only one that anyone will be talking about is Two and a Half Men – minus Charlie Sheen, plus Ashton Kutcher.

What’s new
2 Broke Girls – posh girl has to struggle by with no money, finds sassy waitress to help. According to the behind the scenes, it’s “really funny”. I see no evidence of that I’m afraid.

A Gifted Man – rich doctor falls in love with a ghost. Painfully saccharine.

Unforgettable – it wouldn’t be CBS if they weren’t trying a new procedural, this one has the hook that the lead character has a perfect memory. It doesn’t look bad, we’ll have to see how well they use the idea.

Person of Interest – not really sure what’s going on with this one, something about two blokes preventing crimes using a combination of technology and extreme violence. It comes across a little dry and intense in the trailer, but I’ll give it a try.

How to be a Gentleman – the third new comedy this year about men being MEN. Not as painful as the two that ABC offered up as at least this one also features the ‘perfect gentleman’, but it still looks awful.

The 2-2 – there’s no trailer for this midseason show, but the fact that’s it’s exec produced by Robert De Niro is probably enough to get the hype going. The synopsis makes it sound a bit unremarkable (six rookie cops on the streets of New York) but the character outlines () and creative oomph behind it make me quietly excited.

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