The traditional gauntlet of Network Upfronts kicks off this week with every broadcast network officially presenting their fall schedules to advertisers in New York City. Existing series will fall to make way for new pilots that are ordered to series in the annual television circle of life. And even though the television calendar has largely parted ways with this week being the end-all-be-all of what's to come on the tube — you can thank premium cable, basic cable and streaming services for that — it still sets the table for overall trends.
When it comes to genre, broadcast (aside from The CW) has been particularly fickle with their commitments, and that continues this year with even less overall genre series pick-ups from the major networks.
As the week progresses, we'll update the page for changes and trailers for the new series, so you can see for yourself what's coming to your TVs and DVRs later this year...
(Updated May 14th)
Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. (Season 7)
God Friended Me (Season 2)
The Orville (Season 3)
The Good Place (Season 4)
Manifest (Season 2)
The 100 (Season 7)
Arrow (Season 8)
Black Lightning (Season 3)
The Flash (Season 6)
In the Dark (Season 2)
Legacies (Season 2)
DC's Legends of Tomorrow (Season 5)
Riverdale (Season 4)
Roswell, New Mexico (Season 2)
Supergirl (Season 5)
Supernatural (Season 15 - final season)
Picked Up to Series
"A psychological mystery that examines science vs. religion and the origins of evil. The series focuses on a skeptical female forensic psychologist who joins a priest-in-training and a carpenter to investigate and assess the Church's backlog of supposed miracles, demonic possessions and unexplained phenomena."
Assessment: Starring former Luke Cage, Mike Colter along with Katja Herbers, EVIL sounds similar to Richard Hatem's 2003 series, Miracles, that starred Skeet Ulrich. That series only lasted one season, but had a lot of potential so it will interesting to see what a contemporary take does for the concept's longevity.
"A propulsive, fact-based thriller about the emergence of a deadly, rogue artificial intelligence that combines pulse-pounding action with a layered examination of how technology is invading our lives and transforming us in ways we don’t yet understand."
Assessment: John Slattery (a.k.a. Tony Stark's dad in the Avengers movies) headlines this tech thriller from former 24 executive producer, Manny Coto. It's straight-up Skynet territory, framing the perils of all of our integrated technology, on our daily lives.
Untitled Cobie Smulders Project
"Based on the Stumptown graphic novel series, written by Greg Rucka and illustrated by Matthew Southworth and Justin Greenwood. Smulders plays Dex Parios, an army veteran who works as a private investigator in her hometown of Portland, Oregon. With a complicated personal history and only herself to rely on, she solves other people’s messes with a blind eye toward her own."
Assessment: Nothing overtly genre related in this series except for its graphic novel origins and Smulders' history playing Agent Maria Hill in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. However, Rucka's a top-notch writer and we're here for his stories being adapted well to TV.
Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist
"Zoey Clarke is a whip-smart computer coder forging her way in San Francisco. After an unusual event, she starts to hear the innermost wants and desires of the people around her through songs. At ﬁrst, she questions her own sanity but soon realizes this unwanted curse may just be an incredibly wonderful gift."
Assessment: More genre adjacent because of Zoey's ability to hear people's wants via songs, this is definitely fully leaning into the musical side with its cast of singers including Jane Levy and Skylar Astin. In a world where Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is now complete, we're open to new musical based whimsy.
"Armed with a passion for social justice and a flair for speaking her mind, Kate Kane soars onto the streets of Gotham as Batwoman, an out lesbian and highly trained street fighter primed to snuff out the failing city’s criminal resurgence. But don’t call her a hero yet. In a city desperate for a savior, Kate must overcome her own demons before embracing the call to be Gotham‘s symbol of hope."
Assessment: Already introduced in the Arrowverse crossover this season, Ruby Rose's take on Batwoman has a lot of great potential across the board. She's adding to LGBTQ representation on the superhero front, as well as giving us a complicated hero-in-the-making story set in famed Gotham City.
"In a timeless New York City, as enchanting as Riverdale is moody, aspiring fashion designer Katy Keene meets Josie McCoy, fresh off the bus to chase her musical dreams. Their world is populated with kindred-spirit starving artists, including mysterious socialite Pepper Smith and Broadway-bound performer Jorge Lopez – and his drag queen alter ego, Ginger. While their climb to the top is rife with obstacles, this found family will stop at nothing to see their names in lights. Based on the Archie Comics characters."
Assessment: A spin-off of Riverdale, this promises an entirely different tone from the mother series. More musical than genre, we're intrigued if there will be any crossovers from the Riverdale cast to help tie together storylines.
"Set in the summer after her high school graduation,18-year-old Nancy Drew (Kennedy McMann) thought she’d be leaving her hometown for college, but when a family tragedy holds her back another year, she finds herself embroiled in a ghostly murder investigation — and along the way, uncovers secrets that run deeper than she ever imagined."
Assessment: For generations of young readers who credit Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys books as their personal entry points into the world of horror fiction, we're hopeful this supernaturally-tinged adaptation brings the joy of these books to a new generation, or at least contemporizes Nancy back into pop culture relevance.