It’s upfront season at the broadcast networks, which means the first look at many of the new shows coming your way in the 2018-2019 season. NBC was up first, and the Peacock Network is still riding high on a wave of fan support after picking up Brooklyn Nine-Nine, following its cancelation on FOX. But the cops of the 99th precinct won’t be back on TV until 2019, which leaves the network’s upcoming slate of comedies and dramas to carry viewers through the fall and winter, and now we’ve got our first look at some of those new series.
While the presentation also included other networks that fly under the NBCUniversal banner, like SYFY and Telemundo, we’ll be sticking to what’s coming to the network in the fall — though you can check out the new trailer for George R.R. Martin’s Nightflyers here, if you’d like.
In the meantime, to appeal to advertisers, the network delivered fairly lengthy trailers for Manifest, New Amsterdam, I Feel Bad, Abby’s, The Enemy Within, and The Village — though, for the time being, only the first three have been released online. Abby’s, the new comedy from The Good Place creator Mike Schur actually played up the show’s interesting production angle, in that it will be filmed outdoors, though still in front of a live studio audience. The series, starring Natalie Morales (Trophy Wife, Santa Clarita Diet) and Neil Flynn (Scrubs, The Middle), is like Cheers, if Cheers were set in Sam Malone’s backyard in San Diego. This one shouldn’t take much to sell, since Schur, Morales, and Flynn should be enough to get most people watching.
The Village, on the other hand, sees a strong cast that includes Frankie Faison (The Wire, Banshee), Dominic Chianese (The Sopranos), Warren Christie (The Catch, Zoo), Michaela McManus (The Orville, The Magicians) and more as tenants in a Brooklyn apartment building. The series definitely looks to be in the same vein as the network’s current ratings winner This Is Us, so it will be interesting to see whether or not lightning strikes twice for NBC this fall. As far as The Enemy Within, while it’s great to see Jennifer Carpenter on TV again, after CBS’ one-and done Limitless, this Blacklist-style action series is a definite wait and see.
Other trailers include:
I Feel Bad
The three new shows appear to be fairly standard network television fare.The sole comedy, I Feel Bad, looks like a show that might have started out on ABC — black-ish, Fresh Off the Boat, or Splitting Up Together — and somehow wondered onto the NBC lot. As far as New Amsterdam and Manifest are concerned, the two shows are surprisingly sincere in their deliveries. Perhaps the time is right for a fight-the-system medical drama, and since NBC’s first Ryan Eggold vehicle, the Blacklist spinoff, The Blacklist: Redemption essentially spun out, this sentimental doctor show might be just what the actor and the network need.
Manifest, the latest attempt to turn a Lost-style mystery into a ratings phenomenon, plays the sentimental card, too. It could very well be the next version of Lost networks have been chasing since 2004, but since there isn’t a network yet that has been able to duplicate that show’s appeal, this trailer doesn’t inspire much confidence that NBC has cracked the code.