In a year that has fewer new fall shows coming to broadcast television than any year in recent memory, being designated a “highly anticipated show” is a little like winning a ten-person marathon: you’re all top 10.
That said, of the nearly two dozen trailers released by the five major networks during this Upfronts week, there are some clear standouts.
With more than 2.8 million views on its YouTube trailer in just two days, there’s no denying Cobie Smulders’ return to a starring role on network television is welcomed. The “How I Met Your Mother” alum will call upon the action skills honed through her years in the Marvel Cinematic Universe for this role, where she plays an assertive and sharp-witted army veteran Dex Parios. The series is based on a graphic novel series of the same name.
This “black-ish” spin-off centered on the origin story of Rainbow Johnson (Tracee Ellis Ross) seems to share all the qualities that make the mothership a charming must-watch, but it could see additional benefits from its ’80s-set premise. Hey, it’s working out well for “The Goldbergs.”
Creator Michael Schur, the man behind “Parks and Recreation” and “The Good Place,” tells the story of a former NYC Councilman (Kal Penn), who tries to reconnect with his community after his downfall by helping a group of diverse individuals become American citizens.
“Batwoman” (The CW)
Starring Ruby Rose as Gotham’s newest vigilante Kate Kane, the first series centered on a LGBTQ+ superhero appears to lean into the darkness of the Batman universe. This will likely set it apart from other shows on the network like “The Flash” and the glossier world of “Supergirl,” who it shares Sunday nights with on CW’s fall schedule.
The original cast of “Beverly Hills, 90210” returns to TV as what Fox has called “heightened versions of themselves” in this serialized drama “that is inspired by their real lives and relationships.” Time will tell, however, whether this non-reboot reboot will play well with fans of the original series. For now, it’s certainly building buzz thanks to natural curiosity.
“Prodigal Son” (FOX)
This creepy drama recalls previous serial killer shows like “The Following.” That’s part of the appeal. In this one, Tom Payne (“The Walking Dead”) plays the son of a convicted serial killer (Michael Sheen), who grew up to be a criminal profiler.
CBS alum Pauley Perrette takes a stab at comedy in this show about a rich couple who has to move in with a relative after losing their fortune. She is joined on the cast by “Jane the Virgin” favorite Jaime Camil, who wastes no time coming back to TV. Thank goodness.