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Fox's New Fall 2015 Shows: First Impressions
May 12, 2015  | By David Bianculli

Last fall, Fox’s only successful new series was Gotham, which explains why the network is aggressively targeting young demos and genre fans next season. But for fall, the shows look quite promising…

Some of the big news for Fox doesn’t arrive until the calendar turns in 2016. That’s when American Idol presents its final season (an event about which I just wrote for the CNN website), and – in a much more anticipated event – The X Files returns for a six-episode special reprise, with both David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson on board.

The return of The X-Files is big news, as was the temporary return of Kiefer Sutherland for a brief 24 reboot, Live Another Day, last year.

That’s exciting. It’s in the creation of successful new shows, though, where Fox has faltered, other than with Gotham, which was impressive, and involving, from the start. Other shows last fall were less impressive, from the inferior Gracepoint remake (a wan American Broadchurch) and the under-performing Red Band Society to the clumsy Mulaney and the execrable, quickly canceled Utopia.

For the fall, Fox is front-loading its new series, adding all of them to the first three days of the week. Monday at 9 p.m. ET, paired with Gotham, is a TV spinoff of the sci-fi movie Minority Report, with all the bells and whistles and genre intrigue that title implies. The teaser clip is better at showing what it looks like than whether it’s worth seeing – but at least it’s worth a look:



Tuesday at 8 p.m. ET, Fox presents Grandfathered, a sitcom that sounds cookie-cutter in its somewhat conventional premise: a confirmed bachelor’s life is upended when he’s suddenly visited by the son he never knew he had – and his son’s toddler child as well. There’s not a moment of what happens next that should surprise anyone, but since the grandfather in question is played – and, in the teaser clip, played well – by John Stamos, this comedy could build a fast following:


Another new Fox comedy, following Grandfathered at 8:30 pm. ET on Tuesdays, could just as easily have been staged as a one-hour light drama. It’s called Grinder, and stars Rob Lowe as the long-running TV star of a popular legal drama series. When that show ends, he returns to his family roots, and tries to join the family business – of actual lawyers, trying actual cases. What makes this work, at least in the trailer, is not pnly a playful Lowe, but the actors playing his brother and father: Fred Savage and William Devane, respectively. Looks like fun:


Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET, on the network’s all-new night, is the latest from the folks behind Glee and American Horror Story. This time it’s a limited comedy horror series, or miniseries, or anthology series, or whatever they can get away with calling it, called Scream Queens, and seems to be about a sorority where there’s at least one murder per week. It’s got quite a cast: Emma Roberts from American Horror Story, original “scream queen” Jamie Lee Curtis, Lea Michele from Glee, and a roster of co-stars and recurring players.

Is it any good? It sounds like it will be – but it’s hard to tell from the teaser, which is pretty much all tease and no context:



Finally, there’s Rosewood, Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET, starring Morris Chestnut as a brilliant Miami medical examiner – a sort of cross between Dexter and Sherlock. The preview cut-down didn’t impress me much, so I won’t share it here. But, as with all these series, I’ll let you know what I really think once full preview episodes are provided.

Meanwhile, expect to sample most of these new fall shows, and don’t forget about January: The X Files is out there…

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