Now that the network upfronts are out, and we have gotten the show descriptions, they are starting to get some clips of those shows out there, all trying to get you excited about their new offerings and drum up ad support. The first clips I have gotten to look at are for new CBS series The Big Bang Theory, Viva Laughlin, Cane, and Moonlight.
First up is The Big Bang Theory, which someone described as a retread of Stacked, the defunct Pam Anderson sitcom that ran for a brief time on FOX. That description seems apt. It features a hot, but not terribly bright, blonde (at least at first glance) surrounded by a few guys with definite leanings towards the nerd side of life. This will be filling the hole left by the canceled Jason Ritter series, The Class, in between hits How I Met Your Mother and Two and a Half Men. Frankly, I don't see this one going anywhere, and as goofy as The Class was, I think I am going to miss it. The new series features Johnny Galecki (Roseanne, Suicide Kings) as one of the nerds and Kaley Cuoco (Eight Simple Rules, Charmed) as the sexy neighbor. The clip has the guys talking in the living room, interrupted by a towel-clad Kaley with a shower problem. I don't know, the humor strikes me as forced and not terribly funny. Take a look at the clip and judge for yourself.
Viva Lauglin is a musical/drama that will be on Thursday night and has the starpower of Hugh Jackman as executive producer. In addition to his screen credit, he will also have a recurring role. The series follows a businessman who has a strong desire to get a casino going in Laughlin, Nevada. I am intrigued by the musical aspects, but am unsure how well it will work for a television series. CBS has offered three clips of the show, two of them featuring musical numbers, and they have served to interest me even more; even without much of the surrounding context, they offer something different to the primtime landscape. The first clip is of Hugh Jackman, arriving via helicopter and singing the Rolling Stones' "Sympathy for the Devil" as he makes his entrance from the roof down into the casino. Second clip features Owen Lloyd, as Ripley Holden, singing Elvis Presley's "Viva, Las Vegas." The last clip is a non-singing meeting between the two where Lloyd is trying to get Jackman to buy in as an investor. The series, a remake of the UK series Blackpool, looks good. I am eager to see how it plays out.
Jimmy Smits co-stars with Nestor Carbonell and Hector Elizondo, at least in this clip, of the new drama Cane. The show centers on a family who has made a fortune in the rum and sugar business. The family is at a crossroads and the son (Carbonell) and the brother-in-law (Smits) of the Duque family have differing views on the future of the business. This clip has the two butting heads with Elizondo in between as they talk about pursuing sugar, as opposed to rum, as the primary export. I cannot say that it excites me, but the three featured in the clip I like.
The final show in this group of clips is the vampiric series Moonlight. Taking cues from Forever Knight and Angel, it features a vampire working as a detective. I like the idea, and still have attachments to Angel, so I am interested in how this one plays out, but this clip has left me less than excited. In the bit, we see Alex O'Loughlin, as Nick St. John, in his first moments as a member of the undead, being turned by his lover. This really left me flat, what with the voiceover and all — it just seemed like I had seen it many times before. Still, I am willing to give it the benefit of the doubt. We shall see.