The most promising new genre TV shows of the Fall 2015 season…

Posted on September 25th, 2015
Posted on September 25th, 2015

by Coop Cooper

With far too many original shows in development to fit into a feature article, I’ll focus on the ‘genre’ shows which have some sort of sci-fi/horror/fantasy element to them. Here are a few of the brand new shows premiering this season that look watchable and have already gotten some critical acclaim (P.S. “Fear the Walking Dead” was such a disappointment, I didn’t even include it in the ‘not-so-hot’ list):

The Muppets” (Sept. 22, 7pm on ABC) – Ditching its classic variety-show format, The Muppets are back in a new narrative comedy series similar in tone and format to “The Office”. The show has already courted controversy from parent groups claiming the show is too edgy and adult-oriented for a show starring Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy. Feminist groups also don’t like that Kermit has moved on to a younger, thinner pig lady after breaking up with Mrs. Piggy. The show may turn out great, but I will miss the skits and variety acts of the original.

Scream Queens” (Sept. 22 7pm on FOX) – “Halloween” alumnus Jamie Lee Curtis and “Scream 4” star Emma Roberts headline this parody (?) knockoff of teen slasher horror films. The all-star cast gives it the appearance it could be a cut above MTV’s “Scream” series, even if it is ripping it off.

Heroes Reborn” (Sept. 24 7pm on NBC) – Tim Kring’s reboot of the much beloved/hated superhero series picked a perfect time for a comeback. However, it will be for naught if Kring doesn’t learn from his grievous mistakes in the original series that alienated the fans and lead to the show’s early cancellation (slow/dangling storylines, characters constantly swapping/losing powers, etc…). The characters of Noah, Hiro, Matt, The Haitian, Micah and Suresh (why him?) will return, but with “Chuck” actor Zachary Levi as the new lead.

Ash vs. Evil Dead” (Oct. 31 8pm on Starz) – The cult horror movie franchise is resurrected as a gory, comedic cable series starring an aging Bruce Campbell as the buffoonish, wise-cracking Ash who traded his severed hand for a chainsaw while battling demons in the 1980’s (“Evil Dead 2”) and in Medieval England (“Army of Darkness”). Now the demons are back and Ash along with his trusty sidekick Pablo and Lucy Lawless must destroy them in the most disgusting ways possible. For horror fans, this is the most anticipated series of the year.

Jessica Jones” (Nov. 20 on Netflix) – Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter), a superhero who hangs up her cape due to post-traumatic stress disorder, becomes a NYC private eye with a specialty in dealing with superhuman cases. Meanwhile, her nemesis Zebediah Kilgrave A.K.A. The Purple Man (David Tennant) stalks her from the shadows, using his mind-control powers to manipulate her life. Her Marvel Comics storyline will be crossing over with the 2nd season of “Daredevil” and the upcoming “Luke Cage” series.

The Man in the High Castle” (Nov. 20 on Amazon Prime) – Based off of the Philip K. Dick novel of the same name, “High Castle” envisions a world in which the Axis powers win World War II with the Japanese Empire overseeing everything west of rockies and the Nazis ruling the rest of the U.S. territory while a resistance movement arises to undermine them both. Amazon released the free-to-watch pilot for this show back in January of this year and the response was so positive, they ordered an entire season.

The Expanse” (Dec. 14 on Syfy) – Syfy hasn’t made a watchable space opera since the “Battlestar Galactica” remake, but this adaptation of the award-winning novel series shows promise. The show stars Thomas Jane as a hard-boiled detective on a mining space station who uncovers a vast interstellar conspiracy while investigating the disappearance of a young woman. Based on the scope of the story, the strong cast, the better-than-average special effects and the early critical acclaim, this could be one of Syfy’s most ambitious series ever.

Childhood’s End” (Dec. 14 on Syfy) – This six-hour miniseries adapted from an Arthur C. Clarke novel (widely considered to be his best) tells the story of a ‘peaceful’ alien invasion in which the ‘Overlords’ claim they only wish to supervise human development and keep us from hurting ourselves and each other, but the aliens obviously have hidden motives. This reminds me of the original 1983 NBC miniseries “V” and looks VERY similar to the upcoming USA series “Colony” due in January.

DC’s Legends of Tomorrow” (midseason 2016 on The CW) – I’m cheating since this one doesn’t come out until January, but the online teaser trailer for the pilot looked so epic and inspired, I couldn’t resist. Time-traveling cop Rip Hunter assembles a team of superheroes, villains and misfits to fight immortal nemesis Vandal Savage who has been trying to take over the world for thousands of years. The team must time-travel to stop him at his every attempt at domination in the past, present and the future. The team consists of popular 2nd-string DC comics characters like The Atom, Firestorm, White Canary, Captain Cold, Heatwave and Hawkgirl (Green Arrow and The Flash make cameo appearances). This one looks like a big hit in the making.

New sci-fi/horror/fantasy shows that don’t look so hot: “Minority Report”, “Limitless”, “The Bastard Executioner”, “Supergirl”, “Blindspot”, “The Player”, “Hand of God” and “Angel from Hell”.

Most welcomed returning shows: “Gotham”, “The Flash”, “The 100”, “Rick and Morty”, “Sleepy Hollow”, “The Walking Dead”, “The Leftovers”, “Doctor Who” and “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.”.

– Coop

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